After making short work of the slime blob the party slept away the hours of what they believe was the night, in the dank slim splattered room. In a stroke up good luck, they were undisturbed through the night. They awoke and continued to search this end of the corridor, deciding that that crossing over the chasm in the other hallway seemed quite tempting, but they should see what was to be seen here about first.
The other length of hall contained a battered and broken wooden door. An enticing invitation. Once breached they found a curious and somewhat unsettling sight. To their left laid a sizable pile of jumbled bones. At first glance they could see there were skulls, femurs, ribs, and all manner of bones tossed together. On the right their laid four sets of bones, pieced together on the floor immaculately, still donning their armor and weapons. They looked although they had been laid to rest quite some time ago. However, even more curious were the walls of this room, of which every inch was covered in a great mural.
They took in the pictures with great fascination. It seemed to follow a party of adventurers over their years of quests. Two elvish, a dwarf, a human, and a grey statue like man. It showed them facing and overcoming many foes and challenges through their time until they found a great blackened tree with the life drained from the surrounding area. It was much like the one they had entered just a day before. Now the mural showed the team working to piece together stone tablets while the stone man fought off a hydra, and the next scene was an elvish wizard contemplating and speaking to one of the statues in the following room. Then, however, everything changed. A battle erupted, bloody and terrible. The red soaked the wall mercilessly showing overwhelming death. They fought what look like gnolls and also darker creatures, to smeared with black and shadow to make out their true nature.
Then they saw the very room they stood in. They saw the corpses of many foes, and four adventurers, with one lone standing man made of stone. Time seemed to pass then, for it showed the same scene many times, until it had come to the way it looked today with the bones laid to rest. When the looked upon the final picture, they grew unnerved. It showed a painting of the room where they stood, with a man of stone against the back wall, and five adventurers peering around the room. A halfling, a wilden, a minotaur, a dwarf and an Elf, and it was then they realized that the stone man’s eyes had been gone to shine a pale blue.
After a moment of careful thought the Elf recognized the construct. He was a Warforged, a man made of stone and metal, brought magically to life. However unlike a golem or like creature, warforged are fully sentient and have fluid within them, which resembles the blood which gives other folk life.
The adventures spoke to him in turn, learning much about his past exploits and his fallen band of adventures. There seemed to be a great sadness upon the Warforged. He seemed to be a man whose only family he had ever known had perished, and he, living on decades past them, just pondering his existence, not knowing how to spend his life. During their conversation, the dwarf was arrogant enough to refer to him as machine. Brandishing his sword and shield the man of stone roared. “Machines do not think and feel as I! I may not, eat, nor sleep, nor bleed, but I am aware of my own existence, and I am aware that it can end!” Pouring with apologizes the Dwarf soothed the Warforged. Once the initial outraged had passed, the man had resigned back in to his contemplative sorrow.
Taking pity on the unbreathing man, the party asked him to join up with their cause and destroy the mighty evil which lays below them, and avenge his fallen comrades. The warforged looked at them sharply. he was made to wage war, to fight and kill, but also defend. Had the time to stop defending that which laid dead? he did not know and resolved to think upon it, time was on his side after all.
With that the party bid the man who came to be known as Defender two zero of one zero zero zero, farewell. And for short the stone man told them, they may refer to him as his friends used to, as D20.
Walking through the twisting and turning stony halls of underground lair, the adventures eventually make their way back to the original passage of which they did not explore due to a gaping hole in the floor. With renewed vigor they tackled the obstacle with little resistance. THe halfling went leaping deftly across, spinning with ease to land gently on her toes. She tied a rope that the others might climb across with little effort. However, after they had crossed they came to an obstacle that was just a little more complex. The next room they entered was a great cavern, with walls and ceiling so far, they melted away into the darkness of the great expanse.
As the peered in to the darkness from the cleft they stood upon, they saw out in front a series of pillars large and flat enough to jump from one to another across, to whatever lay out in the dark. Naturally, they sent the Halfling rogue tink to test the waters and learn what she could. With a few hop, skips, and jumps she managed to nimbly reach another great platform, much like the large one she stood on before. Only this time, there appeared to be no other exits. There was however, what appeared to be a stalagmite coming out of the platform, but instead of coming to a point it was as if the stop had been sheered off at a slant. Embedded in the slant was a fist sized smooth stone. before investigating further she called to the others to join her, if they could.
One by one the party members tried their luck to hop across the dangerous pillars, steading themselves with a rope the rogue had secured. Luckily, they all made it however after two adventures lost their footing, they lost a few pieces of gold, and the onyx hydra statue, sending them down to splash far, far below.
With everyone now on the new platform, they now investigated with stone inlay stone ball. Before long they determined that the ball could twist in its stone seat, and seems to be part of some magical mechanism. and then with a twist to the right, a shower of stone slabs appeared to fall from the ceiling floating down to rest in place as to make a bridge from them off to the right. then they found when with turned the stone back to the left the stone bridge flew back up. More turns to the left brought it back down again, this time spanning out to the left of them. Walking out to the left, they found another platform nearly identical to the previous one only this time, the ball was missing from its stone depression. Using some rope and natural ingenuity they were able to toss the ball from the other side to this empty slot, allowing them to make new bridges. There were 6 platforms in total, 2 rows of 3, with the middle column slightly set forward.
they were able to find that the far right platform was crumbling, and could only hold one person at a time, however with a second stone ball they found they were able to make a stone slab bridge to an unusual location, a skinny ledge on the sidewall. Once there they seemed to be at the end of their adventure until they took notice of the sprawling vines. Feeling adventurous they took hold of them and started to climb down the length of the cavern, eventually meeting a corner, and then a ledge with a door. Unfortunately, they also found two Gnolls which had been watching their progress this whole time. The Gnolls attacked them as they climbed down towards the ledge, however once the minotaur, carrying the dwarf of course, landed the battle was all but over. They made short work of the fiends and plundered a chest with two ritiual scrolls, ‘disc of levitation’. Making the return journey potentially very easy, a shame the didn’t have them before.