And so we’re into the final stretch of this section of the game. The party holed up to recover from the carnage of last week, set traps outside the room they had fortified and hunkered down for the night. They had a feeling that the last of the Emerald Claw, led by the Changeling cleric Garrow, were nearby, but decided to risk it. Aside from a wandering hunting party of drow, who fell victim to Kurtis’ traps, they were undisturbed, so the stage was set for a final confrontation.
Emerging into a huge open space on the roof of the observatory, they were just in time to see Garrow sit on an enormous giant-scale throne and disappear. They charged across the open area between them only to find the remaining troops counter-charging from a side entrance on the opposite side of the area. Quick reactions by Keill devastated the rank and file troops as he cast a Spike Stones spell. Half of the troops were mid-charge and tore themselves apart trying to reach the adventurers, while the rest switched to missile weapons. A brief but brutal struggle saw the remnants of the Emerald Claw expedition whittled away by concerted spell and missile fire, with only the Bugbear and Warforged captains escaping back into the other building, but leaving a messy trail of blood behind them.
The adventurers ignored them, and focused on the mystery of the chair instead. Thousands of words in ancient Giant were inscribed in the metal dais supporting it, and those versed in ancient languages were able to identify the words as the names given by the Giants to the stars above. A closer examination revealed that six names were still glowing slightly, though the radiance was fading, and after a brief debate, they decided to all pile on the chair at once so that no one risked being left behind.
In a flash of light, they were transported to an underground chamber filled with pillars and arcane machinery where an enormous proto-warforged body rested in a state of semi-construction. Garrow stood before it, gripped in some kind of mental struggle. As they approached, they saw him scream defiance and throw the now-completed schema that he had stolen from them into the darkness. The proto-warforged body’s eyes lit up and it announced itself as Xulo. It slew Garrow as they approached and stepped forward, intent on killing them too.
Battle was joined. Bumperklart went into a totally defensive mode of fighting, aiming to tie up their massive opponent’s onslaught, while the rest of the party began trying to sever the sixty or so animated cables that seemed to be powering the monstrosity. Bumperklart unleashed a major power of the magical tooth to pronounce a Word of Chaos, which served to confuse the giant construct and sent it running to a far corner while the rest of the group closed in.
As we ended the session, Xulo had climbed above another attempt to trap it with Spike Stones and was about to bring the fight back to the party by moving on the spellcasters. Who knows what directions the fight will take next week?