The 30-ft tall queen of the cloud giants strode into the room, carrying all the haughty annoyance that I had expected. She stopped, her mouth practically hanging open as she surveyed us standing there, our hippogriffs nervously pawing at the ground behind us.
I took a deep breath and bowed deeply with all the respectful flourish I could muster.
“Your majesty,” I began. My mind was spinning. We were conch inspectors – no – we were hunting that foul group who just made off with her dragon. And stole all the treasure from her study! Those rascals. We’d catch them for sure.
But we still needed that shell, and only she could summon it. Behind us Cressaro spoke up in a monotone that made me smile: “It is of the utmost importance that we retrieve the shell.” He was still under my influence.
I then offered to give her what she wanted – the location of some ancient dragon magic. The Countess began to slowly lower her guard.
I was on a roll as she retrieved the magical chest, spoke the words, and brought forth the shell. “Tell it to me now,” she demanded, while holding the shell.
Before I could speak I felt my spell dissipate from Cressaro, its command full-filled. I instantly reached out with my mind to warn the others around me, starting with nearby T.I.M. <GRAB THE SHELL> I screamed into his mind.
Somehow the enlarged construct gracefully leapt forward and gingerly snatched the shell from her hand. Then the room exploded.
Storm King’s Thunder has been mostly bereft of large-scale dungeons, making it almost the complete opposite of our previous campaign. It’s ironic that when we finally reach a big dungeon, we skip almost all of the content.
Yet Lyn Armaal still took us a solid four sessions to get through, thanks to complex planning and strategy. We turned it into a heist mission, a rescue mission, and finally some hilarious diplomacy as we meet with Countess Sansuri, acquire the magical conch shell of teleportation, and get the hell out of dodge.
Having successfully and daringly rescued Felgolos last week, we regrouped back in the Countess’ personal tower. Our only plan was that another Cloud Giant, Cressaro, was still under Kazin’s Suggestion spell to bring the Countess to us. We needed her to magically retrieve the conch shell she had hidden on the ethereal plane.
We spent some time coming up with increasingly wild plans until the Countess arrived with some guards and her giant cat. She made it up to the bedroom where we all waited, including Felgolos and our hippogriffs. We were quite the sight, and Kazin launched into the biggest bullshitter persona of his career.
The CHA dice rolls were on fire as Kazin pretended he and his crew were hunting the others who snatched the dragon from her, as well as blaming them for smashing up and stealing all the magical things from her study. This was a hilariously amazing sequence and I enjoyed channeling my inner Star-Lord.
My plan was to trade the information Sansuri wanted for the shell. She had been duped to believe there was some sort of dragon magic out there that would help her people ascend to the top of the giant ordning. I figured we could point her to Klauth, get the shell, and be on her way.
The plan had one flaw. Once Cressaro had convinced his queen to retrieve the shell, my Suggestion spell wore off, and he immediately turned hostile. Sansuri was just reaching out with the shell and I yelled for T.I.M. to grab it. Cue an amazingly high DEX roll from our clunky construct. We set the pace for not only an epic boss fight, but a string of truly impressive 20+ dice rolls. Just don’t ask us to roll anything INT-based, please.
The fight involved the two named Cloud Giants, the custom built giant cat called a Vapor Lynx, and presumably at least one more giant guard down the stairs. We were at full health but our sorcerers had burned through quite a number of spells, and Cloud Giants are powerful spellcasters.
Cressaro was an illusionist, and an utter pain in the ass to battle. He had a cloning spell that worked a bit like Mirror Image, but also kept up an illusion that prevented us from seeing if he was actually getting hurt.
Bryseis locked down the Vapor Lynx with her Scroll of Dominate Monster, sending it downstairs to deal with any additional foes, while the rest of us focused all fire on the Countess. The real MVP was a vengeful Felgolos, who could deal about 50 damage every turn, gleefully clawing into his former torturer.
T.I.M. analyzed the conch shell. I was assuming the shell would be our exit strategy, taking us from here directly to the Storm Giant Maelstrom.
Unfortunately we learned that using it requires attunement. With Sansuri alerting all the guards in the castle we weren’t about to rest any time soon.
We fought admirably well, using Counterspell’s and Shields to avoid the Cloud Giants’ nasty spells and attacks. With Sansuri weakened I called for her to surrender and let us go. She was not pleased, but not stupid either. She agreed.
We hopped onto our hippogriffs (with the still enlarged-T.I.M. on the still shrunken-Felgolos) and sped away. Bryseis launched a Fireball behind us for good measure, only to narrowly dodge a giant boulder hurled after us.
With Lyn Armaal fading into the distance we flew back to Everlund. The shell would indeed take us directly into the Maelstrom, but we had one last bit of unfinished business- the Weevil.
Bryseis had played this side plot cleverly thus far, eluding the Weevil while at the same time tightening the noose around him. Her plans have bore fruit, as we have intel that the Weevil has set up at an inn here in Everlund. It’s time to take care of him once and for all – next week!