The mummies were covered in tattered burial shrouds, appearing as if they were coated in spider webbing. Avner squealed and announced that his disentery was returning, at which point he and the other NPCs fled back toward the chasm. Bertram followed to ensure nobody died. The horrific appearance of the undead caused several in the party to be paralyzed with fear. Jimmy, Ono, Aleister and Ozzy all succumbed before Keahilani could lob fireballs and Pele’s magic to harm the mummies. Once freed of the fear effect, Ono, Ozzy and Crikey were able to mow down the abominations while Aleister hexed them and Jimmy filled them with arrows. Ozzy and Jimmy both felt ill and were certain that they had contracted mummy rot.
They moved into the secret room, finding a large sarcophagus detailing a king holding a silver dagger in one hand and blue rod in the other, an apparent twin to the red rod they found in the entry chamber. Ono and Keahilani hoisted the lid, triggering an insidious trap that launched spears through hidden holes in the ceiling, floor and walls. The envenomed spears bit deeply and most in the party suffered grievous wounds. After healing everyone, the cleric of Pele looted the coffin, finding the blue rod, a pearl of power and silver dagger.
In an adjoining room, they discovered enormous double doors that were sealed air-tight. A mechanism with one slot a red granite and another a blue marble was in one corner. The rods fit perfectly and Ono and Keahilani were able to open the sea doors by turning them simultaneously. Ocean smell and breeze wafted into the chamber. Beyond was a natural harbor at low tide. Tide pools dotted a beach and they saw the continuation of the mountain trail on the other side of the beach.
First, they finished exploring the southern chambers. In one stagnant pond, Ono was attacked by a huge black pudding. The jelly-like creature split into multiple opponents when Ono, Ozzy and Jimmy tried to attack it. Aleister and Keahilani were able to dispatch the pudding with lightning bolt and fire. With no other rooms to explore, the party gathered Bertram and the surviving crew and exited through the sea doors. No sooner had they entered the tide pools than they were attacked by enormous shark-eating crabs and a smaller swarm of tiny crabs. While the swarm harassed and hurt them, the greater danger was the large fauna. Aleister nearly met his fate when one crab grabbed him and squeezed. Ozzy, Crikey, Ono and Jimmy were able to smash the vermin, resulting in well over a hundred pounds of crab meat which they promptly attached to Thunderstrike.
Days passed as they traversed the mountain trail. Keahilani noticed that Montgomery was doing much better without the lure of easy liquour and gave the man his new silver dagger, asking that he help protect them if necessary. Montgomery seemed to take heart at this and their cabin boy, Jenkie, beamed with pleasure. Amellia’s spirits lifted upon seeing the ocean again. Urol was his normal self and studied everything around him while Avner complained incessantly about crab juice dirtying his fine steed. Keahilani and Ozzy healed the mummy rot afflicting the party. Each night they noticed strange occurrences: The sensation of being watched, a Tulita man apparently committing suicide (yet no signs of him were found) and crucified bird corpses left at their camp site. The strangest was a lift platform that an abandoned village had created to reach the upper part of the trail. Though Aleister could fly, they decided to hoist Thunderstrike using the lift. Ono’s normally-strong grip failed, accompanied by a vine snapping and the poor beast of burden tumbled down the cliff to its death in the ocean below. Avner ranted and railed against the party, but there was no taking it back. Upon examination, Bertram and Ozzy noted that the snapped vine appeared to have been partially cut.
As they contemplated these strange signs, death came from above. A group of four tattooed gargoyles landed among them. They made quick work out of them. However, the next day another group attacked, this time led by a barbarian leader wearing a stone crown. Though fierce, these also fell under the combined might of the party. Ono donned the unique Gargoyle Crown and claimed it as his own.
At last, the mountain trail descended and merged back into the jungle. Urol didn’t think the trail continued and recommended following game trails going south. Within hours, a dense fog overtook the party and a sense of foreboding descended. Urol indicated that he thought it was unnatural. Worse, Montgomery shivered and said he recognized the taint from when the Wave Riders attacked Harthagoa, the Demon Below, and that the fogs smelled of the abyss. After hours of walking, the party realized they were simply returning to the same spot, caught in some sort of magical ant trap.
A patch of ruined stonework was found, a dead man with a hole in his chest crucified and set upside down at its center. When they approached, the man opened his eyes and spoke to them, “Why, hello there. What is it like to be alive?” They had a nice dialogue with the trapped zombie who promised they would have lots of time together to talk about all sorts of things…until they, too, died. He refused to answer questions about who did this to him.
At that moment with a small pop and a flash of light, several demonic orangutans appeared in the group, one reaching for the gnome, Urol. Aleister recognized them as demons known as Barl-gura. They hissed, smiled and showed long fangs before attacking…