After defeating the werewolves, the group freed a handful of captives that included Fretty, a kobold bard, Cora, a halfling druid, and Nithal, who had previously been captured.
The group ventured forth to come across an open room with 2 doors (one being barricaded closed). Nithal, itching to get his foot in gear, forced open the barricaded door to find a narrow hallway with a brutally beaten corpse in the middle. blood stains on the floor indicated that the victim had crawled in through the door on the opposite end of the hallway and died. The group decided not to proceed through the door in the hallway and backtracked through the other door which was found to be unlocked.
The new room was dimly lit and full of crates and barrels stacked to the ceiling with a set of double doors in the corner. on closer inspection, an inscription and eerie carving of an eye was found near the door. Grokk noticed that the roof was covered in a strange mold that Cora identified as brown mold, a very dangerous growth that reacts violently to heat. Kaida was able to translate the inscription near the door as she was the only one in the group capable of reading infernal. after deciphering the puzzle, the doors swung open to find Khazans lab.
Inside the lab, a journal documenting the sunsword was found and a slip of paper with infernal written on it. proceeding through the second door in this room led to an opening with a ladder and two large statues. Suspecting something was off, Fretty conjured an illusory being of light in the room. the statues came to life, revealing themselves to be golems, who promptly attacked and dissipated the illusion. the group decided to try again, however this time when the golems activated, Kaida spoke the infernal word found on the slip of paper which deactivated the golems.
The group proceeded up the ladder into the tower. working through the tower (and collapsing a floor in the process), the group found the remains of Rudolph von Richten, vampire hunter, clutching his diary. (which again spoke of the 3 keys to defeating Strahd) progressing further, the group also found a magically preserved head being guarded by an animated suit of armor, which was not so elegantly disabled by Reginald the stab happy paladin.
Finally, reaching the top of the tower, Grokk finds the holy symbol and retrieves it. This drops the barrier protecting the tower which seemingly also called to arms the treants in the forest. A druid appeared in front of the tower and summoned Wintersplinter, A large menacing tree blight, to attack the party.