Nils and sigrid go off on their own (where to? No one knows…) they have been left a scroll of teleportation that is a two-way scroll. (Either teleport to them or bring them to you – one use!)
Milo runs to the standing stones above the Chamber of Thodish to see if his long lost brother, Rafe, has been resurrected as per his request from Oberon – so far with no known monkey’s paw-esque interpretations of the wish. Rafe is somewhat annoyed that his older brother is now even MORE older.
Turns out that the Archdean sent Rafe to chamber of Thodesh to check the state of the warding there, so the archdean knew about the vampiric aboniation the whole time. Rafe went with an elf selected by King Andursa. While there, the elf talked to the vampire and went off through a secret door, leaving Rafe fighting off the Vampire’s domination.
Reunited, the brothers descend into the chamber with the intent of either (1) finding Tansil who ran off with Weenit the moment they originally entered the chamber through a secret passage in the back of the room or (2) following in the footsteps of the elven vampire collaborater. Milo and Rafe disarm a ghastly puzzle trap door/meat grinder trap rather brutishly by interupting the water flow that powered the mechanism.
They discover many old dwarven corpses on the other side of the door and it appears they were sucked from the Chamber of Thodish by the drap and dismembered. They also find 80 gold pieces—ancient dwarvish origin coins.
They continue down the way. The corridor is dwarven handiwork. Very clean work.
Stale smell, but detecting a waft of wind from behind flowing down into the depths.
Tunnel becomes irregular, water flows faster, splooshy, splooshy, splush.
The Chamber splits into three directions:
Passage to the Right is the smaller crack where the wind sucks in the torch.
Middle passage has a fresh-air smell mixed with heated poop smell? and moose sound, warm air
Left passage has cold air, very cold, smells like pine
Rafe and Milo find a scrap of Tansil’s robe patches b/t left and middle. Did he leave it intentionally?
They find a gold piece on right side. Beneath the gold piece is a tiny scrap of paper which gets sucked down the passage. They rush into the tight passageway to find it.
They emerge into a pitch black, dank, echoey cave with mushrooms glowing all around. They find the piece of parchment, it was hammered from stalk of a mushroom. Milo examines it and doesn’t recognize the language. Perhaps elvish? Rafe takes a look and is “struck” by whatever he read. Knocks him to the ground. Perhaps it is a trap for humans? Elvish, but not like any elvish we’ve read before. They keep the parchment fragment for further study. Rafe muses it might be Drow.
They discover that they are on the banks of a huge underground lake…perhaps a sea? Terrifying sounds echo from all around and small sources of light and shifting shadows they can barely make out flit in their peripheral vision as their eyes acclimate to the light.
They search the nearby mushroom patch and find a rope hidden that leads into the water and pull it up and it is attached to a head and torso which juts out of the water. Milo fearfully smashes the head and it is revealed to be a hollow stone statue. They continue to pull up the rope and it turns out that the head is actually the figurehead on the bow of a smallish (8-10’ long) pale boat with eight oars. The figurehead appears to be a centaur-like creature, but instead of the body and legs of a horse, the body of a spider attached with the oars being “legs” – the vessel of dark elves, no doubt.
As the boat is pulled up onto the shore, there is a disturbance in the water as something beneath it approaches Milo and Rafe. Just then, Milo sees some sort of storage compartment built into the aft of the boat and sees something glinting from within. He launches himself toward it a circlet falls into his hands just as a form made entirely of water breaches itself and towers over him. He thrusts the circlet on his head and feels compelled to say “BOOM, BABY!” and a wave of force slams into the elemental, sending it fleeing back into the water.
Rafe and Milo decide to put the boat back in the water and return the rope to its hidden place and return to where the tunnel branched initially.
They examine some etching on the walls in the left passage, human in origin and piece together from their knowledge of ages past that this is likely a passage to the kingdom of Totenfrau, legendary for its magically temperate weather and also for being ruled entirely by women. The men are rumored to be held in a far less spectacular village outside the region known as Middlemane. They were known to the monastery primarily from their fabled trade with the dwarves who initially carves the Vaults they live in now.
The party takes the fabric scrap from the monastic order of Oghma, presumably from Tansil, and venture down the center tunnel, which is muggy, sludgy and reeks of shit and oil. After carefully following pipes that seem to join together and run down the tunnels, they find strange scraps of wet parchment with incredibly even lettering which is completely foreign to them. suddenly they are assaulted with wind, light and a horrendous cacophony…sounding like a thousand pots and pans caught together in a tornado. Just as it was here it was gone. It happens again and they realize it is some magical beast. A subterranean dragon of sorts.
They quickly and quietly follow its path, and are amazed to emerge into a large underground chamber, lit with a thousand glowing torches, filled with people dressed in strange clothing, the walls covered in smudged, but shiny tiles. They suddenly felt wind rush into their backs and turned to see the two screaming eyes and loud roar of another dragon behind them and leapt up onto the higher area to their left that the people were standing on and cried out as the dragon stopped and belched forth dozens of seemingly unharmed humans and more walked in to replace them. People stopped and stared at them. Some laughed, some covered their mouths and some simply shook their heads and muttered and ignored them.