Where Vlad learns some bad news..
The next day, Vlad accompanied the others into the town to help with the aftermath. The burning question in his mind is the whereabouts of the book, so Vlad heads to the church to ask the priest, Father Alte about it. He says he had moved the book to his private study at the urging of Vlad to secure it the day before. Heading into the burnt out library area, Vlad, Mal, Hailong and Aujak poke around the remains of library and the Father’s private study. Failing to find the book they do determine that the fire was started in the study, and the initial fuel was the smashed up desk the book had been secured in. Best guess is the mysterious woman managed to steal the book.
Returning outside they find Father Alte close to tears. His daughter is missing, and he has what appears to be her hand found near the temple alter. Vlad spends some time throughout the day helping the people of the town tidy up. Later in the afternoon he meets up with Laima, where she reveals that Hilde, the Father’s daughter was Teufel’s fiance, and was also the woman in the library during the attack. Vlad struggles to keep a straight face during this revelation. If Laima was unable, as she claimed last night, to identify the woman in the library, how is she suddenly so sure its Hilde… unless she lied about what she knew, as Vlad had suspected at the time.
Vlad and Laima head over to Teufel’s workshop to find out more of what is going on. As the approach the building they notice the door is open, and the lobby area has been thoroughly smashed up, with glass shards everywhere. Carefully progressing into the building, the rooms for housing the workers are stained with blood, although there are no bodies there. Noise from the kilns attracts their attention, and sneaking into the area they find half a dozen wichtel busy pouring molten glass onto various corpse parts (presumably the workers). Towards the back of the work area, one ‘undamaged’ corpse appears to have been covered in molten glass. Backing off, Vlad returns to the kitchens they passed on the way through the building, and creates a couple of makeshift molotov cocktails. Laima sends her maid for help, and she takes one of the molotovs as they attack the wichtel. The molotov deals with one of the critters, and Vlad kills another while the remaining few are frightened away.
Mal, Hailong and Aujak arrive, and the four set about investigating the damaged workshop. Mal and Vlad study the full-glass corpse, and although Vlad initially denies it, realize slowly that it is the tortured remains of his brother Teufel. Vlad leaves to search Teufels private rooms to find proof he is still alive. The accounts book shows signs of being cooked, with way too many goods being found in the building than there should be, and the lockbox containing a lot more money than the accounts suggest. Loud shouting from the workshop interrupts any further investigation of the books, and Vlad hurries back to find a very angry kiln spirit in residence, apparently Aujak summoned it to find out more about the events here. The spirit is very angry about the damage, the shoddy workmanship and the ‘items sold that were not made here’, ie stolen goods. The spirit also confirms to Vlad despair that the corpse really is that of his brother. Vlad calms the spirit down, and promises to return the workshop to proper working order.
While this was happening, Hailong had been investigating various parts of the building, found Teufels diary. His diary details his relationship with Hilde, and a final drawing shows her with a form of demon on her body – its a Peronele, more commonly known as a Living Armour. All the revelations of the last few hours finally catch up with Vlad, and he moves away from the others to be alone while he weeps for the fate of his brother.
The others, respecting Vlads grief, search for the last of the Wichtel that were scared off earlier, and find a concealed passage at the back of the workshop. It leads a long way under the town to a small cove, clearly used as a smugglers dock. Along the way they pass a bricked up doorway to some form of ancient ruins. The brick work suggests it was done a long long time ago.
The next day, while the others attend to their own business, Vlad gets a coffin for his brother and takes him back to Vendig for a proper burial with the family. he stays several days for the funeral, wake and to support the family, before heading back to Seigsdorf. His father granting Vlad control of the glasswork business. Once back he spends more time cleaning up the workshop and recruiting a few apprentices and at least one experienced foreman to start the glassworks up again. This proves surprisingly hard, as the recent events have given the workshop a bad name. The excess funds on his brothers lockbox are spent on materials and wages to overcome this, and the output is shipped regularly via the Crouching Tiger back to Vendig for sale. The enterprise produces enough to sustain itself, but will need effort to expand. Vlad also ensures the door from the workshop to the smuggler tunnels has a powerful ward against demons, in case the wichtel and their dogs should try and return.