Once More into the Void Session 23
We had a short session this week. Two players were missing and it felt right to stop after one encounter. It took us 5 rounds and about an hour of real time to dispatch 3 goblins and a pair of giant lizards. Not our greatest hour but a few of the characters did level up to 4.
My character Otrivush Oto was in the background for much of the action so I will summarize the events for the players that were not able to make it before I relate things from Oto’s point of view.
Fumbles and stumbles
Last time, the delvers descended into the dungeon beneath a lonely keep in the mountains searching for the necromancer. Announcing themselves far and wide by loudly battering down a door they had a pitched battle with a number of goblins and an orog.
When this session began the players were “safely” resting behind a locked door in the torture chamber they had found. Oto and Alcor went to sleep while Thyrell, Muah, and Talrek kept watch. Talrek heard whispering outside the door and the latch moved but whoever it was moved on.
The delvers went down the hallway open now because of the smashed doors. Beyond they passed through a few rooms and halls that showed the signs of recent inhabitants. In a pile of broken weapons, Oto found two usable daggers.
In a chamber with a curtained off area, a cleaner bed is discovered. Oto searches and finds a secret door. Beyond the door is a stair down. A “tink, tink” noise of metal on rock can be heard in the distance. Mukah snuck forward keeping to the shadows and entered an enormous rough hewn room. Apparently a recent excavation. The entrance and some ledges at a higher elevation (10 feet above the cave floor) that are connected by rickety planks.
Mukah spots three goblin archers on a far ledge and two giant lizards on the cavern floor. As he examines the area the goblins open fire and one arrow hits Mukah. Mukah and Alcor run down a ramp into the lower level, Talrek, Oto and Thyrell keep to the higher area. One goblin drops down into the lower area and climbs on a giant lizard. Thyrell reduces the number of archers by one by killing one with an arrow. The giant lizard running about lose without a rider climbs up above Alcor and swipes at him.
Alcor moves on across the cavern floor toward the remaining archer. The giant lizard swings at Alcor and misses. Talrek is badly mauled by the giant lizard, he tries to attack but misses and falls off the side of the ledge to the floor below (rolled a 1 to hit then a 1 on his Dexterity save). Thyrell moves up near the lizard after deftly running across the unstable plank. But he promptly loses his footing and swings wide (rolled a 1 to hit).
Oto casts magic missile on that lizard badly hurting it. The next round Tinda races up and rips out the throat of the lizard killing it. Oto cast firebolt at the goblin lizard rider but badly misses and almost hits Mukah who has to dive out of the way (Oto rolled a 1 to hit).
Alcor tries to climb up the slope to attack the goblin archer. But he stumbles and falls back down (rolled a 1). Mukah cleaves the goblin riding the giant lizard completely in half at the waist. Thyrell gets his balance fires an arrow at the goblin archer and it misses completely.
The giant lizard that still has half a goblin on its back flees the chamber down the corrider running into a surprsied Oto. Oto hits the lizard with shocking grasp but only does 1 point of damage. The lizard bites Oto who cries out for help. Thyrell turns and fires an arrow through the lizard’s eye killing it.
The last goblin tries to sneak further into the chamber but Talrek casts sacred flame setting it on fire. Then Alcor finally climbs up on the ledge, tosses a dart hitting the goblin in the head and killing it.
Wrapping up Thyrell did a quick search of the bodies and found 23 silver coins. The delvers moved to a nearby corrider and another stair leading down.
|A few goblins should be easy to get past|
Goblins and Lizards
Oto stood before the headmaster attempting not to sway. His stomach rumbled a warning. The headmaster continued to write notes in his book but Oto could see Headmaster Toven scowl.
Finally, Toven put down his quill and looked up at Oto with a cold look in his eyes.
“Drunk again, I see,” he said shaking his head.
“Well, Weaponmaster Marcus can work that out of you!”
Oto groaned under his breath. Not the weaponmaster. He hated the drills with staves. Marcus always made a point of making sure Oto left the practice beaten, covered in welts.
“You object to the punishment?” Toven asked raising an angry eyebrow.
Oops, maybe that groan was not in my head afterall.
“Oto get up, get up!”
I groaned and rolled over on the hard, stone floor. I was not back at the Academy in Candlekeep. I was in this stinking, cold dungeon off on a foolhardy adventure. At least my head was clear. Although I could really use a nip of something. I checked my wineskin. Unfortunately, it was dry. Emptied days okay. I groaned aloud this time.
“You rested, Oto?” Talrek asked looking over at Oto. I waved him off. “Yes, I got enough sleep, I was just dreaming of someplace else”.
“Well, while you were dreaming something tried the door to this chamber last night”, Talrek said.
“I do not know. I let it be and stayed quiet and it moved on”, replied Talrek.
I nodded, stood and gathered my belongings, taking a swig of flat, unpleasant water.
Thyrell, Mukah and Alcor were already packed and ready to go. Apparently, they had let me sleep in. Even Thyrell’s pet wolf Tinda looked at me in askance. I waved them on and took up my customary position in the middle of the group. Where it was safest.
In the hallway beyond the bodies left behind by the previous days, melee were strewn about the floor. Apparently unmoved. The large double door to another hall lay on the floor where they had fallen. I glanced at Mukah who grinned in satisfaction at his handiwork. Motioning to follow him, Mukah moved off briskly down the hall, stepping over the doors.
I paused to unshutter my ever-burning magic lamp. A dim glow filled the hallway. Beyond was an area that looked to be a sleeping area for goblins. Only goblins would sleep in such filth. Straw pallets covered in rags lay on the floor. The smell of urine and feces filled the air. Placing a sleeve before my face I grimly followed Mukah into the hall. Glancing at a table along the wall I could see an interrupted meal of some kind of meat, possibly a rat. Grimacing I rubbed my empty tummy. Defintely something that puts off the appetite.
Mukah waved, “C’mon”. Following Mukah we headed down the hall and into two rooms but there was little to investigate. In what appeared to be a primitive smithy, complete with a forge I found two daggers that looked at least usable. I added them to my pack after offering them to Thyrell who showed little interest in them.
At the end of the hall was another pair of double doors. Exercising caution Mukah listened at the door. Then stood up and loudly said, “Can’t hear nothin!” I grimaced at the noise. But we had already made such a loud statement on entering the dungeon I was certain whatever we encountered would be ready for us. Mukah tried the door but could not open it.
“Should I go get the door opener” Mukah grinned and waved back to down the hall. Presumbedly he meant the wooden battering ram he had fashioned. I remembered the key I had found on the body of the orog the previous day. Reaching into my pouch I pulled out the key and handed it to Mukah.
“Try this first!”
Mukah held the iron key in his hand disdainfully and placed it in the lock. There was a loud click and the doors swung open. In the next room, there were a pair of cleaner beds and a large, dirty curtain blocking off one corner of the room. Mukah moved cautiously forward and peered behind the curtain. Then his shoulders relaxed and he signaled the all clear. Mukah pulled the curtain back to reveal a bed and table. Looking at the bed I was surprised to see it actually appeared to have reasonably clean sheets on it. As the rest of the group milled about, I walked forward and looked intently at the bed. Something was off. Scratching the stubble on my chin I walked around the bed. There were marks on the floor like the bed had been recently moved.
“Mukah, can you pull back that curtain to give me some room?”
Mukah grunted and grabbed a handful of curtain yanking the entire curtain down and throwing it on the floor.
“Talrek, see the marks on the floor? I think there is a door here”
I turned my attention to the wall behind the bed. Spotting the outline of a door I felt along the stone wall until my hands came upon a small, loose stone. Pushing against the stone to see if it moved I heard a click. Then the door slowly swung open with a low groaning noise. I turned to smile at the rest of the group. Talrek seemed taken aback.
“Beginner’s luck is what it is,” Talrek said.
“After you,” I replied.
Mukah lead the way followed by Talrek, Thyrell and Tinda with Alcor bringing up the rear. To the right was a stone stair leading up into darkness. To the left was a hallway that seemed to lead into a larger chamber. From the left came the sound of metal striking stone.
“Tink, tink, tink.”
Three hits followed by a pause and then three hits again.
We paused for a minute listening. Then Mukah hand motioned that he would sneak forward to investigate. The half-orc moved to the shadows along the wall and advanced into darkness until he disappeared from my vision. After what seemed like a long wait, there was the sound of several arrows being fired, followed by a grunt of pain from Mukah.
The clink of arrows hitting stone could be heard in the direction Mukah disappeared. Alcor and Talrek rapidly raced to Mukah’s aid. Thyrell glanced at back at me, hand motioning caution then he to jogged into the darkness followed by his wolf Tinda.
I crept forward cautiously. After about twenty feet I entered a large, rough hewn cavern. I was standing on a stone platform ten or twelve feet above the cavern floor. Some other platforms could be seen in the chamber. They appeared to be connected by a series of makeshift wooden plank bridges. In front of me, I could see Alcor and Mukah had descended to the cavern floor down a wooden ramp. Talrek, Thyrell and Tinda still stood on the platform. Thyrell loosened an arrow into the darkness across the cavern. More arrows flew out of the darkness toward Thyrell but missed.
“Where are they, I can’t see!” I shouted to Thyrell who seemed to be shooting at something.
Talrek pointed into the distance. “There!”
I strained my poor human sight but could only see darkness. An arrow flew out of that darkness and narrowly missed my head. Scrambling back to the corridor I ducked out of range of the unseen archers. Peering around the corner I could see Thyrell release another arrow. A moment later a horrible scream could be heard in the distance.
“Got one,” said Thyrell.
There was the thud of heavy clawed feet from toward the cavern and I saw an enormous lizard the size of a bear climb up on a nearby platform. Its teeth snapping and one front claw swinging at someone below. Thyrell cursed and ran quickly across the thin wooden plank toward the lizard drawing his swords.
To my left in the darkness I could now hear Mukah crying out in furious rage. It sounded like the half-orc had found something to kill. Suddenly, the giant lizard came racing over the wooden plank and bit deeply into Talrek’s side shaking him from side to side. Talrek cried out in pain.
“Telum magicum ignis!” I cried out as three bursts of magic raced from my hand and struck the lizard in the mid-section. It dropped Talrek and reared back eyeing me. I started to edge back further into the corrider. Up the ramp, Tinda’s white form raced like a bolt of lightning and tackled the lizard. Tinda leaped away and the lizard fell lifeless to the floor, its throat torn out, blood spilling in a pool around it. Tinda then ran across the thin plank to follow Thyrell.
Seeing no dangers in my range of sight I moved forward onto the platform again to Talrek's side. Talrek stumbled to his feet, placed one hand on the bloody wound on his side and spoke some words in dwarvish. His hand glowed blue and the wound seemed to seal itself, the blood stopped flowing.
Looking about I could only see Mukah, Thyrell, and Alcor having moved out of my range of sight. To my right, I could see Mukah swinging his longsword widely, like it was a tiny dagger, at a goblin on the back of another giant lizard.
A bolt of fire flew out of my hand. But once I cast the spell I realized I had miscalculated the direction of the goblin. The bolt of fire missed the goblin and also just barely missing Mukah.
Mukah, yelled in anger. But he swung again at the goblin cutting the creature in half. I stared incredulously as the top half of the goblin toppled forward over the head of the lizard and fell to the cavern floor. The lizard went wild racing out of Mukah’s reach and right up to the platform toward me. I turned and ran back into the corrider. I could hear the lizard's steps pounding behind me. Turning I braced against the wall as the giant lizard bared down on me. Its eyes wild with terror. Just as the lizard swung by me I reached out with one hand grabbing a scaly leg.
“Fulgar Manus”, I yelled. Electricity arced from my hand blazing into the lizard. It reared back in pain. But then stopped running and turned snapping its huge jaws at me. I ducked out of its reach.
An arrow flew out of nowhere sinking into the eye of the giant lizard, the lizard stumbled and fell to the ground at my feet its legs still twitching. Looking into the chamber I could see Thyrell giving me a sardonic salute before turning and firing more arrows into the darkness. There was another cry of pain from the chamber that sounded to have come from a goblin.
“All clear”, Talrek shouted. Probably mainly for my benefit.
I walked stiffly back into the large chamber. Adjusting the lamp for the maximum brightness I could see three dead goblins and the dead giant lizard. Only my companions still moved about. Thyrell was busy cutting open a pouch on a dead goblin.
“Hey, we have a few silver coins here” he said with satisfication.
I reached down for my wineskin on my belt. The forlorn, empty bag mocked me for the second time this day.