Chapter 13: Avon Calling

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Session Number: 66
Date: Sunday 12 September 2010
Venue: Fergus'
PCs & Players:

Arrian Rog1/Clr8 (Fergus) (kills: none)
Emily Ftr3/Rog6 (Yeran) (kills: none)
Feren Rog9 (Yeran) (kills: none)
Rowaine Pal9 (Craig) (kills: none)
Troll Wiz9 (Densial) (kills: none)

XP Awarded: TBC

The party stand at the east end of Skull's Crossing, soaking wet. Deciding to limit any of the building inhabitants' egress routes, Feren volunteers to wedge one set of the double doors closed with iron pitons. Arrian provides the tools and Feren sneaks up to the building. The three circular windows in the facing wall form the eyesockets and nose of a grimacing skull. The windows are five feet wide and ten feet above the dam. Feren veers left and notices the doors hang rather haphazardly in their stone frames. They look like they've been smashed or ripped off their hinges at some point and have been poorly rehung. Besides the odd scrape mark, the stone doorframe is intact. The dark wooden, ironbound doors were once sturdy but are now split along the grain and bear massive dents as if hammered from the outside.

Feren listens at the door. Above the drone of the rain he hears deep, raspy voices. They are obviously squabbling, although Feren cannot understand the words. Feren sneaks to the other set of doors. They are similar to the previous but are in good repair. He finds no traps and hears no noise about the door. Kneeling, he slides a piton under a door as far as it will go. Most of it slides under before it sticks fast. He repeats the process for the other door, pushing firmly on the end of each without hammering it noisily. He then returns to the east end of the dam where the others wait.

The party together approach the left set of doors. Arrian and Rowaine take the lead, Feren follows behind with rapier drawn, Shalélu and Troll hover at the rear after having taken a roundabout route. Jakardros and Vale remain towards the back of the group, warily watching the windows. Arrian finds nothing ominous about the door, chooses a jagged portion and yanks at the timber. It rattles against the doorframe. Rowaine tries. "Give me a hand?" she asks Arrian. Together they strain at the door. The wet timber slips from their grasp and bangs back into place. Again they try, again unsuccessfully and somewhat noisily. Arrian casts Bull's Strength on Emily, who takes Arrian's place. The women pit their combined strength against the door. It starts to splinter: just a little more… Arrgh, slam! The door bests them.

Rowaine and Arrian again take up positions and pull in unison. A pointed shaft stabs out a couple of feet through the narrow gap between the doors, narrowly missing Emily's side. It then reverses and disappears back behind the door. Emily and Rowaine back off and Troll flings Acid at the barrier. The door hisses and deteriorates. Troll notices a flicker of movement between cracks of the doors: the ambient light briefly darkens. Troll's Disc climbs and he looks through the left window. He tells Shalélu to keep watch on the windows and looses more Acid where the doors meet. Arrian casts Comprehend Languages upon himself. Troll lets loose a third volley of Acid, believing that the door is starting to weaken. Is that a bar on the other side? There is some sort of irregular horizontal object behind the doors. Troll fires off a fourth gush of Acid, aiming at the object. It moves and something behind bursts out in pain - "Arggh!" Troll can no longer see the object. Rowaine and Arrian advance and try again to pull open the doors. Feren turns his attention to the wedged doors on the other side of the building.

Emily nocks twin arrows, ready to shoot anything that appears behind the door. Rowaine pulls on the door but it does not open. Bang! Both doors fly open. Arrian stumbles back, Rowaine catches herself. Behind the door is a giant, wiry humanoid that looks like it is made from tree bark. A second creature lurks to the left and a third stands behind in the centre of the large chamber, hefting a makeshift javelin.

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Jakardros knows what these creatures are. "Trolls!" he yells. Emily releases her bowstring and her two imithrium arrows embed themselves in the near creature's torso. The troll behind chucks its javelin through the doorway, avoiding both its kin and its target, Arrian. Troll points just inside the doorway. Boom! A Fiery Burst erupts, catching both creatures inside the door. Feren hears the detonation but fixes his attention on the other set of doors. They look no different from how he left them, including his pitons. He hustles back towards his allies. Shalélu keeps her bow trained on the windows. Arrian lunges right and casts Recitation, but his movement spoils the complicated spell. Jakardros fires two arrows at the lead troll. He knows its weaknesses, but also knows its strengths. His arrows will only slow it down temporarily, but it will buy his allies some time. His first arrow lands in the creature's torso, the second pierces its throat causing grievous injury. The troll rips the arrowshaft out of its neck and green gore spurts briefly from the wound. It throws the arrow aside.

"With Moradin's mighty axe, I smite thee!" yells Rowaine.

Moradin's mighty yaks? :-)

Sacrificing accuracy for power, the smiting blow is sadly turned by the creature's rubbery hide. Rowaine's return swing fares no better. Emily shoots paired arrows under Rowaine's arm. Both lodge deeply in the troll's stomach and it keels over.

"Jakardros!" Arrian yells. "Is it down?"

"Not for long!" Jakardros answers.

"Does magical damage kill these things?"

"Fire and acid! Fire and acid!"

The prone troll is still, yet Arrian notes with creeping dread that its wounds are closing over. The troll adjacent to the door hisses but maintains its position. The troll at the rear lopes off out of sight to the right. Troll targets another Fiery Burst just inside the doorway. Both trolls' skin chars. Feren steps right and fires two arrows at the lurking troll. His first arrow passes completely through its forearm. Shalélu doesn't have a clear shot, so maintains her vigil watching the second set of doors. Arrian steps back out of range and safely casts his remaining Recitation spell. Vale and Jakardros stalk towards the northern doors.

Rowaine's first brutal chop creates a shower of sparks as it scrapes against the doorframe. Her second strike is better aimed, gouging the troll's thigh. Emily aims squarely at the centre of the doorway, willing a troll to walk into view. She mentally asks Blink to have a quick look through the windows. The little dragon obeys, telling her as he flutters back that nothing moves in the room beyond. Rowaine's target steps back as it claws at her face. She ducks. It then lunges forward unexpectedly and its teeth screech down her breastplate. Rowaine notices that her previous wound to its thigh is not looking nearly as bad. Thump, thump, bang! comes from the wedged northern doors. Troll ignores this new threat and releases another Fiery Burst at the two visible enemies. They howl as their skin blisters and sizzles. Feren switches back to his blade and steps forward. Shalélu continues guarding. Arrian mentally prepares a Cure spell, waiting to step forward and discharge it should Rowaine or Feren sustain injury. Vale and Jakardros keep watch on the northern doors that are now rattling under considerable punishment.

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