(This session would’ve been better with the name of the next session, but it was closest to New Year’s so here we are)
With the ghouls re-dead and the killer robot armors securely behind a small, gnome-made door, the party sets about figuring what’s up with this funicular business.
Hank starts messing around with the weird bottle thing they found, and discovers it’s a Decanter of Endless Water when it goes off in his face.
After fire-hosing the ghast and ghouls across the room, Ander realizes that they can use the decanter to fill the tank on the front of the funicular, weighing down the cart enough to descend into the tunnel.
The party piles into the carts and fills up the tank, after setting a light cantrip on the front of the tank. The ancient wheels grind and squeal, but sure enough they roll onward into the darkness, drawing cable through the massive pulley at the top of the tracks.
It’s a long journey down the steep, 30 degree grade. The floors are slick and wet with runoff from the dark pool upstairs, and the walls occassionally fall away to reveal larger sections of cavern strung together by the funicular tunnel. Taranion peers ahead into the darkness, and after about 20 minutes he spies another cart attached to the other end of the cable they have been dragging down the tracks. He peers closer, and sees a pair of furry ears sticking out over the cart walls. They don’t have to wait long before the carts pass, and three bugbears spring from the cart to attack the party.
Javelins, monks and goblins fly between the carts, and Mosk, the eyepatch wearing Bugbear from the Redbrand hideout, has declared his intention to murder everyone. Ander switches carts to try and sabotage their ride, while Mistria and Tipsy get in on the action as well. As the bugbear cart gets out of range, he slams the cable attachment with his morningstar, severing it and sending both carts hurtling down in free fall.
Mistria tries to leap back to the party-cart, but her short dwarf legs fail to carry her to safety and she falls to the tracks. She grabs on to the cable whipping around behind the cart, and rides her shield down the tracks, pulling herself back to the cart. The battle continues, with all the bugbears falling but Mosk. After getting poked in his uncovered eye, he just moves the eyepatch over to reveal his uninjured eye and keeps fighting. But the combined efforts of Tipsy and Hank bring the brute to heel, and as they are about to deliver the killing blow, Ander’s ring suddenly begs them to spare Mosk’s life, to save his son’s life.
Ander cries out incredulously, “HEY, WHO’S YOUR DAD?”
To which Mosk responds, “I AM THE PROUD SON OF THE MIGHTY KING GROL!”
Whatever they’re going to do, they need to do it fast: the tracks are about to lead over a giant chasm, shortly after which, the tracks end. Chinny desperately hauls at the cable and helps bring Mistria back to the cart, while Ander knocks Mosk unconscious and yells to anyone who can hear: Pull the brakes!
The wheels on the carts lock and flings everyone to the floor as they screech to a halt, but there’s not enough track for them to completely stop. They hit the blocks at the base of the tracks hard, but everyone manages to stay in one piece. Not so for the tanks, which are fully broken and pouring out their contents into a channel cut beneath the tracks. As everyone dusts themselves off, they hear the sound of an ancient water wheel creak into rotation as the water flows from the wrecked carts.
They disembark and rouse Mosk. At ring/Grol’s request, Ander tells him the tale of how Grol tried to play Black Spider’s game and paid with his life, and how Mosk must return home where his people need him, and also to stop wearing that stupid jeweled eyepatch. Hank won’t let Mosk go unless he swears to be cool with Targor. Mosk acknoledges that since Targor killed Grol, he is the rightful ruler of their tribe, at least until such a time comes where Mosk is fit to challenge him.
Hank reckons that’s enough, and they ask Mosk if he can do anything about the mine carts he destroyed. Mosk sets to work with a room of cart-parts, after giving the party the lay of the land: the main passage of the mine is under a ton of old rock, and is immovable by regular force. Black Spider’s people had been passing through the mines, but something in there has started attacking them. There is a cavern towards the east that the bugbears had avoided, but the party hears a familiar sound coming from that direction: the sound of a great wave crashing, much louder than before, echoing through the cavern.
Defeated: 1 goblin, 2 bugbears + Mosk.
NPCs met: Reencountered Mosk, discovered that Grol’s disembodied soul now resides in Ander’s ring.
Acquired: 1 jeweled bugbear eyepatch (50gp)
Quests: Help the Rockseekers retake Phandelver, rescue Nundro Rockseeker, find a way back out of Deep Phandelver.