Where we left off
The echoes of Wigston’s gun blast echo throughout the subterranean complex. As they fade away, the reverberating boom is replaced by the agitated yapping of kobolds in their peculiar Draconic dialect.
Our heroes stand before a secret doorway pried open from the side of the basilisk pit. A long, dark corridor stretches beyond…
|Known regions of the kobold complex|
The party, faced with the choice of proceeding through the newly discovered secret door or climbing the far ledge of the basilisk pit to brave the main hallway, elects to take the former, less obvious route.
With Kit and Piruk leading the way in standard delving formation, they make their way cautiously into the gloom beyond the door. The corridor proceeds for some ways before turning sharply to the left. Around the bend, flickering torchlight drifts through the bars of a closed portcullis. Beyond the gate blocking their path, the torchlight reveals a tall chamber distinguished by a rope bridge crossing 20 feet over the party’s current level, and a series of windows running parallel to and 10 feet above the bridge.
As Kit approaches the closed portcullis to search for traps, there is a sudden “twang” and she is struck a glancing blow by a small arrow fired from an unknown assailant. The rogue grits her teeth as her arm begins to feel heavy with some unknown toxin.
In an effort to identify the as-yet unseen assailant, Rayne sends Belfry through the bars of the portcullis to investigate the chamber beyond. After squeezing past the gate, the bat is beginning his circuit of the room, when another arrow strikes him suddenly and the diminutive familiar drops to the ground, unmoving.
Piruk and Santiago rush forward and attempt to lift the portcullis, Meanwhile, Wigston casts Mage Hand and slides the limp form towards the bars. When the unconscious bat reaches the barrier, Rayne casts Baleful Transpostion extracting her injured familiar to safety while simultaneously transporting the heavily armored Lanna through the gate.
The yapping begins again, and the arrows begin to fly.
Under assault from kobolds perched high in the windows that line the chamber, the party struggles to lift the massive portcullis. After several attempts, the monk, paladin and warblade manage to throw up the gate, jamming it into the chamber above.
Eleanor steps into the middle of the chamber with her holy symbol blazing in the light of Celestial Brilliance The light-sensitive reptilians continue their assault, partially blinded by the blazing light. The rest of the party follows. Daethin and Kit move to the side of the door and begin returning fire at kobold faces, which appear in the windows. Wigston steps out with his kiitar, playing a stirring and triumphant anthem that puts courage and steel into the hearts of his allies.
As Rayne enters the room, she catches the familiar pungent whiff of combustible chemicals that so often sets her pyromaniac heart aflutter. She cautions the others to be wary. Kit glances up at a clattering sound and sees a large, smoking clay pot teetering in a window far above.
Kit begins to dodge back and forth. The reptillian hands holding the pot attempt to follow… but then… CRASH! Screaming… but not from our heroes. The kobolds fumble their cauldron of oil and wind up dropping it inside their barbican leading to a bit of barbecue. Draconic curses and wails of pain drift down with the smell of charred lizard.
Piruk, Lanna and Santiago rush to the portcullis on the far side of the chamber and begin struggling to lift it. Meanwhile the rest of the party returns fire at their hidden assailants, picking at them whenever a kobold shows its face to attack. Rayne sends a well-placed fireball into one of the galleries, and once again kobold screaming can be heard.
But then, a second pot of oil comes crashing down, successfully this time, striking Piruk and setting his beard ablaze along with Santiago’s robes. While the dwarf and half-orc struggle to put out the flames, Wigston is struck by several flaming arrows. His song takes on a melancholy, soaring tone as he is jolted by each strike. His clothing bursts into flames and soon he falls unconscious under the barrage.
The efforts of the party are at last beginning to thin the kobold numbers. Those in the gallery of windows before them have mostly retreated to lick their wounds, but a withering hail of arrows continues to rain down from behind. Flames extinguished, Piruk and Santiago switch their tactics against the portcullis. The dwarf hefts his maul and delivers a mighty overhand strike cracking several of the timbers and knocking the gate askew in its track. Several swift kicks from Santiago are all that is needed to clear the opening.
“Exit’s this way!”
Daethin rushes through the newly cleared exit and takes up a position at the corner of the hall beyond. The rest of his battered companions follow, Wigston leaning on Lanna while he regains his bearings. Free from the line of fire at last, the group finds themselves in a hallway similar to the one leading up to the barbican, once again stretching into the darkness of the strange kobold complex.