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Session 2 - What's Behind That Rock?

Started by Griznuq, February 22, 2005, 12:49:17 PM

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Second Session:

[color=green:6910a7d79e]Please note that as I recall, the river was north of the beach where we landed; if this is not correct, then all my directions may be off. You are correct, the beach is almost perfectly with, and facing, west. The river runs from east to west, it's outlet in the bay on the northern end of said beach.[/color]

Camp was made on the shores of the ~1 square mile landing site. The plan for the morning was to ?rake? the landing area with groups of explorers to ensure that there was nothing evil lurking in the sparsely vegetated (brush-like) land. Mel, Elberrin, and T?Riad and Amaril were assigned the far southern edge, against a rising wall. The closest party was about a hundred yards to the north (all parties were pretty evenly spaced).

About mid-day, while taking a bit of a nap (group decided to break for a short while), a secret (hidden) cave entrance was spotted by eagle-eye Mel. There was a large boulder that set in front of an obviously worked tunnel entrance. The upper corner of the tunnel was evident peeking out around the edge of the boulder. Upon inspection it appeares that the boulder was engineered to slide to one side, out of the way, to gain entry to or egress from the tunnel. Peering through the revealed corner of tunnel (over the edge of the obstructing boulder) revealed ought but darkness. The party noted the anomaly and decided to continue the brush raking.

Nearing night, the sun hanging low, barely cresting the densely jungled mountains to the north, across the river. The group is nearing the eastern wall that demarks the edge of the landing pad [color=green:6910a7d79e][landing pad for what? - heh][/color]. The thick air is split by a scream that overlaps fear with pain. It comes from the North, presumably by one of the other rake-parties. As a unit, the companions run to render aid. In the distance ahead, silhouetted against the dusky light of a dimming sky, we are able to see a huge bi-pedal form [ape-like creature with 4 arms and two legs] speeding eastward towards the edge of the jungle that abuts that plains that we?ve been experiencing. The beastie appears to run blazingly fast. T?Riad angles easterly to intercept the beast before is makes it to the jungle. Mel heads towards where it came (west, back towards the beach). The beast, which appears to have an ape-like face, gains the jungle before T?Riad can intercept. It disappears into the dense foliage and is swallowed whole by the jungle. T?Riad, wisely, does not pursue it.

Mel encounters the group from which the yelling and screaming had originated; they are trying to chase the beast, but are falling too far behind. They say that this creature pounced upon them seemingly from nowhere and seized Ensign Smith [halfling fighter named J'higzhin - not as talkative as Mel (who is) but was a good kid]. It picked the young halfling up like a rag doll and swung him against a nearby tree (presumably, Mel thinks for tenderizing) two or three times. J'higzhin was dead very quickly. Then the beast tucked its dinner under its arm(s) and ran away. Very fast.

There?s nothing to be done. We dare not follow the critter with daylight fading. We all collectively go back to the beach outpost and report. Mel reports the hidden tunnel and is asked to go back there in the AM and investigate it. See if they can get it open. He requests back up in the form of a couple of dwarves and fighting capabilities. [color=green:6910a7d79e][It may or may not be important to remember who you talked to for these orders. Who was in the tent when you reported? What was there reaction to your news?] With luck, this will not matter, because I do not recall. [/color]

As the group is leaving the tent some mucky-muck shows up and enters. Mel plops down just outside the tent, trying to remove all the day?s loose stones from his shoes while intently *not* trying to listen to the conversation that?s going on inside the tent. It?s a good thing that he doesn?t really want to hear the conversation, because Elberrin decides that this would be a great time and location to play his damned harp. Mel gleans nothing and the mucky-muck [griznuq] pokes his head outside the tent to ask if they need anything further. Mel slinks away.

The trio takes up residence for the night at one of the larger fires. They eat, talk, and play their respective instruments. Within the hour, more bards and performers make their way to the fire to lend their talents. The result is ?Beachstock?: five stages, no waiting. Eventually the gala fades into the night as people head for rest. Only Elberrin remains to keep people awake with his sad harping. [Elberrin Unplugged]

Morning. The Companions are approached by a couple of dwarves [Dakahl & Durghe - adventurers who hail from the ship "Persuit"] who are to help them with the secret passage. Grushnek is there as well. We lead them to the boulder. The Dwarves clean the slot in the ground that I failed to mention earlier. While the dwarves are cleaning the slot, Mel climbs to the top of the boulder to once again try to peer inside. Amaril casts a light spell upon a stone that Mel tosses into the hole. The tunnel goes straight back. There?s nothing interesting to see. Abruptly, the dwarves apparently finished with the cleaning, Grushnek pushes the boulder aside. To keep from falling, Mel clings to the boulder and goes along with it. The tunnel is indeed worked, with no real interesting elements save for some strange tracks (footprints, like Dryders). The tracks are so dense in the center, that the dirt is quite compacted and approaches the proverbial beaten path, while there are but a few errant vestiges of creature passage.

The group decides to find out where the tunnel goes. Grushnek is apparently a bit of a claustrophobic, and won?t enter the tunnel. As we are entering a very dark area, it makes sense that the vanguard be someone who can see well in the dark. Thus it is that the two dwarves are in the front as the party punctures the tunnel darkness. The tunnel goes straight back into the mountain. No variation in slope, direction, or d?cor. The hall is a 10 foot wide, 10 foot tall corridor that goes due South straight into the mountain.The walls and ceiling appear to be pre-cut stone squares that have been put in place to hold back the earth. It smells slightly arid in here, as if a fire had occurred long ago.

50 feet down the passageway, a massive corridor wide, 10 foot deep block trap in the ceiling has been sprung and is damaged. The block is half lowered from the ceiling and is resting on a large boulder that has broken through the western wall of the corridor. It is approximately 5 feet above the false-floor pit trap that is also sprung and completely open. From your vantage point 20 feet away you cannot tell how deep the pit is. Beyond the failed traps you can see the corridor gets wider and appears to exit into a larger room.

The party approaches the failed trap(s) for closer inspection, they are beset by a pair of giant centipedes. The battle does not go particularly well. Mel?s crossbow is useless, and one of the dwarfs is badly hurt and apparently poisoned. The battle is at length won, however, and now we just need to deal with a dying dwarf. The plan: most of us aid the dwarf in return to HQ; T?Riad runs ahead to ready the medics.

T?Riad learns from the medics that the dwarf is in no danger. The poison is mild and will only make the recipient dopey (tired, listless?). We go back to the tunnel less one dwarf. [color=green:6910a7d79e][This took a considerable amount of time. And although I should ask this and should already know, how long has it been since you set out for the tunnel in the morning with Grushnek and the two dwarves in tow? If we could I would like to put in more recollections of time passing in this session entry.][/color]

The tunnel is long, but overall quite easy. The other side opens into a vast (mile wide) deep (how deep? ? so deep the mice were hunch-backed; ?twould be a long drop indeed) chasm. The chasm is well-vegetated, and in the far wall the sharp-eyed can detect that the tunnel that the companions are in seems to continue. It leaves the observer with the sense that the earth had been split asunder by a quake or perhaps the Axe of the Gods.

[color=green:6910a7d79e]Up to the point before this last paragraph, Mel has done an admirable job in his recollection of events. However, with this paragraph he combined to different occurences, named the dual event George, and then cross-dressed it. I believe that at some point, whether before the initial exploration of the tunnel, or while you were waiting for T'riad to "prepare" the medics, you investigated the fissure. But it was not by means of the tunnel. You got beyond the pit trap in the tunnel, but I'll handle that in a second.

I think a couple of you (or all?) climbed about the boulder entrance and made your way up the hillside to the fissure. Someone (the monk?) looked down in the fissure by hanging on to the vegetation that overhung the deep chasm (with rope?). What they saw when they looked down was a hallway that ended on the cliffside, this side of the fissure, and continued on the other side. You decided that climbing down to the hallway was not a good idea until you explored the tunnel entrance next to the "landing pad" which is hundreds of feet away).

Now, in regards to the tunnel. I think we left off when Mel climbed down the pit (and under the half-sprung block trap), found some monkey remains (centipede supper) and climbed back up the other side. He then entered the other side of the corridor which was described thusly: After the pit, the corridor walls and ceiling rise up in the next ten horizontal feet to form a 30 foot wide immense hallway with a ceiling 60 feet above the floor. Except for the fine lines between each large mason brick and the noted size of this corridor, the passage is otherwise non-descript. It expands east, out of your field of vision.[/color]