We begin our story in the Sitting Duck tavern as we attempt to wrangle the ranger, Badiel, into caring that there may be a necro-cult in his midst. He could care less. He was mildly amused by the signet ring of the Necromancer he had been tracking down after killing his father. He gave us 100g reward (minus the cost of the drinks). The map of the Hall of Dead Heroes did pique his interest but we snatched away our map to its location before he had a chance to study it at length. I don't trust him.
Attempting to arouse interest in the cult with the local "good" Necromancer didn't seem to work either. People just don't care about cults the way they used to. During our conversation with the N'mancer, Bay-Wynn attempted to gain access to his laboratory to search for clues that might link him to the cult. Nothing was found. Another dead end.
The sheriff of the town seemed unconcerned as well. Impending doom just doesn't hold water with these people.
Njord's girlfriend the seamstress looked at one of the finer cloaks that we had found and all we found out that someone with a lot of money probably owned it. Ya think? Njord proceeds to bang her again while we wait.
Finding no interest in our cult story we decide to blow the joint and follow the map to the Hall of Dead Heroes. We encounter some drunken ogres giving hell to one of their friends for losing his wedding ring. They were so distracted with this ribbing we were able to sneak past them unnoticed.
The map leads us to a cave with many chambers. In the first chamber we find a deep pool of water. None of us had the testicular fortitude to inspect the pool so Njord summoned a water elemental named Todd to look for us. He found us a masterwork set of chainmail. Medium sized. Joy.
In another side tunnel we encounter a locked iron door, but just outside this door we discover a collapsed passage. We are able to unlock the door and find a chamber with a stone sarcophagus in the middle. We leave it alone. After much digging in the collapsed corridor we are able to find another room with another sarcophagus. Unfortunately this one contained an evil mummy who was defeated but not before he infected Otho with mummy rot. This will need to be dealt with soon.
On the opposite end of the mummy chamber we discovered a secret door that lead to another chamber filled with zombies. Joy. Despite the odds, Otho nearly single-handedly defeated the zombies. Go Otho!
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The Journals of Njörd Eissen - The Necessity of the Sorcerer
Otho has fallen ill. Since his encounter with the creature from the sarcophagus, his mind has weakened. The curse that has afflicted him tears at his soul. He mustn’t have much time left. Luckily, his actions remain true, yet still he refuses to speak.
After dispatching of the vile spawn that were behind the trap door, we gathered the small treasure. We were not exactly sure of what it was. Some kind of curved rod with jewels adorning it. Whatever it was, it seemed as though it were not complete. Perhaps there was another part to it elsewhere in the cavern. We could only hope and pray to Otho’s god that it was also some kind of cure.
We returned to the room that we had initially found that contained a sarcophagus. Most of the room was covered in a layer of ice, but I didn’t mind. The temperature reminded me of my frozen homeland. Finding nothing else of interest in the room, we exited so that we could safely watch in the distance as Pint forced open the tomb. He was immediately stricken by the feeling of a deep and biting cold. Pint ran back towards us, a bluish hue comprising his complexion. Before his departure, he glimpsed some sort of mold inside the coffin. Bay-Winn stepped forward, lit a torch, and tossed it into the opening. The mold, reacting to the heat, doubled in size. It seems Pint had the heat sucked right from his very core! Deducing its aversion to the cold, I bravely bounded forward, surreptitiously favoring the icy embrace. I placed a hand over the top of the sarcophagus and unleashed a flashy and freezing blast, consuming the hindrance entirely.
At the bottom of the sarcophagus laid some kind of keyhole. It seemed that our rod would indeed fit, but only about half, confirming our suspicions. We set out to explore the remainder of the cavern to find the remaining part of the key. As we began to explore, the natural heat of our bodies returned.
Returning to the two tunnels in the main chamber, we quickly surveyed them. In one, a den of vile rats. The other, a tunnel filled with water. Pint, eager for a dip, quickly disrobed down to barely anything. Feeling objectified by our stares, he shouts, “I’m not a piece of meat, you guys!” and dives in. After a few minutes the dwarf returns and shares what he saw; another cavern with another sarcophagus. We relied on the restrained and quiet cleric to summon a water elemental. I spoke to the creature and asked him to traverse the underwater tunnel. His journeys to the opening revealed little but wake the creature inside. Pint finally redressed himself for battle. We decided then to face this foe and swim through the tunnel.
The next moments are a bit fuzzy. I believe this is due to the party’s collective oxygen loss. I remember Bay-Winn attempting the distance and falling short, but we had prepared with a rope tied around her. Pint revived her with a kiss. Could it be that a love is developing?
Despite my love of the water, my frame prevents me from succeeding in the ancient act of swimming. We gave the accursed cleric little choice and tied everyone together, swimming for the other end.
When I surfaced, gasping for air, I noticed Pint and Bay-Winn already in the throws of combat against a Wight, which brandished a large wooden shield. The battle seemed to be going nowhere at an accelerated rate. No physical attack could penetrate the weighty wooden wall the Wight wielded. Blow after blow glanced off, but he could not strike us either. Luckily, my magic was easily able to surpass the protection and his health began to wain. The Halfling casts his final channel, damaging the wretch enough for me to deftly dodge his blows and put him down with a blast from an icy ray. I won’t hold it against the others for not contributing. They are valuable allies, albeit occasionally ineffective.
Inside the crypt we found various valuables. A morningstar, some gold, and the other half of the rod-key. We swam cautiously back through the tunnel, again with its share of struggles. Heading towards the switch, we found some more items from the day’s earlier battles, including a fine belt that caught my fancy.
Wisely, Bay-Winn suggested we stay back as she used her song to fit the key together and glide it into the keyhole. The floor immediately gave way to an opening below. Had we not been cautious, us weary warriors would have worn wounds. We lowered ourselves down slowly and followed the path down to a dead end, this time with an iron sarcophagus. Upon closer inspection, we determined it to be a enchanted puzzle. After much thought, the brainy bard figured it out, only to reveal a stone coffin inside! Etched upon it a riddle,
Beware the obvious trick,
For often ‘tis a truth revealed,
For truth is oft a lie revealed,
From whence no being is proof
Heeding it’s advice, we found a hidden access and the casket opened. Revealed inside were the remains of a woman and various other items, but two particular items strongly drew my attention. There were two rings; one adorned with the deep azure allure of a sapphire, the other, containing the passionate scarlet hue of a ruby. I quickly grabbed them for myself, longing to explore their appeal further.
We exited the cave with Otho looking worse for wear. We weren’t even sure if he would survive the return journey, but we had to try for our fearless friend. We rushed back to town, turning a three day journey into two. Within sight of the town, Otho’s life-force began to slip. As he held on to the last sliver of life and faith, we entered the gates and brought him to the temple. This, all in the hopes that the priestess there can save our heroic Halfling.
I sit to write this entry and stare, lost in thought, at the new rings around my fingers. My thoughts begin to drift away from the grave situation afflicting my friend towards thoughts of the mysteries that surround these gems. Despite my finest efforts, I cannot seem to focus on the cleric and his calamitous circumstance, instead remaining transfixed on the bright bands that I adorn.