From the journal of Nicolas Hauxworth
That was quite the lock on this hidden entrance! Though part of me was hoping that it would be the original lock, both so our ruse would be successful and for the wonderful adventure of delving into undisturbed space. At least there are plenty of vaults left in this world.
The mist from the waterfall made the made the rocky decent quite treacherous but it also had a beauty to it with moss and photofluorescent moss clinging to the side of the cavern entrance. Also the decent was quite rapid and we soon had the Talon scouts welding a pair of lanterns to prevent us bumbling into a loose rock. I was quite impressed with Kildrak as well, when he’s not under the influence of the spirits he is quite stealthy. Our entire party in fact was quite quiet, except for when two of scouts nearly lost their lives during our spelunking missing after the initial decent. Certainly glad that we didn’t lose anyone there however one of them did suffer a terrible wound(I should asked their names, they are after all risking their lives for us). So full of history this cavern is, I must note to return here. We even passed an ancient throne of formian design. Kildrak was not too happy about that, as I am sure Perion wouldn’t be as well, but again he held his urge to destroy the throne. I must remember the power of this sober Kildrak in case I need him in the future.
We soon came to an underground lake. Eridan and I, knowing that such abominations as Aboleths and Kuoa-Tuoas inhabit these seas, were on our guard. Our heightened perception was rewarded, for we did hear something in the water. With our weapons at the ready we moved to the far right side of the lake using our bodies as a human shield against our Talon scout friends protecting them from lake. Soon Eridan noticed disembodied brain in the shallow water…in tact with no reference to where it came from. Eridan identified this as a brain from an intelligent race. We certainly knew that something was near by. Soon enough the horrid creatures made themselves known, huge bipedal lobster creatures with tentacles flailing around their mouth like a squid. Chulls! I have heard of these fearsome creatures, created by the terrible mind flayers as both guards and to capture prey. As soon as they emerged from the water my bolts and Eridan’s magic slammed into one the chull’s scales which was then knocked prone. The Talon scouts decended onto this beast in mad form, doing an incredible amount of damage with their spiked clubs. Hubris got the most of me while I tried to skirt around the chull the other grabbed me and locked me into place. Both monsters then quickly tore into body. The next thing I remember is one of the chulls down while Durani Humphrey spoke to me to get up and shake off my wounds, while not as inspiring as Perion, more blunt, Durani is clearly a seasoned commander doesn’t let his companions die until he deems it so. Barking out orders to Kildrak he used the dwarf like a weapon. Soon enough the other chull fell as well, again with the help of the scout’s expert blows. We even found a magical dagger for our troubles.
Once we got past the lake we came to a later chasm and what appeared to be a stone bridge that was recently destroyed. Clearly the Horn is aware that strike force could use this entrance against them. Looking to be about 15 feet long we decided that the best chance we had was Kildrak, though even then we were not sure if it would be enough so we tied rope to him just in case we had to pull him back. Of course this was not necessary as Kildrak easily vaulted the pit, landing a good 10 feet on the far side of it. The crossing was pretty uneventful though we did lose a lantern to the pit…it making a sound a good 12 seconds after the drop. We were in good spirts after this latest challenge and even the injured scout was feeling pretty good. Still Eridan’s keen eye prevent a potential disaster as Kildrak almost stepped on a trip wire. This was it! Another time to use my thievery kit! As I got out all my supplies, noting the razor sharp blades in the ceiling and the intricate cogs and gears along the walls the rest of my companions decided to… simply walk OVER the trip wire. I couldn’t argue with this logic so I packed up my kit and joined them.
At least we reached the tower with another locked door, this time my companions did allow me to use my kit to unlock the door. Before we headed in though Eridan and I stuck our heads against the door to make sure the way was clear. We could hear the crackle of a fire and a couple of muffled voices. Deciding to use caution we entered the room where we were met at the base of some stairs and could see the dancing lights of the fire that we heard on the other side. We could also hear the tieflings dejected voices as well, complaining that the wished to be in the battle on the front of the tower for there was no reason to guard this rear entrance. Little did they know they would see battle soon enough…