Concerned for our slumbering brothers in the mountain, Mr. Highpeak, myself, and honorary dwarf Gilvaldellin decided to return to Bruckschloss. Having previously been stumped by the slumber ritual, despite our considerable arcane talents, we brought along experts in divine magic in the form of paladin Gerald Poh, cleric Valen Aldarin, and a trio of talented acolytes of the Forge of Moradin.
As we headed toward the mountain, Mr. Highpeak led us in a different and arguably more efficient path than our first venture. This path had the good fortune of running along side of a dam created by an adorable colony of beavers. I found this but a nice spot to relax and enjoy nature, but luckily the more perceptive members of our group noticed some sort of underground cave where the water was backed up. We had more pressing matters to attend to, but the relative close proximity of this cave to the town makes it a prime location for future exploring! It’s location was recorded by Valen, but if you go to check it out, be mindful of Mr. Highpeak’s hunting trap. I am not sure if he remembered to check it…
The tunnels within the mountains remained similar to how we left them. We did not run into any surprises until we reached the cavernous opening that houses Bruckschloss. There was an eerie glow emanating from the center of the fort. The outskirts were covered in thick webbing, which continued to encompass most of the cavern. I heedlessly stomped forward, sure that this webbing was from an unannounced return trip from our good friend Mr. Billy, who is some sort of Spider-Man. We were quickly accosted by what I assumed was Billy’s children. This assumption was quickly proven incorrect, as they attempted to stab us repeatedly. Mr. Hill would raise much more well behaved children than that.
They were led by a more plump, and even more spider-y one who possessed powerful magics. These spider-creatures would continue to harass us throughout our journey.
As we approached the fortress gates, we spotted a large, out of place rock. Having previously dealt with elementals here, I decided to launch a welcoming firebolt to see if it was a friendly rock. It was not a friendly rock.
Our attacks were ultimately ineffective. Most glanced off, and it was evident that if we did not keep our distance we would become puddles. Most of the members of our party quickly devised a plan involving a dangerous bridge and a deep chasm.
Working together, Mr. Highpeak bravely hid in the shadows until his time to shine, gripping one end of a rope while the elemental passed right by him. Gil slowed down the progress of the elemental with his clever illusions. Gerald and Valen positioned themselves on the other side of the bridge, anchoring the other end of the rope until elemental was in position. As soon as the elemental stood at the halfway point of the bridge, Mr Highpeak rushed out, clothes-lining the elemental to the edge of the bridge. As the elemental held on with the last bit of his strength, Mr. Highpeak looped the rope around the chains, and leaped like a madman, delivering a flying wack at the elemental. It tumbled to its death.
The clever reader may be wondering where I, Derg Stonesmasher, was during this frantic, well-executed, and heroic display. I was elsewhere, working on a genius, but much less successful plan. I was on step 2-C of a 17 part plan-on the verge of being eaten-when I looked down to see that my friends had already dealt with the problem.
Inside we found a powerful guardian defending the slumbering dwarfs. It would smash anything that came withing a certain range of the door. Valen’s divine knowledge lead us to believe that this guardian had a limited amount of smash remaining. We did not know how much, so the dwarfs of the party decided to test it by walking toward it, and getting smashed. I woke up 12 seconds later with the guardian still standing, and Mr. Highpeak looking fairly bloodied.
Eventually, one of the spider-jerks was tricked into coming near, and the last bit o’ smash was expended. As the defense fell, the spider-jerks decided that it was a good opportunity to attack. We barely held them off, but ultimately were successful.
Over the next few days, the acolytes have been able to waken the dwarfs. The dwarfs were put into this slumber to avoid a terrible plague that impacted the surface world. It is unknown what will become of the dwarfs in the short term, but we do know that there could be even more suffering dwarfs deeper in this mountain. They talk of a large city, Verghead, where there could be many more.