21 March 1999

Ancient Evil of a Fallen City, Part III

Cursed Guild of the Mages
Our story picks up in the library of the Mage Tower where our intrepid heroes were perusing the stacks looking for spells.  While downstairs in the waiting room, Fangblood waited patiently, Sir Nagrom mysteriously metamorphosed into Alvar, and Jeiro magically appeared.
Shortly there was an all tower summons to the dining room for a sumptuous buffet, which restored our health fully.  Oddly, all of the small talk and chit-chat at the table was about old, old news, events that took place in our childhoods.  Somewhere, a clock chimed and the event began to slow down, upon the the 12th chime, the blazing fire went out and we were plunged into darkness and decay as the party of feasting mages vanished and were replaced by a handful of hideously undead things.  At the head of the table appeared what we can only presume was a lich.
Our battle seasoned heroes quickly high tailed it to the corner of the room and took up a defensive V formation preparing for a sluggish onslaught by the hideous wights that now surrounded us.  We fought valiantly as Jeiro the mighty marksman managed a natural 20 on a called shot to the hand of the lich, which was holding some sort of staff that we can only assume was fearsome.  However, the lich shrugged it off and picked up his staff and the battle continued.  Fangblood was sadly lost to several strikes of a wight.
Alvar, trying to avoid melee and cast spells out of harm's way, spider climbed a wall until a dispel magic from the ol' Eye Sockets (the lich) sent him plummeting comically to the floor.  Matrix and Jeiro were suddenly gripped with a hellishly cold fear and fled to the stairs and
were teleported away.  Leaving Raven and Alvar to dispatch the remaining wights and battle the dread lich.  With a mighty blow of his Blade of Elvenkind, the lich was dispelled and his spirt was sent screaming from his corpse, which subsequently crumbled to dust.  Alvar confiscated the Staff of the Magi that the lich was wielding and we took the stairs to rejoin our comrades, but not until we ritually decapitated Fangblood to prevent his return as a hideous wight.
The room we were teleported to had a giant vat of bubbling slime with some sort of giant creature within it.  We walked around the edge of this pool and investigated a hewn tunnel exiting the room.  This tunnel ended in a sheer cliff and below we could see an active, thriving community of DARK ELVES.  Fearing for our lives, we beat a hasty retreat before being spotted by any of the inhabitants.
In the center of this pool of bubbling slime was a tower with rungs leading up to a hatch in the ceiling.  Using his wits, Alvar cleverly used spider climb and a rope to create a means for the rest of us to shinny up to the hatch.
HOWEVER... when all but Jeiro and his jaguar, Painter, had climbed to the top of the tower, and Raven and Matrix were already through the hatch and in the room above, 3 Driders came scurrying out of the tunnel and across the ceiling to engage us.  Fighting valiantly, Alvar was slumped into a coma from their poisoned swords.  Jeiro fought valiantly and Raven leaped down the hatch to assist in melee.  Fortunately, the Striders were none too dexterous and one managed to fumble into another knocking both into the pool below.  The third also slipped and during an attack and was dumped into the pool.   We quickly escaped through the hatch.
Finding ourselves in a jail with several holding cells and two live prisoners, and one golem prisoner.  We freed the human thief and the half-ogre warrior and they agreed to accompany us out of the tower.  The golem headed for the stairs leading out of the prison and began a time delayed loop of teleporting back into the room and heading for the stairs again.
Realizing the first step on the stairs appeared to be fruitless, Raven tried step number 3 and failed to return as the golem continued to do.  The rest of the party followed and we all arrived in the library.  But the library appeared much more aged this time.
Greedy buggers that we were, the three mages set out to scavenge some spell books to increase our repertoires.  We had an encounter with the ghost of the curmudgeonly librarian, who was fastidiously placing the books back on the shelves that we had dropped periodically to mark our trail since this HUGE library was labyrinthian.  He kept insisting we had been naughty and attempted to attack Raven, so we knew he wasn't being as helpful as librarians ought.  Matrix's quick thinking allowed us to escape the encounter by dumping scads of books on the floor which infuriated the librarian who was forced to pick  up before engaging us.
 Using shouting and singing to maintain contact with Jeiro at the "campsite" within the library, we rejoined the party.  The infuriated screaming of the librarian was heard from one direction, a cry for help was heard in another direction, and all in all we were simply too scared to worry about engaging any of these phantom voices and so onto the teleportation stairs we went.  But Alvar and Raven didn't go anywhere. Apparently the books we had confiscated were not allowed to leave.  So Alvar and myself had a quick reading of Book of Beneficial Magicks by Mazcorick, and the Tome of Many Things.  (you can guess which one caught our eye the most)  Raven was too wary to even attempt opening the Grim Grimoire.  But the Tome of Many Things blessed Raven with a Staff of Thunder and Lightning, as well as 50,000XP.  Alvar got one of his hands torched severely, but was also gifted with a couple magical javelins.  Happy with our looting, we took to the stairs to join our comrades and who knows what will happen in the next exciting installment of....the Mighty Mazcorick Chasers!

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