Sunday, April 10, 2011

ToEE: Bugbears 1, Kryla 0

Game Date: 4/9/2011
DM: Rusty

The Party:
Ashira (Jesse): Dragonborn Battlemind
Jerry (Jesse subbing for Nick): Human Cleric
Kossack (Cliff): Minotaur Fighter
Kryla Bloodfang (Matt): Dragonborn Cosmic Sorcerer
Nyx (Matt subbing for Bryan/Tamara): Halfling Thief
Pixie (Leigha): Gnome Wizard

The Session:
Last session ended with the heroic death of Razz the Githzerai Swordmage.  The party took him to Hommlet's church, where it was suggested we burn the body to release his extraplaner soul.

Then we poked around town and told our story to several townsfolk.  We got a few offers to accompany us on our next moathouse expedition.  A Tiefling named Spugnois joined our party because he wanted to locate some family heirlooms.  We also met Ashira, a part-Dragonborn who could almost pass for human.

We returned to the moathouse.  Nyx led us through a secret entrance that took us closer to the areas we needed to explore.  After a bit of sneaking around, Nyx spotted some human guards in a hallway.  They were dressed in the Temple of EE robes, so we knew they had to die.  It was a pretty easy battle.  We fought some minions first in the hallway.  Kryla kept using her Blazing Starfall at the far end of the hallway, discouraging the rest of the enemies from entering the battle.  When the boss - "Lareth the Beautiful" - finally joined the fracas, he didn't have a lot of support left.

Once they were all dead, we found some spiffy rooms full of expensive items and lots of gold.  It was a decent haul, though we learned later (out-of-character) that we missed an item worth 15,000 gp.  D'oh!  We also found some incriminating letters written "From H. to L." - we're pretty sure the L stands for Lareth, but who is H?  We suspected the village elder Hestra, and decided to look into that later.

We headed back to town so we could spend our cash and equip ourselves a little better.  We went on a spending spree, gaining a lot of notoriety in this usually quiet town.  Spugnois decided we were a bit too hardcore and left the party, asking for half of his share of the loot to be paid in residuum.  Later we went to confront Hestra about the letters, but she convinced us she was innocent.  She suggested that the H probably simply stood for Hommlet.

We celebrated a bit more, with Jerry buying a lavish dinner for our crowd of fans.  We partied well into the night and set out the next morning for yet another trip to the moathouse.  We went back to the room where we fought the Gnolls last session, but they were no longer there.  We found and disabled a secret switch on one of the doors, but we couldn't quite figure out what the switch was supposed to do.  (In a later room we found a similar switch which turned out to control a portcullis, so this one was probably attached to one as well.)

We went down several more tunnels, and discovered another secret exit from the dungeon.  We explored a few more tunnels, until we found a room almost identical to the Gnoll room.  Kossack stood watch while some of us checked out the room's various doors.  Unfortunately, his perception wasn't high enough to see the six Bugbears that came sneaking down the hall.

The Bugbears got a surprise round and won initiative, so they got two turns in before the any of PCs got to go.  Those two turns were all it took to drop Kossack and Kryla.  So before our team even made a move, we were already down two party members.  When Pixie's turn came around, she used her Fountain of Flame daily to create a zone that damaged three of the Bugbears.  Then she spent her action point to use Burning Hands, unfortunately catching Kryla's body in the blast.  Kryla had been right at 0, but the Burning Hands did 16 points of damage... and Kryla's negative bloodied value was only 14.  Kryla expired without ever getting a turn.

It was a long, difficult battle for obvious reasons.  All the party members went down at one point or another.  Jerry tried to keep up on healing, but as a Companion Character he doesn't have all the abilities he has when his actual player is present.  Eventually they got it down to one Bugbear, who surrendered and fled.

The party went back to town once again.  The church offered to raise Kryla for 500 gp, which was just about the value of the treasure we'd picked up this trip.  The group let me decide whether they would raise her or have me roll up a new character.  I chose to have her raised.  I think if Kryla had died due to a mistake I made, or even bad dice rolls on my part, I might have let her rest in peace.  But given the "Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies" nature of her death, I felt a little bit cheated, and I think she deserves another chance at life.

We ended the session in town.  We will probably head back to the moathouse next session.  There is one set of stairs we haven't explored, which lead down.  Could this be yet another level of the dungeon?  We also never checked out the natural tunnels leading from the crypt, but I think we may have decided to pass on that one entirely.

Due to the taxing nature of returning to life, Kryla will take -1 to all d20 rolls until she reaches three milestones.

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