Our resilient heroes made their way back to town through the ancient tunnels. An hour of dark walking passed before they came upon an ambush in waiting! Their tributary tunnel intersected with wider tunnel, and at this juncture hid a bizarre, horrifying creature, lying in wait with a shiny, other-worldly weapon. The party attacked the horror from behind as its prey— a group of dwarven travelers— came into sight in the main tunnel below. Using surprise to their advantage, they made short work of the armored extra-terrestial and were greeted warmly by the dwarves. As emissaries of from the Five King Mountains, these dwarves had come with many gifts and it seemed appropriate to bestow some of that wealth on their saviors. One dwarf, Princess Freyja Thunderkeel of Jägare, accompanies her heroes to the Vigil Grove, where they hoped to find more information about Yulie’s kidnappers.
When they arrived, they were enveloped in a dinner party which turned sour once the dead body of Terran Brax—the Shadow Compadre— was found. In Baron William’s home were six suspicious characters: the previously mentioned Moose Princess; William’s house guest Teyuti, an accomplished Bunny Speaker; the butler Abram Stacionodel; Sgt. Emil Kuhair, an old army friend of William’s and recently a Lychenthrope Soldier; the flighty Kylie Whisperslip, a so-called Fairy of Facepalms; and the enigmatic Sascha Starly, the Thief of Time. The city guards quickly caught wind of the murder and their mages erected a Wall of Fire outside the premises. Their ally on the outside— Veena Heilu— bargained for time, but when hours passed and no murderer was discovered, the guards stormed the house. This was a disaster! There were surely things hidden in this sacred (but not good-aligned) grove which were best undiscovered by the paladin-state!
And that’s when things got wibbley. Sascha Starly offered to turn back time a few hours for the forces of chaos and, after a few loops, they worked out the cuprit, who was none other than the Shadow Compadre himself! The villain faked his own death (three times, in fact) in order to create the police raid which never even happened in the finalized timeline!
Other things which DIDN’T happen include: A duck was NOT served for dinner. William was NOT murdered by his butler, who turned out to be a Scout of the Frail. Sehk’met did NOT befriend William’s maid.
Here are some things that DID happen: The crew did learn about temporal dynamics when they received a watch from Starly, which they planted earlier that evening, was pocketed by Starly, then given to Sehk’met. A did guide Rogenbogen on a spirit journey using creep in Willaim’s sweat lodge. She awoke with a baby dinosaur! Teyuti did promise to stop running his illegal (but consensual) bunny-fighting ring. Freyja and Emil did get more friendly.
A used reagents distilled from the eldritch terror killed earlier in the evening to end Terran Brax’s death-like trance. His proven guilt in this matter will dirty his name in Vigil, completing Piquelle’s request. The side-effects of the treatment are unknown, but suffering and madness will be involved. And Teyuti will happily share some of his reconnaissance of the mushroom cult with the team, so after a rest (several party members have received unsolicited surgery), a-dungeon-delving they will go!