Friday, June 2, 2017

The Colony - Turn 16 - Look! More Bloody Footprints!

The party descends into the lizard's cave, ready to finish the beast off before it can hurt anyone else (or them).

Start Date: July 23, noonish
Start Status: Follow the Leaders
Start Location: In the Wilderness (hex 39,27)

The Turn

White Tulip: Smoke, Rennard, Shade, Zenobe, Mendel, One-eye, Maarek, Hagan, Sim
Exploring: Xon, Adrienne, Nogg, Aaron, Brigg, Candle, Kessel, Jinx, Javiera

After an interminable debate, the party decides to go after the fleeing lizard. During the discussion, Candle casts Shillelagh on himself and Cure Light Wounds on Adrienne [3 HP healed]. Several party members also examine the tunnel entrance (cautiously) and see...

As you move close to the tunnel, following the blood trail, the first thing you notice is the smell: acrid and foul. With a light source (Javiera has a light stone), you can see the tunnel opening is fairly large, about 7 feet wide and 8 feet high. It runs straight for about 20 feet, sloping slightly downward, then splits into two (or more) passages. You can't really see more without going into the tunnels.

The tunnel walls are mostly the same stone as the outcroppings you've seen out in the ravine. There are claw and drag marks on the floor, and the blood trail leads to the left at the split.

The group assumes a new marching order, with those most enthusiastic about the venture in front:

R1: Kessel (Ranger), Nogg (Fighter)
R2: Aaron (MU), Xon D’Or (Fighter)
R3: Javiera (MU), Adrienne (Fighter)
R4: Candle (Druid), Jinx (Fighter)
R5: Brigg (Monk)

The four in front start down the tunnel, leaving the rest of the group behind to scavenge burnable material from debris outside. [OOC: they find some other stuff too, but nothing useful, so I'll detail it below]. With a few bits of dry wood and torn clothing in hand, the rearward group moves into the tunnel. Javiera casts Web down the right branch, leaving the left branch and its blood trail open. The group piles the flammable materials below the webs, ready to light.

With the flank (hopefully) secure, the party advances, tossing the party's two light stones ahead and scanning the tunnels with Aaron's Monocle of Sight. The tunnel goes on for another 40 or 50 feet and widens out slightly. Stone replaces earth in the walls, and the acrid odor present at the cave mouth grows stronger. Here and there, small pools of blood-stained water cover the floor. The main blood trail continues into a large irregular cavern, 20 to 25 feet wide and at least 60 feet long east to west. The shore of a larger body of water is visible at the edge of the illuminated area, and the trail leads straight into the water.

"Giant, chameleon, aquatic lizards," mutters Xon. "What's next, wings?"

Kessel gestures for silence and moves forward 10 or 15 feet. "I think I see an island in the pool. Let's spread out a bit and move forward." He takes point and the others move forward, with the gun users spreading out to get better lines of fire. Aaron picks up the nearest lightstone and tosses it right next to the pond's edge. The island comes into view, as does the still form of the giant lizard sprawled across it.

"Is it dead?" whispers Brigg.

"Let's find out," answers Kessel. He draws his bow and fires a shot, aiming for the creature's head. The arrow flies true, burying itself in the beast's skull. The wound provokes no action. "I think it must be dead. I doubt it's smart enough to play dead."

"Let's be sure it doesn't have any friends," says Adrienne. She points to the north side of the pond where a passage leads down and away, a thin trickle of water flowing across its floor. "There may also be other caves beyond the island too."


The lizard looks pretty dead. There was a lot of blood on the tunnel floor, its legs are splayed out, and it hasn't moved at all.

The east end of the cave is about 20-30 feet north-south and 60 east-west. It has a stone floor dotted with puddles and boulders. There are some bones scattered across the floor and the acrid smell is pretty strong.

The pool in the middle is at least 60 feet east-west and the cave is 40-50 feet wide here. The water extends out of sight. The passage Adrienne saw is more or less straight north of the 20-foot wide island, which is about 30 feet away from the near shore. The island is a smooth mound with several larger boulders and some debris, maybe more bones, visible.

The water is stained with blood and stirred-up mud, but the edges are fairly clear. It doesn't look too deep near the shore, but it's difficult to see further out. The smell does not seem to come from the water.

The quick search outside uncovered the remains of at least three people. Two sets of bones appeared to be older and wore common clothing. The third wore a military uniform and Adrienne recovered a captain's insignia from the remaining scraps of cloth. They also found a military-issue sword, a chain shirt that was torn to pieces, several handfuls of coins (303 CP, 129 SP, 31 GP), and a pouch containing three small gems. There are also skulls, horns, and bones from a dozen or more antelope. A more thorough search may uncover more stuff.

End Date: July 23, noonish
End Status: Victory?
End Location: In the Wilderness (hex 39,27)

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