Out of the Abyss

Part 2 Game 8

As the three boats that remained tied together swept into the tunnel with Valdu paddling like crazy to pull his friends to safety, he could see both Orryn and Sully reach the shore safely and begin exiting the boats before they were lost from sight.

The three boats were jostled around numerous times as they careened down the dark tunnels being pushed by the water many time beyond their control. At one point the boats all hit a spear of stone jutting out of the water and Bomir was thrown from his boat into the rapids, he was able to swim back to his boat with the assistance of the rest of the group but not before spending many harrowing seconds in the twisting and churning turmoil of the river.

Finally the tunnel dumped the party out into a cavern that stretched further than the eye could see and which held a massive body of water that was mostly peaceful. As the group began to gather their wits and take stock of their situations they found the three boats were still tied together securely and the ropes had withstood the rapid quite well. As they were surveying their boats and persons one of the boat’s expedition members called out in terror as three strange looking creatures descended from above. They appeared to be large humanoid brains with bird beaks and tentacles hanging from beneath them. Two each lowered themselves onto each boat and began attacking the members separately. Through a vicious fight all three members of the party were able to fight off and kill the creatures, which they came to learn were called, “Grells.” As the last of them was cut down the party saw a shoreline ahead as well as numerous offshoot tunnels that lead to more underground rivers and the entire expedition began paddling vigorously for the shore. Either with the renewed strength found in fear of traveling the tunnels again or from their battle blood lust still pounding the party managed to steer all three boats to the shore and immediately began dismounting the boats and spent the remainder of the day resting on that shore as the water floated by eerily and misleading peaceful. After a long rest the expedition decided they needed to continue on to link up with the other half of their forces and but they decided they would take the tunnels this time rather than go back onto the water. They traveled for many hours and at one point discovered a tunnel that seemed to have recently uncovered by some type of earth shaking disturbance in the area but decided to not investigate without their full force and passed it by. After a few more hours of traveling uneventfully the group emerged into a chamber of monumental size and filled with water from multiple sources. After taking stock of the situation and with the aid of the Zhentarim guides they managed to move around the shoreline until they were able to glimpse Mantol-Derith in it’s hidden glory from the lakeshore.

Mantol_Derith.jpg

After some discussion the group decided to setup a camp and send out scouts looking for the remainder of their expedition which they knew would be heading towards this general area as well.

Party 2, Game 8-2


Meanwhile, back on the shore Sully pulled Orryn onto solid dry land with hardly a glance at the cleanly, “snapped” rope that had been tying him to the other three boats. The two boats occupants decided to take a short rest where they make their plans on how to proceed forward and the decision was made to move through the tunnels rather than venture back onto the rivers rapids. The group gathered their belongings and left their boats for anyone foolish enough to use them there on the shore and headed into a nearby tunnel moving in the general direction, according to the Zhentarim guides, of Mantol-Derith.

The tunnels around the raging underdark river seemed devoid of any semblance of intelligent life and the party traveled for days without encountering anything more than the standard fungal overgrowths that had became more and more common in the area. As the became within days of the massive cavern the Zhentarim assured them held Mantol-Derith the party discovered the ruins of a series of buildings that had damaged or destroyed long ago by seismic disturbances in the area. As Sully and Orryn moved throughout the ruins they discovered mostly abandoned rooms and the occasional skeletal remains. The only thing of note was a teleportation circle and runic gate that had been cracked in half by a shifted wall.

After more exploration of the empty chambers the two moved forward with their guardians in trail and began to feel magical energy emanating from ahead and grating noises they could not make out but presumed to be a language. After taking their time to move forward quietly the two peaked around into a large circular room to find a Dao, a earth elemental genie standing nearby at the foot of a large circular dais on the ground, like the one seen previously, setup for many different magical transportation methods. The Dao was in the midst of summoning a powerful earth elemental and it was slowly emerging from the circle as the two peaked into the room. After a short series of non-verbal communication cues the two decided to forgo any effort at communication or diplomacy and leapt forward with both arrows and magic. The first spell to fly was a banishment spell that collapsed the magic holding the earth elemental between planes and sending it cascading back towards it’s home plane. The Dao responded in rage and attacked with it’s own magic. Sully summoned his own Earth Elemental and as Orryn sent spell after spell towards the Dao his shield guardian, hook horror also charged towards the Dao and it was surrounded on all sides. The Dao attempted to use it’s own magic to fight off it’s attacked but their magic resistance held them anchored to this plane and allowed Orryn and Sully were able to wear down the creature and kill it’s mortal form and in a scream of rage the Dao was sent spiraling back to the elemental plane of earth.

Orryn then moved forward and made a small cut through one of the symbols, thereby disabling the magic of the transportation glyphs. After a short rest the group regrouped and pushed forward through the tunnels toward Mantol-Derith. The group traveled for another day and a half before also entering the chamber that held the trading outpost of Mantol-Derith. The group sent out scouts and in short order was able to link with the other half of the expedition and the group began discussions on how best to proceed with Valdu wanting to backtrack to explore the newly uncovered tunnel they passed and Orryn wanting to establish another outpost around the magical transportation circle they had discovered.

Part 2, Game 8-1 Video

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Part 2 Game 7

As the fight broke out in full the party battled with the behir as it wrapped around and crushed the shield guardian and continued to resist many of the magic thrown at it. Shortly after this point the flying insectoid demons entered the cavern and went straight for the behir, ignoring the party. As the party chasme neared it, the behir let go of the shield guardian and attacked the chasme with a passion, killing one. With the wounds inflicted by the party and the chasme combined the behir wavered and fell dead before it could turn back on the party but they had more of the demons to deal with, who, with the behir now dead, turned on the group. With Bomir riding his lizard to battle armed with a lance and the archery skills of the rest of the party….and Orryn Raulnor
appearing and disappearing randomly around the battlefield the party was able to put down the demons in short order before taking stock of the battle they stumbled into and considering themselves lucky for having survived intact……mostly.

As the party traveled on they found an abundance of fungal growth and plant growth in the tunnels through which they traveled. After traveling for a few days they found themselves traveling through tunnels in various stages of flooding up until they came upon a shore on the edge of a raging underground river. The party made the decision to construct boats or rafts in order to traverse the river. They broke up the party between five boats and further broke up the expedition in the same five boats.

SA short time later the party started their journey down the rapids after using a sturdy rope to tie four of the boats together and leaving Sulundir “Sully” untied and able to move more freely ahead.

The party quickly learned that the rapids of rivers anywhere, especially in the underdark do not concern themselves with the planning or forethought given to crossing them. The five boats were quickly swept away down tunnels and bounced off rocks here and there. The party took many eventful turns and twists before finding themselves in a slow descent down a dark tunnel. The five boats took a sudden and unexpected drop towards a large cavern lake and the speed and drop combined reduced both Bomir and Deorondan to fits of vomiting and dizziness as they fell to the floor of their respective boats. As the five boats settled out on the surface of the large lake and began being swept towards tunnels at the far end of the cavern they saw a sand and gravel beachhead and immediately began paddling towards it. Sully was able to reach it but with Bomir and Deorondan incapacitated their boats became a drag on the others as they paddled towards the shore and left them nearly at a standstill fighting the current. Sully threw a rope out and was able to land a rope onto the boat or raft belonging to Orryn and he began pulling the boats towards the short, as the boats were pulled toward the shore and suddenly without warning Orryn’s boat shot ahead as the rope attaching his boat to the other three became….unattached. As Orryn’s boat slid onto the shore the river unforgiving pulled the other three boats away and down a dark tunnel out of sight.

Game 7-1

Game 7-2

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Part 2 Game 6

After their flight for from Juiblex the party set camp and rested for the evening but they assured the guards were quite awake all night. After a peaceful night though the expedition gathered up and headed off to make their way closer to Mantol-Derith.

After traveling for two days the party found evidence of a gruesome battle. The party found the remains of numerous flying demons called Chasmes and the corpse of one large serpentine creature called a Behir. The party did some investigating and were able to discern that the two sides had killed each other but further evidence revealed at least one behir had survived the attack and fled, in addition to that numerous chasmes had given chase.

While traveling further, seeing the occasional sign of the fleeing Behir and the demons giving chase the party were, “ambushed” by a small force of goblins….who quickly learned they were outmatched by the expedition, as the goblins came to realize their mistake they turned to flee but where quickly chased down and cut to ribbons by the party’s forward scouts. Namely, Sulundir “Sully”.

While traveling across a section of wide open and segmented caverns the party stumbled upon a member of an underdark organization known as the, “Society of Brilliance.” They traded information with the friendly Mind Flayer named Graxxilaxx before moving onward toward Mantol-Derity. As they came into a large cavern they found the wounded Behir hiding and nursing it’s wounds. The party approached the wounded creature and made attempts to communicate with it. As soon as the creature realized their presence it lashed out violently with it’s lightning breath before charging forward and wrapping itself around the shield guardian in an attempt to crush it. As the party attempted to kill the Behir before it could destroy the shield guardian buzzing sounds could be heard from every direction around them as the hunters finally caught up to their prey…..and possible….a new group of things to hunt.

part 2 Game 6

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Part 2, Game 5

The party seemed to take a deep breath in their battle tactics against the orc tribe and a quick moment to reassess the situation before pivoting and forming a battle line just inside the tunnel opening and standing their ground with the Shield Guardian and Bomir standing a stalwart shields for the orc tide to break against, while the rest of the party formed up behind them and began a full scale barrage of their full power. As the Oni charged forward and attempted to cast more devastating ice spells the party wizard Orryn Raulnor was able to use his own magic to counter the Oni’s and causing both of their spells to fizzle out. Sulundir “Sully” was able to activate a stone of earth elemental control that was gifted to them by the gnomes of Blingdenstone in thanks for their service against the minions of Juiblex. After exchanging a few rounds of blows and a devastating blow from the spell stored within the Shield Guardian in the form of a massive wall of flame the orc’s attack was stopped and their charge broken as the party broke out from their line and charged full scale into the cavern and cut down the remaining orcs. As they searched the cavern they discovered the few orcs who were separated by the wall of flame were gone, having fled somewhere deeper into the underdark.

As the party took stock of the situation they discovered that they were approximately a ten day from the place where they entered the underdark and that they were in a location that was perfect for the establishment of an outpost for their surface alliance to allow for a free flow of communication, information, supplies, and even reinforcements. The party was forced to decide if they would leave a portion of their own troops to occupy this outpost or to spend two tendays in this position while sending messengers to the surface to call for reinforcements to occupy the outpost. After a conversation the party voted and decided to spend two full ten days awaiting more troops from the surface and while waiting they used their magic and troops to strongly close off and dig in their base and fashion it into the epitome of a defensive obstacle. They also used their time to develop tactics and train with their troops in a manner to allow the troops of the expedition to provide ranged support of the party while they engaged the more dangerous creatures within the deeper reaches of the underdark. After the twenty days they party and their expedition gathered up their supplies and headed back out into the underdark after a short but well received celebration drink provided by a scout from the Emerald Enclave Brim Coppervein in the form of Dwarven Ale and Dwarven Gutbuster Whiskey. The expedition itself seems to function more like a cohesive unit as the party started out again rather than a collection of different units with separate interests.

As the party moved forward they noticed a stark comparison between their earlier travels in the underdark and their last tenday of traveling, perhaps it was the proximity to the surface or a change brought about by the demonic incursion into the underdark but the wilds of the underdark seemed….peaceful…..whereas before the underdark has hidden dangerous around every corner, even if those dangers didn’t materialize and lash out at you, you could feel them. You knew they were there, stalking, planning, looking for their moment to pounce upon you, but now the underdark wilds seemed….peaceful….almost devoid of the many threats previously seen on a nearly daily basis and the few creatures seen are the more powerful denizens. It’s almost as if the survival of the fittest contest that plays out daily in this deep dark place has reached it’s culmination and the only creatures left traveling this twisting tunnels are the fittest and most deadly. Only time will tell if this is true and if so, what the end result of this will be.

After traveling for a few days the party found themselves in tight confining corridors that twisted here and there in random directions but always downward, deeper into the underdark and further from the sunlight they had fought so hard to reach. As they traveled down this narrow tunnels the temperature, normally a constant thing in the underdark, began to plummet. After traveling a little further and the entire expedition found themselves shivering they found themselves staring down a tunnel covered floor to ceiling in Brown Mold. Valdu recalled some information about this particular obstacle in underdark travel, he recalled that fire caused it to grow rapidly and that contact with it was very painful and possibly deadly,, after some thought Valdu decided he may be able to use some of this mold and he took six vials and collected enough mold to fill them up, during this process Value took a great deal of damage from the cold but used his healing magic to restore the feeling to his fingers and reverse the damage to his body. As they tucked away the vials the party began looking for ways to overcome this obstacle and after some experimentation the party mage Orryn Raulnor used is most powerful magic to kill off large sections of the mold. Sadly he did not pocess enough magic without resting to kill off the remainder of the mold colony. The expedition settled down for the night and after resting the party realized the mold had regrown in a rapid rate but not enough to recover what was previously destroyed. Value and Orryn worked together to use their most powerful magic to kill off the entire colony of mold and the expedition moved through with haste. As the past members moved through they inspected the tunnels and discovered the brown mold was already regrowing. The party used chalk to mark off the tunnel for future travelers as incredibly dangerous and suggested further travelers go around.

With the brown mold behind them the party traveled for many more days in silence and peace, previously unheard of in the wilds of the underdark, before they found a strange tunnel connecting to the tunnel in which they traveled. During the last half a day of travel the party found the tunnels unusually free of dirt, debris, or rubble. They suspect oozes were in the area so when they found the intersecting tunnel they decided to explore it as a group and sent Sulundir “Sully” ahead as scout in his typical role. They moved a short distance into the tunnel before they found a strange site, the stark white bones of a seemingly large serpent creature that showed no sign of weathering but were clearly stripped bare. In many places it appeared to Sully that the creature had died thrashing, yet they continued to explore the tunnels stepping over the bones of the massive creatures as they moved. After a while of exploring this twisting tunnels Sully came around a corner and stumbled in his tracks in sheer terror and overwhelming awe as he stared at a massive ooze standing twenty to thirty feet tall bubbling and almost instantly lashing out in it’s alien emotions towards sully in an attempt to catch and devour the organism that dared intrude upon it’s meal. This creature was none other than the vile faceless lord, the demon lord Juiblex. As the taint of the creature washed over not just Sully but the entire expedition as the creatures demonic anger sent waves of this corruption roiling through the tunnels the party and expedition turned on their heel and fled back to their original tunnel and fled headlong away from this evil creature. As they fall into a heap attempting to catch their breathe and gather themselves the entire expedition started to look at their mission in a new light as it becomes clear the monumental task that has been assigned to this and what incredibly powerful creatures they faced in the demon lords of the abyss.

Part 2, Game 5 Video

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Part 2 Game 4

The party quickly cut down the remainder of the Carrion Crawlers with little to no damage to them or their forces. After a short investigation the party was able to discern that the area has been home to numerous nests of Gricks and some creature came into the area and slaughtered the entire area with barbaric efficiency, even going so far as to climb up and pull everything out of the nests. The result was the walls, ceiling and floor splattered with chunks of Grick rather than dead Grick bodies.

After their experience in the Grick cave the expedition moved forward with some hesitancy as they delved deeper into the underdark. They didn’t seem to encounter much over the next few days, they had an occasional issue of discipline between the members of different factions within the force but were able to bring the situations to an amiable conclusion and resume the mission. The party started making efforts to spread out their forces in a manner to allow interaction between the different groups in order to encourage trust and bonds to develop through the trip and the shared dangers.

The party was awakened early one morning to a member of The Order of the Gauntlet screaming, once the situation was calmed down they discovered the young woman had a horrible dream of a monstrous slime creatures attacking an outpost of goblins. She described the goblins as going mad and falling upon each other as well as attacking each other in their sudden madness of fury, all the while the slime creature reached out with tentacles made of ooze and dragged the goblins closer and engulfed them whole and the goblins were quickly dissolved all the way down to the bone. It appeared to shake the veteran of the order to her very core.

As the party moved on they discovered a small group of orcs traveling in a parrallel tunnel and were able to trail them without the orcs being able to detect them, mostly due to the skill of, Sulundir “Sully”. After some investigation they discovered the orcs were carrying two human prisoners.

The party discussed the situation and decided to follow the orcs to their base feeling obligated to rescue the prisoners. The expedition followed the orcs to their base and after some fairly superficial surveillance the party put the expedition into a defensive position and burst into the orc tribes base firing at anything they could see. As the party gained a foothold into large cavern the orcs responded in full force with warriors coming from other chambers, two large Oni’s, elite guards, and spell casters launching attacks back at the party. As the party began a small retreat to consolidate their position in their foothold and decide how to proceed the Orc tribe chieftain charged into the fray as Bomir was forced to dispel his mount back to its Astral home and leave it’s saddlebags laying on the ground in the chamber….now behind the line of enemies.

Should they retreat, hold, or push forward into the hornet’s nest they have kicked over.

Part 2, Game 4

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Part 2, Game 3

The party continued their negotiations with the assembled factions, and despite an occasionally setback in the way of failed diplomacy or a lack of intellectual skill where it would be expected the party was able to cobble together support from all the factions assembled through various means and with various agreements.

The party spent a few days after all the negotiations gathering supplies and organizing their forces before heading out across the surface with The Zhentarim as their guides. The party traveled for nearly a full tenday before they came across an out of the way cave guarded by a Zhent camp and six guards. After making their last minute plans and marching organizations the party passed into the cave and back into the Underdark, the place they spent months fleeing the terror and evil of the deep realm in pursuit of the hope of ever seeing the sun again but this time the party marched at the head of an advance force in hopes to restore some balance to the world below.

The party traveled for the first few days through caves often patrolled by Zhent forces and were mostly clear, as they moved deeper into the underdark the terrain grew rockier and more difficult and the faint surface breeze that carried with it the scent of freedom grew more and more difficult to detect….before vanishing all together. On the third day, as the reality of the scope of their assigned task began to dawn on the forces the party they smelled the racid smell of putrid flesh from ahead.

Sulundir “Sully” and Valdu sent their scouts back to the full force of the expedition and scouted ahead as the rest of the party put the entire expedition into a full defensive posture before moving forward as a party alone. They discovered a cavern with the remains of numerous Grick’s that had been totally annihilated by something in a very vicious and devastating assault that left the creatures reduced to small chunks of meat sticking to the walls and ceiling, in the time between the massacre and the party showing up the scene had attracted numerous carrion crawlers to eat the remains. The party decided they needed to eliminate the pests, the party arranged themselves in a manner to attempt to lure the creatures into the confining tunnels leading up to the cave and began their assault on the creatures. With two dead and two remaining the party stands with the shield guardian of the archmage standing alongside Bomir as a blockade between the party and the creatures, the force continues to widdle down the creatures as they seem unable to break the solid defensive wall of the two stalwart guardians.

Part 2, Game 3-1

Part 2, Game 3-2

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Part 2, Game 2

The party returned to their quarters and spent the next day in preparation for the planned celebrations of the next evening. Later in the day the party was brought finely stitched clothing and shortly thereafter they were collected by the same Emissary who escorted them through the city upon their arrival.

The party was taken to the Vault of Kings and as they were escorted into the feast hall they noticed many groups of surface races already seated and segregated by table. As the party walked the length of the hall they realized they were being measured from all sides before they were seated at the high table at the side of King bruenor battlehammer. King bruenor welcome the party to the feast by announcing them as heroes to all gathered and with that he commenced the feasting.

After all the eating was done the hall was opened up for celebration for all those in attendance and as the party moved down among the crowd the different groups began to move out from their segregated tables to make conversation. After many interesting conversations between the party and the representatives a slow rumble that was increasing in strength could be felt from below, moments later a primal and terrifying roar emanated from the very stone around them as the braziers along the walkway of the feasting hall burst into columns of flame 15 feet high. From within the swirling columns of flame four fire elementals stepped onto this plane of existence. All around the hall the organization retinues surrounded their leaders and retreated as the party stepped forward weapons bared but unarmored to fight the Elementals that threatened all.

Shortly thereafter after the Elementals were destroyed and many of the party left singed the guards and King Bruenor Battlehammer himself ran into the area and inform the party that the primordial below Gauntlgrym had stirred as the planer gates that kept it in its slumber weakened for a few moments due to some environmental disturbance weakening their link. King Bruenor stated he believed this was related to the corruption of the Demon Lords in the Underdark and explained further that it was his intention to form an expedition with the party at its head made up of members of all the factions represented tonight and for the party to head back into the underdark to find the lost Stone Giant library of Gravenhallow where they hope to find more information with which to formulate a plan to send the demon Lords back to the abyss.

There were substantial sound setting changes during these videos to fix some errors.

Part 2, Session 2-1
-sound starts at 35:28

Part 2, Session 2-2
-sound starts at 20:40

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Part 2, Game 1

Three months ago the party ended their harrowing and deadly flight from their drow slave masters by creeping out of a small cave in the mountains south of Neverwinter. The party was worn down and bedraggled after all they had accomplished. After taking time to rest and recuperate the party received a messenger from the dwarven King Bruenor Battlehammer summoning the party to Gauntlgrym.

Upon arriving the party was escorted through the city that, while monumental and tremendous in design has suffered greatly over the centuries and is in a state is ruin but there were also signs everywhere of the dwarves working furiously to restore the city to it’s rightful glory. The party were given rooms in the residential areas of the city and then escorted to the Throne room, where they were greeted by King Battlehammer, who requested they sit and tell their tale, in entirety.

As the party concluded their tale, they were told by King Battlehammer there would be a feast tomorrow where many interested organizations would be represented and he would like the group to attend.

Part 2, Session 1 Video

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