The paladin threw his party. During the event, an intrusion was discovered. Further investigation led the paladin to track down the intruder using a hired scryer, whose magic revealed the location of the thief named “Bad Guy And Friend” (that’s what the DM says).
Being a paladin, he took his prisoner to the local guards for some reason. They refused to believe the paladin had the authority to hold a captive, so Bad Guy And Friend had to be left there until the paladin came back home for the rest of the party.
Once reinforced with the might of the full group, the paladin et al returned. The guards recognized the party immediately and gave up their prisoner gladly, whereupon the party returned to the keep to interrogate the thief.
After a little talk, the bard charmed the thief and convinced him we were his friends. He told us where he was going to go to receive his expected pay. The party went there to meet their mystery opponent, hiding themselves behind invisibility spells and waiting in strategic spots.
Eventually, a group of hooded figures arrived and engaged Bad Guy And Friend in conspiratorial conversation. But instead of being paid in the coins he was expecting, the bad guys tried to kill him!
In the ensuing fight, the enemies were revealed to be hobgoblins led by our old enemy, the green hag from the evil coven we had previously encountered. After a mighty battle, the party emerged victorious and the hag emerged decapitated.
Also captured was the evil horse trainer who had betrayed us to the hag in the first place.