Graveyard World

Espis Chapter 9: The Black Spider

The voice in Darakrai’s head reveals itself to be the spectral guardian Glorba, created years ago to guard the spellforge from attack. Varyk disguises himself as Glorba’s master, Erik, and convinces Glorba that his job is done, and releases him from his bonds.

Exploring the spellforge, the party discovers two potent artifacts, the mace Lightbringer and an enchanted breastplate. They are also able to briefly enchant their weapons and armour, using the low flames of the spellforge itself.

Moving onwards, the party makes their way through a breached wall into a natural cavern that opens into a vast underwater ocean, finding the few abandoned boats left behind by Jaitus Kalo’s war party 20 years ago. Amongst the moldy supplies in the old boats, the party finds a number of looted trinkets, along with a real prize – a magical flying broom.

Climbing up to the west, the party observes a group of hobgoblins being watched over by a drow that Varyk recognises. Dakarai brings the loose rocks down upon the hobgoblins in an earthquake, and the party overpowers and restrains the drow, who reveals themselves to be another doppelganger. Not wanting to take any chances with the drow reincarnating and warning others, Kharl buries them alive under the rocks.

To the west lies a grand set of doors. Varyk, who can read all languages, identifies this room as being the Scrying Chamber, which Dakarai notes has never been mentioned in any books about the Spellforge. From within, Dakarai senses many bodies and also vast machinery.

Kharl puts two-and-two together, and determines that the people who killed his grandfather must have determined his location using this device. He immediately kicks the door in, surprising Zyn Coberal, the Black Spider, who is making notes on the far side of the scrying device – a massive, sand-covered disk, slowly being raked by cycling clockwork instruments .

Kharl, to the Spider’s fury, immediately summons a massive gust of wind, knocking sand and papers everywhere. As the party rushes in, dark shapes begin to drop for the ceiling, firing sticky black masses down at the party, who dodge and weave around them. While Lorna, Varyk and Urllexin deal to the descending tendrils, Dakarai and Kharl approach the Spider and his bodyguards, who summons darkness to shroud him. Using his tremorsense, Dakarai kills the hobgoblin guards in the pitch darkness, while Kharl is compelled by Zyn to hit himself in the face with his warhammer, which he does with gusto.

Lorna and Varyk take out half of the tendrils, but the last two overwhelm Urllexin. Rushing to help, Dakarai kills one, but is drenched with acid and poison by the other, and immediately attempts to flee on his broom, but is shot out of the air by the fleeing Zyn.

In a moment of religious zeal, Kharl bursts from the darkness, rushing the dark mass engulfing Urllexin, obliterating it with a thunderous rebuke, while at the same time engulfing Zyn in a blast of holy light, stripping him back half to his bones.

Stepping from behind a column, Lorna calmly skewers Zyn through the eye with her rapier, ending the fight. While Kyuss cackles in Varyk’s ear at the victory, Kharl stabilises and heals the party. As the party celebrates their victory, Lorna is suprised by the news that she just killed the Black Spider.

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Maicus

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