The Points of Light Campaign (D&D 4e)
Adventure #2 WOTC H2 Thunderspire Labyrinth (Level 4)
Earthday, 20th of Fireseek, 2000.
And after an uninterrupted rest, ensconced in the Chamber of Eyes, Charrak is in business once again, leading the guys back through the Labyrinth, however not the way that they came, and the little Kobold is going as fast as he can, with the guys blowing hard trying to keep up. Why you ask. A DM device, I’ve put the clock on them, let’s rewind the tape-
When morning comes around the guys quickly discover bloody hand prints on the front door- which is also wide open. A very quick tally of the bad guy’s bodies and the adventurers are left in no doubt, one of the Duergar Guards is missing, it can’t have been dead…
The grey Dwarf has gone into the Labyrinth, Charrak with a little help from Winstanley and Phrenic reckon that the creature has got a four hour head start- at least, the guys are crestfallen. They speculate a while and finally (finally- it took a bloody long while) come to the conclusion- the Duergar is most likely heading to the Seven Pillared Hall to warn his fellows.
The DM, in the guise of Charrak, presents the guys with a choice- the Kobold knows a quick way back to the Hall, they can do the journey in half the time although the way is much more dangerous, Charrak reckons there’s a good chance they could even beat the Duergar back to the Trading Post.
Or, the guys could just head into the Labyrinth and try to track the missing Duergar- the Guard could in fact be heading for Grimmerzhul. I make sure the guys understand that this is by far the harder option- they have no Ranger and would be reliant on Charrak, remarkably they decide to play it safe- the rush back to the Seven Pillared Hall.
Skip back to the beginning of this section- the guys are now in the midst of a Skill Challenge, again of my own devising and pretty much the same as the last one we employed on the way to the Chamber of Eyes. This time however the DCs are much harder- the rocky ledges are higher and more difficult to get to, the water in the underground streams is faster flowing, or else deeper, or else both. The guys get in a pickle, repeatedly, spending Healing Surges left right and center to get back to the Hall as quickly as they can.
And so three hours later, with Charrak grumbling- mostly at the guys for their repeated failures, remarkably the Kobold is able to scramble up sheer rock faces, leap across freezing streams and generally avoid all dangers. Admittedly I’m making his skill checks behind the DMs screen, but that’s my prerogative. All of the PCs are down at least three Healing Surges, Dirty has lost four already- and has rolled a ‘1’ on two occasions so far, including for an Endurance check- the sturdy Dwarf is knackered and badly out of breath. It’s at this point, more or less oblivious to what’s going on around them, the guys wander into a much larger chamber and are immediately surrounded and confronted by…