Trigger Warning: Spoilers, Fast Zombies, Extended Rest in a prison cell, and an exclusive cutscene.
There wasn’t any Thursday online group because someone fell ill, so it’s just my Encounters table here.
The heroes recovered from their impromptu Umbra Hulk encounter to find themselves in a lair above a trap door that has clearly seen a lot of use, judging from all the organic debris scattered about. I made the west door rusted shut—by now I’m not making things that easy; that door leads straight to the Temple of Black Earth—so the party headed over to the east door.
A door that someone Leroy Jenkined through.
Right into a crypt full of zombies.
My custom made fast zombies.
Needless to say, that little bugger booked it back to the party, with eight zombies running right on his heels. Laughter and Initiative rolls ensued.
They progressed through the main entry room with three Orogs and an Ogre, and found a pair of keys (I guess the monks believed in always having a spare key available, I know I do.) One of which opened the prison cells, whom they said that someone from the delegation (the same group that was lost in the outskirts of Beliard) is somewhere on the floor and needs rescuing. Once they led the party members out, the party in their infinite wisdom, decided that sleeping in the cells was a good idea.
I thought about Jurth meeting them when they woke up would be a good idea, but then I thought, it’s about 15 minutes left in the campaign, let’s have Quarbo and his friends deal with them. I would’ve put down the hurt with shatter if the party haven’t saved.
But in afterthought, I realized that I really wanted to clear the Sacred Stone Monastery of Cultists and monks because I want to use it for something else. In this encounter, I introduced in name, if not in person, a hero Lich named Renwick Caradoon. He’s a rare case that he hadn’t acquired lichhood not from necrotic magic, but from a mistaken potion from his brother. “We had a collective whoops together,” he had written in a book that he posted in his eventual tomb.”
He takes a role in this cutscene which I haven’t included because the Druid wasn’t there:
The monastery was quiet for the bear. Too quiet.
He could hear the commotion that was battle and he felt a tad disappointed in not being in it.
Then his senses perked up, he felt a connection with one of that party strengthen. The druid that befriended him. He knew that the Druid would need his help, his protection, and his company.
But as he bounded around the monastery, he couldn’t find a way in. All of the doors were closed shut, and even with his strength, he couldn’t crash one in.
But as he rounded a corner for the last time, wondering about giving up, he noticed a door being open for him. He went through.
The bear entered the older part of the monastery, detailed very different from the rest of the building. However, the bear didn’t notice anything except the effervescent scent of undeath. The lower part of a tower is fitted out as a laboratory, with work tables covered in alchemical apparatuses and shelves full of strange curios and dusty clay jars. The windows are bricked up, and cobwebs hand thick in the ceiling corners. The only light comes from glowing crystals placed on the walls and floating about in random locations.
The bear sniffed very cautiously at the ancient figure leaning back in his chair. He was taking a break from his tomes and notes with a Sudoku puzzle. He looks up at the bear, and although it was a face that is several centuries older than a human being should look like, there was no malice in this being’s ancient eyes. Just an acknowledgement of the bear’s existence.
“Your friends might need your help,” he said to the bear, who merely huffed. The bear looked around and found a staircase leading down.
“Yes, they’re down there.” The Lich said, as he pulled out something from a desk to his side, a glowing golden amulet. He got up and handed it to the bear. “Take this to them, it’ll come in handy.”
The bear thought about it for a moment. He sniffed at the amulet, and noticed that it wasn’t like the lich itself. Maybe the lich is powerful enough not to need it. He didn’t think about why such a being would just hand him something, but he did take the amulet in his mouth and bounded down the stairs.
The Lich just returned to his chair and continued his Sudoku puzzle.