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Many Alternate Doors, No Exits in Sight (MADNES) 45: A Side quest of Minor Significance

Updated: Aug 3, 2023


By my calculations completing this side quest gives a .5% higher chance of completing the game!
When a game needs to pad out its play time

We've all been there. Game end is in sight. But there's just one side quest I haven't completed yet. Unless you're Snoop, in which case you blasted through the main story and are just working towards a hundred percent:



Just look at how intently he stares at that brownie batter . . .
Proof that we are all just NPCs in an MMO

But most of us do them. And the Delicious Cupcakes are no different.


Though, it wasn't like they were given a choice. They returned from their last side quest (retrieving Grave T. Robber) and were immediately sent on another by their angry fearless leader. This time Noblesword directed them to talk to their Lieutenant.


{Player's Note: A character whose name I've lost due to the complete lack of any interaction the group has had with her in well over a year}


Apparently, the spirit of Jha'luskie had offered said direct commanding officer another deal. One that the elf wasn't having anything to do with. Their mission, should they choose to accept it (spoiler, they had no choice) was to get the deal to go forward by any means necessary.


{Player's Note; I'm not really sure why. Noblesword, being higher in rank, could have simply ordered her to take the deal.


And why was Jha'luski pushing deals so hard right now? Wasn't she against the ivory tower? I mean, she did escape from the same castle didn't she?


Or did she? Perhaps she's been playing them all this time. Perhaps she's the true mastermind behind everything that's happening. Might explain why she's been put into a cocoon. This isn't even my final form!}


When they got there, their lieutenant (mind you, this is their boss) simply stated she wasn't going to take the deal. It wasn't fair. Then she suggested that they should speak to The Dealmaster herself.


Which they did via the ring the lieutenant had traded for earlier. A moment later a small spider descended to the ground, moved a few feet away, and waited. Taking the hint, the DCs followed it.


The octo-pedal guide led them through the city and into a building. It then casually strolled right past a guard and crawled up a wall, stopping at the exact middle. A moment later the rocks making the wall began moving aside individually, as if of their own volition.


The wall parted, revealing a cave. Something that really freaked the guard out, since the wall in question was an outside wall above ground. But, it's nothing the DCs hadn't seen before. (Honestly it was kind of timid compared to most of what they'd witnessed so far.)


They followed the tunnel down until they came to a waterfall of Quicksilver. Steve used his shield to check on the other side. Upon finding it clear, he used it to part the viscous liquid (which doesn't actually work with a rotella, I know. I"ve already tilted at that particular windmill. Just let it go) for the others. Frank chose to ride under his horse for protection.


Once clear of that, they continued, following the tunnel until it emptied into a massive cavern. Frank took advantage of his ability to use his flying undead horse to its greatest extent, because . . . he could. He flew to the center of the cavern, spotting an ornate casket on one side.


Once he'd called this observation out, Hazel rushed over to it. As they got closer an illusion of Zha'luski appeared above the casket. They asked about the trade the elf lieutenant had refused, but all the Drow-Elf would say about it was that in exchange she would provide scouts for the inevitable attack on the ivory tower.


But, since the elf wouldn't deal with her, she offered a deal to the DCs. If they could retrieve an item she would offer said scouts. Not as many, of course. Actually, about half the amount she'd offered to the elf. But hey, something was better than nothing, right?


Upon acceptance of these terms Zha'luskie then informed them that she would open a portal to where the item was. Her accomplice would have the item ready for them, but they needed it to look as if they were stealing it, for . . . reasons.


Once they agreed to these extra terms the Dealmaster opened a portal into what appeared to be some sort of a seamstresses shop. And sitting in a chair was what appeared to be a halfling sized stuffed doll sewing something. Kind of like a surgeon who . . . you know what, let's not go there actually.


The moment they stepped through, the doll noticed them, shifted its button eyes towards a book, then back at the group. Thor, keeping the illusion up, grabbed the doll, as if to abduct it. Steve grabbed the book and they headed out.


A few steps from the portal the doll pulled a needle out of . . . somewhere (look, at some point, you just stop asking) and jabbed Thor in the arm. Now, Thor isn't known for performances; that's his brother's forte. But he gave a good attempt at yelling as if that hurt and dropping the doll.


{Player's Note: He rolled a 3 with a +1. So, yeah, he did his best . . .}


Once they were back, Zha'luskie accepted the book and promised the proffered scouts when the time came. Having finished that particular quest, the group went back through the tunnel, to the waterfall of quicksilver.


At that point, Thor pulled out a bag of holding and filled it to the brim with the silvery liquid. The group then headed back to the end of the tunnel. Once through, the wall reclosed. The spider that had opened it dropped to the floor and skittered off.


The Cupcakes went to report to Noblesword, but were informed by her guards that she was asleep. Knowing full well that one does not wake a Dwarf without being prepared for the consequences, they passed a message to her guards and left.


Afterwards the group went to the Gnomes to sell the quicksilver Thor had collected. Technically, Thor went to sell it. The others went to watch the inevitable show.


Thor tried to be circumspect about it, grabbing the attention of a single Gnome, and trying to hint at what he had. All of that fell apart as the Gnome in question said, in a loud excited voice, "You've got quicksilver?!"


Within a second, he was swarmed by Gnomes. But, eventually, he was able to sell the stuff. Then it was off to get food.


Half way there the idea of an eating contest came up.


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