Conquering the Barbarian Altanis: Session 64


Character Class Description
Rashomon Elf level 2 A dangerous looking elf.
Llyfed Elf level 3 Thin and balding elf whom also happens to be Rashomon's friend.
Brent Goose Cleric level 5 An eccentric, but charismatic, cleric seeking the Holy Bird. White robes and black cloak conceal his tall, frail and anemic frame. His eagle-like nose is exposed for all to see.
Oberon Fighter level 3 A tall, supple hunter adorned with bones and horns of his prey.
Derennan Dwarf level 3 A dwarf hailing from Western Wastes.
Hist Fighter level 1

Redleaves 11th, Airday

“Is everyone back at full strength?”

“Seems so!”

“Then let's head back to that Shang-Ta temple.”

“How about we don't follow the trail this time?”

“Sound like a good idea.”

“We should cut across, straight up to the summit.”

“Sounds like a great plan!”

What could go wrong?

Redleaves 12th, Waterday

Oberon successfully led the party up the scenic Ghinarian Hills. They spotted a tall, totem-like stone idol of perched eagle on one of the summits.

A watch later and they reached the temple's entrance. They approached from the east, stopping some two hundred feet away.

The lay of the land was as follows.

The party stood on a plateau overlooking the sea to the east, with temple to their west.

The temple, a windowless stone box sixty feet wide and long and twenty feet tall, seeming chiseled into the hilltop was straight in front of them. Staircase carved into the rock led to its base. It was a rather sharp incline. Shang-Ta idol towered atop the stone building. Its left wing was broken off.

A simple stone building rested atop a twenty feet tall escarpment to their right. Behind it was another escarpment, also roughly twenty feet tall.

To their left was another escarpment, roughly forty feet tall.

“Let's check the smaller building first...”

The party led by the elven duo, Llyfed and Rashomon, carefully inched towards the weirdly shaped house. The window openings revealed filthy insides. Heck, even outsides were filthy, nay, desecrated with streaks of soot and dried faeces.

The doors fell down at the first sign of provocation. Little of value was found in the dilapidated building. Several broken figurines of eagles were piled in the corner, covered in excrement.

“How about you stay here, and watch our back?”

“I'm not staying here alone!”

The party descended back to the plateau and went for the broad staircase leading to the temple.

Walking closer to the idol they could see how damaged it really was. Cracks and fissures covered its stone body, one whole wing was knocked off, and the beak looked chipped as well.

Llyfed, Brent, Oberon, and Hist saw the statue spring to life, crying out in pain as darkness engulfed it and a sea of deformed humans plucked at its wings and body.

Rest of the party looked in confusion as the aforementioned adventurers stood like paralysed, mumbling nonsense whilst staring at the sky.

Once everyone was back to their senses, they decided to follow narrow stairs leading to their right, to second tier plateau surrounding the peak.

By now everyone had noticed noticeable lack of vegetation and wildlife. Everything was unnaturally quiet. Patches of ground were soft, covered with sickly purple grass.

A stone building lied to the west, overlooking north-west portion of Ghinarian hills. Dorn was left behind to guard the stairs, while the others, led by Llyfed, approached the building.

Simple wooden doors were shut closed. The window shutters were closed as well.

Too focused on sneaking up to the house, Llyfed failed to notice that he was sinking more and more with each step. Three large insects, reminiscent of large balls with legs, oozing purple ichor ambushed him from the ground, surprising the elf.

Llyfed's superior armour class combined with Rashomon's Sleep spell saved his life. The party quickly dispatched the giant ticks, and then rolled them off the escarpment.

Investigating the house revealed little besides more foul waste, a primitive painting of a bull's head, and sacks of something rotten. Entrance was booby trapped. The trap was obvious and shoddily made, so Derennan disposed of it with little trouble.

“This must be the resting place of those cannibal barbarians we've encountered a week ago.”

Something of value was found when Derennan broke into a locked drawer of a heavy desk. There he found 211 silver pieces as well as velum scroll. Unrolling it uncovered what looked to be a regional map with Xs at specific spots. Compass rose was stamped in bottom right corner.

“Let's get to that temple!”

As they approached Derennan suffered the same vision as Llyfed, Brent, Oberon, and Hist did. Simultaneously, Hist, Brent, and Oberon were momentarily pulled into hellish landscape as giant eagle screeched whilst naked men broke its wings and carved its body.

Elves used the opportunity to investigate the base of the idol. An arrangement of broken iron spikes, mallets, and sledgehammers were strewn about. The broken stone wing laid on the south side, effectively blocking passage.

Once everyone recovered, the party made their way around the ledge by the temple's base. There they found two smooth stone doors. Listening revealed nothing.

Hist forced his way in, nearly falling on his face as large stone doors swung open. They swung shut as quickly as they opened.

“Huh? A visitor?” someone asked him in pitch black “Have you come to pay respects?” the person sounded like they have a lot of difficulty speaking.

Rest of the party barged in, inserting crowbar under the stone doors as to prevent them from closing. Sudden burst of daylight blinded the man whom had been speaking to Hist.

What a sore sight he was! Naked, scarred, with sickly green, almost transparent skin revealing his atrophied muscles. He reeked of rot and refuse. The man was sitting on a stone bench by the south wall.

“Aaaaa!” he screamed as he ran to his right, into the dark corridor.

The party spent a moment to investigate the chamber. There was little to find besides stone bench and narrow corridor in the south-east corner. Derennan could spot that this was a finely constructed temple, despite its extremely simple lines.

Pushing on, down the dark corridor revealed a t-junction. Hist took the lead. Peeking into the unnatural darkness to his right was rewarded by an intensely violent vision. The giant eagle, now pinned to the ground by countless deformed figures, was mercilessly beaten and stoned. Finally, a silhouette of giant man with bull's horns appears. It plucks out the eagle's eyes.

Hist finds himself unable to see as streams of blood pour out from his eye sockets.

As this happens, Dorn yells to the party. A naked man with rotten teeth and crazy eyes is standing outside. The man giggles as he pulls out the crowbar. Doors slam shut as Derennan curses. The dwarf runs up to the wall and desperately seeks for an opening mechanism, finding none.


“Ignore that junction and push on!”

Adventurers interpret that as splitting.

Dorn and Brent stay behind to watch the doors whence they cometh from. Rashomon and Derennan stand by the junction. Llyfed, Hist, and Oberon move all the way to the end of the corridor and then turn, pass another junction and stop by yet another turn.

At that moment everyone but suffers from violent visions, losing their chance to act. Hist begins frothing from his mouth as he cries blood once more. Confused and enraged, he assaults Llyfed. The elf manages to deflect all the blows and calms down young warrior, despite suffering himself.

Suddenly a small tit lands on Brent's shoulder.

“Save your flock. Or perish with them.”

Brent feels warm and fuzzy for a second. Heavy fog that clouded his mind seemed lifted. Knowing without knowing, he realised Kadrim has blessed him with the following prayers: Light, Protection from Evil, Speak with Animals, and Bless.

While Llyfed was busy evading Hist's attacks, a naked figure with pale green sickly skin emerged from the dark corridor and flailed at Oberon. Fighter deflected the first blow; deflected the second blow; but failed to evade naked man's bite; he fell to the ground, stiff as a board.

Dorn turned around to face another naked man, deflecting all attacks.

“Will you come to my aid at once!” he yelled back at the party.

Brent casts Bless on area just south of him. Himself, Rashomon and Derennan were affected.

A tremendous bull roar filled the temple, shaking it to its very core. The roar reverberated off the walls, like it was coming from all the directions. Rashomon picked up that it came from the corridor to his left.

And then walls begun crying blood.

“I think I screwed us.” Brent giggled.

Derennan took a shot a the green man attacking Oberon. His arrow landed well enough to send the creature fleeing, leaving a trail of purplish droplets. Dorn slayed the nude attacker.

“Good riddance!”

Rashomon cast Magic Missile, just in case something big comes around the corner.

Hist and Llyfed propped paralysed Oberon against the wall. Then they proceeded west, to the end.

Hist reached the corner and peeked around. To his sharp right was a diagonal corridor covered with hundreds of copper pieces reflecting bits of torchlight. Main corridor extended further north. Hist could see another t-junction just at the edge of his torchlight.

Derennan suddenly felt sick to his stomach. Like great weight had been placed on him. He braced for charge.

Llyfed run up to join with Hist only to find a naked man, frothing from his mouth, silver eagle hanging around his neck, crouching on the fighter sprawled on the ground.

Man's chest was completely open, the wound roughly in the shape of a bull's head. Llyfed could see straight into the gaping hole. There was no heart.

Naked man dragged Hist into darkness.

Llyfed followed.

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