What follows is a brief report on our last Labyrinth Lord game session, which was quite action (and humour) packed...
The party were approached in a tavern by a dwarf wearing an animal skull for helmet who demanded to know if the thief was Terder Caji. A little evasion was made by the thief but when he learned that the dwarf was from Cavestone and had come to pledge his mithril-tipped spear to the thief's service (as the only one in the land who had a higher kill count than himself!) and the thief accepted, getting himself a pretty cool bodyguard in the process.
The elf scanned the tavern patrons to see if he could spot anyone else worthy of being hired and spotted a half orc woman who was playing dice with some of the regulars. The elf and gnoll joined in, while the thief went round the back of her to prevent cheating. A few games were played; small money was won sometimes by party members and sometimes by the regulars. The stakes were increased, then further by the gnoll. Then, when the regulars had all dropped out of the game, the elf put a proposition to the half orc. He said, if they win, she must adventure with them, but if she wins, she gets their stake. She agreed and won the dice game. That was quite funny!
After this, the elf asked how much to hire her and she replied with the cost of three hundred gold pieces. They declined and she left the tavern, but with a little discussion amongst the party they decided they could afford that after all and went looking for her. Asking around town, they learned she had gone to another tavern, so they entered that and hired her on the spot.
Finally, everything in town was taken care of. The party set off back to the caves, for gold and glory.
They travel for a while and then set up camp, when they see Odin and his host of wolves and ravens running at breakneck speed across the sky, surrounded by flashing lightning and leaving a trail of fire. The god is travelling south; the barbarians must have called to him for aid - Thorgrim's war must be driving the Great Hoard out of their swamplands and into the deserts, the dwarf informs them. The party is astonished at what they are seeing. Soon, he disappears over the horizon, they set up camp. The night is otherwise uneventful and they continue their journey the following day.
As the party crosses a bridge over a wide, fast flowing river, a manticore appears at one side and a chitine at the other! A furious fight breaks out; the chitine falls to the thief's backstab in one swift attack and the manticore is eventually brought down by a barrage of blows from basically everyone. It heavily injured the half orc and the undead ant, though.
The cleric releases the undead ant from his service (which instantly crumbles to dust) and attempts to raise the manticore from the dead. It twitches momentarily, but stays dead. The cleric is not yet powerful enough!
He rests and raises the chitine from the dead. The party set off, reach the gold mine, light a torch and a lantern and head inside.
Two giant ants are attacked by the party in a large cavern; the cleric and dwarf engage at point blank and are backed up by the elf, gnoll and thief with ranged attacks. Amusingly, later in this fight, the elf snapped his own bow and had to pull out a sword and charge in! Also, the thief had climbed a stalagmite and attempted to throw a shuriken from his lofty height, slipped and fell off!
After defeating the giant ants, the party came across a pool of mysterious water with a strange fog hanging over it... which the cleric then cast 'destroy water' on and that was the end of the mysterious water! Nothing was revealed under the water, no was there anything unusual about the cavern. This left the party with only one way to go; back tracking to an ant thoroughfare
Here, by attaching the arm from a zombie onto the end of a rope the party were able to attract four giant ants down a narrow corridor, so they could face them one on one. Using the cleric as a shield, they successfully fended the ants off, even though two of them scaled the walls and came at them two at a time, but some credit for this also must go to the half orc who took some heat off the party too. The gnoll scored some good hits with his polearm, although he did manage to break one of them! Luckily for him though, he had another one strapped to his back. The thief also fell off the stalagmite in this cavern!
Another amusing thing happened in this combat. The gnoll had lent his bow to the elf and said if you break it, you will die ... and the elf managed to damage the weapon by fumbling with it! At least it wasn't broken but it was a hilarious moment!
Within a dead end cavern, the characters spot a strand of gold in one of the walls. Using a hammer and chisel, they carve it out, then smash it into four bits and distribute it amongst themselves. Quite a nice find that!
The bravest fight of the night; with the gnoll as party leader three of the heroes dared to go one on one with an equal number of giant ants that were tunnelling; literally chewing their way through the cave walls. This would have been very risky - or impossible - were it not for the henchmen who each took a lot of damage. The dwarf even downed his magical shield to fend off a second critical hit from the ant the party faced.
Those were the events on the night. The gnoll is now ready to be trained to second level, and Mike has expressed an interest in swapping his cleric out for another character in his roster (likely to be either the psychic or the prize fighter), but we'll wait and see what happens...