Josephine had a vision in the night that she was a small child walking towards a gaping cave mouth, a lion appeared and looked concerned about where I was going, looked like trying to push away. As kept going, got more aggitated and upset, trying to protect…eventually walked into the lion, became older and was then herself. Walked 2 steps into cave, fell down a flight of stairs and woke up.
Null Patrice had a vision also. Dream in a place she felt very comfortable. Surrounded by members of family she felt loved by and comfortable with…it was a holiday with a feast. They served her food…as soon as she ate it, it turned to poison and she retched. They comforted her and they brought her water…. tasted like vinegar. Looked around, everyone still trying to comfort, stood up and began to walk away towards her room. Opened a book, her hands were on fire, went down to touch pet, chomped at her hand. She stood up, stuff faded…felt protected at end… feeling from Einlein that he would be there, but was concerned where headed. Woke up.
We all wake up. Jess is sweeping out in front. We talk about our dreams… Ghyslbrecht asks for a flower seller. Jess says to go to the quartermaster supply.
Jess and Null get in discussion. Talks about Abercrombie and Martin. Brother Martin left a piece of advice…he’s been doing tracking and wanted to tip us off that he read in some books that adventurers would sometimes come back from the lower caves, but rarely came back from the upper caves. Best tracker in village is Cobb, Martin has done some tracking expeditions, but has not never found the caves himself. Martin has been gone a week. He’s fascinated by history of keep and area. He prays to the great God Cislew.
At QM supply, large man with big black beard. Welcomes us to Keep, asks if we’re really going to caves. He’s looking for a Rose or a pinch of fine sand. We say we are… he says it’s been a while since people went there. It’s been quiet until recently. Caravans disappear, seen tracks of lizard men. Aseneth buys a bunch of components, Third checks out some weapons. Has some random weapons, dwarf sized plate mail.
Josephine and Null borrows a gold from Ignatus and buys rations that will last us a week. Ghyselbrecht buys a waterskin and fills with wine. Water for party.
Sabina walks up to Josephine and ask if we know where we’re going, any questions to ask. Says to talk to Cobb and Martin. She says Martin went to the East. Ghyselbrecht is upset about the cost of water.
We head out.
We’re staring at a southern path, and go about 500 yards, reach a T intersection. If we went West, we’d be going the way we came. We follow the road east. Travel for an hour…see some cart & foot tracks. See some sort of scuffle and veered off tracks. Go past that…2 hours. Road suddenly stops. Large river intersects the road. Dense forest to left. River is about 200 yards wide, see path continuing. There is room to skirt forest and river and get to other side.
We try to decide where to go… Ghyselbrecht notices a small path to the north through the forest. We follow trail. Walk into woods…take 30 steps in. Hear a harsh horrible, shrieking sound. Realize that Josephine & Third are batting at something, a black shape. josephine take a wing to the face, something seaking in my armor. Creature knocked down Third, proboscus attached to her.
Ghyselbrecht stabs the creature on Josephine with his short sword, wacks off a wing. Ignatus smacks the creature with his sword and kills it. Aseneth backed up and Third swung and missed. Third screams and some blood leaks out. She swings and lodges her sword in the ground. Null tries to smack it, but misses both the creature and Third. Aseneth gets yelled at by Ghyselbrecht, pulls out her dagger and tries to get in, but can’t seem to.
Third is really really hurt, swings at it and does a minor punch. Null finally smacks it with her morning star. Looks like a large proboscis. Null heals Third. Ghyselbrecht nudges Josephine and she stares at Aseneth and figures that all is not right with her.
Aseneth apologizes to Ghyselbrecht and says she isn’t much of a fighter and didn’t want to hit anyone with her spells. Null asks what kind of magic she has… Aseneth says she can be very handy.
Josephine asks if Third feels OK to go on, she nods… we walk on…get through forest. The small path rejoins the first major path. It’s now about noon. We follow the major path another hour or so, forest to north thins out and recedes. To South, see a series of rising steppes (hills), continue to east, path makes turn to North. Directly to East, small river follows path to North. We continue to follow the road North. It’s about 3 o clock. Brook continues to follow the path, large dirt path veers off directly west. Large path, rocks & pebbles, not as a well travelled, but big. We follow the dirty path West. Walk through a clearing, forest to South West. Suddenly path ends in a small patch clear of any vegetation. See a stone lintel set in the side of low rise. It’s either a cliff side or an ancient burial mound. Closed rock door in the middle of a hillside. No writing.
Josephine pushes on door, it’s stone, heavy, and cold. Ghyselbrecht inspects the door for traps. We check out the door thoroughly. Nothing secret. Josephine tries to open it, fails. Then Null and Ignatus put their shoulders into it and tumble through the door. Looking into a dark chamber…dark. Can see the glint of what looks like an army of standing skeletons inside the door. They scramble out, Ghyselbrecht nudges Josephine. She feels revulsion. We back up.
One of the skeletons moves, takes one hand and closes the door. Null and Josephine kind of recognize that burial mound is higher than anything around us. Third is hyperventilating and staring at door. We scramble up top of mound to look around. South see path, forest, maybe spire. To north east, see brook go across path, under bridge. To north we see a giant valley which looks not entirely natural. Natural valley, but maybe parts carved out. We’d have to walk through light forest. Head that way. We walk through woods with relatively no problem.
Walk through other edge and are standing on the edge looking down. See a figure down under the trees. He's been camped down there watching the caves. Realized he can't handle the caves on his own. He's seen smaller and larger than humans. Seems like the smaller creatures tend to dwell in the lower caves.
Party uses rope and stuff to get down cliff. We notice a fire behind some trees. We continue that direction.
Meet up with HaQaRa. He’s seen little grey beings coming in and out of caves. Nothing out of other cave, one with river going in smells horrible. Maybe toilet of area. River itself seems OK…nothing horrible coming out of there. Larger shapes on upper level.
We decide to go into the one with the little grey guys who come out. Cave is completely dark. 5.5 ft high, 3.5 wide. Only wide enough for one to go in…widens and can walk two abreast, seated little grey creature in a little alcove. Null hails it in Kobold. “Well met stranger, we come in peace.” The kobold doesn’t move or say anything. Ghyselbrecht takes a couple steps forward to take a closer look. He suddenly vanishes…like he walked into a shadow and is gone. Ignatus says, “Ghiselbrecht.” He falls into a giant pit and crunches around in bones, he shoulds, “I fell into a pit!” Pulls his sword out and moves to climb out. Kobold still does not move. He starts trying to climb up and slips, we throw down a rope and he climbs up.
Josephine jumps over to inspect kobold. Null and HaQaRa jump over too. Notice cobwebs attached to it. HaQaRa pokes it with his swords, it falls down like a desicated, mummified corpse. Spear falls down trap. Null starts to search it…large maggots leap onto her, one gets under armor and sinks into her flesh. Josephine burns the maggot out of her, the others freak out with the fire and burrow into the ground.
To the left looks a little shadowy and grey. The other direction goes about 20 feet disappears into darkness. Josephine gives the torch back to Null. Go 30ft into grey area (west)... Get into a room covered in spiderwebs. Ignatus and Null suggest torching the webs. Ignatus starts burning them. Josephine moves up to front. Ignatus puts a torch to spider web, instantly as if almost all on fire. Peels of dark smoke start filling up the area. Third collapses and starts hacking. Josephine grabs her and pulls her out. Everyone escapes out of the cave. Smoke starts billowing out. Watch entrance to cave to see if anything comes out. We decide to set up camp and rest. Set up watches, night passes uneventfully. Ranger heals Third before we go to sleep.
HaQaRa seems to think it’s more quiet than normal. We look into the burned room. See a big mess of charred webs. They charred more than burned. Very strong webs. Doused in something to make them smoke like that. Charred web breaks. Null takes dust and throws it on the web. Dust falls out. Ignatus easily cuts through web. Josephine starts chopping too. Room is 30 ft wide x 15… Nothing else really in this room. Oily residue on floor. Ghyselbrecht searches for secret doors and doesn’t find anything. The ranger checks out the oil…it’s black burny oil.
We turn around and check the other way. We travel 10 ft to the east. Passage tilts to SE, goes another 30ft. Begins to slowly slope upward. A little more difficult to travel…heading up to next level, heading to east and level. Another passage to north, 10ft….Another goes up another level to East. We look down passageway. Peer to North, something is making a sound to the east and is getting louder coming towards us.
HaQaRa and Ghyselbrecht hide in North corridor, rest of party moves back. HaQaRa and Ghyselbrecht get tripped. Giant spherical thing rolling towards us. As big as the passageway. We run in front of boulder back… run around pit…boulder falls behind us into the pit/hole. Sounds like sticks breaking…then hear a buzzing sound. Run back towards party.
See an angry hive fly out of the pit…. Regular wasps…they head out of the cave. Trip wire to north. 30ft to North goes East/West. Josephine suggests cutting it, Ghyselbrecht disables it and gets a 10ft piece of wire. We head north, Ignatus poles in front of us. Dark, dank, ugly cave. Walls are slightly hewn…get to east/west. To west, there’s a door after 10ft. To the east, it disappears into darkness.
Nothing special about door…wooden, has a door knocker. Ghyselbrecht checks for traps on area and on door. Doesn’t find traps, but door is locked. He listens at the door, tries to unlock it. Tries again…probably beyond his ability. Null, Third and Ignatus, try to batter it down. They bust it down. The room beyond is filled with treasure. Thousands and thousands of coins, gemstones. Large egg resting like scooped out of nest. Aseneth wants to take a look at the egg and moves to step forward. 30×30. Ghyselbrecht looks for traps in front area. He doesn’t touch anything or find anything. He then throws a stone it… Ignatus starts poking treasure, coins fall down. Aseneth walks forward and looks at the egg with a greedy glint. Takes her hand out, grabs it and lifts it up, takes a few steps back. Shows the egg to everyone. She says we can have the treasure, but she’d like to hang onto the egg. Tough leathery shell, warm to touch. Don’t hear anything inside. Heavy. HaQaRa asks what she thinks it is. She says, “This room is full of treasure, all I’m asking for this egg.” Null and Aseneth get in argument, but all she wants in magic stuff, not treasure.
Josephine picks up a gold coin… “No…it seems too light.” Josephine scrapes the old, underneath is copper. Start inspecting gems…quartz,not diamond… glass. Room filled with fake treasure. (200 copper= 1 gold… about 6000 pieces). Argument to investigate the egg. Null investigates the egg. Egg belongs to everyone until we figure out what it is. Decide that HaQaRa will hold it until later. Josephine takes 20 pieces of copper for Cislew.
We go directly east out of the room. 10 ft, 20ft, 30ft, 40ft…50ft, 60ft…. See a room in front 20×20 room. Vivid contrast from bare walls. Cave paintings depicting small creatures, bowing to large creature “Kurtulmak” who is 10x their height. Holds human in paw ready to eat a human. Antichamber to room where large creature lives. Huge double doors beyond. Search for secret doors. Don’t find any secret doors, but doors in front seem very significant. We listen at the door. Don’t hear anything. Ghyselbrecht thinks they are easy to open. We decide to check out the door.
Ghyselbrecht goes to open the door, swing open easily, behind is a room full of little grey creatures. Dozens of little creatures standing shoulder to shoulder. Give a blood curdling yell, getting ready to throw javelins. Ghyselbrecht gets ready to cast sleep. Volley of javelins comes flying out. Most of them haywire…a few do get through. Ghyselbrecht has two spears hanging out of him. Josephine jumps in front of ghyselbrecht, Null casts Bless. Ignatus and HaQaRa hide behind shield. Aseneth casts a white hand in front of ghyselbrecht and Josephine which closes the door, she throws down a used scroll.
Doors open towards monsters. Slide the pole between door handles to keep door closed. Null goes to heal Ghyselbrecht, he’s unconcious, but stabilized. No one tries to open the door or rattle it. We leave the pole in the door and then head back down the corridor.
We walk down to where the camp was and notice it has been disturbed. There’s a small piece of parchment there. Note basically says don’t camp here again or you will die. It’s 3pm-ish. We trek a bit away towards road and set up camp. HaQaRa cures him to 4. He’s at 1. Josephine lays hands on him, he’s at 3. We sleep, he’ll get a HP.