Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Barrowmaze #22: Back to the Barrowmounds

The successful rescue of young Sir Kay from the depths of Skull Mountain earned the venturers an official new sobriquet: "Company of the Skull" chartered by the Duke of Ironguard Motte to protect the realm, battle its enemies and loot the graves of heretics and apostates.  The heroes were feted, feasted and had bestowed upon them golden medallions certificating their status as well as ornate drinking horns made from the spires of strange rams.

Aliontus continued to ask around about the pink comet seen arcing across the Dolmenwood, and indeed heard tell a few things about the wood.  The nearest environs were nominally under fealty to the Lord of Ironwood Motte, but few of his soldiers ventured within the wood save tax collectors.  One village pays a reliable tax, Prigwort, know for it's unique ales and ciders.  Expert astrologists surmise the pink comet may have fallen in the environs of Drigbolton, a hamlet, on the northern edge of the wood.  To get there, one would inevitably pass through the domain of the Naglord, a mysterious figure feared though shrouded in legend.

The other prince of Duchy Aerik had other plans.  "I will accompany you an a season's last expedition into the Barrowmaze," said Korthos Ironwood. "It has been some weeks since my last journey and I yearn to uncover more of its secrets."
Reluctantly the Company agreed, returning to Helix for an evening at the Brazen Strumpet, then setting out to the Barrowmoor, where they fought bog zombies, then cracked a borrow stone door and descended into a crypt undisturbed for millenia.

Bats circled beneath a sunless sky.  A wolf howled.  Ornate tilework revealed this to be an ancient shrine to the elder god of Rot and Ruin, Impurax the Corpulent.  Exploring further, the explorers found a sealed library full of ancient scrolls and tomes of bound vellum.  In another room a sarcophagus was disturbed, earning the rather of the distinguished one interred there.  After an intense and mindbreaking battle, the company was victorious, Korthos himself striking the killer blow.  But were was the lookout, Porthos?