In Which Tyrrell Ventures Into the Mouth of Madness
Waterday, 12 Reaping, CY 601
After reviewing the party’s collective knowledge about carrion crawlers (none of it particularly awesome), Jane casts echolocation in an effort to suss out more about the cavern they are facing. Twenty feet above, on top of the cage, there is a another closed door, with hinges built into the bottom of the cliff face. The party surmises that this entire cage device is not an elevator to the depths below, but a trap.
Below, the undefinably huge, unnatural thing Jane sensed earlier lurks, along with the second key to open the Vault. Based on Jane’s description of the cavern, Riddle prepares to teleport the party down. Several magical buffs are cast, including nearly half an hour’s air walk on everyone. Riddle brings the entire party to a height of sixty feet above the cavern floor.
Everyone is immediately overwhelmed by… something that threatens their very physical being, but all of them manage to shrug it off without any apparent negative effect. Soon everyone realizes that although they are all hovering in mid-air there is something touching their faces—colors, smells—oh, hey wait that’s fungus. Wet, hallucinogenic fungus. It does seem as though this is going to be a terrible problem, with everyone holding their breath to avoid inhaling it, but a sudden windstorm blasts all the fungus away before these concerns can even register. No sooner has Riddle cleared the fungus than more starts to fall around the party.
And then there is a never-ending wall of pulsing purple flesh.
This thing is so huge that they can only see little pieces of it at a time. It’s like a literal tower of purple flesh. It is a colossal-plus-sized worm that is moving downward, out of their range of vision, easily fifty or sixty feet across. Talons peek out of its wormy flesh. It is wrapped all the way around this room, and the party has just teleported in here with it.
Long Claw gets the first attack, throwing everything he’s got it, and managing to not hurt it at all. Jane activates her winged boots and spectacularly fails to cast fire storm defensively. Tyrrell staves off the fungus effect and then turns invisible, leaving Riddle to wonder how we’ll ever know if he manages to continue resisting the fungus. Scar-Eater also turns invisible. Riddle tries to fails to both cast locate object and to redirect the spiritual weapon he fired up earlier to attack the Mother Worm. Jane tries yet another spell that fails to affect her, and the party begins to readjust its plan. She is twenty feet above the party, but there is nowhere her tentacles cannot reach them. They abandon the idea of killing her, and focus on just getting the key, staying alive, and getting back out.
Tyrrell tries to stab at one of its eyes, at the end of one of its tentacles, but misses. Scar-Eater manages to deal a little bit of damage with his doom scarabs and goes invisible again.
Riddle’s second attempt to cast locate object succeeds. Now we’re getting somewhere. The key is inside of the Mother Worm’s body, about fifty feet above the party’s current location. As a distraction, Jane begins casting call lightning storm. The Mother Worm seems tired of the party by now and begins attacking the only ones she can see, paralyzing Riddle and Archie, and pummeling Jane with damage.
By his third attempt to do anything to the Mother Worm, Tyrrell has figured out that he cannot possibly damage it, and if he’s going to be useful in this endeavor, he’s going to have to find another way to contribute. Scar-Eater manages to hit it with doom scarabs again and the paralyzed Riddle dimension hops next to Jane, trying to bring the party closer in together. Long Claw neutralizes the poison affecting Riddle and channels positive energy to heal everyone a bit. Jane finishes her previous spell, dealing a bit of lightning damage to the horrific creature and then casts freedom of movement on Archie, just in time for the Mother Worm to spit a disgusting line of digestive juices directly at him.
Then Tyrrell flies into the creature’s mouth.
The party keeps the Mother Worm occupied while Tyrrell retrieves the key and then shadow walks back outside. He appears about a hundred feet away from the party but that is considerably less far away than he could have appeared. He moves closer and becomes visible. “I have the key,” he announces. “How can we get out of here??” By then, however, Riddle is unconscious and bleeding out. Jane and Long Claw work together to restore him as the rest of the party gathers together, taking another devastating round of attacks from the Mother Worm. Then Tyrrell gets into range and Riddle teleports them back to Kagro’s chambers in the Citadel, mission accomplished.