Session 8 of the weird new world campaign was played on Friday 2/13
The party consisted of the following:
Verdt, 1/2 Elf Wizard 3 (John)
Nessendra, Wood Elf Cleric 3 (Erindale)
Kethra, Human Fighter 3 (Nikki)
Bach, Dragonborn Warlock 3 (Erik)
Riia, Human Ranger 3 (Hanna)
Guy Noir, ½ Elf Rogue 2 (Nadia)
Anya Bowen, Tiefling Ranger 2 (Allison)
Special Rule of the Night: Critical Hits occur on a natural 13, not 20
After disposing of the bodies in the mud, Guy wrote a note explaining that the two scouts had fallen in love and were running away together, complete with little hearts about the i's. The note was stuck to a tree, for the next group of scouts to find. Riia, Guy, and Anya then scouted the perimeter of the lair, and I provided the map below.
Returning to the rest of the party, they told them what happened, including the were-rat bites, and about the lair. They sat down over a meal of trail rations and discussed their options.
Here things moved out of game, and we all had a discussion about how I'm running this game, namely as a sandbox. If they opt to leave, the pirates will do their thing, but the lair will still be here if they come back. It won't magically scale to match whatever level they are at, and there is in fact no guarantee that they're of a high enough level to tackle it now.
The party opted to skip the lair for now, and head upriver to Coruvon, the town they've heard a little about. I'm taking some inspiration from both Dyson and Michael Curtis for this... but that's for another post.
So in true old school wilderness travel mode, I checked for random encounters using the Rules Cyclopedia encounter charts. Their first encounter was during the first night. Off in the distance Anya spied some short grey humanoids with round black eyes and large batlike ears. They seemed more curious than threatening, but Anya woke Verdt, who promptly cast dancing lights and fell back to sleep. The wyre-lights caused the creatures to scatter back into the darkness.
Around noon the next day, and the party continued up the muddy riverside, they spotted a large reptilian form in the river. It spotted them back. Bach greeted it in draconic, and the dragon lazily lifted itself from the water and chatted with him. The rest of the party slunk back into the trees away from the river's edge. Bach and the dragon Blightfang conversed, and with a series of remarkably good reaction rolls, managed to secure passage through Blightfang's territory for a toll and a promise to sing her praises when they reach Coruvon.
Further upriver, later that same afternoon the party came to an abandoned structure built right on the edge of the river, similar to the one the pirates occupied, but much smaller. The exterior was covered with mostly weathered carvings, but a panel with a large horned cyclopean being attacking smaller humanoids was found. There was a single bronze door which Bach and Kethra managed to lift to knee height, but triggered a trap that blasted sand, knocking Kethra down face first. Nessendra wedged a stone block under the open door, and all but Anya slipped under the door.
The interior of the temple/tomb was a single large room with numerous alcoves. In the center of the chamber stood a statue of the the same creature found on the carving, it's single eyeball taking up the vast majority of the thing's head. As they began to creep into the chamber, 4 skeletons matching the statue step forth. flanking the party on either side. Nessendra managed to turn 2 of them, but the remaining two still hit like a ton of bricks, knocking Riia into unconsciousness.
Anya, watching from outside, and sniping with her bow, notices that from down river Blightfang watches. Anya decides that bring inside the stone temple full of cyclopean skeletons and her friends is better than being outside alone with a dragon!
Eventually the two active skeletons are destroyed, and the two turned ones I handwave as they were already damaged, and still had a significant amount of time before the turning ended.
What will the party do now, with Blightfang watching from about a quarter mile down river?? What will Blightfang do?? I'll find out on Friday!