A new group of adventurers begins exploration of Barrowmaze
This session was played on Thursday, June 24, 2011
Featuring the PCs:
The party met at The Brazen Strumpet. The PCs had heard rumors of strange creatures in the mist of the Barrowmoor. More importantly though, they heard rumors of riches and treasure in the Barrowmaze, a series of great tombs that lie beneath the moors. The PCs, dismissed the stories of strange creatures as the exaggerated fancies of farmers and peasants, scrounged together the lowliest, grimiest and ugliest hirelings they could find and set forth to the Barrowmaze.
Upon reaching the Barrowmaze, the party searched around several smaller empty tombs before entering the main barrow. As they descended the stairs of the main tomb, they entered a large, roughly circular room with a domed ceiling. There was nothing of interest in this room besides four large pillars and a pit that had a rope and pulley system rigged up to it. When the party approached the pit, the stench of death overwhelmed them. It is also interesting to note that the party heard the sound of stone grinding on stone from the depths, but only briefly.
The party tied ropes to the pillars and descended the pit, as there was nowhere else to go in the large domed room, and the pully system was rotting off its hinges.
Once the party gathered, Tymor used his keen half-elven eyes to scan the nearby hallways and rooms. This revealed frescos on the walls that depicted a large and complicated burial ritual, and many doors and turns in the tomb - maze-like indeed. However, it did not take his keen senses long to notice that this tomb was unnaturally silent. There were no rat sounds, or any sounds of any kind but the party pressed on.
The party searched two rooms. In the second room, Tymor bravely stepped in by himself and this is when disaster struck. Tymor stepped on a pressure plate that sealed him inside the room, and at the same time opened a secret door on the opposite end revealing seven skeletons! Luckily, Tymor was on guard. He searched but found no way out of the room and braced for attack in a corner of the room. On the other side of the descended-wall, the party searched frantically for a way to free their comrade. Burton stumbled upon a loose rock which upon further inspection revealed a lever to open the door. Once the door was open the party funneled in and a raging battle ensued. The party lined up on the far side of the room making a four man line. They engaged the skeletons - four man rank to four undead rank.
There are two important things to note about this battle. One: Janis is a two-faced coward preferred to guard the rear. Two: Every single man-at-arms perished (but no PCs died, huzzah!… oh the torchbearer survived too). Janis cowered stood boldly at the other end of the hall while the rest of the party fought desperately for their lives. He claimed to be guarding the rear, but even the low-brow, grave robbing party knew better. Janis charged in "valiantly" when there were two skeletons left and chinked the skull of one with an arrow. To add insult to injury he looted all of Arix's equipment, who was one of the men-at-arms that might have survived if Janis joined the fray earlier (Greg: a heinous lie)…
After the battle, the party returned to town to recruit and resupply, receiving withering glares and comments from the townsfolk while they were at it. Apparently townsfolk tend to get upset when you get all their citizens killed, who would have thought? After the party refueled they headed back to the Barrowmaze. This time the party took a left down a corridor and ended up in a area with several small crypts. The party searched the first crypt and found nothing but an ominous inscription on the far wall "Up then down". Finding no use for the inscription or anything of note they moved to the next door. The next door was locked so the party moved into the third crypt. Here there was a stone tablet with strange writing. As the mage went in to try and decipher the writing, an apparition appeared and yelled "Don't touch the tablet!!!" Bungle, Arcus and Wargash were so stricken with fear by this that they ran deep into the crypt. The party searched their way back to the main domed room and found the cowering Halfling and lulled him back into sanity. The party then proceeded back into the maze and searched down the hallways for the mage and his torch bearer. The party passed a bricked-up archway and an empty room where it appeared that something had broken out of. They found the Arcus some ways down the hall, by some alcoves where gold and a fine dagger were found. The party wished to flee and abandon the torch bearer now that the mage had been found, But Tymor's lawful convictions dictated that he leave no man behind. It was around this point the session came to an end.
Here is a picture of me (Alex) tinkering with the dungeon: