We were short one player for this session, which was a pity because the group got a lot done over a very interesting evening. There was some enterprising ideas to deal with both the pit in the well and the toll gate. The toll gate became two combats (before and after breaching the doorway) with the second being drawn out – both in the number of rounds it lasted and the large area fought over – against fifteen small humanoids (including two spell-casters) armed with light crossbows, daggers, darts and some alchemical weapons. They also started seriously looking around the next level and got into a fair number of undead. There’s also the suggestion that other people died here recently.
I’ve prepared a heap of rumours (and possible interactions) for the players to hear/encounter when they return to town. Mostly, I’ve forgotten to actually hand them out in sessions. The encounter with Nargan is a ‘rumour’ that I actually drew after the session. It particularly suits that town visit because they had stuff they wanted to sell to an alchemist. I’ve put rumour cards aside now, to remind me for the next time we game.
(14th Goodmonth. Under FalsHold.)
The group decides to leave the dungeon. Lanliss talks about breaking the bricked up doorways at the toll gate, and ways to get past the pit in the well tunnels. At the toll gate they are charged 30 silver and a special. Seldrel offers a glowing candle! The price to enter seems to increase slowly, and the exit price is double the entry. Back at Falsford, Seldrel sights a large shrine to Aedrie Faenya (Elven goddess of air, avians and weather) and gets a priestess to cast remove curse on him. Lanliss and the dwarves go in search of a good carpenter and blacksmith. They order two longer than standard collapsible planks and discuss some portable barriers that can block the arrow slits in the side “doors” at the toll gate, and a long, wide plank on posts to block the gap above the pipe. They arrange to collect them the next morning. Hardaz buys a few miners picks. They restock on minor items and find an inn to stay at.
15th – They collect their orders and head out to Falshold. There is no sign of goblins and they move to the well. With Lanliss and the dwarves in the lead, they assemble a plank and drop it across the pit location. An eye ray has no effect, and they move in as fast as is possible – striking against the tiny humanoids with the heavy crossbow. Two dire rats attack from a side passage, and more humanoids with spears from the other side. The narrow space makes attacking and defending difficult, but thankfully the tiny rat-people do minor damage with their spears and go down with a single blow. Six of the creatures are killed and others appear to have fled along tunnels that Merxif later determines to exit near the southern wall of the hold . The crossbow and some copper coins are recovered. There is no sign of the beholder-kin. After some minor healing they all proceed down to the keep basement. Here more dire rats attack, but Seldrel’s magic puts all three to sleep.
They assemble the main frame and open the secret door. An alarm sounds as they approach and the iron plate begins to slide aside. They place barriers over the side arrow slits as a voice calls out an entry fee of 20 silver. Surprised sounds begin to be heard as they block the gap over the pipe. Both dwarves begin to hack at the bricked up doorway to one side, while the others hold the barriers in place. After a minute, Seldrel hears chanting and a swarm of cockroaches begins to enter the room around the barriers and from out of cracks in the stone. Weapons seem to have no effect and Hardaz becomes momentarily nauseous. They all begin to retreat back along the hall to the secret door, swinging flaming torches. Bacon throws his last 2 necklace globes and the fireballs seriously damage the swarm. All retreat up the stairs to the entry hall. The swarm doesn’t follow, and they take time to heal. On return the swarm is gone. They replace the barrier and break a large enough hole in the north side to enter. The group steadily invades the chamber, taking crossbow fire from the small blue fey. A sleep spell is resisted by the party, but a colour spray knocks out Lanliss. Minor wounds are taken from the defenders, as they are steadily brought down. Only one fey is able to escape through a narrow tunnel. The cluster of small rooms are looted. Treasure includes coins (lots of silver), gems, many potions and scrolls, and a complete alchemist lab. The group takes time to break the bricks around the pipe to allow an easier way through. Merxip traces the escape tunnel and emerges near the SE tower. Collecting all the loot, they again return to Falsford.
In town, a young man, Nargan, approaches. He says that his uncle is an alchemist and can brew remedies that may be useful to adventurers exploring Falshold. They meet with Rodar who buys the alchemists gear they have returned with. He promises them a discount on any purchases if they return.
16th – Return to the hold. Six dire rats are feeding on the bodies at the toll gate. All are killed and the group proceeds down the stairs and around the sigil on the floor. This time they head west along a long passage. The first room to the side has a table, some chairs and animated skeletons. They move in and fight, recalling what weapons were most effective last time. A hollow behind one wall is detected by Lanliss, but he can’t find how to open it. Breaking the wall reveals a pouch of coins and gems. The next room has two zombies. As Lanliss and the dwarves move in to attack, two ghouls rush out from a further room. Seldrel, still back in the main passage hears a creaking noise and sees their torches dim. He hears a voice say “Hello… have you seen da bloomun. Oh, sorry…”. The torches are restored to their normal radiance and the ghouls destroyed. The two rooms contain torn clothing, blood spatters and part of a humanoid that has obviously been eaten. Masterwork chainmail, some weapons and a wand are recovered.