Journeying South, the party soon comes across a wide cave entrance in the side of a rocky hillside. The exterior shows plenty of activity and clear signs of habitation – perhaps none more clear than the crude barricade built in front of the entrance that reeks of oil.
As Roland approaches the barricade a flame is hurled towards him and before he can react the barricade bursts into flames as three humanoid creatures resembling upright cave lizards with dull grey scaly hides burst forth and pelt the group with javelins.
Once inside the cave, the party makes quick work of the creatures. As the move from chamber to chamber the encounter more of the Troglodytes – first in a room with a funeral pyre, then in a room with 14 of them slowly dying from filth fever, then into a nursery filled with eggs.
Finally, the complex opens into a larger chamber which reeks of rotting flesh. Between two rocky outcroppings, both smeared with blood, are the remains of a foul ritual – heaps of decaying limbs, bones, and viscera. A symbol depicting a spiraling clawed tentacle has been crudely carved into the rock on the right.
Hissing in defiance stands a larger troglodyte wielding a mace and flanked by an enormous alligator companion. As combat breaks out, the gator viciously grabs hold of Roland with his powerful jaws and thrashes about wildly on the ground as the gunslinger’s limp body hands from his jaws.
Eventually their powerful foes are toppled and the group takes a moment to catch their breath and examine the area, discovering that the remains offered on the sacrificial alter are not boggards or animals, but troglodytes. Meanwhile, Eran correctly identifies the crude symbol on the wall to signify this as a shrine to the demon-god Zevgavizeb.
Pressing further on, a tunnel leads to a haphazard gate beyond which lies a field of fungus.
Shattering the gate, three of fungal elements in the room react to threat and strike with long tentacles, but are quickly destroyed.
Beyond the area the tunnel opens up into a crossroads, with three additional passageways branching off from the Trolodyte’s cavern…