More empty rooms. The barracks within the Eye of the All-Father were as giant-size as everything else, but also completely barren. I poked my head into one of the side bedrooms while Bryseis darted further into the receding darkness of the long hallway.
As I turned to leave the ground began to shake. I heard Bryseis make a startled sound and saw glimpses of her running, followed by the brimstone poof of her Misty Step.
That’s all I saw before the open doorway in front of me suddenly became a solid stone wall, as if there had never been an opening.
“Uh, guys?” I called out, my voice echoing off my newly sealed tomb.
The rumbling grew louder and louder, as did the shouts and screams of my friends. I took a few steps back as something large rolled by, violently shaking the ground. I pressed my head up against the stone, heart beating rapidly as I listened for the sickening crunch of bone.
It never came. The rumbling began again, but this time slower and more rhythmic. As it passed by once again the stone wall magically melded back into the sides. I raced outside. To my left I saw a massive stone boulder rolling back into the darkness. To my right I could make out the prone forms of Bryseis and Halfred panting, with a wild look in their eyes. But they were alive.
This week we finished our battle with the giants, and delved further inside the Eye of the All-Father temple.
The battle with the giants continued to prove painful and tricky. Halfred’s Fog Cloud was saving us from a barrage of rocks from the other stone giant, but it also stymied our ability to hit the ones inside the cloud.
The Frost Giant mage, called an Ice Caller, let loose with an explosive ice blast, slicing into most of the party, though everyone was able to hold on to their concentration spells.
We swiftly retaliated, surrounding him and attacking with Bryseis-Rex chomps, Halfred’s arrows, and a blast of lightning from Korinn. Halfred dropped the Fog Cloud and we moved on the final Frost Giant and his pet wyrmling, finally helping Harshnag with his protracted battle.
Meanwhile that stone giant I had cast Fear on earlier had been lurking in the shadows of the elevated section to the north. As the Fog Cloud dropped the rocks started coming. Thankfully we were out of his ideal range, and lucked out with some bad Disadvantage rolls by the DM.
Flying Halfred and Bryseis-Rex tried to go after him by scaling the ledge, but he began fleeing toward the entrance to warn that full ship of frost Giants docked outside.
We definitely couldn’t let that happen. Harshnag surged after him, and I hopped on for a ride. I leapt off and dramatically cast Compelled Duel to force him to stay.
He resisted. Stupid wise stone giants! Harshnag then pulled out a rock and flung it at the stone giant’s head, downing him. Ah well, that works too.
We were hurting badly and drained of spell slots, but we couldn’t afford a full 8 hour long rest in such a dangerous spot. We were on the clock with those other giants, and needed to get our information from the oracle quickly.
We opted for a Short Rest, and Halfred found a Brooch of Shielding on the Frost Giant mage, along with a bunch of random goofy giant loot that we really couldn’t take.
The door to the temple was frozen shut, so Harshnag suggested we explore the outer areas.
Halfred could slip through some bars in the Northeast to arrive in the main room, noting that all the ice was built up on the door on the other side. The others located a large switch in a featureless square room, discovering that it lowered the giant stone blocks in the ceiling we’d seen earlier. We essentially sealed ourselves inside.
The frozen door was a bit of a problem, so Korinn pulled our her runic horn of blasting and let loose. The ice cracked slightly and the doors parted by about a foot. She and I unleashed our cantrips of lightning and force blasts, violently spitting the ice apart until we cleared a path.
Inside was a massive chamber. A gigantic statue of Anam, the All-Father of the giants, was surrounded by six slightly smaller, but still giant-sized statues, representing each of the giant races. Pedestals lie before them. We needed to place our collected Ostorian relics in their correct places.
We’d taken notes of what the various rune symbols meant, particularly from what we learned in the puzzle-filled Cloud Giant Library. We were able to identify most of our runic items, such as Korinn’s horn for the Storm Giants, and T.I.M.’s orb for the Stone Giants.
As we placed them correctly their pedestals glowed, as well as the weapons being held by each giant, as if offering them out to us. The DM informed us that two of the weapons were missing.
When placing our items we were given a choice: get our rune item back, or sacrifice the item to receive a permanent stat boost. We had no way of knowing which stat would be boosted. Each giant offered a different boon.
Everyone save Korinn ended up taking this offer. None of us were particularly impressed by our relics, and sadly none of us ever actually used their abilities to imbue them onto another piece of armor (T.I.M.’s would have been far more useful, instead of forgotten). Due to the attunement limit in D&D 5e, if you don’t like a magic item, it’s best to just drop it, and what better method than trading it for a stat boost?
We were embarrassingly stymied when the arch runes began glowing, but we were unable to walk through, slamming into a stone wall. Harshnag (AKA the DM) picked up one of the glowing weapons and touched the runes on the arch, transferring the magic into the rune, where it glowed. The weapons were the key, which was bad because two of the weapons were missing. We needed to explore the temple.
We went north into the barracks. This was a weird map, very big but very empty. Korinn took some stairs to find a grizzly sight: a long-decayed giant body. But in a nearby sack lay the giant club, one of the missing weapons. Harshnag was happy to be our packmule.
The rest of us explored the long, empty hallway that stretched even further north. I went into an empty bedroom, while Bryseis ran forward as the rest ambled along the hallway. Bryseis suddenly gave a yelp and began running back toward us – and Misty Stepping, as the entire area began to shake.
Stone slabs melded into the doorways of the bedrooms, trapping me inside, and creating a perfect deathtrap hallway for the rolling boulder that came barreling down. Everyone in the hallway – Halfred, Bryseis, and T.I.M. had to make a DC 12 DEX saving throw to avoid the terrifying 62 damage trap.
Thankfully it was an all or nothing save, and everyone made it! Afterward the boulder slowly rolled its way back up, and the bedroom stone doors slid back open. This place may be empty but it’s still dangerous as hell, and we still had one more weapon to find.