Today’s session picked up exactly where the last one left off, with our heroic party holed up in the fort’s bell tower, trying to figure out how to defend themselves and come out victorious against the giant threat.
As the hours tick by, the party starts feeling a sense of dread that progressively gets worse hour by hour, affecting their ability to make decisions and ultimately make them ineffective should a combat start.
As the midnight hour nears, Earnan hears something, not with his hears, but rather with his mind; a strange voice saying “Droja…they are here…”. Unable to communicate with this ‘voice’, Earnan shares what he’s heard, and the only thing the party can ascertain is that Droja is an orcish word.
The party decides that they need to get out of the tower, but don’t dare risk a frontal assault on the ogres in the courtyard below, and so they start a ranged assault, in the dark from the protection of the bell tower. They find that the ogres have backed away from the tower, to the far corner of the courtyard, but thanks to some well placed ranged shots, and a timely fireball from the group wizard, the ogres go down.
With two of the four ogres still burning, a half-orc woman makes her up to the bell tower, stating “Friends, please put your weapons down. I mean you no harm”.
This woman, Droja, tells the party of their coming, even telling the party of their victories, and losses, citing specific things that only the party would have known.
The party tells them that there is a cleric in this fort that wants to speak with them, and after much deliberation, the party agrees to meet with the cleric, as long as Droja joins them.
Now in the main floor of the bell tower, which is in actuality a church of Iomedae, the resident cleric, a ghost asks for help to free his soul, a proposition that Davik, the party’s own Cleric of Iomedae cannot refuse.
The party sets off to explore the buildings in the main level of the fort, and handily defeats the fort’s butcher, an unfortunate Giant with an unfortunate urge for fresh meat. Upon the “chef’s” death, the party cannot decide in which direction to go, and on an impulse, Earnan open the door to the larder, triggering a series of incredibly unfortunate events whereby the party turns on themselves and starts attacking the closest living creature. 30 seconds later, 2 party members and Droja are near-death, 1 member has run up to the top of the building, and Earnan is left standing in the hallway staring at Cassie, who is staring back at him, unsure of what just happened, and horrified. Cassie, Earnan and Kade drag Bruno, Davik and Droja back to the chapel, where the ghostly cleric heals the party, who decide that it might be best to stay the night in the church.
The next night, the party sets off to clear the remainder of the building te started to clear the night before, re-triggering the haunt, this time only affecting Vinnic, and eventually finding the mess hall, and its macabre residents. After handily defeating them, the party moves on to the main fortress.
There they find two Hill Giants guarding the door beyond, a near deadly encounter, but ultimately successful.
After clearing the next few halls, they find a large chamber with two caged manticores. They party attempt to parlay with these intelligent creatures, and ultimately agree to set the two creatures free. But the starved creatures turn on the party, and are ultimately slain, one by the strategic use of Kade’s “Tiny Hut” and good group tactics. Further searching of the various rooms, the party finds a long since dead body in what appears to be a small latrine, and believe this body might be just what they need to set the ghostly cleric free.