Their go to for the time being has been to find a place to sell off their coin and refit themselves with gear, food, and the ever needed healing potions. They had been informed of a safehold on the 5th level and thankfully by the meeting’s end, had arrived there safely although barely after a nasty fight with 2 gargoyles. Wandering monsters have been very light and infrequent – so the pyramid might not feel as dangerous and deadly as it had when I had run it during earlier days.
Write up follows:
Once the secret door was closed and locked, Safir took out his picks and spent a few minutes working on the lone oversized chest in the room. With a satisfied click, he announced it opened and we lifted the cover. There were hundreds of gold coins gleaming in the lantern light and the party couldn’t help but notice a silvered steel chainmail laying rolled up on top.
Since his armor was already in poor condition, Mark had asked for the chainmail which the group agreed was ok. He took off the breastplate and the other assorted pieces, laying them aside with care before picking up the chainmail armor and putting it on. It was when it had slithered down his body and he went to tie the adjusting cords off that the armor tightened up on its own and buckled with incredible alacrity. As if by magic.
Mark then strode about the small room, noting the armor was very comfortable and weighed about half what he had expected it – further proving to him that it was indeed magical. While Safir was counting out the coins, we checked over the rest of the chest finding a potion vial and an ornate dagger and sheath.
Safir was willing to forego the other 2 items for an extra share of the coins – which we agreed with. Volkan was excited about the dagger while Delsin took the potion. The dagger was tested and was very sharp and had some marks of sorcery on the blade. The potion was lightly tasted and we saw Delsin fade from view for a second before rematerializing. Invisibility! Alright.
As for the 511 gold coins, the party each took 100 and Safir took the remaining to balance out the division of loot. From there, the party just rested. We kept the lantern burning low to save oil and made sure the locking lever was down while the group just rested, ate, talked, and made sure their bags and belongings were in good shape and repair. We did hear the odd movement from behind the secret door in the main room, but no one stepped out or bothered us.
In the morning we awoke feeling great. Most of us had healed up a bit during the night and our wizard and cleric each studied and prayed for their spells. We listened to the door, heard nothing on the other side, and opened the lever to peer out. The study and bedroom looked and felt just as it had yesterday. Mark added another flask of oil to the lantern and turned up the wick while the group fanned out a bit and made their way to the south door to the next chamber.
Volkan did stop us and take the Usimagarian robe of Demetrius, saying that when we get down to Cyndicia itself, it might be handy to have such a robe with us.
The door beyond opened up to a combination kitchen and dining room. Two large tables were in the main chamber where sadly a woman wearing a rabbit mask had died on one of the tables, and a pair of 5’ long plus snakes were coiled up around her. Errrrm…no one wanted to mess with the snakes. So Volkan and Delsin snuck along the edge of the wall until they were able to check out the kitchen proper. The pantry was empty, a few dishes, bowls, and twisted spoons. Nothing of value. So they snuck back along the wall to the party and we all agreed to forego the snakes and sneak along the other wall around the far table, and make our way to the next door on the south wall and out of here, giving the snakes a wide berth. So we did go, and the pythons although watched us, stayed their distance.
At the door we only listened briefly before opening it and showing a room with a number of wall hangings and a couple of divans near the south wall. A door was across the chamber that went off to the east and there were two iron statues on either side of the door. Volkan went to enter the room and felt a crackling – followed by the 4 candles on the walls near the tapestries to fire to light…and nothing else.
So we entered and noticed that the door here did not stay open. Without any spikes, we used Volkan’s 10’ pole to jam the door open, propping the lower end against one of the statues’ feet, and the other pressed against the top corner of the door. The pole did flex slightly, but stayed in place and held the door open. So we entered, Safir offering to stay near the door while the group looked behind the tapestries to make sure there weren’t any secret doors or hiding bad guys back there.
Once sure that the tapestries were not obscuring any threats, Delsin and Mark both sat on the divans which each expelled whatever dust was upon them and warmed up to comfortable temperatures. But it was Volkan’s keen eye that noticed the two statues were now each looking at the divans, the heads had turned slightly. This prompted the two men to get up and we all convened near the northern door and the statues.
Eventually it was decided to leave this room, especially since the pressure on the door kept popping the pole out and trying to close the door. So the group, except Delsin, went to the other door out of here on the east wall and checked out the corridor beyond – it was dark and went off into the gloom. We all stepped through, Delsin took the pole, and then ran across the room to the passage beyond before the northern door could close properly and we shut the door to the couch room behind us.
The passage went some 40’ or so and ended at another door. After a cursory glance for traps, we opened it and beheld a massive office with a desk, padded chair, and more chairs around it. There was a dimly seen door on the north wall and a pair of stone beast like statues flanking it there. But the chamber was larger than our lantern light so we entered cautiously.
Mark was convinced they were gargoyles and the Book of Gorm he had from the 2nd floor talked much about them and their difficulty in detecting. So we closed on them, relying on Mark’s advice that we needed enchanted weapons to even strike them, and drew ourselves ready. Safir hung back with an arrow nocked while Volkan approached with a finger extended to “boop” it on the nose.
The closer gargoyle lunged forward and tried to bite him.
Safir fired and his arrow just shattered against the gargoyle who made to grab at the group. Delsin swung first and Heat Stroke severed one of the outstretched hands, knocking it to rubble as it screeched in fury. Blows were swung, missed, or fell harmlessly against the stone creature. The 2nd one drew closer and Delsin was facing it alone as well as the fury of the 1st one. Safir tried to knock the 2nd one off its feet with his 40# full backpack but only succeeded in getting cuffed and hurled back for his efforts.
Mark took a fairly bad gouging on his head from the gargoyle’s horns and called to Gorm to heal him – the god’s prayer’s closing every wound from the cleric’s body. Which was needed because he was struck again just moments later and took more punishing damage. The party was whittling hit points away when Safir managed to knock the gargoyle finally on its back and Delsin slammed a mighty blow against it, severing its stone wings and then more blows busted off one of its legs.
With the tenor of the battle changing, the 2 gargoyles made to run. Delsin grabbed the floored one by its lone leg and refused to let go while Mark and Volkan gave chase on the other one as it ran to the corner and then turned at the last minute, causing the group to stumble and lose ground. As it ran for the door we had entered, Mark tried to drop it with a hurl from his enchanted mace but the gargoyle stumbled along and ran for the door escaping down the dark passage. We gathered up our weapons and joined Delsin in trussing up the last gargoyle with Volkan’s rope and interrogating it.
We learned very little except that it was aligned with Zargon and the various baddies had heard of us, “people from outside the pyramid” and were supposed to keep Zargon aware of our location and skills. This had pretty much decided it for us and even though Volkan threatened to cut out its eye with his enchanted knife – it was Delsin and his sword blow to the beast’s neck that decided the job and killed it.
We talked about moving on from here and trying to find the Gormite safe haven which Safir said was close and most likely along a “long hall we have to make a left on” when the party realized there was still a gargoyle out there – and it could not be allowed to report to Zargon. So even though our hit points were getting low, we decided to go back down the other wall and see if we could find the gargoyle either at the couch room or beyond it.
We lucked out – it was at the end of the hall, again pretending to be a statue. Upon seeing us get closer it muttered a curse and charged us. Volkan let his enchanted dagger fly, hurling it at the statue but missed! The other two front line warriors traded blows back and forth and then Volkan heard a hissing noise and his enchanted knife had reappeared in his sheath! Neat!
The last gargoyle finally succumbed to its wounds and fell apart in chunks of busted rock. We went back to the office chamber, ignored everything there, and went out the north door and down a long hall that lead to a 4 way intersection. Safir had informed us we had to go left but there was a pit trap at the split and Delsin fell down it, twisting his leg on landing. We dropped rope and helped him up, and then everyone carefully jumped near the edge of the pit to the diagonal angle and the left corridor.
All together again, we travelled down the long passage that went for some time, and then turned north – also heading for a long distance. Eventually we came to a left passage with symbols of Gorm on the wall. Some of the glyphs lit up for us, but they took on a white and peaceful glow as Mark went first, mace and holy symbol presented along the way. At the end of the hall was a door that once opened, showed a man in platemail, wearing the blue and white of Gorm, and embracing the party happily.
We were ushered inside and saw a combination barracks and storeroom with 14 people within – 4 women, 10 men. Over half of the people were warriors. The leader identified himself as Pronius and offered us a safe place to rest for a bit – and more importantly – buy, sell, and trade.
We purchase all 4 healing potions they had and then a few elixirs just to have. Some of the goods we sold off for more coins, Safir filled his quiver with arrows and purchased a few enchanted ones just in case. There were some potions for sale and other things to buy and the party was looking forward to taking advantage of this one time opportunity while it was here and presented itself.