This is part of an ongoing campaign. You can find the other sessions over on the sidebar.
This session was run on June 20, 2022.
5 Sweetrain 4433
We picked up where Session 8 left off, with the party standing outside the broken gates of Stormview Manor. Gwythian took some time to examine the architecture and determined that it dated back to the Gnoll Times (4149-4197) when large bands of gnolls migrated through the lands around the City State and many people were killed and displaced. They decided to leave Cozsari and the turkey outside while they explored the house.
Uggmar snuck through the open gate while Stranger hopped over the wall. Once inside, the half-orc slipped around the building to the east while Stranger listened at the front door.
Uggmar found a door on an extension to the east of the mansion and cracked it open. Vargr moved up behind him to provide cover. As the door opened, he could see a set of stairs going up to the second floor and a statue of a man on a horse. The statue started shaking and flecks of rock fell to the floor. The shuddering stopped as soon as it started and, after he was sure the statue was not going to attack him, Uggmar entered the hall and checked for traps. Finding none, he waived Vargr in.
Meanwhile, at the front of the house, Stranger opened the door and found himself in a foyer with a statue in the center and a door in the center of each wall. The statue bore a plaque reading, "Eric Braden. First Lord of Stormview, 4187. He saved many from the gnolls while others turned a blind eye."
Gwythian explained that he knew some stories about Lord Braden. He was granted Stormview because he helped other lords to flee the areas invaded by gnolls and find new places to settle. There were rumors that, after he was made lord of Stormview, he started requesting a "donation" for his help. There were even darker rumors that some of those he helped were never seen again. He faded from history before the end of the Gnoll Times.
The group in the foyer moved through the door to the west and found themselves in a study. After a quick search of the shelves, they found a scroll of shillelagh. They then moved into the corridor to the north and opened the western door to the main hall of the mansion.
Light streamed into the large room through the collapsed ceiling above. They saw that the roof took the floor of the room with it when it fell, collapsing it into the basement. The basement had filled with water and they could make out skeletal forms and what might be a chest through the murky liquid. The balconies overlooking the room from the second floor remained intact, as did a beam supporting two chandeliers above. Some of the floor in the north part of the room remained intact. A statue of a man wearing terrible armor sat on a throne there. He was flanked by two sets of armor on either side. Behind him, on his right, a shark was mounted to the wall. To his left, an empty mounting plaque dangled from one remaining bolt.
They decided that they did not want to risk entering the room, and considered investigating it from one of the balconies first. They backed away from the door and circled around to the room to the east of the foyer.
As soon as they entered the office, the rug on the floor rolled itself up and flew through the air to attack them. Uggmar and Vargr tried to grapple the rug while the others hacked at it with their weapons. At one point, they had the rug surrounded, and it spun in a circle hitting all of them. They were able to overcome the rug and it fell to the floor as only a pile of threads. A search of the room revealed a silver dagger, a beautifully illuminated copy of "The Account of Skandian Migrations" by Robert Halford, and a sack in the couch cushions containing 20 platinum pieces.
They moved on to the unexplored room they had seen in the north hallway. Duycken decided to enter from the outside of the house using the back stairs. He stepped through the door to find himself in a kitchen. The oven flared to life and hundreds of pieces of silverware began flying around the room. Seeing no way to quell the anger of the flatware, Duycken backed out of the room and rejoined his companions by the stairs.
They decided to move the statue of a man on a horse before heading upstairs. They began pushing on it, but found it heavier than they expected. As they were catching their breath from their efforts, Creng pushed on the back of the horse and its legs broke off at the ankles sending the whole statue crashing to the floor. They sifted through the rubble but found nothing of interest.
When they ventured on to the stairs, they heard them groan threateningly under their weight, so they decided to send only Duycken and Creng as they were the lightest. Once on the second floor, they could feel the house swaying the way one would at the top of a tall building. Duycken decided that the motion and ominous creaking sounds were not due to weight on the floor, and that the large rug at the top of the stairs was not dangerous, and called the others up.
They moved to the door to the north balcony and Duycken cast detect magic on the statue and armor below. The statue and all four suits of armor glowed, so they decided the safest manner of investigation was to lower Creng down on a rope. As the goblin's feet reached eye level of the statue, it and the armor began to move. They hauled their hapless minion back up and ran for the stairs.
As they ran down the hall, they could hear the sounds of the wall being battered down below causing the house to sway even more. As they ran to the stairs, Gwythian stopped to roll up the large rug.
The party hit the foot of the stairs as the statue, which they could now recognize as Lord Braden, and the armor emerged from the hall. They attempted a fighting retreat through the south door to the outside, but Braden struck down Stranger with one blow from his large two-handed sword. Uggmar risked several attacks to grab his friends unconscious body and run outside.
Once out of the mansion, Vargr ran to collect the Cozsari as the others set up a defense around the door. Duycken used his Inspire ability and Vargr cast bless before their foes emerged. We stopped there for the night.