Day 23 - Onward to Lord Randal Morns

Ghoul

We spend our last night at the Inn stocking up on Holy Water and other such 'Undead-Unfriendly' accoutrements then get some rest.

Day 23 - Onward to Lord Randal Morns

We get up about 9:00am have a nice breakfast and ask Bertrand to scry the clearing for us. It looks safe so off we go... We get to the clearing and while we're still on Bertrand's side, Yuna casts Fly and Stone Skin and a bunch of other good stuff on us all and I go out to check the clearing for traps. Again it's all clear.... Norton checks and his sigil has been set off, though he can't tell when or by what. So... once we're all visible again, we fly, we pass Lord Randal Morns village and continue past the farms until we arrive at the graveyard.

Yuna and I settle on the roof of the tumbling Mausoleum while Banipal, Rumbles and Damir start ripping the roof tiles off the other....what a racket they do make. When they expose the stone roof, Norton traces the outline of the rooms with his stone shape - he takes it to pieces, collapsing the roof and cutting out the walls, flooding the inside with sunlight - that'll put a crimp in the Vampires.

When the dust settles Banipal wades through the debris to find the sarcophagi so he can stake the suckers and take their heads (NOTE TO SELF - I know I’ve asked before, but is he REALLY a monk??)

The female’s sarcophagus is crushed... the male’s is buried..... The party dig down to the buried one and Banipal is on the verge of flinging it open when Norton stops him... the Dwarf digs about in the rubble, pulls up a satisfactory brick (Don't ask me - I've no idea) he then casts a Consecrate spell on it - Gee a Holy brick!! Now THAT IS something you don't see everyday.

He stands close by and lets the Monk open it. It's empty - absolutely nothing in it - even from here I can lip-read Banipals muttered "Bugger!".

In response to something the Monk says they all head off into another room, I watch as they rummage about in the rubble wondering for a moment what they're doing. They stop and seem to be uncovering something. From here it looks like a stone slab. They clear it off and before I can shout "Don't!" Banipal opens it.

A cloud of green gas envelopes them but before I act they come staggering out, Banipal's carrying Norton who looks pretty crappy! He fumbles about in his pack and sculls a potion to Neutralise Poison, after which he seems much better. He casts some Restore spells on Damir and Rumbles and then checks the emanations from the opening they've exposed.

There's something STRONGLY evil down there... Really!! Fancy that. Despite what just happened, the fools look like they're about to go straight down the hole without me…

"Hey! Idiots!...want to take your trap detector???" I yell.

"If you want..." is Banipal's laconic reply.

Damir and Rumbles however give an emphatic "Yes!"

The opening is only about two and a half feet wide with stairs leading down into darkness - which isn't a problem for me. I check for traps - the first ten feet are clear then the stairs do a right angle turn and continue - they appear to be clear of traps and nothing falls on my head or shoots out of the walls as I pass.

I reach the bottom and look around; there's a narrow corridor travelling another ten feet and ending in a blank wall - to my left the wall ends at an opening into darkness. I continue looking around and spot a portcullis-thingy over my head - it looks like it's meant to drop and I can't find the trigger so I spike it open, as I'm doing that a lightning bolt flashes down - I fling myself aside and it misses.

I finish spiking the portcullis and turn just as something invisible flashes past my ear. I look around expecting to find a quarrel embedded in the wall behind me, but there's nothing there. I call the others down the stairs and tell them to wait while I check the room for traps.

As I head down the corridor another invisible something stirs the air near me ear as it passes... again it misses and I spin round to find nothing's there! I check all round the opening and the doorway - no traps.

As I straighten something invisible flashes past AGAIN.... this is getting annoying - it misses again, though that's hardly surprising. Whatever it is, it hits like a blind halfling. Ignoring it, I check the room. It's quite large - about twenty feet by fourteen feet with a stone sarcophagus.

At either end stand pedestals with a fat unlit candles. I turn back to get the rest of the party and something hits me in the back - it felt like a claw.... I chuck a chalk bomb where I think it is - the chalk settles and shows footprints. "There!" I yell, pointing.

Damir attacks and hits followed closely by Banipal who pummels it. Rumbles takes a swing and misses completely! Mercy!!! I hack it and hit but only once and without any poison - no use wasting poison on undead! Banipal leaps forward again and whacks it some more and Damir hits again...

If we could see this thing it would probably be looking pretty sick by now. Just as I'm thinking this, there's a puff of chalk dust air as it falls. Damir and Rumbles hack its head off - it's a messy business and takes a few goes as the wretched thing is still invisible.

When they've stopped waiving their swords around, Banipal leaps on the invisible undead and strips its body by feel alone... I'm feeling like I've had enough for a while and start to head back to Yuna for a cup of tea... As I'm leaving Damir calls me back to check the sarcophagus inside and out; AND could I check for secret doors; AND could I check the plinth for traps...

I quarter the room searching for traps in ten foot sections and don't find any... Banipal has finished his looting and come up with Bracers; a Ring; a Wand and a Cloak - Yuna confirms they're all magic.

I checked the sarcophagus - no traps; same with the plinth - I was just finishing my search for secret doors when I heard something that froze me in mid-move. Damir had been fiddling around with the plinth and a section shifted under his hand with an audible click. He's getting better at finding traps! I didn't need to warn him not to move while I herded everyone out of the room and went to disable it. It seems to have been the 'stash' and had 4,850SP; 9,850GP: a garnet ring (worth 140GP) and an emerald (800GP).

Having totally trashed the Mausoleum, we proceed up the path to the gates into the mountain. Rumbles - for some reason known best unto himself - decides to batter them with his body till they open but after three tries and a sore shoulder Damir talks him into stopping and we take the more sensible option of using Yuna and her Dimension Door to get us in (stuffing superfluous party members into Damir’s Bag of Holding).

It's dark and Norton casts a light spell - totally ruining my Dark-Vision. When my eyes re-adjust, I check the doors for traps - there aren't any so I unlock the door and pocket the padlock while Damir takes the chain...

Rumbles attacks the doors again and still they don't budge... "Try and slide them," suggests Banipal. Rumbles shrugs, tries and Lo! They open...

Having established that we can get out, we turn our attention to the five dead Drow lying further down the corridor. Rumbles is fairly disappointed that the bodies are a few weeks old and squishy... this means he can't use them as a meat shield - they're too floppy and bits keep falling off.

We take the side corridor rather than the main corridor straight ahead. It looks like a crypt but there’s no Sarcophagus. Banipal (my walking trap detector) decides to dance through the crypt - He's such a show off but it works - he dances into all the alcoves to ensure they're safe...

I REALLY like his version of detect traps - it's such a laugh. I check around the dead end and the alcoves for secret doors - no luck. Norton checks the stone work... he says its centuries old but probably not Dwarfish work, unlike the actual doors themselves which he says are splendid and obviously done by Dwarves.

We head back to the main corridor and start down - Banipal and I are in front and on foot - the rest of the rabble are flying behind us. They're chickens - but safe chickens. The corridor takes a right angle turn - in the far wall is a door - it's wooden and pretty scuffed... I check it for traps - it's clear... Banipal continues to the end of the corridor - the walls have carved niches, each holding a mummified body - like a catacomb.

The corridor continues for another thirty feet, there's another door in the opposite wall AND it's plastered over - I check it and find a magical trap...

Yuna checks the magic, she says it's very strong and from the school of Necromancy - we leave it for the time being and continue investigating. The corridor ends in stairs leading down. We go back to the first door which Banipal opens... it leads into another corridor - blithely Banipal starts down and triggers the trap.... I see a sigil appear on the floor under his feet and before I can shout a warning, two huge golden lions appear; they roar and leap to attack the Monk.

Banipal and I attack... I slice into one of them and Banipal attacks the other, stunning it, and then beating it to a pulp while it's down. Rumbles flies over us and attacks the Lion I'm fighting. He chops it in two, swings and cleaves the other Lion, which is stunned... That too dies and they blink out of existence.

Rumbles is flying round the room desperately looking for something else to attack.

There are ten sarcophagus, all closed. We open one - desecrate the dead is a favoured game amongst the rabble I travel with - there's a desiccated corpse, dressed finely though the clothing is decayed. It's wearing a silver necklace set with moonstones (600gp) which Yuna says is not magical. The finding of jewellery has wetted Banipal's appetite and respect flies out the window as greed walks through the door - they open and loot ALL the coffins, finding a gold ring with black pearl (900gp), and a lot of nothing till they get to a sarcophagus with a corpse dressed in what looks like Druidical robes and buried with a short spear (Evocation school of magic), a wand (Neutralise something) and a golden torc (350GP) They find no further loot - and believe me... they checked VERY thoroughly.

After the looting is over, we head back to the main corridor and pause outside the plastered room for a brief debate. I don't think opening it is a brilliant idea (not after having let the Dragon-Kin out of that sealed room in the Frost Giants lair) so we head down the stairs instead.

They lead down thirty feet into a roughly hewn cavern with more carved niches in the walls filled with more wrapped and desiccated corpses... there are bits of bone sticking through the wrappings and yellow mould everywhere - we take to the air to avoid the mould...

The room leads to a short corridor which opens into another cavern like the one we just left. There's a twenty foot high marble statue in the centre of the room that looks like some sort of alien insect sort of thing with boggly eyes and mandibles. Again there are niches in the walls with the bodies and yellow mould.

We get Yuna to check for magic before we go in - she detects emanations from the statue... I fly through the room to the exit - it leads out into a corridor (again).

The others catch up and Banipal takes the lead again - Good choice! Suddenly a bunch of sticky tentacles shoot out of nowhere (a bloody Roper - I haven't come across one of those for yonks). He weaves and dodges but one hits and wraps round him, dragging him across the corridor...

Before I shout a warning, another bunch of tentacles come flailing at me, I try and twist out of the way but one hits and pulls me in too.

Damir comes leaping to the fore and has a hack at it and I chuck a flask of acid down its throat, unfortunately it doesn't do much damage and it still manages to have a go at Damir - it grabs him too.

Rumbles is trying to find a spot where he can hit the Roper but not us... before he is able to get into position Damir manages another whack which kills it stone dead.

We disentangle ourselves and continue. Trailing my hand along the wall as I go, I suddenly find an opening. It's concealed by an illusion of the unbroken wall!!

I stick my head through the illusion and see two huge many legged Praying Mantis-ish creatures - they see me and advance - rapidly. "Incoming!" I yell and get the hell out of the way.

One of the creatures pokes itself out into the corridor - it can't get out entirely but it does block the corridor. Banipal, Damir and Rumbles leap to attack it at the same time as I hear a noise behind me it's the other one.

There must be another way out of that room and it's managed to get behind me. It has a go at me and hits, trying to poison me - HA! Not a chance but I must remember to get the venom sacks when these things are dead - they might be useful.

I attack and slice into it with a plain blade and with poison. I hit it but it saves against being poisoned, which I guess is fair enough.

Norton casts a Searing Light at it doing a fair bit of damage. The rest of the party's busy attacking the one still blocking the corridor...

Rumbles stops it - decapitation does put a crimp in its attack.... One down; one to go.... Gosh ain't this fun??!!

I take the opportunity to tumble past and get behind it where it can't hit me and Norton casts another Searing Light which it hopefully doesn't like.

Banipal comes flying into the fray and thumps it repeatedly and stuns it... Whoo-hoo!

Damir steps up and really does some damage, hitting it three times at least - it's looking fairly wonky.

Rumbles leaps forward and finishes it off. I race in and cut out the venom sacks - I'll analyse them later and see if the poison's any good.

Meanwhile Banipal ventures into the cavern where we first spotted them; as before the walls have niches with mummified bodies. He slips into the room and moves cautiously around the wall, trailing his hand against the wall so he can find any illusions. Part way around his hand slides through - just like before. He sticks his head through and hears the sound of sobbing - there's a figure curled up crying.

Back in the corridor we notice Banipal's not back yet so Damir and Norton clamber over the body of the creature I'm dissecting and into the cavern... There's no sign of Banipal......Norton yells his name... no response.

Damir begins to carefully skirt the walls, feeling for an illusion-covered break and finds one. He reaches through and gropes about blindly - something touches his hand and he pulls back... there are sticky strands of web clinging to his fingers and his arm is jerked back into the illusion.

"Get me out!" he yells.

Norton races over and grabs him to drag him back out but he can't budge him so he casts a Flame Strike through the illusion and into an area they can't see. I've finished my venom collecting so Rumbles, Yuna and I step into the room to see Damir smouldering slightly and Norton stepping into what appears to be solid wall - he steps back out REAL fast, his beard smoking.

"It's wall to wall burning web in there!" he says slapping himself to put out the spot fires on his person.

We wait for a bit and stick my head through - it's still burning though the area around this entrance has died down a bit, the rest of the cavern is still full of smoke and flame.

Norton tries a Locate Object and says that Banipal is about sixty feet away... Yuna tries to scry him out but she can only see swirling smoke - No Monk!! If it wasn't Banipal I'd be worried about him.

Damir goes in - the area just inside is burned out but all he can see is swirling black smoke and multiple areas of raging inferno - no sign of our errant Monk.

I trail around the rest of the cavern to see if there are any other exits. There aren't. While I've been doing that Rumbles has gone through the illusion - there's a wall of flame across the room and the smoke is blinding - he can't see any way to get through.

Just as he's about to leave, Banipal’s voice comes from the smoke "There's an invisible Drow Magic user somewhere - probably heading for the exit!"

Rumbles sticks his head back into the room and relays Banipal’s message.

"Seeing there's nothing useful we can do from this end, let's go back to the main corridor and trace it round. That other creature got out somehow and tried coming up behind us, so maybe there's a back door!" I suggest - the others agree.

I head off at a trot, leaving the rest to guard the exit. I travel down the corridor for a while, quietly minding my own business when something takes a swipe at me from behind - it missed and I spin to face a human male who looks VERY surprised to see me or perhaps just surprised that I'm still alive!!

I attack, hitting it palpably and with poison and... It vanishes... That REALLY pisses me off!

I head back and fill the others in on what happened - nothing has stirred at their end so they come back with me - we get to where I fought the wimp - there's a bit of a blood trail but it just vanishes. My guess is that it teleported. We continue till we come to a T-intersection, take a guess at the right direction - left - and head down the stem of the 'T'.

Meanwhile back to Banipal - having left him poking his head into the next cavern he hears the sound of sobbing and sees a figure curled up crying at the back of the cave...

"Female sympathy trap" were his own words. He unfortunately doesn't see the giant spider clinging to the wall over his head.

It is therefore quite possible that the spider is surprised when Banipal laughingly dodges the Web it casts. Flames erupt into the room igniting the Web (That'll be Norton's Flame Strike)

The room is in chaos around him but our intrepid Monk continues to ignore everything and races forward to punch the crying woman on the nose - He cries, "Ha! Ha!" and stuns her.

The spider - obviously a slow learner - races across the ceiling and tries Webbing him again. He flies up and hits it! It makes a feeble attempt to bite him and misses.

While he's been occupied, the female - a Drow - has woken up and slams him with her wand of Magic Missiles... Ouch! Cunningly Banipal ignores it and finishes beating the spider to a bloody pulp.

As it drops to the floor, dead, she hits him with another blast and he drops down to hide in the smoke. She blindly throws Webs into the smoke - she misses; misses again and... misses. Banipal scoffs an Invisibility potion and sneaks up behind her and - of course, just as he's about to hit her, she vanishes... It's so very frustrating.

Obviously there's another way out; he thinks to himself as he looks for another entrance.

Ta Dah! he finds it in the wall near where she vanished.

It opens out into a narrow corridor which runs about 20 feet into another room. He races down the corridor where, without warning, three Drow loom out of the dark and three lightning bolts flash toward him. With superb reflexes Banipal dodges the bolts and throws himself at them.

He stuns the one in the middle - why do people always underestimate unarmoured, weapon-less attackers. Another two Drow appear; again out of nowhere - it's an annoying habit.

One casts an Ice Storm which envelopes Banipal, the stunned Drow and the its caster. Crossbow bolts whine out from the other Drow - they all miss of course. For once our Monk makes a sensible choice and retreats, scoffing a potion of Gaseous Form and wafts back to the cavern he started from. He finds a safe place - return to solid form and scoffs down a few potions of Healing.

We travel 50 feet down to a cavern - the reek of death hangs in the door. There are piles of gear around the room - "I'm not going in there! It stinks!" I say, stopping at the entrance.

Yuna comes up and has a look into the room with her Detect Magic - there are five distinct magic auras from various spots in the room. I head across to the exit I think is the one we need, checking for traps as I go... I get 40 feet into the room and 4 skeletons appear as if by magic (That's intentional sarcasm!!)

Norton casts Rebuke Dead and the Skeletons turn to dust. Damir steps into the room to the right and starts to trail his hand around the wall... I do the same from the other side.

We're happily minding our own business when 4 ghouls appear - I go to tumble past the two attacking and as I leap I realise I still have Yuna's spell of overland flying - I can fly!!! (and I do - up out of their reach)

Rumbles casts a Rebuke Dead spell - I never knew he could do that!! They all explode! Cool!

I step back into the shadows in the alcove. Yuna's looking round and by her expression she can't see anything odd though she mutters about someone casting a Fear spell... I must be out of range! I look around the room - there's no one to be seen... well no one other than the riff-raff I travel with. I feel about the alcove to see if there's an exit.

Suddenly Rumbles screams and races from the room barging through anyone in his way. As he hurdles Norton, the Dwarf casts Remove Fear - at the same time Damir yells "Trix! Over here!"

I look to see his arm sticking through the wall - he's found the door; bless his cotton socks. He feels something swipe at him - it misses. I head over to join him.

Having healed himself, Banipal applies stone salve to himself, sets fire to the web and settles down to wait till it burns out. Once it's down to a smouldering gooey mess, he runs to the end of the corridor at top speed, through the swathes of still burning web and straight into the room at the end, bringing him right back where he started from; the room with the four Drow - he races and stops right in front of them.

Funnily enough the Drow attack - it's silly really - none of them manage to hit him - not even the one who tries to Web him. Banipal’s turn now - he smashes into the Drow directly in front of him and knocks it senseless - teeth fly!

Another Drow casts Searing Light but the Web blocks it's effects. The Drow with the rapier thrusts and misses... again (do they never learn??)

Searing light comes from another and missed again.... How tedious.

Banipal flies into his opponent again, he falls to the floor - dead and the other runs away. He advanced against the female Drow who'd cast the Web previously, says "Go on! Magic Missile me..." and punches her.

She obliges and fires off her wand and Magic Missiles him - he scoffs. One of the remaining Drow casts a Searing Light and totally goes wild - it hits the wall harmlessly - the other has a go and... guess what - misses. Fancy!

Banipal attacks again and stuns his opponent. He hits again... she's staggering but not quite down... she turns and flees and Banipal lets her go.

Only one left... Banipal advances with another flurry of blows, surprisingly he manages to miss quite a bit before he finally hits her... she steps back, casts a spell and vanished.

Banipal takes a step forward and has a go... you never know! Banipal takes off

Damir is fighting mad now - he tears off one of his Fireball beads and hurls it into the room.

Unfortunately he misses the small invisible opening and the bead hits the wall, and then explodes... Fortunately both Damir and I manage to throw ourselves to one side and avoid the blast...

I'm starting to wonder whether he's really trying to kill me!

I feel around where the opening is and stick my hand in. Something bites me and before I can say 'Bugger!' I'm paralysed - it pulls me into the room... it appears to be a female Drow.

Damir steps through after me and attacks - he hits it. Next thing a fireball follows him through - I love travelling with this party.

Norton casts Daylight on a pebble and chucks it into the alcove. Rumbles leaps into the alcove, swings wildly and decapitates it. The body topples and as it falls it changes - apparently it's a Maurezhi... it looks like a Ghould but it isn't... Hhhhmmmmm

Great! I'm still paralysed.... Norton rustles up a Remove Paralysis spell and restores me.

While he's doing this, Yuna has a poke round those piles of gear that had a magic aura.

After Norton's healed me I head on over to check for traps before anyone goes digging around.

Back to The Inn of the Far Shore.


Stupid things we've overheard...

No, I'm sure there's some stipulation that says a disintegrate spell won't work if the spellcaster casts it on himself. Here, I'll prove it.

Random Quote

Look, I am getting old. This morning I was chasing my secretary to do her on the table and she said: "Prime Minister we only did it two hours ago." So you see my memory is going.