shoot first ask questions never
Assemble the crew
Blikz finds his cousin Jutran in a tavern where he is staying. Jutran tells Blikz that people are returning from the mines changed, afflicted with massive mushroom clumps all over their bodies and turned violent and aggressive. Blikz tells Jutran to crash at his place, and the next morning, they assemble the crew. Since Buck has a shift in the morning, he is unable to join them, so Blikz and Helewynn decide to track down famed assassin Godrik the elf, who is fletching in Everbloom Park, where Skadi lives, in a tree, called Skadi’s Tree.
Based on Jutran’s description of the illness, the team decide to recruit a cleric, Bartok Ivanov. He is a relic seeker and Hespero has also coincidentally told him that there may be treasures below the Silver Mine, in the ancient goblin ruins of Silverdeep. Bartok readily agrees, and the gang sets out.
In the white-out rain, they come across the corpses of soldiers in the ravine on the side of the road. Investigating tells them that they were perhaps killed by huge human-like creatures, giants perhaps, crushed with hurled boulders. They continue on the road.
The soldiers at the Silver Mine refuse them entry and tell them that they don’t care to have any help from the likes of them. The human soldiers keep looking askance at Jutran and Blikz, so they’re fucking racists, and the gang goes up to Goblin Town.
Forgot to mention, but you actually pass by Zatma Fortress and Village on the way to Silver Town, on the road. The Snarlwood is on your left (to the west) as you approach. Oh also forgot to mention Silver Town, which is the Gomoteski settlement near the Silver Mine entrance. You neglected to go down there at Jutran’s insistence that you get to Goblin Town right away. Makes sense.
Take the floating pog to the 4th floor
Goblin Town is a three-tiered set of hewn caverns where goblins live and work. A central elevator shaft is the main feature. It goes down to the Silver Mine on the fourth level. The lift in the center is magical and below the fourth level it is. Along the edge of the disc-like / pog-esque elevator reads, in runic goblin:
I, King Ragrat the Mighty, Ordered the Making of these Nine Gates of Silverdeep and the Making of the Great Lift
Three gates are above you, the top gate open to the sky. The gates below the fourth level are shut.
You learn from the alchemist Morgamelly that the fungus
- can be contracted via airborne spores, but other methods of infection are unknown
- causes people to become violent
- is fatal
Morgamelly is trying to make an inoculation but she has failed so far. She is hoping that a sample from the heart of the fungus might inoculate or even cure the fungus in the infected.
You learn from Greyjaw, the chieftain, that
- the Gomoteski government wants the mining the continue as soon as possible and only recently ordered this
- the Gomoteski also ordered the mining to go deeper, into the lower levels of Silverdeep, that were sealed up centuries ago.
700 years ago, the goblin king Ragrat the Martyr was killed and his son Unblart the Unready took over and was forced into an unfair treaty, which led to the unseating of the Grimstar Dynasty.
300 years ago, the goblins delved too deep into Silverdeep and closed the gates after unleashing some evil from an ancient civilization. As their wealth slowly fell apart and they were unable to meet quotas set by the Gomoteski, they accepted kneeling to the crown and were officially absorbed into the kingdom.
Maybe it’s just really bad eczema
The next day, the gang masks up and are lowered into the fourth level, the Silver Mine.
Helewynn and Godrik totally miss the secret door in the mining shaft. The team then heads south into a tunnel where they encounter two infected miners. Trigger-happy Godrik fires on them and they are killed, though Blikz’s thunder gauntlet gives some backsplash. After getting hit by the backsplash of spores, Blikz is able to resist the fungal infection, but the gang become wary of doing too much melee.
They venture into the doors, finding one barricaded, and another full of dwarves getting ready to evacuate. The heroes inform them that the doors are already shut, but notice that two of them are showing signs of infection: yellow sclera and itching, and a fungus grows on the wall. They convince the healthy dwarves to leave through the front exit and the infected ones to stay quarantined in this room while the heroes continue exploring.
The gang goes into the armory and counting room (discovering and disabling a bear trap (which like no one questioned its presence at all) on the way in), and find miners eating fungus off the walls, but they are not aggressive and are even cogent. They leave them be and go into the equipment room where they find the place covered in webbing. A spider monster comes and attacks them, though is quickly dispatched by spells and arrows. The gang finds some potions of healing and dead miners wrapped in webs, and then go into the natural caverns.
Tiny silverfish looking creatures skitter into a pond at the edge of this cave. And the gang decides not to venture further in this direction. Another tunnel out of the equipment room leads them into a large hewn mining gallery where the infection seems to have covered the room.
After popping some big gas spores and releasing spores just fucking everywhere, the heroes discover the corpse of a miner, a pickaxe embedded in his head, with no sign of the fungal infection.
On his body, you find a note written in common, with hifalutin words (like hifalutin), on a very fine parchment, instructing the recipient of the note to send the humans and dwarves home and let the goblins continue working with the infection running rampant.
Helewynn uses mage hand and a pick axe to peel away some of the fungal growths on the wall, revealing a secret door. After the spores settle to the ground, they push through, finding themselves back in the elevator room! Nice.
Godrik decides to go up ahead and check on the dwarves who were trying to make it out of the mines while the others take a short rest. Though Blikz feels a bit sick after the spores landed on him, he otherwise feels OK. Meanwhile, Skadi’s skin feels very itchy.
You are four levels deep into Silverdeep, in the recently quarantined Silver Mines.
Buck is back in Meretesk, on duty.