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The Architects of Betrayal (TAB) 48: The Importance of Context

Updated: Jul 20, 2023

I cast fireball!
Or Ghost Goblins, as the case may be.

Heyoo, we're back. Despite the variety of setbacks the group suffered in the previous haunt, their eventual success seems to have spurred the Cupcakes on, because their very next move was to tackle the other .

Well, to be fair, Zornesk voted to check out the throne room. The others shouted him down saying that even dwarves wouldn't put a forge in a throne room. Oh the irony. One of these days they'll just stop questioning and ask WWZD: What Would Zornesk Do? As it turns out he'll probably lead them right . . . well, as long as he's not actually leading them anywhere anyways. Guy has terrible survival rolls . . .

Anyhow, the group made a beeline for the southern haunt. This time they managed to stop just shy of activating it. Globat then used another of their precious scrolls of Speak With Haunt.

Sadly this haunt was more than one alignment step away, and it made its save, meaning it could say whatever it wanted. Initially all they got from it was the same information they'd gotten in their first encounter. Namely that they must 'break it', 'burn it', and 'make it not ugly'.

When asked what they should break, burn and make not ugly the haunt persisted in naming the questioner's face as the target. Of course the group realized that wasn't it, but it didn't help their tempers when so many of their questions were answered with 'your face' or 'your mama'.

Zornesk was the first to key on the archway the spectral dwarves were defending from the ghostly goblins as the key. He flew over the haunt (activating its waves of goblins) and began trying to remove a stone from it with a strength check. Apparently Kobolds like to overestimate the effects their draconic heritage grants their strength . . .

Meanwhile the group decided to attack the spectral dwarves, apparently as recompense for the haunt's bad attitude. Of course, said dwarves acted in kind, firing spectral ballistae, lobbing spectral bombs, and hacking at the group with spectral axes.

Yep, break IT, burn IT, make IT not ugly. What should we do? Attack the dwarves! And they continued in their efforts even after I pointed out that the goblins were still dying as if the dwarves were still killing them. This despite the fact that said dwarves were focusing wholly upon the party, including the innocent Zornesk.

Afterwards Zornesk, who had tired of attempting to remove a stone block from an arch that had been standing successfully for over a thousand years, smacked said archway with his warhammer. Bob, as if sensing a new theme hit it with his flaming sword. Thus fulfilled the two requirements of break it and burn it.

Globat then desintegrated a ten foot cube, which would have counted for 'break it' had that not already been taken care of. Then Quagrim, who was clearly channeling his inner goblin, scooped up some dirt and showered the doorway with it. (I drew from the first goblin quest in Warhammer Online for that bit)

The barrier that had been blocking their passage until now disappeared. However that sense of accomplishment was short lived to say the least, for they immediately heard a voice from the other side snapping orders in undercommon. Since none but Zornesk spoke undercommon they were not quite prepared when three drow slaves stumbled through the doorway.

They were still blinking in the glow of the paladin when they died. However the short battle had moved the aforementioned paladin in front of the arch. Four arrows flew out of it, nearly killing him. Globat then used a Reach Teleport to transport the group back to the surface. No one runs away like the Delicious Cupcakes!

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