After leaving Death House, the party discovered that most of the goods they took from the house had aged by centuries. Dismayed by the degradation of the plate armour, Regrim visited the smithy, and set to work combining the remains of the plate into a suit that he could wear, working through the night.
Meanwhile, the heroes interrogated the Redbrand Ruffian they captured in a room at the Stonehill Inn, learning the following:
- The leader of the Redbrands is a human wizard known as Glasstaff, so named because his magic staff is made of glass.
- A mysterious figure called the Black Spider has hired the Redbrands to frighten off adventurers and intimidate the locals, for reasons unknown. The Black Spider has sent bugbears to reinforce the Redbrands and provide extra muscle.
- The lower part of the complex is guarded by a hideous “eye monster”.
- The Redbrands have a handful of captives in a holding area “near the old crypts,” which are guarded by skeletons.
After following up on a rumour, they also learned of a secret entrance to the hideout, a tunnel in the forest south of Tresendar Manor. They were also approached by Sildar, who had learnt that his missing contact, Iarno Albrek, was last seen around Tresendar Manor two months ago, and fears that the Redbrands might have captured him. He is determined to accompany the party when they reveal that they intend to raid the hideout.
The group decided to take advantage of the early morning and the fact that the Redbrands were notorious drunkards, stopping off on the way at Lionshield Coster to reequip themselves and Sildar for their mission. Along the way, Hjalmar introduced his animal companion, a wild boar, Herr Nilsson, who had been shadowing the group on their travels.
Along the way to the manor, the heroes visited the Sleeping Giant taphouse, but found it closed. The party met the owner, however, a dwarf maiden named Grista who took a shining to Regrim and told them that she would reopen that night.
The party entered through the secret tunnel, and were confronted with a hideous one-eyed creature called a Nothic. Hjalmar attempted to parley with the creature, and initially succeeded, but then the negotiation soured after the party refused to pay the price of buying the Nothic’s loyalty.
A fight ensued, and the nothic was defeated, and under the bridge a chest was found with a magical sword, “Talon”, which Bree claimed. The heroes then systematically went through the dungeon, using the knowledge gained from their prisoner. They defeated three redbrands in their sleeping quarters, faced off against skeletons, a hallway trap, and freed Mirna Dendra and her two teenage children.
Mirna could not offer payment, but told of a secret location of a family heirloom in the ruins of Thundertree which was valuable.
The heroes then headed towards Glasstaff, the supposed leader of the Redbrands, only to discover that Glasstaff was none other than Iarno Albrek, the wizard that Sildar was looking for. A fight ensued, and Iarno was killed before he could be captured, but his missives included a revealing letter:
My spies in Neverwinter tell me that strangers are due to arrive in Phandalin. They could be working for the dwarves. Capture them if you can, kill them if you must, but don’t allow
them to upset our plans. See that any dwarven maps in their possession are delivered to me with haste. I’m counting on you, larno. Don’t disappoint me.
The letter was signed only with a drawing of a black spider.
The heroes then cleared out the rest of the hideout, freeing the town from Redbrand domination.