Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Greyhame Mountain Dungeon Expedition 19

Orcs have returned to the caverns of the Glimmervaults ...
the Goblin King and the Lord of Werewolves have renewed their ancient alliance beneath the Howling Tower ...
and the secret treasury of the Bronding Kings is said to lie hidden behind the Brokenbrand Falls, haunted by enchanting naiads ...
and Jaer the Windlord looks down on the world below from the Eyries of the Eagles on Greyhame Mountain itself ...
while the Stars themselves are singing an eerie, eldritch song, night after night ...

5 February's roster:
Kord (half-orc fighter 3/cleric 3)
with Blade and Boar (wolfhound and boarhound), and Gram and Thaddeus (normal men)
Ham (cleric 3)
Baby-Face (thief 5)
with Whesker, Wilmerand, and Wallaby (weasels) and St. Bb (st. bernard), and Frida (normal woman)
Aethelwulf (disgraced paladin 3)
with Hauka (weasel)
Little-Bob (traveling man 4)
with Marlo and Panzer (cur and orc mastiff), and Rolf Rolfson (normal man)
Blackleaf (Elf 2)
with Johann Haybaler
Koko (woman-ape 2)

The last time Kord adventured into the Greyhame dungeon, he emerged with a huge haul of treasure after a desperate fight with goblins, but when he caroused, he and his companion Ham got involved in some kind of an Evil ritual--they were both badly drunk and don't remember who or what instigated it, or what the nature was exactly--and both were consequently denied their spells by their Good god, Kord.

Going to Lailith, local high level Good cleric, Kord and Ham each received a quest spell from her to go and save the children that remain the captives of the goblins beneath the Howling Tower. Further, when that deed is done they will have to pay 500 gold for a small Good liturgy, and then they will be restored to their cult and their spells regained.

So that was the purpose of this expedition, but first preparations had to be made. Kord threw his weight around with his new won gold, buying a dog for himself and hiring two mercenaries, Gram and Thaddeus, and then buying a weasel for Baby-Face (who is broke from the last time he caroused and threw the biggest party ever seen in Brakeridge--he owes several thousand gold now to the thieves' guild ...). Kord fully equipped his new hirelings, and then continued throwing money about as he bought two plots of land, one on which he ordered the construction of a new temple to Kord, his good god of strength, and the other for eventual farming plans. Lastly, he acquired 3 healing potions from Lailith, at a whopping 300 gold each. And I believe he still has money left over.

Aethelwulf, meanwhile, is disgraced in his paladinhood while he was carousing, he acquired a slave--Hastia, a young woman--whom he promptly freed, of course, but being Good, the acquisition of a slave in the first place was very bad. So he may no longer act as a paladin until he atones, for which Lailith has commanded him to pay for a 2000 gold liturgy for the Good cult.

And Baby-Face, as mentioned, is badly in debt to the thieves' guild. In an attempt to start paying it off, he took on a job attempting to smuggle goods for them (using the monthly hijinks from Adventurer Conqueror King System)--but alas, he failed at his task, and was unable to meet the contact who would transfer the goods to him.

So ... with Kord, Ham, and Aethelwulf all clamoring to free the captive children, the party set off through the wilderness seeking the Howling Tower. On the way out, attrition destroyed another axe chapping firewood (they must be poor quality), and lost a dozen arrows in a poor attempt at hunting.

Arriving on the ridge where the tower stands, the party observed a much larger pyre beside Begor's pyre, the new one filled with small crooked bodies about the size of goblins--Baby-Face laughed, recalling the expedition on which he and the company slaughtered dozens of goblins.

Entering the tower, the party almost immediately ran into Okok the Ape King and seven of his baboon minions tearing apart the corpses of another couple goblins and eating. As Koko was with the party, they were able to communicate with Okok, who declared that his fire had gone out and that he was very disappointed. By promising to give him a tinderbox, flint and tinder, and more torches, the party enticed him into joining their attack on the goblins below, and he sent his baboons away to follow with the party.

Moving quickly through familiar territory, the party spooked the goblin guards at the head of the stair down to the dungeon, but they chose not to pursue the half a dozen creatures that scrambled quickly down the stairs. Maintaining their order, they descended more slowly and found themselves again in familiar territory in the catacombs. Little Bob pointed out that the western part of the dungeon was unexplored, and so the party looked into a couple of empty tombs before the group complained that they might have a better shot at finding the children if they explored nearer where they knew the goblins dwelt.

So they backtracked that way and entering into a large pillared hall, they surprised about a dozen goblins on guard outside a door. Battle ensued, and the goblins were killed, but they put up a decent fight, hurling missiles from the back rank that managed to kill Wilmerand the weasel and St. Bb the Saint Bernard. The goblins were led by one of their kind who seemed more capable and perhaps a little magical, but she was killed by an arrow to the eye.

The last goblin the party captured. This Nogg as it called itself pointed out that the children were behind the door--those that hadn't yet been taken down to the next level by the Goblin King. As this was all the party wanted to know, they killed Nogg and then went through the door to find two doors, one to the right, one to the left. The right door was locked; Baby-Face unlocked it and opened it and behold, seven miserable children were revealed in the torchlight, scrawny and malnourished and crying from the sudden torchlight. The other door turned out to be storage and a larder.

The party debated what to do next--take these children out now, or leave them under guard and explore deeper, seeking the other children? The question was made moot, however, when they opened the outer door and found a small army of goblins and wolves had filled the pillared hall behind them.

Goblin arrows thudded into the door as the party closed it to consider their options. As they continued to dither, more goblins showed up ... eventually they decided just to charge in.

This battle was going poorly for the party--the goblins and wolves killed the dogs Blade and Boar, and got in a few good hits on characters--and there seemed to be more goblin leaders in the back ranks, getting ready to throw spells--but at this point we were out of time (as summarily decided by our venue), and we had to wrap up. Fortunately, as the first of the wolves had just gone down, I rolled a morale check, and it failed--so reasonably fairly, the wolves' rout became the goblins' rout, and the werewolves that were with the group elected for discretion rather than valor.

So the party made it out of the dungeon with the children saved and in tow, and proceeded back to town without any incident.


Remembrance for the Fallen:
Wilmerand (weasel), Blade and Boar (dogs), Hubert the Peacock and Lysimmachus (normal men), a nameless mastiff, Livy (normal man), Orkie (orc hound), Fang (boarhound), Droopy and Snoopy (mastiffs), Dream Destroyer (ghost hound), Arrow (pack dog), Freyja (normal woman), a nameless cur, Hot Dog and Cross (mastiffs), Orion II (lion dog), Bacon (boarhound), Tore (half-orc fighter 1/cleric 1), Jimmy the Snitch (dog), Orion (lion dog), Harambe (man-ape 1)

and for those Enchanted Away:
Dol (fyrdman mercenary)

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