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Mannix, level 4 Human Inquisitive Rogue
Khaless, level 4 Half-Drow Assassin Rogue
Gillian, level 4 Triton Bard of Whispers
George, level 4 Tortle Battle Master Fighter/Rogue
Therin, level 4 Hill Dwarf Druid of the Moon
Nothing like ending one session by stabbing an old lady, and beginning the next one by rolling initiative. The party quickly figure out that Nanny Pu’pu isn’t exactly a sweet old gal, attacking the disguised Green Hag and her problematic ‘child.’ The real challenge, however, is how to get her bag of loot from the well, where something black and squishy resides.
Khaless is an absolute monster when it comes to damage. The assassin rogue finally got off her full assassinate ability by scoping out the hag’s hut, finding the captured Inete, and getting the first sneaky hit on the hag. She did a whopping 30+ points of damage in a single strike thanks to her auto-crit (she did have to use Inspiration to hit, though).
I rolled really well on the hag’s initiative but the PCs rolled even better. Khaless got another attack off, doing another obscene amount of damage. By the time my turn rolled around the hag was at about 25% health. And I had been worried!
I felt much less bad about summoning Nanny’s flesh golem from beneath the Earth, as the hag used her Invisible Passage ability to blink out. With its multi-attack the golem struck both Mannix and Gillian, downing both of them! Khaless used Faerie Fire to try and find the invisible hag (she resisted) while Therin had a good idea to use Create Water to outline her form briefly. Ultimately I was surprised that despite being at very low health, the hag actually stuck around for another couple rounds, which wouldn’t amount to much.
The golem, however, was going to be a big problem. Flesh Golems have some nasty immunities and the party isn’t exactly flush with magical weapons, as they soon realized.
George instantly thought of a plan: to charge the golem and knock it into the well (which he initially thought was the chute from the pterafolk nest that they had climbed up from).
Shout out to fan of the show Arno Nym who predicted this exact plan in last week’s Crafting Annihilation! (around 37:00).
George had advantage thanks to Faerie Fire but the beefy golem rolled a 23 in response. I gave George inspiration right then because I loved this idea, and he totally pulled through, rolling a 23 in response. He charged at the golem and shoved it down the well in one of the most epic moments of our campaign.
Nobody was fully prepared for what happened next – the golem began to scream and melt as the well’s surprise Black Pudding resident devoured it with acid. Not only did the PCs instantly take care of a very tough enemy, but now they knew the well was hiding another nasty foe!
The hag tried to do the same to George but failed, and soon the PCs converged and killed her. They let the ooze kill the golem and searched the hut for loot, finding an Essence of Ether (DMG 258) and several unfinished potions. I let them roll skill checks to try and finish the potions, with the caveat that if they failed, they would still make the potion but with negative side effects.
That ended up not mattering as they wildly succeeded on three out of four potions, granting them a Potion of Climbing, Resistance, and Fire Breath (Mannix rolled a 1 on making the Potion of Great Healing, leading him to drop and shatter it completely).
The newly freed Inete revealed that the hag mentioned she kept her treasure in the well, as all my players groaned. Music to my ears! What followed was a lengthy discussion about how best to get down into the well without ending up like the flesh golem.
The PCs deliberated with each other, which is always fun for a DM. George tried to use a rope to haul it out, but the ooze was heavy and amorphous, and easily melted the rope.
After a much-needed short rest, Therin drank his potion of resistance, declared Acid, morphed into a crocodile and leapt down the well! Roll for initiative!
Therin would take a nasty amount of damage but kept his cool as he swam down into the underwater tunnel and grabbed the hag’s sack. Halfway back up the well he had to morph into a Giant Lizard for more hit points (and nearly lost that form as well), while everyone else pelted the ooze from afar. Oozes are strong but have no intelligence, so having one person keep it busy while everyone else pelted it ended up working really well.
The PCs were rewarded with several Onyx gemstones, a spell scroll, and a Pearl of Power (DMG 184) which the spell-starved Gillian eagerly nabbed.
The summit of Mbala lay quiet, though the occasional pterafolk still flew overhead, staying far away. They made their way back down the plateau to reunite with Vorn and decide on their next destination, having scouted out much of the surrounding area.
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