Fully recovered and itching for loot, the party prepares to open the three chests they found in the glowing vault...
Start Date: July 16, Year of the Badger, morning
Start Status: Pop top!
Start Location: In the golden tunnels, deep in the Wilds
After a discussion about various ways to open the chests, the party agrees to build a lifting mechanism using some poles, rope, and a grappling hook. Before heading out to gather the needed supplies, they check out the last doors. As expected, they mirror the already explored areas.
It's all a bit anti-climatic really. The lid pops right off, and slides to the floor with a muffled thud. No fiery eruptions from the glowing orbs, no poison gas. Nothing. The group exchanges a number of sheepish looks, then heads in to see what their work has uncovered. Excitement turns to disappointment and puzzlement. There is no gold, silver, or gems within this chest, just three strange objects carefully arranged within the interior. The first is a slim rod of silvery metal, one end flattened into a broad flange, the other inscribed with a set of deep grooves or channels. The second object is a hollow tube of the same metal. Each end of the tube has a pair of deep slots cut into its walls on opposite sides, and a seemingly random series of holes pierce its entire length. The third object is a small metal cup or cap, its exterior smooth, its interior rough (or patterned).
After some back and forth (You touch it! I'm not going to touch it! What if it's trapped?) Locky takes the initiative and picks up the tube. "See, nothing to it!" Emboldened, you gather the three objects and check the interior for any secret panels or compartments, but there are none.
"You know, this lid. It's actually pretty light," says Raúguey, who can easily lift the end with one hand. It only weighs fifteen pounds or so." Impulsively, he turns to the next chest and grabs the end.
"Raúguey no!" shouts Durego, diving for the door, but it's too late. The lid comes off.
Nothing happens. "Warn us next time, will you Raúguey?" says Rawon as he takes a drink from his ever-present flask. "Some of us don't have death wishes."
"OK, OK. Now help me move the lid aside." Mordikarr steps up and the two men easily lift and remove the lid, revealing another collection of odd objects. This time it's geometric shapes cut from stone like the strange walls and floors of the tunnels. Two spheres, three pyramids [tetrahedrons actually], four cubes, all in various colors, all glowing with that same faint light as the walls.
After another brief argument, Ohwatoo picks up one of the spheres. "It's light, too light for stone." He swaths his cloak around it and peers into the shadows produced. "It glows too."
Maro eyes the chest and the careful arrangement of objects within. "Perhaps we should pack these carefully, so they don't touch. Who knows what they are."
"Leave em for now. Let's open the other chest and get this over with," says Dagmarten, anxious to leave the tunnels and back into the sunlight above.
Raúguey and Rawon move into position while the others back away, just in case. With a nod the two men lift and set aside the lid, then peer inside. "Woooo, that's more like it," whispers Raúguey.
Rawon takes a sip from his flask. "Indeed, my friend. Indeed." The others crowd around and peer into the shallow chest. Within are 32 bars of polished metal arranged in four rows of eight, copper, silver, and gold.
"Are they real?" whispers Ohwatoo.
Ingvild touches one of the gold bars, then picks it up and hefts it. "Feels like gold all right." He puts the bar back, then taps a few others, pauses, frowns, then grins. "But this isn't silver." He pulls a bar free. "This, this is platinum!"
The bar is passed around, hefted with bars of silver and gold to compare weight, and then the entire collection is carefully removed and packed into several sacks. The stone shapes and the metal bits are given the same treatment, each piece wrapped in cloth to prevent them from touching, though they seem completely harmless as the group handles them. Finally Raúguey and Rawon set the lids back in place. "No reason to leave a mess, especially if we decide to use this as a base of operations."
Given the downtime, Maro & Ohwatoo will each have time to copy one spell from Nissa's spellbook. Let me know which you copy, and if you change your known spells.
The metal rod is about 8 inches long, and 1/2 inch in diameter. The flange is about 2 inches across and fairly thin. The tube is about 1 inch outside diameter, 1/2 inch inside diameter, and about 8 inches long. The cap is about 1 inch across and 2 inches high. It's fairly obvious that the rod fits inside the tube, the flange fits within the slots.
Each of the geometric objects is about 3 inches across. They feel light in the hand, and each has a faint glow about it.
Tally of bars:
12 bars of copper
8 bars of silver
8 bars of gold
4 bars of platinum
End Date: July 16, Year of the Badger, midday
End Status: Rich!
End Location: Deep in the Wilds