Because we made it to Roseville in such good time for the last
session, we tried
sleeping in more leaving a bit later,
which of course moved us into the Hour of Heavy Traffic, so we were an
hour late. Fortunately Sherilyn knows we still love her, and we were
able to get right into...
Amazon Quartet of Justice IXb: "Into the Sunrise! The Lost
City of Karal!"
After a brief shopping frenzy, Our Heroines return the desert
maidens and the sphinxes to the desert. Due to the innately chaotic
nature of magic, they don't arrive in the part of the desert they had
planned on, but it all works out in the end. Amaryllis even rescues
Kalida's fiancé Hassan, who had set out for the dragon's lair to
die heroically try to rescue his beloved.
While trading songs with the local bards, Gabrielle hears legends of
a lost city, taken out of time, which can only be reached from a certain
place. As this city is rumored to have great protective powers, possibly
even effective against rampaging blue dragons, The Quartet decide to
hunt it down. It might even have one of the Five Sacred Items needed to
save the world!
It turns out that Leo has heard stories of a great sphinx of the past,
who was turned to stone to guard a secret city in the mountains. This
information is deemed suspiciously convenient, but since the alternatives
are to fight the dragon or set out for the strange distant druidic kingdoom
of Nööl, the Amazons decide to go in search of Sphinx Rock, even
if it turns out to not lead them to the lost city.
Fresa is able to borrow enough magic power from Moradin to discover the
way to Sphinx Rock and convey the Amazons there in mere hours, and they
find it much as described. They also find that someone has been there
before them, but is no longer in evidence. After some scouting, they
hide out in their luxurious pocket dimension to await dawn, the hour at
which the city is said to appear.
Just before dawn, Our Heroines leave their camp and arrange
themselves about Sphinx Rock so as to not miss the appearance of the
city. As dawn races across the desert toward them, it illuminates a city
that hadn't been there moments before, and the low rays of the sun
emphasize the fresh footprints leading toward it.
The Amazons take to the air, and soon arrive at the enchanted gates,
which hang ajar. Sandy footprints lead inside, through the deserted but
almost entirely intact streets.
Fortunately those who preceded them wandered about a great deal,
apparently looking for something, and so the Quartet gain on them.
Finally, not far behind, they arrive at a huge temple in the center of
the city. Immediately inside is a pillared courtyard decorated with huge
statues and smeared with the evidence of a recent battle. There is no
time to investigate, though, because the four statues lumber off their
pedestals and accuse the Quartet of being unworthy to pass!
Sadly, creatures of the desert are highly vulnerable to Amaryllis's
spells of cold, and she knows this.
The tracks lead through a labyrinth of corridors much larger than the
outside aspect of the temple, and into a subterranean room larger yet,
where (the Amazons discover, after appropriate use of light magic) a huge
chitinous monster lurks. Grappling with giant scorpions isn't Our Heroines'
strong suit, so they apply a great deal of magic to Gabrielle and her bow,
and the scorpion is quickly dispatched. Unfortunately, the people they've
been pursuing are lurking on the other side of the chamber, throwing
spells, and when Alyra attacks them, they put up an impenetrable wall of
force and scarper.
When the forcefield decays and the Amazons can continue, they find an
ambush of mummies waiting for them, along with a yuan-ti. This proves
more of an obstacle than the giant scorpion, but with determination and
several fireballs, the mummies and their handler are overcome.
Finally, the Quartet has reached the center of the temple! And not a
moment too soon, either, as the necrotheologians are about to sacrifice
a family of brass dragons!
* * *
Wow, are mummies really only CR 3? One mummy would slaughter
a party of four 3rd-level characters: half get paralyzed when they see
it, the rest can barely hurt it because it takes only half damage from
weapons, and even if they survive, they probably die of the rot before
they can find a 5th-level cleric to cast Remove Disease.
* * *
Homeward zooming! Splut!