Chapter 61

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               Navero, male human cleric, 6th level
               Dania, female 1/2-elf MU, 6th 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

From the Gnoll caves, we went back to Hall of Faces that shouted "Turn
back!  This is not the way!"  This time, we decided to go south.
After the obligatory shout from the door, the corridor went south for
a long way, slowly turning away to the west.

Navero: "This is strange.  According to the map I've been making, this
     corridor goes through the area we'd been in before."
Topash: "Hmmm... yes.  The floor must be sloping.  Do you think we're
     above the other section or below?"
Kory: "You'd have to ask a Dwarf.  Hey, Dania, you're the shortest..."
Dania: "Shut up.  Nav, start a new map on another piece of paper.
     We're probably on a different level of the dungeon anyway.  We'll
     figure out which later."
Kory: "How do Dwarves know when they're in a sloping passage, anyway?"
Topash: "They just stand in the corridor and see if their beards point
     to their right foot or their left."
Kory: (laughs.) "Ok, smarty-pants, why is it that Halflings get +3 to
     hit with bows and slings?"
Topash: "It's easier to shoot up than down."
Kory: "And how can Elves do 1-10 points of damage with their bare
Topash: "The mystical art of Elf Fu.  And it isn't with their hands -
     they run up and impale the monsters on their pointy ears."
Navero: "I've never seen you do that."
Topash: "I forgot to sharpen my ears before we left.  Now as far as
     the map goes, we should start on a new sheet, as we probably are
     on a new level of the dungeon.  Though it will get very confusing
     if we go from level to level without warning like this."
     After agreeing that, yes, that would be annoying, we trekked off
down the corridor until we started seeing spider-webs on the walls and
floor.  Spider-webs about the diameter of one's finger.  Deducing that
there must be giant spiders up ahead, we broke out and lit torches,
one for everyone.  After advancing cautiously for about 40 feet, the
corridor came to an end, branching off into two round tunnels, each
about 5 feet across, one going vaguely east and the other south-west.
     The floors and walls of these tunnels looked unusual in the
bright light of all our torches; soft, somehow.  We probably wouldn't
have noticed with just the lantern, as everything was the same dusty
shade of gray.  Serga prodded part of one tunnel with his foot, and
found that it gave slightly, like the tunnel was the mouth of throat
of some strange creature.  That's when an enormous spider leaped out
at him, scuttling up his chest to bite at his neck.

Serga: (Makes some expression of alarm, tries to shove the thing off.)
Dania: (Casts Magic Missile at Spider.) "Shit, somebody grab it!"
Topash: "There's more in the other tunnel!  Kory, help Serga, I'll try
     to hold them here!"
Navero: "I think they're tunnel spiders, like they have in the gardens
     at the monastery!  Watch out, there may be ones behind trap
     doors, too!"
Kory: "Warning duly noted!" (Swings at leg of spider on Serga, as it's
     a little too high for him to reach.)
Lao Tsu: (Looks over Dania's head.) "That is the biggest mothel-
     fucking alachnid I have evel seen in my rife."
Kortul: (Fumes from the back of the party.)
Spider 1: Chitter-chitter-chitter-bite-bite-bite (With malevolence.
     Serga's armor saves him from a poisonous bite.  Serga's armor has
     few gaps that the spider might take advantage of, as flexibility
     is not a concern for someone with Serga's anatomy.)
Other spiders: Chitter-chitter-chitter (Scuttle out from everywhere,
     waving their legs and throwing strands of webbing.  Topash and
     Serga are beginning to get entangled.)
Serga: "Eee-yow!" (Throws spider off, starts backing into corridor,
     throwing webbing off as he goes.)
Topash: "Serga, wait!" (Just squeezes in behind Serga before he blocks
     the corridor.)
Dania: (Spreads Magic Missiles through the spiders.) "Everybody back
     up!  Navero, get out some lamp oil!"
Navero: "I have some!  Do we try to burn the webs?"
Kory: (Almost trips over Dania trying to get out of Serga's way.)
     "Just please, please make sure WE get out before that!"
Lao Tsu: (Backs up.) "Prease, yes."
Kortul: (Ambles back, grumbling and picking his nose.)
Spiders: (Chase after us in corridor, chittering, and drop onto Serga
     and Topash again.  Both are bitten, both manage to save.)
Serga: (Flails about, bashing spiders.)
Topash: (Swats a spider, then falls down.)
Dania: (MM's spiders on Topash.) "SHIT!  Kory, get it off him!  Nav,
     get up there and Cure Poison on him!"
Topash: "Dania, Serga knocked me over."
Serga: "Sorry."
Navero: (Hands oil flask to Lao.  Then swings, and actually hits, a
     spider on Serga.) "These spiders are sure fast!"
Kory: (Stabs spider on Topash.) "Dammit, I don't want to get bit by
     these things.  We need a corridor sweeper!"
Lao Tsu: (Looks at oil flask.) "Firring the harrway with file wourd
     do, but I cannot leach the alea in flont of us."
Kortul: "Leave blasting things to wizard."
Spider 1: (Sits on Serga's head and pokes at his eye slits.)
Spider 2: (Jumps off Serga onto Navero, misses with bite.)
Spider 3: (Bites Topash, who fails his save.  He feels very sick.)
Spider 4: (Jumps at Kory, misses.  Lands beyond him next to Dania.)
Spider 5: (Scuttles along ceiling, drops on Topash.)
Spider 6: (Scuttles along ceiling, waits.)
Serga: "HAAAAAAA!!!" (Smashes head into wall, smooshes Spider 1.)
Topash: "I feel very..." (Drops.)
Dania: (MM's Spiders 3 and 5.) "Navero, we need you!"
Navero: (Tries to bash Spider 2, which is clinging to the outside of
     his shield.) "Just a minute!"
Kory: (Stabs Spider 3, it dies.) "Hey, praise the Lord and pass the
     ammo.  We may get out of this yet, as long as Navero isn't bit."
Navero: "I'll try."
Kory: "You're very trying."
Serga: "He is not!  He's my friend!"
GM: Serga, you just bashed your head into the wall, hard.  I'm ruling
     that you're not even that coherent.
Serga: Oh, ok.
Lao Tsu: (Stomps on Spider 4.) "Haily one, do you think you can leach
     that one, which sits on the ceiring stirr?"
Kortul: (Reaches up with two-hander, waves at Spider 6.) "Nope."
Spider 2: (Looks over Navero's shield at him, then jumps at his head.
     Navero quickly ducks, Spider 2 lands next to Dania.)
Spider 4: (Chitters angrily, bites Lao Tsu on the foot.)
Spider 5: (Grabs Topash and starts dragging him back up the corridor.)
Spider 6: (Scuttles back, drops on Kortul.  Misses with bite.)
Serga: (Wobbles, then sits down very hard.) "Ow."
Navero: (Chases after Spider 5, swings and missed.) "Don't worry,
     Topash, I'll save you!"
Topash: (Looks unimpressed.  Wiggles ineffectively.)
Kory: (Looks back and forth between Topash and Lao.) "Ah, shit."
     (Chases after Topash, stabs and missed Spider 5.)
Dania: "SHIT!" (MM's Spider 4, it dies.) "Nav, Lao needs you too!"
Lao Tsu: "Oh, not to wolly, rife and death ale arr palts of existence,
     though pelhaps I shourd go rie down ovel hele..." (Thud.)
Kortul: (Criticals, impales Spider 6.)
Spider 2: (Bites at Dania, misses.)
Spider 5: (Jumps over Topash onto Kory, hitting with bite.  Kory does
     make his save.)
Serga: (Wipes dead spider off his helmet and looks around.)
Topash: "Gnrrrr..."
Navero: (Casts Slow Poison on Topash.) "Are you alive still?"
Topash: "No.  Now excuse me while I go pick up those pieces of my
Kory: "Yipe!  Hey, aren't spiders supposed to just sit quietly in
     their webs?" (Slashes Spider 5.)
Dania: "Kory: Jumping Spiders.  Spiders that jump." (MM's Spider 2, it
     finally expires.) "Good thing they're not too tough."
Lao Tsu: (Looks very pale, refrains from comment.)
Kortul: (Gives Lao Tsu a healing potion.) "Here."
Lao Tsu: (Gurgles, looks a little better, but not much.)
Spider 5: (Bites at Kory, misses.)
Kory: (Stabs Spider 5, it dies.) "Whew!  Any more?"
Topash: "If there are, I'm going to look for some giant flies."
Navero: (Runs back, casts Slow Poison on Lao.) "I have slowed the
     effect of the poison, but what will we do when that stops?"
GM: Don't you have a Potion of Curing, Navero?
Navero: That'll only get one person.
GM: Uh... ok.  Well, these spiders have fairly weak venom, so the Slow
     Poison works to cure it.  You'll both be feeling pretty ill for a
     while, though.
Topash and Lao Tsu: (Both look much relieved.)
GM: Good thing these were such weak spiders.
Topash: Oh, yeah.
Kory: "No fatalities?  Good.  Those tunnels look like they're made of
     webbing.  We better burn the whole thing out, just in case."
Dania: "Sounds like a plan.  Lao, did you drop that oil?"
Lao Tsu: (Hands over the flask.) "I have devoted the whore of my being
     to it."
Navero: "What did he say?"
Dania: "Never mind." (Takes oil, spreads it in entrance.) "Anyone got
     a torch still?"
Topash: "Might I be allowed to crawl a bit further away first?"
Dania: "Oh, yeah, sure."
     The torch was tossed, and the webs started to burn away.  As they
crisped up, we could see the tunnels of webbing were suspended inside
a large cave or chamber, which was almost completely taken over with
webbing.  A few more spiders were in the room, but the fire took care
of them.  After a few minutes, the flames and smoke and hissing had
died down, Topash and Lao were mostly recovered, and we looking into
the room.
     It was a good-sized room, about 50 feet across we judged, and
looked to be a natural cave.  The floor sloped precipitously away from
us, with a low point about 15 feet below our level.  Other human-sized
entrances were carved out of the walls to the south and east, and
numerous smaller entrances could be seen, scattered low on the walls
and floor.  The entrances were about 1 or 2 feet across, looking a
little too small even for these spiders.
     Also on the bottom of the room were several bodies.  Some were
recognizably humanoid, and all looked desiccated and blackened.  Many
were smaller than a human, about 3 feet long, which looked like very,
very large rats.  However, adventurers presented with dead bodies can
only do one thing: start looting.  Keeping an eye on the rat-holes, we
all advanced into the burned out room to check out the first body.

Daniel Parsons                   "Think it's still dangerous in here?"           "We're adventurers!  We have danger
                                                       for breakfast!"
                                                "I usually have eggs."

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