Here’s the setup:
The characters tracked a crime wave to wererats operating out of the city’s sewers. It became apparent that the wererats had some shadowy connection to a local meadery in the foothills northwest of the city. Coincidentally, this is the same brewer that was providing free mead for the upcoming harvest festival..
The characters traveled there, and found Gnomes who had owned the meadery had been recently bought out by two brothers, who then immediately fired the Gnomish workers and brought in their own people, and closed the place to any visitors.
The party traveled to the meadery, built into the side of a rocky hill. Outside the doors they encountered hostile sentries in the form of two displacer beasts, which provided a tough fight for the four level 5 characters...
Once past the locked doors (the ex-criminal Half-Orc Cleric rolled a natural 20 to pick the lock!), they found three more wererats working the brewing equipment. A Human man fled through a barred door as the fight ensued..
The wererats defeated, it was discovered the equipment in the room included some kimd of alchemical distiller putting a purified and concentrated “secret ingredient” into the mead. Not waiting to figure out more, they found the release for the barred door and went in pursuit of the escaped man. Down a curving set of stone steps,they found an empty store room, with no other apparent exits and nobody in sight.
The cleric and barbarian worked together to locate a secret doorway concealed behind some crates, and down more stairs. They reached the bottom, which opened into a natural cavern. They entered just as a boat piloted by wererats and carrying casks disappeared down a dark subterranean river. The escaped man and his brother remained in the cavern, shouting “you’re too late!” As they transformed into vicious wereboars!
That’s where we broke for the evening, so they will roll initiatuve first thing next time. Also in the chamber is a strange altar to a half-woman/half-beast entity, an icon of which they found in the sewers with the wererats also. They don’t know it yet, but this is Ferinea, The Beast Mother, cursed fallen priestess of the goddess Selune and the first Lycanthrope. The weres have distilled some of her blood into a reagent added to the mead, via which they hope to transform the entire City into were-beasties! Will they succeed? TBD.
I got to use one of the big elevation boxes and two terrain trays for this. Both are very nice, but the box is pretty slick and pieces slide off without a terrain tray between for magnets to stick to. I wish the bottom of the box was metalized as well as the lid.