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DM Dan76
Registered User
(3/13/02 8:58 am)
DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Hi all,

Well since it seems like the thing to do around here, I am going to post the adventures of the group I am running through RttToEE. Instead of writing it up myself, I had asked one of the players to keep a journal, detailing their adventure. What I am posting here is what he wrote in his journal…….a true players perspective.

Note: This is my players 2nd group of characters to attempt RttToEE. Their first group almost all died at the hands of Big U. Only 2 survived by running away, and only 1 player wanted to keep the same character.

The party consists of:
Danford Loddar – dwarven fighter(1)/cleric of St. Cuthber(3). Searching for his brother Brottor (original character, who died at the moathouse with the first group of characters)
Aust – elf fighter(3)/wizard(1)
Ranx Strangefoot – halfling fighter(2)/Rogue(2)
Ivona – elf ranger(3). The only remaining member of the original party the went to the moathouse.
Wellby Tealeaf – halfling rogue(1)/wizard(3). This is the character writing the journal.
Erkie Timbers (NPC) – gnome fighter(4)/cleric(3). This character was friends with the first group of adventures, who they originally met at the “Sunless Citadel”. I had him as one of hooks to get the PC’s to come to Hommlet.

Adventure Log
CY 591

26nd Day of Reaping (Waterday)
We were all in a bit of a dry spell. I guess that is why we ended up in such a remote area in the high-lands. Rumors had drawn us all to the small town of Hommlet. A sizable but sleepy community, that seems to have stirred recently. Our group quickly met up with a female elf, Ivona, and a local gnome, Erkie in the town tavern. She seemed desperate to avenge her friend’s deaths. She could barley choke out her sad tale. Her previous adventuring group went exploring into the countryside, to a place the local’s call the ‘old moat house’. If that group knew the horror that awaited them, I’m sure they would have never ventured from the town to that foul place. To their surprise, a loathing, blue dragon had taken up residence in the dilapidated old building. It tore their group apart. Only she and one other survived the ordeal. She vowed to avenge her comrades and was here gathering brave souls to aid her.
She explained that this blue beast was greatly wounded in the battle with her friends, and since only 2 days had passed, she expected the dragon to be still injured. We quickly took up her challenge and headed down the road toward the ‘old moat house’.

27nd Day of Reaping (Earthday)
A small drizzle in the morning was refreshing and kept the dust down from the dried wagon trail. The keen eyes of our elves, Ivona and Aust, kept watch. Aust, quick and deadly with his rapier, was now starting to learn his elven battle-magics. Next came our sturdy dwarven warrior. Vowing to protect us in the name of St.Cuthbert and to gain revenge for his fallen dwarven clansman, Danford was well armored and always ready to fight. Shining like a small metal rock, Erkie clanged along in his fine armor. Finally, taking up the rear were the halfling kin-folk. My 3rd cousin, Ranks, moved along the trail with the grace and silence of a house cat. On my faithful war pig, I rode with a swagger, eager at the thought of magic plunder from a dragon horde.
This area of the Kron Hills was untamed wilderness. We found ourselves having to kill a giant insect beast in order to move on the seldomly-traveled road. There were all manner of normal, biting insects as well, and thick clouds of them followed us in the boggy valleys. The summer heat was thick in the air by the time the ruined moat house came into view from the swamplands.
Using the information from Ivona’s previous encounter with the dragon, we immediately stormed the broken gates and rushed for it’s lair within the ruins of the moat house. Catching the beast by surprise, it let out a mighty roar as Ivona, Ranks, and myself pelted it with missiles. Aust valiantly charged the stirring reptile with Danford not far behind. Soon the crippled beast was bleeding from a dozen fresh wounds and tried to smash its way outside to safety. Danford’s magic blast bit deep into the huge lizard as it crashed hard down onto the dusty steps of the courtyard. Our victory over the wounded dragon was quick and cruel.

Episode 2 (the lower Moat House)

        A methodical search of the decayed moat house left us with a grim reminder of the ferocity the dragon once had; half-eaten bodies littered the ruins. But all was not quiet in the rubble. The very rocks themselves moved to attack us, as a gray pool of stone/sludge leaped out. Reeking of acid, this ooze lunged at us. We hammered it with blades, both magical and mundane, only to have them melted to nothing by the acid creature. We pelted the gray creature with arrows from a distance until it moved no further.
        Now, both Aust and Danford had to scrounge weapons from the dead, as the acid had burned their trusty blades. All manner of other items were taken from the luckless bodies of previous explorers. Ivona showed us the possessions of her life-less companions. “They will do them no good now” she told us, as we outfitted ourselves with their magic items. Danford the Dwarf took special care to preserve the relics of his fallen clansman, a relative by the way he spoke highly of him.
        With only a dark stairwell left to explore, we carefully inspected the numerous tracks leading downwards. After a quick debate on how or why any humanoid could still be alive down there, so close to a dragon, we decided we would use stealth first. Both of us halflings would lead the way (Ranks and myself – Wellby). Our quiet feet moved down the long dark stairwell. Once we reached the lower level, we peeked around the foot of the stairs. To our horror, we were ambushed!
        A score of creatures lurked in the darkness waiting for our arrival (no doubt they had heard the fight upstairs with the dragon). Giant dog-faced Gnolls lunged from one side, and foul living dead attacked from the other. And from the rear, we noticed the source of these undead creatures: a black, necromantic priestess. She carried about her neck the same strange symbol that we found on other ‘freshly killed’ bodies in the main hall. Swords and maces crashed into empty spots as our fast little feet raced up the stairs towards our waiting companions. As we reached the top of the stairs, Erkie bashed the snapping Gnolls back down the steps.
        Howling in delight, our full party cleaved a way back into the lower chambers. A great battle erupted. The warriors smashed into a line of living dead: skeletons, zombies, and ghoul-like creatures. Only a few of these abominations repulsed back from Danford’s outstretched holy symbol of St.Cuthbert. We small rogues began to run around the legs of the large Gnolls and stab relentlessly. Aust hurled a thunderstone over the melee towards the dark priestess, deafening her with its sonic ‘crack’. She clasp at her dazed head. Aust fought his way past a huge ogre skeleton towards this foul priestess.
        Maces smashed skeletons to dust, arrows ripped zombies to shreds and tiny daggers crippled Gnolls. Soon our group mowed down the dark minions until we all threw ourselves at the well-armored priestess. She struggled to escape through a door, but our fighters pulled her down until the rest of our party beat her into submission.
        Wiping our blades clean, we all stood about wondering one question: what forces had brought savage gnolls, an undead legion, a dark priestess and a dragon to an isolated, half-destroyed moat house? Perhaps the mystery would be solved behind the many unopened doors that still remained in the darkness of the lower levels.

Episode 3 (the prisoner)

        Dust and blood filled this massive underground chamber. We searched around its massive pillars in the darkness and discovered many connected rooms and doors. As Ivona searched one of the large, pillared anti-chambers, Danford and Aust kept a keen eye on all of the unopened doors (expecting more evil clerics to arrive after the sounds of this last battle). The remainder of our group gathered loot and equipment from the gnolls and our captive.
        Within an hour, we had explored all of these side rooms/chambers. Most turned out to be minor storerooms and small cells. To Erki’s delight, one of these storerooms had hidden Spugnoir. He was a local potion merchant from Hommlet who had gone missing a week ago while exploring these old ruins. Some of the dark mysteries of this place unraveled as he told us his tale. It seems he ran into this cult, who was also excavating these ruins. Forced to hide to avoid getting caught, Spugnoir soon realized that both he AND the cultists were both trapped. Only 4-5 days ago, the Blue Dragon had moved into the upper moat house to claim its new territory, thus leaving everyone below as its inadvertent captives. He also told us of a second underground entrance located outside of the moat house.
        It was at this time that Ivona discovered a small secret door in one of the pillars from a side room. A dusty, very small tunnel ran down the inside of the pillar and under the room. Ranks quietly scouted the long abandon tunnel. At the far end of the tunnel Ranks discovered another hidden door. He scanned the massive chamber beyond the door, only to see more hideous corpses standing in waiting. These undead looked as though they had been here for years.
        After reporting his findings, Ranks and the remainder of our group squeezed into the confining tunnel and sealed the hidden doors at both ends. From here we interrogated our cultist prisoner. Forced at knifepoint, she revealed herself as ‘Gren’, an initiate to the cult of the “Elder Elemental Eye”. As Spugnoir confirmed, their group had been appointed the task of excavating artifacts from what she called this ‘holy site’. In her apologetic speech, Gren told us her leader and other cult members continued to obsess over a gigantic obelisk they had found deep in these caverns. Even while trapped by the dragon above, they continued to work at retrieving these lost artifacts. They had previously arranged with ‘Master Dunrat’ a wagon from Hommlet to retrieve these items. It was due to arrive any day now, and the cult hoped these reinforcements would rescue them from the Dragon. Gren went on to tell us that Master Dunrat was picking up these and other artifacts and transporting them all to a location called the ‘Temple of All Consumption’, near Rastor in the Kron Hills.
        Our questioning had reviled that the cult had the following members still remaining in the lower levels of the moat house: at least 1 more ochre colored robed priest. 6 or more Gnolls lead by Garrack their leader. Ysslansh, a troglodyte priest. And probably a few more undead minions she said they discovered down here that were friendly to their cause?!
        With our questions now answered, we quickly squeezed out of the secret tunnel and began to set our trap. With both the; gnoll patrols from below, and a wagon full of cultists expected to return from above, we had to work fast.

The Ambush

        We hurriedly repositioned the dead gnolls and undead combatants into the stairwell. Along with pieces of the Dragon, we tried to make it look like a battle erupted from above and neither side had won. Any returning priests or gnoll patrols would think that they were now free to leave from their captivity. In the upper levels of the moat house, we set scouts and Aust’s raven familiar to scout for any signs of a returning wagon train. The remainder of us all rested and prayed to regain spells and strength.
        We were just settling in for some breakfast the next day, when the first signs of noise were heard from below. From the inner Moat house, we quickly set our ambush at the top of the stairs. After a long, cautious wait, a group of Gnolls stalked out of the stairwell. Before they could spot us, we sprang upon them! From behind slightly opened doors and arrow slits, we let loose a volley of missile fire. Arrowheads ripped into flesh and magic crackled as the surprised Gnolls howled in pain.
        Our over-armored Gnome; Erkie, moved into battle, swinging his huge mace. Panicked, the Gnolls rushed into the fray with more cultists erupting out of the stairwell.
Two Gnolls pierced Erkie with a brutal charge, only to have one crushed by his mighty back swing. A third tried to rush Aust in a doorway, but he quickly slammed the door closed, only to have Ivona’s mighty arrow pin him to the doorframe. And our accurate Halfling missiles attracted the attention of the last 2 gnolls to our position in the hallway.
        Now their cult leader’s rushed out, chanting evil magics and swinging mighty maces. An undead creature exchanged blows with Aust, keeping him from leaving his room. The Gnoll leader; Garrack, joined the melee with Erkie. Blood flowed as these mighty warriors continued to hack at each other. Ranks weaved and dodged around the gnoll swords, as I began to put up protective magic around us. Danford and Ivona continued to shoot missiles into the cult, until Ivona ran in fear from their foul magic.
        With Erkie surrounded by all the cult leaders, and bleeding from a dozen wounds, Danford dropped his crossbow and rushed into the fray with the aid of his magical boots. He cast his divine healing spells into the faltering Erkie.
        Rank’s swift knife, along with magic missiles from both myself, and Spugnoir (who knew?), we managed to clear the hallway of gnolls. Rank rushed up to engage the huge melee surrounding Erkie. Ivona finally shook off the fear spell and ran once again to join her friends.
        When the tides of battle finally looked like they were in our favor, a foul stench erupted from the skin of the Troglodyte priestess, Ysslansh. Soon Ranks and Erkie were both retching from the smell. With tears in there eyes, and vomit in their mouths, they ran from the battle.

Episode 4 (the ambush, continued)

With only Danford left in the fray, the evil cultists descended upon him. Even the undead creature's attention moved to the melee as he moved from the doorway and Aust.
Danford held off blow after blow, while everyone else gathered their wits and regrouped. Arrows and axes cleaved the gnoll and undead until all that remained were the cult priests (including the Trog). Soon they were brought
down by the sheer ferocity of our group.
No sooner did we pile the weapons, armor and equipment Aust was warned by his raven familiar that danger approached from outside the moat house. We quickly tied the new prisoners, and cast healing and protective
Soon, the wagon we had been expecting rolled into the courtyard.
Guarded by only 2 human warriors, a well armored ˝ orc, and a ochre robed priest who stepped out of the back, we sprang our ambush! Our arrows strayed or bounced off heavy breast plates, and the element of surprise was
lost. We soon realized we were the one's who were ambushed as blades came into view when invisible opponents struck down on us. A host of these warriors flashed into appearance and broke through our defenses. Erkie,
Aust and Danford struggled in a frantic battle at the front entrance of the moat house. Priests and mages from the courtyard now threw off their magic invisibility and hurled spells into our arrow slits. One foul priest
commanded a 3' long, tentacled worm out of the wagon. It quickly noticed Ranks who was stuck fast to the top of the tower with his magical boots.
The creature scampered quickly up the walls and engaged him atop the crumbling blocks.
A titanic battle ensued at the archway into the moat house. As our archers abandoned their arrow slits to help reinforce the doorway, the enemies priest came forward to cast foul magic to help them gain entry.
Soon, the doorway piled high with bodies as Erkie smashed one warrior after another who tried to enter. Danford and Aust tried to smash the warriors who snuck past him, but dark magic thwarted them.
Fearing the mighty swing of our Gnome, one of the dark priests threw a magic bead upon him. Flesh tore as an explosion erupted and a great magic barrier appeared around Erkie. He could not exit this impenetrable gray
force field. A look of surprise appeared on the priest as he realized the force field blocked the entire entrance into the moat house.
Two evil warriors were trapped inside the ruined building with us.
As the dust settled from the explosion, one of the warriors quickly fell under our blades, but the other used a magic wand to make himself invisible.
The remainder of us scampered back to our arrow slits, or out of holes in the ruined chambers to fire at the enemy in the courtyard.
With the help of some 'dust of disappearance', I snuck up upon one of their mages and grabbed his wand. I turned his own magic upon them and they began to flee. Only a cowering mage remained in the courtyard. Ranks finally dispatched the foul creature atop the tower, and Aust, Ivona and myself continued to fire missiles at the fleeing priests, killing one. The last priest, aided by an invisible ally, also became invisible and the
unseen pair started to run off!

Episode 5 (Back to town)

Ivona read from her scroll, only to blindly throw an entangle spell on the road ahead of the fleeing villains. Unfortunately, the grasping roots and grasses on the road missed all of the retreating enemies. Using her outdoor tracking skills, Ivona quickly followed the old wagon trail behind the footprints of the villains.
The magic field that entrapped Irkie slowly subsided, and he joined Danford in questioning the cowering cultish-mage in the courtyard. Meanwhile, the rest of our group began to load abandon wagon with equipment from the vanquished. One of the dead was recognized as Maridosen, the rude waitress from Hommlet’s Inn of the Welcome Wench.
We found out the Gnome Cult-mage was named Nierethi. It seems Maridosen in Hommlet recruited him. He confirmed many of the rumors that our other prisoner, Gren had told us. He also let us know that the 3 cult members that escaped us were: Master Dunrat (leader), Chatrilon, and the female mage with horns on her head. It seems they all had a base of operations in the Mill House in Hommlet for the last month.
We realized that since we were ambushed (informed about us), we have to be on our guard because they must have a cleaver spy close by (no one is to be trusted).
We debated at some length about the merits of going back to town, further exploring the Moat House for the ‘Obelisk’, or hunting down the 3 survivors. After grabbing all of the artifacts (were Gren said they would be in the lower area of the Moat House), we decided to bring the prisoners to Justice back in Hommlet. We also wanted to sell the captured equipment that now piled high in the wagon.
Just before setting out, Ivona made her way back along the trail. She let us know that she followed the 3 villains for a few miles. She turned around when she saw that they took the turn to Hommlet instead of the fork to Nulb. It was getting late, and our shadows were growing long. With the three prisoners tied behind the wagon, we set off for Hommlet.

1st Day of Goodmonth (Starday)
We saw the lamp-lights of Hommlet at 3 am in the morning. Instead of riding down to the darkened village, we tried to enter the fortified Keep and rid ourselves of the prisoners, and let the authorities know of the new evil now brewing at the Moat House. Elmo, the captain of the guards was called and the prisoners were jailed. After recounting our story, we (along with a small contingent of militia) headed to storm the Mill house.
After finding both a hidden barrack below the mill, and the mill house abandon, Elmo was going to consult with Brune and Ruffus. Both of these lords were heroes of the town and helped destroy the Temple of Elemental Evil 12 years ago. We were to sit tight in our small camp and report to him in the morning.

Episode 6 (Hommlet)
2nd Day of Goodmonth (Sunday)
Our group spent the next morning selling the huge pile of captured equipment and items at the general store. Once our pockets were lined with gold, we went about this small town in search of items to purchase. We were
all disappointed to find that the town had very little to offer.
Danford made his way to the local church of St. Cuthbert where he was introduced to Canoness Y'dey. With a large donation to the church, and a recounting of our deeds, the Canoness was influenced to make 'raise dead'
scrolls for our party, for market price, of course.
The afternoon was hot and lazy, so Ranx, Aust and myself went to the 'Wench' for some cool refreshments. The food and drink was good, but the music was horrible. It was not long before Aust was chatting it up with Xaod, an (ex?) Paladin of Heironious who seemed right out of his mind with visions of the Temple of Elemental Evil. He recounted his tale of the temple and Aust seemed to think that his previous experience would make him
a good addition to our party.
Before long, Elmo tracked us all down and invited us to see Brune and Ruffus at the keep. We were all a bit disappointed at their lack of response. They seem to realize there is a greater evil, but without proof they could not act. It also seems that Rastor is too far out of their territory to act upon personally. It seems that our group must carry the burden and gain proof of the resurgence of these evil cults.

3rd Day of Goodmonth (Moonday)
We spent the day waiting for our 'Raise Dead' scroll to be complete. Aust and myself spent the day scribing a new spell into our spell books, while the others took our captured magic items into the Scroll Shop to be
A few 'Truth' spells from Danford were cast to ensure that we could trust Xaod to join our party. As well, we made sure it would be safe to store our excess items with Erkie, who declined our invitation to join us, and would remain with his ill father in Hommlet.

4th Day of Goodmonth (Godsday)
Early in the morning our group headed back to the Moat house. We hoped to uncover the obelisk that we had heard about. The journey went uneventfully and after parking the wagon and horses in the courtyard, we proceeded to enter the lower levels. Beyond the secret doors (described earlier by Spugnoir), we found the barracks for the priests. A trapped chest injured a few of our party, but we found a valuable note that one of the priests wrote.
Further exploration took us beyond Garrik's(?) chamber down along some long corridors. A dead-end hallway seemed to have been magically sealed with a large stone. Back along the corridor we found the ancient chamber that Ranx had scouted previously from the secret tunnel. We rushed forth into this unholy place and crushed the ghouls that emerged from the cobweb-filled darkness.

Episode 7 (Obelisk)

        Beyond the coffins that lined the room, an opening was discovered in the darkness. Ranx brushed aside the cobwebs and scouted the small earthen tunnel while the rest of our group waited by the entrance. Soon after he reported a maze of tunnels scratched into the soft earth. We decided to go back and check the remainder of the cult complex first.
        We quickly scanned the rest of the complex. A check of the gnoll common room sprung a trap blocked one exit (not the secret tunnel). At the far end of the complex we had found a large pulley system that would lower a circular platform into the unknown depths below. After investigating a statue, and a large stone ‘cap stone’ in the small room, we began to prepare for decent on the platform.

        Danford and Ivona rode the platform, while Ranx used his magic slippers to walk down the walls of the descending tunnel/well. About 15’ down, the noticed a small underground creek that poured into the depths below. It was surmised that if the cap stone was placed here, the water would flow down the alternate rout of the creek.

        They continued their decent another 60’ downward. The huge cavern opened into a massive chamber over 90’ wide. Ranx had to walk on the ceiling to move down towards the walls. He noticed a second rope and pulley system was attached to the roof, offset from the first by about 30’.
        The first platform reached the top of the stone Obelisk. It was huge, with its top being over 30’ wide, and the bottom disappeared from sight into the darkness. The waterfall could be heard smashing on some rocks below. As Danford and Ivona stepped off the platform, the stone veins began to change shape. They both quickly jumped onto the second platform waiting at the obelisk edge.
        Then a round creature flew at them. Its multiple tentacles slapped at the pair. The long arms of the creature paralyzed Danford. The platform hurled downward as Ivona released the pulley rope. She tried desperately to slow the decent as rope burned into her hand. Within moments, the platform shattered some 200’ below on the rocks. Ivona and Danford were instantly killed.
        The creature now moved its attention to Ranx on the wall, as the rest of the party were retrieving and entering the first platform. I blasted the creature as Aust used a potion to climb over to the now paralyzed Ranx. Aust grabbed Ranx as the creature was blasted into the abyss. Soon all 3 of us descended into the deep cavern to find what had become of our friends.
        At the bottom of the abyss we found magic artifacts and portals at the base of the obelisk. We quickly dispatched with a mad priest waiting in the rubble. After retrieving the items from the deceased bodies, Ranx put one of the corpses in the pool forming from the waterfall above. It instantly turned into a ghoul, which had to be swiftly killed.
        After retreating back up the chamber, the remaining party decided to return to Hommlet to get our friends resurrected.

Episode 8 (Verbobonc)

11th Day of Goodmonth (Godsday)
We quickly realized that a resurrection spell was beyond the skill of any priest in Hommlet, we made the 7-day journey to the capitol city.
The dusty city was alive with the summer caravans. Traders flocked to sell their wares. We ended up selling all our spare goods to help pay for the church services we soon would need.

12th Day of Goodmonth (Waterday)
We took Danford's body to the grand church of St. Cuthbert. It's high steeples and majestic towers were overwhelming. It was by far, the most prominent church in the city. The Dwarf was resurrected with the help of our scroll. We left Ivona's body (and a large sum of cash) with the capable hands of the St. Cuthbert clergy.

13th Day of Goodmonth (Earthday)
Ranx poked around the city trying to find information on the cults we had encountered. Without much luck, he settled into a local tavern. Ivona emerged from the church in a weakened state from her ordeal. She informed us that Danford had begun to look through the ancient scriptures hidden deep in the church's libraries for information.

14th Day of Goodmonth (Freeday)
Since Ivona was still on a mission for the Wizard's Guild in Verbobonc, she and the remaining party visited the arcane university. She quickly recounted the tale of her former party's demise and recommended our new group to take over where they had failed. Soon, we were all rewarded for our tasks to date. Aust and myself were eager to join the guild for it's wealth of arcane knowledge.
The Guild turned out to be an excellent source of information on the artifacts we had recovered from the moat house.
15th - 20th Day of Goodmonth (Starday to Earthday)
After collecting our rewards (in the form of magic items) crafted by the Mage's Guild, we prepared to once again head back to Hommlet. Danford had encountered a friendly priest who happened to scribe some very rare
documents on the Dark God and the cults formed around him. We placed some of the artifacts in the security of the Wizard's guild, and re-supplied ourselves for the journey back to Hommlet.

27th Day of Goodmonth (Earthday)
Arriving back in Hommlet, we were shocked to hear from Erkie that the captives we had placed in the prison had escaped. It seems that someone had 'disguised' themselves as Elmo and retrieved the 3 fugitives.
That evening, we quickly gathered our equipment and headed back to the moat house in the hopes that we could re-capture the escaped convicts. We discovered 2 of the convicts (a human and the gnome) dead on the old road. With all haste, we used the cover of night to approach the moat house.
Within a mile of the old ruins, we used our raven and owl familiars to scout the scene. They reported many 'smelly' man-creatures were in the courtyard. We approached with caution assuming that the escaped Troglodyte
had gathered reinforcements.

Episode 9 (Escaped Convicts)

28th Day of Goodmonth (Freesday)
Only the sounds of swamp beetles filled the night air as we approached the moat house in 2 groups. Myself, Ranx, and Ivona quietly approached the ruins from the back, through the swamp, while Aust moved through the high grasses toward the front bridge. Xaod and Danford, in their heavy armors, waited in the tree-line by the road.
Soon, our group had slipped into the back area of the moat house, when Aust scaled the front walls to discover that the dozen 'smelly' creatures were zombies and ghouls. He quickly realized that they must have been the bodies we left behind, and the returning priest must have used the pool to re-animate them. He quickly used his new magic boots to scamper out of harms way from the undead mob.
With the chaos in the front courtyard, Ranx used his magic dust to sneak into the entryway, where he discovered 2 priests (both of which ran from our earlier moat house attack) and the escaped Trog prisoner. Their invisible assassin detected our invasion and his deadly rapier carved into Ivona and myself. Soon, Ivona was magically paralyzed from the dark priests.
In their heavy armors, Xaod and Danford took a long, lumbered run into the front courtyard where they met wave after wave of undead zombies and ghouls. With his holy symbol brought forward, Danford pushed the unclean creatures back. But for every one that repulsed at his piety, 2 more took its spot.
Now in grave danger, I used my spider cloak to cast a sticky web into the great hall, holding the undead at bay. Ranx and one of the Dark Priests were also trapped in the thick web, but due to Ranx's invisible dust, he chopped the cleric down, in mid-spell. Aust was caught in a deadly battle with the horned she-demon at the far end of the Moat house. He quickly trapped her in a small room and beheaded the witch. He sprung out to the hallway to meet the foul priest and it's summoned pet.
Turning his attention towards Aust, the assassin used a magic wand to, once again go invisible. I tracked the hunter using spells of my own. Soon the hallway was flashing with spell, blade and blood. Aust had to use his spider slippers to escape the clutches of the ensuing priest, assassin, summoned rat, and ghouls that now blocked the corridor. Quickly running along the corner wall towards the stairwell, Aust hurled the magic Bead of Force over his shoulder toward the pursuing horde. The following explosion shattered undead bone and priest flesh alike.
In the courtyard, the tide of battle flowed back and forth several times and undead fled from the light of St. Cuthbert's power. But tooth and claw of ghouls raked Xaod's flesh to a point where even his powerful muscles
could not budge. Released from his webbed cage, the invisible Ranx helped Danford crush the undead. Soon the last of the ghouls fell from explosions of ice shards from our priest's wand.

The battle now over, our party tended to the wounded. As web spells melted and force fields dissipated, the last of these cult members were found and our true victory was revealed. We spent time collecting the bootie. Danford's lips mumbled a prayer to St. Cuthbert as we burned these bodies, so they could never rise again to haunt this place.

THE Major Mayhem
Registered User
(3/13/02 1:39 pm)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Nice going.

Plenty good action and RP it seems. (good read too)
I've got two specific q's though.
1) Ivona is stated to be lvl 3. Is that when they met or after she's raised? Methinks it's (almost too) harsh to throw in new characters of a higher lvl than the original one!
2) WAR PIG? That's a new critter! (trust a halfling to have a TRULY edible riding beast!)
Halfling cavalry attacks = talk about cavalry choke...

DM Dan76
Registered User
(3/14/02 6:34 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Well the answers to your questions are quite simple.
1) When Ivona first joined the group the PC's were 5th -6th level. I told the player that I wasn't bringing him in at that level. To compensate for the lower level I was generous by giving him higher than average equipment (magical items).

2) This was just a flavor thing. The character wanted to be different and stand out. I figured that a riding pig wasn't that different that a riding dog, so what the heck, why not. He did want to be different!

Glad you enjoyed my campaign. I'll be updating every few sessions from now on.

Thanks for your comment.

DM Dan76
Registered User
(3/21/02 6:42 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story....continued
Episode 10 (Alters and Apples)

Shadows danced on the interior walls of the courtyard from the burning funeral fires. The bonfire light cut through the night's darkness, but the charred and bloated bodies of the dead sent up such a horrible smell that even the dwarf winced. We distanced ourselves from the moat house until we
could no longer smell the fetid air swirling around in the night's wind.
Only our ranger, Ivona, seemed to sleep well in the swampy forest. The rest of us ached from our battle wounds and hundreds of insect bites. Our keen-eyed ranger spotted a glint of metal in a tree. The object turned out to be a metal, clock-work device, painted and shaped like a bird. The bird
detected of magic. Puzzled, we placed the metal bird in our bag of holding and continued back to the moat house.

Evil chilled our bones as we descended, once again, into the obelisk chamber. Horror filled the screams of the small group on the platform as another tentacled creature flew at them from the darkness. This time, the creature had hollow eyes, parts of bone showing, entrails was undead! Danford tried in vain to repulse the creature with his holy symbol as Xaod quickly lowered the platform. Ivona and the creature were locked in a swirl of flashing blades and whipping tentacles. Finally, the creature lay defeated by mace and magic on the obelisk. But Ivona also lay lifeless in the stranglehold of the horrid, undead creature.

The will of St. Cuthbert breathed life back into our dead ranger along with the help of Danford's scroll from Canoness Y'dey. Soon we were all moving to the bottom of the pit. Our group spent several minutes searching the bottom of this pit, and it's unholy symbols. As Ivona searched the darkened
portal, another tentacle creature spewed forth. This time the living creature was quickly dispatched.

We remembered the words of the Sages in Verbobonc and lit our brazier artifact. A gem at the base of the obelisk was revealed in the faint, violet glow from the brazier. Hungry for the precious stone, Aust reached for the gem and...flash. Only the brazier remained. Danford quickly went to smash
the unholy stone, and as his mace connected with the gem...flash, he was gone as well. A frantic debate ensued, but was quickly interrupted as we heard the missing duel calling down from above. They told us of a booming voice, and apples to eat. Aust (and only he) ate the apple, and he felt smarter. Well, smarter, and a free meal was all the convincing a halfling needed. I raced to touch the gem, and was magically transported to the darkened room. I underwent the same booming speech and slurped down the
apple. My muscles bulged and I appeared at the top of the chamber. Both Ivona and Danford tried their luck again, but both emerged weaker/duller for their effort. Ranks and Xaod refused to enter the unholy place.

Our efforts now turned back toward the earthen tunnel system under the moat house. After an hour of searching, we came across another darkened and root filled room. A great pillar in the center of the cave was similar in appearance to a stone statue we found in the 'well' room. A small altar stood before it. After much debate and a long effort, we managed to haul the statue and place it on the altar. The altar turned semi-transparent.

Our party stared at the unholy table from various places of hiding when Aust cried out in delight. He had found some hidden caches in the dark pillar.

DM Dan76
Registered User
(4/1/02 6:18 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Hi all,

Here is the latest instalment of my groups adventure journal.
Just a few DM notes I'd like to add first;
Xaod is now a PC, and currently 5th level
Ivona, after her latest demise, is 3rd level
You may notice in the up comming adventure logs that Welby (the author) starts talking alot about spiders. This is because of a cursed item I gave him (a cursed cloak of arachnid). He basically will become obsessed with spiders and may take on a few physical changes as well (not sure at this point still).

Well, on with the story....

Episode 11 (Badgers & Chickens & Gobs, oh my!)

Much speculation erupted about the possible uses of the drum, cymbals, and brazier. But when spells detected no magic on the items, we decided to take them back to the sages in Hommlet to have the items identified. We labored
hard to remove the four-sided statue out to our wagon as well.
We had used the better part of the day and decided not to travel back to town at night. A small camp was erected only 2 miles from the moat house.

1st Day of Harvester (Starday)
Screaming woke us in the darkness. Ranx was on watch and was trying to wake us as he fought a retreating battle back to camp. Hobgoblins charged toward the camp as Ranx limped back with a javelin wound in his leg.
Like a flash, we reacted with blade and spell toward the 3 monsters. Danford's spell confused one of the beasts into chopping down his own kind, while my magic dropped another.
The rest of the party managed to subdue the last Hobgoblin. It was promptly tied and placed into the wagon as our prisoner. Then our party drifted uneasily back to our slumber.
Morning passed quickly, and after a dusty ride we arrived in
Hommlet. Our party split up to gather resources. I found Spugnoir an excellent source of information on the hidden entrance to the moat house, but the others were not as lucky; they could not decipher any clues to the purpose of the unholy instruments and brazier. I spent the remainder of the day trying to copy spells into my book while the others enjoyed the fine ales of the 'Welcome Wench'.

2nd Day of Harvester (Sunday)
Rain tapped at the rooftop for most of the day, keeping the group mainly inside. I continued to scribe into my books, but I found myself more and more distracted by a small spider in the corner. The effort and care it takes in making its web is beautiful. I will have to try and mimic that the next time I cast my web spell.

3rd Day of Harvester (Moonday)
The rain finally stopped, but our group had to trod through the mud to prepare for our return journey to the moat house. Canoness Y'dey has finished scribing another scroll for Danford.
Before long, we entered the abandoned, hidden tunnel. At the end of the tunnel we found the nesting site of 3 huge "dire" chickens! (Cockatrice?) Blades flew and spells sizzled into the birds. The birds tried to turn us to stone like their past victims, but we avoided their ripping beaks. Soon they were vanquished and the rooms were searched.
On a skeletal corpse, I spotted a most fascinating necklace; it was recognized as a symbol of Loth, the Spider Goddess. The workmanship and beauty was exquisite. I snapped up the piece and wore it immediately.
We found ourselves packing up and heading to Hommlet once again to have more of our magic loot identified. We had the wise sages in Hommlet's scroll shop helped identify our items while we provisioned for our journey to Nulb.

4-5th Day of Harvester (Godsday - Waterday)
It was our second day on the narrow wagon trail toward Nulb. The Gnarly forest choked the old road with thick vegetation so it looked like nothing more than a tunnel through the forest. The trail began to narrow, only a horse' length in width when 3 ravenous badgers blasted out of the
woods. They were huge, each weighing over 500 lbs, and raking our lead riders warhorse. Our wagon jolted and turned into the trees while our party scrambled to help Xaod's faltering warhorse. The dire badgers continued to tear into the mount's flesh while our archers pinned them with missiles.
After a volley of magic, our warrior sprung upon the beasts and slaughtered each one in turn.
We steadied our mounts and skinned the beasts. After this brief encounter, we continued on our way to Nulb.

DM Dan76
Registered User
(4/4/02 10:52 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Episode 12 (Nulb)

6-7th Day of Harvester (Earthday-Freeday)
We continued on for one more day, until the trail met up with the High Road. According to our maps, we were only 3 miles from Nulb. We decided to make camp and approach the deserted town at first light.

It was apparent that something sinister was afoot in the town, as we let Aust's raven scout out the ruined houses. No wildlife was present, and a rain cloud hung over the vicinity of the small hamlet.

A small group was sent over the bridge to scout the buildings while the remainder of our group stayed in hiding on the far side of the river.

Ivona and Ranx sulked through the mud and rain and checked the first tall building on the road into town. This large 2-story, dilapidated building was perhaps an inn at one time. After giving it a quick look, they sent the signal that all was clear across the bridge.

They signaled too soon. A ghostly figure materialized just behind Ranx. Luckily his rouge senses and speed helped him avoid the blow from the unholy creatures longsword. Now the rest of the party rushed across the bridge to aid in the battle. Ivona quickly found that only magic weapons would be affective against this foe. The apparition did not flinch at
Danford and Xaod's holy symbols. The fighters slashed at it with their glowing weapons but most of their blows swung through the ghost, but each of my magic missiles stuck true. Quickly, the creature vaporized under our assult.

Ranx warned the group that there were more ghosts on the second floor of the inn. Half the group proceeded up the rotted stairs, while the other half used their magic clothing to scamper up the exterior walls towards the second story window. The entire group blasted into the room where a strange female ghost was holding a baby apparition. My magic
missile wand quickly disintegrated her, but not before she drained Xaod of his good judgment.

After looting the inn, we continued to check for more evil within the small town. Xaod the paladin used his divinity to isolate 2 more areas of evil while riding through the streets. We surrounded one of the sources of evil; a small, ruined herb shop and snuck through both of the shop's entrances. We soon found out the occupant was Lareth "the beautiful". We
remembered him as a great foe from the moat house during the first temple uprising, 12 years ago. We tried asking him questions, but when he started to chant his evil spells, we all rushed him. He tried to beat us back with spells and staff, but we quickly overpowered him. Ranx helped isolate him
by hurling a tanglefoot bag and entrapping his legs. It was then a simple matter to beat the aging anti-hero to death. We took his head as proof of our deeds.

DM Dan76
Registered User
(4/23/02 5:16 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Episode 13 (Nulb's Waterfront)

Xaod could still feel the presence of evil within the town. Our group followed him to the waterfront of the deserted town. We peered along the docks to the source of evil: lying beached like the carcass of some half-dead whale was a small ship. Rain pelted along the ruined timbers on its deck. The back half of the boat was partially submerged in the river,
with small gouges in the hull exposing the interior of the ship.

Xaod's horse pulled tight on its reins and refused to get close to the docks. We all crept on the rain soaked decks with caution. We gained some shelter from the downpour by entering the small cabin of the ship. From in there we could see the hatch that leads below decks and the horror beyond!

A great orange jelly creature slopped away in the water filled lower chamber. It tried to lash out at us from below, but the creature was slow.

We retaliated with our weapons, but with every blow, we cut the creature in half and then both pieces came to life.

Xaod warned us that he could detect more evil from below the decks. As we strategize on how we should kill the jelly, unseen horrors materialized from below the floors. Black, whispy shadows grabbed at our legs and ripped into our skin.

Instantly we felt the cold and our lives drained away by their
attacks. Our group retreated back onto the forward deck of the ship. Holy symbols were knocked away by these undead creatures, and our priest, Danford, looked doomed as he was cornered to the rear of the ship. All manner of blades tried to rip into these insubstantial creatures, but with little effect.

Spells tore into the black horrors and seemed to slow them
for a moment. It was well timed as Danford used his magic boots to elude the icy grip of the creature.

Our group used every resource to attack the vial shadows. In the hacked away at the whisps of darkness until nothing remained. We lay there exhausted in the rain, and decided to tackle the jellys later when we had time to rest.

We returned to our camp and our spell users began to pour over their books and try to slumber for a few hours. I found a nice dark hole by some upturned roots. Pulling my cloak close for comfort, I settled in for a rest. But as luck would have it, there were some delicious insects under the roots for a snack. Still feeling hungry (as Hobbits usually are), I could not help but think that my owl familiar would make a great snack. To my surprise, I could hear a voice in my head agree with me. Then I realized that I had bonded with a rather big spider that wanted to replace the owl.

All said and done, the owl was might tasty.

[DM's Note: The events described above are part of the curse wellby has. As he gained his next wizard level, a tiny monstrous spider replaced his owl familiar.]

About 8 hours later, we returned to the old ship with our mounts and wagon. We all surrounded the hatch and began to hurl missiles into the jelly below. Within minutes, the jellies had split and multiplied again. It was evident that only magic would kill these beasts.

They began to 'leak' out of the shattered sides of the boat and began to slither towards the horses. Some leapt at us, and they burned our bodies with an acid secretion. Slowly, one by one, we managed to disintegrate the pools of jelly with our magic.

Episode 14 (Temple of Elemental Evil)

After wading through the rain and muck, we managed to find some old trinkets below decks of the boat. We cleaned ourselves off and decided to return to our camp to recover some magic and heal our wounds.

That evening, we dried ourselves off around the campfire and debated if we should push on to the ruined temple site, or go back to Hommlet to recover.

We decided that we had come too far already to turn back, and decided to travel to the Temple at first light.

8th Day of Harvester (Starday)

Perhaps it was a bad omen of last night's decision to press on, but Aust caught 3 ogres raiding our camp at dawn. Commanding his raven to help wake the camp, we moved in to defend our camp. Within seconds, we had slaughtered 2 of the giant humanoids and were chasing the 3rd through the
woods. Darkness hampered the pursuit, but Ivona managed to take the creature down with her longbow.

The group took a few grave wounds and arguments ensued about using Danford's healing powers now, or wait until we reached the Temple. With the help of Ivona's healing wand, most of us were in good enough condition to travel to
the temple.

After a few hours of travel, Aust's raven informed him that the ruined site of the Temple was only 1 mile away. It was spooked and told him that a group of 'canine' creatures were present by the temple.

We all cautiously approached the Temple compound. Only Xaod rode his mount directly into the courtyard. Sitting upright and noble in his saddle, he could sense evil just beyond the crumbling gates. We sprang to attack the
small group of hobgoblins who emerged behind the vine-covered walls.

Ivona leveled opponents with her bow, while Aust and Ranx waded into battle with rapier and daggers. Danford leapt over the shattered stone gate and grappled a Hobgoblin to the ground. While Xaod charged his mount into the fray, I used my spell to become invisible and flanked the group of humanoids. Just as the last of these monsters fell, it rang a bell to alert the others of our intrusion.

More came pouring out of the distant temple entrance, but the speed of Xaod's horse and the accuracy of Ivona's bow made short work of them.

Now the gloomy gates of the Temple of Elemental Evil stood before us. We did not need Xaod's divine abilities to feel the cold, hatred coming from these infamous halls. We entered with caution. A grand hall loomed before us, with giant pillars reaching upwards into the darkness. The horrible light from un-holly stained glass reined down sickly pink light into the
vast chamber of pillars. Creeping on the roof, walls and floor, we edged our way into the darkness.

All manner of evil symbols and pictures lined this place. We knew then why the forces of good had to destroy this place, some 12 years ago. It was a shame they did not level the place to the ground.

Registered User
(4/23/02 5:37 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Xaod could still feel the presence of evil within the town.
Xaod warned us that he could detect more evil from below the decks.

I get the impression from these two quotes you might be misinterpreting the detect evil ability of paladins. I realize though that this is a players account, so I might be interpretting the remarks wrongly. If so, ignore the following comments.

Detect evil ability of a paladin functions exactly like the spell 'detect evil', this means that it functions only within 60 ft. To locate anything specific the paladin also should wait 3 rds at each point before moving again. It would take quite a long slow strawl through town to check it out completely and even then you could rule there is a residue of evil everywhere. Though in case of Nulb that might be slightly exageratted, it defintely sounds reasonable in the ancient temple itself. The spell and ability is also blocked by a certain thickness of cover. One wooden wall probably is neglectible in this regard, but several and a layer of water might be a whole other matter. Stone walls of a tower and gate building definitely would block the spell.

Side note - detect evil can overwhelm a paladin, especially at low levels. I feel pitty with a paladin that tries to detect evil for example in the obelisk room in the Moathouse :evil

Edited by: madfox at: 4/23/02 5:40:28 am
DM Dan76
Registered User
(4/23/02 6:06 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
The group used Xaod like a evil radar of sorts. The moment after the fought Wat at the Inn the had Xaod ride through town on his horse (very slowly) and detect evil. He would ride up 60' and wait the three rounds, ride up 60' and wait the three rounds......I was glad that the town wasn't any larger at this point. It was like Xaod was their evil mine sweeper and they SLOWLY made their way through town pinpointing all the evil. I did have the whole place radiate evil though, which through them off, and made them consider burning the whole place to the ground.

I rolled bad for ramdom encounters, so they only encountered what was in the book. It was a long process.

They also had Xaod stand back and use his detect evil on the old ship. As the rest of the group enterd the boat, Xaod stood on the shore and scanned for evil....for somthing like 6 or 7 rounds.

I got really sick of that detect evil ability. I am trying to put limitations on it now, so that the players don't abuse it anymore.

A lot of what was written was just flavor text as well on Wellby's part. I opted to let him write the campaign journal from a players point of view instead of a play by play from a DM's point of view. Don't get me wrong, I love the DM's play by plays, and love reading all the campaign posts here on this board. Its just I didn't feel like writing one, so I had Wellby start a journal.

As compensation to the player, I let him play out a character concept he wanted to try, and I gave Wellby the "cursed" cloak. He wanted to play the "crazy in love with spiders guy", but didn't really like the Fang of Lolth prestige class. So I came up with a cursed Cloak of Arachnid that will make him obssed with spiders, and give him a few minor abilities. Nothing overbalancing, just a chance for some neat RP stuff.

I hope that you all are enjoying reading about my groups adventures, and hopefully I'll have the battle at the temple posted soon.


Registered User
(4/23/02 6:32 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
I got really sick of that detect evil ability. I am trying to put limitations on it now, so that the players don't abuse it anymore.

First of all, don't worry about giving the stories from the players point of view. Many times it is more fun to read anyway, you just have to realize that sometimes the DMs will ask questions/give comments that are based on inaccurate information.

Seconly, I never felt the need to give new limitations on the ability. It has got enough inherent in the spell. First of all, it is very time consuming and incredibly boring especially in the weather you were describing. While patient careful persons have little problems with it, the impatient risk takers should IC hate it. Xaod appears to me to be exactly such a impatient risk taker and he would hate it to work through these tactics.

"What?! That would take hours. Pah, just kick in the doors, look around and let evil show itself."

Secondly, it is unreliable. If I remember correctly a 1 ft thick stone wall blocks the spell. 1 ft thick stone walls are pretty common in medieval settings, especially in areas build to withstand sieges. I treat doors and windows in these cases exactly as I would treat them with an area with spread spell. Which means that I do not bend the spell around corners* too much. Many dangerous creatures are not evil -like the ochre jelly in the pirateship-, a few unpleasant surprises with these and the players start to realize they are waisting time. Many evil creatures are not dangerous and might in fact be needed to gain information. If the traces of evil are as strong as most evil creatures that are still there, nothing should be detected either.

Thirdly, since you can disrupt it, I assume people will notice it when you use it. While they might not regocnize it for what it is, they will regocnize it for a spell. So using it in social circumstances -like a tense diplomatic encounter between the PCs and some neutral orcs- is also not advisable. For all they know after all, the paladin might be trying to 'cast' a charm person spell.

In short, my players use it as a guiding force, never as a radar or even a descisive factor in a descision.

* Slight side-note, I remember reading somewhere about a silence spell getting through a wall. This does not happen. It is a spread spell, which is blocked completely by total cover.

Registered User
(4/23/02 6:34 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
My group did similar, but I had ways of accounting for it.

First of all, I had skeletons and zombies burrowed into the ground throughout the town (they all get up and wander around town at night). So Detect Evil was setting things off left and right.

The PCs would determine where one was, start digging, it would climb up out of the disturbed earth, and they'd dispatch it with AoOs.

Lather, rince, repeat.

This was going quite well for them, until Lareth (who was already Bull's Strengthed and Raged) comes screaming out from between two buildings, yelling hoarsely "GET OUT!!!". One PC is slow to run, I critted with my quarterstaff on my charge, wielding it two-handed, and rolled a 6.

The rest of the party wet themselves and rode from Nulb like there was no tomorrow. Then again, they DID get Lyssa out of the deal (the pastified PC was my wife's previous character before Lyssa).

"Whadda ya mean, Orcs get levels too?!?"

DM Dan76
Registered User
(5/2/02 5:24 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Here is the adventure logs for the last 2 sessions.
Note: only 1/2 of last session is posted, as a new narrator (Snaggle-Tooth) will have to take over.

Episode 15 (Hobgoblins and Ape in the Temple)

Our group sulked closer towards the center of the giant temple, when suddenly we caught the shadow of movement darting between the mazes of pillars.

Aust, Danford, and Ranx raced into the fray. Xaod lumbered
behind, while our ranger, Ivona, used her magic boots to scout along the far right-hand wall. I kept quiet and magically hidden in the center of the vast room.

The battle ended as quickly as it started: as Danford and Ranx closed with the Hobgoblins, Aust used a spell (from his newly acquired cloak) to entrap them in a sticky web. It was child's play to kill the entangled monsters.

We all had one thing on our minds...this was too easy...

Just then, more Hobgoblins emerged from a near-by door. As the 3 fighters raced to intercept them, more noise could be heard from the far end of the temple. Soon, even more Hobgoblins were racing towards the fray. Small goblin scouts and a HUGE ape followed them. This monstrosity was gigantic.

As these Hobgoblins clashed with our fighters, we found they were no ordinary humanoids: they were all skilled warriors.
Xaod took up a position to stop the ape and the other Hobgoblins from the front, while Ivona began to skillfully shoot any goblins that tried to sneak along the side of the temple.

I remained hidden but soon became aware that more Hobgoblins with a pack of hunting dogs were surrounding us from the rear.

Clashing metal sounds echoed from the walls of the temple as a full-scale battle erupted. The swarm of hobgoblins quickly overran the 3 fighters to our left flank. The small group fought a retreating battle as they desperately tried to withdraw to the defendable corner room.

The invisible Hobgoblin leader suddenly appeared as he slashed Xaod from the rear. Our mighty paladin faltered and was quickly surrounded by the enemies' leader, giant ape, and a small group of goblins. I sprayed the entire area with a Web spell, just as Xaod lunged to escape. The entire
area was now encased in sticky strands.

Unfortunately, my hidden position on the roof was now revealed. The hobgoblins from the rear unleashed their
dogs on our fighters, while they attacked me with javelins.
In their desperate race to the corner room, the Hobgoblins hammered Ranx to the ground. To our horror, they let their war dogs rend his lifeless body to shreds. Xaod escaped the webs, only moments ahead of the monsters. Aust and Danford held the door as Xaod raced to join them.

With pinpoint accuracy, Ivona continued to pick off all the little goblins from between the pillars. From the safety of the web (using my cloak), I flashed my spells and picked off any stragglers.

A heroic battle was now being fought in the doorway of the corner room. The giant ape pounded at Aust, as he continued to stab it with his rapier. Both combatants were being healed; Danford used his power of St. Cuthbert, while
an invisible shaman healed the ape. The giant ape finally used its mass and plowed through the door. With its long, muscled arms, it grabbed our cleric and tore him to pieces. Moments latter, the hairy beast fell to Aust's blade.

Ivona and myself used missiles to kill most of the remaining Hobgoblins.

Seeing that their cause was lost, the shaman and Hobgoblin leader tried to retreat. We quickly chased them down, and slaughtered the monsters.

Episode 16 (Temple Deaths)

Each of us looked down and gave a small prayer to St. Cuthbert as we gathered up the bodies of our fallen comrades. Ivona ran to collect our waiting mounts and wagon, as I began to take inventory of the loot from the
battle. With the help of Ivona's healing wand, Xaod was in good enough shape to help Aust search the remainder of this floor of the temple.

After a ˝ hour of heavy work, loading the wagon, Aust and Xaod emerged from the Temple with stacks of booty. Their arms were piled high with statues, rugs, chests, bags, etc.

8th- 10th Day of Harvester (Starday - Moonday)

It was a long and quiet 3-day journey back to Hommlet. This gave us time to mourn Danford and Ranx. We knew Danford had a very good relation with Canoness Y'dey at the Church of St. Cuthbert in town.

Upon arriving we headed directly for the church and her services. We quickly realized a large caravan was in town. Hommlet was flooded with all manner of merchants plying their wares.

After telling the mournful Canoness of our deeds, we left the bodies in her tender care. The remainder of our group took the rest of the day to mingle with the new arrivals and
fence our loot.

11th Day of Harvester (Godsday)

Our day did not start off too well. Most of our newfound wealth was wasted in an attempt to raise Danford. The Canoness informed us that during her ceremony, Danford's soul indicated he wished to stay 'at rest' until he could be brought back to his clan.

After a lengthy and heartfelt decision, I have decided to escort my comrade (and friend) back to the mountains and
his clansmen.

We departed the next day, just in time to say goodbye to Ranx: as the Canoness brought his spirit back to us.

[DM's note: Danfords player decided he wanted to play a new character. Since he was the groups only cleric, Wellby's player figured he would take a new character as well, a cleric, to fill the hole left by Danford's departure. The group now looks like this:

Aust - Elven Fighter4/Wizard2
Ranx - Halfling Fighter2/Rogue4
Xaod - Human Paladin6
Ivona - Elven Ranger5
Jeff(no character name yet) - Half-Elf Fighter2/Sorcerer4
Snaggle-tooth - Half-Orc Cleric6 (Travel & Strength Domains)

Snaggle-tooth will pick up the duty of keeping the Journal.]

DM Dan76
A resident
(6/7/02 5:15 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
(Please note: if the sentences seem short, choppy, or not grammatically correct, that is on purpose. Remember, this is not the arcane scholar: Welby writing anymore. It is a tribal 'shaman' 1/2 orc doing the logs now. It gives it a bit of personal flavor.)

Episode 16, Chapter 2: (New Friends)

With wind in my hair, and the open sky above, I roam free once again. Glory be to Farlanghn, and to Grummish for giving me the strength on my travels.

Like my forefathers before me, I pass our legends in the traditions of our people: carried on foot from tribe to tribe. Now the humans send word.

They hear of great evil rising again in the East. Our High shamans give me scrolls to give to the humans.

Many moons have passed. On my glorious travels, I have joined a caravan. A blessed group indeed, for they live by the freedom my God provides. I also meet a half-breed elf who needs guidance. His gods of luck have betrayed him. Now he runs from a gambling debt in Verbobonc. He should not pray to luck gods for wealth, but to mighty Farlanghn for a quick journey.

12th Day of Harvester (Waterday)

Farlanghn has been kind, for we get to Hommlet safely. Caravan stops for 3 days, so I do my sacred duties and drop off scrolls at the Human Church of St.Cuthbert. I visit the traveling shrine of 'Welcome Wench' (~ A tavern along a main road is considered a shrine to some Farlanghn worshippers. It is a place to meet other fellow travelers.) Here we meet other 'Road-Walkers' who know of great evil in area. They have signed on with our caravan, but want help to kill evil. Me and the half-breed join them in their travels.

13th Day of Harvester (Earthday)

Bad omens come early. The Gods test me with a challenge. The worst sin and unholy crime befalls our group: the defilers wish to block the roadway!

These unclean ogres will pay for their crimes against my god! I pray to Grummish, and he grants me the strength to crush these heathens. Our group is victorious.

Late in the day we arrive at the site of evil (Temple of Elemental Evil).

The halfling; Ranx tells me they fought a mighty battle here. The Human and Halfling continue to claim their spoils while I deface this evil place. The Elves moved off to check the only intact tower left in the courtyard.

The Wizard; Aust's raven familiar flew to summon us to aid the elves. We rushed to the tower where they fought a battle with hobgoblins. The half-breed threw spells at the creature, while the two full-bloods fought with bow and sword. The evil little creatures hurled flaming jars at the elves. Smoke filled the tower as we finally arrived. The female elf; Ivona slew a new goblin with every pull of her bow. Grummish must have been looking down on Aust because he fought his way out of a pack of them. The last of the Hobgoblins tried to run, but the Human, in shiny armor, rode them down with hoof and sword.

With the grace of Farlanghn, may your feet carry you to all the corners of the world.

Episode 17, Chapter 2: (Under the Temple)

Smoke and blood filled the Temple Tower. I called the mercy of my God to heal the injured, while the warriors wiped their blades clean. Trust an elf to find the stinkiest room in tower. Arcane elf, Aust, found small trap door in a chamber used by the hobgoblins as a toilet. Me no like stink! We send little 'half-man', Ranx, down hole.

He find treasure and more tunnels. Soon, we all down hole and searching tunnels. Every tunnel leads to cave-in, except one. We find exit out of deep well, many yards from Temple grounds. Only small, abandon farm left.

We gather horses and go back to Temple grounds.
Many minutes pass. I feel confined in these ruined walls. But little 'Half-man' seems to like small holes. He scurries like rat under one ruined building. 'Little-Rat' has a nasty bite and kills many hobgoblins in hole.

Soon, nothing left to kill.
After good search, we take loot from Temple and head back to Hommlet.

14th Day of Harvester (Freeday)

Holy day of week comes and I pray at morning sun. We arrive back in Hommlet for only one night, because our caravan will be heading out at first light on the 'morrow. Ahhhh, the sounds of equipment getting prepared for the open road, horses getting ready, provisions loaded. My God smiles.
It seems my new friends don't share my pleasure. Instead they choose the path of Olidamara. My half-breed friend finds it easy to gamble his new-found money away, while 'Little-rat', the drunk paladin, and the elf get in drinking contest with locals. 'Little-rat' barely manages to stagger out with his winnings at 2 a.m.

15th-18th Day of Harvester (Starday - Godsday)

The next 4 days I am thankful to Farlanghn for granting safe passage to Kron. Only the 3 heavy drinkers moaned at the trip through the (bumpy) Kron Hills. What glorious days on the road! Great hills parted to show a horrible wall. It looked as if a great beaver had created a huge dam in the valley. The mighty walls of the Gnomes loomed ahead. What horrible little creatures these Gnomes must be to block such a wonderful road. Me sure this will not be good!

With the grace of Farlanghn, may the next corner in the road reveal wisdom.

DM Dan76
A resident
(7/3/02 6:13 pm)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Episode 21, Chapter 2: (Drug Problems)

Rest of night we sleep good, but cold. Winter coming. At sunrise me pray for wisdom: "Oh great Fharlanghn, what is the best way for our group to enter this crater ridge mine complex?"

~"My child, seek the the path least traveled and there shall you find the entrance which you seek"~

"Oh great Fharlanghn, would you be pleased to see me take action for the killing of Tal?"

~"My child, although the death of Tal bothers me not, I forsee great suffering as a result. From the shadow of death shall you find the blessing needed to clear the path which lay ahead."~

After this, the gods give me power to talk to head of our vanquished. We found out that the entrance is guarded by "dozens of warriors and numerous priests...". The gods also give me power to heal Aust's eyes. But talking with gods is tiring and we must rest for the day.

24th Day of Brightleaf (Moonday)

First thing in morning Jeffery and Ranx feeling drained. Xaod uses his healing art on them and says they poisoned from drugs they take.
Late afternoon, our metal bird warns us that cult group comes down from mines (the used path). We quickly ambush these novice fighters. Fight ends quickly.

25th Day of Brightleaf (Godsday)

Morning shows us that Jeffery and Ranx's condition get very bad. They take more drugs to feel good again. Xaod, Ivona and me go to town to look for cure and help re-build trade post.

Once in town, we see many people suffer from drug sickness. Xaod and Ivona think that Ernist, the herbalist that was with caravan, can make cure. They go into hills to find him. I speak with half-orc law-man, Jardeth. I tell him what I know about Tal's drug deals, and how my friends: Ranx and Jeffery try and stop him. I tried explaining how he died when he attack my friends, and how fire may have started in struggle, but Jardeth still want to question them. I explain all my friends are out trying to find cure for the town's drug problems, and promise to return the 'goods' from the burnt store.

I also run into orc brothers 'Verg & Unaret'. They from nearby tribe that trades with Rastor. We trade and work out plan with locals to re-build trading post.

Xaod and Ivona return with Ernist who works on cure in his shop. He discovers medicine that will help villagers. Also tells us of powerful spells that will cure the poison. After helping where we can, we return to our camp on hill.

We find that Aust, Jeffery and Ranx have fought another huge 6-eyed, gray beast. Aust, worried for his weakened friends jumped into battle while the others shoot bows from the tree tops. Aust stood his ground to make openings for blades of his allies. And when beast fled, Aust chased the
creature and hacked it down.

Xaod and I return late at night to Rastor. We take back wagon full of goods that we kept safe for town. We give armor and other goods to help rebuild trading post. We make arrangements with Hothgar to return with supplies for
village before winter sets in.

DM Dan76
A resident
(7/12/02 6:07 pm)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Here is the last two-weeks battle....

Episode 22-23, Chapter 2: (Enter the Complex)
26th Day of Brightleaf (Waterday)

After cold sleep, we prepare to attack side door. We march up steep trail. Grab metal bird, and Ivona uses fancy wand [Change Self] to make us look funny [disguised as the Hommlet Cultists]. We go into front doors. After few minutes, spot Gnolls, but they don't mind us (in funny disguises).

Ranx and Xaod park cart at intersection while everyone else checks all the corridors. While Jeffery and I check the big room at end of hall, Ivona and Aust sneak down long hallway to the left.

Big room has commander of guards giving speech to his men. Large ogre and huge monster (howler) lay in corner of room. I try to listen and peak in.

While investigating room, Ivona runs into a foul 'ochre' robed cleric. This troglodyte screams out an alarm and immediately begins to attack. As Aust runs to help her, both Ranx & Xaod rush the Gnolls. They too, quickly pull a chain and sound the alarm. A huge melee begins.

Me, still in funny disguise, try to explain, but guards quickly catch on. Big howling monster and it's master rush out into the hall to join the battle. Xaod fights gnolls all the way to a back room. Meanwhile, Ivona traps the trog-priest in a zombie-filled room, but they pounding to get out.

She uses boots to stick to roof and readies oil for when they get out. Aust and Jeffery help in big battle.

Aust uses 'bead of force' to hurt monster, but it escapes at the last moment. I get lucky and 'just' escape room with spell. I begin to summon 'small howler' of my own to help us. Giant howler and commander chase Ranx and Xaod into small room.

Ivona hears crack and door breaks open. Hoards of zombies pour out and she splashes priest with oil and flame. More enemy guards rush in to help complex. We all panic and run...Jeffery and Aust race out front door beside me and we fight on the defensive. Ranx, Xaod and Ivona now trapped in

We begin to fight back: with my holy symbol, I turn zombies to dust and bone. Aust uses magic to put most of the humans into a slumber. Xaod and Ranx try to race back into battle, but dark priests cast evil spells and our halfling is blinded. They retreat back to small room, where I use 'mist'
spell to hid them.

Ivona hides in small room and quickly heals herself before she engages guardsman. Great ogre (Wormspike) uses his force to close front doors on us, and locks us out. We use spells and force our way back into door, but giant howler is waiting for us. He snaps at me....and....everything...goes....dark....

Next thing I know is I feel cool, soothing liquid splash on me. I
gain my senses and look around. Looks bad. Aust is bitten in two, splashed all over floor beside me. Giant howler is down and bleeding from many wounds. Great ogre is smashing Jeffery in corner, and Xaod battles many priests and guards down corridor.

Little Ranx gulps potion [potion of Glibness], and tells all the bad-guys we have help coming. He sounds pretty good to me! When their backs are turned, we bash them down. Xaod gulps potion [potion of Haste] and runs around slaughtering the guards. He races down hall and returns with battle-weary Ivona.

Many of the dark priests escape. We surround the ogre and commander, and beat them down. We quickly gather some loot and haul it, along with Aust's body and the blind Ranx into the wagon, before the priests can return. Ivona gathers even more loot and runs to join us racing down the side of the mountain with the cart.

We run for an hour to our old camping spot to heal.

27th Day of Brightleaf (Earthday)

Light snow falls as we wake up in our frozen, blood-soaked clothing. Few words are said, as we mourn the loss of our companion: Aust. I pray and Ranx's sight returns. Xaod also returns from his morning walk, but this time he crashes through the underbrush on his new mount: a rhinoceros!

DM Dan76
A resident
(7/19/02 5:04 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story......still going.
Hello all,

I hope that those of you that have read my story have enjoyed it. I think it funny reading a players perspective and seeing how they preceve things differently than what is intended.

Anyhow, I just thought I'd give a little update about my group (for those of you who are reading this).
My group is now sitting at 7 PCs! We added the 7th player last session (he was an old friend and I couldn't say no).

Here is the group breakdown as it stands now.

Snaggle-tooth; Male Half-Orc - 7th lvl Cleric
Jeffrey; Male Half Elf - 2nd lvl Fighter / 4th lvl Sorceror
Xaod; Male Human - 7th lvl Paladin
Ivona; Female Elf - 6th lvl Ranger
Oskar; Male Dwarf - 7th lvl Druid
Ranks; male Halfling - 2nd lvl Fighter / 5th lvl Rogue
Feiwen; Female Elf - 5th lvl Sorceror

Xaods Rhino mount
Oskars anaimal friends - a Brown bear and 2 dire weasels

As you can see, I have a fairly large group on my hands now. With the addition of the animal friends and mounts (commonly refered to in our group as the petting zoo), there are basically 11 of them. The Rhino and the Bear and devestating in combat. They cleared out the remaining forces of the main gate without a sweat.

I fear the defending forces of the crater ridge mines will have their hands full.

Stay tunned for last weeks conclusion of the attack on the main gate, and for next weeks game where Jeffrey has wandered off by himself and has come into contact with the earth temple!

A resident
(7/21/02 9:29 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story......still going.
I wonder about the way you handle deaths. It seems like you let people just take new chars with the same levels as those that died, thus not getting the -1 level that is the penalty for death, and even leave items behind? Is that correct?
If it is then the starting party that was a bit weak for the adventure should grow into a party that is too strong for the adventure eventually if it hasn't already happened. Or am I wrong? I am myself a bit unsure how to handle this, with TPK's if one wanted to continue then of course the new party needs to be at least as strong. But otherwise in my games a death will always cost a level. Regardless whether the guy comes back with raise dead or as a new char.

DM Dan76
A resident
(7/22/02 4:58 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story......still going.
Actually I handle deaths correctly, althought it may seem I don't due to a high party level.
When a player dies he either raises his character (-1 level) or starts a new character (again at a level lower than his character). This has played havoc with items though. There has been a few occasion where a player brought in a new character, but the PC's still had the old characters equipment because they recovered the body. So now the group's equipment level iot higher than it should be. It would work fine if the PC's had to abbandon the body and retreat, thus leaving all the equipment behind, but it has not happened that way yet.
There was an exception however with the player of Aust. He had a character from a previous adventure that had started this adventure. The whole group was around high 6th level when they started, so I raised the levels of all the encounters. Well an advanced big U wiped out everyone in that party except Oskar and Ivona (who was a new player with a 4th level character). I gave them the option that they could raise their characters or bring in a new party at the propper level.
I gave Oskars player the option that when the time came that his new player was 7th level and for whatever reason (death, etc.) he could switch back to Oskar. That is why when Aust died, he was replaced by a character of equal level. I know it may have been generous of me, but I had given that player the option before hand, and I did feel bad for making him switch characters before.
I am hoping to help out my problem with the characters having too much equipment by introducing them to NPC's with the sunder and improved sunder feats. If I can chop away a few of their magic weapons, then it may bring their equipment level back down a bit.

Stay tunned to find out what happens!

DM Dan76
A resident
(7/23/02 5:11 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Episode 24, Chapter 2: (The petting zoo vs. the complex)

Xaod and his rhinoceros crash through early morning frost toward camp. We surprised to see he bring friends. Ivona also recognize two new people approaching camp. One is elfy woman - just like Ivona, but much prettier; she call herself Feiwen. Other one is grubby little dwarf - Oskar - who
brings all animals in forest into our camp. Huge bear crashes through tents, while monster weasels rummage through all our food and supplies. Big rhinoceros crush my favorite camp pans. We have zoo in our camp.

Me much rather face enemies in mines that stay at petting zoo. We decide to make another 'sneak' attack, right away. Jeffery much more powerful now, and uses arcane magics to make himself, me, Ranx and Ivona invisible. We sneak up to front gates (that are locked). Rest of group waits below on
road for signal.
I cast spell to 'dimension' me, Ranx & Ivona into 'archery guard room'.

With help of silence spell, Ranx and Ivona quickly assassinate guards. We head down ramp to get rid of guards at alarm chain. Again, silenced, Ranx and Ivona slaughter gnoll guards. But we not notice bad priest down hall.
Ivona fires arrows into ochre robed villain, while Ranx swings his deadly blade at foe. Since they attacked, both Ranx & Ivona now visible, and even more guards spot them! I keep hidden and try to figure out door locks to let friends in.
As Ranx and Ivona chase priest down corridor, I slow enemy with silenced stone and fog in hallways. Battle erupts in hallway and more enemy priests arrive. They hurl spells at Ranx and Ivona, who see through their attempts and jump to safety, but forced into back room. Guards pour in from all
posts. I use spell on stone hinges, but door stands firm. I warn Jeffery outside through new opening near door, and he gives signal to the rest of group. Huge blasts of sounds and magic also warn us that Ranx & Ivona in trouble.

Ranx stabs and drops enemies as fast as they pour into the small room. When priests enter, Ivona fires off hail of arrows, and they land true: one in each eye of priest. But head priest continues to lob spells at the cornered scouts. Bodies pile up and blood splatters small room.

Front doors are still held firm, as lock cannot be found. Entire petting zoo races and hurls themselves against the massive doors. Doors creak and moan under the weight of weasels, bear, & a rhinoceros. Soon everyone on the outside pushing against the buckling doors. I rush past fog to get out of way of stampeding petting zoo. I find enemies pouring into room, that my spell tells me Ranx and Ivona in trouble there. Still invisible, so I slip into room between guardsmen, and shut door. Now entire room is silence under my spell, and priest's magic is stopped. I lock the door as Ranx and Ivona slaughter all the guards, leaving only the priest between us.
With silence spell, we cannot hear entire stampede crashing through the enemy guards and smashing them into pulp. And they not see us behind locked door so they crash right through and venture into darkened tunnels beyond.

We finally wrestle priest to ground where Ranx cuts furiously at him. He slashes everything in sight, including me, before killing the priest. Finally, the rhino smashes through our door, along with the new elfy-girl.

Meanwhile, Jeffery (still invisible) has ventured way past Oskar into the tunnel. They can no longer hear him beyond the darkness.

DM Dan76
A mysterious stranger
(8/14/02 5:30 am)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Episode 26, Chapter 2: (Into the mines)

Xaod and Oskar begin to loot dead priest. I fly over rocky tunnel back to wagon and rear group. But me and Feiwen hear cries and flapping back towards Paladin & Druid. They scream that large, winged lion is attacking them. We rush to help, but their blades and petting zoo has crushed the beast before we can help. We gather up loot and head back to wagon. Xaod and Feiwen spot corpse in rough rocks. They retrieve fancy rings from its bony hand.

While walking back, Ranx, and others try to explore side tunnel, but when my spell tells me he is getting hurt, Xaod and I rush to his aid. We charge past deadly traps, only to find they had discovered dirty old bed down trapped tunnel. Even more healing needed now.

All magic used up and party pretty worn down. We find safe place to rest. We head to barracks/ballista room, that has nice, big door to lock.

Armor, weapons, coins all starting to tumble off of carts. Getting too heavy for poor mule to pull. Everyone but Ranx, Jeffery, Oskar and Feiwen go to Rastor to sell goods. After selling our wares for a huge loss, we reluctantly head back up the road for the crater. Night draws near and we tighten our cloaks at the chill. Ivona suggests we leave the mule and cart
corralled at our camp, as they too big for small mine tunnels now.

When we return, the other group looks slightly beat-up. They tell tales of side-passages and even more Trog warriors. This time they use magic potion to make them invisible. We all sleep lightly. Especially Oskar who's large weasels have left during the night. The creatures told Oskar that they no
like caves, and will go back to the forest outside.

28th Day of Brightleaf (Earthday)

We all awake chilled by the stagnant night air. We all eat a nice warm breakfast and prepare to go back into mine tunnels. We pass by main gate entrance (still broken), to see snow blowing outside. An artic wind has blown a storm down from the mountain tops down into this valley. Winter is
close at hand. Oskar worries for his weasels.

We move back into darkened, rocky corridors to place where priest and winged lion still lie dead. We continue slowly, until the sharp-eared elves hear drums and chanting in the distance. We follow the noise, cautiously until we very near. After short moment, we put up defensive spells and let Ivona,
and Ranx advance (with help from Jeffery's invisibility and my silence spell).

They sneak into large chamber. Large group of cultists chant, while sacrifice about to happen on huge stone/earth platform. Great -multi-armed monster seems to see right through our invisibility spells, and races towards our silent scouts. Screams of alarm sound and the remainder of our
group rushes into the fray. Xaod charges the hordes of cultists now moving to block our entrance into their dark ceremony.

DM Dan76
A wanderer
(9/4/02 1:02 pm)
Re: DMDan's Campaign Story (long, but hopefully interesting)
Episode 27, Chapter 2: (Battle in Earth Temple)

Metal dents and maces clash as the great melee erupts. Snorts and dust rise up from Xaod's rhino as it mashes into the longspears of the Trog warriors. The rest of the party moves up into the corridor to help him.

Our scout, Ivona, was horrified that the great multi armed 'xorn' swung at her, even when still shrouded in Jeffery's invisibility spell. To her relief, the creature sensed the tremors of the great charging rhino and 'swam' back in the earth to position itself for new prey. Ivona continued
to stalk up to the looming alter to attack the priests, who were now chanting their dark magics upon us.

The remainder of the group pushed forth. Ranx sticking to the walls and roof, remained hidden and tried to move into position. Feiwen blasted her magic missiles into the xorn as it dodged in and out of the earth. Xaod had stumbled off of his mount and began to swing at any trog that his rhino had
not crushed. Jeffery used his arcane powers and elven swiftness to move in and gain the upper hand on the enemy. I was looking for an opening to run and silence the enemy priest - with their heathen ways. Finally, Oskar used
his power of nature to bring forth a column of fire down upon the dark priests.

Unfortunately, he could not see our hidden scout, Ivona, but she rolled to safety with only singed hair. As she rolled to avoid the flames, Ivona dropped the stone of 'silence' into the pocket of an unaware priest, stopping its vial spells. Both dark priest quickly ran off the platform to get away from the 'unseen' silence effect.

By this time, I have race into the waiting line of enemy. I found myself completely surrounded, and unable to reach the evil priests. It was during this time, that one of the priest, now out of the silence radius, had begun to rain down dark magic upon the group. Feiwen, Oskar, and Jeffery had
finally managed to take down the huge xorn, with the help of 'Fluffy' the bear, and were on their way to assist Xaod. But the ground changed under the spells of the priest. Huge jutting spikes of stone formed, cutting all the feet of any who moved through them.

The earth priest had more than Trogs to help in the fight. Their evil minions, the Mephits used their tiny bat-like wings and fluttered above all in the high cave. As the group was fighting their way through the spiky stones, these little creatures blasted them with their deadly breath.

Then more foul magic pelted the group. Feiwen felt all hope was lost, and began to run from the battlefield. But her escape route was cut off by even more creatures who had moved around behind the group!

It was in this time of desperation that Xaod, and his mount "Stampy" the rhino, charged through the jagged rocks and smashed into the front lines of the enemy. Jeffery and Oskar quickly joined him. The fluttering little mephits soon fell with the skillful chop of their blades. Ivona and Ranx
began to harass the priest with volley after volley of missile fire and dagger swipes.

Our onslaught could not be stopped, and one after another of the Trog warrior dropped under our blades (and Stampy's feet). Only Feiwen retreated, blasting her way clear out of the back tunnels. One of the priests was ripped apart by magic and blade.

I raced to grapple the other priest. Soon most of the group surrounded the dark-one. But in their haste, some of their blades chopped into friend and foe alike. Finally it was beaten into the ground that he once worshipped.

Episode 28, Chapter 2: (Beyond the Earth Temple)

After a quick inspection of the area, most of the party began to dress our wounds, and collect the loot from the dead earth worshippers. Our celebration was interrupted by the cries of captured victims in a cave beyond. The captives were quickly freed by our holy paladin. These farmers, and travelers were sent back out of the tunnels, to freedom. A
capable female elf among them offered to lead them back to safety.

Our party began the task of scouting the maze of twisted tunnels that lead out of this 'sacrifice' chamber. Minutes passed before most of the scouts returned. Only Xaod remained unaccounted for. Ivona's keen elven ears
heard the sound of battle down one of the tunnels. We all raced towards the smashing sounds further up the corridor.

Up ahead, we could see Xaod and his mount limping back towards us, both covered in massive wounds. Through
his blood covered mouth he cried of the horror that lay waiting behind the door at the end of the tunnel. A huge, 3 armed ogre. 18 feet tall and armed with 3 clubs and a poisonous bite, the creature loomed in the dimly lit room.

While the rest of the party readied themselves into position around the door, I healed Xaod's wounds before he rushed back into the battle.
The group stood toe-to-toe with the beast. The mammoth creature filled the entire door, and a great standoff began. Its 3 clubs continued to smash into us. Xaod and Stampy were soon beaten into a bloody mess again. Ivona and Ranx filled the creature with missiles. Jeffery and Feiwen flung magic missiles at the creature, but all the spell casters were running dangerously low on spells after the last great battle. Oskar ducked and rolled beside the doorframe, trying to avoid the creature's massive blows. I chanted the words of my god to fortify the resolve of our party.

Blow after blow were exchanged, and both sides were smashed and beaten. The creature only faltered after taking enough damage to drop 5 warriors. It tried to retreat back into the room beyond the door, but Fluffy raced in to
claw at it, followed by Jeffery. His keen elven blade struck true and the giant fell, bleeding from a hundred wounds.

The party moved into this small, guardroom. Its walls were finished stone, like the ones first encountered at the main gate. While the group looted a large, gem-filled chest, Ranx could hear movement at the other door in the room. We raced into positions, and readied ourselves for combat again.
Down to only reserve healing potions, and scrolls, the party gritted its teeth and opened the door.

A long corridor with another door was revealed. Ranx opened this second door to expose a group of readied humans and elves, poised with missile weapons. They fired their arrows, and raced up the corridor toward us. We gathered ourselves and met them half-way down the long hallway.

Metal sparked and blood spattered as the two groups clashed. Our blades against theirs. Our Rhino and bear, against their pack of guard dogs. They were no match for our skill, and they fell as fast as we could swing our
blades. But they had a champion as well. From the darkest depths of the earth, a deep Dwarf fought for them. A Durgeur. But Oskar changed into a cheetah, and joined our animals as they spilled forth, and our archers pelted the creature, and it was soon surrounded. Deep wounds formed as our arcane casters used their wands and hurled missiles at the creature. The dark creature fell, and only the back ranks of evil elves remained.

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