3 min read

021 Chamber of Starry Death

Alert to the possibility that the seaweed washing into the Boathouse could be dangerous, Colzo fled.
021 Chamber of Starry Death

Alert to the possibility that the seaweed washing into the Boathouse could be dangerous, Colzo fled. Swimming deep underwater, he left the Boathouse and swam back in the direction of the citadel's entrance.

It was well that he did. Although the seaweed itself seemed harmless enough several of the redoubtable adventurer's companions noticed a surprising number of tiny crabs clinging to the weed. As they watched, the crabs scuttled off the seaweed and sank into the Boathouse's waters.

More worryingly, something large then entered the Boathouse--as evidenced by another small wave of displaced water washing up against the jetty. Horsa--using powerful water-bending magics--scooped some of the water aside to discover a monstrously vast crab.

Inevitably, the party unleashed a barrage of attacks against the thing--to virtually no effect. That is they unleashed a barrage of attacks except for Artur who was surprised by the crab's arrival and was in the act of relieving himself.

As the paladin rushed around the jetty to drop the portcullis back into the water to trap the crab in the Boathouse, he stumbled--his trousers around his ankles--and almost fell into the water.

As the portcullis splashed back down, the crab sank deeper into the water and silt rendering it immune to the party's attacks. The heroes decided to let sleeping crabs lie, and retreated to the storage cache for a short breather.

After gathering themselves, the heroes' attention turned to the upper floor of the citadel. They seemed to have exhausted the possibilities of the ground floor-- adventure lay above!

Making their preparations, the party set off--Luther scouting far ahead. Creeping up the stairs, the brave ranger passed the skeletal remains of a horse or donkey and reached the next floor. A large room--or perhaps hallway--greeted him. Carvings depicting curtains of long seaweed fronds decorated the walls, but the area seemed relatively safe.

An archway to the east beckoned the inquisitive ranger. Beyond, he found a long room whose ceiling was decorated with the intricate carving of a night sky festooned with countless stars. A series of low platforms studded the floor.

As this room, too, seemed safe Luther awaited the appearance of his companions. As they arrived, and began to explore the room, something sinister occurred. One of the stars turned black and a red mist filtered down into the room, When it cleared, a hideous hairless humanoid crouched on the floor. It regarded the party with baleful eyes. As Artur--this time his trousers securely fastened--leapt to the attack the creature surrounded itself in a choking cloud of gas.

The foul beast was quickly despatched, but as Artur and Horsa recovered from the gas's choking effects more creatures filtered down from the stars. Battle was joined! Dennan rushed to cleave one of the beasts while Grand Silvertongue conjured a wall of warding winds which dissipated the cloying cloud of gas which yet lingered in the room.

Every time the heroes gained the advantage, though, more of the creatures appeared. Some of the party rushed to the south, intent on outflanking the monsters using the chamber's southern entrance. Artur led the way, but quickly rushed out of the party's light. Stopping to light a lantern, he heard a faint sound from behind him.

Spinning round, he saw a quivering translucent cube-thing cruising slowly toward him from an as yet unexplored passageway. As he shouted a warning, Horsa and Hell'en rushed to help. All variously shot at or hacked at the cube, but it continued its remorseless advance.

As the battle raged in the star chamber, the cube engulfed Hell'en and Artur. Just before it did so, thought, Hell'en managed to curse the creature. Luther's next shot was a spectacular success. Guided by Hell'en's curse his arrow flew true and struck some vital, hitherto unknown part of the cube and it was destroyed!

With the cube destroyed, the heroes switched their attention back to the star chamber. Within, Grand Silvertongue, Dennan and Colzo bravely fought on--stemming, but not stopping, the flow of creatures filtering down from the stars...