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D&D Curse of Strahd: Session 76 The Heart of Sorrow

Studying Time: eight minutes

Because the dragonborn fell to the ground unconscious, the remaining of the get together lastly caught up. Bounding into the room got here Kosef, Brundle, Gimble, and Victor, all greeted by the sight of Baräsh wrapped in a carpet being stabbed by Ireena. She seemed up momentarily, insanity in her eyes, and thrust her silver sabre as soon as once more into Baräsh’s immobile type.

Final night time was the 76th session in our ongoing on-line Curse of Strahd Dungeons & Dragons marketing campaign and, after a confrontation with a carpet, we found Strahd’s Heart of Sorrow.

Every week we return to Barovia within the hopes that we will get somewhat nearer to defeating Strahd, however after final night time’s session it’s beginning to really feel like that’s an impossibility. Maybe you’re not purported to win this marketing campaign. Maybe Strahd von Zarovich all the time will get the higher of the heroes, corrupting and killing them off one-by-one. Both that or our Dungeon Grasp could be very imply.

Beforehand in Barovia…

Inside Fort Ravenloft, our troop of heroes fought Strahd, however he escaped. Intending to stop his regeneration, Nepharon and Associates dashed after him, solely to blindly run right into a dastardly elevator lure. Half of the celebration was despatched careering upwards whereas Kosef and Brundle tried to race up the steps, desperately navigating the citadel’s twists and turns hoping to work out the place the elevator finally ends up. Ultimately they have been joined by Victor and Gimble Timbers, after that they had teleported out of the elevator.

Final session ended with Baräsh and Ireena escaping the elevator by means of a hidden hatch within the ceiling. They entered a extremely adorned room with an expensive carpet and delightful portrait of a well-dressed gentleman. However, as with every part in Ravenloft, the portrait was evil and the carpet hungry for blood. Even the delicate furnishing couldn’t be trusted.

Nepharon and Associates: The Kosef Division

Kosef – Human Rogue/Wizard, carries the Employees of Frost, performed by me;
Baräsh – Dragonborn Paladin, follower of St. Andell and the Morning Lord;
Gimble Timbers – Gnome Fighter, proprietor of the Solar-Sword, has a pet canine referred to as Kevon;
Brundle Swash – Gnome Druid, will get electrocuted rather a lot;
Victor – Human (Teenage) Wizard-in-Coaching, NPC;
Ireena – Human Cleric, Strahd’s would-be bride, blessed by St. Andell, NPC.

Castle RavenloftThe Kosef Division of Nepharon Associates. L-R: Ireena, Gimble Timbers, Barash, Kosef, Brundle Swash, and Victor

Brundle ran to the crumpled type of Baräsh within the middle of the room and pulled onerous on the carpet that was smothering him. It loosened and he yanked it away from the dragonborn and tossed it to the aspect. Then Kosef, seeing Ireena wielding her blade, dove to deal with her to the bottom. He didn’t discover the open lure door behind her they usually each tumbled down via the opening, touchdown closely on the elevator roof.

This was not an awesome begin to the session. Baräsh was unconscious, crushed mindless by a carpet. Ireena and Kosef have been again on the elevator which we’d spent the final two periods escaping from. The Rug of Smothering, not content material with defeating Baräsh, now started wrapping itself round Gimble Timbers, whereas Victor and Brundle stood mesmerized by the charming portrait of Strahd’s deceased brother. Naturally our DM’s first phrases have been:

ROLL INITIATIVE!

The influence from the roof of the elevator prompted Ireena to interrupt free from the portrait’s allure, nevertheless as soon as she noticed the blood on her sword, considering Baräsh killed, she dropped to her knees. Kosef then spent his entire flip making an attempt in useless to awaken her to assist the others. A charisma roll of 2 didn’t assist issues. I’m actually not a really charismatic chief.

In the meantime, within the room above, Gimble Timbers was fighting the Rug of Smothering. Final session we needed to lookup the suffocation guidelines when it had Baräsh restrained, so fortunately this time we already knew what to do. The gnome fighter failed his power saving throw and was not capable of break away of the wily alfombra. He solely had a number of turns till he would die from suffocation.

Baräsh was nonetheless unconscious from his encounter with the rug and rolled a one on his first demise saving throw. This was not good. One other roll of under 10 on a twenty-sided cube would imply demise for the Paladin.

On his flip, Brundle tried to get the rug off Gimble. He solely rolled an eight on his power examine and couldn’t take away the rug. Victor in the meantime began attacking the portrait, hoping that a fireball would break its maintain on his companions.

A Dr. Strangelove Second

Baräsh was nonetheless unconscious when the portrait used its telekinesis potential to select him up and violently toss him down the elevator hatch. He fell closely at Ireena’s ft, however she was capable of forged a therapeutic spell on the dragonborn to deliver him again to consciousness. Kosef referred to as as much as the others to hitch them down the opening because the raise continued its sluggish descent.

Ever-obedient Brundle determined this was a good suggestion and, grabbing Gimble Timbers, he threw himself down via the hole. As he fell he maneuvered the carpeted gnome between his legs and rode him down like Slim Pickens in Dr. Strangelove. Our DM requested for a dexterity examine to see if he might pull it off. He rolled a pure 20. He was critically cool and awarded inspiration for his troubles.

That simply left Victor within the room above. Firing one final firebolt on the portrait, he teleported right down to the elevator and joined the remaining of the Associates.

Planning and resting within the ossuary

We spent the subsequent ten minutes making an attempt to determine on our subsequent transfer. We have been positive Strahd would have regenerated by now and so our plan to catch him earlier than he healed wouldn’t work. Additionally we now had used all our spell slots and skills and actually wanted to relaxation. The drawback was we couldn’t agree on the perfect place to do that. Wouldn’t it even be potential to sleep contained in the fort in any respect?

Ultimately the raise reached the bottom flooring and we headed again to the Bone Room, the place we had fought Strahd beforehand. The plan was to barricade ourselves in and attempt to get a full eight hours. This is able to put us all again to full well being and full energy.

Kosef and Brundle took the primary watch because the others slept. Our DM should have been feeling sort as a result of he allow us to get in three entire hours sleep for monsters began banging on the doorways. This meant we have been all healed, however didn’t have our spells or talents again.

Run!

At first the monsters on the opposite aspect of the door weren’t capable of break down our barricade, however we knew that wouldn’t final. So we woke the remaining of the slumbering social gathering and ran away. From the Bone Room we had two instructions we might head. Ideally we might be going downward as we knew that’s the place Strahd can be and we needed to face him at full well being. Sadly, the one stairs we discovered led us upward.

So, leaving a pool of grease and ball bearings behind us, we went up the steps. First we entered a room that appeared just like the barracks we had been in earlier than. There was yellow lichen on the partitions and piles of bone and particles scattered alongside the passageway. Amazingly, we managed to cross this room with out incident.

From right here we entered a darkish round room. It was 60 ft round with a spiral staircase that hugged the wall because it ascended. As we crossed the edge of the room, Brundle observed a small stuffed wolf toy on the ground. It had a Blinsky label on it and barred yellow tooth and claws when it was squeezed.

The Heart of Sorrow

We needed to discover the steps however couldn’t inform how far they went up and we might hear the sounds of our pursuers behind us. So Baräsh and Gimble Timbers stayed within the doorway able to fend them off. Kosef then made his method up the steps, with Victor, Ireena, and Brundle ready on the backside.

As quickly as Kosef stepped onto the staircase, a purple pulsing mild revealed the complete scale of the tower. It shone down from the ceiling 200 ft above. The purple mild bathed the room in a crimson sheen after which settled right into a uninteresting pulsing glow. The spiral stairs ran to the peak of the tower, narrowing because it reached the apex. There on the prime, 200 ft above the celebration, a big purple coronary heart floated within the middle of the tower. The Heart of Sorrow.

Heart of sorrowThe large, throbbing Heart of Sorrow floated on the prime of the dizzyingly tall tower.

ROLL INITIATIVE!

This coronary heart was the Heart of Sorrow. It was a disgusting, pulsing, gigantic coronary heart, and half of what was preserving Strahd alive, serving to him to regenerate. If we might destroy it, we’d stand a much better probability of defeating the vampire. Nevertheless, it was guarded by Vampire Spawns and at the least 20 floating halberds that might assault us as quickly as we obtained close to. However, from the bottom, we didn’t know that.

Kosef started operating up the steps, shortly adopted by Brundle and Victor. In the meantime Gimble stood on the bottom and fired arrows on the coronary heart. He was a sharpshooter, so he had a 600-foot vary together with his bow. He hit the Heart of Sorrow twice and, as he dealt injury to it, the entire tower shook, inflicting everybody on the steps the roll dexterity saving throws or be thrown off. Solely Kosef handed—being a rogue was coming in useful—and Brundle and Victor fell 15 ft to the ground.

Over the subsequent couple of rounds, Kosef continued racing up the steps, adopted by Brundle and Victor. Ireena, Baräsh, and Gimble stayed on the ground with the gnome capturing arrows on the Heart of Sorrow. Each time he did, we needed to roll extra dexterity saving throws and each Victor and Brundle fell down once more.

Ultimately Victor gave up and teleported to the highest utilizing Dimension Door. Kosef was solely about 50 ft from the Heart of Sorrow now.

A Matrix Second

As Victor appeared, he noticed that the guts was large, 10 ft by 10 ft, and it was coated in poles and halberds that appeared to be alive. They swarmed over it like ants on an apple and, seeing Victor seem, they moved in the direction of him as one. Like a murmuration of crows they rippled and swirled. However whereas their motion was lovely their intent was murderous.

Directly, 20 sharpened spear factors and blades pierced into the teenage wizard. He pores and skin was shredded and he crumpled to the ground, lifeless. The swarm turned its consideration to Kosef as two vampire spawns jumped out from alcoves both aspect of the rogue and ran in the direction of him.

Kosef gulped. Seeing Victor killed by the swarm introduced again reminiscences of seeing his allies slaughtered by Strahd. However his resolve was robust. And he held the Employees of Frost. Pointing it in the direction of the Heart of Sorrow, he set off a blast of freezing chilly power that engulfed the swarm and the guts and the vampires. Icy fissures appeared on the floor of the guts. Nevertheless it was not destroyed. Nor have been the vampires who slashed and bit on the surrounded rogue. END

Afterthoughts

Victor is lifeless. And there’s nothing we will do about it. In our recreation, NPCs (non-player characters) die on a regular basis, however Victor has traveled with us since session 16 and his dying is a transparent signal that our DM isn’t messing round. Because the session ended, Victor was lifeless, Ireena (our major healer) was unconscious, Kosef (my character) had ten hit factors left and was dealing with two undamaged Vampire Spawns that deal greater than ten factors of injury per flip, and the remaining of the get together was madly dashing up the steps to acquired to the Heart of Sorrow. Issues didn’t look good.

What did we study?

DM Tip: Don’t fear should you get the principles improper. All of us do sooner or later. Until you’re a DM with years and years of expertise and hundreds of hours of play underneath your belt, nobody is anticipating you to recollect each single rule for suffocation or falling injury or anything. What’s extra essential is that you simply maintain the sport flowing and make the appropriate decisions for the narrative on the time. You’ll be able to all the time examine the principles later for future reference. Guidelines as written (RAW) would have meant that Baräsh ought to have taken an automated failed death-saving throw when he was thrown down onto the raise roof, which might have killed him. None of us realized this on the time and our DM wasn’t positive if he ought to return and retcon the state of affairs. However that doesn’t matter as we nonetheless all loved the session.

Participant Tip: It’s by no means too late to run away. Typically whenever you’re within the center of fight, the very last thing you consider is making a tactical retreat, however that’s when it makes probably the most sense. Run when you nonetheless can.

Subsequent week might be Kosef’s final session. Until Baräsh and Brundle make it as much as him quickly, he’s not going to final very lengthy towards two Vampire Spawns. What’s extra, Strahd shouldn’t be going to be glad that we’ve discovered the Heart of Sorrow. It’s possible he’ll come to seek out us fairly quickly.

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