A Piece of Blue Sky

Mergmo the Iron Kobold

Drill Baby Drill!

The Lipripper Goblin swordsman leads the party into the depths of the circular hallway, where a trap sets off, and fills the halls with shadowy smoke. Within the smoke, it seems like clawed hands are just beyond the edge of visibility. While Arbol attempts to keep him calm, Deebo angrily commands the goblin to scout ahead. He goes to the end of the hall, beyond sight. His head rolls back only seconds later. They surmise that walking solo will get them killed. Clutching each other close, they make their way down the hall.

In a silent room, they are able to smash off one of the black orbs from the wall. Inside is twitching gears and lenses and bizarre machinery bearing a logo: North Central Positronics. Strange metal strings lead out of the device and into the wall.

At the very end of the hallway, they enter a doorway. The room within is lighted cheerfully and bears many portraits and images of happy smiling Kobolds. A banner is strewn across the room reading “CONGRATULATIONS! YOU ARE ALMOST OUT OF HERE!!” Around the corner is a door labeled “This Way To Victory!” Razabelle spots a door set into the wall. It is locked with two exotic deadbolts, too complex even for her greatest efforts.

Behind it they hear, “You’ll never take me alive!” The woman behind the door believes the party to be her enemies. They convince her they aren’t, and she finally opens the door. Her face is hideously deformed, half blue and hairless with sharp teeth on one side of her mouth, as if she is transforming into a Ghoul. She tells them she is a member of the Pathfinder Society. Her name is Maritha. She hands them the key she took from the Kobolds who run the Redoubt.

She tells them the Kobolds are using the ruins as some sort of sick game, pulling victims into the monster ridden and booby-trapped labyrinth, watching them as they die. the rooms at the end of the Victory door are all trapped. The key she gives them will help open the door at the very other end of the main (still shadowed) hallway. Due to some gas trap in one of the rooms, she is transforming into a Ghoul, and wants the party to take her story and her belongings and put her out of her misery. Deebo grabs her sword, a gold and brass hilt with strange blue steel blade, and does the job. A few words are said and they make their way to the other side of the dungeon.

The socket for the key doesn’t open a door. It opens an entire wall. Behind it is a high-scale sophisticated base of operations. An ogre has gotten loose from a large cage and the party watches as it kills a pair of kobolds. Some quick talking is done afterwards, and the ogre agrees to leave the party alone if they can find an exit in five minutes.

During the search, they locate the following:
1. A chalkboard with a layout of the trapped and dangerous portions of the dungeon, with each section color-coded to a kobold name on the left side of the board. The names are in a list named “Challengers”.
2. A room with four of the seeing orbs, each in front of a chair.
3. Two transportation circles, one smeared and unusable and the other locked to some sort of keyed item.
4. A set of bunk beds for the Kobolds and Goblins.
5. The party’s own weapons.
6. A glass orb set into a large device below a smashed glass rectangle

The exit door is behind the chalkboard, and the Ogre makes his way out.

The party ponders leaving, but Khaliz believes that his Chameleon is sill within the Redoubt. Also, Mergmo totally called them all cowards for even thinking of leaving.

Some stairs lead to an inner chamber and the party finds the inner chamber full of the cords and cables that led from all the viewing orbs. On one side, a giant glass rectangle is displaying constant moving images and sounds of people dying in the halls of the dungeon. Some aflame, some torn apart by shadows, some stabbed to death by screaming grinning goblins.

On the other side of the chamber, Mergmo is torturing Khaliz’s giant chameleon companion. His skin looks riddled and torn with metal parts and gears and spring. He smells like rotting flesh. Smooth metal plates surround parts of his upper torso. They move around and form a giant drill as the fight begins.

During the fight, Arbol looses consciousness and almost bleeds out. Nearing death himself, Mergmo attempts to slam his way past the party as the plates slide down his arm and transform his shredded legs into bone and metal wheels. Deebo and Razabelle strike at him as he passes, killing him and setting him ablaze. his body dashes past them and breaks through the wall.

The party gathers the following
1. A collection of glass orbs like the one found earlier, except these are blue
2. A pack of flyers. On one side of them is several paragraphs in a strange language. The other side has a map leading to the location of the Redoubt and a logo bearing the initials AAH and the silhouetted images of an Orc, an Elf, and a Kobold.
3. Resurrection wand on Mergmo.

Beaten up and joyful to be free, yet yearning to find out just what is going on and who did this to them and why, the party makes their way out of the Red Redoubt. Evening is approaching, and the walls of Absalom stretch out before them.

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Ricardus

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