Thursday, October 7, 2010, 4:16 AM
Jessâ€™ turn to Shine
Standing on a boat at the foot of a fountain, the heroes gazed up, wondering how they would get up to the orb, that they could just about see.
Having a conversation with the Halflings they learnt that plenty of people have gotten up to tier 1 as there was a hole in the base of that tier.
The PCs attempted this and the only slight worry was once again Grunnarch (need to learn levitate at some point!).
From there, the next task was to get up to tier 2. The two most able at climbing were nominated to get to tier 2 and drop a rope down for everyone else to use to climb up.
The surface of the fountainâ€™s trunk would normally be seen as smooth, but at this size, the slightest crack was a gaping foothold. Jess and Booth swiftly moved up to underneath of tier 2. A slight cavity allowed them to rest and consider their next move. It was decided that Jess would tie some rope around her and attempt to climb upside down along the base of tier 2 and get over the lip onto tier 2 and pull Booth up.
Booth tied himself to the rope and braced himself in the cavity. Jess, started crawling along the underside of the tier. Just as Jess thought she was at the edge, she lost her footing and fell off. Booth saw this and had enough time to brace himself against the inevitable pull, when Jess reached the bottom of the rope. Booth managed to barely hold on as Jess swung past beneath him. â€śweeeee, Iâ€™m a pendulumâ€ť she exclaimed with childish delight. Booth and Jess had the idea that Booth might be able to swing Jess up onto the top of the tier. So Jess and he worked in tandem to swing Jess back and forth. As Jess got closer to the edge, she tried grabbing hold, but failed miserably. Booth quickly reacted and used the momentum and another swing to get Jess up to the other side of the fountain. Jess had more luck here as she managed to grab hold of the stonework and pulled herself up. Jess braced herself and hauled Booth up to the top.
Dangling the rope down, the two of them managed to pull up the rest of the party.
Looking around, the gang saw that they were standing in a gargoyleâ€™s mouth. There was a pipe which led down the throat of the gargoyle. Having a quick look, we discovered it was blocked, so went round the edge of the tier. Eventually we came to the Orb shining and shimmering in the sun. The orb was sitting in the water and had two smaller orbs near it. Grunnarch â€“ afraid of getting his robe wet â€“ asked Jess to grab the smaller orbs. Just as Jess leaned into the water, some spiders appeared! Unfortunately, they hadnâ€™t shrunk down so they had to be dealt with. Especially as they attacked Hal and Jess.
The group was kind of split in two. Grunnarch and Hal were next to each other, while Booth, Jess and Kadian were about 8 squares away but clumped together.
Doing his friend a favour, Grunnarch cast Thunderwave and knocked a spider away from Hal. Hal, thinking he was out of danger, wandered over to the others to help out, as Jess was surrounded by spiders.
Grunnarch began to cast Icy Rays. An immobilisation spell. Which means the spiders couldnâ€™t move away from Jess, but could still attack her. I really should look at Grunnarchâ€™s Int score again. As Grunnarch was casting the spell, he noticed that the spider he had blasted away was coming back, so aimed the spell at him, but unfortunately missed him.
With Hal away from him, Grunnarch was left alone with the spider. Never fear though, Booth saw what was happening and shot the spider, making it explode. Grunnarch was dismayed that his robe had spider blood on it, but thought it was better being spider blood than Grunnarch blood. The other spiders were taken care of quickly apart form one that disappeared into a hole in the fountain.
Left with the Orb, we had no other choice but to start hitting it (we had no other choice, a more intelligent group may have). So Hal hit it with his hammer and everyone else piled in.
After the orb shattered, nothing happened. An eerie silence descended over the garden. Booth suddenly started to feel dizzy. Grunnarch was next to start feeling dizzy. Thinking this was the return to being big and not wanting to turn big half way up a fountain, he jumped off the ledge. He knew if he was mistaken and he didnâ€™t return to being big, he could cast Feather Fall and land without suffering injury.
I was then a bit shocked to hear Jon and Jen say they would jump off the ledge as well. Grunnarch didnâ€™t have enough spells for all three of them!
Booth and Hal, dropped to the ledge and clung on for dear life. Grunnarch landed in the wet pond with a splash and a girly â€śoofâ€ť. He noticed something different. He was bigger! Before he could get up and congratulate himself, Jess landed on him and then a plate armoured Kadian. Again another pause of silence, and then the creaking of stone breaking. Grunnarch looked up and saw the fountain tipping over under the weight of Hal and Booth.
When everyone got back up on their feet, there was a lot of noise. As well as the sound of a Hammer that was inside the fountain that was growing and breaking out of the fountain, there was a lot of commotion in the garden. People came streaming out of the stables, Humans, Elves, half-elves etc. most of them shouting â€śweâ€™re free!!â€ť. The happy cries of the Halflings could be heard â€śweâ€™re big, weâ€™re big!!â€ť. A figure appeared that we assumed was Chadrantha. â€śWho are you?â€ť. Sarah, never one to be shy when it came to Hal, proudly pronounced â€śI am Halvor Halvorsen, son of Halvor Halvorsen.â€ť Chadrantha was in no mood for light heartedness and proclaimed â€śI will never forget youâ€ť and touched his amulet and disappeared, leaving Grunnarch annoyed and jealous.
People were still streaming out of the stables and Tannin also ventured out and ran over and embraced a big burly man, who we assumed was Ash. They ran off. Sarah and Jen both indignantly said â€śNo need to thank usâ€ť at the same time.
Some Gnolls at the other end of the garden loomed large â€“ until multiple arrows buried themselves into their chests. The group turned to see where the arrows had come from and there was a band of Elves. They came over to the group. â€śWho was responsible for this?â€ť. Sensing that these guys were friendlier than Chadrantha, we said that it was all of us.
They conferred in Elven. Despite knowing Elven, Grunnarch didnâ€™t understand a word as the Elven he was used to wasnâ€™t accented as thick and didnâ€™t use slang. Booth and Jess had trouble figuring it, but could make out roughly what they were saying. They were Grugarch Elves. They decided to reward us with a prized possession of theirs, hide armour that seemed designed for Rangers, so we let Booth have it.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010, 9:28 AM
Session 22 - Ka-boom in the room
The heroes of Gravidy's Crossing had been attacked by some mischevious Gnomes who had set fire to some wierd powder that had blinded and dazed the heroes (apart form Booth [Toby's Half-elf Ranger]).
The flash bang that had temporarily blinded and dazed the heroes had (along with some time in captivity) taken its toll on Kadian [Jon's Human Paladin] who had to stop and take a rest while the rest of the party went on without him (Jon was absent from the session). Booth was the only one who had seen where the Gnomes had disappeared to and so followed them. As ever, the rest followed Booth.
The Gnomes had gone donw a hole which was the entrance to the halfling's home. The PCs went down some stairs and as they came to a room, Shane informed us that the ceiling was 5 feet high. It was pointed out that Hal [Sarh's Dwarven Fighter] would be the only one comfortable with that. This led to a discussion about the size of Hal's horns and whether size matters for a Dwarf.
We started to enter the room and some crossbow bolts were shot at us. They obviously didn't want us to feel at Gnome! The PCs, being the heroes they are, could see the Gnomes that had succesfully landed bolts on them. So they started kicking ass (and when I say "they", I mean Hal, Booth and Jess. Grunnarch couldn't hit anything - he was too busy wondering how the Gnomes did the invisibility thing).
Booth loosed off a couple of flaming arrows which made some dust floating in the air sparkle as it went through it. He managed to set one of the Goblins on fire with the arrow. By this time, Hal was in the centre of the room, wading into all that came his way. Jess summoned her spirit weapon and attacked the Gnomes.
The Gnome that was on fire ran over to the other side of the room. Unfortunately it was too close to one of the boxes as it set off the flammable powder inside and all the boxes in the room went up. Shane told Sarah that Hal could see the room was about to cave in.
Hal shouted to everyone to get out. Grunnarch didnt' need telling twice. The others had never seen anyone move so quick. They probably thought he had turned invisble like the Gnomes.
Booth wasn't sure about retreating. So I mentioned to Toby that this was the first time that Booth had ever seen Hal tell everyone to retret form a fight so he must know something was up.
Realising that the room we had just left was now blocked, we decided to see if there was another way in. Talking to the Halfling we had rescued form the Gnolls in the previous session, we asked him whether there was another entrance.
"We don't tell outsiders about the other entrance"
Jess suggested that he blindfold us and he agreed. Grunnarch put some leaves on his eyes and wrapped a piece of string around his head. Hal just turned his helmet round. We were led somewhere and unmasked and jumped down a hole. We found some more Halflings who explained to us that there were about 12 Gnomes. We told them (with big grins on our faces) that there were 4 or 5 less now. The Gnomes told us the layout of their home and where to expect the Gnomes. They told the PCs that the Gnomes had initially been nice and the Halflings were happy to let them stay, but the Gnomes had then taken over the place.
We crept slowly down the corridor and Hal heard a noise from what we had been told was the museum room. Going into the room we saw a Gnoll standing there. Hal` (being his usual diplomatic self), asked it "Eaten any halflings recently?". With no rpely forthcoming he attacked it with his hammer, only for it to pass through the Gnoll. Some Gnomes appeared as tehy attacked us and a fight ensued. Hal and Jess got in the Gnomes faces while Grunnarch struggled in the enclosed space. Booth waited in the corridor in case we got flanked by a second party of Gnomes.
Grunnarch ignored the enclosed space and wandered out to the centre of the room only to Thunderwave a gnome towards the tunnel. Once again, Hal was caught in the blast. Due to the frequency of being caught in Grunnarch's spells, Hal is no longer bothered byt it. Booth's decision to wait in the corridor proved to be the right one as the Gnomes did ideed come form the other direction. Booth handled them very well by himself.
The Gnomes were good at turning invisible making it tricky for the heroes to attack them, but they managed to and eventually the Gnomes surrendered. They promised to clear out and leave the place to the Halflings. This victory was due to Hal, Jess and Booth and certainly not Grunnarch who had been useless. Grunnarch's mind kept drifting back to something Pankas had told him long ago about the mightiest Wizards who were could bend the shape of their spells to their will. One day he would be that powerful.
Obviously the Halflings were extremely happy about having their home back and so gave us a flute. Finally, something Grunnarch was good at! Identifying magic items. Grabbing my D20 I rolled quite low, but that wouldn't stop Grunnarch who has a +12 in Arcana. Eagerly looking at Shane, he said:
"You know it's magical"
Before I could do anything else, I heard Jen (as Jess) say:
"So what does it do?"
The Halfling explained it to her. It was a magical flute that when played would delouse clothes or other items.
Grunnarch asked the Halflings about the orb they had mentioned earlier. They explained the orb was in the fountain and was the thing that had been shrinking people. They also mentioned that some people had tried to do something about it, but to no avail.
The Pcs went to the surface.
"Is Kadian here?" I asked Shane
Me (as Grunnarch, wanting to deflect attnetion away form his shortfalls in the fight) "You ****!"
With Kadian back in the fold, we set off to the fountain. We ended the session at the base of the fountain wondering how to reach it.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010, 9:26 AM
Session 21 - The Mighty Booth
The last session ended with Kadian wading into a bunch of friendly Gnolls and smacking most of them down with divine retribution. Grunnarch was unsure as to what to do. His childhood friend had disappeared for a while without any word as to why and now that he had found him again, he decided to murder some defenceless creatures. Had something happened to Kadian while they were parted? Or were these creatures inherently evil and Kadian knew this? While he was trying to make up his mind what to do, the rest of the group started wading into them as well.
The fight went something like this. Hal didn't do anything too spectacular, just got the Gnolls to focus their attacks on him. Grunnarch dropped a fireball spell and misjudged the distance and Kadian got caught up in the blast. Kadian dropped to negative hit points (I would like to stress this was entirely unrelated to the Fireball that my Wizard dropped on him). Grunnarch also went to negative hit points when he got caught alone by some Gnolls. Jess worked overtime as a mobile hospital and the group would have been in SERIOUS trouble if she hadn't had healed everyone so effectively. And Booth? Well Booth was AWESOME. Out of the ten Gnolls, Booth dropped eight of them. Including one Gnoll. who turned away from Booth in the hope that if Booth couldn't see his face, then he couldn't shoot him two times in it. Booth still did, but entered the face form the other direction. Booth also managed to shoot the last Gnoll who had been running away â€“ from 350 feet away.
After the fight, Hal examined the liquid that the Gnolls had been drinking. He noticed that there were bones in the stew. An examination of the area led to the discovery of a halfling with an arm, a leg and tongue missing. He managed to draw directions for the PCs to follow. Dutifully following the directions we carried the poor chap to a statue where we heard lots of shouting and saw four Gnolls. We soon dispatched them(I can't remember who killed them all but it was probably Booth or Jess as they were having particularly awesome evenings).
A priest by the name of Marlowe had been trapped inside the statue while he waited for the Gnolls to go away. It turns out, that Kadian had been sent out to find this guy and that was why he had been absent from the group for so long. The guy was a bit mad to say the least. But he was obviously powerful as he took a holy symbol from Kadian and healed the Halfling back to normal health...as in he restored his missing limbs.
Marlowe wanted us to go with him to where the halflings lived, under a tree. We dutifully followed him, finding out along the way that he knew of the wine makers that we had set out to kill. He gave us some information about them which made them seem a bit nicer than we had encountered. How reliable this information is, is debatable as Marlowe does seem mad and forgetful.
Arriving at the tree (after a lot of wandering to â€ścover our tracksâ€ť), there were some Gnomes at the entrance. We cheerily said hello to them, but they picked up a lantern and threw it down next to us igniting some combustible fluid that was next to us.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010, 9:23 AM
Session 20 - Snake, Rubble and Gnoll
After the fight at the end of the previous session, the gang were left with two prisoners that had surrendered. Deciding that we needed some moral guidance we headed back to Kadian to see if he was feeling any better. Jon was feeling better and coincidentally Kadian was feeling better.
In an effort to keep the prisoners frightened enough that they wouldn't escape, Grunnarch made sparks appear from his fingers and looked at them menacingly.
"What's that sound? That's the sound of your alignment shifting" Said Jen
The sparks from Grunnarch's fingers earned him the nickname Mr. Sparkles which kind of mitigated the menacing persona Grunnarch was after. (Thanks for that Hal...). We interrogated the prisoners and learned that the main boss guy was called The Cat and that he never seemed to age. After talking to each other about exactly why we came here in the first place (searching for the treasure of Chadrantha - a wizard that pinched stuff from his master hundred(s?) of years ago). Booth and Jess suddenly realised that Chadrantha was Elven for "Silent Cat". Looks like we have a Wizard to defeat! Grunnarch is currently in two minds about this. On the one hand Chadrantha is a stain upon the good reputation of Wizards because as an apprentice to a mighty Wizard he stole secrets and items from him to keep to himself, so Grunnarch as a worshiper of Ioun and a great believer in sharing as much arcane knowledge with the rest of the world wants to punish him. On the other hand, Grunnarch wanted to make sure the secrets didn't die with Chadrantha. It will be interesting if Grunnarch and Chadrantha ever face off against each other.
After much debate, it was decided that as we are heroes we would release the prisoners. The other idea was to trade them for Ash. After releasing the prisoners they ran off. Booth chased them - just for fun. They slid under the wall to get back into the stables and Booth followed. After being shot several times Booth came back out.
New plan. We thought that there must be other people in the grounds, possibly near the fountain which we had seen. Maybe we could strike up a coalition and rescue Ash and anyone else that might be being forced to work in the wine press.
Heading over to the fountain, we decided to keep to the path instead of risking the undergrowth. We reached a point where the path was covered by a big muddy puddle. The mud glistened with a faint watery sheen. Grunnarch scooped up some with an empty vial and studied it and deduced that it was slightly magical. Not necessarily magical itself, but maybe having come in contact with a source of magic that had left it's imprint on the water. Homeopathist's would be delighted with this. This is of course a fantasy game.
The water forming the mud was coming from a tree next to the path. When the heroes looked up at the tree they could see something shiny. The two outdoorsy types (Booth and Jess) climbed up to see if they could get to it. They made their way up the tree and saw a yellow gem in what appeared to be a nest. Water was dripping down the tree, pooling around the gem and then trickling off the branch onto the mud. Try as they might, Jess and Booth couldn't get the gem out from the nest it was in. While they were taking their time to get the gem, the wind blew and knocked over Kadian andÂ Grunnarch. Hal looked a little bemused as to what had caused his friends to fall over as he remained as stout as ever. Booth and Jess came back down the tree and reported back to the others. Grunnarch really wanted to get his hands on the gem - it might even be Chadrantha's treasure - but knew that it would still be there after they had rescued Ash and any other slaves. They might be in a better position to get it then.
Coming to the turn in the path that would lead down to the fountain, the gang saw that the wall of the garden had crumbled into a pile of rubble. Booth decided to investigate. Jess and Hal followed as they thought there might be something useful there. Kadian (in his heavy plate armour) and Grunnarch reluctantly followed. Hal investigated one particular tunnel and found the shedded skin of a snake. The snake had obviously not been shrunk like the PCs had. Not being trained in nature, Hal stared at the skin in puzzlement, instead of warning his friends about a potential danger. Booth then found some snake eggs in a tunnel, and was soon joined by mother snake. Booth yelled out to the rest of his friends, who promptly rushed to his side.
The snake grabbed Booth in its mouth and him and Hal attempted to hit it. Grunnarch knew that they had invaded this creature's home and wanted to leave it alone. He decided to put it to sleep and then retreat. It was nothing to do with being scared of the snake. Or being a wimp and wanting to run away [Do you believe me?]. He produced some hypnotic patterns in front of the snake's eyes and dulled its senses. Hal attempted to hit it, Booth and Jess were successful and the snake grabbed Hal in its mouth. The hypnotic patterns finally took their toll and it dropped into a magic infused coma. Grunnarch expected everyone to retreat. However, Hal was a bit pissed at the fact that it had grabbed him and Coup De Graced it. Booth followed with a Coup De Grace. Jess - knowing how deadly snakes are from tending sheep that have been maimed or killed by snakes - also hit it. Kadian made it 4 coup de grace in a row and killed the snake.
Investigating the snake eggs, Kadian found an iron box and opened it. Earning himself an electric shock. He did find a vial marked Holy Water and another vial containing very strong alcohol. The Dwarf took the alcohol and downed it in one and then started choking on something. Jess came to his rescue and thumped him on the back. As a shepherd's daughter she is very strong and whatever was causing Hal to choke flew out of his mouth and Booth instinctively caught it. Wiping the Dwarf saliva off of it he realised it was a diamond. The box also contained some cash.
Paul decided that Jon should be group treasurer as while he had been away, the other four have not been keeping track of the treasure we have found. Shane also had not been checking that we were getting the amount of treasure we were supposed to from the DMG. At the start of the session a quick count up of treasure showed that despite Shane not consulting the DMG treasure parcel chart, we were almost spot on with what we had!
Back to the session and the party left the tunnel and headed toward the fountain. Eventually the party came across a group of humanoid figures sitting round a campfire. Kadian approached while the others hung back. He realised they were Gnolls. One of them said:
"Welcome, brother. Take a seat and have a drink."
Kadian promptly brought down some divine retribution and instantly killed four of them. There were about 6 Gnolls left. It turns out Kadian isn't a fan of Gnolls. I wonder if we'll be able to rescue him in time, in the next session as that is where we finished. It's a shame that Grunnarch, after using Sleep, has no longer got it in his mind as this would be a good time to use it.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010, 5:12 AM
Session 19 - Grun the Merciless
With Jon pulling out at the last minute we reluctantly carried on with the session. Because of Jon's absence, it was decided that Kadian [Jon's Human Paladin] was so excited by getting his armour back that he knocked himself unconscious. Tannin [the NPC illusionist] offered to stay with him while the four remaining heroes went off to resuce her friend, Ash.
So, still shrunk in the wayhouse, the party left the main room and headed for the stables. To get there we needed to go under the door. A crack under the door was a 3 foot gap to us. Hal [Sarah's Dwarven Fighter] squeezed through to the other side and when he came out, he found himself on a step, and saw a Half-Orc nonchalantly leaning on a horn. Hal was unusually cheery.
"Whuh? Uh? Who are you?" The Half-Orc looked startled and blew his horn loudly.
"I am Halvor Halvorsen, son of Halvor Halvorsen, son of Halvor Halvorsen, son of Halvor Halvorsen..."
Sarah would have continued, but the rest of the table was in hysterics so she trailed off. Sarah explained that Hal had missed out the battle victories of his ancestors - as that part of his name was only for Dwarves. It takes Hal seven hours to say his full name...
The sound of the horn brought a lot of creatures to our location. Some of them riding on rats. Now that his back-up had arriced, the half-orc became more talkative. He introduced himself as Rekkel and demanded to know how many others were with Hal. Booth [Half-elf Ranger], Jess [Half-elf Cleric] and Grunnarch [my Human Wizard] came out from behind the door and joined Hal - alarmed that they'd let him do the talking. Rekkel demanded that we throw down our weapons and surrender. The party was unimpressed by this and tried to convince Rekkel that their intentions were peaceful. Rekkel said that they had Ash working for them as a prisoner, and that they would not hand him over. At this point in a low point in the roleplaiyng of Grunnarch I sent him over to Rekkel and Thunderwaved him off the edge. Grunnarch wouldn't do that as that is more Hal's style. I tried passing it off as peer pressure and that I wanted Hal to like me, but I don't think that really worked.[Sarah's edit: Hal was suitably impressed and offered to buy Grunnarch a drink sometime.]
While everyone was asking Grunnarch why he did that, we were fired on from above by some creatures on a shelf above us with an arbolester. We quickly fled under the door but not before Grunnarch suffered some damage. We told the people on the other side of the door that as Ash wasn't our friend we weren't that bothered so we'd go away. We decided to go into the garden to hopefully go around the back and surprise them from there. We quickly headed back to Kadian and Tannin and told Tannin of our new plan.
Heading out of the door to the garden we came up against an obstacle. There was a step down. Normally a trivial matter, but as we were about an inch high, this wasn't as good for us. Also worrying was the blood spatter on one edge of the step. Before waiting for a plan, Booth jumped down. The rest of the group decided against following Booth's reckless example, and used the rope, with Jess to hold it and let Hal and Grunnarch to climb down and then she would jump down and Grunnarch would cast Feather Fall on her to soften the blow. Unfortunately we forgot to take into account how sucky Wizards are at rope use and as I rolled a 2 on my skill check, Grunnarch went tumbling down. Having not healed up since taking the damage from the other step incident, Grunnarch cast Feather fall on himself to stop him from dying. Booth found a soft bit of ground for Jess to land on when she jumped and she managed to get down without much pain. Although Grunnarch almost lost some more HP from the frown that Jess gave him.
Booth noticed that there were some scratches on the step. He surmised that a weasel was about and was quite dangerous. A conversation (both in-game and out of game) took place wondering what dangers would lie ahead as we were outside and only an inch high. I was particualrly worried about dying from having a bird poo on me. Definitely not good luck to be pooed on by a bird when you are an inch high. Booth decided that we should go through the undergrowth as that would be best as it looked like it might rain. As we walked along we spotted a walkway bridge in the blackberry bushes (I imagined something like on Endor). It was beyond our capabilities to get to it though.
After a while walking we came to a clearing where we heard voices. The people who the voices belonged to had heard us making a commotion in the undergrowth and immediately got their weapons ready. Grunnarch cast Ghost Sound to impersonate a weasel running through the undergrowth. This fooled everyone apart form a man with an elvish accent who pointed out the bushes weren't moving. Recognising the accent as elvish Jess wandered out to talk to him. He seemrd friendly enough and Jess explained about the earlier fight. The man asked to see who had killed Rekkel. Except we hadn't mentioned Rekkel's name! Oooo. That could only mean one thing. Initiative!
The various creatures were all in a line, which is odd as Hal had told them earlier that they should queue up to be killed. Four creatures moved up to Grunnarch and hit him. Hard. Grunnarch cast Visions of Avarice. The concentration it took, allowed the people in front of him to attack him. Grunnarch was now bloodied, but it was worth it. Hearing some alluring music from behind them, the creatures turned round and saw a beautiful chest filled with everything their hearts desired. Forgetting they were in a fight they hurried towards it. Once next to it they stood, transfixed by the beauty of the illusion. Hoping for this effect, Grunnarch had already had his next spell lined up in his brain so he managed to drop it on them before anyone else had a chance to react. It was known in some wizard schools as Orbmaster's Incendiary Detoantion but that is just a fancy way of saying "big fireball". The magic flames licked at the feet of the creatures and they were torn between the treasure and getting out of the flames.
Hal and Jess had instinctively moved towards Grunnarch to help him, both taking advantage of the distracted enemies by pounding them with various weapons (both real and divine conjurations). They should have been more worried about Booth who was taking a bit of a beating. Despite downing various foes, he was outnumbered. And down to negative hitpoints.
Grunnarch almost subconsoiously kept the treasure chest illusion going while pinging off other spells. Seeing Booth in trouble he cast Icy Rays at the closest enemy to Booth. However, all of these spells going off one after the other was taking their strain on Grunnarch and he spectacularly failed with Icy Rays. Seeing the icy lance emenating from his fingertips arcing towards Booth instead of the person he was aiming for, he managed to just move it in time to keep Booth safe.
Jess healed Booth and after a few more kills, two creatures surrendered. We will interrogate them next session as that was session-over. However, we have now reached level 6!
Monday, October 12, 2009, 6:48 AM
With the gang still in mid-thought as to what to do next, I told them about the idea I had had after the last session of using the Speak With Dead ritual on one of teh corpses in the rat's nest. This was quickly shot down by the DM as it turns out that the corpses were piles of bones and skulls with no way of determining what was what.
Kadian decided he would scout the perimeter walls of the building we were in, while the rest of us debated what to do. Kadian found foot and hand holds in a wall that were spaced a Kobold's body apart. He returned quickly to the others and told them about his find.
Tannin decided that she would stay where she was. The party decided to use these footholds to climnb up to the rafters and pay back the Kobolds for what they have been doing. Kadian went up first followed by Booth, Jess, Hal and Grunnarch bringing up the rear. Extra special effort was needed to scale the wall by Hal and Grunnarch (both losing a healing surge).
Upon reaching the rafter that was running alongside the wall, the adventurers saw two "huts". One close to them, the other on the other end of the rafter in a corner against the wall. Between the two ends the beam widend and accomodated a lot of Kobold woman and hatchlings. Two male kobolds stood guard, looking bored and door-wards, waiting for the next victim(s) to come in and be shrunk.
As plans go, there might have been a more methodical, efficient plan than our two pronged attack:
1) Kadian, Booth and Jess would wander over to the thicker part of the beam to take out the guards.
2) Hal the Dwarf would run through the back of the hut, with Grunnarch behind him. Yes. Running through a wall.
Hal dutifully obliged in running through the wall, it wasn't a very strong wall and splintered as he hit it, causing him to become slightly stuck, but the Kobolds were suitably surprised. The sight of a hairy red-headded dwarf holding an axe appearing through the wall was not unlike the famous scene from The Shining - which of course, the kobolds haven't seen...
Kadian, Booth and Jess started dealing with the guards, only to be surprised when more Kobolds appeared including one adorned with skulls hanging on chains etc.
Hal moved through the wall and started swinging [Sarah's edit: Swinging his AXE! We're not *that* kind of party!]. Kobolds made his life very difficult. One Kobold hit him so hard that he needed a little while to regain his compuosure. In the meantime, Grunnarch was doing his best at being useful. With every wound he inflicted with his spells he wished Tannin had decided to join them, so he could show her that illusion wasn't the only school of magic. Hal's hesitation to get back into the battle was probably equally the result of his injuries and the sight of Grunnarch getting involved in a fight!
Meanwhile, Melora had bestowed a spear on Jess to use in the fight which she used with great effect. Booth took pot shots at any Kobold that dared to look his way and Kadian tried to join in the fray. However, the witchdoctor-kobold (for that is what the strange looking kobold appeared to be) seemed to alternate freezing or setting Booth and Kadian on fire!.
Despite Grunnarch's best efforts, Hal was getting pretty badly beaten. Grunnarch isn't really a blaster Wizard, he's much more of a controller. But given that the room was 4X2 there wasn't much need to control 3 enemies. His eyes kept wandering to the "Sleep" page of his book, but knowing what happened last time he cast a spell on Hal, he kept flicking past it.
Slowly, Jess and Booth managed to pick off the Kobolds while Kadian tried to get to the door, so he could help Hal and Grunnarch. One Kobold came too close to Booth who dropped his bow and ran him through with his blade.
Kadian eventually broke through the door and came to Hal's rescue. Sensing he was close to his gear, he started bringing down divine retribution on the Kobolds. But more importantly he was soaking up the damage from the Kobolds that they would otherwise be inflicting on Hal.
Grunnarch was tempted to Thunderwave people, but was worried about Kadian's presence within the area that the force would emanate from. Jon said he would be glad to be Thunderwaved. He obviously wasn't around for Session 7.
With Kadian's blessing, Grunnarch Thunderwaved the Kobolds but in the confined space they had no where to go. The next turn Grunnarch did the same and blasted a Kobold through the wall.
The team mopped up the last of the pesky Kobolds until only the witch doctor was left.
Grunnarch marched out of the hut with magic coursing through his veins. Spotting the witch doctor in the corner, he started casting his spell
"Relaxing music is playing in his ears, gently rocking him to - GODDAMNIT! I rolled a 1"
Other people (I don't care who, I was too busy working out how many times Sleep has actually worked!!!!) peppered the witchdoctor with attacks but he was still alive. I was all out of useful spells, so I decided that Magic Missile was the sensible option.
"Don't worry guys - I've got this" A confident Grunnarch said.
Of course, I rolled a another 1, BUT as I looked at the die, I realised it was Shane's dice and not mine.
"That's not my dice! THIS is my dice" As I quickly grabbed the correct die, I then rolled a TWO! Not that I thought Shane would have let the Magic Missile hit even if I rolled enough with the second dice, I was just caught up in the moment, it was good for comedy value though.
After the kobolds were defeated, we decided to see what treasure they had. Kadian got back all his gear (including - hopefully - the spellbook that I asked Jon to work into his story). Other treasure included:
3 dirty fur coats - Jen immediately suggested I cast Presdigitation and clean them.!
We then found a hole in the witch doctor's hut - Jen wisely suggested I use Mage Hand to pick the things out of there
An Ivory Bracelet worth 500GP
Some furry gloves
I suggested we tried the gloves out. "Jess, put these on" Jess obliged. "Slap me!". Jess did. Shane and Jen pointed out that as Jess was a farmer's girl and was a Cleric she was actually pretty strong. I guess I'm down a HP or two now.
The party are quite beat up. But with the next step being the rescue of Tannin's friend Ash, will they hang around to recuperate or carry on in their herioc way?
Thursday, October 8, 2009, 7:30 AM
We ended the last session with Jess [Jen's Half-elf Cleric of Melora] staring down a rat, while the rest of the group were sleeping.
Before she had a chance of waking us, another rat appeared. Jess nudged the nearest person to her in an attempt to get them to wake. This happened to be Booth [Toby's Half-elf Ranger] which - depending on your point of view - was either fortunate or unfortunate. Booth jumped up and not stopping to pick up his weapon, he jumped on the nearest rat and started punching it in the nose. Jess continued to wake people up and shot out Sacred Flames and also conjured up a Great Spear adorned with the symbols of Melora that provided combat advantage over one of the rats.
Unlike Booth, Hal [Sarah's Dwarven Fighter] sleeps with his hammer so had no problem with hitting things, unfortunately he doesn't wear his plate mail while he sleeps so was vulnerable to the rat attacks. As mentioned before Grunnarch [My Human Wizard] sleeps in a onesie (but as it's magical it's a plus-onesie! ba-dm-tsh) and as his staff was lying next to him he picked this up and started blasting the rats. So, we had a Human Paladin in a tunic and pants with a scimitar, a pant-adorned hammer-wielding Dwarf [note from Sarah "Pah - Hal doesn't wear pants - you can kiss his furry ginger behind!"]. A half-elf grabbing onto a rat and punching it, and a Onesie-wearing-Wizard attacking the rats. Jess was the only one who looked normal.
No wonder the NPC crawled into the corner with a perplexed look on her face.
Once the rats were hit a few times, they ran off and jumped down a knothole. While everyone was sorting out their stuff and realising they had been DISEASED, Booth ran off and jumped down the knothole. Grunnarch mentioned to Hal about Booth not being left alone, so Hal threw on his armour in a rather haphazard fashion and chased after Booth. Jess and Kadian (Jon's Human Paladin of Pelor) decided to follow.
Grunnarch decided to stay as the campfire needed protecting. Tannin (the NPC Illusionist) stared in astonishment at the group leaving and said to Grunnarch:
"You guys are ****ing nuts!"
The fight with the rats under the floorboards was fairly quick, I imagine this was because they didn't have Grunnarch to worry about. Booth managed to do a single attack to a rat in front of him AND a rat behind him simultaneously. He very cleverly shot the arrows up in the air, rebounding them off of the "ceiling" (the underside of the floorboards) and burying them into the backs of the rats. Kadian got his first kill since rejoining the group and Jess also managed to kill one. A good score for the divine pair.
While the fight was raging under the floor boards, Grunnarch continued to try and impress Tannin. He cast Ghost Sound to make it sound like Booth was shouting out
"I wish Grunnarch was here to help us."
Tannin didn't look impressed.
After killing the rats, Jess said a prayer over their bodies, while Booth looked for loot. There were the remains of other people in the rat's nest. One humanoid remains had a helmet with the sunburst symbol of Pelor and a flail with the ends of the flail as sunbursts. Wrapped around the handle of the flail was a Cure Disease ritual as well as a Speak to Dead ritual and another one I can't remember the name of.
The rat-destroyers returned to the Wizards, only to find Grunnarch telling Tannin about the many wonderful things he had done. Tannin was nodding like Churhcill the Dog. Jess and Kadian managed to see through her illusion to notice she was asleep. The rest of the party decided that was a good idea. The party then decided to see how they could:
- Get big again
- Get Kadian's stuff back
- Rescue Ash who is/was Tannin's friend
An attempt for Hal to climb all the way up to the rafters was ended when he kept falling off. After he fell off I mentioned that I had memorised Feather Fall as today's 2nd level Utility spell.
We now have to decide what to do next.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009, 4:52 AM
After our break from the cmapaign to let me run my adventure, we resumed from where we left off. We were also pleased to welcome back Jon.
The reactions to the shrinking were diverse to say the least. Grunnarch [my Human Wizard], for once, was not scared, but was fascinated by the magic and quickly whipped out his books to see what he could find about the spell.
Hal [Sarah's Dwarven Fighter] was annoyed, very annoyed. He realised that as he was an inch high, that their must be a swimming pool sized mug of beer waiting for him on the table, which he couldn't get to. Jess [Jen's Half-elf Cleric], never one for indoors, was freaking out and was cursing herself for not sleeping outside. Never fear, though, because Booth [Toby's Half-elf Ranger] went into hero mode and was determined to rescue her and everyone else.
The action cut to a cell, in the rafters of the wayhouse. And there inside, was Kadian [Jon's Human Paladin]! Evidently he had come to the wayhouse 4 days before and was also shrunk and captured by Kobolds living in the rafters. He was sharing his cell with a female Illusionist named Tannin (NPC).
So, the scene was set. All shrunk, Grunnarch (engrossed in his spellbook) and Hal (annoyed that he couldn't reach his beer) on separate chairs which, in our eyes were 300 feet apart. Jess and Booth were on benches that are a lot closer to each other.
I decided to see if any of my rituals would help, so I dived straight into the PHB and began re-reading all the descriptions of my rituals (it's been a while). I noticed that the table had suddenly gone quiet so I looked up. Only to find Grunnarch surrounded by Kobolds! How's that for accidental roleplaying!
The Kobolds, who had dropped from the ceiling on ropes being held at the top by the female kobolds, also surrounded Booth, Hal and Jess. Fighting ensued:
- Hal missed his first attack, swinging his hammer high over the Kobolds head.
- Due to Grunnarch's absorption in his books, the Koboolds got first attack. One of them grabbed Grunnarch, while the rest got into melee range. Grunnarch, being the master of magic he is, managed to cast Thunderwave while grabbed, flinging half of the Kobolds away (some of them over the "ledge" of the chair. Using an action point, he cast one of his new spells, that he had mastered during the break. Orbmaster's Incendiary Detonation, flames rose up out of the chair surface and killed some Kobolds.
- Jess decided regrouping with Booth would be the best move, so she swung across to the bench Booth was on. The kobolds she left behind started tossing javelins at her.* Booth started taking the Kobolds out, one by one.
- Taking advantage of the absence of most of the Kobolds, Kadian burst through his cell door, managing to escape. He got a little way before realising Tannin hadn't come with him. He encouraged her to join him.
- Annoyed that Grunnarch had killed more Kobolds than him already, Hal managed to kill FOUR Kobolds in one turn (Cleave - Action Point - Cleave).
- Grunnarch, keen to test his new spells (and I was keen to show off something I had painted), conjured a treasure chest filled with lovely treasure that the Kobolds would surely want. Some of the Kobolds forgot about attacking Grunnarch and went towards the treasure. The one who had Grunanrch in a grab deicded that he could have both and dragged Grunnarch over to the treasure chest.
- Jess was having a little success in killing Kobolds, but mainly kept Booth alive, so he could do the killing.
- Kadian and Tannin crept along the rafter slowly. Kadian didn't have any waeapons but found a sacrifical dagger. He really wasn't pleased with the prosopect of having to use it, but there was nothing else.
- Hal killed a minion by using a daily power...just because he could.
- Grunnarch managed to escape the grapple and while the Kobolds were distracted byt the treasure, he attempted to Thunderwave them to their death. However, as he was aiming lower than usual, he mucked it up and instead of blowing the Kobolds away, he lifted himself off of the ground and fell prone. He got up and looked around making sure no-one had seen it. A deep dwarven voice boomed through the air "I saw that, boy" then laughed loud and long.
- The Kobolds, sensing that they had met their match, decided to climb back up to the rafters. Unfortunately for those ones that were messing with Grunnarch, he wasn't in the mood to let them go. No-one interrupts his magical study time. Using Thunderwave again, he finally pushed the last of them off of the chair. Out of the four of us, I cleared my enemies first. I trust this will earn the respect of my colleagues and I will no longer be the butt of wimp-related jokes. Being bored while awaiting resuce, Grunnarch kept up the illusion of the treasure so he would have something to look at, The treasure was so pretty, Grunnarch actually started moving towards it himself.
- Kadian got to the ropes and started climbing down. Tannin, conjured up an illusion of fire so that the Kobolds wouldn't cut the rope while they were climbing down. Kobolds started climbing up the ropes and away from Hal, Jess and Booth.
Kadian, Jess, Booth and Tannin climbed down from the bench they were on and decided to go and see where Grunnarch and Hal were. Coming to Grunnarch's chair first, they saw him at the edge of the chair.He shouted down to them:
"When are you guys going to resuce you me?"
They decided that Kadian should climb up and help him get down. Getting about 30 feet up (relative to us) he fell off and didn't hurt himself much - hardly at all in fact - odd. As Grunnarch was only 100 foot up, they asked him to jump off. He refused. Kadian asked Tannin wether she knew any spells about creating a soft landing. Tannin paused for a moment and then shouted up to Grunnarch.
"Do you Know the Feather Landing spell?"
"I haven't memorised it but it's in my spellbook"
Tannin whispered to the others "what is he talking about, I just made that up"
She turned back to Grunnarch and shouted:
Tannin took a feather from Booth and appeared to multiply the number of feathers until there was a big block of feathers. Grunnarch watched this, fascinated. Grunnarch jumped off of the chair and went straight through the feathers as if they weren't there. Of course they weren't - it was merely an illusion. Grunnarch was not happy. This woman had caused him pain (albeit not much) and she was clearly better at illusion spells than he was as he became the victim of his own illusion.
Moving onto Hal's chair, Booth urged him to jump down
"Bollocks to that, boy!" was the emphatic response.
Jess pointed out that Grunnarch had done it. Hal quickly jumped off, to show he wasn't scared like his wimpy friend.
Everyone was happy to see Kadian back, but decided to wait until they were out of this mess, before asking him what he had been up to for the past couple of months, The party camped in the corner, Jess taking first watch. All of a sudden she saw a rat. Unlike the party, the rat had not been shrunk down and was heading towards the camp...
Friday, October 2, 2009, 5:47 AM
This was the last session before a long break to let me DM for the first time. My game was called Black Frost.
As the last session ended mid-fight, the first few minutes of this session were spent working out from photos taken, exactly where the Heroes and Villains were located and what each coloured marker represented. And also an argument about chocolate. Specifically, whether mint chocolate or orange chocolate was superior. The men voted for mint and the women voted for orange. I think that area is ripe for a bit of research.
Anyway, the group looked in bad shape, with Grunnarch the only one on full hit points and not having spent a healing surge (this was no surprise to anyone else). With most powers used up and five Kruthiks still eager to end the dreams of reaching level 5. The monster went first and hit Hal and Grunnarch with spikes. Grunnarch was quite annoyed that he'd finally been hit, but that wasn't the last of the damage he'd be dealt in this fight.
Grunnarch Thunderwaved one of the medium guys right next to Booth, Fortunately the fact that he was smashed to pieces against the wall that Booth was standing next to meant he was no longer a threat. This is the second time that Grunnarch has used Thunderwave to potential devastating effect on his own allies (see Session 7).
After a couple more rounds of fighting, Booth had killed the two minions. So there were two monsters left, a non-minion hatchling and the adult. Grunnarch killed the other non-minion hatchling. Hal was reduced to negative hit points, but Jess rescued him with her last healing prayer. A couple of rounds later and Jess was on negative hit points. The four healing potions the group had were all being carried by Hal...unfortunately the other three were all on the other side of the room from him. Hal risked an opportunity atttack to give a healing potion to Booth who drunk it himself rather than giving to Jess, although to be fair this was the sensible course of action.
With retreat in everyone's minds, Hal gave the Adult Kruthik one last bash over the head. What a time to score a critical hit! 25 points and one dead adult Kruthik later and all thoughts of retreat had gone (mainly because there was nothing more to retreat from).
Jess examined the skeleton that had fallen out of the wall (which wasn't mentioned in the last session report) and saw that he was dressed in clothes that were fashionable just before the Commonwealth fell. A parchment found in the pocket indicated that the guy should meet Chadrantha at the ___ wayhouse. Unfortunately, the name of the wayhouse had crumbled away when Jess had unfolded it. Grunnarch knew a little about Chadrantha. He has been an apprentice to the Wizard Valdyr. When Valdyr went North to sort out the Barbarians that were threatening there, Charantha stole his master's magic items and fled. He was soon captured but managed to escape. His whereabouts and his treasure lost in the haze of the years that have passed.
After the battle, Grunnarch decided that his two kills had earned him the right to be promoted form Grunnarch the Brave to Grunnarch the Mighty. The owner of the tavern rewarded our heroes with a satchel that contained an Instant Campsite. Just unfold it and a campfire and three tents popped out of it. This pleased Grunnarch as he wouldn't get his onesy dirty if they had to camp outside.
Booth wanted to go and find the treasure straight away, while Grunnarch and Jess wanted to return to Gravidy's Crossing to give the box that Walton had given him in exchange for the ritual book. Toby agonised over the decision of whether Booth should join his allies in returing to the crossing or going out in search of the treasure by himself. While he was umming and erring, Jess called Booth a nob, which is a hilarious thing to hear from someone as mild mannered as Jess (and because of Jen's Canadian accent). The thing that swung it for Toby was that little Timmy would want to hear Booth's stories and that Booth had a trophy for him (a Kruthik leg).
Returning to the village, the senior members of the village were gathered round having a stern conversation, but they weren't in the tavern where they usually were. This meant seious business. Grunnarch and the others strode up to Pankas and handed his reward back. They asked what was going on. It turns out that the soldiers that had passed through the other week had been back and "asking" for payment to protect the village from "bad things". Half of the village members wanted to pay them, but the other half said that they had never needed protection before even in the days of the commonwealth and they wouldn't need protection now. A couple of the younger people pointed out that they had "those four" (pointing to us, woohoo!) as protection.
While Grunnarch and Jess listened in, Booth felt something grab hold of his leg. It was Timmy, the 6 year old boy Booth had saved from the Goblins (here) and who idolised Booth. Booth told him his latest story about the insects. Turning his attnetion back to the crowd, Booth suddenly heard a splat. Timmy had found some insects and was stamping on them just like his hero Booth had done. Hal, angling for responsible adult of the year, lent Timmy his Hammer to kill the bugs with. Timmy managed to lift it up, but fell over with the sheer weight.
After the crowd had dispersed, Jess went to see her Dad, who again moaned about her adventuring and suggested she should get married. Still no word from her Mum. Grunnarch went to see Pankas and told him about Chadrantha. Pankas was amazed that he was still here if he had a lead on the legendary treasure.
After a bit of tinkering (see Interlude below), the heroes set off the following morning and made their way to the wayhouses. Each wayhouse was a day's travel from the previous one and there were ten of them in all. They stopped at each one to see if there was anything out of the ordinary. Nothing out of the ordinary happened until they got to the third wayhouse. As they were settling down fo the night, Grunnarch told them the tale of Black Frost.
Grunnarch was laying on the bench closest to the fire, with Hal on a chair. The room started shimmering and spinning. Hal, recognising symptoms called out to Jess "Am I drunk?". Unfortunately he was not as the nausea was arcane in origin. Once the nasuea had passed the group realised they had shrunk! The small fire that Grunnarch had been lying next to was now a raging inferno that he couldn't stand by so he walked to the other end of the bench. He could see Hal standing on the chair about 8 foot high, but that was about it. What a place to leave the adventure for about 8 weeks!
Thursday, October 1, 2009, 5:23 AM
Previously on The Tales of Gravidyâ€™s Crossing
Pankas Carter: Grunnarch, will you and your friends go to the Necromancerâ€™s Tower? You only have a few days before it dissappears again.
Guard: We won't let you into the tower.
Hal: Let me do the talking
Booth: The tower is bigger on the inside than outside!
Jess: We canâ€™t get out! All of the doors lead to the other rooms!
Booth: Who are you?
Jess: Care to join us to try and get out of here?
Hal: Grunnarchâ€¦this painting looks familiar
Grunnarch: The painting is of the statue, but he has a rod, bracelet and necklace.
Montage of party finding objects
Grunnarch: Shall we put the objects on the statue?
Fade to Black
Worried about the tower dissappearing before they got out, the group decided not to sleep as they had already spent nearly two days in the tower. Grunnarch was confident that once the items were in place upon the statue that the five of them (six if you include inky) would be teleported outisde of the tower. The heroes placed the objects on the statue, and the statue started to shudder and pieces of the material started falling. The statue collapsed and an acid ooze monster and a Gibbering Beast appeared. Sensing danger, the group attacked. The monsters kept dazing members of the party, limitng things we could do. Markers were required and sarah reacted quicker than Toby, using the Starburst sours that Toby had brought along as markers (see photo). After several rounds of attacks Hal, hit the ooze with a pretty hardy blow and knocked it so hard that he split it into two creatures! We now had three monsters to fight.
[Aside: When choosing the daily spells for Grunnarch, I have only gone for Acid Arrow once before, as I like the idea of knocking someone unconsious and executing them using coup de grace, however, I decided this day to choose Acid Arrow. Somehow I don't think acid damage would effect them]
Grunnarch decided to use his Shadowfell Gloves to change the damage type of his next attack to necrotic. He then chose to use Ray of Frost, much to the surprise of Shane (I had tossed aside the Acid Arrow power card as I didn't think I'd use the power, so it didn't even enter my thoughts, I was using the shadowfell glvoes to get extra damage). One of the ooze monsters died, leaving one ooze and the Gibbering Beast left. After a short while, the party was victorious. Jacob opened the door and strode through it... to the outside! As the party exited, Grunnarch looked mournfully over his shoulder, wondeirng if there was anything more he could have learned about the tower or the Necromancer. Booth lamented the surprising lack of Necromancers to kill.
The members of the guard that the party had let live, were astonished to see the party and esepcially Jacob. It turns out that only a few minutes had passed between the party entering and exiting the tower. The party slept (everybbody apart fomr Grunnarch slept outside, Grunnarch slept inside a tent).
The party headed back to Gravidy's Crossing to give the book to Pankas.
Back home, the heroes did their usual things, Jess checked on the message she had left for her Mother's people, but it had not been touched and she had heard no news. Booth told the patrons of the tavern all of the stories, proudly showing off his new sidekick - Inky. Hal listened to the stories while drinking the beer people bought for him. As the only thing that had happened was some soldiers passing through the village, the locals were glad to have some stories to entertain them.
While Booth stopped storytelling for a bit, the group managed to find out that the soldiers had come from the North, through the Howling Woods that used to contain goblins until our heroes dealt with them. The soldiers had heard of the strange goings-on around these parts and were trying to see if they could help out.
Grunnarch went to see Pankas and gave him the book of rituals. Pankas was happy with the book, promisng Grunnarch that he and Jess could take any rituals from the book that they wanted, although he wasn't sure if there would be any appropriate ones for them.
Coming back to the village the group had once again walked past the empty houses of the families that had died in the Goblin raid. There was something wrong about them standing there empty and keen to get out from under the feet of their respective parents'and guardians, the party thought it might be wise to buy one of the houses as a base of operations (and for Booth to display his trophies). Hal didn't actually have parents in the area to get away from, but was glad to have something a bit more permanent than his student digs. Len the Reeve agreed to sell the house to the party. Before they could settle in, Pankas sought them out and asked them to go on a mission for him. He had a buyer for the book named Walton, who had arranged to meet at the Trappers, an inn, near the northern entrance of the Howling Woods. Pankas gave them a note to give to the innkeep while they were there. After sleeping in their brand new house, the group set off.
They decided to stop at the woodsman's hut to check in. He was OK, although now that the Goblins weren't living in the woods anymore, the demand for his protective dogs had declined. No other news was gained from him so the heroes went through the woods. Nothing unexpected happened and the group arrived at the Trappers in good time.
They walked into the inn the customers looked up from their drinks to see what fellow travellers were stopping here. The smell of a nice stew was just what the hungry stomachs of the troupe wanted. Ordering four stews and some beer (and a mulled wine for the Wizard), the group gave the note to the barman. Jess and Booth noticed that at the mention of "Carter", several heads were raised from fellow customers, intrigued as to who had spoken his name. A glance around the inn revealed a table of Dwarves, several tables of customers without anything interesting and a dark corner. It was as if the light got to the corner, but didn't want to carry on travelling. It was odd.
Booth decided that the good peole of the inn needed to hear The Heroic Tales Of Booth And Friends. As he got to the part about killing the guy with the shadowy cape , (seeSession 6) the person in the dark corner came over and said:
"So it was you who killed my companion. For that there will be consequences."
As the person glared at the party, Hal sheepishly pointed at Booth. The tavern got a bit quieter. The shadowy figure walked out of the tavern. The barman told the group that the person associated himself with some elves and he didn't like serving them but they paid well and the first time he refused to serve them he found one of his stable hands dead the next morning.
Hal went to talk to the Dwarves about this creature and his elven friends, but got as far as "I'm Hal" and forgot what he was supposed to be doing. He then spent the rest of the evening talking to his kindred about gold, beer, weapons and the latest news from the clans. They told Hal about an archeological dig that had uncovered an old Dwarven Tower. When they hadn't heard from the diggers for a while, they sent out a party to check on them. They found the Dwarves dead, with the only footprints in the area being dwarven. They came to the conlcusion that Elves must have teleported in and slaughtered the dwarves.
Eventually Walton showed up and Grunnarch retired to the room with him and Jess (Grunnarch the Brave didn't want to be alone with him). Booth and Inky kept guard at the door. Walton looked at the book and said that it looked good. He gave Grunnarch the box that Pankas was expecting, which was sealed with a waxen seal. Grunnarch dared not open it. With that, the business deal was done. After a few more hours drinking the gang retired for the night.
The heavy drunken snores of Hal kept Booth awake. Agitated, he got out of bed when he suddenly felt the tavern move. After steadying himself he realised the the floor of the bedroom was not level. Waking Hal up (with some effort), he went to the other room where Jess and Grunnarch were asleep and together they headed downstairs (After Grunnarch changed out of his onesie). When they got to the bar area, they could see the floor was sunken. The barman directed them to the kithcen, which led downstairs. When they got there, some kitchen staff were huddled together and pointed to a door that lead to the wine cellar. Booth rushed off, forgetting he didn't have a lgiht source. Jess pumped the staff for more infomration. One of their number had been taken. The rest of the party followed Booth downstairs. Booth, now having a light source, could see a trail of blood. He began following it, but was stopped in his tracks by the explosion of stone as something came through a wall. They were Kruthik [see photo]. A fight ensued, Booth attempted to hit the things with his swords and then gave up on that idea and went back to using his bow. Grunnarch actually moved TOWARDS a monster (I wish I had taken a photo of people's faces). Casting Thunderwave, to move the monster out of the way, I then used an action point, to cast Sleep on the big monster. It succeeded, but he made his save so did not fall unconsious.
Booth had ongoing damage, which he failed the save for five times. Jess healed him, but he was draining a lot of her resources. Grunnarch was down to at-will powers once again and Hal, had got a decent shot at the big guy, while more creatures streamed through holes in the wall. Due to time constraints in real life, the game finished mid-fight. It's not looking good for our heroes.