Gadwulf, having sustained a nasty otyugh bite, was quickly taken by a fever that Arden could not cure. Luckily, Cyron possessed ancient lore that could help him, but it would require time to rest, which the party could not spare. The difficult decision was made for Gadwulf and Cyron to stay behind, in a relatively safe area, while Sigurd and Arden pressed on.
As Cyron and Gadwulf fell back, Sigurd entered the otyugh lair and heaved his greatsword into the dark, felling the Boneshadow Clan shaman in a single blow. After the orc’s death, the cave fell eerily silent. Arden and Sigurd trekked on, searching for Eudora to no avail, though they did manage to find an assortment of overlooked oils and runes.
Realizing that they were effectively down two men and wanting to hasten the search for Eudora, Arden used a scroll to summon a bloodhound spirit to help them locate prisoners. It alerted their attention to a hidden door in the burial chamber of Mitcou, Siryl Rex’s wizard, advisor and lover, which led them through a secret tunnel into an old crypt chamber, where three people, a pale elf woman, a rather small dwarf, and a silver-haired human, were bound and gagged.
The elf’s eyes widened as Arden released her bonds. She and the silver-haired human seemed relieved to see him, though Arden had no recollection of either of them, until the elf broke a stone that she had purloined from Arden, returning his memories of their past adventures. After some quick discussion, they realized that they were all tied to Eudora and decided that they would be best served by banding together.
They made haste through the secret passages, quickly finding the troll who was among the patrol that waylaid the prisoners as they searched the valley for Siryl’s tomb. Though Erimus, Talitha and Arion were severely underequipped and Arden and Sigurd were pushed to their limits, they all managed to swiftly dispatch the troll. Siryl’s tomb was just beyond the troll’s chamber, but despite being among the hidden halls, it appeared to have been looted years before. Investigating Siryl’s cracked sarcophagus, they discovered a small treasure hoard in addition to the prisoners’ missing gear. Figuring that they wouldn’t have a better chance to catch the breath, the party took this opportunity to rest while Arden fell back to check on Gadwulf and Cyron.
Once rested, the party emerged from the hidden tunnels back to the crypt where several of them had been held prisoner. Just outside the door, they could make out the deep voices and heavy breathing of two very large humanoids. They were speaking in a strange pidgin of Giant and Orcish, which Sigurd was able to understand snatches of, while Talitha recognized certain aspects of ancient Night Elf grammar. They listened for a few moments, then broke into the great hall, where they discovered another troll and an immense ogre, who barely able to contain his excitement at intruders, began frothing at the mouth and chewing on his own lips in anticipation. The battle was fierce, but the party’s combined efforts eventually dispatched their hulking opponents.
The great hall gave way to smaller corridor to the south, each wall bordered by stained glass depicting an armored figure; one a knight, the other a king. Beyond that lay an elaborate sarcophagus, with a detailed carving of a bearded man. A plaque on the sarcophagus read “SIRYL REX, CONQUEROR AND STATESMAN”.
[OOC notes: This session opened with Gadwulf being wounded, Cyron falling back to assist him, and Arden later going back to check on them to account for some roster changes and absences. Gadwulf’s player needed to temporarily drop from the campaign to focus on real world stuff, Cyron’s player wanted to swap out a druid for a commander, and Arden’s player was playing from out of town and could only attend part of the session. In addition, Talitha and Arion’s players joined this game from another version of the same campaign which had just collapsed.]