Friday, May 30, 2014

Westmist Session #72 - Meat the Archmage, Sloth the Pig

  • Erijay, Gort, Sir Thomas Chap and Jason decide to leave Bjorn under the protective amber force field to recover. They load him up with food and water, leave Jason's dog to guard him, and then head off to search for the Gate of the Silver Keys. Jason takes the brazier from Bjorn; just in case they need a 20' air elemental.
  • Having searched the west wing of the chateau, they decide to head through the indoor forest to the east wing. Thankfully(?) no one is left alive from the previous encounter with the Wild Hunt, who had warned them against ever returning. 
  • Passing into the garden, they party is attacked by a group of killer trees. Tentacle/vines lash out and entangle them, drawing the helpless adventurers to great toothed maws to be chomped.
  • There is much (attempted) hacking and slashing of vines, but Sir Thomas and Jason are both slain. 
  • At about this time, another trio of adventurers (Meat the Fighter, Sloth the illiterate cleric  and Dai-sen the Lawful warrior) appeared, and charge into the fray to help Erijay and Gort. Their combined effort destroys the woody menace. The two groups decide to join forces and search for a way out together. 
  • The party treks across the forest, then realizes they forgot to search around the trees for loot. They backtract, find nothing (but recover the brazier from Jason's half eaten body) , and retrace their steps. As they reach the bridge over the stream, they find their way barred by a woman in green and amber robes. They try to talk their way past the woman (obviously another looney d'Amberville) and it works! She steps to one side and allows the party to pass unmolested.
  •  Shortly after a quartet of badgers amble out of the woods and starts nipping at their heels. Meat punts his into the trees, a move copied by Sloth. Erijay and Gort get bitten and irritated,  and choose to pummel theirs to death. Jason, wearing his elven cloak, it not bothered by the badgers.
  • Come to the door to the east wing. A trio of massive stones forms an archway around the door, and a continuous line of blood drips from the lintel. Gort, Jason and Sloth get through with no problem. Meat and Erijay get dripped on by blood, causing an odd magical tingling to them both.
  • They open the door into a massive room with white marble floors. A throne sits back-on before them. Tapestries line the walls, and a skeletal honor guard stands along the north and south walls. Carefully walking to the front of the thrones, they see two regal skeletal figures sitting there. A line of skeletal coutiers line a red carpet, all frozen in various poses. 
  • Meat approaches the throne, and is suddenly overtaken by some sort of mental possession. He twitches for a few minutes, then to his companions surprise ans horror, starts chanting words of magic. Sloth is turned into a pig, and before anyone else can react, Erijay is enchanted to attack her fellow adventurers. 
  • Not sure what is going on, the rest of the party does the only thing they can; pummel Meat into unconsciousness and tie him up. Erijay regains control of herself; Sloth is still a pig. Dai-sen rips a jeweled mace from one of the skeletons on the thrones.
  • They drag Meat into a side room, furnished and decorated in blue. When he regains consciousness they try to reason with him. Meat begins to again cast a spell, so they knock him out again and gag him this time.
  • Erijay casts ESP when Meat wakes up. Finds out he has been possessed by the spirit of Princess Catherine (one of the skeletons on the throne). She was wife of Prince Stephen d'Amberville, but betrayed and murdered him, then married his brother Henri and claimed the throne. In his dying breath however, Prince Stephan cast a curse on his family. Catherine and Henri were utterly destroyed, but she was able to magic jar herself into the throne. When the party entered the room, she took possession of Meat so she could be free.
  • Erijay also learns the Gate of the Silver Keys is in the dungeon below, and the two entrances to the dungeon are in the east wing and the chapel to the north of the indoor forest.
  • They try to convince Meat/Catherine to break the spell on Sloth and bring him back to human form. She/he resists, so they cut off a finger. She/he then complies; Sloth returns as a cleric dumber than the pig he was. 
  • Not sure what to do with Meat/Catherine, the party tries the next door. Beyond it is a white room, very cold, and with a giant 6-legged lizard thing staring at them. Door is slammed shut, and discussion ensues about what to do next. Suggestion made that Meat/Catherine be pushed into the room, then bar the door shut. Hopefully that will take care of at least one of their problems ...
To be continued ...

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Westmist Session #71 - More d'Amberville's

·         Waking after night’s sleep, Bjorn and Erijay see amber writing appear on the wall. It tells them that if they wish to escape from the chateau, they need to release Stephan d’Amberville from his tomb beyond space and time. The writing directs them to find the Gate of the Silver Keys.
·         Leaving the corpses of Riley and Guruuk behind, they break camp and head out to explore more of the mansion and seek the Gate. They meet a trio of adventurers (Sir Thomas Chap [cleric], Jason [magic user] and his dog, and Gort [dwarf]) who are likewise trapped within the mansion. They decide to join forces to force their way out.
·         Party goes to the room where purring was heard last time. Enter room, and find a dozen cat headed humanoids. The cat-things do not speak common, but one has a smattering of orc which allows Bjorn to communicate. The mage makes a great impression, and weird cat licking greetings are shared. Creatures agree to take the party to meet their leader, Richard Coeur de Lion.
·         Half of the cat-things lead party across hall, through a bedroom and then through a secret door into another bedroom. There they see an 8’ tall man with the head of a lion, dressed in golden armor and wearing golden crown.   The cat-things speak to him in their language, and he seems upset they have brought strangers to his secret room. He roars at the party, and all flee in abject fear. Except Jason, who beats a hasty retreat and arcane locks the secret door as he leaves. This traps the creatures inside.
·         A ruckus of hissing and yowling rises from behind the trapped door, which attracts the rest of the cat creatures. They rush over to help their trapped comrades. When the fear wears off the rest of the party, they sneak back into the cat-thing lair and pilfer a chest of gold. They transfer the contents to the secret safe in the room with Riley and Gurruk’s bodies, and then put the chest back in place so the cat-things don’t know they've been robbed.
·         Figuring it best to get away before the fur hits the fan, the party head west. They enter a room with the furniture all pushed aside and a boxing ring in the centre. Standing in the ring is a vaguely unnatural-looking man in boxing trunks. Sitting in a chair next to the ring is a man dressed in rich lace, silk and velvets, and wearing a hat flaunting a giant peacock feather. He is flanked by two armored guards, and hovering over a couple of chairs is a pair of unblinking red eyeballs.
·         The man, Jean Louis d’Amberville, challenges the party to select a champion to fight his boxer. And offers to match whatever wager they choose. After some discussion, Erijay takes the challenge and the party puts up a 1000gp bet. And hedge their bets by having Sir Thomas cast bless and Erijay, haste. They also try to bargain their way out of the chateau, something Jean-Louis cannot do. But he does promise to answer 2 questions about the chateau if they win.'s_Fashion_During_the_Renaissance
·        The elf easily knocks down her opponent after only two rounds. The strange man falls to the floor of the ring, and then dissolves in a burst of flame and smoke.
·         Jean-Louis honors the bet, and answers their questions:  Can Kern/Darnorth be brought back? (Yes, but it would require a power well beyond their own). Where is the Gate of the Silver Keys? (In the dungeon below).
·         They leave through a different door, and find themselves in a richly appointed entry hall. Outside, they can see the grey mist still encircles the mansion. As they prepare to leave, they are confronted by a man dressed in amber livery. A butler or footman of some sort. He challenges them, demanding to know who they are. He doesn’t seem to like their answers, as he raises his hands and fires a lightning bolt at the party. Melee and magic follow, and in the ensuring fight, Bjorn falls to another lightning bolt. Finally, their opponent is slain, and he too disappears in a burst of flame and smoke.
·         Bjorn is not quite dead yet, just lying mortally injured on deaths door (saved by Erijay jamming a potion of healing down the magic user’s throat). They carry him back to the room with Rylee and Gurruk’s mortal remains, carefully avoiding cat-things and boxing matches along the way.  
·         They discover that, when they lay the magic user out to recover, the protective amber dome appears and covers Bjorn. And heated discussion ensures. Do they stay with Bjorn for a few weeks until he recovers, trusting that their rations will last? Or do they leave him with food and water and hope he can recover unmolested, while the rest seek the Gate of the Silver Keys? Tune in next time …

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Westmist Session #70 - The Last Supper (For at Least a Few)

Once more in bullets:

  • Erijay joined the party after missing the original departure from New Breven.
  • Heading north from the fountain, the path curved around again, going from northwest to north, then to northeast. The party hears the chattering of squirrels, and spots a half dozen large amber squirrls dashing about the oak trees that tower above.
  • Gurruk noted they are not normal squirrels, a fact confirmed when Rylee sees one pluck an acorn, which promptly turns to gold!
  • Gurruk speaks to the squirrels. Finds that they do not leave this indoor forest, and the only thing they can turn to gold are the acorns. Squirrel agrees to come along with the party for a bit and act as a guide.
  • Meanwhile, Kern has visions of golden acorns stuck in his head. Borrows Darnorth's boots of levitation and sneaks back to the squirrels. Observed they are carrying the golden acorns to a hollow in one particular oak tree.
  • Kern levitates up to the hollow oak, and when the squirrels are off collecting, reaches his arm in and starts pulling out handfuls of acorns. Squirrels suddenly return; two start chattering at high volume and run off to the west, while three leap at the merchant and start biting and tearing at his nose and ears. Kern flails about, unable to knock them loose, while blood streams down his face.
  • Rest of party hears much cursing, screaming and chattering. Their squirrel guide gets upset and takes off, saying to Gurruk that the "Wild Hunt" will be awakened. At this point, a hill off to the west splits apart, and out pours five riders; one a goat headed man on a giant elk, two cat-like humanoids on sabre tooth tigers, and two fox-headed humanoids on dire wolves. These charge down onto the party, with lances leveled. 
  • While the rest of the party takes defensive positions, Darnorth stands out front to try reasoning with the Hunt. Says it's all a missunderstanding, Kern will put the acorns back. etc. 
  • The Wild Hunt continues to charge, but stops with the points of their lances inches from the dwarf. The leader, Andre-David d'Amberville demands that they leave the forest. They learn he made the forest and protects it, and the party is no longer welcome. The Hunt escorts the party to the western door leading into the rest of the chateau. 
  • Open door, enter a massive hallway with a red carpet over fine white marble floors. The walls and ceiling are covered in mirrors. The candelabras and chandeliers that line the passage suddenly light, sending out blinding flashes of light (and blinding Rylee and Gurruk). 
  • Party investigates first door which leads into a huge kitchen filled with ghostly hobgoblin servants preparing food. The servants ignore the party, and nothing else of interest is found.
  • Leave kitchen via a catwalk across the mirrored hallway, and enter a decayed banquet room.  A few moments after they enter, 2 dozen ghostly dinner guest enter through the south wall and seat themselves at a now visible ghostly table. There are place settings and name cards for each member of the party. Kern, Darnorth, Gurruk and Rylee and takes their places. Erijay and Bjorn decide to pass on supper.
  • The ghostly hobgoblins begin to carry in the courses:
    • Onion Soup and Amber Wine: Gurruk, Rylee and Darnorth all gain permanent new HPs. Kern does not partake.The wine cures Rylee and Gurruk's blindness.
    • Tossed Salad: All four try the salad, and gain and loose 1-2points from various ability scores.
    • Roast Beef, Rolls, Green Beans, Mushrooms in Wine Sauce, and Red Wine: Darnorth and Rylee try the bread: the dwarf no needs only half the usual nourishment, while the cleric now needs double. Several try the wine and Darnorth gets stinking drunk. All try the mushrooms, but Rylee fails a Save and rolls off his chair dead of toadstool poisoning. 
    • Apple Strudel & Brandy: Kern, Darnorth and Gurruk try both. When they try the brandy, the Kern and Darnorth find themselves now incorporeal, and are compelled to follow the rest of the guests when they leave the table and pass through the solid south wall. Kern and Darnorth have disappeared. 
  • Shocked by the loss of half the party, Erijay, Bjorn and Gurruk stumble out of the room. After a second look in the kitchen, they head down to hall, hoping to find something to help recover their fallen and phantasmal friends. Gurruk drags Rylees body with him.
  • Erijay listens at the first door, and hears deep purring. They move on to the next door.
  • There are no sounds behind the next door, so the party enters. The find a bedroom, and sitting on the bed are the ghostly figures of a man and a woman. These turn on the party and attack. Luckily the wraiths' energy drain has no impact thanks to Darnorths long ago wish, and they are quickly dispatched.
  • A search of the room find a safe hidden behind one of the mirrors. Erijay checks it out, and notices it's trapped. Gurruk in  a rage tries to break it open, hoping it contains something to help Rylee. Instead he releases a cloud of spores, which kill him. Once the spores settle, Bjorn and Erijay check out the safe and find it stuffed with 5000gp. They take what they can, then drag Gurruks body over with Rylees.
  • It getting late, the two remaining adventurers decide to settle down to rest for the night. When they do, a globe of amber light surrounds them. Deciding the day couldn't get much worst, the two largely ignore it and settle back to rest.