Empire of the Ghouls Session 14 – Castle Orzelbirg

In our 14th session, the characters reached Castle Orzelbirg where they need to rescue captured Spear Maidens of Hope and recover the Holy Robes of Sister Adelind.

29th Redleaf, 92 FY

The characters and the two Spear Maidens head for Orzelbirg. Late in the day they run into a Ghost Knight patrol. They make short work of them, capturing one of their number, and taking their uniforms and two horses. The hapless fellow explains he was conscripted and keen to desert. He reveals that the Dobrogosts who held the castle before General Grimslade had a secret escape tunnel built, and Lord Dobrogost may have used this to escape when the castle fell to the undead.

30th Redleaf

The party arrives at Orzelbirg. While the others keep watch on the outskirts, Bubbles and The Gears enter the village and talk to the locals in the Hungry Wolf tavern. Bubbles offers a “10 gold piece piece” to Rustem, if he will let the characters borrow his wagon tomorrow.

Joined by the others, they head into the woods in search of the cave said to hold the entrance to the secret tunnel. They meet a woodsman named Bravan who leads them to the cave. Kalo, Penumbra’s familiar, scouts inside, then Bubbles leads the way. The party slay a mated pair of owlbears; their nest conceals a narrow passageway leading steeply upwards.

Following the passage for 1,500 feet, the characters arrive at a secret door. Bubbles opens it and is set upon by four hideous skin bats. The others rush in to help. Once the bats are dealt with, Zygmunt casts aid on himself and the two Spear Maidens. 

Skin bat
Skin bat

Penumbra sends Kalo out through an arrow slit to scout the castle: there are guards on the battlements and towers, undead dogs in the inner bailey, a grotesque ghoulsteed in the outer courtyard, and a gargoyle on the roof of the round tower they are in. 

The party head upstairs to the second floor where they encounter Chapman Bogun, a cowardly gnomish merchant from Niemheim. Under duress, the gnome reveals that he has sold magical elixirs of corruption to General Grimslade which remove a paladin’s immunity to disease. Grimslade is planning to turn the captured Spear Maiden’s into undead Ghost Knights. The characters tie up Bogun and remove his mushroom hat despite his pleas. “We don’t care about Baba Yaga” says Bubbles. “The hat is coming off!” They leave him tied up under his bed and continue upstairs. 

On the floor above, they run into Captain-at-Arms, Dhalak Bloodsworn, a powerful Ghost Knight. The undead knight hits Louthin three times with his sword, and the shadow fey falls dying to the floor. Sister Dorotka heals Louthin, and the others take down Bloodsworn. In the next room, they find a coded message. With no time to decipher it, they grab it and continue upstairs…

Castle Orzelbirg map by Jon Pintar

Published by richgreen01

D&D gamer | Freelance game designer | Writer & publisher – Parsantium: City at the Crossroads

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