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The Goodman Gang in The Mysterious Tower

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classic #14
Dungeon Interludes
Chapter 1: The Eye of the Night
Level 1-3 (Scaled to level 4)​

Turn 41: Dire Straits

WHOOOOSH

The flame curls down the corridor, chars and cinders everything in its path, including Bec, who however barely seems to notice, he’s a hive of activity, chopping, slashing and poking- two more Dire Rats fall to his blade.

“Yew kanought wyn mantheeeeng.”

A Fiendish Dire Rat whispers at the Barbarian, which fazes him a little.

Anya rushes forward, spots the tunnel right, there are more of the things down there, and they’ve spotted her, Dire Rats rush to attack.

“FLAME ON.”

Fire fills the second passage, illuminates briefly another nest chamber ahead, and yet another pair of much larger Fiendish Dire Rats complete with a host of their less fiendish, but as vicious, brethren. “Aaaargh.” She screams and looks down, a partially incinerated Dire Rat has just taken a chunk out of her right knee, Anya kicks the thing in it’s slobbering chops and…

“FLAME ON.”

Fills the passage and the chamber ahead with fire again, rats of every ilk screech and curl and die.

“Come back Bec. We can’t help you there.” Cas screams, the others have at last caught up.

But Bec is too far gone, more Dire Rats scurry into the chamber, the squeaks of the Fiendish duo ordering them in for the kill, Bec swipes and swats, chops another two down but is swamped, bites, tears and gashes cover his legs and lowers arms, he’s slick with his own blood, and the rats ahead are in frenzy, while his Rage is fading.

“FLAME ON.”

From the other chamber the now familiar cry, smoke is filling the void, it’s getting hazy, and warm, rats flail and burn, another gets close enough however to take a nip out of Anya, she staggers but grips tight to her wand.

“Anya get the feck out of there.” Cas completely loses it, goes to drag Anya back, she snaps around, for a second- glares at the Paladin, “get Bec you bloody moron, I’ll retreat when he’s safe, now let me hold the… FLAME ON.”

Yet another gout of flame fills the chamber ahead, the rats have learnt how to play the game however, they duck inside dark tunnels to escape the rolling fury, then emerge again as soon as the fire has passed. Cas moves off swiftly, realises there’s no shifting Anya, back to Bec, who staggers a little.

“Come on, get out of there.” Cas calls over the noise of flame and fighting.
“Hang on.”

The Barbarian screams back, which fazes Cas, a little. Bec regains his balance and dances back into the fray, he’s bitten twice in quick succession, the first Dire Rat rips a chunk of flesh from his right wrist, his longsword suddenly becomes very heavy in his hand, another vermin bites him very near a place best left unmentioned.

“Bugger this.”

He staggers backwards, at pace, clearly having lost the will to fight, although he stabs another pair dead in his retreat. Cas grabs him and heaves him out of the fight, the chain of adventurers shuffles back down the tunnel in perfect rhythm.

“Come on then you BASTARDS.”

Anya screams, there are only the two Fiendish Dire Rats ahead of her, the other rats have finally decided that enough is enough. The creatures snarl and slaver as they stalk forward towards her. They leap.

“FLA…”

But she’s not nearly quick enough; the pair bring the Wizard down, rip and tear at her elegant clothes, to the soft flesh beneath.

Cas, who else, spots her fall, and dodges back and down the second passage to her, slicing and cutting at the air before him, the Fiendish Dire Rats back away from the Paladin’s blade.

“Commmmmmee tooooo usssssss.”

One hisses as Cas reaches down and grabs Anya, he drags her back, still slicing the air ahead of him, healing energies course through him and into her, she shivers then awakes, “where…”, then she realises and scrambles back to safety. The Paladin dives past her, stalks the passageway, towards the two Fiends ahead.

“Yesssssssss thisss wayyyy mantheeeng.”
“I’m coming, plenty for everyone, don’t you worry.”

Cas’ sword shines and glitters in the harsh light, one of the Fiends rushes forward, suddenly leaps and flies though the air, straight for the Paladin’s throat, SWIIIIPE, the thing is decapitated, its body thumps to the ground while its head spirals on past Cas.

“Next.”

The Paladin shuffles forward again, his smile now catching in the light.

Alas Bec is in trouble again, Ala reaches out to heal the Barbarian just as the three rats from the nest ahead of the Barbarian decide to press their attack, they come barrelling down the passage and crash into Bec, one Fiend reaches down and clamps its jaws shut on Bec’s leg and rips and wrenches, a wedge of bloody flesh and a good chunk of Bec’s shinbone are ripped out. He staggers, and yet swats his sword vaguely in the creature’s general direction, all to no effect.

“Bec, no. Retreat.” This time it’s Anya’s turn to urge the Barbarian to try to get out of the fight, while he can. Ala gets out of the way, except to place her hand on Anya’s shoulder, fire more healing power into the bloody Wizard. Anya is at Bec’s back, when the Barbarian finally, having sustained yet another gouging bite from one of the Fiendish Dire Rats, falls. Anya goes to catch him, thinks better of it, and lets him fall; Bec thunks hard into the dirt floor.

“Right, now you’ve really made me mad.”

Anya steps into the fray, armed with her… staff? The first exchange is brief and to the point, Anya is bitten twice, luckily both no more than scratches, the three rats ahead of her however emerge unscathed, two of them, Fiends, grinning, and what passes in the rat world for giggling, a kind of scratchy hiccup would perhaps best describe the sound.

Behind Anya, Ala again comes to the rescue, kneeling over Bec she whispers words of divine magic and another surge of healing startles the Barbarian awake, he leaps to his feet, takes in the situation, and rushes ahead, pushing Anya forward, while waving his longsword past her, at the now quickly retreating rats. Melee is at last joined in the rat’s chamber, Bec and Anya swipe and swing and miss by miles, the one Dire Rat left takes another chunk out of Bec, the two Fiends scamper and snap but are kept at bay. Anya, of all people, manages to land a glancing blow to a Fiends skull, breaking one of the creature’s horns. Then, at last, Bec gets to work, he stabs the last Dire rat, then swiftly turns his attentions to one of the Fiend Rats, cuts it down in a moment, less than ten seconds later the last of the Fiends here is dead.

At the same time in the other chamber, Cas attacks again, and loses his balance, if only for a second, it’s enough however for the final Fiendish Dire rat which clamps its jaws on his wrist, the Paladin shakes and smashes the rat off of him, suffering a huge gash that pours blood in the process.

Behind him Jim has had enough, head down the Ranger burrows through the congregated adventures, spots Cas in trouble and heads in after him, literally shoves the Paladin stumbling further into the chamber, and onto his knees, then slams his battleaxe in, and through the remaining Fiend.

“Will you stop playing the bloody hero, DIRE RATS, DIRE get it, do you know how much I like DIRE CREATURES, I hate them, I hate them- you know that, after the skunk. Could you not have just given me a shout- someone, anyone?” The later part of the speech requires Jim to turn to his comrades and bark at them.

“Bloody do-gooders.” Jim shoves his way back out of the chamber, hurries Newt and Ala back out of the passage and into the original chamber in which they encountered oh so many more Dire Rats.

He strides to the slope then stands there and seethes.

A little while after the others emerge, Cas, Bec and Anya are covered in bites, bruised and bloody- really not a pretty sight, particularly the Barbarian who’s limping badly, dragging one leg behind him, he’s been bitten over a dozen times in the last two minutes.

“We rest.” Cas states moodily, “and heal”, then takes to glaring at Jim, who’s deliberately not looking at anyone, healing potions are being uncorked in the background.

“Everyone that has been bitten will need to return to the Church, we’ll need to check you for disease, these creatures can lay you low three days after you encountered them, believe me I’ve seen the results of filth fever, it seems we’re probably still going to end up owing Father Whiskin a favour even after we complete this task.” Ala states.

The others shuffle and nod.

Newt scurries around the central chamber, poking through the bodies of the rats, makes one or two grisly discoveries, half eaten corpses of Raiders, dragged down into the tunnels for breakfast, lunch and tea. He also makes several shinier discoveries, a smattering of gold and silver, a beautifully crafted Masterwork Cold Iron Scimitar, and a vial, clearly labelled “Silversheen.”

“What the hell is…”
“It’s for coating your weapon, alchemical silver.” Anya states.
“Oh yeah, that figures.” Newt goes to put the vial away for safe keeping, prevented only by Bec’s meaty fist grabbing, although not roughly, at his arm, the Barbarian gestures with his open palm.
“Not talking at all now, not even SAAAnDWITCHHHH.” Newt hands the vial over to Bec, obviously the Barbarian has something in mind.

Jim continues to silently seethe, eyes on the ground, not wanting to meet anyone’s gaze.

The Gnome grabs him and frog-marches him back to the tunnels they so recently fought their way through, back to the rat’s nests. “We may as well take a look.” Jim watches over the Rogue while he searches both nest chambers.

“Who does he think he is… Mr. I’m-always-right.” Jim pulls faces, makes sounds, not words.
“Who?” Newt continues searching.
“Cas, the bloody Paladin the wonder horse… you know.”
“What are you on about?” Newt gives up for this chamber.
“CAS. Bloody Cas, nobody else gets a look in at times.”
“Oh he’s alright.”

Newt heads off to the other chamber.

“What?” Its Jim’s turn, he scurries after the Gnome. “What did you say?”
“I said, he’s alright.” The Gnome gets back to searching.
“Oh take his side.”
“I’m not taking sides, I said he’s alright- he does his job.”
Jim gurns a moment, “he’s a… he’s…”, but he’s got nowhere left to go.
“Found it.”
“What?”
“The treasure.”
“What treasure?”
“This one.” Newt holds up a scroll case. Then heads off back to the others.
“What?” Leaving Jim on his own, it’s getting dark, Newt’s got the sunrod, “bloody Paladin”, Jim follows the light.

Ala and Anya gather to examine Newt’s find, a divine scroll, Ala tucks it away for later use.

“Right then…” Cas starts.

“This isn’t bloody working.” Jim explodes.

“You lead.” Cas counters, and nods to Jim, which pretty much resolves all of their problems.
“Oh. Yeah, that’d probably be best. Thanks.” Jim replies.

They’re about to head off when Cas remembers something, he turns to Bec, “So are you back to talking again, done with the whole ‘SAAA-ND-WH-ICCCCH” thing, only I just want to know?”
“Maybe.” Bec shrugs and indicates that’s all he has to say on the subject.
“Go on Jim, bloody amateurs.” The last part delivered by the Paladin sotto voce.

Jim takes the lead, Bec close behind, his longsword and shield in his hands; behind them Anya clutches her fiery Wand.

There’s another passage out of the muddy chamber, heading south, gingerly they snake down it, Jim to the fore- a little ways in the passage splits two ways. Jim sniffs the air, “south again, careful something smells rotten down here.” The group press on a short distance and then emerge into another chamber; the place is thirty feet in diameter, a circular-ish cavern of packed dirt and stone, the place smells rank, rotting vegetables and the unmistakeable odour of death. The air is thick and humid, sweat glistens on Jim’s brow, and his feet sink into the muddy earth as he cautiously moves into the chamber, towards a wall of boxes, barrels and crates.

Closer he can see that they’re all covered in a rich tapestry of molds and lichens, there’s a pile of rotten and ripped sacks behind the first stack of barrels, rotten grain, from the sacks, has been mashed into the muddy floor.

And just visible a pair of humanoid legs clad in leather breeches sticks out from behind the sacks.

“Body.” Jim states, and then stops suddenly, somewhere a rat squeaks, the sound fades, Jim cautiously creeps closer again. Stops once more, a different sound, a clicking sound… something… no, he can’t quite work it out. It’s coming from somewhere near the body, where the thickest shadows gather.

The Ranger creeps forward again.

“Stop. Don’t move.” Anya taps Jim and then Bec on the shoulder, the pair part, and let her through- the Wizard advances wand outstretched before her.

Suddenly something darts from behind the crates; a hundred armoured legs click and rattle as the Monstrous Centipede, nearly eight feet in length rears up before Anya.

Next Turn: Rat-Trick.
 

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Goonalan said:
... right for the bonus point what was the name of the scenario that appeared in Dungeon magazine that I think involved shrunken PCs and a giant house/cottage- something like that anyway?

I'll have to pass on that one - not a Dungeon mag that I have.

And - excellent start to the new adventure. I particularly enjoyed Bec losing it when faced with all those rats.

Keep up the good work.
 

Goonalan

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Grimbo Area Map

If I've done this right then the attached map will show Grimbo and the area surrounding, fingers crossed.

For those of you who know Grimsby (who's going to admit to that?) you will note that it bears more than a passing resemblance to the area, er... you've got me there, that's exactly what it is. My campaigns are usually set on Oerth, which looks a lot like the Earth, it seemed both simple and obvious all those years ago, it's also Geography 101 for my players.

Obviously the names have been changed a little to protect both the innocent and the guilty.

This better bloody work...
 

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Goonalan

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The United Kingdoms.

As with the previous this map shows Angland (England), and the Principality of the Welch (Wales), please do not take offence, particularly if you're French... you'll see. I'm not just playing on National stereotypes, I'm mostly playing with words, and so Frogland is home to Bullwug's (and other Frog-related folk), and not the French, it just happens in my world to be parked in the same place as France. As I say, please don't take offence.

Fingers crossed again...
 

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Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classic #14
Dungeon Interludes
Chapter 1: The Eye of the Night
Level 1-3 (Scaled to level 4)​

Turn 42: Rat-Trick.

“FLAME ON.”

The Monstrous Centipede burns and flails, and then is spiked on Bec’s longsword, it thrashes a moment and then goes limp. Bec moves forward and levers the thing off his blade.

“Good work, all of you.” Cas is in the room.

Jim moves forward, stamps out the fires started by Anya’s wand, and makes a grisly discovery- the remains of three more humans, two raiders and a farmer, half eaten by rats and the Centipede, their bodies split and broken, their innards ripped out and chewed.

“BAAAARRFF.”

Jim loses his lunch. Newt moves forward, goes to bend to examine the remains, then thinks better of it. “Nah. Nothing here.” He moves on. There’s another pile of gear, adventurers gear, in the corner, the Gnome heads over to take a look- soon discovers that there’s nothing at all of worth.

“Come on, let’s get out of here.” Jim wipes his mouth and heads off back to where the passage divides.

Jim leads them on down the second passage, they head west then north, the passage grows tighter, the adventurers inch their way forward, and out into another larger chamber. Ahead a maze of slick mud walls, each riddled with dozens of rat sized holes.

“I don’t like this.” Jim whispers, he has his doubts. “Right then, it looks like a… a maze, make sure you’ve got plenty of light, and stick together, there are lots of rat holes- a good place for an ambush.”
“Lead us on Jim.” Cas pronounces.
“Stick to the left hand wall.” Anya offers.
“Yep.” Newt agrees.
“Kay.” The Ranger leads them in.

The area is a maze of small rooms, separated by thin muddy walls, some of them only half constructed, only two to four feet tall. The floor is slick with gloopy sticky mud that covers the adventurers boots.

Jim suddenly halts. “Wait. Listen.” And sure enough, the sound of rats. “They’re going to ambush us- be ready.” Jim takes another step forward as a Fiendish Dire Rat barrels around the corner ahead of him, scurries forward with lightning speed, straight for the Ranger, his battleaxe swings and crunches into the creature’s skull. The rat shakes the blade free and scurries back, it appears to be even stronger than the Fiendish Dire Rats they encountered earlier. The beast barely gets five feet when it leaps again, crashes into Jim, catching the Rangers arm in its maw, it yanks and tears, crushes and breaks the bones in Jim’s forearm, simultaneously dislocating his shoulder. The Ranger loses all colour and flops into the muddy mire.

“FLAME ON.”

Anya reaches over a low wall and sends a fan of fire into the space beyond, another Fiendish Dire Rat scurries away seemingly unhurt by the flame. Bec is stuck next to another low wall, he kicks and stamps at the blockage, smashing it down, struggles forward through the gap, skids on the slippery mud and falls into the passage beyond, straight in front of another of the Fiends, the creature sinks its teeth into Bec’s gut, rips out a hunk of flesh and swallows it down.

“Diiiinnnnneeerr isssss ssserved,”

At the rear of the pack yet another Fiendish Dire Rat darts to attack, Cas slices at it leaving a bloody trail down its back, the creature rushes on and sinks its teeth into Cas’ thigh, the Paladin screams and bashes the pommel of his longsword onto the creature’s skull, the rat retreats, as the Paladin bleeds. Newt and Ala dive into save him; the Priest catches the beast on the side of its head, momentarily stunning the thing. Newt sees his opportunity and darts in with his heavy mace in hand. The rat is not done for however, and dodges the Gnome’s attack and delivers a nip of its own to Newt’s side. The Gnome dances back to Ala but the Fiend is still not done, follows up its first strike with a second bite, this time to the Gnome’s right shoulder, his heavy mace gets much heavier. Anya in the midst of the fury chants, a blue-ish sheen engulfs her, her Mage Armour activated.

Bec kicks out, still on the floor- smashes his foot into the rat’s jaw, the creature snarls but retreats far enough for the Barbarian to leap to his feet. The rat comes again, but Bec is ready for it this time, his longsword spears down, stabs, six, eight, ten, twelve inches into the creatures shoulder, it leaps back, Bec grips tight to his blade. The rat settles a moment, looks confused, shivers, and then cautiously approaches again.

Anya stumbles forward, over Jim’s body, to the Fiendish Dire Rat that snarls and claws the dirt ahead of her. “Go back to hell.” The creature races forward, she meets its charge with the end of her staff. The blow nearly wrenches the length of oak from her hands, the rat staggers back- gasping for air, something in its chest is definitely broken, and yet it still has some fight left in it.

At the rear Cas, Ala and Newt now face off against two of the Fiendish creatures, make that one, Newt dodges left then right, as a rat leaps towards him, manoeuvres to the side and brings his heavy mace down, two-handed, on the things skull, something large, and important, audibly cracks and breaks, the fiend sinks into the dirt. Cas steps forward to meet the other head on, lands a lucky blow, slicing into the creatures right front leg, the Fiend shies away, snarls and paws the air. Ala looks behind her, sees Jim collapsed in the muck, in an instant she’s to him, healing his wounds, bones, once broken, knit and mend, his shoulder pops back into place, and the Ranger sits up, suddenly light headed but no longer at deaths door.

“Where am I?”

Jim spies Anya ahead, making a decent fist of keeping another of the Fiendish Dire Rats at bay, but not landing any telling hits, the Ranger jumps to his feet, rescues his axe from the mud and worse, then charges towards the creature, “ANYAAAaaaaaa”, the Wizard dodges as Jim arrives- WHUMP, and buries the entirety of his axe blade in the now dying rats back. He levers his axe free as yet another Fiend appears from a tunnel to the Rangers right hand side, instinctively Jim steps back and swings his axe round to meet the beast, the weapon lodges, for a moment, in the rat’s body, the creature is then sent spinning backwards with the force of the blow. It crashes into another muddy wall and lies there, unmoving- dead.

“Thanks Jim.” Anya adds, aware that she was clearly outmatched in the fight, her soft touch, her hand rubs his shoulder, their eyes meet for the briefest of moments, and yet long enough.

Ala, meanwhile, is back to the rear, alongside Cas, who’s swinging hard, but wide of the rat there. The Priestess dodges past the Paladin and lands the killing blow- lancing her sword, up to the hilt, into the Fiendish Dire Rats skull.

Bec continues to flail and swat, the last of the Fiendish Dire Rats backs away, looking for an opening, alas it backs straight into Jim, and his axe, which bites deep into the creature.

“Whissssskerssssss.”

The final Fiendish Dire Rat expires.

“What did he say?” Jim asks.
“Whiskers?” Anya appears from around the corner, and offers.
“Isn’t that a sort of cat food?”
Anya shrugs.

“Retreat out of the chamber, back the way we came.” Cas calls over. Thirty seconds later they’re back in a huddle at the entrance to the muddy maze chamber, once again Healing Potions are uncorked, in truth they haven’t got many potions left, indeed some of the adventurers are already out.

“We can’t take much more of this.” Ala states, to stares.
“And yet we should go on- finish what we’ve started.” Jim is determined.
Cas scans the assembled masses, looking for consent, they all nod, although Ala’s is half-shrug, half-nod, but she’s getting used to being ignored.

“Left wall again.” Anya smiles and taps Jim on his left shoulder, leaves her hand there a little too long, the Ranger doesn’t look back, his broad smile faces forward, hidden from sight.

And the system works, less than a minute later Jim leads the adventurers into another chamber, out of the mud at last, which now cakes their boots, every step an effort. The floor ahead sweeps sharply down to a pool of murky cavern water, a thick and crusty layer of algae- complete with clouds of flies and mosquitoes buzzing lazily above the surface. The hazard is some twenty feet across, the chamber itself, now illuminated by two sunrods is some forty feet across, at the far side another dark passage leads off. A narrow ledge circles the depression, the footing both sides looks sturdy, however the pit look slick and steep.

“Feck how’re we…” Jim begins.
“Easy.” Newt winks at Anya then delves into his pack, finds and drains a potion, Anya grins then manages the same effect with a simple incantation- Spider Climb, the two take to the walls, climb up and around and then lay a roped trail around one side of the pit, hammer a pair of pitons into the walls as guides for the rope. The job’s complete in less than five minutes; only an idiot could fall in now with the rope so firmly secured.

Bec is the first to tumble down the slope, however he’s not entirely to blame, the Barbarian stumbles and grabs hard at the rope to prevent his fall, however it’s Newt and Anya that’s holding onto to the other end, the Barbarians weight and momentum is too much for them- result Bec is halfway down the slope scrabbling trying desperately to keep away from the water.

“Heave.” Anya calls, she and the Gnome grip tight the rope and pull hard, the Barbarian is rescued inch by inch. Below Bec’s flailing legs the pool seems to shift and gather to one side, a viscous liquid climbs the slope towards the Barbarian.

“I think there’s…” Ala starts but is shushed by Cas. Bec makes it back to the ledge and scampers up to safety.

“Jim… don’t fall in. Take your time.” Cas offers.
“Don’t worry it’s easy, watch.”

Twenty seconds later the Ranger’s boots are splashing at the edge of the water, he’s much further down the slope than Bec, and slipping further down all the time. From the centre of the pool an amorphous blob rises, like some dismembered hand, no fist, except made of Grey Ooze. Ripples spread towards Jim as the appendage surges forward.

“PULL.” Cas screams, and at the same time Bec gets hold of the rope and does as ordered, Jim is catapulted back up the slope, and onto the ledge, his face and front covered in a thick layer of mud. The slimy fist crashes into the slope, in the spot that Jim so very recently reclined, then oozes back down into the pool. Jim scuttles across.

“What was that?” Jim asks looking back.
“Erm… Nothing to worry about, we’ll be across in a moment. Best if all of you grab onto the rope, don’t want any accidents.” Cas shares a look with Ala, gulps. And yet the pair make their way across without further incident.

Blood Whisker stands in the centre of the chamber, stops what he is doing, half-man, half-rat; his seven Fiendish Dire Rat companions that surround him, also stand statue. He listens intently, then sniffs the air.

“Thhhheeeyyy Coooooommmme.”

And in an instant the room is empty, except for the tiny cave rats that carpet the floor. The shadows in the chamber darken.

“Shhh. This way.” Jim’s voice carries into the room.

The chamber ahead is much more welcoming, hard packed earth, no mud, the cavern sides carved with care, and skill. A simple straw bed lies to the west, alongside a series of crudely constructed chests and crates. But what draws the adventurer’s attention is the five foot patch of dirt in the northwest corner, which seems to bubble and churn with thousands upon thousands of tiny cave rats. Countless of the creatures tumble from the area, scatter across the room; disappear into the myriad tiny tunnels that honeycomb the lower reaches of all the walls.

A wooden staff, a tattered green cloak, a length of rope and an ancient leather satchel stick out from beneath the churning pile of rats.

“It’s empty.” Jim proclaims.

Next Turn: Bloody Whiskers.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classic #14
Dungeon Interludes
Chapter 1: The Eye of the Night
Level 1-3 (Scaled to level 4)​

Turn 43: Bloody Whiskers.

Jim heads in, a tiny cave rat hops over his boot- STAMP, and it’s gone. “Bloody vermin.” The Ranger creeps forward, “it looks safe.”

Which proves to be untrue very quickly, Fiendish Dire rats explode from the walls of the chamber, a crouching Blood Whisker, rapier drawn, stays hidden in the shadows.

“FLAME ON.” Anya screams as she stumbles into the cavern, aiming hard right in order to miss Jim- flames lick and fold, bathe the chamber, two Fiendish Dire Rats are a little singed, a dozen innocent cave rats are instantly immolated. Bec charges into the chamber gets perhaps, four feet before a spike of steel lances out of the shadows, Blood Whisker’s rapier, the blade pierces the Barbarian’s lower chest, and passes through; the tip protrudes an inch through his back. And then the blade is withdrawn. Bec moans duly, clamps his hand instinctively on the spot, his next breath ragged and laboured, his lung punctured, blood spills from his mouth, he swats with his giant sword, ineffectively. Blood Whisker grins and retreats a little further into the darkness that surrounds them.

Ala screams, “for Correllon”, her Bless spell encompasses her compatriots, for a second they feel uplifted, confident- then reality hits them.

The rat’s crash into them, one of the Fiends nips and tears at Cas’ hand, leaves a bloody streak in its wake. The Paladin slices down on the creature as it retreats, almost removes its right front leg, it totters back. Another leaps at Bec, the Barbarian scrambles to palm it away, but it hooks its forelegs into the Barbarian’s belt, dodges in and takes a gobbet of grisly flesh out of Bec’s face, it’s almost too much for him, and the fight is less than ten seconds in. Jim is left stranded, surrounded, he swishes and swirls his axe about him, attempting to keep all of the rats at bay, one sneaks past his guard, takes a slice out of the Ranger’s knee.

“Akkat.” Anya hurls Swish into the fray, the Magical Broom manages a fey swat at a passing rat, which then scurries on and launches itself at the Wizard, crashes into her sending her falling backwards, scratched and bitten Anya crashes into the cavern wall, manages to drag herself back to her feet. Swish quickly hops over to save his mistress, swats hard and merely scratches Anya’s attacker, the Fiend pays the broom no heed.

Bec eventually knocks the rat on his belt to the ground, slaps his other hand on the handle of his two-handed sword, draws it, and rushes at the figure he’s just spotted deep in the shadows, Blood Whisker. “BAAAAAssssTTTTUUUDDD.” He swings with all his might, crashing through Blood Whiskers defences, the blade thumps into the Wererat, but doesn’t even break the skin. Blood Whisker realises this at the same time as the Barbarian, the Lycanthrope grins, “thisss sssshhhhooouulldd beeee ffffun.” The rat Bec so recently levered off of him sees its chance, nips in and bites a hunk of flesh out of the Barbarians left leg, Bec staggers again, puts a hand out to try and steady himself, hangs his head, already exhausted, breathing is incredibly hard, cave rats crawl and bite at his feet, he can’t take much more of this. He looks up just in time to see Blood Whisker’s rapier thrust, the blade is coming straight for his face.

At the last moment he twists aside, the blade bites briefly into the packed dirt cavern wall, and then is withdrawn at lightning speed.

Newt so far is playing a game of ‘rat and mouse’, he’s the mouse with a Fiendish Dire Rat on his tail, then the Gnome remembers, and scurries up a wall. “Feck off, vermin.” He flicks the V’s at the stranded rat which leaps and jumps, snapping its jaws about a foot short of the Gnomes legs, he climbs a little higher up the wall. Ala rushes towards the nearest rat, deflects its snarling leap with her shield and then stabs her longsword through the creature’s brain; it curls, bleeds and begins mewling, not long for this world.

Jim drags himself to Bec’s side, “put your back in to it, come on.” The Ranger swings wildly, just as Blood Whisker dodges forward to lance the Barbarian again, Jim’s axe connects with the lycanthropes off-hand, shatters the elbow, sends Blood Whisker dancing back, one hand limp- to his side. Cas sees they have the advantage slices at the Fiendish Dire Rat before him and cuts the thing clean in two, he sprints to Bec, adds his sword to the fight against the Lycanthrope, just as another Fiendish Dire Rat takes a chunk out of the Barbarians left calf, Bec screams and crashes into the cavern wall, it’s the only thing keeping him up.

DM’s note Bec is on 1hp.

Anya spots Newt out of the corner of her eye, the Gnome is trying to load a silver bolt into his crossbow, which is pretty difficult when you’re hanging onto a wall. Anya tries the same move, heads towards the cavern wall, set to climb up and out of the fray, a Fiendish Dire Rat reacts quickly and blocks her path; harries her, sends her scrambling backwards. The rat leaping forlornly at Newt notices the Wizard, rushes in, leaps and crashes, bites and claws at Anya’s back; she’s buffeted badly but still manages to keep her feet. Swish turns to meet this new attacker but proves as ineffective as usual.

Blood Whisker launches a killing blow, its rapier set to pierce Bec’s heart, when at the last minute Jim rushes in and puts his body in the path; the blade pierces his chest and emerges a good distance through the other side. Blood fountains out as the rapier is withdrawn, Jim flails then finds his footing, he’s losing blood fast, his face whiter than white, almost translucent. Ala kicks her way past the Fiendish Dire Rat ahead of her and rushes to flank Blood Whisker, her sword thumps into the creature right shoulder, streaks across its back, the force enough to split the thing open, and yet her blade leaves not a trace, doesn’t even pierce the skin.

Ala back-pedals furiously out of the fight, screaming, “magical weapons”, as she retreats. Blood Whisker turns to spy her, grins and nods to acknowledge her insight. Anya sees an opening, and leaps, and grabs, and grips onto the cavern wall, she scurries up towards the ceiling out of the Fiendish Dire Rats reach, the pair quickly abandon their prey, look over and spot Bec barely moving leant against the wall- they share a look and then sprint over to engage the Barbarian, who in the last instant levers himself upright and forward, swings with all his might, his blade cuts through both of the creatures, curtailing, forever, their charge.

FWUNG

A silver crossbow bolt thunks into the wall, about a foot from Jim’s head. “Sorrrrrry.” Newt calls over. Ala circles back again, further away from Blood Whisker; she reaches out and touches Bec, warmth and healing spill into the Barbarian, who however remains sorely wounded.

Jim scurries back a little, meets a Fiendish Dire Rat coming the other way, one of only three left alive now. The Ranger dodges away swiftly back towards Blood Whisker, foolishly not looking where he’s going; he meets head-on the lycanthropes blade, which pierces his throat, the Ranger slumps, but is grabbed mid-fall by Blood Whisker, who leans in and bites a chunk of flesh out of his shoulder, spits the bloody bolus onto the filthy cavern floor, where it is soon consumed by the tiny cave rats.

“Nexxxxxxt.” It whispers, then glugs down a Healing vial, while blocking Cas’ amateurish attack with Jim’s body. The creature drains the vial and drops it as the Paladin almost trips and staggers forward, Blood Whisker throws Jim aside and grabs Cas, yanks him towards him and spins him round, Cas becomes his new human shield. The creature sinks its teeth through the skin and into the base of Cas’ skull, rips a hunk of flesh free, exposing bone, and then shoves the Paladin back the way he came, Cas stumbles and falls, lies motionless on the hard-packed ground, cave rats swarm.

Ala, whispers prayers, just inches away from placing her hand on Jim, who also lies seemingly lifeless on the floor, she sees Cas fall, she has only one Healing spell left.

“Decisssionsss. Decissssionss.” Blood Whisker calls.

Bec stumbles, leaden legged towards Blood Whisker, then realises the folly of his endeavour, fumbles in a pouch and produces his Vial of Silversheen, pops the cork, all fingers and thumbs, as the Lycanthrope approaches.

Next Turn: To Love, Honour & Obey.


Oooops

Dungeon Crawl Classic #14
Dungeon Interludes
Chapter 1: The Eye of the Night
Level 1-3 (Scaled to level 4)​

Turn 44: To Love, Honour & Obey.

Blood Whisker leaps at the barely standing Bec, still fumbling with his Vial of Silversheen, trying to coat his blade.

“Smidgin.” A Magic Missile launches from Anya’s hand, smashes into the Lycanthrope, diverting its lunge, the creature still manages to get an attack in, off-balance though its blade is easily avoided.

FWUNG

A silver crossbow bolt sprouts from the Wererat’s chest, the creature gasps and staggers back, grabs another Healing vial and brings it to his lips, and the wound is all but gone. Blood Whisker pulls the bolt from his chest, casually lets it fall from his hand, and mockingly motions for Bec to join him in the fight; the Barbarian backs away, still fumbling with his sword.

Ala looks again at Cas, still not moving, then back at Jim, she gets up reddening furiously and heads over to help the Paladin, her love.

Who rises as she approaches, badly wounded but only momentarily stunned, “Jim”, the Paladin states, and clambers back to his feet. Ala is quickly back to the Ranger, the last of her Healing surges into the him, wounds instantly close over, Jim lets out a ragged breath and nods his thanks, while fetching out one of his own Healing vials, he sucks the contents down, and then pops another- his last.

Cas heads straight back into the melee, brave or just plain stupid- definitely fearless, he tangles with a Fiendish Dire Rat in his rush to get back to Blood Whisker, is bitten again, on his right hip, in the process. Blood Whisker welcomes him back with a smile. Cas slashes wildly, Blood Whisker dodges inside the blow, stabs his rapier out but the blade is deflected by the Paladin’s shield. Anya is fast running out of spells, and yet she tries again, flashing lights circle the Lycanthrope’s head momentarily- but the Daze spell has no obvious affect- the lights quickly fade. She shrugs, while continuing to grip tight to the wall, unhooks her light crossbow from her belt, and attempts, badly, to get it loaded.

THWUNG

Another silver bolt slices in, and through, the Wererat’s arm, the creature snarls back at the Gnome, Blood Whisker looks, for a moment, a little nervous, for the first time unsure of the final outcome of the fracas. The Wererat reacts quickly, barrels into Cas and sends the Paladin spinning back the way he came, unharmed but out of the melee. The creature adopts a defensive stance, grabs and drinks down yet another Healing Potion. Bec’s has at last finished lathering his two-handed sword with the Silversheen, a Fiendish Dire Rat tries to interrupt his progress towards Blood Whisker, but arrives late and is cut down by a lazy swipe.

And then Jim is up and charging back at the Lycanthrope, the pair exchange blows, seemingly evenly matched, that is until Jim is flung back, almost falls- the creature is incredibly agile. Another Fiendish Dire Rat blocks Bec’s path, and is cut down in an instant- the Barbarian grins as he strides at last to Blood Whisker- armed & deadly with his silvered sword, which sweeps all before him, fearsome strokes, Blood Whisker has nowhere to go and so backs into the wall, before leaping forward with a precision blow, which however fails to penetrate the Barbarian’s armour. Bec’s final swing connects and leaves a raw gash along the Wererat’s chest and stomach, the creature whines a little. Specks of spittle, mixed with blood, fall from its maw- it doesn’t look pleased.

FWUNG
FWUNG

Newt fires his final two silver bolts, in quick succession, the Gnome has crawled along the ceiling to a perfect spot, to the side, and almost behind Blood Whisker, both bolts hit home, creating a porcupine affect. More blood spills from the Wererat’s maw.

Bec dodges back as Blood Whisker surges forward, looking for escape, a lightning fast set of swipes and swishes, the last of which passes only an inch before his eyes. Jim and Cas leap back into the fray, attempting to flank the creature, Blood Whisker manages to keep them all at bay, however his forward moment is blocked, he has to retreat back again to the cavern wall.

Anya leaps off her perch on the wall, steadies herself and grabs Swish, rushes over to help Ala, who’s facing off against the last of the Fiendish Dire Rats, and not faring so well- the Priestess is bitten again, no more than a scratch on her hand, but another distraction, she swings wide and curses her luck. Anya menaces the creature with her staff, Swish, well… swishes- all to no effect. The rat comes again, it’s decided its going to eat Ala first, however the Priestess is a little too canny- she dodges backwards, lures the rat in, then lunges forward and plants her blade deep in the vermin’s body, the rat shudders and expires.

“Together… Now.” Cas screams and all three of the warriors shuffle forward swinging hard, Blood Whisker for a moment looks truly terrified, then decides its fate, lances it’s rapier straight at Cas, who swats the blade aside with his longsword, however the Wererat’s not finished it continues its charge, smashes into the Paladin and bites into Cas’ neck and shoulder.

“SSSSsssssseeee yooooooooo inn Heeeelllllllll.”

Bec chops hard, his blade bites deep into the creatures body, exposing organs and bones. Jim does the same from the other side; Blood Whisker is almost cut in two. The Wererat stiffens, clasps its hands around Cas, pulls the Paladin to him, in a hug, and whispers in his ear- “Beware… the Devil’s Eye.”

And then dies.

Silence, except for the cave rats pathetic squeaks, and the chorus of heavy breathing, the adventurers are spent- Jim flops to the floor, followed by Cas, then Bec, they find walls to lean against. Even Newt has a little sit down, then Ala, then Anya.

“So where is he then?” Anya asks.
“Who?” Cas enquires.
“Thistle. The Druid.”
Cas looks around, rats continue to spew from the patch of ground at the far side of the chamber, but there’s plenty to eat for the vermin, they’re not after a fight- they leave the adventurers well alone, give them a wide berth.

“OooooA.”

There’s a sound coming from the area, Cas, with difficulty, creaking and cracking, levers himself to his feet- Newt follows him, then Anya, to the rat pile.

“It’s a pit.” Newt points.
Cas nods, “Bec.”
The giant man, limping slightly, wheezing a little, wanders over.
“Give me a hand.” The Paladin grabs the rope that disappears into the pit of scurrying, scrabbling rats. Bec grasps the rope, then Jim. “Heave.” Seconds later a… man? Of sorts, at least humanoid in shape and yet not made of flesh and bone, more bark and root- covered in scratches and bites which are steadily regenerating, rises to the surface of the enormous Rat Swarm.

“Pull him out.” Jim shouts.
“Thistle.” Bec simply states as the Druid is hauled out and to his feet, they grasp the Druid and swiftly move him away from the pit, to safety, mid-way the creature’s eyes blink open, Thistle whispers, “thank you”, and without joy smiles.

They lay Thistle down, keep the area clear of cave rats, and watch as the plant-man fully regenerates.

“Open.” Newt has sprung both of the chests; he sorts through a mixture of coin, although not a lot, some low-grade gems, and some well-made weapons and armour. Bec helps Newt to decant one chest into the other, then the Barbarian hefts the full chest onto his shoulder. Anya uses her Detect Magic spell to strip the body of Blood Whisker, a rapier and a ring, both enchanted.

Ten minutes later Thistle is back on his feet, and no longer smiling, not even pretending.

“All gone?” Thistle asks again.
“Almost, we found one survivor, Farmer Giles, sent him back to the Church of Pelor in Grimbo, to recover. Others may have escaped, fled to the hills, the forest.” Cas replies.
“I will wait for them, they will return, we will build Molton Clay again.” Thistle states and forlornly staggers out of the chamber.
“Wait.” Cas grabs at the Druid’s arm, “what was this all for- the ‘Eye of the Night’, where is it? What is it?”
“Your dagger.”
Cas looks a little disturbed, and then complies, passes his dagger to Thistle, who takes it, takes a deep breath and then carves into his trunk, or rather torso, splits and cuts into his wood-like flesh, a sticky white liquid leaks from the wound- sap.
“What are you?” Jim watches and wonders.
Thistle drops the dagger, delves into the wound, and pulls out a sap covered, slightly glowing, topaz.
“Here.” He hands the sticky gem to Cas, “the ‘Eye of the Night’, we cannot, I mean, I cannot keep it safe any longer.” Thistle turns to Jim, “what am I? I am Thistle, born of the rich earth, nurtured by cool clear water, raised by the warmth of the sun. I am a Druid, the protector of Molton Clay, and the last of my kind… again.”
Thistle moves off again, into the darkened tunnels.

“We’ll take the gem to the Church of Pelor, they will guard it for you, until you’re ready to take it back. When you’ve built Molton Clay again.” Cas tries to comfort Thistle, but the Druid walks on.

The adventurers grab their kit and follow him back into the rat tunnels.

Several minutes later, after a few false turns, Thistle finds his way to a rough chamber, a halo of light, a spotlight on the cavern floor- there’s a smaller passage back to the surface. There’s also a very large Badger, which licks and nudges Thistle’s hand, obviously the Druid’s Animal Companion.

“This is Snarl.”
Snarl snarls.

Instinctively the warriors, except for Jim, take a step backwards remembering previous encounters with Badgers; Dire, Giant and mostly just plain furious.

“He won’t hurt you.” Thistle manages a half a smile, then shrugs, turns back to stare at the obvious exit, and slowly clambers up, momentarily, bathed in the light.

“Give him a minute.” Jim stops Cas in his tracks.

Thirty minutes later Thistle and the gang have completed their sweep of the village, Molton Clay is no more. There are no survivors, just lots of bodies. Thistle is beyond words.

“We need to get some healing- the rat bites, there’s a good chance we’re going to be sick, again, for a while.” Ala breaks the silence.
“Bloody rats.” Bec mumbles.
“We bury the dead first.” Cas holds Thistle’s gaze.
The Druid nods slowly.

In the end they settle for collapsing a wall in the Blood Whisker’s lair, creating a sealable burial chamber- beneath the barn, there’s no other solution, such are the number of corpses in the village.

It takes a day and a half, and at the end of the endeavour, Jim, Bec and Ala are suffering, their wounds are not closing over, their bones ache, they feel cold, and at times dizzy.

Thistle seals the burial chamber and leads the Goodman Gang into the woods.

“I have friends here; they will take care of you. I thank you for your efforts, for rescuing me and the gem, all that I have is yours, your needs are my needs, if I can ever help you… I am forever in your debt.”

Jim blushes, the others follow suit.

“And yet questions remain unanswered.” Thistle states. “Who were these… these killers? Where did they come from? Who sent them? And why did they want the gem?”

Next Turn: Review.
 
Last edited:

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classic #14
Dungeon Interludes
Chapter 1: The Eye of the Night
Level 1-3 (Scaled to level 4)​

Turn 44a: Review

Overall score out of 10: 7.7
Play time: 3 battered hours.

Review:

Another good one, and short, although the players spent Hit Points like they were going out of fashion. From a DMs perspective I thought at first that the continuous cycle of rats would prove boring, particularly when the scaled up version of the module meant the rats would stick around for a little longer than expected, also because there were so many of the little, and not so little, blighters. This seemed to be less of a problem than I expected for the players, they were in a rats den, this was soon concluded- there’s bound to be lots of them.

The players also enjoyed the fact that the pace of the scenario was quite frenetic at times, the battles hard, and the final epic entirely suited to what passed before.

With all the raving you’d perhaps have expected a higher mark, and yet they were just rats seemed to be the consensus on conclusion, and at times, particularly when faced with eighteen dire rats, and then another six… no make that twelve, well you get the idea.

Notes and Quotes:

Once they were inside the den, which took a little while, and caused a few upsets- some of the players want to get in and get swinging as soon as possible, the players were much happier.

The morass of Dire Rats in the first fracas set the pace, they knew they were in for trouble. Compounded when the loopy Barbarian decides to chase after the stragglers and ends up between a rock and a hard place, actually two rat nests complete with pairs of Fiendish Dire Rats.

An excellent introduction to the scenario which served to wipe the smile from all of the player’s faces, Jim for one, Mr. A., seemed most unamused that his sworn enemy- Dire Creatures, were getting offed and he was nowhere to be seen.

And the next creature they meet is of course a Giant Centipede, needless to say more rats follow, and Jim’s in his element, like Bec and Anya earlier, on the floor and getting bitten. Perhaps six Improved Fiendish Dire Rats was a little hard on the guys, but hey ho- who cares, they got through it.

The final fight was another fine moment to witness, shuttle runs to the fridge, players whispering blessings and screaming curses to their dice. It’s so reassuring to the DM- something must be working, nobody answers their phone, or tells stories about what happened in the pub the other night… They just roll their dice, make up stories, and sometimes chew on the gaming table.

And so…

Mr. R. (Cas)- “Can we play it again?”
Mrs. R. (Ala)- “Let’s not.”
Miss P. (Anya)- “I hate rats.”
Mr. W. (Newt)- “See above.”
Miss E. (Bec)- “See above.”
Mr. A. (Jim)- “Has anyone got a picture of a Dryad?”

Overall well received, the fights were all interesting in some way, kept the players on their toes. The hazards helped the story along, led to some creative suggestions, and the finale was definitely worth the price.

More of the same please next time, here’s hoping.

Next Turn: Into the trees.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Turn 45: Into the trees.

Two hours later and the raged group are gathered in a clearing, it’s nice here, even late in the day, early evening, the sun shines down, warm- wholesome, they feel a little better already.

“Here.”

Thistle steps up to a very large tree, twists something and pulls open a previously hidden door. Its obvious now its open, but you’d have to looking for it to spot it otherwise, and you don’t, do you… generally, look for doors in trees.

“That’s nice”, Newt admires the secret door, “can you make me one?”
Thistle smiles a little, the first time in ages, ruffles the Gnome’s hair, Newt strides inside.

The room’s quite clearly bigger on the inside than the outside.

“Are you a Dryad?” Jim asks, then suddenly feels dumb.
“No, brave Ranger, although I am a friend of Dryads.” Thistle clasps the Jim’s hand, “just like you will we be one day.”
“Will I… That’s good. They live in trees don’t they?”
Thistle nods and motions for the group to spread out, to settle, there are chairs, trestles, beds- there’s a lot of furniture for sitting, lying and generally resting on.

Ale is on the table, and spiced teas, and cakes, and sandwiches, and buns, and sweetmeats, and trifles, and sandwiches, and buns, and little things on sticks- cheeses, pickles, exotic fruits; and on some sticks, all three, together. It’s a spread worthy of a king.

“Pelor be blessed…” Cas starts.”
“And Correllon.” Ala finishes, muffled slightly, not standing on ceremony she’s starving, chomping on a chocolate éclair.
“Here, get one of these down you…” Newt offers up the plate of sandwiches to Bec.

Bec examines the bready-host, considers his options, but his eyes are drawn back to the table, to the…

“What is it?”

Bec reaches and points down to a round-ish object, about the size of a potato, covered in some thin shiny metallic paper, a host to a miniature forest of delicate slivers of wood, each bearing a, that is not one, not two, but three different fine foods. He bends low and moves in until his face is almost touching it, right under his nose, he sniffs. The first is an onion, a tiny delicate onion, next, a cheese, Dwarven Ched-Dar, and on the top a piece of… he wants lick it, to taste it, to be sure.

“Have one.” Thistle grasps the savoury laden hedgehog and gestures back at the giant man, “go on- they’re nice.”
Bec swoops, yanks one free and .

The onion crunches- FIZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
The cheese melts- CREAAAAMMMY
The pineapple hits- SWEEEEEEEEEEEEET
The wooden sliver is a little chewy.

It’s callisthenics for Bec’s face.

“Go on, help yourself to the buffet, all of you, and Bec- next time don’t eat the skewer.” Thistle sits and pours drinks to order.

Bec, brought up to know right from wrong, sits by the savoury hedgehog and contents himself with only eating only one of the exquisite morsels every minute or so, smiling politely at any of his companions that reach out towards the delicacy. The smile says it all, that and the wild eyes, those with a Sense Motive score high enough understand the Barbarian’s look, in translation- oh yes help yourself to one of my special foods, I hope you enjoy it’s heavenly delight because later I’m going to snap your arm off.

Bec deforests the hedgehog at his leisure.

A little later.

“So what are Dryads like?” Jim asks through a mouthful of cake.
“They’re mostly stunningly beautiful female tree spirits, usually clad in something thin and revealing.”
The cake goes everywhere.

The door opens again, Jim continues on.

“Excellent. I’m usually quite a hit with the ladies; I’ve got very athletic calves...”

The other members of the gang suddenly stop eating, stare at Jim, and then behind Jim, Newt motions for him to look.

Jim strains around to see, while continuing with his explanation, “generally the ladies can’t keep their hands off… Mischa!”
“Hello Jim.”
“Do you know each other?” Thistle stares.
“Yes.” A chorus from the adventurers.
“Yes.” Out of sink, and pleading, Jim concurs.
“Yes.” Mischa agrees and shakes her head staring hard at the Ranger.

A little while later.

The lights have been dimmed or extinguished, poultices have been applied, and healing and herbal draughts have been drunk- Bec snores, as does Anya but don’t tell her. There are one, two, three, four, five… oh hang on, five adventurers sleeping.

Where’s Jim?

The woods are quiet and a little chilly, Jim takes his cloak off and tries to wrap it round Mischa’s shoulders, she shrugs away from his touch.
“I never…”
“Shut up Jim.”
“I was only…”
“I said shut up.”
Silence for a while.
“Ok.”
Mischa stops and stares at the Ranger.
“You’re so…”
“What?” Jim enquires.
“So… stupid.”
“Oh.” Jim looks at his boots.
“I…”
“What?” Jim looks up.
“Just bloody shut up. I’m thinking.”
“Sorry.” Jim goes back to counting his boots- one, two; time for a recount.
“I mean I like you…” Jim goes to look up, decides better of it, and counts on.
“But you’re so frustrating- you always say the wrong thing, do the wrong thing… I want… I want a simple life; I don’t want to be worrying about you all the time, wondering, moment-to-moment, I wonder if Jim’s alive? I can’t… I can’t live like that.”
Jim gulps.
“But…” He’s learnt his lesson, he doesn’t look up, “I…”, then he notices he’s all alone; he looks up, Mischa’s ten yards away, and not listening.

She turns to face him; he looks down immediately, one boot, two boots, and start again.
“We can’t be together. We just can’t. I’m sorry Jim- it would never work.”

Jim looks up slowly.

Meets Mischa’s gaze.

Exactly six seconds later they’re in each others arms, and kissing.

Two weeks later the adventurers are well again, actually all of them except Ala has sweated their way through a bout of Filth Fever; none of them were infected by the Lycanthrope fortunately. They’re outside the tree, Thistle’s home, or rather one of Thistle’s homes.

“I want you to have these.”
Anya hands the Pipes of the Sewers she’s been carrying over to Thistle.
“Hide them, destroy them, use them if need be, but I don’t want anything to do with them. If I ever see another rat again it’ll be too soon.”
The others nod, Bec vociferously.
“We have to head back to Grimbo.” Cas confirms and shakes Thistle’s hand, “Thanks, for everything. We’ll tell the council about what we’ve seen. And we’ll keep the gem safe, at the Church, send for it when you’ve got Molton Clay back up and running.” The Paladin manages a smile.
“Molton Clay is gone.” Thistle looks stern for a second, and then switches tack, “but I thank you for your efforts, without you… Anyway, keep the gem safe, and try to find out who the raiders were, I will make my own enquiries, if I hear anything, I’ll send word. Stay safe brave ones, the road is long…”

And with that the six mount up and head off through the woods, Jim straining on his saddle to see behind, but Mischa’s nowhere to be seen.

It takes the best part of a day to ride back to Grimbo, although none of them are in a rush to get back, it’s late evening when they arrive- fortunately the gate is open, and lit up like a Christmas tree, guards everywhere, and look- a bunch of them rushing towards them now.

A swarthy figure leads the charge, its Captain Khan; he’s here to greet them no doubt.

“Jim Bowen, Casimir La Frond, the man-child called Bec, Priestess Ala and the Wizard Anya- I have warrants for your arrest, resistance is futile.”

A heavily armed and armoured crowd gathers.

“You feckin…” Jim starts up.
Cas reaches across and grabs Jim’s arm, “we’ll come quietly, soldier.”
“I’m a Captain!”
“My mistake, I was getting ahead of myself, you may be a Captain now but you’ll be a soldier in the morning. Still, chin up, lovely weather we’re having.”
Cas admires the night sky as he wanders into the city, grinning.

The other members of the troop follow on, smiling down at the Captain, who’s short, even on horseback.

“Wait. Men, search them.”
“Hang on…” Newt trots over on Dobbin, “what about me, you missed me out.”
“Newt, if you’d…” Cas starts.
“Shut it face ache this is serious, how come you’re arresting them and not me?”
“I have my orders.” Khan goes to move off.
“We’ll see about that.” Newt spurs Dobbin on, alongside Khan’s mount and in an amazing feat of horsemanship, leans down and under the Captain’s horse, a dagger appears in the Gnome’s hand, slice, and the saddle strap is cut. Newt struggles back up and into his saddle.
“Oi, short arse.”
Captain Khan swivels around in his saddle, which instantly slips, snaps and sends him tumbling hard onto the dirt.

Ten minutes later the six adventurers, Newt in chains, make it to the city gaol, on Vicky Street.

Thirty minutes later they’re prisoners number 9112 to 9117 respectively.

And in single cells and yet seemingly prisoner in some special segregated dungeon, there are plenty more sells, all of which seem to be unused at present.

At least they can still talk to each other.

“Cas are you asleep?” Ala half-whispers, half-shouts.
“He’s not, but I am.” A foul looking tattooed wretch clangs into the bars of his cell, opposite Ala, obviously they’re not entirely alone. “Now shut up before I come over there little missy and…”

SPRUNG-CLATTER.

Another cell door, a short way away, is smashed open- actually wrenched off its hinges, Bec walks out of the wreck as half-a-dozen guardsmen stumble into the far end of the passageway, they’re over thirty feet away from Bec, they stop, fumble for clubs, then decide to see how this is going to play out.

Bec stares at them for a moment then strides off towards Ala, turns and heads for the cell opposite, home to the foul looking, and rude, wretch. Bec grasps the bars, bends them a little, veins explode in his arms, he redoubles his efforts and wrenches them apart, leans in, grabs hold of the surly prisoner within and drags till the prisoners bald head is sticking out of the cell and into the passageway. Calm as you like Bec leans in and whispers something in the man’s ear.

Bec lets go and the prisoner dodges quickly back into the darkness and shadow of his cell. The Barbarian strides back the way he came, picks the door to his cell up and reverses into his new abode, wedging the door back in place as he goes. He leans back through the bars, and locks the door again- well, of a fashion.

A nervous soldier rushes over and fumbles a length of iron into place, a brace of sorts.

“Don’t do that again… please.” The soldier scuttles off.

Silence returns.

“I’m over here Ala, I take it we’re all present…”

The others sound of, they are indeed all present, they chat and snooze till morning comes, uninterrupted this time.

Next Turn: Newbies
 

Mahtave

First Post
Hey, did I miss something? How did the fight end with Whiskers?

I think we are missing a story - To Love, Honour and Obey

Waiting patiently..... :)
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Mahtave said:
Hey, did I miss something? How did the fight end with Whiskers?

I think we are missing a story - To Love, Honour and Obey

Waiting patiently..... :)

Sorry, my bad, off work at the moment with Shingles (apparently a Chicken Pox variant), taking a bunch of pain killers, anti-viral something's et al, including a yellow pill which puts me to sleep for five hours (guaranteed), the other stuff just makes me feel, well... a little light-headed.

Thanks for spotting.

I've appended "To Love, Honour and Obey" to Turn 43, so see above a ways, that way it's in the right order.

Thanks

PS Spoilt the climax somewhat eh?
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
And then one day not everybody turned up and so we decided to do something different, but still Goodman Games, anyway a brief interlude while the Goodman Gang spend time in the slammer…

Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 45: Newbies

Several weeks ago…

The Wheatsheaf Inn, midday, in the City of Grimbo, in the far corner a table of adventurers huddle and whisper, take turns to stare at the giant man at the bar nursing a small beer.

The first of the five neophyte adventurers is a male Dwarf, short and to the point, black studded leather armour, the studs polished to a high sheen, a huge Darkwood club sheathed in a sling on his back. His craggy face, neatly trimmed beard and facial hair, his smile a half-grimace, to look at him one would think him a taciturn Dwarven mercenary.

The next figure, in stark contrast, an animated young Human woman all smiles and cleavage, nestled in the midst of which is a large skull pendent. Her robes are black, her clothes beneath likewise, although there’s the glint of hidden mail- she’s wearing way too much eye-liner, and lipstick, her hair has been died black, badly, her blonde roots shine through, she chews at her split ends.

The third figure a tall and thin young male Human wearing rough clothes, almost pyjama like, made of a coarse weave, they must itch, his head shaved except for a topknot, he eats peanuts from a small tray in the midst of the tavern table, savouring them, chewing each 32 times. His slightly oriental eyes dart about the room, although mostly watching the faces of his compatriots.

The fourth figure is as animated as the woman, a male Halfling sat on several cushions to boost himself up to the level of the table, expensive robes engulf his tiny frame, strange unknown sigils and question marks sewn into them with gold and silver thread. He’s wearing spectacles, wire framed but with very thick lenses, he shuffles and adjusts the small crossbow slung on his back.

The final figure is a very severe looking female Half- Elf, dressed all in black, except black for the fashion conscious, sleek and smooth, and yet dull, guaranteed to blend in with the shadows. Her hair drawn back and tied out of the way, her face pinched almost sour. She stirs an untouched drink and looks bored with the proceedings.

“I can’t believe that, I just can’t, what do you take me for? I just can’t believe it. I can’t… it’s just wrong; I can’t believe you even said that to him… What did he say? Did he say anything, did he? I can’t believe he’d just let that go, he’d have to say something wouldn’t he. Oh just tell me what he said why don’t you, just bloody tell me?” Drone the Dwarf bangs his hand down on the table, the drinks jump.
“I will if you’d let me…” Babs begins, the gothic looking woman with a cleavage you could ski down.
“Shhh he’s looking.” Professor Basil Collindor, Master of the Mundane and the Miraculous, the Halfling whispers.
The amateur adventurer’s effect disinterest, stare in random directions- certainly not at the giant man at the bar who’s eyeing them warily.

“I can’t believe he did that.” Drone mutters. “I can’t.”
“Shut up” Liana, the Half-Elf, in the dark leathers adds her twopenneth.
“I was only saying, that’s all, just saying… I just can’t believe he looked at us like that, like he was trying to psyche us out, crush us with his mind, maybe he has some sort of psychic powers.” Drone pats himself down, paying particular attention to his head, “do you feel any different, do you?” The Dwarf stares at Liana, she grimaces and reluctantly shakes her head.
“I can’t believe we’re actually here…” Drone looks about him, “in the same bar as the Goodman Gang, I mean they’re not all here now but… I can’t believe it. I just can’t believe it.”

It goes quiet for a second, Skoda Octavia, the so far silent Human male stops chewing, “Wet bird never fly at night”, he shuffles out a pad of paper and the stub of a pencil, scribbles down his latest saying, and then resumes eating the peanuts.

“I can’t believe he said that…”
“Oh bloody shut up will you, Babs what did he say?” Liana snaps.
“Strange really”, Babs readjusts her skull shaped pendent, checks her nails and works on an aberrant cuticle, “he just whispered- Buffet.”
“I can’t believe…”
“Buffet?” The Professor looks nonplussed.
“Yep- Buffet.”
“What did you ask him?”
“Well I told him about the two jobs, do we help one brother or the other, he just grinned lent in and whispered, you know- Buffet, in my ear and then nodded towards my jigglies.”
“Your… Jigglies?” The Professor continues.
“You know… My jigglies.” Babs jiggles her jigglies.
“Oh, I see.”
Skoda meanwhile has fetched out his pad of paper and pencil, he scribes, “Buffet = Jigglies?”
“I can’t believe it.” Drone adds.

The silence stretches, mostly because Drone seems to be content to mumble to himself, he’s obviously deep in thought.

“Right.” The Professor announces, “the way I see it we have two options, both of which take us to Feodol’s Basement to recover the Will, incidentally. So all we have to decide is WHEN we find the Will who it should go to, which of the old Wizard’s children is the rightful heir.”
“Your point?” Liana asks bored.
“My point is we’re going to get paid by one of them, it doesn’t matter which- provided we get the Will, if the worst comes to the worst then we can always keep it ourselves… although I’m not sure what for.”
Liana smiles, “You’ve got a point, we could bargain the price up.”
“What do we know about this guy, what are we going to find in his basement?” Babs asks while trying to slurp her cocktail, the umbrella keeps getting up her nose.
“Well he’s, or rather was, a Wizard…” Liana shrugs, “Professor?”

Professor Basil Collendor shuffles up a handful of peanut shells, shakes them in his fist, and then scatters them on the table. The other four stop what they’re doing to observe this great phenomenon, the shells slowly move- of their own accord. The Halfling mutters arcane phrases, the shells arrange themselves into the shape of a human-ish face, the strange visage has however unfeasibly large ears.

“I’m not certain- I have the feeling, looking at this creature’s countenance, we are going to encounter an idiot, a buffoon.” The Professor scrubs the nut shells off the table.

“I can’t believe that. I…”
“So we’ll meet at here at eight tomorrow morning, head over to Old Feodol’s and get this done.” Liana is up, and with a backwards nod, is gone.

The Professor leaps down from his high chair and follows Liana out, Drone, the Dwarf heads over to the bar, still muttering to himself. Babs sees someone she knows- “Hiya”, she grins and waves and heads off to find someone to lie on for the night.

Leaving Skoda Octavia all alone, the weird oriental makes his way out of the Wheatsheaf and into the rain of Grimbo, outside in the portico of the Inn a group of blackbirds huddle out of the rain.

He stares down at the largest of the avians; the one that has its beady eye on him.

“Cats and dogs.” The bird squawks and then shivers, and then motions its yellow bill in the general direction of the rain, “I’m not going out in that.”

Skoda nods sagely and then heads off into the dark streets of Grimbo.

Next Turn: Stats.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 47: Stats

The following characters were ripped from Goodman Dungeon Crawl Classics #24, Legend of the Ripper, it was the nearest to hand that contained a bunch of first level pre-gens. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.

Drone​

Dwarf Male Fighter Level 1
NG HP 12 AC 15 Init +2
Str 15 Dex 14 Con 15 Int 8 Wis 10 Ch 10
Saves Fort +4 Ref +2 Will +0
Darkwood Great Club +4 d10+3
Unarmed Strike -1/-5 d3+2/d3+1
Armour: Studded Leather
Feats: Improved Unarmed Strike & Improved Grapple
Skills of note: Intimidate +4

Items of note: Potion Cure Light Wounds, Potion Remove Fear, Flask of Cheap Whiskey.

Gate Keeper Barbara “Babs” Dallas​

Human Female Cleric of Wee Jas Level 1
LN HP 10 AC 13 Init -1
Str 12 Dex 8 Con 15 Int 10 Wis 14 Ch 13
Saves Fort +4 Ref -1 Will +4
Club +1 d6+1
Light Crossbow -1 d8
Armour: Chain Shirt.
Feats: Endurance & Die Hard.
Skills of note: Concentrate +4 Diplomacy +3 Heal +6 Spot +4

Items of note: Nothing.

Spell Domains Death & Law
Spells Level 0: 3 Level 1: 3+1

Skoda Octavio​

Human Male Monk Level 1
LG HP 9 AC 14 Init +2
Str 12 Dex 14 Con 13 Int 10 Wis 15 Ch 8
Saves Fort +3 Ref +4 Will +4
Unarmed Strike +1 (or Flurry of Blows -1/-1) d6+1
Sling +2 d4+1
Armour: None
Feats: Dodge, Evasion, Improved Unarmed Strike, Mobility, Stunning Fist.
Skills of note: Appraise +4 Climb +3 Heal +4 Hide +4 Move Silently +3 Profession (Cook) +4 Sense Motive +6 Spot +4

Items of note: Nothing.

Professor Basil Collindor​

Halfling Male Wizard’s (Diviner) Level 1
CN HP 8 AC 13 Init +2
Str 6 Dex 14 Con 13 Int 15 Wis 14 Ch 10
Saves Fort +2 Ref +3 Will +5
Dagger -1 or +4 d3-2
Light Crossbow +4 d6
Armour: None
Feats: Toughness & Scribe Scroll
Skills of note: Alchemy +4 Concentrate +5 Hide +7 Knowledge (Arcane) +6 Listen +4 Move Silently +4 Search +4 Spellcraft +4

Spells Level 0: 3 Level 1: 3

Spellbook Level 0: All except Illusion.
Level 1: Hypnotism, Identify, Protection From Evil, True Strike.

Items of note: Scroll True Strike (1), Tindertwig.

Liana​

Half-Elf Female Rogue Level 1
N HP 7 AC 14 Init +2
Str 10 Dex 15 Con 13 Int 14 Wis 8 Ch 12
Saves Fort +1 Ref +4 Will -1
Rapier +0 d6
Dagger (8) +0 or +2 d4
Armour: Black Leather
Feats: Nimble Fingers.
Skills of note: Appraise +4 Balance +6 Climb +4 Diplomacy +3 Disable Device +8 Gather Information +3 Hide +6 Move Silently +6 Open Lock +8 Search +7 Tumble +6 Use Rope +6

Items of note: 50 foot Silk Climbing Rope, Smoke Sticks, Thieves Tools, Vial of Acid.

Next Turn: The Angry Buffoon.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 48: The Angry Buffoon


Although the basement only runs under a portion of the crumbling manor house, it is still quite a large room, cluttered despite its size. The northeast corner has a jumble of old children’s toys, a broken crate, and some casks on the floor. Drone quickly rushes over to investigate, “I can’t believe it”, delivered with a grin, soon turns to “I can’t believe it”, delivered with a grimace- the toys are all broken.

In the southwest corner is Old Feodol broken-down bed. Next to it is a desk that has all its drawers thrown on the ground. Just under the staircase is a battered armoire in similar condition. Liana heads over to scope the place, discovers only a pouch of tobacco, apple-scented, and a pipe- whatever else that was stored here has been taken.

Finally, in the southeast corner there is a long meeting table, now almost grey with dust, a mirror covered with a bed sheet, and a coat rack upon which hangs a red-chequered smoking jacket. The walls around this basement are adorned with a large map of the region – with notations pertaining to shipping routes and market needs – a fading portrait of Old Feodol himself in a younger day, and, over the bed, a well-maintained portrait of what must be his long-dead wife.

The Professor wanders over to the smoking jacket, attempts to slip it on, it’s much too big for the Halfling Wizard, he does however rifle the pockets and discover a small bag containing pieces of dry fruit, “Mmm.” The Halfling gingerly tastes a piece, it’s good- he continues to scoff the lot as he wanders around the chamber.

Babs throws the cloth from the mirror, spies herself, grins and preens, she musses her hair, the quest for better styling products an eternal dilemma.

“Do you think I should dye it again, do the roots?” She muses.
Skoda Octavia stops in his tracks and stares at Bab’s reflection in the mirror, he fingers his topknot, dismisses whatever thought plagued him and heads off.
“I think I should go red?” Bab’s informs nobody.

Drone meanwhile has made his way to a stew pot on the table, looks inside- it’s empty, “I can’t believe…” he whispers, and then snatches up the ancient looking bone handled spoon on the table next to the pot, stuffs his ill-gotten gain away, and grins, “I can’t believe it”, he giggles.

“What’s up with you?” Liana asks.
“Nothing. I just can’t believe it, we’ve arrived too late- somebody’s been here, searched the place. We’re never going to find it now. I can’t believe we arrived too late- too late.” Drone wanders off.

“We’re not too late. They never found this…” Liana bends low and clicks something unseen at the base of a seemingly normal area of the stone wall, the Rogue yanks at something, and straightens, the wall moves up, now of its own accord.

“Genius Liana, genius.” The good Professor wanders over.

The secret door slides up to reveal red carpet stretching into a comfortable study. A well cushioned chair rests next to a pair of slippers and an empty fireplace on the far wall, the north wall features a workbench and shelf filled with beakers and tins.

To the left, in the northwest corner, another large map lies spread out over a plain wooden desk complete with its own, less cushioned chair. There is a door on the southern wall. Suddenly, a low growl fills Liana’s ears, and from behind the desk stalks a large, dark furred dog, its legs stiff and ears flat against its head. It bares its teeth and snarls at the Rogue.


“Dog.” Liana screams and in one quick motion twirls a throwing dagger at the creature, catching it in its shoulder, the dog yelps in pain and rushes towards her.

“Errr.” The Rogue ponders for a split-second and then tumbles backwards out of the chamber, the snarling hound rushes after her into the first chamber, and straight into the path of Drone and Skoda.

“I can’t…“ Drone smashes his great club into the flank of the dog, bones shatter, seconds latter Skoda thumps his foot into the poor pooches skull, a loud crack, and the hound flops to the floor- dead.

“Hold hands.” Babs is quick to the scene, “form a circle, come on- I haven’t got all day.” Reluctantly, and with a crescendo of shrugs and sideways glances, the others obey.

The adventurers form a circle around the very dead dog, “Wee Jas take the spirit of this faithful hound whose dying wish was to defend its master’s home, lift up its bones to the great ossuary in the sky, its spirit to run free in the Elysium Fields chasing butterflies, and burying bones. We commend this animal’s soul to your safe keeping. Harm’em.”

“Say it.”
“Harm’em.” The others comply feebly.

“Now break free.” Babs shatters the circle flinging her hands free, half-heartedly the others follow suit, still exchanging nervous glances. “Now wash yourself clean.” Babs wriggles, jiggles and generally fondles herself all over in a half-erotic imitation of washing.

“You’ve got to be kidding.” Liana wanders off.
The others are not such bad sports, Drone nearly loses his spoon, so rigorous is his scrubbing.

“Babs, or rather Gate Keeper Barbara, do we have to do that every time something dies?”
“It is Wee Jas’ wish.”
“I see, is there perhaps a shorter version… something that you could do, on your own, and perhaps, for instance if we were in the middle of something, how shall I put it… dangerous, is there perhaps just something you can say, maybe even just whisper- to yourself?”
“Wee Jas permits me to forego the ceremony and instead offer up prayer for the spirits passing.”
“Good, can we go with that in future?”
“It would be acceptable Professor.” Gate Keeper Babs nods and three, two, one… returns to her normal self.

She shakes her hair out, “poor doggie-woggie”, she pats the dead hound, “what does dog taste like, anybody?”
“I can’t believe it.” Drone wanders off.

Skoda has his pencil and paper out, he’s drawing a picture of Babs washing, it’s very good, with all the wobble lines in the right places.

The Professor makes his way over to the map, grabs it up and heads back into the first chamber to compare and contrast the two, he’s not sure what to make of them, they’re both of the local area surrounding Grimbo, the second seems to have been annotated indicating new developments, logging areas, and in particular the expansion of Molton Clay- supposedly a centre for peace, love and understanding, some sort of Druidical settlement. The Professor stores the information for later use.

Skoda meanwhile reaches up onto a shelf and lifts down two tins, the first is marked ‘REMEMBER’, he opens it- there are nearly a dozen black berries within, he shrugs and places it down on the table. The second tin is marked “Helpful. REMEMBER”, he opens it- there’s a candle inside, half-spent, it smells of cinnamon. Skoda fetches out his notebook and scribbles “REMEMBER.”

The Professor wanders over, “Goodberries.”
“What?” Liana wanders over, followed by the others.
“Goodberries- good for healing, Druids… ahhh.”
“What?” Liana repeats herself.
“Nothing. Goodberries- good for healing, take a few each.
The Professor shares out the hoard.
“And what’s this?” He sniffs the candle, “Cinnamon. Hang on… We appear to be in a mystery.”
“What?” Liana’s got her big speech nailed.
“Hang on.” The Professor shuffles through his backpack, eventually emerges with two slips of paper, the notes the adventurers received from the two interested parties competing for Old Feodol’s last Will and Testament. “Remember these?” The Professor nods, and then reads-

“Greetings.

You have – oh adventurers – this day a unique opportunity to earn the favour of a powerful wizard, namely myself. In the basement of my father’s manor there will be a green leather-bound book. It is his last will and testament. I need it retrieved and brought to my agent, Gilles Beir. This must be done in haste as my sibling,
Larissa of The Nunny, is also keen on possessing this item. I am certain she means to forge a fake.

I assure you I would do no such thing.

For this service I will pay each of you a sum of three hundreds of gold, in whatever coinage or gemstones you see fit. As I said, you will also have my gratitude. Rest assured that is preferable to having my enmity. I would aid you in this matter but my attentions are required elsewhere at this moment and time is of the essence. I mention this one thing in passing, although I cannot deduce how it can be of use to you: my father once sharply said to me that the only time my sibling and I worked together was in the basement. I assumed he was referring to a forgotten incident from our childhood, but now I am not so certain.

Gilles will await your successful return.

Dennel Batharda.”

The Professor scans the expectant faces, “Oh hang on, it’s not that one, however I am intrigued by the phrase- “my father once sharply said to me that the only time my sibling and I worked together was in the basement”, I think there’s more to that than meets the eye- we’ll see. Oh hang on, this is it.”

The Professor reads out the second note.

“Friends,

My dear, dear father recently passed on, and I fear that my villainous brother Dennel intends to cheat me out of my proper inheritance. I believe he will try to steal my father’s will and forge a fake that favours him. So underhanded is he! I need some true friends to go into my father’s basement and get his will first! It will be a leather-bound book the colour of a spring leaf.

I would be oh so pleased if you could give this book to my friend Aronarg. If you do, he will have 400 gold apiece for you. I would go myself but the thought of entering that basement…it just makes me tear up. I can remember how he always smelled like cinnamon when he came upstairs, probably his pipe smoke. Oh father! Aronarg will wait for you to get the book. Do hurry! My brother will not hesitate to hire some dastardly mercenaries to do his dirty work.

Fortunately I have friends. We are friends, aren’t we?

L.”

The Professor scans the crowd again.
“Well, don’t you see?”
Liana sighs, “WHAT?”
“Cinnamon, dear girl. Cinnamon.”
The Professor fetches the candle, holds it up, sniffs it, and then passes it round for others to do the same, “It smells of cinnamon.”
“What use is that?” Liana folds her arms across her chest.
“Well I don’t know… yet. But I’ll bet you it’s important. I think we should take the candle.” The Professor nods frowning, serious.
“I’ve heard of this thing Ear-candling, they light candles in your ears and the warm vapours draw out all of your impurities, dirty thoughts, and desire to do destruction unto your self and others… I read it somewhere. I didn’t fancy it; I might have got wax in my hair…” Babs offers.
“I can’t believe it.”
“No, I can’t either, and it was expensive.”
“Babs- what is it you do, or did, I mean before you started adventuring?” Liana enquires.
“I worked in the Coroners Office for Gleethorpe.”
“Oh. As what?”
“The Coroner.” Babs smiles and loosens a strap on her backpack, it instantly converts into an over the shoulder style handbag, she rifles inside and settles on a hand mirror, checks her hair.

Search over the group move through the southern door, led by Drone this time, and through a short passage beyond, this basement is proving to be much bigger than they first expected.

The mystery of Old Feodol continues to unfold in this next room. Just around a bend in the corridor, the adventurer’s enter what seems to be a trophy room. A ruined suit of plate armour stands against the north wall, with a plaque reading “Lord Arnost” at its feet. It stands next to a weapons rack filled with various kinds of saw blades and a plaque that reads “Orindale Logging Interests.” The final object on the wall is what looks like a simple roadside sign. It reads, “Molton Clay.”

The south wall bears several framed and hung documents and the mounted head of a hideous creature. A dark yellowish colour, it looks insect-like but has the eyes of a horse; beneath each eye limply hangs a featherlike antenna. A wooden door stands at the opposite end of the room, there also seems to be a passageway branching off to the south.

The ceiling is much higher in this room, perhaps 13 feet, a ledge runs along the wall at about 10 feet high, and skittering and pointing on the ledge are a family group of small monkeys.

“Ahhh.” Babs begins, “shoot them”, she finishes, “don’t let them get anywhere near my hair.”
“Dear lady” The Professor bows, and fwung, fires a crossbow bolt into the happy family group, killing the smallest of the creatures instantly, the three remaining seem less pleased, they screech and holler, strike war-like poses. Babs fires her crossbow but misses by a mile.

“I can’t believe it.” Drone stares around at his companions, including Skoda twirling his sling, getting his eye in, “I CAN’T BELIEVE IT.” Drone rushes out into the centre of the chamber flapping and waving his hands making harsh animal sounds, “AAARRRGHHGERRRRRROFFFFFIIIICCCAAANNNTTBBBEEELLLIIEEEVVEEEIIIITTTTYYYOOOUUURRSSSSHHHOOOOOOOTTTTIINNGGMMOONNKKKEEEYSSSS.”

The monkeys flee in terror, along the ledge into the room beyond the far door.

Drone turns to stare at his brave companions, about to berate them for their violence.

SWISH-DUNG

Skoda looks instantly sorry, his sling bullet catches Drone square in the face, breaking the Dwarf’s nose, actually liberally re-distributing it around the his face.

“IIIICCCAAANNNTTBBBEEELLLIIEEEVVEEEIIIITTTT.”

Drone rushes at Skoda barrels into the young Monk before he can move, the Dwarf’s momentum carries the pair backward, Skoda crunches hard into the suit of Plate Armour, which collapses and smashes onto the pair. Drone emerges from the tangled pile, Skoda soon follows, the Monks left arm at an odd angle, actually dangling and bent backwards.

The Monk looks stoic, adopts a combat stance and shuffles out to meet the Dwarf, who tears and claws at the air- a grappler’s stance.

“People… People…” The Professor begins.

Babs makes it to the body of the fallen monkey, she prays and mutters, “Holy Wee Jas send the spirit of this fine monkey to the tangled bows of…”

CRUNCH

A rock, not unaided, drops off the ledge above the Priestess of Wee Jas and smashes into her unprotected skull; she folds like a pack of cards, “My hair…”, her last words.

“Feck this.” Liana begins and edges towards the door, the monkeys are back in the room and are throwing things.

Drone and Skoda face off, dance around each other for a while, Drone swings for the Monk’s head.

THUNK-SWISH

Drone misses, entirely because the Monk takes a stone to the temple and flops to the floor.

THUNK

Another small rock thumps into the small of Drone’s back, the Fighter spins around to see the three remaining monkey stone throwers heading off to reload, the Dwarf sags, he’s almost down, “I can’t believe it”, he whispers through blood-flecked lips.

Next Turn: The Angry Buffoon Part Deus
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 49: The Angry Buffoon Part Deus

“I’ll get you madam.” The Professor rushes over to Babs who’s using the wall to lever herself upright, a trickle of blood wends its way down her face, then the Halfling’s there and using all his strength to haul her upright.

The Professor hears something- looks up, the monkeys are back, and about to shove another rock onto his head, he dives aside.

CRUNCH

The rock instead connects with Babs’ ankle, snaps it, she crumples to the floor screaming, “Wee Jas kill them bastard monkeys now…”

BONK

Another stone hits The Professor on the shoulder, he staggers and then looks about him- Skoda lies lifeless on the floor, Drone staggers about looking for somewhere to vent his rage, Liana hides behind the door frame, out of the chamber- at least she’s fumbling her crossbow out, another rock crashes against the far wall, Liana ducks out of sight.

“Shoot the little bastards.” The Professor yells and heaves out his crossbow, the monkey’s caper a second and then head back out of sight, going for more ammo no doubt.

Drone spies his future. He spots the far door- to the chamber beyond, where the monkeys keep disappearing to reload.

“AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH.”

He charges into the door.

CRUNCH

Bounces back, not a mark on the portal, collapses onto the ground clutching his side.

“Liana the door.” Babs screams.

The Rogue pops her head around the door frame, spots its all clear and rushes over, her opportunity is short-lived, the monkeys reappear in an instance, more stones in hand- they fling them at the approaching Half-Elf, who is struck twice in quick succession.

Liana dodges back from the stinging blows, and tramples The Professor in her retreat.

FWUNG-THUNG

Alas Liana’s hit causes the Professor to fire his crossbow; the bolt hits Liana at point blank range, buries itself in the Rogues armour, but doesn’t pierce her skin. The two stand for a second in a shocked tableau.

“Open door.” Drone staggers to his feet, stares hard at Liana and then points at the offending portal.
Liana nods and heads over.
“Don’t. Just shoot them.” The Professor rushes, as best he can, to Drone and hands over his crossbow, “Shoot them. Shoot them Drone.”

The Dwarf looks around unsure, then nods, “I can’t believe…”
“I know.” The Professor clasps the Dwarf on his arm.
Drone retreats and stands sentry waiting for the monkeys return.

“Help me get to Skoda.” Babs shouts and snaffles the two Goodberries she clutches, The Professor does the best he can to drag the Priestess over to the fallen Monk.

“It’s locked.” Liana turns back to Drone, shrugs.
“I bloody know that, now get it unlocked. I can’t believe you even said that.”

Babs reaches out for Skoda, lays her hand on him, healing flows in- the Monk opens his eyes, shakes his head once, twice, then leaps to his feet- cat-like. He grabs the fallen Priestess, firmly but gently, lifts and drags her out of the chamber.

“Take my crossbow.” She passes her weapon to The Professor.

THONG

A rock thumps into the Halfling’s back, signalling the monkeys return.

“Fire.” Drone screams, and shoots a bolt straight up into the ceiling of the chamber, then dodges its return.

FWUNG

The Professor is much more accurate, another of the little bastards tumbles from the ledge, lies lifeless on the floor.

“Blessed be the sodding monkey- dead, dead, DEAD.” Babs lies on the floor observing the battle from the doorway.

The last pair of monkeys rush off, to reload again. Skoda meanwhile approaches Drone, sling in hand, taps the sentry Dwarf on his shoulder, Drone turns, the Monk looks peaceable- bows low before the Dwarf. Drone nods back and scans the ledge.

The monkeys return with a hail of stones, but this time the adventurers are ready, they duck and dodge and avoid the sudden blizzard.

“Open”, Liana turns to stare at Drone, who fires his crossbow, a little more accurate, but not a lot- the bolt flies well wide. The Dwarf slings the crossbow away and barrels into the chamber beyond.

THWUNG

The Professor grins as another of the creatures slips off the ledge and mewls a while before dying on the floor.

“Jigglies.” Skoda screams and lets fly with his sling.

DONK

The sling bullet hits the door ahead, only six inches above Drone’s head, the Dwarf doesn’t even notice, or at least pretends not to.

The Dwarf gets three feet inside the chamber beyond when a very angry screaming Baboon leaps down onto his back, scratching and clawing at him. Drone wrenches the thing over his head, grapples the creature attempting to keep its claws and bite at arms length.

The door wobbles shut behind the Dwarf, Liana gingerly reaches forward to open it to observe the melee, only to be met by the cold stare of another Baboon, the creature comes at her flailing and biting, the Rogue tumbles backwards, but not quick enough, she’s bitten badly on her foot, blood pours from the wound.

“Oh Wee Jas Bless these holy warriors as they battle to bring swift death to our enemies.” Babs’ spell lifts the spirits, momentarily, of her compatriots, “Now kill the sodding dirty apes.”

Fwung

The Professor misses with his crossbow, somewhat distracted by a screaming Liana trying to avoid another claw or bite, the Rogue manages to palm the creature away, but cannot get to draw her dagger.

Skoda charges into the room beyond, at the same instant Drone finally heaves the Baboon off him, the hairy ape flops to the floor, turns to re-engage and is met by a flying foot, the creature slumps to the ground- skull broken. Skoda holds the pose for a second, then turns and comes to attention before the Dwarf, bows again.

“Arrrgggghhh” Liana clutches at her neck, which has been ripped open, she crumples. The Baboon sniffs her body and then turns to stare at The Professor.

The door smashes open and Drone and Skoda rush to intercept the Baboon’s charge, The Professor back pedals furiously away from the fight.

The last of the smaller monkeys leaps and lands on Drone’s back, lashes forward and scratches him across his face, which arrests the Dwarf’s charge. Drone reaches round and grabs hold of the tiny monkey’s skull, wrenches the creature from him, then grabs and twists with his other hand.

SNAP

Neck broken- dead.

“Kill the things. Sorry Wee Jas, blessed soul, commend to your dark whatsit… Kill them all.” Babs screams from the doorway.

Skoda smashes into the Baboon intent on killing The Professor, the Monk however is off balance and is quickly losing ground, bitten on the shoulder, badly, the Baboon hangs on jaws locked shut on the Monks right clavicle.

The Professor sees his opportunity, mutters arcane words, a burst of light erupts in the Baboon’s face, the creature squawks and flails, instantly let’s go of the Monk and staggers back rubbing furiously at its eyes.

CRACK

A roundhouse kick, straight to the final Baboon’s temple, the creature flops to the floor- dead.

Those standing snaffle Goodberries, Babs is dragged over to Liana, she’s alive- just. The Priestess does what she can to stabilise the Rogue.

“Wee Jas is not ready to take you yet Half-Elf, I will do all I can to prevent your passing, don’t worry…” She tenderly examines Liana’s wounds, “there’s plenty more suffering for you to endure Rogue before you will be received in the halls of my master.”

Next Turn: Pick sides.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 50: Pick sides.

“I can’t believe it. I can’t.” Drone drains his Potion of Healing then looks round at his compatriots, who are a little the worse for wear.

The Professor helps Babs to her feet, between the pair of them they have fashioned a fairly serviceable splint, the Priestess of Wee Jas is reduced to a halting, hopping stumble. Babs uses a chair as a kind of walking frame.

“Wee Jas take you, you sodding monkeys.” She rails against the inequities of life.

The Professor is a little beaten up too, although nowhere near as bad as Skoda, the Monk however barely shows it, although he must be hurting bad such are the extent of the cuts and bruises, and bites, he has sustained.

Liana lies face down on the floor- stable but very unconscious.

“I have no more healing.” Babs explains.
“Let’s explore this room- but stay on your guard.”

The Professor moves to look at the collection of saws, “the Orindale loggers”, he muses, “weren’t they operating somewhere near Lacey, on the road to K-Stor. Yes, I remember the story, they were attacked, many were killed… I wonder, hang on.” The Professor admires the next exhibit in the trophy room, he reads- “Molton Clay, I told you… that’s that crazy Druid settlement, this stinks- there’s something not right here.”

Drone wanders down the short passage that heads off south.

CLANG

A heavy portcullis falls behind him, trapping the Dwarf in the empty corridor.

Drone turns and tiredly states, while gripping the bars, “I can’t believe it.”
Two minutes later after much huffing and puffing the portcullis is raised and he’s out.

“Careful.” The Professor warns. Babs sits down on a chair, she’s exhausted, “I can’t go on, I’ll keep watch.” She sits so she can see both exits, produces a small mirror and piece of tissue, and attempts to scrub the blood from her face.

“I was right”, The Professor points for Skoda who reaches up and grabs a framed document from the southern wall, “This is from Thistle, its thanking Old Feoldol, says he’s ‘atoned many times over’, I wonder what for? Clearly Old Feodol did some bad things in his time.” The Professor heads over to the far door.

“We’ll just see what’s next door.”
“I’ll stay here and watch Liana.” Babs calls back.
Liana remains sprawled upon the floor.

Like the trophy room, the Baboon chamber has 13’ tall ceilings and a ledge running along the wall. Unlike the trophy room, it smells strongly of musk and wet fur. Knotted ropes hang from the ceiling all the way to the floor along the walls, and in the far corners of the room are large ceramic vases filled with smooth, round stones. There is also a door in the far wall, and an iron door in the north wall. Bits of hay are strewn all about the floor of the chamber.

Drone and Skoda head for the far door, the Dwarf whips it open, there’s a small larder beyond, more dried fruit, casks of water, sacks of grain and flour, otherwise it’s empty.

The Professor makes his way to the impressive looking iron door, notices a small hatch in the base of the portal, he bends low to examine it, unlatches it and attempts to spy within.

SHUFFLE

There’s something moving in there, he notices drips of hardened wax on the floor within the chamber beyond, he slams the smaller door shut.

“There’s something in there.” The Professor states.

Skoda and Drone wander over, “What is it Professor, what lies beyond the door, is it Feodol’s Will do you think? Professor?”

The Halfling cautiously reaches out to the handle of the door, touches it- nothing happens, grasps it and turns- nothing happens again, it’s locked. “Damn.”

“Professor?” Drone asks again.
“Whatever it is within there is somehow rendered helpless by this candle”, The Professor shows the pair the cinnamon scented candle, “Old Feodol lit it and then placed it in the chamber through the small door, there are spots of wax on the floor there. Then he used his key to open the door to get to… well, whatever’s in there, his last Will and Testament no doubt. Only we haven’t got the key.”

“I can’t believe we’re so close”, Drone gingerly shoves at the door, it’s solid, and he doesn’t want to hurt his shoulder again, “so near and yet so far.”

“Not a problem Drone, we just need to head out, fix up Liana and then return here, we can get some healing for Babs while we’re gone, of course you two may have to stay behind to guard the place.”

Skoda nods, then Drone.

“Shouldn’t take long… Come on.” The Professor whistles a happy tune and strides back out of the chamber and back to Babs.

Five minutes later, Skoda carrying the recumbent Liana, and with Babs leaning heavily on Drone the intrepid five-some make their way back into the very first chamber, which is almost exactly as they left it.

The main difference being the two intruders there waiting for them.

One, a gaunt man with thinning black hair, dressed in red robes with strange designs worked on the sleeves and hem; Gilles Bier, an agent of Dennel Batharda, the Vermillion Wizard, son of Old Feodol.

The other a Hobgoblin, a hulking brute with braided black hair and a necklace of knucklebones. His armour is dented, and he hefts a trident with familiarity bred from battle; Aronarg, Larissa Batharda’s Nunny enforcer.

Both seem to be trying to ignore the other, and therefore are keenly gazing at the adventurers, searching for the green leather-bound Will.

“Where is it?” Gilles whispers, “Show it to me for I represent the rightful heir.”
“Da book is mine.” Aronarg grunts and sneers at Gilles.
“I can’t be…”
“Actually we’ve encountered a spot of bother…” The Professor starts up silencing Drone.
“What… bother?” Gilles spits out.
“Our Rogue is a little under the weather, we are in need of Healing, we have used all ours, although the Priestess”, Babs smiles and grimaces, “has many spells remaining, as do I.”
“Da book is mine.” Aronarg grunts again.
“Yes, yes. Only it’s nobodies yet- we can’t get to it without Liana, and so we’ll just leave, get some Healing and then return, I think it would be best if you gentlemen went with us. Drone and Skoda will stay here to keep it safe.”
“Da book is mine.” Aronarg grunts once more.
“HELLO. Anybody home, the Will is not yet found we need Healing- do you understand?” The Professor does his best to mime his speech, finally pointing at the fallen Liana.
Aronarg nods and heads for the door- understanding at last.
“Nobody leaves.” Gilles snaps.
The Hobgoblin ignores the Wizard and goes to open the door out of the basement, it’s stuck fast, he rattles it again and then puts his shoulder to it- which only results in some minor bruising, and a little dented pride.
“Nobody leaves, I have woven mighty magics, the door will stay shut until I command, now take this”, the Wizard hands over a Potion bottle, and in doing so winks at The Professor, “this will see her right… Then return to me with the Will.”
“Da book is mine.” Aronarg grunts.
“Hurry Professor, we’ll be waiting.” Gilles winks again, “and try to remember who your friends are.”

A minute or so later Liana is back on her feet, a little woozy but a lot better than she was, they’re back in the chamber with the iron door.

The Professor lights the candle, slips it inside the hatch, and bolts it back shut again, the Halfling presses himself against the door- listening intently.

“Who were those other two guys?” Liana enquires.
“The reception committee, now shush, the lot of you.” The Professor continues to listen.

The silence lengthens.

“I can’t believe…”
“Shut up.” The Professor snaps.

SHUMP

The Professor presses his ear to the door again.

“I think…” Then bends down and opens the hatch, stares within for a while- there’s nothing to see, it’s mostly dark, other than the cold stone floor, illuminated by the flickering candle, there’s not much else to see.

The Professor crouches, stares and waits- nothing continues to happen.

“Liana- open it. Skoda and Drone, be ready.”
The pair nod and Liana gets to work.

And only thirty seconds later a satisfying click signals her success.

“Done Professor.”

The Rogue clears out of the way.

“Ready?”

The pair nod again, Drone hefts his great club, Skoda settles for a fighting stance.

EEEEEEEE

The door squeaks open and the adventurer’s light floods in.

The hourglass-shaped room is 15 feet across at its widest points, 5 feet across at its most narrow, and 30 feet long.

It is completely empty except for a table against the far wall, resting atop the table is a slim, green leather-bound book, a letter, and what looks like four large emeralds, and two small vials.

“Wait.” The Professor commands, “Drone fetch some flour.”
“I can’t…”
“Just do it… please.”

The Dwarf complies and returns with a small sack of flour.

“Now I want you and Liana to head over to the table, except I want you Liana to search the way for traps, and you Drone, when Liana’s done to sprinkle the flour on the floor.”
“Why me, and why the flour?” Liana enquires.
“You, my dear, because you are the best at finding traps; and the flour because I believe there’s something in there we don’t want to bump into- whatever it is may be invisible, and undoubtedly dangerous. Now quickly while the candle still burns.”

The Rogue and the Fighter nod, and creep in.

“I can’t believe… oh hang on, Professor, there’s something here.”
“What does it look like?”
“A pile of rags, or… a plant.”

The flour shows the outline of an inert tangle, a plant structure, for now nothing more than a mass of tubers on the ground.

“Smash it Drone. Smash it good.”

WHUMP
WHUMP

After the second or third strike Drone starts to take a pride in his work, Liana has to back off to give the Dwarf room to swing- the mystery creatures is soon mashed and pulped.

“I can’t believe it. How did you know Professor?”
“We each have our talents Drone. Now press on.”

A minute later, and with no more surprises, the five-some are reassembled, back outside the now sealed again iron door with their haul.

“Healing potions- give me one of those.” Babs grabs a bottle and glugs it down, and seconds later her ankle is as good as new, “what’s it say?”

The Professor has hold of Old Feodol’s last Will and Testament, he opens it and reads.

“To you who found this letter,

I hope my pets were not such a bother for you- ‘oh not much, they damn near killed us you old fool.’ They were not really to hurt intruders so much as my ungrateful children. ‘Here we go.’ I hope you were able to get past them without hurting them…they were a comfort for me in my last years. ‘Sorry but they had to die, isn’t that right Babs?’”

The Gate Keeper nods then grins, smacking her fist into the palm of her hand, The Professor reads on.

“But you have not come to read about me. ‘Too true.’ I would wager you have come for my money, or were sent by one of the kids for my will. ‘Or both.’

I know you owe me nothing and probably have needs of your own, but hear me out:
When I was young I did a few very stupid things. ‘Who hasn’t?’ One of those things led to the death of a good person who had shown me kindness – a druid. I have spent my entire life – and most of my fortune! – making amends by helping her allies with money or influence. ‘I bloody knew it- Druids, they can’t be trusted.’

Please, it is my last request that this will, and the treasure map it contains, be given to Thistle at Molton Clay. Let my last act be one of charity, and let the druids have the last of my fortune. ‘He’s obviously gone soft.’ Please accept these gems and healing draughts as payment for this last request, and for any troubles my family and I have caused you.

Thank you,

Feodol Batharda.”

The adventurers stop to think.

“Well…”
“So it’s neither of them, it’s this Thistle.” Liana adds.
“I can’t…”
“No, neither can I.” The Professor finishes.
“I mean I…” Drone starts again.
“Can’t be-leaf it.” Skoda offers as if trying the language for the first time.
“Well, we’ll just have to let them down gently.”

The Professor marches off.

“And people have something either pointy or blunt to hand; I think this may end in a little contretemps.”

“A little what?” Babs whispers to Drone.
“Condy-stomps, it’s Halfling for a fight.” Drone puts the Priestess right.
“Oh thanks.”

Just before the door back into the first chamber Babs and The Professor hold the others back a moment, whisper arcane words, prepare their spells.

“Ready.” The Professor asks.
The others nod.

Liana opens the door back into the chamber, Aronarg and Gilles stare intently as the Halfling wanders in clutching the last Will and Testament of Old Feodol.

Next Turn: A Little Condy-Stomps.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 51: A Little Condy-Stomps.

“I think that belongs to me.” Gilles steps towards The Professor, who clutches the book to his chest.
“Da book is mine.” Aronarg has other ideas.

The Professor swallows hard, “actually it belongs to neither of you.”

“What?” Gilles comes to a halt.
“Wat?” The Hobgoblin echoes Gilles.

“The last Will and Testament states that Old Feodol’s treasure… Well, it belongs to Thistle, he’s a Druid in Molton Clay, Old Feodol left everything to him… So, you see.” The Professor spreads his hands wide, still clutching the book.

“Hand it over, now.” Gilles puts his hand out to take the tome, “Now.”

KNOCK KNOCK

Everything stops.

“Let me in.” It’s a woman’s voice at the door, “I have come from Thistle in Molton Clay to collect what is rightfully his- let me in.”

“Who dat?”
“Never mind who that is- the Will is mine.”

Aronarg dives in to intercept Gilles on the path to grab the Will from The Professor, who steps back into the crowd of his compatriots.

The Hobgoblin shakes his trident in Gilles face. The Wizard looks put out.

“Put that thing away, or I’ll destroy you?” The Wizard mumbles arcane words.
Aronarg attacks, but Gilles is too quick, he dodges back out of the way, “help me kill this Hobgoblin scum and I will double your reward.”

Drone dodges forward, Skoda grabs the Dwarves arm, shakes his head.

A white mist suddenly engulfs the Hobgoblin; the mist evaporates swiftly, leaves the Hobgoblin untouched. “Now yu die, Wizud.”

“AAAARRRGGGGHHH.”

Drone breaks free of Skoda’s grip and smashes his great club into the back of the Hobgoblin’s skull.

CRACK

Years of racial enmity bubble over.

“I can’t…”

WHUMP

Drone swings again as the Hobgoblin spins around to face the Dwarf, this time he’s wide of the mark.

“Get the Wizard.” The Professor screams, “try not to kill either of them.”

Liana rushes in and tumbles past the Wizard, who is suddenly bathed in a bright blue light as his Mage Armour takes affect, “Triple money?”, the Wizard screams.

The Professor shakes his head, “surrender?”
“Never, and that’s my last word on the subject.” And so it is.
Skoda leaps in and kicks the Wizard in the face, Gilles folds and thumps into the floor, knocked out.

Aronarg menaces Drone, who scuttles back out of reach, the Hobgoblins trident spears out towards the Dwarf, he dodges round and smashes his great club into the creature’s weapon, which spins from his hands.

The Hobgoblin backs up towards the door, grappling for his short sword.

THUMP

Drone stabs his club into the Hobgoblins gut, the creature drops his short sword too, Aronas quick turns and races to the door, tries to wrench it open- however the spell is still in place.

The Hobgoblin turns back, puts his hands in the air.

“I keel yu sum udder day.”

Drone grins back, “I definitely don’t believe that.”

The Professor strides forward, grins at Aronarg, “strip.”

Twenty minutes later Aronarg and Gilles are sitting naked tied up on the cold stone floor, all their equipment gone.

The door opens at last and a female Elf, dressed in woodland robes, enters the chamber, “the Will please… I have been sent by Thistle.”

The Professor looks around the chamber, the expectant faces of his compatriots.

“How do we know…” The Professor begins.

But Skoda is quicker still; he grabs the Will from The Professor, and at lightning speed hands it to the Elf, the Monk bows.

“Thistle thanks you, if you ever have need then do not hesitate to call on our services, we are in your debt. I must be off, back to Molton Clay, to Thistle.”

The Elf turns to leave.

“I can’t believe…”
“Is that it?” The Professor adds.

“Yes, except thank you again.” The Elf stops, turns back.

“Do you know a man called Jim Bowen, a Ranger?”
“I’ve heard of him.” The Professor confesses.
“Tell him… Tell him…”
“What?”
“Nothing.”

Mischa turns back, leaves quickly.

The silence returns.

“I can’t believe…”
“Shush”, Skoda clamps his hand over Drone’s mouth.

In the background Liana grabs the mirror from the wall; it has a lovely silver frame.

They head out, mission accomplished.

Next Turn: Review.
 

Excellent interlude Goonalan.

I must ask, given what you've said before - how much of the characterisation (Dwarf as Richard Wilson etc) was the players, and how much your own addition?
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
HalfOrc HalfBiscuit said:
Excellent interlude Goonalan.

I must ask, given what you've said before - how much of the characterisation (Dwarf as Richard Wilson etc) was the players, and how much your own addition?

This one's more the players, we've had a meeting, of sorts, I think the deal is with Jim, Bec, Cas, Anya, Newt & Ala that the players want to get places. It's a strange world; I've been playing D&D (DMing) for over twenty years and yet I've not run many extended campaigns, ones where the characters go from level 1 to, say level 15, it's always the case that someone drops out because of work/home pressure, and sometimes it's been me which tends to bring things to a halt. However now I find myself with a bit more time to play, and write, although I'm pretty busy at the moment it'll all quieten down by February next year, so we grabbed a few pre-gens and decided to just have fun- a liberating experience.

So the Goodman Gang will continue to be a ludology thing- it's all for the gameplay- experience points etc; while every now and then we'll play the little guys which will be entirely for kicks, if they die, they die. With the main party the players do everything they can to win/stay alive.

And then Goodman Games 51 came about- damn, an entire campaign in one box set... It was all too tempting and so we've got the pre-gens out of that and we're playing it this Saturday- that was one of the other decisions that came out of our little meeting.

We've even committed to playing more often, we're going from one to two sessions per month to four sessions- every weekend if we can, even if it means we have to be on-line to play (although I'm not certain how that's going to work- any advice). It's all working out well in other words...

I don't know how they're going to turn out, the characters from Dungeon Crawl Classics 51, but they look very good on paper, a sort of half-way house between the two other sets of players. I particularly like the Bingo brothers- hopefully it'll be good enough for me to write up.

The Goodman Gang are on turn 51 at the moment, I've got more than twenty turns written up still to come and there are still five more scenarios that we've played that I've got the notes on to write up, so there's plenty to go at, I'm not going to get caught up any time soon.

Hope that answers at least part of the question, as I say any advice on the on-line thing, and any other comments then I'm happy to hear them.

Thanks, as always.

Oh and we've already played two more scenarios with the little guys, so I'll drop them in some time soon, whenever there's a lull in the action.
 

Loup Du Noir

First Post
Hey Goonalan,

I'm currently engaged in rp over the internet. It's quite simple, we're just using MSN and the dice roller off of wizards website. I find i enjoy it more than actual face to face rp, as it is less hectic. I think my players miss the personal interaction, but there you go.

Some things I've found that help me run, and with the understanding this is done over MSN, are the little details. Things like having everyone set their screen name to their character's, and choose a different colour text so I can tell who is saying what. For my part, being able to pull up links to bits of artwork for the players is a golden opportunity.

We're playing the Red Hand of Doom, which has a dedicated art gallery (also on the wizard's site) and being able to grab a picture and say "here is what you see" "this is Lord Jarmaath" is brilliant. I'm going to try and expand my use, so that people like Alexander the Ruby Knight has a face, and some other encounters too.

More technical stuff, like Voice over IP and dedicated gaming programs, someone else will have to comment on.
 

Goonalan

Hero
Supporter
Excellent advice as always Loup, I will investigate MSN- and I'm laughing as I type this because I don't even know what MSN is, I have heard of it however, which is a start- when I said I was a neophyte when it comes to computers I really wasn't kidding.

Three of my players are I.T. people so I will delegate much of the work anyway, I've used the on-line dice-roller before so that's not a problem, I guess I'll have to trust them to tell the truth about their rolls, I predict a spate of 20s and no fumbles for ages.

Thanks as always.

A short one this time, the review before we get back to the Goodman Gang.

Dungeon Crawl Classics #29
Scenario 2 Old Feodol’s Basement
Level 1​

Turn 51a: Review

Overall score out of 10: 7.1
Play time: 2 hours.

Review:

A nice little scenario, it served me well when we were suddenly a player down, obviously very simple but in play it proved to be most amusing, it makes a refreshing change to have the Priest laying on the floor with a broken ankle, and the Thief teetering on the brink of death. Not that I want to kill them you understand, I’m merely a facilitator, a go-between if you like. Mwah ha ha ha ha, sorry, don’t know what came over me.

Very little extra to say except that I liked the two wounded parties in the finale, and the fact that the players have then to explain to both that the treasure is not theirs, it made for a nice ending, well thought out, simple but effective.

Notes and Quotes:

The attack dog was soon defeated, although a more personable approach may have been equally as effective, it seems my players were once again on the hunt for something to kill.

It was good that The Professor (Mr. R.) had his nose into everything, discovering clues as he went to the real story, well played and well designed.

The attack of the monkeys obviously went less well for the players; it’s so damn funny when they have to rack their brains to get out of a tight spot. That and the fact that they managed to roll the biggest number of fumbles I’ve ever seen in such a short space of time, I think at one point we got to three 1s in a row.

Eventually the players found a way, but not before a majority of them had gotten very close to death or unconsciousness.

Which of course resulted in a temporary hiatus, The Professor had more or less figured everything else out, particularly the fact that something nasty lurked behind the door- for the record it was a Phantom Fungus.

The confrontation with Aronarg and Gilles perhaps came too soon, however it served as a taster for the final confrontation, and increased the tension for the final conflict.

Rescuing the last Will and Testament of Old Feodol proved simple enough after the intervention of The Professor’s big brain.

This just left the players with the final fight, a little easier than expected, particularly when the two fools turned on each other, but who am I to disregard the dice, once again nicely handled. Obviously all it needed then was for Mischa to appear to tie the scenario back into the whole.

It worked well and from a DMs perspective proved easy to run, hopefully many of the other scenarios within the tome will be as well designed, and as short- for drop in purposes. If so it will prove to be an excellent time-saving device, well worth the money.

Thanks for reading.

Next time back to the Goodman Gang, who when we last saw them were in a spot of bother.

Next Turn: Court in the Act.
 

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