Navero 34

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From Mon Mar 26 10:23:38 1990
Path: uci-ics!jarthur!dparsons
From: dparsons@jarthur.Claremont.EDU (Daniel Parsons)
Subject: Navero XXXIV
Keywords: Navero, of the Correct and Unalterable Way
Message-ID: <5435@jarthur.Claremont.EDU>
Date: 26 Mar 90 05:03:39 GMT
Organization: Harvey Mudd College, Claremont, CA 91711
Lines: 331

(Arlor's player finally told us he was dropping out due to a lack of time. The character was eaten by some rabid undead poodles during the night.)

  • Navero, male human cleric, 4th level
  • Dania, female 1/2-elf MU, 4th level
  • Kortul, male human fighter, 4th level
  • Razuli, male human fighter, 4th level
  • Kory, male elf bard, 3rd level
  • Topash, male elf druid, 3rd level
  • Meth, male ? thief, 3rd level

We lowered Dania and Kory to examine the blasted-out secret room, reasoning that they were the lightest and least likely to collapse the weakened floor. Kory was rather upset with Dania, and refused to speak to her. For her part, she wanted to put the whole incident behind her and get on with the looting. There wasn't too much left in the room to loot; the sparkling in the walls proved to bits of gold and platinum, practically embedded in the rock, and not worth the trouble of removing. Much grumbling commenced. The floor and walls in the room groaned a lot, and occasionally a stone would fall, so the inspection was completed with unusual speed. We were disturbed at one point, when someone dead crawled upstairs and attacked, but Navero sent it away.

We decided against spending the night in the secret room, as some had previously thought we might do. Instead, we went down and spent the night in the dead vampire room. We didn't get much sleep at all, Navero especially. The great explosion sent all sorts of undead prowling about the second floor, exploring, and what little sleep anyone got was punctuated with bad dreams. No one was seriously hurt, and no levels were lost (all undead who could drain were terminated with extreme speed.) We knew morning arrived when all of the undead went away; we waited for a short time, both to get a little more sleep and in case it was some kind of trick, then left to go back down to the first floor. We went down from the larvae room, back into the east-west running hall, and went west.

The next door we found was on the south wall; it was unlocked. Inside, there was a small room that had been someone's living quarters long ago. The furnishings were probably quite spartan, but there was too little left to tell. The bed was about the only intact furniture. Razuli tore open the mattress, but the only thing he found was a lot of some reddish mold. Kory found a brass key in the collapsed desk, but it didn't seem to fit any lock in the room. We left.

The next room along the hall was on the north side, and much larger. Inside, there were lots of piles of stuff; leathers and bags and sacks and shoes and moldy hay and boxes and barrels and and casks and crates. Also a lot of spider webs, but they all seemed normal-sized. Weak sunlight shone in through large cracks in the northern wall, and dirt and bits of stone were everywhere. A quick look at the map confirmed that the western half of the room was right under the secret room on the floor above.

Dania: "Razuli, go look at those sacks over there. Kory, check out those boxes, Kortul get that big pile over there 'cause you're tall."

Kory: "Again I ask: Who elected you? Razuli! Let's look at that cask marked `Brandy' over there."

Topash: "Why doesn't everyone just check out the room, each in his own fashion, and then we will leave?"

Navero: "Well, some things might not get checked."

Dania: "Right! Now Kory, get over there!"

Razuli: "Wizzerd, don't scream. The roof'll collapse on you."

Dania: "Oh, shut up about that."

Topash: "What's that?"

Meth: "What's what?"

Topash: "That noise... scraping, it sounds like..."

Dania: "Sounds more like something moving. I think it's over there."

Kortul went to investigate in the indicated direction. Kicking aside a box, he found what looked like a large, blackish lump of some earthy kind of stuff. It sat for a second, then lashed out with a pseudopod and struck him on the leg.

Thing: SIZZLE SIZZLE (Acidic secretions burn into Kortul's leg.)

Dania: "It's a pudding! Get out of there!"

Kortul: (Hacks pudding away, jumps back, falls down.)

Razuli: "Magic-user, lets not burn it, ok?"

Dania: "Fine with me. How are we gonna kill it?"

Navero: (Heals Kortul's leg.)

Topash: "Dania, let's not. This is an old storeroom, and most of the things here are rotted and useless. I doubt that there is anything of any value here, so killing this creature would be wasted effort. Let us go and find a way into the cellars."

Kory: "I agree. This is incredibly boring."

Razuli: "Even with the brandy?"

Kory: "Oh, yes. It should be quite well aged, provided it was any good to begin with." (Procures cask.)

Dania: "Will you be serious? Let's go."

The next door was on the south side. It was locked, but the key we had found opened it. Inside, there was a lot of rusted armor, rotted arrows, and other decayed weapons. We didn't even bother to check it out.

The last door was on the north wall; beyond it, the corridor opened out into the entrance hall of the keep. The door opened easily, and we could see stairs going down into the earth. We went down carefully, but 30 or 40 feet down, the stairs were blocked.

Kory: "Blocked?! Shit. Gee, I wonder where all the undead go to hide during the daytime. Speaking of which, what time is it?"

Topash: "Getting towards noon. With the cover on the sky, they may have full power while under the earth, away from what little light there is. Can we dig through the collapsed section?"

Kortul: (Works at it a bit) "No."

Dania: "Shit. Let's find another way down."

We went out into the entrance hall. It was a big, bleak place in the feeble light, which was already getting quite dark. There were some hooks for hangings on the walls, but no hangings, and there were many dead leaves and small animal bones scattered in piles and in the corners. The passage we had come from was in the eastern wall. The big gates, partially off their hinges, were to the north; outside, the sun was moving behind the inky cover on the sky. Two more passages branched off of the southern end of the hall. There was also a door in the western side of the hall; it was open, and some furniture could be seen within. We decided to look into the easterly of the southern passages, to fill up a blank area on the map.

The passage went south a short way, then opened out into a great hall of some kind; it seemed to have been a mess hall at one point. Several long tables and lots of chairs were within, mostly rotten and broken. A door in the eastern half led into the kitchen where we had originally entered. We were just deciding to leave when a bunch of tentacles came down from above the doorway and lashed Kortul in the face. He suddenly collapsed, and the tentacles grabbed him and started dragging him upwards.

Dania: "Grab him!"

Navero: (Grabs him.) "A big worm with tentacles got him!" (Both are pulled into the air)

(Party charges into the room to get it.)

Kory: (Shoots it twice.)

Dania: (Casts Magic Missile.)

Razuli: (Shoots it.)

Thing: (Drops.)

Topash: "Don't touch the tentacles. They contain a paralytic venom. And get it off Kortul's face."

While Kortul recovered, the party explored the hall. The tables and chairs were all very old, and weren't worth much when they were new. Several people had carved their initials into them, along with some more objectionable things. Everything was covered with dust and dirt, and a cold breeze blew in from the hole in the kitchen. Occasionally, it seemed as if something were moving out there, but whenever anyone focussed their attention on it, nothing could be seen. We assumed they were undead, like just about everything else, and left it at that.

Back in the entrance hall, we looked through the western door into a large barracks room. Lots of cots, each with a footlocker. Also, checking out the ceiling, we saw a lot of yellowish mold. We didn't know if it was the deadly variety, but decided not to risk it.

The other hallway leading out of the entrance hall went south and opened up into a smaller hall. This hall was much better appointed; there was only one table, and no one had carved initials into it. The chairs had once had cushions on them. A large stairway went up along the northern wall, leading to the second story. There had once been hangings on the walls, but they appeared to have been burned. There was a passage leading off from the north wall, and a door in the west. We decided to check the passage.

The passage went north. We could see four doors, three on the west wall and one on the east. Our map indicated that the east door opened into the barracks room, so we didn't bother with it. The first door on the west opened with difficulty onto a small room.

The room had been a bedroom, with bed, desk, etc. The quality of the furniture was higher than elsewhere, and was mostly intact. A skeletal body was collapsed on the bed, wearing the remains of armor and surcoat. It didn't move when Navero tried to dispel it, so we assumed it was dead. The room was not very interesting; we found a key in the skeleton's pocket which didn't match the one we found earlier, but it didn't fit anything in this room either. The next room was much like the first, only there was no body. We gave it a half-hearted search and went to the last door.

Kory: "Gawd, this has got to be the most boring dungeon in the world. There's just NOTHING in here!"

Game Master: What do you expect when you run and hide whenever the monsters come out?

Kory: "Yeah, but these monsters are DANGEROUS! Undead are not nice people."

Dania: "Maybe if we found more money it'd be more exciting."

Topash: "But it would still lack the glory of battle you seem to crave."

GM: You can think of this empty dungeon as something to lull you into a false sense of security. Or, not.

Kory: "I don't like the sound of that."

GM: (Enigmatic smile)

Razuli: "Shall we go, kiddies?"

The last door was somewhat different. It looked like it had been broken in at one point, and someone put it back up later. It was unlocked. It creaked open to reveal some sort of chapel or shrine. At the western end, there was an alter and statue, covered with dust. The statue was of a female deity of the arts of war. (I believe it was Athena.) Some benches lined the walls. In the middle of the room, there was a great pile of near-skeletal bodies, most of them stripped naked and all of them hacked up. Bits of skull and limb were scattered about. The alter had had blood poured over it; the statue had a stupid face finger-painted onto its peaceful countenance.

Navero: (Gives the last rites to all the dead.)

Dania: "Do we want to check this place out? I think somebody got here before we did."

Topash: "That body over by the altar appears to be clothed. If you wish, you may loot it."

Dania: "Nav, are any of these undead?"

Navero: "There place feels evil, but it's kind of diffuse. It's stronger by the altar, but all the bodies are dead. I wish you wouldn't disturb them, though."

Kory: "If you don't mind, I'll wait in the hall. Yeesh!"

Dania: "I don't mind at all." (Marches in, kicks body out of her way. Dust flies up from bodies.)

Dania: (Starts coughing, collapses.)

Kortul: (Goes in, grabs Dania, gets out. Dust begins to coalesce.)

Navero: "It's forming something!"

Kory: "Nav, dispel it! Or shoot it! How's the greedy bitch?"

Kortul: (Tosses Dania to Kory. Dania is still coughing her lungs out.)

Something: (Howling noise, like wind through gravestones.)

Topash: "Hmph. A pile of dead bodies would be a likely breeding ground for all manner of diseases. Does anyone know any cure spells?"

Razuli: "We'll get her later. Let's get that thing now!"

Ghost: (Shape has coalesced from dust; it appears to be an old man with a robe and armor. The howling rises into a skreetch. A horrifying light shines from its eyes. The clothing strongly resembles that of the clothed body.)

Party: (Everyone gets outside real quick.)

Ghost: (Approaches, dust flying. Party retreats, and rather rapidly too. Door slams, howling subsides, and is gone.)

Navero: (Casts Cure Disease on Dania.)

Dania: "Aggg..."

Topash: "Let's not go in there again, shall we?"

Dania: "Yea... urk."

We went back south to the hall. The door in it's west wall was the only place we hadn't checked. It was locked, but Meth picked it. This room was also someone's quarters, but it was a little bit larger than the other rooms. There was a carved wardrobe (empty), a double bed, large table, two chairs, vanity, mirror, sofa, dresser, and hooks for wall hangings. At the moment, though, it was much like the rest of the keep; ruined. A search turned up a small sack of gold hidden under a stone in the floor, but not much else.

Razuli: "OK, how we gonna get downstairs?"

Navero: "This part of the map is blank. I think there's a secret passage."

Topash: "Alright... it should be right... here." (Pushes at back of wardrobe, it collapses back and reveals a passage heading off to the east.)

Dania: "Right. Let's go."

Dan Parsons

"Everything in here is either wimpy or overwhelming."

"Don't worry about it. At least we can always run away."


                                blocked       to larvae room
                                   |              |
                           gates   |              |
|            |  |         |       | ^|           | ^|      |
|            |  |         |       | ||  stores   | ||empty |
|  temple    /  |         |       |dn|           |up|      |
|            |  |         |       +/ +-------/---+/ +--/---|
|------------+  |barracks |       +---/----+---/---+-----  |
|  officer   |  |         /       | armory | room  |       |
|   room     /  |         |  +-+  |        |       |       |
|------------+  /         |  |^|  +--------+----+--+pantry |
|  officer   |  +---------+  |||                |          |
|   room     /  | <-- up     |||                |  |       |
|------------+  +----------  |||      mess      |  +-------|  .
|            |               |d|      hall      |         . :  '
|  C.O. room |     hall      |o|                           .     wall breach
|            /               |w|                | kitchen  ,\ .
|----S-----------------------+n|                |          |
|         secret passage       |                |          |