Another damp, dreary day along the Lost Cost. The adventures returned to Sandpoint with tales of Foxglove’s corrupton and his family’s haunted mansion. Pastor Zantus confirmed that Aldern became a ghast and that Vorel’s blight on the mansion could be exorcised with the proper rituals. Sheriff Hemlock noteed that similar murders have occurred in Magnimar and agreed that Foxglove’s townhouse was a reasonable next site to investigate.
The heroes left immediately for Magnimar and rode through the night. By midday, they reached Foxglove’s neighborhood. Maggie, Malcanthet and Albi approached the front while Ito and Kayleb snuck through the lush posterior courtyard.
Maggie used the iron key and the front door opened. She crunched a notice on the floor that indicated the property would be auctioned in 3 days, singed by Chief Justice Ironbriar. Inside, Maggie heard voices upstairs.
Meanwhile, in the back, Ito and Kayleb snuck beyond a gardner and climbed a trellised sunroom. Once in position, Kayleb cast a dazing spell and Ito leapt upon him. The teifling’s pummeling fists met unusually resistant skin and the “gardner” tried to push his way through the back door. Ito lashed out again dropping the foe, but another human, crashing through the foliage, joined the melee.
Inside, the sound of retreating footfalls encouraged Mal and Maggie up the stairs. At the top, they saw Aldern Foxglove! “Who are you people? What are you doing in my house?” he demanded. Mal began cursing him as he backed away calling for the town guards. The heroes move up after him and Maggie engaged with cries of “you’re still a shitty boyfriend!” Aldern’s features morphed to that of a woody humanoid with whorling skin, recognized by Mal to be a faceless stalker.
Outside, the humanoid facing the heroes likewise revealed itself. Ito, Kayleb and the creature traded blows, but Ito delivered felling strikes until the stalker was down. The pair rushed inside.
Upstairs, a stalker appearing to be Iesha Foxglove joined the fray. Maggie was grabbed by some massive wooden claws that leeched her fortitude but she managed to slip away quickly. She retaliated with rending sword strikes. Malcanthet blasted a lightning storm of arrows into the creatures. Albi lobbed a bomb but the stalker dodged; the resulting blast blew out a front window. After several tense strikes and counterstrikes the creatures died in oozing puddles of milky blood.
The group reunited and started searching the place. Upstairs, Maggie found a lion-headed ornament with a keyhole deep in its maw. Using her other key, she opened a compartment that contained a purse with 200 platinum, several papers and a ledger.
The papers were the deed to Foxglove Manor. The land and house were owned by Vorel Foxglove, but clearly financed by a group called the Brothers of the Seven. In addition, after 100 years the ownership of the manor “and all lands within one mile around and below” were to lapse to the Brothers – the deed was dated 80 years ago.
In the ledger, Aldern’s expenditures and income are recorded. most of it was pretty mundane, but towards the end there were several entries labelled “Iesha’s trip to Absalom”, indicating that Aldern payed 200 gp a week. These payments are made to a certain “B7” at an address in Magnimar – 3 Sugar Row.
Meanwhile, wary of attention from the watch, Kayleb disguised Malcanthet as Lady Foxglove. And just in time. A pair of guardsmen approached the front door and asked about the broken window. Malchanthet charmingly described the accident and thanked the guards for their vigilance. They withdrew smiling for her favor.
Alone again the heroes began to discuss their next steps…