The Chain Gang:
- Franklin Faust, spiderbot Clockwork Magician obsessed with the dark arts.
- Julia, sexy Vampire Warrior in a Studio Ghibli-style Hazmat burka.
- Richard Johnson/Jordan, Changeling Warrior suffering an identity crisis.
- Golden-green~, self-indulgent Elf Rogue pistollero wrapped up in her own flower-power.
- Silverbell, canary-headed Pixie Rogue with the life expectancy of a candle-flame.
- with special guest Ragnvilde, Jotun dwarf-sitter and personal party Cavalry-man.
After her return from exploring the surrounding ruins, Golden-green~ discovers from the base-camp (currently consisting of 8, Fido & Kane) that the rest of the team has gone inside the elven ziggurat. Following, she finds the interior cistern filled with waterlogged corpses and fragments of chain on the stairwell and floating in the water. Spotting a tunnel below the waterline, she empties her waterskin for (she hopes) a little extra air before swimming after her comrades.
While traversing the tunnel though, she is swarmed by the carnivorous fish that haunt it. Managing to swim past, she makes it out into the circular chamber where she finds fragments of Backwash being nibbled on by the fishes, and where the rest of the gang waits by a dimly lit open door. Ragnvilde has his hands full with Brenda, who has assumed the fetal position thanks to her newfound hydrophobia, and he is gently rocking her like a bade.
Golden-green~ and Richard spot something flitting about inside the next chamber, so they – along with Julia & Faust – enter to investigate. Inside the dimly-lit redish room they find the Pixie Silverbell, whom Golden~ recognizes as another former slave of the same Wizard who had forced her into servitude many years before. Silverbell explains she had escaped when the Wizard died (?), stowing away in a backpack belonging to the Treasure-hunters that had opened up this ruin. She had been nibbling on food in their pack and been asleep when they’d died, waking up to find herself trapped in the dungeon with no way out but for the tunnel full of hungry fish.
They are all startled when, above the massive dimly-red glowing dome that occupies much of the room, a beautiful elf maid appears above, only to strip away her flesh and pull out her eyes before vanishing. The gang recovers their composure and decides to allow SIlverbell to join their company (especially when she admits to knowing a little water-magic). After examining each of the doors, they finally choose one. While checking for traps, Golden’s crossbow slips off and breaks, and Richard discovers the truth about himself while picking up an iron screw. Several minutes of identity shock go by as he recalls (dimly) another name, Jordan, and takes on Golden’s form. Eventually though they get back on track and enter to discover a long hall bordered by pillars, where they are promptly ambushed by two skeletons armed with bows and scimitars.
Things from bad to worse, despite Golden~ dropping one of the undead with a shot to the back of his head, when Faust and Silverbell discover two more Bloodybones – those damnable skinless faeries that had killed so many of their friends – sneaking up on them. Fleeing back into the room, Faust climbs up into a corner & distracts them with a casting of Horrible Deification; unfortunately this makes him their prime target as, while one is distracted while puking their guts out, the other takes him out with a single swipe of her claws. He briefly sees Hell before he shuts down…
The remaining Boneguard drops Julia & Jordan before switching back to its’ bow to trade more shots with Golden~. At the door Silverbell also drops from a blow from the recovering Bloodybones, but Ragnvilde comes running to the rescue (having spent much of the time prying off a hysterical Brenda), planting his axe firmly in one of the fairy’s that he starts spraying the room with blood. The smell revives Julia, who crawls up to drag him down so she can feed until he stops kicking. Silverbell & Jordan also recover, and while Silverbell flies over to freeze the remaining skeleton before hiding behind Golden~, Jordan joins Ragnvilde in putting down the remaining Bloodybones (which Ragnvilde has been forced to resort to boxing after his rune-etched battleaxe breaks). Golden~ gets a little peeved when the Jotun finishes off the Faerie, then strides over to put his hatchet in the Boneguard, and the word “kill-stealer” is bandied about.
Badly wounded & mourning the apparent death of Faust, the gang decides to make camp in the pillared hallway, taking a much needed breather…