The party handily defeated several of the lizardfolk who approached the camp. One of the lizardfolk, who identified himself in Draconic as Snapjaw, turned out to be more or less a leader, and he made alliance with the party.
Deep in the swamp was Castle Naerytar, which was a major base of operations for the Cult. The castle was defended by a tribe of lizardfolk and by a village of bullywugs. It was not an amicable arrangement though – the lizardfolk felt hard done by as they did all the work while the more numerous bullywugs just sat around in the mud being lazy. But the bullywug leader – a particularly fat shaman named Pharblex Spattergoo had killed the lizardfolk tribe’s shaman and bullied them into submission. Snapjaw saw the adventurers as a way of getting back at the bullywugs.
The lizardfolk tribe actually served a black dragon, but according to the half-dragon leader of the cult, the dragon now served the cult too. Hence, the lizardfolk also served the cult. But they weren’t happy about it, especially when the bullywugs were put in charge. The Wearer of Purple who commanded the castle tried to treat them well, elevating several lizardfolk to be his personal guard and attempting to teach them metalwork. However, this only made those lizardfolk who made the guard arrogant, since they got the best treatment and the metal weapons.
There was a great deal of discussion during the day-long canoe ride to Castle Naerytar, mostly focusing on whether the party should just march in the front door and start murdering everybody, or whether a more subtle approach was warranted. In the end, Snapjaw’s description of the castle dissuaded them from a straight frontal assault.
They approached the castle and pulled up in the mud, noticing the two small but well built huts for lizardfolk and the veritable village of bullywugs. Snapjaw led them into the castle courtyard, where a simple reconnoitre established that there was a large force of cultists along with the bullywug guards.