Vulcan’s Peak

Rolling toward the end of this thing

August 26, 2004 9:47 am

Oooh, the last time I posted D&D tales here was almost a month ago…I’ll continue from there. Theresa had just joined us, so we had some character shuffling!

After an encounter with a group of bandits, the party spent the night in an extra-dimensional space, conveniently provided by Nadrak. However, Tae was called away by her deity during the night (that’s the goddess of Oreo cookies for those of you who hadn’t heard this fairly recent development). Fortunately, her goddess is lenient, and allowed her to call a couple of old buddies in to cover for her: an old friend from her novice days, Hamere (Theresa), a cleric of Pelor, and an old friend from her rebellious finding-herself days, Sheva (Liz), a bonafide whirling dervish. Needless to say, Nadrak and Petra were decidedly surprised to discover Tae’s disappearance and meet this pair when they left their shelter in the morning.

The new and improved party warmed up by beating the tar out of a second bandit party. One escaped, but another was captured, and they got some information out of him. He essentially told them that Archimago was organizing bandits to harry anyone who looked like a danger to their plans (i.e. adventuring good guys). He also pointed out a couple of pertinent locations on their map.

Later that day, the party finally arrived in Spens, where they found a very large hydra guarding the entrance to the main city and to Sir Edmund’s castle. However, since the gang had been windwalking the whole way, they bypassed the beastie for the moment in order to fly in and have a chat with Sir Ed and his daughter Aemelia. She was very glad to see the party, and told them all about the beast situation. For one, someone was definately censoring the mail: letters from Miralana to Spens got through. Letters from Sir Edmund to Miralana got through. Letters from Aemelia to Miralana did not. Obviously someone knew who was running the place and who was senile. For another, unknown to Miralana, a few knights had gotten to Spens, and there had been more than one beast. The first had been a fairly young red dragon, who had been dispatched by a knight called George. Unfortunately, George was still camping when a white dragon flew in the next morning, so he got et. This dragon was slain by a pair of knights who arrived a few days later. Unfortunately, it was replaced by a pit fiend, and when they attempted to take it down the next day, they did not survive the attempt. Aemelia has no idea what happened to this monster – one morning it was just gone, and this eleven-headed Lernaean pyrohydra was letting no one out of the city.

Aemelia graciously opened her potions cupboard to the party before they went out to tackle the hydra, which they did…in three rounds. (Like I told them them during the next session, I was amazed – they were doing nearly 100 points of damage to my poor beastie per round.)

From her spot on the town wall, Petra found the magical device that had been summoning the monsters and broke it, though they suspected to find one last monster in the morning. They were, of course, right.

Before they took on the big red dragon, the party had a chat with Sir Edmund over breakfast. He told them all about the fight he lead fifty years ago against Queen Mab and her trusted lieutenancts (so to speak), Archimago and Duessa. He doesn’t know quite what Mab’s fate was, though. He’s heard all the stories about getting trapped in caves or oak trees or being banished to another plane, but all he knows for sure is that she was turned over to a trio of powerful spellcasters. Two have died of old age since then, but the third, is still alive. Santhymum Treehollow, an elf, is currently living in Riverman’s Junction, an odd little town in Orant, the country to the south.

Highlights of the fight with the red dragon included a shot to the eye by Petra and Hamere’s Harm spell, which took care of the last hundred hp.   😉

After Nadrak checked on the progress of his dominated butler, the party made a little detour to Riverman’s Junction to talk to Santhymum. After being sufficiently quirky, she revealed that she and her fellow mages had trapped Mab in a mirror where she could see and listen, but not speak or act. The mirror had been carefully guarded in a museum for the last fifty years.

Santhymum also gives the party an Amulet of Dimensional Anchor that can be turned on or off.

The next destination for out heros was a spot the bandit had marked on the map as Prideth Manor. After talking to a friendly groom, they were met at the door by a pair of vrock. The bone of contention on this floor was the magic mirror guarding the staircase. It wanted the party to go flip some switches, and some of the party wanted to bypass such nonsense. The mirror was not very smart, however, and was easily convinced to show an image of the last people to pass through it. One of them was Duessa herself. The clever solution was to enchant Sheva to look like Duessa and bluff past the mirror. On the second floor, Petra crept about, poking her head into doors. She found rooms with monsters, rooms with nobody, and a room with a buzzing, which turned out to be an ebony fly in a little box with a fair bit of gold. Only Sheva was with her at this point, so they split the loot and said nothing to the others.

We broke at this time, and so shall I before my fingers fall off.

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