Marpenoth 6, 1489DR – Leafall (October), Thursday
After defeating the revenants in the chapel the party exits the room through the northern door. Tucked behind the mansion is a fog-shrouded cemetery enclosed by a seven-foot-tall fence of wrought iron. In the northeast corner stands a mausoleum.
They suddenly feel like someone or something is watching them. Looking up, they spot a well-dressed man with a thick mane of thistledown hair observing from a high tower window. He draws the curtain and disappears from view.
They continue forward and notice that the corpses from the gravestones appear to have crawled out of the earth. Of the missing corpses there is no sign, but the surrounding fence is intact, which suggests that no one got into the cemetery from outside.
They reach the mausoleum. Tarnished, silver-plated gargoyles shaped like dragon wyrmlings cling to the stone-tiled roof of this mausoleum. An eight-foot-tall, four-foot-wide white marble door set into the southwest wall is engraved with a name: ARGYNVOST.
The interior of the mausoleum is dark and dusty. They spot four empty alcoves with raised floors. Etched into the far wall is a verse written in Draconic. Unfortunately, no on in the party can read Draconic, so they copy down the etching hoping they might run into someone who may be able to translate the text.
They exit the mausoleum, pass by the cemetery and re-enter the mansion to continue their investigation. As they search through the kitchen and wine cellar they find a wounded elf named Savid. He had been tasked with finding the young Arabelle, the Vistana child kidnapped and rescued earlier, and report back to the Vistani camp.
Savid was attacked on the road by needle blights, and once wounded sought refuse in the old mansion. The party offers to take him back to the camp once their investigation is complete. He in turn offers some history on the old fort:
- Argynvost was a silver dragon that liked to assume human forms. Argynvostholt was the dragon's home. In human guise, the noble dragon led a group of knights called the Order of the Silver Dragon. They gave shelter to refugees who had come to the valley to escape Strahd's army.
- Strahd's soldiers slew the dragon, destroyed the order, and sacked the mansion.
- Vistani and dusk elves avoid the mansion, believing that the dragon's ghost haunts it.
The wine in this cellar has long turned to vinegar, but they bear the name of a winemaker that keeps popping up: Wizard of Wines. Next they enter what appears to be a parlor. From the hearth springs forth a fiery dragon. It flies about the room and speaks to the group:
“My knights have fallen into darkness. Save them if you can. Show them the light they have lost!"
With that, the fire burns out.
Confused and a little wary the party moves to check the second floor. They find more ruin and signs of the devastation that took place centuries ago. While investigating the northern rooms the party is attacked by a group of phantom warriors.
At this point, Bladehelm also makes his entrance downstairs. He had been investigating the werewolf den with Makaelis but soon got tired of “that insufferable warlock!” And so he decided to ditch the caster and catch up with the rest of the group. He happens to walk in at the right moment and is able to help the party in the battle.
After defeating the foes, the group witnesses a smoky dragon apparition fly past them and to the main hallway up through another set of stairs. Where did it go? Before looking further, they all settle down for a long rest.