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Recap - 20111210 - WAR! The Three In One Mission

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After exposing the secret activities of extreme factions within the Royalist ranks while at the same time cutting off huge amounts of Royalist war supplies, the famed heros of Strikeforce Black return to the rebel base, knowing that the Royalists are on the run. Quite a number of the team members take this opportunity to take a few weeks of leave; for others, the war goes on. After a few days, a guardsman summons the remaining team members to a briefing; Cedarick (Ross – Shaman), Hayden (Brad Gnome Warlock), and Walster (Ibuki – Warden) who has returned from Strike Force Green.

Commander Danlor “First off, high compliments from the commanding staff on your mission that exposed the Royalists dealing with the House of Swords. That was really the key to breaking the Royalist confederation. Final victory is almost at hand and although many of our troops are worn down from years of fighting, we know who the strong willed are that will carry on. Like you, Strike Force Blue, aka “The A Team” has quite a few members that are wounded or on leave. This is Chief Atredies and Guardsman Snape; they will be joining Strike Force Black on this mission.

There are a number of Royalist hold outs near the slave city of Zazesspur. You will go there either overland, providing additional security to our weekly supply column, or you will go there via ship, since the Royalist blockade has been broken. Once there, Captain Pike will advise you of the specific targets and the specific tactical situation. Good luck…”

The party chooses the overland route (not wanting to fall overboard while wearing plate armor) and reaches the slave mining city of Zazesspur with minor incident; Hayden steals an entire wagon of nearly worthless tin coins from a poor war refugee. Once at the city, Captain Pike explains “There are three Royalist positions nearby; the Stockade at Hillcreast, the Sunshine Silver Mine, and the Main Temple of Pelor at Zazesspur. Our regular forces are besieging all three locations but have been unable to end the sieges w/o unacceptable losses. We can get a small team of elite operatives into these locations but it will be risky. If the elite team can complete their missions, hopefully it will bring a quick end to the sieges with minimal additional loss of life, on both sides.

For the stockade, the goal is to temporarily poison the well. Without water, we are convinced the Royalists will surrender. We have a scroll that can be used to teleport your entire team fairly close to the well room. Alternately, we have dug a tunnel that we feel is fairly close to the well room but the platform we’ve built to cross an underground sink hole we’ve found, can only hold the weight of five or six people.

For the mine, the High Priest is the only person capable of organizing the Royalist defenses. He is both the military and spiritual leader of the Royalist forces there. If he were killed or captured, the remaining Royalists would surely surrender. We have dug a counter mine and we feel we are now right underneath the central chamber where the priest coordinates the defenses. You can break through, jump up and catch him by surprise! A second method is to use the six temporary water breathing potions we have and swim down the underground river and come up below the high priest’s chamber. You can rest and re-equip on the ledges in the underground lake and then move toward the surface to locate the high priest’s chamber.

Lastly, for the Temple, it is shielded by some sort of magic and or radiant shield. We know that the shield can be turned off from the inside using a panel in the lower altar room. Your mission is to shut off the shield so our surface forces can storm the temple and overwhelm the four score defenders that remain. We have a magic plane shift scroll that should put you right in the lower altar room or we’ve found an 4” diameter access pipe into the area near the lower altar room but your team would have to drink some magic Shrinking Potions we have to be able to crawl down the small pipe.

Make a decision regarding which location you wish to infiltrate first and by what method.”

The party decided on the Temple first and they decided that Plane Shifting was less risky that fighting what would be “giant” rats while in small form. Snape reads the scroll and for some reason, the team didn’t appear right away in the lower altar room. Due to an unforeseen dimensional rift, the team ended up on some unknown plane. The ground was slightly soft and covered with 8” of mist. Worse, there was an entire squad of mean looking Githanki warriors attacking! Despite getting the initial jump on the commandoes, the Githanki took the worst of the fight as Cedarick quickly dispatched three silver sword warriors. All other team members, except Hayden, downed the one attacking them, and Walter engaged and downed the enemy Captain. In an impressive show of arcane magic, Snape concentrated on and downed the enemy Swordmage (Wizard/Fighter). After a reorienting themselves, Snape reread the scroll and the team appeared in the lower altar room.

Instead of appearing in a group, the team was spread out room, many standing right next to one of the six Pelor Elite Temple Guardsmen. Hayden ended up next to a guard and the enemy Sorcerer. The high priest was well to the rear where he could guard the control panel. The party quickly converged on the control panel with Hayden using magic to switch himself away from the panel and the Paladin to the panel; little did Hayden know at the time, it required the skills of a rouge to operate the panel, not knowledge of the gods and Hayden was the lone team member with the skill of a tinkerer! Walster tied up the High Priest for sometime and Snape finished the priest off, as well as a couple guardsmen. Lucian downed the Sorcerer and Cedarick kept the wounded party members alive and used his spirit companion to hamper the enemies movement toward the two Warlocks. Hayden finally makes his way back to the panel and disables the shield, letting the rest of the Rebels forces at the surface attack and upon hearing the battle above, the remaining Royalists in the altar room surrender.

When the dimensional spell wears off , the party appears back at Captain Pike’s tent and having quite a bit of fight left, the team chooses to try the Mine next. Selecting the counter tunnel rather than the water breathing potions, the team is dumbfounded when the tunnel they are in suddenly collapse and the entire team finds themselves out numbered by two to one, scattered and prone in the enemy’s central command chamber! A swirling battle erupts as both sides maneuver to control the ledges around the central pit. Walster finds himself on the northern side, fighting the enemy Captain, and Lucian is on the south ledge battling two more enemies. Hayden uses magic to transport Snape up to where they fell from and Snape uses the position to good advantage, blasting away and downing two archers and two swordsmen. Hayden and Walster also make a good showing, downing at least two enemies each. It is not long before the team knuckles down and has laid waste to all of the enemy, saving the High Priest for last. After their mission is accomplished, the team debates if they should explore the hole in the bottom of the pit. Hayden encourages the others to go down first and when they refuse and start making their way back to the surface, he reluctantly follows.

The team again returns to Captain Pike and challenges the party to assault the Stockade. Cedarick is too wounded to continue so the remaining team members, under Walster’s leadership, decide to push on. Choosing the teleportation scroll over the tunnel, the party’s magic again, doesn’t quite turn out as expected. The party appears in the area, but they are spread out, disoriented, and surrounded by enemy soldiers (again). The team appeared near the edges of the room and the soldiers were all in the center of the room eating. Reacting quickly, they drew weapons and engaged the Rebels where they stood, except Snape who managed to dash off the stairs to the corner before most of the Royalists could react. Little did Snape know that another force of Royalists were just about to pour through the door he had just left. Of all the battles, this one proved the least difficult as the Royalists here were regulars, not elites. Even though there were close to 20 of the enemy, it wasn’t long before all the Royalists were down. The team quickly located the well and completed their mission, causing the Royalists to surrender the position.

For their heroics in ending these three sieges, Snape and Lucian are both promoted to Section Chief. Walster is promoted to Master Chief. For slaying no fewer than 12 enemy soldiers, including two leaders, Snape is awarded the coveted medal of The Slayer. Yet another mission accomplished and job well done.

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