Grizzop is still back in Damascus, while the rest of the party has appeared in Rome on a rescue mission to save the hostages kidnapped by the Cult of Hades. Einstein has just been brutally attacked by a strange beast.
Back in Damascus, the night continues to roll on; Grizzop is still watching the factory. He doesn’t notice the water coming back up anytime soon, and the air around him is quiet. He falls asleep eventually, and the first thing he does is check on the river. The water is still heading down the hole instead of filling up the river again; he thinks that he might have just redirected the river, but has no idea where it’s coming out. He heads back down into the factory to check and confirm that it’s been destroyed.
Back in Rome, the party is still fighting the creature. Hamid has it in a hold person grip, but it’s clearly incredibly draining, and the beast breaks out of it before long. Eventually, the beast flees, leaving Einstein in a very bad way. He cannot walk, and is doing his best not to scream as loudly as possible. Sasha pours a cure light wounds potion down his throat, and he gets 4 HP best. He’s still bad, but he can walk on his own power now. Sasha tells him to teleport to some healers and they’ll figure out their own way out, but Einstein is worried that they’ll die. Azu gives him a quick checkover - he’s not on the verge of death, but he’ll need a proper rest as soon as they can. Hamid wants them to find somewhere safe to hole up, and Sasha says that nowhere is safe. Einstein tries to reassure them, saying that he’s fine for now, but that they need to move. Another howl comes out of the distance, and they start to move. Azu carries him, moving quickly. There’s another howl, much closer this time, and Sasha gives Azu her Cloak of Elvenkind to help her sneak. They rush on.
Grizzop, meanwhile, has gone back down into the factory, avoiding the traps as he goes. The closer he gets, the more he notices watermarks on the walls, and when he gets to the proper factory floor, he realises that it must have filled up at one point and then started leaking out. The water is only going out through the mine entrance. The current going down is brutal, and there’s nearly no equipment left in the space. Grizzop heads back to the maintenance passageway, and heads back to try and break the funnel that’s stealing the water, to see if that helps.
The Rome group is still running on; the howls are coming from random locations, but sound slightly closer each time they hear them. Sasha and Einstein, at the same time, spot an opening to a cellar that they can get into. Another tear appears in the air, and a beast comes out, this time attacking Hamid. They deal with it and it flees again. Hamid is horrified at the fact that he attacked Sasha, and says they need to get down into the basement.
Back in Damascus, Grizzop is back at the large room and is trying to mess up the funnel so that he can stop the water from falling through it. He takes a while working at it.
In Rome, Sasha stares right at Hamid as she drinks a potion of cure moderate wounds. She gets 18 HP back. Hamid gives her his two potions as well. Hamid takes a potion of cure light wounds and gets 9 HP back. They run to the basement, still attempting to be stealthy. Sasha doesn’t even need to check it for traps. It seems to have survived the Fall of Rome relatively well. There are some amphorae on either side of the room; the entrance they came in through was probably a delivery chute or something. There are remains of stairs leading up, and it’s actually quite large, with some saucy (and eroded) Bacchanalian designs on the walls. Einstein stumbles out of Azu’s arms and starts trying to cast teleportation wards around the entire building. He starts glowing in purple, and then there’s a large, nearby explosion. He turns to them and apologises, saying he’s out of spells. Sasha stands up, standing to the door, and says that she’s taking first watch. Hamid suggests that they all get some sleep, and Einstein crawls inside one of the pots before sheepishly apologising. Both Azu and Sasha reassure him, saying it isn’t his fault. Azu asks if they should barricade the doors, but Hamid reminds her that the dogs can teleport, so it would just stop them from escaping.
Jumping to Grizzop - he’s doing his best trying to break the funnel. He’s gone back up to the camp and stripped down to his pants and is working away at it. It’s clearly going to take an incredibly long time; he needs to make sure that the water isn’t going to find it’s way around, and it’s potentially going to be a massive undertaking. He keeps working on it, and suddenly hears a voice calling to him from up top. Grizzop pulls his bow out and draws, turning and noticing about 100 orcs staring down at him through the illusion and asking what he’s doing. Grizzop explains that he’s getting the river back, and demands to know whether or not they’re here to help him or hurt him. One of the orcs asks what he’ll do either way, and Grizzop says that one of them involves him killing him, and the other involves him accepting their help.
- "You do this on instinct and the first thing that happens is, as you start doing it, it's really difficult and you realize, oh yeah, there’s no one there. You reach out for this power that isn’t there. There’s nothing. And then you really just lean into it and internally you are begging. You are screaming please, please, give me something, I need it, please anything. The tiniest, tiniest trickle comes out, of power from your divine deity. It’s like it’s been bouncing off a bunch of stuff before it gets to you, it’s effectively almost nothing."
- ―Alex, as Azu tries Lay on Hands on Einstein, as he’s bleeding badly.
- "Rome’s the worst. Rome is objectively the worst."
- Lydia: "Sasha stares down Hamid and chugs a cure moderate wounds."
- Bryn: "I get out two potions of cure light wounds and shove them into your hands."
- ―Hamid accidentally hits Sasha with one of his scorching rays.
- Orc: "Hello! You in the pants!"
- Grizzop: "What?"
- Orc: "What are you doing? And why are you in your pants?"
- Grizzop: "Getting the river back so Damascus doesn’t dehydrate and also cause I’m working! And I didn’t think I was gonna be disturbed, thanks, now are you gonna help me or try and hurt me? Cause I’ve got two moods today."
- Orc: "What are the moods?"
- Grizzop: "One of them involves killing, now answer my question!"
- Orc: "What’s the other one?"
- Grizzop: "Accepting help!"
- ―Grizzop gets some help in destroying the factory and figuring out what's happened to the water.
Dice rolls and Mechanics
- Grizzop makes a Survival check while waiting overnight: 14
- Azu makes a Heal check on Einstein: 22
- The Rome party makes a Stealth check while fleeing the dogs: Azu gets 7, Hamid gets 11, Sasha gets 26
- The Rome party makes a Perception check while fleeing the dogs: Azu gets 21, Hamid gets 14, Sasha gets 30
- The beast attacks Hamid, hitting and dealing 6 damage.
- Grizzop makes a Disable Device check on the funnel: takes 20
- The Rome party makes a Perception check while fleeing the dogs: Azu gets 7, Hamid gets 18, Sasha gets 18
Initiative: Creature, Sasha (26), Hamid (19), Azu (15)
- Creature: Attacks Einstein again, moving incredibly quickly. Einstein is struggling, but dodges three of the attacks. The beast rips at his chest.
- Sasha: Bull rushes the creature, missing on a combat maneuver check of 12. The creature’s flesh feels pliable and strange, and knocks Sasha back before she can get Einstein.
- Hamid: Casts hold person on the creature, and a purple haze surrounds Hamid and swells. The creature rears back to attack Einstein and then freezes, vibrating. Hamid knows that this is as augmented as he can handle.
- Azu: Uses lay on hands on Einstein. She still can’t feel her god and is basically begging for any sort of power, and the tiniest trickle comes through. She heals him for 3 damage.
- Creature: Vibrates more, and completely breaks out of the hold, starting to move.
- Sasha: Stabs it twice, hitting on a 24 and a 21, dealing 18 damage and 1 fire damage on the first hit and 17 damage and 3 ice damage on the second.
- Hamid: Casts scorching ray. The spell misfires and a wall explodes 30 feet away.
- Azu: Attacks the beast, hitting on a nat 20, but doesn’t confirm the crit. She deals 18 damage. She attacks again, missing on a 17.
- Creature: Takes the withdraw action and flees.
[There is a gap in combat as the creature flees. Another creature eventually shows up and the party retains the same initiative order.]
- Creature 2: Attacks Hamid and hits him for 6 damage.
- Sasha: Fails to somersault over the creature with a 28 (Alex rolled a nat 20). It gets an attack of opportunity, and hits for 13 damage.
- Hamid: Takes a step backward and casts scorching ray. He hits on a 27 and misses on a nat 1, hitting Sasha instead of the dog on a roll of 17. The first ray deals 15 fire damage to the dog and the second one deals 22 fire damage to Sasha. Sasha is down to 12 hit points.
- Azu: Attacks the creature, and hits on a 19, dealing 17 damage. She hits with a nat 20 on the second attack, but doesn’t confirm the crit with a nat 1, and deals 9 damage.
- Creature 2: Takes the withdraw action, upwards.