The stories that lead them together where many and varied, but they had a common thread: betrayal. That betrayal finally had an origin. Brendo wasn’t certain that Fickelfum’s information was accurate, but he was willing to find out. They talked Dafad into watching their rear and waved a red flag in Hulgrim’s face promising a good fight if they were caught.
They were caught, there was a fight, though if you asked Hulgrim it was anything but good (punching an old librarian in the nose is hardly “honorable combat”). The chaos came pouring out into the street next Dafad making a hasty retreat from the growing mob, most of whom were just confused at the sudden commotion coming from the usually quiet abby.
Dafad and Hulgrim were disgusted when they learned that all of that was for a “worthless” book. Dafad was a little more forgiving when he found out that it might lead the party to those that had harmed his friend, and the dwarf enjoyed hearing that it might lead them to a fight (though was wary that the fight might be with more librarians). The marking in the tome being the same symbol as the group that had burned down the monesitary, the party decided to head to the city where the book was made, hoping to get some more information about the odd symbol and its origins.
As the road bent to circle around a lake, the party came across a mutilated body. Seemingly the work of a pack of wolves Dafad pointed out that the bites and cuts looked more deliberate than a normal wolf attacks (also it was very unusual for them to leave a body with so much meat). In the corpses hand the party discovered a note:
Hail to thee of might and valor.
I, a lowly servant of Barovia, send honor to thee. We plead for thy so desperately needed assistance.
The Love of my life, Ireen Kolyance, has been afflicted by an evil so deadly that even the good people of our village cannot protect her. She langushes from her wound, and I would have her saved from this menace.
There is much wealth in this community. I offer all that might be had to thee and thy fellows if thou shalt but answer my desperate plea.
Come quickly for her time is at hand! All that I have shall be thine!
As Ficklefum finished reading this to the party, howels fill the air and the party soon see’s several figures emerge from the woods. Three large wolves growl and glare down at the party, and from further up the path a fourth much larger wolf appears. The large black form of the wolf glares down at the party, its eyes glowing a bright and unnatural red and seems to command the other wolves forward.
Ficklefum shot forth a spell at large black wolf and Hulgrim ran forward trying to engage with this same “alpha” looking down upon them, though he was quickly intercepted by two other wolves as they descended upon the party. As the wolves began to tear at Ficklefum and Hulgrim, Bardo ran forward to help the tiny gnome defend himself from snarling creatures and Dafad launched a magical stone at the larger wolf before joining the fray.
As the fight continued the weather began to shift, what had once been a sunny day, turns cold and cloudy, mist begins to poor out from the forest and rain starts to fall. The large wolf continues to glare and call forth more wolves to attack the group (seemingly targeting Ficklefum, who was still holding the note). The rain increases and the fog thickens, soon it’s so dense that the party is swinging blindly through the mist trying to fell the many wolves continuing to harass them.
When the last wolf fell, most of the party were in agreement that they needed flee…most because Hulgrim was sure that the fight should be continued (despite his only being alive and standing thanks to the magical aid of Dafad). As he tried to charge forth blindly into the mist, the howling of the wolves reaching a crescendo, his friends acted in unison to trip him sending him tumbling to the ground and preventing his suicide charge. As the party bent down to help him up they noticed that the ground beneath their feet had changed. Where once they had been standing on a road they now stood in a grassy grey field. Suddenly the wolves howling ceased and a single raven cawed from somewhere out in the mist.