Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Return to the Ruins of Adventure - Session 5: Roadblock!
Over a month ago our heroes completed their quest to slay the goblin chief in the slum section of the ruins. Since then they have been spending their money and time in the civilized section of Phlan. Low on cash, Kordan, Javanni, and Mikal decide to see if the council needs any more help. As it turns out they do.
Councilman Barnabus thanks them for freeing the slums although resettlement is going somewhat slower than they had hoped. Some of this is due to a new problem in that kobolds have taken over Kuto's Well, cutting off a major source of fresh water for the settlement effort. Kuto was one of the original settlers of the area and he built a fort around the well. Early settlers also gathered around what is now civilized Phlan for access to the harbor. The city grew up as these two sections grew together and the Slums are what was once this middle section joining the two early settlements. So reclaiming the well is important both for symbolic reasons and for the practical needs of a) fresh water, b) a buffer zone past the Slums themselves, and c) a fortified location at the far end of the settlement to help hold off attacks from the monster-infested ruins of the rest of the city. Barnabus offers the party 1000gp per person or the choice of a treasured magical item upon delivery of the kobold chieftain's head. The party agrees and sets out for the well.
Now being unable to locate their wizard the team advances with some caution. Passing through the Slums they see the occasional beggar moving through the rubble but that's about the only sign of life. Finally they come to the end of the slum section and see a stone structure some distance away through heavily rubbled streets. They advance.
Nearing the well the group uses a mostly cleared roadway to speed their travel. Up ahead, though, they spy a roadblock and note that several side streets have been block off as well. Observing for a few minutes, they see small shapes behind the roadblock and a few more figures up on some nearby rooftops - kobolds.
Kordan (Fighter) and Mikal (Warlock) take a left and try to make an indirect advance on the kobold position while Javanni (Bard) advances just enough to put the enemy in range of his vicious mockery and begins taunting the scaly ones.
Turning a corner, Kordan and Mikal exchange fire with the westernmost kobold rooftop sentries. They are slain fairly quickly but not before both heroes have been tagged with seriously foul-smelling missiles. The heroes then close in on the roadblock as Javanni takes the other rooftop sentry out of the fight with his incredibly harsh language.
Battle is joined as Kordan smashes through the roadblock and into a Kobold Dragonshield. Mikal lays down curses and eldritch blasts on multiple foes while Javanni sings a veritable song of abuse, throwing in some common kobold names to spice things up and scoring as several enemies look up in open-mouthed horror at the things he is saying about their nest-mothers.Kordan takes a few good blows from Kobold spears but in the end the trio blows through the watchmen like a summer storm, leaving no survivors.
Looking around the team gathers up what clues they can and decides to go back and find their wizard, and maybe some other assistance, before they assault the well itself.
DM Notes: This was our first D&D session in quite a while and ended up only involving the setup and one encounter, mostly due to excessive chit-chat. I say excessive but part of the fun is a group of friends getting together and catching up on things and that took a lot of time this time. Also, Lady Blacksteel had other plans and was not available to run her character for the evening so the party was down to 3. Now I build my encounters for the 4E standard 5 man party and I'm not inclined to weaken them but the party blew through them pretty well. I admit I didn't make the bulk of the kobolds very active opponents but they were guarding a roadblock so it made sense to me in the context of the encounter. Next time will not be as easy.
The good news is that we may have picked up another player, bringing us up to the officially-endorsed 5-man party. Also, clearing a lot of the getting-back-together-after-a-long-gap stuff cleared out and getting the mission set up out of the way means we can dive right in next session and that next session is this coming Friday so we will have some momentum going in. It's good to be rolling again.