Wednesday 10 July 2024

Session 379 - Vespjulian the Ninth God

Date: 2 July

Moon: Waxing Crescent
Zenith: Alaunus

New Characters:
- Janus, a Cleric who worships the ancient arts of POWERLAD rather than the man-become-dragon-become-god Himself. Was once a management consultant of niche renown.


--- A Surfeit of Frogs
- We begin at the cliffhanger! It is the fourth floor of Dwimmermount where all the stuff from the Foundry gets teleported to. Glass boxes built into the walls contain strange plants and creatures. Lights flicker.
- Sydney is midair in the middle of the room, grabbed by a sticky hand-tipped tongue, flying towards a froggy doom. Sydney is looking back across the room at the opposite barricade behind which swole unicorn-men look in shock.
- Sydney lands in the jaws of a huge toad and the foam-flecked teeth BITE. Stun poison! He screams but does not struggle.
- Aximander leaps into action, bounding over the unicorn barricade, begins summoning a beam of fire  and.. forgets to say the activation phrase that disables the teleport maze. He vanishes!

--- Unicornucopia
- The Swolicorns are not so foolish. They yell "Ave Vespusian!" as they leap over the barricade, run across the room, and leap across the enemy frog barricade into battle!
- The frogman attacking Sydney is slain instantly by a brutal unicorn horn to the heart! Sydney drops and considers how much pain poison is running through his veins. One move and he could pass out instantly.
- The frogmen retreat, croaking their dismay. The Swolicorns roar in victory!
- Razylymvaer in Sydney's head says "oh ho ho, you're weak aren't you? Just relax, we've got this". Sydney's slime familiar opens up into a smile...

--- Bifurcation 
- Aximander is alone. Truly alone. There's not even the hint of Julian inside him. What has happened?
- Floating next to him, an orb of light. It's... Julian?
- They talk for a while. Julian is fine with Aximander being the body's owner, he just wants a body himself.
- Aximander puts the floating orb onto his flaming sword where it turns into a huge uncut ruby. They're a team for now.
- An extradimensional door opens next to Aximander - inside is Elf Sydney! In fact, many Elf Sydneys! It's the Safe Space of the Sydnot. Aximander enters cautiously.

--- My Mental Roommate
- Meanwhile Sydney is well fucked up. The unicorn-men convey him safely back to to Vespusian and lay him on the altar that Vespusian once rested on (it's the only place to lie down).
- Sydney is offered the blessing of the purple rags. They try to speak... but their mouth moves on its own! They - he - Razylymvaer, speaks through Sydney's mouth! "Grant me the blessing, mummy-man!".
- Sydney passes out, but his body yet moves. Bandages dripping with eldritch purple gunk are wrapped around his damaged limbs.

--- The Sydnot
- Aximander meets the Sydnot, the council of Sydneys, and gets on well because they are all Elves. They collectively trash talk Sydney, a mere mortal. Gifflewim is there too because he loves an Elf party.
- They discuss the now ruby-form Julian. Gifflewim offers to trade for him, but Aximander has cold feet. There's got to be something weird with someone else owning your former self's soul, right?
- They agree that the Gods shutting off magic has got to be a bad thing, since they're all Elves and all. There are like a thousand Sydneys in here, so they agree to help collect the scattered God Parts.

--- Reunion!
- Aximander leaves the extradimensional council chamber at the head of a horde of Sydneys! He once again forgot to tell them about the teleport maze password, so they start teleporting all over the place!
- Luckily Aximander himself is warped back to the start point.
- He meets back up with Sydney, who is now wrapped in purple bandages. Next to him is a rather naked mummified Vespusian who insists the bandages will "grow back".
- Sydney also wants to be referred to with he/him pronouns now and keeps burping out fire. Aximander takes it in stride.

--- Launch! Launch!
- Without any effort from our heroes at all, the Sydneys have managed to collect all the God Parts! Unfortunately they may have triggered a new portal to the eternal depths of the ocean through which an incredible amount of frogspawn and frog-men have burst through.
- There is SO much water, but it's being weirdly messed with by the teleport maze, as though the ocean itself is a sentient thing which is getting teleported around!
- No time to lose! They hoof it to the elevator! Vespusian is coming with, he might be some sort of magical mummy but he certainly doesn't want to face the wrath of the sea!

--- Sacrificial Dragon
- They drag all the parts into the lift and - on no! - someone needs to be in the control room to activate it!
- Sydney growls out that he will volunteer! He is a dragon after all! Aximander finally "realises" that this isn't Sydney at all, but Razylymvaer in Sydney's body! Razylymvaer throws the slime familiar to Aximander, and sees that Sydney's soul has been transferred in there!
- Razylymvaer goes into the control room and salutes, slamming the button that closes the door. It's JUST in time! The ocean crashes against the elevator door... but it holds!
- Sadly approximately 10000 Sydney-Elves are immediately killed by the pressure and/or lack of oxygen as the sea smooshes them all into a big Sydney pancake.

--- All Hail the New God
- They shoot up the shaft to the top floor of Dwimmermount! The ocean slowly rising below as it starts to work its way through the plug of Elf bodies.
- Handily, the systems up here are all automated! Whirring waldoes emerge from the walls and take the God Parts away.
- Aximander follows, Julian in his sword and Slime Sydney on his back, all the way to the launch chamber!
- The Seraphim is complete! All that remains is to upload a mind...
- Sydney gloopily tries to cast Safe Space... but cannot! There's no access to the Old Miner! How are they going to manage this?
- Vespusian steps forward. He was a great technologian in the past, and he studied the Gods closely. He knows exactly how the upload works... but it needs more than one mind and he must be one of them to stabilise the doohickey.
- There aren't many minds going right now. Sydney demurs, he needs to be alive to get the Old Miner out in case something goes wrong. It won't accept Aximander, he's an Elf with no soul to copy.
- The only option is Julian. He wanted a body right? How's being a god sound?
- Cold water pools around their feet. The ocean is here! There's no time!
- They plug Julian and Vespusian into the machine. They scream as their minds are uploaded and... BANG! Vespusian explodes like a sack of old jerky! Julian shatters into a million pieces! Did it work??
- Lights turn on in the Seraphim. A robotic voice says "all systems nominal... launch procedure beginning". A weird cackling mixture of Vespusian and Julian cries out - "I AM COMPLETE!"
- Aximander runs as the launch procedure counts down, flames burning, and the top of Dwimmermount opens to allow the launch of this new God!
- Aximander sloshes in the knee-high water, Slime-Sydney on his shoulder, and realises that they've still got to work out a way to get out of here. The ocean is coming... and it's angry!

Total: 10000 exp

- 19 God Parts (19000 exp)
- A new God
Total: 19000 exp

- Several frogmen (400 exp)
- Limitless Sydneys (100000000 exp)
Total: 100000400 exp

Exp Totals:

Tuesday 9 July 2024

Session 378 - Opinions on the Creation of a New God

Date: 2 July

Moon: Waning Crescent
Zenith: The Dead God


--- 19 Days Later
- It has been nearly three weeks in Sydney's increasingly busy extradimensional flat. Previously a simple place to crash for a number of PCs equal to level, it's now home to a bustling array of weird beings, hangers-on, and a techno-deity that is significantly older than life on Earth.
- During that time, a familiar face returns! It's Little Jack Tall on a flying visit after a long time in the far east! He pre-dates Mentor Multiclassing, so this Halfling Specialist is technically pure Specialist!
- Our heroes discuss their next steps. They're constructing a Seraphim shell into which they can place the aggregate mind of a new god. How much is enough? The Old Miner is the template for all current gods, and he contains the aggregate mind of a whole alien civilisation. The other gods contain copies of whole Dwarven arcologies. What's the minimum viable god?
- Just then they hear shouts of warning from the front door out to the real world! The Foundry is under attack!

--- Hellhounds
- Our heroes rush out of the front door into the Foundry. An emaciated Termaxian Priest manipulates levers at the control panel, printing out complicated Seraphim parts using the big cylindrical forge in the middle of the room.
- Bursting through the door - frankenstein parodies of dogs stitched from many bodies! Huge green-bellied flies swirl around their mouths!
- Sydney has a plan. Their spell, Escape Rope, will take you to where you entered the dungeon! They cast and... ZOOP! They're all... back in the Foundry exactly where they left the Safe Space. They did technically enter the dungeon from there.
- Luckily there are Dwarf-borg guards here to help! Combat is joined, the dogs breathe out metal-melting fly-breath, but between Sydney's incredibly powerful Magic Missiles,Aximander's incredible forge-lit use of a flaming sword, and Divinity's Sword of Ages, the dogs are summarily destroyed.

--- Jonathon Toast Welcomes All
- With the Escape Rope spell not operating as intended, Sydney tries plan B - the Mountaintop Gauntlet! He grabs Little Jack Tall and they both warp up to the peak of Dwimmermount. It's afternoon, but raining heavily.
- Holding hands, since unclenching the gauntlet warps Sydney back down, the two begin to descend in the general direction of the Red Doors - the entrance to Dwimmermount. There is evidence that Rudolphus was here fairly recently.
- Suddenly they are lit up by a searchlight! Somewhere in the rain a booming voice... it's Jonathon Toast!
- They follow the beam as it leads them down towards the flat ground in front of the entrance. Jonathon Toast floats above them, an obscene flesh-blimp. His floating bulk keeps off the rain... yet big warm drops are still falling wetly from his underside. Ew.
- The other change is that an ethnically diverse array of red shirt-wearing people are milling around, all connected by gossamer threads to the great sky whale above. They don't have much of a mind of their own. There are humans, red elves, green mutants from the dungeon, and even Brogi! Remember Brogi?
- They ask Jonathon Toast if he has any contact with the Wheatlands. Apparently he does! Connected by the long "guideline" threads, he's got a minion over there! The Wheatlands are luscious, but unfortunately the pawn at the other end is immediately killed when it emerges from the wheat and starts screaming.
- Jonathon offers Sydney the chance to be blessed, joining his burgeoning coterie of people. Sydney politely declines. They head towards the dungeon entrance.

--- Theology Ensues
- The entrance is barricaded, but Sydney and Little Jack Tall hear a voice and are beckoned forward. There is a green-skinned mutant man, wondering why the pair haven't been eaten by the horror above.
- They gain entrance upon showing that the backs of their necks do not have gossamer threads growing out of them. Sydney unclenches the gauntlet and pops back down, gathers the party, and Escape Ropes back up to the entrance. Easy!
- Theology ensues! Many ideas for what to put in the God-shell are thrown around. Perhaps they can put Jonathon Toast in there? He's basically an aggregate mind all on his own! Can he be trusted or at least influenced?
- Even more pressing - the first level of Dwimmermount is basically a friendly town these days. That means... carousing!

--- Realisation of the Sydnod
- While the others party, Sydney researches a new spell alone. Knock, that's a good one!
- Hagen is the life of the party in the town, using his alcohol-related Lorebond to induce a state of On the Lash!
- Everyone at the party swears blind they saw Sydney show up, even though they were definitely spending the week researching spells instead.
- Theories abound... was that Elf Sydney? Born from the moon when Sydney died that time? And hey, if that's the case, are there multiple Sydneys around? They could keep casting Lunar Womb and multiplying right?
- This theoretical Council of Sydneys is hereafter referred to as the Sydnod.

--- He is no Beast! He's a guy! In a can!
- Having spent many obols partying, the gang reconvene in the kitchen of the extradimensional flat.
- Sydney, the real Sydney with the slime familiar that hates him and the saggy skin, is baffled that they saw them at the pub. Sydney was researching spells the whole time, they swear!
- They were all told that the pieces of the God-Shell were being warped to level 4. From there they'd be taken to the elevator, transferred to the launch level, assembled, and fired up into space. That's all the Termaxian priest knew at least!
- So saying, the gang head to the elevator and descend to Level 4, known to some as the Halls of Lesser Secrets.
- They cautiously head down the wide corridor, and see a bunch of extremely buff anthropomorphic unicorn men. They wear purple bandages and are facing away, behind a barricade of upturned and very ancient tables, facing towards a similar barricade on the other side. They are armed with long sharp rods used as javelins.
- The purple-ragged unicorn men turn because they hear the party coming, largely because Sydney has animated a cart and it's singing terribly and loudly.
- Hagan strides forward - he's got a bone to pick with Vespusian. That purple-bandaged mummy motherfucker chatted shit about the Old Miner, and Hagan has new information! His Grudge-sense tells him exactly where Vespusian is hiding. In his room!
- Vespusian is shocked to see Hagan alive! They chat at length, and at last Vespusian apologises for calling the old Miner "a mere beast". Hagan reveals that the Old Miner is no beast, and is in fact an alien and impossibly ancient aggregate mind! It's also currently trapped in a can trapped in an imaginary flat in a room filled with water and also sea-goblins!
- Vespusian accepts all this and apologises. Hagan's Grudge is settled!

--- You motherfucker, it's a fetch quest??
- With the Grudge settled, it's time to chat. In Latin.
- Vespusian says that he's been helping out the Swolicorns because they've been trying to prevent the Frog Monsters from stealing all the god pieces. That's right, the horrible frog monsters are still around!
- He's got one piece in his treasure room, snagged by the Swolicorns during a previous battle, but the rest are out there somewhere.
- The big issue they have is that the teleport maze keeps warping people around. The wide corridors end at tall cylindrical rooms which warp you to any other. This makes it very difficult to get the God pieces to any one place, for both sides. Luckily the local Ratman population is staying out of it.
- They talk some more about the situation - there is a frog queen somewhere and hopefully killing her will stop the frogs. Also -
- Just then, Sydney yells "Ave Vespusian!" to pause the teleport maze and leaps into the cylindrical room! It is very brave! There is a croaking sound from nearby and a tongue SCHLOPS onto Sydney!
- We end on a cliffhanger, Sydney being pulled through the air by a long sticky hand-tipped tongue! What happens next?!

Total: 8000 exp

Enemies defeated:
- Several frankensteined hellhounds (300 exp)
Total: 300 exp

- Sydney learnt the Knock spell!
- Divinity spent 2400 obols! (2400 exp)
- Aximander spent 1800 obols! (1800 exp)
- Little Jack Tall spent 1000 obols! (1000 exp)
- Hagan spent 2000 obols while On the Lash! (4000 exp)

Exp Totals:
- Carter / Sydney, Level 8 Magic-User: 200242 (Level up at 288000)
- Kitty / Julian & Aximander, Level 7 Languid Wastrel: 114618 (Level up at 144000)
- George / Hagen the Heretic, Level 7 Dwarf: 92490 (Level up at 128000)
- Ollie / Divinity, Level 6 Battle-Cleric (Fighter 3/ Cleric 3): 61348 (Level up at 72000)
- Henry / Little Jack Tall, Level 4 Halfling: 14462 (Level up at 16000)

Tuesday 2 July 2024

Session 377 - "But Before All That, We Need to Stop the Moon!"

Date: 25 June

Moon: Waning Gibbous
Zenith: The Scorned

New Backstory:
Rudolphus von Blitzenstrick broke it off with his first love. She was part of a cool group of friends but had to return to Denmark. +1 HD for the rest of the session when you break a lover's heart.


--- Rudolphus Gone
- In the dark depths of Dwimmermount, on a level defined by its circuit-board patterns and dim lighting, Sydney and Grog Greedy are gulping down snacks. Aximander is here too, cursing the moon. Finally Roland McDoland, the ill-fated wizard they picked up recently by telling him they'd guard him on their way to the Great Machine, is sort of just keeping out of the way.
- Hagan borrows the Mountaintop Gauntlet from Sydney and uses it to grab Rudolphus von Blitzenstrick, recently retainer-ised by the insistence of his absent player. Both are warped right to the peak of Dwimmermount!
- They blink against the sudden sunlight and see for miles! Wheat fields shine in the distance over the rotting meat of the Wheatlands. Jonathon Toast the flesh-blimp feasts upon apparently petrified foods - his central cephalopodic eye blissful. In the skies above a lumpen Red Moon flashes under the attack of some distant celestial object.
- Hagan lets go of Rudolphus and warps back down. To his surprise, Rudolphus doesn't come with him! Turns out the Mountaintop Gauntlet is a one-way trip!
- Hagan grimaces, says "welp that's interesting", and hands back the gauntlet. Sydney is aghast. By sheer accident, Rudolphus is now stuck on a mountain peak with no food, water, or equipment!

--- Battledworgs
- With the knowledge that they've been down here way too long and the very dungeon itself is warping to expel them, they hurry onwards.
- There is the sound of fighting! They approach, finding a scroll-filled library with few of those emaciated Termaxians fighting against Dwarf-borgs! It's the same Dworgs who chased after their "friend", actually the mind of a dragon patriarch switched into the Dworg body by Sydney, and it's all very confusing for all involved.
- The party charge in and aid the Termaxians while the dragon-brained dworg runs off. He doesn't yet know that Mind Switch is temporary!
- Aximander casts Magic Aura on his sword to give it more power, while Sydney GRABS a scroll off the stack and casts it without even reading it first. PHWOOM! A big cloud of darkness obscures a sword-wielding Termaxian and the Dworg he's fighting. Clanging and shouting comes from within the swirling shadow.
- During the combat the confusion mounts! The Termaxians insist that the Dworgs should be on their side, while the Dworgs themselves are just kind of erroring out!
- Meanwhile another Termaxian, this a woman in white Termaxian robes, casts spells from behind a turned-over table. She casts Shackle to the Earth on the Dworgs, magical chains wrap around their legs.
- Also meanwhile, Roland has finally buffed himself with a spell! He casts Deathless on himself to ensure that he cannot be killed! By the time he reaches combat, it's too late.
- One of the Dworgs is finally killed with a slice from Aximander's magicalised sword, and the other shrieks that "failure does not compute!" and detonates in an electical explosion!

--- Aftermath
- In the aftermath, the Termaxian warriors warily come back to guard their Wizard from the mysterious new gaggle of heroes who just helped them against the Dworgs.
- The wizard's name is Grizzibelle and she asks for introductions.
- Conversation ensues. Sydney leads, explaining that there are Red Elves invading who want to mine the Earth for its magic, which will eventually lead to no more magic for anyone!
- Aximander loots the room, grabbing some cool-looking scrolls from the library nooks.
- Grisibelle explains her position - the Termaxians up here are rebels who want to alter Terms Termax's plans. Terms wants to upload himself to the god-shell of Eris, shot down centuries prior. Unfortunately for the egotistical Terms Termax, Gods are aggregate minds made up of many individual minds. He wishes to be a God alone, which has thus far proved impossible.
- Grisibelle and her faction want to persuade him to upload with those who, like her, are loyal subjects who simply recognise the limitations of his plan. That's why they've taken over this level - it contains the Foundry that can create more god-shells (and other powerful objects) if they can only get their hands on Eris' shell.
- Asked if more god-shells can be created, she demurs. That requires Angel Metal, and they don't have any of that.
- Luckily, Sydney's spell shenanigans previously glitched out to create a whole roomful of Angel Metal! it can be done!

--- The Forge
- She guides the group to the Foundry, and oh crap on the way a massive smoke-breathing stone bull tramples towards the party! It is intercepted by a bunch of Dworgs, and the party dive through the door into the Foundry. Lucky!
- Inside, two more Termaxians are overseeing the Forge. It's a huge pillar, molten orange liquid running through it like veins. One Termaxian, at a control board, moves levers to cause huge moulds to self-form into a Dwarf-shape before their eyes. They fill with liquid, STAMP, and out comes a newly forged Dworg! The other Termaxian welcomes them to the world.
- Hagan asks for Sydney to make their slime familiar form a phone so he can ring God.
- There is a brief moment where the slime pretends to be the Old Miner and tells Hagan to kill Sydney... but then the real Old Miner comes over the phone.
- After some bargaining, the Old Miner agrees to go up to space (all he wants is to survive, he says, and Hagan persuades him by saying that he'll live forever up there). If they create a god-shell for him, he'll upload to it and enter the heavens.

--- Consequences of Previous Actions, Heretofore Unrecognised
- It's time to let the Dworgs into Sydney's house to help mine out the Angel Metal they need to create a new god-shell! Sydney does so, and to his surprise a man-shape formed entirely of black ooze tips his ooze-hat to him at the entrance. Seems that the Old Miner has given sentience to ooze-men?
- It's going to take nearly 3 weeks to print out the God-Shell components in the Foundry, so they decide to just spend that time researching spells and staying out of trouble.
- They also discover some other standard template constructs that the Foundry can print. There's the God-Shell aka Seraphim, the famous ISBM that was once used to blow a God out of the sky, some sort of interstellar Transport Vessel, a Type A Slaughtergrid Automaton, and of course a Fate-style Ark City.
- Sydney gets their essence Reknit a few times by Aximander until their intelligence is a bit better, and they learn them some spells while the others relax and watch Friends reruns. It seems the ooze man's body was the charcoalified corpse of Qing Po. Hmmm.
- At any rate, after some weeks Sydney will have researched Escape Rope and Aximander will have learned Shackle to the Earth and Deathless. Not a bad run!

Total: 6000 exp

- Access to the Foundry!
- Scroll #6304 - Deathless
- Scroll #6240 - Shackle to the Earth
- Scroll #6383 - Blinding Beams
- Scroll # 6265 - Ulrich's Forceful Sigil

- A couple of Dworgs (150 exp)
Total: 150 exp

Exp Totals:
- Carter / Sydney, Level 8 Magic-User: 198890 (Level up at 288000)
- Kitty / Julian & Aximander, Level 7 Languid Wastrel: 111466 (Level up at 144000)
- George / Hagen the Heretic, Level 7 Dwarf: 87138 (Level up at 128000)
- Charles / Grog Greedy, Level 6 Inheritor: 43008 (Level up at 72000)

Tuesday 25 June 2024

Session 376 - Prime Rump

Date: 18 June

Moon: Waxing Gibbous
Zenith: Minerva

New Backstory:
- Rudolphus von Blitzenstrick fought a bully at university by the name of Heinrich von Poopenheimer. To everyone's surprise, Rudolphus won! +2 to hit vs higher level enemies


--- The Importance of Maps
- Our heroes are once more in the depths of Dwimmermount, after a near-miss last week where they were nearly locked forever in Sydney's extradimensional apartment.
- It's a familiar area, and thankfully Sydney has been keeping very good maps! It's the Azoth Cave level, and they've luckily dropped back in (courtesy of some shenanigans with Gifflewim and a teleport bead) right near the way down to the prison level.
- Sydney is on it! They guide the team round the corner, through the cavern with the sobbing cavewomen (and one very tired caveman) and to the heretofore unexplored stairs up to the Manufactory.

--- Gimik the Mimic
- The ascend the stairs and come to an entry chamber. The floor has a circuitboard pattern carved into it, running with silver.
- There are two statues flanking the door on the other side - one a human woman, one a double-wide Terran woman. Also, in the middle of the chamber, a treasure chest full of gold!
- Everyone is immediately suspicious, and that suspicion is immediately justified when the chest talks back! It is indeed a Mimic, calling itself Gimik. Grog approaches and when the Mimic tries to attack, he simply sits on it with his callipygian rump!
- Gimic surrenders and agrees to work for gold and "debt tattoos on the blockchain", joining the rearguard of the party under Grog's employ. 
- Rudolphus, meanwhile, attempts to talk to the statues. While clearly animate, they are tight-lipped. Razylymvaer, the dragon-mind that's also encamped within Sydney's head, reckons that they are statues of Babylon Snels before and after being given a Terran body. They probably guard the way down, so entering is fine.

--- Alcoves
- They pass the statues and continue down a long corridor. Regular alcoves contain black plinths with nothing on them, except for a pair that show a before-and-after of Terms Termax as first a cool wizard, and then a head in a jar on a roboskeleton body.
- They listen at doors, but eventually decide to follow the lines of circuitry towards the north.

--- Dust Dwarf!
- They open the door to find a circular room with a sagging muddy Dwarf-shaped creature turning towards them. Rudolphus approaches to talk to it, and gets punched in the mouth! It tries to reach down his throat!
- Sydney surmises that this is a Dwarf without the gems that give it shape, and lobs a gem towards it. The soil-dwarf snatches it out of the air and is granted a rudimentary voice! It declares that it NEEDS MORE GEMS!
- Aximander cracks the air with a Beam Fire rune overhead, and it punches Rudolphus straight in the groin! He doubles over, and just then Grog feels a sticky tentacle at his back! It's Gimik the Mimic, apologising for its nature while also trying to devour Grog from behind! "He's eating my aaasss!" shrieks Grog!
- It's a two-front fight now, dusty Dwarf monster from the front, Mimic from the back, the party trapped between!
- The Mimic overwhelms Grog and he's down too! He shrieks, flailing at the sticky mimic tentacles, and is badly burned by the acid!
- Sydney tries to lure away the Dwarf monster with gems, and when that fails they try a Magic Missile... which goes awry! Instead of killing the earth Dwarf it sucks a whole bunch of its earthy body towards Sydney, making Sydney grow far taller and making the Dwarf far smaller!
- Divinity's magic weapon is dealing big hits to the earth Dwarf, while others' attacks do little.
- Grog's skin begins to melt. He has deep tissue burns across his whole body, the mimic is digesting him alive!
- Hagan drinks a potion, hoping for something cool. He is filled with hope! Seeing Grog in trouble he does the most obvious thing... try to tempt it over to him with his dumptruck ass! Divinity assists, using her Unbuckling Sceptre to make Hagan's trousers fall down!

- It's too much for the buttock-obsessed mimic, who immediately leaves the (burned, bleeding, near-death) Grog and pounces towards Hagan's prime rump!
- Sydney tries another Magic Missile but this chaos bursts too... to great effect! The power of the Missile is doubled! The ensmallified Earth Dwarf is annihilated in a storm of dirt-enhanced shards formed from its former clay-flesh!
- Rudolphus staggers to his feet, looks Gimik the Mimic dead in the gem-eye, and says "I'm going to make a withdrawal". He strikes hard, and the Mimic collapses into melty looking treasure chest.

--- Grog Feasts
- Grog himself has collapsed into the pile of fleshy muddy ooze that makes up the true form of an Inheritor. Only his massive forehead protrudes from the mire. 
- They dump the Mimic's body onto Grog, who immediately begins to consume it. He heals, of course, but also absorbs a new ability - the Mimic's stickiness! He can now Wrestle like a Mimic, and has a constant sticky film all over his whole body.
- While they wait for the demonic digestion to finish, they poke around the room a bit. Lo and behold, a hidden hatch! They peer beneath and hear voices. One is wheedling, the other is laughing.

--- Dark Bargain
- They follow the voices and come to another room, this containing a big circular summoning circle containing a huge red demon! Before the demon is a wizard in circuitboard-design robes. Even his skin seems to have a circuitboard pattern beginning to form...
- The party approach civilly, with Rudolpho as the face. The wizard is called Roland McDoland and he seeks the demon's help to get to the Great Machine on this dungeon level. The demon, Draunanon, is driving a hard bargain for this. He himself wants to stay on this plane rather than getting dragged back into the Chaos realm.
- Deals are made. The party will help Roland get to the Great Machine (since they're going anyway). He tells them that he's met these Red Elves and seeks the Great Machine to find a way to shoot down their Red Moon. He also tells them that he's been fleeing crazy metal robo-Dwarfs who protect the Great Machine!
- In a separate deal Draunanon will become new skin for Grog...? In exchange, the demon only asks for a favour to be exacted in the future. At least Grog has skin for now! He's completely red, similar to when Aximander is at full power. Red skin buddies!

--- We Are the Dworg
- With all that under control, they try the only other exit and find a similar hatch upwards. Peeking through, they hear robo-Dwarfs talking in regular English, not a Dwarf language. It transpires that they're doing this in case their bosses are listening.
- As it happens, they're also all facing the other way.
- Too bad, bots! Sydney is here! He Mind Switches with one of the robots! Except Sydney's mind doesn't switch? Oh no, the dragon-mind of Razylymvaer has been swapped in! The robo-mind is in with Sydney now, and extremely confused! It tries to use his body to no avail.
- Dragon-Robot runs away down the corridor, cackling because he is FREEE! The other robots give chase, leaving our heroes alone for now...

Total: 8000 exp

- 50gp (2500 exp)
- 200sp (200 exp)
- Demon skin
Total: 2700 exp

- A dusty half-formed Earth-Dwarf (1000 exp)
- Gimik the Mimic (750 exp)
- Several robo-dwarfs. (300 exp)
Total: 2050 exp

Exp Calc:
- Carter / Sydney, Level 8 Magic-User: 197352 (Level up at 288000)
- Kitty / Julian & Aximander, Level 7 Languid Wastrel: 109928 (Level up at 144000)
- George / Hagen the Heretic, Level 7 Dwarf: 85600 (Level up at 128000)
- Ollie / Divinity, Level 6 Battle-Cleric (Fighter 3/ Cleric 3): 57288 (Level up at 72000)
- Charles / Grog Greedy, Level 6 Inheritor: 41470 (Level up at 72000)
- Tim / Rudolphus Von, Level 3 Specialist: 4270 (Level up at 7000)
Level Up! +1d6 HP! +2 Skill Points! +1 to Saves! +Backstory!

Tuesday 18 June 2024

Session 375 - Djinn in a Tin

Date: 28 May

Moon: Waning Gibbous
Zenith: Eris

New Characters:
- Rudolphus Von, a failed Shaman of Light, now an expert archivist.

New Backstory:
- Grog Greedy, everyone's favourite long-foreheaded caveman, was born under an omen of DOOOM! It was a comet that heralded the ice age, freezing Grogg into the ice for millenia. When another character dies, gain +1HD of health for the rest of the session.
- Julian did something reckless and impressive - painting a cursed painting! While it very much impressed his fellow artists, it was ultimately his undoing, bringing Aximander into his body! We haven't seen Julian in a while... +1 to Dex score.
- Hagan received great advice from his mentor Andromeda the Vampire - never dig too greedily or too deep. Alas, he understood too late, since the party is now about as deep as you can get... +1 to Wis score.


--- Guardian Confusion
- It's the night of the New Moon and even this far down below the Earth, Aximander feels its pull. He's at full power and high level, his skin is a deep dark red and his long tongue twists from his distensible jaws.
- The others find this perfectly normal, it's just how you can tell when it's a full moon. Also perfectly normal - meeting a new character in the depths of a megadungeon and thinking that they're trustworthy! Meet Rudolphus, researcher!
- In front of them is the entrance to the final depth of Dwimmermount - an enormous geode big enough to contain a city! A wide boulevard goes off into the distance, the grand buildings around it all angular and strange in a variety of styles and materials.

- There are also a couple of huge statues of Dwarves guarding the entrance, which (naturally) come alive when approached! The magical among the party can feel them draining Chaos from the air around them.
- Hagan approaches, he can understand Terran. It's an archaic proto-Dwarvish. Rudolphus can too! He's down here to study it after all!
- Hagan reveals his credentials - a Dwarf with a Brooch of the Terrans. But confusingly he has the stamp of Terms Termax on his hand! The statues are confused until he reveals the tattoo of the Old Miner's inverted hammer on his chest! They let him through.
- The others blag their way through too, confusing the statues until they insist on taking a break to confer. In the mean time, the party runs deeper!

--- Lose Your Mind
- Hagan feels a pull towards a flat-topped building ahead, but Sydney can't help but check out a nearby building. Inside the floor is a sort of hydroponic setup for crystals. There's also an ominous thrumming from a spreading crack in the wall... and visible brain matter?

- A tendril-hand emerges from the crack and a giant brain on legs made from twined threads emerges! It looks like it shouldn't fit, yet it does! Sydney backtracks, leaving Rudolphus to get pounced on by the big brain monster!
- Grogg pulls him out of the way just in time, and a big spiraling hole opens in the middle of the brain. A search-beam seeks out a target - zoning in on Aximander's forehead! The Elf leaps out of the firing line, and the disappointed brain beast scuttles back into the building, mewling.
- Sydney asks Razylymvaer, the dragon-father who now lives in their mind, what the hell that was! The dragon answers that he doesn't know its name, but it knows that Halflings evolved from them!
- The party is struck by the DEEP LORE and realises those brain-eating Halflings they faced in the dungeon levels above were probably an evolutionary stage between brain monster and modern Halflings!

--- The Revelation of Hagan
- Hagan feels the tugging of his beard leading them on. The brain monster stalks the party from the windows of the buildings they pass, but doesn't attack again.
- They reach the flat-roofed building. Up close it is clearly fortified, all the windows are on higher floors. Nevertheless, Hagan knocks.
- The door soon opens and lo! It is a Terran who names himself Vidaro! Hagan reveals his confusing clash of marks, the Old Miner tattoo and the Terms Termax stamp, and explains what happened in the upper level.
- Explanations aside, the Terrans refuse to let an impure Dwarf to see their God. Dwarves are a debased version of Terrans who inter-bred with humans, sullying their bloodline forever. The mechanics of how this inter-species lovemaking even occurred results in some debate amongst the party.
- Hagan is nearly stymied... but luckily Aximander is at full Elf ebb and uses his tricks to Fairy Godmother the Dwarf into a thick-limbed double-wide Terran! The priests are taken aback, he was merely hiding his true form!

--- The Old Miner Speaks!
- The Terran priests take the newly thickened Hagan through the hall of the building, and into a circular room at the heart of the place. Within, amongst ticking machinery, is a great cylindrical can containing a God.
- Vidaro directs Hagan to kneel on a metal prayer mat before the God, and to his awe the Old Miner speaks into his mind!
- The Old Miner celebrates Hagan's faith, but insults his debased body. It was the Old Miner who made the Terrans, and they betrayed him by sullying their souls with humans. However, for the faithful alone, he will place their mind into a Terran body. It must be a blank, either dead or new-formed, but He has the power to move minds!
- The Old Miner reveals that He is a composite mind, formed of all the Terrans who ascended in an earlier aeon in a far-flung solar system. Alas, after billions of years the Great Beast gestating in their planet finally cracked their world like an egg, throwing the Old Miner's geode mind into the cosmos until it finally hit a cooling Earth, infecting the newborn planet with Shub-Niggurath yet allowing the Old Miner to survive.
- Millenia later the geode ran out of material, and so He drilled a borehole out to allow his newly crafted Terrans to acquire more. That did not go great, all things considered.
- All He wants is to survive. He is not much bothered by the nonsense on the surface and the skies, having learnt His lesson about meddling outside of his borders.
- Hagan, filled with incredible new knowledge, gives the signal to Sydney.

--- You Wouldn't Steal a God
- Sydney steps out of the room, the other party members step in, and Sydney casts Sydney's Stolen Sanctum! The entire room is vanished and attached to their extradimensional flat!
- Those inside the room see it shiver and warp! Water floods in as the floor drops 10'! The Old Miner yells in confusion!
- Everyone else drops into the water, suddenly wet and heavy!
- Worse, some sort of underwater gremlins have spawned below! They swim out from a cave in the dark water and come in to attack!
- Vidaro, the Terran priest who was also in the room, draws a glyph on the air before him and creates an air bubble! He's now on the actual floor, underwater in a big old bubble.
- The others join the battle, and to everyone's surprise and amazement Rudolpho actually stops everything before it's even begun!
- Rudolpho speaks Scoblin too, it transpires, and he persuades the Scoblins to simmer down until everyone can work out just what happened here. Since they themselves just appeared, the Scoblins agree and swim back to their lair for now.

--- We Cannot Get Out
- Sydney, back in the geode, has missed all this. There are, however, a number of angry Terran priests behind him wondering what just happened to their God!
- They bug out, casting Sydney's Safe Space to warp back to the flat. There's one small issue.. the doorway only goes one way. You can enter the flat, but you cannot leave.
- Over in the Old Miner's newly shifted room, Hagan asks the Old Miner what the deal is here. He also lets the God briefly take his mind so the Old Miner gets filled in on what just happened.
- It transpires that the Geode is a reverse prison - it can be escaped by magical means, but cannot be entered. Long story short, they're stuck in the flat because the front door doesn't work any more.
- There's also the matter of a second Terran priest who came in when Sydney cast the spell to get back into their flat. Hagan smooths that out and leaves her to watch reruns of Friends, sitting next to a very charred corpse that has an explanation but little relevance to the current recap.
- The thing is, the problem remains. The spell ends when everyone's left the flat... but they can't leave. What to do?

--- Oh Hi Aximander
- Meanwhile, Aximander is in Neo-Spacedin. This is interesting because he was just in the extradimensional flat that nobody could leave.
- The new moon is high overhead and he's looking at a woman wearing broken bits of PS4 as jewellery. She's getting a lukewarm Hawaiian pizza out of the replicator inside the broken spaceship at the heart of the town.
- The woman turns and says "ah Aximander! Thank you! Do you have that crystal of infinite possibilities I asked for?"
- Aximander passes the crystal, and the woman hands him a bowl of pineapple chunks that have been picked off replicator pizza.
- Ahah! It was a jape! An Elf jape! The woman whisks off her image and reveals that he is Gifflewim! What a tricker! And naturally, the same sort of Languid Wastrel Elf as Aximander.
- They barter. Aximander wants Gifflewim to take one of these beads to a deep level of Dwimmermount. Gifflewim says he'll do it for a favour in kind. Dubious, but acceptable. They shake hands, stare up at the moon, and head off to do more dark deals in the dead of night.

--- Where Were You Aximander??
- In the morning, Aximander leaps gracefully through a window with lukewarm Hawaiian pizza and some beers, plus a roomba.
- The others are incredibly impressed by Elf bullshit.
- He explains the bead, crush this one in his hand and you teleport to that one that Gifflewim placed last night. Simple!
- Sydney takes the bead and crushes it, vanishing. Minutes later the front door to the flat opens. It worked! They're back on a lower level of Dwimmermount! What's more, they're surprisingly close to the Prison of Terms Termax that they were so worried about!

Total: 9000exp

- The Old Miner, now ensconced in Sydney's flat.
Total: Priceless and thus expereinceless

Enemies Defeated:
- Stone Golems, confuddled (2000 exp)
- A bunch of Scoblins (100 exp)
Total: 2100 exp

Exp Totals:
- Carter / Sydney, Level 8 Magic-User: 195202 (Level up at 288000)
- Kitty / Julian & Aximander, Level 7 Languid Wastrel: 107978 (Level up at 144000)
- George / Hagen the Heretic, Level 7 Dwarf: 83650 (Level up at 128000)
- Charles / Grogg Greedy, Level 6 Inheritor: 39520 (Level up at 72000)
- Tim / Rudolphus Von, Level 2 Specialist: 2320 (Level up at 3500)
Level Up! +1d6 HP! +2 Skill Points! +1 to Saves! +Backstory!

Tuesday 4 June 2024

Session 374 - Dragon Hoards!

 Date: 28 May

Moon: Waning Gibbous
Zenith: Eris


--- Lore Feast
- The party emerge refreshed from the extradimensional apartment into the caveman caverns below Dwimmermount. Those double-wide Dwarfs are still about, under the command of the Cosmog the emaciated ex-priest of the man-become-god Terms Termax.
- To their surprise, one of the Dwarves declares that he's originally from Salisburgh and was granted this long-lived Dwarf body as a reward from Terms Termax himself!
- The party have a classic decision - go up and find this Great Machine that's supposed to let Terms escape his prison, or go down in pursuit of LORE and the promise of meeting Terms' estranged lover Babylon Snels. They decide that down it is!

--- More Dragons Than You Can Shake a Dungeon At
- Unfortunately there's a whole family of wingless stone-skinned dwimmerdragons to get through if they want to reach the Deep City, and what's worse is they can smell the taint of Terms Termax on anyone who got stamped by a magical mouth on the prison level.
- Yes, they all got that stamp.
- Cosmog gives a rundown on the dragons. There's Dresseldrack (previously met) who smells like garlic. Handily this does cover up the smell of the stamp. Then there's Jarnabal, who due to complications with a Ravenous Zombie he ate one time is COMPLETELY mad until he's eaten a brain. Beyond him is Aryzmyr who is the youngest and vulnerable to flattery. Finally the big man patriarch himself Razylymvaerr who commands a whole volcanic zone and guards the stairs down.
- Oh hey and Cosmog's got a plan to deal with Terms Termax. See, if Eris ascends to the heavens it will lock Chaos out of the world and allow the Gods to control everything in perfect harmony. Terms Termax is planning to go up there instead and take control himself, granting limited magics to his followers. Cosmog's (admittedly half-baked) plan vis-à-vis Terms Termax is to install some kind of dead man's switch in Terms' angel metal body so that he can be controlled and prevented from reneging on his stated goals. Good right? Right...

--- Flattery Will Get You Anywhere
- The party set off, somewhat perturbed and fearful of the thing where consecutive nights in a dungeon make encounters more likely. They have spent a LOT of consecutive nights down here. It's fine for now though at least.
- Everyone puts on various potions and powders to get rid of the stink. Good thing Aximander's here and can change the perceptions of things. Instead of a dress into a ballgown, he turns tattoos into less stinky skin. Should work right?
- They follow the instructions and get to go straight to Aryzmyr's lair. The dwimmerdragon himself is stone-skinned and gem-encrusted, lying on a ledge and is indeed as vulnerable to blandishment as Cosmog said! Hagan and Grogg lay it on thick.
- He warns that his father will likely summon Jarnabal if he's even slightly suspicious of your motives, and Jarnabal can swim through stone.
- Aximander instead challenges Aryzmyr to a friendly duel. As it happens, Aryzmyr loves duels! He's even got a dojo at the back of the ledge! Let's do it!
- Alas for Aryzmyr, Aximander is a trickster. No sooner have they shaken hands (or at least grasped forelimbs), Aximander casts Reknit Essence and vanishes the dragon from this world! The dragon vanishes in a swirl of spaghettification to be made anew.
- Teehee, they gather up the loot! 100 gold pieces of Dwarven make, the Mountaintop Gauntlet that makes you ascend to the highest point of wherever you are so long as you're gripping something, the Moon Glaive which is more powerful under moonlight (and Hagan insists is not a glaive because it's a throwing disk not a polearm) and a long ladder woven from Dwarven beard hair. Not bad!
- They scarper before Arzymyr reappears.

--- Razylymvaerr's Bane
- They continue and come out into... what? A whole open-air area? This far down? Surely not!
- The sky burns with red stars that drip streams of magma across the scorched volcanic rock.
- The dragon himself peers down and laughs, his body covered in rich red rubies. He's huge, and has wings! The undersides shimmer with silver. He's beautiful.
- Hagan steps forth, declaring that he wishes to learn the ways of his ancestors. The Dragon laughs, but says that maybe Hagan still has a few drops of Terran blood in his veins after the years of interbreeding.
- Sydney basically calls bollocks on this whole open world area, it's defo an illusion. They cast Hallucinatory Terrain, the world shimmers... and something seems to snap! The illusion collapses, revealing Razylymvaerr to be somewhat less handsome, without working wings, at the end of a wide corridor, and set with lower quality rubies.
- Sydney summons a Sudden Siege Engine ballista and Grogg climbs aboard! As he's fired into battle, they hear a sound like spaghetti being unwound from somewhere behind them, and then Aryzmyr bellow "treachery!".

--- Get in the Dragon, Sydney!
- Grogg hits the Dragon and basically bounces off, albeit he manages to apply a bunch of Pain Poison to the dragon. Hagan follows up, misses, gets cold feet, and tries to escape into the nearby room. It's not just a room, it's a treasure room! 
- Taken aback by the riches, it's the only opening Razylymvaerr needs to follow and nearly bite him in half!
- It's suddenly a bit more dire than anyone expected. They need to do something drastic.
- Sydney nods to Aximander and charges in, spinning a fast-cast Mind Switch into creation! It nearly fails... then succeeds! Sydney IS the dragon! The dragon IS Sydney!
- Before Razylymvaerr can recover from this bizarre sequence of events, Aximander has slipped a ring onto Sydney's finger. There is a flash and Razylymvaerr-in-Sydney is a cat now. He struggles in vain.

--- I am Your Father
- Aryzmyr comes in at that moment, eyes flashing. Everyone else hides in the treasure room just in time! Aryzmyr looks good actually. He looks shrewd and moves with poise. Sydney is yet more shrewd, though, and tricks him into thinking it's still his dad in control of the dragon body! Aryzmyr leaves in a bit of a huff.
- The others cheer (quietly...) and loot the treasure room! There's a hoard of coins and gems, three sets of teleport beads, a pocketwatch that drops a corpse and turns you invisible when you're attacked, some potions, a scroll, and best of all a baby dwimmerdragon statue carved from jet black rock that acts like it's alive!
- Grogg is over the moon, there's never usually treasure when he's around!

--- Complications Arising From a Mind Switch
- Now there's just the question of what to do with this big dragon body Sydney's inside! They decide to scrape off those jewels for a start.
- This kills the dragon.
- Sydney is back in their body again. The only issue... so is Razylymvaerr! There was nowhere for his mind to go so it's in Sydney now. Brain roommates??
- Grogg devours the dragon corpse and steals its powers of illusion. I'm sure this will go well!
- Hagan checks out the long spiral borehole downwards. It's smooth, a long long ramp, like a huge screw. Good thing he's got that armour with wheels on it! He kneels and goes wheeeeeee!
- The others follow. When he reaches the bottom he sees glimmering lights over a crazy city built inside an enormous geode. The way is guarded by huge stone Dwarf statues. They have not moved yet though...
- The party collects themselves and has a quick meal break. There is a thrumming, deep singing, and a misty pearlescent haze of Azoth. They've finally reached it - the deepest point of Dwimmermount!

Total: 8000 exp

Enemies Defeated:
- Aryzmyr, spaghettified and tricked (1250 exp)
Razylymvaerr, mind-switched and murdered (1500 exp)
Total: 2750 exp

Treasures Looted:
- 1100gp (55 000 exp)
- 20000sp (20 000 exp)
- Bag o' Gems (5000 exp)
- Three sets of Teleport Beads
- Mountaintop Gauntlet
- Moon Glaive
- Dwarf Beard Rope Ladder
- Dead Ringer
- Jet Pet Dwimmerdragon (10 000 exp)
- Potion #147 - Growth
- Potion #285 - Bottle Imp
- Potion #27 - Overdose
- Scroll #6317 - Illusory Double
Total: 90 000 exp

Exp Totals:
- Carter / Sydney, Level 8 Magic-User: 192782 (Level up at 288000)
- Kitty / Julian & Aximander, Level 7 Languid Wastrel: 105658 (Level up at 144000)
- George / Hagen the Heretic, Level 7 Dwarf: 81330 (Level up at 128000)
Level Up! +1d10 HP! +1 to Saves! +Lorebond! +Backstory!
- Charles / Grogg Greedy, Level 6 Inheritor: 37200 (Level up at 72000)
Level Up! +1d6 HP! +1 to Saves! +1 Meat Point! +1 Mutation Cap! +Backstory!
Level Up! +1d6 HP! +1 to Saves! +1 Meat Point! +1 Mutation Cap! +Backstory!

Tuesday 21 May 2024

Session 373 - Terms Termax in a Trap!

Date: 30 April

Moon: Waxing Gibbous
Zenith: Alaunus


--- Emaciated Priests
- We rejoin our heroes deep in Dwimmermount. The walls and floor are classic dungeon, carved from the very stone of the mountain. They are gathered around a stone mouth carved in the wall which has stamped everyone (and their caveman minions) with the symbol of Terms Termax and given each person a chunky physical key.
- Aximander returns! The Elven wine he's been guzzling down for the past several weeks has, miraculously, healed his broken leg! He, too, puts his hand in the stone mouth and receives his stamp and key.
- They all continue down the corridor, hoping to find the fallen god Eris who was legendarily shot out of the sky by Terms Termax and secreted within Dwimmermount.
- But lo! Shapes emerge from the darkness! It's a set of emaciated priests in priestly robes marked with the cross-in-circle symbol of Terms Termax! When the party reveal their hand-stamps and keys, the priests brighten up and motion them to follow.
- They lead the party through a bunk room with more emaciated people and into a larger room with a desk. Behind the desk is another priest named Viator. It transpires that he (and the priests in general) will only talk to the Honoured Ones at the front of the party, not the Useless Ones in the second rank. They will, however, listen skeptically to those Useful Ones in the back ranks.
- They inform the party that Terms Termax is beyond the elaborate angel metal door, but imprisoned within a prison barrier that lets anyone enter but only lets Lawful creatures leave.
- They open the door and see the barrier, and also see that the whole area beyond is made of angel metal like the inside of the Seraphim they entered in the apocalypse. All shining brass and whirring gears, and of course a shimmering pearlescent barrier as promised.
- To test the barrier they send through a caveman. Indeed he cannot leave! He cries.

--- Terms Termax
- A huge clanking robot stomps into view, at its very centre is a head in a jar. It sees the stamp on the caveman's hand and greets it in every language at once, saying that its name is...
- Terms Termax!
- The other cavemen, enraptured, follow through the barrier. The true god!
- Sydney throws a bunch of huge frog legs through the barrier so they'll at least have something to eat. Terms Termax calls for a woman, Pericleia, similarly imprisoned, to gather the frog legs for him.
- Terms Termax rambles on about how he was trapped in here by his lover the "Whore of Babylon" who betrayed him, and he will reward anyone who frees him with mighty abilities.

--- Portal Experiments
- Grog slops a bunch of Portal Milk (from Christmas, long curdled) onto the barrier, and it opens a portal to the Milk Dimension! Alas, no way through, and they cannot even enter the milk dimension. It seems that no dimension-shifting, portal-making or other such magical nonsense will work in this area.
- They try to get a caveman to come back out, but despite charging with all its strength it ponks off the barrier and falls backwards, definitely a concussion.
- Aximander sticks the tip of his finger through the barrier and casts Reknit Essence on the fallen caveman. It works, but unfortunately reforms within the barrier. No way out that way.
- Aximander's finger is, however, stuck in the barrier and turning black since the blood can't come back out. He beseeches Terms Termax, who slices off the fingertip with a cigar chopper that he forms from his metal body. Aximander is free! But sans a fingertip.
- Sydney tries his Stolen Sanctum spell, hoping to steal the room despite the anti-extradimensional nature of the prison. It goes off... strangely. Using his slime familiar as a makeshift viewing portal, Sydney sees that a room has been added, but it's just a room in the shape of the room he tried to steal completely filled with angel metal!
- The others ask Terms Termax the full name of his betrayer, and he spits the name at them... God-Shall-Smite-Asunder-The-Whore-Of-Babylon Snels!
- The party is in shock. Isn't she meant to be a Dwarf? Is there a Dwarf in the Snels family line? She was certainly a Denialist!
- There is debate over whether they go up to the Great Machine which will turn off the barrier, or down to meet the Snels matriarch and find out more lore. Eventually they reach consensus - down it is!

- Backtrack to Go Forward
- They invite Viator into the party (he agrees as long as he can be in the honoured front rank) and head back up to find the way down. The prison is the lowest level, you see, but there's an even lower level if you find the right way down.
- They all head up, past the big stone dwarf golem which allows the Termax-branded party through, and back to the cavemen den. They inform the wives and children that the men are trapped in a magic prison due to following a false idol. They wail!
- Party don't care. They keep going. At the south end of the massive caveman cave they run into another group - this a host of eight double-wide Dwarves and their wizened leader Cosmog! Cosmog is a fellow wizened Termaxian priest, but he's extremely anti-Terms Termax and considers him a false idol. He and Viator have WORDS! They want to FIGHT!
- Sydney casts Reknit Essence on Viator to make him vanish for a few hours. They step forward to take Viator's place in the honoured front rank, and parleys with Cosmog.
- It turns out that a great rumbling about 24 years ago allowed him to escape, and he's been plotting to defeat Terms Termax ever since! These double-wide Dwarves were to help him with that!
- They allow the party to camp out with them and the cavemen, who donate some big chunky cave crickets for dinner.
- Grog uses them to cook up "Grogg's 'Famous' Drunk Cricket Porridge" by combining them with stale beer and giant millet. It's tasty!
- Everyone rests up and gets ready for the next descent...

Total: 5000 exp

Foes Defeated:
- Viator, technically. (1000 exp)
Total: 1000 exp

Exp Totals:
- Carter / Sydney, Level 8 Magic-User: 167594 (Level up at 288000)
- Kitty / Julian & Aximander, Level 7 Languid Wastrel: 80470 (Level up at 144000)
- George / Hagen the Heretic, Level 6 Dwarf: 56142 (Level up at 64000)
- Ollie / Divinity, Level 6 Battle-Cleric (Fighter 3/ Cleric 3): 55338 (Level up at 72000)
- Charles / Grogg Greedy, Level 4 Inheritor: 12012 (Level up at 18000)