ju rbund wer liip du ere djik ruun

Adventure Log by Arxaggus Add comments

Itching for further discovering of arcane secrets at Dragon’s Delve, Elios bugged me to lead another expedition to the halls beneath the ruins of Chordille Keep.  Wisely, I took the Doc as well and convinced Drom Fragula and Xanytha to tag along.  I was eager to promote them from recruit status to full-fledged members of the Band of Blades.  Today they would earn their tabards.

At the river crossing, we came across a few shifty-looking humans.  Happy to see friendlies outside the walls, we engaged them in conversation.  They were toting building supplies.  I wondered if these men were foolish enough to think they could build a home for themselves somewhere in the wilderness.  We talked a bit about adventuring and exchanged pleasantries, but not much else came from that discussion.

Moving on, we again spied a wolf eyeing us from the safety of the tree line, beyond the entrance to the Delve.  That forest is waiting for us, I think.

Entering the dungeon, we went straight for that unopened door behind the eye tyrant’s glass prison.  We’d passed it a half dozen times, yet still hadn’t discovered what lay behind it.  Opening the door, we were greeted by a blast of frozen air.  This chamber was somehow home to hurricane-force wind and subzero temperatures.  Clearly enchanted, we yearned to discover what this room protected.  Me mates tied a rope around me and I stepped in.  Immediately me teeth began to chatter, and I was knocked from me feet by the unceasing gale.  Blinded and deafened by the magical storm, I inched along the wall, unable to step more than a few feet before being knocked down.  I managed to reach what I thought was the far wall before me reason kicked in and forced me back out.  I needed a few minutes to defrost should I try again.

Doc pulled his cloak about his face and covered up any exposed skin that he could, then he too ventured into that frozen hellhole.  The rest of us waited to pull him out, clenching the rope nervously.  After nearly a minute with no signs of return, we all gave the rope a good yank.  The Doc emerged from the blizzard, encased in some kind of amber-colored energy prison.  Elios identified it as a spell, Sappeyon’s Snake Something-or-Other.  The only hope was a restorative spell from the priests back in town.

Temporarily defeated, we returned to Westhaven.  After a full two days and a rather large pile of cash as payment, one of the priests finally managed to dispel Doc’s enchanted binding.  He informed us that he had managed, after a great deal of effort, to unlock the door he discovered along the far wall.  I guess I had just missed it, having came close.  While blinded, his hands also managed to make out some kind of inscription upon the wall, although its meaning was unknown:

“ju rbund wer liip du ere djik ruun”

It’s possible these words were the imprisonment magic he was afflicted with.  In any case, with the Doc cured we returned again to the Delve, vowing to return to that frozen chamber, but not before further exploration was in order.

We headed straight for that large, double-balconied room with the curious checkerboard-style floor.  Upon entering, we were greeted by a barrage of crossbow fire originating from behind a few doors with arrow slits.  The goblins, hobgoblins, orcs, and pair of kobolds that ambushed us from one of the balconies were dealt with without a great deal of effort on our part.

This room contained a curious wall with large eyes peering at us.  As Elios and the Doc attempted to discern how the doors these eyes were mounted to opened, the eyeballs spoke to us in riddle:

“down below a mother moon

about the lands a sacred gloom

reaching across the midnight sky

knowing the truths that make you cry

night imbued with his very essence

eternal light forbids his presence

secret questions you dare to ask

shadows are his faithful mask”

Though we had a few guess, the full meaning behind this riddle eluded us.  Elios scribbled it down in his book as the Doc examined a curious shaft at the other end of the room with a lever at the bottom and some kind of lion’s-face relief at the top.  Pulling the lever activated a magical disk that floated on the air.  Attempting several code words succeeded only in flipping the disk’s rider over or slamming him or her against the wall or the roof.  After a great deal of unnecessary bloodshed, I figured out that “west” results in the safe transportation of the disk rider to the top of the shaft, allowing the Doc to remove the large agate stones from the lion’s eyes and the four lantern screens from inside its’ mouth.

Continuing on, Elios briefly studied an odd mosaic of bug shape-inscribed tiles at the end of a hallway.  Convinced it held a secret door but unable to find it, the five of us pressed on into an unfamiliar hallway.  I turned a corner and nearly ran smack into an odd goo covering the doorway from ceiling to floor.  Guessing it was a monster of some sort, Drom and I hacked at it for a few seconds, and the great mass oozed to the floor.  The gelatinous blob was filled with bits of old bone and debris of all kinds.  Whatever this thing was, it was now dead.  We climbed out of its’ pit and saw a large bronze statue.  Raising the visor of the statue’s helm resulted in the discovery of yet another secret door, behind which dwell a very upset creature.

It identified itself as Chasmal, an old human now exiled from Westhaven.  After a very long and boring conversation, Elios promised to take a message to some old woman in town, Elena, who is apparently the mother of some important artisans.

Not wanting to further disturb the old man in his home, we moved past his room down the corridor, discovering a larger chamber with three swords embedded in the stone and a lit brazier hanging from the ceiling.  The swords were clearly magical, declared Doc, and all were unique in some manner: one possessed a stylized hilt with a flame motif, one was plain with a polished green gem in the pommel, and the third was sleek and silver-colored.  Examining the brazier, Doc discovered a message: “Lord Saral’s keen eye.”  Written on the stone floor was another clue: “two banes and one blessing, a gift from Lord Saral.”  Whoever this Saral was, he clearly wanted us to have one of these weapons…but only one.  Which to choose?

After a great deal of guessing and some illogical reasoning by Elios, Doc fiddled with the brazier, resulting in smoke filling much of the room.  The smoke wafted about curiously, though, despite there being no breeze to speak of.  It seemed to move with intent of its own; some of it wafted about the silvered blade more than the other two…

Taking the hint, I pulled that weapon out of the ground.  Instantly, the other two blades crumbled into dust and the brazier extinguished itself.  We were now in the possession of an enchanted blade, something a rich merchant in town would surely find appealing.

We moved on.  The next room’s floor was inlaid with some kind of metal that shocked Elios when he stepped on it, and a statue of an elephant.  The chamber beyond that one held two corpses, one with a sealed clay jug.  The other lay close to a clay jug that was now broken and a curious purple puddle that seemed to have a mind of its own.  It oozed down the hallway and around a corner, forming into a human hand that strained to reach a ledge that held more jugs.  We were careful not to allow this moving puddle to touch us or any of the containers.  Doc took one jug for studying and left the other two on the ledge.

The next room had a few curiosities: bronze-plated doors, one with an engraving of galloping horses, and several pedestals that held salable items.  Elios discovered a secret door that revealed the staircase leading down towards level 2, guarded by those great roots we had found before.  Now knowing two different paths to the second major level, we returned to the blizz-cane room with the goal of opening that far door.

Having discharged the enchanted inscription, having discovered that we were already in possession of the golden key to open the door, and having bundled meself up well and good, it wasn’t difficult at all for me to brave the cold and open it.  I discovered what surely must have been Serrestique’s vault, the place she kept her magical oddities.  I slowly pushed through the freezing winds three heavy chests, surely enchanted with the same guardian magics that kept safe the door, then returned for the miscellaneous items that lined the shelves: a half dozen silver scrollcases, pouches filled with spell reagents, too much to list here.

We returned to Westhaven, victorious.  We paid the priest another hefty sum to disenchant the warded chests: one was filled with spell scrolls, one with potions, and the third was filled to the brim with gold coins.

Addendum: I realized I forgot to mention that the central path of the Delve, the one that leads towards Glarias’ corrupted altar, was partially built over with the beginning of a wooden fortification.  It was a curiosity that puzzled us until Doc realized that the humans we met at the river crossing were toting building materials.  Why anyone in town would seek to bar a main path in a cursed dungeon is a mystery.

Addendum 2: Elios has just informed me that they were building a bridge at the river crossing, to make it easier for wagons and supplies to cross it.

Tonight's Cast:
John "Doc" Smith, Human Thief / Dedicate - Mat
Captain Arxaggus "Ox" Dunnbuldanngen, Dwarven Myrmidon - Tristan
Elios "The Cat", Human Hunter / Man-at-Arms - Paul
Xanytha, Elven Archer - Heather
Drom Fragula III, Dwarven Weapon Master / Berserker - Jeff
DM - Russ
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