PDX Dungeons

The road to Cloud Temple

We take back Drelin’s Ferry. At one point Templeton fireballs a dude, then chucks in a horse from her bag of tricks. It is not that dude’s day.

Marching through the mountains in search of the temple. We avoid many encounters thanks to Cardagh. Encounter a patrol of hobgoblins and ogre. Soggy attempts to talk with them, but they attack. We web them and attack. Cardagh, in eagle form, casts swarm.

We capture a bugbear and dominate him. He tells us:

Multiple dragons. Red, and blue dragon and behir. Blue is usually home.
Upper levels: bone devil and demon or devils.
Also dudes that look like dragons. Half dragons?
West side: chamber where you don’t come out. Horrible skeleton thing.
Someone goes into front door and chants and then you’re let in. Chant has name Tiamat.
East side of complex. Most hobgoblins live there.
Place is nearly empty. Kinda? Eastern wing is mostly empty.

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In the stone lion

Some choppy notes from our encounter with the lich:

Go into a giant stone lion in the middle of the Thornwaste, with the philactory to trade with the lich.

We find a secret door, follow through a passage, get attacked by ghost lions, Ed loses 6 strength. Follow stairs up to lions mouth, kill some monks. One tries to escape. Cardagh gets an aoo on it.

Room full of hobgoblins, Esmelda fires empowered fireball, kills most.

Then there’s a room with some bone vampires in it and some weird trap things and a lion in some slime that’s being ghostified.

Then the encounter with the lich. Some had the idea that we might fight it.

Nope.

We give e philactory to the lich, who lets us go.

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The Big Stone Lion

The party travelled through Thornwaste, encountering a chimera at night.

The next day, they randomly encountered 3 basalisks, then found a giant stone lion statue. Ismelda used arcane eye. Dark passages in the interior, and a balcony in the mouth, with a coiled rope ladder. Many ghost lions flying around. Darkness in entrance of lion. Soggy puts in a lit mace, gets eaten and then constricted by a behir-esque monster. We fight it, it runs off. Cardagh turns into an eagle and pursues.

We find a secret door, follow through a passage, get attacked by ghost lions, Ed loses 6 strength. Follow stairs up to lions mouth, kill some monks. One tries to escape. Cardagh gets an attack of opportunity on it, killing it.

We camp out in the interior, replenishing spells. After a time, we head downstairs, to find a bloody hole in the ground. Naturally, we go down it. Beelow are a set of passages, one we follow to an eerie well, filled with some liquid, and glowing a pestulent yellow. Of course the magic user goes in first, and we’re all attacked by crazy undead bone-vampires. We kill them, after the magic-user is almost dispatched herself, Ed bull-rushing and overrunning several opponents.

Eventually, we meet with the big lich. We give him e philactory, and he allows us to leave, and leaves e service of Tiamat.

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Brindol Nights

After defeating evil ranger and his pet dragon, the party headed south, to Brindol, to warn the town of the forthcoming army of the red hand, to gain information, and to resupply. Once there, Templeton lost no time in getting embroiled in a scam, Ed and John lost no time in getting in a fight, and Ismelda lost no time in…breaking into a store?

Cardagh learned the languages and forms a few nearby animals, and Goldy learned a little something about the proto-Marxian decunstructive analysis of class stratification systems in pre/non-democratic societies.

The party was outfitted, research into the legend of Urikel Zarl was done, and plans for the defense of the town were made.

And then everyone got drunk with the dwarves:

Determined to confront the threat of Zarl, the party set forth for the Thornwaste, several days to the south. Along their route lay the stronghold of Goldie’s kin, Hammersomething. Seeking to warn the dwarves of the possibility of invasion, and hoping to enlist their aid in the defense of Brindol, the party set forth first to their stony demense.

On their way they unexpectedly encountered a taste of the horrors that might await them in the Thornwaste. They stumbled upon a group of Etins, ogres, and goblins wreaking havoc on a supply convoy. Stepping forward, Ismelda decimated their number with a powerful fireball. But lying in wait was a cunning new foe: Barghests. Monsters of the ethereal plane. The ensuing battle, though eventually ending in victory, was a trial for the wizard, who was targeted by these beasts continually.

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The Ruins Of Rhest

In which the party meets some elves, get drunk at a funeral, destroy a watchtower ninja-style and take a garrison in an epic struggle.

(Fill in narrative here.)

Notes

Recovering the ranger yields (weapons and armor are small sized):

  • one magical potion
  • Magical mithril chain shirt
  • masterwork greatsword
  • magical longbow
  • 20 normal arrows
  • 10 magical arrows
  • magical cloak
  • leather pouch of 37gp, 11pp and a key

The dragon remains underwater somewhere.

Cardagh in crocodile form returns with the spellcasting hobgoblin, who has:

  • magical studded leather
  • masterwork dagger
  • magical backpack
  • 6 magical potions
  • two magical wands
  • a magical scroll
  • a kit of sharp implements, needles, clamps, wire and other small torture devices
  • three nonmagical potions

We’ll deal with searching cleared rooms at next session or in comments if everybody is dying to find out what’s here.

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The Party Deliberates

Having defeating the dragon and sending the druid in eagle form to scout out Cinder Hill, the party is now well aware of the size of the marauding army marching towards Drellin’s Ferry. The destruction of the bridge over Skull Gorge has certainly bought them a few days, and messages have been dispatched to the town and Delrak by way of Jorr and a feather token.

What’s next?

OOC

This is mostly to start a conversation so that mcsoggybiscuit can be part of the decision. Have at it in the comments. I’m also deliberately not recapping leads or clues the party may have missed or ignored, so it’s up to everybody else to list options.

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Jävlar dragon!

It is often said that the best laid plans are oft to gang agley, and so it was with the party’s first attempt to slay the fell dragon that guards the bridge over skull gorge. The plan was a good one: trap the bridge to keep the lesser foes at bay, gain surprise on the dragon, and draw him to the the party to engage at close range. A good plan, perhaps, but the dragon had plans of its own, and they didn’t involve getting caught on the ground. Instead, it circled far overhead, breathing hot death down on its would-be attackers.

Hard lessons have taught the party when to stand and fight, and when to retreat. They ran like hell for the woods as fast as their feet could carry them.

The next day, wounds licked and spells re-memorized, the party set about making a new plan, and several hours of heated debate punctuated with words like “impossible” and “insane” followed. In the end, a strategy was decided upon, and the party once again stood at the edge of the woods, ready to face its fell foe.

Time to put the plan into action.

“Get ’im,” said Edward.

Nothing happened. The party looked around at each other, expectantly.

“Cast the fireball!” Ed shouted at Ismelda, “like we planned!”. Ismelda, who, for her part had understood the plan to be that the fighters should rush the tower, merely glared back. Templeton ran back from her forward position, behind some rocks in the clearing.

“Where’s the archon? Weren’t we summoning an archon-y angel type thing?”

McSoggybiscuit, who was rather ill-suited to plan making, for whom in fact the long, tedious hours spent plan making had acted as a particularly effective soporific and was therefore unaware of any plan at all, spoke from somewhere in the trees. “What’s an Argon?”

Edward put a calloused hand to his brow. He wasn’t quite sure anymore what the plan was, or had been, but he was fairly certain that standing in the clearing and waiting for the archers and the dragon to target them wasn’t quite in it.

“I’ve heard it said,” he mused, “that no plan survives contact with the enemy, but this one doesn’t seem to have survived contact with us.”

“it’s not the plan’s survival I’m worried about,” shouted Goldie, “Look!”

The dragon, apparently weary of watching the vaudeville, had launched itself, catlike and lethal, into the air and was hurtling toward the party at a speed that really hadn’t been properly invented yet.

Ismelda and McSoggybiscuit were already casting, and down by the bridge the results of Cardagh’s druidic machinations could be heard, if not seen, as several hapless goblins dropped what they were doing to pick caltrops from their calloused feet and curse loudly.

Then there came a sound the adventurers well remembered. Louder than a sound, really, a crush of sternum-pounding air that assaulted the party’s eardrums and seemed to shatter the sky like a stone being pushed through a block of ice. The dragon wheeled overhead like a comet zeroing in on a future crater, breathing in the shattered air and preparing to cook the pesky creatures below it in a nice bath of searing hot death.

“Nice knowing you, Goldie,” said Edward, drawing his sword. A lot of good it would do him, he thought, with the enemy attacking from the sky. Around him, his companions likewise made ready to go down fighting. There was an explosion, distant seeming to him, as a spell went off. A great ball of fire erupted next to the dragon, was shrugged off with what looked like a sneer.

Edward felt his heart in his throat, his hands, gripping his sword, were glazed with sweat. He was going to die. He knew it, and now it seemed his body had finally caught on. To make matters worse, the hellhounds and goblins were finally making it across the bridge.

The dragon hurtled downward.

It was then that Edward noticed something. No, not something, nothing; the absence of something. It was a nothing he would never forget. Around him and everywhere, the flower of battle bloomed into chaos as his companions clashed with the forces that held the bridge, and above, where the death dealing dragon made ready it’s first attack run. Chaos was everywhere, but in a small dwarf-sized pocket next to him there was…silence.

The dwarf looked into the sky with a steely gaze. And steel is something dwarves know about. Silence seemed to radiate from her like light from a torch. A living silence that Edward, even in his fear, even in the heat of battle, could feel in his bones.

The dragon plunged from the sky like a raptor, claws extended, death in its eyes and fire in its mouth.

Goldie, her face relaxed and calm, drew back her bowstring. She looked…ordinary, Edward thought, like she might be serving tea or fixing a leaky faucet.

Three arrows sprang from her bow in rapid succession, hurtling towards the quickly approaching dragon. The first hit the dragon square in the eye. The dragon reeled in disbelief and anger. Fire erupted from its jaws, jetting down towards the party.

The second arrow split the first, driving both shafts deep into the beast’s skull. Blood and ichor erupted from the wound in a torrent of hot gore. The dragon, moments before a deadly predator on an inevitable course with Edward’s fragile being, was now suddenly, impossibly, falling from the sky, clawing uselessly at a third arrow now sticking from its throat. Wings collapsing and legs splayed, the great beast tumbled, “ass over teakettle,” as Edward’s father would have said, and plummeted into the earth, landing with an ear-shattering crash.

Edward stopped. The goblins stopped. Everyone stopped. Everyone looked at Goldie, who was putting away her bow with an even hand.

“Yeah,” she said, “that’ll do.” And turning quickly aside, walked back towards the woods.

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Battle at Vraath Keep

Preferring a straight-up fight to all that sneaking around, the party decided to take on all the occupants of Vraath keep at once. This strategy was nicely facilitated by Jon McSoggybiscuit, who thoughtfully decided to knock down a shack outside the keep, thus bringing all the goblins to the yard. As well as all the wargs, manticores, and minotaurs. Also, one asshat decided to hide in the tower and throw lightning bolts at the party, a plan that might have well decimated it had not the wizard dealt said asshat a deadly blow by casting Irresistible Laughter and Flamestrike on him. In the end, it was a pitched battle, and the party certainly took its lumps, but was finally victorious.

Once the rooms were cleared and the sorcerer dispatched, the party looked for loot, finding a secret trap door, beneath which lay clues to the history of the fort, as well as many locked coffers, and a HUGE gauntlet made of bones carrying the symbol of a frowning mouth.

Also, the party found this map, stuck to a giant oak table with knives.

Also also, a few hours spent studying the papers in one of the alcoves of the vault revealed the history of Vraath Keep.

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Drelin's Ferry Part 2: The Witchwood

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Drelin's Ferry Part 1

From between the tortured screams of the captured hobgoblin commander, the adventurers learn that the attacks are coming from an area north of a town called Drelin’s Ferry, along the Elsir river, south of the forbiddingly-named Witchwood. It’s clear to the party that humanity needs heroes once again to help fight the increasing number of raids and skirmishes that now threaten its borders. Plus we get to keep whatever we can loot.

After a bit more fussing in town (the druid talks to a carp!), the party agrees to head to Drelin’s Ferry, there to meet with captain Serrana, and find out more about the attacks. It is a large hamlet, possibly even a town, sportting many interesting features and persons among them number:
*The Old Bridge Inn (fancy)
*The Green Apple Inn (not fancy, owned by Tharma, a talkative drwarf)
*Avarthel the Druid
*A Shrine of Pelor
*A smithy
*Sertierin the Wise

The party learns of some intriguing legends of the Witch Woods, and does some reconnaissance of its own to discover the following facts and legends:
*There’s some evil druids that live in the Witch Woods (legend)
*There’s weid animals, even dragons in there! (fact)
*There is a tower, supposedly haunted, called the Vrath Keep, there (fact)
*Long ago, the dwarves went to war with the forest giants and destroyed the old bridge here (legend)
*There are two trails through the forest, that the party knows of: the main trail and the “witch trail” (fact)
*Jor, a druid, lives in the forest (fact)
*There is a low gorge at the north end of the forrest, the “Skull Gorge”

The party sets out to find Jor, and what he may know, but before they can, they are beset by several owl-bears! The encounter may be a landmark in the history of animal combat, as it boasts an owl-bear fighting a snake (from the druid’s staff), a bear (the druid), and a large cat. The owl-bears prove no match for the party’s menagerie of terror, and they are defeated. Ed rolling a crit on one to drop it outright.

..I’ll finish later…we encounter a hydra.

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