Another “empty” tomb for Gregern Falshandren, but one with a nasty fight. The group also were faced with the down side of their deal with the ghost of Robann Falshandren – they can’t plan to spend a lot of time away from the mountain. We had a normal session, but I think everyone was more focused on the game and they got through a lot more than they usually do. In game discussion about prime numbers (and the number 17) carried into out-of game stuff that night and then over the next two weeks in conversation and emails.
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7th Patchwall: Continuing up the stairs, they find two more rooms – one small with a stone table, the other large and dusty. The larger room is marked with skulls. Lanliss locates a secret door opened by pressing a nearby skull. Two human sized clay statues stand in a niche either side of a narrow passage. They are well crafted and painted to look like armoured warriors wielding a greatsword. As Lanliss moves along the passage, one strikes at him. Both dwarves move up to fight it with the rogue and eventually they break the construct. Lanliss disarms a pit trap in a corner of the passage, and sights two more statues before the passage opens into a chamber with a tomb. He suspects that one of the statues will animate and attack. He suggests that they lead it back into the dusty room where they can surround the statue. They do entice it out of its niche, but as soon as they retreat around the corner it goes back into position. They all move up and batter the statue in the same way as the first, and Merxif heals them.
The tomb chamber is also trapped. Lanliss notes a floor tile that can be depressed and a hole in a wall close by. He disarms it and reads the inscription on the sarcophagus – “Gregern Falshandren”. As the rest of the group moves up, a hooded figure flows through the side of the tomb and attacks. The incorporeal undead seems stronger than a wraith, dealing negative energy damage and leaching the health out of those it strikes. Both Lanliss and Winter are severely wounded by the time it is defeated. The tomb and a chest in the room hold coins and jewellery. Skull shaped rubies are taken from the clay statues.
The group heads back down the stairs, through the fungi caves and around to the secret chambers they have left the snail shell and chairs in. Once out in the Hold, they briefly check the ghoul tower, but it is empty. They arrive back in Falsford mid afternoon.
8 – 11th: Lanliss and Winter take two days to recover from their wounds, under Merxif’s care. Kevelli advises them that getting a worthwhile buyer for the snail shell will take time. He sends messages to Falsridge and Mitrik. They find a buyer for the set of chairs. Seldrel studies alchemy and is able to decipher the runes carved onto a secret door under the Fals’Krag. (Nickel, copper, bronze, iron) They all spend some time training. [Fifth Level] On the second night, everything shakes. A mild earth tremor! Merxif invests in some new armour and gets Seldrel to enchant it. Seldrel also creates some Bracers of Archery for Winter. Kevelli comes up with some research on Ormarr in relation to the temple under the Krag. The group start to feel weakened, dull, and uninspired. Some are restless, some confused. They start to feel a pull back to Fals’Krag.
12th: Seldrel determines there is some supernatural curse or effect on them all, that he feels will get worse each day. Edamala, the main priest of Rao suspects a geas. something too powerful for her to remove. The group recalls that they promised the ghost of Robann Falshandren that they would destroy his grandson, in return for items from his families crypt. Merxif realises that they all feel more relaxed simply discussing returning to the Hold. They pack up and head straight out to the Hold. They all feel restored as they walk up the road to the gatehouse.
The iron grill that was set in the ceiling of the gatehouse has fallen out, and the ghoul tower is now a mass of rubble, dry grass and sticks. The unstable second floor has now completely collapsed. Lanliss sees a bit of paper with writing, and pulls part of a page from the remains of a birds next. He recognises the writing as Baklunish and translates it for the group. It refers to levers and elemental magik linked to particular rooms. In the hall of the gods they activate the statue of Rillifane (wood elf deity) and receive a wand of entangle. All three elves are able to move faster. Headed to where the levers are located, they find a dead ogre in the moon room – down the circular floor shaft. They tie a rope to the corpse and are able to move the body and read writing on a ring further down than they had previously seen. Written in Suel, it refers to the two moons and when they are full. In the halls of levers, Seldrel pulls each down in the sequence marked on the secret door in the caves, and they quickly head to that location. The secret door has slid up, revealing a narrow passageway and a small room. Lanliss searches cautiously, and brings back a large bag of copper coins and a orange crystal skull.
They decide now to continue up the great stairwell. Winter sends her owl ahead to scout, seeing through its eyes and finding the stairs end at a pair of metal doors. The iron doors are rusty and stuck. Hardaz pours some oil on the hinges and helps Lanliss to open them. Within, dusty rooms filled with webs are spaced around a central chamber with a hole in the ceiling that lets in sunlight. They begin to burn webs and are attacked by six large spiders, then a seventh that is bigger than any of them. The group deals with them efficiently. While both Summer and Merxif are bitten, they avoid being poisoned. A small amount of treasure is recovered, and behind the webs in one room is another black gate. Two doors lead out into a chamber partly open to the mountain. They quickly learn that a pair of wyverns has been nesting here. The first wyvern on its nest is quickly knocked down and killed. The second retreats out onto the mountain top and dives at the group, stinging with its tail. It poisons Hardaz before they are able to bring it down with spells and missiles. Merxif heals the group and they search the next and surrounding area for treasure. The building stands on an open section of the mountain about 350 feet above the hold. The wyvern nest has some gems, jewellery, a magic items – a wand, ring and set of bracers.
Back into the stairway, they head down to where they originally entered. Another thirty feet down, a hall leads away from the stairs to a pair of stone doors. The stairs continue another twenty feet down, and they drop a stone with light on it into the deep shaft. Winter again uses Summer to see down the shaft. About ten feet lower are double doors set into an alcove and then the shaft drops considerably before opening up into a huge underground cavern mostly filled by a lake.
Lanliss and the dwarves go to examine the stone doors, and note a secret door on either side of the hall which they cannot open. The three sets of doors all seem to be constructed the same way and pushing at the double doors confirms their suspicions. All the doors are very heavy, hard stone and can only be pushed open from one side. There are no handles or protrusions and a stone lip runs along the floor on the side that can be opened. Hardaz tries to hammer a piton into the floor to stop the main doors (engraved with a ‘3’) from swinging closed but cannot do it – the rock is too hard. Seldrel solves the problem by using stone-shape to raise a block from the ground that holds one door open.
The wide halls are clean with no dust, and cool and dark past the initial room which is light by a magical flame on the ceiling. They head west and find another one-way door with a ‘4’ engraved and the back of another one-way door. Lanliss opens the door, releasing a bad smell and revealing two thin, dirty humanoids with yell at him not to close the door. They rush out with relief, but then try to bite Lanliss. Merxif identifies them as being undead. The ghasts are quickly destroyed. There is no exit from the small chamber, but many scratches and chips on the inside of the door, as well as bones, coins and a blunt dagger. The next area along the hall has a passage heading north and a door engraved ‘11’. They open the door. Lanliss searches the room, finding many bits of curved glass and another door marked ‘373’. The group begins to discuss prime numbers. While someone stays in place to hold each of the doors open, Lanliss moves ahead. The passage behind 373 turns and heads east to a door marked ‘17’ that emerges in the original hall before the main entry doors. He hurries back around to rejoin the group and they head north. A door marked ‘13’ at a t-junction leads west, then south to ‘53’ and the room with the glass fragments. Winter and Lanliss both note that the light at the entry chamber is no longer shining and the group starts to head back that direction. Midway along the passage, Lanliss realises that a huge black mass is rolling along the passage towards then and has blocked the light. Winter shoots an arrow into the thing with no obvious effect and Seldrel thinks the creature is a ‘small’ black pudding. Like most other oozes, it isn’t likely effected by edged weapons. Lanliss strikes a minor blow with a mace that promptly breaks from the creatures acidic surface. The group draw back and use fire spells, and throw alchemical weapons. It wounds a few party members but is badly burnt in return and eventually killed.