The Water Margin

A Throne Room. How Pretentious.

Participants:
Joani Render
Kirlat
Melmoth the Merciless
Namliia
Tikka Greenteeth
Salador Seldon
Baka the Barbarian

The party finds what must be an ancient throne room, with supporting pillars running in pairs down the center, ending in a stone dais with a large throne upon it. All along the walls are frescoes depicting scenes from the history of these strange, beardless dwarfs. At the base of the dais are a pair of braziers in which burn pale blue-green flames without fuel. A ghostly figure sits upon the throne, flanked by a pair of spectral attendants.

As the party enters the room, the dwarf-king-ghost lets out a garbled threat in an unknown language — presumably some ancient long-forgotten ancestor of the dwarf tongue. The spectral forms flanking it move to engage the party, and several figures peel away from the wall frescoes — four of them animated stone statues, and two of them skinless undead dwarfs covered in the dust of hundreds of years!

The party engages the dwarfs, but they quickly discover that their weapons are mostly useless against the incorporeal foes — only Salador’s psionically-enhanced sword can injure them. Baka is struck multiple times by the incorporeal dwarf guards and their chilling attacks drain his very life-force, rendering him comatose. The two clerics (Tikka and Joani) call upon their respective elemental patrons (rain and water) to banish the undead, and after several attempts they manage to force the two spectral attackers to flee, as well as the skinless dwarf banshees, but they are unable to destroy the undead or to affect the ghost-king. Melmoth picks up the psionic sword after Baka falls, and charges the dwarf-ghost-king. Though Melmoth’s blows are only partially effective, he trades attacks with the king, which uses its own ghostly great axe. Enraged, the king howls out some sort of spell, and stones of earth blast upward from the ground, badly wounding the party; Namliia and Salador are both so badly wounded that they collapse unconscious and bleeding. Melmoth bellows and with mighty swings manages to discorporate the ghost.

The party’s clerics help to restore the wounded warriors as best they can, but Baka will only recover with time. Kirlat helps to bring Namliia to her feet, and she uses her magic to command the cowering and angry dwarf banshees, making them her (temporary) minions. Namliaa orders the banshees to carry the bronze braziers, whose ghost-fire has extinguished with the death of the king. Melmoth picks up the king’s ghostly great axe, which now seems like a solid, real, steel weapon.

Sorely wounded and with limited resources, the party decides to retreat to Salt View to catalog their winnings, but when they return to the exit-tunnel they discover that it is once again blocked by a pumice boulder. Salador manifests object reading and determines that the boulder was created from magma! Then the ground starts to crack and hot toxic gases erupt, and the party knows that one of the magma priests from the mountain range must be nearby.

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JesseHeinig

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