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Adventure #2 WOTC H2 Thunderspire Labyrinth (Level 4)
Session #9.06

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Encounter #33 A2-1: Grimmerzhul Trading Post.
Click on the Links to see the Monster Stat cards.
Duergar Guard (Soldier 4) x4
Duergar Theurge- Kedhira (Controller 5)
Encounter Level 4- 900 XP

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Earthday, 20th of Fireseek, 2000.

And so, after a successful Skill Challenge to get back through the Labyrinth at double-quick speed, the guys make it to the Seven Pillared Hall, although almost all of them are low on Healing Surges- Phrenic and Dirty have only two left apiece.

The guys sneak, as best they can- mostly covered in blood and out of breath/shape, they head in an around-about fashion to the Duergar Trading Post. Winstanley finds what he thinks is a back way in to the establishment.

The plan, such as it is, is for Winstanley to enter the rear door when he hears all the screaming- a pincer movement, although Winstanley is on his own at the back- is that safe, we’re about to find out.

The guys are starting to attract attention in the Hall- no time to dawdle, time to get it on. Note while this fight is only a Level 4 encounter, and the PCs are Level 5- I wanted to make sure there was plenty of threat, and no time for the players to plot it all out ahead of time. Thus I made them get in and on with it as quickly as possible, all the while emphasising that if the fight spilled out into the Hall proper then things could go badly very quickly.

Let’s see how they got on.

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Minutes later, at the front desk in the Trading Post- Kaspard & Phrenic are laying down the law, basically accusing the Duergar Guards working front of house of being ‘evil slavers’. This doesn’t go down very well- and attracts the attention of another Duergar- making three Duergar Guards present. The grey Dwarves are not very chatty- they have a named bad guy for that- Kedhira, they do however tell the adventurers to ‘push off’, only with more expletives and plenty of menaces- there’s an argument. Isn’t there always.

Dirty already has his maul out- he jumps the gun.

The plan was for all of the PCs to try for a surprise round, it doesn’t work out that way, although…

Dirty Cometfall Charges the nearest Duergar and slams the evil bastard Dwarf. Winstanley, at the back door, hears Dirty screaming and enters the rear of Trading Post- he only just remembered to unlock the door prior to this manoeuvre. The Halfling has a look around, and spies into a bed chamber…

Meanwhile at the front of house it all kicks off.

A Duergar Guard leaps the counter and smashes Grey- not what the Wizard expected, and how come he’s in the front line? A second leaps onto the store counter and swishes with his warhammer, now sheathed in flame. The third menaces Dirty, the Dwarf keeps it at bay- while a fourth enters the store front and thumps Dirty with its warhammer (a crit). Its getting very busy in here.

Dirty delivers a Crushing Blow and the first Duergar is bloodied, the Dwarf follows up with a Spinning Strike and the other Duergar he’s facing is injured and on his face, briefly.

If only he’d concentrated fire, there’d be one Duergar down already.

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Duergar Guard- Aiming for the eyes.

Phrenic’s Leaf on the Wind attack slices another of the Duergar Guards.

Back to Winstanley who suddenly comes face to face with Kedhira- the robed Duergar Theurge, the Halfling spins out a dagger, with a Deft Strike, Kedhira is hurt- time to get the hell out of dodge, the Rogue backs out of the chamber.

Kaspard sends out his Hands of Radiance, two of the four Duergar Guards suffer, for good measure the Priestess of Bahamut manifests her Spiritual Weapon, although she’s off target with the conjured device. Grey meantime sprints for the rear with his Expeditious Retreat, the mage finds a little space to work in, and then remembers that the Duergar are immune (a bit- he doesn’t know how much) to fire. The Wizard fires off a Ray of Frost, the second Guard is bloodied, and hobbling- slowed. The Wizard isn’t done however, he chants and a section of the shop is suddenly shrouded in shadow, and chilled to the bone- his Grasp of the Grave, the effect is startling, even Grey is impressed, the newly bloodied Duergar Guard is left staggering- only just able to keep its feet, while a different Guard is bloodied, both are also dazed.

Kedhira meantime gets after Winstanley, she exits her chamber and is instantly stabbed by the Rogue, the Duergar steps back and shoots out a Firebolt, the Rogue somehow dodges the missile.

Back in the store front, the two dazed Duergar scurry to get out of the area of effect of Grey’s Grasp of the Grave, one makes it to safety although still suffering further necrotic damage, the second Guard isn’t so lucky- Phrenic cuts it down.

The other two Duergar Guards wail on Dirty- the Dwarf is smashed twice, and has to get his Second Wind to stay on his feet, he manages a glancing blow with his Reaping Strike against one of the Guards he’s facing.

Winstanley is feeling a little lonely, and frightened, the Halfling Tumbles away from Kedhira and kicks a door open- he’s behind the Duergar in the shop, he delivers a Deft Strike to one of the Guards and kills it dead and then screams for help.

Two down.

Kaspard’s Spiritual Weapon continues to swat ineffectively, the Priestess fires a Daunting Light at one of the Guards left standing, it’s nearly done for.

Kedhira unleashes her Vile Fumes attack through the now open door and into the store front, only Dirty succumbs to her power- the Dwarf is poisoned and left blinded.

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Duergar Theurge- Kedhira- Smoking!

One of the two Guards left standing swats at Phrenic- and misses, the other smashes Dirty, who’s easy prey- still blinded, the Dwarf swats back with his Reaping Strike and catches his attacker but again only a glancing blow- the fourth Duergar Guard is bloodied, at last. Winstanley plays a blinder, at Grey’s instruction, the Halfling skewers the same Guard with his Positioning Strike and then shoves it back into the mage’s Grasp of the Grave power.

Kaspard’s Spiritual Weapon is still flailing, and still missing, the Priestess decides on a different tack, she draws her own magical mace and Charges into Kedhira, the Duergar leader is left bloodied. Grey’s Ray of Frost ensures Kedhira’s not going anywhere fast, the Duergar leader is less than impressed, Kedhira launches a Wave of Despair- Kaspard and Dirty are caught in the attack, both are psychically damaged and left dazed and slowed. Kedhira retreats, slowly back out of the chamber.

The two Duergar Guards wail on Phrenic, the Tiefling is struck twice, although one of the Guards suffers for his efforts from the Grasp of the Grave’s necrotic effect. Phrenic cuts one of them back with a Viper’s Strike, although its only a glancing blow.

Winstanley scurries after Kedhira, spins a dagger into the Theurge with a Sly Flourish. Kaspard follows suit and Charges after, the Priestess slams her magical mace into the grey Dwarf leader, knocking him unconscious.

Two things- 1) What the hell- Kaspard is charging stuff, she’s a laser Cleric, and 2) the guys remembered they need a prisoner, who better than the leader. Result.

Grey’s Magic Missile ends the second to last Duergar Guard- which by my maths just leaves one of them left standing.

The terrified Duergar runs, straight past a surprised looking Phrenic and out the front door of the store and into the Seven Pillared hall, screaming blue murder.

Which gets the attention of quite a few of the folk in the Hall, particularly when Dirty runs out after the escaping Guard, and then Phrenic, and then Winstanley, and then Kaspard.

And finally Grey.

The Duergar Guard however isn’t stopping, and the populace are keen to give the screaming grey Dwarf with a warhammer a wide berth, Phrenic however is quick on his feet and manages to catch and slash the escapee.

All of the other guys don’t even get close.

A crowd is gathering, a number of them are Bloodreavers, or at least they’re Hobgoblins and Goblins, as far as they guys know their Bloodreavers. Just arriving on the scene is Brugg, the Ogre-scourge of the Seven Pillared Hall, and a bunch more of his fellow enforcers.

Things are fast getting out of hand- there’s a lot of shouting, and threats from Brugg, the guys are told on pain of death to throw down their weapons.

Brugg is duly ignored.

Except by Dirty, who squares up to the Ogre and tells him- ’he’s next.’

At which point Phrenic catches up with Duergar Guard and skewers him dead.

The fight is over, or else it’s just begun…

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