To Tread The Jeweled Thrones

10/6 Recap

Taking the Physician up on his offer, they had some of the slaves move the marble table out of the way, and followed the tunnel back to the rotunda.  There they found an alcove where the bier of the Blood Prince rested, as well as the shrouds that had been wrapped around his body, but his body itself was missing.  Not pausing to examine anything further, they hurried to look at the other potential exits to the room.  To the West and East were bars with gates, the West was slightly open while the East was closed; beyond both were stairs going down, made of the same red tile as the rest of the place, with the weird glowing gem-stones.  The stairs were deeper and wider than would be comfortable for a human to use.  To the SouthWest was another alcove, without any bier.  To the North, the direction of the temple, were gigantic double-doors of bronze, with no handles or fixtures, but partially covered in smeared blood and filth.  Finally, to the South, the direction the map pointed, was the entrance to the Crypts of the Faithful.  On the lintel over the entrance to the Crypts was carved writing in a strange language none of them recognized.  One of the group tried to pry one of the glowing stones out of the while, but after nearly stabbing himself in a failed attempt when his knife slipped off the hard surface, succeeded in stabbing himself in the femoral artery and bled out before anybody could help him (the perils of fumbling when you have only one HP).

The group headed that way.  Unlike the rest of the complex, the Crypts of the Faithful are plain stone, showing age and cracks, and lacking any of the glowing gems so that it is pitch black throughout.  Set into the walls at regular intervals are alcoves with desiccated mummies, many of them clutching grave goods in their wizened fingers.  The group spent a bunch of time here, pawing through the goods and uncovering some treasures.  Unfortunately several of them started feeling unwell after doing this, and one of them, Poor John, found his vision going dim and shortly was blind.  Others began to get the shakes, and one's fingers started to turn green and smell bad.

Pressing on, the group lit a lantern and pushed southward in the maze of twisty little passages, all alike, doing their best to follow the scribbles on the map.  After an hour of this, including a pause to glom some more of the grave goods from the mummies that line the entire place, they came to the place clearly marked on the Physician's map.  It proved to be a room with no visible other exits.  While searching for secret doors, the floor gave way dropping most of them into a pit full to the brim with writhing white slimy fist-sized maggots.  Most of them managed to scramble up to safety, some helping each other, before the maggots acidic slime did any damage to them; others weren't so lucky. Eventually they all managed to win their way free, with no casualties (I think?)

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