Author Topic: Session 55 – The Shrine Maze  (Read 2795 times)

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Session 55 – The Shrine Maze
« on: January 02, 2007, 10:41:16 PM »
Session 55 – The Shrine Maze

The party of heroes were in the midst of the stone garden – a maze of constantly shifting stone blocks and changed the layout of the maze from moment to moment. Walls would slide shut cutting off access to corridors. Whole rooms would appear and then disappear.

The party evaded more bomber goblins and other small denizens of the stone garden until finally, the stone blocks began sliding about in disarray until only a jumble of stone blocks were left. The party walked through the remaining jumble of blocks and came to an open area with three identical wood and metal doors.

Callister used his spyglass to check out all three doors. Beyond the first door was a circular chamber, a catwalk running around the perimeter and a huge floating ball of fire floating over a lowered floor. A door was visible on the far side.

Beyond the second door was a circular shaft with a stairway running around the inner wall, going both up and down. No exits were visible.

Beyond the third door was a huge chasm and a stone bridge going off into darkness.

The party chose the third door. The chamber beyond was a natural cave. It seemed that those who had built these dungeon had taken advantage of natural caverns. A gaping chasm stretched out before them. The ceiling was lost above them in shadow.

The party used their light sources and the spyglass to examine the chamber thoroughly. The chasm walls and floors beneath them were covered in strange leathery egg sacks that were connected in fibrous cords of tissue. As they discussed how to safely get across the stone bridge, they heard a few of the egg sacks open and slime covered horrax (scorpions with dragon fly wings).

Rothgar thought he heard the sounds of large wings from the shadows above.

Dozens of horrax crawled up out of the chasms on the players side to confront the party. Tyron quickly gathered the group close about him and cast an anti-life shell. Any living creature would be unable to penetrate the spell.

The spell worked and the party was able to begin across the bridge. The horrax scuttled about the stone underfoot, but could not approach within 10 feet. Callister used his lightning sword to toss a few well placed lightning bolts out into the mass of flying insects, frying a few dozen.

Unable to push against the mass of insects in front of them (doing so would have collapsed the bubble), Ugita cast a Horrid Wilting spell and several hundred of the little monstrosities imploded as the moisture was vaporized from their bodies. With the path clear the party continued to the far side where an identical door was waiting for them.

Suddenly they heard the beat of large wings and something large landed behind them on the bridge. They turned to find another of the mongrel creature (hooves, fur covered humanoid, pincer claws, beak, horse mane and bat wings) standing in the middle of the bridge. Callister attacked and punched a few holes in the thing. It started to morph to deal with the attack. It began growing a hardened exoskeleton and its armor improved. It began to look more like a walking crab now.

The party unlocked the far door, went through, closed it and locked it. They could hear the mongrel creature rushing the door and then beating on it with its huge pincers. The party found themselves in a long corridor. They ran half way down the corridor and stopped. Knowing they had to rest, Tyron cast a Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Mansion spell. A shimmering doorway appeared in the ceiling (Tyron put it up there on purpose). The party then climbed up into the extra-dimensional mansion. Inside they found a large mansion complete with bedrooms, tables, chairs and a feast of food. The party would stay here to rest, heal and recuperate.

The party slept for 8 hours, bathed and ate. Then, Tyron and Martin, both wizards capable of casting identify, spent three hours identifying the items that they had recovered from the bodies they found at the bottom of the previous chasm.

The short sword, which Detect Magic showed to be the most powerful item, was indeed a treasure. It was powerfully enchanted to strike true in battle and to bite deep. It sucked life energy from the wound and bestowed this energy on its wielder. And wounds made with this blade would bleed continuously and would be resistant to all but the most potent healing magic.

The ring was a Ring of Protection and helped turn blades away from the wearer in combat.

The leather armor taken from the body of the thief was black as night and shadows seemed to cling to it. It was also silent. Blades struck against the material made no sound. Once donned, the wearer made no sound. Finally, it protected greatly against fire, cold and lightning.

The cloak bent light about the wearer rendering the wearer almost completely invisible, leaving only a shimmering visual distortion. (Think Predator).

The first of the two wands was a Wand of Fire. It could hurled fire bolts, spew a stream of flame, quench fire and allowed the wielder to resist fire. It had 48 charges remaining.

The other wand was a necromantic bone wand. It could heal or harm, cause disease or cure it.

The final item was the potion. This potion once quaffed caused the imbiber to regenerate and heal wounds at a fantastic rate, though the effect lasted only a short while.

After healing, resting and identifying the items, the party cautiously left the mansion and dropped back down into the corridor. There was no sign of the mongrel morphian beast. There were a few horrax scorpions here and there but these were quickly dispatched with well placed arrows from Rothgar’s bow. The party noted that the door through which they had come was now shattered and torn to pieces. They decided to move on quickly.

The corridor ended in a huge chamber. Stairs down the side of the room went down into water. The lower level of this chamber was flooded with murky greenish water. On the side wall, some 80 feet away, there was a large arched passageway, though it was mostly submerged and only the very top of the arch was above water. It looked like there was about a foot of air in the passageway beyond the arch, the rest was flooded. The party decided to go through the arch, but did not want to risk entering the water.

Tyron used an Otiluke’s Freezing Sphere spell (actually two of them) to freeze a large potion of the water. At the archway, the ice ended. Callister got down on his belly and crawled into the low opening there was just enough space between the top of the corridor and the ice for him to get through. The ice ended about 5 feet into the passageway beyond and Callister slipped into the water. The corridor was dark. Some 10 feet into the water, something grabbed his leg and pulled him under. The rest of the party saw thrashing in the water and then a coughing Callister reappeared.

Callister swam back to the beginning of the corridor, crawled back up onto the ice and back out into the main chamber and rejoined the rest of the party. Ugita decided to go next. He was still wearing the Armor of Holrumna. This magnificent suit of armor could seal air tight and had enough air for 5 minutes. The party used Teela’s flaming sword to melt some of the ice and give Ugita enough of an opening so he could drop down into the water filled passage with his armor on. Ugita sealed the armor, dropped down into the water and pulled out a continual light stone. Small silvery fish scattered before his light.

About 30 feet in, the ceiling of the passage dropped down and their was no pocket of air at the ceiling anymore. Beyond that point, Ugita was completely submerged. He continued forward until he got to a point where the floor descended down about 12 feet and passageway opened up into a chamber. On the left, right and far walls there was an opening with a portcullis like metal gate. All three portcullis gates were raised and open.

He returned to the party. They decided that they did not want to go into their section of the flooded dungeon. Callister had a Ring of Free Action which allowed him to move quickly through the water and Ugita had the armor which could seal air tight. But the rest would be moving slowly and would have to hold their breath. Not knowing how far the submerged section was, they decided that venturing in blindly was a poor choice of action. Instead, they decided to try to drain some of the water out of the next few rooms. Hopefully, the submerged area ahead and was not too large. The party decided to cast a wall of stone just outside of this submerged corridor back in the main room. This wall of stone would be a half tube, directly in from of this door and about 10 feet tall. The idea was that they would drain water from the section where they were going into the section behind them. The curved stone wall would keep the two sections separate. How would they drain the water? They decided to use the Pilfering Rings which they still had with them. These two rings (iron circles some 14 inches across) were connected through an interdimensional gate. You stick your hand through one ring and it would come out the other. They could toss one ring into the water in the next section and the other ring would start to gush water as the water pressure forced its way through.

The second ring was held over the edge of the wall. The plan was working – water was being sucked in by one ring and spewed out the other dumping the water into the main chamber behind them, behind the stone wall. However, it quickly became clear that this process was going to take a very long time. After 45 minutes of this, the water level in the corridor had only dropped by one inch. The party wanted to get much more than one inch and it seemed they were in for a wait of hours.

We ended Session 55 here. The Rings are being used to drain the submerged chambers that lay ahead of them, but it’s taking a long time. In the mean time, the party is going to try to come up with a faster method drain the water away. This is no simple feet. We are talking about thousands, possibly millions of gallons of water. They could simply hold their breath and swim in, but who knows what lies ahead. The party is trying to be cautious and make the next section of the dungeon a little easier.

So, here ends Session 55.