The Desert of Desolation

Looking Out.

We need to get out of this pyramid! Just when I think I’ve seen and been through the worst event, the next is worse. I think this pyramid is driving everyone to become impatient and crazy. Raenn’s death, may he rest in peace, is concerning me and reaffirming my belief that we should have avoided this cursed pyramid. When Talise, Nixxie, Raenn and I left the group to check out a course, Raenn first wandered off on his own making us all more vulnerable. Talise, Nixxie and I took on a Minotaur while waiting for Raenn to wander and return. We torn the Minotaur apart in two moves. As soon as the beast was defeated, in walks Raenn. I was happy to know the beast came after the three of us instead of him. Wandering off alone was just Raenn’s first mistake, not the deadly one, although if the Minotaur would have gotten to him instead of us his life would have been taken then. His final fate came with his second impulsive move. We approached a door that we peaked into, carefully so we wouldn’t disturb what was behind it. In that room were two huge Minotaurs, a hay stack, and more doors. Before we could talk him out of it Raenn runs straight into the room aiming for the pile of hay. None of us followed because we knew what our fate would be. It was a suicide mission. There was no saving Raenn so we closed the door with heavy hearts knowing we would never again see his brave face. He was not weak by any means just not strong enough to live through this battle. Again, I feel it is this cursed place getting inside our minds, causing us to act before thinking things though. We will miss our brave comrade.
After seeing Raenn dive into that room like he was invincible we all ran back to where we started knowing that we need to find a way out of this mad house as soon as possible before another one of us went crazy. The room with the levers was still the same as we left it but Nixxie smelled a familiar scent, it was all we had as far as hope for escaping so we followed her back through the maze. That familiar smell was Gary who wandered in by himself and was crazed, trying to attack us. He kept saying, “It’s mine. You can’t have it!” He was out for blood. Not one of us wanted to kill our comrade so we knocked him unconscious. When the sword he was holding fell away from him, he came back to us. We discovered the sword was cursed and made him blood thirst anyone who tried to take it from him. This place is a nightmare.
Gary told us Fennwick is alive. He then explained that Fennwick had been captured by a shapeshifter. The shapeshifter who was Fennwick at the time is now wandering around looking like Gary. We then left the sword on a quest to find Fennwick.
When we finally found Fennwick he was inside a box playing in gold. We are happy to have that crazy, blue, little Gnome back. He sure makes life interesting. If only we could get Raenn back now. After finding Fennwick we decided as a group to head back to the room where Raenn was. While traveling I thought to myself, “Maybe there is a chance Raenn is still with us. We found Fennwick after we thought we would never see him again.” When we arrived back at the room my hope was shattered when I saw Raenn’s body was ripped to shreds on the floor next to one of the exits. We killed the two Minotaurs that murdered our friend with no effort. We were there for justice.
Before we could recover a burly man walks in named Dragos. After we see he clearly is alone and needing our help we welcome him in. He may be of use to us in the fights to come. While still trying to find our way out of this god forsaken pyramid we fight 5 of the guards we first came across when approaching the pyramid. I got surrounded by 3 of the men. I killed 1 of the men and the others killed off the other two. I wasn’t doing too well and the others were tired from our draining day so we rested.
I can always count on a new day. I am hoping that today is the day we can get out of this place and move on with our journey. It is never ending battles I feel because we immediately get attacked by 4 Doppelgangers. After being knocked unconscious almost immediately by the shapeshifters I wake to find the whole party ready to move on. We are very anxious to find a way out. Balor heals me and we’re on our way feeling hopeful for escape but before we find our way out we had to defeat a creature with a hawk head. The creature is huge in size and wanted to play a little game. Dragos was choosen to play but when he did not know the answer we crashed down the door after the creature who went after Dragos down the well. We defeated the strong creature when it came back up the well. We took it by surprise. I got in a few good hits but it was Nixxie who tore him to shreds. Dragos did not make it. He sacrificed his life for us, practically strangers. A very honorable man. May he rest in peace.
After deploying threw the well we are sitting, resting on the upper level of the pyramid. Tomorrow I feel certain we will escape this dreadful place. Finally. Ready for a new setting and more adventures.


Death is our constant companion. The one universal truth to this glorious thing we call Life is that it must end. However, today we were able to thwart the Dark Mistress, even if for only a short while. Our brother in arms Fennwick has once again been returned to our fold, much to the joy and delight of all. But I get ahead of myself, my nightmares seem to be enhanced by this temple of doom, and I find it difficult to maintain thought.
More bloodshed occurred against these Minotaurs. One poor beast we killed before he had risen from his stool. They fight like berserkers, and while I know attempting to communicate with them is futile, I try nonetheless. Too many of my companions seem to have an unnatural thirst for combat; perhaps they forget the all too likely result? Raene, the stalwart ranger who has been our guide to this point, discovered all too forcefully this harsh reality. What he was thinking trying to hide in a bale of hay we shall never know. Much to my chagrin, it was I that voiced the idea to leave him to his fate, but I feel that I control my own fate, and choose not to sacrifice myself in struggles that assuredly will result in pain.
Following feline intuition brought us to long lost Gary, who seemed a man possessed by demons! In truth, it was a wickedly enchanted sword that gave him such blood lust, the type only matched by these brute Minotaurs. We were able to wrest away the enchanted blade, and were filled in by Gary on how he found his way into the temple, and rescued Fennwick as well! Dopplegangers apparently inhabited these halls as well as Minotaur. We found some of the fabled riches of the Pharaoh, but certainly not enough for the ferryman to return us Raene’s soul.
Traps galore this evil temple has. What could be simple booby traps set to keep out grave robbers seem almost malevolent in their set up. A truly warped mind designed this accursed place. And once evading…and not evading…a few of these same traps, we discovered we must return to the site of Raene’s death. His murderers, two Minotaur warriors, did not stand a chance against our righteous judgement.
A new companion joined us in the form of a half orc barbarian by the name of Dragos. Such power with his great axe rivaled the Minotaur themselves in few skirmishes with more Dopplegangers posing as elves. Unfortunately for our new friend, his great strength was only rivaled by his weak intellect, and he fell afoul to a bird Sphinx guarding the exit of this terrible place. A seemingly simple riddle was the challenge the Sphinx posed to Dragos. After his ordeal of being lost in the pyramid for weeks I can see why the answer eluded him, even I at the time had trouble with this simple riddle. After Dragos fell. once again our righteous anger at a companion’s death led us to defeat an enemy quickly and brutally.
So much pain and suffering for so little gain. What good is material wealth if only a few of us are standing to receive it? And what good is material wealth if the fire of my soul is extinguished in its obtaining?
The flames behind my eyes seem to be receding, perhaps a decent night’s rest is in my future. If only our friends were here to share it.

Looking Out.

I can’t begin to express my relief of knowing this underground stream will lead us out of this hell on earth. The past couple of days have been the most grueling yet! My feet belong on the ground, not underneath it. I feel the agitation in Nixxie as she craves for fresh air herself. I know we need to rest, but the urge to leave now is difficult to fight. I will admit, sitting down right now does feel wonderful, maybe a bit of a rest is smart. Besides, Nixxie’s closeness is always comforting and welcome, and right now her pushing against me to sit warms my heart.

As the room quiets and settles, I try to sleep, but I can’t stop thinking about our travels in this maze. Ahhh, the maze. The cursed maze. Running from room to room, marking the walls trying to make rhyme or reason of how they all connect. One looks exactly like the other, playing tricks on the mind, making us careless as we just want to find something different as we run into the mists. I will admit, there was much joy when we caught a minotaur by surprise instead of the other way around! Ha! The sound of his body falling to the ground was music to my ears. A smile did cross my face as he gave his last horrid breath.

Feeling confident, we continued our journey, finally finding a door. Carefully and quietly, we opened it. Raenn maybe felt a bit too confident. He jumped in and was surrounded by 2 minotaurs! There was no way to save him. We had only a split moment to make a decision… the hardest I have ever had to make. We left him. I know he did not want us to follow him once he realized his grim future, but it did not make any of us feel any better. With tears in my eyes, we closed the door. Two of my comrades are now gone. I am beginning to wonder if this adventure was such a grand idea. I wanted to see the world, yes, but not this, not all of this death and sadness that seems to follow each step we take. Nixxie bumps her head against my leg, snapping me out of my depressing thoughts. Balor, Kierra, and I share our pain in one short look, then trudge on. It’s not safe to stay here.

We turn and run back the way we came, trying to leave Raenn’s death behind us. Nixxie seems to be following our previous scent. I love having her around. But luck is not on our side. We run into Gary! I couldn’t believe it! Gary was not himself though. He was… possessed and very ready to see us die. We didn’t know what to do but fight him. The sword he was wielding would slice us in one hit, there was no choice but treat him as the enemy. Nixxie sensed it as well, and went to work. Thank our lucky stars he was knocked unconscious. With the sword fallen from his hands, he was our Gary once again. What came next was truly a miracle. Fennwick, our crazy little blue-haired friend, was alive! Gary spoke of finding him in a creature’s bag! I guess the Fennwick we lost was a doppelganger! Can you believe it? I have only heard of them in stories from wandering folk passing through our village. They were real, and we were in the presence of one! My understanding is that when Gary became possessed, little blue-hair ran for his life. I can’t blame him! I don’t think that licking the sword would have ended well for him. hehe

We shared our experiences next, then planned our next move. There was still an unknown turn to make, so we took it. After some time, we came to a room. This room felt different. Nixxie became very excited and ran to a tomb. She was chirping and nudging it, pushing at it with her massive paws. Did I hear… mumbling? Upon removing the lid, we found Fennwick! The real Fennwick. The crazy little gnome was here, safe and sound. It was a happy moment, one that was greatly needed. We also found gold… so much gold that Nixxie carried some for us. Alas, we were still trapped in this horrible place! Back to searching.

We sadly decided to head back to where Raenn rested. There were doors in this room, ones we may very need to find freedom. Along the way, we were still riddled with doom. Traps seemed to be everywhere! Poor Fennwick stood on an x and was hurt from falling rocks and boxes. But we found our way back, and once again opened the door. It was another tough battle, but we were victorious. We did it for Raenn. I couldn’t bear to look where he was slaughtered, it was too upsetting. We were then surprised to find an orc. HIs name was Dragos, and he seemed to want to be rid of this maze as much as we did. It was decided that our new friend would accompany us. It definitely helped having him along. We conquered thunes and more doppelgangers disguised as elves. But our last foe was again too much for one of us. Dragos was chosen to enter before a hieracosphinx. How many tales have come to life? I am amazed at the number of nightmares that now walk our paths. Dragos was asked to solve a riddle. A wall blocked us from giving him any aide at all. It was so frustrating, us being able to talk and figure it out. Poor Dragos could not offer a suitable answer to the walking nightmare. To save himself, he leaped into a fast moving waterway. The door lifted, but it was too late for us to help our new friend. The water ran red. Another one of us had fallen. We had no time to grieve before the hieracosphinx was upon us. It took some work, but we killed the winged one only by working together. All of us wanted out of here. I decided to swim down the waterway to see what I could. There seemed to be an exit. I can’t explain how good it felt to be in water again. It doesn’t feel right to be away from it for so long. I silently prayed to my gods, thanking them for this gift. I brought back some fallen gold, and told my group of my findings. Smiles, something I haven’t seen for a very long time. Too long of a time. And here we are, resting before our next journey. I will keep hoping we find good fortune, but one never knows what the future holds.

Looking Out.

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