Marpenoth 28, 1372 DR (5:00 PM) Entrance to the Underdark
The party returns to the hole in the middle of the floor. Igor and Veracity look into it.
"Pretty steep," says Igor. "Too steep to walk, but looks like an easy climb."
"Even easier if you fly," says Kress, as he lifts off and hovers over the hole. Igor and Hazen join him in the air. The others choose to simply climb down. Proceeding down the steep tunnel, soon the party finds another hole in the floor with an iron ring set into the floor a few feet back from the lip. Several feet past this hole, the tunnel ends in an unnatural looking hewn stone wall.
The fliers settle to the floor and again Igor and Veracity look over the edge. The hole goes down about ten feet and then opens up, with the floor an additional ten feet farther down.
Veracity looks at the far wall and then down the hole. "That's an odd wall, but our goal is down. I'll tie my rope to this ring." She removes her rope from her pack and ties a sturdy knot to the ring.
"I'll fly down," says Igor. He draws his sword and flies down into the hole, landing on the ground below. As soon as his feet touch the ground, a wraith spider scuttles up and bites at him, missing.
From a different direction, a revolting undead creature appears. It looks like a flayed corpse, with no skin or exposed fat - just muscles over skeleton, with caustic blood oozing all over it. The quth-maren glares banefully at Igor and spits at him! The globule misses and splashes on the floor.
From yet a different direction, a drow male in robes sends three darts of force from his fingertips towards Igor. He scowls in anger as Igor's cloak of displacement makes the missiles go wild.
Veracity tosses over the end of her rope and slides down, invisibly. She moves behind the quth-maren.
Igor stares at the quth-maren's glaring eyes and cowers in fear.
Kress flies down the hole, battle axe drawn, and lands in front of the quth-maren. It spits again, at Kress this time. The globule misses him but strikes the floor, splashing him with acid.
The drow mage waves his hand and a thin green ray shoots forth and strikes Kress. Kress shudders but resists the spell.
Hazen flies down the hole and lands, short sword drawn. He charges up to the drow mage and hits him. The sword skates over the drow's stony skin. "Not fair!" says Hazen. "You're cheating!"
Igor pulls himself together and strikes the wraith spider with a single mighty blow, felling it. He steps up to the quth-maren. Kress also steps up to the hideous creature and strikes it. Igor takes the opportunity to strike it himself. Kress strikes it yet again.
Tebryn slides down the rope and looks around. He draws his short sword.
A concealed drow sentry runs to the edge of the cliff and yells down. "Intruders! Alarm!"
Another concealed drow sentry shoots an arrow at Hazen, missing him.
Veracity draws her swords and strikes the quth-maren with the Sword of Kas. It wheels around and strikes at her twice with its oozing hands, missing both times.
The drow mage takes a short step back from Hazen and sends a bolt of lightning towards both Hazen and Tebryn. Hazen dodges to the side and strikes the mage with his sword, which again skitters ineffectually over the mage's stony skin. The lightning bolt strikes Tebryn but he completely resists the magical effect. Hazen strikes the mage three more times with his weapons, doing no actual damage.
Brianna starts to slide down the rope, but gets a little tangled half way down. She swings from side to side, her foot occasionally dipping through the ceiling, before she controls the rope again.
Igor strikes the quth-maren, felling it, and moves over to the drow spell caster, ready to flank him.
Brianna slides the rest of the way down the rope and lands. She sees Veracity standing alone, swords drawn, with the dead spider and quth-maren lying at her feet. "Go Veracity!" she calls. "Good job killing those monsters!"
Kress rolls his eyes and charges over to the sentry with the bow, striking him with his axe.
The other sentry charges Igor and unsuccessfully attempts to hit him from behind. Igor smiles at him. "Don't waste my time. You're next." He then calls out to Kress. "I'll come and help you after I finish off these two." With a smile, he returns his attention to the mage. Tebryn charges up and strikes the sentry with his short sword. The drow looks back and forth between Igor and Tebryn and turns to face Tebryn.
The other sentry drops his bow, draws his rapier, and slashes at Kress, missing. Veracity charges up to him and strikes him with the Sword of Kas.
The drow mage steps back and fires another bolt of lightning, this time at Igor and Tebryn. Just as Hazen had, Igor evades the bolt completely. And, just as before, Tebryn resists the bolt's magic and takes no damage. Tebryn chuckles and the drow mage stares at him and peevishly stamps his foot, just as Veracity might.
Hazen steps up to the mage and strikes him three more times, one of them a mighty blow that actually penetrates the mage's protective spell, causing a minor wound. Igor steps up and strikes the mage with a mighty blow, killing him.
Brianna runs up behind Veracity. "Go, Veracity! Kill this one, too!" Kress snorts and strikes the drow with his battle axe, slaying it. "Good job, Kress," says Brianna. "You finished it off for her!" Kress scowls. Veracity smirks at him.
The only remaining foe standing, the sentry who'd given the alarm, strikes Tebryn with his sword. Tebryn strikes him twice in return. Veracity charges up and strikes him with her sword. Finally, Hazen steps up and finishes him off with a single blow.
The party looks at each other.
"Easy enough," says Igor. "Let's look around, now that we've taken care of the welcoming committee."
The cavern is fairly large. A small table with three chairs around it stands near the hole in the ceiling through which the party had arrived. On the table is a neatly coiled rope. Veracity walks up to it and picks it up. After examining it, she pulls off her pack. "This is well made. I'll keep it. That's my rope tied to the ring up there. Let's leave it there, so that we can climb up it, should we need to come back."
"Is that magic?" asks Kress.
Veracity shrugs. "Who knows?" She places the rope into her pack with no further comment from anybody. "Let's go see where that sentry was calling."
At the edge of the cavern is a deep chasm, thirty feet across, but stretching to the limits of vision to each side. A cold strong breeze blows up from below, contrasting with the still air the party has found so far in the crypts. Large webs stretch down into the distance, ladder-like, almost. From far below comes the sound of rushing water.
"This way to the Underdark," says Veracity. "Next stop, Szith Morcane!"
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