D&D West Marches 004 - Power Word OH SHIT

The entire party was percolating
Oh boy and just like that we're back for ROUND 2. Inside of the alter-plane that we last left off, our party(Sans one Shiitake Bushroom due to abandonment of service) takes a nap in the dungeon instead of going back to town, instead opting in to finishing this quest once and for all. But since time is fuzzy in D&D Bridges suddenly has a whole lot less money and a whole lot more potions than he did last time.


Bridges Rhinestone Jr, Lore College Bard
Ven, Halfling Sorcerer
Gisela Fade, FIGHTER of some kind
Bird Brain, Wild Magic Sorcerer
K'yan, Barbarian who I never learned the race of

Starting back up where we left off, Bird Brain pretty much immediately decided that the only way to work our way into the "boss room"(Whatever that is) is somehow going to the previously unexplored "potion room", which was a clear bio-hazard violation but somehow I don't think OSHA gives a fuck, and igniting the chemical compounds of the randomly mixed potions.

He tried to rally his party but they were quite adamant that they were not going to go in there and nothing has changed since then. So in typical Bird Brain fashion he went alone and zapped a Firebolt into a hole within the door, but not getting the massive explosion he was looking for. Instead, pretty much nothing happened. So he returned to the party as they discuss their next move.

Eventually though he tried to again rally his party to look into the potion room. Running off on his own once again, this time he got a surprise in that the potion room he was so interested in was on its way to him instead. It turns out that the chemical spill of potions was actually some sort of weird amalgamation monster that had every intention on devouring us. Thankfully he managed to get a chance to run back and warn the party before the creature caught up.

They retreat into the long hallway with a pit in it which used to be filled with acid, but since drained by figuring out the mechanism. Earlier, in the last session, they had fastened their ropes around these monkey-bar like objects that were clearly supposed to be a way through the acid that they never took because fuck that. So a few of them climb over the ropes and over the chasm in the hallway that used to store the acid and climb their way over to the other side. BUT BEFORE THAT...

K'yan and Ven were trying to figure out the door to the "boss room" right before the monster appeared, so both sequences started to sync up with themselves. As the DM tells the players for the 30th time(Bridges remembers) that it's not a door, but an open archway with a series of skulls adorned atop of it with a topaz that is clearly magical. So, after doing some scientific research(e,g: Firebolting it), the Barbarian decided enough was enough and attempted to rush through the archway.

Around this time Bridges finally crawled his way over the chasm and to the side of the room near Ven and K'yan, which would be the difference between life and death. Because, you see, the gem housed on the series of skulls adorned at the top of the archway was a fucking TRAP, but not just any trap, oh no. See, this was a fucking POWER. WORD. KILL. trap. Ven readied his counterspell, expecting a mild spell to repel, but was actually about to get hit with one of the showstoppers in the mage arsenal. Thankfully Bridges had done so many write-ups of previous events, which automatically earns DM Inspiration, which allows advantage on one roll of his choice, and is also a bard with Bardic Inspiration, which allows him to use a bonus action to inspire an individual of his choice so that they may add one six-sided die to any attack roll, saving throw, or ability check.

And thank fucking god the DM was willing to let him use both to assist Ven which prevented the abso-fucking-lute and immediate death of one of the lynch-pin's of the entire operation: The nigh on indestructible barbarian, K'Yan. The counterspell went off, and thanks to having advantage the second roll was a natural 20, ending up being like 24 or something all total, which beat the DC of 19 due to it being a 9th level spell.

Ven was shocked, Bridges realized he's probably in over his fucking head with this shit, and K'yan got a second chance. But no one really had any opportunity to react much as the cries from behind of a monster trying to get jiggy with the party. K'yan needed a moment to collect himself, which resulted in a turn skipped for self-reflection. But after that, he got a chance to compose himself with a Charisma Save that he passed, nutted up and got back in the fight. With his and Gisela's deft powerhouse of damage, the foe did not last for long, especially thanks to Bird Brain for getting the final blow on it's gelatinous ass, evaporating it and possibly leading to long-term long development issues for the party in the immediate area.

Once the Potion Room had been defeated, the party decided that maybe it is time to inspect what's up in there. Which is when the found a guide to unlocking the secrets of the vault, because, by the way, this alternate plane of reality was supposed to be a vault. Because the pressure plate room from before was awfully suspicious with no clear solution to figuring it out, having what looked to be a clear solution to the puzzle seemed exciting. So the party raced over to the other side of the map, drained the acid from the skeleton room, which causes it to flow back into the long Boss Door
™ brand hallway was.

They raced to the plates and input what appeared to be the combination. The note was in Inferal which Bridges did not speak so he could not be of any help, but the drawing on the note ended up being pretty accurate and so upon the successful input, they began to hear a series of noises which seemed to imply something had happened. Racing back once more at their break neck pace, again shifting the acid from the hallway back to the skellington room, they cross the chasm by climbing over the ropes and walk up to the Boss Door™brand archway and discover a way through. The "suddenly decided you no longer get to live" spell had been deactivated and they walk up close enough to see inside slightly, and just within the room they see a huge pile of bones. Because literally fucking nothing in this dungeon that appears to be dead or inanimate actually is, Bridges let the party know that they should proceed carefully. Which they don't.

Before long someone is screaming, the Halfling's height is brought into play, and Bridges is sorta-kinda pleading with a Spirit Naga, which is common for "Giant Snake Bitch". Initiative is called for, hearts are in throats. Bridges spent 800 gold pieces in preparation for this battle, fearing for his and his companion's lives, knowing that nothing could potentially fall victim to this great beast-and they killed it in the first round.

Bridges didn't even get a goddamn minute to react. Suddenly the beast was dead and he was sincerely questioning why the fuck he spent pretty much his entire earnings on something that will probably goddamn expire before they get to use it because they just wiped the floor with this creature-and now there's a water elemental.

Suddenly the fight was back into the full swing of things and shit was going down. Gisela who Bridges definitely was not singling out to inspire got pretty much immediately absorbed by the water elemental. So I mean I guess he was right. Bridges, through careful usage of his Dissonant Whispers which is quite literally the only spell that actually works for him since they fucking constantly make their saving throws against Vicious Mockery, managed to cause the elemental to flee, which proc'd about 3 different opportunity attacks, only 2 of which hit, and gave the party some distance.

They played this dance once or twice before the elemental got really kind of pissed and decided Gisela's face looked better on the ground, so that's where it put her. Hard. So the entire party gasped dramatically, or maybe that was just bridges, but before it ever got anywhere near the worrying territory(Aside from the face putting on the ground), Bird Brain jumped in to save the day with a healing potion. I mean Bridges had Cure Wounds so he could have done that but hey whatever let's deprive him of the supple touch.

The water elemental didn't last much longer than that. The sheer number of damage going around between the Barbarian and the Fighter were staggering, though it was Ven who got the kill by machine-gunning his magic missile and totally not being small.

So the party spent the next 20 minutes or so searching the area, and found a whole bunch of magic objects and artifacts that apparently some peasant with no taste for talent had been in the market for. And hidden within the lair of the water elemental someone found a key, a glass key to be specific. They had explored all of the rooms in the vault, so they knew they had to have missed something and then Bridges had a moment of clarity: The Orc statue was on a raised platform away from any other raised platform. Perhaps it had been there to not just come to life when a Barbarian smashed the petrification crystal, but when someone goes snooping around the base of it? This newfound inspiration got the party kicked into high gear, knowing that they are working on borrowed time because once the portal to this plane closes, they are surely dead.

They do the acid-redirect shuffle, but this time learn that Gisela had actually seen something moving around within the acid. Nothing had popped out and attacked them since then, and there was no clear sign of creatures moving about aside from them, so they made sure to clear the acid and inspect the area just to make sure, but by all accounts everything looked okay. Scouting around the orc statue Gisela spots with her special eyes a small keyhole, which, when the key is inserted, revealed a secret room filled with coin. Gold, silver, copper, but definitely not any electrum because who the fuck thought it would be a good idea to disturb the platinum, gold, silver, copper legacy that has persisted in so much of fantasy as a whole? What even is electrum, and why does it sound like a Marvel comic?

Well anyway they collectively shit their pants at the loot when they, Ven, Gisela, and Ven all notice that also within the secret room is a sign that says "Push Me" and a lever that is ultimately inspected and revealed to be connected to a mechanism within the room. The three of the group wrestled with the staunch desire to press the fucking sign, and tried to fight it so hard. But, ultimately, they gave in and pressed the sign. Strangely, for once in this goddamn dungeon, it did not lead to sorrow or heartache, and nothing sprang to life to kill them. Instead, a secret door opened up nearby that lead them into the room they had been in prior, which would had been a nice detour, but they could have only accessed it using the glass key they found in the Boss Room™ so ultimately there was nothing they could have done about that. Though Bridges does have the Knock spell...

In the end the party came out alive and well. Gisela had taken a licking and kept on ticking, and Bridges definitely apologized about that later on.(EDITOR'S NOTE: MIGHT BE REVISIONIST HISTORY).

Taking their new found loot and totally-not-evil artifacts to some Mr. Johnson looking motherfucker who conspicuously waited outside of town like he's got something to hide, Bridges and Ven had determined that they are going to try to sell this stuff to the guy at a higher priced than anticipated, and made a fantastic offer thanks to the help of Ven. After having a thorough conversation about stimulating the local economy and building the trust of other adventurers by paying a higher price than intended thanks to their due diligence and braving the storms and fighting monsters like the heroes they are. They settled on a price that could deversify any professional portfolio and parted ways. (Editor's Note: This never happened and the negotiations were instead a dumpster fire that devolved in a very short span of time. It was a disaster that just wouldn't stop. Consequences will never be the same)

But hey, Bridges is level 5 now so that's pretty cool.

My name is Ryan. I like to play video games and Dungeons and Dragons and all kinds of other cool stuff. I also like to write. This is my website, it's nothing special, but I write about topics from time to time that probably make no sense. But if you think they do make sense, then hang around and check out some other articles. My friends call them "blogs" but goddamnit I've got a URL and everything, so they're "articles".

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