The party have found themselves in an alchemist laboratory with a strange ulfen man trapped in a glass case. The party take advantage of a rare moment of calmness to thoroughly search the room. From behind a locked door comes a voice, who confirms he is the imprisoned Ulf Gormandr. The key to his freedom lies with the mercenary captain, Jorgan the Axe, whose quarters can be found halfway up the tower. The party navigate to this room and then surprise Jorgan, who manages to buy enough time to transform into an imposing Werebear and charges the party. The party close and attempt to brace the door but Jorgan’s immense strength breaks the door apart and combat is joined. Between Senja’s powerful punches and Shalelu’s relentless arrows, Jorgan is eventually brought down, but not before landing a savage bite to Senja’s shoulder. Although Senja overcomes this injury, a bite from a Werebear is always a worrying sign indeed.
Having obtained the key from Jorgan the Axe, the party returns to the laboratory to rescue the imprisoned man. A skeptical Koya pressures the captive until he admits that he is not Ulf Gormandr, but was pretending to be so the party would rescue him. The man is actually Lute Haggersly, a rich and powerful merchant on the Rimerunners Guild high council, who had seen the Rimerunners gradually transition from its usual trading activities to extorting and assassinating its business rivals. He had decided to confront Thorborg Silverskorr, head of the Rimerunners, and discovered that the guild had been warped into little more than a front for a murderous group known as the Frozen Shadows. With this knowledge he had been captured and imprisoned, destined to be offered to the nightmarish Hellwasp Swarm that now infested the man in the glass case. Lute counsels that the Swarm should never be released into the world.
The party decides to retrace their steps and sweep the first level of the Ravenscraeg great hall before proceeding. But deciding that her strengths lie in solitude and tracking skills, Shalelu slips off alone to investigate the dungeons below Ravenscraeg. Ignatius is the first to notice Shalelu’s disappearance and doubles back to search for her. The rest of the party, then noticing their dwindling numbers, return to the laboratory and track the missing heroes to the dungeon, where they have discovered a subterranean water channel that provides a barrier to further progress. Spying a heavy wooden board on the far side, Shalelu and Senja nimbly launch themselves over the channel but find themselves encountering a passing troll that questions their presence. Rather than continue the conversation, they retreat back over the channel, pursued by two enraged trolls.
The trolls wade across the water channel, seemingly unstoppable as the party’s relentless attacks inflict wounds that seem only to rapidly heal again. Ignatius’ searing fire magic appears to cause lasting damage and slow the creatures’ regeneration. The first troll is slain only after taking hold of Senja and wrenching at him with powerful arms, nearly pulling the monk in half. As Senja retreats to take care of his greivous injuries, Ignatius finds himself unexpectedly on the front line. Deciding to press the attack, even at this great personal risk, Ignatius douses the lumbering monster in roiling flames, only to have the burning creature seize Ignatius in his arms. Ignatius is subjected to crushing bites before the troll pulls apart with all its strength and Ignatius is wrenched in two, his body then discarded onto the cold dungeon floor.
Horribly injured, the troll only makes small further progress before it is brought down by the party, though at this great loss. Grief rises within the party, but Koya’s is held strangely at bay as her memory wanders to tales she heard long ago about the saving power of Desna. Willing to try anything to save her friend, Koya kneels beside the body of Ignatius, gathering his scattered limbs together, and beseeches Desna to make whole this ruined body, and to send back Ignatius from the afterlife to continue his works of goodness in this world. At first a trail of smoke emerges from Ignatius’ mouth, and then a cough of fire and then air as Ignatius’ body returns to life, the savage wounds smouldering like embers as they gradually heal over. This process is not easily endured, and Ignatius feels himself permanently weakened by the touch of death, but his sorcery and cooking skills shall survive in this world for yet another day.
(Koya has burnt a hero point to cast the higher-level spell Raise Dead. Ignatius is restored to life but has accrued a negative level)