Session One Hundred and Sixty-One Summary (Graveyard of Empires: After the Fall)

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Session 161, November 29 2023



We continue at 8:40AM on the 16th of Anurilden ( on the Apocalypse Clock) with the party having discovered the lift mechanism and using it to access some of the lower levels of Gharaz'Khel after defeating the Storoper that lurked above it. After a quick stop on the residence level cut short by indications of some sort of sickening miasma, the group descends to the research area where they briefly see some monkey-like creatures that flee deeper into the corridors. Are these creatures friendly or non-hostile? Is there anything of use in the ancient dwarven laboratories? Will the entire party sicken and die from the bad energy radiating from the sabotaged power generator? Find out next time, or not.

Larry's Summary

Velkin moves to the window/arrow slit after swapping his gold lenticular device for Druul's platinum lenticular device and the rest of us are ready with missile weapons.

It is a room with consoles in it with smears of feces. More lockers behind the console. The lever is towards the window.

Velkin slips through the window to investigate further.

There are empty slots to hold something in the lockers.

Open door with bones and earth in a dark hallway.

Bones stuffed into hallway by door on other side of door we see.

East goes ten feet and expands to another chamber and lots of roots and vines and dripping water.

Thorfus moves up to see if he can see anything in the room. He sees nothing and hears nothing.

Velkin then says, "We're not here to hurt you." All movement stops. Thorfus hears this.

Velkin tries to speak monkey. "If you'd respond to me, I'd be happy to have a conversation."

There is no response, so Velkin leaves and encounters Thorfus listening.

What's in those lockers?

Thorfus covers Velkin while he checks them out.

There is an empty locker. The last one has a stun stick and one environmental suits with breathing apparatus, but no tank.

Velkin grabs the stun stick and hands it through to Thorfus.

Thorfus tells Velkin to close the door from this room to the hallway and lock it so the creatures cannot flank us. The door doesn't close as tightly as the others have.

The console has a lever and six buttons, but not lit up in any way.

Since they can't get to us, we decide to check out the accelerator passage and shut the outer door to lock it to prevent the creatures from coming up behind us.

We use the detector and nothing abnormal.

We prepare to open the door with Thorfus and Glompus in their suits.

Thorfus unlocks and opens the door, and Glompus checks and it beeps a bit more, but the light is off.

Past the 15 foot mark, there is a boom and rumble from the South.

There is a dead end with a window and a desk with lockers behind it, and one locker is open. There is a stun stick, but the suits are gone.

The buttons on the console have a glow to them. The lever is away from the window.

There is a faster series of beeps and orange or maybe red.

Glompus crawls into the room.

There is a door and it is green. Glompus listens and there is a rumbly noise and there is a boom that is louder and the door shakes a bit. Maybe there are voices talking. It isn't clear is humanoid or burrowing mammal speech.

Thorfus goes down and helps Glompus, we open the door there is reddish light it is loud and there is a boom that is very loud.

Glompus tests and it is constant beeping with bright red light.

Glompus peeks quickly to North and South before Thorfus closes and locks the door.

Backlit is a catwalk with a railing and an open space beyond it.

Thorfus closes and locks the door with a platinum key.

We check the lockers. They have been cleared of suits and tanks, but there are 5 stun sticks. We grab the stun sticks.

Glompus does catch sight of a paw print. So the monkey things made it in here at some point.

Glompus realizes the floor is paneling with space behind it.

Thorfus gives Glompus an iron spike to pry up a panel.

There is space underneath with tufts of fur caught on conduits and wiring.

Below the floor level, it might slow a little, but the humming is louder. The pipes seems to be the source of the humming.

We put the panel back.

We return to the others and close and lock the door.

Thorfus drinks what we believe to be a Clairaudience Potion. Thorfus listens for voices at the end of the hallway. He does hear voices. The voices are speaking Ancient Dwarven. It sounds like talking of multiple conversations but not to each other. Voice talking about the jubilee, then another voice talks about needs to get the key, overseer left his post, where's the key. Also hooting and monkey noises along with it and no response to that.

There are other voices having their own conversations about sabotage with the generator, need to get to safety. It cycles around and around like that. Almost like they are caught in their conversation, repeating it endlessly.

Thorfus listens straight up and gets nothing. Same with straight below us.

Thorfus goes back to the Eastern hallway and listens. There is hooting that is agitated and some slapping like banging on a wall or a door.

They decide to have Kauri cast blood magic invisibility on Thorfus to scout ahead to check on the voices.

Prixithalma has reduced her size and has a suit and accompanies us.

Thorfus puts his platinum key in Prixithalma's hand.

Thorfus listens for any other conversations. There might be some other conversations going on, emergency the overseer fled to the residence level, can't do anything without him. Seems like he had the right idea. The rules say shelter in place.

Velkin pokes around looking for things and finds a few bones similar to those in the hallway.

Prix unlocks the door and Glompus opens it. Thorfus steps out at the ready.

There is a large chamber light brightly with a catwalk with a guardrail.

Just inside the hallway the catwalk extends to right and left (East and West). There is a large open chamber with a deep drop off. Can't see across due to blinding light. The voices are getting louder and seem to come from all around due to acoustics.

The floor seems to be far beyond. There is a rough, bumpy growth on the wall starting below the carwalk.

The light is coming from above and maybe to right and left.

Peeking to right a left, the catwalk continues for a long distance with doors that open onto the catwalk maybe 40 feet.

There are giant tubes to right and left 50 or 60 feet to either side, the giant cylindrical things suspended and reach the North/South width of the chamber. Ringing the center is an opening that flash red, but not together. Like lights in a circle chasing it's tail. Very much like warning lights.

The chamber is 60 to 70 feet across and the cylinders extend a long way, but not sure due to angle and perspective. There might be a curve to the chamber. The gunk is pulsating a bit and is encompassing the pit, covered in eyes and mouths. It looks a lot like the thing in the waterwheel house, but it is enormous.

Maybe saw something at opening of cylinder and there is a bright flash and a boom and rumble and this tar-like growth shivers and goes nuts with movement.

Thorfus goes back and explains what he saw and they lock the door and rejoin the others.

We decide to go up to the Main Residence level and look for the key.

Lambertus, Felix, Renthark, Peronelle, and Snuffles set up base camp in the office in the Reservoir Control level. Thorfus, Prix, Glompus, Druul, Velkin, and Kauri go to check out the Main Residence level.

The ones to explore the Residence Level check the Reservoir Control Level then down to Residence Level. The others join us on the Reservoir Control Level then we head down. Druul leaves his gold control key with them and Lambertus says he will keep an eye on it and watch Snuffles and he smiles a bit.

Block C to the South. There is a door and it is green. Block A to North, B to East, D to the West, each with a 20 foot passage and a door. The one to the West is red the rest are green. We decide to go West.

In the corners there are planters but nothing is growing in them. There is dirt in them. Druul grabs a handful of dirt.

Thorfus unlocks the door and opens it.

There is a 30 foot hallway and a door with a window to the North side of the hallway. The door is green.

Thorfus goes up and peeks in the window. There is a body crumpled on the floor in an environmental suit with the bones of a body poking out over a stun stick with gashes in the suit. The lockers are open and stripped, some violently.

There is a lever towards the hallway and the buttons have a faint glow in 2 rows of 3 and no labels.

Glompus hops through and sees a door in the South wall that is open and checks the body, it is bones. Glompus searches the body. A little stone falls out. It is a silver evidently not platinum, and an axe in a holster belt thing. The axe is in pristine condition with a weirdly shaped handle. There is an extra bulbous end and glowing lights. There is also something that looks like a playing card. It has an image of a constellation (The Silver Throne). \[We can get more platinum pieces from their money dispenser.]

Thorfus looks and it has 3 charges. Thorfus asks Kauri if he can tell anything besides it having 3 charges. Other than transpatial energy, Kauri has not seen any DVLs. He has never seen this much transpatial energy in the absence of DVLs.

Kauri asks TikTok what he thinks about it. TikTok takes a deep breath and says something feels good. Yeah, this place, oh wait. Yeah, um, hmm. Can you explain why magic items are working and there are no DVLs. It is possible to have dangerous levels of it, I think you might be in danger now. There's something below us. Suddenly TikTok shivers, no that's closer, that felt painful. They're doing bad things to my people down there I think. No there's DVLs here, close, pointing downwards. Actually, an incredible amount of them. It's deeper even than that. I don't know if I've ever felt this many DVLs before. TikTok holds up a finger and says I don't want to go downstairs. I can feel, there is a tug here. I can resist it here, but I worry if I go to far down.... Like the embassy.

Thorfus opens the door. Remnants of bodies collapse. It was stuffed with dwarves.

Velkin and Druul search the bodies. They find 124 platinum pieces. They also find 5 daggers made out of nanocarbon. Necklace with a green gemstone, a gold ring, wrought gold ring.

Glompus's Letter

Hey there Spud,

Sorry, phased out a bit for the past few hours since my last letter, so I don't have a lot to report there. I was really worried about my friends. It surprised Velkin when I told him we were friends, but I meant it. We did some... kinda bad stuff together to save the world that you don't need to worry about, plus Snuffles really likes the fingers. They're good fellows overall. Speaking of my sick friends, I did find out the magic crossbow is actually just a detector for the transpatial energy that's making my friends sick. Which is a bit awkward that I was trying to fire it at monsters.

Anyways, Velkin went up to the window while the rest of us covered him. You know that old saying that the things you worry about never happen, and the things that happen you never worry about? Well, while we were all busy looking out for monsters, Velkin slipped and fell in some poo. You'd have loved it, we had a hard time not laughing. He recovered somewhat gracefully and managed to get through the window. He was gone for about twenty minutes before we started to get worried and Thorfus went to check on him. They came back a bit after and Velkin said the monkeys didn't talk to him, so we locked the door and moved on.

We shut and locked the door to the monkeys and headed towards something called an accelerator. I asked what an accelerator was but no one knew. Sounds like it makes stuff go faster, I wonder if it's just a big dog?

Turns out the detectors are actually really useful. I can fit in one of the protective suits they've got here since I'm a gnome, so I was able to scout ahead a little bit and make sure it was safe for the others so they don't get sick again.

While I was scouting ahead, I heard some booms and voices through a door. Thorfus came down to help me with it, and we set up on either side of it and opened it. Scary and exciting stuff. There was this red firelight and the detector went crazy. We've both still got all our teeth though, not sure what these suits are made of. We decided we didn't want to look through that door after all, and closed and locked it.

On our way out of the room, we saw a paw print heading down through the floor, so it seems like the monkeys might come this way too. We pried up the panel to see where it went, and it opened into a whole bunch of pipes pretty tightly backed, but with some fur stuck between them. We briefly considered greasing up your grandpappy, but we decided against it. Snuffles would be disappointed if he knew, he loves butter. Sad we didn't see any of the monkeys though. The animals here are kind of cute in a weird way. I still want to see if we can get one of those little moles so Snuffles can have a friend.

When we got back to the rest of the group, Thorfus drank a magic potion that let him hear things from far off to listen in on those voices. They were speaking ancient dwarven, and talking about the jubilee and a key. Thorfus said there was something off about them though, so we went to go check it out. Heading towards where the voices were, we came into a room with a lot of pulsating gunk near an enormous creature with a bunch of eyes and mouths. Now, your grandpappy has never been the cleverest gnome, but I knew well enough to leave the giant horror monster alone, and my friends did too, so we decided discretion was the better part of genius and left.

After a bit more exploring, during which I may have confused rocks for bones, we decided to head up to the residence floor. We checked the reservoir level to make sure everything was safe, and then left Snuffles and the crew there to set up camp. Snuffles was real nervous about it at first. He's barely let me out of his sight since we... lost you. The giant monsters probably didn't help either though. He got a bit more comfortable when I let him know he would be with some of the others. Lambertus seemed happy to keep him. We should get him a dog covered in holy symbols when we get back to town to cheer him up.

We headed back down to the residency level and started exploring. We saw some... bad stuff you don't really need to hear about. Kauri brought out "Tick-Tock", a clock everyone said he was talking to. It kinda looked like he was having a conversation with himself, but who am I to judge, I spent the past few months only talking to a dog. Apparently "Tick-Tock" said they were doing bad things to DVLs here, and that there were a bunch of them, more than he'd ever felt in one place. He didn't want to go deeper into the mountain. Which was a lot of opinions for a clock, but that's Kauri's thing.

Miss you a bunch Spud. Look down on Snuffles tonight if you get a chance.

Love, Grandpappy Glompus 16th of Anurilden