We travel on foot to a hidden canyon where there is a sprawling monastary ringed by sandstone cliffs.
We walk up to the front door. We introduce ourselves as emmissaries of Comander Thurl Merosska of the Feather Gale Spire, but they are having none of it. We introduce our boots to their door.
Nearby, there are monks at writing desks inside who are alerted as we kill the entry guards. They hop to. Several monks fight us in the hallway. Then one of the leaders, Hellenrae, comes around the corner and starts attacking. She’s tough, but we put her down.
There are several rooms
Stone stairs descend ten feet to a landing, turn, and continue to descend beyond your sight. Several large buckets are stacked unevenly on the landing. To the north, a staircase descends ten feet to a door.
Piles of firewood are stacked neatly against one wall of this room, and four large copper kettles stand in iron frames above iron fireboxes. Copper tubing in long coils leads from one kettle to the next. Several large wooden casks stand at the south end of the room, and shelves on the eastern wall hold scores of brown bottles sealed with red wax.
Straw mats cover the floor of this large exercise room, and wooden racks along the walls hold quarterstaffs, polearms, and various weapons commonly associated with martial arts. Doors exit to the north and the east. A triangular symbol is carved into the center of the rooms western wall.
An Ogre comes up the stairs as we are blocking them. So we have to retreat into the hills. We rest there. After a few hours, we return to the building and sneak around the eastern perimeter, which appears to be delapidated. There is a garden gate we enter. The garden is unused and unkept so we slip through it.
It turns out the garden is less unused and abandoned than we thought. Look! Gargoyles!
The stone hides of the creatures make it difficult to bring them down. Also, they roll max damage almost every hit. Oh, and we roll minimum healing on almost every heal.
We retreat to the mountains. After midnight we are joined by some Dwarves who were frightened by the Feather Gale Spire warriors. They seek our grouped protection. As typical thieves and murderers, we are wary. The Feather Gale Knights already found them lacking. So we keep an eye on them but they wisely decide to keep their unreputable activities at bay while in our presence…except for one mouthy dwarf who attempts to convince us they are anything other than the worst of peoples. Strangely, I admire his perseverence…though not his ignorance.
There is a call for a rest, but I am pretty certain we just slept. So WTF? Oh look…a door.
We enter to find a room full of zombies. Why is it always zombies?
In the lower level we find a crypt that has a marker for one of the dead, Samular Caradoon, Defender of the North. There isn’t anything interesting there. We move on. There is a very odd room nearby protected by a blinded creature.
The floor of this large chamber consists of loose red earth. A column of natural stone stands near the middle of the room, and a row of sturdy iron bars with a sliding cage door (currently shut) walls off the western portion of the room. A door of iron plate stands in the western wall behind the iron bars, while a similar door exits to the east. To the south, a wide set of stairs leads up.
Behind the iron bars stands a monstrous creature that resembles a cross between a huge ape and a beetle. It has wicked mandibles, powerful claws, and four eye sockets-but two of its eyes have been put out, and its claws are bronze blades. The creature bellows and thrashes in rage, constantly testing the bars and clawing at the walls.
We release the creature (an Umber Hulk) and when we do the stairs going up turn into a slide. It cannoot climb the stairs, so we decide to just kill it. Rawr does that pretty quickly. Some Stone Monks come down to engage us and we kill them as well.
A short rest allows us to recover a little. We find some ancient dwarven stairs leading down and we head that direction. Willowsmasher whines…a lot. He thinks we are headed to our doom. I think it smells like heroism down there.
There are gargoyles ahead, so we decide to rest. It goes well, and we recover compeltely! An ogre tries to interrupt our nap, but we wax him. Now, on to the deeper, darker, dangers!