Well, it wasn’t easy, but last night the party cleared the dreaded Tower of the Moon. When we rejoined our adventurers, they were ascending from the third to the fourth level of the tower. As soon as the reached the stairwell landing on the fourth floor, a massive Gnoll pack lord—wielding a poleaxe, its fur teeming with lice and singed in places—greeted them as intruders and attacked. The party killed the humanoid and then entered it’s lair where a massive (giant) hyena attached them. Again, the party prevailed.
After clearing those areas, they discovered a temple dedicated to Ravanor in which a juvenile Shoosuva, a wolf-like creature with glowing eyes, spines along its back, and a scorpion-like tail, was chained in front of a 10’ tall bipedal statue of a man-like being with the head of a monstrous wolf and over-sized claws, which commanded the room. The barbarian retreated and tossed the severed head of the hyena into the room. The statue, seemingly sentient, filled the party’s heads with rage and vile threats and it was all too clear that Ravanor himself now knows the party’s identity. The Shoosuva advanced in toward the party and attacked. While the party was fighting the monstrosity, a priest of Ravanor, Malachi, crept out of his room and attacked. All members of the party survived this encounter, and Malachi surrendered (and was interrogated before fleeing into the shrine only to be killed by the party in front of Ravanor’s statue). The statue, before crumbling in rage, promised them they would never leave the tower alive.
The adventurers then climbed the stairs to the top level of the tower, five stories above the cold moonlit earth. As soon as the opened the stairwell door, they were greeted with a fusillade of crossbow bolts from three wolf pelt wearing guards. The guards fired, dropped their crossbows, drew scimitars, and attacked. After a pitched battle, the party prevailed, killing all three of the cultists.
As the barbarian approached the wooden door leading to a room on the west side of he tower, a ghastly demonic howl pierced the heavy veil of silence that had descended on the tower after the battle, which caused the barbarian to flee in terror toward the stairs. The elf Ranger pursued his friend and while consoling him heard the sounds of a door splintering apart and the echoing footfalls of humanoids as they raced up the stairwell. The gnolls and bugbears sealed in their barracks by the party had escaped.
Thinking fast (well not too fast has much ale had been consumed by this point), the adventure barricaded the door with corpses of the three slain guards. This only forestalled the inevitable as the the bugbears, leading the charge, forced the door open. The party killed the lead bugbear and then cast web, choking the narrow landing and stairwell with a mass of thick web that engulfed the creatures, trapping them at least temporarily.
Wasting little time, the party darted into the western room from which the awful howling had emanated and encountered a four post bed, surrounded by an opaque curtain. They could heard something shifting on the bed. The ranger charged forward, scimitars slicing through the curtains, but they passed harmlessly through the not fully material flesh of a monstrous hound with a human-like face. The hound lunged forward and seized the ranger in its jaws causing a shocking amount of damage. Fortunately, the party had enough magic weapons and spells that they were able to prevail.
From the doorway leading into an adjacent room, they heard tiny voice complaining as saw Caleb and Alana…as well as their sinister mother, Elwith who ordered her children to transform into wolves. She then changed into a horrific bipedal werewolf and advanced on the party, still wearing a golden ring. The adventures realized that they were lacking silver weapons and also did not want to kill the child werewolves, only their mother who they recalled had almost certainly butchered her neighbors and also tried to send the party to its death by directing them to Sorrow’s Chasm where they were attached by the peryto.
Fortunately, the ranger was wearing the Ring of Scared Moonlight which he had found in the tower. Its power, gifted from Lunitha herself, was that it causes lycanthropes to involuntary return to human form (if fail a save). After a ferocious battle, the children were transformed back into small children and fled the battle. Elwith raged on but with the party’s full rage directed at her, was grievously wounded and bolted through the window diving headfirst toward the ground five stories below. By the time they looked out the window, she was gone. Only faint tracks visible. Elwith may have abandoned her children, but not her lord, Ravanor.
The party then, bypassing the stairwell that was still full of struggling bugbears and gnolls, entered the eastern room, which was something out of a Frankenstein-like nightmare. A mad alchemist (Reinhold), in the thrall of Ravanor, had been experimenting and creating flesh golems in the image of his master. He ordered the automaton to attack the party, which ultimately defeated it and killed Reinhold, but not before in a senseless rage it went berserk and smashed a still living human subject strapped to a table into pulp.
The party claimed a Figurine Bronze Griffon [(DM p.169) AC12 HP 75 MM p.174] and using the griffon was able to escape through a window just as the 13 surviving bugbears and gnolls were breaking free.
The adventures and returned the Tower of the Moon to its rightful owner, Lunitha, and for that they would have her gratitude. But Ravanor will not forget this transgression and he has marked the party. Elwith also survived and similarly will not soon forget them. And what to do with Caleb and Alana whom the party rescued? And, one among them is even now infected with lycanthropy. Can it be cured and how long do they have until the next full moon?