First combat session of Encounters, hooray! As I mentioned before, the adventurers this season had to choose a faction - House Melarn, House Xorlarrin, or the Bregan D’aerthe mercenary company. I noticed that most people wanted to be part of the mercenary company, and I wonder if that is because they think it will give them the most freedom of choice later on. I really hope that the three affiliations are balanced... mostly because I chose House Melarn!
Ostensibly, the three factions are united in their quest to help the evil goddess Lolth take over as goddess of all magic. To do this, Lolth has commanded her followers to drain magic items of their power and turn over the raw energy to her. Recently, a shrine to primordial magic was found and a group of drow were sent to harvest it. Apparently they failed, as they have not been seen or heard from since. The leaders of our various factions have commanded us, as a group, to search out the shrine and finish the task. Nothing can go wrong with this plan!
After these general instructions were given, each leader pulled the members of their faction aside for a private chat. I don't want to say much more, but I could see how my instructions could potentially set up an interesting conflict. But, wait! I've said too much...
We proceed into the cave (Cave, cave, of course, a cave! Freakin' Underdark) and are almost immediately set upon by an Ocher Jelly and half a dozen spindly-legged minions. Being a paladin, I charged right into battle, trying to subject as many people as possible to my Defenders Aura (enemies standing next to me get punished for attacking my allies). I ended up dropping a Cloud of Darkness, and I immediately hated myself for it.
We beat the baddies in this session pretty handily, and rescued the previous drow party. They informed us that one of their priestesses had betrayed them,
and that was the only reason they were defeated by Jelly & Co.
Riiiiiiight. I have to say, it's fun role playing a drow character. For example, here's how the exchange between me and the rescued drow NPC went:
Me: Is his house higher or lower in rank than mine?
Me: Akneth says, "We've come to complete the mission at which you failed, pathetic scum!"
Mac: Wait... Actually, he's higher.
Me: Okay, in that case she says, "With respect, we are here to rescue you and continue your glorious task in the service of Lolth."
Next Time: On the trail of the rogue priestess! But I will be out of town, so check out Dungeon's Master for updates.