An Eye for an Eye
Session Two: Welcome to the Grunewald Hunting Lodge
As the small wooden drawbridge is raised behind them, the party gets its first look inside the Grunewald Lodge. Unfortunately, it appears that the hunting lodge has seen better days. The stone wall surrounding the lodge has fallen down in places and appears hastily repaired. The grounds are unkempt with a large over-grown garden, run-down shrine, and small forge which appears to be unlit. The only activity is seen around the gate tower and the nearby stables.
The wagon comes to a stop inside the walls, though none of the servants appear from the nearby stables until V. Hendrick barks out some orders to a nearby stable boy. He looks up with a tired glance and comes over to unhitch the horses. As the party climbs down the party sees Lord Aschaffenberg emerge from the manor house. V. Hendrick climbs down and introduces him to party. He appears delighted by the arrival of his household goods. He mentions the ‘bit of excitement’ outside the gates but doesn’t give it much pause instead urging the party to grab a box and follow him inside.
Inside the Manor
As the group crosses to the manor house, they notice unnatural quietness of the place. Sounds echo off the stone walls and carry too far. Besides the barking dogs and occasional call of birds in the forest, the lodge seems to be eerily muted. As the party enters the manor, Aschaffenberg leads them upstairs and shows them where to place the boxes. He urges them to bring up the rest and turns to begin unboxing and sorting his belongings. The party decides split up on the stairway, with the Grundel and Leopold heading down to get more boxes, while Austerman and Gunther head down the hallway.
Austerman and Gunther come upon a door slightly ajar at the end of the hall. They notice a moaning coming from inside and decide to investigate. They push inside find themselves inside a makeshift Hospice.
Once inside the Gunther decides to ask for aid. The doctor comes over to wrap his wounds, but he doesn't appear to be very successful. As he attends to his wounds, Gunther picks up an odd smell coming from the doctor.
As they look around, they see a disheveled dwarf who is muttering in the corner. Austerman catches a few words about “stones, and bones, and eyes” before the dwarf begins muttering under his breath again. Austerman and Gunther decide its time to head downstairs. As they head out Gunther decides that the doctor is not doing his best work at the moment.
Meanwhile, Leopold and Grundel head downstairs, and briefly stop to talk with a couple of the staff. They appear somewhat slow and tired. They don't pay much attention to the two as they head down to get more boxes.
Once outside the dwarf attempt to grab two boxes at once while Leopold decides to take a quick look around the grounds. While the dwarf struggles under the weight of a couple of the boxes to the amusement of the nearby stable boy, Leopold notices a kennel alongside the stables and a small shed next it. The dogs are barking furiously and a large man opens the door as Leopold approaches. Leopold introduces himself and he chats briefly with the Kennel Master who describes the recent beastmen attack and tells him of the many injured and four guards who were killed.
Meanwhile, Austerman and Gunther have headed downstairs and decide to investigate another room. They walk into the Library and surprise the librarian who appears to be drawing in a small diary. Before he can close the journal Austermann catches a glimpse of the Librarian's drawings - idle doodling of large floating eyes as well as a note about “an unblinking eye.” Making their excuses, the two head back outside where they find the their comrades carrying up the last of the boxes. They head upstairs to talk to Lord Aschaffenberg.
Meeting with Lord Aschaffenberg
Ashaffeneberg reiterates to the group that they are here to investigate the strange behavior of the staff at the lodge. He wants to know who is reliable as well as what mischief or vices are going on at the lodge. He mentions that his wife will be arriving within the week and he hopes to have any business sorted out before she arrives. Specifically, since the staff are von Bruner retainers, he needs some cause before replacing or dismissing any of them. He seems anxious not to offend his new relatives.
After talking to Aschaffenberg, the party decides to split up again to investigate the lodge. Gunther and Leopold decide to head downstairs while Austerman agrees to show Grundel to the Hospice.
Visiting the Hospice
Upstairs, Grundle and Austerman visit the Hospice. Grundle introduces himself to Sister Sonja and she is happy to assist a dwarf from the mountains. She praises him for walking with Sigmar and fighting off the beastmen at the gate - evidently word has quickly spread about the recent attack. As Sister Sonja bandages Grundle, he notices the other dwarf, the local blacksmith according to Sonja. Grundel introduces himself but Sister Sonja explains the poor man has gone insane following his injuries during previous beastman attack. At which point, Korden grabs Grundel by the arm and begins to insist Grundel find his legacy and see it returned. But he quickly descends back into mindless ravings.
Leopold and Gunther head downstairs where they run across more servants who are whispering and discussing amongst themselves. As the two loiter about briefly looking around the great hall, Leopold notices a small scrap of paper that appears to have been left behind by one of the servants. Retrieving it he discovers one word written on it, ‘Goose,” and wonders what it could mean.
Disaster in the Library
Leopold insists on visiting the Library deciding he may be able to determine what this reference to an “unblinking eye” might be. As they enter the room the find the Librarian still reading his book. He looks up but doesn't seem too concerned. Leopold is clearly flustered, however, and is unable to make much headway perusing the books. He does come across a book discussing the various noble families of Altdorf. At one point he manages to gain the ire of the librarian as he mistakenly knocks down an entire shelf. Sensing the growing anger of the Librarian, the two decide to head out to give him a chance to calm down. As they head for the door, Leopold suddenly recalls that the Unblinking Eye was a chaos cult in Altdorf that was wiped out a few years ago after they were infiltrated by witch hunters.
As they enter the Kitchen, Gunther and Leopold find themselves in front of stout woman wielding a large cleaver and cutting up vegetables. She looks up with a grimace and eyes them suspiciously. The two look around and notice stars heading down into a cellar. Gunther attempts to distract the cook while Leopold sneaks down the stairs. Making a small ruckus, the cook is distracted from her work while the two sneak downstairs. As he slips down the stairs, Gunther notices a bitter, ripe-vegetable smell coming from the back of the kitchen.
Once downstairs, Leopold calls on the winds of magic and light bursts from the torches along the cellar wall. The two quickly find a small stash of papers. Upon a little investigation, they reveal a series of ledgers that indicate some recent stonework was done by the previous owner to improve the lodge. The two decide to grab a bottle of wine to help ingratiate themselves to the staff members. At this point, with a quick look to avoid the cook, they rush out the door and back into the main hall.
Talking to the Butler
Meanwhile, Austerman and Grundel decide to investigate the door at the end of the hallway. They find themselves in what appears to be where the junior servants of the house have their quarters. Seeing no one around they decide to rifle through the room to see if they can find anything. Austerman finds a pendant with small copper disc. Sensing it has some unusual significance, he decides to pocket it.
As they leave the room, they encounter Piersson leaving his chambers. Piersson appears wounded from the previous beatman attack. Austerman and Grundel chat with him briefly and indicate they have been assigned some tasks by Aschaffenberg. Piersson is polite but seems somewhat aloof and mentions that he would hope that the staff might soon turn their attention to the sorry state of the walls -- after the recent beastman attack he thinks it prudent. At which point, Piersson excuses himself and heads downstairs to look in on the staff.