« Balinor/Morty/Tarplin Summary #5: Making Friends | Main | The 10th Telvar Open: Pocketing the Difference »

Felix Summary #8: The Continued Adventures of King Felix

Download file

Felix's party, having rescued the dwarven kingdom of Arala from a flying, strength
and level draining, rogue, chimeric shadowy servant of the god of Rakshasas, is
attempting to find and reclaim the legendary ancient dwarven tunnel system to
provide a safe passage between Cromwell and Arala. The hope is that if the tun-
nel is reopened, trade between those nations will pick up, and dwarven expatriates
will return home, shoring up the desperately thin defences of the oldest seat of
dwarven power in the New World.

The Party

Felix, Dwarven King: dwarven fighter 10, hp 100, land-dragon scale armor, shield,
short sword +5 Peacemaker.
Donald, Future Ruler of the World: human mage 9, hp 48, indian head-dress, flow-
ing golden robe, hell-hound cloak, smoky quartz glasses, copper bracers and a gaudy
Hendel Hardaway, Preserver of Dwarven Wealth: dwarven thief 9, hp 52, dual
dagger, double-shot light cross-bow, bracers.
Gates Hardaway: dwarven cleric of Moradin 8, hp 52, banded mail, shield, shock
Rathbane Hardaway, “Evenslate": dwarven fighter 7/cleric of Clanggedin 6, hp 54
plate-mail, bastard-sword Soul Mirror.
Aral: human woodsman 2, hp 27, banded mail, heavy cross-bows and dwarven hand
cannon, pointy slippers.


The party, having rescued the dwarven kingdom of Arala from a flying, strength
and level draining, rogue, chimeric shadowy servant of the god of Rakshasas, is
attempting to find and reclaim the legendary ancient dwarven tunnel system to
provide a safe passage between Cromwell and Arala. The hope is that if the tun-
nel is reopened, trade between those nations will pick up, and dwarven expatriates
will return home, shoring up the desperately thin defences of the oldest seat of
dwarven power in the New World.

In a previous foray the party made its way, with little incident, through the
abandoned city below the occupied levels of Arala. After finding both the large
elevator shaft and the access shaft that presumably linked the abandoned city to
the tunnel, the party carefully opened the access shaft and descended. Well before
reaching the bottom of the access shaft the party encountered a complex where a
Spirit Naga who was using enslaved gnolls to mine garnets. The party slew the
naga and many of the workers and returned to Arala to train and drop off loot.

The Adventure
The city, or dancing in flames
While the abandoned city beneath Arala is almost entirely deserted, there are
some inhabitants. Indeed, as the party was traveling through the city they encoun-
tered a Frost Giant. As the creature started to shamble forwards it became clear
that there was something deeply wrong with the giant, and thinking “zombie",
or even worse, Gates and Rathbane attempted to turn the monster while Aral
proceeded to take careful aim with his hand-cannon. The clerics rapidly became
aware that, despite all appearances, the giant was not undead, and Aral fired. The
bolt struck true, and with effect, but ominously a yellow cloud spewed from the
Donald took several quick steps to the side and fired a Lightning Bolt, hitting
the giant twice, after which Felix and the giant engaged in melee, with Rathbane
rapidly reinforcing the front lines. The remaining fight was quick and one-sided,
but both Felix and Rathbane were covered in strange yellow spores that attempted
to burrow under their skin. Taking no chances, the two fighters removed their
armor and cleansed themselves of the threat by enduring a Fireball from the party
wizard. This therapy, while painful, proved effective.

Note: At the conclusion to the adventure, we queried the Arala sage. He informed us
that there are odd mushroom men who use some form of fungus to animate dead bodies
as guards. The giant we encountered was likely a rogue specimen of such, suggesting that
we passed near a mushroom man colony. The spores present no major threat to the living,
and would merely have unpleasant for perhaps a week.

While the casters slept in an abandoned house to regain spells and heal the
self-inflicted wounds, the people on watch saw two bugbear-like creatures pass.

These “bugbears" were of the right form, but of the wrong color: dark. They
were crudely equipped, one with a club, but pulling something not-unlike a child’s
wagon. The watch choose not to engage, and the “bugbears" fled.

Note: After more interactions with these “bugbears", Donald remembered some leg-
ends linking Drow elves to a race called the Quag which matched our impression of them.
In retrospect I have no idea how the probably-Quag got into the city. Both the elevator
shaft and the access shaft were well-sealed.

The access shaft, or exercises in claustrophobia
Upon arriving at the access shaft, the party opened it and started down the lad-
der. Eight hours later, long after the party passed the Naga’s complex (§2), they
arrived at a dismaying sight: the shaft was caved in. Hendel could tell that the
cave in was not accidental but rather the result of a trap, and so the rubble likely
wasn’t impossibly deep. Shuddering at the thought of spending days lifting rocks
however, the party retraced their steps and returned to an access door leading to
the main (elevator) shaft. Aral determined that the area had seen recent travel
and Hendel found two traps on the door: one, barely worth the name, was a few
blades attached to the handle. The second trap was a Glyph of some form. The
party attached a rope to Hendel and climbed further up the access shaft before the
thief attempted to disarm the door. The attempt was successful.
After regrouping, the party opened the door and a Magic Mouth went off,
speaking in a language clearly related to Dwarven. The party, unfortunately, could
not understand the message, but there clearly were people down below that could.
A Continual Light coin was dropped, revealing a circle of 8 stools filled by 8 of
the “bugbear"s 100 feet below. Interestingly, there was an extendible ladder
whose top was just outside of infravision range. The “bugbears", clearly pained
by the light, fled although Gates managed to confuse and delay two of them by
asking them in Dwarven to stay. Without a better way down, the party jumped,
getting Featherfalled by Donald before landing. In addition to the aforementioned
ladder and stools, the bottom of the main shaft was populated by a bizarre mix of
well engineered, crafted and maintained carts and wagons, and primitive camps.

The fight, or when Kraken attack
The room the party found itself in had exits: three huge archways that looked like
they all lead to the same place. As these were the exits the “bugbears" had made
use of, the party pursued. The party found itself in a large (150’ square), well
crafted room. The walls were indented with large cubby-holes that looked like
the underlying component to dwarven market stalls. On the left and right walls
were two balconies, without obvious accesses. The right quarter of the room was
a pool of water with a nice, albeit destroyed in the center, railing. On the far side
were two more huge archways facing those we had come through, and flanking
a grate: the ticket counter or information booth for the ancient dwarven tunnel
system? Perhaps of more immediate import, however, was the sound of fire-doors
clanging shut in all the obvious exits.
A deep voice, from the behind the left balcony (above land) told the party that
they didn’t know what they were interrupting. If they did know, they would un-
derstand, but they couldn’t be allowed to leave. Somewhat bizarrely, however, the
voice didn’t want to kill the party. He had a friend who would take us away. It was
at this point that Aral noticed the water starting to stir. The party opted to move
around the edges of the room to the left, to eventually get beneath the balcony.
Negotiations with the voice went nowhere, when a psychic voice started talking
to the party about how they were all going to be its slaves. On top of these events,
eight odd looking, spear wielding, slightly shiny and certainly wet gnolls came out
of the darkness from the water-side of the room and took up positions flanking the
party. Communication with the psychic voice went absolutely nowhere, and after
and Continual Light stone toss that revealed a giant armored squid-like creature
and a psychic strike on the party that everyone shook off, Rathbane used a token
of bridge to create a path from the corner of the room where the party was to the
balcony. The gnolls threw spears at Donald and Aral took a cross-bow shot at the
gnolls and the squid covered the light with a tentacle. No one managed to injure
their foe and the party crossed the bridge with the gnolls on their heels.
At the top, the party found a large iron door, which was not an original is-
sue fire-door. As Hendel studied the door for means to open it, Felix took up a
guard position on the bridge and Gates and Rathbane started spells. They would
both cast Prayer which Gates was to supplement with a Protection from Evil 10’
Radius and a Spiritual Weapon. While Felix, rapidly reinforced by Rathbane,
handily held the bridge against the gnolls, Hendel found that the door had no ob-
vious weaknesses and the party was struck again by psychic force. The veteran
dwarves and Donald shook off the effect, but Aral was not so lucky, and collapsed
in a despairing heap crying about how it all was hopless. The fight proceeded in
a somewhat bizarre fashion, with Felix and Rathbane slaying the gnolls (who
appeared to have fishlike skin, the source of the shininess) while Hendel threw
another Continual Light stone which Donald used to target a Lightning Bolt. Af-
ter that, Hendel started trying to slap Aral out of his hysteric despair, Felix and Rathbane prepared to stand against a shiny Frost Giant that followed the gnolls
out of the darkness and Donald dropped a Fireball on the squid, while the squid
opted to single out Felix for targeted psychic attacks, to no avail. The Fireball,
however, was exceptionally productive as in the light it cast the party could make
out two more Frost Giants. Those two Frost Giants appear to be extremely vul-
nerable to fire as the entire upper half of their skin was melted off.
Just as the Frost Giant reached the top of the bridge, it turned around and
headed back down. Felix and Rathbane failed to stop its retreat and the party
pursued back down the bridge. As the party reached the floor the psychic voice
called out, saying “These ones are dangerous. They are your responsibility", and
the party heard more splashing. The party heard some clattering from the iron
door and then a yellow fog formed on the balcony. Rathbane drank a potion
of Frost Giant Strength and the party, still uninjured physically, started back up
the bridge with Rathbane in the lead. As Rathbane reached the top, a large,
humanoid, two armed, bat winged creature stepped out of the cloud and breathed
flame on the entire party. Rathbane held it at bay with Soul Mirror and Felix
went for Mortal Coils, the set of shackles that strips the supernatural abilities
from extra-planar creatures and destroys them on death rather than letting them
flee to their home plane.
Felix managed to get the shackles on while the demon tore into him with a
claw/claw/bite routine. Hendel snuck behind the creature and thanks to the shack-
les blocking the demon’s psionic senses, delivered a pair of devastating back-
stabs. Rapidly, the demon abandoned his attacks and turned, trying to tear the
door off its hinges, while the party continued to hammer it with blade and spell
and Gates prepared to cure Felix . Realizing that escape was hopeless, the de-
mon turned at bay and ripped into Felix, rapidly dropping him just before Gates
dropped his first cure spell and started on his scroll. That, mercifully, was when
the demon was dropped. Remembering that slain demons were engulfed in major
explosions when the shackles destroyed them forever, the party, again, fled down
the bridge. Segments later, the door opened and a bearded dwarf stepped out,
brandishing a wand and claiming “Now I will destroy you all".
The party split up, Felix and Rathbane diving off to one side of the bridge
and the rest of the party the other. A heartbeat later, the dwarf launched a Fireball
from the wand, injuring the larger section of the party, and killing Aral outright.
The dwarf then went for a blue globe. Just as he raised it overhead, the demon
exploded. The dwarf saved, but the globe did not, and released an anrgy Wa-
ter Elemental. The elemental immediate took out its anger on the dwarf, hitting
him twice and slaying him instantly. The elemental then slowly drifted down the bridge and into the pool of water, to the party’s relief. While the elemental was
gone, the foes had not yet run out of reinforcements. From the door several more
dwarves stepped out, armed with cross bows. A brief, largely ineffectual exchange
of missile fire occured while Rathbane , largely untouched, started back up the
bridge for the third time. Felix used a charge from the Shield of Healing, Don-
ald let off his final Lightning Bolt and Hendel began to climb the wall under the
The exploding demon, Hendel’s crossbow and Donald’s Lightning Bolt had
slain three of the new dwarves. As Rathbane closed, the remaining three dwaves
went for their melee weapons: two were armed with pole-arms and the third with
paired short-swords. Rathbane held the short sword wielder at bay, but did not
injure him too greatly. Hendel attacked from behind, slaying one of the polearm
wielders outright while Gates killed the other with his Spiritual Hammer. The
short sword wielding dwarf brutalized Hendel before Felix closed, and then sur-
vived long to score hits on him before being taken down. The fight, at last, was

Note: The wand wielding dwarf was in fact beardless. He had grown his hair long
and combed and braided it into a fake beard.

The lair, or when mad scientists go bad
The party, having been the recipient of several area attacks, was in poor shape.
The decision was made to turn Hendel invisible with the Ring of Invisibility, give
him the Wand of Trap/Secret Door detection and have him scout. In the first
room, directly past the (now open) iron door, the party found a bizarre workshop.
It seemed that the dwarves were working on some kind of poison gas traps, but
that wasn’t entirely clear. In the room, levers were found, some clearly marked
as controlling the fire doors. Further, there were three large black barrels The
room had two new exits, to stair-cases, one down and one up. Heading down,
Hendel found a large room with five more large black barrels and some combat
dummies. The room opened into a large tunnel with a pair of tracks running
down the center. To the left, the tunnel extending into the darkness, but to the
right Hendel rapidly came to the other set of large archways and an entrance into
the grate-room. Past those there was a very large construction in the tunnel, but
infravision was inadequate to characterize it. Returning, Hendel went up the stairs
and found a barracks with six bunks, the right count for the non-wand wielding
dwarves. Three of the chests by the beds were trapped, but the keys found on
the dwarves would bypass those traps and locks without difficulty. At the far end
of the barracks was another door, this one guarded both by a magical and by a
mechanical trap.
Judging that the dwarves were fully defeated and the the “bugbears" were
unlikely to return, the party advanced into the barracks and Rathbane Dispell
Magiced the door. Hendel bypassed the mechanical trap with keys found on the
savant and the party opened the door and found a demon worshipper’s dream
room. Beyond skulls, candles and other paraphernalia the party found a chest and
a desk drawer of interest, both magically and mechanically warded. This time
Gates did the Dispell honors and Hendel again opened them without difficulty.
Further, the party found a secret compartment with an small casket.

Note: Loot listed in §4.

On a table was a bizarre object. It seemed alchemical in nature, but Donald
could not place its purpose. An interesting feature was the wheels, which turned,
but were just too high for the object to run on. Another oddity was the contents
of the three barrels in the work-room (the five barrels below were empty): Earth’s
Blood. This rare alchemical component came, according to Donald’s knowledge
only from the kingdom of Empyrea in the Far World, which had been in con-
tact with the New World for a bare few decades, and was worth perhaps eight
thousand gp/barrel.

The “bugbears", or when the gods forgot the brains
After spell-shifting, the party figured that there was likely a mirror to the section
they were in that would end in the other balcony and so went to the tunnel and
headed in that direction. With light, the party could identify the construct on
the tracks as a massively scaled up version of the machine in the savant’s room.
Here, Donald could tell that there was another barrel’s worth of Earth’s Blood in
a tank in the machine, which was made both of an ancient, ancient base and new
construction and appeared nearly complete. Past the machine the party indeed
found a mirror image of the other complex, guarded by two “bugbears", with
whom communication proved impossible although Rathbane managed to anger
the pair by repeating their phrases back at them.
After retreating, Gates loaded Tongues and the party returned. I will spare you
the conversation, but let it be said that the “bugbears" did not impress with their
wits. They did, however, have the secret of the wheel. It turns out that the dwarves
had been paying the “bugbears" in food for scavenged ancient dwarven machinery
parts. Further, the party learned that towards the Cromwell side, the tunnel ended
in a rockslide while to the other side, the tunnel became dangerous, and populated by “slime creatures". The “bugbears" had torn a hubcap and a pipe from the large
machine, which their leader had been using as club and shield. To recover those
without a fight, and get the “bugbears" out of the way, the party bargained passage
outside and a few pole-arms and shield.
The party, with “bugbears" in tow then proceeded back up the access shaft to
the Naga’s lair. The “bugbears" started with an olio of bizarre objects, including
a dwarven fishbowl, but abandoned most of them on the way out. Upon entry to
the Naga’s lair, the “bugbears" became agitated, but upon the casting of another
Tongues spell, and being told of the Naga’s defeat, followed. At the exit, the
leader of the “bugbears" turned to Gates and asked “Snow?". Upon Gate’s agree-
ment, the “bugbears" ran their hands through their hair and along their arms and
turned white. The clearly not-bugbears then left, disappearing from sight almost

Arala, or when politics raises its ugly head
The party proceeded back to Arala without incident, whereupon things went
weird. To keep this story from becoming overlong, it appears that the party had
indeed found the tunnel, ancient dwarven machinery and more, a technical man-
ual from the High Kingdom (which fell some twenty odd thousand years ago).
The machine and manual stirred up significant political issues, which resulted in
the party being sequestered (Aral was raised by the Aralian priests) while debate
raged. In sum:
The clan of the Aralian king (and perhaps other dwarven clans whose tradition
dates that far back) feel that the fall of the High Kingdom was due to over-reliance
on machines rather than hard work. As such, the Aralian king likely intends to de-
stroy the machine, the Earth’s Blood and the manual.
A further interesting note is that what records remain suggest that the machines
of the High Kingdom all required Earth’s Blood and that the fall of the High
Kingdom roughly coincided with the supplies of Earth’s Blood running dry. If
the party (as dwarven nobility) or Felix, as a dwarven king decide to attempt to
intervene, this suggests an obvious line of argument:
If the High Kingdom could not find an alternate fuel to keep the machines running,
than even if such machines are redeveloped there is no way to produce or use
enough to fundamentally alter dwarven society and make it weak. If, instead,
the supplies of Earth’s Blood have regenerated, then likely divine intervention
occurred, and it would be wise to query the Gods before destroying what might
have been meant as a gift. The dwarves of the New World are in a perilous position as things stand, and the discovery of a preserved technical manual might
be divinely inspired.

Note: On a more mundane note, the sage believes that the “slime people" the Quag
mentioned might be the same fish-scaled creatures we encountered with the Squid. He
noted that every few decades adventures claim encounters with underground squid that
enslave people. People familiar The Stone Soules might recognize similarities with the
experiences of The Dozen.


Note: I took the loot list with me to enable writing this section. Accordingly, this is the
only player record of the loot.
6, 940 gp worth of assorted coin, gems and jewelry.
3 repeating dart cross-bows. These are designed to carry poisoned bolts, making
them slower to load.
2 +1/ + 1 quality short swords.
Dagger +1
Longsword +0/+4 and double damage vs hooved beings. I believe it is unnamed.
If so, may I suggest My Little Ponyslayer?
Angry fire, air and earth elementals in globes (1 each). Tricky to transport, and no
way to control said elementals.
Wand of Fireballs, 11 charges, command word unknown.
Soul Broach, originally could absorb up to 9 level drains or death attacks. 4
charges remaining.
Potion of Climbing.
Full Size spellbook (Death Servant magic). To be destroyed or handed over to
people for anti-demon research.
11 vials magic ink.
5 10 cn. mithril bars.
3 alchemical book preservation boxes, 1 with a
∼ 20, 000 year old dwarven tech-
nical manual. Status of the later a matter of political debate.
11 dwarven alchemical barrels, 3 filled with Earth’s Blood. Also politically sen-


TrackBack URL for this entry:


the “bugbears" ran their hands through their hair and along their arms and
turned white. The clearly not-bugbears then left, disappearing from sight almost

That's some bad pretty dandruff right there.

Aral was raised by the Aralian priests

Woah. That just blew my mind. It's like destiny has been fulfilled.

With this summary, I believe we can surmise the true cause of the collapse of the Dwarven kingdom. You see, living below ground, they lacked a large grain-growing lobby that otherwise would have made the push for a switch to ethanol. Alas, the dwarves were thusly not able to deal with the economic realities of "peak earth's blood", which now apparently trades at a price of 8000 gp (~ 11 million dollars?) per barrel. Clearly, Telvar's dwarves should not make the same mistake twice. I recommend a program of research targeted towards making the necessary modifications to the subway's engine that would allow it to run safely on distilled hooch.

If the Aralan government insists on destroying the subway and the book, the book may just need to be "liberated" for the good of progress and civilization. If this can be carried out, the book should be copied and reprinted as often as possible, before being marketed under the bestseller-assuring title: "Ancient dwarven secrets they don't want you to know about".

Obviously a lot really depends on the precise attitudes of the dwarves. Are they culturally unified against the idea of complicated machinery? Or might there be some significant push back against the opinion of the Aralan king. If the Hardaway Clan were completely united in favor of the destruction of the book and train, Gates would pretty much have to go along with it. Although of course my other alter-ego, Chiaro, would probably consider "Rescue the nifty ancient artifacts from the dwarven Luddites" to be the closest thing to a holy quest this side of "Unite the five ice-toad kingdoms and lead their warriors in a crusade against the Mailed Fist."

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)