After killing the rat king, and finding the strange gem of power, the party spends a little time discussing what to do next before settling on the idea of returning home to rest up, as Viktor and Luka have taken somewhat of a beating. When retracing their steps, they find a cave in (caused by Asha’s deafening thundershock) that blocks the passageway. They decide to brave the rest of the cave, hoping for an alternate path back and shortly run into a strange man-made wall with some words among the numerous strange arcane runes.
The key exists in side your head,
Use the key to paint me red.
But be aware of what you spurn,
For what was taken shall be returned!
After a little head-scratching, Luka decides to wipe a dead rat on the writing, which after completely coated, the words begin to glow slightly and absorb all the blood. Suddenly, two rats fall from higher up on the wall, and are easily slain by the party. Luka is ecstatic that the town now has a never-ending food supply, but within minutes the two dead rats begin to liquefy and turn back into puddle of blood. Luka now uses a turnip to coat the writing in red turnip juice, however this only resulted in making the wall messy, and wasting a turnip. Confused the party moves on, and fights the last two mutant rats in the cave, with Luka nearly fainting from exhaustion.
Back in Ashwick, the party brings some of the glowing rats to the town cook, and makes up a story of where they were found and the cook refuses to make any glowing rat soup. Viktor makes Luka some glowing rat jerky, and everyone decides to rest for the night (and go to level 2!). In the morning, they find out that Kelric is still not back from his hunt, which is rare but not necessarily a sign of trouble. So they decide to return to the strange wall, and Lacey is the first to volunteer to use her blood on the door. To her, the bricks seems to slide over each other and create a door-sized passageway, and she eventually convinces the party to follow suit.
Inside is a room that is covered in dust from lack of use, but use to belong to a follower of The Sage, and has tons of books, a couple uncharged magical gems, and some various magical/alchemical reagents. Upon a scan of the books Viktor finds a fancy book entitled “How to train your dragon” as well as a nice blanket from the bed, Luka finds some books on Orcish history, and Lavey finds some books about warforged (Asha spends her time looking at the magical components, including a magical compass). They hear a loud noise from where they came and come face to face with a bulette and promptly run back into the shelter of the magic room with the bulette unable to follow.
Back in the room, the look see at the other end of the room is another exit which takes them up a steep climb and puts them up on high on the mountain way above the entrance to Ashwick. They find a table with a book on it that seems to be a journal about dragons and their eggs, and about 20 feet away, a huge nest with a three foot tall egg that is slightly warm to the touch. In the distance they see a huge fire giant that must be at least 100 feet tall that luckily isn’t headed in their direction. They grab the dragon egg and journal, and make their way back to the strange room, and after a little worry about taking things from the room (the last phrase of the riddle was a little ominous, and things not touching people couldn’t be thrown out of the room). The party makes it’s way back to town with the spoils of their exploration!