Session 6: Rescue at Blackraven Manor
After managing to rescue the missing girl, and getting a good nights sleep, the party prepares their wagon to head north to investigate the missing guard, alongside gifts of weapons from the smith, cheers of good luck from the townsfolk, and warnings that today’s mission is time-sensitive from the DM. After a day’s travel they reach the manor-house, which looks very impressive, but very deserted. They scout it out and find 3 entrances, and then decide to split the party up.
Rurik, Mialee and Ron Weasle’s story:
They decide to go in through the front door and find an ornate hallway with 3 doors, and a bunch of footprints that Rurik recognises as bugbear prints. Playing a game of ‘pick a random door to go through’, they are confronted with a bugbear standing on the other side. In fact four of them. Rurik takes quite a bit of damage but rallies on bravely until Mialee shouts “DUCK” and a magical flame shoots over his head and incinerates them all. They find a few bits (which they pocket), including a set of keys. They unlock the next room, a study, and find a LOT more treasure, but decide to leave it there as they are in someone else’s home. The next room they find has been used as makeshift barracks, but is now strewn with half-eaten corpses and smells BAD. They also find a door barricaded with a pile of furniture and warnings of “DANGER – DEAD INSIDE” scrawled on the wall. Showing a previously unseen sensible side, they decide to leave it alone, and explore elsewhere. They find another locked door, and eventually remember they have keys.Inside is a stately bedroom, and a group of badly hurt, shackled guards. They rescue the guards, and heal them, before they start to hear voices from down the corridor...
Kray, Cerric and Clara’s story:
The other three sneak in through the back door, past a pile of burned food and suspicious bones. As soon as they are inside, they hear an angry voice coming from behind a door. They open it to find a kitchen, and are immediately attacked by a very angry bugbear chef. Cerric and Clara trap it behind the table, while Kray stealthily takes it down. Looting the room, they find a chefs hat and a lacy pinafore, which Kray convinces Cerric to wear. The con pays off, because the next room they try contains a couple more bugbears arguing over some badly cooked food. Kray manages to convince them that Cerric is a replacement chef, and they convince them that better food is available, and manage to lock the two in the kitchen. Heading round, they find a library and the guards weapons, which they decide to keep for themselves. Finally, they come across a pile of four charred bugbears, before they hear voices from along the corridor...
The Group Reunited:
Both parties quickly realise that the voices they can hear belong to each other, and catch on the details of the other groups adventure so far. They work out that they have rescued the surviving guard and their belongings (there is a bit of back-pedalling as they convince the guard that they didn’t really steal all the weapons), and the guard suggests that they all just get out of there while they still can. They decide to send the guards back to Phandalin, but want to carry on exploring. They find another locked room, a store room that looks worse for wear and was locked from outside. Searching it starts another battle with a Carrion crawler, which is over pretty quickly. They calculate that there is only one room left, which is barricaded and filled with zombies. They come up with a pretty good plan which involves letting them out slowly and picking them off one by one, which works very effectively, with only Rurik taking damage. Slowly they pick their way through the undead until no more remain. They have a quick chat about time, before deciding to go back and loot the study as they now know all the family are dead.
Epilogue: The Importance of Time
Eventually, they decide to saunter out of the manor, chuffed with the work they have done, and rightly so. Unfortunately, they left it too late (I tried to warn them - DM), and meet with an angry-looking Green Dragon who has now returned. They try to dive out of the way of a blast of poison breath, but only Rurik has the honed instincts to even try to dive aside. The townsfolk raise a memorial to them for all the good work they did in their short time. They were friends and heroes. They will be missed.