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Author Topic: 1.5 The Catacombs of Crie Isle  (Read 1874 times)
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The Bothellians
Blissful Ignorance

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« on: 19 June 2009, 17:26:03 »

The party row the boat ashore and Brin scouts ahead up the winding stairs carved into the cliff face. He is challenged by voices unseen before he reaches the top, after a brief parley the party are allowed to enter the island proper. The voices belonged to two mages who live on the Isle, this used to be the home of the King in ages long past and has fallen into a state of disrepair over the eons. Few buildings still have a roof, one which does houses the mages who are six in number, they welcome us and assist where they can with potions and scrolls. Crow asks whether there is anything that can be done for his axe.
The mages warn us about the dangers in the catacombs below, how they are protected by a gate with wards on it and gives us an ancient riddle that describes and confuses us as to what we search for. We make our way outside to the hatch which leads down to the gate, it appears that the doors have been opened quite recently from the way the moss has been disturbed, this is of concern as others may be looking for the same item we are after. Crow starts tracking and soon detects three sets of footprints, human or humanoid in origin. We advance toward the gate whilst Gerard the Mage raises it for us, the conditions down here are gross with rotting matter and debris strewn all over, the smell is almost overpowering. We grit our teeth and pass below the raised portcullis, Gerard lowers it behind us and wishes us luck, the party advances cautiously into a large room littered with debris and filth, as we make our way across the room three of the piles of rotting filth rise up and attack us, the creatures are huge shambling mounds, larger than anything seen by the party before, even Dancing Bear is amazed at the sight of these mobile compost heaps.
If both appendages hit a person then they are drawn into the creature to suffocate, this happens to Caerlith but is soon freed by the devastating gardening skills of Ditch, these creatures are soon laid to rest and Crow resumes tracking. We remember the words of Gerard and turn right when facing a choice of directions. We pass through several rooms riddled with small (less than two feet in diameter) tunnels, soon a section of the corridor has been broached by a very large tunnel, and thinking of Purple Worms we move past cautiously and enter another room riddled with larger holes, clicking noises can be heard. Matrix and Crow take up defensive positions by the large tunnel to the rear whilst Brin makes his way invisibly to the other side of the room, Hook Horrors begin streaming into the room and a fireball explodes in the midst of them not exactly where Brin had been moments before. Undeterred they rush to intercept us, Caerlith, Thule, Brock and Ditch form a defensive line across the steps leading into the room, Dancing Bear unleashes a wall of fire through the line of creatures, killing one outright, Brin starts firing arrows into the rear of the creatures and unfortunately a stray arrow flies towards Dr Wack who is saved by his magic enchantments. The monsters are quickly overcome and Crow comes to the fore and seemingly loses the tracks but a nudge from Brin gets him back on the path, we ferret around in the tunnels and find some gold coin.
Soon we enter a room where we nearly lose the track, so well have they been disguised. A pile of broken columns precariously block the doorway to the left, effort is made to render them safe, this leads to some debacle as we realize that we will have to remove the stones to pass through the doorway. After searching the room beyond there is no sign or a way further. So the room with the columns is inspected once again. Brock makes out the difference in some stone on the wall directly across from the other opening. There was once an archway here but now it is covered by well disguised stonework and Ditch unleashes his might shovel to excavate through. Once we have breached the opening an acrid smell seeps out, this may well be the final room we are seeking where an acid moat protects the chest and stones we seek.
The party cast defensive enchantments on themselves and approach the room and its layers of battlements, a magic mouth foretells our doom and magics are unleashed which dispels some of our enchantments, also luckily dispelling the symbol of stunning which had affected Brock. The party swiftly makes it’s way up the wide steps all the while nearly gagging from the fetid stench in the room, the cause of which start making their way over, several large piles of rotten, disgusting matter, known as excramentals or poop monsters, also making their way over to the intrepid party are several more shambling mounds even bigger than the ones previously encountered, there are several large shapeless humanoid lumps known as envelopers, as well as several skeletal warriors, some green fungoid creatures, a many tentacled lump of goodness knows what and some human sized creatures skulking in the upper battlements.
The party is soon spread out with Brock just at the entrance assailed by a poop monster and soon to be joined another and a shambling mound, Crow quickly slices through one creature but is turned to stone by the breath of another, a scroll is called for and Wack soon turns him back to flesh, Caerlith is trapped by another poop monster on the stairs, whilst Thule and Ditch form a line of defense at the top of the stairs, Brin starts unleashing a volley of arrows onto the different creatures, finding some of the monsters are immune to his attacks, one such unlucky recipient is Caerlith who is drilled in his back at point blank range. Thule also feels the affect of the stone breathing creature and is soon bought back to normal.
The battle rages back and forth Crow finds himself surrounded by creatures and needs the healing of Matrix to keep him on his feet, Dancing Bear likewise helps out Brock. Caerlith finds the poop monster has difficulty hitting him and is slowly wearing the creature down when Brin once more makes him stagger with another misplaced arrow, he has to heal himself before more friendly fire takes him down, a woman on one of the battlements comes down and enters the fray, she unleashes a fireball on the party and soon becomes a favorite target for Brin (earning a brief respite for the Paladin), she goes down as Crow fights his way to her, an invisible assailant has been hurling poisoned darts down at Brock, as Crow charges he runs smack into an invisible wall, much to the amusement of the party, Matrix steps up and negates the wall, the invisible one then tries to intervene Crow and is struck dead by a flurry of axe and sword blows.
Meanwhile on the stairs Wack is backed up against the wall and has summoned some sprit warriors to help provide a line of defense between himself and a poop monster, Brin shoulders his bow and draws sword and dagger to cut through two nearby fungoid creatures, that threaten him and the Doctor, all of a sudden Thule is overcome by a huge shambling mound and Brin leaps forward to heal him with magic from his Ring, soon after Wack is overcome and Caerlith steps down to heal him.
A voice rings out from the far battlement where an archer has popped up to send arrows down into the melee, the word is GRATZ and the body of the sorceress disappears.
Matrix is hugged by one of the shambling mounds, but thanks to a magic necklace makes himself comfortable and waits to be rescued.
Ditch is swinging his huge sword in wide arcs and dismembers one of the envelopers who are incredibly difficult to take down, soon he hits something harder than his sword and it breaks, Brock sniggers at this point.
The two humans previously taken down appear to re-enter the combat from different positions, the invisible one traps Crow in a force field, after several rounds Crow is healed and makes his way out to stand behind the magic using woman on the battlement. Several blows later she is history, fearing another healing episode, Crow grabs some items off her corpse before the ground opens and her Underworld God claims her body.
Dancing Bear has been enveloped by a shambling mound and turns into a mouse to try and escape from the sticky grasp, then changes into a huge crocodile to get her mouth above the creature to keep from suffocating. Brock is encapsulated by a magical force field.
Breath is drawn and positions are evaluated…….

People once believed that when someone dies, a crow carries their soul to the land of the dead.  I'm here to tell you it's true
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