Friday, August 12, 2016

Tromping through the Shudder Mountains, Part 5

Wherein I start breaking this story down into bulletin points, cause I'm way behind!

Chapter 3: The Serpents Beneath (continued)

When we last left the party (consisting of Pinky, the halfling brewer; Hans, the Mad Braar; Darcy, the elf bard; and Rynila the fighter) they were exploring the underground tunnels of an Ancient Temple in the middle of their town and recently defeated, or rather stalled the gears with chicken meat, a clockwork serpent guardian only to find that something foul has escaped from its slimy cocoon.

  • The party follow wet strange footsteps through the tunnels; finding all the stone doors were booby trapped with spraying acid. Discovering the pattern in which to press the carved stones on the frame they were able to make their way further.
  • They took a set of winding stairs that descended another mile below ground. The stairs led to a vast oval shaped chamber carved from the earth's crust. A ledge ran around the chamber and, below in a pit, were rows and rows of ledges lined with great and grotesque eggs. At the very bottom was a liquid fire like lava, heating up the chamber and making the eggs hatch. Across from them was a tall albino Serpent Man in red robes!

  • The Serpent man was standing behind a set of crystal controls when the party arrived and immediately attacked, firing some sort of energy beam from his wrist!
  • The party split up and ran around either side of the chamber.
  • Pinky slipped and fell, but grasped the ledge at the last moment.
  • Darcy played her flute, attempting to summon her patron Ubtu-galoo, but the Chaos Lord was not listening.
  • Rynila and Hans were flaking the Serpent Man.
  • As Pinky attempted to climb up; an egg just below him burst open and a hungry lizard thing with needle sharp teeth began biting at his dangling legs. 
  • Darcy reached for Pinky when the Serpent Man shot out another ray of fire that burst open Darcy's chest in a blast of gore and flame!
  • Rynila and Hans arrived and started beating the Serpent Man to a pulp. Rylina took a serpent styled gold bracelet off the fiends wrist.
  • Pinky climbed over the ledge and checked on Darcy, but she was dead before she hit the ground. He grabbed her flute.
  • With the eggs below hatching faster and faster, Rynila headed for the controls and started switching out crystals, the liquid fire below began rising, burning all the eggs in the pit as it rose.
  • Hans picked up Darcy's body and they all fled back up the stairs as the boiling lava bubbled over the edge.
  • Fleeing the party took a wrong turn and ended up in an unfamiliar corridor.
  • They decided it was best to just leave Darcy here, she was literally dead weight after all.
  • Exploring the hall, they found strange glass alcoves set into the rock wall. Inside the foggy glass here humanoids, some perserved, others mummified and still others skeletons. Then they heard foot steps...
  • Following the sounds they found some of the glass alcoves busted open and then they were ambushed by a group of Proto-Shudfolk from the primordial age. 

  • Frighten, the Proto-Shudfolk chose to fight! They outnumbered the party and after a round or two of fighting, forced them to flee down the halls!
  • They found a door, forced it open, ran inside just before the rest of the Proto-Shudfolk could come through!
  • Looking around at their surroundings they felt this hall seemed familiar, as it was rounded like the hall near the Clockwork Serpent. Exploring they found another set of doors, and after a bit of acid spray to the face they manage to open it.
  • Inside was a long chamber with a great murals on the walls depicting a race of Serpent-Men all dressed in stylish robes while early man were depicted as enslaved. In the center of the chamber a green tinted metal gauntlet rested on a pedestal and behind it, between two statues of warrior serpent men, was a silver coiled snake. The silver snake's head was raised as if judging the party.
  • To some of the party's objections, Pinky picked up the gauntlet and placed it on his hand. Painfully, the scales dug into his flesh while visions of sliding through humid jungle forests, chasing, enslaving and slaughtering hairy man-things filled his mind.
  • Coming out of the trance he saw the silver coiled serpent in the back of the chamber and knew it was no mere trinket.
  • Raising his gauntlet hand, the metal serpent came to life, uncoiling and sliding to rest in his gauntlet hand. It was a magical relic, half sword, half whip!
  • They left the chamber and having found their bearings were prepared to leave this dark place when a shadowy form appeared out of the darkness of the ceiling to attack Rynila. The shadowy, ossified, cat-like demon swooped down on bat-like wings to snatch her, but the party fought it back until it disappeared again. They questioned what just happened, but could devise no clear answers...
  • When they found the exit the great clockwork serpent was waiting, but this time it did not attack. They discovered the bracelet Rynila took from the Serpent Man could command the machine. She used it to assist them in climbing out of the underground chamber (and took her dismay her new serpent pet couldn't come with her).
  • Back in the upper portion of the ancient temple they sealed off the entrance way and then hear screams from the village outside!
  • Running out to investigate they found many houses ablaze, women screaming, men attempting to fend off shadow demons from stealing their children!

To be continued in Chapter 4: The Farmhouse of Cosmic Horror!

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