Saturday, January 23, 2010

8 Flamerule 1479

Oh, what a day. So we got to where the road curves one way to Kryptgarden and the other to Waterdeep, where there is a small "farming" town called "Last Chance" - because it's your last chance for an inn or caravan stop until Dragonwatch. It's really a sort of cross between a market town and a caravanserai. There's a big caravanserai at one end of town - fee of 10g to park your wagons - and a BIG inn central on the square. It is one damn fine inn. They offer lovely hot baths - with real soap - and your clothes cleaned and pressed and mended while you wait. Soak a while and go out in the common room - in these robe things they lend you - and eat and chat and whatever. Very nice - and a beautiful set-up for theft or whatnot, so I kept my eyes open.

They happened to light on a lovely little barmaid named Pearl. Friendly and cheerful, full of tales of local sites - haunted tombs and the like. I figured, she was pretty, she was friendly and it'd give me an obvious reason to skulk about in the innyard so I drew her out into a nice dark corner and tried not to get too distracted. Not easy that, she, really enthusiastic and the damned robe is...ANYWAY, I did spot what looked like one of the inn servants hanging Ugrun's clothes back up - but why would they have been down? I pulled myself away from Pearl and her many charms (it's so nice to meet a girl who understands the realities of the situation - well, at least the ones she needs to) and slipped back to the table and mentioned my find. We got our clothes back and went up to our rooms - except for Aprilane who went back to the caravanserai, she's still not real happy with towns - Waterdeep is going to be no fun for her, poor girl. (On the other hand, she'll have Ugrun - and that seems to be a great...thing now) Ugrun checked over his clothes and spotted a new button on one shirt - a magical tracking device. Nothing much to be done, better to try and fight 'em here if possible, when we know they're coming. If nothing happens, we'll just leave it behind in the morning. I tore it good and tossed it under the bed - likely a silly precaution, but it looks less suspicious.

Had the worst dream of my life - the prettiest girl I'd seen, but when I tried to chat her up, it went flat and she got icier. The more I flirted with her to warm her up, get her to smile, it just kept going more and more wrong and she got icier and icier and each time she did she got prettier and prettier and then she was just this beautiful ice statue. I shivered to think on it and it woke me up and I saw that Ugrun wasn't in his bed - I ran to the window, while Max and Gnf threw themselves outta bed - they had bad dreams too - and we saw this blue...portal like think in the square and Ugrun being bundled through it. So I gave a yell and we all went out the window - Allyson and Lyra from theirs too and Aprilane rounded the corner - I guess she'd been for a walk and we all sorta dived through the portal thing.

Must've been some kinda plane shift, 'cuz it looked like the town square still, but were inside a building. With a bunch of kenku who were not happy to see us. We could see a Ugrun-sized bag, all tied up in the back with some guys working on him. We wiped 'em all out and got Ugrun free - Gnf has some spell that gives him a sorta third hand - only spectral sorta. Anyway, we got Ugrun out and back through the portal, followed by skellies. Went to warn the townsfolk and I dashed to get Ugrun's things - can't fight worth shit without a sword, I think. I dropped the stuff at his feet and realized he wasn't fighting worth shit WITH his sword. He didn't even move like himself...DUH, idiot, that's because he's NOT. So I made sure Aprilane couldn't see my arm and pressed my dagger good and hard against his back and threatened him if he didn't come clean. Little coward threw it in at once - I mean who lets ME intimidate them? Anyway, turned out to be some kind of shapeshifter - the folks in town call him Shifty (ooh original) and he was working for "the guy in the black hood" - he was supposed to fool us so we wouldn't go deeper in to where Ugrun was up on the altar. (Of course, it's always an altar - y'know, I never realized how...alike all the old stories were) The big guy said to "just make sure she's dead" - to the kenku or to someone further in - Shifty was...shifty about it. He proved we couldn't really hold him or threaten him much - without flat out killing him, which wasn't gonna happen - largely by turning into Pearl.

SO many questions.

Anyway, obviously we let him go and headed back in. Gnf said he'd figured out it was plane shift but to no plane he could identify and no kind of teleportation. The first room - after the one that was the town square - was dimly lit and with bones all over the floor - hard to walk, they'd roll under your feet unless you did this shuffle step thing. Then the shadows swooped at us. Some wraith thing - doesn't seem to HURT you much, just makes you real tired (wonder if they can do something nasty once they get you tired enough) but you can't friggin' hurt THEM. One of 'em had this laugh was bugging the others a lot, but I don't see why. Anyway, the end of that room was some big brass-bound doors. Go through them and you're in altar central.

Standard kinda small temple layout - altar up front, pews in rows facing the altar. Only the pews were sarcophaguses. There behind the altar was a guy in a black hood - surprise - and a big skeleton with 3 heads (ok, real surprise). Also 2 mummies in that standard "guard the altar" pose and 4 zombies. No big deal right? Except for that big skeleton - Max said that was a skull lord and you had to kill each head separately and every time you killed one that sucker healed himself up and you had to start all over. Lovely. Well, the black hood threw some kinda switch, yelled "get them" and zipped away through the new blue portal. So we started forward - and found what the switch did - BIG swinging blades coming from the walls on the rows in between the sarcophaguses. Man, but Max can move outta the way fast. Tough damned fight without Ugrun - the more so as one of those damn heads kept bringing the zombies back as fast as we could kill 'em. But we win, yey. And I found a nifty set of pipes - magic even.

So many questions.

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