Zombie Assault and an Ancient Evil: The Annals of Stonehell Dungeon – Season 1 – Tenth Session

The Annals of Stonehell are the weekly record of the semi-seasonal game of D&D that I run using the brilliant Michael Curtis’s Stonehell dungeon.  (Go and buy it now; it’s worth every dang penny.)  All installments are indexed here.

August 25, 2016

Zombies!  Barricades!  Death!  If you’ll remember, the party ended the week before shut in the nameless wizard’s inner sanctum with zombies pounding on the door. The player characters quickly threw together a plan: they threw down tables and furniture to make a barricade to fight behind, and tied a rope across the room as an obstacle for the mindless flesh-eating undead.  Everyone got behind the barricade and readied their weapons, and one player character (I don’t even remember his name, but he was played by Jon) threw open the door and ran for the barricade.  Didn’t make it though.  Zombies got ‘im.  As it turned out, he made the perfect distraction for the zombies, as they clustered around him, gobbling him up, the player characters on the other side of the barricade were able to unleash a withering hail of missile fire to soften up the zombies substantially, and then finished the restless dead off with polearms and other reach weapons.

Orcs again!  And lies!  On their way out of the wizards’ chambers, the player characters ran into yet another orc raiding party.  Fortunately, they spoke a common language, so the player characters were able to tell outrageous lies to the orcs, who were in fact looking for the player characters to get revenge, but didn’t realize it.  The player characters said they killed this “other party” and named off the locations of all their own dead comrades as proof of where they’d left the bodies.  The orcs bought it, and the party skedaddled back to Kobold Korners.  On their way, they poked into a few more rooms and found, in a trophy room, a mounted set of manticore spikes.

A Medusa!  Commerce!  And rumor about mysterious gem!  Back in Kobold Korners, the party briefly ran into Lacheisis, a Medusa known throughout Stonehell as an information broker, together with her two hulking ogre bodyguards.  Moving on, the party made their way to the trade warehouse where they sold the manticore spikes for a pittance and learned about a mysterious gem in the crypts directly to the north of Kobold Korners.  Hoping that it might be the fabled 40-lb ruby of Stonehell, the party recruited a kobold guide named Gretsch and set off into the Quiet Halls.

Even more zombies!  And a teleport glyph!  After traversing a strange stone bridge over a river of stagnant filth, the party started poking into sealed crypts, hoping to find, man I don’t really know what they were hoping to find.  But they found hordes of zombies.  Displaying the better part of valor, the player characters fled into a secret door they had found and ran into a glyph carved into the wall in the hopes that it was some kind of teleporter and not some kind of disintegrator.  The bet paid off, but they found themselves far deeper in the dungeon than they had anticipated.

Strange corridors carved with faces!  And ancient evil elves!  The party emerged into some sort of hub, with six little alcoves, each with a glyph like the one the party had just come through.  The ceilings were higher than before and the floors were more like some kind of poured concrete.  But the walls were carved with faces of all kinds of beings, some known, and some unknown.  The party set out to look around, and found itself face to face with a group of some kind of grim, science fiction dark elves, calling themselves the Vrilya.

“We’re gonna have to take the orc.”  The Vrilya demanded tribute, and immediately started picking over the player characters’ equipment lists, taking anything that looked interesting.  Certain they were outclassed, the player characters were prepared to submit to all kinds of indignity, even allowing the Vrilya to take Jon’s orc henchman (the orc was pretty pissed), but then the Vrilya crossed the line, demanding Rotam the Rotten’s bag of saltpeter.  Why this was the line, man, I do not know.  But it was.  The player characters turned on the Vrilya and were all cut down in their tracks in shockingly short order.  And that was that.  The fabled Total Party Kill.

On to the next session!

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