Return to the Known Lands Sessions # 3 and #4 – Not Quite a TPK

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Dates: 9/12/20, 9/20/20, 9/27/20

PCs:
Brother Berthold (Cleric Ll – RIP killed by flying demon)
Sporith the Gambler (MU Ll – RIP killed by Osan’s arrow)
Osan (Elf F/MU L1/1)

Hirelings:

Caris (Sellsword – RIP killed by an Orcish arrow)

NPCs:

Blunt, (Rowboat ferryman – RIP killed by a wild boar)

Links to Previous Sessions

LL Notes:

This was an entertaining session featuring an NPC who was killed, brought back as undead and killed again, all within a few rounds. It was also nearly a TPK – the surviving PC, Osan, had a few lucky rolls near the end that saved him.

Session Notes:

The party enlisted the aid of Blunt to return upriver to the dungeon the next next day. They made the trip in Blunt’s rowboat without incident, but upon arriving at the beach near the dungeon entrance, they were surprised by an Orc with a bow, who took pot shots at them from shore. The Orc was wounded by Osan’s careful aim with his bow, but not before Caris was slain, an Orcish arrow through his neck.

Sporith commanded Blunt to row towards the island, even as he dug out his scroll of ‘animate dead’. As the boat pulled ashore, Caris the zombie arose! Caris’s tenure as an undead minion was short-lived, however, as another Orcish arrow ended his un-life. Osan finally killed the Orc with another well-placed arrow, but even as the Orc fell, five more Orcs appeared on the beach!

To make matters worse, the party, now on the island, was attacked by an angry warthog, who charged at them through the underbrush, goring and killing Blunt, and wounding Berthold. Sporith decided he had had enough of the Orcs and cast sleep, putting all of them into an enchanted slumber. Meanwhile, Osan and Berthold ganged up on the warthog, killing him. All was finally quiet. The party quickly rowed across the river to the beach, where they searched and killed the sleeping Orcs.

The island the party was on was not large, and was wooded with rocky soil. They did a loop around the island, returning to the southern tip, where Osan’s Elvish senses detected something amiss with an oak tree by the shore. A careful of the tree examination revealed a secret door in the trunk. The door opened into a hollow, with a winding stair made of rough stone headed down. Sporith lit a torch, and the party descended.

The stairs opened into a stone chamber, with a wooden door on the opposite wall. Berthold opened the door, and could see they were looking over a well-lit room. In front of them was a balcony, with stairs down to the room proper. Berthold could see two people talking in front of a large set of double doors. As he stepped out onto the balcony, they looked up – he could now see one was robed, and one armored. The robed man yelled “Intruders! Get them, Bjorn”, and as he did, he ran out the double doors. Bjorn, meanwhile, drew his sword and ran up the stairs, towards the party.

Berthold and Osan met Bjorn on the stairs, while Sporith dropped down from the balcony railing, intent on seeing where the robed man had gone. In the battle with Bjorn, Berthold was wounded, but he and Osan managed to subdue Bjorn, knocking him out. They tied him up while Sporith examined the doors – they were of red metal, trimmed in gold, a golden handle on each. However, there were no locks, and the doors could not be opened. Sporith thought them to be wizard-locked.

Berthold and Osan questioned Bjorn after rousing him. He was defiant, mentioning his master Quix, and provided no other information. Tiring of the questions, Bjorn stood up – hands still tied – and ran up the stairs. He did not get very far. Osan ran after him and hacked him down, this time killing him.

The party searched the room, finding nothing but an odd circular carving on the balcony floor, and a gold ring worn by Bjorn. Thinking that Bjorn may have been running towards the stone circle, Berthold took Bjorn’s ring and touched it to the circle’s center. Sporith and Osan gasped mas Berthold disappeared! They both followed suit, and all three party members could now see that they had been transported to another place, perhaps elsewhere in the same dungeon – but they had no way to know for sure.

The room they were in was long, with a black marble floor and white marble pillars lining both walls. At the far end was a demon idol on an altar. Berthold moved closer to the altar, but as he drew near, he was surprised when the demon spread wings and flew off of the altar, attacking from the air. The battle was on as Sporith moved in to help Berthold, while Osan fired his bow from afar.

Here the party was not as lucky as with their prior battles. A stray arrow from Osan killed Sporith outright, while the demon killed Berthold and was finally brought down by another of Osan’s arrows, even as it flew towards the Elf. Osan had to think quickly – he was alone, in an unknown part of the dungeon. A quick search revealed an exit to a cloak room, where Osan rested for a bit, before continuing on, in search of a dungeon exit or stair.

It was slow moving, as he was dragging the bodies of Sporith and Berthold, and at one point he had to hide and narrowly avoided being discovered by two acolytes, but he eventually discovered a stair up to level 1. He dragged the bodies up to the top of the stairs, leaving them for the moment in an empty room. He explored south, after a short while coming across a circular room. In it were two robed acolytes and two skeletons armed with scimitars. The two acolytes, one with a silver medallion, chased Osan, but did not fare so well as Osan turned and drew his axe. He killed the one wearing the medallion with a single blow, and the other fled north, escaping down the very same stairs Osan had just come up. Osan gathered the silver medallion and moved back towards the skeleton room.

He crept into the circular room, intent on the one exit. The two skeletons were immobile, but as soon as Osan passed them, they animated and attacked. Luckily he was able to defeat them quickly, and the exit led to an area of the dungeon he was familiar with. He dragged the bodies of Berthold and Sporith along until finding the exit by the beach. He exited and headed back to Larm in Blunt’s rowboat.