The Lorrimor Legacy

34: Behind closed doors...

Trial of the Beast

Taking the rest of the day and the one to follow to recover (and marveling at the storm that passes through, striking the last tower above’s lightning rod repeatedly with it’s wrath), a small party consisting simply of Variel, Nisca, Kendra & Shala clamber back up to the network of towers with their interconnecting halls filled with water. Heading right this time, they stumble into yet another trap, yet again dumping them into deeper water. This time however they are attacked by four dead men, dressed in the garb of the Count’s soldiers, who try to pull them under. Without Narsius to make them play nice our heroes slash and fight them as best they may, though Shala finds herself pulled under. In the end the Draugr can’t stand up to their blades or magic, and the group pulls themselves back up to the ledge to examine the double doors around the corner.

Finding them bolted from the outside, they draw the bolt and peer inside. Variel quickly spots that the floor drops 20’ bellow the water, and the ceiling climbs up another 40’. While two doors can be spotted above, the catwalk that once connected them has collapsed bellow the water, and swimming up from the depths is a strange, translucent creature. Before Kendra can properly identify and warn them, the aquatic Basilisk turns Nisca to stone before attacking. Fleeing the room under Kendra’s magical Haste, they retreat into the hall to give themselves fighting room, and though it manages to bite Shala and turn her summoned Dolphin to stone, it takes enough of a barrage from Kendra and Variel (even with them in turn tryng to avoid it’s gaze) that they manage to drive it back to hiding bellow the water. Shala continues her hobby of playing bait, dancing in to the water with multiple images surrounding her, and manages to draw it out long enough for Kendra to bring it down with missiles of force from her wand.

Using it’s blood, Kendra smears enough over Nisca to restore her to flesh, and they decide tather that just moving streight on to another set of double-doors, to use the magic rope to climb up and explore the upper doorways. After clambering up and breaking down the nearer door, they find themselves in an upper hallway, which contains the upper end of the collapsed stairwell, along with a door opposite. Popping open the door and sending in dancing magical lights, they startle three flying giant winged heads Nisca identifies as likely Vargoulles of unusual size, but swiftly slam the door and bar it before the monsters can engage. Moving back, they use the magic rope to slip over to the other door above the basilisk’s chamber, break it open, finding a long hallway, this with several other doors branching off. Finding more basilisk’s blood and a couple of useful potions in a recessed cabinet at the hallways end, their investigation reveals more door leading to more water-filled towers: one containing strange animate fungi, while the other contains aggressive black goo (as well as a persistent scratching from behind a flat patch of stone), both of which fail to engage them before they manage to slam the doors shut.

The last door leads out to a thin stone bridge leading to the final tower. Working their way across carefully, they reach the double doors, which Variel finds magically shut, but manages to open with Nisca’s help. Inside they find a room that has been trashed, along with a wrecked cage, and a raging, four-armed monster that rears up to slash and rip into both Variel and Nisca. Again under Kendra’s magical Haste, the Seer shouts “Flesh Gollem!” as she zips back across the bridge. Though Shala suggests they might be able to take it, Nisca and Variel think not, slam the doors shut as they retreat, and prey it doesn’t follow.

Apparently the monster doesn’t understand latch technology.

They retreat, wounded, back to the safety and comfort of the Count’s mansion and their allies to again rest, recover, and plan their next move…

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