On the 23rd day of Angel, the party decide to escort Grubbycheek to the dwarven city of Hammerstone by way of Slateholm rather than going back over the mountain pass. The mountains seemed particularly dangerous in light of attacks by a dragon and roc. They concluded travel over trade roads would be safer.
They spent that night at the Dancing Frog, sampling once again Amphibian Ale and conversing with Zetel. The next day, they walked to Slateholm and visited Benabil’s shop. Ferris sold 8 healing potions for 25 gp each. Healing salve from Malcolmsfort had become hard to find in light of high demand for the recently-arrived armies. The civil war from the east had spread to the west. Both factions raced to gather resources and to fight.
The party pooled resources to purchase a rare scroll that contains four spells: Summon Monster III, Black Tentacles, Hallucinatory Terrain and Break Enchantment. The old elf tucked the scroll away for future study, as he intended to add these new spells to his spellbook. After a night in an inn with little trouble, they headed west towards Hammerstone. Along the way, they met to gigantic snails on the road and dispatched them with ease.
Traveling to Hammerstone
After reaching the dwarven city, Grubbycheek indicated he meant to spend a few weeks recruiting workers. Jerker wanted to make for the mine right away, so the miner provided instructions for finding the tunnels that lead to the mine. He also directed them to the Tin Whistle where they rested that night, but not before indulging in some revelry.
A round of drinks was bought for the handful of patrons and Jerker asked for a game of chance. The patrons, eyeing Tienarth, suggested a game of elf tossing, which the old elf warned them not to try. Thereafter, a known gambling master was fetched and they began playing a dwarven dice game. Ferris lost 100 gp playing. Jerker won 600 gp, causing the gambling master to close up for the night. Jerker gave Ferris enough coins to make up his loss.
The next day, they left Hammerstone along the underground trade road, careful to follow Grubbycheek’s directions. At prominent landmarks, they chose ever-smaller tunnels. The journey was long enough to require a restless night in a cramped cave chamber. Along the way, Jerker marked cave walls with a sigil Ferris invented on the spot. On the second day, they arrived at the muddy cave and then outside to breath fresh air once again.
With half a day of sunshine left, they explored the ruined city. Jerker spent a lot of time digging in the rubble beneath Molokotu’s feet where a castle once stood. He found little of value but could tell with more digging he might reach a dungeon area not clogged with debris. As the sun set, they found the supposed vault and saw the eyes of the gargoyles glowing again.
Aderian mounted the platform and felt a wave of magic, which he shrugged off. Presently, he climbed a pedestal and plucked an emerald from the eye of the statue. Again he felt a chill and then became sleepy. He barely descended before collapsing in Jerker’s arms.
Inscrutable writing surrounded a central granite block. Tienarth was unable to read it with his magical glasses and concluded they runes were magical. He suggested a time of rest to memorize an appropriate spell. In the dark night, they retreated to a half-ruined building to take shelter for the night.
Ferris took first watch and soon spotted werewolves approaching. He kicked at Jerker to wake him, and the young warrior produced a scroll of protection from lycanthropes. A glowing sphere surrounded the party. The werewolves were repelled, but the screeched out a warning that they would be back.
Day 2 at the Vault
The next day, Aderian sleepily woke with a profound feeling of weakness. They walked back up to the platform to study it further. With the benefit of his spell, Tienarth could read words that claimed the vault was below the block. With this hint, they combined their strength and shoved the block away to reveal a lead plat with an inset handle. Jerker twisted it and the plate retreated to show a deep shaft.
By flickering light, they saw an immense treasure more than 100 feet below. The distance was covered by a shaft nine feet across, thickly covered by short blades dripping with some unknown substance. Jerker dropped a boulder down and it stopped, hovering some distance over the treasure room. This was taken to be a force field of some sort. A second boulder produced a ringing sound, suggesting the barrier was metalic, though transparent. Jerker also tried dumping water, which pooled and then ran off into an unseen crack.
Tienarth produced his crystal ball and scryed the treasure room. It appeared to 20 feet square and piled with all manner of coins and gems. Above the room, Tienarth could see the bolder and water hovering and a slanting side passage.
Jerker Attempted a vigorous attack on a statue, hurling boulders to no effect. The stone seemed completely immune to damage. Aderian attempted taking another emerald and suffered no more ill effects, though his overall strength remained weak, as were his mental capacities. Jerker took a gem for himself and soon suffered a similar diminishing of ability.
With the sun high in the sky on the 30th day of Angel, the four of them faced each other and considered their next move.
- Treasure: none, though Jerker won 600 gp gambling
- 2 Giant Barb Snails: 480 xp
- 5 Werewolves: 0 xp because they were scared off
- Characters: 120 xp each
- Aderian: 132 xp
- Ferris: 132 xp
- Jerker: 132 xp
- Tienarth: 120 xp
- Days: 7 / Ending on 4/30