Adventure Wrapup: Darkmantle Nesting Season

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Adventure Wrapup: Darkmantle Nesting Season

Postby Stam » Fri Jun 15, 2012 5:51 pm

(Shout-out to an Aussie bird for the title: Magpie Nesting Season.)

Sjach, Corleona and Aulric just happened to come across a Cellarer's Guild crew moving on down a primary thoroughfare in the Trades Ward, locking in the city's manholes with special covers to ensure none of the recent surge of tunnel critters could escape and hazard the general population. After briefly explaining the cause of their actions - apparently it had gotten bad enough that Darkmantles had begun nesting in this section of the sewers - they pointed the three would-be good citizens in the direction of the local office.

There, Sjach and Corleona girded themselves for another epic combat with their chief antagonist, the gnome known to them as The Bureaucrat - only to find out that he was off for the day, and the replacement was considerably more laid back. Forms signed and task given - kill off the Darkmantles, but leave at least two Carrion Crawlers living - the three went to the sewer substation and descended the stairs, carefully locking both door and grate behind themselves. Somewhere along the way they picked up Anika, a halfling baker and her trusty dog steed, and in the substation itself they found the knight-paladin Kavir awaiting their arrival.

Borrowing gear to better survive the sewer stench and taking one of the two lights the substation offered, they opened the reinforced outer door that exited directly into the sewer.

To their left, they found one of the large barred grates used to divide up sewer section and filter out any substantial pieces of junk that tended to float around, such as the odd corpse. Its rusty gate was open and invited the PCs to explore further...but the map they had been given listed this area in red as off-limits. Abiding to the wishes of their temporary employers, the group left the grate untouched and gate open, doing similarly with the door to the substation, and proceeded to the right.

Partway along, the party uncovered a human hand among the refuse with a gold ring on its fourth finger. (Extreme marital troubles, perhaps?) Kavir examined it further, declaring it to be at least three days old, and Corleona pocketed the ring 'for safekeeping'. Some discussion as to the legal issues the group might face regarding the hand and its sole possession, but it was the dog that took upon himself the job of carrying the gristly trophy.

Periodically sure, then not sure, that they had heard something behind them, the party moves further along and comes to the main junction they were tasked to explore. (Meanwhile, the paladin Kavir is sidetracked by an epic battle against the nefarious Server Denial and its minions, Internet Problems.) As Aulric once again checks behind them, Sjach peers down the dim hallway and then hurls arcane balls of energy the length of the corridor. Right at the edge of their range, the twin bolts hit something...that sends a number of small objects falling to the tunnel floor below.

Approaching, the party finds ... a squishy empty sacklike thing that probably used to be a creature, and roughly forty small jellylike eggs. As they poke at them and ponder whether these are the Darkmantles they are looking for, the Darkmantles they are looking for show up and start hammering away at the pair of warmages.

It's a quick and dirty fight, but without the surprise or the luck to fasten themselves around their intended victims' heads, the Darkmantles are quickly dispatched. And good thing, too, for Corleona is not particularly stout and those things hit hard.

Calamari out of the way, the eggs are quickly smashed and signatory trophies taken. Sjach heads back to the main thoroughfare, where he pauses in shadow just long enough for the first of the Carrion Crawlers - which had followed the group from the left-hand corridor all the way to this point - to inch its way right on down the main pipeline without a second glance at the tunnel that housed the PCs.

Making the odd decision to follow behind the creature, the party did so for the additional hundred feet required to complete searching the designated area - and at the next junction, they found that the Carrion Crawler had found a friend. Both of them were looking at the party, and started for them moments later.

Making the careful decision to hurry, but not run, in the slippery sewer environment, the party kept just ahead of the Carrion Crawlers as they hustled back to the substation door - only to find that keeping it open for easy exit wasn't such a great idea after all. A third Carrion Crawler was busy trying to eat one of the leftover pairs of boots.

With two Crawlers right behind the main body of the group and one occupying the room they had thought was save, it became a race for the relative safety of the room that ended just in time, Sjach slamming the door shut in the faces of the oncoming overgrown caterpillars. As Anika succumbs to the creature's paralyzing touch, Corleona plucks the best spell from her limited choices of wizardry and begins conjuring.

Sjach gets the grate open and Aulric chives the dog up the stairs as an icy centipede appears from nowhere, freezing all open water in the room. Diving at the Carrion Crawler, the magical construct simply flows over the critter and holds it at bay in its frosty length just long enough.

The grate slammed and locked behind them, the group divests itself of borrowed equipment at their leisure and then shambles off to the office, there to report in about their little fun and games.

[OOCly: Thanks for playing, guys! I'll get the wrapup finished next, hopefully in more timely fashion. Meanwhile, you folks should already have been given the XP and GP for the scene.]
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