Friday, May 18, 2012

The Hairpin

At the top of the path, in view of the door Falfysson mentioned - which is still about 30 feet beyond - the path makes a hair-pin turn around a rock formation.  The ledge at this point is about 9 inches wide and sloped about 25 degrees ... and like everything else, it is damp.  To get around it, explains Batath, there are hand holds carved into the stalagmites; but Batath himself was surprised when a spider climbed out of one of these and over his arm.  He nearly slipped.  The drop, he adds - for he is describing this to Ahmet, who is resting at the place where the stairs look out into the cave proper - is about 160 feet.

Batath got to the door, which has no handle.  There's an iron bar for wedging it open from this side, and there certainly is a keyhole.  He'd suggest bringing people around the hair-pin with rope, but there's no where, really, to stand on the other side of the hairpin.  he tried to hammer a spike into the limestone (you would have heard the banging), but it cracked and broke apart as he did it.

Still, that seems to be the only obstacle remaining.

60 comments:

Lukas said...

Cant spend some time lassoing it? How high up is the stalagmite at this point?

Alexis said...

40 feet; from the perspective of the viewer at the stalagmite's bottom, it may or may not attach to the ceiling.

Ahmet said...

160 feet down, eh? What's your view on falling damage? :)

Ahmet said...

Where is the Bishop's apparatus? Can we see it now?

Alexis said...

Apparatus?

10 feet: 1d6
20 feet: 3d6
30 feet: 6d6
40 feet; 10d6

And so on.

Ahmet said...

Falyfsson said the bishop uses an apparatus to avoid using these treacherous stairs.

Ahmet said...

Ahmet makes a note not to fall more than 20 feet.

Alexis said...

Ah. Apparently it is an apparatus that the Bishop takes with him.

Ahmet said...

Ahmet asks Batath to look around for any hooks, pulleys, etc., that would draw up such an apparatus, assuming it's not some kind of Tenser's Floating Disc type thing.

Alexis said...

Batath curses Ahmet for about half a minute - "I've come close to losing my life twice this last hour!" he shouts. "Do you think I'd have missed a PULLEY if there was one?"

Lukas said...

Lukas shakes his head with a chuckle. "I think his apparatus is magical in nature or completely inaccessible to us as it has been drawn up completely."

Lukas thinks a moment.

"If this entire chamber is under the tower... is there any way we could destabalize this chamber to bring down the tower?"

Alexis said...

Batath grits his teeth. "I left my earthquake generator in my other pack."

Lukas said...

Lukas shakes his head and keeps thinking out loud, "So you think that the limestone isn't providing any support? If you think that is the case, would we be able to carve some of our own hand or foot holds? Or do you think it won't crumble fast enough like it did with your piton? Or would it take too long..."

Ahmet said...

OK. Not quite sure if this will work given the space constraints, but I will throw this plan out there for discussion:

1) Batath opens the door
2) Ahmet enters the room
3) Batath follows Ahmet in (assuming Ahmet hasn't fallen to his death, triggered a flame strike, or eaten by a troll)
4) Ahmet and Batath find something in the room they can secure the rope to, and toss it back to the others.

Thoughts?

James C. said...

(OOC: Sorry I was scarce yesterday, guys.)

Sounds like a plan to me, Ahmet.

Ahmet said...

Lukas, Janos?

While Batath is certainly more dextrous than Ahmet, I'm afraid that sending him in alone is a suicide mission. At least Ahmet can take a couple wallops if there's something nasty on the other side. (And if the thing on the other side is so nasty that Ahmet CAN'T take a couple wallops... well, you survivors may want to find another way around...)

Alexis said...

(OOC: not sure that anyone knows, but today is a holiday in canada. I'll be heading out to the mountains for the day, to get a little fresh air and do some hiking. Take care)

Ahmet said...

Ah, happy Victoria Day! Enjoy.

Ahmet said...

Are we waiting for Lukas and Janos to check in?

Alexis said...

Ah, sorry for the delay. I know lately it's been a lot of delays; and I know that's okay with you fellas - you've said so enough times. But not waiting for anyone to check in except the DM.

In the interest of time and practicality, I'm going to take advantage of something Lukas said and skip forward with this particular obstacle.

If you will observe the post above, you will see that I have updated the text with an image of the hairpin.

Now, Lukas suggested perhaps a rope could be attached to the top. I think Batath would take note of that, and shimmy up to the top to see if the stalagmite is attached to the ceiling. There was always a chance that Batath could roll his climb percentage, fail, and leave the party to figure out somehow to get up there and look ... but I roll Batath's climb and he gets up there.

He hooks the rope around the top of the stalagmite and then he stays up there to keep the rope from catching on anything while the party gets around the obstacle and makes their way to the door.

Alexis said...

From there we can pick up on Ahmet's suggestion, but not with Batath holding open the door (he's up top). But Aruth will venture forward and open the door for Ahmet if he likes.

Lukas said...

Lukas will wait for his turn to cross, however he will be waiting for the initial scouting party of people with armor to check out the door first. He will try not to be too far behind.

Ahmet said...

Sounds reasonable. Ready to charge into the unknown when you are!

Alexis said...

There's enough room for about four people to fit between the hairpin and the backs of Ahmet and Aruth. Since Lukas seems somewhat willing to hold back, and I haven't heard from Janos or Andrej, I'll presume it's Seth, Htuya, Frith and Ganzor.

Aruth asks, "Should I have the key to unlock the door, or should I open it when you've unlocked it?"

Ahmet said...

Ahmet asks Aruth to unlock it, in case we have to deal with something immediately.

Can I enter with scimitar drawn and shield in hand, or do I need my hands free to negotiate around the bend?

Alexis said...

As long as he opens the door, you can enter with scimitar and shield.

And Aruth opens the door ...!

Alexis said...

Revealing a flight of stairs that climbs to another door. The flight is clean, well constructed, dry and quite steep. It climbs 25 feet at a 60 degree angle.

Ahmet said...

Ahmet relays this information and asks Batath to come forward, check the stairs for traps, then quietly climb the stairs and listen at the next door.

Alexis said...

Batath cannot come forward; he is aiding other party members to make their way around the hairpin; he cannot do anything else until every person is past the hairpin, whereupon he will be the last to descend again to the pathway.

Ahmet said...

Can we put a stop to that? It does us no good to have our only thief at the rear of the group.

Andrej said...

(OOC: Duty called)

Andrej joins Ahmet when he is able, peeks into the stairwell and awaits the entire party's being ready.

János said...

(OOC: My apologies for my scarceness, fellas. Work has not been too kind either.)

Janos will join the group at the door as soon as he as able to as well.

Alexis said...

I am somewhat confused, Ahmet.

1) Do you not have any idea why Batath is doing what he's doing, or why it is necessary that the thief do it? If you look back through the description for this post, and the comments, you may understand that UNLESS Batath is doing what he was doing, most of the party would be falling to their deaths trying to negotiate the hairpin pathway.

2) Are you under some belief that the dwarves, Batath included, are "yours" to play with as you will?

Your character will have to do his best with his means - you cannot have the dwarves jump and hop to your demands simply because you believe the thief is better used attending to your personal needs.

Alexis said...

(OOC: no worries, Janos. I have only discovered today that I'll be training a new soul in parts of my job, to give me more time - but thursday is going to be a writeoff)

Ahmet said...

I understand that Batath is helping people across, but I would rather wait for him to be able to come up to the front than blunder up the stairs myself.

We were specifically warned not to make a lot of noise; I can't think of a worse person to be the "scout" than Ahmet in his plate armor.

Alexis said...

Ah, but you see Ahmet, there isn't ROOM between the end of the hairpin and the stairs for everyone. And Batath risks certain death everytime he climbs up and down.

So he's not going to climb down, check your stairs, then climb up again to help people around when the front of the party goes up those stairs, making more room - is he?

No, he's going to sit up top until EVERYONE goes by, before he risks climbing down again.

Ahmet said...

OK... so we wait.

(OOC: As I said... in my next life, I'm coming back as a Thief! They get to do all the fun stuff!)

Alexis said...

Slowly, now.

Space between bottom of stairs and end of hairpin for SIX people.

Total number of people to fit in space: 25.

Therefore, if you wait, how can people move forward?

Ahmet said...

So right now, we have: Ahmet, Seth, Htuya, Frith and Ganzor in the room, with space for one more -- Aruth?

Alexis said...

Yes, Aruth is the sixth man.

And back around the hairpin, the next person (probably Janos, if he's willing) is waiting to receive word from Batath that he can start around the hairpin).

Ahmet said...

Ahmet asks Frith to send whoever is sneakiest of his five Dwarves to quietly head up the stairs.

Alexis said...

Frith eyes Ahmet suspiciously. "Somethin' wrong with your feet, Mister?"

Ahmet said...

"They're clad in steel."

János said...

Janos is willing to cross next, once there's room.

Are any of the Dwarves not wearing armour? Ahmet's probably right that whoever's lightest should go first.

Andrej said...

Alexis, Andrej's stated action was to lead the group after Ahmet's. Where does that now put him in relation to the door and hairpin turn?

Alexis said...

Andrej would be about six places back from Janos; but the dwarves have spent an hour breaking up straw and strewing it on the path, so really Andrej could be right behind Janos if he wanted to be.

Frith's answer to Ahmet - "And my men's feet in leather; so you'll bear up better, methinks."

Ahmet said...

Ahmet reminds Frith of Falyffson's specific warning to be silent.

"By the time I march up to the top of those stairs, every man in the tower will be ready and waiting."

Alexis said...

"Oh, that's what worries you? You've never been a war before, then. Do you imagine any man will be dallying around at the bottom of the tower? And do you not think their attentions, at their arrow slots and upon the tower's peak, might be busy elsewhere? We're as safe as house, my dear Turk.

But come on, I'll lead you up."

Ahmet said...

Ahmet nods to Frith and waits.

Andrej said...

Andrej is right behind Janos.

Alexis said...

Frith climbs the stairs with all caution. Nothing happens. He stops about 20 feet up; other dwarves (if Ahmet doesn't move) have begun to file up the stairwell.

Frith has found something. He runs his hand over the left wall where he is, draws an eating knife and seems to gently slip it into a space between stones. He stops, puts the knife away, then calls for either Zoft or Andrej to come forward to where he is.

Alexis said...

I should have said: the door at the top of the stairs is not reinforced at all. It doesn't appear to be a normal door either, as it is fairly loose on its hinges and appears to be somewhat the worse for wear. The nearest dwarves relay back that they can see through cracks in the door, but that there's no light on the other side to reveal anything.

Alexis said...

Janos and Andrej have come across, and are now standing near the first door, that one that required a key to enter, revealing the stairs.

János said...

I mean...

"After you, Father."

Alexis said...

(OOC: I'll be in a meeting until 11:30 Pacific, so do your best, fellows).

Assuming that Andrej makes his way over to Frith, the dwarf will demonstrate that there is clearly a door in the wall; not secret or hidden, but with a crack around the outside. Frith demonstrates he can widen the crack with his knife, and says he's certain he can open it.

However, he points at a symbol at the bottom corner of the door and asks Andrej what it is.

It's clearly a glyph of some kind, but Andrej does not recognize its nature.

Andrej said...

"It is a glyph, Frith, the purpose of which I cannot ascertain. These are placed by greater clerics than I, generally for the purposes of preventing one from entering, taking or passing by a thing. It's effects can be varied, but we must assume it is dangerous. Zoft?"

Alexis said...

Zoft concurs; he does not know what it is either, and suggests it may be anything intended to activate once the side door is opened - from an alarm to a thunderbolt.

Andrej said...

We should bypass the stone door for now and make for the rickety wooden one.

János said...

I agree. Messing with the glyph at this point just seems like a disastre waiting to happen.

Alexis said...

This is continued on the next post.