It was a difficult night for the party. It began with Kjorik sleeping deeply upstairs while his three compatriots, in their soaking wet underclothes, waited for the demon Bob to eat two of them in the darkness. Thankfully, the demon Dory answered the summons of his master Varna and Bob had no wish to deal with such a dread creature. Following the slurps and bubbling sounds that Dory made, the party made their way in the darkness back to the monastery, narrowly avoiding several very deep pits on the way. Bob quietly followed them up, ignoring Quinn’s continual false directions to him. When they arrived at the monastery’s lower level, Varna retrieved Dory and put him on watch at the door. The Abbot was opposed to this but so tired from their battles that he allowed it to happen. The party also allowed Bob inside, for some reason known only to them. Finnoula learned that the Finnoula doppelganger had preceded them and left the monastery, which greatly grieved the Abbot when he learned of it. Bob chomped on the dead demon crab on the ground until an attack by Kleplocks distracted the party and allowed him to slip away as well. The party rested for a day, with Dory effectively guarding the door. Another faceless demon swordsperson arrived at the door but had second thoughts after seeing the bubbling Jaldak in front of him. Finnoula, Quinn, and Varna were reequipped by the Abbot, and the four characters and the air elemental returned downstairs to look for the missing ring the next day, leaving Dory to guard the monastery. The abbot was by this time resigned to this guardian, though he was still greatly disquieted by the creature.
The party continued their exploration, first seeking the gems of the Hoarder, Bob. They were, of course, gone. They then ran into a Nutchinker (a mad demon version of a nutcracker) and easily defeated the little abdomen-munching twerp. Then they returned to narrow cavern near Bob’s hoard, and found a long dead wizard (Reese Deeplore) jammed into a corner. Quinn took a small amber obloid on a necklace. Sealed in the amber was a small misshapen skull, which the magicians soon discovered was a demon (a Sponger) who could absorb and then release lightning (electricity) for its wearer. The energies could be released with a command word, which Kjorik identified. Better still, Varna’s fire elemental returned to its master, since its binding into Finnoula’s sword had not been made a permanent enchantment.
After that, the party journied to the doppelganger’s pool and Quinn went for a swim. After a time, he recovered all of Quinn and Varna’s gear, but Finnoula’s was gone for good. They could see no way to progress further and considered returning to the surface to buy plate mail and train for a few years, but then they realized that a pit on the bottom level led even deeper, and somewhat reluctantly descended. There they found a room of geodes, which they ignored. They next came to another large cliff up and once again Quinn led the way. Halfway up he was assaulted by a Razorwing, a man-sized butterfly with human head and razor sharp metal wings. His right arm was rendered useless, but he hung on while the wizards below plied their craft, eventually banishing the creature through their covenant. The party continued up to the top, where they found mud flows coming over the edge of the cliff.
Quinn was healed and they proceeded through thick mud flows that sucked at their legs. Along the way, Finnoula stepped on something small in the bottom of the mud, and discovered the ring for which they served. By this time, however, they had forgotten what they were supposed to do with it, so they advanced onwards. They passed some boiling springs, then navigated a narrow ledge over a very deep pit and finally they came to a flaming gate, which they incorrectly thought they needed to close. An enormous Slarg emerged, which several players (but not characters) already feared. Rather than run (as would have been wiser), the party delayed, incorrectly thinking they could use the ring to close the gate. The Slarg pushed them back slowly, and after it nipped off Finnoula’s right arm, Varna resorted to launching both air and fire elemental at it. The resulting explosion proved too weak to affect the Slarg, so the party took to their heels. They did poorly in descending the rope with rapidity. Quinn fell, but took no major damage because he was so light. Kjorik fell but managed to fall safely and only got scraped up. Varna gallantly waited for Finnoula and then rappelled down expertly with both of them. They got out of the way just in time, because the pursuing Slarg failed several rolls, fell the full distance, and exploded into a variety of pieces as it met the bottom of the cliff.
The party returned to the monastery, where the Abbot sealed the secret door that led to the demon-infested caves. They gained very little treasure (a total of 1000 p. from the Abbot), but were feasted so thoroughly that they gained 2 skill points in Vinology. Most importantly, their reputations were all salvaged (at least here in Grasslands) and they no longer feared arrest or capture. The party then prepared for a two year hiatus during which they would heal, recover, and train. Varna’s mentor agreed to train them in a variety of skills for free, as he had need of agents for a particular job, which will be their next adventure.