13 – 15 Rova 4712
Gedryr and Searos studied the intricate arcane symbols on the floor of this room with its magically fueled fire and discovered that the runes were once part of a powerful trap that summoned fire elementals to defend this chamber, but now have decayed over the millennia to function as a sort of Magic Circle Against Law spell. Gedryr was also able to discover that the fire in the center of the room once held a powerful creature of flame, but, that creature had long since escaped his binding.
Moving on, the team searched the final chamber in this area. Finding two sloshing lemures in the room, Rhondal yelled, “Bitey creatures!!!” and withdrew.
An odd proclamation to have made, since lemures do not have teeth.
Confused over what they were facing, our heroes braced for the worst, with Kellfrid, mighty Ulfen warrior, charging into the chamber, Icicle glowing it frosty blue to discover the mindless devils trudging forward to attack.
Realizing it was just lemures which Searos had already identified, the group made quick work of devils.
Suddenly, when the killing was over, the party heard a high-pitched voice squeal with delight.
Invisibly identifying himself as the “Suzerain of Little Eberus,” the Suzerain congratulated the group on their skills against his lemure guards and offered them a position of wealth and power in Little Eberus is the party would accomplish two tasks for him.
Task One: Rescue two of his lemures from the clutches of his vile foe, Lord Baz.
Task Two: Kill Lord Baz.
After hearing of the tasks, Searos strode forward, in Full on Diplomatic Mode, and saluted the invisible creature and informed him that Lord Baz had fled when they encountered him in his lair, and that, sadly, his two lemure servants died valiantly in the combat.
At this news, the Suzerain of Little Eberus became visible, revealing himself to be an imp, and shrieked with joy!!! Unfazed by the death of his lemures, “Well…things happen…” he removed a ratty old leather pouch from his neck and rewarded his “most valiant knights and proclaimed that he was “off to live in the finer quarters of Lord Baz” and that our heroes could “live in this lordly chamber for as long as” they desired.
With that…He flew off.
Searching the pouch, the group found a collection of silver pieces and a Divine Necromantic scroll.
While they were doing this, however, the Suzerain of Little Eberus returned, confused as to how his other lemure servants, down in the alchemy room had died. Again, Searos took the initiative and informed the imp that those lemures, while the battle against Lord Baz spilled into their chamber, fought with courage for their lord and perished.
Impressed with his servants, “I do have most loyal warriors,” the Suzerain of Little Eberus again flew off to enjoy the comforts of Lord Baz’s chambers.
With the days combat wearing on the group, and a defensible position to rest, our heroes set watches and passed an uneventful evening.
Waking the next morning, with Searos able to cast a spell to understand the pathetic wailing of the devil hiding on the other side of this level, the headed off to find out what its deal was.
Again, with Searos in Full on Diplomatic Mode (henceforth FDM), and listened to the wailing of the devil.
It turns out that this lemure, who calls himself Stink, is a hopeless coward and fears the other devils in these chambers, our heroes, whoever else might come along, and just wants to be left alone. In fact, he’ll pay our heroes to leave him alone. Comfortable being paid off, our heroes took Stink’s gold and headed out.
With the chambers on this side of this laboratory level thoroughly investigated, the party headed back, into the unknown south of their position.
Finding a diverging hallway, the group followed the western tunnel of unworked stone to a vast underground cavern, too pools of water collected to the north and the south. Bones of an ancient bulette attracted the party, and as they headed towards it, Rhondal’s keen eyes picked out, among the mud and water, a gray ooze, waiting to strike.
Responding with “cat-like reflexes” Rhondal stabbed the creature with his rapier, but, as the blade slid in and out of the creature, a strange acid that coats the beast began to corrode the blade.
With almost equal reflexes, the gray ooze struck at the rogue, wrapping itself around the Varisian, crushing him, its acid disintegrating Rhondal’s chain shirt, burning into his flesh.
The team went to work.
Arrows sang while Icicle and Gedryr’s sword tore gaping holes into the creature that forced it to relinquish its grip on the rogue. Soon, however, the ooze struck no more and lay dead on the stone floor.
A search of the room revealed nothing, so the party moved on, through a twisting tunnel that led to a sturdy double door with a marine motif. Finding no dangers or traps, Rhondal pushed the doors open to reveal a murky water filled pool in the center with tentacle carved columns supporting the vaulted roof. A landing stood in front of them and at the far side of the pool, thirty-feet away. Stairs led from the landing into the depths of the pool.
Deciding to send Rhondal swimming across, a rope was tied to the Varisian who did a masterful racing dive into the water, only to discover that the water is home to three sinspawn guardians.
The sinspawns’ ranseurs cleaved into the lightly armored rogue, tearing his flesh apart. His comrades, quick on their feet, began to pull him back to the landing, but not before the sinspawn guards could deliver a second round of attacks.
Finally, the group managed to pull the lifeless body of their comrade back to the landing for healing. When they turned their attention back to the murky water, they could not find where their foes had gone.
Firing arrows and spells into the water, the group could not pinpoint the sinspawn, who appeared to be biding their time until one adventurer braved the water.
That adventurer was Kellfrid Yngvildrdottir.
With the Battle Rage overcoming her, she stepped down the stairs into the pool, immediately becoming the target of the sinspawns attacks. Fighting back, she was unable to attack the creatures with any effectiveness from her position, so she returned to the landing to formulate another plan.
Her time in the pool wasn’t without its benefits, however. Gurion was able to connect with a series of arrows before the sinspawn returned to hiding deep beneath the surface of the pool. Gurion then realized that the group had to take the fight to these aquatic creatures if they hoped to cross this pool.
Grapping his dagger, the dwarf jumped into the pool, hacking at whatever was in range. Searos and Kellfrid jumped in to join him while Gedryr, more academic than athletic, slipped on the slick surface and fell into the pool with very unelf-like inelegance.
Rhondal, who had his fill of: ranseurs, murky water, sinspawn, lacerations, blood and pain, lit his piped and wished his crew well as he recovered from his ordeal.
A brutal underwater fight raged, our heroes, inexperienced with underwater combat could not deliver the maximum effectiveness of their blows, while their foes, creatures of water, could.
But, although badly bloodied and wounded, our heroes prevailed.
Searching the pool in hopes that the Shard of Greed they sought was hidden in the depths of the pool, the group discovered nothing. Crossing the pool and scanning the hallway on the other side, Rhondal discovered it led to a stairwell to the south, leading down.
With their resources drained from the pool combat, and badly wounded, the group chose to return to the healing fountain on the previous level to recover and then back to King Zuuga to return his sleeping crown and receive the diamond “as big as his head” in payment.
Retracing their steps, they returned to the magical fountain, then to King Zuuga who was starving and issuing orders to no one.
The king of the mites, unhinged from the beginning, did not recall asking for his sleeping crown and summoned his “Execution Squad” to “behead these invaders!!!” Sadly, for King Zuuga, he had no “Execution Squad” and was quickly disposed of himself.
With the day coming to a close, the group headed back to the fountain to make their camp and pass an uneventful evening.
Returning to the laboratory level of the Crow, the group found themselves in front of a sign leading to the next room that read, in Thassilonian, “Do Not Leave the Cages Open.” Intrigued, they entered the next room and found… the cages open…
Our heroes discovered three half-formed creatures, standing on two monstrous legs, its mouth full of jagged teeth dominated their bulbous heads, their veins pulsed just beneath their transparent flesh. After waiting thousands of years to attack, these beasts charged forward, eager to taste flesh.
But, they weren’t charging into just any namby-pamby band of adventurers, they charged Ayra’s Five. And Ayra’s Five doesn’t blink. They just kick ass.
And that’s exactly what they did.