so i built a little dungeon! well, it was a creepy house, but when the players came for dinner the eldest son left & bricked up the door. i had secret passages, secret doors, traps, wall & door hardness & hp (as well as break dcs), the stats for the npcs, everything. the npcs struck, of course, after they had seperated the pcs. taking the ox garrick to steal food from the kitchen, sending emma into the drawing room for femminine chit-chat. fight fight fight! all the npcs reacted according to the notes i'd compiled for them, which basically meant that the dungeon ended up destroyed. see, the pcs succeeded in killing the father & the second oldest son (the first killings of the game! the first people dead at the pc's hands!), but as i said, the eldest son, the mother, & the youngest son all escaped (you havn't seen the last of the radu kadats!)- setting the house on fire as they fled, so all my precious dungeon went up in smoke. hey, two traps were triggered, so i can't complain! anyhow, they ended up getting out of the (burning) building without too much difficulty- where i'd sort of planned a race against the blaze, complete with smoke inhalation, instead the players had better ideas. namely, emma had a flask of stone dissolving acid with her (no joke!) & between that & garrick's sledge hammer, it was a two round big easy.
of course, outside was where the real bad guy was. i'd mod'ed a mini the night before, super glueing things to it & painting it with my girlfriend's nail polish, & it came out pretty fucking alright. i figured it was time to have them face the prophecied red-handed apprentice. so they come limping out of the burning house, two of them badly wounded, & he's just standing there. garrick, who is in berserker mode, charges him, & thanks to the lovely spell "backbiter," nearly smashes his own face off, as his weapon twists in his hand. anyhow, the apprentice keeps rushing emma, & eventually succeeds in smearing red paint all over her face- marking her for the crimson king! garrick then smashes him in the head with a dizzying blow, knocking his helmet off & revealing jacob, the boy emma consigned to the chambered looking-glass when she was a little girl. so he smashes garrick down to the ground, threatens the pcs, the wytchleech (swoon) comes out & curls along his leg, & the pcs limp away. well, everyone except balphus, who gets into a screaming match with atahwa, severs the head of one of the radu kadats, crawls into the abbatoir's sewers, marinates in blood & filth & madness for a little bit, then finally rejoins everyone at atahwa's suggorate dad's place.