With some time at our back, we made sure we were ready once more and reentered the Terror Dungeon by 3 in the afternoon. We hoped to go and see about reclaiming any of the barrels that were at the base of Level 2 with the Carrion Crawlers. Grendel joined up, taking his place in the lineup and we bid our farewell to Kara.
The descent was without issue. We looked over the main entrance room and talked at length about how to go about getting down there as well what our options were on the barrels. All? Some? From there we made our way to the east and south, hoping to take the passage across the pit when we noted it was opened. A tossed bit of meat let us know that a cube was in there, and it reached up, took the meat…and devoured it.
We wanted to close the pit but the cube was too high. So they tied a rope to Connal and the monk leapt over the pit where he tried to shut the lever from the opposite side. It would not budge. Cube was too high. We had to drop it somehow. And our presence here was enticing it to stay up and high. Shim eventually cast a Summon monster spell THROUGH the Cube by riding on Thon’s shoulders to gain some height and vantage.
Three giant rats appears, immediately began squealing and thrashing around. Which enticed the cube to drop lower into the pit and eat them. Which took pressure off the side of the pit and allowed Thalin to close it up. We crossed the passage now without issue and kept going. There was a smell in the air here though. So we looked north to the door we never looked in before…and saw a horse. Dead. It looked like it had died of lack of water and food. The suspicion was that it was the horse that had been up on this floor 3 or 4 days ago and survived this long before just dying here.
We then went through the 1 way door and opened the secret passage with a finger pressed in the dwarf god’s eye. Passing along further we made our way around to the Gargoyle chamber, then south again to the lightning chamber and eventually…the stairs.
Going through our gear, we wanted the ability to keep the crawlers at bay. So eventually we settled on torches tied to spears, and Brading hit the torches with a Log of Everburning – extending the burn time and doubling the heat output. Ready as we were going to be, Shim was going to summon something to keep them busy and we would use fire to hold them back, snag a barrel and run for it.
Like all plans, it fell apart quickly. Heading down the stairs had a rising wind, blowing up from below – and it was tinged, somehow, with the scent of urine. Getting closer to the bottom, the spray was everywhere and the wind was an almost 40 mph. In fact if the torches were not enchanted, they would have gone out. The thought was…where were the Crawlers? We looked around the corner and did not see them. But there was a pool of urine some 20’ diameter and a few inches deep. And the barrels were in it.
Ok – we needed some help. Shim called out a Summon spell and a wild elf appeared. Raven haired and snarling, she felt put upon to be here. “I’m in love,” Grendel muttered on seeing her. She was not happy on being here but looked for the gnome. No, the Crawlers were NOT here. Already. Time for the barrels. She gathered them up one at a time, growling and bitching the entire time. Grendel tried to chat her up but Shim felt she was not deferential enough to him and dismissed her in a bit of pique. “I didn’t even get her name!” the fighter moaned.
We doubled up on hoisting the 200 lb plus barrels up the steps, storing them in the former lightning chambers, before heading back for another pair. And that also went without much issue. It was on the last batch that we saw at the base of the steps was a 4’ tall beetle with a pair of feathery antenna. “Oh, fuck no!” Darius groused. “Fucking Rust Monster.”
Shim came forward again and this time summoned an armored gnoll! It engaged with the monster, losing his armor and weapon quickly. But it ripped into and through the rust monster eventually killing it. Shim went to work its antenna off while he sent the gnoll to investigate the wind. It went into the hall and turned left as the gnome gathered the last of the antenna free.
And then the wind stopped. And the Crawlers returned. Grabbing the last 2 barrels we made our way back up the stairs and stowed them in the room for another day. Smelling, tired, and not wanting to stay any longer, we made our way through the dungeon back to Entrance two and left once more back to Bork Keep by 6 PM.
We showered, changed our clothes for this less reeking of urine, and then grabbed some food at the mess hall. The plan was to rest now early and study, hopefully back in the dungeon by 5 AM on the morrow.