On November 16th, Year 5, when TrS insists on bringing Rovert, even though all of the quests they are considering are well below his Encounter Level alone (except one, but they’re afraid to do that without Verdis), I decide to introduce something new with a very rude satyr arriving and informing them of a tower in Satyr lands from which creatures cause trouble all year, but especially in winter many of the creatures emerge and scavenge in the area. He warns them it is very dangerous and starts to get the impression they’re not up to the task:
- Rovert (TrS): Level 13 Human Necromancer
- Drej, Level 5 Psuedodragon Familiar
- Zengiff, Talking Rock
- Skeletal Elf Eater, Level 5 Skeleton
- 2 Spectator Wraiths, Level 8 Wraiths
- Conan (MiM): Level 9 Elf Vampire Magic-user
- Scar, Level 6 Hawk Familiar
- Mark (JaH): Level 4 Halfling Thief
It takes them three days to arrive, only meeting other satyrs and one hornet nest their satyr guide stepped in along the way. Close to their destination they battle three roachlings (Tome of Beasts, converted to Mind Weave), easily killing them but learning that this is an enemy that dodges. At this point their guide insists he go no further and they send him back to the nearest village with a wraith escort before proceeding toward the tower ahead.
Outside the tower they see run-down cottages, some occupied by roachlings as their familiar scouting reveals. Their scouting also warrants an arrow from the tower warning them of archers there. They proceed to ambush the roachlings in cottages, taking an arrow or two in the process before rushing the tower doors. They take some arrows in this endeavor, but soon Rovert has burned through enough of the door for Mark to cut its crossbar in a single slash with his magical knife.
Mark and Conan rush into the passage beyond and start attacking the next door but are shot repeatedly through murder holes in the ceiling. With Mark nearly down, he withdraws to the archers’ blind spot with Rovert, but Conan gets one more spell in before eluding them as well. They soon demolish the next door and run in to find an empty room where they expected more enemies.
The room is lavishly decorated with marble statues of an elf and a throne on a dias at the far end, one door leaves the room, but with no danger, they decide to investigate the room and throne before moving on, until an arrow strikes Mark from the wall with the door. They immediately move on the door, getting out of the arrow slit’s arc. Mark picks the lock and they debate a second who should go through, hearing enemies chittering on the other side.
Rovert opens the door, sending his remaining wraith through to block the enemy while he casts death bursts into the corridor, finding them surprisingly resilient in the face of his magic. When the enemy finds they can’t damage the wraith, they call for help and a roachling arrives throwing fire bombs that force the wraith to move and deal some damage. The enemy is then able to press Rovert, forcing him out of the doorway. They press into the room, damaging Rovert and bringing Mark down before Rovert and Conan can finish them all off.
They all need significant healing, including the wraith, and Rovert heals them all before they proceed, skipping the stairs up and down for the moment to search the ground level. They find barren living quarters and a magical statue that tries to “help” Rovert sleep before arriving at a barricaded door.
Rovert creates a portal to the other side and goes through, finding himself in a kitchen and dining area. He soon comes under attack from a roachling fighter with an axe and two alchemists throwing shocking roots. As the others pour in, he leaves the fighter to go deal with the alchemists crouched behind a table. Suddenly, doors burst open and roachlings armed with kitchen knives, pots, pans, and rolling pins swarm, 3 on Conan and 6 on Rovert. Surrounded, Rovert gets battered before slipping out of their reach to cast a massive (Mon powered) death burst near the alchemists. It mostly clears the room, killing the alchemists and all the kitchen staff but leaving the roachling fighter on the far end up. It also severely wounds Rovert and nearly drops Mark despite his cover on the far end of the room. Between those remaining, they soon deal with the fighter.
They search the kitchen and the cellar, finding dead satyrs stored there like meat, heal themselves again, and withdraw, evading arrow fire to make it far down the road and make camp. They plan to decide whether to assault the tower again or return to Citadel in the morning. Mark levels up.
They severely underestimated this place, not expecting roachlings to have such power levels available to them. Do to the real time nature of this campaign, they may head back so their characters can go on a high level mission on Saturday, they may have the right players to make another stab at this on Saturday, or we may arrange a special session to wrap it up.