This is a session report from running Greg Gillespie’s Caverns of Archaia megadungeon. If this is your first time seeing this, then you can start with Session 1.
The Fungus Crypts as the Library Entrance
Players: Gultop, Keff, Saint Underbungle, Angel, Tyson, Wolfram, Ozor, Mordan
Region: Caverns of Archaia
Snakes at the Eastern Rim
We started on the eastern edge of the caverns. After trudging around, it took an hour to descend the trail to the bottom. Because it had rained recently and the trail is muddy, the bottom littered with snakes writhing in the mud tangled amongst each other.
Our party walked along the ridge toward the cave. Together we moved slower through rubble on the ridge, rather than risking going through mud at the very base. There was a strong fish smell coming from the pit to the south. Above the cave is an ancient crevice. The same buried bookshelves extend up the slope to the cave mouth.
We found the rope we left pressed into the mud and started up the slope to the cave mouth. There are remains of nibbled rats eaten and piled along the edges of the rock crevices, buried in somewhat large nests along the top of the rope. Looking around, we find that there are also large chicken-like footprints around the nest. They are in areas accessible by walking, not like roosted parrot nests. We see handprints painted like graffiti on the cave mouth, and discover the stone slab sealing the door has been broken down.
The Fungus Crypts
The crypts have smooth worked stone walls and it smells like decay inside. Inside the first room are two large marble statues of female warriors with large swords. To the east is an arch leading to stairs downward. And two small doors that may be tombs.
To the south, a small door opens to a crypt tunnel filled with alcoves. The smell of death comes from beyond the chamber. In the first northern alcove is a body on the ground facing downwards, somewhat rotted. It had a backpack. We picked up the bag (which contained s small potion and a hand axe), and then heard movement to the south A massive wrapped undead creature charging toward us from the opposite alcove.
Fighting the Mummy
After lunging forward, the mummy struck Mordan causing him to contract some horrible disease. We managed a fighting retreat to make it back to the entrance chamber. We hoped to get the mummies to clump up to strike them with a fireball or tangle it somehow. Mordan casts web to block them just outside of the crypt entrance. This allowed us to spend twenty minutes slowly destroying them with magical weapons. Then we sent our scout ahead with his boots of elven kind and invisibility to check the rest of the alcoves. He finds one alcove with a keyhole and Gultop is dispatched to pick it. Inside is mold and bone debris. A small compartment inside that is filled with a thousand Archaian coins and a handful of gems, plus a potion and scroll.
After that, Mordan continued to check alcoves methodically. One tomb is filled with skeletal hands and a body of a wrapped corpse. In another tomb, we found a pile of skulls. Then, we heard horrible buzzing and thousands of insects start pouring out from the eastern depths. They started coming through gaps in the floors and it sounds like many are trying to make their way to the surface. These small blue flies bit us dealing damage to everybody other than Mordan who was invisible. We took a turn to rest as the insects pass and count the coins.
When looking around, Gultop noticed strange wisps of light along the ceiling up above that form into four green ghostly figures watching us. They wore strange and alien ancient dress and whispered to Saint Underbungle in an ancient language we couldn’t make out. Going down the Eastern stairs in the entry we found a brick wall meant to seal the passage. After inspecting, our dwarf finds that it is hollow and could be broken down.
The Library Entrance
We decided to leave the brick wall alone and travel to the southern staircase. There is rubble on the ground and scorch marks in round circles, six inches across. The scorch marks might indicate some kind of fire trap. Past the rubble is a door and there is no visible trap. Tentaively going down the hall caused no reaction. Inside the room is a very small pyramid that seems to be made of dark blue metal. It appears to be striped with a single stripe(maybe related to the Neanderthals painting). The room is filled with glyphs depicting a whole group of people running and carrying trunks behind them. Looking more closely, the glyphs show others behind them screaming and following as a large monster chases from behind.
Angel is the brave one and decided to tempt fate. We backed into the hallway, tied a rope around him and he approached the pyramid which started to hum louder at his approach. As soon as he touched it, the pyramid spoke to him telepathically and said “welcome my child. how can I help you? what information do you seek?”
Speaking with the Pyramid
After finding the strange pyramid inside, we try to speak to it, asking about the Caverns of Archaia. After taking notice, it speaks like an information kiosk:
- “We are in the entrance to the library. To gain access to the library we must consult the council of the librarians.”
- “The pyramid can’t locate them and believes that they are dead. Access through the barrier is granted to those that work in the library as well as to bodies stored there and artifacts that must pass through. The library possesses all valuable knowledge.”
- “Anuah is a stubborn god, that we no longer trust.”
Then, it ran out of juice or borked and started repeating “Any questions about our current policy, please consult the Archaian index.”
After searching around, we locate a secret door thirty feet long on the wall behind the pyramid, very large but sealed very tight. Metal slides upwards and it reveals a long passage. Mounted along the walls are strange animal heads, lizards and ancient and even larger heads.
Finally, sliding up the door on the East of this hall revealed three jelly blobs in the center of a room, there is a pile of rats to the east and what looks like a desk and closed it back up. It would have been rude to interrupt the monsters. After opening the sliding door in the south face of the head room, we found a message has been scrawled on the walls in green chalk. Looking closer it looks like it says: “You Are Garbage.”
Agreeing with the sentiment we decided it was time to leave the fungus crypt. Back outside the library to the far north is a pack of goblins rummaging through the walls. Because we turned invisible from a spell, we could quietly leave back to the trail up the rim while hasted. Returned to the town of Eastdale with nobody dead. Wolfram has mummy rot, but everybody kicked in 1000 gp to get the mummy rot cured.
Gold & XP: Piece of unknown Egg shell, 1 scroll has four spells, yet to be determined. 1 potion healing, 1 small potion diminuation, 3 gems 1420 xp, 1023 archaian coins 10230 xp, 1 hand axe, 6 dessicated animal heads. 100×6
12250/ 7 =1750xp
Written by: TheLoamRanger