Here’s the write up for our final Scarlet Citadel session of 2021. Playing every week has been fun but it’s meant that we’ve had a smaller group more often than not. Starting from January, we’ll be going back to a fortnightly schedule and hopefully we’ll have all five players most weeks.
You can read earlier posts here. This post contains spoilers for Scarlet Citadel.
The session began with a near TPK in the ruins above the Scarlet Citadel. Expecting four players, I decided the undead presence spreading through level 1 had attracted a death vulture from Tome of Beasts, a CR 4 creature, to the ruins. The monstrous bird arrived as they were burning the body of Ushulx (may she rest in peace!) and took two characters down to 0 hp before it was driven off and then killed as it flew away.
Back on level 1, Allia, Dimitar and Torander fought a group of skeletons in Charun’s shrine. This fight soon after the encounter with the death vulture proved too much and they retreated back to the keep for a long rest.
Returning to the dungeon on the following morning, they checked the supplies in the storeroom and saw that many of them were stamped with a candle symbol – perhaps a clue to where they came from?
Next, they returned to the catacombs where they fought a pair of spectres and retrieved loot, including a +1 shortsword, from the desiccated corpse outside the broken sepulchre. They hastily checked the rest of the corridors around the ossuary, then re-sealed the door from the Holzanger shrine.
With the whole of the level now explored (aside from opening the sealed vaults), I switched the Roll20 dynamic lighting to Explorer Mode, allowing the players to see more easily where they had been.
The party then decided it was time to venture down to level 2 again. Heading down the spiral stairs, being careful not to step on the pressure plate that triggers the acid trap, they entered a room containing three huge vats and a desk. Torander grabbed the notebook sitting on the desk, triggering an attack by an ink guardian that appeared from a bottle of green ink. This ooze proved very dangerous and two out of three characters went unconscious again and had to be revived with goodberries. After fleeing upstairs, the group decided it was best to withdraw to Redtower and return in greater numbers.
Back in town, Allia and Dimitar had enough XP for 4th level. They visited the temple of Rava to check Cecylia was happy with the sacred scrap they’d brought back and spotted the candle symbol on goods in Jordyn Gentleblood’s store. Zula the witch sold them yet more potions of healing and identified the mysterious symbols in the notebook Torander stole as relating to alchemy. They also learned that Gabe, the young lad living at the orchard, hasn’t been the same since he spend the night at the lifeless clearing….
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Main image by David Auden Nash