Two notes of addendum to the discussion the party had with the town leaders of Winrterhaven in the previous weeks session. Lord Padraig asked the party how much information they had been able to extract from their captives, a query that temporarily stumped the party members (Captives? We don’t need no steenkin’ captives!) After some discussion Lord Padraig let the party know that while the “kill ‘em all and let god sort them out” approach to interrogation had its strong points, he could think of at least one glaring weakness.
The other discussion revolved around “Krand and the Bloodreavers” and “Thunderspire”. The only person who had any information about this was Bairwin, the merchant. He stated that they were likely a gang that dealt in slaves and had a home in or around Thunderspire Mountain. Deep inside the mountain was an abandoned Minotaur stronghold that had been turned into a major, if slightly underground, trading post. All types of peoples and races could be found there, and there are rumors that some of the tunnels under the mountain lead further down into the Underdark. Lord Padraig stated that Menos needed to be appraised of this.
This week the party faced two entry ways that faced south out of the natural cavern room that was home to a large number of giant rats. Many rats have been killed so far, but more could still be heard scurrying around in the darkness. The party decided to move down the first hall, which led south for about fifty feet before an open pit in the floor was found, right in the entrance to a medium sized room.. The body of a decaying six legged husk, or shell, of an animal lay at the bottom of the pit. Eldred was at the front at this point, and warned the party that there were several uneven floor tiles ahead. Eldred also noted the presence of several small tunnels that were burrowed into the walls ahead, small enough for maybe a Halfling like Oester to get through, but not much more.
There were no rats here, or at least the scurry and chittering of the rats couldn't be heard, but this area had more a musty smell instead of a garbage and filth like smell that was present in the room with the rats. As the party moved into the room it was Bogar who found the other pit trap, stepping on a floor tile that gave way to a ~10 foot pit. As if on cue several animals poured through the tunnels in the walls that surrounded this room, catching the party by surprise. The party quickly dispatched them, only to find larger versions of these six legged creatures coming at them from the hallway to the south. As the party moved to engage the larger versions of the creatures - including one that was quite a bit larger - another batch of smaller versions of the creatures poured from the tunnels, and the party found themselves surrounded.
DM Note: These creatures, Kruthiks, gave off an Aura with a range of 1 that did damage to all within range. Fortunately for the party it was determined that the damage could not be stacked, otherwise some party members would have taken some serious damage quite quickly.
The small and medium Kruthik's swarmed the party, while the large one was content to stay back and flick poisonous quills at the party members. For the surprise and shock these creatures provided they didn't seem to claw much, their aura damage being the only consistent damage the party took.
DM Note: This was the second Sunday in a row where the DM rolled extremely poorly, not that the party members were complaining. 2's on to-hit rolls were the order of the night.
Once the Kruthiks were vanquished the party proceeded to move forward to see what lay ahead. With two more Kruthiks the area was safe, but in this last corner the party found a nesting area, tunnels burrowed into the wall, and a small chest.
The party also looked around to see that two members were missing. When it looked like the battle with the Kruthik's was just about over Oester and Akta had proceeded back up the hallway to go into the other as-of-yet unexplored room. Oester had started in this room previously when the rest of the party had stated down the other hallway and had been attacked by something that lay on the floor like a pool of water. With Akta now in tow the two moved back up the hallway and around the corner into the room only to find the creature had moved to a position outside the room and Oester almost stepped right in the middle of it.
The Ochre Jelly nipped at Oester and did damage, and the two fell back, only to find the Ochre Jelly had considerable (and surprising) movement available to it. They were able to land several blows, but were unable to bloody it, but the DM continued his luck of bad rolls and Oester and Akta were able to avoid more serious damage.
As the two maneuvered to try and stay way from the jelly another group of rats appeared behind them, leaving them temporarily surrounded. Both took a swing at the jelly and started to run down the hallway to their friends, only to find that the rats had disappeared and the jelly wasn't following. Reinvigorated with courage, the two moved back up the hallway to see that their last blows had done enough damage to bloody the jelly, but instead of a single jelly they saw two smaller jelly's.
With the rats gone Akta and Oester continued to damage the remaining jelly's, although Akta finally did take a hit. The rat swarm returned once again, but the rest of the party arrived in time to add some firepower of their own to the battle against the Ochre Jelly(s) and the Giant Rats and they soon all fell.
With any remaining Giant Rats in hiding and the Kruthik's and the Ochre Jelly dead, the party decided to re-enter the room with the brackish pool of water to see if they could obtain whatever valuables lay on the island in the middle of the pool. Jenneth opted to send forth his floating disk with the intention of using his magic hand to retrieve the items and place them on the disk, but as the disk flew over the water a giant Blue Slime exploded out of the water, engulfing the disk and sending a stream of foul smelling stench in Jenneth's direction, doing damage and immobilizing her.
Jenneth was able to teleport away and the party was able to otherwise stay out of range of the Slime's attacks and was able to send in some ranged attacks of their own, but decided that for now it was better to just walk away from this particular room.
The party decided to move back upstairs, out of the natural cavern area, and to find a place for a quick rest.
30 Giants Rats
1 Ochre Jelly
10 Kruthink Hatchlings
4 Kruthik Young
1 Kruthik Adult
None carried any armor or weapons, and each party member earned 295 XP. Further inspection of the chest found in the Kruthik's nesting area revealed 84 GP, 7 Gems worth about 50 GP, and a Goblins Pouch containing 14 GP and two Potions of Healing.