Out of the Abyss 2020: Sessions 26-28

Hi all,

I previously posted some warts-and-all email summaries of the ‘Curse of Strahd’ campaign I ran in 2017, and the ‘Tomb of Annihilation’ campaign from 2018. CoS was the first campaign I sent summaries to players by email after each game (I was a bit lazy prior to that). Here’s another campaign – 2020’s ‘Out of the Abyss’. Each session was approximately 4-5 hours long. Some of the summaries may be amusing, but don’t forget these are unedited emails, so please forgive their somewhat chaotic nature and poor sentence structure/grammar. If you’re a D&D fan you may enjoy them. And maybe even if you aren’t.

Game on!

Steve 🙂

Session 26 – Grayvenhollow

The party battled and defeated a Nalfashnee and two Balgura demons. They were joined by Jeremy’s Firbolg Druid during the battle, who was promptly accepted as if he had been a member of the party from the beginning 😉.

The PCs walked through the huge, basalt gates of Gravenhollow and met an intelligent Basilisk who gave them a tour. The magical stone library existed on multiple levels and interdimensional space, growing in size as needed and consisting of sections devoted to the past, present and future. It was run by three Stone Giant librarians who collated history on stone tablets and crystals. The party discovered the library was aware and brought them here because they needed to be here.

Given a stonespeaker crystal, the party received visions of the various demon lords and figures they had interacted with on their adventures: Zuggtmoy and Neverlight Grove; Juiblex and the Pudding King; Demogorgon and Sluupoodoop; Fraz-Urb’Luu and the dark gemstone of Mantol Derith. They also saw visions of demon lords they hadn’t encountered yet: Baphomet the horned king and a reality warping device stuck in a magma-filled chasm; Yeenoghu, Lord of Gnolls; Orcus, Lord of Undeath and a faraway mind flayer city; Lolth, Queen of Spiders. They witnessed Drow archmage Gromph Baenre’s folly – a magical ritual in Menzoberranzan that backfired because of the Underdark’s faezress – that brought the demon lords to the Underdark.

Afterwards they met Vizeran, the Drow Wizard that Hgraam of the Stone Giant enclave in Gracklstugh asked them to find. He was in the library researching ways to defeat the demon lords. Vizeran informed them that the demon queen Lolth took advantage of Gromph’s ritual and brought many demon lords out of the Abyss to the Underdark. He invited the party to join him.

Next week: Vizeran’s Tower and the quests for ritual components begin!

Session 27 – Araj and the Wormwrithings

The party was joined by Jeremy’s Elvish Arcane Archer, who assured all it would be his last class change(!). The party travelled to Vizeran’s Tower, where the archmage informed them he had devised a ritual to summon the demon lords to one place, have them all fight each other and then they could be finished off more easily. Vizeran advised he needed the party to collect some components for the ritual:

  • The intact and unhatched egg of a purple worm, for channelling great physical power.
  • The central eye of a beholder, to break down magical resistance and overcome magical forces.
  • Six feathers from six different angels – the authority of the celestial realms and a force to enrage fiendish creatures.
  • The heart of a goristro demon, to reach and influence the hearts of other demons.
  • Gromph Baenre’s grimoires and notes on his ritual, to assist in better understanding the power that summoned the demon lords.

Everyone in the party was given an Amulet of Protection from Fiends (single-use), a Drow Cloak of Elvenkind (which unfortunately crumbles to dust in sunlight, such as that produced by Pete’s Rogue’s Sunsword), and sanctuary in Vizeran’s tower between missions.

First up: The purple worm egg! On their way through the wormwrithings, the party encountered Hanne, an apprentice egg hunter separated from her mother and her team. As the party explored a huge egg ‘nursery’, Hanne and Arvus climbed up the resin strands suspending the eggs 40 feet over the floor, to cut one free. The party dispatched a number of giant spiders when a purple worm suddenly appeared! Kane’s Paladin fought valiantly but succumbed to the worm’s poisonous tail and bite. Then, when things couldn’t get worse, a huge Formorian ran into the cavern yelling “Kill egg thieves, save my precious ones!”

Next week: The battle continues! Will the party survive their first fetch quest?       

Session 28 – The Wormwrithings and the Vast Oblivium

The party finished off the Purple Worm and the Fomorian egg sitter as Kane’s Paladin was revived with a healing word and polymorphed into a Giant Ape! As the PCs ran from the cave with their Purple Worm egg (the arrival of another Purple Worm echoing in the distance), they came upon a group of Drow Egg Hunters led by Hanne’s mother, Zhora Hallen of House Mizzrym. After a stirring and emotional reunion, Zhora and Hanne departed, with Zhora saying she was in the party’s debt and to look her up if they were ever in Menzoberranzen.

The party rested overnight and then headed off to the Vast Oblivium, a deep chasm carved by the beholder Karazikar, surrounded by ten vertical shafts with numerous caves where the beholder’s slaves lived. After a short interview with the beholder on a rope bridge over the chasm, Kane’s Paladin was turned to stone and Belinda’s Bard put to sleep. Shedrak, the beholder’s Mage assistant, blasted Rhyse’s Rogue and Matt’s Cleric with numerous fireballs and a cone of cold, while hidden with greater invisibility. Finally, Jeremy’s Fighter brought the Beholder down and the Mage ran away. Peter’s Rogue woke up Belinda’s Bard, who used feather fall to get down to where Matt’s Cleric lay and saved him from death. A real challenge for the party, but the Beholder’s eye was finally claimed. Two down, three to go…

One of the Beholder’s Dwarven prisoners explained Karazikar was obsessed with something called the ‘Maze Engine’, which it learned about from a machine it held captive in a cave below…

Next week: Into the Labyrinth…

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Published by stevestillstanding

I’m a writer who loves tabletop role playing games, poetry and (you guessed it) writing. Occasionally I have something to say...

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