The Lorrimor Legacy

32: Night at the Museum

Trial of the Beast

As dusk falls and the storm recedes, Variel stands one hundred feet above the raging waterfall on the swaying rope-bridge between the ruins of the Count’s Alchemy Lab, and the mysteriously ornate building on the far side of the gorge. He faces sudden peril, as once he passed the mid-point of the dangerously fragile bridge, an Eyrinies appeared and took aim as she flew about him, while his companions shouted warning from where they stood at the Lab. Three flaming shots from the Devil’s bow and Variel is half-dead, and his return shots miss. The Devil takes a new target, in her folly deciding he’s no threat, when Shala charges out (surrounded by her multitude of mirror images) to heal him. Two of her shots disrupt illusions, but her third strikes true – but the distraction is enough for Variel to strike true, badly injuring the wretched Devil, aided some by more support-fire from Nisca, Kendra, and even Narsius’ pesky magic. Variel’s last barrage does the trick, sending the Devil back to Hell, but he manages to loose his grip on his bow in the process, and all watch in dismay as the Longbow that had served him so well since he’d taken it from the Stag Lord of the Sundered Land’s cold dead hands falls into the frothing waters bellow.

Retreating to the ruin, the Heroes of Harrowstone spend a few minutes healing and catching their breath, when one of Nisca’s dueling companions approaches from the Mansion to announce that an old Elf Wizard, a friend of the Count, has arrived to pay him a call. After letting the stranger in, introductions are made, and the venerable Oanon offers to lend a hand to find his old mentor in the arts of enchantment (an offer the adventurers readily agree to).

While the rest wait to see how it goes (and not to crowd them), Variel and Shala cross to examine the door, noting the statue of the Nymph and the stained glass Unicorn in the entryway. They grow cautious when they find the door unlocked but under the effects of abjuration magic, and suspect an Alarm spell of some kind. Opening it and entering while Narius and Nisca cross and assist Kendra and Oanon to do the same, they marvel at the weird and grotesque collection of dead creatures (or parts thereof) that they find in the front hall. Narsius, however, warns that he’d spotted something large working it’s way upward from a caged stairwell under the building, so they are somewhat ready when a homunculus opens one of the nearby doors and leads a large but blind Flesh Golem in to attack. Quickly discerning the monster uses the half-dozen Homunculi swarming about it to see to attack, they target the little creatures primarily and find it not only uses them to “see” but that it is injured as well when they are struck down. Once half are dead, so to does the creature die, though not before it manages to smash Narsius’ skeleton dog to powder.

While Nisca and Kendra hang back, the rest head in to search the room from whence it came, finding remains of several creatures from the Darklands on display. Of particular interest are two sarcophagi on opposite ends of the room, one of which opens to reveal a mummy, which swiftly begins shambling forward. Narsius holds up his hand though and orders it to return to its’ coffin, which – after a moment of consideration, it does. Thus they are completely taken by surprise when the sarcophagus behind them comes alive and starts animatedly smacking Shala around. Oanan finds his double-sword sticks to it when he throws his elven weapon at it, and when it smacks Shala she finds herself stuck to it. Even Narsius’ hand ends up glued to the Mimic (as they soon recognize it to be), but their counterstrike manage to kill it before it can devour Shala. The room claimed, they again pause to heal and catch their breath, debating their next move.

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