Note~I’ve adjusted all the henchmen’s hit points to reflect their new status as 1st level henchmen. Also, I was wondering about exceptional abilities. In reading the Complete Pits & Perils rulebook, I noted that 2-in-6 peasants have some exceptional ability. I rolled this for each of the henchmen and the results are…
Goat Bently…is hardy…he has the constitution of a goat! He is older than the others in the company, but one tough old fellow.
Catamont Beerling is wise…he had the wisdom to leave Coot’s Mill behind, especially the evil influence of his mother. She works the tavern in Coot’s Mill and has connection to bandits in the area.
Meklin R’bonic is also wise…he is a mysterious foreign born warrior, older than the others but not as old as Goat. Dark skinned and quiet, he has the wisdom to observe quietly and act when the time is right.
Egg Barkley and Handsome Brune have no special abilities, but they are loyal and true companions.
So I will add these abilities to our current company…
Arden, a charismatic fighter, Martin, a wise cleric, Thane, a clever dwarf, and Corwin, a clever magician.
The group is lacking a real sneaky thief, but Thane is doing his best.
Day 61~Arden and Corwin do some trading with the merchants in the Keep. They decide to offer the sable coat to Sir Kent. It is a valuable prize and the Castellan is quite impressed with it. Corwin had the smarts to get it cleaned! Sir Kent will offer this as a gift for his wife, Lady Amy.
A few days pass and Arden and Company rest again and make preparations for their next adventure.
Martin offers 55sp more for the church he is building in Coot’s Mill. I estimated that a two-story wooden building would cost approximately 1500sp. [I am using a silver standard, so just substitue gp whenever I mention cost.] The building of the church hit a snag. The workers were needed to help their kin folk attend to harvest chores.
Day 65~Arden hires a wagon and horses and makes a foray to recover the weapons cache they had hidden. It takes two long days to get the weapons and return. No monsters were encountered and all came back safe and sound.
The total cache of weapons and arms were sold in part to the Provisioner and to the Castellan. [I figured resale of the items at 50% of their original price.] The company nets 838sp!
Corwin spends some time trying to read the cursed blade. He is still unaware of its curse but has learned that it is a magic item. He decides to offer it to any member of the company that wants it. [This won’t go well.]
[An interesting side note…when the cursed sword was found, I figured that Thane would be the first to handle it. I rolled a saving throw for him and he passed it! I also rolled saves for Meklin and Corwin and they both passed their saves! So, the cursed sword didn’t latch onto anyone just yet.]
Handsome Brune takes the sword. He will find out how bad the weapon is soon.
Day 68 ~ mild weather.
Arden and Company leave early in the morning with Sgt Tenning and the archers escorting. All are on horseback.
Encounter during the day? No.
They camp once again at the Overlook.
Night encounter? No.
Day 69 ~ The company approaches the Caves of Chaos. Egg and three archers guard the horses.
Encounter? Yes! In the dappled shade of the hillside, the company run across a small group of skeleton warriors! Their armor hangs from their raggedy frames. The company is surprised for a moment by the silent warriors. The skeletons close and attack with their rusted swords and spears.
Perhaps they sense the power of the cleric, but three of the skeletons move towards Martin to attack! One stabs at Martin hitting his armor!
The skeletons win initiative and Martin is struck once more!
Martin holds his holy symbol in the air and the skeletons flee from the company.
Question-Does the Company pursue the skeletons? No, but Martin will make preparations back at the Keep to confront them next time. Stocking up on holy water and asking the Curate for any other help they may give. The Company watches the skeletons flee up the hill and into a cave at the far end of the valley.
Under the stand of trees, they find another cave entrance on a lower level near the valley floor. Corwin decides to send Nicodemus into the cave to scout ahead. The familiar sneaks into the dark opening.
Nicodemus hears noise from the left tunnel–snapping sounds and perhaps gulping. The cat decides to go the right tunnel first. In this cave is a pool, the drip of water is heard. In the pool, Nicodemus spies several blind fish swimming lazily. He bats at them just missing one. Immediately, the cat hears a wet sound and jumps back as a gray sheet of goop falls from the ceiling. It strikes Nicodemus as it lands but fails to grab ahold of the cat. Nicodemus takes a heavy blow from the ooze. [Doing 2 points of damage!] The cat scats back out of the tunnel before any more things fall on his head.
Corwin observes this with a magical link to his familiar. Nicodemus shoots out of the cave and runs past his master to climb up a tree and sulk.
Corwin relates the events to the others. They will explore this cave very cautiously.
Thane and Arden enter first and listen. They also hear a noise from the left tunnel. They post Catamont and Meklin at the cave entrance with torches and oil just in case the ooze creeps their way. The others move down the left tunnel. Bones and dead leaves are scattered about in this area. The stench is overpowering. They decide to move on.
As they move farther into the cave, they hear a loud roar. In the torchlight, they see a hulking form that looks like a great grizzley bear covered in feathers. It stands on its hind legs and brandishes sharp claws and snaps with a vicious beak! An owlbear!
Arden and Company are ready for it! Thane throws his magic axe of returning…a critical hit! The axe bounces off the owlbear’s head causing the owlbear to lose it’s next attack!
Arden throws his spear…11! Arden adds a luck point to make it a 12. The owlbear takes two more points of damage.
Goat fires an arrow and hits the creature for two more points! The cavern is large enough for Arden to use his greatsword. They spread out as the creature charges. It targets Thane and attacks with claws and beak! One claw and the beak hit the dwarf. Thane takes 4 points of damage!
Arden swings his greatsword…but misses. Thane chops with his handaxe…misses. Handsome attacks with his cursed sword…hits! Surprisingly! Martin swings his two-handed morning star…misses! Goat readies an arrow but will wait, not wanting to hit the others. Corwin prepares a fire bolt spell but will also hold.
Handsome and Meklin both strike the owlbear. It is starting to bleed heavily, but has a little life yet. It strikes back at Handsome…only its beak hits the warrior. [2 points damage]
Initiative…both rolls are 1…simultaneous!
All of the Company hit! The owlbear strikes at Handsome…both claws slash the fighter [doing 4 more points! Handsome has 2 hp left. Good thing he wore his chainmail shirt!] The owlbear shrieks one last time and drops to the cave floor. It shudders once and is dead!
Martin heals Handsome, restoring 4 hit points.
The Company moves farther into the cave finding the owlbear’s nest. They find the half eaten corpse of a gnoll and searching through the nest they uncover a scroll. It is a scroll of protection from undead. Corwin will keep this, but the scroll is written to allow clerics to use it as well.
Question–Do any of the gray oozes leave their pool to investigate? FU die=2, thankfully no!
The Company search the other areas of the cave system for secret doors and find nothing, so they return to the entrance.
Question–Does Thane or Corwin (both are intelligent) have any knowledge about slimes or oozes? Thane has heard tales of them, but doesn’t know their weakness. Corwin does not know either.
In the torchlight, Thane can see three distince gray blobs. One hanging from the ceiling and two others near the pool. One begins a slow crawl towards Thane. The company launches oil and torches but the ooze crawls right through it. Arden throws his spear but misses. Thane throws his handaxe and it misses as well. The creature moves quicker towards the Company and Arden takes a swing at it with his greatsword. 12…a critical! He cuts it into it doing 3 points of damage. Arden looks in dismay as he holds up the smoking ruins of his greatsword! The creature’s acid melted the blade!
The creature rears back and slams at Arden barely missing him.
The rest of the Company retreat as Arden tries to slow the creature. The ooze strikes at Arden once more…an 11! Arden wisely spends 3 luck points to keep the creature from hitting him! He then turns to run out of the cave, but the ooze lashes out one more time battering his chainmail [doing 1 point of damage]. Arden rushes out of the cave and the others strip him out of his chainmail. The metal quickly liquifies before their eyes. His armor is ruined.
Thane notices that the stone of the cave didn’t appear to be damaged by the acid. He keeps this bit of information tucked away for future reference.
The Company decides to return to the Keep. Arden needs new armor and a new weapon. The Caves will still be here when they return another day.
Game notes–not much treasure gained this time, but some valuable information. The Company now knows of undead in the area and the cave they came from. They gained a valuable scroll of protection from undead and killed an owlbear. XP=70xp for the owlbear and 75xp for 5 skeletons. Total=145xp.