Splinters of faith

They found Undead 'Chicken-Snatchers'

Exhausted from the previous encounter, the party heads back to town with the wagon and one of the ruffians tied in the back.  They speak with Almery, informing the priest that the 'fox' problem has been solved, to which he awards them with a bushel of potatoes and some vinegared eggs.  After resting at the old inn, the party decides to investigate what precisely the ruffians were guarding.  

With Grut leading the way, followed by Cher, Thrandal, and Iona, the party enters a tunnel dug into the hill.  As they approach bend downwards, Grut suddenly looses his footing and slides rapidly down the rest of the way.  The tunnel had been greased for some reason.  Cher, Thrandel and Iona managed to maintain their footing on the way down, and encountered a happy unhurt Grut at the bottom.

The party had arrived at a circular room.  The entrance behind them appeared that it had been hewn out of the rock, whist on the other side of the room was a door lying on the ground off its hinges.  The walls were adorned with various symbols, all crafted out of skulls and thigh bones.  Finally, there was a curious green flame brazier hanging in the center of the room, granting light.  As they pass the doorway, Iona reads some writing on the door, which says "Forged first in Dargath's fires".

The adjacent room turns out to be a long curving corridor, with pillars following its length.  The party encounters another door to the left, only this one is stuck in place.  Both Grut and Cher attempt to open the door, but it fails to even budge at their attempts.  Thrandel, fed up with their attempts, tries to open it himself.  He succeeds in leveraging his entire body, and opens the door so forcefully that the door strikes Iona as it opens.  Immediately bones start spilling into the corridor, and the party sees a room not unlike the first they entered, only filled with bones.  Grut decides to peruse the room, and finds amongst the chaff a purple potion.  Cher tastes the potion, and quickly deduces that it is a potion of Bull's Strength.  Grut seems pleased with this discovery, and saves the potion for later.

As they exit the room the party encounters a pack of zombies.  This fight does not go well.  Iona, in casting Color Spray on the zombies, discovers the hard way that zombies are rather resilient to mind altering affects.  She later finds more success just burning the zombies.  Cher fails twice to cut the zombies, despite successfully striking them with her swords.  Grut proceeds to rage and hew through the zombies with his flaming sword.  During the fight both Iona goes down, and Thrandel barely manages to keep the party afloat with a series of Cure Light Wounds.  Eventually, exhausted and battered, the party finds themselves the victors in the encounter, and quickly retreat to rest and recuperate.

The next day, now a bit demoralized that a pack of three zombies would cause them so much grief, the party returns to the underground structure.  The party passes by the door Thrandel threw open the day prior, and come upon an open doorway on their left.  As soon as they caught sight of it, another pack of zombies shambled forward, threatening to gnaw on their flesh.  Grut storms forward at the zombies, while Cher decides to peek inside the room.  She witnesses a horror atop a throne of bones, and proceeds to close the door and hold it tight.  Shortly thereafter a shadow drops from the ceiling and attempts to siphon Iona's strength.  The party manages to dispatch the zombies and the shade easily, though they decide to take a respite before investigating the figure behind the now sealed room. 

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