Nov 16, 2007

GS: Out of Bounds - Part 2

... so the party was able to follow the track marks deeper into the forest. They tethered their horse and wagon before venturing further. After a short trip, the found the tracks going into thick overgrowth.

Clearing away the camouflage, they found the remains of what looked like part of an old room built into the hillside. Inside was a heavy, engraved door (that soon turned out to be a false door) and statues on either wall. The door showed what looked like a skeletal man cradling a sick and dying man while feeding him some liquid. It was clear from the engraving that the skeletal figure was not causing, but trying to easy the dying man's pain. The statues on one side appeared to be the skeletal man, while the opposite statue looked like the dying man.

After searching the room and trying to figure out where the tracks had gone, Hunter got the smart idea to pour liquid down the throat of the statue representing the dying man. The liquid affected a buoyant mechanism in the statue and released the lock on the hidden passage way.

The party moved in cautiously down the underground path and soon found themselves in a room with a bunch of kobolds. Most of them were busy playing a game with crude dice, while only one stood alert. Everyone rushed in and engaged the kobolds before they had a chance to arm themselves and organize their attacks. Many of them were dispatched quickly, but one managed to slip out an exit on the far side of the room. The party soon followed but there was no sign of him.

They continued down the hall and came across a statue, a shrine actually. Unfortunately there was no one in the party familiar enough with the various religions to determine who or what this represented. As they moved toward the next room, the escaping kobold tried to attack the party again on the stairs, where they had to travel single file and seemed a bit more vulnerable. This was not the case and he soon broke off his attack and ran away a second time.

The next room was very large, but was actually divided in two by a huge pile of debris piled in the middle like a great wall. The party was able to notice a small gap in the wall at one end, while Hunter was able to slowly and quietly climb the mound to get a look at the other side.

In the other half of the room were a bunch of kobolds drinking and throwing daggers into the corpse of a human male as target practice. Theo was able to sneak in a attack one of the kobolds before he was noticed, while Hunter used his position to rain arrows down and Arti wielded arcane magic to deadly effect. In short order all the kobolds in this room were as dead as the corpse they had been defiling minutes before.

Exploring further into the underground lair, they ran across a dire weasel and his kobold owner. The strange thing was that the weasel had the unusual ability to breath a cone of rocks and pebbles as a short range attack. Fortunately the party quickly dispatched the weasel and it's kobold master with little injury to themselves.

Further in the lair, they found a collection of jail cells, and at the far end of the hall, a female kobold, clad in robes, fixing a stew. The kobold turned out to wield divine magical power and attempted to use it against the party. Hunter was in the front line of the battle and along with Theo and Arti stopped her before she could do much harm. A search of her body revealed the keys to the other jail cells in the hallway.

In one cell the party found a small gaggle of strange dog-rat looking creatures (this wasn't some twisted magic experiment, but a unique creature to the Dragonlance setting that's more familiar to underground races, hence the reason the PCs didn't recognize them). The party chose to leave them in their breeding cage and checked the other cells. One was empty, one had two kobold prisoners. They were in tatters and malnourished, clearly no threat to anyone. Hunter wanted to release them, and everyone else agreed. Once freed, the kobolds began scrounging for food from the nearby kitchen. The last cell contained another prisoner, but this one was a goblin. He was in better shape than the kobolds, and once freed, seemed to want to follow the party. They gave him a crude dagger they picked up earlier let him follow along. Since he didn't speak the common tongue, communication was crude at best.

After looking in the cells, everyone proceeded down the new corridor near the kitchen. This path was strange in that there was little evidence of traffic in this area, as if the kobolds avoided the whole area. At the end of the corridor, the party found a strange room full of statues. Each held a different weapon in it's hand and while the statues were on opposite sides of the room, none of them actually faced each other. Also strange was that the heads of the statues could be rotated, but that was all. Everyone thought there was some trick or puzzle to the statues, but after some time they gave up and used this undisturbed area as a safe spot to rest, heal and regain spells...