Empire of the Ghouls Session 26 – The Ghul King’s Catacomb

In our 26th session, we were back around the gaming table in person for the first time since February 2020! Online gaming has been good, but I’ve really missed playing together with all our friends 🙂

We continued with Chapter 4: Catacombs of the Ghul King as the characters entered the catacombs beneath the Elia family mausoleum.

Here’s the write up which contains spoilers for the campaign. 

Read past episodes

28th Snowfall, 92 FY (contd.)

The Gears and Herr Biegen join the rest of the party at the Elia family mausoleum. Searching around the area, the eagle-eyed kobold spots a vent in the ground missed by the others. Penumbra sends Kalo down to have a look; the pseudodragon’s scouting reveals that the shaft ends in a series of catacombs. Deciding to check the mausoleum building out first, Penumbra casts two shatter spells to blow open the sealed entrance. Inside is a chamber with a large statue of a seated jackal. 

Penumbra starts to take a short rest to recover her spells, but another sandstorm begins to whip up and she is forced to take shelter inside. While The Gears isn’t paying attention, Bubbles pulls the lever in the statue’s foot, revealing a set of spiral stairs leading down.

The characters wait for Penumbra, then head outside and enter the vent one at a time, using ropes to get down the shaft. They explore a series of dead ends, find a feather token, and discover a secret door leading further into the complex. Bubbles leads the way through the door and is attacked by two foul-smelling ghasts. When The Gears enters the room to join the battle a hound of Tindalos appears from one of the corners of the chamber and attacks the kobold, draining his life energy. Bubbles and Zygmunt destroy the ghasts; Penumbra kills the hound of Tinadalos after both she and The Gears fail to send it back to the Void.

Entering the next two bloodstained chambers, no one is surprised when the skeletons lying on the floor rise to attack. The Gears obliterates all but one of them with the divine power of Rava, allowing the characters to press on to the double doors ahead. 

Kaya by Will O’Brien

As the doors are shoved open, Bubbles falls under the spell of Kaya, the undead owl harpy in the circular room beyond, and rushes into her embrace. Fortunately, the shadow fey snaps out of it almost immediately. Zygmunt rushes to Bubbles’ aid as swarms of scarab beetles close in on the pair. Meanwhile, Penumbra at the rear of the party has come under attack from a wraith which emerged from the wall; the tiefling is drained of 21 hp life energy. Bubbles bashes the undead harpy with the pommel of her sword, incapacitating her. Bloodied, she offers to tell the adventurers everything she knows if they stop attacking. As the harpy tries to back away, Bubbles runs her through. Her secrets die with her.

A search of the harpy’s nest reveals a trapdoor in the floor. The Gears has a quick peek: a ladder leads down. Closing the trapdoor, the characters decide to explore the rest of the level before venturing downwards.  

Entering the round room at the northern end of the level triggers a gravity trap. Everyone is slammed into the ceiling and several characters are hit by falling debris; poor old Herr Biegen is wrecked yet again!  Penumbra and Bubbles make it to the spiral stairs to the level above by teleporting; the others dash across the ceiling. With things the right way up again, they head up the stairs in search of somewhere safe to take a long rest. The stairs lead into a ruined chapel but there is an undead guardian standing in their way… 

If you’d like to keep up to date with my Empire of the Ghouls campaign and other posts, please do join my mailing list – there’s a sign up form on the home page.

Main image by Roland Deaconu

Published by richgreen01

D&D gamer | Freelance game designer | Writer & publisher – Parsantium: City at the Crossroads

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