Tienarth gazed into the crystal ball and watched Ghevont trudge through deep grass over hills and down into dark valleys. Presently he recognized the shape of St. Orlan on the horizon. The party headed back to meet up with Ghevont. They stored the teleporting portrait in the cellar of their new homestead, still being renovated and then returned to the temple of St. Orlan to devise a plan.
Again Tienarth used the crystal ball, this time to spy the vampire. During the day, the view was cloaked in darkness. At night, the old elf began to catch glimpses of the villain at work on evil deeds.
The first viewing of note caught the vampire in bat form. Leathery wings flapped furiously over treetops reaching out from deep shadows into the light of a full moon. Tight lips curled back to display gleaming, razor teeth. Dark crimson soaked the downy fur of the lower jaw and the heaving breast. Distantly, a cloud of vicious nightflyers trailed after the vampire.
Later that same night, saw the vampire as a wolf. Padding through decaying oak leaves, the wolf crouched where the trees thinned at the edge of a clearing. Thin smoke curled from a stone chimney jutting up from a rough cabin. Golden firelight danced from an open window, revealing a still figure face down on a table. The wolf’s eyes glowed red moments before it leaped into the air and simultaneously transformed into a bat. As it climbed into the air, lights through several windows formed the unmistakable constellation of the small community of Muleshoe. Leaving the small town behind, the bat beat its wings to the south. They knew this place well and made plans to ride there.
Before heading south, Tienarth consulted the crystal ball once more. Past an oak that dropped a mighty limb in some storm many seasons before, the bat winged to the base of a cliff. Head-sized boulders clogged a natural opening, but the bat found a suitable passage near the top of the pile, squeezing through and into complete darkness. The families at Muleshoe recognized this description well and offered directions.
Having easily found the tree and the cave, Ghevont cast silence on the opening before they made work of pulling out the boulders. Surely the vampire would not hear their approach.
A steep shaft descended into the earth. They carefully picked their path down through rough ground and arrived at an intersection. To the left they saw bat guano. To their right they saw a soft glow and followed that. Azrak pushed forward to encounter three panther-like beast with whipping tentacles ending in blades. Displacer Beasts! A battle ensued aided by Tienarth’s web spell. The beasts were put down and the party inspected the cave chamber. Elven runes glowed from the rough wall over a pile of stone, an ancient grave if the runes were to be believed.
Returning to the intersection, the party crossed through the bat guano. Suddenly, Ghevont fell into a 20′ pit filled with rats. They pulled him out and dumped flaming oil into the pit.
Ferris crept silently up to the vampire’s coffin. He lifted the lid to view the sleeping horror. Momentarily he hesitated, then he plunged a wooden stake into the vampire’s heart. Ebahi screamed in agony. Ferris stabbed a second stake into the vampires chest, doubting whether he’d hit the heart. Presently, the vampire expired. They dragged the body out of the cave and into the light where it turned to dust. Ferris snatched a golden necklace from deflated clothing.
Loaded with loot, the party rode swiftly towards Slateholm, resting a night with Lah. The jewelry was sold and several of the party made plans for training with the funds. Azrak discovered the dungeon rations do not keep well, especially after being dunked in a magical pool.
Ghevont paid for the identification of his new mace. He found it was especially dangerous versus spell-casters. Several potions were identified as well.
- Characters present: Tienart/Tre, Ghevont/Jeff, Aderian/Jason, Ferris/Henry, Azrak/Nick
- Virtues: diligence for destroying the vampire
- Vices: none