Where There’s a Wind, There’s a Way

Editor’s Note: This is a summary written by Adric; that week I had another obligation and couldn’t be at the game. I think it’s awesome! Note that calling myself Editor is a misnomer, as I did not edit this at all. Just FYI.

To clarify briefly, one of the things done to deal with the swarms of Hellwasps was that Badl cast a spell to produce 31mph winds in a huge area, thus effectively pushing the enemies so far away as to not be a concern. I forgot to mention it in my last update.

And now, on with Adric’s update! Many thanks to Adric’s player for writing this!

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After the last jackal fell, things were oddly calmer, despite the howling swirl of the wind Badl had conjured up. Adric and Rock moved down the corridor toward the central plaza to check on things. As they passed the crossing tunnel, they saw enormous swarms huddled left and right at the edges of the wind spell, awaiting its departure to pounce. As they moved on, they found the plaza apparently deserted.

“I think I’m going to fill a wineskin with some of that honey,” Rock declared, “is that a bad idea?”

“Probably, but I’ll keep a _word of recall_ ready in case something bad happens. Just run back here.”

“Unless I fall and you have to come get me.”

“Oh yeah,” Adric replied, “except then.”

Rock crept up to the raised pool and dipped his waterskin into the nectar. He noticed three steel skulls in the bottom of the pool. Ad libbing, he pulled out his spear and attempted to skewer one through the socket. He succeeded. Beyond all specter of surprise, of course, the sockets began glowing bright red and all three began to form bodies of the nectar substance itself, and advanced on him– slowly. very slowly.

He retreated back to Adric’s position in the shadows of the tunnel, put away his waterskin, pulled his bow and launched an arrow in tandem to Adric’s flame strike. the beings seemed unharmed– and still advancing. It was time to fall back.

We met back up with the main body and waited to see if any of them followed us all of the way– one did. It seemed immune to magic and packed a NASTY wallop. Rock knew he couldn’t even stand toe-to-toe against it for long. Nigel hollered something about “constructs” and “adamantine” and Rock pulled a stowed adamantine greatsword and squared off against the monster. Nigel recalled a particularly potent spell of force power, that could penetrate even the most resistant of creatures. Between the two, they brought the being down. Rock pocketed the skull with the nectarskin.

When Adric tried to heal Rock’s wounds he found them incredibly resistant to his spells. He found he had to focus twice as hard as usual in order to cure Rock’s wounds. At this point, the party decided they had accomplished about all they could at their current strength and needed to retreat and ponder their next move. Nigel dropped a wall of stone (only 3 inches thick, unfortunately– did we read that right? that seems thin) over the entrance to the cave and grabbed our teleport partners, and bampf!

Only, things didn’t go quite as planned. those riding with Whitten seized in pain as their biomagical signatures were briefly scrambled in a double zero division error. Whitten knew there was now a serious risk of becoming permanently stuck here until the pain of this transitional world killed them all. He refocused his karmic efforts and managed to get them all back to the cave in the next instant. (Editor’s note: Just my frickin’ luck, the one time my Fatespinner special abilities are needed and frickin’ work, I’m not there for it. 😉 )

As the party hunkered down in the quiet cave, they pondered what they had learned and more importantly, what their strategy would be for the following day. As Adric moved among them sharing the last of his healing energy, Nigel suggested blasting through the roof of the central room. Appreciating the dramatic flare of Nigel’s ever-direct approach, Whitten was drawn to the idea.

“It doesn’t leave us any escape route for those of us who can’t fly,” Rock replied. Air Walks and Fly‘s were counted. “We should send a group in the front entrance as a feint.”

“I can Stone Shape the wall,” Adric suggested.

“But I thought you only split your forces if you had a numerical superiority,” Badl said. “Er, that’s what a pack of wolves once told me, anyway.”

“If we break the roof of the place, but DON’T kill all of the baddies, we’ve got no way to close the barn door,” Adric cautioned. “I don’t want this evil getting out of its bottle.”

“We could Dimension Door,” Nigel supplied. “That limits how many can come in that way, though.”

Deciding to prepare for the broadest of these contingencies, but not an actual assault plan, the depleted and battered party’s eyes began to droop toward sleep. It was about then that a gentle spark of inspiration nudged the party’s thoughts.

“Adric, can’t clerics control the weather?” Nigel asked.

“With suitable caution for the disruption for the natural flow, one of my highest abilities is the ability to control the local environment,” Adric replied. “In this area, I could pull in a fierce sandstorm, blowing in any general direction– But be careful what you ask for, once called, it takes on a life of its own. We could be eating dust for days.”

It was then Badl and Nigel hatched an idea of sweeping scope– literally. “If you can get a vicious sandstorm, I could whip a smaller area of that into a sand-blasting excavatin’ tornado with my winds,” Badl explained. “We could have the whole place excavated in hours.” Whitten made a note to add “Archaeological Excavation” to the skills section of the TTC business cards.

The next morning, the party sat in the cold cave eating their daily Feast, empowered by the captured rod. This is the ONLY way to “dock a day’s rations” in the field. After breakfast, they bampfed back to the slaughtered camp outside the dungeon. Only it wasn’t there any more. The stone wall had been clawed open and the bodies, so carefully buried the day before, had been exhumed and taken inside.

“More wasp factories,” Badl concluded grimly.

Adric moved a mile or two off, to center the storm away from the dark conical pit in the sand from his 6 mile diameter sandstorm. Badl channeled the down-swept winds into a controlled tornado-forced winds that swept tons of sand aside. In a rod-extended fury, three hours of excavation had revealed most of the former Mulhorandi embassy. Thinking their might be more, the party moved off to see if any other buildings lurked in the immediate area. After another three hours, the entire complex became revealed. The main structure was the only building in the area. It was reasoned that we had explored approximately half of the area from the inside. Our excavation had briefly discovered the original “ground” of the time. A brief puff of white smoke was almost all anyone saw of the expanse of humanoid bones that littered the ambassadorial bailey.

Around the exterior, the party iscovered two “additions” built into the side of the embassy. The most interesting was the side addition that seemed to match up with the guarded doors inside. The room seemed to rest upon a lower basement room, constructed entirely of a silver metal. Badl alchemically identified it as “mostly mythral.”

“Could this be something the dwarves were charged to protect?” Adric asked?

“We’re being Scryed!” Nigel’s warning ceased all further speculation.

“I see a dozen masked winged-orc mages. They’re mounted. They’re scrying INSIDE the building. They’re only 5 miles–THAT way! They don’t seem to be looking for us. I think they’re trying to get a Teleport lock inside the embassy!”

We’ve got 45 minutes before one of our enemies teleports into our other enemies’ den. Do we let them fight and take out the “winner”? Do they think this storm is anything other than natural? Do they know we’re here, too?

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