Well before dawn, in the darkness of early morning, the party assembled, inventoried their gear and began the several hour trek to the entrance the townsfolk had informed them of - the very same one the legendary Perceval used on his first delve into the depths.
After they arrived, and checked their gear one last time, Ygg lit a torch and passed it to Leegand while the party arranged itself into a suitable order.
[ marching order:
As they descended into the darkness [I decided that the orbs of light were no longer there] Ygg looked at the map.
“If this map is actually of this dungeon, then it looks like there’s a pit trap at the bottom of the steps. Who’s the lightest?”
All eyes turned towards Zilliniy. “I’m pretty sure it’s gramps over there” she said, nodding at Lykidas.
Ygg contemplated that for a moment.
“She’s right. Let’s get a rope around his waist. Zilliniy, you walk down the steps with him - don’t even think about stepping onto the ground. Cover him with your bow in case something is in the room. I’ll move down behind them in case the unholy living dead are present. Eomond and Runolf, you two keep a good grip on the rope. Leegand come down the steps a bit, but keep back - we don’t want the torch to give us away. "
[Does the party accept this? 50/50, Chaos 5, No.
I decide this means there's some discension, Lykidas protests.
Ygg will attempt to convince Lykidas. Lykidas makes the point that he couldn’t be of much use if there’s anything down there.
I use my system or interparty interactions, and Ygg and the rest of the party come around.
Will Leegand volunteer since he’s a thief and all? Somewhat likely, 20, yes.
Does that hold? chaos 5, 10, yes
Lykidas disagreed with the whole idea of sending him into a possible pit trap - seeing as his weapons were rather limited, not to mention his strength. Ygg conceded and Leegand, experienced in climbing as part of his trade, volunteered to switch places with the old man.
[I rolled 1d6 on the dungeon stocking table in b/x and got 4, special.
I used my special table and got "oddball" ]
As Zilliniy and Leegand reached the bottom of the steps, a large, green glowing, floating eye, in the center of the room, spun to greet them with a piercing gaze.
[Does this setup hold? Chaos 5, 8, yes]
Lowering his voice to a whisper, Leegand turned to the elf, “Is it alive?”
"I don't know" she said, her voice barely audible, but her furrowed brow gave away the computations she was considering. As if to test her hypothesis, she let loose with her knocked arrow.
[Is it physical? 6, yes.
I decide an AC of 5, would be good. Which in Ascending AC, is AC: 14
Her arrow is wide of the mark. (4, miss)
At this point I don't know what the eye is or if it will be able to attack.
party 3, eye 6
Since it won, I have to learn what I can about it. Can it attack? 50/50 78, no.]
“No one advance!” ordered Ygg. “If it’s not attacking us, it’s either not violent, or it’s trying to lure us in”
“Or it’s an alarm system” said Leegand.
Considering the latter option as likely, again and again, Zilliniy shot at the eye. Again and again, she missed. [I rolled nothing higher than a 10!]
Turning to the party behind her, she raised her voice, “If anyone else wants to participate, feel free!”
Leegand grabbed a sling stone and hurled it across the room where it hit the opposite wall with a thud. [He rolled 11. Better, I guess]
“This is ridiculous” said Eomond, to no one in particular.
“Let’s ignore it for now, check for the trap door and then attack it if we need to” suggested Ygg.
Leegand gently placed one foot then another onto the stone floor at the base of the steps. He stood, tranferring weight little by little onto his feet. Up the steps Runolf and Eomond held fast to the rope and braced themselves across the stair well.
The floor did not give (rolled 1d6, got a 5). He stepped further into the room, and the eye followed his steps.
Zilliniy. let loose another arrow, more out of boredom than any desire to destroy the eye, whatever it might be. (4, miss)
Meanwhile, Leegand jumped up and down on the stone floor. He was about to give up when the floor gave way. Briefly, he hung in mid-air over the pit beneath him. With his quick reflexes, he had enough time to try to twist to face the wall that he soon found himself accelerating towards, pulled in the direction of his rope's anchors. He brought his feet up to absorb the impact.
Does he take any damage? Roll vs Dex, 7 vs 13. No
“There’s a pit alright!” The voice came from one end of the rope, it's speaker no longer visible to his companions.
Is the eye doing anything now? 50/50, C 5, 15, yes
The eye slowly rotated away from where Leegand had stood a moment before and returned its attention back to the steps.
Zilliniy shot again and missed again. “Just warming up” she said, followed by a nervous laugh.
Ygg hurried town the steps, “Lykidas bring the torch!”
[and then it occurred to me what made the eye really special.]
As Lykidas stepped into the room the eye sizzled and sputtered, unleashing an invisible wave at the torch (17, i’ll say it hit) extinguishing it immediately.
Ygg didn't want to lose anyone to the pit by accident. He swung his pack around, and pulled out a torch. After a moment of fumbling through the contents of the bag, he pulled out the flint and steel. The dim electric green glow of the eye provided ample light by which to light the torch.
First on spark, then another, and finally the torch caught fire. Instantly, the eye fired its fire extinguishing blast at the torch (7, miss) but this time Ygg shielded it with his body. The sensation as it careened into his body was like a dip in an icy bath.
Since he was on the floor already and knew vaguely where the pit was, he grabbed his war hammer and charged the eye. Blow after blow reigned upon it until it shattered in a slow motion nova of glowing shards scattering in all directions.
[Everyone in LOS save or take damage.
Y: 18, saves
Z: 5, fail
Ly: 3, fail
Z. takes 2
LY takes 2]
Ygg lit a torch, while Zilliniy (1d4, 3) and Lykidas (1d4, 1) bandaged their wounds, and then he carried the torch over to the pit and the dangling Leegand.
Both sets of eyes fell upon the body at the bottom of the pit. Even 20’ away they could see it had splayed unnaturally - likely killed by the fall.
“It looks like he’s packed for adventuring doesn’t it?” asked Ygg.
Leegand agreed and called up to Eomond and Runolf to lower him. Looking at Ygg, he said, “Only one way to find out.”
END SCENE chaos stays at 5.
As Leegand reached the bottom of the pit, 10x10x20 deep, he could see that the corpse had decayed somewhat, but not significantly.
He called up to the party, "Looks pretty recent."
A bandoleer of daggers, silver daggers at that, caught his eye.
[Does the setup hold?8, yes]
Leegand rooted about carefully, calling the items out.
Zilliniy peeped over the age and [rolled 1d6 on Z’s table: 4. “Manchiver really is a friend of the family, but Zilliniy is really only after his spellbook. She will still pay to bury his body properly, but will spend less than the 50GP she has saved up”] cried out, “By the guardians of the forest! that is Manchiever Muntz!”
Even had she not rambled about him and her family's ties to him, the party was well aware of the significance of finding the body of the party that had previously braved this place.
Talking at the speed of light, the elf half shouted, “We need to get him out of here. He needs a proper burial”
They hauled the body out of its unfortunate tomb, and then, true to the code of dungeon explorers everywhere, they relieved him of his possessions. After all, the dead don't need these things, but the living do.
Is the spell book there? very unlikely. 14, no.
In a loud angry whisper she said “Where is it?" Before anyone could ask her what she was talking about, she added, "His spell book. I had hoped to find it - a chance to keep his memory alive. And it’s not there. "
“Maybe, “ offered Lykidas, "he kept it somewhere not on his person. It would be foolish to bring ones spell books into a place like this. They could be destroyed and then what?’
Zilliniy brightened and Lykidas smiled, the act contorting his pox marked face into something to frighten children.
"OK, everyone let’s gather his stuff, we’ll come back for him" said Runolf.
The elf seemed annoyed by his suggestion“We have to bury him!”
“Bury? We have to go back to town for that. “ said Eomond
"The boy is right. The dead are dead, it's not like worse can happen to him" said Runolf. His pragmatism wasn't making any headway.
Ygg stepped in, hoping to avoid any unnecessary delays, but also accommodating what he deemed a reasonable request especially for the body of someone who was a friend of the good Sister Linkat. "Look, I know he’s a friend, but a funeral pyre can be done properly outside, and we could save some time."
Does everyone accept? very likely 57, yes.
With that, the party returned to the surface where Ygg presided over the construction of the funeral pyre, and Zilliniy offered a few words, ostensibly targeted to the ear of the Hedonistic Lumberjack, on Manchiever’s behalf.
As the fire crackled and the flames consumed the corpse, each party member said a silent goodbye to the well-known, if hapless, magic-user. The deed done, it was time for the party to return to their original purpose: the exploration of the dungeon.
End scene Chaos 5
Down they went again, but this time with full knowledge of the pit trap. The room was otherwise empty, save the shards of glass.
Does it hold? 3. No. Altered scene
Is there something else here now? 50/50, 26, yes. Roll on wandering monster table. d30 book. I rolled 2 warriors (2nd level fighters).
Reaction Check from B/X: 4
Two people, in black-as-the-Abyss armor, with spiked helm, shoulders, and elbows clomped through the door opposite the stairs. Their drawn swords and shields gave away their hostility.
“Who dares disturb the sanctuary of our Master!”