Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tomb of Abysthor: The Unseely Sorceress

Recap from 10/28/05

The session began with a discussion on where we wanted to explore in the Tomb of Abysthor next.  It was a truly massive complex and there were lots of areas we had been to but not fully explored and a few areas that were as yet untouched by the group.  Holzabog once again said that he wanted to return to the Order to get more spells and would certainly not miss the tomb if we never returned. We discussed tackling the cave morays, anhkhegs and  whatever was turning people to stone in that cavernous area of the dungeon and decided that it would be better to take that on when we had more muscle available since both Korhill and Patches were currently not with us.

After some debate we decided to try to take out the evil Elven sorceress in her lair once again.  The first time we tangled with her was the session where she hit us with one of her fireballs and most of the characters lost most of their hit points after we rejected her offer of parley but fortunately none of the player characters were killed.  We were all hanging on by a thread at that point and had to fall back and heal up so we were pretty bent on getting even with her after that.  Needless to say, we probably should have left her alone after the first time and did leave her alone after this session.

Brundel would have rather gone into the lair a little better prepared spell wise but both he and Holzabog still had a fair complement of spells to choose from.  We discussed a plan and came up with this one:  Brundel and Holzabog would hang back a little from the group (just at the edge of sight) while still invisible. The rest of the group would go in with a coin with silence on it and try to draw her out while the two spell casters covered the group's back.

Unfortunately, as always seems to happen with any plan we came up with it began to unravel almost immediately. Shortly after moving through the room at the bottom of the stairs Brundel noticed another tunnel in that room which had an invisible wall concealing it. He thought that maybe she could be hiding in there and decided to wait for a minute (six rounds) in case she came out instead of following immediately behind.

Meanwhile, the group went past the room with the mist, down the hallway and through a new illusory wall that looked like stone that led into the chamber where she previously had her wine and water. Everyone in the group at that point had to save verses paralyzation from a glyph placed above the door. Miles was the only one who made the save and Cairie was not affected because of her Ring of Free Action. She decided at that point to press on with Miles to the room with the chests and leave the two paralyzed characters behind (big mistake). The two of them proceeded into the room with the chests and both failed to save verses blindness from a glyph over that door - they were in the dark and in danger of knocking over the magical components and equipment in the room while fumbling around in it.

Meanwhile, Brundel and Holzabog got past the room with the fog with Brundel leading the wizard trough the darkness. Before proceeding down the hallway beyond the first invisible wall Brundel poked his head through it to see if the witch was hiding behind it. At this point he realized that the mist didn't affect his sight - his darkvision allowed him to penetrate the mist unlike the rest of the group. It was obviously some sort of darkness spell that she was hiding in.

About fifteen feet down the hallway and clinging to the ceiling was our unseely friend. She hadn't seen Brundel at this point because he was invisible so he cast produce flame and threw the flaming missile at the witch dealing out a small amount of damage. This caught her completely off guard since she didn't know we were there. She cast silence (a cleric spell?) on the spot where we were standing. Brundel grabbed Holzabog and pulled him into the mist below and behind her to get out of the range of the silence. Since he couldn't see anything Holzabog cast a light spell.

The next round she scurried on the ceiling away down the passage to the "T" intersection. Holzabog blindly tossed a 2 die sharks tooth fireball down the hallway since he couldn't see her to target her with a more powerful fireball or lightning bolt. Brundel tried to dispel her spider climb but failed the intelligence check to do so. She turned the corner and disappeared. Brundel gave chase and saw two zombies guarding the door to another chamber where he assumed she had retreated. We fell back to find the rest of the group.

What we found in the room past the illusory stone wall were the charred corpse of Ian of Avondale and a very badly singed knight who was still barely conscious.  Brundel cast a heal spell on the knight and went back into the hallway to guard against the witch. Meanwhile, Holzabog and the knight went down to the lab room to see what happened to rest of the group.  He found the other two blindly fumbling around in the room. At that point the other knight began busting open chests and discovered a large quantity of loot consisting of five potions, bolts of expensive silk, expensive furs, a lot of coinage and some jewelry.

They proceeded to loot the room of its contents.  Meanwhile, back in the hallway Brundel saw two zombies in banded mail and curved swords approaching and heard a familiar voice. The little elf woman said "there is no doubt that your friends are stealing my belongings right now" or something to that affect. As she was attempting to parley Brundel turned her two zombie escorts. She said "that wasn't very nice" and Brundel ran back to the lab room to get Holzabog. We used the dust of disappearance to turn invisible again and scouted the hallway ahead - her two zombies were now guarding the "T" intersection down it a ways so we assumed she had retreated to her lair.

At this point, we looted the charred remains of the fallen Ian (Brundel wasn't concerned about him being reanimated because there was almost nothing left of him). We gathered up the loot and our blinded companions and once again fled the tomb and fell back to the shrines.

It is now apparent that the unseely sorceress is in fact not a witch at all but a priestess of Malabar and a sorceress. This gives her a potent combination of cleric spells and sorcerer spells including the ability to heal herself and control undead. The fireballs that she tossed at the two in the room were a pair of eight die fireballs - that means she is at least an eighth level sorcerer plus whatever her cleric level is. She is a formidable opponent and now that we have stolen her treasure Brundel thinks she is best to be avoided - she tried to parley with us twice and we rebuffed her. I don't think she will be as kind the next time. Not that toasting us with fireballs is kind or anything - she was clearly holding back and more than a little afraid of the Mage of the Order and the Scion of Kaz Grimmle despite the fact that we barely scratched her.  The fact that Brundle could see into her mist was probably a bit unsettling to her.

So ends the life of Ian of Avondale. We will miss his Bardic Knowledge rolls and the merry music that he used to entertain us with.  Despite the loss we came out of there with a considerable haul of loot and potions. Also, the quiver of Elhonna survived the fireballs along with Ian's Ring of Protection, the pattern welded broadsword and the dwarven chainmail.

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