Category Archives: Classic Fantasy

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 Part 11


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 11  —————————-

After a days rest Rathulagon flew us up two at a time and puts us down on a mountain near where the shaft, from his cave, comes out, this is a snow covered steep slope and we need to find a way to get down back to the road and back to Lastever.

 

With limited supplies and no cold weather clothes this could be very dangerous however we set to with all the skill and luck we have. [GM – I use an Extended Conflict to work through this climb, PC’s Con Pool V’s Mountain pool of 16 and Athletics skill V’s 75%. Survival will add 1/5 to each players Athletics if made. Roll each day and they reach the road when the Mountains Pool = 0. Failure means D6 Pool loss, half pool lost become Stressed all rolls @ -20%. 0 Con means take D6 Fatigue and if  another Athletics roll was also failed take D6 falling Damage to 1 random location.  One days stop will recover 1/4 of Pool]

 

Thorn uses his Survival and Navigation skill’s to help the group. The first day is slow going and they cover little ground and suffer from the cold. The second day I realise that I should be using my Athletics to help the others my finding a path for them, as my Star Sign of the Watchman means that they will get a better bonus however I can only really do this twice,  we get further this day. Third day is slow again, and we get very little distance, we are all suffering from the cold and climb, but managing to keep going. Forth day is slow again and I can no longer help the other as much also Thorn fails in his supplying us with food and water. Day five and I and stressed and so Gnoman takes the lead with his unnatural climbing ability, he is a thief after all, and we do much better as we are now out of the snow and its more about the climb. Day 6 another good day we can see the road below us as we camp. Day 7 we reach the road, never have we been so glad to see a rutted road.

 

Now we are down it takes another day to reach the city of Lastever. We rest and buy new clothes, as ours are ruined. Rotnik takes the Censer to the temple. Next day ‘Rebril Moradin’ the High Priest & Thorin City leader receive the party at a banquet and give us a chest with the 1,000gp for the Censer. But they argue that they have not cleared the fort rather it has just been destroyed and so refuse to pay the extra 500gp. A argument starts but I claim it down and say ‘we should not ruin a good meal and celebration maybe we can sort this out tomorrow’. This all agree to and we finish a wonderful meal in our honour.

 

Next day we met up with Rebril and Thorin to make our case. However the fact that the fort is a destroyed smocking ruin counts against us and we can not get the extra 500 gold for clearing and re-garrisoning it. Thorn is not happy but has to except this, we do however ask about honours but only I get one, after all I did deal with the dragon. I am made a Bard of the City allowing me free access into the city and the right to entertain, as long as I always tell the story of the scared Elf who didn’t face off the dragon but hid in a human town. We then spend some time debating how to divide this gold, will James get any? what about Mackenzie and Rotnik? In the end we decide to be knid to James and give him a retainer of 50 gold from our payment while also giving 100 gold to both Rotnik and Mackenize. Thorn, Gnoman and myself each get 250 gold. Thorn then arranges to have the skull of the dwarf we had found buried properly. Then he gets a new helm, his is to badly damaged, and a right arm vambrace, while I find 2 new javelins. One of these turns out to be of wonderful quality giving me a bonus to my throwing and its damage.

 

So after a couple of days we made our way to Duvik Pass to find James. We find him still with Ernst learning spells and he tells us his story.

James story in Duvik Pass

Arrival at the Town Gates – Orid is on the gates and needs to levy the new tolls  Cost to enter 1sp per person animal or wagon.  James pays the 1sp. Then lets fellow member of fighters guild, Orid, know that a Kobold raiding party is threatening the road. Orid does send a party to clear the road around the city, he reports that he found some tracks but noting else. James also lets the guild know that the Dwarf Fighter-Priest Thorn has negotiated a Condetta contract from the Dwarf’s of Lastever worth 1500 GP on total success which if it comes off will greatly help Duvik Pass and it’s trade income. He then goes to call on Ersnt who is busy when James arrives and he will need to wait till evening before he is free then he will met James for supper.

 

Ernst is not happy that James has abandoned his apprentice. He will only James allow guild access to his spell book when James returns with him or promises to keep him for a year and a day. Ernst wants a biding oath from James to this end,  James happily gives this. James then points out that the only reason he left him safe & studying in Lastever is that he currently lacks the stealth for quick trips across dangerous territory.  Road is just not safe at current moment in time with White Fang Fort out of action. Ersnt accepts this and allows James guild access to his books. Ernst has an important meeting tomorrow with Lord Sendars and the council and will not be free to do any work for a few days, this will mean James has to spend more time than he expected to gain the spells he wants as Ernst only has a guild spell book for 1st level spells and will need to make a scroll of any 2nd level ones James wants for James to copy from, this increases both the time and the cost of accessing these spells.  The List of spells Ernst has, as he has adapted some spells to make them yellow those with a * are non standard

Cantraps – All in Spare spell book

1st level – All  in spare spell book plus he knows Non-standard *Affect Normal Fires; *Color Cascade; *Detect Magic; *Disk of Burden; *Faerie Lights; *Flaming Hands; *Light; *Magic Missile

2nd level – Dispel Magic; *Fireball; Haste; Hold Person; *Know Passions; Locate Object; Mage Lock; Read Thoughts; Tongues

Next few days – While waiting to spend time with Ernst and learning new spells James practices and thinks about flying so far he has had some easy flights and a crash in the Mountains to study [he spends 3 EP on fly skill, also spends 1ER on combat skills] James has created his Fly spell known as “Wings of the Arials”. The original spell developed by Arial Elf Mages to give their earth bound and wingless kin a taste of the Sky.  Developed out of Levitation Magic first used to reach Elf Tree Houses without use of ladders/tree climbing the Fly Spell gives the target of the spell full horizontal movement and the ability to glide and soar as well as move up and down.  Handy to pop over to the neighbours for dinner and a song (or to drop things on them if they are annoying).  Spell causes a of mystic wings to grow from the caster’s back. In version of the spell used by James Ernst & the Duvik Pass Guild these wings are yellow and red, due to use of pinch of Red Dragon powder to replace some other more common components and influence of Ernest. When under influence of the spell a hit in the Chest area results in need to make a hard fly skill roll, a failed roll means only able to levitate in place, a second easy roll is then needed to recover or character will start to fall, a fumble results in falling out of the sky instantly.

James goes, after a couple of days, to see Father Sam, Ernest the Yellow & Lord Senders to advise that the group have requested help with the Haunting from both the Dwarfs & the Elves. Gordon has taken the Dragon Heart to the King & Queen of Loreddell, they might send a Cleric to pick up the Crystal Crescent Moon encased in Brass holy symbol of Lumiya & perhaps the Elven Art work both of which we have left on display at the temple until the Elves claim it. You can not really haggle with Elven Royalty but they may be gracious enough to help, it will take some months before any answer can come. However Rebril arrives, from Lastever, and does the job of removing the ghost from the mine and town.

 

James Copies Feather fall, 1st level, from the guild book with apprentices watching how its done as they do it as well. Then he starts on the second level spells he wants. Ernst however will only commit to creating two scrolls for James at a time, taking him 8 days. Then it will be a couple of weeks before he can do the other two each taking him 4 days, therefore it will be a month before James is finished getting his spells and learning to Fly. By then he has also regained the magic used on his courier, to the elves, meaning he is either dead or carried out his mission.

 

Spells James works on with Ernst – Yellow Fireball 2nd level Swapped for ‘Wings of the Arials’. This Scroll takes Ernst 4 days to make and takes James 1/2 day to scribe into spell book costs 200+ for ink to put into your book. Haste 2nd level cost 200sp for scroll 4 days to make  1/2 day to scribe into spell book cost of ink 200+sp.

Locate object 2nd level cost 200sp for scroll 4 days to make  1/2day to scribe into spell book cost of ink 200+sp. Tongues 2nd level cost 200sp for scroll 4 days to make  1/2day to scribe into spell book cost of ink 200+sp.

 

With James still needing time we all have to wait at the town for a couple of weeks before we head to South Borough and Trumpton, the Halfling village where Gnoman comes from. While waiting Gnoman gets his long wanted Longbow and starts to learn how to use it. We are again given a feast for the work we have done to free the town from the plague and then the ghost.  As winter draws in we leave the area and head to Trumpton to see the family of Gnoman and explain about his sisters death.

 

Carrot Gemstone is not a happy father when he hears of the loss of his daughter. He blames Gnoman for taking her into the cave, even if he thought it was better than leaving her in the plague ridden town. ‘Why didn’t you send her home he cries’ Gnoman has no answer and accepts his fathers scorn. He explains that we sent a messenger with a message however it appears Meria and Ron never turned up, we wonder what happened to them. We do not stay here long and move to Greymoor which we reach by end of the year. What with the cost of travelling and then Guild dees and Taxes we do not have a lot left from our adventures in the Iron Flow River area. With winter coming on we settle in to Greymoor  doing odd jobs, guild work or working for the guard for now. We have all learnt a lot from this adventure and spend time at our guilds improving ourselves, all of us are now at the second level in at least one Guild area and wonder what our next adventure will be, also we remember those who died helping us in our journey they were not as lucky as us in dangerous situations.

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The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 Part 10


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 10  —————————-

 We move on down the natural steps ahead of us which brings us to a opening on our left. Mack shines his light into it and it seems to be another passage which bends after about 20′. We stop and listen and Gnoman thinks he hears something so gets us all to be quite. He hears shuffling sounds, we decide to move on down the main passageway which leads to more natural steps leading further underground. James would have so loved this! We come to a Y junction with us arriving from the bottom. Again we listen and Gnoman hears flapping like something flying maybe from the left. Again we continue deciding that resting here is not going to be of any help. The Trog wants us to go right which leads us to a massive cave

We have entered an enormous cavern. The ceiling towers above you, perhaps over100 feet in height or more. Long, jagged stalactites hang from the ceiling by the hundreds in tight clusters, and great, convoluted draperies of stone hang along the walls. The floor beneath our feet is loose, sandy soil. Beyond this small beach is a great pool of dark water that goes as far as we can see. Since we entered this cavern a continuous roar has filled our ears. Looking to the north you now see the source: or at least the spray glittering in your light, of a great waterfall. A flat bridge constructed of stone slabs stretches across the water ahead of us to reach another larger sandy beach far to the west. The bridge appears to be a primitive work, yet it looks stoutly constructed, and the builder was clever enough to include small handrails on either side and a walking surface made from giant, flat slabs of grey stone. The beach to the west appears unoccupied except for a scattering of boulders and large rocks here and there illuminated by scattered light from above. You can dimly make out what might be a cave entrance beyond the far beach. The majesty of this cavern is nearly overwhelming and we cannot help but believe that we have discovered the great scaly god’s lair at long last.

Gnoman looks up not wanting to be surprised while Thorn checks the water for refilling their skins. As Thorn thinks the water, which is flowing quickly, should be fine he wades away from the shore to get water, as it will not have sand etc in it. Rotnick holds the rope tied to him as he does this. I, Errath, stand by the entrence to keep watch while Mack holds the Trog off to the side.

Look out I shout as two Troglodyte zombies shuffle towards me only a few feet away. The zombies reach me and I ready my club, not having time to throw a javelin. Gnoman moves to get line of sight, while I get hit, in the chest, by one zombie while by parry allows me to fall back from the other one. The chest blow dazes me.

Gnoman releases a sling shot from his sling and a zombie hits its right leg and knocks it down. I parry the other zombie attack but miss with my club. Gnoman starts to reload his sling I again parry the zombie attack and this time manage to hit it in the chest with my club. Gnoman continues to load.

Gnoman lets go another sling shot at the fallen zombie hitting its right arm. I parry the zombie attack but miss my counter attack. Rotnik readies his mace and moves up, having helped Thorn from the water. Gnoman starts to reload his sling, I parry the zombie again and my club trips it up as I hit its left leg. Rotnik also attacks but misses.

With both zombies on the ground it is easy to finish them off now that Rotnik has joined me. However just as we do we hear a roar and a flash. Lighting blasts from behind me catching Thorn, myself and Rotnik in its blast. Both of them burst into flame as their backpacks etc, catch fire, I am lucky as nothing catches fire.

Thorn seeing a Blue Dragon, the Scaly God!, flees heading for the passageway. Gnoman changes weapons to his hand crossbow. I use a potion to restore my very burnt body, I took more of the lighting blast than the other two.  Rotnik turns to face the dragon and flees in terror. Mackenzie, being a paladin, ignores the fear and challenges the dragon to a fight man on man.

The dragon accepts and they line up on the beach as I and Gnoman watch, only after Gnoman gives Mack one of his Blue Dragon slaying crossbow bolts to use as a dagger if he can.

The dragon is faster and strikes first with its claw, smashing into Mack’s right leg and only with luck not ripping it right off. Mack is dazed by the pain of his leg and stands.

The dragon lowers its head over Mack and swallows him in one gulp ripping his head off as he does so.

I start to sing as I run, about a dragon who having swallowed a paladin chokes on a crossbow bolt. Unfortunately this one doesn’t.

We stop a little way up the passage and think. Does this dragon have the censer or is it just another block in our journey to find it? How can we get past it or kill it. We still have one Blue Dragon Slaying Bolt for Gnomans hand crossbow left. Thorn also still has his potions of Giant strength and invisibility left in what is left of his backpack. Our plan is simple, Gnoman will sneak back to the cave invisible, he still has enough power to cast it on himself. Thorn will cast Silence on him and I will cast Barkskin as well. I will drink half of Thorns invisibility potion and Gnoman will have the other half for when he has to drop his spell. I will follow Gnoman into the cave as support.

Gnoman, carrying his cat, heads back into the cave with me following while the Dwarfs tend to their burns. Gnoman sees nothing so moves up to the bridge and checks it for traps, seeing none he moves onto it to cross over. Halfway across he notices that the central slab is dodgy and will tip if a human or Dwarf walk on it tipping them into the flowing water. Being a Gnome has its advantages thinks Gnoman.  He moves onto the other beach while I watch from the other side, not him of course he’s invisible.  Looking up Gnoman sees the outline of a hole in the roof with diffused light coming down it.

Moving over the beach Gnoman reaches the entrance they had seen from the other side. He has night vision thanks to his cat and can just about make out a long thin cave around 100′ by 20′ just in from the entrance is a pile of coins and gems with a scooped intended top next to it is a smaller pile of items, he can not see a dragon. Listening he can hear the breathing of the dragon, where is it?  Thinking maybe its in the pile or made itself look like the pile of coins Gnoman removes a coin. It comes way easily and a few others roll down the pile. He reaches out and touches just above the coins and feels a heaving body. A eye opens and the dragon says well I never it is a Gnome, I smelt you coming and wondered what you wanted, just what do you intend to do? Gnoaman puts up his hand crossbow and fires his dragon slaying bolt into what he hopes is the invisible dragons belly.

He draws his potion of invisibly and runs back towards the bridge as the dragon shacks itself and scrambles after him. It looks like the bolt of slaying didn’t work, such bad luck. Gnoman thinks his days might be numbered. I seeing the dragon coming after a visible Gnoman drink the potion of giant strength and throw my javelin at the dragon. I hit it in its forequarters where I can see the bolt sticking in it. This seems to daze the dragon who just hovers near the bridge. I quickly ready my second javelin and throw again.  Again I hit its forequarters and I force its surrender. I Errath forced a dragon to surrender.

We agree with the dragon that we will leave it alone if it gives us the Censer, flies us up out of the caves and destroys the goblins holding the fort. Rathulagon agrees, he was lucky not to die[he has used up his last luck point], he will do all of this after a days rest.

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 – Part 9


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 9  —————————-

 

We tie Ssustre up, hands behind with a rope through for us to hold him by, we use part of his rope curtain for this. We have a short discussion about how we go forth, Mackenzie casts Light on his big two handed mace and then let Ssustre lead us. He takes us past the acid spitting plant which hits thorn on his shield burning it slightly, then Rotnik on his right leg armour, Gnoman manages to dodge the globule. He then leads us past two shrieker’s avoiding the tendril plant. Then into a corridor and to our dead pony, where we all collect the items we had on it with Mackenzie carrying some of it. Then we go back up the passageway to the first shrieker at the four way junction, where we head south east. Down and down we go past other side tunnels.

The passage before us slopes down, and we feel the air growing more musty and damp as we proceed.
A small mural painted on the southern wall catches our attention. The primitive image, apparently painted with natural clays and animal fat, depicts troglodytes presenting struggling live offerings of assorted humanoids to a huge, lizard-like being partially draped in shadow. The scaled lizard creature is depicted in a hunched pose, crouched before a waterfall under stalagmites. Beneath the frightening mural is a line of crude runes chiseled into the wall. Mackenzie casts Know Language on the runes which warn that beyond this point is the lair of the great lizard god and that death awaits to those that proceed further. We think about the message until Ssustre tugs on the rope to bid go on.

The passage continues, until sitting directly in its center is a carved statue or idol of some sort. The crude stone figure stands approximately five feet high and depicts some sort of gruesome, lizard like beast. The creature has been carved with peeling, tattered folds of skin, a small pair of wings, long foreclaws, and a huge gaping maw filled with teeth. The long claws and snout horn add to the beast’s dangerous appearance. The statue has two large red gemstones for eyes. The statue is posed as if it were ready to leap and attack the viewer. Its stone scales shine with moisture, and despite the crude level of workmanship it almost seems to breathe. Rotnik wants the ‘ruby eyes’, Thorn looks around while I try to talk Rotnik out of desecrating a shrine. I fail and Rotnik uses his great hammer to smash the head of the idol and then take the two red stones. He thinks they are worth 10 and 12 gold each. Thorn sees that Ssustre is amused at this activity. We move on past the idol.

A short distance beyond the statue, four forms are slumped against the walls, two on either side of a northern exit passage. As we draw closer, the forms reveal themselves to be  troglodytes, but they are in an advanced state of decay. They have lost many scales, bones show in some places while in other places their scales are covered with yellowish mold, and their head fins droop. The bodies appear to have been purposefully propped up against the walls – perhaps as a warning to those who dare proceed farther down the passage. We dare.

Suddenly their glassy eyes swivel in our direction and they move, lurching toward us!  Thorn calls on Hombel and two of the zombies turn and stagger away, with new bits falling from them the other two continue to close with us. Gnoman and I with Ssustre move back and leave Thorn, Mackenzie and Rotnik to face them. Mack hits the first one in its left leg bashing it back 10′ as well as knocking bits off of it. The other zombie attacks Thorn misses with its bite but so does Thorns parry. Thorn then counters with a hit in its left arm, knocking bits off it and scattering yellow spores into the air. Thorn quickly holds his breath to avoid breathing in any spores. Rotnik hits that zombie in the chest also bashing it back 10′.

Mack pulls some cloth over his mouth and nose while the zombies move 5′ back towards them.

Mack finishes pulling the cloth over his face, as the zombies close into attack range again. Thorn hits one in its left arm smashing it off the body, but still the undead keeps coming. Rotnik also hits that zombie in its chest smashing it apart. Both of them manage to avoid breathing in any spores.

Mack hits the other zombie in its right arm and parries its bit back. Thorn and Rotnik move to help Mack.

Thorn hits the zombie in its right leg and trips it.

They all than smash it up while it is on the ground. Just as we rest from that combat the other two zombies turn up again.  They attack Thorn and Mack both of whom parry the attempted bites. Thorn then hits it in the head with Mack and Rotnik both hitting the other in its head smashing it and seeing it fall to the ground, finally dead.

The remaining zombie tries to bite Thorn who parries the bit and then Thorn smashes its head in with a mighty blow.

All zombies dead, did Ssustre lead us here on purpose and is it the right way we wonder. Mack is tired from the fighting and eats one of the Hombel gift fruits we still have to recover. We continue on our way with Ssustre leading us. Further we go deeper and deeper under the rock, with the cold damp air penetrating our bodies. We pass many other passages and start to get confused as to the way, we then reach an area of many twists and turns and passages and Rotnik starts to chip  the way we are going for when we come back, incase we do not have the trog with us. A bit late we know but its better than nothing.

Then the tunnel opens up into a huge cavern. We stand on a smooth ledge perhaps eight feet wide that sweeps along the cavern wall and banks down at a curving angle to eventually meet the cavern floor some distance below. A short distance ahead is an opening to another passage or cave that leads away from the ledge, about halfway down the incline. A few small stalagmites dot the bottom of this natural ramp; otherwise, the
ledge is clear of debris except for spattering’s of bat guano. Peering over the ledge, we can make out what appears to be a ribcage and possibly other bones littering the cave floor far below. We continue down the curve carefully and being aware of the side passage, I see strands of spider web lying around, quite thick compare to a normal spider. I recognize it, from childhood stories, as belonging to Gorung man sized spiders which are touched by chaos and by eating gems have the ability to cancel magic. We do not see the spiders and hope they are not interested in us.

The sweeping ledge leads down into a large cavern. The ceiling here is very high, further than our light shines, but we can see the bottom of some dotted around stalactites. Hopefully they are attached to something. The floor here is largely flat with very few stalagmites or loose rock present. There are some loose bones lying about and several whole skeletons as well. One skeleton is particularly large, perhaps being the remains of an ogre or similar size creature. We follow the wall as we can’t see the other side and come to an exit, which Ssustre takes us through.

This passage brings us to a small cave with a high ceiling that reaches 30 feet and more in places where the light cannot reach. Short stalactites drip water from the ceiling above. Ahead the floor drops sharply away to an unknown depth, except for a seemingly natural span of stone that stretches across this dangerous plunge and connects to a similar ledge some 40 feet away. This bridge of sorts looks solid but the stone appears both damp
and smooth. Luckily, the very center of the span is worn down slightly, creating a slight lip to either side that at least gives the illusion of safety. The sheen of moisture is present on the walls, the bridge… everywhere we can see. From somewhere beyond comes a low, continuous sound – the sound of moving water far below.  Ssustre leads us towards the bridge.

Gnoman using his skills checks the bridge out, he believes that if more than one person is on it that it will wobble on its worn rounded base. So we decide he can go first as he is the lightest taking one end of our silk rope with him the rest of us holding it firm. He gets across ok even though he finds the footing very slippery. Mack goes next and only just makes it with some bridge wobbling and foot sliding, he was lucky. We release the trog so he can go over but he just climbs along the wall to join the others, while Rotnik cover him with his crossbow. I go next with no problem followed by Rotnik. Then Thorn ties the rope around himself and we hold it our side this time, he gets over ok as well.

We follow the passage some more passing another one to our left and then two to our right still going down sometimes by natural worn steps. We come at last to another cave which has rippled, uneven sides and it is difficult to see how many passages lead out of it. Water enters this cave through many small openings in the lower northeast wall and flows out of the cave to the southwest, flowing across the center of the cave as it goes. As it passes through the cave the water collects in a natural depression and a pool of unknown depth has been created. The current stirs the sediment in the pool, creating a murky swirl. Thrusting up from the center of the
cloudy pool is a stunted tree – apparently dead, judging by the drooping, bare branches and the unhealthy-looking blackish color of the bark. On closer inspection, with out getting close to the water, the tree trunk bears numerous scars, and the whole thing leans slightly to one side. A long white bone and a single silver piece are visible just beneath the water, near the edge of the pool. A narrow walkway skirts the pool on either side. I believe Ssustre when he moves towards the left side walkway which will take us under the falling water.

Before we move on though we decide it would be good to fill our empty water skins. I, using my survival skill, check both the pool and the falling water and do not think either is a good idea, after all it has killed this tree, although we wonder what a tree is doing here. Thorn also checks the falling water and thinks it is safe so we fill up and drink.  Ssustre leads us under the falling water so we all get wet and cold and leads us onwards until we reach a large crevasse which cuts cleanly through the corridor floor, blocking our advance. The gaping chasm falls away to an unknown depth. Beyond the crevasse, the corridor slopes downward and to the left. We need to get over this gap but how. This quest is a lot harder than we thought.

Again Gnoman is tied to the silk rope and with Rotnik holding it he climbs up the wall and over and then down on the other side. This takes him a good 5 minutes. Gnoman then looks to see how he can secure the rope for the others, he spots a good looking fissure which his sword would hold in. However he does not want to use his nice magical sword and so Thorn gets me to throw his chopping small axe over. This I do with ease and Gnoman finds a fissure in the wall and rams it in and ties the rope to it. With one end secure and the other held by Rotnik and Mack Thorn crosses hand over hand. The trog’s is pushed to the rope and gets over before being retired. Then Mack goes over with Rotnik and I holding the rope. Then its Rotnik’s turn leaving me holding the rope, he gets over ok but I suffer rope burns to my hands as the rope slides under his weight. Finally its my turn, with no one to hold I tie the rope around me and the others pull it in leaving some slack and I climb as Gnoman did. Again it takes a while but I get there and we are all across safe and sound, even if it took a good 1/2 hour or more, getting back could be fun though.

Mackenize’s light goes out now and he recasts it to last another two hours. We take a drink and wonder what will be next and prepare to move on having rejected the idea of trying to rest here.

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 Part 8


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 8  —————————-

Thorn casts Cure Minor Wounds on Rotnik and then Cure Fatigue on Mackenzie, then after a quick 5 minute talk, discussion, look around and rest The cave we fought in is a long gallery which has a very high ceiling decorated with many long stalactites. In a few spots they nearly join lower stalagmites to form columns. The southern wall immediately catches our attention.  Colored pigments or clays have been smeared on the wall, apparently by hand, to form a huge mural of many colors – vivid reds, sickly ochres, bold blues, deep browns, blacks, and still other hues. The mosaic is a horrific visage; it presents a huge, blackish-blue, lizard-like form that is tearing into a host of figures with claws and teeth, causing great panic and rout. The figures are only superficially detailed but appear to represent humans, elves, and possibly various humanoids as well. The mural is nearly 40 feet long and easily 10 feet in height. Some parts of the picture, particularly toward the outer edges, appear to have been added more recently, and other parts appear to contain several layers of pigment. Clearly this ghastly picture was drawn over a period of months and new additions are still being made. In front of the mural are a collection of bedding materials, sacks of possessions, and small fire pits surrounded by cracked bones. . Then they follow the blood trail from Gnoman and myself. Mackenzie casts light onto Thorns shield as the three go.

 

They follow the blood past two side caves and a turn off, till they reach the edge of a forest of fungus. Entering this cavern, they cannot help but stare at the amazing variety of plant life here. Many huge mushroom-like growths of white, yellow, and green stretch toward the ceiling, some easily as tall as a man. Other strange growths are everywhere: weird puffballs, morels, and lichens in a great multitude of colors, with ochre, black,
and brown being predominant. There are signs that refuse has been spread on the floor, so the cultivation of these growths must be purposeful. This floor covering of offal only adds to the dreadful stench of the fungi. As they study the area more carefully, they can now discern several narrow paths winding here and there amidst the fungi and growths. Thorn takes the lead and as he walks past a Tan fungus it lets out a piercing sound for a few seconds. O well they know we are coming.

 

As Thorn passes a corner near a Violet fungi its tendrils lash out trying to hit anything in range, Thorn parries them away with his shield. Then near a slop up hw passes a smaller 3′ tall plant, with its roots spread over the ground, with mushroom like stalks. One of the heads spits something at Thorn who evades it into a curtain. Mackenzie as he follows is hit in his chest and the acid burns him slightly, Rotnik gets it in his right leg with his armour taking the damage.

 

Pushing past the hanging curtain composed of vertical strands of rope which blocks the entrance to this cave. The coarse threads of rope are adorned with sewn-on bits of shell, wood, leaves, and small bones. There seems to be an odd order in the sequence of sewn objects, but the overall pattern, if any, eludes you. The curtain appears light and they push through it easily enough. The walls of the cave, behind, have been decorated with
tiny objects – a feather on a ledge over here, an animal skull on a jutting ledge over there. Areas of each wall have been painted with very crude frescoes picturing flying beasts, lizard-like creatures that walk on two legs, and common cave creatures such as bats, fire beetles, and the like. There are many handprints on the walls, as if a child dipped his hand in dye and stamped the wall – except the handprints are man-sized. A fire beetle carapace and two flint knives lie on the floor before you. In the rear of the cave is a hollowed-out area lined with grasses, twigs, and several animal furs. To one side of the cave is a circle of round stones around a concave depression near it are Gnoman and Errath. Against the opposite wall lean three long javelins. A muscular reptilian humanoid stands before you. It is garbed in a loincloth and a reddish cape-like garment, crude bracers, and a neck pouch adorned with an animal claw. Beside him are the two Trog’s they where following.  With such a small cave, only 20′ square, all parties are close enough for weapons to reach and combat breaks out.

 

Mackenzie throws a dart impaling, Kinhul, the sub chief in his right leg, the trog then swings at Thorn with his great sword. Thorn parries and closes to short range to be able to use his mace. Sathsar, the chief goes into a rage and hacks at Torn as well, smashing bits off his helm. Ssustre, the cleric, casts Dispel Magic onto the area around the entrance taking away our Barkskin benefits. Thorn smashes his mace into Kinhul causing damage to his head. Rotnik calls on his deity Moradin for help.

Mackenzie tries to cats Light on the clerics eyes but Ssustre will stops it. Kinhul swings at Rotnik but is parried, Sathsar also attacks Rotnik but misses. Ssustre casts Cure Minor Wounds on Kinhul’s head.  Thorn hits the right leg of Kinhul stunning it, while Rotnik hits Sathsar in the head for a scratch.

Mackenzie holds the castsing of another Light spell and Thorn hits and stuns the right arm of Kinhul.

 

Mackenzie continues to hold his spell, Sathsar gets past the parry of Rotnik to hit his left arm but his hammer stops enough of the blow for his armour to stop the rest. Thorn hits Kinhul in the right arm again, while Rotnik hits Sathsar in his head again, this time for a good blow. However the raging Trog ignores the injury.

Mackenize gets a clear look at Ssustre eyes and casts his Light spell on them, this time successfully, partially blinding the cleric. Sathsar hits Rotnik in the head but fails to get past his helm, thanks to Rotniks parry. Ssustre uses his two handed club on Thorn hitting his right arm. Thorn distracted misses with his mace attack on Kinhul.

Mackenzie casts Light onto Kinhul’s eyes and Thorn hits him in his right arm again.

 

Mackenzie readies his staff and moves towards the trog cleric. Sathsar hits Rotnik and bypasses his parry hitting Rotniks left leg. Ssustre swings at Thorn but thorn uses his mace to deflect the blow into his shield. Thorn hits Kinhul again, this time in the chest knocking him out. Rotnik hits Sathsar in the left arm and trips him even though it does no damage.

Mackenzie swings his staff at the trog cleric hitting him in the head, Mackenzie showing why he should be a Paladin rather than a mage. Sathsar stands and is hit by Rotnik in the abdomen and is knocked back down again. Ssustre swings his club at Mackenzie misses and Mackenzie’s parry trips the trog cleric.

Mackenzie tries to hit Ssustre but misses the prone trog while Thorn knocks out Kinhul with another hit.

 

Mackenzie accepts the surrender of Ssustre, Sathsar tries to stand, Rotniks attacks fails to stop him. Thorn closes onto the side of Sathsar.  Rotnik hits Sathsar in the abdomen.

Sathsar swings at Rotnik who parries the blow, Thorn hits him in his left leg tripping him.

Thorn hits Sathsar in the right leg.

 

With both trog warriors down they are quickly finished off, then they go the Gnoman and Errath. They are both unconscious but no longer bleeding and alive.  Thorn casts Cure Fatigue on  himslef, he was tired from the fight as was Rotnik. Then he casts Cure Fatigue on Rotnik, Gnoman and Errath who both then drink a cure serious wounds potion restoring them to full health. As this happens they hear a voice and mail armour and a two-handed and single handed mace appear by Mackenzie. The voice of Hombel says ‘Mackenize you want to be a paladin and you have acted in the best traditions of one so I make you one, here is your armour and weapons and I raise you to a Paladin, well done.’

 

We all stand there gob-smacked this is the second time Hombel has shown himself to us, Thorn, cleric of Hombel, and Gnoman are pleased for Mackenzie and wonder what James will think about this. Gnoman and Rotnik search the cave while the other recover and Mackenzie puts on his armour. Rotnik finds a fire opal, worth around 100gp,  in the neck pouch on the trog cleric and takes it. Errath once on his feet takes one of the javelins to replace one he had lost. Rotnik knowing what the Censer looks like draws it roughly in the dirt, Ssustre nods his reptile like head and points and indicates it was an offering and draws deeper tunnels. We indicate will he show the way, he nods. So we need to go deeper into this dark underground maze, what other dangers will we met?

 

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 – Part 7


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 7  —————————-

 

We all check our kit just in case those little demons have got at it, but none of us seems to be missing anything. We head back to the cave with pool and then south west. With Gnoman in the lead, holding a fire beetle as we have run out of lantern oil, the others follow 15′ behind with Mackenzie carrying another beetle. We reach the Pesties holes and Gnoman calls me forward to talk to them. I call out and with some luck manage to convey that we want safe passage down the tunnel. They want 20 slivers and after trying to haggle we pay 20 slivers. Gnoman continues to lead us on. We continue south for a long time with the natural tunnels jagged edges varying in width. Gnoman is careful to check for traps and such as we go.

 

We get to a point the passage splits into three distinct pathways: one running to the east, one running roughly southeast, and the last heading in a southwesterly direction.  Gnoman calls me forward to look for tracks and he find a considerable number of troglodyte sign against the walls and floor. Gnoman sticks his beetle light on the end of his stealth sword holds his cat and casts invisibility. The rest of us can still see the red glow of the beetle so he gives it to me, and then finds 3 stones to throw at us if he wants our attention. I pin the beetle to my leather helm. Gnoman heads south west we assume.

 

An enormous mushroom-like growth has sprouted up near the wall in this passage. This tan-colored plant is nearly five feet in height. The cap of this fungus is pierced with deep openings at regular intervals. Suddenly a piercing shriek fills the air and echoes around, Thorn tells us its a type of Shrieker fungus. Any chance of surprising the trog has gone I think. We continue onwards.

 

Off to the left is a opening, Gnoman looks in while crouching, his night sight and infravision allows him to see 7 troglodytes heading to leave the cave. He also hears and sees 2 more coming up the tunnel towards him. He moves back to the others throws a rock and hides against the irregular wall. The trog’s see us and us them.

 

Gnoman staying hidden holding a casting of Flaming Hands, The trogs walk towards us 2 wide. Thorn starts to cast Barkskin as do I, while Mackenzie readies a dart and Rotnik his great hammer.

Four trog’s throw javelins at us, hitting Thorn on his helm to no effect. Thorn finishes his casting and his skin thickens. Mackenzie kneels and Rotnik braces himself.

Thorn now readies his shield and mace while my casting fails. Mackenzie tries to find one of the thrown javelins.

 

The Trog’s walk forward, Thron braces I start to cast Barkskin again. Mackenzie finds a javelin and Rotnik calls on his god Moradin.

The next four trog’s throw javelins, one impales into Rotniks left arm the other three miss. I manage to cast my Barkskin this time, Mackenzie fails to find another javelin. Rotnik takes hold of the javelin in his arm and pulls it out avoiding to much extra harm to his arm.

Gnoman drops his Flaming Hands spell and casts light on the corner behind the trogs. With the trog’s closer Gnoman falls to their odor the rest of us manage to deal with it. Thorn looks hard and sees that the trog’s are armed with glaives. I prepare a javelin to throw and Mackenzie prepares a dart.

 

Gnoman, still invisible and hidden, holds a new casting of Flaming Hands and the trog’s close into attack range of their glaives. I throw my javelin at a trog but miss wildly. Mackenzie stands and Rotnik attacks a trog with his great hammer. The trog tries to parry the blow but makes a mess of it and the impact smashes its right leg.

One trog swings at Rotnik and misses Rotnik parries the blow and damages the glaive. Two attacks hit Thorn in the head and right arm neither doing any damage thanks to his armour and Barkskin.

Thorn unable to reach the trogs attacks one of their weapons, meanwhile I look around and start to cast Barkskin to put onto Rotnik. Mackenzie throws a dart, an amassing throw, catches a trog in its right leg bringing it down.

Thorn with more agility than the trogs closes up to be able to use his mace. I hold my casting so I can move up to Rotnik and Mackenzie readies another dart.

 

Three Trog’s attack Rotnik all missing and his parry trips one of them.  Thorn attacks with his mace hitting one in the head. I walk up to Rotnik and Mackenzie also walks forward.

The trog’s fall back and Thorn follows up while I cast Barkskin on Rotnik who also follows up. Mackenzie throws his dart but misses.

 

As we all watch the remaining five trogs fall back into the side cave.

 

I try to inspire the group but they are not impressed. We follow the trogs into the cave, pulling the pony behind us and leaving me as back guard.

Gnoman goes fasted and casts a Light on the ceiling so the rest of us can see, the five trogs start to move into combat range again. Thorn move in front of Rotnik who readies his crossbow. I move my club into my shield hand so I can cast Shillelagh. Rotnik fires and impales a trog in its right arm.

Gnoman moves back and holds a Flaming Hand spell ready. Two more trogs come into my vision charging up the tunnel  Thorn attacks a trog glaive which the trog parries, Mackenzie readies his quarterstaff and I cast my spell on my club. Rotnik fires his repeating crossbow again impaling another trog this time in the abdomen.

Thorn attacks the trog weapon again but fails to hit it effectively, while I ready by club for the charge coming my way.

 

Two trogs attack Thorn one rips into his large shield, others move around to get behind Thorn and Rotnik so heading for Mackenzie. and the pony. The two trogs charging up towards me hit, one has a great sword and the other a great axe, both seem to be chiefs. One slices into my right arm. I then try to close the combat range to them to use my club but fail and get hit badly in my left arm and abdomen by their counters. Rotnik swaps his crossbow for his great hammer.

Two trogs attack Thorn both miss and his parry allows him to close the combat range so he can use his mace. Thorn then takes one of them down with a hit in the left leg and Mackenzie again beats the odds and hits another with his staff in its left arm stunning it. Rotnik readies his hammer.

Thorn smashes the left arm of another trog and Mackenzie misses with his follow up attack.

 

The trog chiefs need to get past our pony to get at the rest of us so attack it but its kicking hoofs makes them fail, it does move into the back of Rotnik though. Two trogs attack Thorn and Rotnik niether have any effect. Thorn hits one in its chest and Mackenzie misses again. Rotnik moves.

Gnoman casts Flaming Hands at the chiefs burning one a little, however he was then hit badly in his abdomen and is like me in a bad way bleeding out. Thorn parries an attack on him but misses with his counter, Mackenzie moves back from the stunned trog.

Thorn closes up to mace reach and Mackenzie misses his attack on another trog.

 

The trog chiefs fell the pony which falls with its hoves flaying, so blocking passage. Thorn, Mackenzie and Rotnik manage to finish the warrior trogs off quickly.

 

With the pony in the way the two chiefs grab Gnoman and myself and retreat back down the tunnel. The rest finish off wounded trogs and recover their breath.

 

Are Gnoman and Errath dead or alive?

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 – Part 6


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 6  —————————-

So with the strange mollusks dealt with I head East to check that way out before we head down the main passage south West. I head down the passage and realise I need some light to see tracks by a lantern so I get Gnoman to cast light on my shield and after I have used some of my entertainment clothes to make a cover for it. After about 30′ I come to a junction South or East, I continue to go East. The walls of this small cave glisten with moisture. There is a scattering of stalagmites near the center of the floor, amid which lie a handful of small, sparkling crystals. Overhead the ceiling lies in shadow, but a slow drip of water can be heard. Otherwise, all is quiet here. I move the light from my shield up to look at the ceiling, On the ceiling directly overhead, nearly hidden in shadow, is a huge mass of slime-like growth, approximately eight feet across and blue-green in
color. It seems to tremble slightly, but it could be a trick of the light. I head back to the others, I do not want to be caught by a strange moss with no support. Thorn comes back with me and he watches the ceiling while I look around. I can see nothing interesting so I watch the ceiling while Thorn uses his mining skills to look for secret exits. He finds none but does pick up 4 of the crystals leaving the others as they are to close under the moss. We go back to the others at the pool.

 

There we all hear a load roaring sound back towards the entrance way, we wonder if its the Wyvern mother come home or something else. Whatever it is we do not think we will go and look. leaving the others at the pool I again head East and visit the other cave at the junction. As I enter this place, a few small bats rustle overhead. This cave shows the effects of water and time; a few tiny stalagmites jut from the floor in spots, and in other areas flowing water has worn the floor smooth in small trails. A few pale white mushrooms grow in a far corner of the cave. Near them is a cluster of pale, fiery lights illuminating dark creatures shuffling on the floor. I look at the bugs on the floor but have no idea of what they are, the others arrive. Thorn knows that these are Fire Beetles and their red light will continue for up to a week after they die. Thorn also checks the cave for exits but again this seems to be a dead end. Gnoman decides that some of these beetles could be handy for a low level none obvious light, so he puts his coins into his backpack and puts 4 beetles into his coin pouch instead along with some mushroom. With one dead one in his hand he has more than enough light to help the dark vision his cat familiar gives hm. It will make Gnoman a very effective scout especially when invisible.

 

 

We all go back to the pool area and look around to see what made the earlier roar, still there appears no threat. Gnoman with his red light beetle in hand heads down the south west passage. After disappearing from our sight he sees some more tiny holes like those near the entrance, more access points for the Pestie’s I suppose. He continues to advance slowly looking for traps until the corridor widens into a small cave. Guano marks the floor and overhead hang strawlike stone projections that might be stalactites in an early stage of development. A short distance ahead, the corridor resumes its normal width and continues in a southward direction. Gnoman turns and comes back to the rest of us.

 

We all head down the passage with Gnoman 60′ ahead of us, we head back to the small cave and then Gnoman goes to its other side again seeing no traps. As he moves on down we all follow, still 60′ behind, suddenly I things go blank for me as I lose sight of the others and then feel disoriented. I am in total darkness. Have I fallen into a pit? My infravision can make out little but cold water and a warm patch on the ceiling. I call out Rotnik! and just get echoes back. I cast Detect Evil but nothing shows, I then swap my javelin for my club and reach out to find an edge and follow it till I find an exit I can hear water ahead. I call Rotnik again it echoes back to me.

 

The others meanwhile notice that Errath has gone, and some tiny laughter. Thorn calls Gnoman back to do a finger tip search of the area. This search turns up nothing, so Thorn casts Detect Magic which shows the remains of some magic effect. However he has no idea whaat. Rotnik shouts ‘Errath!’

 

Errath moves round another cave and heads towards some light he can see in the distance. He reaches a area with some stone terraces going up. He then notices that something is trying to confuse his mind, but being a half elf he manages to throw it off. Then the world shifts again. Again he feels disoriented and feels movement and is now in a dark place again.

 

Again I can hear water dripping and this time I can make out a figure with me in this area.  I sing a charm in elvish to lift my spirits and to see if it will charm any creatures doing this to me.  Lucky for me Gnoman hears my singing and he follows it to find me. Meanwhile I find a way out of this dark hole and we meat by the water pool with crushed mollusk’s around it. Gnoman rushes to explore the area I had come from the southern exit from the pool area. I follow shouting wait for me.

 

Gnoman goes down a short, twisting corridor runs south and eventually widens into a small cave. Droplets of water fall from tiny stalactites on the ceiling, feeding small, scattered pools of water on the slick floor below. In the far south corner is a figure of some sort. It is a gauzy white color and almost seems to float above the floor, garbed in a velvety black cloak. The figure holds a short sword, its silver edge resting against the floor. He quickly comes back to the rest of us saying he has seen a ghost. We want to know if its friendly or hostile. So I and Gnoman go back to take another look. We try to speak to the ghostly figure but get no answer, so we enter the cave and move closer. The figure is not moving and its hand holding the sword is skeletal. We call for Thorn who casts Dectect Magic on it, the sword is magical, I then cast Detect Evil, it has no glow around it so its not. Gnoman approaches and searches around the figure and it. The body is still dressed in rotting leathers and a blue cloak (now black with mildew). His backpack contains the moldy remains of a cheese wheel and dry rations, an empty wineskin, and an 80 ft. coil of strong, thin silk rope. A leather pouch containing a mere 5 gp is
attached to his belt, as is a normal dagger. His boots are mostly intact. The short sword clutched in his hand is magical as we detected.

 

We take the gold for party funds, Thorn swaps his standard rope for this lighter longer silk one also leaving a crystal. Gnoman takes the sword from its hand and he knows what it is. He has found a Stealth Sword, a thieves guild item, it gives the welder a bonus to damage and to combat skill as well as boosting to Stealth and Evade. [+5% to hit; +1 Dam; +20% Stealth & Evade] He gives his dagger back in exchange. I, Errath, am not happy at robbing this body, I check the body and he died from a hole in his head, maybe one of those mollusk’s hit him. Gnoman decides that maybe he was a thief and checks to see if his cloak has the mark. It has so Gnoman thinks that the boots might hide something, so he takes them off the bones and checks. He finds 3 blue gems in the left boot hollow, each worth 20-50gp. Gnoman then lays the bones out and puts the bones in the backpack which he has emptied. He intends to leave the bones here and asks Thorn to bless them, reminding him that there should be no charge for this.

 

With the bones in the backpack left on the ledge we leave this area and move back to the south west passage. We go some further way down and realised that the Pesties where right when they said the Trogs where a long way off. With Gnoman and myself both getting low on magical reserves and thinking we might need it we decide to camp. So we head back to where the body is, it was the only area Trogs didn’t seem to have tracks to. We make a small fire, and cook boar and mollusk with some of our own rations as well. We leave some of this cooking out for the Pesties, hoping that will keep them sweet. Gnoman sets up a tripwire near the entrance and we set a guard. Mackenzie  first, then Rotnik, then me as I have less magical energy to recover. Then Thorn and Gnoman sleep and rest for 9 hours. Nine hours later we have some more food and hear that Rotnik saw a giant rat during our rest, we wonder what else came past during our rest. With more than a day of our support chanting done we need to get a move on so its up and onwards.

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 Part 5


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 5  —————————-

Gnoman gets Errath’s potion of Extra Healing from his, Errath’s, backpack and pours it into Errath restoring his chest with the magic it holds. Meanwhile Thorn and Rotnik enter the cave to recover Errath’s shield it is after all a magical one, and his javelin. Thorn carries his lantern, so that they can find the wooden objects after all Infravision needs items to have different heat levels. The rest of the group follows them to avoid being caught out by themselves.  Taking some boar meat from the pony to throw to the Wyvern, however the young thing ignores the meat, it wants something live. Annoyed by its burns it attacks Thorn with its mouth on the end of its long neck. However Thorn reacts with lighting speed and brings his mace down on the monsters forequarter smashing in hide, muscle and bone killing it. Thorn, as a cleric, can feel the holy prayers helping him. With the young Wvyern dead they can soon find Errath’s things and also 22sp, 31gp a badly thorn suit of mail, a rusty helm and a dwarven skull. Thorn picks up the cash and the skull, intending to burry what’s left of the dwarf.

 

With their back secured the group move back to the last cave. The entrance to this wide cave is nearly blocked
by several stunted trees. The trees are nearly bare of leaves, and they probably serve as a perch for vultures or other birds. Right now the trees are empty of occupants, but abandoned nests and spoor are evident enough. The cave area is strewn with dead leaves and small twigs. A thin layer of sandy dirt covers the floor. I, Errath go first with the others following, around 20′ behind with Thorn carrying the lantern. I see the tracks and rat bones as we move into and around the odd shaped cave ending up leaving from the opposite side. We travel approximately 50 feet inside the cave entrance and the natural tunnel proceeds steadily downward via smooth stone terraces. We pass unworked stone walls on either side and see the telltale signs of vermin, but little else thus far. The corridor continues straight ahead into the darkness.

 

As I descend the terraces I spot a shining in the light from the lantern its a wire running across the steps at around ankle height.  I can also hear the echoing sound of the others behind, their armour and the pony making quite a noise. Seeing the wire I go back to stop the others and report. Gnoman goes to have a look with my assistance, we can see that the very thin wire goes from a hole in the right side of the corridor. Looking at the hole which is about 18″ high we see that there are three of them they might be rat holes. Gnoman cuts the wire and then puts his hand into one of the holes as he does so we hear some tiny voices and Gnoman shouts out dodge. He rolls aside but I fail to get far enough away. I am hit by a net and then rocks falling from the roof, I take hits to my chest and my left leg. I am lucky as the chest wound is not to mayor however I still fall unconscious. While Gnoman uses another potion of Extra Healing on me Thorn covers Rotnik while he moves the rocks to cover the holes.

 

Once I am back on my feet I try Druids cant to see if the voices answer. They don’t, so I try my bad elvish. This gets a yes from behind the rocks. I say ‘hello, that was a cleaver trap!’. They reply, ‘Yes’. We start a broken conversation with them always asking for shineyes. We clear a hole and out comes a short 18″ tall creature, it looks a bit like a brownie and eventually Rotnik names them as Mites and Pestie’s a form of cave dealing brownie. Once we have sight of them I can ask questions with each one needing a gift of coin before we could get an answer.

1- Are the big ones, Trog’s, coming?  No they are far down.

2- Can we trade for items? They show a minute dagger we ask if they have anything bigger? Thorn casts Detect Magic on the area and he sees a glow of divine magic. We ask for anything glowing and they bring us a plain metal vial. We agree a price of 10gp and 20sp for it. It turns out once cleaned off to be a potion of cure serious wounds. Which I put into my backpack, to replace the smashed, by the rock fall, vial of healing. I also notice that the last of my dried fruit, given by Hombel, has gone later we find that Thorn has lost a potion of healing as well.

3- ‘Number of big people?’ They say give 1 shiney per answer we say no we will give 20sp for answer which is there are 15.

4- ‘Are there any more traps?’ No we only make this one and not go far from here.

5- Gibberish

6- ‘Anything else in caves?’  not that we know.

We end up giving them 60sp and 10gp to them, cheep for the potion and information. However we do not really trust them and wonder what else we might find.  We also give them some boar meat and unblock the other two holes.

 

We move on with me in the lead again and ahead we see another cave. The central feature of this roughly circular cave is a pool of water, fed by water dripping from a multitude of long, pointed stalactites above. The
droplets echo in the quiet chamber with an almost musical sound. The pool is completely surrounded by many small, pointed stalagmites. There are some small tracks in the dirt floor of this cave. I go and check the tracks, they turn out to be mainly Trog ones going both South West and East, there are also some other small prints going in all directions. There is also a passage going South so this pool area is more of a crossroads. While I am doing this  Gnoman calls out eveade so I throw myself away, expecting something from the pool. However it is something from the ceiling which lands near to where I am. It is a stalagmite and it seems to have a foot as it rights itself, with a very pointed end I am glad that I did not end up under it.  Gnoman, Rotnik and Thorn all shoot at it, Gnoman and Thorn with thier slings and Rotnik with his repeating crossbow. Gnoman misses Thorn hits with no effect on the shell and Rotnik punches two amour piecing bolts into it. I throw my javelin and impale its foot.. Thorn and Rotkin then use their mace and hammer to smash it open. Just as they finish that and start to throw what’s left into the pool another 4 of them drop, the ones above Thorn, Gnoman and me all miss while the one that hits Rotnik bounces off his heavy armour. Rotnik then smashes all four with his two handed hammer.

 

This cave area is different to the mines we have been in, many more dangers and strange things. I wonder what else awaits us.