Written and Directed by Chris Bailey (@mopeycomposer)
Adapted for Session Report by Keith M. Sandler (@slightmisplay)
Wruze “Roo”, half-drow rogue— Gab-tron
Osrick, human fighter – Clark (@this_isnt_clark)
Phlaxen Phlox, halfling ranger- Laura (@lbsamuelsson)
Sawiya “Boo” Bu, air genasi (wizard?) – Sarah
Captain Valla, half-elf pirate (fighter?) — Erin
Jarren, human (quarter-elf) ranger — Keith (@slightmisplay)
INT, Dungeon, Day/Night???
The party is split, Jarren in the north room, the remainder in the room with the secret door where we had taken our rest.
Osrick hears Jarren’s cry for assistance and comes into the room to his aid. Jarren frowns.
Jarren is able to drag a nearby table to barricade the door that is being assaulted in his room.
Meanwhile, the secret door in the other room is being forced open from the other side, despite the party’s efforts to block it. Whether it’s gnolls or gnomes (svirfneblin!) or gnus, it seems they’ll be entering. Now.
Back in the north room, Jarren gives Osrick a knowing look. Osrick returns it with an unknowing nod. Jarren pushes the table back away from the door and whips it open, reaching through it to grab, hopefully, a gnome throat or collar. It is not a gnome. It’s a gnoll. Jarren realizes this as his hand flails futilely at the creature’s crotch.
The room to the south is being invaded by the gnolls including the larger, fiercer gnoll that appears to be their leader. The party gives up on trying to close the door, now concentrating on beating back or slaying the assailants. Phlax takes a spear hit, making her into a shish-ka-hobbit. She counters by scrambling through the fiend’s legs, stabbing upwards at his femoral arteries as she goes. She succeeds in dealing out pain and carnage. A good thing, as the hits have not exactly kept on coming owing to the strong defenses of these enemies. The party misses the good old days of carving up slices of Jell-o. The thing drops from Phlax’s attacks even as one of his underlings follows though the doorway.
Osrick comes to Jarren’s aid, as another gnoll joins the fray at this doorway, as well. Osrick deals out some sword hits to the lead gnoll, but Jarren can’t penetrate the creature’s defenses with his own shortswords. Jarren drops the swords and takes aim with his crossbow at the lead gnoll, firing a bold into its filthy mouth and through the back of its throat. Its eyes go dark, and Jarren grabs its’ slouching head, and fires through it again, hitting it’s companion.
The battle in the southerly room is going the party’s way, even as some of the svirf’s enter the chamber. They do not appear to be hostile, but they are extremely wary of Roo. Racial slurs are uttered in Undercommon towards the half-drow.
Osrick and Jarren continue their pursuit of their gnoll through the large chamber back towards their comrades. It’s a classic flanking maneuver, and they are good at what they do. The second gnoll is slain, and Jarren seeks high ground atop one of the large tables, trying to get a clean shot at the gnomes beyond the secret door… should it become necessary. There are several svirfneblins in this chamber, as well, that Osrick and Jarren are eyeing as potential threats or bargaining chips.
The svirfneblins appear to be negotiating with Roo… but his translations do not make things seem copacetic. The recurring theme, according to the drow, is that they may not are able to defeat us now, but they will most definitely kill us and/or take all of our stuff when we sleep.
Roo now notices that his legs feel heavy, sluggish. He remembers the fourth amethyst retrieved from the far room. And the note attached to it.
I should grind this up in case I ever need to play a Treant.
The party isn’t entirely sure what this means, but the consensus is that the gem contains some properties of… making someone’s legs feel like they are stone or rooted in the ground.
As untrustworthy as Roo is, he’s the only one who shares a language with the svirfneblin, so we’re stuck with him as our diplomat. It is not a good situation. The svirfneblin are not forthcoming with any information that seek— how long they have been here, when the gnoll attacks started, what this place is, or what in the hell is going on here— but they are willing to bring us to their camp or home to negotiate. Perhaps we can learn the locations of the remaining items we seek (headpiece and staff).
Jarren doesn’t trust the gnomes… or Roo… so he warily leads the rest of the party, staying steadily ten feet behind Roo who in turn trails the deep gnomes. The entire group heads through the north door from the large “battle” chamber. It’s a long corridor, but it’s lit (AF!!!), so that’s a plus. We haven’t travelled far when we hear a nasty weird voice treating with the gnomes, apparently bargaining or seeking tribute in the forms of gems. The source of voice approaches the party. It doesn’t look pleasant. It’s a strange creature apparently made of rock and earth, with legs, eyes, and arms arranged on its squat body outside of what most of us upworlders would consider natural. It’s head is crowned with a maw or mouth.
Jarren wants to destroy this abomination against the natural order immediately, but Roo wants to bargain with it. They split the difference and leave the corridor, Jarren and Boo closing and barricading the door with a nearby bench.
As he further realizes the effects of the amethyst on him, he tries to get rid of it, but it appears to be stuck to him. He tries to shake it off, but it remains on his hand, sliding around like a Michael Moshun contact juggling routine or some sort of slapstick comedy shtick. He then tries to wipe it off like a booger, to no avail. Plhax refuses to even touch the cursed thing when asked to try to take it off.
Someone (possibly not Osrick or Roo this time!) proceeds through the door in the southwest corner of the large chamber. Because the party clearly does not have enough options… or problems.
The group heads into what appears to be a large amphitheater or coliseum. Jarren immediately has visions of the party being forced into mortal combat against one another, staring at the menacing volcanic glow high above the north end of the theatre.
Roo wants to grind up the cursed amethyst and snort the dust, but there’s no time for that. The comrades hear a hauntingly serene and beautiful song emanating from an… angelic?… creature near the lava glow. Phlax, Sawiya, and Jarren are enthralled, succumbing to the siren song. Which is Enya. It is always Enya. The three thralls (that’s fun to say) find themselves unwittingly proceeding up the aisle way stairs of the amphitheater towards the song’s source.
Stadiums. We’re being summoned by sirens into doing stadiums. This is horrible. We continue our sluggish trek towards the top.
To be concluded…