After a brief respite in the guard room by the broken portcullis barring the passage to the Nevermore, the group recalled the warden’s log mentioning a hidden passageway leading from somewhere into the torture chamber. They made careful inspection of the walls of the “workshop” and located a walled off natural tunnel heading towards the Nevermore.
The tunnel, roughly 40 feet long, was closed at both end, and also home to a grey ooze that had wandered into the remains of the prison years ago. The party splattered the ooze after half-solidifying the creature with a tanglefoot bag and setting it alight with oil and fire. The latch to open the hidden door to the end of the tunnel was soon discovered and the group found themselves in the staging area used for transporting prisoners to the torture room.
The Nevermore lay before them, a wing of the dungeon similar to the oubliette to the north. However, water trickled down the walls here, seeping down from the lake above, having over time filled the pit in the middle of the chamber. As they slowly spread out into the Nevermore, the group saw blood weeping from the walls and coalescing to spell out their names. As the blood spelled out more and more letters of each person’s name, they began to feel their sanity, indeed their very souls slipping away. Attempting to destroy whatever presence was affecting them, the party lashed out with spell and weapon both, eventually destroying the bloody names.
Unfortunately the violent attacks further damaged the walls and support timbers, already weakened by the fire 50 years ago. The walls and supports crumbled, causing severe damage to several members of the party, scattering the floor with wreckage. With the group injured and in disarray, the ghost of the Splatter Man rose up from the waters of the flooded oubliette and summoned several dire rats to harry the party, followed by a volley of magic missiles. The party spread out around the oubliette, attacking as they were able, though the ghost of the wizard carefully moved out of position, dancing away from the melee fighters.
The summoned dire rats were put down, followed soon after by several giant spiders. With a combination of magic weapons, channeled energy, and enchanter arrows, the party defeated the final spirit of Harrowstone prison. In time they located the warden’s badge among the bones of the skeleton tied to the rack in the torture workshop and brought it to Vesorianna. With a quiet sigh, the ghost of the warden’s wife took the badge from Hadrian and disappeared, promising to cleanse the ruin of any spirits haunting its walls.
The party emerged triumphant from the prison gates, making their way back to Ravengro.
Back in town the group was given the heroes welcome they had earned. The town council arranged for a celebration on the coming Sunday and the townsfolk set about preparing to honor the brave adventurers who had delivered their town from destruction. Word spread of the groups noble deeds and come the celebration Sunday evening they found themselves being hailed, by townies and the council alike, as the Heroes of Harrowstone.
The Heroes of Harrowstone spent the next several days working with the towns people on a variety of projects. Hadrian began teaching classes of basic fighting skills, while th others supervised the project to clear out the rubble-filled stairwell in the prison and retrieved the remaining guards’ equipment. The arms and armor was given back into the town’s care and to be used for equipping the sheriff and deputies, possibly to be expanded into a local militia in the future.
The party spent their remaining time visiting with the friends, acquaintances, and other locals they had met during their stay in the village, preparing for their coming trip to Lepidstadt. The day finally came to begin their journey and, as they loaded up their final belongings onto the newly purchased wagon, they were greeted by an ecstatic Pevrin, posting exciting news to the town’s posting poles.
The Beast of Lepidstadt, longtime scourge of the county of Vieland, had been captured, and was set to be put on trial in just over a week’s time!