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With Eseron dead after our last outing, his player was given the option to roll up two sets of stats to choose one for the party (since we are now all levels 4 & 5, the DM agreed that this would give him a somewhat better chance of getting a character that would fit in well).

Brian’s rolls were golden though, and his first character had stats of 17, 11, 16, 13, 13, 16. Ridiculously better than the rest of the party, and very well suited to playing yet another cleric (which would have brought us up to 3 clerics). So he dumped six points from his Wisdom to increase his Intelligence by 2 and his Strength by 1, making him an impressively strong elf (as strong as Eseron was while wearing his magical gauntlets, and nearly as smart).

A sea elf from a wrecked merchant ship (destroyed by the same dragon that ran the local halflings ashore here), Draemoss Sea-Born easily wormed his way into our party’s protection with his Charisma of 16. If it weren’t for the 4 level gap between him and Bethunel, Draemoss would even be in contention to take over as the leader of our team. Instead his high Charisma makes him likeable and gives us motivation to protect him as we coddle him up to at least level 2 or 3.

We re-entered the ruins and quickly returned to the third level we had been exploring where we found stairs descending even further – however they were in a room containing a yellowish giant blob that broke up into a flurry of smaller deadly blobs when attacked. So we retreated from that area to return once we had figured out how to defeat the beast. Just down the hall from that chamber we also found a chimney that lead up, probably to the second level, but couldn’t investigate again because of the yellow blob.

As we retreated, however, we were fallen upon by a swarm of gargoyles. It was a horrendous, chaotic battle. A quick light spell disabled one of the swarm, and suddenly everyone in the party was engaged by a gargoyle except the invisible thief. For a level 1 elf, Draemoss stood his own quite well, and ended the battle bloody, but having the first kill of the fight – against a 4 hit die critter.

Then we hit another critter that is basically unique to the game – living statues. Along one hallway there were statues lined up on each side around a doorway. As we listened at the door, the statues sprung to life.

After a few more encounters (most involving the quick and brutal elimination of our foes and the charming of an elf who’s one prepared spell is charm person, suddenly launching a discussion of von Neuman machines, D&D style), we ran afoul of a group of sorcerers – as soon as the fight began our new elf and the charmed elf as well as the fighter and magic user were taken out by a sleep spell and a light spell blinded Bethunel, leaving the team with just one cleric and the invisible thief. Fortunately, even alone the two of them were able to take down this small team of “Mediums”. It is terrifying how powerful level one spells can be – especially when you are on the receiving end of them.

The next room, however, is where the game went pear-shaped. The invisible thief listened at the entrance and then stepped in, and both parties were surprised. He has time to gasp and since they were surprised he gets a quick glance at them – three medusas. Then he failed his save against petrification – remembering that this is a game where the first access to stone to flesh will occur when the party reaches level 11.

He gasps out a warning to the party, and alerts the medusas that someone is here. The rest of the team enters the room with eyes averted, fighting at -4. The first medusa strikes at Torvull, hitting with her snakes and lethally poisoning him (although the poison is only lethal after 10 minutes). The second attacks Coruhn who’s very high AC keeps him alive, and the third strikes the charmed elf dead. The next round Draemoss is also poisoned, and in the final round of the conflict, Bethunel also takes a deadly snake wound. As the dust settles we realize what is left of the party – the magic-user Moruth and the cleric Coruhn are all who manage to escape the dungeon and the encounter with the deadly medusas. The rest die on their way to the surface.

And thus ends the adventures of Bethunel and her companions. Coruhn and Moruth will reappear in later adventures as the “high level” sponsors of a new level 1 adventuring party.