Dungeons & Delvers: Dryad Adventure, Episode 102

  • Lydia (level 4 human bard)
  • Raynor (level 4 god eater-class thing)
  • Savatar (level 4 vampire)

Session Highlights
After weighing their options, the party decides to head directly to the dryad's home-tree and tell her what they know: hopefully she'll believe them and stop attacking the village.

En route they come across an almost completely buried castle: just the uppermost part of several watchtowers are sticking out.

Raynor wants nothing to do with it, but Lydia and Savatar believe that even a buried castle will have some sort of treasure. Tryfas volunteers to excavate, and after only an hour of work she manages to find the drawbridge. Most of the wood has severely rotted, so tearing it apart is a simple task, but as soon as she finishes they hear wolves howling within.

Fortunately Savatar can speak wolf. Unfortunately they are warning the party that they have already surrounded them, and are preparing to attack. What with the full moon looming overhead, Lydia suspects werewolves, but instead a pack of skeletal wolves come loping out of the mist, followed by a much larger dire wolf skeleton.

Thanks to Tryfas they are easily destroyed, but while they are resting Savatar strikes up a conversation with a nearby bat. The bat explains that every now and then people show up and start digging into the castle, but they always get killed by a ghost that lives inside, and eventually some elves come and bury it all over again. The party reconsiders whether they want to go inside, and ultimately decide against it. Oh well, at least Savatar walks away with a new bat-friend.

Tryfas is tired, so they make camp far away from the castle. When they wake up it still looks like it's night time, which Raynor chalks up to the whole time-flowing-differently aspect of the forest. They keep walking, passing a mostly-sunken-temple in a lake before arriving at the dryad's glade.

Urian attacks again, going with his usual tactic of hiding in the trees and sniping at various party members with arrows. They tell him what they learned, accusing him of Zarek's murder, and he mocks them for believing "the spider", implying that he did what he did because the humans are slowly killing the forest. Savatar spots him, transforming into mist and occupying him long enough for Raynor to close the distance (which he does by having Tryfas throw him).

While Raynor and Savatar fight Urian in melee, Lydia uses her harp to summon a spider: it arrives just in time to capture Urian when he tries to flee. What with him all trussed up, both the spider and Savatar want to drink him dry; Urian begs for mercy, confessing that he did in fact kill Zarek and feed his remains to a chimera. He offers to take them to the chimera's lair if they'll spare him, which would have been great for him had the dryad not been within earshot.

Seeing as they'd made a lot of noise so close to her glade, she'd been preparing to ambush the party in her monstrous stone-bear form, but upon hearing Urian's confession she sheds stone and earth and approaches him. At first he tries to backpedal, then blubber out excuses, and finally break free of the spider's webbing. None of these work as roots emerge from the ground underneath him, twisting about themselves to form a pair of massive, gnarled claws. Urian continues to struggle and screams as thorns burst forth and the claws snap close, before tearing him in half.

The dryad quietly thanks the party and apologizes for terrorizing the village. She promises to stop, instructing them to tell the villagers that they can resume logging before slipping away into the trees. Savatar heads over to Urian's remains and begins lapping up whatever blood he can. He notices a few golden decorations, and while looting the corpse-chunks find a ring: it's made of solid gold, with a tiny emerald set into it. There's something etched on the inside, but its written in a language none of them can understand.

Lydia figures its worth about a hundred gold pieces.

Designer Notes
Though this adventure is technically over, the party wants to backtrack and check out the sunken temple, and maybe the buried castle. This means I'll actually need to figure out what's inside both. I have some ideas from other adventures I've considered, but depending on what they do it could take them quite awhile to get back home.

You can now get a physical copy of Dungeons & Delvers: Black Book in whatever format you want!

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