This rundown castle was infested with grick, goblins, hobgoblins, bugbears, and an owl bear. Deep in the castle we find Klarg and two drow. They have a dwarf held captive, who they have obviously been torturing for information. We defeat Klarg and one of the drow but the other escapes. Our interrogation of Klarg confirms that he has been working for the Black Spider to help her find Wave Echo Cave. Klarg killed Grunden and has left his brother Nurow for dead. Certain that we have all the information we can get from Klarg, Gimble runs him through.
Reidoth revives Nurow who confirms everything that Klarg told us. Based on what weve found in the castle we can assume that Grundens traveling companion, Sildar Hallwinter, found the same fate as Grunden. Nurow will guide us to Wave Echo Cave but asks that we help him return to Phandalin first. We agree, after this journey we could use a good nights rest as well.
After a nice long rest we spend the day in Phandalin. Habin reassures us that the Roughians have not been a problem and Glasstaff is going to be transported to Neverwinter very soon. Habin, who is enamored with Malcer, offers him the position of Sheriff of Phandalin. Malcer accepts the position though he will see to the destruction of the Black Spider first. The rest of the day is spent selling, trading, and purchasing gear. Now fully equipped, we are ready to head to Wave Echo Cave.
The village of Thundertree had been left in ruins. It was not, however, empty. In our search for Reidoth, we crossed paths with ash zombies and strange little stick creatures called twig blights. These battles proved to be simple enough for our party and we quickly found the druid.
Reidoth was holed up in one of the few well kept buildings in the village. We asked him if he could help us find Grunden and he agreed. He just had one favor to ask first. Help him rid the village of the giant spiders and the green dragon, Venomfang, who have taken residence there.
After some rather primitive “negotiation”, the dragon agrees to leave. When we encounter his band of followers they are easy to persuade to follow him. The spiders put up a good fight but in the end we eradicate them as well.
Happy that the menaces of the village have been taken care of, Reidoth tells us that Klarg and his band of goblins have Grunden in their hideout, Cragmaw Castle. He agrees to help us rescue him. We set out first thing in the morning.
After a good night sleep at the Sleeping Giant, we head to the abandoned Tresendar Manor, the hideout of the Redbrand Roughians. Within its dilapidated walls we encounter and dispatch several fiends; everything from the likes of skeletons and bugbears to a strange magic using creature called a nothic. Working alongside these beasts were the Redbrand Roughians. Deep in the hidout we find the leader of the Roughians, Glassstaff. After a brief skirmish, Glassstaff surrenders. Among his possessions we find a dwarfs journal and a letter from the Black Spider that reads:
My spies in Neverwinter tell me that strangers are due to arrive in Phandalin. They could be working for the dwarves. Capture them if you can, kill them if you must, but dont allow them to upset our plans. See that any dwarven maps in their possession are delivered to me with haste. I am counting on you , Ilarno. Dont disappoint me.
With Ilarno in our custody, we return to the townmasters hall for questioning. After some probing we learn that Klarg, a bugbear, is helping to supply muscle to the Roughians. He is doing this under the command of The Black Spider. As we suspected, The Black Spider is a drow who is searching for Wave Echo Cave. Unfortunately, Ilarno didnt know where Klarg or The Black Spider could be found. Habin has agreed to see that justice finds Ilarno.
Now that the Redbrand Roughians are eliminated we decide to have a drink at the Sleeping Giant. Here we are meet with a heros welcome. We agree that our next objective should be locating Grunden. As we are discussing how to do this, a halfling called Qelline Alderleaf introduces herself and says that she may be able to help. She doesnt know where Grunden is but a friend of hers, the druid Reidoth, may be able to help. He is currently living in the abandoned city of Thundertree. We will set out for Thundertree at first light.