The Charter members to take part in this expedition into Dwimmmermount were Yuri, Alexander, Leandra, and myself, as well as Yuri’s constant companion Vladimir. We decided to spend this foray into the Halls exploring the southwest reaches of the dungeon, as we had yet to fully map out that corner of this level.
The first room we came to had a hole in the wooden door, which Leandra said seemed to have been gnawed out by something with rather large teeth. The possibility of Dire Beavers was mentioned, though I hope the speaker was in jest. Upon opening the door, we saw a room full of rubbish and copper coins. Among the rubish we spotted a rather large rat, and as we all know full well, where there is one of those damnable creatures, there are several more. Leandra seemed to think (wisely, in my opinion) that to fight them would be a large waste of our time. She decided to sound the strange horn we picked up a while back to blast the beasts into oblivion, a method that was more effective than I would have expected. The entire contents of the room were shoved against the far wall, and in our search through the wreckage, we found that around nine rats had perished in a spectacularly messy fashion. [Note: I must speak to the Blackdogs about acquiring similar horns. The item is extremely useful against fortified locations, and we must figure out how to protect our own fortifications from the like. If there is one, there must be more effects.] We discovered in our search several thousand copper pieces (gore splattered, but still viable for use as currency), a hairpin studded with rubies, a golden chain, and an ivory comb. I will admit that I took a liking to the comb. Thankfully, the rat gibblits had not ruined anything of value.
Sadly, the use of the horn seemed to have alerted some nearby enemies to our presence, for Alexander was ambushed as he scouted out a nearby roughhewn tunnel. The spider that ambushed him nearly took him out of the fight, and I count him lucky to have survived the effects of its venom for the duration of the fight. Immediately upon his ambush, a group of kobolds led by a dwarf of questionable sanity charged around the corner. We defeated them rather handily, thanks to Yuri and Leandra’s judicious use of their spells. I slew the mad dwarf myself, and through sheer coincidence managed to discover that his hammer seemed to be magical in nature. Leandra was bitten by the spider during the general melee, though she seemed to be able to shrug of the worse effects of its poison. Yuri’s first attempts at ministering to Alexander’s wounds were futile, and we were only barely able to get him to the Room of Rest, where time seems to stand still. I spent the time experimenting with the dwarf’s hammer and chain, which seem to be magically linked somehow. I made up my mind to have the items examined in town, and to have the chain shirt resized so that I might wear it comfortably. It took us the better part of two days, but we managed to finally purge the poison from his system. While we were waiting, we had to drive of a bunch of kobolds. They thought it would be a good idea to burn us out, but it turns out that the horn works as well on the little rat-lizards as it does on oversized rats.
As we exited, we had a brief altercation with a group of bugbears with extortionist tendencies, and showed them the error of their ways. The horn apparently requires time to recharge its eldritch energies.
Overall, this was a much more profitable run than our last attempt, and far less fatal to the hired help.