Real date: 10/16/17 In-game date: September 15th, EY632
Ambrose (Warrior – Fighter L2)
Asher (Footpad – Thief L2)
Imric (Veteran/Seer Fighter L1/MU L2)
Roger (Outlander – Warden L1)
Gruk (Brabarian) – Fighter L1
In our last session, the party defeated an Ogre at the cost of Ambrose’s life, and returned to Frostmark. The party first visited the Temple of Soldra, where Patriarch Sunamel agreed to raise Ambrose for a donation of a mere 1,200GP. They scraped the money together and soon enough, Ambrose was back (DM note: He made his CON survival roll). A rest was in order, and during the next week Imric crafted a sleep scroll while the rest of the party stocked up on supplies and bought some horses. The party headed back to the caves on the morning of the 7th day in a dense fog.
During the overland journey, the party ran into a band of seven Orcs. Roger was able to lead them astray on his horse, then loop back in the fog and attack them from behind. He was soon joined by the others, and together they had no problem dispatching the Orc patrol.
The next morning the party approached the caves from the south again, and this time the entrances were partially blocked by rock piles and men (bandits?) on high alert with crossbows. A frontal attack was (surprisingly) almost successful – the party killed all but one guard, who escaped into one of the caves. Ambrose, Gruk and the meatshields ran into the cave in pursuit, but ran headlong into four men coming to investigate the alarm. They engaged in melee, while outside the cave Thom, Imric and Asher were surprised by four more men, who snuck up on them, firing crossbows. They managed to kill the four men, but Thom was gravely wounded and Asher narrowly avoided death (DM note: Thief’s luck roll).
Back inside, five more men joined the fray! Arrows, hand axes, and oil flew, and eventually all but two of the attackers lived. Those last two fled, and with nearly everyone wounded, the party decided to hole up in a locked room to heal. Roger applied his healing poultices to the worst off, and they continued on into the cave complex.
This time Asher scouted ahead, while the rest of the party waited in a darkened corridor. Asher spied a head peeking from around a corner about 100 feet away from him, to the north. He headed back to tell the others what he saw, just as a group of men was coming out of a nearby door. Then, from the north, a robed spellcaster rounded the corner! Imric cast sleep on the group of men, catching all of them unaware. A hail of arrows felled the spellcaster before he could get even a single spell off.
Meanwhile, in the rear of the order, Sturdoon suddenly fell face-first to the floor! The party turned its attention his way, only to see an Elf standing over the body, holding a bloody sword. Rolgrim and Gruk turned and attacked the evil Elf, while Asher attempted to sneak in behind the melee. In the resulting battle, Gruk also collapsed, but Rolgrim and Asher were able to finish off the Elf. Searching the first group of men, Imric discovered a suit of magical chain armor. A search of the room they came out of revealed a map with trade and caravan routes, and a strongbox with gold and silver. There was no sign of the spellcaster’s spellbook. The party tended to Gruk and Sturdoon, gathered up their loot, and returned to town.
DM notes: The zero-HP table gave Sturdoon and Gruk their lives, at the expense of some grave wounds. I ruled they had lost some appendages (a leg for Sturdoon and an arm for Gruk), so we retired them after the party returned to town. But it all seems a bit too fiddly for me, so this will be the last game where we use the zero HP table. Also, as we all know, the sleep spell is quite effective at taking out large groups of humanoids, and the Holmes scroll creation rules mean the Elf is starting to amass a collection, so I make a mental note to change things up for next time.