30th Day of Garmensis – Part II

Hogar’s Journal (Translated from Giant)

Year 781 of the founding of the City

30th Day of Garmensis – Part II

Silverkin Manor – The Basement

Steep wooden stairs descended into a dank and dark basement.  Condensation flecked bricks swam across my vision.  I came to realise that I had struck my head when Silverkin threw me across the room upstairs.  Last into the basement, as I looked into the dimly lit room I saw two skeleton retiarii armed with trident and net facing off against Eligos.  Quickly she was engulfed by their nets but before they could press the attack Rodney pushed them back with a thunderous energy wave.
Suddenly from the shadows pale vampire spawn emerged and closed in on us.  Freshly turned they hungered for their first meal.  Stumbling from the last step into the basement I noticed some barrels to my left from where I could get a better vantage point.  I staggered over to the barrels and leapt atop them only to find myself face to face with a vampire spawn.  Without room to use my bow I took a swing at him with my sword but failed to connect.  Over my shoulder I heard a mighty crash as Minron charged at the retiarii closely followed by Glenn.  I couldn’t see clearly but their attack didn’t seem to go well and before long Minron was being driven back under a flurry of trident thrusts.
Gradually I became aware of a skittering scratching sound coming from underneath the barrel I stood upon.  The others told me later that this sound had been present throughout the encounter but I had been too groggy to notice.  As the vampire pressed an attack on me he disturbed the barrels and hundreds, perhaps thousands of rats swarmed into the room engulfing me instantly.  The next several moments were even more of blur than those previously as innumerable pairs of tiny fangs sunk into my flesh.  I struck out at the vampire who had disturbed the rodents and thought I heard a body crumple to the floor as I staggered away blindly.
The passage of time was marked only by agony.  Agony which reached its crescendo with an orange flash as flames seared my skin.  Rodney had dealt with the rats by engaging both them and me in a column of flame.  I dropped to one knee as the roasted carcasses of rats dropped from my body to the ground.  Fury engulfed me as I rose to my feet, finally with the space to use my bow.  There were no longer any young vampires standing and only one of the retiarii still menaced with trident and net.  My companions had been doing their jobs well.  I sent an arrow clattering amongst the ribcage of the remaining skeleton and narrowly missed with another.  This distraction was enough for Glenn to step in and reduce him to a pile of bones with a crashing blow from his ugrosh.
A yelp from Diefenbaker drew my attention to a new enemy in the room.  The tall and graceful figure of a female eladrin withdrew the blade of a magical dagger from Dief’s flank.  As she turned her hooded face to mine I could see that the pale complexion so characteristic of the high elves had taken on a grey tint, the pallor of the undead.
Suddenly Vicrael teleported alongside me.  He seemed to think having been swarmed by rats and roasted alive by Rodney that I was in a fit state to lend my life-force to a spell he wanted to use to poison the vampiric eladrin.  I told him that if he laid a finger on me if would be the last thing he did.  The senile old duffer went ahead and attacked with poison anyway.  It was no surprise when the vampire was largely unaffected.
Summoning all of my concentration I sent a shaft through the creature’s left eye.  Amazingly she remained standing.  Immediately sensing the danger this powerful being posed Minron rushed in.  He impaled her on his sword and the high elf screamed in pain, the three vicious attacks in succession having some effect on her.  After an initial hesitation Eligos transformed into the fearsome ram and charged home.  The vampire staggered but still refused to go down.  Glenn stepped into the fray and clove his axe into her torso where it stuck with a sickening squelch.  The diabolical creature screamed again but still would not fall.  Undeterred the stout dwarf placed his foot on her midriff and hauled the blade free.  Putting all of his not inconsiderable strength behind one final blow the axe head sunk into her shoulder and penetrated deep into her chest.  The vampire threw back her head and unleashed a deafening death cry.  Her body suddenly evaporated around Glenn’s axe and coalesced into a ghostly form floating above our heads.  An eerie silence descended as it became apparent that there were no more enemies in the room.
The ghost of the vampire was drawn, as though a plug had been pulled somewhere, through a door on the far side of the room into a second chamber.  As one we all turned to follow.

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