View Full Version : They Rose from the Darkness Beneath...
10-16-2012, 07:52 PM
'Neath the headsman's sword they fell... Man, woman, and child...
'Fore the headsman's sword they were driven... Beast, abomination, and horror...
'Hind the headsman's sword they were sealed... By purest soul, and gold...
The Sacrifice... Her words echoing down the corridor as the final stone was set
"Hold now and forever, let not a one escape..."
And then the stone was set, and the last gleaming sun's ray was banished from that place...
And the Headsman held before the gate, shrouded in darkness, for the barest moment, before the seal broke...
He felt it in his bones, and the back of his teeth, that shiver of shattering glass, and knew that all was for naught...
Behind him the gate had not yet been breached, but it's strength was gone, lost as a whisper on the wind.
"... Let not a one escape..."
10-17-2012, 03:30 AM
The gateway chamber to the Great Seal was meant to be the final bulwark against unclean horror & foolish tomb robber alike. The end of a vast labyrinth of cunning traps & obfuscating enchantments, even with these prodigious defenses it is to be expected that some few might brave the dangers to reach the final gate over the long millennial wait.
Here their bones lie in state, skulls to the left, bones to the right. The once magnificent hieroglyphs & runic script of the walls have since been obliterated ages past, scarred by miscast spells cast in fevered desperation, gouged by pitched battles, cracked by the restless movement of the earth.
Standing vigil over this grim tableau like a monument to an unknown God of Death, the hooded, armored figure clutches tight the instrument of it's sacred duty; an ancient blade untouched by the eons. The chamber & it's silent occupant seem to convey a single, inescapable truth:
None Shall Pass
Yet even now twin pin points of crimson light flicker in the depths of the executioner's hood. Unholy vitality once again floods the ancient bones, & bearing the incalculable weight of ages, the warrior raises his head.
10-17-2012, 05:48 AM
Dust falling from battered armor, the sentinel turns to the gate, untouched all these years, & with steady, inexorable force pulls it free exposing the catacombs beyond.
Beneath his cloak the sanguine light smolders, regarding the stygian depths ahead. A long moment passes, dust settling once again. Until the silence is disturbed by the eerie clicks of skeletal hands grasping steel.
Passing through the gate without so much as looking back, the guardian leaves his ancient post, to wander once more on his endless quest.
10-19-2012, 12:00 AM
For the Headsman:
Passing through the gate, you delve ever deeper into the labrynth... You know the way, you remember how it was built. Through your silent vigil, the eons passed as minutes, and little has changed... But there... New tunnels have been wrought, mined through the earth by the sealed in search of other ways to escape the pit to which they'd been banished... To no apparent avail... But the passages are vacant now.
"Kristophan..." a voice whispers...
You stop, the power of your name tingling like needles across your bones...
"... Praise be, your vigil persists... We are broken, but hope yet remains... The defilers fates chose, but one remains... Protect him..."
The Sacrifice fades away, and with the last whisper of her voice, you hear a scruffing shuffle from a thick patch of fungus... Approaching, you find a short humanoid. It's badly mutilated, but alive, and waking up... It is clearly not one of the sealed... A dwarf..? Perhaps?
You jerk awake in a searing wash of pain. It's pitch black, and your bad eye stings and weeps as you try to see... You are laying on a scratchy mattress, or so it feels at first. Peering through the darkness, you see it is infact a large patch of fungus...
... Your face hurts, and you cannot feel your left arm... And... Your beard is missing..?
As you try to roll over, you catch sight of a visage that chills you to the bone...
A figure stands over you, still and silent as stone, clad in dark plate and grasping a massive greatsword... But one such as yourself cannot fail to recognize the headsman's cowl covering it's crown...
10-19-2012, 12:24 AM
Murgan rolls over, instinctively checking he still has his weapons and testing his extremities for anything worse than bruising. Despite his lack of adherence to traditional dwarven values, he finds the loss of his beard very disconcerting. It was his beard. He's had it forever. Who the hell took it? He'll gut them. Havn't had a fall this bad since I slipped from a window on the Tower of Swords. I could still move then, though. Looks like I havn't broken anything. Thank Abbathor. I ever make it back to a temple, I'll tithe a fat sack of gold to you, Trove Lord.
He looks up, spies the armored figure, and freezes. He briefly reconsiders if he's even still alive... this grim figure seems like the sort of thing that people are supposed to be greeted with upon death. He forces himself to relax, stall for time, check he can still move.
"Hope this weren't your patch of fungus, headman? Got yourself a little garden down here? I guess even executioners gotta eat." he drawls casually, slowly moving to a sitting position and adjusting his jerkin, surreptitiously making sure he has a knife within easy reach.
10-19-2012, 12:46 AM
Though the armor is ancient & battered, the blade is a study in the sword smiths art: crafted entirely of adamantite, elven script & obscure glyphs grace the length of the naked steel. Even through pain & dim vision alike, the inner dwarf admires the martial beauty of the instrument: the edge honed past invisibility...there is no doubt to the weapons single, terrible purpose.
The inner Rogue however, always practical, notes the priceless star sapphires set into the hilt.
Regardless, the silent knight may as well be carved from stone. Only the flickering pin points of crimson deep within the hood imply it is anything other than a statue.
Watching the sublime light of the living suffuse the injured defiler, Kristophan is content to wait. Should the light begin to flicker, I will plan on relocating him to another chamber.
10-19-2012, 12:53 AM
As you check yourself over, you find that the phrase 'whole and unbroken' no longer applies to you...
The reason you could not feel your left arm, is because it, like your beard, is also missing... Severed at the elbow by a clean, surgical cut that has been delicately sewn shut... Bizzare, crystaline growths protrude from the wound.
Your skin too, has taken on an unhealthy, rough, almost scaly texture...
Your face sears white hot at your touch... Raw flesh... It wasn't just your beard they took... you've been skinned...
You thought you were ugly before...
Please apply the Fungal Template to your character, and choose a mutation.
The Fungal Template
Type: Change to “Aberration”
Hit Dice: Change all current and future hit dice to D8 if class HD are lower.
Gains Darkvision: 60ft if it didn't already have it.
Light Sensitive: -2 to all attack rolls & saving throws within bright light.
Barkskin: +4 Natural Armor bonus
Natural Weapons: Bite attacks deal 1d4 or increase in damage by 1 die category if they were already present.
Fast Healing: Each round the subject recovers a number of HP equal to half it's Hit Dice (max of 10),
Necrophage: The subject gains the memories of any thing it eats: Make a Will Save (DC: 10 + Target Creatures Hit Dice) when ever this effect takes place. Failure results in 1 temporary Wisdom damage, & the memories are muddled & dreamlike. Success reveals the memories flawlessly.
For every 4 HD the subject gains a Mutation. Provided are some examples of mutations.
Spores: You spread the fungus everywhere you go. All creatures within 30ft must succeed at a Fortitude Save (DC: 10+Hit Dice) or suffer 1D4 Con Damage, and potentially become carriers of the Fungus themselves.
Energy Resistance: 10 +the target's Con. Modifier, select one type per Mutation
Spell Resistance: 10 +the target's Con. Modifier.
Psychic Resonance: Gain +1 to your Psion Level
Crystalline Limb: The crystal growth deals 1d8 Slashing/Piercing damage, has a +4 Strength for attacks with the limb only, x2 Critical on 19-20. Psychic characters may shape the limb at will.
Death Burst: The subject develops a hunchback vaguely translucent & filled with noxious pus & poisonous crystalline growths. At will, the subject can voluntarily explode, dealing 5d6 + 1d6 per Hit Die to a 30' radius (Reflex Half) Anyone damaged by this attack must also make a Fortitude save v.s. Poison (DC: 10 + Subject's HD, Initial: 1d6 Con., Secondary: 2d6 Con. + 1 Charisma Drain).
10-19-2012, 04:11 PM
"...Wh-what are... where's my arm? WHERE'S MY RUTTING ARM?!"
Murgan's veneer of calm abruptly leaves him, and he kips up rapidly, grabbing for the strange ornate key-axe at his side
"You BASTARD! What have you done to me?! I'll kill you!" he shrieks. He seems on the verge of attacking, only his profoundly altered state and the fact that he's unsure of his new physical limitations causing him to delay from immediately laying in to the tall, imposing warrior out of anger and fear.
10-19-2012, 10:25 PM
Adjusting stance ever so slightly, the armored figure tilts it's head, seeming to taste the rage & pain in Murgan's cry as it echoes into the catacombs...
Into the black depths below...
One hand leaving the hilt, the silent warrior points at the tunnel beyond, & again ceases all movement. Beckoning? Commanding?
None can say...
10-19-2012, 10:54 PM
Murgan stares up at the headsman, a mad look in his murky eyes. One is bloodshot with a viscous scar rent across it, the other is yellow and rheumy.
He waits a moment for the headsman to react in any other way, his axe hand trembling a little. He stares into it's veil, wondering how long it's been watching over him. A golem, maybe?
He glances over his shoulder for half a second, checking the way behind him is clear, and then takes several steps away from the headsman. He slams the strange axe down into the ground in front of him, and watches the headsman warily as he digs around in his pocket for something, seemingly poised to grab the axe if the figure moves to attack.
He produces a small steel mirror and raises it before him, using it to examine his face while keeping one eye on the silent watcher. He checks himself over, then moves the mirror to the side, trying to see the back of his head. He tries to fight down his panic, even as he yearns to hit something, anything, that might be responsible for what's happened to him.
Alright. Alright. So my stump don't hurt much, I must've been out for a while. Drugged, mebbe. Some crazy took a scalpel to me, who knows why. This is fixable, though. I can still move. Still fight. Not bleeding any. I got the goblin's healing potions. Got enough gold stuffed in my pack to pay a priest to give my arm back and set me to rights, and still have enough left over to take it easy for a while. The others are probably looking for me; I'll find them, and then we can find the crazy doc and put him to the sword. Be nice to watch that bastard die... maybe I'll take his arm, too, eh? I can still make it.
Murgan passively senses how deep he is and compares it to how deep he was before, wondering how far he fell and therefore how far above him the rest of the party is. He looks up at the headsman, pocketing his mirror and retrieving his axe.
"So what's your game? Can you speak? You have any part of this?" he says, moving the shoulder of his missing arm.
10-20-2012, 12:03 AM
Unmoving, as if it will point the way till the end of time, silence is the only answer to Murgan's question...which is perhaps an answer unto itself.
10-20-2012, 02:14 AM
In the mirror, were it not for your eyes, you wouldn't even recognize yourself. Your face is a mass of scabby raw flesh and fungal growths, where time has tried to heal the wounds, but there is no skin to heal... The scar over your one eye remains only because, when you recieved it, the cut was deep enough to cut into the facia and muscle tissue beneath the skin...
The skin on your neck is whole, after a fashion, right up to the line of your jaw, where it ends in a straight, clean, surgical cut... Absently, you recognize the incision line as an almost textbook guide on where to open a man's throat...
The cut circles your face, leaving both your scalp and your ears untouched, peeling off only the skin covering your face.
Feeling out your depth in the embrace of the earth around you, you understand that you have fallen a long, long way... Just shy of half a mile, if you wanted to be exact about it... You cannot immagine how you survived.
Glancing upwards, you note that there is no hole in the ceiling through which you could have fallen, so you must have been moved... For what purpose, you can only guess at, though you might draw a few conclusions from the physical changes you have experianced...
Regardless of all that, besides the pain in your raw face, you feel remarkably hale and hearty. You are not wounded, and not really even bruised... You can only guess at how much time has passed since your fall, must have been at least a few hours... Or days... Or Months? ... Years?
You remeber the Minotaur as if the encounter was only moments ago, but who can say for sure...
10-21-2012, 07:11 PM
Murgan stares, agape. He runs a finger along the scar of his throat, disbelieving. He looks back up at the hooded figure, and smirks, baring his teeth inside his raw face.
"Well, aren't we a pair. Some say women like scars. What do you think? Are fancy noble ladies going to ask me to dance?"
He pockets the mirror, and surreptitiously checks his undergarments as he does so. He doesn't understand how he survived having his throat cut, and a wild thought occurs to him that he might actually be a walking dead; he knows that dead men often vent their bowels, and so he checks to see whether or not he messed his breeches with all the dignity that a young dwarf can muster.
He stands, retrieves his axe, and nods to the headsman. "I'm ready. Lead on, then."
10-21-2012, 08:22 PM
Your breeches, while being far from clean, are as yet unfilled by excrement.
Further evidence of your continued living is drawn from your heavily working lung capacity, and the steady beat of your heart.
10-22-2012, 12:00 AM
Coming to life at the words, the Headsman slips into the catacombs once more, a series of faint clicks accompanying the movement. Walking softly as he does so, it is clear that he does not wish to be heard by whatever might lurk in the dungeon. Regardless, it seems he knows the way.
Unless another exit is apparent, Kristophan will lead Murgan back the way he came, to the primary entrance. If a tunnel sloping upwards becomes available, even a sheer one, he may try that as well
10-22-2012, 12:09 AM
Murgan moves behind the hooded figure, noting his quiet footfalls and moving softly himself.
I knew it understood Common. Probably not a golem, then. Not a talker, either. Wish the damned thing would tell me where I am or how I got here.
Murgan keeps track of his relative depth, wondering whether they are ascending or descending.
10-22-2012, 09:12 PM
Down the inky black passages the silent knight leads on. The halls are silent but for the odd, almost boney, click that accompanies his movement, and the quiet pad of your soft boots...
At length, you pass through a narrow, but ornate, gateway, wrought entirely of gold and mithryl. A short ways further on, the passage ends in a massive pile of rock and debris... a cave in.
For the Headsman:
You don't recall this particual geological event, but the earth shifted frequently over the intervening millenia, and while the builders carved the structure to survive such events, there are limits to even the most masterous crafts... Perhaps the seal's fall was inevitable, even without the defilers' intervention... Perhaps that is why this one must be protected...
There were neumerous offshooting passages as you returned, all leading deeper into the pit. Regardless, with the seal lifted, you don't expect the pit to hold the sealed for long, and if they've escaped, perhaps you can follow their path.
10-23-2012, 11:53 AM
For long moments the Headsman simply regards the caved in tunnel...perhaps reminiscing or even perplexed that it should be that way. At one point he pulls at some of the stones, as if he might tunnel through or even move the figurative mountain, one stone at a time.
Eventually he seems to come to his senses, turning back the way you came with resolute determination. With a broad gesture, he seems to indicate that you should take anything you find useful if you have not done so.
Judging by the way he quietly re-enters the tunnels, sword drawn & held ready, the way ahead will be difficult indeed...
10-25-2012, 03:25 AM
Returning whence you came, you deeper into the depths of the catacombs...
The headsman knows his way, but things have changed behind the seal since it was drawn closed, and many and more new passages and chambers have been hollowed out...
Onward and downward you proceed, and while the Headsman seems not to notice the slight change in the air, Murgan notes a singularly putrid stench, hardly noticable at first, wafting up the passage...
The smell grows stronger as you proceed, becoming almost overwhelming, when you suddenly become aware of the sound of crackling fire, and boiling water... soon followed by agonized and wretched screams...
... Ahead, light pours from a gap in the passage, and creeping forwards, you find a horrid scene within...
... A great vat, filled to brimming with a fetid, boiling alchemical solution... Tables and cases line the room, filled with all manner of bizarre components, and strange creatures mull about the vat. Short, and goblinish, all are afflicted by the same parasitic fungus as Murgan. Two posess strange crystaline appendages in place of one limb or another, and a third, clearly the leader, has had two additional arms surgically grafted to it... One at the neck, the other at the hip. At a gesture from this one, one of the others goes to a spot against one wall, and begins pulling on a rope leading to an intricate pully system hanging from the ceiling...
... Another wretched scream sounds out, as an awful sight is pulled into view.
It is another of the creatures... Or rather, the torso of one... Still very much alive, it struggles, wiggling its stumps where all four of it's limbs have been amputated, it hisses and shrieks, bound and hooked to the pully apparatus, as it is lifted dangling over the vat.
At another gesture from the leader, it is slowely lowered downward towards the boiling putrescense...
If either of you would like to take any actions at this point, you may do so. If you'd like to wait and watch further, just say so, and I'll continue.
10-25-2012, 02:13 PM
Murgan conceals himself immediately and reaches for a weapon immediately, with such lack of a decision that it's clearly his default response to most threatening stimuli. He tilts his head at the cloaked figure.
Friends of yours, headsman? ...Or did you assume they were friends of mine, and that's why you're bringing me here?
Murgan subtly repositions so that he's in place to try to push the Headsman into the vat and then run, should that turn out to be the case.
Unless that cave in just happened after you walked in... and you would've heard it, and not stood there staring at it like a hooplehead... you must've been down here a while. You gotta be some kind of golem. But you only just switched back on, so you're no good as a guide. Let's see how you want to play this, though.
Edit: Bah, always fall afoul of this. Won't let me say c-o-c-k-s. Replaced with tilts.
10-25-2012, 03:29 PM
Please roll initiative.
10-26-2012, 01:53 AM
Damn, was hoping for a surprise round, cest la vie.
10-26-2012, 02:22 AM
Oh, you get your surprise round, I just like to get the numbers before the action starts.
10-26-2012, 04:06 AM
You needn't wait long...only moments after sighting the goblinoids, the Golem-Knight takes three swift steps, leaping into battle. In mid-air it's body contorts about the sword, driving the blade forward like a lance towards the mutant leading the ceremony.
Then without further ado...
Jump check [roll0]
Aerial Charge - Depending on the jump check, I'll be looking to clear the first two, target the apparent leader.
Attack:[roll1](-5 Power Attack, +2 Charge)
Damage if hit: [roll2](+7 from above)
Note that Cleave & Combat Reflexes are at the ready
10-27-2012, 03:33 PM
Sailing over two of the intervening creatures, the Headsman smashes into the leader with a devastating blow, his thrust punching clean through the creature's shoulder and tearing free in a lateral cut, severing one of its four arms...
The creature shrieks in agony and staggers, but remains standing, and you watch as the strange fungus already begins growing to fill the wound, as the other creatures move in on the silent knight...
10-27-2012, 03:35 PM
Murgan, You've got an action in the surprise round before initiative begins, so go ahead and take it, and give me an initiative roll, and I'll add it in.
I'm afraid I'm on a short tour right now, and so won't be able to post a map untill I get back tomorrow night. As it stands, you are approaching from the south. The vat is in the middle of the room, the leader off to the Western side. Two creatures are between you and the leader, one holding the rope against the wall, the other near the vat's edge. A fourth creature is on the far side of the vat, off to the North. (and then there's the amputee hanging over the vat.)
10-31-2012, 10:39 AM
Murgan watches the golem-knight charge the creatures so similar to him. Why? Were they intruders in its domain? Are these creatures the golem's enemies? If so, why was Murgan spared? Doesn't look like the damn thing is very forthcoming with answers, and Murgan find that he doesn't want the creature to be destroyed. He doesn't want to be alone down here.
He concentrates for a moment, suddenly changing tack and thinking very hard about gravity and how entirely subjective it all is, when you really think about it.
Then he floats silently down behind the golem, drawing a long knife as he goes. He attempts to use the distraction from it's furious attack to sneak up behind one of the creatures. He lunges from the shadows, wrapping his arm around the creature's torso and below the base of it's crystalline arm, locking it out of the way without actually battling against the arm itself, even as he pushes diagonally off from the ground and hovers twenty feet into the air, aiming to wind up directly above the bubbling vat.
Surprise round, manifesting Levitate and moving in to position. Next round initiating a grapple attack as a standard action (flanking the creature with the headsman and hopefully not triggering an AoO because I havn't been seen yet) and then floating 20 feet up as a move action.
Concentration DC 17 [roll1] (to dispense with Olfactory display from manifesting, though I don't care too much.)
Stealth [roll2] If this fails, my target gets an AoO against me.
Surprise (hopefully surprise!) touch attack to initiate grapple: [roll3]
Grapple check [roll4], [roll5] damage if hit.
Edit: Ick. Bad Rolls. Activating Adrenaline Boost as a Swift Action, which should increase all rolls this round except concentration by 1.
11-01-2012, 04:46 PM
The creatures whirl and turn in surprise at the silent knight, giving Murgan the opening to slip in behind them...
Quietly intending to take to the air, a sharp jolt of prickling pins and needles courses through you as the fungus' crystalline growths resonate powerfully with the psionic eminations in a burst of energy that sends you hurtling forwards like an unstoppered balloon...
Out of control, you smash hard into the goblin near the vat... Grasping wildly, you fail to get a good grip on him, but the force of the collision upsets his ballance, and he topples headlong into the putrid brine...
The Leader staggers back from the silent knight, screaching and gibbering in some disgusting language, before making a twisting gesture at the Headsman, and a searing beam of energy bursts from his fingertips...
Murgan, your Spell Resistance is now in effect.
Creature2 falls into the vat, and takes damage:
Fortitude Save, DC 20: [roll1]
Leader casts Scorching Ray at the Headsman
Ranged Touch Attack: [roll2]
If hit, take damage: [roll3]
Creature2 and Leader each recover 4hp for Fast Healing.
Headsman, it's your turn.
11-01-2012, 04:53 PM
Do I get an AoO for the spell cast when I'm threatening? The ichor soaked blade IS pretty threatening...
11-01-2012, 06:00 PM
Oooh, good call. I forgot about that.
He casts defensively. Lets see how he does...
Concentration Check, DC 17:
Edit/: looks like he gets it off without provoking an AoO.
11-02-2012, 03:29 AM
Attempting to spin away from the arcane fire in vain, the tattered cloak burns, incinerated in an instant. The scarlet rays dance across the back of the warriors ancient breastplate, blazing as if cast into a forge.
Undaunted, the Headsman completes his spin, sword lashing out in a lateral arc through the floating sparks of his own burning cloak.
Power Attack: 1d20+8
Edit: Roll seems to have miscalculated, trying again...
11-02-2012, 03:44 AM
Bratovich's rolls again:
Power Attack: [roll0]
EDIT/: Also, I just realized that I went to all the trouble of making a Map, but then forgot to post it.
So without further adiu,
11-02-2012, 04:14 AM
Through spark and cinder and ash, the headsman's blade sings through its arc, catching the leader in the midriff and severing him cleanly in two...
As Murgan dumps the one creature into the vat, the one holding the rope against the wall gives a panicked shriek, and fumbles with the mechanism, attempting to reel the amputee away from the vat...
The final creature charges forwards at the headsman, the crystilline growth on its arm rippling fluidly, and shaping into a viscioius spike, he slams into the silent knight...
Creature3 charges the Headsman:
Murgan, it's back to you.
11-02-2012, 04:44 AM
Murgan wants to stay within reach reach of the creature in the acids' likely points of egress, so he can hit it if it tries to clamber out, but he knows an opportunity when he see's one. He steps in behind the creature that just stabbed the headsman, flanking it, and brings his axe up from the ground in a quick, underhand strike.
He speaks in Undercommon. "Yah creesah Undarcummun? Tu'vath contrail weepis nao, ah turruk tae vir ah turr spool yah!*"
He lashes out with his strange, heavy key-axe, listening to a whisper in his head that tells him exactly where he should strike, where the sweet spot is. As he does so, his eyes flick over to the thing's strange crystal-arm, and the wound it caused. He's curious to know if it exposed any flesh or drew blood.
*Do you speak Undercommon? Surrender to us, and I will persuade the Headsman to spare your lives!
Attacking goblin that attacked Headsman. Lurk Augment: Additional sneak attack, boosted once for two psps.
[roll0] to hit, [roll1] damage and [roll2] sneak attack damage.
11-02-2012, 09:47 PM
Sailing over the vat of putrid sludge, you flank the goblin creature as it slams into the Headsman. Taking your opening, you slash upwards, opening the creatures back in a horrid, jagged gash...
The creatures attack was lethally accurate, finding the gap in the Headsman's breastplate just under his armpit, and burying the crystaline spike nearly up to the elbow into him in a blow that should puncture both his heart and opposite lung...
He doesn't seem to mind, however, and as you make your cut, he twists hard, snapping the spike clean off the creature's arm, and brings his greatsword down in a blow that opens the creature from shoulder to stomach...
Absently, he reaches under his arm and draws out the spike, as one might an extra knife, and drops it to the floor.
The Headsman's Power attack, +2 for Flanking bonus:
The last goblin, still wrestling with the ropes, finally manages to set the amputee down away from the vat, gibbering panickedly in what sounds like some vile derivation of goblin, its eyes fixed upon the vat...
Suddenly, the surface sloshes...
... In a spray of boiling acid, the thing erupts from the vat, a writhing length of leprous invertibrate flesh, bulging with cancerous growths and wicked crystalline spines, it slithers out, catching the shrieking amputee coiling around him, before his screams are suddenly silenced, as with a jerk, it tears his head from his body... As it twists around, you are horrified to realize that the serpantine thing ends in a face... The face of the goblin whom you just pushed into the vat...
... A moment later, another horrid, serpantine thing bursts out of the vat, this one's end splittin into five tendril appendages... Fingers...
Murgan, it's your move.
11-03-2012, 06:54 AM
Murgan immediately levitates straight up into the air, out of reach of the weird goblin-centipedes. He watches them to see what they do, analyzing them for their weak points.
Figure one'll rush the Headman, and I can drop in behind it and cut'em. Why we even fighting these goblins? I don't care what goblins do on their own time, even if it is with weird acid and amputees. Free country and all that.
Levitating up and then holding action until one of them moves to attack the headsman, whereupon I'll drop behind them, provide flanking bonus, and strike again.
Lurk Augment: Additional Sneak Attack damage. [roll0] to hit, [roll1] damage and [roll2] sneak attack damage.
11-04-2012, 04:18 AM
The headsman steps back, putting up his greatsword in a defensive stance...
Holding for a moment, you watch as the creature peels open along its length, revealing rows of spine-like teeth, and consumes the remains of the amputee in but a few moments...
... As that occurs, three more of the worming appendages slither out of the vat, and the creature lifts itself out of the putrid brine like some obscene starfish...
At its body, a mass of cancerous flesh and strange mutant organs, the thing seems to pause for a moment, unfurling a sort of spongy organ into the air that flexes and squeezes...
Suddenly the face tendril turns on Murgan, the goblin eyes focusing clearly on him, and it lurches forward, two of the other tendrils quickly following...
Headsman goes full-defense, -5 attack, +5AC (totaling AC 25).
For Murgan, yes, your +1 vs. goblinoids applies.
Creature attacks Murgan:
If hit, initiate grapple. Resist with strangth check, DC above roll +4.
If hit, initiate grapple. Resist with strangth check, DC above roll +4.
If hit, initiate grapple. Resist with strangth check, DC above roll +4.
Each successful grapple above shall apply a cumulative +2 bonus to subsequent attacks, and a cumulative +2 modifier to DCs to resist the grapple.
11-04-2012, 05:56 AM
Can it reach this high? I levitated straight up...
Opposed grapple: [roll0]
And I'm presuming I don't get an AoO, right?
11-04-2012, 01:53 PM
Unfortunately, the ceiling is only about 15 feet high. The top two feet have the pulley mechanism taking up a fair bit of space which you can use to get some cover (take +2 to your AC), but the pseudopods are about 30 feet each, so yes, it can get you.
And yes, it has Improved Grab, so no AoO.
I apologize, I should have given the vertical dimensions when you started flying. I'll include them next time. :-/
11-04-2012, 08:42 PM
The thing reaches for Murgan, but one arm and its face tangle in the pulley apparatus.
The five squirming fingers of the other arm, latch around his leg and begin pulling him down out of the air...
You both held your actions, you either of you may act at any time.
Murgan, since it only got you foot, you may attack freely with only a -2 penalty from the grapple.
11-05-2012, 11:22 AM
Once again demonstrating unusual agility, the Headsman breaks stance in a startling burst of speed, dashing forward towards the abomination. As he reaches the edge of the pit he leaps, grasping the ropes trailing from the pulley system, he swings across the charnel pit below, gathering momentum for a strike at the grotesque neck-tendril that leers hungrily at Murgan...
Pardon me while I indulge my penchant for Errol Flynn...
11-06-2012, 02:52 AM
With a flying leap, the Headsman shows that his cowl is no mere affectation, bringing down his massive sword in a fearsome blow that severs the goblin head and seven feet of neck clean from the obscene creature...
... But it seems the physiological changes in the creature are more than skin deep, as what should have been a fatal blow appears to be little more than an inconvenience to the horrid beast...
Murgan, it's your turn.
11-08-2012, 08:47 PM
Murgan sinks downwards, allowing the creature to pull him closer so that he flanks it opposite the headsman. He lashes out with his axe...
Sorry guys, had sporadic net access the past few days.
Lurk Augment: extra sneak attack.
[roll0] to hit, [roll1] damage and [roll2] sneak attack damage.
11-09-2012, 01:54 AM
Lashing out at the twisting tendril, Murgan's jagged axe-key finds flesh and bites deep into it, ripping open a horrid wound, and crippling the appendage...
Quickly, the two remaining appendages lash out, one grabbing at the headsman, the other wrapping around Murgan's torso...
Attack vs. Headsman:
If hit, resist Grapple, DC above roll.
Attack vs. Murgan:
[roll1] (+2 for having hold of you already with one tendril)
If hit, resist Grapple, DC above roll
Headsman, it's your turn.
11-09-2012, 02:21 AM
As the creature swats at the Headsman's dangling legs, he releases his grip on the pulley, falling onto the Thing with a powerful thrust into it's fetid core...
Death From Above: [roll0] (-5 Power Attack, +2 Flank, +2 High Ground)
11-09-2012, 02:24 AM
Murgan snarls angrily, baring his teeth. They look kind of horrifying, framed against his skinned face.
[roll0] resist grapple
11-09-2012, 02:29 AM
Murgan twists this way and that, shaking off the questing tentacle and lashing out again at the creature.
"Filthy thing! But I bet you still hurt. I'll make you hurt!"
[roll]1d20+6[roll] to hit, [roll0] damage and [roll1] sneak attack damage.
11-09-2012, 02:30 AM
Messed up to-hit roll: [roll0]
11-11-2012, 02:02 AM
Murgan twists and slashes wildly at the creature, and for a moment, one must wonder which is the more terrifying monster, as the heavy blade strikes home on the fingered appendage gripping his ankle, and hacks it to pieces...
... His swing carrying him back over the creature, the headsman releases his grip, plunging down onto the body of the beast, the ancient blade sinks deep, and twists...
The horrid creature emits a terrible gurgling, bubbling sound, that can only be a shriek of agony, before shuddering and finally relaxing, slipping slowely back into the putrid sludge of the vat as the headsman leaps off of it in a neat back-somersault, landing safely upon the flagstone... It takes but a few moments for the acidic substance to dissolve the creature into nothingness...
... Huddled against the wall, the last goblin gibbers something quietly...
Congratulations on your first battle.
All gain: 3,250 exp.
11-11-2012, 02:28 AM
Murgan lands, and stalks towards the goblin. He barks at it, repeating his earlier message in every language he knows. He studies the creature, looking for any sign of understanding in it's eyes.
Dwarven, Undercommon, Giant, and Terran.
11-11-2012, 03:01 AM
Getting your first really good look at the thing, you see that indeed it is a goblin, or at least was... Generations of disease and inbreeding have left it so horribly misshapen and malformed that its a mystery what caused you to label it as such...
As you speak, it tilts its head at you, blinking mis-matched saucer sized eyes at you, and chewing its lower lip... It's upper lip is missing, removed by a clean, surgical cut.
After a moment it gibbers something, and, with a long, hooked fingernail, it carves a chunk of fetid flesh from its abdomen, and offers it to you...
11-11-2012, 03:49 AM
Sliding off the slick hide of the monster, the Golem-Knight lands near the edge of the pit with feline grace. Remaining crouched, the hooded figure turns it's flickering scarlet eyes toward the interaction of the Blighted dwarf & goblin...waiting.
11-11-2012, 03:59 AM
Murgan stares at the goblin, then snatches the piece of flesh away like it was his property all along. He sniffs at it. He finds himself moistening his lips, or what's left of them. Then, so quickly he barely has time to think about it, he slips it into his mouth and chews it like it is a choice cut of steak.
11-11-2012, 04:09 AM
Mmm Mmmm goooood...
Please give me a Will Save vs. Necrophage, DC 13.
Also, please give me a Fortitude Save vs. Disease, DC 18.
11-11-2012, 04:11 AM
11-11-2012, 04:28 AM
Awesome. I'm afraid you'll have to wait till tomorrow for the results of that, however. Bed is calling, and you are about to experience a whole new world. >:-}
11-13-2012, 03:07 AM
For the Headsman:
You watch the dwarf's head loll back, and his eyes close, as though savoring the choicest flavors he has ever tasted.
The raw flesh is, in a word, foul... In a delicious sort of way. Your eyes roll back in almost pleasure, as the blood trickles down your throat and opens your mind...
... Like rivulets of acid scorching burnt trails across the surface of your brain, the world around you falls away, and you are soaring through the darkness... Bright lights flash around you, hurting your eyes, so many and so fast its a wonder the darkness can be so complete... And with each flash, a face... Bizzare and misshapen gobinoid forms... Hundreds or thousands of them... But you know each and every one of them, as though they were your own... In fact they are your own...
... You remember... All of them...
Remember the taste of meat, remeber the last time you deficated... You remember when you were littered, and remember the face of your mother... But her face is among them, and you remember giving birth, and the pain of pushing out nine goblin pups... Remember the male whom you mated with that time, and how much you enjoyed it... But his face is there too, and you remember the female, and many females, for you were a breeder...
... And on, and on, and on...
A hundred lives, a thousand, flood your brain. Each now your own as much as if you'd lived it yourself... And among them all a common thread, a single purpose, a deep, driving hunger...
... To consume, and be consumed...
... To absorb all life you can touch, untill you are eaten yourself, up unto the gods themselves...
... And you've seen their gods. The hideous entities carved in the walls of that empty shrine, and the living, starving horror of that thing of hands that ran you through the gauntlet...
... Slowely, the world re-asserts itself around you. The headsman still crouches unmoving where he landed, and the goblin still gawks at you, its hand outstretched expectantly...
As a side effect, you remember how to speak this creature's dialect of goblin.
Also, on a side note, despite all the people now knocking about inside your head, your own personality remains the dominant one.
11-15-2012, 04:25 AM
Murgan gapes. He looks down at the creature's outstretched hand, realises what it means by this gesture, and elects to attempt to smack the creature upside the head with the flat of his axe.
[roll0] , including -4 penalty for dealing non-lethal damage. [roll1] nonlethal. Lurk Augment: stunning strike, DC 13.
"SEPPELID DU'TAKI MUHAVAH! DU? Hukka vik tcrash msillin, tikkitik tikhak anama!" he screams at it, in the goblin's own tongue.
"Who did this to me? WHO? You piece of crap, I should kill you right now!"
Murgan searches his new memories, wondering if he has any specific knowledge, about the layout of the place, or whether it's all an un-organizable morass of impressions and experiences.
11-15-2012, 04:44 AM
Gliding silently behind Murgan, the Headsman moves to cut off any route with which the Tainted might escape...
*That was a Stealth roll, by the way.
11-18-2012, 10:43 PM
The goblin staggers under the blow, cringing...
"Xnal vern kalgraxt malurntnal me toom, brech xnal ver nax toom grem."
"We arn't privilaged to have merged with them, though we are in them too..."
... Searching back through your memory, you remember where you are, and know well how to return to the great subterranian city that is your home. Though you also know that not many remain there after the seal broke, and the way to the high world was opened... The cerimony dwarfed all that came before...
... You remember they said the prophecy was nigh...
You remember the prophecy, set down in times before even you can remember...
"... Their god's own choosing shall release us from their prison, when those who fought are dead and gone, and as one they are fractured and weak, the dragon's arrival shall break the seal, and the lands above may be reached once more..."
... You remember when they said a creature from the lands above had fallen from one of the long shafts that reached passed the seal's barrier, and that the leader had caught its soul before it fled, and forced it to remain alive. They said the leader merged with it heavily, and from it's life, knew the dragon was approaching with other's of it's kind. He assumed others of its features as well, so as to be recognized as a friend when they arrived...
... You remember crawling through the streets of the city on the predicted day. Through the squamous millions of other blighted goblins... Against a far wall of the cavern, a giant arcane circle had been carved into the ground, made up of elaborate and chaotic geometric shapes and formulae... At least a hundred feet in diameter. Around it the thronging crowds were thickest, pressing right up to the circle's edge. And over there, the Leader stood and began the chant... His back was to you, standing a little taller than the rest, but the power that radiated from him was palpable...
... Hour after hour, the chant progressed. Days, maybe weeks passed in its rolling rise and fall, untill near the end it rose to frantic cacophony.
Around then, the dragon appeared in your midst, flanked by other stranged creatures of the lands above, but as you remember, you recognize them...
It is Kulkov... His silver scales gleaming in the torchlight, the Dragonborn. Fredric, with his golden skeleton leg where he'd cut off his own after getting caught in the gauntlet. And Malthos, the shaman bald and tatooed, and looking fifty years older than you remember... Something must have happened. And two others you don't remember... A halfling girl, looking about ready to wet herself, and a sailor.
... Even with the appearance of those of those fortold, the leader payed them no heed, carrying the chant to it's crascendo with limitless fervor and vim...
Suddenly, the circle ignited. Thunder ripped through the immense cavern, as lightning and fire licked and sizzled around the sigils of the circle...
... Then all went silent and dark...
... A deep, distand rumbling was heard, coming from deep within the earth beneath you. It grew louder, and the ground began to shake, quickly becoming so violent that you were nearly thrown from your feet, and a terrified cry welled up from the multitudes...
... And then it came...
... The thing that eurupted from the circle was... Impossible...
Your mind reels at the memory, struggling to cope with the image...
... The immensity of the thing alone is beyond comprehension... Its maw consumed the circle entirely as it breached up into the cavern, reaching up over the crowds a thousand feet if it was an inch...
It's countenence, a blind horror. A monsterous mockery of all the gods' creations... Much more you cannot grasp... Your mind refuses to put the pieces togather into a cohesive picture, the mere bits of details you can comprehend leave you quailing at the mere thought... The only image you can relate, would be to say that if all the world were but an apple, this would be it's worm...
Arching high over the panicking and terrified crowds, you stood paralized with fear of the thing, when you heared the leader's voice ring out...
... Such a sound could not come from earthly lungs, his voice thundered over the screaming masses, ringing in your ears untill there is no other sound in the world, and with a wide gesture, he commanded the Worm...
... With all the weight of inevitable and absolute doom, the horror paused, and almost bowed slightly, before twisting and diving into the base of the cavern wall, and slithering out and away... Leaving behind it a wide, round tunnel, sloping steeply upwards. Soon it has dissapeared, and far away, for a moment, you could see a glimmering pinpoint of light at the end of the tunnel...
The Worm gone, and the masses settling down, the leader turned passed you, and for a moment, you recognize him...
... He is you...
... Your filthy beard and weepy eyes peered at you from atop that misshapen form, and it takes you a moment to realize that it was a mask... Cut from your face and sewn to his that he might be taken as a freind to the party...
... A silence, heavy with anticipation, fell over the masses as the Leader turned to the party, and cut a chunk of his own flesh off to offer to them... With only a moment of hesitation, Malthos stepped forward to eat it.
When he bit into the fetid meat, a deafening roar erupted from the multitude, and the leader stepped back, arms held wide, basking in the horrid cheers...
Then, the throngs surged forward...
... Time seemed to slow as you watched the squamous masses close the small distance around the party. They fell on the leader first, and he was consumed... Like a leaf under a swarm of locust, canabalized by his own followers... You struggle to reach him, overcome by the the hunger, but are pushed aside by hundreds of others as the new leaders are lifted above the rest by his flesh...
... As quickly, they fell onto the party, but suddenly there was another standing among them... A young girl, perhaps thirteen years, garbed in a thin white shift that billowed in an unfelt wind as she spoke a single word...
... Then you died...
... Untill you were again merged with another, one of the few who'd remained away from the ritual to tend the vats...
11-24-2012, 02:29 PM
Murgan shakes his head, not sure how to deal with this rush of information. He pokes the goblin.
"What happened to these figures after? Where did they go? Lead us to them and we'll let you live." he growls.
11-24-2012, 03:41 PM
The goblin points upwards,
To the lands above..."
... With a sort of lurching gait, the goblin moves off towards an archway in the far side of the room, and off into the warren of passages and laboratories... Along the way you pass hundreds of vats akin to the first, each attended to by a number of other goblins, all busy carefully dipping others into the putrid solution... The howling unspeakable, mutant horrors that emerge from the vats to be subjegated by scorcerous means, and the screams of the subjects are an ongoing cacophony that nearly drives you to madness as you push ever deeper into the maze of chambers...
... The goblins you pass pay you little need as you move through, busy with their duties, or simply in recognition of one of their own...
... An hour or more later, you emerge into a cavern of insane size. Under a roof so high you could mistake it for the night sky, the cyclopean city stretches out before you. Small structures, built of bone and mud and garbage, lean against and stand upon one another, forming immense compound edifices each over a hundred feet tall...
... Finally, against a far wall of the cavern, you come upon the Tunnel. Left in the wake of that incomprehensible worm-thing, it slopes up steeply straight to the surface, wide enough to march an army through...
... And over the stench of the city's squalor, a breath of fresh air blows down it... The first you've tasted since you first set foot in this damned dungeon.
11-25-2012, 03:03 AM
Striding resolutely behind the blighted pair, the Golem/Knight seems largely unaffected by the horrid tableau...though every once in a while it pauses, surveying...even seeming to drink in the terrible sights. The glimmering sparks that pass for it's eyes note every turn & twist, each newly spawned monstrosity, each squamous legion of goblins with meticulous care.
Escorting the Defiler takes precedence over the previous command, but Kristophan burns with a desire to hold back the thronging mass...Miriana commanded "Not even one" after all.
11-25-2012, 11:33 AM
Murgan follows the goblin, silently, not wanting to say or do anything that would give him away as an outsider.
He tries to remember what the goblin thought they were doing with the prisoner being lowered in to the acid.
11-26-2012, 02:46 AM
The Vats serve a variety of purposes to the goblins, and are among their primary engines of war.
In the instance of the one you walked in on, they were spawning shock troops for their coming war with life upon the surface.
In most cases, carefully dipping a subject into the luminescent ooze of alchemical mixtures, the derived essences of their bizarre gods, and the symbiotic fungus, can induce mutations greatly improving the combat potential of the subject. Some individuals have even been known to volunteer for the process... Though, as you witnessed, there are occasionally complications.
At the mouth of the tunnel to the surface, the goblin leading you leaves to return to its work... You are left to wonder if incursions into their labs, that leave several dead and loosed monsters, are so common as to not warrant an alarm, or even so much as a raised eyebrow from the hundreds of others present.
11-26-2012, 12:27 PM
Before leaving the cavernous tunnel, the Headsman draws a rusted dagger hanging from a crude sheath & scratches an odd symbol onto a jutting stone.
Carving a crude Elder Sign, as I recall it from before. Powerless, but the echoes of the past demand the effort.
11-26-2012, 12:36 PM
Murgan frowns, making a note of the sigil, vaguely thinking to ask Frederic what it means later.
He forges on ahead, heading up, and hopefully to safety.
11-27-2012, 03:14 AM
The tunnel travels upward for over a mile before you reach the surface... The bright light of the sun and sky sting and cloud your eyes for a moment before your vision clears...
... The sight before you defies description...
... You've come up in the midst of a city. Ruined and demolished, and swarming with the blighted goblins from the city below... Millions of them.
... And it's not just any city either... The fresh sea breeze blows up your nostrils from the bay upon which the city sits, as your eyes fall upon the massive cracked golden dome of the Great Temple of Beluvah. The holiest of cities, the gods' very seat upon this earth... Turning to the North, you gawk at the gaping vacancy in the sky where stood the High Tower of the Morninglord... Gone. Missing. Demolished by whatever event laid waste to the city, and left it to be occupied by the tainted creatures from the darkness beneath...
You've never been much of a god botherer, but there is scarce a man alive who has not made a pilgrimage to Holy Beluvah at some point in their lives... The back allys here were as rough as anywhere, and you made fairly good coin knocking off unwary temple goers...
Still, the shock of the city's state is almost physical. While you never put much stock in the symbol, you were a minority among minorities, and nearly all others very lives were built upon it's foundation...
... More fool them...?
For The Headsman:
As the sun spills onto your mask for the first time in a millenia, you are transfixed... Lost in a memory...
... The present gone and forgotten, you stand amidst a bustling market place... Your daughters run off before you, laughing, and playing with the bag of glass baubles you just bought for them... A hand slips under your arm, your flesh smooth and alive, your wife coming up behind you, and smiling after the girls... It was the younger one's birthday, and you were taking them to the temple to recieve the gods' blessings... Before you the sun gleamed off the immense gold dome of the Great Temple, flashing in your eyes for a moment...
... And bringing you back into the present, the sun still gleaming off that cracked dome, to the devastation surrounding you... In the city of the gods who stood together against the blight, now fallen, teaming with the masses of the sealed...
... Your watch failed...
... They are free upon the earth...
11-27-2012, 07:14 AM
Long moments pass as the pair observe the scene...
Suddenly dropping to it's knees, as a puppet with it's strings cut, the Headsman crumples. Another long moment passes before it's head tilts back, gauntlets raised shaking at the sky in what can only be a long, silent cry of anguish & unearthly rage.
As it does so, the light reveals a finely carved mask of mithril, in the shape of a man's face...a funerary warmask, wrought with elven script.
Scrabbling forward in the mud & horribly gnawed bones of the butchered city folk, the Great Sword whistles from it's back like a loosed bolt...yet even in the grip of silent madness & unspeakable vengeance, the inhuman construct pauses...
Will save to ignore Miriana's command & reap a vast harvest upon the horrid despoilers who have wrought devastation & blasphemy on my lands:
Difficulty is 20 + her (considerable) Charisma modifier
11-27-2012, 05:35 PM
For The Headsman:
The blade of justice shall fall upon the rabble, but not now. The commands of the Sacrifice bind you to her will, and the duty she placed upon you cannot be shirked... The fate of the defiler must be fulfilled.
... In your time the blighted were driven back once, they shall be driven back again in due course.
11-27-2012, 05:53 PM
Murgan turns, sneering at the Headsman.
"What do you care? Huh? You weren't from here? ...Or. Hmm. You were, weren't you? You were a man before you were a golem. Weren't you? Maybe you had family up here? Long ago?"
Murgan peers about. "You think a city like this would have put up a better fight, even if they did come up from the ground... must have been a total surprise... this is all strange."
Murgan walks over to the headsman, kneeling down and staring at his mask. His expression softens, slightly. He sort of grimaces sympathetically, and puts a hand on the headsman's shoulder.
"Look, golem. I dunno what you're about. You're no friend of the goblins, and it looks like you're not happy about this. And I don't like it either. But see, the only people that'd know what's going on are my old group. I saw them, see. When I et that bit of goblin, I saw a memory of them. They're wrapped up in this somehow. They'd know how best to fight them. We need to contact them."
Murgan looks around, for a temple that still seems mostly intact, or any tower still standing where he could get a good view of the place. He tries to gauge how long this has been going on; how long the fires have been burning, whether there are sounds of fighting anywhere, pockets of resistance. "This is a temple city. Where there's temples, there's priests, or scolls. Some way we could get a message to 'em. We find a cache of scrolls, or a priest that's still alive, and we get a message to my group. Safety in numbers. Right?"
He scowls. " 'course, anyone we meet is gonna think I'm one of them and skewer me. What do you look like, under that mask? Any prettier than me?"
11-28-2012, 02:22 AM
For Murgan (And the Headsman, once he takes a look around):
You remember the summoning of the Worm and the appearance of the 'Dragon' to have happend about a week ago. The low burning fires around the city give the impression of a similar time frame.
Many of the major buildings of the city are generally still intact, though doubtless are all severely defiled.
Much of the destruction to the infastructure appears to have been caused not by battle, but by the shifting of the earth, likely due to the passage of the worm...
Truely, you can clearly see the Worm's path through vast areas of semi-circularly crushed buildings, and other great tunnels into and out of the earth, but the devestation to the city stretches far beyond just it's path...
Now might be a good time to get acquinted with the Continental Map.
11-28-2012, 05:49 AM
With slow, careful deliberation, the Headsman unwinds some of the ragged strips of cloth that adorn his armor, & unbuckles the breastplate.
At first glance it almost seems hollow. But no...the armor is buckled over ancient bones. Scorch marks blacken the spine where the goblin wizards spell traced across the back. A few hairline cracks along the ribcage show where the crystalline limb struck in vain.
Gathering up a few of the littered bones, clearly cracked & gnawed for the sweet marrow within, the skeleton knight binds them alongside his own tightly, then dons the battered armor once again.
Rising from the muck, the mask turns this way & that, surveying the ruins with what can only be empty sockets. At length, one gauntlet raises indicating the Great Temple...or perhaps the sea beyond.
11-29-2012, 03:17 AM
You recover 4hp.
As you do so, you are awash with the full horror of the Worm's attack upon the city, the battle with the High Priestess (whom you remember...), and the flood of the tainted erupting from the earth...
Her name was Cylirr, she was a Lathanderin Acolyte in your age... Clearly risen to great hights over the intervening years, and powerful indeed had she become... But she could not stop the Worm, or even save herself from it...
11-29-2012, 11:21 AM
Murgan starts moving towards the great temple, sneaking about and trying to avoid contact with the goblins.
11-29-2012, 12:29 PM
Stealth: [roll0] following up after Murgan
12-01-2012, 03:40 AM
Taking your first steps into the desecrated holy city, there is initially no place to hide. Hundreds and thousands of the blighted goblins scurry around, about, and over one another, like ants in a colony.
Attempting to 'act natural', you press into the masses, and are met with little resistance (you suspect because Murgan may be considered one of them, and the Headsman is inedible).
You find yourself bitten in passing quite frequently, doubtless this is simply how the creatures opperate, taking and spreading the whole of their knowledge with each chunk of flesh. Take 5 damage.
You may wonder what effect your own experiences may have upon the whole... The goblin you tasted had no real sense of 'Self', for he was already all those who had come before him, and would be part (to a degree) of all those to come after. You, however, do. And you suspect the concept is getting passed on each time a bit of you is eaten.
At great length, you manage to push your way through the crowds, and off into the less populated back alleys. The goblins are still present to a degree, such that you doubt any pockets of survivors or resistors still persist, but the way is frequently clear, and so hope may yet glimmer.
To keep to a clear route, your path must be extremely circuitous... Through narrow streets, and ruined buildings, over rooftops, and through stretches of gutters and sewers, such that while the dome of the Great Temple is but perhaps ten miles off, night falls before you are much more than half way there...
... Atop the roof of what may once have been a brothel, you watch the last rays of the sun set beneath the Western hills, and the stars sparkle into view in the vast chasm of the sky...
You are in a [reasonably] safe place to camp for the night, if you would like to do so. Or you can press on through the night if you like, or take any other actions as you see fit. It's been about 4 hours since you reached the surface.
The glaring light of the sun was hurting your eyes worse than usual... Perhaps due to too much time spent underground. Regardless, the growing darkness is like a weight lifted from your brow.
01-06-2013, 04:34 AM
Pressing on through the night, you make your way through the mangled streets of the ruined city to the gates of the great temple.
Activity is busier here. Piles of bones and gnawed corpses litter the square before the temple, and a dim light burns from within... More of the great Vats have been erected within the temple, and it is the fires beneath them that produce the light.
Within, the temple has been utterly desecrated. The bodies of all those who sought shelter here lay eaten and rotting all about, the statues and depictions of the gods have all been broken, defaced, or are missing, and horrible idols of the goblins' unspeakable gods have been set in their places...
Through all this you make your way to the temple's great library, perhaps the greatest repository of history and knowledge on the continent... It too, has been all but demolished... Many if the tall bookcases have toppled, spilling their mountains of tomes, books, and scrolls all across the floors, where it appears the goblins spent a fair bit of time ripping them to shreds.
The destruction is not absolute, however. By some miracle, the library escaped the fires that swept across the city, and deeper in its bowels, there is hope that there may yet be much that has escaped the slaughter. And if there is anywhere you could hope to find magic stored, this would be the place.
01-06-2013, 01:28 PM
The Headman maintains a silent vigil over the dwarf, tirelessly shadowing his every step. Pausing to regard the destruction, the skeletal construct seems little interested in the relics of the past, though quite willing to follow it's mutated charge if need be.
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