SESSION 52c: DAY 23 – THE CAVES OF CHAOS – IN SEARCH OF HOBGOBLINS
Lucian says, “Alas, if time were on our side, we could set up a trap on this side of the door. I am of the mind to explore out the remainder of this cave to ensure no surprises, then take a vote on returning here or entering a new complex entrance.”
Talmark responds, “I’m in complete agreeance. I wonder who is doing all of the clean up of the cave system. Is it just common scavengers or something more insidious?”
Malandir considers the arguments but is concerned that having managed to approach the door without being engaged by the hobgoblin archers wouldn’t it be better to seize the moment rather than risk having to fight back down the narrow corridor again at some future point. He asks, “Why have we elected to come down this way if only to turn back now when we had originally suggested the other direction but decided to come this way?”
He thinks more on it. He doesn't care much either way, but next time it will be one of the tough men at arms who will lead the party down this corridor.
Lucien appreciates much the aggressive nature of the Rogue. “Malandir I take your point but I prefer that we take time to consider our enemy and be more methodical. Hobgoblins are militant, cunning tacticians. Taking advantage of our placement here and now could result in falling into their hands via a second front through another secret entrance or the main entrance.
If I were them, it is what I would do. A holding action here at the door while a flanking force comes in from another direction. I suggest we see if the rest of this particular complex is clear, if we could detect another secret door, and then make a decision together weighing the options.
I can leave my oft forgotten and nameless familiar to stay at one place hidden, such as the entrance to the cave or here at the door, while we check out the rest of the cave so we have forewarning if any creatures come through the area where the viper is stationed.”
Leaning on his glaive Per says, “Lucian, that suggestion is most excellent and should be implemented.”
[DM’s note: Ok guys I feel the pace of the story is slowing down a bit here so I’ll make a random call on whether the party leaves the viper at the door or the cave entrance. 1-3 = door, 4-6 = cave entrance. Roll = 3 = door.]
Lucien starts to instruct his oft forgotten and nameless viper to stay by the door and to warn them of any danger. Everyone looks on as the viper and Lucien exchange various looks and Lucien makes hand gestures and the viper hisses but neither party speak any words.
As the party turns to leave the viper follows, not really understanding what Lucien wants. Lucien turns back to the viper and stamps his foot on the ground and points back to the door. The untrained viper (see page 97-98 of the Core Rule Book), who only understands the general emotions of his master (see page 83 of the Core Rule Book) is confused. It now feels that it’s master is frustrated that with it. If feels sad and lonely. It doesn’t know what to do. The hand gesture means nothing to it as it isn’t trained. None the less it stays in place. If it could weep a tear it would as it watches its master leave.
As the party and Lucien round the corner, Lucien feels that the viper is very afraid, very scared but Lucien doesn’t know why. He comes back around the corner to check on the viper. It’s still there, trying to hide in the dark, lonely corridor, all by itself, abandoned.
Lucien feels frustrated with the oft forgotten and nameless viper again and the viper picks up on this emotion and feels even more sad and confused.
Lucien gathers the party and starts off again. “Ha,” he thinks to himself, “If I leave him there he’ll just be scared but if anything comes he’ll be terrified and I’ll still know that something is coming.” The heartless cleric rationalises “That’s good enough warning.”
He motions the party forward, safe in the knowledge that his maltreated viper will act as an early warning system for them.
As they get further and further away from the viper it gets more scared, but not terrified.
Then, suddenly, Lucien’s Empathetic Link to his familiar is gone (see page 83 of the Core Rule Book for rules on Empathetic Link).
They rush back to the area to see what danger has emerged but there is nothing there. The door is still closed. There are no monsters. The viper has disappeared.
Then Lucien remembers. The familiar is only a recurring dream, a figment of his mind. Once he gets outside of a 100 feet of it, it disappears. It won’t be back till tomorrow when he prepares his spells (see page 10 of Familiar Folio).