I have my hesitance to accept something so vicious and grisly as the work of the same beings that have been working via mind-control and staying out of sight, but that could also be explained as them being more impatient or even desperate as investigations draw closer to revealing them in full. I will say that Laermont's actions in this chapter in particular have exhibited strong thought processes. He's brought in an expert, they've picked up the trail, and he was certain to wait to assemble back-up (and arm them) before rushing headlong into trouble. It likely won't be enough, but the fact that he's taking these precautions is good.
I will caution against making it so the Outside Ones can just do anything. While their methods may be unknown to us, there should be patterns that people can pick up, and limitations foreshadowed so they won't seem like a deus ex machina if introduced later on. If you've included such foreshadowing, forgive me, I've missed it. I am intrigued in seeing where this goes.