Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Episode 59: Well, At Least We Got Off That Planet!

It all began so innocently.

It was a straight-up dungeon fight scene. The Squad had the higher ground (a stairwell) and superior firepower (draconic laser tubes), even if they were slightly outnumbered. And The Enigma had managed to not trample on Dolorous while firing upon (and exploderating) a skeleton.

Even Captain Bonkers managed an atypical display of dexterity, failing to trample Dolorous and firing upon (and hitting) Stonehenge. Probably even accidentally.

Stonehenge welcomed the change, as the giant troll's constant battering of him into the dungeon floor was getting old (and his hit points were in danger of falling below 50 - a worrisome spot indeed.)

But just when The Squad was poised to 'kick things into high gear', as it were, the nitpicking gnome of disaster began pulling at the thread of reality, and things began to fall apart.

It began, as it usually does, with Koresh.

Instead of the acid-breathing, forked-finger fonging tsunami of destruction that the Squad is used to (and actually is capable of planning for), Koresh paused for a moment to curl himself inward around his milky-white sphere. He began to pet it. The Enigma even heard the words 'my preciousssss' being uttered.

That wasn't helpful.

What also wasn't helpful was the dark, cowled wizard forking dual bolts of violet light at the stairwell. Not only did they cause Dolorous' BoomHaranging Bone Shards to utterly miss the mark, but they (most unhelpfully) caused the The Captain and Enigma (Love.... Love will keep us two gethuh...) dematerialize in a puff of purple static and rematerialize at the wizard's side, mer purplish clones of their former selves.

And, in rare and concerted effort to be helpful, the Jade Scarab crawled under the wizard's robe and was eaten by a Basket Imp.

It was at this point that Koresh built a small hut out of glowing skeleton bones.

(It should be noted that when the Jade Scarab crawled under the wizard's robe, he was, in fact, in scarab form. It would have been awkward, and probably against the rules of D&D to do it in human form.)

(Also, the Imp would have to have been much bigger.)

Anyway, having led the charge into Failsville, the Jade Scarab decided he'd had enough, and took it upon himself to right the ship - first by having himself vomited up by the Imp, and then by performing a barrel roll, a basket punch and a head squeeze to the wizard - considerably turning the tide in the Party's favor. In fact, things were going so well that when Koresh finally emerged from his exploding hut to attack the giant troll (having become bored with pummeling Stonehenge) he had the wherewithal to detect a slight disturbance in the fabric of reality...

Koresh was just able to gather everyone together when IT appeared.

Big. Dark. Malevolent. And a current employer, apparently.

It started asking questions like "Why have you strayed from the path?" and "What of the tasks we've given you?" After some nervous chitchat, each party member had a vision of the past/future...

...and were plunged into a Hellish cathedral.

(It was at this point things got really weird. The Enigma was turned into a salt lick. The Jade Scarab was cut in half by the Anti-Pope. Captain Bonkers went, well, bonkers and got stuck in - literally. And while the former gnomes stabbed and fonged their way into a winning position against the giant devil, The Enigma became the King of Evil Deer and, riding into the cathedral on the back of his hellish steed, delivered the coup de grace with a well-placed antler butt.)

Then everything went black.

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