04 Jul

FRC Session 33…Eight (NPCs) is Enough

When we last left our explorers, they had survived betrayal and attack by the drow stationed at an outpost called Velkynvelve. Although one drow, possibly a priestess type, had escaped, they slaughtered all the rest, gathered additional supplies, and had freed eight of ten prisoners (killing a drow prisoner and leaving behind a kuo-toa who was way too “enlightened” for their tastes). We pick up with their final preparations before departing the outpost after the break.

This recap is from Thomas. Muse and Craig were missing this session. Bridgett made a guest appearance to play Dench while RJ played Meri. As Jubi was still missing, I guess it’ll by my comments back again in [brackets and italics].

There are possible spoilers for part of Out of the Abyss from Wizards but much was changed.

The group sets off from the Drow station much larger than they went in, picking up 3 dark gnomes (Topsy, Turvy, and Jimjar the Gambler), a derro (Buppido), an orc (unnamed), a fury monstrous creature (claims to be a polymorphed elven prince), a dwarf (Eldeth), and a sentient mushroom creature (Stool). Before leaving the Drow camp, the party did their best to equip the former slaves with some kind of weapons, giving everyone but the orc a shortsword and a hand crossbow. Buppido takes one look at the map and informs the party that it is incorrect and incomplete. He agrees to show us a better route that will completely bypass the illithid camp and their scouting trails.

[Pretty convenient, huh?]

Although this kind of behavior is highly uncharacteristic of a derro, the party trusts him and we begin down a different path than we had originally planned. Buppido seems to know this area of the Underdark pretty well so he takes the lead with Rory, Fletch, and Stool – who seems mostly to be following Rory. [Rory did make an effort to befriend him.] He tells us that he is leading the party to a common camping area that is very defensible because its a cavern with only one entrance some thirty feet up in the tunnel being traveled. The party uses some invisibility spells to scout it out and eventually gets the entire crew inside it. As the rag-tag group is settling down for the evening, the orc and the “prince” get into a disagreement about sleeping arrangement – one made through gestures and tone as they do not speak each others language. The disagreement turns into a full-on fight to the death, the party doing what they could to stop it, but too late to save the orc. Having killed the orc and seconds from facing the judgment of Verrak (death), the “prince” claims that he blacked out and sometimes goes into a blind rage when struck. The party decides to restrain him for the evening, not fully trusting his story. [And to which the prince willingly agreed.]

During the scuffle, Eldeth the dwarf took her opportunity to try to kill the orc as well, but was stopped by Verrak. After the fight was over, she made some disparaging comments about Verrak and his lack of worth in carrying Bloodcrier’s Hammer, to which he gave her the option of leaving if she didn’t like the way internal relations in our party were handled. So she left.

The following day, the group, whose numbers are now reduced by two, continue through the tunnels. The scouts for the party (Buppido, Rory, Fletcher, and Stool) come to a fork where they each smell their favorite foods to the right. They decide, despite the right path being the easier path, that they will take the left path to avoid whatever trap seems to be working down the right. However, as they brought the party along, Verrak found the smell of his great-grandmother’s bread too irresistible and went right… into the mouth of some kind of sand-looking creature that was laying on the floor of the path. Both Verrak and Dench were swallowed by the creature but eventually the party was able to kill the monster and save the two from a fate of slow digestion. Buppido then teaches the party how to find treasure in the Underdark: flip the monsters over and open their stomachs.

Inside the sand-looking creature were some coins, a pearl, a gold locket, a silver amulet, and a prism. Bupito wanted 1/3, so he claimed the amulet. But not knowing the value of the amulet, Verrak negotiated a deal that Bupito found acceptable. Verrak would temporarily keep the silver amulet, which Bupito wanted, and Bupito would hold onto the prism, which Verrak wanted in order to ensure that they both would be as honorable as they claim to be.

Having Eldeth no longer to contend with, Topsy took to spooning with Verrak during the night’s rest. This results in one incidence of “misplacing” his money pouch and her biting his ear in another.

[Hmm…I wonder what the nibbling was all about.]

The next day, Buppido informs the group that they were approaching an old Kuo-Toa shrine that would provide good shelter for one night, even better than the night in the cavern because the doors could be barricaded. But first they would have to cross a gorge which is a popular ambush point for hungry creatures of the Underdark.

Sure enough, the party arrives at the gorge and scouts it out before attempting to cross. Unfortunately, the scouting does not turn up the two ropers laying in wait in the cavern [as they are, after all, indistinguishable from a normal stalactite until they move]. However, with a well-placed Hypnotic Pattern, Fletcher incapacitates one of the ropers while the party kills the other, allowing the group to take them out one-by-one.

The party eventually arrives at the shrine and [Buppido and Fletcher invisibly] scout ahead, again seeing nothing of any visible danger. They go back and get the party to the opening vestibule of the shrine which is decorated in quite unnerving scenes of a lobster woman which have been badly defaced. The vestibule has two double doors on one side and a single door on another. The room appears pretty damp and there are some kind of animal tracks leading into the single door. The party opens the door to find hooks hanging from the ceilings and benches along the sides, with two small brain-looking creatures on 4 legs sitting motionless in the room.

And that’s where we stopped for the night.

The party’s trip back to Pedestal has taken a bit of a turn. Their map shows a pretty direct route from Mistle’s bridge to Pedestal but passes by or a through a series of rather dangerous locales such as Velkynvelve, an illithid outpost, one or two more drow outposts, and a kuo-toa shrine or temple of some sort. They’ve now struck out into the wilds of the Underdark, along smaller passages, with a derro as their guide and with a few other NPCs in tow. It’ll be interesting to see where this goes.

And where is Jubi?

I’m still far behind on catching up with these so no beer log again. I’ll start again as soon as I get caught up again.]

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