Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Chapter 9, Part 4: "Knives With Wings..."

Part I Here, Part II Here, Part III Here.

The party recovers from Xarnagan Vrokk's disgusting exposition regarding the Vat-Man lurking in the chamber below and resolve to destroy it. With blades and sidearms drawn the party rushes down the spiraling sloped corridor and attacks the lumbering, idiotic, visaged synthetic abomination which has recovered it's jagged metal club.

Halberds and swords slash at it's flesh while Vrroomish repeatedly fires bursts of tiny needles (which produces a soft whirring sound) that continue to miss the Vat-Man; one volley glancing off the Cactoid Kalervo's new splint mail harness. However the thing's wounds continue to close up entirely.

With quick shouts the party resolves to make one more round of attacks before fleeing, however the being dissolves into a mass of reeking overripe pink jelly, watery sticky plasma, and rubbery bones after the next volley of strikes.

Wounds are tended and the companions cautiously explore the chamber, aiming for the source of the nauseating pulsating pink glow that permeates the subterranean vault. Approximately halfway through the mass of bizarre alien machinery an ancient, slumped metal shelf filled with mouldering tomes is spotted.

Xarnagan rushes forth only to have the grimoires fall apart into dust at his touch. Among the piles of dust four objects are found, all bearing spidery glyphs: a green stone tablet, a silvery disk, a tiny black monolith, and an amber globe with sigils floating in it's depths. The sage and Dickie Dee the Bone Man Sorcerer examine the artifacts and determine that a simple glyph deciphering incantation would determine their properties. The two resolve to prepare and use the appropriate magicks at the first safe opportunity.

The party proceeds to the far end of the chamber and discovers the source of the unsettling lurid illumination: a pool of seething glowing pink flesh, writhing with the suggestions of monstrous malformed foetal forms. Several conduits and pipes of coppery metal run along the wall and the floor, many going to the varied sorcerous mechanisms in the vault.

The party is mostly unenthused by this discovery and many are visibly ill at the sight. They leave the chamber, travel up the spiraling tunnel, leave the black basalt Serpent Man ruins, and head off down the iridescent purple, green and coppery mountainside southeast towards the Forbidden Mist Valley.

Several hours of hard trudgery later a horrid cawing is heard and several of the companions are slashed by the sudden appearance of vicious hooked beaks and talons attached to gray and red feathered hawk-like avians with yellow scaled bellies and heads. There are less of the hawk-things than party members and the raptorians seem relentless in their attacks upon their initial targets.

Buzz Brazelhatch is spared the avian harassment and takes in the situation. He begins guffawing with cruel amusement at the sight of the battered black-and-white bald head of the mountain guide Hobab streaked with blood from the talons in his scalp. As the scaled hawkoid shrieks and flaps it's wings it continues to yank at Hobab's scalp with it's embedded claws while striking at his head with it's knife-like beak. Buzz Brazelhatch swings his sword at it halfheartedly, hoping to strike Hobab instead, but is repeatedly dissapointed.

Soon the flying predators are slain, although many of the adventurers bear fresh bloody gashes, and the party staggers battered and exhausted down the steep cold slope of the Bornite Mountains.

What adventure or misfortune awaits them next?

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