Thursday, July 3, 2014

Under a Dark Sun: Session 16

Session 16:

Adventure name: The Year of Priest's Defiance

Current PCs / NPCs
Grom Dunestalker - Half-Giant Psionic Warrior (PC)
Lain - Half-Elf Bard (NPC)
Sadiria - Half-Elf Wilder (NPC)
Russk - Mul (stated as a Half-Orc) Fighter (NPC)

The session open with our heroes lost, standing at the edge of a dune. A few days earlier, they had set out from Outpost Three with their shipment of obsidian, headed for Urik.  A sudden sandstorm in the night separated the group from the caravan.  Now, as they watch the sun break over the horizon, they glimpse something wondrous.  Last night's winds have uncovered an ancient structure, still intact.  As they look on, fresh green grass sprouts up from in front of the building to spread across the small dell between dunes.  Bereft of options, the group decides they must investigate.

Within the ruined structure, the party finds several rooms of unknown purpose, all awash in sand.  In one room, they find murals of happy people standing in boxes, dangling wooden poles into a great body of water.  In another, joyful people go about their business in a clean, bright civic setting full of greenery.

Moving on, they find a pair of small rooms, half filled with sand.  In the northern room, beneath the sand, they find three 1-foot across holes in a bench.  The southern room looks to be similar, but before it can be investigated, a large, angry, insectile creature bursts up from a sand pit in the entryway.  Combat ensues, with Grom going head-to-head with the creature, while the rest of the group ineffectually tries to squeeze ranged attacks past the half-giant blocking the way.  Before long, the creature falls and the party sends Russk down the pit to explore further.  The pit opens up into a network of earthen tubes that permeate the area, and could possibly serve as a back door out of the ruin, if necessary.

Further into the structure, the party discovers a large room with shelves on the walls.  The shelves hold a great number of urns: some intricately decorated, perfect for storing water in.  Of special note, is a single urn, ornately decorated with flecks of gemstones and with the lid sealed on with lead.  Grom decided to set this urn off to the side, for later investigation, but is leery about fiddling with the lead seal here in this place.

In the next room the PCs discover a large, deep cistern full of especially clean, pure water!  Runes run along the lip of the cistern, illegible to the group.  All attempts to collect or drink the water result in every last drop running back out of the water skin (or between Grom's lips, in one instance), and back into the cistern.

As the group tries to puzzle out the situation with the water, a traveler enters the ruin, accompanied by what looks like a 1-foot tall kangaroo rat.  The man mutters to himself about how "it's trapped" and "we must free it".

Outstanding Plot Hooks:
•           Who is this mysterious traveler they have met?
•           Can they get to the water they all so desperately need?
•           Will our party EVER be able to get to Urik and receive the payout from their caravan?

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