The party began their return trip to Phandalin after the informative meeting with Venomfang. On the road back, they were confronted by Hamun Kost, who demanded that the party turn over any magical artifacts they had plundered from his dig site. Billy drew first, blasting the necromancer and his skeletal bodyguards with a fireball. The fight was over fast, and the adventurers left a looted caravan and a smoking hole in the ground in their wake. Darak got an old Dhakaani Ring of Protection as plunder.
Back in Phandalin, the gang touched base with their contacts. Burrich d’Kundarak, a representative from the Dwarven dragonmarked house, had been seen in town. Quelline Alderleaf told them that he was meeting with Nundro Rockseeker, presumably with interest in the Phandelver mine. The party also learned that the bugbear “King” Grol had been seen around Cragmaw Cave. The adventurers set out in that direction, intending to tie up some loose ends.
At their return to Cragmaw Cave, the gang made short work of a force of hobgoblins guarding the entrance. Their raid into the cave went somewhat awry when Xander stumbled into a roper, which had claimed one of the caverns as its lair. After the protracted battle was won, the party was confronted by Grol himself and a horde of goblins. The bugbear chieftain wielded a vicious magic greatsword named Bloodtaker. Now Jinara wields it.
The party returned to Phandalin to rest for the remaining week before the Festival of Nymm. With enough experience to reach level 6, the characters plan to research, train, and socialize while they wait for whatever event that the tapestry might foreshadow.