The Valley (ACKS Session 1)

[We started over after two sessions - no reason save that we added a new player and I had a chance to do a little more worldbuilding. I'm working with a very heavily altered version of Thunder Rift as my region map.]

PCs

Mithras – Dwarven Vaultguard

Aella – Bladedancer

Calus – Explorer

The nameless thief…

On the shores of the great lake, the distant roar of a waterfall in their washing over the town, four adventurers come together. Lured here by tales of a ruined wizard’s tower, they wander the town for a time, picking up rumors about dragons, an ancient dwarven artifact, and a hobgoblin warlord amassing an army. Realizing that they’ll need plenty of rations to go up into the mountains and explore this ruin, Aella and Mithras buy a mule they promptly name Bill Sparkles and at least a week’s worth of rations for the party.

They spend most of a day wandering the mountains headed for the dungeon, deciding to camp out for the night before trying their luck. The townsfolk in Kleine told them that other adventurers had gone to the ruins before and none had ever returned and they hoped that along with treasure, this expedition would build their reputations. They entered the dungeon early in the morning and began to explore by lantern light. [It is striking to me that none of the demihumans in this game have infravision]. The party chose to follow the left wall – and as they began to map the first level they immediately encountered skeletal sentries. As the four skeletons stepped out of alcoves along the walls Aella stepped forward and invoked the power of the Passionate Twins to leave the undead cowering where the rest of the party could make short work of them.

With their confidence up after this first encounter they push deeper into the complex and bust their way into a room where they encounter a Mage and his warrior companion. After a brief conversation, the Mage (who never gave his name) convinced them to turn back and take a different path. Mithras wanted to attack as he thought the Mage was hiding something from them but the rest of the party decided leaping on a prepared mage was not worth it yet.

They turned back and proceeded away in the opposite direction, going north and discovering several empty rooms before stumbling into several ghouls. Again, the power of The Passionate Twins compels the ghouls and the party makes short work of them. Their first real danger comes when the party finds a secret door with two further ghouls hiding behind it. The party is surprised and even though Mithras quickly lops the head off a ghoul, Aella and the Thief are both paralyzed and the thief is dragged into the secret door by the remaining ghoul. The dwarf shoves the newly statuesque Aella and manages to spring the door again in time to save the thief.

With the ghouls dispatched, the party stops to investigate the rest of the room and the mysterious corridors which lead off in all directions. One of the tunnels meanders back to the surface and they find the graveyard where the past owner of this tower buried his victims and failed experiments. Deciding that they do not want to spend any time in such a place they retreat back into the dungeon and press on. The next room is full of trash and Mithras spots the giant rats just before they attack. He throws himself into the fray but some bad luck leads to a nasty bite. Deciding that they need to retreat from the dungeon they return to the entrance where they hid Bill Sparkles and camp. The next morning Mithras is sick but feels as if another day of rest is all he needs. They stay out another night and in the morning they find poor Mithras dead in his bedroll. Deciding that they fear the plague he might be carrying they burn him in his tent.

Despite the loss of Mithras the remaining adventurers press on. With the first real hint of treasure in their pouches they are excited for what else might lie within. Entering a huge chamber full of ten coffins and a wall riddled with rat warrens they set a fire to blow smoke into the warrens and try to keep the rats from surprising them. Then they begin to investigate the coffins, finding old skeletons, some ancient jewelry, and a jeweled sword with a dragon hilt. Calus draws the blade and fills a thrill of power as it slides free. The next coffin proves their undoing though. A jeweled dagger within animates when the party attempts to pick it up and it cuts Calus before they knock it down and it reappears in the coffin. After a brief conference between Calus and the thief they decide to try for the dagger again. This time it proved to be a poor choice. The dancing dagger strikes a fatal blow to Calus, opening an artery and ending his life. Aella makes a valiant attempt to save him but can’t quite pull it off – leaving them down two party members. After laying Calus to rest they decide to leave the dagger alone and perhaps head back to town.

Who will join them for the next adventure?

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3 responses

  1. Your party needs to read the first few sessions of B/X Misadventures in Randomly Generated Dungeons, until they get a few levels in them. :)

    Thanks for the write up. We get our first session of 13th Age on Friday.

  2. That’s cool. I’ve been thinking about having them all read ‘The Old School Primer.’ I don’t agree with all of it but it really does hit the most important points. Are you going to post any write-ups from 13th Age?

    1. I’m going to be trying to do so both on my blog and Obsidian Portal. First actual gaming session is this Friday, so we’ll see how it goes.

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