The Baron’s son seemed very shaken up and told the party that Sir Grisso had been captured and dragged into a lair nearby, by creatures with the bodies of men, but the heads of wild beasts. As the companions bravely ventured off the track into the deep forest, Brion followed the spoor into a clearing where a great tunnel lay in the side of a hill, it was deep and dark and forbidding, magic was strong in the air, and he warned his companions this was a site of great importance, power and magic, and his words were proven true as Helvennian the silver stag of Albion stepped forth from the clearing to rout a pack of wolves that were about to ambush the party.
The ancient pagan god spoke to the group telepathically and explained that the lair of Garambar, the lord of beasts stood before them, Almeric urged the party to enter and help find and save Grisso while the Silver stag had another task for them; he bid them to venture deep within and find an item of great value that would aid the land in times to come, for a train of events centures in the making was coming to fruition and a mysterious, evil force was threatening Albion.
The dungeon was deep, it sloped down into the very earth, and the oppressive weight of tons of rock could be felt above them. The party battled hard, for some hours, fighting dire wolves, beast men, bears, sabre tooth tigers and panthers – a menagerie of beasts was under the control of Garambar.
Finally the deepest recess of the lair was pierced, and two pieces of news shook the party – the discovery of Sir Grisso’s body was discovered – he had been cruelly left to die, blinded and hanging in chains but even more shocking was the discovery of Lord Almeric’s body. His revenant or ghost, had brought them here, to avenge his loyal retainers death, his guilt had caused his restless spirit to stay on this side of the river of death while this last act was done, in an attempt to atone for his cowardice. With a pitiful wail, the guilt stricken spirit of the Baron’s side dissappeared to the other side.
Garambar rose from his throne, a might warrior, 12 feet tall, with the thickly muscled body of an ogre and the head of a boar, the king of beasts was a cruel and brutal enemy who chased the party out of his chamber. Sir Ronin, heroically stood while his comrades took up a better position and used his shield expertly – blocking blow after blow from the huge axe which would have surely sundered others in a single strike.
Meanwhile, Logen & Brion had formulated a plan, to bring the roof crashing down on the brutish boar king, and the party lured him out of his throne room, into the corridor, where the nimble barbarian clambered up to the roof, where roots and brambles held a great weight of stone in place tenously, and smote at the roots with his battleaxe. The web of roots and tree limbs holding up the tons of rock creaked, groaned and began to snap just as the beastmen guards which Garambar had summoned with his hunting horn rushed into the chamber from the south. Logen and Ronin dived out of the way at the last moment, as several hundred weight of boulders and earth came smashing down onto Garambar and some of his minions, instantly destroying them.
The party scrambled to regroup, for they had been separated by the cave in, Logen was alone and beastmen swarmed into the area where he stood alone, the grunting, growling half men had wicked vengeance in their hearts, to slay in the name of their fallen god, but they had not reckoned with the strength of a son of Wotan, a barbarian of the gnawing wastes was made of sterner stuff, and he met them head on. Roaring his battle oaths and with great overhand sweeps of his battle axe he slew beastman after beastman, until the corridor lay thick with dead and his cloak, face and body were spattered with their blood.
With their enemies dead, the group searched and took stock of their loot. Friar Marcus had found a legendary relic, a cross of St Justinian, Gothryd had found a +2 magic spear, a teleport scroll and the party had found 450 gold. Of Garambar’s body their was no sign, but most important of all, the shield that bore Helvennian’s mark had been found! The party regrouped and made their way back to the manor house and although they had won a great victory it had come at a terrible cost and with heavy hearts they told of Grisso and Almeric’s fate, to Jacob the manorhouse seneschal and the newly arrived Sir Orrin, a knight in service to Baron Aldred.