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

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Session 133, April 12 2023



We continue at 4:50PM on the 25th of Denrilden ( on the Apocalypse Clock) with the party having just defeated the criminal mycelian Bogfunk and a group of Silence that were hiding in the Ragathi Clan's abandoned mines on the outskirts of Malgrim. The group now continues their attempt to escape the Deep Gnome city, descending towards an ancient tomb predating the current settlement and reputed to be dangerous because of some kind of fungal infestation. What awaits the party in the elven catacombs? Will they survive to reach the surface again? Tune in to find out ...

Larry's Summary

We prepare to continue after taking a short break in a relatively safe place.

The minecart is not in the best shape, but it might roll down the slope OK. But it will be loud, so we don't use it.

We set watches and rest for an hour.

There are no surprises.

We reach a collection of three passages and Velkin hears nothing down the rightmost passage.

We head down the rightmost passage.

In a couple hundred feet, there is a smell that gradually gets stronger as we go and is a very vegatative, rotting smell, or old gym socks, or Lungmold.

We come to another shaft in the passageway, just an open hole, with no helpful way down.

There are a bunch of chalk marks, perhaps warnings about the hole in the ground.

The smell is definitely emanating from the hole.

Shaft is too deep for light coins to see the bottom. Velkin can't see the bottom past 90 feet. It narrows a lot towards the bottom, but will be one person at a time at limits of what we can see.

Velkin scouts ahead with 100 feet of rope to start, ready to add 50 more feet.

Velkin climbs down 100 feet easily. Careful with how we go down and lay ropes as it is rough.

Thinks he can see bottom 30 feet down, so we add the other 50 feet of rope we had ready.

Velkin is ten feet above the floor and listens. There is the sound of water and squelching like walking through mud and a scraping noise. It is all coming from one direction, with a little bit to other directions.

There are doors either side of the passage, very old iron doors. One open, one partially closed. Two directions, no walls. The ground looks wet. It has flooring, like a stone floor that is smoothed and fitted. If he were to guess, maybe dwarven, or possibly deep gnomes or ancient elves.

Velkin sits and listens for 5 or 10 minutes to learn more about the squelching. It isn't a consistent noise.

Bottom of shaft is about 5 feet across.

AS he is waiting, the slightly open door makes a lot of noise when something pulls it open all the way. It looks like boots and the lower legs of some humanoid that may be drunk because stumbling out. Turn immediately towards where the noise comes from, and makes the same squelching noise as up the passage. Boots and clothes look funky, partially rotted away, and looks like fell in a bog.

Velkin climbs back up and fills us in.

The squelching noise is within 90 degrees of what we think North should be.

We think the passage we are in above the tomb is North.

We discuss our options and Velkin and Druul go past the shaft to see what they can see.

They can see an open area about 90 feet and about 90 feet Velkin sees the open area.

Felix has a better chance to turn higher undead, so the dragons make him invisible. Khelratha and Felix are lowered down, Khelratha stays above to be ready to pull up Felix, just in case, or go down if it is generally safe. Velkin goes with them.

Prix turns Felix invisible. Then the discussions of whether it will work if undead can't see the holy symbol. Felix hands over the holy symbol to make it visible and it stays visible when he takes it back.

Finally, they are lowered and arrive where it narrows. Felix goes first, Khelratha follows.

30 feet where we have to stop and Felix keeps going.

Finally, Felix touches down on the wet floor and can hear the squelching noises. Felix calls out in the name of Baldric Evenkeel, and the squelching is going on but pauses for a moment, then rope goes taught a couple times. Felix says, I didn't seem to do anything.

Did you see a hallway, it has doors either side, 20 feet to stairs, then other way is ten feet to an intersection. It is covered in something, I don't know if it is water, but it is sticky, but it is all over everything. I thought they were undead, they looked like skeletons, near the stairs. They didn't seem to take any notice at all, but didn't attack either.

Felix slaps Thorfus to be visible and goes back down to try and turn the skeletons.

He stops for a second above the opening, takes a breath, and lets himself be lowered down.

This time immediately the squelching stops, and he calls out to Baldric Evenkeel.

He looks up and says, I think it worked, then gives two tugs and gets up in the passageway just as two of these skeletal creatures come wobbling into view. They look odd.

Um, I think it worked, they kind of fell over, but not all the way, then got back up. That one fell over backwards, but is still walking, the other fell forward is still walking.

Velkin tries putting a spark onto the ooze on the wall with his flint and steel, sparks just get snuffed out.

Velkin drops a vial of acid on one of the two down below. It is hit followed by a hissing noise and the thing starts moving quicker with a squelching noise, maybe stumbling, then scraping noises like something dragged along the floor.

Velkin shoots the other with his hand crossbow with hydra poison. It sinks into mid section and collapses like mostly empty and a hissing noise from inside, then a crack and the top half falls off ad the legs continue to move a bit more freely. The upper body then starts dragging itself around.

The legs are just coated with the slime stuff. The upper portion only one arm is working with a healthy coating of slime.

Now it is using both arms and able to pull itself along with both arms.

Felix says the slime is all over the place, like webbing almost. Further down past the intersection it is thicker with strands of the stuff.

Velkin goes down to fill a vial from the ceiling.

Velkin yells out in spider, "Anyone down here?"

The wandering partial creature things pause for a moment and resume pointless wandering.

We go back up and consult with the dragons, Thorfus stays at the narrow spot to keep watch.

Druul goes down to hang out with Thorfus. He tries playing for a while to try to build up some dirt or flowers or something to try to soak up the slimy stuff.

Nixomanthus is very interested in the stuff. He questions Felix, who touched it and feels no ill effects.

Velkin retrieves a finger from his pack and Nixomanthus pours a quarter of it on the finger and it starts to twitch and starts to pull itself towards the shaft.

Velkin suggests wiping it off to see if it stays animated. The more he wipes off, the less animated it becomes, until it is just twitching.

Nixomanthus asks Prix about optical devices for research? I need them.

Velkin asks Caspar for his loupes to look at something. Cass says, "They found a dead finger that can move, I saw!"

Druul makes it down to Thorfus.

Druul pulls out his lute and concentrates on the ground below us. Suddenly one of the upper bodies pulls itself into the area below and goes still and hear the legs squelching and fall down next to it.

It looks like the pool of mucusy stuff is getting deeper and they are rolling around in it, but most of it is soaked up as the thing stands up with its top on backwards and it marches off towards the intersection.

Druul keeps playing and whatever this stuff is thickens up below the passage. The other top comes crawling over through it, coating itself entirely and turns its head to look towards you. The eyes are full of this mucusy stuff. Its mouth opens and more mucus drips out.

Druul shoots it. Maybe there is exhalation as stuff bubbles out.

Druul resumes playing.

The only thing that keeps flowing is the mucus, there is no sign of any plants.

Up at the top of the shaft, no these aren't good enough, and hands them back. I'm interested in, things have, it's very complicated, but basically things are made of smaller things, if I could see the smaller things it is made of, I could figure out more about it.

Velkin pours water on some of the slime but it only breaks some away.

Velkin puts his finger an inch away from it but it doesn't move. Velkin talks to it, there is no change.

Druul decides to go down, he looks at Thorfus and says follow behind me, I guess.

Druul sees a 20 foot hallway with rooms that appear to be burial niches. To the "South" 20 feet of stairs, leading down. To the "North" 10 feet and passages off it also 20 feet wide. Passage straight beyond the stairs and the majority of the thicker strands are there.

The one Druul shot is in the intersection, pulling itself in circles, and while not looking at him, appears to notice him.

Thorfus reluctantly follows.

Druul shoots the visible one with his crossbow, and hits something covered with this stuff, and there is a pressure change and ripples go across the coatings on the floor.

Thorfus stops and says, What was that?

There are noises from the open doorway to the side. Skeletal bodies are rolling out of the niches, even the ones that are higher up, roll out and crash to the floor and start to stand up. They seem more put together, and when they stand they are actually standing. What little hair remains is long.

They are dressed in what may have once been finery. Human or elven.

Druul tugs on his rope and Thorfus does likewise.

The skeletons come rushing out, but are bottlenecked at the door, and take swings at us.

They miss as we are pulled up.

Immediately they look confused as Druul is lifted off the ground.

Druul shoots another crossbow at the bolt on the floor and they pounce on the bolt.

Thorfus stops at the narrow point to keep watch below.

Druul stops along with Thorfus.

Nixomanthus looks down and muses about what if one of us were to die....

Velkin asks if Nixomanthus is volunteering.

Cas has the finger and says, "No, my friend." Velkin says, "Don't eat it."

Velkin tried to pick his pocket.

Druul tries to enchant the slime covered skeletons.

It works and 4 of them 3 full size and the crawling one gather below the shaft and are swaying.

Druul then tries to charm them.

They are all just swaying there.

Druul tells them to go close the door. 3 of them are swaying there. One of the full sized wanders off.

Druul cycles through all his languages and there is no change in their behavior.

Nixomanthus says they must have an appreciation for music, so they or it is intelligent, or at the very least conscious.

Velkin asks Ithirialma to make him invisible so he can climb down and scout ahead.

Velkin goes off to one side of the group at the bottom of the hole.

Velkin fails to grab the wall and swings out and knocks into one.

The one he bumped into takes a wild swing.

Velkin lowers himself the rest of the way to the ground and moves off to the side.

Velkin heads to the intersection and to the left 50 feet down are double doors slightly cracked open, and a door on the North wall halfway down.

To the right there is a door and beyond that is just a wall of goo completely blocking the passage.

The creatures have stopped swaying and are looking in Velkin's direction.

Ten more feet are stairs and tendrils of goo that he can duck and dodge. Velkin continues that way.

Velkin is able to stay ahead of them, crosses the intersection and up the stairs, and they seem to know exactly where he is.

After another twenty feet the room widens out with pillars and more goo.

At the edge of the room, he looks around. Five creatures, one seems to be trapped in a tendril and is flailing about. Four pillars, 40 x 40 room with two doors one on East and West. Another staircase going up, even more goo. Very challenging to keep going that way.

Velkin heads to the North hallway in an attempt to get the pursuers trapped in strands of goo.

The creatures in the room also try to pursue him.

Velkin shadow steps to the top of the stairs.

The creatures start to mill around confused.

Velkin is now in a large chamber. It about 70 x 80. Narrow where first enter but walls widen at a diagonal. There is a dais directly in front. There may be an altar, covered in the most substantial tendril he's yet seen about twenty feet in diameter. It is encasing the altar floor to ceiling.

Around the edges a closed double door and part of the wall collapsed with a natural cave beyond.

There is a mass of 30 of these skeletons, curled up like sleeping around the base of the tendril. As standing there, a giant eyeball opens on the tendril about two feet in diameter.

Velkin says, "You mind letting us pass?"

Thorfus moves down and peeks out and sees the four moving "North" obviously chasing something.

Thorfus keeps watch to both directions.

Druul also lowers down, not touching the floor with his crossbow at the ready.

Velkin says, "My party and I would request passage through your domain, if that's a possibility."

It blinks and the creatures start to stir. A ripple goes through the floor. It almost looks like the stuff around his feet is sending feelers out. A bit of exploration.

The 30 creatures nestles up against the tendril appear to shake themselves awake and push into standing positions. They are kind of sleepy.

Velkin shadow steps back to the first room.

All the creatures in this room turn in his direction.

Velkin tries to hide in shadows and they are still looking at him.

Velkin runs and says, "Drop a rope!""

Thorfus holds out a hand and yanks on it once Velkin grabs his hand.

As soon as Velkin is pulled off his feet, they are disoriented.

The altar looked liked it was covered in gems and jewelry and a really nice shield that illuminated the eyeball from behind.

Discuss options of how to deal with the eyeball.

Velkin starts a fire to see if the slime will sizzle and burn. It does pop and sizzle.