session recap, 11/16/2014
Gutboy the Cleric (6), his henchpeople Trezgar the Elf (3) and Bunny the Thief (3), and his blink dog Rufus II
Pai Mei the Wu-Jen (4), and his henchmen "The Doctor" the Time Lord (2) and Paula Abdul the Battle Dancer (2), and a charmed blind Conjure-Man
Rolf the Dwarf (3), and his henchman Piston Honda the Sumo (2)
Kalimar the Ranger (3)
SPARKI the Robot (3)
The party had been lodging in Bartertown, and joined up with an itinerant murderbot named SPARKI (Synthetic Positronic Android Responsible for Killing and Infiltration). First order of business - their captive cultist was insisting on being sacrificed to his tentacle-god. Pai Mei put on the Mask of the Coiled God, and was elated when his face became a mass of tentacles - but the cultist was unimpressed with his blasphemous display. The party escorted him to the Fane of the Coiled God, a large room with a giant pit of bones, and 20' wide bronze doors sculpted with spiraling tentacles. They ordered the cultist to search the bone pile for loot - but once in the pile, he began shouting "Take me, Coiled God! Take me!" as he marched towards the bronze doors. The Coiled God did not disappoint - the doors swung open, and masses of tentacles plucked the ecstatic cultist from the pit and shoved him into a beaked mouth. The tentacles reached out a second time, to pull the doors shut.
Unimpressed, Gutboy convinced Bunny to hop into the pit looking for spare change - she found a few silver pieces, and then the party (wisely) decided the search was taking too long, and decided to press on to fabled Under-Miami. They walked down to room where the Priest of the Coiled God had been holding services, and two stairways beckoned downwards.
The north stairway led to the excitement of a 30' by 40' room with nothing but a rusty pail and ancient mop. There's adventure for you! Beyond this room the corridor ended, a giant face with a gaping open mouth carved in the wall. The mouth cavity was dark. The party nominated Bunny to crawl into the mouth and see what lay beyond, assuming it was a portal - but as she approached, Gutboy told her to stop.
Gutboy: "Wait! That could be a trap!"
Pai Mei: "You're right. Conjure-Man, explore that portal!"
The Conjure-Man crawled into the mouth, which snapped shut and made grinding noises, opening wide a moment later. Only darkness was seen inside.
Gutboy: "It was a trap."
Face: "No, not a trap at all! It's a portal, like you said! Endless riches lie beyond!"
Pai Mei: "I'm not buying this."
Face: "Seriously, riches!"
Gutboy: "We're leaving."
Face: "Fine, you figured it out, it's not a portal. Give me another fleshy one! I shall grant you whatever knowledge you desire!"
Kalimar: "We've heard that one before"
Pai Mei: "We just gave you a guy!"
Face: "That one didn't count! Bring me more!"
Pai Mei: "How about a cow?"
Face: "I do not know these 'cows' you speak of. Are they fleshy?"
Pai Mei: "As fleshy as four or five people!"
Face: "Let it be so! Bring me this cow, and I shall provide you wisdom beyond measure!"
Disgruntled by the cannibal demands of the face, and unconvinced by its promises, they backtracked to the altar-room of the Coiled God and headed down the second stairway. The stairs went down 40', and terminated in a circular room with a 10' wide pit in the middle. Suspended from a wire 20' above the pit was a foot-wide jeweled silver globe. This proved to be no obstacle, as SPARKI was fully equipped with rocket-feet, and he boosted himself up to snag the globe.
Beyond the circular room, a stairway headed even deeper - another hundred feet or so. After the climb down, a short tunnel opened into an enormous fog-filled chamber. The whir of machinery was heard from above. They could only see a few feet in front of them, the fog was so thick.
The party followed the left-hand wall, and stopped after a bony column, perhaps 6 inches wide, came into view. They began whacking the chitin column with a ten foot poles, checking to see if it would explode or otherwise terrorize them - and it did not fail to disappoint! The pole began swaying, and more poles began swinging into view as a massive globular body lowered from above - the column was a leg of a gigantic daddy long legs. The arachnid was enormous, its body 20' wide, and it gulped down Piston Honda the Sumo Wrestler in a single bite.
Fear and panic infected the party, with a healthy dose of bloodlust - and the big guns came out. Gunfire echoed through the foggy chamber, coruscant magics blazed forth from the hands of twisted wizards and fanged elves, and swords clanged against chitin armor. Resources depleted, the party stood victorious over the bloated horror. They briefly considered gutting it and searching for treasure in its innards, but breaking through the chitin plates looked to be too time-consuming.
They continued following the edge of the room, stumbling across a pile of bones, the wall above the pile chipped and marked with tiny holes - presumably near the creature's larder. No time for investigation - they continued around the room, eventually finding a narrow corridor heading west.
Beyond, they stumbled across a room full of dusty monitors and keyboards mounted into consoles along the wall. Beyond that, a second room, with a large knife switch on the wall, above a series of faintly humming cylindrical coils. Bunny used a wooden 10' pole to lift the knife switch up - and the coils began vibrating loudly and sparking, as the computers in the previous room sprang to life. Gutboy rushed into the computer center, and began typing away, conversing with "Weather Observation AI #23", gleaning the following facts:
a. The AI deeply desired to be installed into a satellite and launched into orbit, to fulfill its weather observation duties
b. It had no idea of its surroundings or current location
c. It was one of a number of personalities or programs that could be loaded into the satellite deployment system
At this point, the transformer vibrations were reaching a crescendo, and Bunny dropped the knife switch, fearing electrical explosions.
Continuing on, they came across a natural cavern with acrid water puddling on the floor, and thousands of slugs crawling across the walls. The slugs slowly gathered themselves into a shambling humanoid form and rose up, demanding that the intruders leave. The party deduced that this thing was a Slug Collective, one of the ruling class of monsters on the fifth level - a brief negotiation promised delicious lettuce and cucumbers in return for unnamed rewards, and the party retreated.
Heading in another direction, they came across a room with a bronze hatch mounted in the wall, and large pump machinery with dangling wires and disconnected hoses. One of the henchmen spun the wheel on the hatch, and it opened with a hiss - and the party began choking and wheezing. The air beyond the hatch was sour - and all but SPARKI retreated.
SPARKI headed into the cavern beyond, finding a pair of dry, withered, nude corpses on the floor, perfectly preserved by whatever gas was filling the caves. Pressing deeper past the stalactites and stalagmites, he saw another dried-out corpse - this one a bit more mobile. He rocket-boosted himself up to the ceiling as the black-eyed fanged fiend clawed at his leg hydraulics - the gunshots the robot put into the corpse immediately healed. Unfazed, the murderous machine tossed down an incendiary grenade, blowing the undead fiend to pieces. Determining that discretion was the better part of valor, the robot abandoned his solo expedition and headed back to the rest of the party, closing the hatch behind him.
Back to the great fog-filled chamber, and then following the wall again - they came upon a much wider corridor with stairs heading down. At the bottom of the stairs was an octagonal room with the words "UNDER-MIAMI TERMINAL" spelled out in soothing teal and pink floor tiles. The corridor beyond was circumscribed by a great hoop of protonium metal, with colored lights flickering along the inner edge - the only way past was through the center of the hoop.
As each party member walked through, a calm feminine voice announced "Human genome detected - access granted" (or "Partial human genome" for the various demihumans, and "Machine servitor" for SPARKI). The only exception was for Rufus II, who received an angry "Nonhuman genome forbidden!", as the air in the center of the hoop flared with red energies - he leaped back just in time. Being a blink dog, he simply blinked across, and the party proceeded onwards.
Past the hoop was a wide room with parking spaces outlined on the floor in yellow paint. Several white vehicles resembling golf carts were scattered about the room with no regard for the clearly marked parking spaces, cables running up from charging points in the floor to access ports in their hoods. The party piled into two of the golf carts, and the meters were glowing green and showing 100% charge. With some experimentation, the party figured out the various pedals and steering mechanisms, and they began to drive down the 40' wide underground lane beyond.
The trip took two days total, covering uncounted miles of featureless tiled tunnels with occasional abandoned charging stations. At the final station, they saw a few more golf carts, and, surprisingly, sunlight from the tunnel beyond.
Their destination reached, the party headed down the tunnel, which opened into a miles-wide underground cavern. They were standing on a ledge on the southern end of the cavern, overlooking an underground sea, and a landscape dotted with jungle, swamps and volcanoes. The sunlight came from a vast glowing cylinder of plasma running from the southern end of the cave to the far reaches of the north, above a ruined city. Looking below, they saw a small ramshackle village, a highway heading north for a few miles, and finally, the glimmering metropolis of Under-Miami.
Whooping in joy at their arrival, they headed down, encountering a pair of bored Under-Miami customs agents, who were quickly enamoured by Gutboy's charismatic demeanor ("Anything to declare? No? Good, our shift's over. Why don't you come grab a few brews with us?"). They headed down the to village to rest up before heading down into Under-Miami proper.
Gains: 5 sp, jeweled silver sphere
Kills: Giant daddy long legs, undead thingy
Losses: Conjure-Man, Piston Honda