Though Conan arrived home only Saturday night, and Rovert only Sunday night, when Rovert sees Verdis ready for adventure on Monday, November 30th, he grabs he and Conan and they set out for gnomish lands and Ovomoda’s castle, bringing with them the candles Rovert suspects are needed to activate the teleportation circle there.
- 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
- Verdis (Hus): Level 12 Human Fighter
- Phineas, Talking Rock
- Conan (MiM): Level 9 Elf Vampire Magic-user
- Scar, Level 6 Hawk Familiar
On Tuesday they spend the night at the Rathad Oidhche inn. Wednesday, Dargos receives them at his palace and hearing of their intentions gives his blessing and a warning that the teleportation circle almost certainly leads into dwarvish ruins where the Dragon Empire and other dark things certainly lurk. Thursday they are warmly welcomed at the castle and rest the night before visiting the circle Friday morning.
The candles work much like Rovert expected, but instead of teleporting them when lit, they transport them to an adjacent dimension, allowing them to walk across a space warping bridge that Verdis believes carries them to the Southwest. They walk for an hour and a half in this state, carrying their candles, until arrive at another circle where they extinguish their candles and find themselves in a dark room.
They use Conan’s light maker to get Drej’s lantern lit and proceed through a door to the Southwest. A bell tingles as the door swings, but they have more pressing concerns as they see an aggressive, ethereal blob creature squeezing through the door ahead of them. They attack and soon drive it back through the door crack, but not before Verdis and Conan are struck with shooting stars and Verdis suffers a brief bout of madness. Verdis and Conan heal themselves and Rovert leads the way through the door.
On the other side they come out into a room with eight doors like this one and eight cabinets besides, but occupying the center of the room is a much larger blob, of which the first must have been an extension. It rises up from a hole in the middle of the floor and attacks as well. The fight is again brief, with Rovert and Conan getting caught in a shower of shooting stars and Verdis being teleported from the room, jostling through stone until he finds himself in a dark corridor. While Conan again retreats to heal, Rovert casts a powerful spell, destroying the creature in the room as it withers down the hole.
Verdis soon returns to the hub room through a door in his corridor (having seen a light under it from Drej’s lantern) and they search it. They find two of the cabinets locked, but break into them, finding seven more candles usable with the teleportation circles and a store of personal items including a journal with a Bookkeeper (Creature Codex) and some other minor magical items.
From the journal they learn that they are in Ker Vedno, the dwarven capital. His master was the Lord of the Globokko, or Deep, a mining hold deep underground, and he had come here 600 years ago to visit the Lord of the Head of Ker Vedno and maybe the Royal Family. They also learn that at least the mad bookkeeper believes the Royal Wizard might have been capable of time magic enough to have trapped it in a time bubble while its master died, though it seems more likely that it just doesn’t have a normal sense of time.
They read the signs above the surrounding doors and learn they lead to (clockwise from North) “Royal Wizard”, “Of Peace” (where they came from), “East Road”, “Deep”, “Reflection”, “Hill Guard”, “West Road”, and “Foton”. They take some interest in exploring down the shaft, into Ker Vedno itself, but a still larger blob huddles there, attacking when they look down. It soon teleports Conan and Rovert out of the room, Conan first out into open air where he takes bat form before hitting the ground, but quickly changes back as the sun burns him, then Rovert up onto the top of a stone dome. Inside, Verdis manages force the creature out of sight by pushing things down the shaft.
While Rovert’s and Conan’s familiars prevent Verdis from jumping down the shaft, they communicate with each other through them, trying to find each other. Rovert is on top of a massive statue of a dwarf’s head and Conan is at its base, where arrows shoot out at him from arrow loops. When Rovert learns that Conan can’t fly up to him because of the sun, he uses his trident to summon rain (awesome!) and allows Conan to rejoin him so they can teleport back into the head (thus getting back on the rails after I had so foolishly hurled them off them).
They drop a glowing stone down the shaft and see it fall down into the darkness at least a few hundred feet before stopping, just a prick of light at the bottom of the dark shaft. With no rope, they abandon the idea of descending lower in the statue head. Instead, they decide to take the portal to Hill Guard, which they learn from the journal was the old dwarven capital and probably the nearest destination to the Vale.
It takes them over two hours to traverse this tunnel and they arrive under a very fine building from what they can see from the closet behind and beneath which the portal is hidden. The first thing Rovert sees looking out into the wide, opulent hall is a plainly robed kobold walking away from them. They briefly discuss what to do and decide to capture a kobold to interrogate.
When Rovert looks again, he sees a red-robed lizardfolk coming their way and again ducks into the closet, allowing it to pass. They assume it is an indication that a red dragon is worshiped here and get excited about slaying a dragon. On their next check, they see a kobold with a stack of papers and take him before he can enter a door off the hall. He manages to break free from Verdis, though! Rovert is forced to knock him out with a spell and he lets out a cry before going down. They drag him quickly into the closet and close the secret door again, but they can already hear concerned voiced looking for the missing kobold.
Once again in the basement chamber with the teleport circle, they wake the kobold and speak to him, convincing him (with Rovert’s mastery of Dragon Empire and Draconic and Verdis’ ancient dragon worshiper robes) that they are on his side. They learn that the dragon, Ellizari, is about 600 feet long and has small children and large suitors nearby. After some calculations, they decide attacking the dragon is too risky (at least one of them would certainly die) and decide to erase the kobold’s memory and return him to the closet above (they can hear kobolds searching for him in the hall outside) and return to Ker Vedno.
With time for one more destination, they choose Rovert’s favorite: the Royal Wizard. After less than an hour in this tunnel, they arrive at a circle in a dark, tiled room with stairs leading up and down. They go up first and find themselves in an observatory with a telescope and a magical book showing the positions of celestial objects on different days as they turn the pages, a magical quill nearby. When Rovert tries to take the book, however, a voice calls out, stopping him. The owner of the book, and of the tower as a whole, greets them as a disembodied voice.
Nikoli is curious about them and though suspicious of Conan (an elf) greets Rovert’s enthusiasm to learn with an offer to trade knowledge for knowledge. He invites them to stay the night in his guest quarters two levels below the teleportation circle and in exchange for them catching him up on the happenings of the last 600 years to give them access to his library. Rovert does his best, but his knowledge of the history of this continent is very limited. Nikoli tells them that the teleportation circles are fueled by inter-dimensional beings, Potniks (the blobs they’ve been fighting), trapped and attracted to the pheromones of their mother used in the candles. He warns them that killing the Potniks used for the circle will break them and seems very concerned when they claim one is free. They also learn that the tower overlooks Slighe Domhainn, able to see its lights from one of the windows, and retire to bed.
In the morning, Saturday, Nikoli struggles to guide them to its library (on the floor below) without allowing them to pass through his sunroom, which is “a mess”, but they eventually agree to climb down from the open air bridge between the tower and the sunroom. Rovert’s curiosity, however, gets the better of him and he casts a stone piercing sight spell on Drej that allows him to see into the sunroom and see a robed, dwarven skeleton against one wall, broken glass from the surrounding windows everywhere.
Nikoli asks what the spell is and when Rovert lies and tells him it is a warmth spell against the cold mountain air, he calls him out on it, having recognized many of the components. He accuses Rovert of trying to see into his sunroom when it was off limits and orders him to leave his tower, whether by the teleportation circle or by the road. When Rovert argues, an unseasonable thunderstorm starts to rumble overhead. They choose the teleportation circle and depart. They arrive in Ker Vedno to find that another Potnik has reached into the corridor to the Royal Wizard circle. Rather than fight it, Rovert teleports them all to the circle leading to Ovomoda’s castle and they return using the candles.
They reach Slighe Domhainn by Saturday evening and spend the night there. Dargos insists they join him at church Sunday and tries to convince Verdis to marry his daughter and take command of Ovomoda’s castle, but Verdis politely refuses. By Wednesday evening, December 9th, they arrive safely back in Citadel with new knowledge of the dwarven remnants to the Northeast. Rovert levels up.
It took a special Black Friday session, but we got HuS to the table for this long awaited mission. Still much more to come from this place, as they know, but now we have a good place for high level play.