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Recap 26: If At First You Don't Succeed, Move On To The Next Thing

March 28, 2009

The Alchemy Lab

The room is full of dusty potions, holy symbols, a small jewelry box with a ring inside, platinum coins stamped with a dragon head, a scroll, and a book. Malouf is held back to prevent him from destroying any magickal items. He and Lieralyn decide to wait outside with Josy.

Snow does a quick check of the room while Flerm collects the holy symbols and scepter. They leave the room, as well, to guard the corridor while Alana, Brecaryn, and Oliver to examine the lab's contents more thoroughly.

No traps were detected on the scroll or the book when Snow and Oliver checked them, so Alana picks it up to study. Nothing is ever easy. The door to the lab slams shut, trapping Brecaryn, Alana, and Oliver. Three Dragonkin ghosts appear, angry that their holy book has been "defiled". Oliver is stabbed by the leader's ghostly sword. Although the sword passes right through him without cutting, Oliver drops to his knees, aged and infused with cold. Meanwhile, the rest of the party outside of the room try several times to break the door down, failing miserably with each attempt.

Casting a few spells without any success, Brecaryn tries a bluff. Adopting a haughty tone, she reprimands the ghosts and demands they free her "minions". This has an instant effect on the Dragonkin. They kneel to Brecaryn, apologizing, and disappear.

Just as Oliver opens the door Lieralyn gracelessly falls in with Flerm stumbling behind her. Ah, the mighty rescuers have arrived. Examining the book, Brecaryn is able to make some of it out based on the knowledge crammed into her head while she sat on the throne. It is clear it is a bible that is several thousand years old. It is also clear the Dragonkin performed human sacrifice. It is stowed away in the mirror with the rest of the hoard.

Playing with the ring he found in the jewelry box, Oliver ends up injuring several of the party members. The ring is made up of layers, each a different color, and apparently, each exhibiting a different magickal property. The layers get thinner with each use, though. Oliver, sheepishly apologetic, is advised very strongly to NEVER play with an unknown object (if he knows what's good for him). Hoping to heal some of his injuries, Flerm risks imbibing one of the unknown potions. Instead of restoring his health, the potion causes him to burst into flames. Unharmed, Flerm is able to bat down the flames until they go out.

Feeling extremely worn out, the party decides to try resting in the lab. On the first watch, Oliver and Flerm hear a voice saying "There shall be no rest". Flerm immediately slams the door shut. Oliver, hoping to make up for the ring incident, opens the door to face what is coming. But, seeing the army of undead coming down the corridor, he quickly slams the door shut again. Josy is roused and thrust to the front of the door by eager hands.

Though she easily turns the skeletons, ghasts, and wight, the flaming skeleton is unimpressed and responds with a fireball. Malouf, Snow, and Alana are badly injured, but luckily manage to save their equipment. Recovering from this attack, Snow and Malouf kill the skeleton while Flerm takes a shot at the wight's retreating back. Lieralyn tries to help but snaps her bowstring instead.

Now, with no hope of resting, the party has no choice but to press on. There is a rusty lever in the lab. Snow examined it earlier and could not determine anything in the lab that the lever might trigger. Malouf pulls it. A screeching is heard, followed by a sigh. The West Corridor was now open. Super.

Skeletal Dragons are People Too

Everybody know what's down the West Corridor? That's right - the skeletal dragon. As the party makes its way down the corridor, they start shaking with fear and are overwhelmed with a desire to run. A voice calls out, "Cervantes! This will not stand!". Brave as they are, of course the group presses forward.

A book is seen lying on the floor. Malouf and Lieralyn try to get it, but fear paralyzes them. Snow moves ahead to get the book. She turns to show it to her companions only to find the corridor behind her empty. The rest of the party took the opportunity to flee back towards the entrance of the corridor as fast as they could.

What to do about the dragon even if the Crew could manage to get down the corridor? Perhaps Brecaryn would pretend to be this Dragonkin queen and face the skeletal dragon. Bad idea bad idea bad idea. As soon as she takes the scepter and dons the crown, she becomes possessed once again. She orders the group to "remove the filth". What she means specifically, they do not know, but they are sure it involves going down a corridor they are too afraid to go down The ghost Michael calls out to Cervantes again. In a rage, possessed Brecaryn conjures 3 Dragonkin ghosts to punish her companions.

Hoping to lure the ghosts into the corridor to pit them against the skeletal dragon, the group backs down the hallway. It does not work. They are trapped between the paralyzing fear and the advancing ghosts. While magickal weapons are able to injure the ghosts, regular weapons only pass through, leaving the ghosts unaffected. Lieralyn learns this the hard way, sustaining a blow from the ghost that ages her. Flerm's sword Keagon absorbs a Dragonkin ghost, glowing a sickly green afterwards. On the second attack with Keagon, the green energy is expended, killing another ghost. Alas, the last ghost proves too quick for Flerm. The ghost disarms Flerm and strikes, aging the drow, as well.

Snow attacks the queen, pointing a dagger at her throat and ordering her to call off her henchmen. Using Brecaryn's shocking grasp spell, the queen knocks Snow back. Alana decides not to risk shooting the crown off and instead rushes forward to grapple with the queen over it. Alana succeeds in wresting the crown from Brecaryn's head and the last ghost disappears.

Tired, wounded, unsure of what to do next, the party decides to leave this area and regroup. Before leaving, they make sure to close the door to the West Corridor. As luck would have it, who should they run into, strolling through the cave entrance but their good friends from Havoc Company. They have been hired to retrieve a gem. Presumably the same gem the Motley Crew just failed to retrieve. Smug in the knowledge that the Motley Crew failed, Dokari and her band continue into the cave. Considering most of the traps and undead have already been taken care of, the Havoc Company would likely achieve their goal without breaking a sweat. The Motley Crew console themselves in the knowledge that they have the hilt and without it, the sword cannot be put back together.

Back at the Temple of the Drunken Butterfly, they are able to rest and heal. Alana tests her elemental arrows and Oliver tries out his ring in an open area, safely far away from anyone else. The monks examine the ankh on Flerm's forehead but can offer no information other than to say the ankh is a symbol of the Death Cult of Zebu. Super.

Onward to Togo Ridge Pass

Not too far up the Pass, the group encounters a beholder. Concocting a plan to use the mirror to shield them from its gaze, Malouf and Snow run up to it with the beholder fork. As Snow grabs the beholder, it explodes leaving a mushroom-like stench. Odd. But not ones to question things, the group plows on.

As evening approaches, they hear voices. Nightshade is sent ahead to scout - seven dwarves around a fire. Not wishing to startle them (and fully aware that the majority of the group is made up of elves, including a drow), Malouf and Snow approach first. They attempt to ingratiate themselves with the dwarves using their usual charm and wit - "You know, some of our closest friends are dwarves. *wink wink*". After this winning opening, the dwarves are more than happy to let them pass, warning them to beware of a mad dwarven wizard who liked to play tricks on travelers. The exploding mushroom beholders were one of his specialties.

On their watch, Oliver and Flerm get a special treat. A laughing dwarf in a tattered robe appears, glowing as if he has been hit with faery fire. He flashes the two before running away gleefully. Oliver and Flerm look at each other and silently agree never to speak of the incident.

As they continue up the Pass, they encountered more exploding gas spores. Easily taking care of them from a distance with arrows, they make good progress until the Flasher appears, annoyed and shouting "No Fun!". Suddenly Malouf, Oliver, and Flerm are briefly covered in a mini ice storm and the Flasher disappears. Malouf then hears a voice in his ear whisper "Friendly". Managing to resist the charm, Malouf realizes there is a weight on his back and reaches around grabbing what feels like legs on his shoulders. Holding onto the legs, Malouf crashes onto his back to smash his invisible baggage. Snow runs up and grabs at the invisible assailant, finally grasping a leg and neck and holding him upside down. "Make yourself visible and stop toying with us."

In response, the flashing dwarf not only becomes visible but morphs himself into a snake and tries to bite Snow. Brecaryn freezes him with a spell. Leaving a note with the petrified snake warning him not to bother them again, the group continues up the pass.

Nearing the top, the temperatures drop and the climb grows steeper. Frost and snow dot the ground. Suddenly, the elves stop, sensing a presence. Brecaryn casts a spell and is able to detect yetis surrounding the party though they are invisible to the others. Flerm casts faery fire blindly ahead and manages to catch three of the yetis, outlining them in a glowing light.

Snow tells the group to form a defensive ring with the fighters guarding the rest. The yetis only become visible when they are within 2 paces and exhibit incredible speed. The area is filled with fireballs and arrows, swinging swords, blurs of fur running past, and spurts of blood. Having killed nine of the eleven, the group is confident it can finish this fight when just over the peak, a giant yeti appears, carrying a giant ice block. It throws the ice at the center of the group injuring everyone except Alana and Flerm and killing Oliver.

The remaining yetis flee from this giant. Brecaryn quickly fires off lightning as Snow runs up to deal some heavy damage to his manly bits. Malouf lands the final blow just as three frost giants ride up and cheer. Impressed that such little creatures could defeat a giant yeti, the frost giants invite the Motley Crew back to their home.

Viva la Raza

At the wooden fort, the frost giant's healer Snurggi is able to resurrect Oliver. He is noticeably shaken and not at all sure he has made the right decision to join this group. Afterall, half of them do nothing but threaten him. Why should he risk his life for them?

While resting and feasting, the frost giants' blind uncle Gurngaard picks up Brecaryn to learn what an elf is like. He puts a strange necklace on her that increases her strength exponentially. He asks her to now participate in a game they like to play. Gurngaard would like to see her wrestle his nephew. Brecaryn demurs and Flerm steps forward to take her place. After a long match involving many throws and close calls, Flerm eventually wins the match, to the delight of the Motley Crew and the vast amusement of the frost giants.

Documents Acquired: Dragonkin bible

Tags: Alana, Blind Uncle Gurngaard, Brecaryn, Captain Dokari, Havoc Company, Josy, Keagon, Lieralyn, Mad Flasher, Malouf, Nightshade, Oliver, Snow, Snurggi

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