D&D Encounters – Out of the Abyss – sessions 9-10
Back on our normal schedule, and almost back to our regular cast. We pick up with the party heading into the Kuo-toa ceremony posing as prisoners.
- Phil – Capt Astrid, human paladin
- Stuart – Exom, human mage
- Jason – Io, human monk
- Lewis – half elf sorcerer (can’t remember its name)
- Rose – Morwenna, half elf rogue
Accompanied by the priestess and a pair of guards the heroes (still with their equipment and arms) are led through the town to a shrine near the docks. There, before a circular depression, is the altar to the Deep Father. Many Kuo-toa are gathered, mostly general townsfolk/fishermen but as the priestess announces that she has brought further sacrifices several guards emerge and stand by the heroes while a pair of the fish-monks flank a priest at the altar. Moments later the rival priestess appears and the chanting begins as a bound duergar prisoner is dragged into the center of the depression.
As the ritual reaches a crescendo, the priestess of the Sea Mother cries “Now!” and with surprise on their side the heroes manage to quickly gain the upper hand. The crowd however are still chanting away and the ritual continues unabated as battle is joined.
Exom uses his illusions as usual to confuse the enemy while Astrid and Io take the lead with melee. The sorcerer uses his invisibility to get clear of the combat before unleashing his magics. The heroes focus upon subduing the rival priestess, but in doing so they leave the remainder of the enemies mostly alone until it becomes clear that they need to be dealt with. Io drags the unconscious form of the priestess clear of the ceremony, threatening to snap her neck unless they surrender but the kuo-toa are too deep in their fervor and rush the monk, leaving him once again lying lifeless on the floor.
It’s at this point that the heroes notice that something is occurring out on the lake behind them, as the water bubbles and froths a massive two-headed figure emerges, its tentacle arms lashing as it reaches its full height and begins heading for the town.
Most of the kuo-toa are stricken in awe and fear at the creatures arrival but thankfully the remaining heroes (apart from Morwenna who passes out) are ok and quickly decide that escape is the best plan of action. Grabbing the stunned rogue and the fallen monk they head for the town gate in an effort to flee into the Underdark once more.
Twice their way is blocked by half-mad kuo-toa but they are swiftly overcome by the parties combined attacks and with a last look back to see the creature (which they later realise is the demon-lord Demogorgon!) thrashing away at the docks and nearby buildings they reach the relative safety of the tunnels.
They continue to hustle onwards until they find a suitable site to try and regroup, by this time Morwenna has recovered her senses and the duergar prisoner they also dragged along with them introduces himself as Hemeth, a trader from Gracklstugh (the Duergar city to the south-west). The heroes discuss their options and decide (against the complaints of Topsy and Turvy) to head to Blingdenstone, there to make further decisions as necessary.
We took a pause there as this was the official end of the Encounters portion of the adventure (as supplied by the Organised Play program) and this allowed the players to allocate their xp and in most cases level up. Jason called upon his faction Raise Dead once more but also chose to use the retraining facility to change his character to a dwarven cleric as he felt the party was lacking in healing ability. Most of the party then used their accrued “downtime” to use the catching up option and bring them each up to level 5.
With time quickly running short on our session we crack on with the journey through the Underdark to the home of the Svirfneblin, Blingdenstone. Most of the journey proves uneventful and the few encounters they do have are swiftly dealt with thanks to the newly improved fire-power (quite literally, as the wizard and sorcerer both hurl fireballs) of the party and we end the session as they approach the gates of the deep gnome city.