Session 10 The Money Pit and the Giant Ants

The adventurers secured their castle, which they renamed “Chateau D’ Awesome” and began decorating it with their various surplus gear and random tchotchkes. Now with someplace to leave things, they set up a smokehouse to cure the meat they’ve been getting and some drying frames to cure the hides of the many bears, wolves, and boars they kill. They passed the winter there, unwilling to travel to town through the snowdrifts, and survived admirably well. Cleanup of the Chateau went well and they were able to finish rebuilding the inner stone keep to the first level. It remains roofless, and originally had another two levels, and the outer wall needs repair. The drawbridge is broken and they replaced it with a bridge of saplings. The portcullises and all the doors and furniture are destroyed. And they talk of building a road to Earthstrike to ease their travels. All this makes for a very happy referee!

They found that the ruined city around the Earthstrike palisade could be used as a supply of quarried stone, saving much time and money. They didn’t begin main construction yet, though, using all the fallen stone in the Chateau ruins to rebuild the first level.

One player decided to hire workers from Earthstrike to build a normal building outside of the town. The workers used the local stone from the ruins, so the player got a pretty good deal there. She’s more interested in helping out the town, and her original goal was to set it up as a schoolhouse. To keep the workers employed she left money for two more buildings. She convinced one of the apprentices of Yojimbo the Death God priest, who now runs Earthstrike, to teach and maintain the schoolhouse. In exchange he gets to use the schoolhouse at night for religious purposes, holding rummage sales, whatever.

When they had originally arrived, the lord of the fort of Earthstrike was a military man, an experienced soldier named Lord … something. I forget. The priest Yojimbo, who was on the same caravan boat as the PCs, replaced him as the leader of the colony. Yojimbo’s negligence and mismanagement began immediately, when he diverted most of the labor of the colony to building a cathedral outside town. Yojimbo is enamored with the ancient culture, you see. So instead of a traditional step-pyramid he wants a cathedral in the local style, which he has no idea how to build. And he changes his diagrams daily, so anytime the construction isn’t plagued by disaster it’s being intentionally pulled down and altered.

While the Lord So-And-So keeps his sanity by staying out with his patrols on long hunts in the forest, Yojimbo has a Secret Project which one of the Polymorph PCs intermittently investigates.

There was some exploration of the woods and hills around Earthstrike, and they found several nests of Giant Ants. The adventurers would attack, then become swamped and try to flee. They had some close calls before they developed a tactic of casting Entangle upon the anthill to trap the emerging ants. Ill-prepared, they spent every spell and arrow and random stone lying about but didn’t decimate the anthill completely.

They vowed to return.

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