Chapter 57

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               Navero, male human cleric, 6th level
               Dania, female 1/2-elf MU, 5th level
               Kortul, male human fighter, 6th level
               Kory, male elf bard, 5th level
               Topash, male elf druid, 5th level
               Serga, male half-ogre fighter, 4th level
               Lao Tsu, male human monk, 4th level

Now that we were all going down the long corridor, deeper into what we
feared would be a wizard's lair, certain precautions had to be taken.
Two lanterns were lit, with Navero carrying one and Kory carrying the
other.  Kortul and Kory went in the lead, with Kortul lightly tapping
the floor before him with a long stick, as it seemed very likely that
the corridor would be trapped.

Kory: "Hsst!" (Everyone stops.)

Dania: "What?"

Kory: "See that?  The line in the ceiling?  Going across the corridor
     about 10 feet ahead of us?"

Kortul: "See it.  Trap door?"

Navero: "Why is it in the ceiling?"

Topash: "To drop something.  Look around the floor."

Kory: "I don't see anything here."

Dania: "No, don't look.  The trigger's magical.  There's a field in
     the corridor.  I'll bet if you enter it, the trapdoor will open
     and dump something out."

Kortul: "Where?"

Dania: "The field's about 5 feet in front of you.  And it covers the
     whole corridor."

Topash: "Well, that's inconvenient.  Is there any way we can wedge the
     trap door shut?"

Navero: "I have some iron spikes we could wedge into it."

Kory: "Hmmmmm, let's try it.  Unless there's some way to dispel it?"

Dania: "Save our magic.  Is there any way we can pound the spikes in

Navero: "Um... no.  Unless I cast Silence."

Topash: "Let's just try pounding them in, and hope we're far enough
     away from whatever's in there that it won't matter."

(Serga and Kortul, being the tallest, pound 6 iron spikes into the
edge of the door.)

Kory: "Ok, ok, you can stop now.  Kortul, throw the stick down the
     corridor and see what happens."

Kortul: (Tosses stick.  A click sounds in the ceiling above us, and
     the trap door drops a hair, but nothing happens.)

Dania: "Great.  Let's go."

     We kept going, still on the alert.  Kortul managed to tap the
pressure plate before Kory spotted it, and a huge section of floor in
front of him fell away into a pit.

Kortul: "Shit!"

Kory: "And you can quote me on that."

Topash: "We appear to be in luck.  I think these traps were designed
     to catch people coming up the corridor, not coming down.  That
     pit would have opened up underneath anything coming up.  I think
     this is an escape tunnel, and the traps are designed to eliminate
     any pursuers."

Dania: "What about the last one?"

Topash: "There might be as password for it.  If you don't say it, but
     run through, the trapdoor will probably fall down behind you and
     dump something into the corridor.  Perhaps something sized to
     fall into that pit as well."

Dania: "And all the little pursuers go squish.  What do we do about
     the pit?"

Navero: "It went down on a hinge.  Maybe we can pull it up?"

Kortul: (Glares back.) "With what?"

Kory: "You know, pits that swing down on hinges usually swing back up
     by themselves when they reset."

Dania: "How do you know it'll reset?"

Kory: "Let's wait -

(Click comes from pit, and lid swings back up.)

Kory: (grin!) "...and see."

Kortul: (Steps over pressure plate to stomp directly on trapdoor.  It
     does not budge.)

Dania: "Right.  Everyone over the wire, and whatever you do, don't
     touch the pressure plate.  You'll send everyone in front of you
     in.  Wait, where exactly is this plate?"

Kortul: "It's... here."

Navero: "I have some chalk so we can draw a line around it."

Kory: (Draws line around large pressure plate.) "I think short people
     will have to jump."

Topash: "It does seem like it's sized to catch people running."

Serga: "Is it too big for me to jump?"

Kory: "Uh... how far can you jump?"

Serga: "I'm not very good at it."

Navero: "I think you can just step across."

Dania: "Fine.  Let's go."

     One way or another, everyone got across and we continued our
careful way down the corridor.  The pit cover shook noticeably under
our feet, especially with Serga on it, but did not drop.  This was
turning out to be a very long corridor; about 100 feet separated the
first two traps, and the third trap was 130 feet beyond the second.
We also didn't spot the third trap before setting it off, but again,
it turned out that it didn't matter.

Kory: "AHHHH!!!" (Leaps back and climbs up on top of Kortul as flames
     leap out of the walls and blast down the corridor, away from us.)

Topash: "A fire trap!"

Kory: "Oh, really?!?  I thought it was just a dragon that had Mexican
     for dinner!"

Lao Tsu: "But that is not possibre.  Dlagons ale cleatules of spilit,
     and consume nothing but dewdlops flom frowels."

Topash: "I take it you've never met a dragon."

Lao Tsu: "I have not been so foltunate."

Kortul: (Shoves Kory off his head.)

Navero: "It was aimed away from us.  If we find out what triggered it,
     we can avoid it just like the pit trap."

Dania: "Yeah.  Kory, what'd you do to set it off?"

Kory: "Just minding my own business.  Most unfriendly.  Check for

Dania: "Yeah, magic field in the corridor.  It's between 2 and 4 feet
     in front of Kortul."

Navero: "But the flames were further down the hall than that."

Topash: "Obviously, to catch pursuers.  The flames will turn on when
     we're in the field.  If we enter the field one at a time, then
     wait for them to die down, we can proceed."

Kortul: "How far down is safe?"

Topash: "That's a very good question, Kortul.  Unfortunately, I don't
     have a good answer, so we'll just have to send someone down to
     see.  Any volunteers?"

Kortul: "*grunt*" (Stomps into sensor field, waits until flames turn
     off, then stomps about 40 feet down corridor.  The rest of us can
     just see him at the edge of the lantern's glow.)

Kory: "Ok, be ready to run!" (Enters field.  Flames shoot down
     corridor, obscuring Kortul from view.)

Topash: "Kory, move forward another foot."

Kory: "Oops." (Flames flicker down after a bit.  As they do, Kortul is
     momentarily visible in the glow, standing a little further away
     than before.) "Looks like 50 feet is a good distance."

Topash: "Mm-hmm.  Go ahead, and we'll follow."

Kory: "But not too closely."

Topash: "I'll make sure Dania stays where she is.  Go on."

Dania: "Hey!"

     One by one, we made our way through the trap.  It did occur to us
that we must be making an unholy amount of noise, and would lose any
surprise advantage we might have hoped for, but there also didn't seem
to be anything we could do about it without completely wearing out our
magic-user in the first corridor of the dungeon.  Kortul did go ahead
to scout a bit while everyone else walked through the fire trap, and
reported that at the end of the corridor was a large room with "faces
in the walls."
     And indeed, some 60 feet beyond the fire trap trigger was a
doorway, into a room about 40 feet across.  The room was hexagonal,
with a doorway in each wall, and a face carved into the wall around
each doorway.  To enter the doorway was to go into a face's mouth.
All the faces were humanoid, but each was different; all of them were
wearing various expressions of rage, disdain, fury, or confusion.  One
in particular, the one to our immediate right, looked like the Rev.
Jim Ignatowski from "Taxi" after a particularly bad night.
     We couldn't see any more traps, so we wandered into the room and
looked through the doorways.  Through each, we could see more corridor
going out to the range of our lanterns.  All of the corridors looked
equally unused, there was nothing on the floor or ceiling, and all was
quiet.  At least until Lao poked his nose through one of the doorways.


Lao Tsu: (Jumps about 7 feet due up and retreats to the center of the

Party: "WHAWAZAT?!"

Lao Tsu: "In my tempre, the statues would speak to those who they
     consideled to be enrightened.  Nevel befole have I seen such a
     thing take prace.  I do not think I have achieved enrightenment
     yet, so I am in gleat confusion."

Dania: "That doorway shouted 'Turn back, this is not the way.'"

Kory: "I knew those pointy ears were good for something.  I wonder
     what this one says." (Pokes arm through another doorway.)


Dania: "They're just programmed to say that.  Probably a Magic Mouth."

Topash: "At least it didn't try to bite you."

Kortul: (Jumps through another doorway into the corridor beyond.)


Kortul: "Just make noise."

Dania: "Just like Kory.  Which way do we go?"

Kory: "Hey!"

Topash: "One way seems as good as another.  Obviously, this is meant
     to confuse and disorient us, so Navero, be very careful about
     keeping the map."

Navero: "I will. 'With caution and care, needs not beware.'"

Topash: "Uh... yeah.  Let's try that one."

GM: Aren't you even going to try the Jim Ignatowski one?

Topash: No, we've decided to go south-west.

Navero: I figure we might start out there, as its right next to the
     one we came in.

GM: But the Jim Ignatowski one is too, right on the other side.
     C'mon, try it?  Please?

Dania: I'll bet it's trapped.

GM: Look, you can't, I mean, look, it's not trapped!  They're all the
     same, but just try it?

Lao Tsu: Jeff, you usually don't steer us like this.

GM: You don't have to actually go down the corridor, just go in the
     doorway and trigger the door, ok?

Topash: Oh, very well.

Navero: Sayonara, babyface.

Topash: "Just to be sure, let me look down here." (Looks down SE


Dania: "Be sure of what?"

Topash: "I don't know, I just had this feeling.  Let's go." (Party
     goes off down SW corridor.)

Serga: Jeff, you'd been rehearsing that Jim Ignatowski impersonation
     all week, hadn't you?

GM: You'll never understand the depths of the sacrifices I make to
     make this game worthwhile.

Navero: Are we sure we want to?  Some of them might involve Thor.
     (Thor is the GM's pet iguana.  See Ch. 22-23)

GM: They do not involve Thor.

Topash: But Thor is a god.  You must sacrifice to Thor.

GM: Ok, I sacrifice meal worms to Thor.  That's all.

Dania: Does Thor get thor about that?

Topash: Not if Thor utheth a good lubricant.

GM: Ok, ok.  There will be no more puns about the GM's iguana, he gets
     enough of them already.  Continuing down the corridor, you see...

Daniel Parsons                                            "I AM THOR!"                        "Want thome athpirin?"

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