Daragoth

The Second Assault on Hazaraan the Beholder

After destroying the undead minions of Hazaraan the Beholder and his powerful allies the party came face to face with Hazaraan himself. The party fought valiantly, but with half the party turned to stone the rest were forced to flee back to the safety of the city.

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Return to Stonecliff

The group made the somber trip back to Stonecliff. Feeling defeated and exhausted they made their way to the Red Wolf Inn for a drink and a room. After getting a bite to eat and drink the party retired to their room where the quickly passed out.

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Unexpected Awakening

The party awakes with splitting headaches. They look around and see only utter blackness. They try to move only to find their hands and feet restrained.

A voice greets them, “Good your awake, now you can walk.” The next thing they see is a dark elf holding a glowing purple stone. He draws a blade and cuts the bonds of their feet with a fluid motion. He throws a water skin and some dried meat of some sorts at their feet. The parties hunger was so great that they did not have time to consider the source of the meat, they just ate.

As their eyes adjusted they soon realized they were not in the company of just one drow but of a small raiding party. From the stubble on their face they guessed they had been out for just short of a week. Still adjusting to their new surroundings and the predicament they were in, they did not hear the call of the taskmaster to rise. It was an error the party would not soon forget, they were met with the stings of whips again and again until they rose and started moving again.

The party traveled for several more days before they came to a purple shimmering portal. As the party passed through the portal they felt the surge of energy and by the cold temperature that met them, they knew they have traveled a great distance. Unfortunately for them, still darkness except for the stone. They traveled several more days before they arrived at their new home.

They were quickly shown to their new quarters. They were locked in a prison with three buckets and a few furs to lie on. There was a bucket for wastes, one for water, and the other food. Soon after their arrival they were met by other prisons returning from todays work.

The party soon fines this is a drow mining operation. The oldest slave has been here six months. He tells the party, “the drow will only keep you around as long as you prove useful”.

Deciding it was in the parties best interest until they had a better plan they started mining. Days turned to weeks and weeks to months.

Escape seemed impossible. Armed drow watched them. The party’s legs were shackled and the casters hands too tightly shackled to cast spells. Not to mention the fact they were stripped of their armor, weapons, and implements.

After 3 months of hard labor a potential opportunity finally arose. Could the party capitalize on it? The complex was under attack!

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No Where to Go but Forward

The party was awoken from the cell, unshackled, and thrown into the courtyard to help fight the oncoming invasion. After fighting through the first two waves of goblin fodder with basic weapons the group decides to jump the two drow guards to gain entry to the armory.

After combating a wave of hobgoblins, they made there way into a small library to discover many book and maps and most puzzling of all a small drow girl. The girl could be no more than 8 in human years and she carried with her a stuffed umberhulk similar to that of a surface child’s teddy bear. She retreived a mask and put it on transforming her into and elf. She then pointed to a map of the surface and a journal on the table. She clearly wanted to go there, but what was her motive? As sweet as she seemed there was something dark about her which shown through her smile as she watched the party to continue to fight waves of troops.

Fully equipped again the party fought through the next two waves of duergar troops. Bloody and barely hanging on they looked onward to the last wave of invading drow. Can they hang on long enough to gain their freedom?

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Allies Come and Go

As the party engages the drow leading the assault of the complex an unusual ally joins the fight. The duel wielding bugbear made quick work of the drow blademaster awing those who witnessed. Seeing that the party was in capable hands the barbarian retired to the empty armory to rest. The drow poison was clearly taking a toll on him.

Not sure where to go, Cedric approaches the drow guards in front of the double doors. He calmly asks if they have earned their freedom. The drow calmly reply “only in death do you earn your freedom”. Stares are exchanged as another party member approaches and joins the conversation. Cedric asks, “Will you pursue us if we leave” and the guard replies “we are in charge of guarding these doors not you, others will pay for your escape not I”. As the third party member approaches, the guards, sure of an impending battle, let loose a volley of bolts from their hand crossbows. Battle ensues but the guards are quickly dropped.

The party decided to explore the complex before the main troops return. First stop was the sleeping quarters were they dispatched a few more guards and a drow sniper. The party also freed the remaining slaves in the prison.

Next stop was the guest quarters. Each door of this hallway was guarded with glowing spider glyphs. Eon attempted to disarm the first glyph but was instead blasted with a considerable amount of necrotic energy. Shrugging off the blast he opened the door only to be face to face with a mind flayer, one of the Underdark’s scariest denizens. The party rushed the mindflayer and scored several devastating blows quickly felling it before he had time to rape the party’s minds.

The glyph on the next door also proved to be troublesome for the party assailing them with poison damage. Toma peered into the door and saw no creatures. He decided to make his way into the room for further investigation not knowing a master drow assassin was hiding in wait. He took his first step in when he felt the sting of many bolts in his neck. It all happened so quick, and before the party realized what had happened there was a magical darkness in the room. The next sound coming from the room was the cleric hitting the ground bleeding to death with poison racing through his veins. The party rushed into the room and past the darkness only to be ambushed by the drow. She darted between party members slicing each viscously with her rapier the whole time taking mighty blows from the party. In the end it would be the party who would be victorious. It would be Cedric to stabilize the dying cleric and Eon to administer the potion to bring the cleric back.

Cedric after seeing two of the other glyphs disabled the third with ease. Once inside the party searched the room and found a small chest.

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The Final Push

The party gathered outside the main dining hall and slowly pushed in to the vacant room. The sound of pots and pans clanging could be heard from the kitchen. Eon quietly sneaked up to the doorway and peered in to find a goblin cook hard at work, cleaning his dishes. Eon declares him free, the goblin nearly shits himself from being startled. The bugbear Grog tells him that his village needs a cook and with that the goblin grabs some supplies and heads off into the Underdark following the vague directions Grog gave.

There were two other doors off the dining hall. The party decided to listen to each door; behind the first they heard an interrogation and behind the second, prayers to Lolth. Deciding the priestesses were the greater threat the party pushed into the altar room where they were met by three blade masters and two priestesses of Lolth. It was in this room the party learned what the dark priests of Lolth were capable of. During the battle they witnessed the priestesses transfer damage to the warriors and also a much more sinister spell that exploded the blade master into thousands of spiders that bit the party.

It would be in this dark battle that the barbarian would attempt to rape a drow priestess and would turn on his ally Aranax. Cedric would try to calm the barbarian to no avail and Aranax to end the quarrel if only temporary. It would be in this battle that the drow girl Akazeez would be slain in the blink of an eye. Ultimately though the party would be the victors of this battle.

As one battle ended another was beginning. Out of the other room came the drow inquisitor and his two templar guards. As the party met the group head on, they saw another drow come from the darkness and began brutally assaulting the inquisitor. The battle was short and the party faired well. They decided to allow the drow to continue on with them, at least for now.

They went back into the altar room to investigate the last door. They heard not a sound, so Cedric led the way. As he walked into the room he was ambushed by two drow. His monk training taught him to shrug off the stinging pain, but he was wounded and knew he was in trouble. The party rushed in after him only to be met by a drider and the matron mother herself. Toma kept the party alive as the battle raged on. Every time the party landed a few hits on the matron she would transfer the damage to the drider or one of her warriors. When the battle looked like it was going to favor the party she fled down a secret tunnel, leaving the remaining drow time for her to make her escape.

After the battle the party found the secret tunnel after some investigation. Several party members have some hesitation about pursuing her.

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The Search for Mother

Trusting in their new drow companions intel, the group tracks the Matron Mother to a well fortified mercenary keep. Outnumbered 10 to 1 stealth was clearly the best option.

The party decided to make their approach from a lower path that ran along the river. The first obstacle they encountered where poisonous mushrooms that released spores. Deciding jumping them was the best option they quickly made there way, only the priest had difficulty clearing them. Severely poisoned Toma was able to heal himself and continue. The party noticed a rare type of mushroom also growing in this location; it produced sacs of poison which causes sleep. Thinking these could prove useful the monk carefully picked two sacs.

As the party continued along the river they made their way to a waterfall and behind it a narrow ledge. Slowly trying to make their way across, half of the party ended up in the rushing river below. The priest quick thinking allowed him to drop a rope and rescue his fellow adventurers. With half the party across they threw ropes to help the others cross safely.

The next obstacle was a 20 foot rock face to scale. The barbarian made his way with ease to the top and dropped a rope for the rest to climb.

Now on the side of the keep’s 5 ft wall the party peered over. One at a time they jumped the wall and attempted to sneak across. Not well versed in the art of stealth, the party’s location was soon spotted by the patrolling guards. Cedric quickly throw a poisonous sac at the group knocking them unconscious.

To Be Continued….

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