Episode 8

Tumbling with Witches and Lord Hopperduke

Year, Season, Month, Days: 5992 F.Y. Pranst, Nox, 20-21

The party, looking refreshed from their incident with the bog, moved past the warning signs, the bog’s path long worn away. Several sets of footprints were seen coming in and out of the bog itself. Marasennah claimed the undead have personalities.

The bog became less stable and the number of trees increased as the party moved deeper. The party moved into a set of waist high grass which was sharp and spotted with bloodstains, only noticed by Mandilyon. Marasennah and Harry noticed the area they walked was no longer visible, as Marasennah looked longer, the grass moved and surrounded the group.

The party battled the Gluttongrass, managing to take out the patch. During the fight, Mandilyon started feeling something for Harry. The party found body parts and other loot within the field. Bae learned about dinosaurs from Harry, and that they were likely what Bae could transform into.

The party continued on the path and found a sign stating the rose garden was ahead and contained nothing of value. Marasennah stated the party was her friends before quickly rescinding and calling them minions.

The party found a tar pit with bones in it before doubling back and heading in a different direction. They found a steep slope with something glistening beyond. Bae descended the slope and stepped onto a trap. With some luck, Marasennah was able to walk Bae through the trap, afterwards, realizing the glittering was a sign plated in gold that said “I told you there was no shit in here.” Bae climbed back up the slope and discussed making nice with the witch.

The party escaped the maze, Bae rambled to Harry about The Crown. Marasennah said they felt “off”. The party checked Marasennah, found nothing wrong, then moved on to find a plain with three archways, two of which were broken. Many columns appeared to have supported a large structure at some point. A sign was planted in the ground stating “Safe camping spot” with several campfire ashes. Bae yelled out “Hello” and waited before hearing a reply. The party spoke with two green spirits, Harold and Edith. They were killed by the undead, unsure if the witch made the undead or was shielded from them. Also, they had never seen the witch.

After learning the witch made The Pavillion, the empty space the party made camp in, the party invited Edith and Harold into the protected space. The party learned the intact arch lead to a large and broken building, but the spirits were unsure which, however they believed they died there, where the undead came out of the walls. The spirits were unable to wander, tethered only to where they had been before.

None of Marasennah’s lovers had three arms. Bae did not believe any of their lovers had three arms. Suddenly, Edith appeared in front of Mandilyon and Marasennah stating she smelled magic on them. Harry casted Detect Magic on Mandilyon and stated there was no magic on her. Mandilyon giggled strangely when they were told they were magical, and later seemed attracted to Harry.

The party attempted to redirect the conversation back to the witch, but Edith was obsessed with Mandilyon’s magical capacity. The party pestered Edith who failed when attempting to lie and send them down the left path to the undead-pouring wall. Harold (the ghost) clasped his hand over Edith’s mouth, told the party to go through the middle door, and called his wife a bitch before declaring he was leaving and he faded away. Edith became enraged and red.

Clouds shrouded the sun as Edith’s eyes became flames and her body turned black and grew long claws. Harry cast Magic Weapon on Mandilyon’s longsword, and Sun Metal on Bae’s scimitar. Marasennah barraged Edith with spells (referring to the party as her friends at one point), and Bae and Mandilyon struck at her several times. The party fought Edith with Harry slaying her and bringing back the sunlight. Marasennah took the silver wedding band.

The party set up camp, Bae let Harry use their tent. Harry offered to share with someone. Harry made the party s’mores, which was a huge hit, and shares Sun Wine, a warming beverage, with the party. Marasennah planned to convince the witch to join the party’s cause, and kill her if necessary.

The party talked of the gods and undead, as well as of the Goddess Yria, before heading to bed and taking watch.

Mandilyon shared the tent with Harry. Bae whispered to him, through the tent that Mandilyon was into him and to follow his heart or his loins. Bae asked Marasennah if she truly meant that they were friends. Marasennah begrudgingly said yes. Marasennah also revealed there was no other royal who governed with her in her home country, however she had several husbands of lower quality and has had relations with other women. She would also be turning roughly 2001 years old. Marasennah went to bed and Bae kept first watch.

Bae wrote and drew in their journal and sent up a prayer to The Crown before their watch. They noticed a barrier preventing the shuffling undead from entering the space, even from below. Bae watched a rabbit in the space and named it Hopperduke. Bae woke Marasennah who immediately received a Scroll of Telescription and passed on the information of the watch, and Marasennah bequeathed upon Hopperduke the title of Lord.

During Marasennah’s watch, Lord Hopperduke moved to the edge of The Pavillion. Marasennah warned him of the dangers outside the wards. While reading the first scroll, another scroll appeared with a crack of thunder followed by the overwhelming, almost sickening, scent of roses. The party, awakened by the thunder, investigated, Lord Hopperduke lept outside the wards and a squeak was heard, Bae was distraught.

As the party gathered, the scent changed to melons, the party learned this was from Lady Tamara, a thorn in the side of Marasennah. Upon opening, Marasennah was bathed in temporary glitter, and, upon dropping the scroll, it transformed into an origami butterfly. Marasennah was incredibly vocal about how much she detested the Lady.

Mandilyon took the second watch, Marasennah joined Harry in the tent and attempted to push Harry romantically towards Mandilyon. She left the tent and snuggled Packrat.

During Mandilyon’s watch, she noticed a figure in the distance moving towards The Pavillion, they stopped upon noticing the fire then started to move away. Mandilyon called out to the figure, whom stopped then moved onward through the middle archway. Marasennah and Mandilyon conversed quickly before the figure disappeared into the woods.

Marasennah heard a humming noise in the distance and offered to take the remainder of the watch, she hummed the tune she heard earlier and a lit trail, visible only to her, appeared in the distance in the forest. Marasennah headed down the middle path alone, Mandilyon woke Bae and worried. Lord Hopperduke crawled from the forest with a broken leg, Bae held him while Harry set the leg, then calmed him.

Meanwhile, Marasennah continued along the path, suddenly unfollowed by her distracted party members, each light extinguishing as she passed. After a winding path, Marasennah arrived at a small cottage with a sign stating “No soliciting. Unless there are cookies. No killing me either.”

A tall woman in an emerald green cloak and eyes of two colors answered the door, Magiw: The Witch of Edel Bog. Marasennah offered her fortune cookies and was welcomed inside to a very plush location, with several cats and magical items. The Witch explained she placed the lights to protect from the undead and had actively been working against them, theorizing they were coming from the abandoned castle. Magiw offered a reward for the permanent removal of the undead.

Magiw revealed they could hear things throughout the forest and the bog, and they believed Harry did like Mandilyon. After sharing a fortune cookie, the two enjoyed several hours of carnal pleasures.

After several hours of “panicking” the remaining party members heard Marasennah in the distance. She shared the information from Magiw and the female party members lamented about the patriarchy. Marasennah shared that she lived in a long and girthy tower.

The party slept to fight off fatigue and awoke to Harry making brunch. The party ate and opened fortune cookies before Bae treats Lord Hopperduke with a potion. Bae, at least temporarily, convinced Lord Hopperduke to stay with them. The party made way Magiw‘s cottage.

Magiw was prepared for their arrival and offered to watch the party’s animals. Packrat seemed to realize Marasennah’s involvement with Magiw was more than it seemed. Marasennah casted Prestidigitation on the couch and kissed Magiw’s cheek before the party headed castle-ward.

As the party found the path changing to cobblestone, they could see the remains of a great and formidable structure. The structure was incredibly large and had dark rolling fog pouring from the low openings. The remains of a door were seen and, as the party advanced, they saw a large hole in the stonework blocking the entrance with several floors below. Decently sized tick-like creatures were seen moving around in the floors below with the appearance of a heart with bone legs and teeth.

The party cleared the gap and entered the entry hall. A shimmer appeared and a door’s slam was heard. A ghostly image of the main door closed behind the party, and a ghostly image continued from the material walls, showing a portion of the completed castle before fading away. The party called out several times to the sound of bone on stone. A growl was heard from below, as well as a banging noise.

Marasennah peered through the holes in the floor and saw shambling undead and the floors were several feet thick. The sound of shattering wood was heard below. The party looted several rooms connected to the great hall before moving into the dining hall and then moving through a door to the right of the staircase into a large and ornate ballroom with columns encased in carved instruments.

Marasennah pulled a stone flute off the wall and attempted to play it, and, after covering Mandilyon in dust, began to play as a normal instrument, the other unbroken stone instruments played in unison. Marasennah moved to the stone grand piano and started to play a song, Bae attempted to join in but was in minor key, which Marasennah transposed to match. The stone instruments joined in and harmonized.

As the music played, the fog in the room swirled and formed smoky dancers moving in time to the music, as well as instrumentalists. When the music stopped, red eyes appeared on all the figures.

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