Our heroes venture down the steps to the second level of Shadowfell Keep. They encounter a glowing wall. Dire walks forward, holding the amulet of Orcus in his hand and speaks the passphrase “And life fails in the dark.” The light fades away and the party continues down the stairs, which open into a large cavern. To the left is a small barracks, to the right is a hallway, and directly in front are two goblin soldiers standing in front of a pit. Behind them, there’s another guarded alcove through which a caged Deathjump spider can be seen.
The two guards come to attention and challenge the party by shouting “Shadow seeks Shadow!” The group freezes and looks a little guilty, unsure how to respond. Dire steps in and claims that the group has news from Ninaran, and that they seek an audience with Kalerel. The goblin says “What… is your name?” Dire replies “Dire.” “What…is your favorite colour?” “Green”
“No but seriously, if you need an audience go ahead.” “Thanks! Um, could you tell us the way?” “Haha, you’re joking right?” “Uh yeah…haha”
Kiera wants to release the spider from its cage, but the guard clears his throat and says “Kalerel isn’t that way. Just joking around some more?” The adventurers start to go down the hall to the right when the guard yells “HALT! Why are you wearing symbols of Bahamut?” Dire bluffs that they picked them up from some fallen heroes as trophies.
The guard seems convinced and the crew keeps walking. They come upon a corridor to the south and a door to the north. They open the north door and a trigger happy goblin archer screams “Intruders!” and ducks out of sight. Two goblin soldiers emerge from a door and one of them scores a critical hit on Dire. Dire strikes back, and Sir Blandington challenges the one next to him. They effectively block the north corridor, so Thun- Thun runs DENNIS and hits a goblin soldier, killing a goblin grunt minion with his off-handed weapon.
Davan Ogrescrush runs to help Thun-Thun and trips. Kiera takes a shot at the soldier in front of Blandington, but the arrow goes wide.
Zanvard heals Dire and uses sacred flame on the goblin soldier in front of Dire. Blandington takes a hit from both soldiers. Davan parries a blow while prone, knocking the soldier’s blade into his ally. Blandington uses a daily to sanction the soldiers. The goblin archer that sounded the alarm tries to shoot Blandington but hits a goblin soldier instead.
One of the guards opens the cage and releases the spider, using some sort of glowing rod to keep it under control. Kiera gets a shot off at the goblin archer and does some necrotic + fire damage. Davan crits on a goblin soldier. He ded. Zanvard uses Astral Seal on the soldier in front of Blandington and gives the party an accuracy bonus. Dire gets his soldier with a spell and Blandington kills it. The archer saves against the necrotic damage but hits the WarCaster in the back of the head with a shaft.
Thun-Thun crushes a soldier but he staggers back up. The Deathjump spider jumps closer. Kiera pirouettes through the melee, shooting a soldier in the head, then spinning and releasing a flaming arrow at the spider. It hisses in pain and rage, and the handler looks furious. Davan hits his soldier with his hammer, and Zanvard uses Sacred Flame against the one remaining near Blandington. One of the soldiers knocks Davan prone again. Dire crit fails and hits the wall, revealing some crispy wall meat. Blandington gets bloodied by the archer. Thun-Thun hits a goblin soldier and then uses an action point to get another swipe, killing it and cleaving into his buddy.
Kiera uses her daily to deal 19 fire damage and ongoing necrotic to the Deathjump spider and its handler. Davan stands up and tries to cleave, but misses. He uses his action point to bloody his target. Zanvard uses Hymn of Resurgence, giving temporary HP and also does damage to some gobos. He uses his action point to attack with sacred flame, doing even more DPS.
The spider handler points his glowing stick at Kiera, and the spider leaps into the air and tries to bite her. She twists like a wisp in the wind and it misses. The handler marches forward and jabs her, trying to knock her to the floor. She gets cut, but keeps her feet and dances nimbly back behind Thun-Thun and Davan. Dire kills the soldier that has been threatening Blandington, leaving just the goblin archer and the war mage in the north room. Thun-Thun unleashes his Dragon’s Breath, killing an minion and hitting a goblin soldier. Then he tries to hit the soldier with his axes, but misses twice. The spider jumps and bites at Thun-Thun, but his armor is too thick. A minion hits Thun-Thun and another hits Davan. Kiera twin strikes the handler, making him drop the controlling implement into the well. The handler gets a terrified look on his face and starts to run away.
Zanvard tries to use Bane on the spider. (“You will be Baned, and then there will be cake.”) But it misses. Thun-Thun uses his daily on the spider, killing it. Blandington asks him to save the head so he can add it to his shield.
Kiera kills one of the remaining soldiers with some poison arrows. The last soldier tries to bullrush Davan, but being a dwarf it doesn’t work on him. Blandington uses Virtuous Strike on the War Mage, killing him. Kiera kills the goblin handler who tried to run, shooting him full of arrows in the small of his back. Zanvard destroys a minion. Dire hits the archer for a ton of damage, but it’s still standing. Blandington charges at it, killing it. The room is clear, so he goes to retrieve the spider head. Thun-Thun hits the last soldier, but he doesn’t quite die. Blandington tries to charge around the corner, jabbing his shield into the wall to help him change trajectory. He makes the turn and gets behind the soldier, but then falls prone as he skids to a stop. Thun-Thun kills the soldier and Davan picks up a Vicious Warhammer.
Will our heroes be able to get past the rest of the garrison force? Where could Kalerel be lurking? Does he know of the PCs presence? Find out next week, on DragonCast! THUN-THUN-THUN!!!