The Points of Light Campaign (D&D 4e)
Adventure #2 WOTC H2 Thunderspire Labyrinth (Level 4)
Encounter #41 H7: The Slave Pits.
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Human Berserker (Brute 4)
Duergar Guard (Soldier 4) x2
Spined Devil (Skirmisher 6) x2
Duergar Theurge- Framath (Elite Controller 5)
Encounter Level 6- 1425 XP
Godsday, 25th of Fireseek, 2000.
The guys move back into Grimmerzhul- back the way they came in, the place is pretty much as they left it, until reinforcements arrive the Duergar are on their own, save for the Tiefling and his friends. I also figure that I want the guys to get in and get on with it now- as fun as Grimmerzhul is I’m keen to get the guys moving on, remember they’re still of the opinion that this is the last part of the adventure. Having said that it’s at this point that a couple of the players start to have doubts, they’re beginning to suspect that there’s something bigger going on here.
So, Winstanley leading the way back- as always, the adventurers make their way through the outpost, over the less used bridge and back to where they fought the Wights, and all without harm. From the ruined chapel they head north into a bunch of ancient, and seemingly unexplored, Minotaur-sized crypts- I figured the Duergar didn’t know this place exists, if the guys had just gone on earlier I would have allowed them to rest here undisturbed.
From the crypts the guys find a secret door, I changed a couple of the doors into secret doors to make the crypt particularly well hidden, in this section. Through the secret door the guys follow a dark, and dank, passageway to a dead end, and then duly find yet another secret door.
Winstanley takes a moment to listen at the door- he suddenly looks shocked, a scream- a human scream, at least that’s what the Halfling thinks…
The Rogue manages to silently work the door open- it hasn’t been opened in an age; he sneaks a peek within- a lit chamber with more Duergar, the screams (plural) are coming from a great rectangular pit in the floor- flapping over the pits is some sort of devil creature- covered in spikes and spines.
Winstanley has seen enough- the guys burst in…
Grey fires out a Magic Missile which slams into the Spined Devil tormenting the captives in the closest pit. Dirty and Phrenic Charge into the nearest Duergar Guard, and pound him, while Kaspard’s Daunting Light sears the Devil and leaves it vulnerable to further attacks.
It’s time for the Duergar to start screaming.
Grey moves in to the huge chamber and fires another Magic Missile, this time into the leader type, the Duergar Theurge- Framath. At the same time Winstanley spins out a dagger, with a Sly Flourish, and suddenly the tormenting Spined Devil is bloodied- it flees, at speed- screeching as it goes. A second Spined Devil leaps into the air and swoops forward- towards the adventurers. The fiend fires down a Rain of Spines, the needles burst into flame in flight, Dirty is punctured, burnt and poisoned, and also slowed. The Dwarf doesn’t feel well.
The Duergar Guard’s hammer is suddenly wreathed in flames- it attacks the Dwarf but the Fighter has enough about him to keep it at bay, Dirty fights back and smashes the Guard with a Crushing Blow- it’s bloodied, and the Devils poison in the Dwarf’s system is neutralised.
Framath, the Duergar leader- and the furthest away from the guys, screams and shouts- issuing orders, and then unleashes a Brimstone Hail- Grey and Dirty are caught in the storm, both are burnt a little, the mage is also sent sprawling to the floor- and left shrieking in pain.
Human Berserker- He wields a massive chopper!
Kaspard shuffles forward and lets loose her Radiant Hands- the uninjured Spined Devil is now injured, as is the second Duergar Guard who stands before Framath, protecting the Theurge. While the Duergar Guard fighting Dirty, and now Phrenic, is left barely able to stand- not long for this life. The Human Berserker Charges into the mix- Phrenic deflects his greataxe and the fight rumbles on.
Grey fires out another Magic Missile (a crit) and Framath winces, Winstanley meantime skitters around one of the pits and gets as close as he can the retreating badly injured Spined Devil- his Sly Flourish finds its target- and the Devil is forced to land.
The Duergar Guard in the fracas thumps Dirty with its warhammer, the Dwarf however is Unbreakable- he barely feels the blow. The second Duergar is ordered forward, by Framath, and into the action- it starts by flinging a handful of its Beard Quills at Phrenic, the Tiefling is peppered and poisoned. The evil Dwarf screams and then Charges in and slams its warhammer into the Warlord. Dirty’s Reaping Strike turns out to be nothing more than a glancing blow- the Duergar facing him miraculously survives the attack. The Dwarf Fighter sucks up the hurt and gets his Second Wind.
Duergar Guard- The Grey Dwarf du jour.
Framath points, and then gestures- a streamer of smoke lurches forward from his splayed hands and engulfs the combatants, the guys are suddenly breathing in Vile Fumes. Kaspard, Phrenic, Dirty and the badly injured Duergar Guard are all left choking, and worse still- blinded. Framath roars with laughter (as does the DM).
In the midst of the melee the combatants continue to flail- it’s the blind attacking the blind however, all of the attackers fail to find their targets.
Winstanley meantime spins out another Sly Flourish, again at the retreating Spined Devil, it drops- dead. The second Spined Devil however is still in the air- its Rain of Spines lacerates and punctures Kaspard, and leaves the blind Priestess burnt and poisoned.
Dirty takes a thump to the chest, he can’t see who his attacker is, but the terribly injured (and blind) Duergar Guard hopes he’s hit one of the adventurers. Even my blind guy can hit Dirty, guess what- Dave’s not happy. The second Duergar Guard’s warhammer is also suddenly wreathed in flame, although Phrenic fails to appreciate the spectacle, he too is blind, he gets the full affect up close however- the Duergar smashes his flaming weapon into the Tiefling’s chest- Phrenic is bloodied.
The players are having a bit of a worry at this point.
Dirty swats furiously and delivers another glancing blow to the still standing, and still blind, Duergar Guard. Framath’s Firebolt somehow misses the flailing Phrenic, yeah I rolled a ‘1’, and then suddenly the Tiefling can see again- he stabs the badly injured Duergar Guard which sinks to its knees and then falls face forwards into one of the pits. The Tiefling follows up with a few Inspiring Words for himself, and then- wonder of wonders, throws off the poison effect from the Devil.
Kaspard mouths a few Healing Words of her own- her wounds are all but forgotten, she then conjures her Spiritual Weapon but alas fails to cut down the remaining Spined Devil. Grey’s Magic Missile thuds into the creature however, while Winstanley’s follow up with his Sly Flourish, which also hits home. The panicked fiend fires out another Rain of Spines, and once again Kaspard is left pierced, burnt and poisoned.
Spined Devil- Death from Above.
Dirty at last gets into the action, he can also see again- which no doubt helps his aim, his Steel Serpent Strike thuds into the Berserker, the brute fights on but Dirty’s blow clearly hurt the frenzied Human.
Framath meantime is still having fun, the Theurge unleashes another Brimstone Hail- Kaspard and Phrenic are caught in the savage downpour- although the Tiefling is immune to the fire, the pair are however knocked to the floor. Framath laughs like a madman- invincible.
Phrenic quickly scrambles to his feet and then lashes out with a Viper’s Strike- the Human Berserker is at last bloodied- Kaspard guides in her Spiritual Weapon and thumps the Berserker again, the Priestess also throws off the Devil’s poison. Winstanley scooches up behind the Berserker and stabs the lunatic in the back- it dies, having not managed to connect once. The remaining Duergar Guard smashes Dirty again with its warhammer.
The Fighter is however getting a little fed up with the situation, it shoves past the Guard- taking another whack for his sins, and then Charges headlong at Framath, and smashes the Theurge with his maul. The Duergar leader tries to get away and is hit again- Framath manages however to clear a little room for itself, and then sends out a Wave of Despair. Dirty staggers- dazed and slowed, and then thumps his helm with the haft of his weapon once or twice to clear his vision. Just in time to be hit by Framath’s follow up Firebolt, Dirty is fortunate he has a little fire resistance. Phrenic shouts over a few more Inspiring Words and the Dwarf Fighter’s wounds are swiftly forgotten. The Tiefling then follows Dirty’s lead and Charges past the last remaining Duergar Guard, and straight at Framath- the Theurge is sliced some more, and this time left bloodied. The Warlord screams for his friends to finish of the Duergar leader.
Grey obeys and slams another Magic Missile into the foul fellow, Winstanley creeps closer and spins out another dagger, as usual with a Sly Flourish, Framath staggers. The Duergar Guard doubles back and catches up with action, rushing to save its leader it slams its warhammer into Phrenic’s back. Dirty meanwhile continues to stagger, still dazed and slowed, unable to land his attack.
Duergar Theurge- Framath- Concentrate fire!
Framath is suddenly faced with a wall of adventurers- all out for his blood, the Duergar leader has had enough- it flees, and is cut again by Phrenic. The Theurge gets to the chamber door and flings it open, there’s a corridor beyond- Framath rushes on. Phrenic follows after, in hot pursuit of the Duergar leader, although the Tiefling is slammed again by the Duergar Guard en route. Phrenic covers the ground quickly and cuts Framath again, and yet still the Duergar Theurge struggles on.
Grey suddenly scoots and rushes out of the chamber- a blur, courtesy of his Expeditious Retreat, the mage comes to a halt no more than ten feet away from the fleeing Framath- grins at the Duergar, and then punctures its skull with a well-aimed Magic Missile.
Framath is dead.
Winstanley rushes over to intercept the Duergar Guard- also making for the exit, and with his Bait and Switch technique he stabs the Duergar and leaves it bloodied, and in the same motion swaps places with his enemy- forcing it back away from the exit.
The Spined Devil squawks and the fires another Rain of Spines into Dirty, the Dwarf grins and bares the hurt- the Devil backs up away, figuring out whether to run and hide, or else stay and take the pain.
The Duergar Guard meantime must get to his master (Framath- the Guard, can’t see the Theurge is dead)- or else he must warn his Lord- head down the Guard Bullrushes and yet somehow fails to get past Winstanley. Dirty meantime continues to stagger, still dazed and still slowed- and still unable to clear his head.
Dirty’s just not in this fight.
Kaspard’s Divine Glow bathes the Duergar Guard in radiant light- which burns the evil Dwarf, Grey’s Magic Missile slams into it- and it’s dead. Just the Spined Devil left- the fiend cuts and runs, or else cuts and flaps- back down the passage into the minotaur crypt- the adventurers path into this fight. Phrenic and Kaspard head off at speed after the Devil, and then- at last, Dirty finally clears his head and follows after.
Grey’s too far behind the fight now, the mage- as quietly as he can, drags the bodies of first Framath, and then the Duergar Guard back, into the chamber and then shuts the doors. Winstanley meanwhile is off at a rush- after the Devil, the Halfling even manages to flick out a dagger en route- although at incredible distance he still manages to cut the Devil. The creature flutters and flies on, although unsure of just where to go it circles the crypt looking for a way out- an escape.
The adventurers rush in- Phrenic to the fore, the Tiefling grabs out a javelin, flings it and skewers the flying fiend.
Grey meantime completes his task, and then takes a look down the pits- he’s found them, the ex-citizens of Fallcrest, the mage fetches out a ladder, and shushing all the while signals for the captives to climb up and out to freedom.
Back in the minotaur crypt Dirty finally arrives on the scene, and with his throwing hammer in hand- he flings his missile weapon which thumps into the Devil, causing it to flutter down to the ground. Phrenic steps in and slices the last enemy dead with his Viper’s Strike.
The battle is won.
Grey meanwhile is very busy- helping out a total of ten slaves from the pits- the former citizens of Winterhaven, and assorted travelers from the King’s Road are over-joyed to be released, although still a little anxious. Their clamour is eventually quieted, and with their help the room is cleared up a little- after the clear up the bad guys are thoroughly searched. The dead bodies are then dropped into the flooded pit, the armoured Duergar sink straight to the bottom- while several of the other creatures remain afloat- not a perfect plan.
A break is called for the guys to question the ex-prisoners, and get used to the lie of the land, but that however is for next time.