Kai really wanted to play again last night, so we did. Having already stolen some of the initial encounters from The Lost Village, I decided just doing the later ones would be short enough for this school night.
I had Lord Kingspirit summon them to his throne room again to ask their assistance as brave adventurers. He said “I need your help.” Kai (Draco) immediately responded “Anything!” Looks like we’ve found a good source of quest hooks. He hadn’t even heard what the mission was! Lord Kingspirit was nervous about the bear and dragon in his throne room, so Kira (Lilly) whispered to Olivia (her bear cub) to wait outside. Kai on the other hand, had no intention of leaving Firebreath (Draco’s pet) outside and convinced Lord Kingspirit that his dragon was well-trained. Seeing this, Lilly explained that Olivia was as well, and quickly summoned her back.
Anyway, it turned out that mission was that a small village off the coast, on the Island of Wakwak, had suddenly gone silent. No one had traveled from there in weeks and no word had been sent. It was only about a day’s journey by boat. They agreed to go. I had the voyage itself be uneventful, mostly in the interest of time. Also, not every bit of travel needs an event.
They docked and crossed the bridge into town, which was strangely unguarded. The market square was eerily quiet and filled with empty market stalls. One house had a collapsed wall and they could see inside. Exploration of the other houses showed them all to be empty of all people, food, supplies, and even furnishings. Very strange indeed. Near the dock, a sewer pipe emptied into the water, a feature of the map tiles, but one I did not mention in my description. Nevertheless Lilly immediately took an interest in it and swung herself down over the dock to take a closer look. It was too dark to see further without actually journeying in. A tracking check showed them footprints, some human, which seemed to stumble and be dragged, along with several reptilian ones. They decided to go inside.
I immediately picked up all the city map tiles revealing a set of sewer tiles underneath. Of course they were intended to discover this as where the inhabitants had vanished to, but it was really exciting to have it be Kira’s idea to investigate there without any leading from me. The sewer had a river of green sludge down the middle with a small walking path on either side. Since Firebreath could fly, he told him to scout ahead. He cautioned them that one of the paths was safe and the other was not, using little coos and head movements, which they understood.
Coming to a t-junction, they chose to go to the right, and discovered four rooms. Three of the rooms had bars like a jail and could be easily seen through. One held the townsfolk, one held some food and a chest, and one held a lizardman. The fourth was a stone room with a wooden door, so they could not tell what was inside. Both the lizardman and the townsfolk begged to be freed. As they debated what to do, I told them each to make a stealth check. (This is not a Hero Kids mechanic, but it seemed important here). Erin (Hermione) and Draco both failed, causing the wooden door to swing open and three more lizardmen to burst out. They attacked the party immediately and a fierce battle followed. Olivia was knocked out and Firebreath nearly was as well, but Hermione’s healing kept them in it. One of the lizardmen was slain on the bridge over the sludge and fell into it, sinking below the slime. The lizardmen themselves had no issues with wading through the slime, though the heroes still hadn’t attempted to venture in.
The final lizardman grabbed Lilly and forced her into the room, closing the door behind him. His strength checks kept surpassing her dexterity checks to escape her grasp so he chained her to the wall, immobilizing her. By this time, Draco had burst through the door and finished off the lizardman. They couldn’t see keys for the shackles anywhere in the room as I described it to them. Erin thought to search the body of the lizardman they had just slain. I rolled to see which of the lizardmen had the key ring (considering the obstacle of them appearing on the one whose body had sunk below the sludge), but they happened to be in the possession of the lizardman they had just slain. Lilly took the keys then and lept across to the storeroom, grabbing the food and opening the chest. She found 3 coins inside and pocketed them before the others convinced her to be a team player and share the loot. She made several more leaps across with the townsfolk on her back and Draco helping to catch her if she should fall. She only fell one time and took a damage from the sludge. The townsfolk thanked them and scampered back to the surface.
Now there was the matter of that lizardman in the jail cell. They debated a long time about freeing him. He hissed to them that his brothers had falsely accused him of theft and imprisoned him. They at first wanted to leave him and he protested saying he woulds starve to death. Lilly offered him some food but he said that wouldn’t last forever. They finally agreed to free him and tried to persuade him to help them, but they failed their check and he dove below the surface of the slime, vanishing.
They either didn’t notice or didn’t care to explore the other side of the t-junction, having already freed the townsfolk. They went back to Lord Kingspirit who rewarded them with some more gold for their efforts. He asked if they had defeated all the lizardmen and Lilly insisted they had. Hermione seemed not so sure, reminding her of the one who had run away. She persisted, saying she was sure he drank some of that sewage and couldn’t have survived. To which Lord Kingspirit responded “Are you sure?”, raised an eyebrow, and I said “and that’s where we’ll have to stop”.