3. Entering the Chamber of Eyes – 13th March 2015
Upon waking the next day, Corvar sought out the dwarf Ulrik in the hopes that he could discern the dwarven rune writing on the slips of paper that he had pocketed. With Ulrik’s knowledge of the dwarven language coupled with their ruminations on the papers they were able to figure out that these were gambling strips, and one of them appeared to be marked as a winning one. Thanking Ulrik, he stashed the papers away once more before heading downstairs to meet up with the others.
It seems likely that he intends to cash in that gambling slip, but it remains to be seen whether an establishment that seemed happy to deal with such a degenerate as the dwarf from whom the papers were taken would so easily give up the cash, nor whether anyone trying to claim it could successfully extricate themselves from such a situation with their lives and the cash in hand.
On exiting the Inn, our group was pleased to find that the shops in the area seemed once more to be open for business, but it also became clear that one of their number was now missing. The wizard Quelanna, it seemed, had taken off during the night. However fate was smiling on them, for upon leaving the Inn they were approached by one of the Warforged, who was looking for purpose in the dark halls of the Labyrinth. The group, seeing as how they were now down a wizard, and had been in dire need of a heavily armoured group member, did readily agree to the paladin joining them. Ulrik however seemed to agree mainly through remaining silent. No one seemed to take notice of his abject fear of the towering newcomer.
Gendar’s Curios and Relics
Thus with their group numbers fortified, they headed over to Gendar’s store of Curios and Relics, hoping to sell some of the basic armour they had accumulated before arriving.
It was the Kenku that led the group into the shop, hoping to offload some of the basic armour that the group had picked up from the initial confrontation outside the Seven-Pillared Hall. Upon entering, they were accosted not only by a rather shady looking Drow, but also a shop that was literally filled with all manner of items, so much so that it was difficult to perceive what might actually be worthwhile to purchase or not.
The most prominent of items in the shop however was the humble potato, whom the shop owner, Gendar, told them with some pride that he was the only supplier of in the Hall. This, the group were lead to believe, made this merchant a canny businessman, since potatoes, it seemed, were the primary food-source in the mountain.
Despite the chaos in the store, Corvar seemed to put his perception skills to good use (the rumours that birds such as crows did indeed have an eye for such shiny things), and picked out a number of items that caught his eye while the rest of the group merely watched, perhaps with some amusement at the interaction. After some discussion and a little haggling, Corvar sold some of the group’s extraneous loot and purchased a ritual scroll from Gendar’s collection, one he hoped would aid them in their journey into the labyrinth, for it had become clear that their trusty loot-carrying mule Hendrix was under threat where they would go, and the ritual would adequately hide her, and the rest of the group while not in combat.
Just as they were about to leave, Gendar, having noted a certain gleam of interest in the eye of Corvar at one of the items, a rather shabby looking hat (personally I saw nothing interesting about it, but both Gendar and Corvar seemed to be of a different opinion). Gendar proposed that should the group retrieve a sceptre for him that had been stolen in transit, he would cut the price of the hat down by 1000gp. Interested, but non-committal, the Corvar said he would consider it.
Ulrik seeks divine insight
Upon leaving the store, Ulrik made it known that he was still uneasy about the loss of connection between himself and Land Shark. Corvar did attempt to comfort the dwarf, however the kenku had never been good when talking with people and only proceeded to make Ulrik feel worse. However it was, perhaps surprisingly, words from the titan that held the most consolation, strange as that might seem coming from a being Ulrik was clearly fairly terrified of. Filled with renewed hope, and after asking around for directions, sought some enlightenment in the Hall’s temple, The Temple of Hidden Light.
Although Ulrik seemed to find the Temple a relaxing place to sit in, he didn’t appear to be any closer to finding out how to reconnect to Land Shark. Making a donation to the temple anyway, he left with only some more peaceful thoughts and a spell for some poor travel rations that the temple had offered him upon leaving.
Upon leaving the temple, intending to go to the Chamber of Eyes to follow up on the trail of the Bloodreavers, the dwarf’s attention is drawn to a gathering of people at the base of a massive minotaur statue. How the group had remained oblivious to this edifice until now is beyond comprehension, but it seemed to be the truth. Ulrik’s eyes widened as he looked up at the 30 foot-tall statue, not, as one might imagine due to the size, but because of the likeness it held to his once-companion Gwenn, whom had disappeared just before their journey to Thunderspire Mountain.
Personally I cannot tell one minotaur from another, but apparently to Ulrik, this statue was the spitting image of his troubled friend. What was more, the humans who deigned to talk to him intimated that he was sure that the statue hadn’t looked quite like that in the past. With the unspecified ritual taking place at the base of the statue, and the possible changing of the statue’s visage Urik became more and more insensed with worry, and not without cause. Gwenn had been volatile at the best of times, with her temper and blood-lust well known. Ulrik became worried, and tried to get the group to be as concerned as he was about the fact, seeming to believe that she was now in the Labyrinth and would hunt them down if they didn’t do so to her first.
At first, such dire professions fell on deaf ears, but it was the unlikely target of the titan who proved the most amenable to the idea, perhaps hoping for a more worthwhile hunt on the horizon. The group, although none-too-convinced, still deemed it something they could potentially look into once they had dealt with the Bloodreavers.
So it was, with such thoughts that the group once more turned towards the path that lead to the Chamber of Eyes, hoping to have the situation dealt with quickly to collect the reward. Such things however rarely go to plan.
Into the Chamber of Eyes
Stepping onto the path that they had been led to believe led to the Chamber of Eyes, they made the mistake of setting out without a proper map of the route or guide, and very quickly became lost. Thankfully, whether through fate, luck or providence, they re-found their route and ended up outside the Chamber. Relieved that they had not been attacked or become lost forever in the maze, they set their mind on the task in front of them: to deal with the Bloodreavers.
Initially cautious, they entered the first room of the Chamber only to find that it was empty, of guards or otherwise. There was a locked door with the image of the evil God Torog on it flanked by two statues, and a raised platform at the end of the room. Deciding to look around, they decided sneaking up onto the raised platform to see whether it led anywhere was a good plan. Unfortunately, Ayanna, who was almost at the top of the climb, slipped, crashing to the ground. There were shouts from beyond the locked door, the group having alerted the guards to their presence.
With quick thinking on Corvar’s part, he engaged the guards in conversation, and convinced them that he was a potato seller (having found out from Gendar earlier that potatoes were the primary food source in the Mountain). Amazingly this seemed to work, and the guards unlocked the door, not to attack, but expecting a merchant. Chamber_map_01
They were disappointed.
Although the fight started well, things swiftly became overwhelming for our intrepid group, for the foes that now faced them had a greater strength and skill than they had yet faced.
The one bright light in an otherwise poor situation was that, despite the damaged connection between Ulrik and his companion, he did manage to summon Land Shark during the battle. In this shared battle, the connection between the two seemed to once more reassert itself, much to the visible relief of them both.
The fight on the way to the Seven-Pillared Hall had been difficult for the group, and this fight seemed to further challenge them. The enemies they faced seemed far better organized as a group and were far more eager to call for backup than others had in the past. One enemy in particular, a bugbear, they had never come across before, posed a challenge to them that nearly proved too much.
However, despite the fact that the odds seemed set against the group in battle, they did in fact succeed, however limped their way back to the Seven-Pillared Hall to rest and recuperate, tending to their numerous wounds before they would even consider going back to the Chamber of Eyes to deal with whatever other foes still waited for them there.