Post by James Maliszewski on Sept 16, 2009 11:44:44 GMT -6
Trusting in the tales dwarven fathers had passed down to their sons, your party set out from Muntburg, seeking out the hidden caves that supposedly existed on the eastern slopes of Dwimmermount. The terrain here is rugged, with hardy shrubs and twisted trees poking up through the rocky soil here and there. You see little evidence of animal life of any sort, let alone game -- no wonder it is said that the Thulians used magic to feed the troops garrisoned here in ancient times.
The trek upwards is difficult but not unduly so and you notice, as you begin your ascent, that the air takes on a peculiar, purplish haze, as if suffused with something you can't quite explain. Despite its odd appearance, the air does not seem to grow noticeably thinner and your climb grows no more difficult as you reach closer to the spot the dwarves believes holds a forgotten entrance inside the ruined fortress.
There is indeed a cleft in the rock, barely large enough for a Man to enter because of its height, but one through which a dwarf, even a stout one, can fit quite comfortably. Though obscured by brush and some distressingly large cobwebs, which burn quickly when put to the torch, there does appear to be some kind of a tunnel into the mountain.
How do you proceed?
Writer and Sleep-Deprived Dad
Post by otherworld on Sept 16, 2009 12:59:38 GMT -6
Looks like it's single file, chaps.
Do we want to nominate a scouting party to check out the entrance? We don't want to make too much noise, and I suggest that torches and lanterns are not a good idea at this stage if there are living guards.
But if this is a secret (forgotten?) entrance, it could be guarded by traps.
Also, watch out for spiders!
Last Edit: Sept 16, 2009 13:00:52 GMT -6 by otherworld
Xhul speaks from behind his great horned helm: "Were it not for these cobwebs, I would suggest a dwarf or two scout ahead with his infrared sight. But alas, greater caution must be exercised. Prepare for glorious bloodshed, comrades."
Wulfgar aims his crossbow at a nearby rock in case it is a troll. He has heard of rock trolls, but never troll rocks so he is sure it would be a rock first then a troll. If it were a troll. It might just be a rock. But he keeps his aim steady. You can never be too sure. Besides it would not be the first time he'd been outwitted by a rock.
"Scolde wit anwadan déaþsele?" He asks then again in the words of mortal men, "should we invade death-hell's halls?"
HJ: "Mr. Dwarf [indicating Ivildir], Honest John can scout alone. If something wants to bite, I would like a path clear of dwarves for running."
Honest John will wait a couple rounds trying to bait any nasties inside with his boullion bag. If anything comes out, he'll flee, and probably leave his boullion to fend for itself. If nothing bites, he'll "move silently" inside alone [if no one objects], still holding his spear and the bag ahead of him. Assuming he clears the narrow passage and reaches a larger chamber, he'll go back to wave the others in-- either a scouting party or the whole group.
Post by crusssdaddy on Sept 16, 2009 23:07:35 GMT -6
*Puggy Two-Cups grows alarmed when he sees HoJo wielding a wineskin, presumably filled with delicious spirits, in a careless fashion that seems destined to result in spillage. He follows HoJo into the tunnel, determined that no harm shall befall the precious booze! In a rare moment of lucid thought, he sheaths the too-large battle axe and draws his hand axe, looking carefully about for any sign of danger*
Post by James Maliszewski on Sept 17, 2009 7:43:30 GMT -6
Honest John stealthily makes his way forward into the cleft, his spear ahead of him. The scent of decay fills his nostrils. He moves onward nonetheless and soon finds himself at the stop of some rough-hewn stairs descending downwards into a damp cavern filled with the same large cobwebs through which he'd passed earlier.
The cavern is devoid of signs of life, but there many signs of death. Littering the ground are the brittle bones of Men and Man-like creatures and, within the webs, there are at least three desiccated corpses -- mere husks sucked dry of life some time ago.
There are two passages leading out of the cavern, the northern one being blocked by cobwebs, while the northwestern one is seemingly clear.
Writer and Sleep-Deprived Dad
After celebrating the bollion's courage by taking a few mouthfuls from the skin and offering one to Puggy (flesh and bones of sundry creatures lovingly boiled over a low flame, salted, and mixed with wine), HoJo returns to make a report.
Post by reverancepavane on Sept 17, 2009 9:20:39 GMT -6
Grimey asks Honest John how wide the stairs are.
James: What is the scale of the map squares?
Grimey also starts to have second thoughts about his newly chosen profession. The strands of those webs seem to have been made by much bigger spiders than the ones he is used to....
Grimey: "Do we want to deal with the spiders now, or try the deserted corridor. I'm not sure I am happy at leaving something behind us. Then again, I'm not really happy with the idea of spiders that seem to be large enough to trap men."
"Although the corpses are old. Maybe the spiders have gone away. Then again. Maybe they are out here already. Hiding and watching. Do spiders do that?"
Slapping Honest John on the back for a job well done Wulfgar heads down the stairs into the cavern. At the foot of the stairs he looks around. Glad to be back underground he takes the time to check the cave, looking at the walls, floor, and roof to see if this is a natural cavern or one hewn by dwarves. Then his gaze wanders over the cobwebs, corpses, and bones in search of anything shiny.
Glad to be back underground he takes the time to check the cave, looking at the walls, floor, and roof to see if this is a natural cavern or one hewn by dwarves. Then his gaze wanders over the cobwebs, corpses, and bones in search of anything shiny.
The cave appears to be natural, judging from its irregular shape and height -- barely six feet in some places and more than twice that in others. The air is cold and damp, as are some portions of the cave, suggesting a source of both air and water nearby.
Looking at the ground, your eyes catch sight of a few copper coins. As your eyes travel upwards, you see that one of the corpses -- the "freshest" of the three -- appears to be wearing a leather purse on his belt. Perhaps the coins fell from it in the owner's death throes. You also notice that all of the corpses appear to have bits of intact gear remaining on their bodies, although the majority of what they carry appears to be largely useless.
Writer and Sleep-Deprived Dad
Post by reverancepavane on Sept 17, 2009 14:22:57 GMT -6
Grimey shall light his lantern and go down into the cavern after the fighting men, trying to keep them between the other two exits from the room.
If he gets a chance to do so relatively safely, he will examine the bodies to try and identify their race and what they were carrying, making sure to only touch them with his dagger, and being ready to leap back if they are full of not-so-little baby spiders.
He looks enviously at the purse, but doesn't want to upset Mr Diggins at this early stage of the adventure.
"Besides, there must be gold further in," he thinks to himself. "So why waste my time with coppers."
Just as long as there are also no spiders either, he will be happy.
Xhul stops before the fallen adventures, grips his silver holy symbol, and speaks a word of prayer to Mavros. Seekers of adventure that perish so are to be respected. Upon completion of the brief prayer, Xhul observes for a cause of death -- do weapon wounds mark these men? Or do their corpses betray the signs of death by poisonous bite?