Monday, 27 January 2014

Doggerland Session 2:16 (Return to Staneford)

The Moathouse – Part Six (22nd January 2014)

The Adventurers
Bow – Ranger
Hallan – Fighter
Johan - Cleric
Paulix – Thief (NPC’d)
Ulf – Fighter (NPC’d)
Vox – Magic User

Return to Staneford - Sunday 21st Quattrober (Day 26) – early hours

The fear of pursuit and the never-ending deluge of water from the heavens wore heavily upon the travellers as they arrived at the small village nestled in the valley of the Darenth River. It was still an hour or two before sunrise and nobody was abroad in the village. The party headed straight towards the fortified tower of the Thuringian lords Rufus and Burne to give them their news and warn them of an impending assault.

As they approached the steps of the tower, a voice from above called for them to halt and state their business. The party responded that they had just returned from the Moat House in the fens where they had fought a multitude of beast-men and were now coming to warn their lordships of an impending attack upon the village. As proof of their exploits, Hallan took the bugbear head from its sack and held it up for the watchman to see. The guard called over his colleague to keep an eye on the party whilst he went to awaken his leaders.

An Audience with Rufus and Burne

Used without permission - Copyright TSR/WotC

The party waited for a short while before they heard the clanking of chains and saw the drawbridge lowered to allow their access. They were not shown to either of the lords’ room but into a common room with a large table set with victuals and wine. Lord Rufus offered them his hospitality whilst the party told him their story.

The two lords and their closest advisors considered the evidence they were given and decided that as pursuit was likely then the village may at any time come under attack from dark forces. They ordered the prisoner to be taken away for questioning and sent runners to the most prominent members of the village council.

A short while after word was given to the guards to inform the village, alarm bells began to peel and torches and lanterns were lit throughout the village. The local militia were gathered together on the green; their drill and professionalism most likely marred by the earliness of the hour as well as their general incompetence.

Whilst this was going on, the Lord Burne asked if there was anything that the party required to help them continue the fight and thus aid the village in its hour of need. As they were all beaten up in some way, they suggested that some magical healing and maybe some magical aid would be handy in the absence of monetary gain.

Lord Rufus instructed his lieutenants to gather the men-at-arms and form them into patrols, as well as inform the local Sol Invictus priests that they would be required to perform some serious healing. Orders were barked and snapped to with great efficiency and great urgency as the party were asked about their next moves.

Vox, not wanting to be beholden again to a Sol Invictus priest for his healing, asked that as the offer of magical aid was on the cards could he learn a spell under the instruction of the wizard Lord Burne. This was answered in the affirmative and the two mages retired to the wizard’s chambers to study.

The rest of the party asked Lord Rufus what he was going to do to face the potential threat and he responded that he would send a small patrol up the road to act as an early warning whilst he gathered his forces for an assault on the Moat House dungeon later that day. He said that he would inform the party when he was going to raid the moat house and suggested that in the meantime they go and get healed and then rest up at the inn, from where he would call upon them.

He thanked the adventurers for their work and dismissed them so that he could get on with planning the attack. The party trudged their weary way up to the temple of Sol Invictus in the steady downpour and knocked upon the door. They were greeted by the two clerics and their manservant who enquired after what the ruckus was all about. A quick explanation was given and the companions were ushered into the small healing room where the few prepared spells of healing they had were administered to those most in need. Johan supplemented this healing with his last few orisons and then the Sol Invictus priests said that they would need to rest up and pray in preparation for the forthcoming hostilities for when their powers would be more sorely required.

A Moment of Calm - morning

The party walked back to the Plough and Stars Inn in the centre of the village, where they were quickly ushered into comfortable rooms, drawn hot baths, and plied with hearty meals and fine wine. After their ablutions they were left to sleep if they so desired.

Vox completed his training session with Lord Burne, with a useful obscuring cantrip and a spell of the highest power he had encountered so far in his spell book, and headed for the inn. He too was plied with food and drink and then, after a long soak in a hot bath, was led to a comfortable bed to rest up.

Return of the Patrol - midday

Around midday, the party awoke and made their way down to the common room, where all was still buzzing like a wasps’ nest. From the windows of the inn, soldiers and militiamen could be seen patrolling the village as supplies were transported hither and thither in preparation for the offensive.

The ranger, Bow, sensing an opportunity to make some easy cash, negotiated a good deal with the inn’s owner, Gundigoot, for the small barrel of brandy that he had requisitioned from the moat house supplies. Gundigoot saw a bargain when it presented itself, and knew that after the forthcoming battle there would undoubtedly be many shaken and thirsty customers.

A few minutes later, a bleeding and beaten man-at-arms stumbled into the village calling for the guard. He was quickly seen to by the perimeter patrol and taken to the tower to make his report. The party overheard the bulk of the story as he ranted on the way to meet his lords; his patrol was attacked by about a score of large, shambling creatures that were advancing upon the village.

The party recognised the descriptions and surmised that these shambling creatures must be the recently reanimated corpses of the bugbears and gnolls that they had slain in the moat house dungeon. The village would soon be attacked by a horde of undead, no doubt backed up by their powerful clerical or magic using re-animator. The companions, now fully rested and healed, grabbed their weapons and headed part-way up the moat house track way to slow the advance of the undead army that was now undoubtedly advancing upon them.

Shambling Beastmen

They only had to wait a further quarter of an hour before the pack of shambling corpses hove into view. Rather than wait for the undead to approach them unhindered, the companions let loose with several volleys of missiles. They knew from previous experience that this did little good, but every wound would reduce the effectiveness of their assailants a little.

The animated corpses drew to within melee range and combat was joined; the fighters and rogues threw themselves into the fray supported by the blessings and magical aid from the spell casters. It was not long however before the fighters, who had already taken several heavy hits, realised that these walking corpses were a lot tougher than those created from human cadavers. They began to give ground slowly, buying time for the village militia to arm themselves and join the fight; the alarm bells were clanging in the distance, so they knew that help was on the way.

At first the fight went against the adventurers and injuries began to build up. Paulix, hurt the most, retreated from the fray to give covering fire with his bow, even though it was not very effective. Vox saw that the line of fighters ahead of him had thinned a little, so he cast some defensive magiks upon himself and stepped into the fight whilst Johan continued to chant defensive dweomers for his companions’ benefit.

Even though the warriors cut down several of the walking cadavers, the numbers of the zombies began to tell as the fighters’ defensive wall began to break apart and they spilled through the gaps towards the cleric of Balder. Johan was finally attacked and the magical support for his companions winked out. At this point, the party thought that they might now be doomed to an ignoble death unless the village came to their rescue, but Ulf’s blood was up and it fired him to greater heights of fury. He redoubled his fighting efforts and cut down zombie after zombie until the tide began to turn in the companions’ favour.

After several minutes of intense combat, the party of adventurers finally overcame their assailants. The last of the zombie corpses dropped to the mud just as the local militia came into view behind them. In the distance the pounding of hooves could be heard, and looking up the party spotted two or three black-cloaked figures on horseback retreating rapidly back towards their lair.

Return of the Patrol - midday

The companions checked themselves over in case any of their wounds were infected and ordered that the corpses of their enemies were burnt as quickly as possible. The party were then swept up into the air by the jubilant crowd and carried towards the inn where they were to be celebrated as saviours of the village.

They quickly bathed their wounds and cleaned their weapons and armour whilst the priests of Sol Invictus applied healing salves and spells to bring them back to full strength. Then the companions were treated to such a night of revelry as they had never experienced before.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Doggerland Session 2:15 (The Moathouse Dungeon II)

The Moathouse – Part Six (15th January 2014)

The Adventurers
Bow – Ranger
Hallan – Fighter (NPC’d)
Johan - Cleric
Paulix – Thief
Ulf – Fighter (NPC’d)
Vox – Magic User

Rest and Recuperation - Godsday 20th Quattrober (Day 25) – late afternoon

The narrow beam of light from the thief’s hooded lantern only partially illuminated the narrow fissure ahead of the pair of intrepid explorers. The stone walls and rough-hewn columns of the chamber at the end of the claustrophobic tunnel bounced the lantern’s rays in all directions making strange shapes appear to jump out of the shadows at them.

Bow placed his lantern down to mark their exit from the dank catacombs just in case they needed to exit in a hurry; the rest of the party were ensconced within the secret passageway at the north end of the crypt to rest, heal up and regain their spells.

The ranger readied his bow as the duo stepped into the roughly-shaped chamber and Paulix shone his lantern around, expecting to encounter the snarling face of a ghoul at any moment. Fortunately there was no repeat encounter with any denizens of the charnel house and the two adventurers were able to search the chamber in safety. They spotted a pile of old cloth full of gnawed long bones and skulls in one corner, but decided to not approach any closer. They made a mental note to dig through the pile at a later time.

There was only one other exit from the chamber, and as the pair advanced towards it the light from their solitary lantern glinted on some metal objects partially buried within the dust on the ground. An arrow was shot at the small pile of gleaming objects as neither of the companions believed it could be set there as anything but a trap. The arrow zinged into the dirt and a handful of metal coins jumped into the air under the impact.

Not wanting to get too far separated from the rest of the party, the thief and ranger decided to retrace their footsteps and join their comrades for a few hours’ rest.

Gnolls (late evening)

Feeling refreshed from the healing and rest, the party emerged from their hide-away. Hallan and Ulf were given the task to block the entrance to the ghouls’ chamber with a few heavy stone sarcophagus lids. Meanwhile, Paulix and Bow scouted the corridors ahead, leap-frogging each other’s position through the zig-zagging passages until they came to a T-Junction. They awaited the arrival of the rest of the party and took stock of their situation.

To their right (southwards) was a set of damp steps carved into the stone floor. The beams from the lanterns could not reach the far end of the corridor which led down into the dankness below. To their right (northwards), the corridor stretched on for a goodly distance before ending with a wooden door. They could also just make out a side passage that led off eastwards about twenty feet before the door at the end of the main passageway.

Part of the Moathouse dungeon - Adapted and used without permission

After a brief discussion it was decided that the two scouts would investigate and report back whilst the rest of the party guarded the rear. Paulix ranged ahead of Bow by about twenty feet, using the pools of light from their lanterns to see their way. When Paulix reached the side corridor, he noticed that it led partially back on itself at a forty-five degree angle to the south-east. He shone his lantern at full beam down the corridor but could not make out the end in the gloom.

Paulix moved up to the door and listened whilst Bow guarded the mouth of the angled corridor. Paulix heard nothing at the door so lifted the latch and snuck through the small opening he had made. He had to pass along a small niche that was the same depth that the space the opening door would require to open into and then hugged the nearest wall of the chamber and advanced within. He noticed at the far western end of the room there was a dim glow of light emanating from around a corner. He headed towards it to find out what was there, but noticed that there were two more doors in niches on the southern wall that he entered from. He took out his mallet and iron spikes, covered the metal in swaddling cloth, and gently hammered home a spike beneath each door to stop them from being opened in a hurry.

He then noticed an open corridor in the wall opposite, but it was very dark and there seemed to be no movement from that direction. He advanced cautiously along the walls, keeping to the deepest shadows until he was able to see where the glow emanated from. He could just about make out the backs of a couple of large humanoid creatures with heads like dogs. He listened for a short while to ascertain their numbers and guessed that there may be at least half-a-dozen stationed there.

He silently made his way back to Bow and the pair of them reported back to the rest of the party. A brief discussion ensued and it was agreed that they would lay an ambush for the creatures in the hope that they could take them down quickly enough without incurring too many injuries.

Again Paulix and Bow advanced upon the position, leap-frogging each other until they got to the door again. Paulix advanced into the chamber, bow drawn, and Paulix lined up with Hallan to form the first line of defence just behind the door. Ulf and Johan formed the second line, whilst Vox kept an eye out down the angled corridor behind them just in case.

Paulix crept up to within a few yards of the gnolls and let loose with a shaft. It struck true and the target howled in pain and rage. Within seconds the gnolls gathered their weapons and charged their attacker. Paulix had a good start on them and had just enough time to look back at them from the entrance to the chamber. He noticed that there were nine gnolls chasing him. The warriors with axes charged directly after him whilst their leader appeared to give instructions for one warrior to peel off up the dark corridor to bring reinforcements and for the two archers in their midst to form ranks in a suitable position.

The gnolls were surprised by the rest of the party when they turned the corner and passed through the door. A desperate scuffle broke out. The gnolls had the upper hand to begin with and Hallan bore the brunt of the attack. However, Johan was on hand to heal him each time he took a big blow. Paulix and Ulf supported their comrades from the second row and Vox occasionally threw a flask of lighted oil at an opponent that showed too much willing. The tide slowly turned in favour of the party as the gnolls’ corpses began to pile up in the doorway, but the two with the bows firing from a distance made the going tough.

Just as the leader of the gnolls was cut down, a bark of defiance went up from within the room and a new horde of humanoids burst into the combat. This time, the lone gnoll scout was accompanied by half-a-dozen bugbears.

The party realised that the odds were now against them, so agreed to try to close the door and put some distance between themselves and their pursuers. Only one bugbear managed to get through the door, swinging its morning star in frenzy. Hallan and Bow put the creature down and then began to close the door in the face of the remaining enemy. It took a while, but slowly the superior numbers of the bugbears was outmatched by the superior strength of the two human warriors. Paulix used a hammer and spikes to stop the door from being opened again easily.

Rather than trying to force the door open, the frenzied bugbears bashed at it with their weapons in an attempt to smash it open. The party quickly ran back to the T-Junction where they devised an escape plan. They knew that they would not be able to out-run the bugbears due to the tight squeeze in the shaft beyond the crypt that would be their exit point, so they decided that they would have to set another ambush in the hope that they could reduce the numbers of their pursuers further.

A Second Ambush

Vox liberally splashed lantern oil over the floor before the entrance to their corridor and the warriors took up defensive positions again. They only had to wait a few minutes before the bugbears had smashed their way through the door and the sound of their baying pursuit ran shivers down their spines.

The bugbears rushed towards the party’s position and the oil had its desired effect on one of the beasts as it slid over and hurt itself. The others carried on regardless and battle was joined again.

This time it was a lot tougher than the fight against the gnolls and each injury took its toll. Hallan’s superior strength enabled him to cut down one of the beasts every few minutes but this then allowed for a volley of missile weapons to be fired through the combat as a gap temporarily opened up. However, the two gnoll archers were unable to get too many shots in like they had at the other end of the corridor which aided the party no end.

Just as Hallan and Bow were about to be overwhelmed (Johan’s healing spells were all used up by now), Vox lit a couple of lantern oil filled flasks and passed them forwards through the crush. The two fighters grabbed them and threw them at the oil covered floor which erupted in gouts of flame. This injured many of their assailants and halted their attack temporarily so that the second rank warriors in the party could now step to the fore thus relieving Hallan and Bow who were almost done for.

Ulf and Johan put up a stout fight and the combat continued. It was at this point that Vox was able to count the numbers. Two of the pursuers were missing. He called out that they had better get out of there fast as more reinforcements could be due at any time. The party fought a bitter retreat but a Magic Missile cast by Vox finally turned the tide by putting down the last of the two gnoll archers that gave the fighters the freedom to gang up on the last of the bugbears.

Paulix led the retreat and made sure that their escape route was clear. After he had gone, the rest of the party left the combat one-by-one as their opponents were defeated. Finally, the last of the bugbears fell and the companions looked themselves over. They were all still standing but all were covered in many severe cuts and bruises. Bow, not one to waste time or opportunity, took out his dagger and cut the purses from their assailants’ belts before bringing up the rear.

Return to Staneford

The party retraced their steps through the zig-zagging corridors back to the crypt. They quickly made their way through the secret door and closed it behind them. The journey up the shaft was very slow as Hallan could barely fit, but they made it out of the tight spot into the torture chamber above.

The two scouts spotted no-one about so hastened their companions across to the stone stairs whilst they torched what they could of the supplies removed from the two store rooms. Hallan swiftly removed the head of one of the bugbears for proof of their encounter with strange humanoids and tuke dit away in a large sack. The party swiftly advanced up into the actual moat house, where they rapidly made their way through the fortress to recover their prisoner before joining the road to Staneford.

It was still raining outside but at least there was no sign of pursuit. They had shaken off their attackers but were sure that they had stirred up the hornets’ nest. There would be repercussions.

Monday, 13 January 2014

Doggerand Session 2.14 (The Moathouse Dungeon)

The Moathouse – Part Five (8th January 2014)

The Adventurers
Bow – Ranger
Hallan – Fighter
Johan - Cleric
Paulix – Thief
Ulf - Fighter
Vox – Magic User

Shelter from the Rain - Godsday 20th Quattrober (Day 25) – mid-day

Ulf stopped his steady plod through the mud-blighted fenland path, blinked the rain from his eyes and re-adjusted the hood of his sodden cloak to cover his long blonde hair. He had been travelling for days and was cold, tired and hungry. He was sure that the village of Staneford was but a few hours walk hence, but he really wanted to get out of the deluge to dry out a little before continuing on and booking a room at the renowned Plough and Stars Inn. He could then look for adventure after a hot bath and a warm meal inside him.

Recovering from his reverie, he espied in the distance, through the trees, the grey, looming walls of an abandoned fortification. As he approached the walls he noticed that it had been severely damaged in the past and was most likely abandoned. That was until he spotted a shadowy figure that climbed up the scattered masonry and disappeared within the confines of one of the towers.

He held is spear tighter to his chest in readiness for ambush and looked for a way into the fortress. He only had to walk a few dozen yards before he spotted the fallen gate that covered the original drawbridge. The entrance appeared to be unguarded and the shelter the building offered enticed him to look closer.

Going Underground

The last remaining bandit was made comfortable and then questioned by Bow, the ranger. After his interrogation he was carried to the room that the party had made safe last time they were there in the moat house. He was administered some aid (his leg was set and bound, and then he was tied up securely) and then the door was close on him. The rest of the party readied themselves for the descent into the dungeon below when they heard sounds of movement from the courtyard outside. Hallan, Johan and Vox crept silently to the doors of the main hall and took a peek.

Ulf was seen to be muttering quietly to himself whilst trying to figure out what the pile of burnt and blackened bodies were doing just lying there in the courtyard. A slight movement caught his eye and he glanced up, spotting the three adventurers observing his movements. He lowered his spear and shield and announced he meant no harm; he was looking for somewhere to shelter from the rain before he made his way to Staneford and the adventures that could be had from there. The party saw that he presented them with no threat, so invited him in to share their meagre rations and brought him up to date with what they were up to. They mentioned that another sword would be most welcome in their quest below, and Ulf agreed to accompany them for a share of any treasure found.

The companions quickly readied their arms and after a quick discussion decided that they would return to the underground part of the lair via the secret door in the bandits’ black marble chamber. Now that the other bandit had been moved out of the room, no-one would know of this secret entrance other than the party.
Image Copyright TSR/WotC

Paulix flipped the catch and the secret door swung silently inwards. The party lit their lanterns and torches and proceeded down the steep stairwell in single file to the bottom. Bow listened at the next secret door and could hear a rough, guttural muttering from beyond. He motioned for the party to be silent and let Paulix pop the catch. As soon as the catch was triggered the guttural uttering stopped and the sound of movement within ceased. Bow shoved the door open and sprang into the chamber beyond. He was faced with two very large, hairy creatures clothed in scrappy leathers and wielding a morning star apiece. The monsters flew at Bow in a rage as soon as he burst into the room.

A heavy combat soon ensued, but the weight of numbers on the side of the party began to tell quite quickly as their multiple attacks soon reduced the two bugbears to one. The badly wounded second bugbear lowered his weapon and tried to beg for mercy but a new hatred formed deep within the ranger’s belly and he cut the beast down before it could react.

A quick search of the bodies revealed that they both owned a pouch of valuable coins. The pouches did not match the leathers that the beasts wore, and Bow deduced that these were some sort of payment for services rendered; how they would spend the coin was anyone’s guess.

A quick look into each of the adjoining rooms revealed that nothing had changed since their last visit. They opened the final door that they had spiked on their last visit and emerged back into the large chamber that they fought the horde of zombies in. The mouldering pile of half-burnt cadavers was still where they left it. The party split up to investigate the rest of the area. Vox stood on guard with his poled lantern and used the time to learn a spell. After searching through the cells that held the zombies and finding an impressive gemstone in a pouch hidden behind a loose stone Johan joined him.

Bow, Hallan and Ulf investigated the large pile of debris in the northernmost part of the chamber and were able to discover that the pile hid two doors. It took them quite a while to pull enough of the debris aside to reveal the two doors beyond. Hallan booted the top half of each of the doors asunder and Bow dropped into each room in turn, after lowering a lantern through the hole to see what they contained. Hallan and Ulf continued to pull the debris away from the doors whilst Bow inventoried the rooms. He discovered that they were well stocked store-rooms containing a multitude of well-made weaponry, freshly made leather armour and several barrels of food- and drink-stuffs; all still in excellent condition. They also found dozens of black capes with the golden eye of Zuggtmoy embroidered upon them. The three fighters proceeded to roll each of the barrels out of the rooms and also to stack the other items for ease of extraction when they brought back a mule and cart later on. Each party member grabbed two capes for future use, but only Bow put one on.

Paulix meanwhile, explored the torture chamber. Again he saw the implements of torture; racks, iron maidens, mangles and such-like. This time though he saw that some of the blood on the floor was fresher than it should have been. The cadavers and body parts still on the torture devices were dusty and obviously several years old, but the blood trail was fresher. He took his time looking for secret entrances but was stumped as he could find none. The blood spots made their way to a column in the middle of the room and just stopped.

Paulix called for his companions’ attention, and luckily it was at this time that the rest of the party were finishing up their respective tasks. He told them what he had found but all scratched their heads because no egress could be found from the room and therefore no further parts of the dungeon (that they assumed was larger from the clues they had gathered) could be explored. Ulf wondered if the blood trail could actually lead within the column, so he struck it with a large, heavy piece of wood. It boomed as though hollow. This encouraged Paulix to look closer and he noticed that the heavy strike had dislodged some dust; just enough to show him here the catch for the secret release mechanism was. Just as he popped the button, the party heard more guttural voices from the head of the main staircase that led down to the dungeon from the kitchen area.

Each warrior grabbed his weapons and rushed to the stone staircase. The cleric and mage moved up to support their companions whilst Paulix kept up his investigation of the secret way within the column.

As there was not much room at the bottom of the stairs, the battle raged fiercely, but only against one opponent at a time. The numbers of the party soon told again and the two patrolling bugbears were soon defeated, but not without a few scratches being dished out to a few of the party. Johan learned that his Command spell would not work on the bugbears as they did not speak Vannin!

A quick search of their pouches revealed another small sum of money, but nothing else worth salvaging. The party re-joined Paulix at the entrance to the column and he told them what he had discovered. The very narrow shaft descended about twenty feet and then the path headed eastwards along a very narrow corridor for a short distance. It then turned south for a further thirty to forty feet before ending at a blank wall. It was silent down there and very dark.

Both of the scouts decided that there must be another secret door at the end, so Paulix quickly descended the iron rungs to the bottom. The rest of the party followed in single file, Hallan took quite a while to get down as he only just had enough room to manoeuvre himself down the narrow confines of the shaft, and Bow brought up the rear. The catch on the shaft side of the secret door was marked with chalk (as were all other secret doors they had encountered so far) and then the door was closed behind them.

Ghouls in the Dark - late afternoon

Paulix made it to the end of the southward leading corridor first and searched for the catch to open the suspected secret door. He found it in no time, checked it for traps, marked it with chalk and popped the door open. The door only swung open about two feet before being stopped by obstacle on the other side. He reduced the hood on his lantern to a smaller size and squeezed himself through the gap after it. He stood upon a stone sarcophagus that was positioned within a small niche carved into a wall. He shone his lantern away from the back of the niche and followed the light into the main body of the chamber beyond, closely accompanied by Ulf, Johan and Hallan.

Just as Paulix jumped down from the sarcophagus, a great hissing sound erupted from close by and the pattering of bare feet on stone resounded around the large chamber. The charnel stench of foetid breath hit the companions like a wave of nausea and they were assailed by four creatures from their worst nightmares. Paulix and Ulf formed a small defensive wall to fight the creatures off, but just one strike paralysed Paulix where he stood. Johan, recognising the ghouls for what they were from the grimoire he had read back in High Beeches, called upon the power of Balder to aid him in his hour of need. Three of the creatures were driven back from the light given out by his holy symbol, but the fourth, obviously more cunning and evil than the rest was able to strike Ulf and paralyse him too.

Whilst Johan was concentrating on keeping the three ghouls at bay he was vulnerable to attack from the last one. However, Hallan was there to get in the way, albeit only temporarily before he too was stopped in his tracks by the vile paralysis that affected his two companions. Luckily he gave Bow and Vox just enough time to arrive on the scene and grab from Paulix’s pouch the Potion of Undead control. Vox swallowed it quickly and commanded the carrion eaters to kneel. The ghouls fell to their knees and Bow was able to dispatch the undead beasts with ease.

It was a few minutes before Paulix, Ulf and Hallan regained control of their limbs; the last few minutes of the combat were extremely scary as they could see what was going on but could do nothing about it. They rubbed life back into their arms and legs as the rest of the party explored the darkness of the noisome crypt. The burial chamber was huge and contained many dozens of niches, but not all contained a sarcophagus. The main room itself led off eastwards and then a corridor at the far end of the chamber seemed to head south again. One of the two southern niches in the main chamber did not contain a sarcophagus either but at the far end of it was a rough-hewn passageway that led off into the darkness beyond.