Got to Love Caves:
Apparently we found the trail into the valley of Chimera, into and under. While I spent all evening and night into the next morning digging out parts of the glory/horror that exploded on us, the other rangers discovered tunnels that lead into the twisted land ruled by Chimera. I am left to my task until nearly the noon hour. At this point a group of rangers, several from Sog including Salvatore and Kassagor, pass into the caved in area where I have been working. In such a frenzy was I that I did not even notice they were rangers I had worked with often, not realizing this gave them time to stop and note who I was. They promptly decided that they were in need of a dwarf since the task assigned to them was checking some caves. Now it was them not to realize the importance of my self appointed task. I was hauled along bodily when I did not respond swiftly enough to their hails.
Grumbling at the loss of time gathering the parts of the behemoth, I reluctantly follow after some time being dragged. It is a simple cave crawl though in this case there was no crawling. Surprisingly enough there are many large caves this close to a scout fort. My people spend a good deal of time checking the areas around them. If there were this many easily accessible open caves close by the only thing missing from this swift search is a vain of something to mine. Makes me wonder if these are recently opened caverns. It seems the face and the bedrock itself have been changing of late. Or perhaps it was not like the other pockets that have suddenly opened but a twisting of the powers of the Chimera. The walls are rich with crysarium, some of it tainted, some of it pure, some I can not identify. It would be a good place to clean up and reopen a mine and holding. I wonder if the tainted crysarium could be cleaned? Or if one could re-power them after they are drained. Yet this musing will have to wait for another time for there is smoke ahead and created light.
Indeed the path is opening to a dimly lighted area with glowing globes. Very like what my people will do in common areas where some light is enjoyed yet not a full hall or home where reading or fine tasks would take place. The light is far too regular, not that of an open flame or even a mirrored oil lantern. This must be a Builder area, that would mean the smoke that is dissolving at the far reaches of vision is likely to have something to do with them as well. There is a swirling of the smoke and soon two Builders come into view. They look like they are fleeing something. Yet before we have even the time it takes to charge them unaware it dissolves into the figure of a druid and the wolves that were leading the group seem super charged.
Again before even these nearly frenzied beasts of the wood, whom I have never seen come this deep into a cave before, can act the lone figure is charged and struck by a huge creature with horns and a twisted demonic form. Upon the back of these the worst of Chimeras monsters is a Builder artificer riding and controlling the thing as it teleports away from the flying form of the druid, whom may or may not at this point be alive. The wolves charge forth and Kassagor charges at the riding beast, expecting the rest of the group to follow as they normally do. We ignore the group of builders that have activated a war golem. This time things are not as they are in Sog. The druid has diapered from her landing spot and the wolves had charged at the spot where the creature was and the Builder are. So it seems we have split up the rest of the group slowly trying to come up from behind yet splitting the difference between the monster and the Builders.
Luckily for the split up party one of the Archers was able to shoot off the control device allowing the builder to force his will upon the twisted demon. As one might expect, it was happy to be free, crazy with anger to have been trapped. Almost one might feel sad for the man upon the back of it, well if they were not selling themselves to the Twisting power known as Chimera. The whole mass sacrifice for personal gain makes one less caring about their fate. There is not much of a fight, the war golem opens a preplanned exit tunnel for the Builders upon seeing the collar removed from play. Leaving one of them behind that stopped to talk to one of our party… he was able to speak the long lost tongue of the race. This was enough to make me forget that I had been charging a demon with rage filled allies.
The demon using the powers of teleportation sends itself to the highest point in the cave over the war golem. Than twisting so that the rider is smashed upon the larger metal figure. This may have worked if the rider had not been an archmancer. It earned the demon several large explosions right in the mid section. What parts were not seared or smeared around the area the golem took upon its shoulders the weight of crushing into red paste. During this time the unassuming man that can speak with the Builder is confounding myself and the Builder by asking for a reevaluation of the builders current contract. I am catching about every third word or better of this ancestral yet extraordinarily technical conversation. The rest of the party is gathering and Kassagor beat me to the control collar.
They start discussing the fact that the area is rich with powerful crysarium, the problem is the taint and corruption of these stones. They sit easily reachable in the walls or even sitting upon the very floor of the caves, tainted. I inform them that I have collected a number of samples of these differently charged stones, having gotten some from each of the twisted and tainted creatures I have come upon these last several days. I am mostly distracted during their conversation since I am truly focused on the discussion about terms and properties of the renegotiation. Kassagor draws my attention solidly to him when he offers the control collar of the demon for one of the larger samples I have retrieved. This trade takes place rapidly when I swap the items as swiftly as I may, using both hands.
The conversation netted more than just a stand down with this Builder and the golem. He gave us directions from this area to a lab area where they were supposed to meet back up from the teleport. This saves us many hours searching the cave system. We are able to get closer to the tower complex, under it actually, and find a currently inhabited lab. As we are walking we keep worrying over the power nearly dripping from the walls. I pass on to the group remembering that I have yet to inform the rangers of Sog about glitter boom. Kassagor as usual is skeptical about anything that is not a kayakor, requesting a display of military application.
I do try and provide so upon entering the lab complex and noting that there is a tentacle beast infestation. I take it upon myself to remove said creatures with one good poof from my new creation. I do prefer a creation of metal and wood to the amalgamation of things that Chimera is using. We find that there is a squad or two of Builder troops and researchers, clearing the lab as if having warning that we are approaching. The group again splits up one going after the Builders and, well, Kassagor charging anything that looks big and dangerous. There are two Ogre turtles, many slug bats, and maggot hounds. Yet the things that always get our berserk/ leader into the most pain are tiny. In this case many of us rush to find what is making him scream in agony. We find crab/rats, one must point out for his self preservation, that Kassagor was covered by a dozen or so of the pests. I ask before glitter booming him, it is fun to come to his aid, as he has so often taken out things that would hurt or kill myself. After waiting for his sigh of approval, as much as resignation to the flames, he eats the flash cooked beasts.
Our very talkative friend comes into play again with the removal of the experimental creations. He is able to get a stand down and more information from the Builders. They are willing to leave the area and not take any of the things they were still gathering. They do seem to have taken the lion’s share of the good stuff already. There is a wonderful room with many panels and dials that I am sure I can use in my building of things. We spend some time going through the leftovers and salvaging what I might be able to reuse. As the others return to report this area as clear and close to the tunnel used by Chimeras tower, I return to excavation of the monstrous item of other worldly power that caused a cave-in just a day past.