2019-08-17 LiN01 - An Elf, A Thief, & Five Dead Men

Warning: may have spoilers for The Tomb of the Serpent Kings.


Rations Used: 3
Treasure Recovered to Safety: 4 electrum amulets (10 sp each), Cursed Silver Ring (Save vs Poison or suffer 1d6 damage when removed)


We started our noble adventures in the beautifully quaint town of Pogshire. The adventurers hear of the wondrous treasures that can be found in the abandoned dungeons. Those dungeons and their treasures, however, rest within the lands of noble lords and ladies. The lords generally expect to see what treasures are brought out of the dungeons and reward the adventurers with a portion of said treasures (or be granted a parcel of land). These lords, however, hold those lands in fief from the Countess (who, of course, got it in fief from the King, who you’d suppose got it from … the Authority?). It is widely understood that treasures brought directly to Countess Marsana (of County Anshuara) will save the adventurers a share of the treasure. Countess Marsana has made it known that she will grant a portion of treasure in return for land. A dungeon had been discovered not very long ago after a landslide revealed its entrance. Since it is untouched the Party figures this would be a good ruin to begin with.

Jerry seeks out Loradiel to convince him of dungeon delving. They decide that since they’re so few, they’ll head to the bar and convince drunkards to join them on their quest for riches. Making a disjointed speech, Jerry attracts the attention of three scoundrels and two farmers, hiring them at 2 share each. Alarmed at how many unsavory fellow knaves they have in the party, Jerry and Loradiel plot to kill off the hirelings through poison or tossing them into the jaws of a trap (using them as a living 10 foot pole). The three scoundrels are Bitho, Harold, and Tat and the two peasants are Alvin (fused teeth) and Herbie (toothless). They are, as far as the mechanics are concerned, “normal men.”

The seven miscreants set forth on the road towards the rumored dungeon. Jerry serves as scout, attempting to make sure there are no bandits on the road, as there have been rumors of their ambushes. Jerry notices someones hiding in a bush. He returns back to the group, whispers to Loradiel what he’s seen, and asks Harold to help him shoot a deer, telling him to flush it out of the bushes ahead. Harold obliges and approaches the bush. The man in the bush stands and draws a shortsword against Harold shouting for him to step away. Harold, failing in his morale, flees back to the group. Loradiel asks what the man in the bushes is doing. The man stammers unconvincingly and says he’d dropped his locket in the bush. Loradiel launches an arrow at the man and he immediately flees down the road. Loradiel inspects the bushes and finds no locket.

The party continues for the dungeon off of the trail and arrives at nightfall. Despite having been walking all day, the group decides to enter the dungeon. They inspect the entrance and decide that it is old.

Looking into the corridor, they find that there are four strange rooms at two intersections along a corridor that eventually ends at a barred door. The first intersection’s rooms have two clay snake-man statues alongside wooden coffins [a mistake on my part, the statues should’ve been inside the coffins]. The latter rooms have only wooden coffins. Loradiel discerns that the statues are hollow by observing its depression on the soil. Loradiel opens one of the coffins (Room 4) and presses his weight down onto the statue, breaking it and releasing a poison gas that renders him nearly unconscious and at 0 hp. Loradiel steps outside of the tomb after pocketing an electrum amulet and a silver ring from the coffin. Alerted to the dangers of poison gas inside the statues, Jerry instructs the hirelings to tie a rope around one of the statues (Room 2a) to pull it down. Tat, unfortunately, trips into the statue, breaking it open and exposing himself to the poison gas. He’s dragged out of the dungeon and placed next to the semi-conscious Loradiel. Jerry breaks the rest of the statues with arrows, waiting for the poison gas to dissipate.

After this, the party calls it a night and lies down to rest. During the night, Jerry, dubious of the loyalty of the hirelings places the amulets in a sack in one of the coffins and attempts to lift the bar on the door. He discovers that the bar is too heavy for one person to lift. At dawn, it’s decided that Loradiel will rest in his comfortable tent (it’s actually regular, but he’s the only one with a tent so it’s still pretty comfortable). This will earn him some faster recovery [since it was noxious fumes, I’d decided that Loradiel would heal as he had at least half his hp; I think a tent and bedroll allows comfortable healing in the wilderness]. Tat remains with Loradiel, despite feeling fantastic and making a full recovery [1 hp]. Alvin stays out with the two, keeping watch over them and tending to them.

Meanwhile, the rest of the hirelings and Jerry go into the dungeon to futz with the barred door. Right next to the door, they notice that there is a recess above them in the ceiling next to the door. He instructs one, then another, and finally all three of the hirelings to lift the bar. Jerry notices that as the stone bar is lifted that the iron pegs that hold the bar also begins to rise with the bar, but says nothing. Once the bar is fully lifted and the pegs stop rising, the click and clack of mechanisms is heard and the trap is triggered – a massive stone hammer, as large as the corridor, falls from the ceiling and crushes Bitho, Herbie, and Harold into the door with a sickening crunch. They, along with the door, are sent flying into the other room. The hammer retracts back into the ceiling.

Jerry runs back outside to report the tragedy and to recruit Alvin. They go back into the dungeon & they explore Rooms 6 & 7. In Room 6 they find a 20’x35’ room with a southern egress and three wooden, hinged coffins with paintings on their tops. The paintings illustrate a snake-man king and his two snake-brides. In Room 7 they find a horrid statue-shrine to what they figure is the snake-men’s god. They also discover a secret passage below the statue.

Alarmed at the statue and the passage deeper underneath it, Jerry throws rocks at the walls in Room 7. Nothing occurs. He then throws rocks at a bride’s coffin, waking the skeleton. Jerry and Alvin immediately flee. The snake-bride skeleton pursues them, & catches up with and kills Alvin, dragging him back to the “king’s tomb.”

Jerry and Loradiel discretely converse about their predicament. With a sinister plan in mind, Jerry convinces Tat to drag the corpses out of the king’s tomb for burial back at town (or at least under the stars outside of the dungeon). Tat agrees, and while his back is turned Jerry thrusts his spear into Tat’s back, killing him.. Jerry drags Tat’s corpse over to the statue of the snake God as tribute. Nothing else is done with the wooden coffins in the king’s tomb. [I grant 5 XP for killing Tat. This is wrong and not in the rules, but I thought it was funny and inconsequential. This would be a one-time occurrence for levity’s sake]

In the evening, Loradiel puts on the silver ring & discovers it’s magical abilities. His fingernail is transformed into a snake’s fangs. Loradiel takes the ring off & discovers that it’s somewhat cursed, suffering 4 further poison damage (reducing him to -1 HP, with the 2 HP he’d gained from resting for the day).

The next day, head back into town under no delusion that they will ever manage to convince anymore villagers to join them on their tomb-raiding excursions. Unless they can convince that naked dwarf and babbling mage over there….