Lillian, Jonathan, & Alpine approached the tunnels of the lodge on June 14 at 5 am. Jonathan’s bodyguards — Johnny and Joanny McGlerigel – stumbled onto a hidden sinkhole, falling 140 feet to their death. “Aw, that’s too bad,” consoled the Keeper. “Any other NPCs you want to bring?” The party responded in the negative.
Descending, they found a key to a room, within which was a magic box and the spell that created it. They found a mummified lawyer and descending many more mummified bodies of various sizes. Those that were fairly intact all looked dramatically aged, including a small girl. Jonathan made an Elder Sign at the entrance to the pits, just past the altar.
They found a host of pits with monstrosities in them. Alpine fell into a pit in the dark and had to be rescued, much the worse for wear. Lillian’s first aid helped this time. Then they found lead bottles of dust and emptied a few experimentally into some of the pits. Nothing. Next they moved on and found a room with a Sodium Resurrection spell carved into the wall. Apparently the dust was some sort of sodium and could be reconstituted as a person, or something else. They reconstituted one on top of the lawyer’s mummified body and it tried to strangle Jonathan. Lillian pistol whipped it into unconsciousness and then returned it to dust. Alpine went insane and had to be under private care for a good month before he regained his wits.
Returning on July 25, the party tried the spell with only a third of the dust from another bottle, and ended up with a writhing third of a person. Back to dust. By this point, Lillian was temporarily insane and had to be restrained. Back upstairs, wait until sane, and then descending once more.
On July 26, they noticed that the lead bottles were arranged by age. If Ben Anna had been turned to dust, he would have been in the first bottle, which Alpine had tossed on top of a monstrosity in the pits. Back upstairs to fetch horse tranquilizer, some meat, and a broom and dustpan. Luckily the creature ate the meat and fell asleep, and they tried to sweep up all of the dust. Ben was indeed reconstituted, though he was covered with dirt, refuse, and hair. It was noted that Ben’s skin, like that of John Scott and the various guards, was pockmarked. A function of the spell? Perhaps.
Returning to the magic box, they learned that the box was a gate. Jonathan was the only one who could fit through, so he pulled it over his head. In the darkness on the other side, his caving helmet and carbide lamp made it clear he was in a broom closet. It was locked. He shot the lock out and found himself face to face with two Arabs with some sort of advanced assault rifles. He dodged and then ran back through the box, complaining that he didn’t get to shoot them. He then rearranged the box in case they came through.
First he puts the box against the wall, so they are blocked. “No wait,” he says, and moves the box behind the curtain facing the hideous SAN-sucking bas relief carving. “No wait,” he repeats, and put the box at the top of the spiral staircase. “No, even better!” and he puts it facing into one of the pits.
Ultimately they left the tunnels with the box, which no longer worked, and put it in a vault in Jonathan’s house. They tried to convince various people to come with them and see the tunnels, but when they finally got a psychic to accompany them, they discovered that the tunnels had been either filled in or destroyed. Ben tried to explain that the tunnels had been there when he was turned to salt, but the psychic decided to retreat at that time.
The party each got 5% to add to two skills, and regained 2d6 SAN.
On Aug. 1, 1920, they were invited to a famous professor’s house to aid him. They went, but things went screwy from there. I won’t give spoilers but the adventure is a good interlude, and we enjoyed the start of it immensely. For other Keepers, go find “The Peaslee Formula.” You’ll enjoy it.