Friday, December 07, 2018

Lark's Landing, Episode 48

Colonial Caerdia: Lark's Landing is a story being told through a 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign I'm running at a local hobby shop called the Devil's Bench. If you aren't familiar with this ongoing story, you can follow this link to Once Upon a Tabletop on YouTube to hear the start of it or read the brief summary I wrote when I switched from video to blog.

You can find the previous episode here.

8th-19th of Waning Spring, 1AL

The 3rd Watch found a silver box. Inside the silver box was a copper fish figurine. The copper fish figurine had a hatch on the back. They opened it and found colorful glowing beads inside. They touched the beads, causing the hatch to close and the fish to take to the air and fly off down the corridor.

Now the 3rd Watch are in hot pursuit. They follow the fish until it comes to a door, where it stops, waiting... so, they open the door for it, and it flies into the room - which is filled with a decrepit army of clay statues. The fish flies around the room for a little, then goes to another door, which is barred on this side.

Fiaeorri takes this brief respite to begin training her fire beetle, Ruby. T'Zric looks around for treasure and grabs some coral beads from a sedan chair with a skeleton chained to it, though they have little value. By then, the fish is flying again, back out the door they had come in through. Extang follows, staying on the fish's tail, but Fiaeorri unbars and opens the door the fish had been waiting at, wondering if it might come back - it doesn't. She and the rest of the group check through the door anyway, finding that it leads to a sandstone block they had pushed out of their way earlier. They then hurry to catch up with Extang and the fish.

For over an hour, in the poisoned air of this ancient temple, they follow the fish figurine as it meanders around - leading them in circles a couple times - until, at last, having returned to the room with the cat motif, most of them decide it's a dead end. They return to their search of the lower levels - all except for Extang, who insists that the fish has something to show them and continues to follow it on his own.

The main party make their way down to the lower levels, and then through an already open secret passage behind a statue, dropping down from high on the wall of a large hall lined with frescoes.

Back with the fish, Extang follows it through the open secret passage behind the calendar stone in the cat room, down a narrow tunnel, into a wider hall with three doorways off of it - one closed, one opening into a closet, and one opening into a large room. He follows it into the large room, which is filled with a diorama of a city built around a lake and rivers of what looks like liquid metal. The two do a circuit of the room - with Extang noticing some potential treasures but not stopping for fear of losing the fish - then back out of the room, into the hallway. The fish flies through the open door into the closet - and vanishes. Extang follows behind, and also disappears.

Down in the hallway, Fiaeorri is far in the lead, the others having hesitated before following her through the secret passage. She opens the doors at the far end of the room, and hears a horrible shriek. 120 feet back down the hall, the fish figurine appears under an archway, followed by Extang, but much more noticeable to her are the hundreds of swarming rats that come boiling out of the walls and ceiling to attack her.

She begins fending them off, with her friends helping mostly from afar, but then an enormous wolf-sized rat comes from beyond the doors into the dim light cast by Ruby to join the fray. The rest of the 3rd Watch (except Extang, who is casting from a distance while strolling along behind the fish) rush in to help, but they're having their own problems - as more rats have dropped out of the ceiling to land on them.

Eventually they clean up the pest problem and continue on down the hall, which goes down some stairs before the floor gets quite wet. The hall eventually opens up into a strange, half-flooded room with a stony beach and crystal ceiling. They pause here to refill their waterskins and for T'Zaric to wash off the liquid light that would be drowning him were it not for his magical cloak that lets him breathe underwater. Except for Extang, who follows the fish to a door, where it pauses. He tries to open the door, but finds it blocked by mud and silt. The fish turns around and leads him back the way he had just come from.

The rest of the 3rd Watch have decided they've had enough of this temple, and it's time to go home - with or without the vampire. They start heading out, passing Extang on the way, who argues that the fish must be leading them somewhere. Fiaeorri and T'Zaric continue on, in spite of Extang insisting on staying behind, but the others pause long enough to restrain him with spells and rope, then drag him along behind.

T'Zaric and Fiaeorri wait for the others to catch up with them once they get out of the poisoned area, then they all continue on out of the temple - with Extang finally cooperating once he's realized the fish is long since lost. They emerge into the night, which immediately alarms them as they know this is the time of the vampire. They push on for a couple of hours before making camp. Everyone on watch duty is exceptionally observant that night, and they are very glad that nothing dangerous occurs.

They rest throughout the day, deciding that they should travel at night so everyone is awake and conscious should the vampire come after them. Struggling through the jungle at night, it takes them much longer to get home - but the push on, arriving on the 19th of Waning Spring. They split the tiny amount of treasure they found on this trip and head off their separate ways.

T'Zaric goes to the council and asks if, as part of his penance for his crime of murdering Balasar, he can establish an archive or library. His suggestion is turned down, however, as the settlement currently has no need for such an establishment - but they agree to revisit the idea in the future when it will be more practical. Fiaeorri visits her shrine to Pagslas and works on training Ruby some more. Quib moves his nest from his lean-to to the 3rd Watch headquarters and begins looking over his notes. Extang goes to the tavern and Caerdian Explorers' Guild to complain to Stor about the new members he's stuck him with, talking about how they got cold feet at the first sign of trouble. Stor insists that they just need time and experience, and ends up more concerned that Extang had been planning to stay in the temple alone.

Patrick goes to the shrine to Epesta and asks one of the worshipers for a place to stay. Unfortunately, it seems that Saul, his guardian, has been worried and has asked people to keep a lookout for Patrick. The worshiper encourages him to go back to Saul so the old monk won't be worried anymore. Instead, Patrick goes to find Logan, who gives him permission to stay in his old house. Once there, Patrick sends a magical message to Saul, assuring him that he's safe, alive, and well, and has done well on the adventure he went on. Saul's reply is relief that Patrick is alive, but also an urgent request that he comes home immediately, insisting that there is something he doesn't understand.

And that's where this game session comes to an end. Check back in a week for Episode 49.

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