OK as I fell behind this may be a bit inaccurate as that darn real life got in the way of story writing (again!). I would appreciate the players using the comments to insert any edits as needed if I assign an action to the wrong player etc or any other general goof up. NB Absent this week due to illness/work Phaedra & Rats Magee.
Felix looked puzzled but didn’t argue. Tem had said he was a bad man and that was enough for the little Hobbit. Meanwhile may as well see what he had in his pockets – the rest of the room while he was about it.
Meanwhile Temerian had approached the shocked and shaken woman bound to the cot and freed her. “You have nothing to fear of us..” he said awkwardly; the human tongue did not site easily with him yet. “How are you called? How came you to this place?”
“I am Pinella” she began after taking a long pull on the water offered her. “My companions and I were exploring these ruins a week or more past. We were ambushed by some rogues and captured, at least I don’t thing any escaped from the five of us. Some are dead for certain, the sorceress had them dragged away and all I heard was distant screams. I think Paxon our priest may live still I thought I hear him chanting prayers from my cell.”
“Cells? With locks?” Piped up Felix, waving a bunch of crude keys he had taken off the cooling corpse.
Pinella nodded. “Through there” she said with a toss of her head to the western door way. “Vivlok would drag me from my cell to here whenever he wanted his way..” she burst into tears, and Phaedra sat down next to the shaking girl and wrapped her in a thin blanket.
“Go see to any others” The Hooded Cleric whispered. “I shall tend to this one, call me if there are indeed more unfortunates”
Happily Felix tried the door and he and Temerian stepped into the Cell block.
“Well, if that’s made of wood we could carve our way in if we wanted to?” Jospeh pondered as the three of them looked up from the waters of the underground river. His arms ached from climbing sideways along the rough walls laying out a length of rope on spikes so Arvid and Mogar could follow.
“If ya can get me up there I can bash my way in sure” Mogar replied.
“I can assist with that!” Arvid crowed rising higher into the air on his glowing disk of magical energy. He had barely got the end of the rope tied tot he wooden structure when the spell eventually gave way and he tumbled back into the shallow water.
“Thanks, go dry off” grinned Joseph shinnying up the rope. “Lemmie examine it first Mogar, if I can’t worm my way in I’ll swap with you and you can bash as bigger hole as you like!” good as his the nimble thief produced a crow bar and soon had a couple of planks free. Squirming mightily he wriggled into what he could now see was some sort of causeway or bridge. “Got in, but I don’t think you’ll fit Mogar if you want in then I’ll leave you the crowbar, see if you can make a bigger hole!” Mogar grunted and started to climb laboriously up the length of rope.
On the floor of the cave river Arvids ears tingled: “Arvid, this is Temerian, listen the spell does not last long. We have gained entrance and met and slain a guard. We have found prisoners, come join us…” Eyes lighting up the mad priest hauled himself back along the rope line to the edge of the wharf and the secret passageway.
“I think I managed to send a message to the others” Temerian declared to Felix and Phaedra. The three of them stood in a narrow cell over an unconscious man. Pinella was correct their party’s cleric one Paxon still lived as did one other. But despite her best efforts Phaedra could not rouse this man from his death like sleep.
“Good, we may need them.” Phaedra declared. “According to the girl there are two Jailers that take it in turn to watch the captives. Eventually the dead ones relief will show up we had best be either ready for them or else, gone by then.
“lets see whats in this room first?!” Piped up Felix reaching for the door at the far end of the block.
“Use caution short one!” Temerian urged, though he also was curious.
The pair cautiously opened the old wooden door and peered inside. The room was dimly lit by a single torch opposite them and was maybe ten feet across and apparently filled with nothing but smashed wood dust and other detritus. The trash had been roughly swept aside out of the middle section of the floor that led to the outline of another door. Idly Felix shuffled to the right and stooped to examine something in the dust. Suddenly a hideous roar like an angry tiger erupted from that side of the room sending the Hobbit skittering back.
Seeing nothing about Joseph helped the big man wriggle onto the walk way. He had needed to bash a couple of cross beams out of the structure to admit the big warrior. He had wanted to search more but shortly after Mogar began testing the hole for size the glow of Arvids disk had faded out, leaving them in the dark. A short trip up the passage had revealed an unlit torch in a sconce by a simple wooden door.
Lighting that Joseph had made his way back to assist Mogar. “Where the Preist?” he asked puzzledly. Looking through the staved in side of the walk way Arvid was no where to be seen? Mogar just shrugged, he was just glad to be out of the threat water, chain mail was not known for its buoyancy!
“Wait here I saw a door up this end, I’m going to check it” Joseph Pope (II) cautioned the big warrior. He had barely gone half way when he heard Mogar arguing with somebody behind him. Expecting it to be thier tardy cleric he almost carried on with his task, until he heard the gravelly tones of a Dwarf join the conversation!? Hurrying back he saw Mogar stareing down three individuals he had never seen before. Scanning their faces he couldn’t match them to any of the wanted descriptions he had carefully tried to memorise.
“Well why din’t you bring the wine then?” Mogar rumbled at them. Naked confusion stood out on the Dwarfs face and the other two (a man and a woman) looked suprised and shocked as well. Finally the woman found her voice.
“Who the bloody hell are you anyways! We’re not your servants” He hand was hovering next to her short-sword and the Dwarf already had a mean looking warhammer out and ready.
Joseph strode forward and projected all the confidence and swagger he could right back at them. “Vivlok sent us, you know he is go get some wine before he gets mad at us all!”
“An’ who is you mister!?” the Dwarf grumbled
“Yeah how you know Vivlok?” Asked the man right behind him.
“Oh we’re the new guards” Joseph replied coolly “Didn’t he tell ya? Oh well that’s all..”
The woman at the back looked at them with deep suspicion. “You all stay here!” she declared “I’ll go ask the mistress, you and Trob keep them in sight til I get back got it?” Her companion nodded, eyeing Mogar still with suspicion. She disappeared to the south back the way they had come.
Even odds at least. Thought Joseph as she left, lets see if I can keep them talking just a little longer…
“So you like it here?” He asked nonchalantly
“its sokay” the Dwarf mumbled back. “Underground prefer it, here but no like the..”
“Don’t talk with them till Runas gets back” The man cautioned, interrupting his partner. The Dwarf stopped and sank into a sullen, glaring silence.
They tried again, as the Dwarf was seemingly only now interested in a stareing contest with Mogar looking at the suspicious man instead.
“So whats Dark Odo like to work for? Not met her in person yet…”
“Huh?” grunted the man looking surprised “She is the mistress; nobody calls her by name, Vivlok woulda told you that!” He cried drawing his sword.
Crap! Joseph thought “Look out Mogar he…” But the Warrior never needed the warning nor the help it seemed. As the Dwarf dashed towards him Warhammer swinging at his nuts. With an almost contemptuous sidestep and kick Mogar dodged the Dwarf and kicked him through the Hole in the bridge!
“Your friend not so bright heh!” The Warrior smiled an evil grin at the suddenly alone human approaching him. Weapons clashed in the half darkness, and the man slipped on his backside. Crab like he tried to scuttle back out of the big mans way but took a nasty cut to his leg before he could get back to his feet.
Alert for any reinforcements yet reluctant to fire his bow past Mogar in the narrow passage Joseph suddenly became aware of what sounded like a growling animal somewhere behind him…
“Where is it! Where is the beast!” Temerian cried arcane energies gathering in his eyes as he prepared to blast the beast when it came into view. He and Felix cast about in vain looking for the animal but none came. The hideous noise seemed to come out of nowhere.
Eventually the pair realised that the “roar” was exactly the same over and over again. Niether knew a fig about Tigers but they didn’t sound so repetitive, even Felix was sure of that.
“It is but an illusion for the unwise!” Called a familiar voice from behind them.
Arvid Klerx stepped resolutely to the rooms edge and extravagantly waved his hands about. “See there is nothing there but sound and seemings!”
“Oh hello funny Man!” called Felix happy to see a familiar face.
“I am no ‘funny man’ short one. I am Arvid the Great, messenger of the five!” the Cleric retorted with passion.
“Where are the othe..” Temerian began to question the newly arrived cleric when with a crash the door sprang open: revealing Joseph in the door frame dagger in hand torch in the other.. The hulking form of Mogar was visible in the shadows behind him. “Ah! never mind” he concluded.
After a few minutes the group briefed itself on their several experiences. Arvid could not rouse the comatose prisoner with his invocations either. Frustrated the man stamped to his feet. We should seek out the source of his injury not fuss over him now. He declared impatiently.
“let me see this Jailer you killed” Joseph declared ignoring Arvids advice. Temerian led him back to the jailers room but inexplicably it was in pitch darkness, No light would enter it the mans copse shrouded from view.
“One moment I can rid us of this I belive” The Elf Mage muttered calling a specific spell to mind.
Meanwhile Arvid had gone back to examine the other side of the bridge, the bridge He had discovered from below! He knew the Five was leading them to the right goal and so he pressed on down the passageway. Mogar tagged along a short ways behind him. “You do know the one I wounded escaped back this way?” He asked the cleric.
“Yes yes I see his blood upon the floor my fine friend. It is no matter we should press on!”
A wave of nausea ripped over Mogar, and his eyes felt suddenly heavy. Shaking himself back awake he saw Arvid had apparently taken leave of his senses and was making a little Jig as he skipped and pranced down the passage way.
“It is magical compulsion” Arvid hissed through a grimace. As his involuntary steps carried him towards some kind of well lit opening at the end of the passage way.
I had best stop him, thought Mogar, If he gets into the open he’s and easy target. Out loud he called over his should to his distant companions “Hola! we are attacked!”
Temerians magics had pushed back the darkness now obscuring the jailers room enough for Joseph to see the disfigured corpse upon the floor. “yep” he crowed with satisfaction, “that’s one of them Vivlok, we’ll have a bonus waiting for us once we get that one back to the base..”
Temerian simply nodded, then inclined his head to once side. “Do you hear that?” the elf stated levelly. “Mogar calls us.”
Felix had heard the big mans bellow as well and the Halfling had scooted down the passageway just in time to see Mogar crack Arvid over the head with his quarterstaff.
“That wasn’t verey nice!” he called out accusingly to the Big warrior.
“He’s not in control of himself!” Mogar flung back over his shoulder at the small critic.
“oh never mind then!” Felix agreed drawing his dagger “Shall I help?” he asked quizzically cocking his dagger to take out a Kidney.
“No not with that!” Mogar cried in alarm, knock him down or something don’t kill him!” A harsh bray of laughter started to be heard coming from the the room up ahead. Several voices, and not all of them sounded human to Mogar’s ears…
Arvid still bereft of his own volition skipped into the room. Arrayed in front of him was a trio of evil looking Gor’bayen and behind them was an upturned table with two humans with short bows cocked and at the ready behind it. At the back of the formation a well armoured man waved a spiked flail with golden chains menacingly at him.
Felix slipped in the room using the involuntary gyrations of Arvid Klerx to shield himself from the enemy. In vain he sought a patch of shadow to use, but torches burned on every wall. Awaiting his opportunity he descided to just stab anyone that came for Arvid while he couldn’t help himself.
Mogar tucked his staff behind his pack and readied his sword and shield then cautiously stepped into the room. A pair of arrows volleyed right at him one skipping off his chain covered flank. Couching their swords two of the Goblins advanced to meet him. The Spear wielder edged towards Arvid…
Temerian and Joseph arrived in time to see Mogar charge past the two Goblins, his armour ringing as the surprised creatures tried to slash at his flanks. Stepping suddenly up and over the Tables barrier the Warrior smashed downwards on the Bowman cutting his head almost in half. Dimly Joseph recognised him as the fellow from the bridge that Mogar had hurt before.
Temerian sketched a glowing rune in the air with his writing quill. From a rent in space something like a fiery spike of stone spat forth to smash into the chest of the fellow seeming to command the defenders. The man was blown backwards and landed in a heap against a far door. Smoke rising from the hole in his chest to mingle with that of the torches.
Joseph standing by the entrance took careful aim with his bow at one of the goblins. Felix dated between Arvids legs just as the spear wielding Goblin stabbed at the helpless Arvid. Both Goblin and Arvid fell almost on top of the Halfling. The goblin dead Arvid unconscious…
Suddenly Mogar turned and with a wolf like howl threw down his sword and grabbed his staff once more. Barrelling forward he used it to crowd Tem & Joseph back to the rooms entrance. “Leave my friends Alone!” he screamed into their faces.
Temerians practised eye saw the compulsion and the agony of resisting it writ large on the Human warriors face. “He is controlled!” he barked in warning to the others. Inwardly he reasoned that the sorceress herself must be observing the battle either invisibly or mayhap via a spy hole of the like. No matter the grim necessity he had to take down his erstwhile companion or the Warrior might slay them all! A pair of smaller eldritch bolts blasted Mogar against the wall tearing at his body but sparing his life by the narrowest of margins. Joseph and Felix wrestled their friend to the ground and pummelled him into unconsciousness.
One more spell, I need one more spell to see us safe. The Mage thought wearily. May the fates be with me. Drawing deep from his reserves of stamina he concentrated as never before. The enchanted quill swept back and forth describing runes and symbols in the air that lingered with a faint golden light before fading: With a cry he proclaimed the trigger word and like a pent up spring his magics unfolded into a shimmering glassy wall stretching from the passageway to the wall some 20 feet, carefully enclosing the supine forms of Mogar and Arvid as well as his companions sitting upon Mogars chest.
An arrow sprang back as it hit the adamant energy barrier and Temerian smiled to himself. They were safe. For now…
Ok! Ok, ok that is IT. I know the session went on just a little longer but 3000 words is my limit in a single sitting! I’ll append the last actions of this session to the start of the next which I hope to do in a day or so fair enough? Hope you enjoyed it!