When we last left our heroes, they had found the main entrance to Rappan Athuk, the deadliest dungeon in the land. Valestar (Marco) continues their tale.
7th day of Calistril, 4716 AR
I have not updated this journal for far too long. I hope that I will remember to write down what is happening in our deadly adventure.
After killing the “scary” black skeleton that had lunged at us, we lift and found a peculiar section of the stone behind it. It looked like a square was carved into the stone, but the crack was deep enough to stick one of the skeleton’s short swords down. Using that, One Punch Man and I used our superior strength to lever the stone out. It slid out with a loud clunk, and we all looked down to see what it had been covering.
A staircase led down, and at the bottom was a fresh handprint of blood on the wall. In the gloomy musk, we ventured carefully forward and found a door. We opened it, to find yet another long hallway. It led to a small door in the floor that opened to a hole in the ground, that had a door on one side of the wall. We opened that door up, and kept going. This is where things started to get dangerous. We were greeted with an aromatic stench of feces, and it was greatly displeasing to our Strix, who has yet to tell us his name, who made rude noises in what I assume is strix. We moved on, the hallways turning into a rough cut tunnel, with a side passage leading off to the left.
At the end was a room. We went inside to find piles of bones, with green slime and acid burns in them. We looked about, to find a large green slime on the ceiling. One Punch Man remembered that his old mentor had once said that slimes don’t like fire, and used his Elemanfal Affult as he called it, to burn it away. Some dripped on his hand, and our new party member, a shaman named Oogaboogawooga, had to heal him. We moved on.
We later backtracked to the rough stone walls and went down the side passage to find a room with an empty coffin and a door blocked by rubble.
Returning to the room in the main part of the level, we saw a stairwell in the wall of this room, and we proceeded down it. But before I could take a step, Oogaboogawooga yelled at me to stop. He had noticed a trapped step. Death from Afar demonstrated it to me. It would collapse, and steel spikes on the edge (that were coated in poison) would stab into your foot. We put a piece of wood down to step on, and moved on.
We found a room full of broken furniture, and an intact table with a deck of cards on top. Upon closer inspection, we found that the ace of spades was the top card, lying face up, and it was too shiny to be normal. We looked closely, and saw that it was in fact a thin layer of poison, spread on the card like butter on toast. We removed the poison, and I decided to keep the deck of cards to help further furnish our spartan house. We also found a skeleton in a throne-like chair, with a broken statue of a horse beside it. Oh, the unneeded destruction of innocent furniture, how it saddens me.
Leading out the back of the room was a pit that opened just as I stepped down, but my fast reflexes saved me from a 20-foot fall. We had the Strix fly a rope across, and we all went across. We found (surprise!) yet another hallway, which we meandered down. It led to a large cave-like room that smelled even worse that the rest of the dungeon. Inside was even more broken furniture (again, a tragedy. Someone made these poor tables and chairs, and now they are just junk in an underground dungeon. So crude. Heavens, I am starting to sound like Vizair. Wait, what happened to him? And where did this crazy shaman-healer guy come from? I need to look into this more. Sorry for deviating from the story so much). Then our crazy shaman noticed a not very well hidden ‘secret’ door that was in the wall, and the horrendous smell seemed to be coming from behind it. We carefully opened it up, and found a short tunnel leading to 2 holes in the floor, and a shiny, pristine white privy. I immediately knew something foul was afoot when I tried to detect evil, and found that the perfect loo, was in fact evil! It then proceeded to shapeshift into a large mound of feces, and I swung at it with my magical sword. It then tried to eat my sword, then dropped it.
I remembered a warning I had received from my old church when they heard I was venturing to Rappan Athuk:
“Valestar my friend, I may not know much of Rappan Athuk, but I have heard the rumors. Heed these words, they may save you. Don’t go down the well, and beware the smelly one.”
Those were the words of Elder Brim, one of the retired crusaders (which are rare), who had helped train me. He had also given me quite a bit more information about ‘the smelly one,’ but the general gist of it was this: it is immune to almost anything you throw at it, and will swallow you whole and suffocate you if it can. Run. And so we made a carefully planned tactical retreat, which involved, as Death From Above would say, GTFOing.
We slammed the door behind us and fled and decided to return home, even though we hadn’t found much treasure. We walked into the night, and made camp on the Coast Road. We set watches, and went to sleep, hoping the patrols on the Coast Road would scare off anyone who wanted to interrupt our rest. But as me and Lily’s Sister’s (a.k.a. Anna’s) skeleton stood out in the night, I noticed a hulking shape trying its best to sneak up on us. It had sneakily smashed through not one, not two, but three trees, and I recognized it as an ogre.
I yelled a battle cry and charged it, my sword held high. I landed a solid blow, and my steed Orion ran up with me and smashed the cursed beast with his hooves, while the rest of our party woke up and noticed a quartet of bugbears trying to ambush us from the other side. My horse and I slew the ogre, while Strix fired arrows from his tree, and Anna blasted one with a Scorching Ray of fire, incinerating it. One Punch Man charged them and landed a solid punch to one, but the others ganged up on him, and he was forced to move back, but by then they had been slain. One had run, but Orion bolted after him, and squashed him with a hoof to the heart. I healed One Punch Man, and we went back to sleep.
We awoke to a patrol galloping up to us, and asking about the dead bugbears and ogre. I explained to them how they had ambushed us in the middle of the night and how they had paid the price. We talked about our adventures in Rappan Athuk, which at first they didn’t believe, until I showed them my scars, and our maps. They said their goodbyes, and we set off for home.
I wish I could write more, but I am running out of paper. Until I find more, I will have to rely on others to record our adventures.
-Valestar Ekhart (Marco)
Death from Afar, hobgoblin slayer 5
Lily’s Sister (a.k.a. Anna), aasimar necromancer 4
One Punch Man, suli brawler 4
Oogaboogawooga, aasimar shaman 4
Valestar Ekhart, aasimar paladin 7
Strix, strix monk 4