GATAVIA III, Episode 3

Session/Game: ACKS Gatavia3 #3 Date: September 29, 2013

Episode 3: Everybody goes to Spunky’s

Campaign Date: March, AY 1430

Rotwang the Battle-lover, neutral, barbarian-2 (Bob Laforge)
Brother Punchy the Norrisite, neutral, mystic-2 (Chuck Fleurie)
Murderface Jack, neutral, dwarven fury-2 (Jason Liebert)
Astradalto, neutral, Nobiran wonder-worker-2 (Robert Swan)
Decius, neutral, human, explorer-2 (Andrew Smith)
Mr. New Guy, neutral, lizardman gladiator-1 (Robert Swan)

Cassandra the Miscellaneous, human, level-0 (works for Rotwang)
Wilhelm the Chiurgeon, human, level-0 (worst healer ever) (works for Astrdalto)
Miller the Torchboy, human, level-0 (works for Brother Punchy)
Jebbly the Pack Hauler, human, level-0 (works for Rotwang)

Judge: Dave Nelson

Prologue: awakening in Peaches’s, at Boscovania, the group, newly christened “The Skull Collectors” decide to return to Skull Mountain at either ally with or overthrow the wizard Presfen. When Cassandra claims that she is unable to guide them to Skull Mountain, they meet and recruit Decius, an explorer with memory issues, to lead them to the mountain. They empty Bosco Turnip’s farmer’s market of produce and head off into the wilderness to the west, keeping Princess Athalwyn tied up the entire time, except for a daily turnip break.

March 22, 1430

Encounter 1: I’m feeling a little less Horse
As they pass across the Badlands westward, they spot a pair of griffins flying overhead. Twice, Decius fails to get them to proper cover to avoid the beasts. The griffins dive on the party, but only carry off 2 horses to feast on, rather than fighting the men. The Skull Collectors rest for the night soon afterwards.

March 23, 1430

Encounter 2: Monkey Time
The Skull Collectors reach Skull Mountain in the afternoon and immediately attempt to assault the Eastern Eye entrance, where they had wiped out the bandits previously. They find the stable behind the East Eye to be deserted, and the door beyond that has been replaced and barred shut. They take a half hour to chop the door down with axes. Murdeface and Rotwang enter the corridor, activating a swinging arm spike trap, which swings over the dwarf’s head and catches the barbarian square in the chest for severe damage. Just then, from the old bandit barracks come swarming 20 vicious Chaos Monkeys who assault the party vigorously. Astradalto uses a sleep spell to defeat a third of the horde, and Rotwang, Murderface, Brother Punchy and Decius finish the others. However, one of them manages to throttle Miller the torchboy and then cruelly bite his genitals, permanently maiming him. After killing another 6 chaos monkeys in the bandit leader’s old office, and a further 12 in the archers’ barracks, they decide to spend the night in the stable, since the entire bandit area has been completely sealed off from the rest of the level, presumably by Presfen’s remaining gang.

March 24, 1430

Encounter 3: Poke the Western Eye!
After Wilhelm pretends to heal people, they bed down for the night. Rotwang and Murderface kill 4 giant centipedes that wander into camp during the night. The Skull Collectors decide to assault Presfen’s gang through the Western Eye entrance, rather than cut through one of the sealed entrances from the brigand quarters.
They discover that this entrance is protected by 2 flanking rooms with barred doors and arrow slits. Six goblins with short bows are in each of the 2 flanking rooms. Decius uses one of Murderface’s goblin candles to taunt the goblins and draw their fire, while Brother Punchy and Astradalto throw oil flasks at two points along the wall, which Rotwang then sets on fire. The goblins pelt the party with arrows, injuring several. Then Brother Punchy goes to work with his spear, stabbing through the arrow slits and killing a large number of the goblins. Murdeface manages, finally, to reach through a slit and pull a goblin’s head clean off by yanking him through the hole. The goblins’ morale breaks and they all cower in various corners. While Murderface and Rotwang work on chopping their way through the heavy doors, a band of 6 chaos monkeys attack the party from the rear. One of the monkeys injures Astradalto, while another throttles Jebbly the pack-hauler, severely biting his face, sending him into shock and permanently maiming his lips and tongue. The monkeys are soon killed, and then the doors are broken down and the rest of the goblins are slain.
The Skull Collectors have won the battle, but are in really bad shape. They realize that they can’t safely hide in the stables, since the goblins raised an alarm before their defeat. So, they gather their horses and wagon and leave the mountain. They decide to head for a mysterious “inn” that Jebbly had told them lay nearby. Jebbly had also warned them not to go there, several times.

Encounter 4: Everybody Goes to Spunky’s
The “inn” turned out to be a gigantic lean-to style shelter built by a cyclops named Spunky. He had a very strict business model “I sell everything for 2 gold pieces; I buy everything for 1 gold piece; No Cheating!” His plan is to collect a large amount of gold, have a huge golden crown made and crown himself King of All Cyclopes. When the Skull Collectors arrive, they immediately buy food from Spunky. At first Brother Punchy tries to pass on buying a drink, but Spunky starts to mumble about cheaters and he forks over drink money too. Astrdalto, however, figures he can charm Spunky into being his friend or something, and offers to give him a present, as part of a surefire scheme to get his crown faster. Spunky explains his business model again, but Astradalto continues to insist that he accept a present. At which point Spunky, having taken an immense dislike to the wizard, clubs him to death and throws him on the meat pile to eat later. Wilhelm runs over to the corpse but is unable to unjelly the various smashed bits. The rest of the Skull Collectors immediately agree to rent a room from Spunky at the usual rate.

March 25—March 31, 1430
The Skull Collectors spend a week mourning the loss of their heal-monkey, I mean a dear comrade, and rest up from their goblin injuries. They recruit a Lizardman gladitator who was also staying at Spunky’s, but don’t hire the Amazing Steve, a young wizard, or his two pack-haulers. Over the week, they decide that they’ll return to the Mountain and finally deal with Presfen.

April 1, 1430

Encounter 5—Die, Presfen, Die
Deciding to avoid the deadly Western Eye, the Collectors re-enter the easter eye, bringing with them a stout pine-log ram. They crash through the hasty brickwork across the bandit corridor and charge into the western region of the level. They make a cursory examination of the mostly abandoned rooms, and kill 2 hobgoblin guards. Decius discovered the former bandit treasury, but notices that the treasure chests had been dragged away deeper into the level. They follow the drag marks to the central atrium where they kill a hobgoblin champion named Flung and two of his soldiers. However, they are soon assaulted by Presfen, his 3 chaos monkeys, his thief henchman Silvio, and his blade-dancer hench(wo)man Romana. The wizard throws a hold spell which takes Lizardman and Brother Punchy out of the fight, but he himself is simultaneously killed by them and Decius. Rotwang enters a long duel with Romana and is nearly killed by her before he wins the day. Decius and Murderface defeat the chaos monkeys and put down Silvio as well.

Having destroyed Presfen’s gang, the party loots his workshop and library. Among the things they find are some store of gold, a pair of wands and a ring, and various other pieces of equipment that may or may not be magical. They also recovered Presfen’s Skull Mountain Research Notebook, with various notes he made about the history and possible contents of the dungeon complex. They also read that Marco’s sword (which Rotwang now uses) is the Sword of Speedy Geramos (+1 sword, grants +2 Dex, but user ages twice as fast and needs to eat 7 times as much).
They gather their loot and begin to discuss further plans. Shall they go sleep it off at Spunky’s? Shall they search for another lair in the area? Shall they investigate the shack at the foot of the mountain? Shall they visit Tower Graf? Shall they move into Presfen’s section of the dungeon, making it their new home?