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October 2023
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Play date: 5-19-2009


With the last of the creatures dead, Varende reenters the cave and examines the door. He discovers that the ten foot wide iron doors have a tight seem down the middle. Four holes an inch in diameter enter the door at a downward angle. He starts searching the room and eventually comes up with four eighteen inch long metal poles with a rounded end and an end cut at 45 degrees. The metal poles fit neatly into the holes on the doors. Serk hears a noise, constant in nature with slight variations, from the other side of the door. He can’t place it. Malperder listens and hears the same noise but can’t place it either. Meanwhile, Andrew has left with the head of one of the creatures to go back to report the mission’s success. Keddick casts knock on the door but it won’t open. Varende inserts a rod into the door part way and then retrieves it. He then pushes it all the way in using another rod and the flat end becomes flush with the door. Varende feels a slight click. Eventually he inserts all four rods. Each clicks only on the initial insertion, and as the fourth is pushed home, a louder click can be heard. Banic tires of waiting and tries stone-shaping a small shaft through the stone to behind the door. Nothing of interest can be seen through the hole. Keddick becomes gaseous and enters. Keddick is caught up in a whirlwind of sorts and eventually dispels the gaseous form. He cannot move against the wind but is able to move with its swirling pattern slowly. He casts some divinations. The only thing he finds is a well concealed stone in the floor at the far end. He makes his way back to the hole, turns into a ferret and comes out. Someone suggests trying the four rods in turns, pushing the doors each time. The twenty-four combinations are tracked by Keddick and the door is opened. As the heavy doors swing inward on internal hinges, the wind dies down inside.

Crowbars are use to lever up the stone at the far end of the forty foot wide room. A small staircase leading down is revealed. Malperder heads down the stairs. He notices and odd bit on the wall that turns out to be a square of stone that depresses slightly when pressure is applied. It pops back out when released. With no imminent danger, Malperder proceeds down the stairs. As he moves off the last steps into the five foot wide corridor beyond, a huge blades scythes out of the wall and cuts him deeply. He raises his shield and shouts for everyone to “Stay back!” or “Move back!” In the confusion, he continues to stand on the landing and is sliced twice more before retreating. Varende moves down and disarms the trap. Looking down the hall, an archway can be seen one hundred feet away dancing with the light of flames beyond it. Everyone moves down the hall. The arch leads onto a space that appears to be burning. Keddick thinks it is a fire-dominant plane and that the arch is a gate. A similar arch thirty feet through the fire plane leads to a large room filled with coins and gems. Varende draws Thasti-Kes, says “The blade will protect me!” Everyone decides to rest the night in a rope trick.


In the morning, Varende draws Thasti-Kes again, says “The blade will protect me!” and steps through the arch. He is absolutely right! He moves in and then back out of the arch with a hair singed. He says he will move across and through the opposite arch. He moves quickly and disappears into the far arch. He is gone from sight. Keddick polymorphs into a red dragon thinking it will protect him. (Grant missed the ruling – the fire did indeed burn Keddick). Keddick moved through the far arch, spoke with Varende, returned, said everyone should come, and then returned to Varende. Each time someone enters the far arch, they disappear. Everyone moves through the flames with varying degrees of burns. Banic heals everyone who needs it. The arch seemed to harbor an illusion. Beyond it was only more five foot wide corridor running out of vision. Malperder notices he is now deeper underground that before moving through the arch. About four hundred feet down he thinks. Continuing down the hall, the group comes to an arch. Forty feet into the room beyond is a low bier with a body on it. The room is circular. The arch has script above it. Keddick spends a minute or two studying it and says it reads:

“Those who Uphold the Law and be of Good heart, enter freely.All others are Forbidden.”

There is some shuffling of feet and equivocation. Eventually Varende grasps the problem firmly and enters the room. He doubles over in pain but does not die. Everyone else follows. Keddick and Jack are hurt the worst, but everyone is hurt somewhat. Keddick realizes it is a forbiddance and that leaving it will have the same effect. As Banic heals Keddick who is near unconsciousness, Keddick spots a huge shimmering blob of protoplasm moving towards everyone. He shouts a warning and skeedadles. A gelantinous cube harries the group nearly engulfing Serk and Varende, but they skitter away. A haste, three arrows, a fireball, a deific vengeance, several healing spells, a magic missile, and lots of “run away” sees the massive blob stop moving and droop nearby the bier.

Several people examine the bier to see a pretty woman lying on it wearing a silvery chainshirt with links of a different metal depicting the monolith on her chest. A heavy steel shield occupies her right arm with the same emblem, and a rapier grasped in her left hand across her chest. Carvings on the bottom of the bier depict this woman fighting all manner of creatures that might generally be classified as evil: dragons, orcs, giants, bugbears and a variety of abominations. Keddick looks about with divinations and says she covers a secret door. He also says she is covered by several strong abjurations and another aura he cannot discern. Malperder tries to push her off the bier because Keddick says there is a way to open the bier under her. Malperder’s hands stop short of her blocked by some invisible force. He feels his natural 20 Will Save fall into place and withdraws. Keddick tries to poke at her with a ten foot pole and also makes his natural 20 Will Save. He stops to contemplate the magic that tried to take him (Spellcraft next time first thing).

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