Saturday, June 6, 2015

Shattered Star: Heads Will Roll

Game Date: 6/6/2015
Location: The Game Keep
Campaign: Shattered Star, Session 28
System: D&D 5e
DM: Rusty

The Party:
Bjertha Brawlbaker (Matt) - Dwarf Fighter
Carlie Nackle (Chere) - Gnome Wizard
Fellany Mertien (Cliff) - Human Fighter
Maruca (Daniel) - Human Ranger /Cleric/Rogue
Slancio Brioso (Matt, Subbing for Thomas) - Human Bard
Tai Lindro (Angela) - Human Monk/Warlock

The Session:
When we left off, we were exploring the Black Keep in the pocket dimension.  We had just finished fighting a pair of Hungry Fogs and a Manananggal (porcupine guy).  It was a tough encounter which left us low on hit points.  Today we continued to explore the keep and get our asses kicked.

In one room we found a library.  There we encountered a corpsey-looking guy with a big forehead.  He introduced himself as Maligast of Eox, and told us he was doing his own research on the shards.  He sensed that we carried a few of the shards ourselves, and politely offered to take them off our hands after killing us.  We turned down the offer and the fight began.

At first it looked like it was going to be a deadly battle, especially when he cast Cloudkill.  But we managed to break his concentration enough to dispell the effect before it did too much damage.  We took him out quickly, possibly using more resources than we should have because he looked tougher than he really was.  Still, we were hurting, and we decided to attempt a short rest.  We suspected it wouldn't work, but we had to be sure.

No luck.  Before we could benefit from a rest, three wraiths phased into the room.  They weren't hard to kill, but it did convince us not to try resting again.  We kept on exploring, next finding a large dining hall occupied by six Shadow Mastiffs.  Carlie won initiative, throwing a fireball into the pack.  Unfortunately they were resistant to fire, but it still took them down a few hit points.  Then Slancio hit three of them with Faerie Fire, allowing Bjertha to slaughter one on her turn.

Once we'd killed four of them, a door opened and the Dark Rider entered.  He wielded a spinal column as a flail, and rode a rather bitey horse.  We were doing well at first, but then he used his signature move.  He hurled his head at us, doing huge area damage (41 damage, half on a save).  This brought Bjertha down to zero, and the Rider took Bjertha's head and put it on his belt.

Then Bjertha's body turned into another Shadow Mastiff and attacked the party.  Tai charmed the Rider for one turn, giving us a few seconds to breathe easier.  Meruca used Mage Hand to pickpocket Bjertha's head, but she didn't keep it long.  When the Rider could act again, he killed Meruca, taking both her head and Bjertha's for his collection.  Then Meruca's body became another Mastiff.

Carlie hit the Dark Rider with a lightning bolt, bringing him down just low enough for Fellany to finish him off.  The party finished off the final two Mastiffs, and pondered what to do next.  They took stock of all the healing potions left in the party and downed a few.  Then they put Meruca's and Bjertha's bodies into a bag of holding.  They considered heading back, but we'd been warned not to leave the pocket dimension unless absolutely necessary.  We'd already killed the Rider, what could possibly be worse here?

...yeah.  In the next room, the party met Olanna the Nuckelavee, the Black Rider's consort.  Her body was fused at the waist to a skinless horse, and she angrily accused us of murdering her lover.  During the fight she used a powerful breath weapon, which took down everyone but Tai.  For the next few rounds, Olanna chased Tai around the keep, through different rooms, and finally out of the building.

Meanwhile, Slancio, Fellany, and Carlie were making death saves.  Slancio and Fellany stabilized, but Carlie failed three saves and died.  Tai tried to reenter the keep only find the door locked.  So she climbed the nearby tower, jumped back down and came in through the side door.  On her next turn she finished off Olanna. 

Tai used healing potions to revive Slancio and Fellany.  They kept exploring, with Tai scouting ahead.  In one room there was a statue of the Rider, and a musical instrument hanging on the wall.  Tai was afraid it might be a trap, so she left that room alone.  On another wall in the keep, there was a small round stone.  It was the same size and shape as some marbles we'd found earlier.  Touching a marble to the stone on the wall caused the stone to fall off, so they kept it.  Then they went around collecting other similar stones they'd noticed.

In one room there was a pool, with something magical underwater.  Tai stepped into the pool and was attacked by three Mohrgs.  These long-tongued skeletons grappled Tai, while Fellany ran to her rescue.  Fellany grabbed Tai and pulled her out of the room, but fearless Tai just ran right back in and kept fighting.  They soon realized the Mohrgs were vulnerable to bludgeoning damage, so Fellany switched to her flail.

...but before she did much damage with it, Fellany went down.  Slancio went down soon after, leaving Tai alone against the foes.  She used her great speed as best as she could, crossing the room a few times and trying to stay just out of their reach.  But then she misjudged how far to move on one turn, and a Mohrg caught up to her.  The creature got in one final hit, bringing Tai down.

We ended the session there.  Bjertha, Meruca, and Carlie are dead.  Slancio, Fellany, and Tai are at zero hit points but still breathing.  We've been instructed not to roll up new characters, so we'll just have to see how things unfold next session.

Our next session isn't until July 11th.  For those interested, June 20th is Free RPG Day.