Ongoing Games (In-Character)Play-by-post games are going on in this forum as we speak (well, read). All threads on this board are actual games, so please, only post on a thread if you are a player of that game.
"What we could do is this: Travel in groups of two or three. When one person finds the Cave, light a SMALL wet fire, downwind of the dragons cave. We then all gather around, and make final preperations. Fizan, if you could sneak down first and do some scouting, to find the lay of the land, that woudl be best."
"If there are no other exits to the dragons den, perhaps we could plant some traps near the entrance of the cave, and try to smoke the dragon out. Either he would die in the smoke and flames or get shredded to pieces by traps we can create."
"If the dragons den slopes slowly downward, we can use a simple trap to keep it from comming up easily. By Taking some simple sticks, sharpening both ends, and placing them into the celling of the burrow, the dragon will end up shredding its wings apart if it tries to fly out. A similar number of these sticks on the sides, pointing into the cave, woudl make it easy to venture into the cave, but very hard to get out quickly without impaling ones self."
"Finally, we could use one of the flasks of fire to pour upon the dragon as it flies upward, by putting a beam in the way wiht the fire at the top. As the dragon moves teh beam aside, the flask breaks and dumps fire onto the dragon. I also happen to have a bag of caltrops with me, we could affix some of those to any sticks to make them even more dangerous."
Perhaps each team should have a crossbow and we light the arrowtip and let the arrow go at the air so the other team sees the arrow and comes? Ofcourse, this would require at least one team member look at the skies for the arrow while the others are looking around. Lighting a fire is not a good idea because if the dragon can hear well as you say wouldn't he have a strong scent ability or something? Master Oden is right. Perhaps I should stop trying to look and sound smart and actually start being smart?
*Linda looks down with a frown on her face*
"Hence why, wee lassie, we light the fire downwind of the cavern. Even several hundred feet, if needed, because once we are in the general vicnity of the lair, we can find it again. Also, the smell of rotting meat should over power any steamy smoke we produce, along with the fact that the dragon covers its lair with trees and rocks. That shoudl also keep a good chuck of smell out."
"If there are no other ideas, we should move out. We dont want to waste time"
You break into 3 groups: Oden Homm and Linda, Thokk and Fizahn, and Taern and Elthan.
Your three groups move cautiously outward from the pond. As you explore, you realize that the "hills" are actually a number of mounds arranged in two concentric circles. Each mound is approximately 100 feet in diameter and 20 ft high. There are 12 mounds in the inner circle, 24 in the outer circle.
The arrangement of the mounds indicate that these are not natural phenomena. The field of mounds, with the pond in the center, covers about 20 acres. The mounds are as overgrown as the rest of the Wetwood, reminding you of ancient barrows or perhaps some long-lost, long-buried monument from some kind of ancient civilization.
As you wander among the mounds in the mid-day heat and as humidity rises from the bog, you begin to sweat. There is little wind and the silence soon becomes oppressive. You speak in whispers, not wanting to inadvertently wake the dragon you believe lurks nearby. At ground level, the mounds cut off any view of the other groups, so you occasionally climb to the top of a mound to get a look around.
Soon, a thin plume of light smoke rises from atop one of the mounds to the west. Taern and Elthan have found something. When the party assembles, Taern and Elthan lead the group to a gash in the side of one of the northernmost mounds.
Apparently, one side of this mound had partially collapsed long ago, leaving a wedge-shaped divot approximately 30 feet across directly to the north. There is evidence of recent excavation as well, revealing stone buried underneath the brush and earth. It doesn't take Thokk's stonecunning to see the outline of a stone post and lintel doorway (picture Stonehenge or the symbol pi) rising out of the dirt.
An 8 foot x 5 foot muddy block of stone is fitted into the doorway, sealing it, but claw marks at the edges and scrape marks along the "frame" make it obvious that the "door" has been pried loose and replaced repeatedly.
*Doubtfully, Taern looks their discovery up and down. Being careful to whisper, she turns to the other party members*
There's no way in Tymora's name I could move that without waking up the dragon. Do we wait for it to come out, or do we come back later and hope it's moved the stone? Or is there another way in, maybe. A back door?
*hopefully, she looks around the mound, trying to find something that would resemble an alternative entrance*
*She looks excitedly at all of you and says*
There was that spell I once read of, passwall it is called, that opens a passage in walls or solid stone. Master Oden, do you know how to cast it?
*Linda looks at master Oden's menacing look-the look he takes when she has done or said something stupid then she realises her forgetfulness*
We have a passwall scroll with us...
*Her voice trails off and she now looks at the ground avoiding everybody's eyes but especially Oden's* How could I possibly forget something like that? I fail master Oden's expectations by behaving like an idiot. Why don't I concentrate? Master Oden always said it is the mage's job to take decisions and take care of things and not to be distracted by anything-even her excitement about the adventure!
*She now is all red and has an angry look in her face.
"If we can't find another way in and we are sure that the dragon is inside, we could use the scroll master Oden has given us to make a passage into the dragon's lair. If we find no way of entering it we could wait until it comes out and then we attack it by surprise."
"Great, old barrows, with luck, the dragon has looted them all and triggered any traps or killed any guardians. Wouldn't the scroll of passwall only give one person entrance to the lair?"
I doubt he's triggered any of the traps that were most likely placed in the mounds recently enough to have wounded him, but it means that he does have a hoard of treasure. I wonder if he could take control of any undead guardians.
Oden Homm frowns, looking at the stone door. "This is just too obvious and inviting. I would have expected him to be more cunning. True, we could attempt the passwall, but I agree with Taern and Elthan there could be another entrance."
Taern and Elthan circle the mound carefully in one direction and Fizahn from the other. Despite the sharpness of elven (and half-elven) vision, it is the gnome who spots the small dark opening, only a few feet high and wide, obscured by underbrush, at the base of the mound almost exactly 180 degrees from the stone door.
"Ach, here is where the beasities main lair is. *I suggest that we try to block the first exit as much as we can, so teh dragon cannot get out that way. *Does anyone else agree with my idea of smoking out the dragon and using the sharped sticks, to shred the wings?"
"Also, the smoke should weaken the dragon, making it easier to kill once we get into combat. The fumes will sting the eyes, and harm the throat. He woudl be dizzy due to lack of oxygen, and hopefully easier to kill"
"I applaud your cunning, Sir Thokk, but I wonder if we have enough daylight to put your plan into action. We would need to find straight lengths of wood (difficult to do in this bog), cut them to size and sharpen their points, and somehow install them into this tiny tunnel, all before sunset (when the dragon will likely awaken) and without alerting the dragon to our presence.
"If we were to place the spikes in such a way that we could enter but the dragon could not exit, would that not also prevent us from exiting in an emergency? I for one would not like to impale myself on a spike meant for the dragon.
"I suppose that we could leave and try to manufacture some traps back in Mimleth before returning. My concern would be, however, that we have now left our tracks and scent scattered around this area. Should the dragon realize that we are on to him, he might flee again...
"I like the idea of trying to smoke the dragon out, but which exit should we cover? If we split our forces to cover both, that could possibly leave three of us facing the dragon alone before the other three could come to our aid. The dragon is still young, but he is no doubt going to prove a formidable opponent.
"In addition, it just occurs to me that there could be connections between these different barrows under the ground that we are unaware of. Not only could this foil our plans to smoke out the dragon, it also means that trying to simply seal the dragon in might be unsuccessful as well."
"Hmmm... Just covering our exits and containing the dragon is proving quite a challenge... Perhaps a swift and straight forward stike could prove more effective. It would be more dangerous but in the confusion, we may be able to take down the dragon before he makes his exit."
*Looks at the newly found door.*
"Then again my plan doesn't sound that good... your choice."
*Looks at the rest of the band expecting an answer.*
"well, i am just offering ideas. Have you ever tried to take down a black dragon before, nevermind a black one? I think a planned out idea would work better, but if its a fight we should do, then im as ready as I am going to be. I still think we should block up the Doorway we found. If possible, we might be able to heard the dragon into that area, and then kill it while it is boxed in."
Are we going to attack this dragon, or do we stand around arguing about how to do it? I agree with Elthan. We should just charge in and put an end to it's misery.
A brief, glorious battle would be best. The beast would not suffer, and our injuries would not be great. Hmph. Planning traps and tricks which may or may not work against a beast so great. Our time for battle has arived, my friends shouldnt shirk it with clever plans.
"I can't think of anything better to do with our resources, aside from sneaking past it and trying to find something useful in its hoard of magic items(I don't think that'll work), so (I can't believe I'm saying this) I think we should try a straight forward battle."
Hopefully we can confront it in tunnels instead of the main cavern so we can use our small size and agility to our advantage.
A straightforward but carefully planned battle would be the best. For all we know the dragon could be awake now and listening to our plans. The more we wait the greater the chances of this actually happening. Towards danger but none too fast is my idea of battle. After all, the dragon wouldn't be able to quickly exit the cave if he has blocked the front entrance and the entrance we just found is not large enough for him to fly out.
*Linda will wait for the others to decide and will listen to their ideas but will urge them not to waste too much time planning*
"I believe the frontal attack is viable, but I am concerned that such an approach might allow the dragon to escape through the back entrance if he decides not to engage us. There is another option that might prove more successful; however it carries a slightly higher risk for one of our party members..."
He looks directly at Fizahn.
"Perhaps Master Fizahn could slip into the dragon's lair "through the back door" with the last remaining bead from my necklace of fireballs, using stealth rather than strength. The rest of the party could prepare for battle outside the "front door" awaiting his signal.
"Once Fizahn is in position he could throw the fireball, both surprising the dragon and signalling the rest of the party to charge in. With luck he would already be in a perfect flanking position."
OOC: This is the plan suggested by McMouse in the OOC thread.
*He takes from his spell component pouch a piece of cured leather and then start making symbols in the air with his hand and chanting words. After that, some very dim light barely visible sorrounds him and quickly fades away. He then loads his crossbow.*
Oden Homm eyes the small tunnel. "Sir Thokk, I doubt that any but Master Fizahn could easily crawl through that hole. It seems that for most of us, the stone door is the only way in.
Oden reaches into a pocket and pulls out a small toad, offering it to Fizahn.
"Perhaps not the most glamorous, nor most intelligent, of familiars, but he may be of some small use in this instance. I can not see through his eyes, but if you carry him with you, I should be able to sense if something goes awry."
OOC: Please check theOOC threadfor play mechanics as we switch to combat rounds...
The party members find that there is little more to say.
Fizahn slips into the small tunnel, the golden bead clutched in his right hand.
After Fizahn disappears, Oden Homm searches the ground for a moment, then bends over and picks up some strands of silk from a spider's web. The silk is tossed into the entrance to the tunnel with a whispered word, and the entrance to the tunnel is sealed by a dense web.
The rest of the party quietly, but briskly, moves around to the other side of the mound, where Taern is flexing her fingers, scanning the muddy block of stone for some good handholds.
Elthan moves into position behind Taern, crossbow cocked and loaded.
Oden Homm whispers to Linda that she should stay behind him. He takes two small leather discs out from a pocket. Holding one over her heart and one over his, he chants quietly - the discs disintegrate into faint sparkles, then vanish. He then touches her lightly on the forehead, tracing some kind of arcane sigil, still whispering. He traces a similar symbol on his own forehead.
He then takes the scroll of daylight from Linda and approaches Thokk. "Are you ready, Sir Thokk?" He opens the scroll and reads from it. The armored dwarf begins to glow like a diminutive celestial. Hoisting his sword and shield, Thokk moves into position in front of the door, next to Taern who is now feeling the rock, testing her grip...
OOC: Oden Homm casts web on the hidden tunnel, sealing it. He then casts both mage armor and resist energy (acid) on himself and his ward, Linda. Finally, he uses the scroll to cast daylight on Thokk.
Fizahn enters the small tunnel. Even with his small stature, he is forced to crouch to avoid scraping his head on the ceiling. The tunnel has been dug relatively recently. With his low-light vision, he can see claw marks in the wall. A strong fishy odor mingles with the smell of fresh earth. He recognizes the stink from his exposure to the dark mist.
The tunnel darkens further as Oden seals the entrance (and a potential exit) with a spell.
He moves cautiously, as silently as possible. The tunnel slopes downward slightly for the first 15 ft, then cuts back upward for the last 10 ft. The tunnel then ends.
There is a loosely fitting stone, roughly 3 ft x 3 ft x 1 ft, blocking his way. Looking back, he can not see the entrance to the tunnel directly (due to the dip and rise). There is, however, still just enough diffused light for him to see that the stone does not seal the passage, it just prevents him from moving past it without pushing it aside. There is near total darkness beyond. He can feel cool air on his face. The stench is quite strong now.
Fizahn tries to slink around the stone, without disturbing it. His head and left arm are through when he becomes stuck fast. He finds that he can move neither forward nor backward without dislodging the stone. Cursing under his breath, he is weighing his options when suddenly he sees a shaft of light pierce the darkness from 50 ft away, illuminating a large round chamber...
Just as Linda quietly asks who has the passwall scroll, she hears the scrape of stone on stone, then a loud thump as the hewn rock "door" topples forward into the earth, narrowly missing Thokk.
A dark 5 ft x 8 ft opening is revealed.
Taern's smile of satisfaction fades as an angry hiss echoes from the chamber...
OOC: Fizahn's Escape Artist check: 9 (1+8). Fizahn gets stuck as he tries to wriggle past the stone blocking the "hidden" exit. Taern's Strength check: 22 (20+2). Taern pulls down the stone "front door." The dragon wakes up.