måndag 21 maj 2018

Play Session 03, KotB 03: A dark encounter

This was also a little shorter session and quite heavy on information gathering.

Boerge the Beef, Human Thug, 257 points
 - Sture the Stone, Human Guard, 63 points
 - Benny the Bee, Human Weapon Caddie, 63 points
Amore son of Casanova, Human Duelist, 254 points
Father War, Human Cleric, 253 points

We started off in town with a short recap of what happened to Father War while the others were away trying to book a table at the hobgoblin restaurant. There had been a festival to the god of light in town (it was real world Easter during last session) and that was the reason he couldn't join the party to the last delve but had to attend some ceremonies instead. He also was a bit sick from being bitten by rabid rats so there was a wierd episode where he was holding mass for the people of Northern Gate, reciting a verse of pure inspiration while having a high fever, swaying the crowd to an almost exstatic state and then suddenly waking up in his bed in the chapel: cold, sweaty and feverish.

After they had sold the loot Sture was immediately off with his share to do some gambling, returning after a day or two asking for more but Boerge was intent on keeping half of his share for him as a future big payment which he sulkingly accepted.
The party used some holy scrying to really make sure that the ornate platearmour that they found during last session really was the commanders (they're 99% sure), then they had a fairly long argument about what to do with it and decided to keep it in the pawnshop/bank in a sack for the time being, trying to get a better deal on returning it (the commander hadn't promised them anything yet beside his gratefulness).
The day after giving the exotic-looking chainmail to the beggar-elf, a mystical message was left for Ernst which urged him to seek out the "old man of the forest" for answers to what's lurking in the Caves.
Then they were once again called up to the commander, he wanted an update on how they were doing, he had heard the rumors running around the tavern that they had returned from the caves with a cart full of loot. They made a fairly bad work of avoiding to arouse suspicion of the above mentioned plot (none of them are much of the talking type) but the commander didn't pressure them, he actually even offered 20 gold coins for returning the armour fast (he really needs it for a banquet he's holding in two weeks times). He also told them his guards had captured an orc in the woods that the PC's were free to question if they liked, but sadly the bloodythirsty, orc-hating Boerge just saw this as an opportunity to get some targetpractice with his flail so no new information was gained (none of them are the interrogating types either).
Before heading back towards the caves Amore was presented with a book by a shady-looking woman outside the tavern which he after some haggling decided to buy. It was magically sealed but Father War managed to temporarily dispel the magic. It was a diary of some kind from an inhabitant of the Caves, it's last entry was a few weeks old and said that the writer "Was heading back to the academy for further studies of the obtained items" with a reminder "to bring more jewellery for trading next time" before the dispel magic expired and the book slammed shut, nearly trapping War's fingers within.

Now off to the dungeon again, this time intent on taking care of the cursed ground problem on the way there. When they arrived on dusk the first day a large treetrunk had grown up in the center of the ash-colored piece of earth, without leaves and pitch black as if it had burned. When they walked closer they saw a body, charred and blackened by soot, impaled on a branch with arms held out in front of it, palms toward the sky. Father War fainted while the others attention was drawn to a ravens croak behind them, on the edge of the cursed area. Boerge didn't wait for it to react but started unleashing maces upon it while it transformed into a human shape, hitting the semi-translucent shape over the leg while it materialized but then stopping when it held up it's hand in front. The shape was of an old woman wrapped in dark robes, urging them not to go near the Caves because of the unspeakable evils within before disbanding into a pack of ravens shooting for the sky. At the same time they felt the ground under their feet move and hands started grabbing them from beneath as they had to drag the unconscious cleric out of the cursed ground while fending of two undead gnolls charging them. After taking care of them they waited for Father War to come to and decided to exorcise the ground which made the tree and body dissolve and both it and the ground peel of and take to the sky like the remains of a burned out book meeting a gust of wind.

When arriving near the caves, they did their usual routine of failing strategy and perception rolls and just headed straight for the goblin-entrance again, this time with the cleric falling behind and tripping as they ran down the hill, he hurt his leg but quickly healed himself and continued while the gnoll-camp started preparing to give chase on the lone prey but in the end they all made it safely into the caves. They immediately noticed a poorly concealed line of rope hanging across the roof of the entrance cavern, from the hobgoblin entrance to where they spotted the bear during last session but decided to let it be for now. They continued down the middle opening instead towards where the goblins came out of and found a room to the side filled with sawdust and (by goblin standards) fine quality carpenters tools lying about but nothing of value apart from that. They heard some shuffling of feet and following it found a staircase hewn out of the rock further down the main cavern. To keep a little of the element of surprise they decided to charge and met up with about six goblins preparing for battle in the first room down the stairs. Some nice acrobatics and sword-skill from Amore while Boerge was doing his trademark jaw-shot routine with his flail made the goblins a fairly easy work, with goblin spears and swords managed to get one or two hits in but only minor damage was made and easily healed up.

We decided to start next session outside the dungeon to keep the game moving. We're all still pretty new on the combat-rules (especially my players) so I think they're fine with things moving relatively slow from the start. 1 xp was awarded for exploration and MVP went to Boerge for his attempt to pry more money out of the commander's armour quest.

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