Session #124 – Worm to Lady Dwarf and Back to Worm Again

After another night in the muddy mine, Jerker found the mental strength to push past his curse and clear the vault room of rubble. He recovered Eugene’s body, such as it could be identified after being crushed under tons of stone. He also found the flattened parts of the platinum scepter and the necklace. The gems that once adorned them were destroyed, but some quantity of precious metal remained.

The spent that day examining and experimenting with the two sets of keyholes, one set at the surface and one set in the lower room. Ferris easily used lockpicking tools to work the mechanisms, determining that two of them raised and lowered an elevator in the shaft. More worms of various sizes were fetched from the mine for testing the effects of the other keyholes. One certainly disabled the pressure plates on what was now known as an elevator. The last keyhole was yet to be proven, though they suspected it turned off the rush of wind that pulled everything down the shaft.

Next, Ferris opened up the third vault room that contained many items covered in glowing domes of magical energy. The fields were of various colors.

ItemOrb Color
Small BottleRed
Small BottleOrange
VialYellow
ScrollGreen
RodBlue
WandIndigo
WandViolet
BagRed
Suit of ChainmailOrange
SwordYellow
Deck of CardsGreen
RingBlue
Small BoxIndigo
GemViolet

Despite opening the door, they did not dare to enter. The traps encountered so far were increasingly deadly. They retired to the mine once more to contemplate a safe approach to remove the treasure. The less experienced attendants were silent when asked to venture into the third vault.

Polymorphing Magical Friendship

On the morning of the 11th, Tienarth described a devilish plan. He proposed to transform one of the many worms that endlessly materialized at the glowing crystal into humanoid form. Jerker enthusiastically promoted this idea, even though Tienarth seemed to regret the idea the moment he shared it. Ferris noted it was fortunate no paladin nor cleric were around to disapprove of the plan, particularly because Tienarth planned to use a charm spell to be sure the transformed worm remained an obedient servant.

Perhaps due to some animosity for dwarves in general (the dwarves in Hammerstone had proposed a game of throwing the old elf around a tavern) or perhaps due to wanting to choose a form the vault might recognize, Tienarth chose to transform the worm into a dwarf. He placed a small worm on the stone of the vault platform. Speaking a few words, the worm quickly grew in size and took the form of a lady dwarf wearing nothing but a surprised expression. Jerker swiftly wrapped her in a cloak. A moment later, the old elf cast a spell that forced the worm-cum-dwarf to consider him her best friend.

She expressed fear and puzzlement at her new form. A worm possesses little intellect, but this new creature certainly could speak and feel frightened. Tienarth told her coldly that he had a task for her. Again, she shared her fear but reassured him she loved and trusted him. They descended the chain into the vault and approached the third room.

Tienarth instructed her to enter into the room and pick up the potion bottle inside the red orb. Jerker advised her to use the cloth of the cloth to protect her hand. This proved ineffective protection. The moment she touched the red orb a flash of fire enveloped her, thoroughly burning her to death. As she fell to the vault floor, her form gradually returned to the original worm shape.

Tienarth then attempted to dispel the magic of the red orb with no result. And Ferris searched the room for traps, finding a door the in floor that would open under sufficient weight. He opened it to see a shaft ending in a blue liquid.

Taking this information together, they knew the problem of the orbs was beyond current understanding. They had already gathered significant loot from the first two vault rooms. With the protections in place, it was unlikely anyone else would remove the treasure, but Tienarth added his own magical locking spell on the vault.

They retired to the mine once more. Tienarth attempted to convince Jerker of his curse, but the fighter insisted he was merely tired. Regardless, they planned to return to Hammerstone after resting.

Home Again

On the 12th, they headed out of the mine, into the underdark and towards Hammerstone. Along the way they met Aderian. He explained that he’d visited Lah to remove the curse he picked up by stealing the gem from the gargoyle eye. Along with him came a young paladin called Nate.

Aderian’s bag, a sentient being who once was a wizard, sensed the vast loot they carried and begged to hold it, for Irenduel was a bag of holding that craved gold and asserted some influence over the former pirate, Aderian. Jerker offered to give up some treasure. The bag opened up and Jerker dumped a handful of worms in. Disgusted, Irenduel demanded that they be removed immediately. Jerker chuckled at his prank.

Before long, they returned to the dwarven city of Hammerstone and in the days that followed, they made their way back to the homestead near St. Orlan. On the way, Jerker talked to Lah to remove his own curse. He also donated the emerald he took from the gargoyles to the church.

They arrived back at the homestead on the 16th day of the month.

End Notes

  • Treasure
    • Smashed sceptre and necklace pieces: 1,000 gp
  • Combat: none
  • Characters
    • Aderian
    • Ferris
    • Jerker
    • Tienarth

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