Greyhawk's Lesser Known Heroes

Session 2: Harbek's Mine

Eliminating the Goblin Threat

The session begins in media res: Gregor chasing the wolf-rider, and Atticus chasing the other goblin. The wolf, exhausted, tumbles in the chase, sending its rider flying. Gregor quickly cuts him down with his glaive. The wolf attempts to flee, not attempting to fight and somewhat cowering. But Gregor, fearing that the wolf will alert any other goblins to their presence, dispatches the wolf before it can get away. He searches the goblin, finding a few coppers, and heads back to the road with the wolf carcass (which he will then skin for its pelt). Atticus, meanwhile, is able to chase down his goblin, and after he attacks the goblin a few times, it thinks better of its plan to fight and falls prostrate to the ground, throwing down its weapon. Atticus carefully binds him and gags him, bringing him back to the road.

Otto surveys the damage—one death (Felipe) and some slightly injured horses. He suggests that the specialists find out if there are any more goblins, and eliminate them—they cannot afford an ambush of Halmaro’s caravan. After discussing it a bit, the group heads out—Yesunge is able to find the goblins’ trail. After several hours of hiking, the group spots a hill where there appear to be some stone columns and a cave. Upon closer inspection, it is an old mine. There are four stone columns, but only three are standing. There are dwarven runes on them proclaiming that it is “Harbek’s Mine.” The mine entrance has two iron gates locked with a chain and padlock, which look somewhat old. There is enough play in the chain to allow very small creatures through, but not anyone dwarf or human-sized. After inspecting the lock, and determining that it is not magically warded, Gregor decides to attempt to break the chain with his glaive. The metal-on-metal sound clangs and echoes in the mine entrance; after two chops, the chain link breaks, and the padlock and chain crash to the ground. They push on through, the gate squeaking as they move it.

Atticus casts a light spell on Gregor’s glaive head, and heading in, the group explores the first group of rooms, finding broken tools (pick-mattocks and wheelbarrows), some broken bunk beds, broken tables, and a caved-in fireplace. In searching the room, Atticus encounters a rat, who attempts to bite him (unsuccessfully) and flees, heading into a crack in the wall. Delving deeper, the group finds a mineshaft with an elevator and pulley system. Cullen lights a torch, and Atticus casts light on a pebble and drops it down the shaft. It falls for quite some time before they lose sight of it; they’re not even sure they heard it land. They illuminate Gregor’s glaive again to have two sources of light.

Atticus, Gregor and Storen head down in the elevator, which can only hold three people. It groans a bit, but does not give way. About 30’-40’ down the shaft, as best they can tell, there is a horizontal shaft/tunnel. Gregor gets out, as does Storen and Atticus. They look down the hallway, and cannot see where it ends. Atticus casts light on a crossbow bolt, and fires it down the hallway. They see the light quickly zoom away, and it eventually clatters some distance away, leaving a very faint glow. Storen suggests that they see how deep the central shaft goes, while Gregor waits here (after Angus again casts light on the glaive). Storen gets Cullen from above, leaving Yesunge and Angus at the top. The three of them descend lower into the shaft, and Gregor decides that he doesn’t just want to wait here and do nothing. (One of his flaws is, “If there is a plan, I’ll forget it. If I don’t forget it, I’ll ignore it.” He heads down the hallway, dropping lit torches every 30 feet or so. At the same time, the elevator is moving in 30’ increments, roughly at the same speed.

As Gregor drops his third torch, two objects zip by his head—arrows, bolts? He charges into the darkness. As he does, he sets off a tripwire, and is suddenly engulfed in a net that has pieces of metal and glass attached, which creates a huge noise. Gregor now calls out to the group for help. Storen and Atticus think they hear something, and feel something fall past them. They quickly start moving back upwards. Meanwhile, Gregor is, once again, nearly shot twice, but he luckily is missed both times. He tries to get out of the net, and now can see four goblins approaching—three that are holding scimitars, and one wielding a heavy, wicked axe. Gregor yells out again, beseeching Storen & company to hurry. Meanwhile, some objects fall past them again as they are pulling themselves upward.

Storen, Cullen and Atticus get of the elevator just as Gregor frees himself from the net. The goblins meet up with him just as he does, and he is wounded, but not badly. The wound drives him into a rage, and he lashes out and kills a goblin. Meanwhile, Yesunge is pulling the elevator up while everyone else closes in on Gregor. A tight battle ensues, as the corridor is fairly narrow. Gregor gets hit a few times, and the group quickly dispatches another goblin, but the axe-wielding one, also in a rage, proves to be hard to kill. Angus and Yesunge also get in on the action, and eventually the combined efforts, and notably Atticus’ axe, fell the remaining goblins.

After shortly patching themselves up, the group decides whether to continue further down the corridor, or head back down the central shaft. Ultimately, they head down the corridor to find the goblins’ barracks (empty, and with little coin), and the goblin leader’s room, which actually has a bed (as opposed to straw mats). Under the bed, Gregor finds a sack that has a fair amount of coin—200 coppers, 60 silver, 50 gold—as well as a woodcut of a goblin, and a strange, roughly 2" diameter bronze sphere with runes on it. Neither Angus nor Atticus can decipher the runes, and Angus notes that it is both warm to the touch and magical.

The party eventually heads back down the shaft, finding two corridors that branch off to the left and right. Cullen disembarks on the left, holding his torch and sword, along with others. Atticus, Gregor and Angus go to the bottom of the shaft, only 30’ or so further down, to find a pool with cave fish. Atticus tries to probe the bottom with his glaive, and sees something at the bottom of the pool. Stripping down to his breeches, he dives in, and finds a watertight scroll case. Before they can open it, they hear a cry from Cullen. Storen and Yesunge wheel around to see a very large, segmented and tentacled insect-like creature crawling on the ceiling above Storen—who is quickly attacked by its tentacles.

carrion-crawler2_1_.jpg

He immediately feels a numbing sensation, but stays on his feet. The group in the corridor attacks, while the others in the elevator quickly attempt to get up to the landing. Storen is also hit with the tentacles, but does not succumb to the poison. After the group wounds the beast, it turns to flee, but they manage to slash and crush it, and it falls to the ground, dead. Gregor, with the assistance of Yesunge, attempts to “milk” some of the venom/coating into two vials—whether it has any potency remains to be seen.

Advancing down the corridor, they come to an iron bridge over water. Shortly thereafter, they find a hole in the ceiling. Gregor climbs up to investigate, and finds that it is sticky and appears to be a lair, with some bones—those bones also near a suit of chainmail, a fine-looking shield, and a warhammer. He brings them down to the group; Atticus believes that they are dwarven remains. He heads up to the lair, and says a ritual to cleanse the place and give the dwarf an appropriate resting place.

Finally, they make their way to a large cavern with stalactites, stalagmites and large fungi. As they approach, one of the fungi moves and opens its eyes. The party does not attack, and the fungus send a puff of spores in its direction, engulfing both Gregor and Angus. They quickly find that they can communicate within the spores. A conversation starts, and the learn that the myconid have been here for many years. The myconid learn of the demise of the goblins and carrion crawler, and this pleases them. They tell the group that they wish them to leave, but that they can have some mushrooms from their garden on the other side of the shaft, explaining that the black caps are invigorating; the purple caps difficult to swallow and painful, but tasty; and the yellow caps bringing them to a higher state of consciousness. The party abides by their wishes, and heads back to the central shaft.

NOTE: The characters have each gained 308 xp at this point: LEVEL UP!

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