|Highball and Dragons #5|
Highball and Dragons #5
We had ended up in a goblin refectory with five doors. We knew what was behind two of them. Which one should we cross next?
The two doors on the other side of the refectory were each flanked with a statue, and one of the goblin had fled through it, but we couldn't remember which one (it was at the end of the previous session after all).
We felt more drawn to the door next to the lever. We illuminated the tunnel behind that door and saw two bridges and, beyond them, two chests. Tertius went straight at the chests, and, well, we followed.
Bernie and Beowyn decided to stay in the refectory. Rurik, Torleif, and Aby went to cross the bridges to join Tertius. The bridges fell under them and confined them, bruised, to the bottom of the pit.
Tertius decided to inspect the chests. Locked, heavy and locked. Finally, he precipitated the chests at the bottom. They broke and revealed their lack of content. They were simply baits for our greed. (and bridges were probably made for goblins, not men).
Meanwhile in the refectory, Beowyn and Bernie inspected the statues, and the statues talked to them and explained to them that one of them was telling the truth while the other was lying. We, the players, were scratching our head, we had learned about that logical puzzle, but we had forgotten its solution. The two programmers among us started to jot down truth tables, but we soon had to go back to the shared fiction, where the two other players were investigating the pit and the small lake at its other side.
Tertius had decided to join his companions, and had jumped down the pit. Rurik (or was it Torleif?) swam in the lake and found an exit ending in a basin on the other side. We followed. As we all emerged, three trolls arrived, each twice the size of Tertius, the tallest of us.
They were chattering, one of them picked Tertius from the floor, as if our fighter was a vulgar chess piece, and inspected him. He put our fighter down on the ground. A small dialogue engaged, Torleif was the interpret. They asked who we were, we answered and then inquired. They told us they had a boss that they disliked and hinted at us joining them to topple him.
They let us have a peek at the boss. He was twice the size of his goons. He didn't notice us as he was busy taking care of his pet, a very big centipede.
We decided not to engage that monster and his scolopender. We didn't take advantage too long of the hospitality of the three goons, we said good bye and moved on through the second tunnel (the other leading to the boss) and arrived in a gate very similar to the one that had lead us underground. Fortunately, unlike the entry gate, this exit gate was not guarded.
Meanwhile, Beowyn and Bernie were joined by Erik and Yvor. The two old men cut though the hesitation between the two doors, silenced the statues, and lead that second team through the door and the tunnel that lead them to the same gate we, team one, had reached. Finally reunited.
The path out of the gate lead us to a yard enclosed by an iron fence, like a row of spears. A strange building was standing before the entrance and similar buildings seemed to repeat within the enclosed space.
Two men were sitting on the steps of that first building. We engaged the conversation with them and learnt one of them was hoping to find the bones of his wife and ring the bell to liberate her soul. "She's locked in there and cannot find her rest".
We peeked through the fence and noticed multiple ethereal shapes wandering slowly between the buildings. One of them noticed us and flew towards us. The two men called at us, "come in here with us". We ran towards their mausoleum and locked ourselves in with them.
"This place is safe, they can't get in". We looked through the opening in the walls and, once the spectres were gone, we ventured back outside. Torleif used his magical skills to sense the magic within the yard and noticed three places, not too far from the gate yielding interesting levels of magical energy.
Tertius was wondering about the mausoleum that had just safeguarded us and began scratching its wall and gather the resulting dust in a folded cloth.
Rurik and Torleif made a run for the closest magical hotspot and Torleif's insight was rewarded, that mausoleum there indeed contained bones that were the source of the sensed magical echo. As the two norsemen rushed back to the safe place outside the yard, Tertius had drawn a powder line, and his insight too was rewarded as the spectres inflected their trajectories not to cross that line.
(There was that funny moment when Tertius was running throwing the powder behind him left and right, like a sprinkler...)
We had a plan.
Leveraging Tertius' powder tracks, Torleif and Rurik gathered the rest of the bones. Once placed inside the external mausoleum, we had to wait until the spectres lost interest.
Once all the bones were gathered, Tertius gathered the dust among us and we made a run to extend our powder tracks up to and around the tower bell.
Torleif helped channel the spectres with a few magical lightning strokes. They seemed to really not like it.
Our strongmen, Tertius and Rurik then proceeded to the tower and, helped by the rest of the team, they lifted the bell and put it back in the tower. That bell was lying at the foot of its building, how long had it been there?
The spectres were floating around us, prevented from crossing by the magical powder. Among them was the dead wife's spectre. Her beauty still lingered, distorted in her way.
Once the bell was back in its place, we quickly transferred the bones from the external mausoleum to the tower, half-running with, half-passing the bundle of bones. One specter intercepted a pass, but that didn't seem to affect the bone and they went through. Finally the bones were on the plaftorm and we rang the bell.
The spectres all vanished except the dead wife. She floated to the platform, thanked us and then was gone, seemingly smiling.
The two man entered the yard and thanked us profusely.
That is where the session ended.
What is in store for us next? We're in some other world peopled with goblins, trolls, and now specters, though vanished.
Will the huge armoured knight on his dragon chase us in those lands? He seemed not able to follow us through the entrance gate, where will we cross him again?