As our heroes laid down for the night, Nídhwen discovers a locked trap door hidden beneath the large bear skin rug. With only a few moments of work, she managed to disable it and open for her companions. Six volunteered to go down first.
A half-dozen boxes and barrels take up the majority of this underground cellar. A rough blanket lies spread on the floor in the southeast corner next to a bowl of half-eaten food.
A half frozen and disheveled figure of a woman was lying, almost unconscious, on in the blanket. Six managed to rouse her awake and assist her upstairs with the vocal aid of his allies. Once upstairs, she was given fresh hot food and allowed to warm herself in front of the roaring fire. She seemed very arrogant and proud, as only Taldan noble can be, but she was very grateful to her rescuers.
Resting for the remainder of the night, our heroes used the three horses to get the still weakened noble woman back to the safety of the village of Heldren. Thanks to the horses, they barely managed to make the town by nightfall. Councilwoman Ionnia Teppen, saw to it that they received a heroes welcome and their meal was on the town. She also fulfilled her promise and granted each with a small pouch of 50 gold pieces. In the morning Lady Argentea gave them a single purse of 500 gold pieces as an expression of her gratitude.
Toby wanted to know more about why the cold fey were terrorizing this region and the allies set out to return to the snow covered forest. However they were only able to make it to the lodge before the effects of the extreme cold forced them to stop and warm up.
in the morning they make their way to the bridge.
A bridge made of rope and wooden planks spans a narrow ravine. It’s already covered in ice and snow. and it sways alarmingly in the icy winds blowing through the gorge. The turbulent waters of a fast-moving creek surge through a couple of waterfalls far below.
Being the lightest, Toby was tied to a length of rope and proceeded to gently pick his way across. About fifteen feet onto the bridge a strange blue skinned creature flew up from beneath it and belched out a cold of icy shard at the small ranger. Toby slipped and fell over the side of the bridge and slammed into the side of the gorge. As he did, his grip on his short sword dropped and the blade fell into the water below.
Colt hefted his blunderbuss and charged, rather gracefully, onto the bridge and blasted at the malicious creature, while Qari use her magic missiles and Nídhwen used her crossbow. Overwhelmed by the combined attack, the creature retreated.
Six pulled while Toby climbed up. Fearing his sword was lost, they contemplated trying to get it back. Nídhwenasked if the Vrixx would be able to go down for it. She agreed and was successful in looping the rope around the hilt of the weapon. Toby and the others were quite thankful to the little winter-fey and she seemed to smile for the first time since they had meet her, although the smile only lasted for a split second.
Shortly after they cross the bridge, they are jumped by three more of the frosty skeletons, but they don’t last very long. Colt drops two with a single shot. The other is quickly taken down after that.
The rocks and snow along this part of the ridge are stained a reddish brown, and many tracks, both human and animal cross the area.
Toby takes a look at the tracks and discovers a dead body. The body is that of Dryden Kepp, one of Heldren’s more esteemed hunters and his corpse has been mutilated by a large creature that seems similar to a weasel but very much bigger. They locate his bag and discover two magical arrows (Qari identifies them as +1 animal bane), a half-full hip flask of strong applejack, about three days worth of rations, and a journal detailing his efforts to track a “giant weasel”. It mentions that he has placed bear traps at the head of Somir Valley. They also find his short bow although it has been snapped in half and as such is useless.
A cold wind blows through the forest atop the ridge. Heavy snow burdens the boughs of the evergreen trees, but someone has appently cleared the snow from a large patch of ground to dig in the pine-needle-carpeted soil.
As our heroes close to investigate, they are attacked by two frost firs. They manage to deal a fair amount of damage to the allies, but they managed to given them a good pruning before they killed them off.