Hukule’s flight from the ruined Minotaur Temple is joined by Camille, who was not present at the fateful final battle. The party’s powerful mage, , left the temple as well before the last battle but went her own way keeping her council from Camile, the reserved cleric of the Raven Queen.
Hukule and Camille are met on the way back by Pock, a gnomish artificer, and Rolan, a doughty dwarven fighter, who were bidden to visit the Minotaur Temple by Nimozaran.
The introduction revealed Rolan to be the brother of the recently departed Dolan. Rolan’s original goal was to adventure with his brother but now desires to properly inter his brother’s remains and assist with the liberation of Fallcrest from the aberrant evils overrunning the city.
Pock, being sensitive to the troubles in Fallcrest, sought council with Nimozaran. The two arcane lore masters discovered a hereto forgotten artifact that could free Fallcrest from the aberrant menace. The only reference to the artifact was that it was in the ancient gnome warrens to the North West area of the Moon Hills. Nimozoran suggested that more may be discovered at the Minotaur Temple or, failing that, further north at the Moon Hill Keep.
Although it was late in the evening the newly formed party decided that their best course of action was to return to the Minotaur Temple. Rolan looked forward to evening the score with the foul undead that caused his brother’s timely demise. Hukule and Camille desired to recover the bodies of their fallen comrades.
The newly formed troop barely started back toward the temple when Pock hears the sound of rending turf. The smell of turned earth and vegetation greet the party along with about a dozen strange mobile roots that move toward the party with purposeful intent. Sensitive to the aberrant emanations, Hukule perceives two eyes burning into his psyche. He fends off the attack but sees a vision of Boraheen and G’Narsh at rest.
Some of the roots are as large as Rolan while the rest are the size of a mastiff. All of them sport flailing tendrils that reach out and lash the party. Rolan proves that he can reach out to enemies as well by striking true with his javelins. Hukule curses and destroys the roots with his warlock powers. Pock proves to be an asset to the party by evening the score with a magical construct servant that attacks and distracts a number of the roots. Camille deals out her own damage with Lance of Faith and has little trouble keeping her party healthy with her Healing Word.
Hukule seems to be the most pressed of the party as the roots lash out and try to pull him toward the tear in the earth. He has little to fear as Rolan trades javelins for hammer and begins to methodically turn roots into paste. The group makes short work of the aberrant flora with little injury.
After the short battle a barrel sized mound is revealed next to the rend in the ground. Some short exploration of the mound discloses the person of Boraheen! Camille revives Boraheen who states that he was “connected” to some vast entity and the G’Narsh was among that connection. Boraheen sadly reports that Dolan was not among the presence.
The intrepid cleric of the Raven Queen throws a sunrod down the crevice to discover a short 10-foot drop to a cave bottom with the sound of rushing water nearby. Without waiting for her companions or considering the danger Camille nimbly scampers down the line. She finds herself in a large cave with a quickly flowing underground stream. In addition to her sunrod there is a phosphorescent illumination emanating from the water and lichen on the walls. Camille’s welcoming committee includes a host of sickly blue blobs and a couple of the large mobile roots she fought earlier.
Hearing Camille’s cry for help Boraheen is the first to follow her down into the cavern. His recent death experience seems to have made him a little less dashing as he twists his ankle while landing hard on the floor. Their companions follow with only Pock slightly injuring himself on the way down. The battle ensues and Boraheen wades into the enemy. The companions find the blobs not difficult to hit but the blobs’ pseudopods give Boraheen trouble by pushing him into the quick moving river. The heavily armored Boraheen fails to swim but successfully swipes a blob with a mighty sword stroke carrying half of the creature’s mass away with the rushing water. The mindless ooze slams Boraheen forcing him to be carried off with the current and into an underground cavern.
Rolan finds himself surrounded by blobs as Camille and Pock target the roots climbing like spiders along the walls. Hukule uses his warlock’s curse and eldritch blast to remove the blobs weakened by Rolan and Boraheen’s onslaught. The sturdy dwarf refuses to be dunked by the blobs but the human Camille and little Pock fail to remain on dry land. Soon, they too, follow Boraheen into the opening beneath the waters. Rolan and Hukule have little trouble finishing the blobs and roots and not wanting to be left out of the fun dive into the stream to follow their chums. The stream takes them through a short tunnel that empties into a calmer and shallower pool.
The stream continues on into an impassable opening in the wall. The room that the companions find themselves in is much like the first except the occupants include a troop of sickly green bats and a strange pod that seems much akin to the mobile roots. Although the creatures do not seem to notice the party Boraheen’s ill-fated attempt at stealthily putting Pock on the shore draws the attention of the roots and bats.
Boraheen acts quickly bringing the battle to the bats. A burst of acid from the dragonborn’s maw sends four of the five bats squealing in pain. A slash of his blade bring two halves of a bat to the ground. The scourge of bats fly by Boraheen with raking claws that leave bloody marks on his scaled flesh. Pock and Camille effectively put the pressure on the root pod that responds with futile tentacle attacks. Boraheen and Rolan leap into the air to pick-off the remaining bats with their melee weapons while Hukule finishes off the weakened foes. The pod makes an effort to drag Boraheen to the worked stone part of the room off to the west but succumbs to the relentless attacks by the party.
As the root pod crumbles in a foul smelling morass the group suddenly feels invigorated as if the experience of this conflict has opened up new attack capabilities and given them more vitality. What will the party do now? Can they try to go back through the fast moving tunnel or should they investigate the odd worked stone area that seems to abruptly end after only 10 feet.