Friday, 4 March 2011

Dark Sun Marauders (Season 1, Chapter 6)

These posts are copies of the summary emails I write for our DnD group.  The current adventure is a return to the world of Dark Sun.  Whilst effort was taken to follow Dark Sun canon, there are undoubtedly bits where our story strays or contradicts stuff.  We're aware, and not playing to create new canon, but to have fun.  So, read on and enjoy!

Toramund had provided you with good information, for you had found your way through the Canyon of Gothay to the vault of Darom Madar easily enough, and though the restless dead within it were not happy with your presence, you persevered, and discovered the hidden treasure - Rhotan Vor would be pleased, his life searching could now end!

As Gretchan undid the last arcane sigil binding the protective wards to the silver wall, it slid downwards into the ground, revealing a short passageway which in turn lead to a small room. Via the flicker of torchlight, you can barely make out chests, racks of weapons, and other amazing valuables piled around the chamber.  The glint of gold - real gold! - drew the party into the chamber, and almost too late did they see the final guardian.  Standing in the middle of the vault, was a withered, ragged figure in rotting finery, it's gaunt features dreadful and unearthly.

Tak-tha and Kuoroar! charged forward, leaving Gretchan and Garidias to face the wight's other attack: Zadusic possessed.  From behind, the tiefling fired down arrows upon them, quickly sending the young girl to the floor, bleeding badly.  Her eladrin companion of so many years didn't stop for her, instead charging in to confront the cause of the ranger's betrayal.  The battle there was fierce, Darom being as focused in death as any dwarf was in life, and playing with the minds of the others - especially Beren, with whom he shared some blood.  Turning the party against itself was not his final trick, though!  As he was destroyed, the party moved to rest, electing to leave those unconscious that way, and not waist their magic on them...and then Darom returned, with a vengeance!  At less than half strength, and with some of their number still down, the final fight was very fierce, and the treasure of the Madar Dwarves was almost lost again...but they managed to prevail in the end.

Not wanting to leave the treasure just yet, everyone started sorting through the great wealth - even their smaller-than-desired percentage of this wealth was still a small fortune each, more than they would have ever thought possible to set their eyes on.  Only Gretchan had seen anything approaching the wealth she now wore on and held in her hands; but that had never held the magical power that her gloves and staff contained.

Electing to rest there the night, instead of moving out and alerting Rhotan, Zadusic watched over them.  The tiefling still felt uneasy around the party - especially Garidias, who had not forgiven his magically-caused betrayal - and wanted to prove his worth.  He had no sleep that night, and remained behind the next morning, as the team moved off to search out more of the vault.

Apparently, not only Darom had been so strong to remain behind with a vengeance; his wife, Dynera Madar, and their two children, Lyos & Taran, still clung to a semblance of a presence.  All three were now phantoms, wraiths lurking around a Sorrowstone, which was itself a trap for those who might happen across it's path.  Many fears and sorrows were met that morning, and a lot of crying was done amongst all, until the stone could be destroyed, and the wraiths all dispersed back to wherever they were meant to rest.

The final stop before returning to the surface was the tunnel under the main hallway's floor.  Feeling that it would not be a difficult challenge, and that Rhotan and his men really should be alerted soon, Beren returned to the caravans, whilst the others moved into the tunnel.  It lead into a cave, mostly natural, but with enough scratch-marks to cause them to think that their earlier suggestions of ankhegs were going to be correct.  Indeed, they wandered right into a brooding next, with a pair of adult ankhegs trying to protect their young.  After Tak-tha was dragged away, Garidias made a valiant stand, giving Kuoroar! the time and courage to take out the dangerous pair of overly large burrowing creatures, even as the warlord was himself dragged away.  Gretchan narrowly managed to save him, and remove him from the male ankheg's pincers before it retreated down a hole, and the threat was dealt with, ensuring safe passage for the workers to remove the remaining treasure from the vault.  All that was left, now, was to go and meet with Rhotan Vor.  And, at some point, have a rest!

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