When we last left off the group had just had a tangle with a couple of stirges, a close encounter with some giant centipedes and all in all had started to heavily use up their strength finding their way through the labyrinthine castle. They had just came upon a large wooden door at the end of a long corridor. The barbarian opens the door carefully and looks inside finding it ot be mostly barren short of a crude bed, table, some stoneware, and a large paddle locked chest. They then carefully go about ransacking the room taking a heavy mace and bashing off the lock and taking some ordinary cloaks and a leather pouch with a memento to Erig the captain of of the guard as well as Rogahn's friend. The group ponders about the meaning behind the memento, loot the 5 gp from the crock pot, took note of the interesting keg in the back and moved on.
At this point it has been about 3 1/2 hours and the lantern is starting to burn low (thank you basicexpert.info for the amazing online turn tracker) so the party decided they would do just a small more bit of mapping then head back to the city. They luck out no wandering encounters and so they head back to Belltaine and make it just as the sun is starting to set. They stop in at the soggy boar and speak once more to Johan the bar/innkeep and ask a bit if he knows much about who Erig was as they did not pay a whole lot of attention when the magic mouths told them of Rogahn and Zelligar and was unable to really ask questions about them. Johan did not know anything about Erig however a dwarf sitting over at a nearby table ears perked up hearing more about what the group had been up to (a new player who was joining the group) and introduced himself and was interested in joining them on their current venture.
They headed out the next day after selling off some extra unwanted gear and headed back torwards the castle. Along the way they spotted a abandoned shanty which they found the former elderly occupants dead and being feasted upon by 4 large giant rats which made their way torwards them. The barb started shooting with his bow, the rogue now wolf along with his guard dog tore into 2 others and the dwarf lit up the last one with his battle axe. Finding nothing of value and not wanting to touch the corpses opted to leave and make haste for the castle.
They make it there about mid day and head down the original path, ignoring the hidden passage way deciding this time to take the stairs. They found the scene of the mighty battle and looting a small purse of 5gp. While they was distracted a surprise attack for the giant tick was rolled and rolled the 1 out of 6 required to surprise the group. Assigning its target randomly the wolf was in its cross-hairs and the attack came up a critical hit, came out to losing an eye. So the tick leapt all the way at the wolf, latched to his face and bite out his eye and began to suck for blood. I ruled that due to the predicament and the way the wolf would have been fighting to get the tick off there was a 25% chance of any attack hitting him instead of the tick. Having him roll for his save and failing that he also contracted a deadly form of lyme disease that will take hold in 4 days if not cured. The battle was on and the barb went in swinging this time using a mace he had hoping that if he did hit his companion it would not be enough to kill him and scored a solid hit but not enough to kill or dislodge the monster. Every one else made their attempts and just could not land a hit. The tick auto drained for 4 then won the next round of initiative and drained another 4. He was going to die in another round or 2 if some one did not find a way to get it off. The dwarf decided to swing with his axe using the flat side for half normal half sub-dual and landed the blow stunning the creature (leaving it at 1 point) and every one went about stomping it to death. Healing spells was spent and after catching their breath and taking stock of their situation decided to move forward.
Moving forward they search the kitchen, not finding a whole lot so they headed over to the dining hall and found it lead to a room with a beautiful marble statue but it was surrounded by 4 large purple mushrooms. Just as soon as the human mage brought light to bear on them they started emitting a ear piercing cacophony that forced every one in the area to make a save ( I do the save one time and all those who fail take 1 damage from each shroom). The barb did not like this and ran in axe swinging scoring a critical for 29 points of damage(triple damage) and caused the mushroom to erupt into spores. The other 3 continued their caterwauling and the barb decided to head to the door, took a few parting shots with his bow, then left.
The group decides to then head back to the kitchen having taken note of a door they did not check and found it to be locked. Several whacks from the dwarfs axe and it came down. They then head down the nearest passage and met upon 3 kobalds holding spears and wearing leather armor. The kobalds acknowledge them and made no sudden moves so the group did the same but was weary of tricks requested to be allowed to pass them and the group would ignore them. One kobald took spoke for the group and said that they would not leave but the group is free to go back the way they came and no harm will come to them, please leave them in peace. The dwarf (whose player is an old school player and was a very welcome addition to the group) noted that if they want to get past maybe they can bribe them, distasteful as it was to deal with kobalds but where several of them was hurting from 2 rounds of screeching from the shrieking mushrooms and they had no idea what sort of insanity the kobalds might implement just to smite them tried to work a deal out for 2 gp to each of them to be allowed to pass. Rolling a reaction roll and getting a neutral result they wanted 10 gp each and they could either take the deal or leave it. The group figuring it was better to pay 30gp and possibly, but not likely, get some good will in this place. The kobalds took their pay and headed on out keeping good to their word.
A minor distraction of a foaming at the mouth madman with an axe was quickly dispatched by the barbarian with a single shot of his bow and they headed to the end of the corridor where they looked into a mostly empty room save for a winding staircase moving downward. The dwarfs stone cunning went off and he didn’t know what but something felt off about the room, the stairs in particular which the group pondered on as the session wrapped up.