Our heroes opened the door into the dank cavern. They crept carefully inside and saw green oozing patches of sea scum, glowing stone octopi statues, dark pools of water, wooden rafts scattered about, and a high ledge about 75 feet up at the far end of the room.
Valen strode towards an octopi statue swirled with mist and a dark tendril promptly wrapped itself around her, restraining her.
Hadain suddenly realized the purpose of the rafts – the room was going to flood. The adventurers would need to use the rafts to bridge the gaps between the ledges of ever-increasing heights.
Valen tried attacking the statue – even got a critical hit – but it bounced off.
Hadain hopped on a raft; Gauth moved to another raft closer to the end of the cavern.
Two-thirds to the room was under water. Valen’s six-feet tall frame was under five feet of water and she watched her comrades flee further into the cavern while she was still unable to escape the tendrils.
The water rose again – twenty feet deep – and Valen was under water! Luckily, she was finally able to break free of the tendrils. While she swam to the surface, she was attacked by an alligator and it grabbed her with its mouth. She managed to break free and swim to the surface.
The raft closest to the cavern’s entrance didn’t rise with the water. Strange.
Suddenly, a moldy, half-dead lizard-man rose from the water and poisoned Hadain! Two zombie-lizards (“zlizards”) also showed up and shot blowguns at the group.
The pulled-down raft exploded! The next raft in line was pulled under water and the group understood – there’s a time limit to these rafts.
The water continued to rise and the rafts continued to explode as the group (sans Valen, who was busy being constantly detained by statues and alligators) made its way towards the end ledge, hopping across rafts.
A door in front of Valen opened and the tunnel creature from earlier in the sewers burst through, looking well-beaten. The group dubbed him Uggo. He invoked Khyber’s name and cursed Valen. She was not having the best day ever.
Hadain headed back to save his comrades and attacked Uggo, much to Valen’s relief. She was already busy enough with an alligator.
The third raft exploded and Hadain killed Uggo.
Draloch did the group a solid and healed everyone – everyone, that was, but Valen, who was stuck with an enemy too far away. She announced haughtily that she didn’t want it anyway.
The water rose (now fifty feet!) and the middle four rafts exploded. Only one more set of rafts was left!
Valen swam the fuck away from the crocodiles and Awk gave ‘em the ol’ Mind Thrust. Hot!
The water rose – fifty-five feet.
Valen was grabbed yet again.
The fourth-to-last raft exploded.
Valen managed to get up to the highest raft and pushed Hadain up to safety on the ledge above.
The water rose again – first seventy feet, then seventy-five. The water was finally level with the ledge at the end of the cavern where Hadain laid.
Valen stabilized Hadain, swam over and grabbed Gauth, swam back, pushed him onto the ledge, and stabilized him.
The adventurers still had a zlizard to finish off, but were dying left and right. Valen ran over and killed the crap out of it, single-handedly saving the rest of her teammates, even after being cruelly denied Draloch’s healing. The battle was finally over.
Back on the ledge, Hadain figured out how to disarm the final mist-covered octopus statue sitting on the ledge. A dragon-mark displayed on the ground and Awk sat to commune with it. He heard in his head: Charging into shadow, beyond dawn’s reach; renewal, reunion, and redemption.
Gauth grabbed Uggo’s Gorilla Gloves, then the comrades head through the door Uggo had popped out. It led to an old, ruined temple to ancient sea gods filled with dead enemies. Apparently, Uggo had been damn busy.
The group made it out of the sewers into the considerably better-smelling early evening air and headed to an inn for food and drinks.
Draloch informed his fellow adventurers he had been contacted by individuals who wanted to buy Awk at noon the following day at the Apix Distillery. He felt the group should pretend to go through with it but instead ambush them. His comrades felt somewhat suspicious of his plan since his dislike of Awk was quite well-known, but agreed to go along with it. The group decided to have Hadain scope out the distillery in the morning while the rest of them spoke with Professor Nephret.
The next morning, Hadain headed to the distillery. Located in the underbelly of Sharn, the Apix Distillery had been abandoned for nearly a decade. The two-story tall building was in an extreme state of disrepair – smashed windows, a broken ladder, a collapsed left side of the foundry. Hadain climbed the broken ladder and discovered a roof access door to the second story. He peeked through the door and saw a broken catwalk and a handful of people – one sitting in the manager’s office, one hanging out on the catwalk, and three or four others on the floor, keeping an eye on the doors. They appeared to be quori, a race of immortals. The intel gathered, Hadain headed back.
The rest of the group headed back to Morgrave University to speak with Professor Nephret, who offered to have Lady Daenae (who had knowledge about the Ashen Crown) meet them that day around noon. Since the group was already engaged at that time, they rescheduled for the next day. The professor gave a bit of information about the Crown. It was shattered during the Xoriat incursion. The five pieces went together, but there was no word on what happened when they did. Asherta’s Blade was one of the five pieces. Wordbearers were searching for the pieces, as were orcs and goblins, who were hoping to rebuild their empire.
Their respective tasks completed, our heroes met back up at the inn to ready themselves for the ambush.
P.S. Hi Nancy! :-)