Monday, April 11, 2011

SR39: Cave Fishing with Alys

This session happened Friday, March 11, 2011, and was the only session I ran this past weekend.  Erin Palette of Lurking Rhythmically joined the game via Skype this session, playing Alys Kaah.  Normally I wouldn't call out a player like this, but Erin'd never forgive me for not doing so.  Just ask her.

Adventuring Group:
Mog the Doomed (half-orc barbarian)
Tycho von Helmont (elf alchemist)
Agnes Sunbeard (dwarf rogue)
Xin (human wizard)
Thorngrim (half-orc sorcerer)
 – Kainen (Thorngrim’s human fighter cohort)
Sal Ty (elf wizard) [via Skype]
– Maenwen (Sal’s human wizard cohort)
Alys Kaah (gnome summoner/cavalier)
– Mr. Boodles (Alys’s owlbear-looking eidolon and mount)

Note: the list of player characters is in player sitting order, from my left and then clockwise around the table and then on my laptop via Skype.

In-game Starting Date: August 28, 23rd Year of King Nikola V

Alys Kaah came across the Southern Sea to Westcastle Crossing to avoid boredom.  She was not impressed.  The town was full of miners, quarrymen, and farmers.  When she heard adventurers were in the village tavern, she went there immediately to introduce herself.  She did this by jumping up into Thorngrim's lap and declaring she too was an adventurer and she would like to adventure with the group.  This direct approach (and the gnome's very strange appearance) took the group back a bit, but they decided they could use another person when they eventually faced the dragon.  Alys was happy as fighting a dragon would definitely not be boring.  The group left Westcastle Crossing and headed east on the Road of Grass to return to Drop-off Tower.

After introducing Alys around at the Tower, the group discussed what they would do next.  It was decided that a puzzling marking east of Santa Fe on their map should be investigated.  The group head south on Old Road.  While still in the forest, the group was ambushed by dire tigers out hunting.  During the combat Maenwyn was killed by one of the dire tigers before the party could kill the tigers.  This forced Sal to detour back to Drop-off Tower using flight to have Su Bel cast raise dead on Maenwyn.  He (and the newly risen Maenwyn) caught up with the group where Old Road ended.

At the end of the day the group camped on the Sea of Grass.  While the rest of the group went about the process of setting up camp (and their defenses), Alys explored the nearby area.  She found two cheetahs stalking the camp and charged them riding Mr. Boodles.  She killed one of the cheetahs with her lance, while Mr. Boodles's attacks drove of the other.  Alys returned with the dead cheetah and had Mog skin it for her.

In the morning, the group started exploring the plains east of the Adobe Hills.  They found a steep cliff surrounding a large depression in the plains with several rivers draining into what appeared to be an enormous sinkhole, nearly 100 ft across.  The sinkhole was deep enough that the bottom was shadowed.  Pooling all the rope they carried, they were able to make a single line 300 ft in length (if of varying diameter and materials).  Using an improvised pulley system, Alys (the lightest) was lowered into the sinkhole.

The walls fell back from the edge and Alys could see that the sinkhole was actually a deep cavern whose ceiling had collapsed in the past.  The rivers pouring over the edge spread out as it fell until it filled most of the cavern, drenching Alys and masking most sounds.  She could see that there were many cave fishers crawling along the walls, catching birds for meals.  This would make the trip back up much less than boring.

At the bottom was a jumble of fallen rock with brush and other plants growing thickly.  There was a small lake where the falling water gathered and then flowed deeper into the ground through a very low tunnel.  In the opposite direction was a wide and tall tunnel leading to the west.  Alys untied herself from the rope to explore the area some.  Mog noticed the lack of weight and started pulling the rope back up to see what happened.  When he was done and the rope was found to neither be cut not damaged, the group decided Alys was looking around and would very much want to see the rope again, so Mog fed the rope down again.

Alys did indeed very much want to see the rope again and eagerly retied herself to it when it returned.  She then yanked twice to get Mog to pull it back up.  One of the cave fishers did notice the Alys-shaped meal on the rope and caught her with its sticky tongue.  Thorngrim, who had been watching, relayed this to the group and Kainen joined Mog on pulling the rope back up.  After a short tug of war, the cave fisher's tongue lost and Alys broke free.  Thorngrim lobbed a fireball down to get the creature to back off while Mog turned and ran with the rope, pulling Alys the rest of the way back up at nearly dangerous speed.

After some discussion, the group decided to explore the cavern further.  Sal and Thorngrim cast feather fall on everyone and then the group leapt over the edge.  Judicious use of magic spells kept the group safe all the way down.  At the bottom, the group started down the tall tunnel, seeking where it went.  Not very far down the tunnel the group was attacked by a gargantuan purple worm!

During the chaotic fight, Kainen was swallowed by the purple worm.  Mog was able to kill the beast and cut Kainen free just in time to save Thorngrim's cohort.  The group uses what little healing magic they have with them to heal up.  Mog then started cutting up the carcass and skinning the parts he could get to (much of the worm was still in its burrow.  Alys had a tooth removed from its maw, with plans to have the tooth made into a gnomish greatsword for her use.

Once everyone was mostly healed, the group decided that perhaps they wanted to have their healer with them before exploring any further.  Through the use of Sal's magics the group returned to the surface safely and then rode their horses back to Drop-off Tower.  Sadly, Su Bel and Dame Yasha were away, assisting in the Baron's iron mines where a collapse had killed and injured many workers.  Again.

*End of session*

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