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  1. - Top - End - #241
    Titan in the Playground
     
    RaggedAngel's Avatar

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    Maekrix peers in the direction that Galwaith points, and he tightens his pack. "If that isn't a shelter, then we need to move quickly. I can get to the hill more quickly in the air; I'll determine if it is shelter, and I will give you a positive or negative sign. If it is not, then we all need to start running away from that storm." He takes a few swift strides away from the others, and then leaps into the air in a small explosion of sand and dust. His massive wings beat for a moment, and it strikes you that his muscular form should not be supported by his wings, despite their size.

    Just as a dragon will rise, however, he moves into the air swiftly, and he flies towards the hill with powerful strokes. After about half a minute he begins to glide, and once he is near the hill he begins to look for any gap or opening in the rocks and hill. He wheels around the hill in the air a few times, making sure to view it from every angle. The whole affair takes about a minute.
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  2. - Top - End - #242
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Galathir's Avatar

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    You soar over the small rise and at the first pass, you see nothing but a few rocky spurs and the sheer wall of a small outcropping. Upon second glance though, you notice that hidden among a few sickly looking shrubs is a small opening in the outcropping. Almost invisible save for the shadow of its opening, a closer look reveals a rather sizeable entrance that looks large enough to shelter the party, if not comfortably, then at least safely. The deep shadows and cover from the shrubs prevents you from seeing how far it reaches back, but it's better then nothing.
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  3. - Top - End - #243
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    Maekrix glides for a moment, and then beats wing as fast as he can back to the others. He calls out the them as he flies; "The hill has a cave! Come quickly!" Once he's close enough to be clearly visible he holds out a hand, and he waves them towards the hill and he takes a wide bank, turning back towards it himself. He makes sure that they have seen him and begun to follow him before slowing his pace and gliding to the ground. He hits the ground in a blast of sand, and he begins to run towards the hill after taking only a moment to catch his breath.
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  4. - Top - End - #244
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Sanfeng grumbles at Vinto's expenditure of arcane energy, "That's hardly necessary."

    The orc wanders in Maekrix's shadow. As the dragonborn signals the cave ahead, he huffs and turns to the marching procession.

    "If we can keep moving..." he begins, but, cognizant of the party's flagging stamina, resigns himself to the pit stop.
    A post about nothing.

  5. - Top - End - #245
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Galathir's Avatar

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    You stop for a quick breather and then, with the combination of Sanfeng's urging and the ominous storm front heading in your direction, you dig your feet into the grit underneath and make the final push towards safety.

    As the way slopes upwards, your feet slip in the loose sand making the effort twice as exhausting as it would otherwise be. You soon stand atop the rocky hill and half walking, half sliding, you make your way down the side of the outcrop and find yourself at the bottom of the rock wall. The top stands perhaps double Sanfeng's height, and at the bottom is a yawning opening large enough to comfortably walk through. The bright light of the surrounding desert is held in check by the shadow of the rock, but you can see perhaps fifteen feet into the cave. Although the outside appears natural, the stonework inside certainly bears the mark of design and hard work. At one time, perhaps the entrance was also carefully crafted, but untold years of eroding sands has worn it down to bare rock. Just a few feet inside, however, the sides of the cave are nearly straight and smoothly finished. Narrow stone pilasters decorate the walls every few feet and they are all topped with fancifully carved volutes. There is a faint flow of air coming from the mouth of the cave; still dry as the rest of the desert, but refreshingly cool as if its source lay deep underground. Sand has drifted over the floor for several yards, and there are no marks of entry or exit by any other creatures.
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  6. - Top - End - #246
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Alwynn smiles at the cave as he steps in and places his heavy backpack on the floor.
    "How lovely!"
    He goes deeper into the cave, his flourescent blue eyes piercing the shadows.
    "I wonder how deep it is..."
    He pauses as though a thought just occurred to him, and draws a symbol on his chest before continuing to explore.

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    Protection from Evil

  7. - Top - End - #247
    Titan in the Playground
     
    RaggedAngel's Avatar

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    Maekrix slips inside the cave carefully, making sure not to let the rough outer walls catch his wings. He also takes care with his ranseur, holding it closely to prevent it from striking anyone or anything accidentally. Once he is inside the smoothly carved walls, he relaxes a bit. "This is interesting; I wouldn't have thought to find anything manufactured out here. Well, might as well bring some light into this place. I don't recommend you go any further than the lights have gone, to be safe." He makes some quick gestures with his right hand, and mutters a few old draconic words under his breath. There is a flash, and five globes of light as bright as torches fly out of his upturned hand. He makes another gesture, and they begins moving down the passageway quickly, brightly illuminating anything they pass.
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  8. - Top - End - #248
    Colossus in the Playground
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    "Gah!" Alwynn shields his eyes from the glare and squints. "Ouch."
    He pokes his way down into the cave, staff at the ready.

  9. - Top - End - #249
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    Vinto coughs, and blows his nose. "I should've covered my face, but your scarf was far to lovely to be ruined by some lousy weather," he calls to Alwynn. After a bit more sputtering, he settles down and drinks some light ale from his mug. It was quite watery, which was wonderful, as far as he was concerned at the moment. "Is anyone else in need?" he asks, perhaps a bit hopefully. He didn't know what skills the Dragon thought he could bring to this venture. He wasn't an explorer or a pathfinder, or a fighter. He was a traveler, granted, but his roads were solid roads, and had frequent inns in which to stop along them; perhaps if he was feeling adventurous, a night in the woods would remind him of their comforts.

    "I miss home," he says, as his mind wanders.

  10. - Top - End - #250
    Orc in the Playground
     
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    Galwaith slips to the side, and slumps down against the wall, resting his back against the smooth (relatively) cool worked stone. He slowly peels off the covering over his face with weary arms, revealing the odd sight of a face half tanned brown, and the top a dusty glittery white. He wipes his brow with the cloth and sighs in relief. "Well, that was quite the adventure. I must say, I think my legs fell off about a mile back, and were replaced with wooden stumps. I don't think I can move them any more." He gazes with hungry eyes at Vinto's foaming mug. "My dear chap, I am beyond need. I am famished and my throat is parched with a dryness rivalled only by the seventh layer of hell! A single quenching sip of your divine refreshment will gain you a servant for life!"

    Outside the entrance, the wind begins to pick up; wavy riffles of sand form ever-changing eddies that weave their sinuous lines across the desert floor. The air outside takes on a caustically astringent and pungent odour warning of the storm to come. The clouds converging overhead darken the scene outside, giving greater contrast to the glowing orbs conjured by Maekrix. They float gently down the corridor, shedding their light on walls that have remained in darkness for countless years. As they pass down the hall, the shadows cast by the pilasters lengthen and reach towards you like the filmy fingers of some long departed spirit clutching at the last dim gleam of light from the open entrance of the cave . . . and then it slips out of sight, the shadows blurring into one uniform shade of dusk.

    About fifty feet down the hall, which slopes gently downhill, the light reveals another wall and two shadows of what seem to be passageways heading off to the left and the right. Those of you with sharp vision can see a pair of sconces holding torches of some kind of light coloured wood or other material.
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  11. - Top - End - #251
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Alwynn smiles at Vinto. "That's sweet. Silly, but sweet."
    He pops a lemon drop in his mouth to help generate saliva again, and follows the glowing balls down the corridor. He calls back to the others about the two passage ways, and takes out his packet of tindertwigs. He strikes on and lights the torches.

  12. - Top - End - #252
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    Vinto manages not to dump a couple gallons of water all over Galwaith as he goes about his theatrics, pulling up water from cracks in the stone. It hovers for a bit, before filling his cup, which he hands over.

    "Careful of shamblers and bogeymen down there; my mother always used to joke about such things to scare us, but after the Mazurewicks..." he trails off.

  13. - Top - End - #253
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    Sanfeng stands before the mounted torches, pondering their choice of retreat.

    "I thought you..." Brut grasps for a common thread amongst the lowlanders, "Robin-followers lived in needle cities. Who lives in caves but beasts or bandits?"
    A post about nothing.

  14. - Top - End - #254
    Orc in the Playground
     
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    Galwaith gratefully gulps down the proffered water and then returns the mug to Vinto. "My, that was quite refreshing. Wait, where is everyone going? Oh fine, wait up for me."

    He groans as he forces himself upright, and then walks down the hallway to join everyone. The twin torches, although quite old, have caught quickly and despite some sputtering and spicy-smelling wisps of smoke, they burn with a cheerful glow sending flickering shadows down both passages. The one on the left descends downwards about twenty-five feet before it is blocked by a sloped wall of sand, apparently fallen through in some kind of collapse. There seems to be a doorway of some kind but it is mostly covered by the sand. The other passage continues for thirty feet and ends in a door.
    Last edited by Galathir; 2011-07-14 at 08:27 AM.
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  15. - Top - End - #255
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    Maekrix sighs as he sees the hallways spread down to two doors. He tightens his pack, and holds his wings closely to his body. It isn't exactly uncomfortable to hold them like that, but he much prefers to have the spread at least a little, and the displeasure shows on his face. Even in the dim light he gently glows, and the flickering torches shine off of his platinum scales. "I hate dungeons and tombs. They serve as hiding holes for villains and wretches, they serve as breeding grounds for aberrations and monsters, and I will admit, I am far more comfortable under the open sky."

    He smiles a bit, and taps his ranseur on the ground. "That said, they often contain useful objects and treasures, and I have too much dragon in my blood to deny that I have an unfortunate fondness for gold. No one is perfect, I suppose, and I attempt to recognise all my flaws." He looks down the doors, thinking for a moment, and then he moves his right hand in a flurry of intricate gestures. It seems as if his armor should inhibit him, but Maekrix has obviously taught himself to deal with it's minor encumbrance. There is a dim flash of power, and the air in front of him warps, as if a great dollop of perfect glass had been poured out in front of him in the shape of a tower shield.

    After a moment, the warping fades, and Maekrix nods in satisfaction. "I've recently learned to extend the duration of all of my abjuration spells, so that should last a little more than half an hour. I'd love to give one to all of you, but I'm not sure how." He gestures vaguely towards the door at the end of the hallway. "Are any of you trapfinders? I could just blast it down or bash it in, but I think a subtler approach would be wiser."
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  16. - Top - End - #256
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Alwynn smiles cheekily at the draconian fellow.
    "Wouldn't it be more polite to knock?" He raises a fist as though to do so.

    (I imagine this to be at the clear door, by the way)

  17. - Top - End - #257
    Orc in the Playground
     
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    "I can't imagine that anyone still lives here. This ruin has probably been abandoned for hundreds of years."
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  18. - Top - End - #258
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Alwynn strokes his beard, then leans in to listen at the door.

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    Perception check: (1d20+6)[11]

  19. - Top - End - #259
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Galathir's Avatar

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    You listen attentively, but hear nothing beyond the door.
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  20. - Top - End - #260
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    "Would you like me to check it out magically?" Vinto offers.

  21. - Top - End - #261
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Alwynn shrugs. "If you like, though I'm all for a polite knock."

  22. - Top - End - #262
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    Maekrix sighs, gripping his ranseur tightly in frustration. As much as he would like to destroy the damned door, he restrains himself, though not without visible effort. "In the absence of any real trapfinding, I'm fine with knocking." He steps forwards, looks to the others for consent, and then he strikes the door firmly with the end of his ranseur three times. "Is anyone there? We were seeking shelter from the storm, and we wanted to ensure that any residents of this hill were not hostile."

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    The ranseur has reach, so he's five feet away. I figured that was the best solution, other than simply hitting the lock with a Lesser Orb of Acid.
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  23. - Top - End - #263
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    Vinto detects for evil, just in case.

  24. - Top - End - #264
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    Sanfeng lingers at the back of the procession. He watches the curious lowlanders prod the cave's far end.

    "If exploring this tomb will put you all to rest, then hurry."

    The orc steps to the front and yanks the sand-buried door open.
    A post about nothing.

  25. - Top - End - #265
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Galathir's Avatar

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    The dusty silence of the ancient caverns is broken by three sharp cracks from Maekrix's ranseur. The door, despite its age, is still solid; no doubt preserved by the dry atmosphere. The three knocks resound in hollow echoes from whatever lies behind the doorway. The slight hesitation before the echo reaches you seems to indicate that a rather large room lies beyond it. The sound is quickly smothered into quiet and other then the faint exhalations of your breath, nothing is to be heard. No residents give you welcome, either friendly or hostile and if there are indeed inhabitants, they are keeping themselves well hidden.

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    Vinto
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    You do not detect anything

    And, pardon me if I'm mistaken, but my impression was that you were at the door to the right, the one not mostly covered in sand. The other one is about 90% buried, and would require a bit of excavation before it could be opened. It doesn't matter to me either way, I just wanted to get it cleared up before you go any further.
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  26. - Top - End - #266
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    Maekrix looks to the others, attempting to judge their reactions to the sound from the room beyond. It seemed that the hill contained far more than they could have suspected. He wondered, for a moment, if it was wise to continue; indeed, he felt a small voice in the back of his head telling him to get a night's rest, wait for the storm to pass, and then leave and never look back. That voice, however, was quickly quenched by the voice of the dragon withing him. "I'm going to try to muscle this open; that said, it will only take a small amount of my availible magic to simply blast it open. Give me a moment, but be ready if something's in there, like a swarm of eldritch horrors who have waited thousands of years to be freed, and who are now preparing to teleport across the world the moment I open this door." He speaks with a bit of humor in his voice, but there is a small hint of fear in the paladin's eyes. It seems that his choice to focus on his sorcerous power has indeed weakened him in some regards; as it is well-known that even moderately experienced paladins do not feel fear.

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    Strength checks: (1d20+3)[9] (1d20+3)[18] (1d20+3)[18]
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  27. - Top - End - #267
    Orc in the Playground
     
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    Maekrix pounds on the door with three well placed blows, and on the third one, the timbers shatter, leaving a pile of splintery wreckage lying on the floor. A waft of stale lifeless air flows out of the room. Your light reveals a large room on the other side of the doorway, perhaps 60 feet long, and 40 feet wide. Six large stone sarcophagi are set it pairs down the centre of the room, and small rectangular openings line the walls, each about two feet high and six feet long. At the very far end of the room there is some kind of raised platform with some small items on it.
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  28. - Top - End - #268
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    Ruh-Roh! My Scooby senses are tingling! Let's get some Know: Relig, Know: Arcana rolls in here. (1d20+7)[24], (1d20+7)[17]

  29. - Top - End - #269
    Orc in the Playground
     
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    You easily recognize the chamber as some kind of crypt. The small platform at the other end is probably a reliquary or something similar but you are not aware of any further significance. There does not appear to be any arcane symbols, creations, devices, or other items of significance.
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  30. - Top - End - #270
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    "Perhaps we should let the dead rest in peace," Vinto suggests. "They've done their part in this life already - we'll take-part of the shelter their grave provides, but I think we should show our respect by tidying up before we go..."

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