Real date: 9/24/17, 9/30/17 In-game date: September 8th, EY632
Ambrose (Warrior – Fighter now L2)
Asher (Footpad – Thief now L2)
Imric (Medium – MU L1)
NPCs: Gruk – (Barbarian – Fighter L1)
In our last session, the party defeated the Hobgoblin chief and returned to Frostmark. They recovered for a week, enough time to allow Imric to craft a sleep scroll, and set out again to the caves in a cold, light rain. The journey to the caves was uneventful, and this time they took a different approach, sneaking up from the south just after nightfall. They spotted two caves they had not seen before, shrouded in trees but visible due to lit torches at each entrance.
The activity around the caves seemed much higher than during the day – each entrance had five guards, a mix of Dwarf and human, some with crossbows. Imric decided to sneak a bit closer and expend his spell repertoire all in one go, he cast sleep on the guard positions at each entrance in turn. One (human) guard they left alive and attempted to interrogate, but the fellow would not cooperate (DM Note: terrible reaction checks) and Asher killed him after he tried to flee.
The party decided to enter the east cave, inside they followed a lit tunnel past a few branches to a large door. Ambrose tried to open it, but it was stuck and required a few tries. Unfortunately, the noise altered the room’s occupant, an Ogre who was preparing dinner. When the door finally opened, the Ogre was ready. He rushed Ambrose and killed him in one blow with his large mace! The front ranks of the party let loose a volley of arrows and rushed the Ogre, cutting him down without any major injuries to the remaining party members.
A search of the room revealed three large, iron-bound chests, lined up in a row in the west corner. Asher examined the floor around the chests and noted the flagstones oddly discolored. He tested his theory that the floor was trapped by throwing a heavy bit of debris on the floor in front of one of the chests. When he did so, a large chunk of stone fell from the ceiling onto the chest immediately below it, scattering the chest contents – gold and silver coins. Imric found a small depression in the nearby rock that when pressed with a pole, resulted in an audible ‘click’, and sure enough another test revealed that this disabled the floor triggers. In the other two chests the party recovered a good quantity of gold, some gems and a finely crafted lockpick set. They gathered up what loot they could and returned to town, Ambrose’s body in tow.
DM notes: I handle stuck-door checks by having players roll once, if they fail I assume the door eventually opens, but with effort and noise (unless they explicitly tell me they are trying just once). In this case the Ogre heard the attempts to open the door, and was waiting in front of it to see who was interrupting his dinner. A failed surprise roll for Ambrose the fighter was all it took – he had six hit points, and was killed in one blow of the Ogre’s mace.
The players discovered the falling block traps purely by searching and testing – remember my thief class does not have an explicit ‘find traps’ skill, anyone can find traps. It makes my job as referee a bit harder – I have to make sure I provide adequate clues and descriptive hints. So far this seems to be working well.