This adventure is NOT part of the Foresite Irregulars storyline, skip to Lost in Sigil to pick up the latest in that chapter.
This is the fourth post from my run of D&D 5e’s Out of the Abyss at Games of Berkeley.
Having discovered, cleansed, and looted the The Lost Tomb of Khaem our survivors have decided to stop by Blingdenstone to trade and get appropriately equipped before heading to Neverlight Grove.
Revenge at the Mushroom Farm
Over several days of travel, Jimjar briefs the non-locals on the history of Blingdenstone. Short version: City sacked by Drow a century ago, and only recently (and partially) resettled. So, the Drow in their group, Magda, could present a trust problem. “We’ll have to deal with it when we get there.”
They approach the farms outside the city:
Jimjar says “One of the farmers here owes me on a bet, we can grab some decent mushrooms to eat here at is farm…”
But, before they can even get to the farms themselves, they are attacked from both sides by Quaggoth!
They quickly engage, using some resources in an attempt to end this encounter quickly, but are then surprised by a second wave: Darvon: “It’s Drow Ambush! These are our former captors!” Kraum activates Dawnbringer, and the sunlight quickly handicaps the denizens of the Underdark.
Our party spreads out, to engage the enemy, only to discover that Jorlan and Shoor have joined the fight, each from a different farm, flanking our group.
Shoor: “It seems the only way you will return with us is unconscious. So be it!”
Darkness falls on the center cavern, covering most of the group and giant spiders enter the chamber from above, and web-over the exits not covered by the Drow…
Things have gotten complicated. Kraum quietly says. “At least Ilvarra isn’t here” as he advances to engage Jorlan.
Jorlan replies: “You spoke too soon, orcish buffoon!”
In fact, Ilvarra was just out of sight, until she uses her Staff of the Tentacle to take him down…
After taking down the Quaggoth, Magda engages Shoor.
Meanwhile, Buppido, Stool, and Shuushar are trapped in the outer corridor with a flanking Drow – A pacifist, and Derro and a Mushroom walk into a Drow…
Bucephalus leads an attempt to recover Kraum’s body.
Only to discover that he is somehow conscious and can help with his own extraction.
Meanwhile, reinforcements from Blingdenstone arrive!
Only to have most of them pinned by an Insect Plague summoned by the Drow Priestess.
But the heroes rally and renew their assault, pulling out all the stops…
Taking down Jorlan. But Shoor is relishing the punishment he’s dishing out upon Magda. Darvon’s heals are keeping her standing…
The group in the hallway somehow defeat their Drow, as Shuushar removes the web covering their entrance cave.
Chant makes a decision. “Everyone but Magda, withdraw quickly!”
They know what he has in mind, and quickly retreat to the entrance deflecting all blows…
He grabs the Necklace of Fireballs from around his neck and hands it to Kraum – the strongest of them all, and instead of picking a bead or two to throw, he instead throws the entire necklace at Ilvarra as she comes in pursuit into the main chamber…
The explosion is massive! Instantly turning Ilvarra into a cinder. The cavern wall partially collapses, but is still passable. Shoor, the only remaining Drow, immediately surrenders to the now immerging deep gnomes. “I am a prisoner of war! Take me away from these villains!”
The gnomes also try to arrest Magda. Jimjar quickly pipes up “She’s with us, she helped us capture and kill Lady Ilvarra and these other invaders!” They reply: “That’s above our pay grade, Jimjar, the Chief will have to decide. For now, she’s you responsibility.”
In attempting to rescue the three mushroom farmers that were poisoned and restrained with webbing by the drow of Velkynvelve, Chant came down with some spore-born illness…
[This account of the first visit to Blingdenstone is taken from the journal of Magda Rin’hae…]
They pass the outer gate and maze and are stopped in “The Gauntlet”…
Chant was carried off by the Deep Gnomes, along with the other sick and injured farmers. They promise they’ll return him when he’s better. Likely some trick just to make us behave.
The rest of us are forced to wait here as they cart off the pretty-boy Drow lieutenant, Shoor Vandree. Sorry I don’t to sit in on his interrogation. I’d have liked to see the uppity snig squirm. The guards take down our names, and are dismayed to hear mine – well, my last name at least. Back when the Deep Gnomes were driven out of Blingdenstone, my familial House led the charge. Yep. The Rin’hae.
Of course they’re gone now. Their destruction was why I grew up in the gutter, fighting for scraps. But these scribbly Gnomes don’t know that. And I’m not about to enlighten them.
To pass the time I bet Jim Jar he couldn’t find us a deck of cards so we can teach Stool how to play. Because bored now. So of course he finds some. Worth the silver. The Myconid can’t play for mulch, but it was hilarious to try.
Eventually they let us into town.
Not as conquering heroes but as barely tolerated guests (I got my own private guard-escort and everything!), and their leaders come out to tell us how we brought the Drow to their doorstep, put their people in danger, blah blah, whine whine. And then ghosts show up, but pretty much do the same – that must be hell, trapped to wander Blingdenstone as a lonely ghost, only to complain about it. you’d think they might try being proper undead and go haunt the actual Drow responsible.
Anyway, after the scolding we are finally allowed to shop. But the shop-keeps here are all distrustful bigots and wouldn’t sell us anything above 10gp.
At some point they took Shuushar, our pet fish, off – apparently he had a friend at the gate.
He comes back with another Fish-man – one who manages to look even sadder than he does – named Sloopydoop (yep, Sloopydoop). No wonder my race is trying to enslave everyone – its’ the only way they can stop other people from having stupid names! Anyway, long story short its’ a good thing we didn’t escort Shuushar to his home town, because it isn’t there anymore. Turns out that earthquake we felt a few days back was caused by a giant two headed Demon that rose up out of the water to destroy it all. Now the Kuo-Toa gill men don’t have a home, and are searching for survivors to let them know they’re all relocating to Neverlight Grove.
Well, we might have talked more, patted the poor orphan fish men on the heads and offered them some fermented worms or something, but the touching scene was interrupted by a pair of Gelatinous Cubes that followed in quietly behind them.
We killed one of them and drove off the other (there was a lot of stabbing going on. And fire), and none of us were killed. Yay!
But the leaders of Blingdenstone were like “hey, we think you suck, but why don’t you prove you don’t and go follow that jelly cube? We’ve been having ooze trouble for months, and they’ve been stopping us from colonizing the center of town here. Go see what’s what and maybe well let you get some cool stuff.”
Who doesn’t want to buy the cool stuff? So they gave us a few healing potions and off we went to the heart of Blingdenstone. Uptown. The Ritz.
The Ritz in this case was an ancient temple covered in five-hundred (plus) slimes and oozes of every conceivable stripe and color.
Led by none other than a lunatic calling himself the Pudding King.
He threatens us. Says “We’re not ready yet! Begone in the name of the Faceless one!” So we politely leave, struggling not to make eye-contact with the crazy person.
Back in the settled part of town the local yokels take it pretty hard, with Stool sporing out: “I gotta go ’ome! The Faceless One is danger!”, though our hope is rekindled when we see that Stool sweats blue goop when it’s nervous. Why hope over gross bodily secretions you ask? Because its blue sweat is acid resistant! Stool is cool!
So, given we risked our necks, and because we agreed to go to Neverlight Grove to acquire more of this goop, they’ve revised their opinion of us. They let us buy the cool stuff. They even gave us a wagon, barrels, and a beast to draw it with to go to Neverlight Grove to fetch the makin’s for enough Oil of Acid Protection retake Blingdenstone from the Pudding King and all those slime!
Bonus for me? They gave me pretty boy Shoor Vandree’s armor. I’m totally replacing his House seal though. – Maybe I’ll just mark it with a big fat dirty worm.
But before we left, Edeth decides to take the gnome’s offer of escort to the surface, speaking to Kraum: “If you ask me to go with you to the Grove, I shall – but I beg let me go to Gauntlgrym and seek audience with the king. In one day we’ve heard of several great demons return. I must carry this news to the surface and seek aid.” Kraum says “I was just about to suggest that!” Jimjar: “I’ll take her, as witness and guide.”
What will the find in Neverlight Grove
— Will they make it back with enough Oil of Acid Protection in time to protect Blingdenstone?
- Walls & Map
- House Center
- Papeti’s Parc Guell: 3x scale, heavily modded kit of Gaudi’s Parc Guell in Barcelona, Spain. See this thread for construction details with home-made tiles and pillar mods.
- Mushrooms from Mines of the Mountain King by Fat Dragon Games (resized/recolored by OldSchoolDM)
- Water Effects: Mars Mud by Toysmith
- Grey Ooze/Statues/Black Pudding: Home made – it’s just gluestick or greenstuff for the statues, a base, and paint.
- Fold-Flat ‘Seamless’ Gelatonus Cubes: Home made, I’ll do a video/post of the technique later.
- Market Props: Many suppliers. If you have a specific interest, contact OldSchoolDM on cardboard-warriors.proboards.com or facebook.
Next Time: Neverlight Grove