Saturday, December 17, 2016

Session 18: Halloween Hobgoblins

Having taken out a ghost and several parties of hobgoblins and humans, Galathil and Flint were low on spells but confident the curtain wall of the fortress was safe for now. While Flint rested and Lynnya watched, Galathil was dispatched to find help from the more martial members of the party. She managed to give Dyn-bach and Volodemir good enough directions back to the fortress, before disappearing on some elven family business.

Lynnya signalled to Dyn-bach and Volodemir and lowered a rope for them to join with Flint on the top of the curtain wall. From here, they could see that the fortress had a large portcullis, seemingly allowing for space to crawl under, but there was a large muddy patch in front of it. Above the portcullis, two guardhouses were apparently occupied by groups of hobgoblins, and along the top of the fortress, two more groups, consisting of 2 hobgoblins and an unidentified humanoid shape patrolled. Not wanting to risk being discovered, Flint cast silence on a spot on the curtain wall that allowed the party to descend undetected to the ground by the corner of the fortress.

They decided to sneak their way over to the portcullis. Wary of getting stuck in the mud, Flint decided to sound the bottom before hopping in. Doing so, he struck something hard, and partially averted the surprise of an ankheg attack. He cracked at it with his warhammer while the rest of the party waited for it to emerge. When it popped out, it spat acid on everyone, was hit a few times, then started biting and clawing, and was taken down by force. Suspecting the combat had alerted the guards above, the party tried to scramble under the portcullis. Just as Volodemir was passing below, burning liquid came splashing down from above in the guardhouse murder-holes. Running across the small courtyard for the cover of an archway, the party was fairly riddled with arrows from the groups of archers in the gatehouses. Figuring that surprise was out of the question at this point anyway, Volodemir cast an ear-ringing shatter spell on one of the arrow-slits killing a couple of hobgoblins and leaving more slightly more exposed.

Eying up the developing situation and their pin-cushioned bodies, the party decided to push further in to the keep. Flint healed everyone and they moved through a large room with a fountain and some lovely shrubs to find a very stubborn locked door. With time of the essence, Dyn-bach slammed into the door with his body 3 times before it finally gave way. Closing the ruined door behind them the party was faced with a choice of two directions to proceed.

Heading to the left, they proceeded down a corridor to a large door. Listening at the door for danger, and hearing none, Flint opened the door. A huge silent bear lunged out from behind the door, but his quick reflexes prevented this from happening. However, at the same time, Volodemir disappeared. Volodemir had fallen into a hidden pit that covered itself back up. After some investigation, Flint found the seam from the pit's cover, and working together, Dyn-bach and Flint were able to lift the cover enough to let him crawl back out.

Examining the room they had found, they discovered the mechanism by which the bear had been rigged to fall, and they re-set the trap to slow down any guards who might have been following. The room presented them with two exits, one to the north and one to the south. To the south, they saw light beneath the doorway and decided to proceed. They saw a hallway lined with torches, and a large floor to ceiling mirror 20 feet down on the right. In the distance, mummies started shambling closer. A few pot shots at them seemed to be deflected off something in midair, so Flint examined the mirror to the right while they were still fairly distant. He spotted it was a secret door, and asked Volodemir to open it.

This foiled the plans of the 6 hobgoblins and their captain waiting to ambush them, but also opened them up to a flanking attack. The mummies turned out to be more hobgoblins in crude disguises approaching from around a corner reflected by another mirror. The ensuing battle was fairly difficult, between the highly armored nature of the foes, the ability of their captain to inspire them, and their pack tactics. After some sleeps and a shatter, there was room to attack the leader, and Lynnya damaged him and Flint took no chances and unloaded his wand of magic missiles on him, taking him out. Dyn-bach cast a shield of faith on himself and Flint blessed his companions. At one point, he channeled divinity to preserve the lives of his companions who were close to death. Eventually, all 10 hobgoblins were taken out. Around the same time, the sound of a bear falling on someone was heard from behind, so there was no time to hang around. The party had to keep moving....