Crown of the Dead [D&D v.3.5] – Part 10

This adventure was Friday April 17, 2015. All players were present except T.F., G.R., and T.R.

The next morning comes and the group is not hung over. Having been here only four days, the party has gained confidence in negotiating this undead-plagued region.

Paladin Raygar Brightblade tithes Jenny the cook for a decent breakfast. Ranger Xorn commissions a Masterwork warhammer from smith Lanna Riis, with an eye to have it enchanted to magical status some day. Barbarian Wee Jack considers having another weapon made. Noomfoodle Gobbliegook Pann is now a Ranger as well as a Rogue; Undead are his favored enemy. Cleric Jacob Light-Bringer has done enough guard duty, and is eager for time in the field.

Everyone but Brightblade leaves the enclave to forage in the garden. The Paladin catches up after the others have pulled up their fill. The group looks off to the east – somewhere an abandoned town and mysterious church call to them. Their curiosity is undiminished by today’s dismal rain and low cloud.

Travel along the hilly border of bog and plains seems safest. This is true for an hour, until a pack of Ghouls and Ghasts ambush from the marshy treeline !

Startled, the group draws weapons and goes on the defensive. Cleric Jacob Light-Bringer doubles down on his faith and effects a Greater Turn against the onrushing creatures – he instantly destroys the four ghouls. This leaves three particularly nasty ghasts to wreak havoc in the midst of the party. Everyone makes their Fortitude saves against the miasma of hideous stench that attacks with the ghasts.

Viciously biting and slashing, the ghasts paralyze Wee Jack and Raygar Brightblade. Cleric Jacob Light-Bringer is struck down, paralyzed, comatose, and bleeding out. Then stalwart Xorn is severely wounded and dropped, almost unconscious.

Ranger-Rogue Noomfoodle Gobbliegook Pann is the only one left standing, against all three ghasts. He wisely drinks one of his Potions of Hide From Undead, rendering himself invisible to the enemy. Wee Jack shakes off the paralysis, rises to his feet, and makes a run for it to draw the ghasts away from his friends.

One ghast follows; the other two decide, for some reason, to loot the apparent corpses of Jacob Light-Bringer and Raygar Brightblade instead of something more sensible, like biting them again or anything else less deus-ex-machina. Invisible to them, Rogue-Ranger Pann feeds a healing potion to the Cleric. This prevents Jacob from dying. Then, attempting to Sneak Attack a ghast that cannot be Sneak Attacked, Pann succeeds only in attracting both ghasts’ attention. They easily overpower him, and then drop Paladin Brightblade again just as he recovers from his paralysis. Jacob uses the distraction to crawl over to Xorn and revive him.

Wee Jack uses his mobility and Power Attack to whittle away at the third ghast and kill it. Jacob Light-Bringer does not fare well against a ghast; the Cleric is knocked out of the fight for a second time. But Xorn brings his consistent melee skill, and Fortitude saves against paralysis, when they are needed most. The half-Orc Ranger and the Gnome Barbarian, the only two party members still standing, kill the last two ghasts and prevent what seemed certain to be a party-wipe.

Priorities. The wounded. There are enough Potions of Cure Light Wounds on hand to wake everyone, but not get anyone into decent health. On the ghasts and under the grim dust of scorched ghouls the party collects nearly 1,300 gold pieces, an Arcane scroll of Pyrotechnics and of Scorching Ray, and a vial later identified by Sister Janus as Oil of Magic Stone. Additionally there is what looks to be a pearl, but isn’t.

Predictably, the party must turn around and trek perilously through an hour’s worth of open terrain to back to the safety of the enclave. Again they lose an opportunity to explore the distant church.

Sister Janus depletes her daily supply of healing spells on the group. She identifies the pearl as a Pearl of Power; an artifact that grants a spellcaster the ability to re-cast any 2nd-level spell already cast that day. Janus offers a sum greater than its list value, which tempts the party but does not make a sale. The party, overwhelmed by the thick fog of licorice-root mist drifting through the eccentric Cleric’s hut, steps outside to option the rest of their day.

 

(end of Part 10)

 

Xorn is now Level 4.

Wee Jack is now Level 4.

Jacob Light-Bringer is now Level 2.

 

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About d20horizons

D&D player.
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