The Favorites of Selune campaign - Level 5 - Session 6
Posted by Tobold's Blog [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 11 June 2013, 7:17 am
In the previous session the players had entered the dungeon below Castle Ravenloft in search of the crypt of vampire lord Count Strahd von Zarovich. Having had two fights already, they started this session somewhat exhausted, and planning to rest. But the rogue first wanted to loot the vampires they had shot through iron bars, and proceeded to open the door. Behind the vampires he found an open door leading to the guard room from where the vampire guards had come. And in that room there was a staircase leading up, and a cell with a man imprisoned inside. The man introduced himself as Bogdan, and claimed to be imprisoned because he was part of a resistance movement against Count Strahd.

Now previously the group had been fooled by a vampire disguised as a maid, so they were somewhat distrustful and tried to find out whether Bogdan was a vampire, for example by casting turn undead right next to him. But Bogdan showed no sign of being undead, ate the food he was offered, and when the cleric gave him a bottle of holy water (presumably for protection, but without explaining what it was), Bogdan just drank the holy water with no ill effect. Nevertheless the group decided to leave him in his cell until they had rested, and Bogdan told them that the staircase led to a secret door to the chapel, where they could rest in safety. That turned out to be true, so the next morning they freed Bogdan, armed him with a sword and crossbow from the vampires, and continued further into the dungeon.

The next room was a huge catacombs with 13 small crypts and an exit door opposite from where the players had entered. Now the rogue would have liked to loot those crypts, but the wizard was vehemently opposed and the majority voted to continue to search for Strahd's crypt. They only read the epitaphs on the crypts, finding that they housed several deceased members of the von Zarovich family, as well as assorted nobles, and even one crypt with their dogs. Passing by the crypts, the wizard cast a mage's hand spell to open the door leaving the catacombs, revealing an apparently empty room with a bricked up exit at the other end.

The rogue was the first to approach that door, but when he passed between the crypts in front of it, the other  characters saw him "transformed" into a wight. The wight proceeded to attack them, and when the dwarven fighter stepped between the crypts to strike at the wight, he was transformed into a wight as well. In reality that was a teleportation trap: The rogue got teleported into a crypt, wearing nothing but a burial shroud, with another wight on the slab next to him, dressed in the same kind of shroud. So the rogue ran out of the crypt, through the door, and tried to hold that door closed. The fighter of course was switched by the teleport trap with the other wight, found himself alone in a crypt with a door being held shut from the other side, and started pulling at that door. That predictably ended with the stronger fighter pulling the door open and finding the rogue on the other side. The whole thing worked out to be funnier than I had thought.

Meanwhile the other four group members were not only fighting the two wights, but also Bogdan, who had turned out to be a werewolf (and thus really not an undead). The fighter and the rogue ran back to join their comrades, but of course their weapons and equipment were still on the wights. The wight who got teleported into the fighters armor had dropped his axe on the ground, the axe being an holy artifact, and the fighter managed to recover it without stepping into the teleport trap again. The wight in the rogue's armor was carrying the rogue's daggers in his belt, and with a successful pick pocket skill check the rogue managed to pull out those two daggers and in an epic move continued to hit the wight with those daggers. Overall the fight was interesting due to the teleport trap, and the added surprise from the werewolf, but not overly hard. The heroes managed to dispatch the three enemies after a few rounds with only minor scratches, albeit with two characters infected by the werewolf's moon frenzy disease.

As there were only two wights in the crypt against which the fighter and rogue had been exchanged by the teleport trap, the players wondered whether the trap was still active. The cleric dared to try it out, and found the trap wasn't doing anything anymore. So the group advanced into the next room, with the brick wall on the other side. That corresponded to information about Strahd having sealed his tomb. But of course nothing is more suspicious than an empty room in a dungeon, and the group took great care to search the room high and low for traps. Thus they noticed that in the 8 squares long room there were over the last 4 squares long gaps from wall to wall in the ceiling, as if something could drop from there. They tried to crack the brick wall from a distance with a throwing hammer tied to a rope, but didn't make much progress.

So they started thinking about blocking the trap somehow, at first moving tables from the kitchen under the trap, but then concluding that if something heavy like a portcullis would drop from there, the tables might be too flimsy to stop it. So their next idea was using a stack of doors to stop such a portcullis. But where would they get all those doors? Well, from the 13 crypts they had up to now avoided. Thus the session ended with the amusing notion that the party might loot those crypts not for the potential treasure inside, but for their doors. :)
Tobold's Blog



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