After chartering a vessel to travel to Q’Barra, Omega sets off to search for answers and to find this mysterious tomb potentially holding a great weapon to combat Gribnakh (all information in the ledger and journal from Tarus’ study).
They arrive in Newthrone a week later and set about investigating, starting with a house Tharashk outpost. Inside they manage to hire a guide who they’re to meet at the airship dock later. Not much else in the town gives them any more insight. Omega does their best to steer clear of too much interaction as they note Inspired are rampant there and the information they possess could potentially get them unwanted attention.
When they arrive at the dock, they run into a funny-looking fellow who introduces himself to them.
First Contact with Brea
Omega learns that they can only get Airship passage as far East as Ka’ Rahashan. From there they would have to by foot through the Basura swamp to the area the tomb is supposed to be located in. They could get a guide in Ka’Rahashan, supposedly.
Ka’Rahashan is relatively hospitable, considering the location. The Dragonborn village is home to a great many religious artifacts of the race and, thusly, none of the adventurers are left to wander unaccompanied. But when they entered seeking a guide, they were promptly taken to the village elder. The elder granted them a guide on the condition that they do battle in their arena first, which Tripper did. Taking on 2 of their finest warriors, Tripper proved his worth by besting them both alone. The least battered of the two set out with Omega the next day to guide them to the heart of the Basura Swamps where the fabled Tomb was said to be.
After about a week travel in the treacherous terrain, they all arrive at the site of a ruin. The guide says he will stay outside for 3 days and no longer. If they do not return in 3 days, he will assume they perished and he will go home.
082207 Game Night Recap
You guys started in the hallway. After a few minutes of inspection, Harlos realized the ceiling was trapped. He tinkered with it, and with Tripper’s help, you bypass the trap (which turns out to be a crushing rock trap that would have dealt 16d6 damage). You open the door to discover a blank wall of earth. After some debate, you deduce this isn’t the entrance to the tomb, so you venture out East combing the hillside. After a little ways, you discover a second mound of cave-in similar to the first, so you dig through to discover a tunnel:
Brilliant colors are everywhere; pigments painted on stone are undimmed by the passage of decades. The floor is a colorful mosaic, featuring a distinct, winding path of red tiles forming a 2-foot-wide, meandering trail south down the corridor. A few chips and gaps reveal that cement or plaster covers the underlying stonework of the corridor, and it mostly provides a smooth surface for the many illustrated scenes.
The images depict fields with cattle grazing, a copse with several wolves in the background , slaves—human, orc, elven, and strange human animal mixtures of pig-human, ape-human, and dog-human—going about various tasks. Certain frescoes are more focused and show rooms of some building—a library filled with many books and scrolls, a torture chamber, and a wizard’s work room. Chairs, windows, boxes, bales, doors, chests, birds, bats, spiders, and all manner of things appear on the walls.
In the mosaic on the floor, Harlos discovers a pattern. It’s something written in common runes:
ACERERAK CONGRATULATES YOU ON YOUR
POWERS OF OBSERVATION. SO MAKE OF THIS
WHATEVER YOU WISH, FOR YOU WILL BE MINE IN
THE END NO MATTER WHAT!
Go back to the tormentor or through the arch,
and the second great hall you’ll discover.
Shun green if you can, but night’s good color
is for those of great valor.
If shades of red stand for blood the wise
will not need sacrifice aught but a loop of
magical metal—you’re well along your march.
Two pits along the way will be found to lead
to a fortuitous fall, so check the wall.
These keys and those are most important of all,
and beware of trembling hands and what will maul.
If you find the false you find the true
and into the columned hall you’ll come,
and there the throne that’s key and keyed.
The iron men of visage grim do more than
meets the viewer’s eye.
You’ve left and left and found my Tomb
and now your soul will die.
You first turn your attention to the path and Harlos leads the way to the first image, the one with the box.
Two jackal-headed human figures in this painting are portrayed as if holding bronze chest—which is real, and protrudes slightly into the corridor! The chest is hinged on the bottom so as to allow the lid to swing down.
Most everyone sees that the box is trapped with a poison spike, so Tripper triggers and dismantles it. The box opens, and Onavel looks inside, discovering a level, which he promptly tugs. The floor beneath him gives way, and he narrowly misses falling into a poisoned spiked pit trap, thanks to Harlos’ aid. Tripper descends into the pit to examine the contents and pulls out a pair of Goggles of night.
You move on to the next mural.
This portion of the fresco illustrates an iron door that evidently confines some sort of a horrid creature (its clawed and scaled hands grasp the bars of its small window) that can be loosed to torment prisoners.
After some inspection, Harlos finds that the wall is not what it seems, Tripper gives it a good punch, and part of the mural falls away, revealing a door. The group moves on, deciding to explore the whole hall before passing the door.
Down the hall, you all narrowly miss another pit trap, before Harlos decides to search every step for them. After a while, it is noted that there is a pattern to the traps, and it somewhat follows the red path.
At the end of the hall/path, there is a giant Green Devil face on the wall that radiates evil and magic. His mouth opens into a black void.
A fork of the red tile path leads directly to a leering devil face set in the mosaic at the corridor’s end. The devil’s mouth gapes wide and empty—in fact it is dead black, emitting no hint of light and allowing none entry.
On the left wall is an arch with 3 colored stones.
A section of the red tile path leads into a mist-filled stone archway. Three large stones are embedded in the arch. Each has a different hue—yellow on the lower left, bluish at the top of the arch, and orange on the lower right.
When Tripper gets within 5 feet of it, they begin to glow. Yellow (lower left), Blue (top), Orange (lower right). Tripper tosses a useless potion through. You hear and see nothing.
The group decides to skip this, and head back to the door, but not before exploring each pit. In one of two pits that does not contain spikes, Harlos discovers a secret passageway, but it appears to only go one way, out into the pit. Harlos rigs the pit to remain open, and the party proceeds back to the door.
Opening the door reveals a small path. The group enters the path and Tripper opens the next door. As soon as the door is opened, light from Osh’s Torch reveals, in the shadows, a large 4-armed creature.
A grotesque, winged humanoid with a horned head and stony hide lunges, its four arms each tipped with wicked rocky claws. Around the creature’s neck is a collar studded with huge, gleaming gems.
Battle ensues. Continued…
So monumental that it bears the official title of “The Battle.”
I awarded a surprise round to both parties to set the stage. There was no official “surprise” as all parties were aware of each other at the same time. In the surprise round, Onavel (who won initiative) sprinted into the shadowy area only to get clobbered (critical hit a.o.o.) by the creature with one swing, sending him flying back out of the shadow and into the illuminated hallway. Tripper and Harlos followed. Everyone else, except Osh, filed into the room. The creature slammed Tripper, to minimal damage (thanks to his DR).
In round one, Onavel regained his feet and tumbled into the creature’s range, Harlos flanked him and took a few jabs, Tripper wailed on him, and Brea attempted to flank as well, but fell victim to his a.o.o. again as Onavel did. She took massive damage and fell unconscious where she landed in the hallway. The creature cut loose on Tripper landing all 4 arms, a bite and a gore, rending Tripper for roughly 100hp. Dez began singing and successfully cast Slow on the creature, significantly crippling his ability to deal damage. Corwyn sprinted into position and took a swing, and Osh attempted to mentally grapple the creature, to no avail.
The next round, Onavel Pulled the Elder Mountain and dished out a painful blow to the creature, Harlos jabbed at him again, but the creature’s DR shrugged most of it off. Tripper wailed on him again, and Brea stablized, but didn’t wake up. The creature, highly annoyed at Onavel, but slowed by Dez, used its one attack to swat him into the wall, dealing a significant amount of damage. Dez attempted to Charm the monster, but it resisted. And then the battle came to a remarkable conclusion.
Corwyn turned to Onavel and performed a Lay on Hands to secure him, then turned to the creature. With a furious swing aimed at the creature’s head, Corwyn dismembered him in one swipe. BA is the first official critical instant kill. 2 natural 20’s and a confirm. :)
The creature slumped to the floor and bled out on the spot.
Harlos snagged the collar, and he and Tripper examined it. They found a secret compartment in it containing a small strip of parchment which Tripper deemed magical in nature. Dez cast Read Magic, and the parchment revealed:
_Look low and high for gold, to hear a tale untold. The archway at the end, and on your way you’ll wend.
In the upper and left walls of this room are doors. The group proceeded through the left one first, leaving the upper one for later. Within the first door:
This small chamber is empty of scent, stain, or decor. Only the dense layer of dust reveals the uncounted years since any moved through this chamber since the present.
While standing in the chamber, an arrow fired and hit Tripper. After searching, Harlos discovers the arrow slot and disables it. He also discovers a secret door. What follows are 7 more rooms similar to this one. Arrow slots and secret doors until the final secret door that has 7 studs on it. Along the way, Tripper smashes each arrow slot, destroying them.
The group falls back to explore the other door, to find a path similar to the other, but no secret doors, no arrow slots, and it dead ends in the 4th room.
The party moves into the room with the final secret door, and sets up camp for the evening with Tripper on watch.
The game will resume on the following calendar day with you all refreshed from an eventless night’s sleep.
090507 Game Night Recap
You left off in the hallway of the secret doors and arrow-slit traps. You guys rested the night and began the next day by studying the 7 pegs on the secret door in front of you.
After some careful study, Harlos not only figured out the trap, but managed to bypass it. As he opened the door, you discovered a long (about 160ft) hallway decorated with several colorful creatures holding orbs.
The floor of this long, wide hall is inlaid with tiles, and the walls and ceiling are painted with figures of animals and strange signs and glyphs. Humans and humanlike creatures hold painted spheres, each a different color from the next.
From north to south (right to left) on the wall in front of you, you see:
GOLD sphere held above head by a naga.
ORANGE sphere held waist high by a mummy.
PURPLE sphere held at feet by a minotaur
BRONZE sphere held waist high by a nymph.
GRAY sphere held at shoulder by an owlbear.
BRIGHT BLUE sphere held at feet by a sahuagin.
WHITE sphere held above head by a red slaad.
TURQUOISE sphere held at shoulder by a satyr.
SCARLET sphere held waist high by a mind flayer.
PALE GREEN sphere held at feet by a medusa.
On the opposite wall. in order:
PALE BLUE sphere held at shoulder by a werewolf.
SILVER sphere held at feet by a four-armed gargoyle. (on the door you came out of)
GREEN sphere held high above head by a half-orc.
YELLOW sphere held at shoulder by a falconheaded creature.
PINK sphere held high above head by a yuan-ti.
BLACK sphere held at feet by a hydra.
PALE VIOLET sphere held at shoulder by a kuo-toa.
RED sphere held waist high by a skeleton.
BUFF sphere held at feet by a white- bearded human wizard.
INDIGO sphere held high above head by a batwinged woman.
Harlos was quick enough to point out that there might be significance to the positioning of the orbs, since the walls appear to be segmented in 4s, and the characters are holding the orbs in 4 different positions. Though, no actual pattern could be determined.
Tripper detected magic throughout the hallway. He decided to move Orb to orb and try to better determine the magic. He moved to the Orange Orb first. After jabbing at it with a dagger, he managed to disbelieve the illusion and found a door behind it. He and Harlos studied it and Harlos found and disabled the trap on it. After opening, they discovered it to be nothing more than a trap, as a solid wall laid behind it.
Next Tripper went to the Red Skeleton and jabbed at it, finding an empty space from about waist-level, down. After a few moments, he managed to disbelieve the illusion and discovered a crawl space. Dez went inside until he came to a bend, then an apparent dead end. This entire time Brea was clueless and saw through none of the illusons.
When Harlos came to the dead end, he discovered a secret door, but no traps, so he pushed in on it. When he did, the entire crawlspace dropped 10 feet, but Harlos (already being on hands and knees) came out unscathed. Back in the main hall, 10ft in all directions from the opening caved in 10ft deep as well. Everyone managed to avoid the intentional cave in. They all dropped in and followed Harlos into the room past the secret wall.
The adjoining room was 60ft by 60ft and had this description:
The chamber is bare but for three conspicuous chests, each about 4 feet long, 2 feet wide, and 3 feet deep. One appears to be of gold, the second is silvery, and the third is constructed of hardy oak banded with thick bronze.
The group went to the Silver one first. Harlos found and disarmed the trap. Upon opening, they found a nasty dart trap inside that could have shred Harlos to bits. And a crystal case (appraised at 1000gp) with a ring inside, later identified to be a Ring of Levitation.
On to the Bronze Chest. Both the Bronze and Gold radiated Conjuration magic and had no mechanisms in either that looked like traps. Harlos behind and Tripper in front, they popped open the chest and a Large Bone Golem appeared. The fight was quick and relatively painless, though he proved a slightly formidable foe with his damage reduction. Without Tripper, it would have been a longer battle.
On to the Gold Chest. Same scenario. Upon opening, 12 tiny vipers sprung out. Harlos quaffed an Antitoxin immediately, and the group managed to dice all 12 within 2 rounds (I believe).
Nothing else was found in the room, so the party went back to the main hall. Nothing was in the 2 encounter chests.
The next Orb Tripper tried was the Black one with the Hydra. Same scenario as the Red one with the Skeleton. Harlos went in the crawlspace first, this time. It went on for quite a long crawl, gradually downward. Tripper followed, and the rest of the group followed a little later. After a long crawl, they came to another dead end, which obviously was not. Upon opening this secret door, the group discovered a large Chapel. Northern section text:
Chapel accoutrements fill this chamber, including great wooden pews on either side of a central mosaic path that leads toward an altar on the far side of the room, which is separated from the pews by a wooden railing. Scenes of everyday life are painted on the walls, but all the people are portrayed with rotting flesh, skeletal hands, and worm-ridden orifices. Yet depicted amidst these disturbing portraits are various symbols of readily recognized benevolent deities.
The closest 2 pews radiated magic. Harlos discovered traps in each, and bypassed them. Nothing was inside. The remaining pews contained many coins in each. Nick noted the amounts.
At the southern end of the chapel, you see this:
Behind the wooden railing is an opalescent blue altar, which is set before a tiered dais that supports a well-carved and padded wooden chair. Two large brass candelabra, each holding five white candles, stand on either side of the dais. Two large white pottery urns, each stoppered with brass, sit in each corner. A human skeleton wearing badly rusted and torn black chainmail lies dead in the southwestern portion of the room, one outstretched arm seeming to point into a mist-filled arch on the southern end of the west chapel wall.
The group decided to tackle the Dais and Altar first. Dez jumped on top of the altar and a lightning bolt shot out from it. Everyone evaded it to some degree except Tripper who took the full impact. Harlos studied it after, realizing it had automatically reset. He managed to bypass the trap only to discover another trap behind it. He quickly pulled off a rapid trap bypass on it, too, discovering it was an explosion trap that could have been very nasty. He released the traps, and the group vowed to never touch the altar again.
Nothing special was discovered about the candlebras or the chair. No one really wanted to tough the urns. The group then turned its attention to the smoky arch. After some study, they determined it wasn’t a trap, per se. Tripper tested it with the reaching arm of the corpse on the floor. After no actual results came, Dez volunteered to enter. He passed through, and a couple of sensations came over him, but he shrugged them off. As he emerged on the other side, he was in a 10×10 blank cell. Nothing at all inside. He spoke to the group, and they decided there was nothing special about it, so Dez came back through. He took a minor amount of damage on the return, but nothing other than that. No one else passed through.
Harlos gave the room a thorough once-over and discovered: Search check of the eastern wall in this area reveals a small slot with the letter ‘O’ faintly traced above it. The slot is of sufficient size to accept a coin or a flat gem. It is also just right for insertion of a magic ring.
They decided to insert the Ring of Levitation in. When they did, a secret passage revealed itself, burying the ring in the process. But on the other side was a short hall and stairs leading down. The passage lead to a sharp turn right and ended in a stuck door. After many tries by the group, Dez managed to unstuck the door only to reveal a pit on the other side, which he dexterously avoided. The scenario repeated itself 2 more times. Everyone except Tripper managed to jump over the pits. Poor Tripper fell into the first 2 and climbed out, and just didn’t even bother on the third. He just jumped in, then climbed out. After the third, the hall cornered right again into a 160ft hallway ending with a door.
Upon approaching the door, it was discovered that it radiated magic, was heavily locked, not trapped, and gleeful singing was heard on the other side. Harlos barely managed to bypass a very tough set of locks (Open Lock DC 41). Upon opening the door, the singing stopped, sounds of panic and running ensued, and a small fading light was seen about 50ft away in the darkness beyond. The group pursued, slowly. After about 30ft, the floor began to slope down, northward. Everyone but Tripper managed to scurry back to the door. Poor Tripper slipped and slid down the hall into a pit of moletn lava. Luckily as he breached the end of the hall, he snagged the ledge, so only half of him got immersed, but it burned him severely, incinerating most of his joints. He drug his burning body up after an unsuccessful first try (doing an additonal 30-something points of damage, melting the non-adamantine parts). Once he finally fully emerged onto the hall, the burning was so severe, he bottomed out, disabling on the spot. The group could only watch, horrified, as the trap had reset as soon as he fell in.
Harlos slowly moved down the hall and found the tripping mechanism for the trap, disabling it. Then the group drug Tripper’s body back down the 160ft hallway to the corner, and the group stopped there.
100307 Game Night Recap
Picking up from the corner refuge after bringing Tripper back to functionality, the group decides to head back the way it came. Passing through the closest pit, Onavel senses something strange about the south wall there. On inspecting, Harlos finds a secret door. The group moves through into a stairwell, leading down to a short hallway that turns right. However, as they start to descend the stairwell, Onavel has another strange sensation that something isn’t right with the walls again. Harlos inspects them thoroughly to uncover another secret door. Breaking the illusion, a magically sealed secret door is revealed.
Its mechanism is beyond Harlos’ skill, so Onavel begins hacking at it. After his Elder Mountain maneuver proves ineffective (compared to other doors), Tripper steps in and charges through it. The hallway beyond turns right (south), and leads to something akin to a laboratory. A thorough search of the desks, tables, and shelves in the room turns up nothing of interest except a mummified hand on one desk. Corwyn reasons it to be a graft of some sort, and Harlos packs it for later.
In the center of the room are 3 large vats of murky water. Onavel steps over to the Easternmost one and jabs his sword in and swirls it. As he does, the vat bubbles, then congeals as it grows out and over until a massive jiggly cube stands before the group. The group wastes no time in dispatching the gelatinous cube. Onavel looks again into the vat and discovers half a key. He retrieves it and moves on to the second (middle) vat. He swirls it again and discovers the other half of the key at the bottom. He reaches in to retrieve it. When he pulls his hand out, it begins to burn and itch, but is remedied after he cleanses it back in the first pool. Nothing is found in the third pool. The two halves do fit together, but need to be fused, so they are pocketed until later.
Harlos inspects the rest of the room more thoroughly, and finds yet another secret door in the southwesternmost corner. Beyond is a short hallway that turns left (south) to a descending stairwell, then turns left again into a long hallway. 20 ft into the hallway lies a 30ft long, 10 ft deep pit filled with spikes. On further inspection, it is revealed that medium creatures can maneuver the spikes safely. While the group deliberates the ins and outs of this possible trap, Dez barrels into it. When he gets just past 20ft in, his next footfall springs the trap. He leaps up and back, narrowly escaping a mass of spikes that shoot up from the floor, then retract back in. Harlos, who is standing on the back edge also narrowly avoids being spiked as the spikes shoot out just past the crest of the pit.
Harlos descends into the pit to disarm the trap. After a few moments of inspection, he discovers the pressure plating and competely disables the trap. The group passes safely through the pit. In the corridor beyond, the group sees only a dead end. Harlos inspects the walls as they go, and finds another secret door on the north wall.
On the other side of the door lies:
Rotted sofas, several thronelike chairs, small tables, braziers, vases, and dented, chipped, even broken urns lie in disarray about the chamber, as if purposely tumbled and looted. Only the tapestries, featuring weed-grown rocks and greenish scenes of undersea life, seem to have escaped such rough treatment.
Harlos moves in and yanks the Westernmost tapestry aside. As he does, it immediately transforms into a slimy substance, but falls safely ahead of him. Behind the tapestry he sees an opening at the NW corner of the room. He then moves to the NE corner where a door lies as Onavel moves in to address the other tapestry. As Onavel nears the tapestry, he emits a cone of fire from his sword and jumps back as the tapestry comes to life, just as the other, but falls safely to the floor in front of him, singed. All this time, everyone else is moving into position and Tripper is holding the door. Just before Harlos reaches the door in the back of the room, the room begins to shake violently. Everyone but Corwyn manages to stablize. Corwyn collapses and takes a small amount of damage from the fall. Harlos checks the door and finds it to be a similar trap to those found in the hallway with the murals and orbs. After 2 attempts, he disarms the trap, then immediately moves to trying to disarm the shaking room trap. After some help finding it, he eventually locates a part of the mechanism and bypasses it. The group then proceeds to watch as Onavel, who has been randomly destroying furniture as he waits impatiently, smash the chests and coffers. Several of the coffers release small vipers after smashing, which the group quickly dispenses of. Some of the coffers are empty. the rest contain either gold or sapphires. None of the chests have anything in them. Harlos did succeed in picking the locks of one chest and one coffer prior to Onavel’s rampage.
Following Brea, who had positioned herself just outside the NW tunnel, the group moved through the path, which curved around ending in a descending stairwell facing East. The hallway beyond intersected about 50ft past the stairs. Brea moved up to the intersection and peeked around the corners. 30ft ahead was a door. the hallway to the right (south) ended in a door. The hallway to the left (north) was longer and ended in double doors. Just before stepping into the center, she spots a trap and calls on Harlos’ trap-disarming skills. He comes up and disarms the trap, but notices an unsettling cold from beneath the floor there. As well, he can hear something scratching on the wall beneath him, as though it’s trying to get up to him and can’t. He notes this to the rest of the group.
Everyone decides to move north to the double doors. Upon opening them (no traps, no locks), Harlos finds a blank wall. Onavel points out the riddle, noting False to be True, and Harlos inspects the wall further, finding a secret door. Brea also points out that these doors are the first she’s seen thus far that hinge in both directions. Harlos closes the double doors and pushes in on them rather than pulling, but they do not open in. He then opens one, shielding himself with the other, and finds the secret door to be smaller than the larger doors, and it is slightly depressed from the pressure, so he pushes in further and slides it. As he does so, the rest of the wall around it slides away and a thick gas starts to fill the chamber around him, 30 ft in both directions. Everyone else had fallen safely back to the intersection. They hear doors click and open beyond the mist, but nothing else. Tripper rushes into the mist as everyone moves into position in the hall. As Tripper finds Harlos, Harlos is stumbling through the mist back toward them. Tripper notes the mist would put anyone asleep who inhales it. Dez then dispels it, and the party moves forward into the hallway beyond. Ahead is a stairwell leading to apparently nowhere, and a set of double doors just before it on the right (east), which are open.
Onavel and Brea run to the doors, Onavel noting a secret doorway on his left (west) as he passes. Onavel spots a massive rolling elephant made entirely of stone, apparently moving in their direction. Brea holds at the entryway, but Onavel charges in to attack, but his fire cone washes harmlessly over it. Harlos, Corwyn, and Tripper move up to the doorway, as Dez covers their backs at the intersection.
The massive golem, that takes up almost the entire hallway, barrels forward, rolling over everyone in its path except Harlos and Brea, who dodge out of the way, up the stairs. Several of the group get pot shots in on it, but it doesn’t seem to do a lot of damage. All this time, Dez has run up the hallway to see what is going on. He meets the thing almost head-on and does an about-face in the other direction. the Golem follows to the double doors, but promptly returns direction without turning around. Onavel meets up with it and deals a massive amount of damage, and Tripper follows him slamming into the creature and thoroughly destroying it with a charged slam attack. Victorious, the group slides up the odd stairwell, and rests for the evening with Tripper keeping watch in front of the double doors.
101707 Game Night Recap
The following day, the group emerged from the odd stairwell to follow the path from whence the rolling construct came. Finding it nothing more than a dead end, the group backtracked to the secret door Onavel found nearby. After discovering the trigger, Harlos opened the door to reveal a narrow passageway leading north. The group followed the path to the ending which was a curving stairwell leading up to a 10ft hallway, ending with a metal door.
The group approached, and investigated.
A door forged of gleaming metallic alloy with massive reinforced hinges bars passage beyond this point. Three vertical slots mar the door’s surface at waist height. Each slot is about 1 inch wide and 3 inches long.
Harlos peered through the slots to see a massive chamber on the other side, filled with pillars. A faint orange glow shown across the room, beyond Harlos’ darkvision range. Referencing the riddle again, the group concluded this was the right path. After some deliberation, it was suggested that the slots were the right size for swords to be placed in. Immediately after doing so, the door slowly opened. Harlos investigated, but only 30 seconds after doing so, the door slammed shut flinging the swords out. Harlos narrowly missed being bludgeoned by the door in the process. It was then decided that Tripper destroy the hinges and remove the door entirely. After a few minutes of slamming, the wall gave way and the door collapsed harmlessly, if not very loudly, to the floor. The group peered into the chamber beyond.
Scores of massive columns hold up a ceiling tiled in dark stone. Across a gulf of darkness, something glitters with orange light.
Prior to entering, the group buffs against undead, assuming this is near the Lich’s chamber. The group enters the room, fanning out a bit, and immediately heads left (north) toward a door.
This small door seems to shimmer with a faint blue light. A sturdy brass ring hangs enticingly at the center of the door.
They note a throne on a dais to the right (south) and a large green devil face on the wall up and left of the door they’re heading toward. Onavel wanders off on his own during this time. Spread out, the group prepares for Tripper and Harlos to open the door. Bored, Onavel leans impatiently against a pillar and immediately levitates into the air. Dez swipes a grappling hook from his pack and flings it at Onavel, but he misses it in his flurry. As he ascends, he tries to grab another pillar. This results in him shooting up even faster. As he clears the top of the pillars, a breeze begins to push him in the direction of the devil face. As he nears Harlos, he throws his own grappling hook toward Onavel, who catches this one. Harlos secures it to Tripper, who prepares a dagger to cut the line just in case. Onavel attempts to pull himself down, but the force against him is too strong. Dez then casts a Dispel Magic on Onavel and he plummets to the floor, tumbling 5 feet past Harlos, taking minor damage. Onavel then stands, trying to regain his composure, and declares touching the pillars is a bad idea.
The group then returns to the door, which is emitting a faint blue light. Harlos flings the door open to find…nothing. The room is empty, save a little dust. So they move on to the next door. This one emits a violet light.
This small door seems to scintillate with a faint violet light. A sturdy brass ring hangs enticingly at the center of the door.
Using the same process as before, Harlos flings the door open. As he touches it, it gives off a slight green light. The chamber beyond…
This 10-foot-square chamber contains many martial war decorations, which consist of crossed swords over round shields.
Harlos inspects the doorway. Finding no traps, he steps inside. As soon as he does so, the walls around him animate and everywhere there was a shield and swords, now stands a stone figure armed with 2 swords, and they all swing at Harlos. An amazing display of dexterity ensues as Harlos dodges and deflects every single attack, then tumbles out of the room. As he clears the threshold, the constructs phase back into the walls. Rather than face the room from the inside, the group decides it’s best to just destroy the room from the outside. So Onavel and Tripper set to smashing the walls 5 ft at a time, until all the outer walls are destroyed. Confused, the constructs attempt to animate at every breach, but when no one is inside, the immediately remerge with the walls.
When all the walls are gone, the group approaches the door. The last 2 constructs come forth and the group quickly disperses of them as only they can. They open the next door and peer inside.
Water spills from a wall basin onto a sodden floor strewn with decayed bones and rotted equipment. Runes are carved in the northern wall.
Everyone hesitates to enter, but Onavel, in his brash fashion, trods inside. When nothing happens, the rest of the group enters. A search of the room reveals a bag of 743gp, a potion of Reduce Person, and a +1 flail with the name “Shatterskull” carved into the handle in Dwarven. The runes read:
“YOU WHO DARED TO VIOLATE MY TOMB MAY REMAIN
AND DIE SLOWLY OF STARVATION, OR ESCAPE TO CERTAIN DEATH.
WHATEVER YOUR CHOICE, ACERERAK THE ETERNAL
WATCHES AND SCOFFS AT YOUR PUNY EFFORTS AND ENJOYS YOUR DEATH THROES.”
The group decides there’s nothing more of interest here and moves on to the final doorway, which also emits a blue light. Following the same procedure as before, Harlos swings open the door. This time to find:
A large wooden sarcophagus rests upon a low stone table. Broken and looted chests, urns, and coffers are scattered about on the floor.
Onavel and Tripper remove the lid to uncover a mummified humanoid. Harlos’ closer inspection finds a green gem in an eye socket and a ring under his hand wraps. As Harlos tries to pry the gem out of the eye socket, the body comes alive and grabs his arm. The gem disintegrates. Tripper smashes relentlessly at the body, and Onavel takes a few swings as well. The creature is quickly dispersed and Harlos pulls his arm away with the hand still gripping him. Tripper obliges Harlos and removes the hand. Harlos takes the ring and Tripper identifies it as a Ring of Fire Resistance, Minor (resist Fire 5). With nothing more of interest in that room, the group moves on to the area with the faint orange glow.
When they get there, they discover the glow to be a gem in the middle of a pile of rubble:
Cinders, ashes, charred bones and skulls, and the crisped and blackened remains of gear, clothing, arms, and armor are strewn about a huge, glowing orange gem.
Tripper inspects it as Corwyn warns it emits an overwhelming evil. As Tripper touches the gem, it triggers in his mind that he could be granted one wish if he activates it. Rather than relaying this to the group, he simply states this item needs to be destroyed, and he stashes it in his pack for later. The group then moves on to the Throne.
A stark black dais holds an obsidian throne inlaid with silver and ivory skulls. A crown and scepter rest upon the throne. The crown is golden, while the scepter has a silver end, and one of gold.
The group approaches the throne and inspects it. Harlos grabs the scepter and declares he will attempt to touch the silver end of the scepter to the silver crown inlay. The rest of the group moves back. When he does it, the throne sinks into the floor revealing a passageway down and south. The group moves into the passageway, leaving the crown untouched.
The room beyond is a cornucopia of materials ending in two metal doors atop stairs.
The steps, wall, and ceiling of this stairwell are each apparently forged of a separate precious or semiprecious metal. A bronze key lies untended on one of the steps.
The six steps are made of onyx, pink marble, lapis, black marble, serpentine (golden), and malachite (re s p e ctively, from lowest to highest). The walls are lined with copper (untarnished and gleaming) panels set between rare woods inlaid with ivory. The ceiling is silvered iron, formed so as to reflect and multiply light. Upon the fourth step is a large, cylindrical key of bronze. The doors on the south wall are apparently made of mithral The doors set on the southern end of room 28 are 14-feet wide and 28-feet tall (and 3-feet thick).
Harlos approaches and inspects. He realizes the inlay for the keyhole in the doors is an indention that matches the size of the ends of the scepter. After much deliberation, it is decided he place the silver end of the scepter in the inlay. When he does so, he feels a sensation as though he’s being pulled away from that place. But he resists. Convinced that this is the answer to the riddle, Harlos flips the scepter and places the gold end in the depression. The doors silently swing open. The room beyond…
A silvered ceiling reflects a grand room with inlaid ivory and gold tiled walls and a polished agate tiled floor. A hulking black iron demonic sculpture rests in each corner of the chamber, each bearing a distinctive weapon. In addition, the chamber contains a gold filigreed bronze urn from which issues a thin stream of smoke, two iron chests, and a granite sarcophagus which is plainly inscribed with the name ‘ACERERAK.’
Each iron statue is 9 feet tall and is forged of black iron. The statue to the northeast stands with a saw-toothed two-handed sword raised to strike; the statue to the northwest has a huge, spike-ended mace; to the southeast the sculpture readies a wickedly spiked morning star, and the one in the southwest has a glaive. Each has a magical aura. Each has an evil aura as well and the visage of each of these iron statues is most fearsome and terrifying.
Deciding that this is an “obvious” trap, Onavel sets toward the one in the NW corner, smashing at it. It splits in two and falls over revealing a trap door beneath. He sets about the room attempting the same, but no other trap doors are found. Before exploring further, they decide to inspect the remainder of the room.
The Sarcophagus reveals nothing. It is empty. They move on to the chests. After allowing Tripper to set off the 3 traps on each chest, and break the last of 3 locks on each, they open the chest to find 10,000 gems, which Onavel estimates to be worth about 50gp each. When they later leave the dungeon, they find these to actually be only quartz flints worth nothing more than 1cp each. They had been enchanted by an illusion. Enjoy your 20,000 quartz flints, fellas! LOL!
The group then moves on to the Bronze Urn. Onavel walks up to smash it. When he does, an Efreeti appears and battle ensues. The group quickly realizes, for some unknown reason, none of their magic or magical effects work. But they still make short work of the Efreeti. Tripper steps back out of the room and finds that it is the room that is causing the loss of magic.
The group moves on to the trap door. Opening it reveals a 10ft drop to a 5ft opening that opens again into a 10ft hallway that curves around. Harlos searches the area and finds a secret door. Opening it, he sees a 10ft wide by 20ft deep room with a small depression in the middle. In the depression is a key hole. Harlos attempts to use the key they found in the mirky water vats (repaired by Dez), but a large fireball explosion erupts, destroying the key, and narrowly missing Harlos. He then has Tripper go get the key from outside the AntiMagic room. Turning that in the key hole, the room begins to shake and move and Harlos sprints back to the exit, the floor rising as he goes, allowing him to easily leave. What is revealed in the room’s stead is another room.
A pile of gems, coins, vials, scrolls, and other items lies immediately inside the door of this mithral vault, but against the rune-scribed far wall is a stone bier. On the bier is a thick layer of dust mixed with bone shards and a gem-encrusted skull.
As many of the group as can fit enter the room, and Tripper takes note of the items on the floor. He then taps the skull with his chain and it reacts by raising into the air, turning in his direction and peering into him. He feels a sensation deep within him, a hollow feeling. As though all his essence was trying to be ripped away, but his return pull is stronger, and he escapes the skull’s grasp. While this is happening, the dust in the room swirls and combines to form a ghostly figure.
The group turns its attention first on the ghost and dispatches it quickly. But the skull proves to be quite resilient. Tripper manages to nick a chunk out of it with his chain, but all other attacks prove ineffective until Dez pummels it with a Shatter spell. All other magical attacks bounce right off. Then Onavel squirms his way up front just after Tripper resists another stare down by the skull. Onavel then crushes the skull into dust in a maddened assault. The group then loots the treasure of the room:
• Ninety-seven 10 gp gems and three huge gems (a 1,000 gp peridot, a 5,000 gp emerald, and a 10,000 gp black opal).
• Gems set in the demilich construct: two jewels set into the eye sockets (5,000 gp rubies) and 6 pointed (marquis cut) diamonds set as teeth in the jaw (each diamond worth 500 gp).
• Three potions of cure serious wounds, one potion of heroism, two oils of keen edge, two potions of fly and a potion of greater magic fang.
Two scrolls of command, one scroll of slow, one scroll of arcane eye, one scroll of shatter, one scroll of scorching ray, one scroll of dispel evil, one scroll of Melf ’s acid arrow, and one scroll of power word kill.
• A ring of feather falling, a lesser rod of silent metamagic, and a staff of fire.
• A cursed backbiter spear, and two –2 cursed longswords.
• A pair of goggles of lifesight (see Libris Mortis, page 78).
• A wrapped tower (see Libris Mortis, page 76).
They then inspect the bier and discover it actually holds a hidden compartment. Upon opening, Tripper pulls out an Ogre-sized Heavy Flail that radiates a strong magical aura (Aberration Augury). As he pulls it from the bier, several in the group feel a change in air pressure in the room beyond. They round the corner to find 2 doors. Opening each, they see portals. To where, they do not know. Each portal appears to lead to the same place.
The group discusses and decides not to take the leap of faith, instead returning to the dungeon’s main entrance. It has now been 4 days since entering the dungeon, and they are not sure if they have a way back home waiting on them outside.