It’s been a while and as usual interest in updating the log has diminished somewhat but here is a summary of the story so far, this is intended only as a summary recounting of events if you want to add your own take on what happened, or expand on things, feel free!
The party ended up defeating Kalarel after a long and difficult battle the main points of which were:
The party having their asses handed to them by a fast moving Wight, which was justice for them kiting the poor gelatinous cube from a previous encounter, the Wight ran circles around them picking them off until the party was at a point where they had little chance of defeating Kalarel.
At the last moment, Sir Keagan appear and duelled Kalarel vowing never to allow the portal to open, the finale of which was Keagan crash tackling Kalarel through the portal, sealing it, for now.
The party returned to Winterhaven but noticed that as they followed the road in to town that the traffic was considerably more than when they had left, mostly consisting of refugees who told the party they were running from the Hand of Naraash, and evil cult of Bane who have been operating on the frontier to the North and West.
The party were hailed as heroes by the town but unfortunately with the sudden population explosion the town has bigger issues to deal with than showering the heroes with gifts and gold.
The party organises to have Shadowfell Keep rebuilt to act as a base of operations and also ensure that nobody else tries to re-open the portal. The initial stages of which will be to reactive the local quarry and hire another party of adventurers to clear out any creatures still living under or near the ruins, this proved to be quite expensive and will have ongoing costs as work proceeds.
While shopping for supplies Winterhaven comes under attack by a group of humans who start slaying or kidnapping refugees from the shanty town which was established around Winterhaven, the party rushes to assist and quickly puts down the attackers but now before some innocent blood is spilled.
Just in time to see the end of the battle some heavily armoured clerics and paladins arrive on horseback, they introduce themselves at the Light of the Sun, an order dedicated to fight against evil cults of all types. She explains that her party had been tracking these killers for days and that without the party’s timely intervention they would have arrived too late. She requests a meeting with the party the next morning at which she reveals that her Order is in need of a party such as this to seek a Paladin named Drael (yes, that Drael) who was sent on a mission across the frontier to the heart of the cults territory, a fortress known as The Pillars of Night which is located in the Harsmad Hills via the Black March a deadly and treacherous road leading north beyond the frontier.
The party accepts the mission to find their old friend and heads off by backtracking the raiding party. After several days of trudging through featureless plains they come across a burnt out village, then another and another, nothing but death and decay and evidence of the cult’s activities. The party discovers a number of bodies of both innocents and cult members. The cult members all wear a grey robe marked with the symbol of Bane and also a silver talisman with a hole where a gem would have been set. The party remembers seeing these talismans around the necks of the original raiding party and endeavour to re-create the missing gem using items they find in their environment, with great success, wearing the talisman and cloaks they would easily pass themselves off as cult members, should they so choose.
The party finally comes upon a village which has not been ransacked and meet with a man named Auldwyn who offers them a bed for the night, but appears very nervous as he advises them not to proceed with their mission, but instead to just turn back and return to the safety of their warm town behind the frontier. Before they can settle in for the night the house comes under attack by some more cultists, this time more organised and more powerful, a hobgoblin Warcaster among them.
The party has some problems putting down these vile creatures but eventually succeeds and this is where our adventure ends, for now …