Friday, April 11, 2008

CotAB: Entry 6 (Silver the Enchantress hates Akabar Bel Akas)

It's unfortunate that Haptooth didn't really have a decent inn. By the time we got there, I needed a shower pretty bad. I thought I earned one after going through the caves, but we still had the "Red Wizard's Tower" to traverse. Weird how we went from the caves immediately to the top of the tower. It would have made a whole lot more sense if we started at the bottom and worked our way up. Alas.

Even more unfortunate that Haptooth didn't have any form of weapons shop. Somehow, I dropped my dagger way back before Essembra. Didn't realize it was gone until it was too late. In the meantime, I had to free Hap, traverse the caves and then the tower -- three major campaigns -- without a weapon. Couple that with no armour and the monsters have a sitting duck on their hands. Surviving this part of the adventure has been an adventure in itself.

So anyway, we started making our way down the tower and the first guy we run into is some "burly dark elf lord." I had no idea dark elves could even be "burly." Good thing he was at the bottom of the stairs, because it still took our combined momentum to get past him -- no thanks to that douche Akabar. We kept calling him "Admiral Akabar" and he didn't even get it. He kept thinking we were complimenting him. If only he were as pretty as the real thing. Anyway, the guy has this REALLY annoying habit of staying back and casting fireball spells after we've already engaged the enemy in melee fighting. Dark elves are usually immune to fire, but we aren't. Usually all Akabar succeeds in doing is lighting us all on fire. It's hard to fight when you're wearing a cloth robe, you're on fire and you don't have a weapon.

Once we finally hit level 4 of the tower we were able to play the fun "trial of the sphere" game. Some red wizard played it with us. We didn't get a good look at him, but he wasn't Dracandros. I'm not sure if it's Dracandros's tower, or if it's this guy's. All I know is that according to Journal Entry 18 from blog entry 4, we're simply looking for the "red wizard," so I don't know. Anyway, the wiz told us that we needed to will this sphere toward him and he'd try to will it toward one of us. Whoever willed it to the other person first would win! He also said that only mages could control the sphere. For some reason Rex jumped ahead of me to play. Reddy must've been lying about the whole mage thing because Rex (with his weak, boyish mind) somehow willed that sphere right into the wizard's face. The wizard and the sphere exploded, so I didn't even get a chance to play.
On the way down to the next level, some other dark elf lord demanded some dinero before he'd let us pass. We refused, but he disappeared as an illusion before we had a chance to fight him or turn him into the authorities for bribery.

On level 3 we had a wonderfully cuddly time with the dark elves' pet owl bears. During combat they even tried to hug us! I'd think it adorable were I not a hardened adventurer. They also made fabulous shields against the dark elves.

Speaking of fighting dark elves, we must have killed like 30 or 40 dark elf magic-users. Why come none of them, not a single one, was carrying a dagger. They had all sorts of mystical elfy weapons that Rex, Derf and Pil couldn't get enough of, but I still wound up with no weapon. About this time I just took Disposo's dagger, claiming seniority. He didn't complain and he had no right to, because he got the armour bracers.

The description to our next battle was downright terrifying.

Much of what was done next was getting the map up to date. I'm using a new cartography spell, so I'm pretty proud of the map results. It's way better than Rex's last map anyway.

Notice the place where we found the exploding paper, the weird veggie lab and the bedroom.
We took something out of the pool in the lab. Derfindor grabbed it. He said it felt like a head. Then he brought it out of the water and put it immediately in his pouch. He nor we didn't get a good look at it. I wonder why not.

Wyverns. They use the "poison" spell, which is cheap. If a spellcaster pulls it off it means instant death. That doesn't make any sense at all. One of the traditional attributes of poison is that it takes time to work through the system. HP shouldn't go down immediately, it should be slow and agonizing. Akabar never had a chance to be poisoned. I swear to you I never even saw the guy move his feet in battle once. His battle strategy is to just stand there and wait for something. Sometimes, sometimes he'll throw down a stinking cloud, but it's usually in our faces. Anyway, Chlorine learned from the wyverns. Poison is a great quick, efficient spell.

Rushing outside the tower, we finally found Dracandros. Can you believe this guy? He brands us, forces us to do things against our wills, frames us and then has the gall to say crap like "You have dogged my steps for too long..." Time to die Dracandros.

The guy was surrounded by dark elf fighters and efreeti. I never dreamed there were so many genies in existence. Maybe now there are none in existence. I threw a bunch of confusion spells at them. It made things easier, because after the dust had settled, all the efreeti were gone and two of the dark elves were so confused they were fighting for us. It gave us a chance to surround Dracandros. Akabar was a waste, though. He cast an invisibility spell on himself and then did what he always does -- stand there. He could have used the spell to slip past people and do some damage, but he wound up completely wasting it. I swear I'd have a lot more respect for him if he'd just run away or not bother casting any spells at all than waste them like that.

So I guess I could've spent time detailing how we wailed on Dracandros, but my annoyance with Dracandros just weighed too much on my mind.

We wailed on Dracandros.

We could've then gone straight back into Hap, but detoured back through the caves to make sure we didn't miss anything. The salamanders let us take some of their stuff, which was nice. We literally had to dip our hands in lava to get it, so there was some give and take.

We went back to Haptooth and unfortunately, they still don't have a weapons shop, so we decided to backtrack back to Essembra when:

Good freaking riddance! The guy stabbed me more than he hit any monster.

Right as we left Hap, all the dark elf weapons dissolved in the sunlight. No big whoop. We were only a day away from Essembra, but just outside of town, we hit a nightmarish snag that I wasn't hoping to hit. Remember that Crimdrac dracolich who gave us a free ride to the tower roof in the last entry? Well, for some reason he found us and for some reason he didn't give us a chance to surrender this time. Strangely, he was mad at us for killing his "tutor." What's up with that? Dracandros the wuss was the mentor of Crimdrac the badass dragon skeleton? Must've put an inferiority complex spell on the beast.

We hid from him for like a half hour before we realized that he was impeded by the trees. Disposo and I simply hurled about six fireballs at him and the skeletal softie went down like a cat.

I'm gonna miss that guy.

Essembra was so wonderful! I bathed at the classy inn before we all went to get leveled up. That was another thing that was missed about civilization. We racked up a shload of XP we weren't even getting credit for. I am now a level 9 magic-user, or more officially, a sorcerer. A sorcerer sounds way better than the level 8 designation of "warlock" which I hated because I'm not male. Here's hoping our newfound "cloudkill" and "hold monsters" spells come in handy.

When we went to have our found stuff identified we discovered that half of our weapons and armour was good stuff we weren't even using! Plate mail +3, shield +2, glaive +1, ring of protection + 3, bracers AC 2, ring of wizardry (I don't know what that is, but it sounds awesome), wand of fireballs, wand of ice storm, broad sword +2 and a short sword +1, gauntlets of dexterity, etc. See, we were afraid of using any of that stuff for fear that some of it may be cursed and would stick to us (it's happened to us before). Turns out just about everything was clean except for the "robe of powerlessness" (why would anyone name something that?). Oh and also, Disposo claimed the +2 staff of Dracandros. And I still have the 2 gold piece dagger that I took from him.

Just when most of the fun of our trip to Essembra had deflated, I heard this in the tavern:

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