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EoD 020: Deaths in the Darkness

...another of the creatures oozed under the door...
EoD 020: Deaths in the Darkness

The shadow-things were upon the party. Lion, out of options and too far from his friends, collapsed—feigning death. This desperate last throw of the dice did not fool the foul undead—perhaps they sensed his vitality and strength, and one of them fell upon him. Meanwhile, another of the creatures oozed under the door Dimble had so recently closed. Theoden’s prostrate form lay before it, and the thing greedily supped upon his vital life essence.

The four survivors—barely holding their terror and panic in check—fell back to the ruined chapel of Kalron. They enjoyed a brief respite, and then the things attacked again. Helmia wreathed herself in nature’s power not once but twice in the ensuing battle, taking on the form of a mighty bear. Polumya used the last vestige of his divine power to enchant his quarterstaff; this was a wise decision.

Backed into a corner and with no chance of escape, the four fought on. Amazingly, at this late hour, the tide of battle began to turn, and the heroes finally slew three of their four assailants; the final shadow-thing fled into the darkness of the southern cavern. None of the heroes felt predisposed to give chase.

With the field of battle temporarily free of enemies, the survivors checked Lion to see if he yet lived. Tragically, the doughty half-elf was dead—horribly shrivelled and drained by the shadow-things. There was nothing the survivors could do for him. Ignoring Theoden’s corpse—for it was taking on a most unsettling hue and aspect—the survivors fled, retreating to the ruined keep above to rest and recover.

The next morning, Polumya loudly declared he wanted to return to the chasm to recover his friends’ remains, but the rest of the party feared what else could lurk in the environs. For them, the ease and comfort of Dulwich beckoned. Outvoted and unwilling to delve alone, Polumya reluctantly agreed to postpone his return…for now.

With this decided, the party returned to Dulwich. While they did not know Theoden’s family or how to give them the terrible news of his horrible, blasphemous death, the group knew that Lion had hailed from the eastern hamlet of Barrowhurst. The half-elf’s family yet dwelled there, and the survivors felt compelled to deliver the news of his death in person…

This post is a session summary from my weekly 5e D&D Edgelands of Darkness campaign set in the Duchy of Ashlar.

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