Sunday, March 10, 2019

[Actual Play] Back to the Stacks! The Stygian Library, Revisited [LotFP]

Picking up where we left off: a second run at the Stygian Library (see the first report here).

I broke the number 1 rule... You are supposed the generate the Library from scratch every time the players enter or re-enter. However, I decided to use last session's general layout, and only modify and "re-stock" it, as one would do with a regular dungeon. Overall, I think this was a good decision for the game, because the players were eager to explore the paths not yet taken.

So I kept all the Locations, re-rolled certain Details that made no sense anymore, and of course kept encounters, events, and new rooms completely random.

The session was shorter then the previous, because we had less time on our hands --- but also because we got close to a TPK and the group (wisely) cut their losses and retreated! But let's see how it went.

Krulo the Goblinboy, Elf 1 (former side-show attraction, former thief's apprentice, current free elf)
 & Unnamed laborer retainer...
Machteld Mercki X, Magic-User 3 (witchy type)
Ishimura Kobayashi, Fighter 1 (Machteld's bodyguard)

Downtime activities: After their last adventure, the group spent about 30-40 days in town, recuperating, copying spells, researching the weird items they acquired, mourning their fallen comrade. Krulo went carousing, and ended up with a cool tattoo (an upside-down cross on his temple). Having spent all their money on these activities and shopping, the group looked for new employment. They were approached by a professor, who wanted to procure a rare book on alchemy (which used to be in Rudolf II's occult collection).
So back to the Library they went!

0: Mausoleum
The library section / mausoleum was of course now void of treasure. But there were some new books on the shelves, mostly genealogical surveys and social almanacs. Krulo the Goblinboy wanted to look himself up (he is an orphan and knows nothing about his origins), and he found information about Courlandian nobility, to which he think he might be related (because Courland -> Krulo, that's his logic). There was a heartbreaking story about a young noblewoman disappearing for two weeks, then giving birth to a malformed son 9 months later.

But soon, a fight spilled over into the room!

Four huge spiders were terrorizing four obsidian monkeys. 

The group decided not to take sides in this melee, and retreated to a neighboring room, which they knew to be the cafe / tearoom.

1: Tearoom + Oriental Rugs
Like last time, the room had food and drinks laid out, however the expensive cutlery and porcelain dishes were replaced by simple ceramics and wooden trays... (looting adventurers! that's why we can't have nice things!). The group wanted to check under the floorboards again, because last time they'd found a potion hidden there, but this time only buzzing could be heard from under the floorboards, so they decided against opening up the hidden compartment again --- the memory of their encounter with the Paper Bees proved to be quite traumatic! So they rolled up a couple of rugs to take home later, and went into a new direction instead.

2: Skeleton Collection + Oriental Rugs
This part of the library is made for comfort! ...And for displaying bones... Glass cupboards with posed bird skeletons lined the walls. Machteld's meticulous search turned up an extraordinary book, which she felt was vibrating with inner power: a misplaced collection of spells! The group didn't linger here longer, and went to check what's deeper.

3: Ossuary + Gas Lamps
More bones and teeth in display cabinets! Sorted by type, size, origin... Lots of rare stuff, too, including dinosaur fossils. Krulo found a secret door, that lead onto a dark staircase. Machteld thought the rare fossils from the cabinets would make a good addition to her laboratory, and, using the Rust Moth antenna they salvaged last time, the group opened up the lock...

...and out came of the Bone Beast!

The whirling tornado of teeth and bone fragments caught the group off guard. The poor nameless laborer was torn to pieces almost straight away, and Machteld received a serious injury. Ishimura tried to fight them off, but his spear (despite being magical!) was of little use against the swarm. Machteld managed to cast Hold Monster, slowing down the tornado of death. This gave Krulo the opportunity to open the secret door, jump inside, and pull it closed. On the next round, Machteld nearly died as the bones and teeth slashed her neck arteries open. Gushing with blood, she stumbled towards the secret door, and Krulo managed to let her and Ishimura into cover. The Bone Beast started scratching at the door... So the group quickly applied some first aid to Machteld (there was one very lucky Medicine roll), and fled. 

The small, narrow corridor led to another secret door, which they carefully opened, only to arrive into...

0: Mausoleum
Yes, the secret passage led back to the entrance. The door opened behind the vertically propped up sarcophagus. From this vantage point the group saw the spiders finish off the obsidian monkeys, wrap them in webs. Only two spiders were left alive after the combat. The monsters wrapped their prey in webs, and carried two marmosets out of the room.

The group used this short time window to leave the secret passage, pick up the two remaining dead marmosets and two spider corpses, drag out three oriental rugs from the Tearoom, and leave this wretched place, licking their wounds...

Future plans include going back into the Library (they still have a month to fulfill the alchemist's request, and they are in a dire need for money!)...

No comments:

Post a Comment