Before leaving Krezk, Rudolph apologizes to Deckard. After an acceptance to his behavior, Rudolph offers to help revive Tornado in a timely fashion so they can still get on the road before dark. After reviving the ranger’s once again zombie cat, Rudolph mentions that his own saber tooth tiger, “Moongrass,” (a familiar tribe name to Breath of Wind) was once a mother not long ago though her only cub that survived while here in Barovia went missing. He believes that Tornado was in fact the cub of Moongrass (though Moongrass doesn’t acknowledge the undead creature now). Rudolph, after his conversation with Deckard, realizes that Breath of Wind may be undead himself. So he talks to the catfolk and asks what his plans are if he gets his friends out of Barovia and vanquishes Strahd. Breath says the Raven Queen will most likely take him to the unknown and he will finally be put to rest. Rudolph offers to help Breath in that situation if it comes to it, Breath “appreciates” the offer as best as he can.
Within a half hour’s time, the group arrives near the gates of Krezk. Senna Loot’sko is able to inspire the group by telling of her past family issues with vampires and hopes that they will come together as a unified group after all they have been through. A slow clap and “Bravo!” comes from around the corner as the group comes upon a dignified dusk elf dressed in a nice, ornate black suit standing in front of a large, black carriage. He exclaims how great Senna’s speech is and introduces himself as Rahadin, the head chamberlain of Lord Strahd Von Zarovich. He bows and gives the group the letter they “dropped” (the one burnt by Shep) as it is an invitation to dinner with the Count at Castle Ravenloft. The group, ready to fight, now notice a group of werewolves (the same ones Ireena saw earlier that morning) surrounding them in the woods and threatening the Vallakians that they were escorting. Realizing there is no way around this “dinner invite,” the group agrees as long as the Vallaki servants and Stella Wachter are brought to Krezk. Rahadin agrees and orders the werewolves to escort the scared Vallakians with the party’s letter from Baron Vargas in their hands.
The heroes are taken by a jovial elf many hours into the night towards Castle Ravenloft. Many various dark creatures (Scarecrows, wolves, evil druids, twig blights, Vistani, etc.) greet and bow before the carriage and Rahadin. Deckard takes out one of the twig blights with his crossbow but is greeted by various (presumably dead) voices within his head thanks to Rahadin. It disturbs and hurts him as he becomes quiet for the rest of the trip.
They arrive at the castle, rain soaked, as they enter the grand entrance of Strahd’s grand home. There they have dinner with the vampire himself, Strahd (or so they think). He entertains them with organ music, food from their own specific home in Erryes and he pleads with them that he is a just ruler of Barovia. He wishes two things: one of these 5 heroes that came from Erryes to become his heir to his throne and to have his Tatyana back, a soul he believes inhabits the body of Ireena. She refuses, They disrespect him in his own home and he seems to be very upset by this. The candle lights extinguish all the rooms and they hear every door, portcullis, and drawbridge close within the castle and outside the courtyard. It seems they must now find a new exit and leave this terrible place.
While traveling they are attacked by creatures of shadow, flying swords, (even a Strahd mannequin that “attacked” the party) and swarms of bats as the murderous castle seems to be very hard to take even an hour breather. They also come in contact with Lief, Strahd’s accountant. He is a prisoner here and says he wouldn’t make it out there, plus he’s chained to his desk. He tries to ask the heroes how much they are worth in gold in order to best account for Strahd’s future wealth. The heroes also notice many adventurer name’s above their own in a thick ledger he is working on. They don’t seem to appreciate that and they interrogate him for information but he isn’t too forthcoming. They do take some of the gold and platinum from his room including an interesting and magical book to look at later.
The 8 heroes continue east further into the castle as Kasimir feels going out the front door might be too dangerous; they also find a large window on the west wall of the castle to be reinforced with magic so going out certain windows might be too hard. The wizard did hear from his sister that Strahd is a powerful wizard as well and might have the ability to teleport to various places in Barovia so easily from within his castle.
They happen upon two very unique zombies sitting in chairs as they are attacked near what appears to be a broken chapel.