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Well, this didn't go well.
We’re still in an unknown location with a pair of rooms and a pool. We discuss our options for a little bit. We decide to take an overnight rest.
During Arkane’s watch, he hears something enter through the door. We peek around the corner and see a liquid covered arachnid. We believe it is the monster of which Sima spake. Combat ensues.
After an initial, indecisive tussle, we decide to move on to avoid the spider. We explore through the door and Sima runs into a trap. She gets out of it and moves to the blank wall at the end of this corridor which she thinks is a room.
While we’re dicking around, Arkane sees the spider climb out of the pool in the room we just came out of. It looks to have healed up in there.
Sima finds a way to open the hidden door that she is fiddling with as the spider comes forward and tries to grapple Arkane. It succeeds, and we try to get him free. Arkane does manage to wriggle free. Unfortunately, the fight really goes to shit and everything goes wrong. Arkane and Gefilte get the water sucked out of them by the spider and pass out. We do find that the hidden door leads to the trippy room we went through earlier. It makes Sima double over, vomiting. Kelmar and Beska and Sima make it out into the trippy room. Blackmore somehow has the bright idea to drag Arkane and Gefilte back into the room with the pool (where we find out that Arkane is actually dead), thus effectively trapping them there. The arachnid goes out after the guys escaping, and Beska uses Eddie to hit it with a fireball.
Blackmore wants to fight the spider more, and he asks Gefilte to spend more time praying for another Blessed Healer healing.

Gefilte and Blackmore are currently stuck in the room with the pool and a dead Arkane, and everyone else has abandoned them.
Session: Game Session - Monday, Mar 05 2018 from 1:00 AM to 4:00 AM
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Wet Feet, Warm Heart
Mirilda’s feet sank with every step in the thigh-deep sludge that was the Outcast End swamp. She could feel the peaty mud soak through her boots as it squished between her toes. Even on the stretches of land they found, her feet never really seemed to dry out as the mud was thick there too. The few times they found some dry shelter, the caked mud between her toes caused her feet to itch terribly.

The going was slow in the swamp, every step took so much more effort. Even with Mirilda’s strength, lifting her feet out of the thick mud was exhausting. She tried to give herself mental distractions to pass the time. She thought about First Light, but soon her mind was back on the effort of each step. Eventually she thought about Gaelon, the Pelor fighter she met while fighting the frost giants.

Mirilda did not think she was capable of romantic love. But then again, she did not think she was capable of platonic love either but she loved the members of the Unchained. What she felt for Gaelon was not love, but it was something. The nights they spent together after battle sharpening their blades, sparring, sitting in silence with few scattered conversations were the most intimate moments in Mirilda’s life.

No, she did love Gaelon. But, if she were capable of falling in love with anyone, she felt it would be him. Regrettably, since their paths would not cross again, she would never know.
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Heads and Hags in Hell
Leon had become accustomed to the danger of the Abyss, but here he sensed a whole new level of evil. His head rang with the same word over and over. Bad bad bad.

A ring of stakes around the hut held numerous skulls. It was impossible not to pass close to one of them, and feel the remnant of prolonged torture from a hapless head. It occurred to Leon that the unfortunate souls may yet be lingering at the end of each spike.

The dwelling was fashioned from the bones of some gigantic beast. Leon was careful to not let his eyes linger on the demonic sigils burned into the hide, lest he unwittingly conjure some evil just by letting the thought slip into his mind.

A repulsive stench of decay filled Leon’s nostrils as they passed into the hut – a poisonous combination of burned offal and a thousand years of nightmares. A slow drum in his head repeated: bad, bad, bad.

Leon’s very bones screamed “run!” when he encountered the savage hag Zothana. But the swamp illness had left him listless, and he let the others lead him into the center of the room. He barely understood the negotiations taking place; his blood felt thin and weak.

She led them to the cauldron, filled with putrid brown liquid. Leon swore he saw a human finger bubble to the surface then disappear. He had never felt such terror and forboding as she ladled a serving for him to drink. I must. He parted his lips and the noisome substance slipped into his mouth. As he swallowed, he was quite sure a worm wriggled on his tongue before sliding down his throat.

A vision filled Leon’s mind: Ula handing him a warm buttered loaf of bread. He devoured it, feeling his energy and confidence return. The room felt somehow less wretched, as if a large fist had released its grip on his chest. His vision and mind felt clearer. We are the Unchained, and we are off to our next adventure.
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In a Storm of Bones
What can I say about being trapped within a horde of skeletons? It is terrifying. I wonder if maybe I should stop rushing headlong into situations… but, no, I’m not sorry for any of it. I mean, I made it out, didn’t I? The only thing I regret is not being able to figure out the puzzle. I refuse to believe there was nothing there to find.

Imagine it: you’re in the middle of a vast room, alone because your companions are huddled near the door (which, now that I reflect on it, why hadn’t they come with me?). Our reasoning led to my going out alone because I can fly, and therefore escape any situation—although, we had just passed through a magic-dampening pentagram, so why exactly did we think that was a good idea?

Finally, I had recognized something in this topsy-turvy land: a pentagram. I thought of my mother when I saw it… But it robbed me of my power instead of bolstering me against the natural laws of the world. I feel a bit like I’ve been betrayed—but by whom? Who was I expecting to come to my aid? Was I waiting for anything at all?

As my fingertips whispered against the sword’s hilt, all of Hell broke loose. Well, I suppose it wasn't really all of Hell, since we are actually in Hell and I think I’d notice if the world ended. No, what happened next was not the end of all the world, but it certainly felt like it might be the end of my world.

The bones which had lain passively below my feet rush towards me as my power of flight flee my body and I come crashing to the ground. And as I lay there catching my breath, I gaze in horror at the skeletons methodically re-articulating around me. They begin to pound at my back and shoulders as I struggle to rise without exposing too much of my tender flesh to their uncompromising blows.

I close my eyes and suddenly I’m back in Hareswood. i don’t want to be here, but here I am. The blows rain down on me as I hunch, trying to shield my stomach and face and offer only my shoulders for them to beat. The miller’s wife has discovered me playing tag with the youngest of her brood, a girl named Lassy. I am barely more than a child, as is Lassy; she hid her face in her mother’s skirts when we were found out, crying and whining as if I’d forced the game upon her. That had been yesterday. Apparently, when her father and two older brothers had come in from the fields last night her mother had told them Lassy had been hexed by the witch’s girl, because this morning when I’d come into town to purchase some tallow from the butcher they were waiting for me on the path into the rough circle of hovels around the village center. I took one look at the storm clouds in the father’s face and turned to run, but the brothers—both nearly men themselves—had come up behind me, blocking my escape.

Then they commenced the beating, knocking me to the ground and raining heavy blows upon my back. I knelt in the dirt, trying to present as small a target as possible, pulling my neck into my shoulders and shielding my head with shaking arms. Suddenly it cease, and I dared to raise my head and glance toward the village center where the mother had appeared, with Lissy tangled pitifully in her skirts, to watch. I could not see Lissy’s face, it was mashed so tightly into her mother’s dress, but the mother caught my eye with a look so deadly my blood froze. She held my gaze for a moment then looked to her husband, who I could see from the corner of my eye was watching to see what she would do, and nodded slowly. The beating resumed.

I don’t know how long it lasted, but ages later the beating stopped again.

It took me longer this time to uncover my head and raise my face but when I did the father came swimming into view, in a strangely hesitant pose, shifting his weight from foot to foot as he gazed anxiously behind me. Lissy and her mother had disappeared. I turned to peer in the direction he was looking; I caught sight first of the brothers, both staring in the direction their father was looking. Then I saw my mother.

She was standing quietly, almost placidly, a little down the path toward the forest, and she looked at the sky, then the brothers, then the path, then the horizon, then the father, then away, not spending too much time looking at really anything. Even so, the menace she directed toward the father was almost palpable in the air. Finally her gaze slid to us, catching the brothers in its heat. They startled, leaping into the air as if they had been shocked, then scurried away towards their home, heads bowed, trying to appear as small as possible. I glanced back to the father in time to see him scowl, but eventually he, too, backed toward his house and, with one final glower for my me, turned to strut away.

I watched him leave, then turned to my mother. rising a bit now that I was no longer in imminent danger. But she was gazing dreamily at the trees again. After a few moments of silence she spoke.

“Well?” she said, turning pointedly to me. “Aren’t you going to get that tallow? I want to make candles today.”

And with that she turned and glided back along the path toward the forest and home.
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She fights, and fights, and fights.
When telekinesis fails, Ghyra seems always willing to pitch herself straight into danger. The sword is too tempting to pass up, so she flies up to retrieve it manually. Upon touching it, she’s immediately struck down, landing loudly in the mounds of dried bones, and rendered nearly defenseless: no magic. The dried bones she’s struggling to wade through, however, have plenty. They rise up around her, forming enormous bone golems. There’s nothing we can do. We can’t even really see her. Just a flash of flesh every now and then through the hulking masses of bone, and we hear her cries. Boudica, Blaze, and Mirilda stand on the perimeter, taking a beating themselves, but unwilling to leave her there, even though they’re helpless to assist. I’m a fucking bird, flying around shitting all over the place, as there’s nothing else to be done. The only things I’m good for in this aberrant, lifeless place, are keeping myself out of harm’s way and healing the others, who actually have some usefulness here. As someone whose every strength depends on the natural world, I’ve never been so powerless and vulnerable. For a brief moment, I almost wish they would just hurry up and kill her, and end her torment. But then fuzzy images rush through my mind of other pitiful cries, pools of blood, pale lips, and mangled limbs. My friends. I remember lifeless eyes seeing again and limp bodies regaining strength. I think of Ghyra’s pluck, and I relish the tiny spark of hope that blooms in my breast. I stop shitting and start screeching. She fights, and fights, and fights, and whatever misgivings I have about her alignment are, for now at least, replaced by admiration as she slowly, slowly battles her way to where the others can heft her out of the pit. They’re all in bad shape, and she’s swollen, horribly bruised, and bloody, but alive. Blaze and I do what we can to heal everyone, and settle in for the night. As I sit here with Mirilda, comforted as always by her strength, I doubt we’ll make it out of here alive, but my spirits are buoyed somewhat by my awareness of the indomitable spirit that imbues my party.
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