29: The Doppelganger Effect

Real World Info

This session was played on April 30, 2010, featuring:

Gamgar Khazam, Dwarven Warrior and Eutaxadar of the Lash.
Bonspiel the Adept of Kor and Bella Clover and Pilpo Paggins and Sister Helspeth.
William Parsnip the Warrior and shooter of bolts and Mulyx, an acolyte and Wainscotting.
Dalamyr of the Owl.
Warthog and Dorkin Darkload.
Feralion with Helvetica and Grimantha.


Dalamyr escapes from the owl temple and is reunited with Parsnip and Feralion. They journey to Threshold and recruits Gamgar, Bonspiel, and Warthog to finish cleansing the temple of evil.

I. A voice in the dark

After a taxing evening under the oppressive aura of evil which permeated the hidden lair beneath the church-of-stryxis, our intrepid thieves adventurers decide to camp outside to regroup. Parsnip just finishes explaining that he intends to set out at dawn for Threshold, where he'll meet Gamgar in order to rescue some treasure children, when who should step from the dusky gloom into the glow of the fire, but Dalamyr! He explains that he was teleported into iron cage, and that another, who goes by Turlok is still rotting in there.

Though Parsnip is anxious to meet up with Gamgar, assuaging Dalamyr's guilt and rescuing the wretch takes priority (if only because Parsnip knows he'd never hear the end of it on their trip to Threshold), and Turlok is quickly freed.

II. A knife in the dark

Feralion's many retainers trade-off watch through the night. Upon waking, everyone is accounted for, with the exception of Turlok. A bloody trail leads back behind one of the abandoned buildings of Yew, where it ends in a large pool of the same, and fresh baboon tracks are found. Assuming that Turlok was set upon by silent ninja baboons during the night, the adventurers prepare to depart for Threshold in search of their companions, before descending once again to vanquish the evil aura which befouls the church once and for all.

III. Once more into the breach

With their courage bolstered by reinforcements, Warthog leads the group in to the room with four displacer beast statues, which was avoided in their first foray. However, as soon as he begins to preemptively reduce the statues to dust, 11 skeletons set upon him! Though the traffic jam in the adjoining hall slows the party down, the skeletons are quickly turned and dispatched, but not before they kill the hapless Sister Helspeth.

Gamgar looks askance at the displacer beast statues, however, and directs Eutaxadar (sometimes mistakenly called Evtaxadar) to take his sledgehammer and disable them.

IV. The Temple to Talon

Though the party should have learned their lesson from the previous stairwell, the inner corner once again takes the one in the lead, Dorkin Darkload, unawares. Concluding that he was likely teleported to one of the cages from which Dalamyr escaped, the party retraces their steps, only to find the jail empty!

As they forge ahead, the party hears Dorkin's blood-curdling scream further down the corridor. Rushing forward, they find themselves in a large darkened room. Advancing carefully reveals a 60' deep pit dominates the room, while Dorkin is found resting peacefully (freshly headless) on a dais opposite the entrance, below the menacing stone gaze of Talon, Stryxis' ex, and a generally evil god (as she never returned his Shattered Fixtures tapes when they broke up).

The party makes quick work of the slowly animating Talon, and recover her eyes (emeralds worth 2,500gp each!).

Warthog and Bonspiel lower the halflings down in to the pit to search for treasure, and their compatriot's head. Unfortunately, they only find the head. While leaning over to say he won't pull them up until they find some gold, Warthog tumbles into the pit and nearly dies!

Gamgar's sharp Dwarven eyes clearly saw Grimantha pushed him! Which he relates (in an unknown tongue) to Parsnip who is keeping watch on the hallway. They ready their plans for payback, rubbing their hands together in true Machiavellian form…

Bonspiel climbs down into the pit to heal Warthog with the staff of healing, and he is successfully recovered. Warthog's own suspicions are quietly confirmed by Gamgar.

V. Betrayal

The next two rooms yield nothing but cobwebs and dust, leaving a final door at the end of a hallway. Feralion steps boldly forward to vanquish the stuck door, but fails to detect it is a trap designed by Wile E Coyote. Instead of the door opening, the floor does. To add laughter insult to injury, a giant heavy weight falls on Feralion before he can so much as brush the dust off his Elven clothes, and he is hideously crushed.

Dalamyr strides forward to resuscitate their comrade, and extricate him. Seeing a chance arise, with the overprotective Feralion incapacitated, Gamgar signals Parsnip and Warthog. The three turn and attack Grimantha in concert. Unfortunately, the concert is more of a badly orchestrated cacophony, and what should have been a quick dispatch, becomes a debacle. Grimantha, the unscathed, guts two retainers (Wainscotting! Nooooooooo!) in order to make good her escape.

Mustering a rage that is only known to the recently dead, Warthog gives chase and, unleashing a blood curdling howl, guts Grimantha where she stands with his righteous polearm of Vengeance (+0). Dead, Grimantha reverts to Turlock the doppelganger!

Sated, and muttering to himself, Warthog severs Turlok's be-ringed left hand. Despite his dire warnings, the ring is later revealed to be not evil at all… and likely magical.

VI Epilogue

Warthog, seeing the increasing pride and purpose of his companions in the shaping of the Black Peaks, commissions Mrs. Grinstead, a woman in Threshold whose skill in tapestry making is unmatched in the region to create a battle standard for Dalamyr's Doomriders.

Owl God Revivals: White tents and free indoctrination juice mead just doesn't seem to draw the crowds for which Dalamyr yearns. He turns to his deity for aid, and is shocked when his prayers are answered. As is so often the case, shock is quickly followed by dismay, as the Owl God intends to collect on the debt. Dalamyr finds himself, bound by his solemn word, on a holy quest to rebuild and repopulate the shithole town of Yew.

Feralion uses his gold to build what he calls "the elven underground" which is really just two shacks built overtop the town sewer.

Parsnip gets in trouble with the "law". While trying to establish an Inn in Threshold for increasing the quality of the party's meatshields retainers, and a place befitting his fine carpets and dinnerware, he runs afoul of the Dead Gentlemen, and their supposed "zoning bylaws," which Gamgar told him not to worry about. About to be carted off ye olde gaol, he relents, and begrudgingly pays the hefty 1000gp fine.


Total losses/loot

Sister Helspeth was hacked apart by skeletons. Dorkin Darkload was beheaded by a god. Eutaxadar and Wainscotting (not to be confused with Wayne Scotting) were eviscerated by a doppelganger.

Each surviving PC earned 835 gold, plus 690 xp. Each surviving retainer earned 345 xp. The Doppelganger's Ring was taken by Warthog.

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