This Tuesday we had Dungeons and Dragons and things took an unexpected turn!
When last we left our fearless adventurers, they had just discovered a small cache of treasure in the Shanty Town beneath Snowspire Castle. Their loot wasn’t handed to them. They had to fight off a bunch of grey oozes to get it. They recovered a very special dagger that they aren’t sure what does yet, and the magical helmet of a Night Watchmen named Gerard that is intelligent and can speak to the wearer. From the helmet they learned that Castle Snowspire was once a thriving community and the last communication between Gerard and the helmet was decades ago. What happened to the Castle?
Apep the Sorcerer started out curious about what was happening in other Shanty town homes but a Grey Ooze attacked again. The group decided it best to continue exploring. They decided to go down and encountered a long corridor. Moisture permeated this corridor, indicating a likely warm soil that allowed water to remain unfrozen in this part of the very Frozen Frostreach. A broken miner’s pick lay at the side of the corridor. At the end of this corridor was a heavy iron door. Falla the Rogue peered under the door with her half elven low light vision and saw stairs leading down. The door was locked.
Faced with going back or forging ahead, Dom took action. As a Wizard, he cast Flaming blade and was going to attempt to open the lock by melting it. I held out for the possibility of this just fusing the lock, making it un-openable, but he rolled a Natural 20 on his spell check so I gave it to him!
They descended the staircase and found a large open area with mining equipment and a little storage of rubble stacked throughout. A deep pit sat in the middle of the room, with a wooden walkway and gantry system across the middle. There was a pulley system elevator near the platform. Asking Gerard’s helmet, they learned that since the Night watchmen watched on the outer wall, he rarely spoke of this mining area. However, the Helmet did mention Gerard speaking of periodic monster sightings and attacks in the mines.
The group decided that Lucaan (in Giant Eagle form) and Trevor the Manticore™, should fly down first and scope it out. They descended down into the chasm and saw a mine cart, tracks leading into a shaft and various miner tools scattered about.
The whole group decided to descend. They doubted the strength of the elevator system over time, but agreed that they should move the elevator down in case they needed to make a quick getaway. Apep was brave enough to lower herself on it and had no problems.
When down, the Mine Shaft split into three ways and they took the left tunnel. They found a series of skinny passages branching off, one of which lead to a small quarrying area with veins of a glittering metal still exposed. They decided to turn around and check the left main passage. It wound around and to their right was a room filled with barrels. The barrels contained a black powdery substance, wadding and little string-like devices. I explained that they did not know what this was because “gun powder” didn’t exist in their character’s lives…yet. They packed the powder into the wadding but did not take any strings (Uh oh for the future!)
They continued down the corridor and the group split again. Dom decided to go back to the small quarry area to explore. Falla and the Manticore went down the left split. Lucaan and Apep went straight ahead and Aazoth (Candace) and (?) went right. To the right there was a room with scribe’s desks and cases full of scrolls. They found a scroll that looked like a map, but clearly not of this level of the mine. Straight ahead, the group found a mess hall with a kitchenette. The Manticore and Falla went down a long corridor to the left which opened up to an even wider shaft. They went left and found a large open room with wooden walkways constructed along two levels and a bridge across the second level. Mining equipment and rubble lay everywhere.
Cutting back to Dom, he continued to explore the small quarry area, finding some active and dead walls. In the last one, a large room similar to the one described above was present. In a corner he heard some clicking sounds. A huge Ant-like creature turned around and screamed at him. As Initiative was rolled he got a solid hit with a spell. Unfortunately, the monster gazed at him, confusing him and freezing him in place! Thou shalt not divide the party!
Cutting back to Falla and Trevor the Manticore, they encountered a similar creature. They exchanged blows with it and learned that the thing hits hard. Deciding it best to flee, they ran back down the large mine shaft and to their left: to find another large room and a dead end. The Manticore flew up and hid with Falla on the walkway. The Ant-Beast did not see them.
We cut the adventure short on time with the rest of the party running to aide their comrades after hearing the noise from the fight and flight echoing through the caves.
What will happen next in the mine complex? I actually don’t know because I had not planned anything for that last floor. But, I believe that a DM should be guided by their players, not vice versa, so it was a successful adventure of player choice!