The Underdark is a strange, mysterious, and dangerous place. There are dangers and wonders found there that would mystify and enchant even the most worldly traveler from the world above.
As a Dragonborn Cleric of Bahamut, Anadar is determined to bring the light of the Platinum Dragon to the darkest depths of the world. As a descendant of a Black Dragon, Anadar has been met, forcefully at times, with questions of his devotion to the Wyrmking. Trapped in the Underdark, he may find his faith under its most trying test.
Ku is a gnome tinkerer who was kidnapped from the surface world. He was originally going to be executed, but priestess Ilvara seems to have other designs for him. Is he to be sacrificed to the dark goddess Lolth, or serve one of the high houses of Menzoberranzan as a technocratic slave?
Dave, a barbarian from the surface world was fleeing the destruction of his tribe when a sinkhole opened at his feet, trapping him hundreds of feet beneath the surface. He was captured by the Drow, and despite all of his rage, he was the first of our party to be thrown into the cage in Velkynvelve.
The newest member, a wood elf named Deirdre. An enigmatic ranger who seems well versed in the workings of the Underdark, she seems to play everything close to her vest, including how she managed to find her way into the darkness below.
Shortly after Deirdre arrived, the group was provided with their opportunity to escape. Anadar was able to use his acidic breath weapon to damage his manacles, and then later escape from them all together. This was after Jimjar, a gambling-obsessed gnome, made a bet with Ku that he could find a way for them to escape the room on his next trip out. Unfortunately for him, he never got the chance.
Bupido was quick to inspect the new arrival, checking to see why she was there – her refusal to engage in cordial conversation with him frustrated him. He muttered, “Freak” at her, before wandering away to try and engage the twin deep gnomes, Topsy and Turvy, in conversation. Their sullen, bleak faces seemed to be more inviting than that of the cool elf. Shortly after Anadar’s return with the chamber pots, Bupido, Ku, and Dave were taken into the main mess hall, where they were forced to stack stones on top of each other for the enjoyment of the Drow.
It was at this time that Deirdre and Anadar discovered one of their companions had a little secret. A small myconid that was wandering around on two stubby legs released a cloud of spores into the room, establishing between the three of them a telepathic bond. He began to regale them with tales of his home, (The Neverlight Grove) and promises that if they help him return there, they will be given supplies and safe haven. Deirdre seemed to take a lichen to the fungus, and assured him that they would help him find his way home.
Dave, Ku, and Bupido returned from their manual labor with various cuts, bruises, and scrapes along their body. Ront overheard the group discussing their escape, and he muscled his way to the front, boasting that he could break them out at any time. Dave put him on the spot, demanding he prove it, and Ront picked him up, intending to throw him through the gate to prove himself.
Ku, however, had other ideas. He managed to steal and conceal a small iron bar, which he decided to use on Ront. With Dave hoisted over his shoulders, Ront was unable to defend himself from Ku, who smacked him firmly across the face, breaking his one remaining tooth. Ront passed out, and Ku picked up the tooth… And that’s when Dave managed to put his feet back under him. Before another confrontation could start, however, the Drow showed up and everyone retreated to their own corners to lick their wounds.
One by one, everyone in the group fell asleep. Topsy carved another line into the stone wall, (the sixteenth one, beneath a large circle) and then cuddled up with Turvy to sleep. As Anadar drifted off to sleep, though, his mind began to wander. He had dreams, terrible dreams, that caused him to awaken with a roar, heart pounding and fear coursing through his veins. His terror was so complete that he didn’t immediately notice that he awoke the others in the room. He described his dream as being full of tentacles, and white spores, and fear.
One of the drow, disfigured, with a lame hand led two quaggoth’s into the room, and they each put down thin bowls of mushroom broth for the prisoners to eat. Before the players were able to eat, though, the drow whispered to them that the fastest way out of Velkynvelve was to leave through the gates and dive into the webs below. He then turned and walked out, “forgetting” to lock the door.
Ront, still unconscious, was left behind as the heroes stealthily moved out of the room and across the swinging spidersilk bridges. They refused to take the drow’s advice, instead choosing to find some of their gear before leaving. This lead them to the shrine of Lolth. A younger priest was leading a worship service to three males prostrated before her. Dave and Deirdre decided to attempt to sneak past them and into Ilvara’s chamber, located beneath the temple. Dave, however, stepped right in front of a bioluminescent fungus, casting a shadow across the worshipers.
Thinking fast, Deirdre rushed down the rope ladder to avoid being seen. She then started tearing apart Ilvara’s room, looking for weapons, armor, anything that could help her companions above. Dave was standing his ground, eyeing each of the Drow in turn. One of them pulled a hand crossbow, shooting Dave in the arm. Raging, he pulled the dart from his shoulder and flung it back at the drow, sinking it into his arm and rushing up to him with the ferocity only a barbarian from the surface world can muster.
Hearing the commotion, Ku and Anadar tried to sneak forward and discover what was happening. As he pulled back the spidersilk curtain, however, Anadar’s claws got trapped. Trying to free himself, he managed to pull the whole silk curtain down, dropping it on Ku’s head. Knowing they were caught, he looked inside the room and immediately joined the fight, launching a caustic line of acid at one of the drow.
Deirdre had finally managed to get the chest of drawers open, receiving a “bite” to her wrist at the same time. Ignoring the effects of the poison, she grabbed a couple of weapons and tossed them up through the floor, allowing her companions to even the odds. These weapons allowed them to turn the tide of the fight, along with Bupido’s timely entrance, ripping out the throat of a drow with his teeth. The entire group quickly got their clothes, and passed around various weapons and belongings before trying to figure out which direction they were going to go. Steeling themselves for a fight, they left the temple, just in time to see a large group of Drow running toward the north end of Velkynvelve.
The group ran in the opposite direction of the Drow, when two chasme demons appeared, droning loud as they attacked a vrock demon. Stabbing it with their proboscis, they brought the vrock crashing down in front of the group. As it struggled back to its feet, the party descended upon it, crushing and killing it before it could cause any damage. They rushed into the mess hall, stealing whatever food they could find before rushing back to the lift. The sound of fighting was still fierce, so the group decided to escape via the lift, dropping to the chasm floor and rushing off into the darkness, and away from the Drow.
What lies in store for our intrepid explorers? Will the Drow pursue them and feed them to the spider queen? Or will they become lost in the Underdark, destined to starve. Will they manage to find friends, or are all denizens of this alien world hostile to those from the surface?
That, my friends, will be revealed in the next installment.