Monday, October 1, 2012

Return to Hellmount Monastery

It was a short session but a fairly vigorous one.  After a brief rest to repair some armour, the gang headed back out to the old monastery hoping to discover more loot.  Along the way they met a small caravan of  farmers who had braved the roads with their meagre harvest, hoping to sell it at Red Towers.   Klyte, for that was indeed the name of Kane's mendicant retainer, made a point of stopping and asking the farmers some innocent questions about their hats and what sort of produce they had, an activity performed in such a way that the nervous farmers became quite terrified.  Who better than Henril to step in and explain to these nervous and ill equipped 'merchants' that the party was not a cruel and sadistic gang of bandits toying with them, but actually friendly adventurers who happened to want to purchase a hat and perhaps a turnip.  The situation was eventually sorted out, and the terrified farmers rapidly made their escape, no doubt vowing if they survive this enterprise never to leave their farms again.

Pressing onward, the party reached the hidden cave.  They were very wary as they were concerned about the manticore that had chased them out of the dungeon might still be lurking around.  On entering the cave they noticed that the mule body Henril had left as a distraction had been dragged off to the south, and on investigating they were attacked by two giant ferrets who had made their lair in the cave.  After dispatching the beasts, they noticed that  indeed these ferrets had been living well on the carcasses of many giant rats and the mule remains left in the wake of the adventurers.

They decided that instead of returning to the staircase downward, they would explore some of the passages to the north east, and soon stumbled out of the caverns and into a carved hallway - very clearly the lower levels of the monastery on the hill.  They found a barred door with a crude skull drawn on it in soot and not being the type to heed casual and probably meaningless graffiti they decided to go in there and look around.  The room they found themselves in was dusty and unused but contained many candles along the walls and a large font in the middle.   Tim identified it as a holy water font used for church purifying rituals and not 'Helvitca' as was surmised by Ann.  Further into the room they found a sarcophagus, and with no hesitation they chose to desecrate it and slide the lid off.  Inside there was a corpse with a dagger transfixing it's chest and Klyte immediately snatched the dagger up.  The corpse rose into a sitting position just in time for Henril to smash it to bits with his two handed sword.

The party then found a small sealed door and opened it.  It was full of bones and Henril decided that they should burn the bones.  He threw his oil into the room and lit it as the bones started to form into animated skeletons.  The fire caught but the skeletons started coming through the door and attacking.  It was a vicious fight as the skeletons pushed out of the room replacing those that the party dispatched.  Ann was struck by a particularly terrible blow and probably would have died had I not made an erroneous and offhand remark in a previous game about damage not carrying over.  Soon however between the players attacks (Klyte laying to with effect using his new seemingly magical dagger) and the increasing fire, the skeletons were dispatched.  The party carried on and came into another crypt - this one with detailed mosaics on the walls depicting the life of the saint - obviously the very man interred in yet another sarcophagus.  Showing an appalling disregard for the sanctity of the Lords Of Order they looted the holy man's coffin and struck the head off his corpse in case he decided to wake up.  They were very hurt and tired but decided to check out one more room to the south - and found it was an ossuary filled with the holy bones of the monks interred over the centuries.  They decided against burning all the holy bones in case there were 'books and stuff in there' and instead poked around until they were satisfied that there was nothing of material value or any danger.  Then Kane used a last cantrip to levitate the beam on the outside of the door marked with a skull so as to bar it and conceal their presence so that they could rest in this tomb.

After recovering somewhat they made ready to continue their explorations.  They had been very underwhelmed by the lack of swag a holy man was afforded in his grave - beholding his saintly bones not being reward enough apparently.   I blame video games.  To his credit Brother Tim did try to 'straighten up the mess' a bit - probably due to his many years of devout religious training.  They left the tomb and came across a room with a staircase going down deeper into the hill where they fought some goblin rat-catchers and their half-trained ferrets.  They ran into some goblin lookouts and managed to stop them from running off and warning the others - one attempting to run up a stairwell and one attempting to run west down a hallway.  They then went west and found the goblin guards and dispatched them - but not before a very large goblin came barrelling into room to see what all the commotion was.  They killed this boss goblin and traced his steps back to the room where he kept all the goblin loot.  Then they finally made their way up the stairs into the monastery and after fighting some more large goblins, they came upon a large open courtyard arboretum now overgrown and wild.  Then they decided that they were pretty banged up and needed to replenish themselves and their supplies so they left the monastery (without incident) and returned to Red Towers.

It was a short but sweet session, and lots of player bickering and one one-upmanship which is always fun.  I think most players managed to level up as well since they realized that the rules say that it's 1000xp multiplied by your current level - not the target level to level up.  There was some grumbling over this since I probably told them wrong and they likely had levelled up a little while ago - however that's one good reason I like to print out the rules - I can't remember everything. Also, as GM I'm never wrong - just less right at times.  So Henril hit level 4 I think and Kane gets second level spells.  I let him roll twice to get two new spells from the crazy old magic tutor he 'found' at Red Towers since it's not explicitly covered how mages gain spells when they level and it's probably something the GM will want to manage anyway.


  1. In my defence (Tim's Player here), I was under the impression that the holy crypts had been corrupted with all the evil goings-ons, the skeletons in the closets and sooty skulls everywhere. Also I think you should hand out clues if'n yer area of expertise lines up with something (a-la Gumshoe style) like Lords of Order for clerics. Also I was drinking.

    1. hahaha I found your blasphemy to be delightful. And by 'I' I mean the forces of chaos.