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Previously on Rime of the Frostmaiden

Valravn, level 14 Eladrin Bard of Eloquence
Fray, level 14 Halfling Barbarian of the Beast
Celeste, level 14 Half-orc Sun Soul Monk (played by Fray/Heather)
Edmond, Level 14 Human Alchemist Artificer
Thimbleweed, level 14 Thri-kreen Swarmkeeper Ranger (played by Edmond/Raymond)

After a long rest and a level up in the Tower of Divination, it was time to explore more the city. The Wellspring of Answers is the closest point of interest, an enormous well that houses a dangerous creature.

The long rest causes the hidden side effects of the magic charms from the House of the Arcane to activate. They each lose the ability to cast their various cantrips, followed by another magical effect:

  • Valravn gains resistance to necrotic damage, and is under the effects of death ward for the next 8 hours. Nice!
  • Edmond and Celeste explode, dealing lighting damage to everyone around them, ouch! Negates Valravn’s Inspiring Leader and then some.
  • Thimbleweed gains 10 temporary hit points.
  • Vellyne seems less annoying to Fray, heh.
  • And Fray transforms into a stoat, haha!

The party arrives at the Wellspring of Answers (Y12), finding only a 50-ft hole plunging into darkness, surrounded by several park benches. They recall the well and the benches softly glowing with magic when viewed from the arcane telescope in the tower.

Around the well is an ominous engraving: “Herein lie the immortal remains of the Telepathic Pentacle. Sit, meditate, and listen.”

Our heroes are usually a bit more cautious, but perhaps coming off a long rest and a level up leads them to run to the park benches, sit down, and attempt Insight checks to see what happens!

Thimbleweed and Celeste are able to commune with a psionic presence nearby, temporarily gaining resistance to psychic damage until the next long rest — a nice trait that will immediately prove useful. It only takes one failure to disturb the Thing in the Well, and Edmond’s low roll summons a heck of a boss fight that lasts the entire session!

Rime of the frostmaiden session 83 wellspring of answers

The original campaign book calls for a hydra, but the DM redesigned this fight with five separate heads (using the Neoilithid art and a young purple worm with modified attacks) to represent the heads of the creature.

Every round as a lair action, the Thing in the Well can cast an enchantment spell, targeting every creature in the area (except itself). It doesn’t have save for concentration, but it casts a different spell each round, so no spell lasts longer than one round.

The first lair action spell, confusion, is immediately debilitating, with half the party failing and losing their actions. On the plus side, a confused Lord Marbury stomps the Fray-stoat, quickly transforming her back into Fray.

The monstrous heads grapple and bludgeon with their mouth tentacles as they psionically strike with their mind snares.

With the party separated around the well, no one is safe. Many stick to ranged attacks rather than risk the tentacles and the ominous well. Thankfully this party is well-equipped for ranged attacks, other than poor Fray, who at one point resrots to firing her laser pistol while being telekinetically restrained in mid-air!

Valravn is similarly stymied but for a different reason — these psionic creatures are immune to psychic damage. He doesn’t want to spend any big spells, instead resorting to passing out bardic inspirations.

Edmond takes a lot of damage from multiple attacks, dropping to 10% hit points. Undaunted, he unleashes two arm cannon blasts in back to back rounds, hitting four of the five heads with both blasts.

Finally the heads begin to drop. When only one head remains, the lair action enchantment spells cease, and the party can fully pounce on it.

So much for the immortal Telepathic Pentacle! Though it was no slouch; the party will need to short rest and lick their wounds before exploring further north.

MVPC – Fray

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