Vita est ludus
The thin line between fantasy and reality...













The City of the Spider Queen - Day 1 - Bebiliths

Marpenoth 28, 1372 DR (3:00 PM) The Dordrien Crypts

Yol casts her spell and walks slowly back up the hallway, her scowl even deeper than usual. Everybody else follows.

As Yol reaches the narrow cavern approaching the roper's lair, she stops and stares intently at a long section of wall that contained no graves. "Interesting ..." she starts.

"Come on, Yol, move over to the graves. Skip the boring wall!" says Hazen. He looks over the wall section. "Nothing here!" He pokes it with his hand, and stares, his mouth hanging open, as his hand sinks into the wall. "Uh..."

"As I was about to say, I detect the aura of Illusion on this wall," says Yol.

Veracity walks up and sticks her hand into the illusory wall. She moves from side to side, discovering that it's at least twenty feet wide. "Come on Igor! Right through here!"

The party lines up and marches into and through the illusion. On the far side is a large cavern. There are two huge spider-like creatures in the room. One stays back near an exit in the far wall while the other advances, clicking.

Veracity draws her two swords and easily dodges a glob of webbing that the advancing bebilith shoots at her. Igor dodges the webbing fired at him by the other bebilith and draws his great sword.

Veracity steps up and swings the Sword of Kas at the advancing creature, barely missing.

The rest of the party starts to make its way through the wall. Tebryn stops as soon as he arrives, assessing the situation. Brianna steps through and, quickly deciding on her course of action, starts to sing an inspiring song. The invisible Hazen steps through the wall and steps to the side. Kress draws his battle axe.

Veracity's opponent bites her, injecting poison. "Oh!" she gasps, shuddering, but she shakes off the initial effects. The bebilith claws twice at her but misses both times.

The other spider demon advances up to Igor and bites at him, but misses. Igor strikes three times at it with his great sword. He hits twice, one of the blows being exceptionally powerful. The bebilith quivers but holds its ground.

Kress runs through the illusion, barely missing Tebryn, and quickly sizes up the situation. He runs up to aid Veracity and hits the spider with his axe.

Veracity slashes her opponent three times. Her opponent bites her yet again, afflicting her with yet more poison. Again, she resists the initial effects. And again, the spider demon misses her with both claws.

Igor's opponent bites him, inflicting a grave wound and poisoning him. He, too, shrugs off the venom, although he feels it entering his blood. The spider fiend also claws Igor once, wounding him slightly. Hazen runs up behind Igor's opponent and strikes at it with his dagger. He misses, but appears before the eyes of all, as his invisibility drops. "Oops!" comments Hazen.

Kress slashes Veracity's bebilith, twice, but it remains standing.

Igor strikes his opponent with two powerful blows and it drops to the floor, twitching. He steps over to confront Veracity's opponent.

Veracity strikes it and Igor takes the opportunity to strike it himself, dropping it.

Veracity sulks. "You did it again, Igor. Taking away my fun. I was about to polish it off with my next blow, but it crumpled at my feet before I could do that."

Igor raises his eyebrows at her. "Remember what you said last time? I thought we were working as a team."

Veracity pulls herself together. "Oh, right. Good job. But, you still took my fun... Umm. Yol! Can you help me, please? I was bitten twice, and I can still feel the poison, coursing through my body. It worries me. Neutralize it, please?"

Yol steps up and looks into Veracity's eyes. "Ah, yes. Doesn't that make you feel the closeness of Death? Sobering, isn't it? Do you like the feeling?"

Veracity rolls her eyes. "Yes, yes, and no. Neutralize it, please? Now? Please?"

Yol sighs. "Very well." She gestures with her holy symbol, incants, and touches Veracity.

Veracity sighs in relief. "Thanks."

"How about me, Yol?" calls Igor. "I was only bitten once, but I, too, am still poisoned."

"No more spells, Igor, but I can tend to that," answers Yol. She examines his wound and treats it. Igor's poison subsides without doing him further harm.

"Thanks," says Igor.

Brianna walks up to her friend. "Those bites look nasty. I am glad Yol cured the poison. Allow me to cure the injuries, please." She sings a short melody and touches Veracity. All of Veracity's wounds close up and disappear.

Veracity grins at her. "Thanks!"

Brianna grins back. "My pleasure."

Yol looks at the spider demons. "I expect their venom is worth keeping. Let me harvest some of it." She bends over one of the creatures and probes its poison sacs with her dagger.

"Shouldn't you have waited for us all to get ready before going through that wall, Veracity?" grumbles Kress. "I heard sounds of battle before I even had a chance to enter the cavern, and I almost tripped on your brother when I came through."

Veracity raises her eyebrows. "Igor and I went through together. And, as the leader of this party, I think..."

"You?" exclaims Hazen. "Come on. I think..."

"Calm down," says Veracity, holding up her hand. "Who else but me?"

Brianna leans on her and gazes into her eyes, smiling. "You have my vote," she says, raising her hand, as well.

"Hey!" exclaims Hazen. "Me! Me! I'm in charge here." He raises his hand, and all turn to look at him, Veracity and Brianna lowering their hands. "Let's see those hands for Hazen!" shouts the Grey Dwarf, one arm waving over his head and the other held out in front, supplicating. He dances around and starts chanting. "Come on, Hazen's the guy. Raise 'em! I'm the one! Kress?"

Kress rolls his eyes and turns away. Everybody else stares at him with their jaws hanging open. Hazen looks from one person to the next. When it becomes clear that nobody else is going to vote for him, as he stands with his back to a dead bebilith, he lifts one of its legs up with the back of his foot. Pointing at the upraised leg, he shouts out and gestures. "Look at that! Support from an unexpected quarter!" He runs over to the other spider demon and does the same thing. "Hey, and each of these guys get eight votes. So that makes..." Hazen starts calculating, looking at the ceiling and muttering. "nineteen for me, I win!"

Everybody stares at him silently for a second, shaking their heads in wonder at his little display. Tebryn starts and looks up. "Someone is crying in the next room," he says. "I hear it too," says Igor. All rush into the next room leaving Hazen alone. "It's lonely at the top," he mutters, shrugging.

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Copyright © 2004 by Brianna Sollandry <brianna at hambo dot com> Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu
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