032

Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition
The Red Larch Adventure.

The European Union consists of-
Bob (Serbia & the world) playing Ken Lee, Male High Elf Wizard (Folk Hero)
Christer (Sweden) playing Zyler, Male Human (Variant) Cleric of Tempus (Hermit)
Pedja (Serbia & Germany) playing Goren Naeris, Male Wood Elf Rogue (Criminal)
Simon (UK) playing Zalt, Male Half-Elf Warlock (Sailor)
Zoki (Serbia) playing Grimm, Male Human (Variant) Paladin of Tymora (Sailor)
&
Me- Goonalan (UK) playing everyone else (DM)

We play using Fantasy Grounds and Skype, usually once a week for approx. 3 hours.

And so-

Session #032 Wednesday 4th May 2016
Beholder Riding & Inspiration Points.

Starring-
Zalt, Male Half-Elf Warlock (Sailor) Level 5
Zyler, Male Human (Variant) Cleric of Tempus (Hermit) Level 5
Grimm, Male Human (Variant) Paladin of Tymora (Sailor) Level 5
Ken Lee, Male High Elf Wizard (Folk Hero) Level 5
Goren Naeris, Male Wood Elf Rogue (Criminal) Level 5

Yet another excellent session, it’s getting to be a regular thing.

This session was made all the more shiny by the actions of a dour-named Paladin, and by the life saving properties of Inspiration Points, now read on…

The Action-

1) Mid-Fracas.

We left the guys in a set of caverns a little way (about an hour) from Lance Rock, the adventurers are investigating the area after a tip off from Kayleesa, the owner of the Swinging Sword Inn back in Red Larch. The guys are in the middle of their third encounter with undead, all within a matter of minutes. The have just got fooled by a Zombie (hereafter known as the bait), and five Skeletons that jump them from behind- one of the Skeletons is of the Minotaur variety, Grimm has just got charged and Gored, the Paladin is bloodied and battered.

Necro_Cave_3.jpgSkeletons!

And so…

And so the Skeletons suffer, Grimm gets back to his feet and grabs out his masterwork maul, known as “Stirgeswatter”, moments later the Minotaur Skeleton, with a little help from a Great Weapon Master attack- or two, is looking decidedly rough.

Zalt and Goren help out with the artillery- Eldritch Blasts and arrow-shots respectively, the enemies don’t really stand a chance. Although I’m delighted to report that the Zombie landed Ken Lee, the Wizard, with a good one- punching the Mage in the face.

Minotaur_Skeleton.jpgMinotaur Skeleton.

Zyler “TEMPUS!” finishes off the Minotaur Skeleton, soon after the rest of the mindless undead follow suit.

The fight is over, the Union’s enemies destroyed.

ENCOUNTER #50
PCs 5 x Level 5
Monsters Zombie 50 XP, 4 Skeletons 50 XP each & Minotaur Skeleton 450 XP
XP 700 Adjusted 1400 CR 4
Easy

The guys take a nose around the chamber and check the fallen, alas there’s nothing of significance to find, or else there is and the guys fail to find it…

2) Odd Zombies.

After a short rest break for healing Goren and Zalt lead the guys on- to the west, the eastern passage (from which the Skeletons emerged) is Webbed shut by Zalt, just to be safe.

Necro_Cave_4.jpgMore Undead!

The winding narrow tunnel leads into a small shattered chamber, very odd- there are three Zombies in the dark here, Zyler’s Light spell reveals them to be dressed as a bear, a lady, and a jester.

The guys have no idea what’s going on and so rush into action giggling- more undead are set to fall.

Zombie_Bear.jpgZombie dressed as Bear, soon to have its own entry in the Monster Manual.

Alas the DM has tricked the players once again, the guys get in a few good hits (including a Shatter spell from Ken Lee) on the costumed Zombies, and then are swiftly jumped by a pair of Ghouls that were hiding in the myriad cracks and crevices that score the chamber- Grimm is hurt again, as is Zyler- the Priest of Tempus is also left Paralyzed.

Ghoul.jpgGhoul.

And yet the Union’s victory is never in doubt, the Zombies and Ghouls are taken down, with extreme prejudice. At the end of the fracas several of the guys however need a little light healing, time to pop potions or else plead with the Cleric.

The fight is won.

ENCOUNTER #51
PCs 5 x Level 5
Monsters 3 Zombies 50 XP each & Ghoul 200 XP each
XP 550 Adjusted 1100 CR 4
Trivial

Once again the guys take a break to check the fallen enemies, and discover the possible exits from the chamber. There are two of the latter, both extremely narrow passages- each only three or so feet wide, one slopes upwards to the north west, the other downward and to the south west.

Time for Tempest.

3) Tempest the Scout.

Zalt’s familiar Tempest is dispatched to check out both passages, the (sorta) Owl is commanded to walk down each of the narrow passages to see what can be seen, Zalt can see through Tempest’s eyes.

The narrow passage to the north west ends in a low ceilinged chamber containing a pair of old and battered looking wooden chests, the area looks to be otherwise empty, and with no other exits.

Necro_Cave_5.jpgChests!

Tempest returns to his master and is then sent to check out the other possible exit, the passage to the south west, which curves around to head north west leads into a massive torch-lit chamber, a vast cavern- the ceiling nearly forty feet above.

Necro_Cave_6.jpgThe Necromancer.

A short way into the massive chamber a cowled and hooded figure appears to be contentedly working on a dead body, one of three such corpses, all lying atop makeshift stone ‘operating’ tables.

The Owl about turns and heads back to the guys, Tempest’s periscope job is complete, a short debate ensues- the holy men are keen to get at the Necromancer (the guy in the robes), while the sneaky guys are keen to check out the chests first.

The sneaky guys win the debate, Goren is sent off.

4) Goren Trap Detector.

Time for the Rogue to do his stuff.

Goren creeps down the passage and into the chamber with the two chests, and straight over to the pair- at which point, and completely without warning, a majority of the ceiling falls on the Wood Elf’s head- the trap is sprung. His comrades of course come running, and soon after drag Goren out of what remains of the chamber.

A voice rings out- “You dare to pit yourselves against the Lord of Lance Rock!”

Followed shortly after by- “Death is your reward!”

The voice seems to be coming from within the now rubble choked cavern- the chests are likely smashed beneath the ceiling fall.

Goren is dragged back into the cavern the guys fought the Zombies and Ghouls, and soon after made well again, Zyler is getting through his curative magic. The other players are mostly laughing at this point, the Rogue is not having a great time with traps of late, word is the guys are thinking of promoting Tempest to the job.

A little while later, when Goren has got his wind back, the Rogue gets back on the horse (metaphorically speaking) and heads down the other passage, with the guys following (a safe distance) behind. The Rogue sneaks forward again, out into the chamber proper, and hides himself behind the nearest makeshift ‘operating’ tables, just as the hooded figure shambles back into sight.

Hooded_Figure.jpgThe Necromancer?

The guys have, of course, identified the fact that the shambling figure approaching is the Necromancer, Goren readies himself to attack.

Crawling_Claw.jpgCrawling Claw.

At which point half-a-dozen Crawling Claws exit the makeshift ‘operating’ table the Rogue is hiding behind and scratch, pinch and claw at the Rogue, leaving him yelping and screaming.

Goren is not have a great time atm.

Don’t tell him this but he also rolled a ‘1’ on his secret Stealth check to sneak into the chamber- he’s fooling no-one in this session- the dice are against him.

It, of course, very quickly gets to fighting.

5) The Necromancer of Lance Rock.

More of the Crawling Claws emerge from holes, perches or else ledges on the cavern walls surrounding- Goren is getting swamped, and Ken Lee cannot resist the temptation- the Wizard grabs out his crossbow and then drops a Fireball onto the Rogue. Luckily for Goren, Ken Lee has the ability to shape the spell to leave the Rogue safe from harm- eight Crawling Claws are snuffed out in an instant.

At which point the rest of the guys come rushing forward, keen to get into the action- just as a another wave of Crawling Claws leap down from their hidden lairs and start jumping and grabbing at the guys- all except for Goren who is furious, the Rogue rushes the hooded Necromancer and buries his short sword in its gut.

At which the point the hood falls away to reveal Goren is stabbing a drooling human Zombie.

It’s about this time that Goren spots that there are several Skeleton archers a good forty or fifty feet ahead of his position, emerging from concealed positions, seconds later the Rogue is pin-cushioned, bloodied and almost broken.

Necro_Cave_7.jpgHere we go…

The rest of the guys slice through the Crawling Claws in seconds and are heading up to Goren, just as the Rogue disengages and gets the hell out of dodge; Goren spends most of the rest of the fight hiding behind one of the makeshift ‘operating’ tables taking pot shots at whatever targets present themselves.

Suddenly the real Necromancer pops up from the behind cover at the far end of the cavern, the fellow taunts the guys for a while, declares himself the ‘Lord of Lance Rock’ a few more times and then fires five Magic Missiles into Zyler, the Priest of Tempus doesn’t look well.

Moments later the Skeleton archers unleash another salvo and the DM is rolling high- Zyler’s Lucky feat comes in handy, the Priest of Battle is however bloodied and beyond in moments. Which is a strange state of affairs- Zyler has an AC of 20 or so, the guys usually shove him to the front to soak up the attacks, very rarely does he get hit lots.

At which point Ken Lee gets creative-

“There’s been a mistake, we are here to learn from the mighty Necromancer Lord of Lance Rock, please Lord stop attacking us.” The silver-tongued Elf (with a Charisma of something like ‘9’- Dump Stat) then rolls a ‘19’ on his Deception check, the Necromancer is listening- he orders his undead to cease their attacks.

Over the next few minutes the guys (actually Ken Lee) attempt to get the Necromancer talking. For info all of the adventurers, save for Ken Lee, are squatting behind the ‘operating’ tables, yeah… that’s right- the Priest of Tempus and the mighty Paladin are hiding.

The Necromancer is rightly suspicious, he notes and makes mention of the fact that Ken Lee’s group contains what looks to be a Priest of Tempus and a holy warrior- what possible reason can this pair have for wanting to learn from the Lord of Lance Rock?

Good question Ken Lee thinks, and then calmly explains that the pair in question (Grimm and Zyler) are actually slow-thinking simpletons- he, Ken Lee, allows them to dress up simply to entertain him- much as the Necromancer does with his Zombies. Ken Lee’s Deception roll is a ‘17’.

The Necromancer is further persuaded when Ken Lee goes on to explain that one of his group- Goren, he introduces the Rogue, is to the best of his knowledge a cold-hearted murdering bastard. Goren stands up and continues the act with a wink and an embarrassed laugh- “guilty, as charged” the Rogue confirms, and nods at the Necromancer- his new found friend, and then rolls a ‘20’ on his Deception check.

Oreioth.jpgOreioth, the Necromancer of Lance Rock.

The Necromancer introduces himself, apologises for the rash attacks of his minions and saunters a little closer to the guys, at which point Ken Lee informs him that what he really wanted was for the Oreioth to get closer to his Skeletons, and in range of his Fireball- like he is now.

At which point the Skeletons and the Necromancer are caught within a fiery blast.

Three of the five Skeletons are destroyed in an instant, Oreioth is furious- and very badly wounded, a second later the Necromancer is hit by Zalt’s Hypnotic Pattern (and after good use of an Inspiration Point to force Oreioth to re-roll his save) he’s entranced.

The guys rush out of hiding and in scant seconds beat the last few Skeletons down.

Victory!

Job done.

At least that’s what they were all thinking, that is until Ken Lee makes an odd sound and points up towards the ceiling of the chamber.

Beholder1_t.pngA Beholder!

There’s a moment, in-game and on Skype, when the chatter just stops- that moment is now.

Eventually one of the guys says something like “It can’t be a Beholder! Can it?” There follows a chorus of “No’s”, each one a little more quieter and hesitant than the last.

Then Ken Lee gets hit by an Enervation Ray, and has to spend an Inspiration Point just to stay alive.

Chaos ensues, at least for a short while; the culmination of the chaos is however glorious, it goes a little like this…

The guys scatter, dive for cover- fire missiles, or else just plain hide; the Beholder is revealed as being nothing more than a slow moving Zombie variant of the Eye Tyrant. The guys quickly decide that it’s still very terrifying, particularly as their attacks either miss it, or else don’t seem to bother the undead creature at all.

Beholder_Zombie.jpgZombie Beholder.

Zyler and Grimm close with the dead Eye Tyrant, mostly in order to get close enough for their ranged spells and weapons- the pair take cover behind a stone outcrop; the rest of the guys stay back and also try to find as much cover as they can, they snipe at the terror. Zalt longs longingly at the exit, he’s the furthest away from the Zombie Beholder, but holds his nerve.

The Beholder is closing still, although it has not yet managed to inflict any more terror on the guys.

Then the Lord of Battle takes the stage…

Grimm clambers onto the stone outcropping he was hiding behind- Misty Steps onto the side of the Beholder and makes an Athletics check to clamber on top of the great floating eye and get to his feet, a moment later he stabs as much of his magical greatsword, Hewer, as he can into the brain of the beast. With his second attack he starts yanking and twisting the blade in the wound (with Divine Smite on both attacks).

The Zombie Beholder takes 66 points of damage from the two attacks- it’s nearly done for.

It hits the Paladin with its Disintegration Ray, it takes two Inspiration Points, to save Grimm- and yet still he is almost beaten (on 6 hit points).

The Zombie Beholder heads up and away, attempting to crush the Paladin against the ceiling of the cavern, or else to knock him off- forty feet straight down.

Zyler joins in the fun- first up he cures Grimm a little with a Healing Word, secondly he hits the Zombie with a Guiding Bolt.

Moments later the Beholder is finally sunk as Ken Lee (almost) empties his Magic Missile Wand into the great beast.

Grimm rides the deflating Zombie Beholder for only a short while, but is very soon plummeting to the cavern floor, the Paladin lands hard, he’s unconscious. A moment, and a Cure Wounds, later and the Paladin is up again and grinning like a loon.

As are the other guys.

Oreioth, the Necromancer, is tied up- gagged and otherwise made to feel uncomfortable; all done before Zalt’s Hypnotism wears off.

The fight is won, and what a fight it was.

ENCOUNTER #52
PCs 5 x Level 5
Monsters 15 Crawling Claws 10 XP each, Zombie 50 XP, 5 Skeletons 50 XP each, Oreioth- Necromancer 450 XP & Zombie Beholder 1800 XP
XP 2700 Adjusted 10800 CR 13
Deadly

Bloody hell, that was great.

6) Chatting with the Necromancer.

Oreioth is more than a little bitter- he’s been made to look a fool.

The Necromancer rages, every now and then screaming things like-

“Can’t you see it! It’s the Eye!”

&

“It sees your every move!”

&

“Don’t you fear it?”

Eventually the guys cotton on to Oreioth’s odd exclamations. they drag the Necromancer over to see his dead Zombie Beholder- the Eye is dead, they inform Oreioth.

Oreioth looks bemused, he knows the Beholder is dead- he’s talking about “the Eye”.

Which gets the guy’s interest.

Eventually Oreioth is persuaded to show the adventurers “the Eye”, he has crafted a magical statue of the thing- in his chambers.

It looks a little like this, please note those of a nervous disposition should go no further, such is the horror of my rendition of the terrible ocular device.

Eye_1.jpgI know- terrifying isn’t it, it makes me shiver just looking at it.

A little while later and Oreioth is still not making a whole lot of sense- the Necromancer is also sharing his mad plans for world domination, which are grisly to say the least. The guys are running out of patience, and loathe to let this mad man live.

And so… they don’t- Oreioth is cut down and blown apart, by spells and sword.

At which point the session ends.

Good work.

Session #032 Ends.

Ongoing Quests- Quest #1 Get the Pitchblende safely & secretly to Red Larch (COMPLETE), then meet up with Strom Halifax- get it authenticated, sell it and then return home- easy job. Quest #4- Investigate Lance Rock- Ongoing. Quest #5 Investigate Tricklerock Cave.

NPCs of note- Gundren & Nundro Rockseeker (Patron, again), Sildar Hallwinter (Lord’s Alliance), Sister Garaele (Shrine of Tymora)- GRIMM’S SQUEEZE, Halia Thornton (Town Master & Phandalin Miner’s Exchange- ZHENT?). Mags O’Mara (Triboar), Oggnog the Smith (Triboar) & Gable, of Gable’s Stables (Triboar). Sgt. Beavis & his men at Black Maw Bog Bridge. The Popper family & Gordo at the Rusty Gorgon. Sister Gallafrey (& the Pilgrims of Chauntea). The Village of Westbridge= More Owlman!

NPCs of note in Red Larch- Phaendra Chansyrl (Curvy in leather), Imdarr (Priest of Tempus & Gauntlet), Endrith Vallivoe (Junk shop owner & Harper), Mangobarl Lorren (Baker), Ghilee (Serving wench at the Swinging Sword), Constable Harburk (the Butcher, and the law), Ironhead (Ironhead Arms), Kayleesa (Owner of the Swinging Sword), Gaelkur (Fence- buys gems etc.), Minne & Pell Mhandyver (Poultry & Ghost Stories)- kindly old lady and her granddaughter. Elak Dornen (Quarry owner).

Enemies of note- Gnolls, including (odd-looking) hard-to-kill pale Gnolls. Goren has enemies- the Greymen. Oreioth the Necromancer & his undead- DEAD.

New Info- Wade through a sea of undead, including a Zombie Beholder- the Necromancer of Lance Rock is beaten, and dies muttering and shouting about “the Eye”.

XP Awarded-
700 Section 1) The Minotaur Skeleton & Friends
550 Section 2) Zombies in Costumes
100 Section 3) Tempest the Scout
50 Section 4) Goren Trap Detection
2700 Section 5) The Necromancer of Lance Rock
200 Section 6) Chatting with Oreioth
4300 XP Total

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032

Goonalan's D&D 5th Edition Campaigns goonalan