The Serpent Slayers

The longest session we had yet. Darkness was already encroaching upon the adventurers and horrifying screams could be heard coming from deep within the mountain. Many powerful enemies were slain and a wagonload of treasure was recovered. But at what cost

Alissa had recovered from her drained strength (see session 22) and got over the loss of Obler. She recruited Banri, the clueless and Thora, the seeress. Flavius, now a Justicar of Mitra, was eager to set out into the depths to seek out Chaos. Niko Strong, his brother in arms, was also there. Sly Norstrand smelled the opportunity to obtain booty and joined as well. Renal came too and brought with him Melbil the dwarf and vengeful Hunter

The initial plan was to capture and if necessary kill the hated Rat King whose foul powers had twisted the party’s visages and bodies. On the way they were ambushed by Marat the hydra. But unlike during all other run-ins with the beast, they chose to fight even after the surprise onslaught the creature had inflicted. Niko severed one of its eight heads and disabled another. Marat, hoping to catch easy prey, crash dove into the river and fled.

After the horrific fight, someone had the idea to assault the hydra’s lair. The beast had been wounded in the fight and everyone agreed. Indeed Marat had retreated back to its lair and a second battle ensued. This time the hydra did not back down and defended the lair ferociously. It was Niko who felled the creature, driving his sword deep into its body. The Hydra did not have a hoard ready to be plundered though, so the adventurers instead paraded one of the severed heads straight to Goblintown. The Goblins were overjoyed to see their nemesis dead and threw a feast for the Serpent Slayers.

The feast lasted the entire morning and well into the afternoon. Alissa hired Utes Doomgorges, the goblin master, and his best soldiers as mercenaries. She paid him a thousand coin instead of splitting any potential treasure. In the great hall, they found the Rat King together with his court. Again the disgusting feeling came over them, but the party powered through. Thora used her sleep magic to allow the fighters to break through to the Rat King and Norstrand ran his sword of draining through the rat from snout to rump! Norstrand felt stronger after this.

In the aftermath they found a heap of coins in a place the rats must have used as a latrine. Who has ever heard of rats using latrines? This Rat King was truly special, as the runes tatooed beneath its fur attested. The Goblins were about to leave, when a Horde of large rats showed up. The party reacted quickly and pushed them back into the corridor where the full might of the thirty nine beasts could not come down on them. After a short battle and the use of even more sleep magic, the remaining rats retreated, but not before half of their number were killed or disabled. The remains of the Rat King seemed to have reanimated and squirmed towards Norstrand, but stopped and tried to get his attention. Norstrand destroyed the abomination.

The allies parted ways and the party headed deeper into the mountain. They made a quick stop at the elves’. Awiri Beachweaver, the druid, told them that the Rat King had become undead for a time and examined the sword of draining. She examined it as the cause of the reanimation and the elves and the party had a quick talk about undead, with the elves strongly disagreeing with having undead servants.

Beyond the chasm

They crossed the narrow stone bridge spanning the deep chasm and entered the inner city.