Montporte Dungeon Campaign Session 15 Notes

A chance encounter at the end of Session 14, left unresolved, erupted in Session 15 into a sprawling multi-room battle that lasted for about three hours. That is a lot of combat for 2nd and 3rd level characters in a d20 rules-lite game (Blood & Treasure). +Chris Bard  (The Clash of Spear on Shield) has a nice blog post about the session here and +Tim Shorts (Gothridge Manor) has a cool "first person" post here.

The Cast
Adzeer Mattiu, Hunter of the First Circle (Half Orc, 3 Lvl Hunter): Tim (Gothridge Manor)
Duncan Kern (Gnome, 2 Lvl Wizard/Thief): Dan
Dante Rathburn (Human, 3 Lvl Warlock): Chris (The Clash of Spear on Shield)
Luven Lightfinger (Human, 3 Lvl Thief): Rob (Bat in the Attic)
Larramore “Little Larry” (Kobold, 2 Lvl Marksman): NPC
Ansarkhan ("Mushroom Man", 2 Lvl Fighter): NPC
Diana (Human, Torch Bearer, Goat Driver): NPC
Innerkhan ("Mini-Mushroom Man"): NPC
5 cave goats
Map A (1 square = 5 feet)
The Session: Combat (Part 1)
Session 15 started where Session 14 left off, with the brave adventurers in Area 1 (Map A above) moving into Area 2. Area 2 was occupied with two gaunts, several initiates (wearing gray robes & hoods), and one novice (wearing a black robe & hood). The initiates panicked and starting yelling, "Rebels! Rebels!" One clear-headed initiate scrambled down the steel ladder in the middle of the room (next to the giant steel tank protruding from the hole in the middle of the floor...see the description in Session 14).

Taking advantage of the panic, the party moved into the room and attacked. The early rounds all went the way of the adventurers, with half the foe dying quickly. However, the novice unleashed two burning hands spells and turned the tide. The first burning hands did minimal damage to Ansarkhan but the second sent Duncan to the ground in a coma. The battlefield continue to tilt away from the adventurers, as a few more gaunts entered the Area 2 from a door to the west.

To make matters worse, there were two gaunts in Area 3 that, when first encountered, were standing still and did not respond to the party (this was in Session 14). The party, in turn, ignored them and moved to Area 1 (which is where this session, Session 15, started). Ignoring these two guants turned out to be a mistake as they became active and attacked the two noncombatants (Diana and Innerkhan) at the rear of the party. Diana suffered two whacks from a gaunt's halberd and ended up comatose, joining the dying Duncan.

Ansarkhan intervened with these two gaunts, turning the momentum back in the party's favor. Innerkhan took the opportunity of this intervention to get a healing potion into Duncan, waking him up. The fight continued for a few more round, as one gaunt stubbornly refused to succumb. While this last gaunt was defending himself, the party healed Diana enough to stabilize her but not enough to bring her back to consciousness. As the fight was coming to a close, Luven could hear yelling from the big square hole in the floor and the sounds of people moving around in clanging armor.

With the battle over, Adzeer looked into the hole to see what Luven was fussing about. He could see that the hole opened up into another room about 50' down. He did not have enough light to see anyone in the room. As no one appeared to be coming up the ladder, Adzeer decided to check out the tank and walked out onto the steel catwalk. There was a steel panel on top of the tank with knobs and switches [a metagame description], all of which were beyond Adzeer's knowledge to understand. This did not stop him from messing with them. The result was a hissing sound and a cloud of green gas forming next to the top of the tank. The party fled the room.

The Session: Combat (Part 2)
The party hovered around Area 1, discussing what to do, particularly how to search the bodies, most of which were Area 1, where the gas was leaking. Luven, who was closest to Area 2, noticed that the green gas cloud was not spreading into the room. Instead, it was sinking into the hole in the floor. As it did so, he could hear screams from below. The party might be able to search the bodies, after all. No threat of gas, plus no threat of attack from below as the gas was doing something nasty to those on the next level.

The search never happened. Four more gaunts and an initiate began moving towards the party from Area 4. The adventurers quickly formed up their battle line and moved north to meet this new threat. As melee combat ensued, some in the party noticed more gaunts coming out of doors to the east of them. The party was in a particularly vulnerable location, with lots of unexplored territory nearby and the threat of being surrounded.

They executed a fighting withdrawal to the south, with the idea of allowing the gaunts to gather together in close order so that Dante could hit them with the sleep spell. Adzeer stayed in the middle of the room to serve as bait. The ruse worked...or it would have, if not for the fact that Dante's sleep spell was on the anemic side. He took out two of the nine gaunts, leaving Adzeer in a bad way. The party rose to the challenge, however, and this second phase of the battle ended quickly.

The Session: Interlude
The party moved back into Area 1 and searched the bodies. In addition to gold, silver, and some magical stuff, they discovered two scrolls on the body of the novice. The scrolls turned out to be letters to the novice, whose name was Vanerra. The first letter was from Elias the One, the leader of "the Breeders." The second letter was from Lady Lessa, an important leader of the Breeders. The letters indicated that Vanerra had been selected to go through a ritual that would grant her eternal life. This ritual involved the sacrifice of a "garnock" (which Duncan recognized as an ancient derogatory name for gnomes).

While this investigation was going on, Luven wandered to the north, into Area 4. Hiding around the corner in this room were five more gaunts and a novice.

The Session: The Final Battle
The novice's first response was to yell at Luven and the rest of the party to leave, rather than attacking the party. By doing so, the novice ceded the tactical advantage and was webbed by Adzeer as a result. The party quickly dispatched both the webbed and unwebbed gaunts. Duncan, now full of righteous fury at the thought of these breeders sacrificing gnomes, began interrogating the webbed novice, using his dagger to get a quick response.

Duncan wanted to know the way to "the surface," which was a sensible question, as the party was lost after being teleported in Session 13. However, the concept of "surface" completely baffled the novice. Through some careful questions, Duncan did learn that they were, in fact, on the second level of the dungeon. They also learned that Elias the One, leader of the Breeders, lived on the fourth level. In between were lots of breeders and their minions. Duncan then dispatched the novice, after swiping the magic ring off of his hand (every novice wears a magic ring).

After the interrogation, Luven noticed that the two muchroom men, Ansarkhan and Innerkhan, were speaking quietly in elvish and pointing at various sections of the north wall in Area 4. Dante, the elvish speaker in the group, asked them what they were doing. They said they were looking for the secret way back to their master, Allindrihl the elf.

Duncan used his finder's glass on the wall and found nothing, so the party moved back to Area 1 (since it was the mirror image of Area 4) and looked on the south wall. They found a secret door, were greeted by some mushroom man guards and were able to find a secure resting place in Area 5.

This is where the session ended.

The Dungeon So Far
Level 1
Another Part of Level 1 (Exact Location Unknown)
Level 2 West
Level 2 East
Another Part of Level 2 (Exact Location Unknown)