Friday, January 26, 2018

Don't Help Women In Trouble?

Dara 1 - 13; next holiday, Darkest Day, Dara 35.

The Party:

  • Rig Bigny, Gnomish Beastmaster
    • Flit, the bat familiar
    • Clench, the Wardog War-Badger
    • Midnight, the Panther
    • Noona, the Lion
    • Faufe Yitaw, Dogwere (Badgerwere?)
      • Rawf, Wardog familiar
      • Aroof, Wardog familiar
    • Llarm Paphyra, Elvish Polydoctorate
      • The Metal Man, construct
  • Caranthir, Human Leader of Men
    • Rhea Trueheart, Elvish Nightblade
    • Lucille "Luce" Burwood, Fighter
    • Elenora Garrard, White Mage
    • Gimli Trollriver, Dwarven Fury
  • Gróin of Norston, Dwarven Sapper
    • Laurita Gomez, Priestess
  • Quetgar, Thrassian Assassin
    • Zarc, Thrassian Gladiator
  • Sorvald, Thief
  • Mor Gibs, the Wonderworker
  • Gianna, a Gnomish Trickster

The party resumed their journey (skipping town on Wintermas - but happy birthday, Zarc!) to find treasure, portals, and plotlines. In the desert, they came across an upturned wagon; Gimli and Rhea approached to lend aid, but found themselves under the control of another Child of Nasga! Charmed, they began refusing orders, and freed the creature. Caranthir quickly attacked, and the group finished off the lone threat... then chased down the two hench-people, as they had been sent running into the desert. Thankfully, no one got lost!

After meeting up with Gutsack and his Efreeti "friend", the party split, with Sorvald and Gróin and the henchmen heading south to some treasure, and Caranthir and Rig heading north, to find the portal to the Fire Plane. On their way, the two avoided a group of mummies and some horses; they found a recently-active volcano, and climbed inside. After navigating for miles underground, they came across a huge red dragon, sleeping on a pile of treasure. Being just two, they opted to turn back. However, they then ran into a group of morlocks; Caranthir, in dragon form, froze all but two in a single blast. The living morlocks began weeping and pleading for their lives. They weren't sure of where the fire portal was, but knew that dread creatures sometimes came from behind the red dragon's chambers. Rig and Caranthir turned back, and crept past the dragon, who only snored louder.

Following the tunnel, they found a narrow crevice, and inside a pair of obviously magical gloves. Finally, they reached the fire portal, and verified it was, indeed, the plane of fire. Retracing their steps, they once again slipped past the dragon, and exited into the cool night air. During the night, a group of four stone giants passed by their camp, but never noticed them.

The next morning, they began their trek back. On their way, they saw two statues below them... statues that suddenly lifted on great wings and caught up to them - it was a pair of Sphinx! Sphinxes? Sphincter... no. Let's go with Sphinx. After some banter, the first sphinx asked a simple riddle:

What comes in pairs,
And rarely flies
Is eaten by men
And brings life when it dies?
The answer, of course, was seeds - pear seeds. The second Sphinx asked another simple riddle:
Nodding, Waving, Head in the Sun
Daytime done, head is hung
Who am I?
Which Rig immediately guessed, correctly, was a flower - a sunflower, of course. As a reward, the pair were gifted a ruby, and a bit of information about the surroundings. Over the next few days, they encountered a few vultures, but not much else.

The second party of adventurers, on their way to find some treasure, ran into a woman, fighting a scorpion! After a moment of indecision, they landed to help... only to find the creature was, in reality, a Lamia, and had tricked them with illusions! They drove her off, however, and returned to their quest. In the desert, after much searching, they found a buried room, containing the corpse of a somewhat famous mage, some gold and jewels, and a +1 sword. They returned to the fire temple without further incident. While waiting for the others to catch up to them, they spent their time hunting down the tribe of gingerbread orcs that Gutsac had baked.

Finally, the party reunited, and the Efreeti granted two wishes. Caranthir wished to be a full dragon, with the power to polymorph; he is now a full level 9 dragon, with the polymorph ability, his original stats, and advances in saves, proficiencies, attack throws, and damage bonus as a Fighter. When transforming into a human, he is a normal human fighter.

Rig, meanwhile, wished for a way to move his pets with him more easily, and was granted a Ball of Pet Summoning. The well-chewed leather ball seems to have a strap wrapped around it; once per week, a strap can be removed and put on a tame creature. Any creature with a collar can be summoned for 1 hour (6 turns) within 1d4 rounds, and be dismissed at will to return to its original location. Removing a collar from a creature will cause that collar to be re-absorbed by the ball.

The magical gloves were, of course, the Fire Gauntlets of Elrik the Wanderer. Gróin tried them on, and was immediately rewarded with a vision of Elrick, fleeing a tide of rising magma inside the volcano; coming upon a crevice, Elrick leaped over it, pushing himself over a red-hot boulder with his leather gauntlets. For a moment, the gloves glowed blue...

The Flame Gauntlets provide immunity to heat and fire-based magic; additionally, they can be activated once a day to wreath the wearer in flames for 1d6 rounds, doing 1d4 damage to enemies within melee range.

Bidding farewell to Gutsack and the Efreeti, the party decided to head to the Pointless Tower, as the Princess decided to inform them she knew the way inside. On the way, the party was nearly drowned by a pair of thieves... and, the party gained a Ring of Invisibility, Sword +1, two vials of Holy Water, a silver dagger, Leather armor +3, yet another Decanter of Endless Water, a Ring of Fire Resistance, and a Ward against Elementals.

They made their way past a large Orc encampment, and finally found the tower. Sorvald was nearly roped into being a test dummy, but they managed to extricate themselves, and the princess lead the way to the real opening of the Pointless Tower...

As the party split up, I'll make two lists for XP.

  • Caranthir and Rig
    • Encounters
      • Child of Nasga (3100)
      • 9 mummies (avoided)
      • 50 horses (skipped)
      • 30 morlocks (killed and/or captured, 300)
      • 4 stone giants (ignored)
      • 2 rocs (ignored)
      • 2 sphinx (answered their riddles, 6000)
      • 3 vultures (ignored)
      • Pterodactyl (avoided)
      • Martín Robles (lvl 8; 1600)
      • Johan Månsson (lvl 8; 1600)
      • 429 orcs (avoided)
    • Treasure
      • 5,000 gp ruby with setting
    • XP for Rig and Caranthir, each: 5142 (plus 2500 each once the ruby sells)
  • Everyone Else
    • Encounters
      • Lamia (2500)
      • Martín Robles (lvl 8; 1600)
      • Johan Månsson (lvl 8; 1600)
      • 429 orcs (avoided)
    • Treasure
      • 1,000 Gold
      • 1 flawless diamond (4,000 gp)
      • 1 Glass jewelry (130 gp)
      • 1 ivory jewelry (300 gp)
      • 2 wrought gold jewelry (800 gp)
    • XP for Sorvald and Gróin: 1659 (plus 1743 each once the treasure sells)
    • XP for Laurita and Zarc: 830 (plus 871 each once the treasure sells)
  • XP for Rhea, Elenora, and Gimli: 246

GM Note: I paused the session so I could make up the maps for the Pointless Tower in advance. I ended up shortcutting a different adventure by combining the two, and in the process, thoroughly creeped myself out. This should be a fun adventure! :-D