030. Ascend, part 2

 

They enter, and find a very large pile of sand in the middle of the room, and a tiny column of sand falling from the ceiling, evidence to the hundreds of years that this room stood as an hourglass, slowly filling with sand.  Peaking out from under the sand, they find a treasure chest.  They pop it open, and find a suit of armor, shiny red and depicting the face of a demon.  Toggaf finds out that it is cursed, and they put it in their sack for later.

They camp that night in the sand-filled room, but Juxmonochrome cannot get rest.  He wakes up in a cold sweat and chills.  He is ill.

A door at the far end of the room depicting a riddle:  

The eternal father

He outlives all his children

He will be there when all is left but the void

Speak his name and ye shall enter

They speak the name “Chronex”, and the door opens, revealing a set of spiral steps leading up.

They take the steps for what feels like 10 or 12 floors, and finally find a door.  They open the door, revealing a cave.  Inside the cave are large lizards, and a huge, broken statue.

They fight the lizards, who turn out to be Lightning Lizards that breath lightning.  It is a challenging battle, but they come out on top.  They look at the statue, and find out that it depicts King Parthen I, ruler of Parthen from 500 years ago.  Are they nearing Parthen?

The find a rusty iron ladder leading up through a hole, and notice water dripping from the ceiling.

They take the ladder up, and find themselves emerging in a series of channels carrying water.  The water is murky and full of the smell of piss and shit.  Barlo sticks his mace in the water, and an Electric Eel grabs onto his mace!  They fight the Eel off and manage to kill it before it causes too much trouble.

 

The make their way through the windy passages, trying to avoid water where they can.  They find a room with water and a tempting treasure chest.  They dare to enter the water, and find themselves fighting two more Electric Eels.  After the fight, they open the chest to find treasure.  Monikrunc decides to check the murky, shit-filled water and puts on her ring of underwater breathing, and sticks her head in the water.  She finds nothing, but the shit and piss filled water fills her gills, and when she sticks her head back up out of the water, she can tell, she knows… she will soon be ill.

Soon they find a larger room with two locked gates on either side.  Inside are two skeletons, one of them holding a small metallic object.  They are too large to fit in the door, but D’understanding gets an idea.  He transforms into a rat, and crawls through the bars.  He goes to the skeleton, and then he comes back through the bars, holding a key.  They use the key to open the gate, and they all enter the room.  The room has a large pool of murky water in the middle of it.  The gate on the far end of the room is partially submerged in the water, and Barlo decides to step into the water to open the gate.  As soon as he does, the water itself animates and forms a Water Elemental, attacking the party.  The water elemental proves to be a worthy foe, almost knocking Barlo unconscious with a couple of viscious blows.

Toggaf summons skeletons warriors to help with the fight, but they don’t get to do much before the fight is over.

The party continues, looking for a way up.  They send the skeleton warriors ahead, and one of them enters a watery room and is immediately killed.  They turn toward that room find another a treasure chest on a small ledge on the other side of the water.  Not content to leave a chest alone, Tully hops into the water to open the chest.  Before they find treasure, another Water Elemental attacks the party.

 

After barely killing the Water Elemental, the party opens the chest to find two vials of Cure Serious Wounds potion, and in the nick of time.  They savor the potion while they ponder their next move...

The party finds an iron ladder that leads up through a narrow vertical tunnel.  They feel a warmth and smell the smell of old potatoes when they finally reach... A pantry cellar.

 

They realize they are in a parthen dungeon.  They subdue some guards and explore long enough to find Corvus the Black's protégé, Richard locked in a room with a magic-repelling crystal.

Richard tells them that Corvus is being kept by Kazzen. Also, that some unknown hideous creature is lumbering above.... Boom.  Boom.  Boom.

They deftly work there way through the guards and work their way to the entrance of the dungeon... The door opens, and they are dazzled by the sunlight that floods in.  

Sunlight that they hadn't seen in over a week.