Turning to the north after leaving the forest and heading for the Rift visible in the sky slightly to the east of the city of Duram, the party follows the road.
Spending the better part of a day traveling, they encounter large amounts of traffic heading south on the road, mostly villagers fleeing from the influence of the tear in the sky, they find out that the rift is just outside the city, and has been dropping large balls of fire and other things. The city guard have begun engaging the various entities that are now appearing, while others have begun to fall back to the Aerie ward to protect the Council.
Continuing north along the road, something has changed. Where there should be a simple road, there is now a dark, foreboding seemingly abandoned village, with a small crater surrounding it, and the flora and very ground itself shifting into a dull grey color, clearly something that either shifted or fell from the Shadowfell rift in the sky nearby. Sneaking in, Tawna discovers a large undead monstrosity, appearing to be part dwarf, stitched together with parts of giants and goliaths to be a massive flabby beast barely able to stand on its own stunted crushed legs.
Hemingar decided to try to communicate with the giant, which was somewhat successful, and they learned the creature, named Grummus, was not alone, and had at least a brother named Grimmus also in the small village. They also learned that the creature has an insatiable hunger, and will eat just about anything, indicating that the half-orc looked “tasty”. This was interrupted however, when he noticed the halfling approaching, and decided that she was bite sized, and began to lumber towards her.
Nairb, not wanting to see his friend eaten by this, thing, cast Fog Cloud before rushing in and turning into a constrictor snake to try to grapple Grummus. The party began attacking the creature, but not before Grummus pinned the snake, reverting Nairb to his original form, with his amble presence. After several moments, the wind began clearing the fog cloud, just in time for Nairb to wild shape into a Stench Kow, and with the pressure of the giants body on him, causing the Kow to be launched 10 feet into the side of a building.
The party managed to kill Grummus, and then continue on beginning to search the village, trying to find out why the flow of refugees has stopped, and discovering 3 Vorokhoi Zombies, along with a Vorokhoi Mage Champion, who began attacking the party. The group was able to defeat them fairly easily, though they did suffer some damage.
As they continued to search for survivors, they did find several refugee bodies, slashed and dead, near the edge of the town. They also discovered the brother, Grimmus, and after trying to talk to him and not getting anywhere, other then finding out that he has a similar appetite as his brother, engaged and defeated the second giant.
Clearing out the rest of the village, they discovered one last enemy, a beholder zombie that had either been summoned into a room with only a door, or had somehow managed to get in there and could not get out, so, Nordred decided to burn the building down, killing the zombie, and finishing their at least short term mission of making the area safe for the refugees to continue moving through the village.