Session 31 Don’t call it a comeback


As the creepy woman, Vasilka, stares down at the corpse of the Abbott, she laughs. She moves back to the shadowed corner of the room as as a deep voice chuckles from somewhere up the hallway stairs. The as-yet-unseen figure begins to clap, and, suddenly the Abbot appears in the doorway.

Zygfrek Belview
Zygfrek Belview

“It’s been a while since I’ve had such a worthy adversary. It appears that I need to make a stronger version of myself,” he says, gesturing to his clone lying on the floor. The doors behind the group open, and two mongrel henchmen enter. “What do you want us to do with them, Boss?”

Otto Belview
Otto Belview

The Abbott pauses in thought for a moment, then continues chatting with the group, seemingly unwilling to let them leave. “What brought you to my abbey?”

“We came to bring you wine. Nothing more. But, I think it’s better that we leave.” Thaldir nervously speaks the words that are in everyone’s mind. “We really didn’t mean any harm. We’ll be going.”

The door is still blocked, and Tilly notices that Syrren is focusing intently on the Abbott’s movements. “Before you go, I could use your help with something. I am in need of a face that would appeal to the Devil Strahd. Do you have any ideas?” The Abbott looks in Tilly’s direction.


“Well, as gorgeous as I am, I don’t think my face is the perfect model you are seeking. Besides, my friend Syrren has had some experience with people walking around carrying his likeness. It’s quite creepy, frankly,” Tilly says.

“Besides, I can think of a gal who has a much prettier face. She used to hang with us, but she married some fella in another town. I bet Aydin still has a picture of her in his pocket,” Tilly continues.

“No one as pretty as you, Tilly,” Aydin snarls sarcastically.

Thaldir again states the party’s intention to leave. “We’ll be taking our leave of this place now. I’m afraid we won’t be able to help you with the face.”

“She needs not only a face, but a soul. Then she’ll be fit for Strahd. This is the only way to lure him and finally free the man from his curse,” says a grinning Abbott. “The vessel needs a soul.”

Recognizing the imminent danger, Jaylin casts a fiery net in the direction of the mongrels. Thaldir summons divine guardians to protect the group, and the would-be heroes find themselves locked in battle, once again. As Syrren summons a wall of spikes, the guards wail and screech in pain.

Jaylin and Thaldir quickly dispatch the two Mongrel thugs, while Tilly focuses her thunderous wrath on Vasika, the creepy doll woman. Aydin pierces her with his spear and follows that with another blow. In the midst of the chaos, the Abbott disappears, appearing to have vanished into thin air.

When finally, Vasika is destroyed, the Abbott appears behind Jaylin and deals him a nearly fatal strike with his mace. As friends rush in to cover Jaylin’s wounds, the Abbott disappears again.

A terrified Victor volunteers to graciously guard the door and runs from the room.

A stillness falls over the room, with only the sound of the group’s labored breathing. They try to sense where the Abbott will appear next. All at once, they are hit with phantasmic damage as the invisible priest casts a corrupted healing spell on the entire room.

Our heroes are now fighting an impossible enemy and have no way to discern where to strike. Keeping their senses sharp and weapons ready, they each scan the room for any sign of movement. The only stir is the burst of two more guards into the room.

The two menacing spectors begin attacking Syrren, who has summoned several giant wood spiders. Thaldir and his friends attack fight the only enemies they can see, hurling fire and rage at the guards.

Frustrated by the damage the Abbott has done to his chosen family, Term summons a hex that finally reveals the evil cleric. As he appears just outside the chamber doorway, the crew refocuses their attacks at him. Syrren’s spiders move to

It all seems to be in vain. The abbott proves a formidable opponent, practically immune to every type of menace. As the party becomes exhausted and takes on more damage, their combat turns to desperation. Term punches wildly at the Abbott with the force of thunder.

Victor was forced back into the room when the Abbott reappeared. He immediately regretted the decision but had nowhere to turn. He ran to corner and relieved himself at the sight of his bloodied companions.

As they watch the Abbott recover again and again, a stranger watches from up high. The Devil himself waits in the rafters, grinning and chuckling softly to himself.

Thaldir briefly lifts his eyes to see the one that has been the target of all of their missions up to now. He meets Strahd’s gaze and, resolute, turns back to try and best the Abbott.


As if sensing that their combat prowess is on display, the rest of the crew begins to advance on the Abbott again. Izek, who has rallied from near death, deals powerful blows to the Abbott. The Abbott responds by destroying the host of giant wood spiders that surround him.

Just as they think the tide is turning, the Abbott brings the family of warriors to the knees. With a single touch, he ends Izek’s life. His lethal hand takes Aydin to the brink of death with a single touch. Grief-stricken, Syrren conjures thunder from above to try and end the Abbott’s campaign of terror.

The Abbott remains standing, bloodied, but alive. The hope they have of victory fades until Thaldir, summoning the might of his ancestors, uses a spiritual weapon of immense power to smite their foe.

Strahd von Zarovich

What should have been a time triumph turns to a tense standoff as Strahd reveals himself. “Well, well, well…you have impressed me, once again! You have managed to kill several of my brides. Such a delight to watch you all!” He moves menacingly close to the group and grins broadly. “Because you are proving yourselves such worthy warriors, I wish to extend you a personal invitation to the wedding of Vasili and Ireena. Of course, the nuptials will be held at my castle.”

Thaldir frowns and politely (albeit somewhat sarcastically) rejects the invitation. “I think you’re well aware we can’t attend, and I’m sure you know why.”

“Suit yourselves,” quips Stahd. “It’s something you definitely won’t want to miss. Please do come if you change your mind.” With those words, Strahd disappeared, leaving the group to mourn their friend Izek.

Tilly joined Syrren where he knelt on the floor near his brother’s body. The decision was made to make a funeral pyre before resting for the night. They had won victory but at a cost for which no one was prepared. Syrren ripped the heart from the Abbott’s body, took both of his eyes, and tucked these things away.


“Izek should be buried with the eyes as a trophy. Since he never got the chance to eat them, I want them to burn with him,” Syrren said. Tilly rose and went to join the others, leaving Syrren to have a few more moments alone to bid farewell to Izek.

Thaldir and Aydin were discussing the prospect of rescuing Ireena from the wedding. Both agreed that something had to be done, since Strahd was surely going to somehow possess Ireena with the spirit of his lost love. Aydin wanted to crash the wedding, but Thaldir appealed to his tactical sense. “Our best option is to get them on the way to the wedding.” Term and Jaylin agreed.

Exhausted, they remember their responsibility to the prisoners. They go through the entire castle, freeing the unfortunate victims of the Abbott. A small, weak cry distracts them from the other captives. They find a small female creature who calls herself Marzena. She is chained in the corner. She appears to have wings like a bat. Her wings appear to be weak and dirty, and her hair is matted. Tilly asks her questions to see whether she is a follower of the Abbott or his captive.


“The Abbott gave me wings. He’s a good man…no, a bad man. He’s mean. No nice. He’s mean nice.”- She seems confused as to where her allegiance should lie. Thaldir gives her some rations and is rewarded with a scratch on the arm. As they continue to talk to her, she tells them that the Abbott can’t really be dead. She heard him laughing about how he fooled these fighters. She also tells them that one of the guards was her brother.

Syrren enters the cell, walks directly to the girl, and releases her chains. He says, “I know what it’s like to be a little different. You’re free now.”

With that, the girl begins to cry and flys out the drafty cell window.

The party continues exploring the grounds, freeing captors as they go. Because the grounds are too large to cover them all in one day – especially after two difficult battles.

After a long rest, they awaken and continue exploring the castle. Term places the Abbott’s mace in his bag, and Syrren removes a gold disc from the wall, revealing a superior healing potion and a crystal flask. Four gold candelabras are also placed in the group’s bag of holding.

As they continue to explore, they find that the walls and furniture are all crumbling. The faded signs in the hallways on on the doors indicate that this was once some sort of hospital. Their wandering is brought to a halt as giant shadows appear around the corner.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Adventures with Droop website is unofficial Fan Content permitted under the Fan Content Policy. Not approved/endorsed by Wizards. Portions of the materials used are property of Wizards of the Coast. ©Wizards of the Coast LLC.