Night is about to fall on Cadar. The Wujen learn that the Deity of the Town is Hedrade, a Lawful Neutral God, known as the Law giver.
That night, the group chooses to sleep 4 hours, just after Serpenthelm and Gwyn return to the tavern. The ranger has arranged to meet a contact, known as Dwindle, in the morning.
After a short rest of four hours, the group heads down to the square. There are a few people out on the roads and pathways. Janella flares up, likely casting her mage armor. The majority of the taverns are on the far side of the square, opposite where the Wujen are planning to explore.
Gwynn first goes on a minor engagement, by picking something up at a fine winehouse. A fair elvish maid serves Gwyn, and offers a fine port. Gwynn purchases the drink, a fine four year old vintage. It appears to be a fine wine from the west. “For when we have done something epic – fortified wine”, Gwynn states. He wraps it carefully, and stores it away.
As the group returns to the streets, they note that the night is overcast. The adventurers reach a tunnel entrance on the street, that Gwynn had earlier found. The grate covering the entrance is well maintained. IT opens easily, revealing a narrow descending staircase, making a 180 degree turn along the tunnel. The group initially argue over the order of the march, with brave Telius at the rear carrying the torch.
After about 30 feet, the tunnel levels out, with a cobblestone floor. All but Telius hears a click from above and behind. Ahead, some alcoves are seen, filled with some statues. The group steps into the side areas.
The adventurers then hear someone humming. The steps halt, after Serpenthelm calls out to the creature. The rest silently look on in horror, at such a breach of common dungeon etiquette. Serpenthelm, now emboldened by such brazen behavior, follows up with asking for directions in the underground.
A head pops around the corner. “What are you doing here?”
Serpenthelm continues her strategy of trying to engage the stranger. “Where is the party?” At this time, Ronn Tellius joins in. Acting curious, he introduces himself. The creature reveals himself to be a small dwarf, dirty and could be confused for a slave. He mentions that he is responsible for meals for the Artist Guardian. The Artist likes salted meat and cheese, and apparently makes statues. Serpenthelm asks further questions about the Artist Guardian. The small creature introduces himself as ‘Rue’, and fails to notice the rest of the party hiding in the tunnels.
Rue continues further into the tunnels, followed by Tellius and Serpenthelm, with the rest of the party hiding in the shadows.
The small creature leads the two brazen adventurers to a set of double wooden doors. Inside, a large chamber is dimly lit by magical light. Huge columns are in place, extending up to the 12 foot ceiling. Scattered around the chamber are various intricate columns with various statues. They include humans, dwarfs, and elves, some appearing as soldiers.
Jan, Gwynn and Shadowspawn are hiding outside the doors, as Gwynn listens through the open door.
Ru walks in approximately 4 to 5 pillars, and a tall humanoid approaches him. Ron Tellius and Serpenthelm follow the little creature. The tall being has its face and hands covered with bandages. He says, “What have you brought me, Rue?”
At this point, Tellius tries to engage with the mysterious individual. The Bard asks about an ancient temple. The disguised one states that he could help, but wants a fair trade, and wishes to be freed of a curse. He is allowed to live in the place, to be a guardian, but not by choice. He is forced to be here by the Charduni. He states it happened after he made an unflattering statue. He is held in place by runes, for approximately 40 years. Rue agrees. At this point, Janella enters the room, and asks the hidden beings’ name. The tall being does not answer.
He points out a large, central pillar that has a number of pictures and runes on it. Janella, Serpenthelm and Ronn Tellius examine the runes. The Bard, digging deep into his bardic knowledge, figures out three of the five runes. He deciphers the 1, 3 and 5th runes as “Ugly, Protect, and Anger”.
Gwynn and Shadowspawn enter at this point. Shadownspawn poorly attempts to connect with Rue, with an offer of food. Rue takes offence at this innocent gesture, stating that his job is to feed the Guardian.
Rue then reveals that he has 3 tattoo Runes on his back. Some of the runes are the same as on the pillar. With continued research, the group understand the symbol for wind; and start to realize that they could create a variant of one of the runes. These include porcelain, wind, and swim.
Janella and Gwynn start planning, and then Gwynn takes a nap. Janella, Serpenthelm and Tellius are taken to a wall covered by runes some distance away by Rue. The group of magic users study and copy the runes, for about 4 hours. In the meantime, Gwynn sleeps, trusting Shadowspawn to keep watch.
After the magic users return, and Gwynn awakes refreshed, the group plans to modify a single rune, in an effort to free the bandaged being. The effort is known as a Rune Hack, in an effort to change the rune for Anchor to Wind.
The bard, with help by Serpenthelm, starts playing a singing portion of the ritual. Some metal is used with a portable chem lab to try to prepare magical ink, and Gwynn prepares a soften metal spell. There is adequate paint to attempt to alter the rune. Shadowspawn uses his finesse of fingers to alter the rune.
Once this is completed, an audible crack is heard, and a breeze eminates from the pillar. The party hear the covered creature exclaim “Free!! He will free us!!” He removes his bandages, and reveals himself as a medusa. The adventurures manage to avoid his direct gaze, except poor Rue. The little creature is turned to stone.
Combat is initiated, but the Wujen are at a hideous disadvantage, as they cannot gaze upon the vile creature. Janella attempts to cast flame breath, but misses. Tellius bravely walks behind it, drawing his sword and hiding behind his shield. Gwynn bounces past, and connects. Serpenthelm tries to strike at it’s shadow, but misses. Shadowspawn melts into the shadows, and gazes upon the visage of the creature. It’s living anke hair hisses, and writhes. The eyes are blood red, with no pupils. The evil that emanates from them would curdle the soul of any brave creature unlucky enough to be caught in its view. Shadowspawn realizes that he is in a unique position, to actually give aide with vision for his clan. He decides to head towards Janella, and whispers, “I’ll be your eyes”.
Ron does what he does best, not by actually engaging his sword arm, but rather begins singing. His ditty, “Getting Caught in Hedrade’s Basement” stirs the souls of the Wujen. Serpenthelm manages to grasp her mirror, and strikes the creature with a mighty blow. In one strike, she beheads the creature.
Shadowspawn leaves the shadows, slightly weaker, but throws a bag over the decapitated head. Tellius bravely loots the body, finding a silver chain and key, which Gwynn quickly graps. The group realizes that there is still one last dose of Rune Juice, and a shirt. Rue is still stone, and possibly picked up.
It is now approximately 6 in the morning, and the main double doors seem to be locked. The room is explored, and another set of doors are found. They are covered with runes that are apparently “explosive”. After a second attempt, the doors are opened, reveals a neat and stacked group of various expensive items……