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Adventure #2 WOTC H2 Thunderspire Labyrinth (Level 4)
Session #10.03

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Encounter #36 Random Encounter- Kruthik Nest.
Click on the Links to see the Monster Stat cards.
Kruthik Adult (Brute 4) x5
Kruthik Hive Lord (Elite Controller 6)
Encounter Level 6- 1375 XP

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Sunday, 23rd of Fireseek, 2000.

And the guys are getting frustrated- they’ve suffered a few more failures in their Skill Challenge- and have been involved in a variety of mishaps- wandering into a chamber full of spore spraying fungi they escape choking and bleeding from every orifice- and down a healing surge or two each. They’ve also narrowly escaped when a huge stalactite fell, almost without warning, into their midst, and still they’ve not managed to complete four successful skill checks in a row to complete the challenge. The DC is down to 17 which should make it easy but each time they try one of the guys rolls incredibly low.

Which is why I decide to call an end to the challenge, and dish up one last encounter in the hope I can beat one or two of them down, all of the guys have fewer than half of their healing surges.
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What’s worse the guys find themselves wading through a series of caverns two to three feet deep with a viscous green-grey gloop- it’s hard to move quietly here, particularly if you’re a and Halfling up to your chest in the slop.

Winstanley suddenly lets out a yelp, there’s something moving through the muck and gunk- several somethings in fact.

A large reptilian insect-like creature surfaces ahead of Winstanley, the Halfling spins a dagger out with a Sly Flourish and scores a cut in the beast. The Rogue screams again, there are Kruthik are in the muck.

Grey reacts in an instant and conjures a Flaming Sphere which sinks a way into the gunk but continues to burn, and in particular it burns the Kruthik Adult that is scuttling through the goo and fast approaching. Phrenic burns the creature some more with his Scorching Burst as it surfaces. Dirty spots the beast and rushes forward, as best he can, a Cometfall Charge and the Kruthik Adult is quickly bloodied, the Dwarf however is spiked and cut by the beast for his pains.

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Kruthik Adult- From the gunk it rises.

Another Kruthik Adult surfaces and is hit by Kaspard’s Hand of Radiance, seconds later Phrenic staggers as yet another of the beasts bursts from beneath the goo and starts Clawing at the Tiefling. Another Kruthik Adult surfaces, quite a distance away, it fires its Toxic Spikes- Phrenic and Dirty are both struck- the pair are left poisoned and slowed.

One of the Kruthik Adults is caught in the aura of Grey’s Flaming Sphere, and then smashed by Dirty, a pair of the brutes menace the Fighter but he keeps both at bay.

Grey tries to make room for himself, he rolls his Flaming Sphere over to a Kruthik fast approaching, the reptile is already cut, smashed and burnt- the beast is left scorched and unmoving- the dead Kruthik Adult sinks a little into the muck.

Phrenic lashes and cuts another with his Leaf on the Wind, and then offers himself a few Inspiring Words, the Tiefling is back in fine fettle. Dirty smashes another of the beasts with his Crushing Blow- it’s bloodied in an instant, the Dwarf meanwhile gets his Second Wind. The pair, Phrenic and Dirty, also shake off the Kruthik’s poison.

Suddenly, ahead, creating a great furrow in the muck comes yet another Kruthik, a Hive Lord- almost 6 feet high to the crest of its carapace, and easily ten feet long, Kaspard prays and illuminates the beast with her Daunting Light.

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Kruthik Hive Lord- King of the Muck.

The Kruthik Adult still hanging back fires again- two more Toxic Spikes fly out, and Dirty is hit again, the Dwarf is poisoned and slowed once more. Another Kruthik Adult is burnt and charred straying too close to Grey’s Flaming Sphere, it diverts and closes in on Dirty and Claws at the Dwarf. Yet another Kruthik Adult spikes Winstanley, even the Halfling’s Second Chance can’t save him- he’s Clawed badly.

Grey can see few options- things are getting a little desperate, the Wizard wades closer to the action en route his Fire Shroud erupts- alas only one the Adults is flamed and left burning. The mage tries again with his Burning Hands, this time many of the Kruthik burn- but only one of the Adults and the Hive Lord feel the full force of his fire storm. Winstanley spins out a dagger and another of the burnt Adults is left bloodied.

Dirty continues to bluster smashing the Hive Lord with his Brute Strike, the monster Kruthik is at last bloodied, the Dwarf again shrugs off the effect of the Kruthik’s poison. The great Kruthik rears up and sprays a fan of fizzing clear liquid at the adventurers before it- Kaspard, Phrenic and Dirty are all caught in the Acid Blast and left blistered and weakened, for good measure the Hive Lord snaps and Claws at Phrenic, the Tiefling is also bloodied.

Kaspard’s Spiritual Weapon blinks into existence, and yet misses its intended target- the Hive Lord. The Priestess reacts and bathes the area before her with a Divine Glow- but again her prayer is underpowered, or else she is, the Hive Lord barely feels the radiant force, and none of the other Kruthik are harmed. Kaspard shouts outHealing Words and Dirty forgets his wounds.

Now that the Hive Lord is at the center of the action the other Kruthik seemingly click and whirr into a frenzy, Winstanley is Clawed horribly and left bloodied in an instant. Then hit again as another Adult fires off its Toxic Spikes, the Halfling is also poisoned and slowed. Grey’s Flaming Sphere however does its job, another of the Kruthik Adults wanders too close and is burnt- to death. The Hive Lord and a nearby Adult are also caught in the mage’s Scorching Burst.

Winstanley is suffering (down to 9 HP) the Kruthik poison is doing its job- the Halfling’s Bloodcut armour flares (Resist 10 all), momentarily he feels no pain. Seconds later the Halfling spikes another Adult with his Positioning Strike and sends the reptile skittering back into Grey’s Flaming Sphere. He’s not finished however, Winstanly grabs out a clutch of daggers and lets them fly- his Blinding Barrage, the same Kruthik is reduced to a twitching mess (on 1 HP), while yet another Adult is bloodied- both are also blinded.

Phrenic is bloodied, burning with acid and still weakened, the Tiefling slashes at the Hive Lord with his Directed Attack, Dirty immediately retreats, while Winstanley Charges into to stab at the Kruthik leader. For good measure the Warlord finds a few Inspiring Words to offer Winstanley, the Rogue momentarily forgets his pain.

Dirty gets back into action, although the Dwarf is also weakened and burning still from the Hive Lord’s acid attack. He Charges in and smashes the aforementioned Hive Lord, and follows up with a Reaping Strike- the great creature staggers, emits a series of staccato high pitched clicks and squeaks, alas it’s also positioned next to Grey’s Flaming Sphere- it burns, and then slowly catches fire, unmoving- dead.

Kaspard, equally out of sorts- weakened and burning up, concentrates her efforts on keeping her guys in the game- she mutters Healing Words and Phrenic is suddenly much healthier, she follows up with a Cure Light Wounds and now she too is feeling fine.

The terribly injured, and blinded, Kruthik Adult parked next to the Flaming Sphere is scorched some more- it explodes in flame and moments later expires. There are now only two of the creatures left in the fight. That came around quickly- the guys were terrified earlier on.

The first Kruthik Adult backs up and fires off its Toxic Spikes- Phrenic suffers, as should Winstanley but his magical armour soaks up almost all of the hurt. The second Kruthik still standing is scorched badly by the Flaming Sphere, it too is also blinded- it menaces Kaspard but without effect. Grey makes it suffer, he rolls the Flaming Sphere right over it (a crit), the last but one Kruthik bursts into flames- squeals a while, and then slowly sinks beneath the gloop.

Winstanley launches a Sly Flourish and the last remaining Kruthik is now bloodied. Phrenic, who’s now bloodied again- the acid on his skin continues to burn, gets his Second Wind, and douses himself in water from his skin- the acid’s burn is quenched. Kaspard’s Spiritual Weapon (no hits so far) thumps into the last Kruthik, the Priestesses Sacred Flame also hurts- although not much, the Priestess is still weakened.

The last Kruthik is burnt by Grey’s Flaming Sphere- it all proves too much, it does the best it can to get the hell out of dodge- and the guys are content to let it go. Except for Dirty, who loses a throwing hammer in the gunk, trying to target the retreating beast before he’s eventually persuaded to let the strange insect like creature depart.

The fight is over, and the guys are truly spent.

No further- they can go no further; the adventurers and Charrak find a safe place to rest up- organise a watch rota, install Grey’s Alarm ritual and get some shut-eye, tomorrow could prove to be another very nasty day.

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The Points of Light Campaign (D&D 4e) goonalan