April 12, 2012
Having bested the Giant Weasel, the party determines to continue exploring the Haunted House. Acacia succeeds in tempting the war pony to attempt to jump back up to the first floor. After a successful jump, the war pony goes outside to wait for the party to return. The Warblade excuses himself from the party and goes outside to watch for anyone that might try to sneak up on the party. In reality, he was so shaken by his poor performance in combat that he needed some time to steady his nerves.
Acacia leads the war pony outside while Zekel Thruf and the Paladin explore the house. They find a metal box hidden behind a loose stone in a fireplace. In recovering the box they arouse the ire of a giant spider which they best in combat. After failed attempts to pick the lock on the metal box the decision is made to bash it open. The sounds of the hammering draw the attention of two giant ants. Acacia returns to assist in the battle with the ants and manages to deal Zekel Thruf a good blow with an errant bullet from her sling. The ants are handily defeated. The metal box is prized open and a ring is discovered inside.
The party discovers a ring of mushrooms growing in one room, but Acacia is familiar with the species and recognizes them as harmless. Zekel Thruf discovers another loose stone in a fireplace, this time up the chimney a ways. He recovers from behind it a pouch with some coins and a gem of some sort.
Upon entering the kitchen, an ominous and terrifying disembodied voice is heard. Acacia is overcome with fear and flees, reuniting with her war pony outside. Zekel Thruf and the Paladin are stalwart and do not run. Instead, Zekel Thruf discovers a secret trapdoor in the floor that leads down to a cellar.
In the cellar, the party find a large room with cots along the south wall and a long dining table. At the dining table is a human figure. When the human sees the party, he grabs his short sword and rushes forward, clearly meaning to do harm. The Paladin bests the human assailant.
Acacia having overcome her fear, returns to the party. A secret door is discovered on the north wall of the cellar.