Eleint 6-7, 1479, Year of the Ageless One
Lo-kag felt a drop of saliva land on his shoulder.
When he looked up, the ghoul was already leaping at him from the ceiling! The goliath stepped to the side, avoiding a sweeping claw that came dangerously close. The undead landed next to him. It hissed in anger, baring its sharp blood-stained fangs.
At the other side of the room, another ghoul leaped away from a corner in the ceiling. It hurled itself at Winslow, striking the surprised paladin with its full weight. The two fell on the floor with the ghoul landing on top of Winslow. It clawed at Winslow’s arm, causing him to scream in pain.
Outside, Ang saw the ghoul on top of the paladin. Both were just inside the doorframe leading into the jailhouse.
Although the doorframe partially obscured the ghoul, the elf took out a handaxe and threw it at the ghoul, striking its arm.
Deb moved next. He quickly aimed his bow and fired. His arrow tore into the undead’s leg, its impact sending the ghoul sprawling back against the wall behind it. For the moment, Winslow was safe.
The ghoul in front of Lo-kag tried to attack him. He swatted the ghoul’s arm away with his weapon.
With the ghoul off of him, Winslow got back up and prepared to face the unholy creature before him.
Despite its wounds, the ghoul came at the paladin to claw him in the leg. With the pain threatening to overcome him, Winslow cut the ghoul across its chest with his Vicious longsword—an enchanted weapon the group recently acquired from the slain Zhentarim sergeant, Petrus. The ghoul howled in pain as thick, oily black blood poured out of its gaping wound.
Ang and Lo-kag, meanwhile, were also busy fighting the ghoul in front of them. Wounded by attacks from the elf and the goliath, the ghoul went on the defensive. It took a step into the room behind it. It then jumped onto the nearby wall and scampered like a spider onto the ceiling.
Lo-kag kicked the door open and followed the undead into the room. Caldreas also followed the undead in. They both looked up at the ceiling and saw the ghoul. It roared in anger then leaped towards a nearby door which led outside. With a loud crash, the ghoul burst through the door. It landed on all fours just outside and was ready to escape when a magic missile tore through its chest destroying it instantly.
“Nice work Caldreas,” Lo-kag said to the mage standing next to him.
Ang looked back to where Winslow and the other ghoul were still locked in battle. Just as Winslow was about to attack, the ghoul suddenly fell over having bled out from the deadly wound it had sustained earlier.
With both ghouls destroyed, everyone regrouped.
Winslow said a silent prayer to Amaunator and healed his wound, though he suspect that the ghoul’s attack may have infected him with the zombie plague. Only time would tell for sure whether his system can resist the plague’s deadly effects or if he would need Caldreas to use one of his Cure Disease scrolls on him.
Lo-kag slowly started going down the stairs. He suspected it led to the jailhouse’s cells. Thanks to the darkvision Deb conferred upon everyone before they entered the jailhouse, the goliath was able to see in the dark as he made his way downstairs.
Everyone else followed while Deb and Winslow went back outside to watch over the captured Zhentarim soldiers.
Downstairs, the group ran into two more ghouls. However these ghouls were different from the others they had been fighting since they had arrived in Hluthvar. These were slightly weaker but reeked even more so than the others—if such a thing was possible. The adventurers were barely able to keep themselves focused on the fight due to the powerful stench that seemed to surround the ghouls like an aura.
They also came upon a swarm of undead rats that poured out of a storage room they found.
The battle against the ghouls and the undead rats was quickly won but not before Ang was wounded by one of the ghouls. Caldreas also nearly fell into a gaping hole that suddenly opened under the mage as he stood near one cell. Except for the mutilated remains of one prisoner, there were no signs of any survivors Matteas said were still trapped in the jailhouse.
They searched the jail cells but didn’t find anything. The hole on the floor appeared to drop into a tunnel that curved to the north and south. The group decided against investigating the tunnels for now.
Back upstairs, Winslow and Deb searched the rest of the jailhouse with their prisoners in tow. The soldiers’ hands were bound and they were all tied together, so Deb was confident they wouldn’t be able to escape. Besides, he knew he could kill them with his arrows if they even considered such a foolish action.
When everyone was back in the jailhouse’s main room, Deb searched the desk in the room. In it, he found a set of keys which opened all of the cell doors. He also discovered several bottles labeled Potion of Healing, an enchanted hand crossbow, and a pair of magical iron-plated gauntlets which were constantly trailing wisps of smoke.
In the end, everyone decided to lock up the Zhentarim soldiers in the jailhouse. They promised to bring food and water on a daily basis for the prisoners while they decide what to do with them.
Everyone then went back to the tower and rested for the remainder of the day. Fortunately, both Ang and Winslow were able to stave off any effects that may have been brought on by the ghouls’ attacks.
Winslow, Ang, Lo-kag, Deb, Caldreas
7 Potions of Healing; Magic hand crossbow +2; a pair of Burning Gauntlets (lvl 6, AV, p132)