War Ruins Aeris

Session XVII

note: Characters increase to level 10 following this session.
note: If there is any discrepancy you notice in the negotiation with the dragon, let me know.

Cast:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Otherwise Occupied:
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)

Werewolf of Quisaadi

Cullen’s passionate dislike of Werewolves made him commit to ending the life of the imprisoned werewolf. With it trapped, it was only time for unlimited silver arrows to kill the beast.

New Toys

The group experimented with the enhancing pedestal, using Kel’s Holy Symbol, and the Ring and Circlet found below. All three gained enchantments.

Bargaining with a Dragon

Using the ring, the group explored the Dragon’s room with impunity. They found Osnappar inside, seeming dead on the ground with a large gash from the claw of a dragon. Kel could not find the remaining Crystal, but Cullen was able to detect an ancient magic aura beneath the dragon. He also discerned that the dragon’s circle of sustenance had been damaged and was no longer active.

Cullen negotiated with the dragon using telepathy, since the Dragon seemed unable to speak Zinnaerin. The Dragon responded by calling him a “Child of Laban.” Similarly, later, he referred to Erythis as a “Child of Olam-Hi.”

Cullen offered to return and help the dragon escape if the dragon aided them in escaping the prison. The dragon wanted a valued companion of his to remain behind to ensure his return, but no trust could be established on this topic.

Cullen then offered the Amulet of Sustenance to accommodate for the broken ritual circle in the room, and the dragon agreed to this exchange. Cullen also offered to return still, and the dragon promised to teach him the ancient language if he was ever freed.

The group negotiated to give up all their gold in exchange for a magic item from the dragon’s small horde, and agreed to leave the prison door open in exchange for another. Then most of the group left to pack up everything and gather up the remaining thieves/thugs. Kel remained behind and the Dragon snuck up to the door and stuck its head out, surprising Kel. The dragon began to speak to Kel in Quisaadi (surprising both he and Wil, who also remained). The dragon pressed about what intentions Kel had regarding the door, and Kel responding with imprecise answers. When the dragon moved more into the doorway (and thus blocking vision of the rest of the room, Kel triggered the mechanism to close the door, fearing that Osnappar was really still alive.

The dragon fought with the door and received a few blows from Kel, Wil, and Muy, and responded only to the ranged attack from Erythis, in spite of many people provoking him as they ran by. The group watched as the dragon eventually won, and broke the door.

The dragon stuck its head out later that night and called for the “Child of Laban” to come closer. Cullen kept his distance, but approached a little. Cullen reiterated his promise to return.

The group rested one more day, to recover the power of the ring, and then after allowing everyone to escape through the beam of light, Kel returned and using the ring, he removed the crystals from the doorway, blocking entrance to the “portal” out of the prison.

Another Place

The group found themselves in a similar room, suffering a horrible drain from the process of moving. (up to 3 surges) The room looked the same, but the crystals were not in the platform and a physical doorway led out into a grand hallway. That hallway was lightly coated with white sand, and the doors at its end led out to a great white sand desert. Looking about they could see nothing in any direction.

Cullen identified the place as the great desert of Indril.

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Session XVI

_Note: I missed at least 1 session in which the group made a cursory survey of the remaining rooms and fought the “necromancer” Osnappar who fled into the room with the Dragon.

Cast:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Otherwise Occupied:
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)

Taking Names

Cullen noted the first word of the announcement for each room. These are those words:

Dragon – “Leviathan”
Osnappar – “Osnappar”
Undead – “Lo-Hamaetah”
Child – “Walad”
Realty Bender – “Maemeer”
Mimic – “Namor”
Shadow – “Natzael”
Ice Creature – “Ruach”

(Previously Erythis had identified the frequent occurrence of the word, “harag”)

Thawing

The group smashed and melted the remaining ice in the Spirit of Winter’s cell, taking a great deal of time, but finding nothing new.

Gazebo

The group killed the gargantuan mimic posing as a garden with a gazebo. Finding inside of it a level 6 magic item (chosen as armbands of archery).

Reality Bender

The other tentacle beast was taken it, which turned out to have the ability to shape reality to its needs. It created a tesseract, trapping the characters and splitting the group, and then attacking them individually. Nothing else was found in this room.

The Chest Below

The group gathered the resources from the chest of the thugs/thieves below: 300 gp and a distinctive circlet and a ring inscribed with the word, “Balance” in elven (neither magical).

Going Forward

The group discussed the what remained, since no final crystal was found:

- Kill the Werewolf (trapped below)
- The Spirit of Winter (trapped below)
- The Chamber with the Child & Asp
- The Dragon and the “Necromancer”

Of these, Cullen wanted strongly to kill the Werewolf, and the group determined that the crystal was almost certainly in the cell with the Dragon and Osnappar.

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Session XIV

Note: 1 Retro active decision, see the last line of this post

Cast:
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Otherwise Occupied:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)

Decisions

The group faced the second floor of the Prison: a long hallway, over 200 feet long, four doors on either side, and one at the end. Being informed about which room supposedly contained a dragon, they immediately concluded that this room would be avoided. Seeking the exit, they assumed the door at the end of the hall was most logical.

A Pedestal and a Wall

The room at the end of the hall contained a pedestal with 3 slots for 1-inch crystals, at the base of which were the shards of a 1-inch green crystal. On the wall behind it, were two columns of 3 slots each for half-inch crystals, separated by a width of about 8 feet. On top of the pedestal was a folded cloth which turned out to be the Mantle of Elijah.

Immediately the group chose to try filling the 6 half-inch slots with red crystals, which opened a portal in the wall into a large octagonal room, leading to a pointed ceiling, 90 feet above. At the center of the room is a large platform about a foot above the ground with slots for 3 2-inch crystals on its surface.

Only having 2 1-inch crystals and 2 2-inch crystals, the group decided to explore the other rooms.

A Child

The first room was 50’ by 50’ with a circle of ancient writing at the center. In the corner of the room sat a small boy petting an asp. Cullen discerned that the circle possessed an ancient magical aura, but there were no other auras present, so the boy was re-sealed in the room.

Undeath

The next door open contained a surprised humanoid creature wearing a red 1-inch crystal around its neck. Surprising the creature, Kel charged in and was followed by Wil. Erythis discerned the creature was undead. It possessed threatening reach with claws which grabbed. It made bite attacks which included flying movement, and it teleported frequently. It used a burst attack which sucked in the life around it. In never became “bloodied” and shortly after it was put down, there was a burst effect the cascaded outward until it sucked in life, which functioned through walls. The group could not see the creature, but suspected it healed (12 hps) from the effect)

Rest and Change

The group returned to the first floor to rest and found the dynamics had changed. The Ancient had come out from its corner and was lingering in the entrance/pit room. The leader of the thugs was acting like the ancients who were with “the” ancient, and the other thugs seemed tense with the arrangement. The group however did not talk to or engage them in any way.

Checking the first floor, they found it other wise the same.

The group took an extended rest in the in the room with the fruit trees and decided they would experiment with the pedestal and the 1-inch crystals, now that they possessed 3, and then would return a fight the ancient. (because I didn’t have the stats for that fight with me)

Crystals

The group returned to the pedestal with 3 1-inch crystals, 2 red and 1 yellow. They learned that any combination of crystals produced a white light above the pedestal. They also tried the following:

YRR with mundane gloves on pedestal – no effect
YRR with a half-inch red crystal – Crytsal exploded (2d6 damage)
RRY Detected as stronger ancient magic than YRR
RRY with Wil’s Sword, inherited from his father – increased its enchantment by 2
RRY with Muy’s Staf, ____ – increase the enhancement by 2
YRR with Kel’s Spear, acquired through trial – new property providing extra actions
RYR with Erythis’s Bow, given to her by her mentor – gained critical related properties
RRY with (non-ancient) Magic Armor, found in the temple – no effect
RRY with Erythis’s “spirit” stone – gained a property (ret-conned, from my in game ruling)

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Session XIII

Cast:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Otherwise Occupied:
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)

Going Up

The group took the head of the Arborean “wizard” to the humans and showed the proof of their accomplishment. With some negotiation they gained the aid of three of their group (2 minions and an archer), information about what they learned of the next floor, merely the presence of a dragon, which caused them to flee after loosing some of their group, and their protection over the entrance pit.

The group tackled the stairs up, combating a harpy and two gargoyles with the faces of ancients. Bypassing the traps, they made their way to the upper floor.

Floor 2

The doors to the second floor open into a dull gray hallway. At the end, a solid wall, somewhat different from the other walls and a crystalline shaped indentation in the side wall. Placing a half-inch red crystal into the slot, the wall slid open (up and down). Removing the crystal caused the door to close suddenly. Inside was long hallway with similar doors along it’s sides.

Placing a crystal into one of these, the group heard words spoken in the language of the ancients and learned from the humans with them that they could prevent the door from opening by removing the crystal before the door was triggered.

Food Supply

Experimenting, the group found that the long blue crystal caused the fruit to grow faster in the way the arboreans were using it. They let the humans know that they could ensure the provision of food, provided they could get back down, thus dissuading them from any thoughts of trapping them on the second floor.

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Session XII

Cast:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Otherwise Occupied:
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)

Ancient Library

Kel final encountered a match for his thieving abilities in a couple of trapped doors. The triggering effects lowered defenses. The first room was an ancient library, and something about the shelves called to the characters, drawing their attention, slowing them down. The room also contained a large statue of an ancient, tall, slender and regal. There were also living ancients in the room who had somehow survived all this time. They were hunched, however, and did not speak, not like the two, regal statues you have seen. These attacked immediately, using psychic weapons.

After their defeat, the group searched the room and rested. Six books in all were found. Cullen was able to determine that one possessed recipes of some sort. From this he learned to identify the imperative verb form, allowing his to notice that another of the books was filled with imperatives, and this also allowed him to learn the negation of imperatives, also heavily present in that book. All of the rest of the books in the library were blank (save the four).

A Handy Haversack was also found, and a circlet on the statue which possessed ancient magic. Cullen was able to identify it, but its function was not clear.

Spend a Healing Surge and you will be able to see something “other” when you perform the minor action to perceive your surroundings. Will tried this and reported that everything appeared to have an oily color residue around it when using it.

Then the group proceeded to the next room, encountering and triggering two traps. Here they encountered four more ancients, one stood upright and spoke. All of the ancient encountered were wearing purple lined with silver. In the course of conversation, The speaker seemed to imply that the defenses of the last few rooms were his, and the group interpreted this to mean he was a necromancer.

Cullen asked what his people were called, and after thinking, he said, "I guess you could call us “gibor’”." Asked for his name, he answered, “Os’nappar.” (’ = accent)

Cullen made a deal with the ancient, that the group would return if they found the way out and help him to leave, in exchange for knowledge. The ancient gave 4 red crystals, half an inch in length to help the group. He told them they would work like keys, and told the group that the next floor up possessed things more powerful then he dared mettle with. When pressed he did not have the word in this language, but described, “creatures of scale and wing.” He also told Wil, when he tried to use the circlet, that he would not see any of that in here. The ancient was not very forth coming and the group suspects that he is one of the prisoners once held here.

Departing from the room, they spent several hours dismembering and decapitating all of the dead bodies on the floor, for fear the ancient would rebuild his defenses. Wil then tried to contact his Vile Servant with questions, but nothing happened. Wil suggested that this meant they were on another plane.

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Swssion XI

Cast:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)

Otherwise Occupied:
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Arachnids and Pyros

The group tackled two more areas of the prison. North of the pit room was the prison opened to a forest of fruit trees with open sky above, which turned out to be an illusion. At the center of a clearing were four plinths and a square stone at its center. On the stone was a ritual circle written in the plant language and above it a dark blue crystal floated.

Exploring the room, the group was attacked by more arboreans as well as ettercaps, spider beings. After a fairly easy victory (with 6? critical hits), Kel dismantled the trap on the stone and retrieved a two-inch dark blue crystal.

North of the hedge room, was a room charged with carbon from something burning. Opening the doors to the adjoining room with a trap which Kel dismantled, the group encountered large curtains coated with a gel like substance. The curtains seemed to be made from patchwork from the clothing of past victims of the prison.

Beyond the curtain were more curtains of the same material, coated in the same way, forming a maze of sorts. Soon after entering, one curtain unexpectedly burst into flames, injuring Kel. Behind it stood an undead creature with fire burning in its hands. The creature then fled through the curtains. Kel then moved through the maze as fast as he could, mapping the area and shoving the undead he found toward the entrance where the rest of the group was. After nearly half the curtains had gone up in flame, injuring many, the group managed to defeat the four undead.

Only one path remains for the group on this floor, going further north.

Next week is a short week, so remember we’ll start about 11:00 and try to get through two rooms if possible, maybe only one. We’ll need 1-2 sessions more to complete the level after next week.

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Session X

Cast:
Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)
Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

Otherwise Occupied:
None

Circumventing

After nearly dying at the hands of the Shaman and his plant terror, the group escaped and rested in order to be completely healed. But them chose to circle around and attack from the room’s other entrance.

Entering into the other hedge room, they found more of the scythe and short sword wielding plant creatures, but also a large dire bore and a hag, disguising itself as a hostage. Though they presented a small challenge, the group defeated them, save for the sword-wielder, who escaped invisible into the next room.

With the options of going through doors to the north or following the invisible swordsman west, they made their pursuit after about 15 minutes. In the next room, they found a deep bit, the source of the plant’s dirt for growing. Here they fought with a Satyr, 3 Shambling Mounds, and 2 plant creatures.

Checking the adjoining room, Wil found 500 gp in with the bones of bodies that have nourished the soil, among other mundane equipment.

Left with a choice of north or south, the group took an extended rest and moved south to take on the Shaman again. Kel, after preparations, went around to the previous entrance.

Combating the Shaman

With sufficient preparation, the group faced little challenge taking on the Shaman, his bear, and the plant terror.

Searching the area and the two adjoining rooms, the group found the following:

  • A 1-inch long yellow gem on the body of the shaman
  • A book written in a plant language from the alter
  • 400 gp, 1 500 gp gem, and a 10th level neck item in one room
  • 400 gp and a 8th level armor in the other room.
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    Session IX

    (Reconstructed, so some details may be less than accurate, etc. – Feel Free to post comments about errors)

    Cast:
    Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
    Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
    Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
    Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
    Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

    Otherwise Occupied:
    Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
    Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)

    Storage Rooms

    The group followed the quickling into the next room and were confronted with the Large plant creature, a bear, and a plant creature with magic, in addition to the quickling. The room contained four monoliths and many trees.

    The group was forced to retreat and in the process managed to kill the quickling.

    In the process, the group learned the following about the defenses:

    The Trees attack (at start of your turn) any space within 2 of the trunks.
    The Plant Caster can cast Close Burst 5 effects, center on himself or any of the monoliths.
    The Plant Caster has an Aura 5, 5 Poison damage.
    The Plant Caster one attack causes poison damage and daze.
    The Large Plant has threatening reach and can slide.
    The Large Plant seems to heal when he shifts.
    The Large Plant has aura 1, difficult terrain.

    The group is hold up in the color-lock door room.

    No session this Sunday (thus why I posted the combat info).

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    Session VIII

    (Reconstructed, so some details may be less than accurate, etc. – Feel Free to post comments about errors)

    Cast:
    Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
    Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
    Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
    Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
    Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
    Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

    Otherwise Occupied:
    Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)

    Fortified

    The group returned to the humans and found them barricaded in, claiming that the group had disrupted the system in the prison.

    Room 7

    The group tackled the southern hedge room, fighting plant creatures and quicklings, becoming divided by the vines that slow. One quickling escaped and have 15 minutes of rest, they decided to pursue.

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    Session VII

    (Reconstructed, so some details may be less than accurate, etc. – Feel Free to post comments about errors)

    Cast:
    Cullen – Kalashtar Bard – (Steve)
    Erithys – Elven Ranger – (Gretchen)
    Ignavus – Human Cleric – (Chris)
    Kel’saris – Elven Ranger – (Ryan)
    Landen – Elven Sorcerer – (Scott)
    Muy Serio – Bullywug Monk – (Jason)
    Wil – Half-Elven Blackguard – (Dustin)

    Otherwise Occupied:
    ?

    Room 5

    The group went to one of the hedge rooms and tried to negotiate, but they lied about not having crystals.

    Room 6

    The group took the stairs down and fought in the water systems against lizard creatures. They found a room with floating crystals like those that control the prison cells. They found a room with drag marks that lead to a secret room with a statue of what seems to be one of the ancient humanoids. The statue wore an amulet and was trapped. When Kel tried to disarm it, he triggered the trap and became infected. He then succeeded and recovered the amulet.

    The group traded the bodies for water rights and the crystals the humans had.

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