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Kingmaker: Varnhold Vanishing, Session 11, Part 2

November 18, 2016

The “eye” room was only about 10 feet by 30 feet, and Vordakai took up a good third of that on his own. In such a small space, he loomed over the humans (and elf) and stared down upon them with a clinical disinterest. Then he conjured a cloudkill that filled the enclosed area with noxious green gas! Everyone but the undead necromancer started to choke, taking Constitution damage in the process.

Orseen the warpriest and Satampra the swashbuckler charged, but their weapons had little effect on the lich’s body. Mestinous the elven wizard, still blinded from the last battle, summoned a bearded devil, but its attacks were also blunted by the Big V’s damage reduction. Iofur the druid called forth ball lightning, but the lich didn’t even bother to dodge – he was immune to their damage.

Vordakai then let loose a wave of fatigue, which sapped the strength of the living. The warriors continued to slash at V with their swords while Iofur turned to baleful polymorph. But once again, his target was completely immune. Seeing the writing on the wall, Remesio stumbled over to the secret door and opened it up so that the adventurers could retreat.

But before the party could disengage, Vordakai tried to curse the druid with blindness, but in a bit of luck for the party Iofur made his saving throw. The cleric grabbed the blind wizard and used dimension door to spirit them both out of the cloudkill and into the cleaner air of the adjacent crypt. Once Satampra and Orseen made it out there as well, Remesio hurriedly teleported the four of them off the island and back to the Nomen centaur camp. Once clear of the cloud, Iofur turned into a dire bat and flew outside as quick as he could go.

The next kingdom turn was just a few days away, so the druid had to head straight back to Stagfell. The others filled the centaurs in on what had happened, and then asked for a ride to Varnhold – Remesio’s teleport couldn’t get them all the way to Stagfell in one hop. The horsefolk obliged, and on the following day the cleric was able to instantly transport the group from the empty town to their bustling capital.

Something Smells Fishy

By the time the druid made it back to Stagfell, the scholars in the group had already combed the libraries and universities for tomes of undead lore. They didn’t know what Vordakai was, so they set out to make a list of possibilities. It seemed he was intelligent and self-aware. He was extremely resilient, although whether that was the result of magic or his innate nature they could not say. Their best guesses were vampire, lich, or maybe mummy. But he didn’t look much like a mummy. A vampire was resistant to weapons that were not magic and silver. A lich was resistant to weapons that were not magic and blunted. Mummies were just plain resistant to weapons, although they were vulnerable to fire.

Then came an agonizing week of the kingdom turn for Sarenith (June), 4719. The rulers had to sit through long meetings and councils and public events, while their enemy was doing who-knows-what over in his island. But as it happened, their enemy wasn’t content to just sit on his hands, and he decided to pay them a visit!

The assembled rulers of Caerelia were in the council chambers when Satampra failed a Will save against Vordakai’s greater scrying. After studying the room through the Oculus of Abbadon, the lich cast some buff spells, grabbed a piscodaemon that he had recently bound, and teleported into the room. V was invisible, but the daemon was not, and so as far as the PCs knew it was alone in its assault.

Satampra and Orseen grabbed their weapons and charged. The octopus-headed, lobster-clawed fiend responded by creating a stinking cloud that filled the chamber, while its master summoned a fiendish rhinoceros. V had both of his general-purpose 5th level spell slots reserved for teleports, so he had to rely on lesser spells to support the assault – and ideally ones that let him remain unseen! The cloud did its job of clearing the room of NPCs, who ran choking and vomiting from the room. The spellcasting PCs likewise moved to the edge of the fumes, but did not flee. Satampra and Orseen followed after being savaged by the lobster claws and nauseated by the noxious smoke.

While the netherworld rhino gored Mestinous, Vordakai created a slick of grease under the heavily armored Orseen, which tied up the warpriest for a couple of rounds. Iofur summoned a cyclops to deal with the piscodaemon, but the fiend’s attacks and the stinking cloud made short work of it. It did, however, tie up the daemon while the others recovered from the vomiting. With no targets within reach, the piscodaemon charged out of the cloud and towards Satampra, whereupon it scored a lobster-claw crit that crushed the Emperor’s head! His body fell to the ground and landed with a wet smack.

Luckily, Remesio was standing nearby! He whipped out the scroll of breath of life that was recovered from Varnhold (after some prompting from the DM) and healed the swashbuckler’s head back into its normal shape before his spirit could depart. Then a fireball from Mestinous finished off the piscodaemon.

Vordakai could have probably done more here, but I didn’t have a list of spells specifically for this assault. After observing his enemies during the battle, he teleported out, still hidden from view. Next time, he would be better prepared to exploit their weaknesses.

Next: the state of Caerelia!

  1. How do you categorize a location seen only via scrying? Viewed once, right?

    • Huh, they changed the description of the categories in Pathfinder. I guess so, although I was operating under the 3e version of the spell.

      • Fair enough. I think that’s intended to limit the fry-and-scry trick.
        Presumably Big V simply managed to roll under 76% (I think).

  2. Wait a second. Does Big V have any defined defences against scrying himself? Other than his Will save?

    • Not as written, no. But his Will save is quite prodigious, so the chances of the PCs scrying on him before meeting him – which in the adventure doesn’t happen until they enter his throne room – is very slim, as he would get a +5 bonus to the save. It is possible, though.

      I’m a bit surprised my PCs haven’t used the spell at all.

  3. somesaycubbish permalink

    Wow Vordekai teleported to Stagfell? That’s ballsy. Yes a diviner would help here. I played one in a Kingmaker campaign, but we ended it before she got 4th-level spells (like Scry). Was looking forward to using that one …

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Kingmaker: Varnhold Vanishing, Session 11, Part 1 | Daddy DM
  2. Kingmaker: Varnhold Vanishing, Session 16, Part 1 | Daddy DM

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