The directions the PCs recieved from the villager (see The Pursuit) were very vague, leading them farther and farther north through the Nentir Vale. Along the way, tragedy struck, and at the worst possible time. Not a day away from the village of Winterhaven, Kobolds ambushed the party and, while little threat to the PCs, managed to kill Biscuits!
The party was forced to slog on foot into the village, where they resupplied. While staying at Wrafton’s Inn, They heard news of Douven Staul. He had been in town very recently! They managed to figure out where he had been headed, and traveled there themselves. A large force of enemies waited at the excavation site, but the PCs fought them off and freed Douven. They found instructions to a mysterious transportation ritual that involved blood, pain, and other sundry elements. Presumably, it had been intended for teleporting the loot the villains uncovered. It did not work for transporting party members. With Staul freed and the villains dead, they headed back toward Winterhaven to search for more clues.