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This Bites

Theona’s Journal

Eleasis 8, 1373 DR, near giants’ fortress

We managed to loot the ogre mage’s body: large armor and great sword, a few potions and scrolls— no silver cat. Not that I thought it would be that simple. At any rate we needed to find Glitch, so we went down to the bridge level and found a door. I spent the next half hour picking locks and disarming traps, including locks on a row of cells from which one very relieved rat emerged unharmed to climb into our sorcerer’s backpack. We randomly explored a few other rooms: one contained several sarcophagi holding nothing but desiccated humanoid remains, another presented us with four very smelly dead goblins with puncture wounds on their necks. It was alarming to note that the puncture wounds were in pairs, with about 8” distance between the fangs.

It was at about this time that Tyan (perhaps with prodding from Glitch) mentioned that he’d seen a hydra through a hole he’d blasted through the roof in our earlier battle. Apparently, the hydra was guarding a single door in the far wall of its lair, but we could get into the room through an archway opposite that door if the hydra could be distracted or dispatched in some way. Fortunately, Tyan (or Glitch) had a plan; the sorcerer would go up on the roof and distract the hydra, and Glitch would stay below to coordinate the rest of us. Unfortunately, Ebin must consider himself to be quiet and sneaky; he lumbered into the archway with his shield in front of him and the hydra saw him, using at least four of its heads to bite the human male. Ebin jumped back, and argued with no one in particular that he was just “peeking” even though it went against our plan.

Our element of surprise was gone, so I tumbled past the archway, attempting to activate the wand that casts the “enfeeblement” spell at the creature. I was grazed by a set of teeth as I passed the opening. I jumped up and put my back to the wall, expecting another attack, but the darn thing went after Areon and my friends. At least it gave me more time to use the wand. By the time I was able to hit it, the creature was all the way into the hall, so I slipped past it into its den. Tyan was lowering himself into the room, no doubt with the intention of keeping a line of sight to cast spells at the departing beast.

I went to the closed door, quickly decided that it wouldn’t need to be trapped with that thing guarding it, and flung the door open. One look in convinced me to wait for my friends, who had vanquished the hydra but were now engaged in a struggle to get past the monstrous corpse in the hall.

A few minutes later found us all standing in that doorway, looking at the biggest sarcophagus any of us have ever seen— it must have been 20’ long! There was no way visible to conveniently open it, and we weren’t sure we wanted to. We somehow decided that sunlight was what we needed, and so all went back up to the roof to beat the crap out of it in a fashion similar to how Tyan had shed light on the hydra. That took a long time, but we finally had a hole right above the big stone box. We tried to crack open the sarcophagus in the same way we opened the roof, but by the time the sun was starting to set, we’d only managed to chip the lid a bit.

No one argued when it was suggested we leave the fortress and find a place to camp a good distance from the place.

Areon and I split the night watches as usual. I had just started mine when a blood-curdling howl of rage emanated from the fortress. Whatever was in the crypt (should I mention that we all have some vague and horrific vision of a giant-sized vampire?) was stirring, and not at all happy with our handiwork.

Posted by Kristin on June 21, 2005, 23:35 | Theona’s Journal