The only time spent in Egede was finding Aribon. The party quickly made its way back to the wilds and Rappan Athuk.
- Noises in the forest and the sound of a dying elk roused their interest. In a clearing they found three Forest Drakes devouring a dead elk. The drakes spouted clouds of acid, biting and slapping with their tales, but were quickly put down through a combination of Hendel’s fireballs, Hiso’s growing agility with sneak attacks and combined attacks from Rocknut and Azrond.
- In the graveyard, they were surprised when the green gargoyles finally animated and attacked. Two were over-sized and had four arms. Their attacks were powerful and even Rocknut was brought low by their combined claws, bites and horn attacks. Another gargoyle fired a longbow, hovering in the air. Hiso dimension-doored into the mausoleum, but found that the ceiling trap had a magical trigger. Two of the stony creatures were destroyed and a third fled but only after Aribon and Requiem went down, bleeding. The mausoleum trap reset and Az retrieved the finicky key from the dwarf statue which bypassed the trap. Hendel gathered the green gems that were the gargoyles’ eyes, finding them to be emeralds of incredible value.
- Skeletons and putrid, diseased zombies attacked them on the first level, but were destroyed without much thought. They avoided the dung creature and found the stairs to the second level. Again, undead swarmed them but were easily killed. They went northeast and entered a moist cavern filled with mushrooms. Aribon’s tower shield with Light cast upon it triggered the Shriekers to begin their noise. As they walked into the cavern, Twilight Mushrooms exploded in clouds of spores. Hiso and Aribon nearly died a choking, airless death. They were carried back to the safe room until Aribon could revive them with Lesser Restoration. The rest of the part returned to the cavern, avoiding the mushrooms, but found a gnarled root system and stump that animated and attacked: a Cavern Bog Creeper. The creature erupted in acid and thorny branches. After the initial shock, the stump was destroyed and burned, its swampy treasure looted.
- Resting in the safe room, the party was surprised when the emeralds regenerated into the gargoyles! They fought them again, this time in close quarters. After their second death, the gems dissolved.
- Az and Hendel convinced the party to cast Water Breathing and go down the river on the first level. Giant albino Gar swam lazily past. Hundreds of yards down-river and deep in the dungeon, something gargantuan opened a reptilian eye. Swimming slowly, Azrond attacked while Requiem sent Rocknut to do the same. Hiso teleported to the other side of the massive beast. It emerged from the deep muck: an albino dire crocodile. With a lazy motion, the reptile snapped its jaws on Az and swallowed whole. A combined attack on the beast resulted in a cloud of blood and flesh as at last Azrond erupted from the creatures gullet. The gar feasted well. Feeling a moment of fear, the party decided to return upriver and avoid the water, but only after finding a magical axe buried in the mud.
- Instead, they took the stairs down on the second level. Glowing green letters on an archway leading into a large cavern warned: “Beware of Purple Worms! The archmage, Spiegel.” Indeed, the earth rumbled and shook. The party hugged the eastern wall, avoiding the open cavernous space. But Aribon tripped and fell, attracting the attention of a much smaller Tenebrous Worm and its Gloomwing parent. The giant moth mesmerized and confused the party while the Tenebrous Worm fought with barbs and jaws. They brought the worm low and the Gloomwing fled. However, the noise attracted something much larger. The huge Purple Worm erupted from the rocky soil. Az, Hiso and Aribon cast water breathing and jumped into a different river, floating downstream. Rocknut was sent to battle the beast but was destroyed, while Hendel and Requiem levitated far above the worm. Injured, the worm slipped back into the earth after not finding food. The river swimmers discovered a fork in the river, but returned to the cavern. They hugged the cavern wall and entered a stone-carved room beyond the cave.
- Going through a door to the east, incense was thick. They found symbols of Orcus and blood-spattered walls. A preserved human corpse was displayed on an altar, prepared for some sort of ritual. Going deeper into the luxurious chamber, six maidens confronted them. Az disappeared with a flash and appeared in the far corner along with a Vrock demon. The demon tore Az to shreds and appeared next to the party. The maidens shifted into jackalweres and attacked with swords. Hiso managed to trip the demon while the party did battle with the jackal creatures.
- Hendel cast a stinking cloud hoping to stop them. Meanwhile, Az looked around and wondered why Hiso had attacked him and the rest of the party looked ready to split open his head. Hendel suspected something was amiss and cast Dispel magic on the demon – in its place was their friend, Az. The room was covered in thick Mirage Arcana, Veil and Permanent Image illusions. An invisible creature attacked from within the Stinking Cloud, casting powerful Magic Missiles and Lightning Bolts. A Confusion spell nearly wiped out the party as they began to flagellate themselves and each other. Aribon took himself down in a fit of insanity. A lightning bolt slammed into Az and nearly destroyed him. Hendel limped away after multiple Magic Missiles, Acid Arrows and Scorching Rays. Whatever the creature was, it seemed resistant to most magic. Finally, Hendel threw a Glitterdust into the room and blinded the creature while at the same time revealing its location and form: A royal-looking tiger humanoid. Hendel recognized it as a Greater Rakshasa and shouted a warning to his friends. The jackalweres fell, but the Rakshasa was resistant to most blows. Requiem could not summon Rocknut due to his Confusion and the party seemed disorganized under the effect of the spell. Hiso harried the creature while Requiem’s summoned aurochs trampled it over and over. Hendel fizzled many lightning bolts against it but a few snuck through. Its cowardly nature revealed, the Rakshasa fled into another room, avoiding the Acid Pit spell thrown by Hendel. A swirling human-sized mirror framed in mithral was imbedded in one wall. It spat a word in Abyssal and leaped into it, vanishing with a flash.
- The confusion ended and the party looted the fiend’s chamber, finding opium, valuable rugs and mounds of gold, silver and platinum. An arcane-locked teakwood box was both valuable and resistant to opening. They would have to tackle that another time. Six flayed human corpses hung from meat hooks: a tattered banner identified them as Braimen and his party of paladins.
Hiso managed to nuzzle the lock on the teakwood box open. Something wonderous glowed inside…Hendel glanced at the mirror, whispering the Abyssal word he memorized and saw something within…