Sunday, March 19, 2017

Ancient Dread: The Eight Sided Ambush


We move past the wall, writhing and squirming around us in anger. The imposing ceiling is not quite as imposing. The buildings become more densly packed and less fire damaged. The quality of the buildings have become more urban than rural seeming. They are less built than carved from the living stone. Are we actually inside the third island?

We come upon a wall with a gateway. Closed. Two giant brass rings. Opening in. There was once a mechanism to assist opening but it's long gone. Rod casts a Portal spell allowing us to easily pass through. A long, pure white marble walkway stretches out before us, 15' wide. A large, ornate door ends it about 1000' away. On each side is infinite darkness instead of walls. The door, marble and inlaid with gold, an 8 sided design is depicted. A classic octagon. Various symbols surround it. The only recognizable one is an infinity symbol, flames, and some gems icons. Others are wavy lines, a three sided shape w/ one side open, and others. Acdor and Strongbow together open the door.
Inside is, unsurprisingly, an octagonal room, huge, about 25' in height. Seven separate panels circle the room set in from the walls. The six symbols from the door are on the floor, one in front of each panel. Between the walls and panels are circular hatches with a whitish metal. The panel directly across from the entrance has no symbol. Strongbow tosses an arrowhead at one of the symbols but nothing occurs.

We decide to try the wavy lines first, whether air or water, we have a strength there. Echo goes first, stepping on the symbol. Four Shedim demons and three gargoyles suddenly appear, attacking Echo. The blows come fast and furious, hurting several demons, Echo, and Ackdor. Echo summons an Ice Elemental to fight. King fells one of the Shedim. Strongbow uses his bracelet of Charismatic Aura to stop 6 of the creatures but is hit by one of the Gargoyles, tearing his face. King and Ackdor face off against the remaining Gargoyle while Strongbow calls on the demons to return to their fell dimension or face their wrath. They shake in fear and disappear with the smell of sulfur in the air. Rod raises her holy sword and expels the remaining monster. We rest for a few while Rod heals the party.

We move to the three sided square. Stepping on it, the hatch behind the panel opens up. A dwarf sized tunnel is behind it. Ackdor, the shortest of the group, takes point. A room, ten feet in height. A pedastal is in the middle of the room w/ a key. At the high end of the back wall is another tunnel. Rod takes the key. The tunnel leads to another room. Ackdor goes through and calls out that there is a keyhole in the floor. Turning it, there is a grinding noise from behind us. Returning to the octagonal hall, on the North Wall, there is a mural of an octogon. The section of what would be the the three sided square has slid out, revealing the symbol.

Again we move to the wavy lines. The tunnel is filled with water. Brackish and black. Echo summons a phantom to cast breath without air on the party and scout ahead. It returns and describes a room. The party swims down, unable to see but feeling our way with a rope. Pulling ourselves up on a ledge, we send the phantom to find the key which it quickly does. In the center of the far room is the keyhole. We return to the Octagon room. The mural is shifted.

 We move on to the gemstones. The tunnel is sparkling. Jagged. We make it down with only Rod sliding down with some injury. We find three keyholes in the first room. The following room has a wall of solid ruby, one of solid sapphire, and one of solid emerald. The keys are buried inside them about a foot in. Strongbow teleports the gem wall away to reach the keys. The phantom, hauling our a chunk of gem, gets destroyed by energy bolts in the tunnel. We decide to leave the rest. The keys turn. The mural shifts.

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