541 CY: I Kill My Wife Yet Again

To explain, my wife was playing Odette, and played Raylene before her. Two character deaths in as many sessions. Sigh. For those of you just joining, they are playing through Judge’s Guild’s Dark Tower, which we’ve located on the northwest border of The Tangles, north of the Bandit Kingdoms, Greyhawk.

Beatrice found herself alone in the poison corridor, with Hors turned to stone and embedded in the wall of the corridor. As the gas began to fill the corridor again, she leapt back through the doors and found herself teleported to the previous room.

Lisri found himself in a bunkroom, with Whisper (and his Bag of Holding) turned to stone and embedded in the wall of the room. Lisri was not alone. Two warriors were there as well, one with a longsword (Mellon Half-Elven) and one with a battle-axe (Tarshigid Rarreacher). All were surprised for a moment and then leapt into action. Lisri cast Mirror Image and now five Lisris danced about the room. Mellon and Tarshigid began eliminating them, which gave Lisri time to get out his Wand of Frost and do a good deal of damage to them.

Meanwhile, Eric and Odette followed Beatrice and Hors into the poison corridor, and finding only Hors, jumped back. Beatrice had by now descended the stairs, traversed the freezing room, and turned into an owl and perched behind the dried-up cupid fountain. There she remained for two hours.

Eric and Odette then jumped through the north wall of the teleport room and found themselves with Lisri. Eric successfully cast Hold Person at Tarshigid and they then attacked Mellon in unison. Odette knocked him unconscious just as Eric was attacked from the rear by Argol Bargol Burt, who had just entered the room. Argol soon regretted his move to aid his comrades, as he found himself in battle with two warriors better than himself. Lisri fell upon Mellon’s unconscious body and stabbed him repeatedly in the neck. Covered with blood, he rose and advanced on Tarshigid, whose eyes rolled in terror at his approach. Tarshigid was a big man, and Lisri was forced to jump to reach his femoral artery, but soon the big man was dead as well.

Argol yielded to Odette and Eric, and they allowed him to live. Lisri wanted to kill him, but the two Lawful Good characters were much dismayed at his bloodthirsty treatment of their downed foes (Lisri is Neutral). After being assured by Odette that Argol was not evil, Eric made an appeal for Argol to join them but the warrior deemed their chances low in defeating Haffrung Helleyes and demurred.

After casting Detect Magic, they stripped their foes of their magic gear (an axe and a pair of gauntlets). They also found Oph’s warchest (one of Argol’s missing comrades), which they appropriated along with its glittering contents.

The party advanced into the rest of the suite and Odette entered the only open door on the corridor, only to be surprise attacked by Tirian of Asalbar. Eric soon joined her and Tirian also found himself in trouble. After he cried for help, Dagda and Mervyn (Haffrung’s apprentices) cast Protection from Good and summoned a pack of baboons to attack Lisri, who was still in the hall. Lisri ran into the room and Eric tried to block the door. He was only partially successful and one baboon made it inside and again attacked Lisri. Eric opened the door and guarded it, the baboons making a semi-circle around him. Eric cast Silence on Mervyn but the apprentice made his saving throw. Eric then made saving throws against two Control Person spells, and then Lisri and he and the lead baboon took six points of fire damage from Burning Hands. Lisri replied with a fireball that killed all but Dagda and one of the baboons, and Eric charged Dagda and put him down. They then finished the last baboon.

Like Argol before him, Tirian yielded, but he was more amenable to joining the party. Eric (whose player had too much whiskey) offered him 14,000 gp to join them, which astonished everyone. Tirian rapidly agreed, and Eric tried to revise that amount to 1,400, which resulted in an argument that continued the rest of the evening.

With Tirian guiding them, they explored the apprentice’s rooms but found no magic books or other goodies. They then explored Haffrung’s rooms, but found only two very silly people (a young lady and a man in leather) playing checkers. Searching the room around them, Lisri found an elaborately decorated box, which they stowed.

They then returned to Holomir and the White Tower. Beatrice soon joined them, having flown in owl form through the dungeon safely. Lisri Knocked the box open, and Eric found the giant ruby inside was magic. Lisri Identified the gauntlets as Gauntlets of Dexterity, and was given them to wear.

Tirian still refused to join them, a result of the ongoing payment argument. Eric, Lisri, Odette, and Beatrice set off to explore the 2nd level further. They first encountered a 10′ diameter steel ball rolling silently down a circular corridor. Eric and Beatrice ran to safety, but Odette and Lisri failed to state their actions fast enough and took rather horrendous damage (we later discovered that Lisri’s player had fallen asleep!). Odette picked up Lisri’s broken body (he was at -6 hp) and ran with him to safety, where he was healed.

The party continued through the Ogre statue room, or rather, everyone but Lisri did (we still hadn’t figured out his player was asleep; that’s a problem with grognards).

Now down to three, the party continued on. Eric used Dispel Magic to get rid of a Wall of Fire to a temple of Set. Inside they found the golden dragon Murkaganth laying dead across the altar, having been sacrificed. An evil goat frolicked in the room and Beatrice spoke to it with little satisfaction. It leapt out of the room, the Wall of Flame went back up, and the party was trapped inside. In anguish over the death of Murkaganth, Eric attacked the legs of the statue of Set with Whelm, which caused the statue (a stone golem) to attack them. The golem first fumbled badly, causing nearly 30 hp damage to himself. It then rallied and hit Eric for 26 hp and paralyzed him. Beatrice cast Obscurement and while the golem attacked Odette, ran in and dragged Eric to safety. The golem killed Odette with a critical blow doing 36 hp and then began searching for the other two. Beatrice dragged Eric through the wall of flame (both survived) and then through Sam’s room. Getting past the steel ball was tricky but achieved by following the ball to the next opening, ducking in, and repeating. The two survivors made it back to Holomir, and Eric was cured of his paralyzation by the Lammassu.

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Navah: Bumber joins the Party

The party was joined by a Woodwose named Bumber. They got the Shadowlord’s fingers and Melian’s arm restored through Transmogrification at the elven city of Sarisia. The Shadowlord was billed much more than Melian, as his race are not loved by the elves. And he was guarded by four lightbearers throughout his short and undesired visit to the city.

They then returned to the House of the Gnoles, where they again met a Kek. It put Abrameowlin to sleep, gutted Doldrumarsh, and tore off Bumber’s arm. Eventually it fled underground with the griffon’s body. The party followed and saved the griffon from a coccoon of copper wire, but while they were underground, Doldrumash was abducted and killed. Bumber was kept safe in a tree by Melian.

After getting Bumber’s arm restored, they again came to the house, but this time the Keks were away hunting. The band got in and started exploring, finding several dead Gnoles, many ridiculously dangerous traps, and 200 F. in a chest under one of the beds.

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541 CY, The Death of Raylene

Trying to rest in a secret corridor, the party was quickly discovered and attacked by an animated statue of Set. It did a fair amount of damage before being destroyed. The party then headed back to the wraith tomb, where they were able to spend the next day or so healing and regaining spells. They then headed out again, finding a freezing room, a smoky room, and a refuse room, all of which they disdained to enter. Instead, they opened a set of creaky doors which brought three trolls to attack. Lisri Fireballed the trolls (and Whisper and Raylene) and then battle was joined. Whisper was knocked unconscious, but was healed by Beatrice, who then burned a downed troll. Raylene was slain by the remaining two trolls, who then went down themselves. Hors poured a healing potion into her mouth, but she was dead and it just poured out again. Eric set fire to the two trolls, forgetting that they were on Raylene. Beatrice pulled Raylene’s body free, and fortunately all of her valued items made their saving throws versus the fire. The party stuffed Raylene’s corpse into the Bag of Holding and began to return to the White Tower.

Peanuts cartoon: Lucy expresses her mixed desire to either help the party or just fireball them.

On the way, Lisri and others failed their climbs several times and took damage as a result. Then Lisri Hasted the party and they tried to make it past the Water monster. Eric used his Wings of Flying to reach the other side of the pool very quickly, while Hors was pulled in. Hors activated his Helm of Underwater Action with the phrase, “Sun Streaking Cold” and fought the creature underwater. Eventually the creature grew tired of fighting him and instead pulled Beatrice into the pool, as she had stayed too close to the fight. Eric dove in the water to save his beloved while Whisper and Lisri kept just out of reach and hoped for the best. Beatrice started to drown, so she changed to a crocodile. Eric and Hors managed to destroy the water monster, and all of them swam to the side of the pool, climbed out, and ran away.

They returned to Holomir and retrieved Raylene’s body from the bag. An honor guard of six gnomes carried her to her rest in the White Tower, and her next character, Odette Sagetree, Paladin of Mitra, joined the party.

Together they headed downstairs where they got involved in a fight between two sentient doors, Hargrove and Sidni. They escaped after some damage, and later found the outside of Sidni, on whom Lisri decided to take a whiz. He took a great deal of damage, bringing his HP to -7, but was healed and the party fled. They found a glowing black jewel, but decided to wait until Lisri had Identify memorized. They then wandered down a corridor where poison gas forced them to run to a set of double doors that caused teleportation. Beatrice and Hors were left alone, but decided to join their comrades by running through the doors as well. The DM took this opportunity to explain that they were all dead, enjoying that for a few minutes until he revealed they had merely been teleported to another room.

In the new room they searched. Beatrice and Hors were teleported back to the poison corridor (2-15), Whisper and Lisri to 3-16 (with Mellon Half-Elven and Targashid Farreacher), and Eric and Odette found stairs down to what might be the cold room. After everyone else had disappeared (again), Eric and Odette followed Beatrice and Hors.

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Hall of Heroes after 1.5 Years of Adventuring

The Shield Lands campaign began in Greyhawk in 540 CY (March 2020 in mundane terms). So far 43 heroes and NPCs have died in that campaign. Herein they are remembered…

Jack’s character, Adrian Canmore, Human Cleric of Pelor, Died of Fireball by Thaak in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
Richard’s character, Cael Thrand, Human Ranger, Died of Fireball by Thaak in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
Jennifer’s character, Keeva Moran, Elvish Fighter Mage Thief, Died of Fireball by Thaak in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
Matt1’s character, Rotanan Nichelor, Human Ranger, Died of Fireball by Thaak in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
John’s character, T’ilnor, Human Druid, Died of Fireball by Thaak in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
Jack’s character, Turfen, Dwarvish Thief, Died of poisoned needle in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
Jack’s character, Ruften, Dwarvish Thief, Killed and eaten by Nandies in the Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
John’s character, Mogroth, Dwarvish Fighter, MIA, fate unknown.
Jack’s character, Bradic of Greenwood, Human Cleric of Pholtus, Killed by Bloodhawks in the lagoon of Tirian Teyzuren.
NPC Izzis, Human Thief, Drowned in pit trap in Hall of Tirian Teyzuren.
NPC Hawky, Lisri’s Hawk Familiar, Killed by Thaak in Halls of Tirian Teyzuren.
NPC Gragen, Human Fighter, Torn to pieces by the Wendigo Thaak in the Halls of Tirian Teyzuren.
NPC Beolba Rillid, Human Fighter, Died in the Running of the Bauk in the Dying Earth.
NPC Shadow, Tebin’s good dog, Killed by pirates in the Dying Earth.
Matt2’s character, Torin McCreath, Human Ranger, Killed by goblins in the Mithril Mine.
Jack’s character, Ralden Falren, Human Cleric of Pelor, Killed by goblins in the Mithril Mine.
Jennifer’s character, Alarnna Pandorne, Human Paladin, Killed by goblins in the Mithril Mine.
David’s character, Tebin, Human Druid, Killed by goblins in the Mithril Mine.
Jack’s character, Tanus, Human Cleric, Killed by a Lightning Bolt in a mysterious tunnel in a cliff in an unknown land.
David’s character, Lug, Human Thief, Killed by a Lightning Bolt in a mysterious tunnel in a cliff in an unknown land.
Terry’s character, Kragsheer of the Whitestone Clan, Mountain Dwarvish Fighter, Squashed by falling rock while he slept in the Mithril Mine.
Jason’s character, Quaal, Human Fighter, MIA, fate unknown.
Jack’s character, Barrish Lowbrenn, Human Cleric (Oeridian) of Pholtus, Sucked dry by Stirges in Castle Mukos.
Jack’s character, Gorden Lowbrenn, Human Cleric (Oeridian) of Pholtus, Dies from Eoka poison in tunnels under the City State.
Matt’s character, Sir Percival Quackers, Duck Ranger, Dies from Eoka poison in tunnels under the City State.
NPC Rocco, Human Porter, Fled from party at first chance on White Plume Mountain. Killed and stuffed in Chasm by Cave Bear.
Teagan’s character, Boon Mando, Human Monk, Killed and eaten by storm giants on the slopes of White Plume Mountain.
David’s character, Havic Hammerbell, Hill dwarf fighter-thief, Killed and eaten by ghouls in White Plume Mountain.
Jack’s character, Catrick Purrcival, Human Cleric of Bandorack, God of Feline Animals (Unknown Gods)., Drowned by Kelpies in White Plume Mountain.
NPC Trixie, Dog, Killed by Black Pudding in White Plume Mountain
NPC Jerrimac, Human Porter, Boiled alive in White Plume Mountain when Nathal broke open the protective film with a lightning bolt.
David’s character, Monigo Intoyga, Gnomish Fighter/Illusionist, Blown up by explosive runes.
Matt’s character, Dara Mac Brádaigh, Human Paladin, Killed by Vampire in White Plume Mountain
NPC Canrick, Human Porter, Killed by Black Pudding in White Plume Mountain
Dan’s character, Nathal, Elvish Mage, Killed by Super Tetanus in White Plume Mountain
NPC Glesim, Human Porter, Killed by Black Pudding in White Plume Mountain
Teagan ‘s character, Kelly Darkwater, Human Thief, Killed by Nix & Nox, the Efreeti at White Plume Mountain
Teagan’s character, Ban Mando, Human Monk, MIA, fate unknown.
Jennifer’s character, Raylene Mavrini, Human (Flan) Ranger, Killed by Trolls in the Dark Tower, after weakened by Lisri’s Fireball.

Jack has lost 9 characters, David has lost 4 characters, Jennifer has lost 3 characters, Matt2 has lost 3 characters, Richard has lost 1 character, Dan has lost 1 character, and Matt1 has lost 1 character (although Lisri has been reconstructed by androids and then later reincarnated by a dragon).

As for leading causes of death, Fireballs killed 5, Goblins killed 4, Black Puddings killed 3, Lightning Bolts killed 2, and Eoka killed 2.

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541 CY, The Tomb of the Wraiths

Whisper fought six Hasted orcs while the rest of the party slept on. Eric came awake after being attacked in his sleep by two of them, and Lisri woke up in the room below a round or two later. Lisri managed to cast Fear and chase four of them away, and the other two decided to run as well. The water monster claimed two of them but four made it away.

The party then descended to the tomb of the wraiths, healed, and rested. They then opened the two chests in the room and found a great deal of treasure including several magic items. A Helm of Underwater Action went to Hors, and a Rock of Controlling Earth Elementals went to Whisper. It was discovered that no-one remembered what was in their Bag of Holding, so they had nothing in it. Raylene spent part of the evening trying to reconstruct its holdings from past chat records.

Along the way, we reconciled their various levels. Eric and Beatrice were 9th, Lisri was 8th, and the rest of the party had been reduced to 6th.

They emerged from the tomb onto level four and fought three Minotaurs, killing two and chasing the third away. Finding a secret door, they stumbled on a magician’s lair. He summoned six Troglodytes to fight them, Hasted them, and then cast a Web into the tunnel with the player characters. They eventually fought their way free, but the mage had escaped. No treasure was found.

They continued until they encountered a group of carnivorous apes. Lisri chose this as a time to cast a Fireball and killed all ten of them. A bit more treasure was found, a couple of secret doors, and a burnt ladder leading up. Whisper went up and thankfully made his Hide roll, as the room above had more carnivorous apes. The party took refuge in one of the secret passages, thinking (incorrectly) that this would protect them from wandering monsters. We’ll resolve those issues next time!

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Navah: The Lean, High House of the Gnoles

I had put together an adventure in the House of the Gnoles where I had hoped the party would rescue the dryad, but they took so long at Lord Makkon’s Keep that I didn’t use it and instead shifted the rescue over there. So this week, I picked up that thread again, with some changes.

The party established a comfortable camp near the crushed Keep of Lord Makkon, and set the earth elemental to work digging down to the presumed treasure of the presumably crushed dragon. They started on the west side of the ruins but switched to the east when Melian remembered that was the location of the steel doors.

A dwarf named Jerrill Krakklehorn wandered by, seeking the dwarvish thief Pepperell the Purple, who had stolen an extraordinarily valuable treasure. Harrison’s ears perked up at this, but Jerrill would give no details and it would not have impressed Harrison if he had, for the treasure he spoke of was his own romantic heart. Too bad for him that Pepperell died in a pit trap in the Keep some time before, because no one knew that and she was now crushed to dust. Jerrill’s quest was now eternal.

As he sat next to the party, he inquired as to the object of the dig. Melian began to explain but then stopped, realizing her faux pas. Jerrill sensed treasure, and with dwarvish avarice continued to inquire until he convinced Harrison to describe the treasure and its location, in exchange for a large emerald and 10% of the realized profits from the treasure. The dwarf then left to set up his own subterranean dig.

Eventually the elemental reached the location of the doors, and found only the doors and nothing behind. Jerrill and two other dwarves were there. Jerrill was very angry, having hired 25 miners to dig into the supposed treasure and having nothing to show for it. He called Harrison a liar and demanded the return of the emerald, but the Shadowlord returned to his home turf and hid. As the Shadowlord’s treachery dawned on Abrameowlin and Melian, they interrogated him as to his purpose but received no adequate reply.

Disgusted, the last of the dwarves left and the party began to investigate the door. Would the lock still work? Would the gates to the various dungeon levels still be accessible. Inserting his right hand into the lock and turning it to the right, Harrison lost the first two joints of his fingers and thumb. The party had forgotten that they had wisely used a silver hand to turn the device the first time. No sign could be found of the lost digits, so Melian sewed him up and then Healed the skin as best she could. Harrison would now have -4 to hit, until he became used to fighting with his left hand.

They then used the key, inserted it all the way and turned to the right, revealing the path to the trap level. Despite having going through that level four times already, and being annoyed with it each and every time, Harrison re-entered it, only to be pursued by a Weeping Angel and blocked from return by the steel doors that dropped into place. The earth elemental was sent to rescue him by digging around the doors but found that it was “a typical magical dungeon” and that it could not dig through the walls. The elemental was lost behind other steel doors. The evening looked like it would descend into “The Further Adventures of Harrison,” so the referee offered a dice roll (1d10) to resolve it.

1-2 = death
3-5 = maiming of some kind
6 = death by weeping angel
7-8 = escape
9-10 = treasure

Naturally, Harrison rolled a 10 and escaped safely, reporting that he found no treasure. He had already cached most of what he had found, including an enormous ruby eye that once decorated a rather forbidding statue of great fame. Value? 100,000 s. at least. The party cast jaundiced eyes on their disreputable partner.

The party soon learned that Lean High House of the Gnoles was the epicenter of some great dark power, and that the region near the House had gone silent of late. Many faeries had disappeared, much more than every would have been strangled by the Gnoles, who were after all a rather conservative bunch.

As the party drew near the house, they stopped and discussed what to do. They talked at great length and at some volume of how sneaky they were, with the obvious result that two Kek — enormous bronze spiders (M:25) — approached and attacked. One was a true stumblebum and after multiple fumbles, failed to catch anyone or anything. The other was more effective, and lamed Marigold and Abrameowlin. Its armor (value 20) defied most weapons, and the size of the creature meant that even when the griffon penetrated the armor, it left only minor wounds. Most of the party fled. Melian was knocked unconscious by one of the darts shot by the Kek, but Doldrumarsh the Marshwiggle picked her up, ran, and successfully hid after Melian reminded him to take off his tall pointed hat. Meanwhile, Marigold made an astonishing hit on the Kek above her, a major wound to the chest. The Kek grabbed her and fled underground, but then died. Marigold hid under the body as the second Kek reentered the grassy trapdoor, and then escaped. Dragging herself along the road westward, she fortuitously re-encountered her party, which had taken the next two days to do random summonings in the woods. Garrulous now had a M:6 earth elemental to replace the M:3 one he had lost in the dig and was quite pleased.

Next on the docket, planning an assault on the House or simply burning it to the ground, and finding a Restorationist to restore the fingers of Erebus (Harrison’s latest nom de vol) and the missing arm of Melian.

By the way, after writing this adventure I came across someone else’s interpretation of Lord Dunsany and St. Clair’s stories. Check it out: The Lean, High House of the Gnoles

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541 CY, Water Monsters and Wraiths

The party first started exploring a set of doors they had not yet entered. Inside they found a font of warm blood. They went on and found a group of Elven statues that came to life when Hors tried to pass them. The party went another way and came across a cleric of Mitra chained to a wall. Lisri cast Knock on his chains and he accompanied the players after Beatrice tried (unsuccessfully) to disarm a crossbow trap. Raylene, Eric, and Lisri were able to pass the elven statues, but behind them the cleric drank some of the blood and turned into a berserk snake that bit Beatrice. The druidess tried to cast Animal Friendship but it didn’t work, and she fled after being attacked again. The snake fumbled and was so angry it bit itself. Lisri polished it off with a magic missile, and it turned back into the cleric. Thinking it might be a vampire, Beatrice cut off its head and shoved an arrow through its heart. Lisri put a garlic bud in the mouth of its decapitated head.

Whisper then picked the lock of the chest in the cleric’s room, receiving a poison pin wound. He found Avvakris’s ceremonial garb, which is worth a good deal of money. They of course took it with them, although Eric is considering destroying it.

Eric and Raylene found a door past the Elves that teleported them back to the White Tower. Everyone met up again, and headed down the stairs to the second level.

Lisri suggested they fight the water monster and destroy it. They defeated it twice, but it kept reforming, and in their haste to escape it, most of the party ran east while Lisri ran west. He tried to join up with them again but the creature reappeared and pulled him into the pool where it started drowning him. The party returned, defeated the creature again, and ran east into a dark corridor, when they fell down into a room twenty feet below. They planned to rest there but four wraiths emerged from a hole. Whisper lost two levels, while Raylene, Hors, and Beatrice lost one each. Lisri attempted to hide in a Rope Trick, but one of the wraiths followed him in. Eric used Whelm to stun three of the four, and Beatrice, Lisri, and Whisper fled up to the 2nd level again. Eric followed, but so did a wraith. Meanwhile, Raylene fell back to the room on the 3rd level and fought the stunned wraiths. While Beatrice became first and owl and then a tree, Whisper and the others fought the wraiths. Whisper killed three of them.

Eric then descended by rope down the hole the wraiths had come from, and found himself in a room with two chests. He nailed the door shut, making an awful racket, and then ascended again (after falling once). The party decided to rest in the 3rd floor room, but left two guards above on the 2nd level east of the water monster’s pool. That night, as Eric slept next to him, Whisper was the only one awake as a group of orcs, a small red demon, and a mage entered the corridor and attacked. And there we left the party until next week.

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541 CY, Wights, Wraiths, and Giant Snakes

When last we left our intrepid adventurers, the college year was started and our stalwart DM was called away to solve Moodle problems for the faculty, staff, and students of Colby-Sawyer College. We now return to the ongoing adventures in the Dark Tower.

Eric and Raylene found themselves teleported back to the White Tower, and hurried back to join the others. In the meantime, Whisper had found a secret door and with the party rejoined, they opened it. Inside was a wight, who had been clawing the walls for several hundred years, trying to get free, he rushed onto the party, and Hors had a level of life sucked away before he knew it. The party then regrouped and managed to slay the wight. They then found another secret door and found a wraith inside, but thankfully they defeated it quickly. Changing tactics, they went to the mirror of seeing and Lisri looked deeply within, almost too deeply, and his friends were forced to pull him away.

Next, they went up top again, and Beatrice flew around the town as an owl (after much delay) and found nothing of interest. The party then went back towards the mirror but ran into most of the townspeople in the temple worshipping Set. A huge firefight ensued, with Eric slamming Whelm on the ground, Lisri sending a fireball into the melee (carefully, thank goodness) and Beatrice casting Obscurement, which created great confusion. In the combat, the party killed Aphris (who had changed into a giant snake), Hastor, and 4 guards. Eric was bitten by Aprhis and the poison nearly killed him, but he survived. Hors and Whisper went up into the kitchen of the inn while the others fought, but returned once the battle was won. All told, five days of game time were spent that evening.

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541 CY, Omphalos

After healing for a day, the party was attacked at the gates of the White Tower by 12 skeletons. Eric Turned them quite handily. The next day, they journeyed to the Temple of Set and found behind the statue a secret door. Opening it, twelve of the mirror skeletons they so feared charged in and the party backpedaled, hard. A few were hit with minor wounds, causing them to double. Lisri took out three with magic missiles, and then dispatched the rest with a carefully aimed fireball that singed Whisper’s eyebrows. Looking into the mirror room, they investigated the huge mirror and found that a few of them could use it as a seeing glass. Lisri became a bit addicted and had to be pulled away.

The next room was filled with dead bodies of a hundred people, rotting. A carrion crawler rushed the party, paralyzing Eric. The black pudding that followed scared away the crawler before it could lay its eggs. Lisri Hasted the party and Slowed the pudding, and they were able to retreat.

The next day they found the crypt of Lareth and found not only treasure, but the Mask and Shield of Lareth. The Shield revealed the hiding place of the Heart of Law, which they carefully transcribed.

Then they returned to the charnel room. Again they were attacked, but a magic missile and a spiritual hammer killed the first crawler. They entered the room, becoming covered in viscera and gore. The charnel smell nauseated Whisper and in mid vomit he was paralyzed by a second crawler and fell face first into the gore. The creatures were too close for a fireball, but the party managed to make their saves and fight the monsters hand to hand.

After victory, they waited 2.5 hours for Whisper to regain use of his body, and then pushed forward, discovering an ancient temple of Mitra that lay beyond. In a silver box, they found a map of the chamber of Omphalos. Seeing the temple layout, Lisri realized that the map from Lareth’s shield started here, and they explored further until they found a wood wall where a stone one should be. A Knock spell smashed it, and they entered, finding a circular room with 50 silent skeletons around the walls. After Lisri took 12 points of electrical damage, they used the map to avoid the Glyphs of Warding. In the center of the room was a 20 foot green and gold serpent with a human face, Omphalos. The guardian was not very helpful. He first sent the three non-good party members out of the room (Hors, Beatrice, and Whisper) and then gave the good characters little guidance. Lisri, Raylene, and Eric opened the doors to the next area, taking electrical damage. Then Eric entered the white mist that lay beyond and was lost. Raylene tied a rope to herself and giving one end to Lisri, followed Eric. After a few minutes, Lisri recovered only a severed cord and returned to the other party members.

In the meantime, Whisper located a secret door in the hallway. The party will decide what to do about all this next week.

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Navah: Zumi’s Rescue

In Lord Makkon’s dungeons, the party sat heavily together after the battle with the Rainbow Demon. Abrameowlin was deeply apologetic for his homocidal madness but Melian was having none of it, sunk into anger over the loss of her arm. Garrulous was unfazed and oblivious, spending his time praising Buddy the Dikdak as “a good dog.”

After a time they noticed others approaching, and wearily rose to face this new threat. Imagine their surprise when Peter Midnight, their old Shadowlord friend, was among the newcomers. “I’m Cipher,” he corrected them, and then explained that he had been saved by a second squad of the Glorious Guard, who had been too late to join them but had entered the dungeons anyways. A Marshwiggle named Doldrumarsh and an English Mastiff Pouka named Marigold accompanied Cipher, but they explained that they had lost several companions in their efforts. The two parties resolved to join forces to save Zumi.

Entering a large armory, a very fat dragon lofted and then struggled to fly towards them and eat them, but made very slow progress due to its tonnage. They prepared for battle but Marigold identified it as a Drekasprengja (Dragon Bomb), which tend to explode, and the party recoiled. Fortunately Garrulous managed to banish it.

They then explored the southwest regions, finding themselves in a very large cavern with a huge scorpion engraved with skulls. Predictably, Cipher vanished into the shadows. Abrameowlin then found himself facing a foe slightly larger than himself and heavily armored. The creature, which Marigold identified as a Qatil al-mati (Death’s Head Killer) had enough venom to kill whole legions, so the griffon was fortunate when it attacked with its claws and even more fortunate when it missed. Garrulous failed to banish the demon, but the griffon smashed it in the head (aimed shot) and knocking it unconscious. The deadly tail was still twitching, so the party skedaddled. An opportunity to kill the creature was missed, and the demon was left to eventually recover.

It’s Skedaddle o’clock!

Unable to advance in the desired direction because of the demon, the party explored one of the larger underground rivers, and found it led to another set of tunnels. The party all made it safely through except for Abrameowlin who failed one roll and found himself being drawn towards the roaring sound of a waterfall. Fortunately, he had taken swimming as a skill and was able to recover. The party headed south. This time they ran into 3 Daemonenhunde (Demon Dogs). The party quickly killed the beasts, so quickly that the griffon got in only one kill, and was disappointed thereat.

Continuing eastward, they found a large cavern filled with stalagmites. Abrameowlin warned everyone to look out for stalactites, which might fall on them, but Marigold warned that a monster called a Reamer was known to look like stalagmites. Garrulous tried to banish one, but accomplished nothing. His END was growing low and he complained to Marigold about fearing every little thing.

They went on and found a squad of boar poukas, who rose to defend their barracks until the griffon hove into sight, whereupon they all fled and most took shelter under the beds of the barracks. Melian put one to sleep and Abrameowlin eviscerated another, but the poukas sought peace so avidly that the griffon was stymied.

After questioning them, the party learned that they worked for Nardo the Lame, an exiled elf who abducted Zumi the Dryad and kept her underground, albeit in luxury. Nardo loved Zumi, but the love was not returned and Nardo would not let her go. Ultimately Zumi withered and died, and Nardo had her buried outside. Nardo then committed suicide and had himself buried next to her. Passing through the gatehouse that lay just beyond the barracks, the party viewed the graves. Marigold noticed a sprouting sapling growing from Zumi’s grave. The party transplanted it back to the Silver Forest, and in the fullness of time, Zumi was reborn.

None of the original party who had entered Lord Makkon’s Dungeons had survived, but those who finally fought their way through them gained great fame (3 points of Reputation each).

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