The party chose to rest two nights in order to fully recover fro their recent fights. Fortunately, aside from a few noises here and there, nothing disturbed them during this time. Iban did cast identify on the magic, golden spurs they’d found and Rowan had taken — they apparently would allow short bursts of great speed from a horse. Ready to go once more, and after a little trouble with the first door outside their secret camp, they made their way back down to the fourth level without incident.
There, they focused their explorations to the east, beyond where they’d previously explored. The first room of note they found had four oddly slanted pillars that tilted inward towards a soot-darkened roof. The room just beyond this gave off a strange feeling of serenity, but, mistrusting this, they continued eastward. They next found an empty room and a passage north that opened into a large, natural cavern — Nordak scouted this briefly but did go far, as the party now spotted a tall, thin figure standing along the south wall of the passage they were in, further east. This turned out to be a Troll, apparently on sentry in front of a doorway. He was apparently in no mood to fight, though he had little enough to say when spoken to. It was clear he was a sentry, and Rowan could sense evil beyond the door. However, as he indicated the party could pass freely, they did so and did not fight him.
Further on, they discovered a wet, slimy room (which they refused to enter) and then, nearby, a room with a trio of Trolls. These ones were far different than the one they’d spoken with – they were somewhat decayed, filthy, and strange worms could be seen eating into them. They were also instantly hostile, and a melee ensued. Iban managed to polymorph one into a mouse with a wand, while the fighters went at the other two. However, as they closed, some of the worms in the trolls began to leap at the lead fighters, one striking each Aldeberon and Nordak. The worms began to burrow into them rapidly as the fight continued. Once the Trolls were slain and burned, the party turned to the worm infestation in the fighters. Aldeberon used Oil of Etherealness to shed the worm (which dropped from him when he passed into the Ether, while Lune used the Finger of Kavkaz to slay the worm inside Nordak.
Aldeberon, now ethereal, decided to take advantage of that to do some exploring. First, he passed through the walls and into the room behind the troll sentry, where he noted several more trolls and two hideous monstrosities unlike anything he’d ever seen or heard of, with strange, tentacular faces and dressed in weird violet robes (he also noted a chest in the room). Further on, he made his way into the room of the shadows and the suspected evil cleric, who he managed to find in his lair (also with a chest, the fighter noted). Returning prior to the etherealness wearing of, he reported his findings to the now rested party. They debated who to take on first, the weird monsters nearby, or the more distant priest they’d fought before. As they’d fought him before, they decided to tackle the priest first and would come back to the other monsters later. They now moved west and scouted the vicinity of the cleric’s lair, searching around it for a secret door they hoped might allow for a surprise attack. One room they passed through had a pair of Lormyrrian warrior statues back to back, but they never did find a secret door. However, in one round room due north of the evil cleric, they rounded a corner to see what appeared to be a beholder in a round room. Lune rushed forward valiantly and attacked – causing the Gas Spore to explode in a fiery blast. No one was killed, fortunately, but several of the party were injured. Given this, and that they were low on spells, especially healing, they decided to rest one night in a room near to the stairs they’d come down on. Although not an ideal spot, they took comfort in knowing they had the Door of Welcome, which would open to a safe place to rest if they were attacked. As it turned out, they passed the night uneventfully, and they felt more comfortable going after the evil cleric.
They made their way further west now, and approached the shadows and evil cleric. In preparation, Havok cast Silence on a coin to maximize surprise. The first, outer room proved to have a single Shadow on watch, which Havok easily turned, driving it into the next room, where he and Rowan turned most of the remaining Shadows. However, the evil cleric appeared and counter-turned several of them, making for a confusing mess! He also managed to get off a finger of death spell against Parker, but she managed to dodge its effects. As the melee heated up, Iban (invisible) took a potion of flying and went over the top of the fight right at the cleric, who he attacked and threw into the midst of the fray so the others could get at him. Once this was done, his fate was sealed, and he was soon slain. At this point, the few surviving Shadows all broke and fled, allowing the party to obtain a goodly plunder from the dead cleric, who turned out to be a priest of Roshim, god of evil. Pleased with the haul, the party decided they would rest in the priest’s quarters prior to taking on the trolls and their weird masters…
– Experience: 3066 XP each