The group was intact again this week as we move towards the finale of the Well of Demons. The party had accumulated all four of the magical items (bell, book, blade, and mask) and they knew where the four magical circles were, plus there was one door that has not been opened yet. Who was the guardian? Would they see the tieflings again? How about the pesky imp and stirge - they were still flitting about somewhere as well.
After a brief rest party moved back to the center area around of the Well of Demons. Nothing there had changed, so the party quickly moved past the manacled skeletons to look at the last door. It was large, heavy, had no handle nor did it have a key hole anywhere visible. It was locked, and further investigation showed the door was heavily magicked and the magic was somehow tied to the larger magic of the room itself. It was decided the placing of the four items in the magic circles was likely the key to advancing further.
After some discussion the eight party members broke into four groups. One party member would set their assigned item into the circle and the other would stand watch and coordinate actions as necessary. Initially the uncoordinated setting of the items into the circles had no affect, so it was decided the items really did need to be placed simultaneously. With all the open doors and with the party members able to yell to each other, one, two three, drop, the four items were placed into the four magically runed circles.
After a brief moment the four items glowed magically and then disappeared. Then the runes of the circle began to glow and began to shoot out streaks of light all about the dungeon. A roar could be heard coming from somewhere, and in each of the rooms where the circles resided different traps activated. Mark and Renny were grabbed by skeletons. Howling statues cast fear affects at Jenneth and Oester, causing Oester to run panicked into the hallway. Akta and Krstic were able to move out of the vat room, although a watery arm barely missed Akta. Jenneth and Bogar came under fire from a pair of crossbow bolt shooting devices that lowered from the ceiling.
There was also a huge spiked ball of energy that began to roll about the track surrounding the innermost section of the area. The ball took up the width of the passageway leaving no doubt that harm would come to any in it's way. And from the center of the room, arising from the pit therein, a flapping sound could be heard and a huge set of wings began to rise from the pit.
As the party spent their first round either evading or avoiding the traps close by or the wrath of the spiked ball circling in its path a green dragon emerged from the pit in the center of the dungeon and flew out the north entrance toward Jenneth and immediately bloodied her already weakened body with a poisoned breath. The dragon then followed Jenneth into the room where Miave and Bogar were attempting to disable the crossbow traps. Krstic and Akta soon joined the party, as did Eldred, while Renny and Oester looked to avoid the ball and the dragon and the other traps.
The dragon might have found itself surrounded by the adventurers, but it was not powerless. Using its bite, its claws, its tail, its ability to fly as well as it's poison abilities each of the party members in the area took damage at some point. But six capable party members can eventually begin to wear down a dragon, and just when things looked grim for the dragon it spun and flew out of the room, ensuring it placed itself between the party and the rolling ball of energy.
The dragon used its brief respite to resume its attacks in another direction, this time flying into the center area and going after Oester and Renny. Most of the party was able to resume the fight, but as the evenings activities drew to a close the bloodied dragon was still alive, as were all of the party members, everyone having survived nine rounds of ferocious combat.
When we resume in two weeks we will pick this up where we left off and see if the door to the inner chamber has opened. There are still plenty of active traps to work through as well. And once the last door is opened, what lay beyond?
Score Card: With the completion of the previous encounter the party had accumulated an additional 164 GP and 700 GP in gems. With the 0 XP earned during this encounter the party had accumulated 9070 XP (10000 needed to reach Level 7). Including the previous encounter Renny was sitting at 6190 XP (7500 needed to reach Level 6).
DM Notes: We neglected to discuss the magical bracers and the boots from the previous weeks episode. The bracers seemed to have some level of healing ability, while the boots were a bit harder to discern. The only clue were the three wiggly lines magically worked into the weathered leather on each boot.
We will see everyone at Leo's on Sunday, 01/02/2011. Brian is bringing snacks. Everybody have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year!