Much time was spent restoring the chapel wherein they found the vampire. They replaced religious icons, tried to repair what damage had been done by their combat with the vampire and what damage had been done by the vampire himself. In process, they found three things of note:
- A page from an otherwise destroyed and burnt book that evidently chronicled various events of the monks who once worshipped in the chapel. The three entries found on the page indicated that the lower levels of the dungeon where changing; that there were growing attacks from below by people in golden masks; that the monks had believed that they had destroyed something called the Well of Chaos with the Two Swords, though some were beginning to question the success of this endeavor; and that they were betrayed by one of their own who chose undeath.
- Behind the altar of the chapel was an icon of a saint wielding two swords; however, instead of there being a mosaic of the swords, there were two indentations where actual sword could be placed. Whatever swords these indentations might have held were not found.
- The doors of the chapel were sealed from the inside. When the party broke through, they found the remains of a battle between armed monks and people wearing golden masks. In turn, this battlefield was sealed off from the rest of the dungeon.
- The party had a disastrous encounter with a golden-masked warrior who was leading a band of gnolls. On a tactical level, things broke down and spells were used in a manner that affected the party as much as they did the monsters. The worst affect was from a wand of fear, which caused the party to flee into three separate groups. While separated, I rolled a doppleganger for a wandering monster encounter. It went after the weakest group and managed to kill off Kavela the NPC magic-user before being killed itself.
- The party found a golden statue of a man in excruciating pain. When Dn. Goram held up his holy symbol to the statue, it changed poses into a man in peaceful contemplation. When Dn. Goram then went to touch the statue, he was Quested to find the Two Swords.
- They encountered a group of werewolves that they had encountered many sessions ago. In explaining that they had unknowingly re-entered territory they had promised to avoid, they found out some interesting information. It seems that the werewolves loyally serve a single faction of the gold mask wearers. Whereas they see their own cause as righteous, they find the other factions as fallen and corrupt. This cause seems to be the destruction of what they call The City of the People. These "People" once enslaved their masters. When questioned about attacks made on the monks who once lived in this section of the dungeon, the werewolves declared that they were merely "in the way."
As a side note, we saw the appearance of one of our players who has not been able to play with us recently because of a schedule change at work. This spawned one of the most entertaining moments of the evening. When Ahkmed's player exhibited some of his elfishness, the party tried to explain what had happened in the weeks that the player had missed. It was here that Ahkmed earned a new monicker: the Dwelf. With the party still being obsessed with helping Ahkmed create his son, the discussion then went on to hypothesize what effect Ahkmed's Dwelfdom might have on his offspring.
Interestingly, the party has decided to keep the stake and return it to Fr. Valinor as a holy relic.
That is genius. Will it have powers once invested as a relic?
What a great addition to your campaign's history. I hope you gave them an XP reward for that!
I didn't think to give them an XP reward, but it will definitely have some form of in-game effect. I'm still toying with ideas — one of which involves a process for the redemption of the vampire killed. Regardless, I was impressed when they came up with the idea.
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