Our Cast of Players:
- Albrecht (Alan Bates): Human Priest, level 8.
- Artan Praxis (Dave Marasco): Dwarf Warrior/Thief, level 6/7
- Kaji the Painted (Ian Andrews): Human Wizard, level 7.
- Murky Dismal (Ricky Paginton): Hobbit Warrior/Thief, level 4/7
- Pioden (Craig Baynham-Evans): Elf Warrior/Wizard/Thief, level 4/6/7.
- William the Drover (Max Bryans): Human Warrior, level 8.
- Nogri: Human Warrior, level 2.
- Tal: Human Warrior, level 2.
- Uthilian: Elf Warrior, level 2.
- Vermox: Human Warrior, level 2.
Total XPs awarded from the previous session: 21,516
With Murky rescued from asphyxiation by the gas creatures, William and Artan lead the way out of the lower winch chamber. They have gone barely 10 feet when William is attacked by another of the gas creatures, lurking unseen in the swirling green vapours. It crawls over his armour, seeking to find a way in through the visor, but this time you know what to do. Kaji and Pioden drive it off with a series of hissing and fizzing magic missiles and it retreats disappointed into the mist.
A little further along the passage, a side tunnel opens to the left and you elect to follow it. The tunnel narrows briefly before flaring out again into a wide, oval room 40 feet wide and 25 feet deep. Two mining carts and several picks lie abandoned near the north wall. The walls are pitted with rough grooves and cracks. Thick layers of quartz fill the crevices, and crystal fragments crunch under your feet. It appears this section of the mine has not been worked in quite some time and Artan surmises it was abandoned due to the poor quality of the crystals. On the far wall there is a big heap of large sacks or bedding.
Pioden takes William’s halberd and approaches the heap. Before he gets anywhere near it the smell tells him what it is. It is a pile of dead slaves and Pioden signals you all to leave, backing out of the chamber with his hand over his face. You return to the main passage and continue along it. Through the swirling mists, you see another tunnel branching off to the north-east. A sturdy wooden frame has been installed in the hallway, housing a wide wooden door reinforced with metal struts. The walls and the ceiling have been carefully worked to snugly hold the door frame.
Murky checks the door as high as he can and, pronouncing it clear, William tries to open it. Tendrils of flame shoot up his arm as he touches the door and there is a loud detonation as the gas nearest the door explodes. William is thrown to the floor badly burned and the rest of you are partially deafened by the echoing noise. Albrecht quickly tends to his wounds while Kaji does a polite cough and steps forward, gently pushing the rest of you out of the way as he rolls up the sleeves of his robe and adjusts his coolie hat to a jaunty angle. Flexing his fingers he casts a dispel magic spell on the door followed by an opening spell, both with an exaggerated flourish. He steps aside and gestures through the opening with a deep bow.
A faint green shimmer illuminates the room beyond as mist starts to pour into the chamber from the hallway. The walls within have been worked to a high sheen, with numerous shelves carved into the rock itself. Many scrolls are unfurled atop an enormous desk occupying the far wall. A huge barbed spear leans next to the desk. Several crates and chests are lined along the north-western wall. A large cloth map hangs on the south-east wall, depicting a birds-eye view of what looks suspiciously like the Great Swamp, location of your assault on the Forge and a place of many evil memories.
You all file into the room and disperse to examine the diverse contents therein. There are a few moments of silence and then a howling and icy cold gale fills the room as, in an unobserved corner, an ogre shimmers into view from underneath an invisibility spell and casts a cone of cold among you. Pioden takes the blast full on and is immediately dropped, with many of you taking heavy damage. Albrecht recovers from the shock first and implores the gods to strike paralysis into your enemy to no avail.
Artan throws his hammer at the ogre wizard and it smacks home, returning unerringly to Artan’s hand for immediate use again. The ogre is rocked but recovers quickly, laughing deeply as Kaji’s follow up lightning bolt bounces harmlessly off but damages Kaji, William, and Murky as it detonates the mine gas that has leaked into the room.
Deciding that direct engagement is the way to go, William grabs the halberd back from the prone Pioden and goes toe to toe with the ogre, inflicting multiple hits but taking several rocing blows in return. At this, the ogre turns into a cloud of gas and pours swiftly towards the door. Kaji looses off another lightning bolt but once again this does more harm than good, doing no damage to the insubstantial ogre but knocking Kaji down, deeply unconscious, as the backblast from the flammable gas hits him
Albrecht sets to work desperately trying to heal all of wounded, but he has been doing his duty for very little time when the ogre reappears into view in the middle of you once again, rejuvenated and ready to defend his mine. However, this time, it does not go all the ogre’s way. He casts his cone of cold again, which surely will finish you all this time, but Kaji is ready for him and weaves a counter-spell, disrupting the ogre’s casting. With the ogre wizard now at the disadvantage, William and Artan fall upon him and pummel him to the ground with reckless abandon for their own safety. Murky darts in between the pair and decapitates the ogre as he falls. It has been a close run thing, but victory is your.
A careful search of the body and what now seems to be the overseer’s office reveals a magic ring on the ogre (which Kaji takes), a magic spear propped against the desk (which William takes), and a selection of potions in the ogre’s belt pouch that are handed around. More interestingly, in the desk drawers are the ogre’s spell book (quickly grabbed by Kaji) and what looks amazingly like another Eye of the Night. If it not one of the pair you entrusted to the Bishop, it is very much like it.
To be continued…