Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Session 10: Turning undead - It's not so many ensorcellments

And two weeks ago (real time, not game time):

We start session 10 still in the tunnels under the statue in the middle of Loamville...

Flush with the victory of creaming another small human party and taking all its possessions, our party returns to a nearby secret door and heads deeper into the dungeon. They trail along through corridors and staircases until they spring a trap on one landing, a hunk of wall suddenly punching out and smacking Bolin into the rest, Bowling (Bolin-ing) them all down the stairs. Bruised, they proceed using their heavy packs to trigger the trap and crawl one by one past the stone, which retracts and doesn't re-launch as long as sufficient weight remains on the landing.
Further along Stonk sticks his head around a corridor provoking a goblin attack (?); next in line Bolin is attacked by a tattered human corpse. Ronson fucks up the goblin, but more corpses stagger forward to do some damage. Lucky for the party, Bolin's so holy he turns the whole crowd around.

Our heroes follow the fleeing monsters to an intersection, heading north as the undead go west, to a door with a flame on it. They listen at it (but take no other precautions for some reason) and, hearing nothing, open the door.

The door scratches along the ground and ignites a huge fireball, which blasts Ronson, Bolin and Stonk into unconsciousness (the land of zero hitpoints). [Amazingly, though, they all fall to exactly zero hp, so they don't die - DM]

Danth and Lert bind their wounds, and they wake up badly burnt, with much loot lost; what's worse, their own holy symbol and spellbooks are consumed too. Damaged and defenseless, the whole party makes haste to the surface, staggering out at last into the afternoon sun, and fleeing Loamville as fast as their stolen horses can carry them.

Having made camp, the party attempt some rest and recovery; but the watch (Danth) awakens them mid-night to the approach of trouble. Hurriedly dousing their fire and breaking camp, they discern an advancing party of what sound like aimless mad thugs, spoiling for a fight, rambling through the forest hacking at trees! The friends scramble away on the horses just as the thugs enter the clearing, and stagger off into a swamp to try to salvage what sleep they can.

They wake up late and discuss the next move; it is decided that provisions are needed before the party head back to Loamville, and a nearby castle seems like the best bet for finding them...

Session 9: You make a pile of wolves; or, I really ought to write these up while they're fresher in my mind

Thanks goes to Heather (aka Stonk) for taking notes the last two sessions. Here's what happened 4 weeks ago:

The scene as we open:
An outpost that has fallen on evil times. All its inhabitants seem to be dead or evacuated after some tragedy or madness. A four-story inn (the Grinding Gear), a chapel and a stable surround an overgrown cobblestone courtyard with an impressive copper statue on a marble block in the center; the statue is surrounded by corpses for 20' in all directions. Our nervous heroes are considering splitting town on the healthy (though spooked) horses they found tethered in the stables, but find themselves compelled to try and unlock the mysteries of this place before nightfall...

The companions approach the statue as a group, picking their way over bodies as they go. They are mostly dead goblins and orcs, a few wolves, a human (or a few?); all these are unarmed and bear no signs of battle or disease, though they all seem to have needle-like bite marks on them somewhere. The plaque (marked "Garvin Richrom") on the marble base is pressed, a panel in the side opens up, and the party hear a hissing... two are felled (Stonk and Bolin??) but the other three pull them out of the 20-foot radius corpse zone just in time for a battle with six bats! After some painful struggle (and some bloodsucking), during which few bats are killed and more approach, the knocked-out companions revive and the party hightails it to the chapel to bind wounds and recover. No bats follow them inside, and through the stained glass they see the bats fly back to their home in the inn. When they come out, though, the door in the statue's base has shut again.

They scheme out a crazy plan to pile up corpses and make a fulcrum for pews (torn from the desecrated chapel) to lay atop so that they can nudge the plaque from a safe distance, jam a pew into the door as it opens, run back to the chapel and wait for the bats to leave, and look inside. It doesn't work on the first try, and our party hikes south through the forest to stay the night, before returning to run the whole rigmarole again (and again) and open the secret door at last. Down the ladder one by one they go...

From here, we switch from a write-up based on Heather's notes, to the somewhat more cryptic notes themselves:

"Mark well your passage, you would-be robber! For the clever observe closely, and only the clever will win the day."
Find secret compartment, find lever in down position and flip up.
"Family Crypt: Do No Enter"
Four (dead) rats fall from ceiling!
Open door to night sky room in incredible detail. Man in the moon playing the organ; painted in moon "what is my favorite song?" Party kick themselves for not taking the sheet music on the floor of the birdcage in the inn.
Secret compartment with downward lever. Flip up.
Candle, half burnt, unlit, under glass bulb.
Another secret door, down lever, flip up.
Light candle, certain stones in the floor glow: "Richrom Dares You"... but nothing came of it.
East passage - search for secret doors, found one, but try E door
After some awkward parley, bust in on another party - 2 figures in leather armor, 1 robed figure, all human. They say "Go away" but we smashed the door down. Stonk is knocked out yet again during the early action; Bolin & Ronson vanquish 'em and put 'em to sleep. Strip & gag them and tie them up. Get a shitload of loot. Bolin realizes that adventurers are by definition hoodlums...