Part 38: Troglodyte TempleUpdate 033 Troglodyte Temple
You meet a small girl who's running down the street bouncing a ball. She stops to watch you. You're adventurers, right?
On occasion. And you are?
I'm Kelly. Hi!
She jumps up and down. Wow! I've never met real adventurers before! I wish I was one! I could look after my daddy.
Something wrong with your daddy?
He's the missile guy! He's real worried about all the troglos, and might send me away. I hope he doesn't. I'd miss him. She thinks. Catch!
* * *
So, training time. I've only got 2300 gold at the moment, so finances are a little tight. I won't spend all my points though. I do do another round of training at the end, so stay tuned.
Art just gets 10 more SP at this time.
Sass picks up Mage 3, Priest 3, round 10 in Pole Weapons, and 9 more SP. With his middling Intelligence at this point, he's best served as a Buff/Debuff/Status guy, saving damage for his Halberd.
Assassination 10 might be overdoing it... Oh, who am I kidding?
Just 10 more SP, same as the others. The free Spell Points from the Anama don't quite cover what you need for the Ritual, but its a start.
More Spell Points, and enough Mage Lore to put me over what is needed to get Magic Map from the House on the Hill.
And once again, more Spell Points. After this, I have 24 gold left, so no more training for me.
* * *
Before we head out to the temple, let's go back to that house. I want one more crack at the book.
You mean now that I've got some more skill in deciphering such texts?
I didn't say it.
Is this the south end of that mountain range with the house, I wonder?
I don't think so. We're barely north of Sharamik.
I thought we had established by majority response that the proper pronunciation is Sharimik, not -amik?
I can say it how I want to!
Not going to weigh in on this, Art?
What? No! It's amazing enough that he doesn't slur his esses when talking. I'm not about to push my luck!
Hail and well met!
Hail. One moment, your approach has been noted. Someone will be out to see you.
Oh hell yes. Watch this!
I think we can do that.
Now, you're probably thinking 400 gold for 100 food? That's stupidly cheap! There's no way to pull a profit., and you would be right. It is. Except that we have the Manna spell, and can thus make as much food as we want, with the only cost being the time needed to regenerate the Spell Points used.
So, how much do you need?
We can take three more loads like that.
And if you come back here after the fourth load of food:
Easiest money I've ever made.
Are you sure you're not a practising member of the Church of the Divine Lucre?
Finally! Time to cheat!
I feel so much more empowered now that we can see ahead.
Good, we can try it out at the Troglodyte Temple, wherever that is.
* * *
Maybe we can ask them?
They call that stealth?
Behold, the new combat paradigm. Art moves up, casts 'Curse All'. Sass and Bronwyn move up beside her. Delilah moves up, casts 'Bless Party', Ni'aurrl casts 'Slow Group' and Matthias rounds off with 'Major Haste'. The end result is everyone on my side is faster and stronger, while everyone on the other side is slower and worse off. I like this, except it can be a pain to do repeatedly.
Awww... no one said anything.
Past here, it seems is Troglo territory.
We'll head south to the river, then go east along that until we reach something.
Yes, I think a mountain range would be a nice place to start.
And look, a convenient path up!
And well travelled too. These are religious icons.
No signs of guard.
Let me map the place with our awesome new spell!
Oh right. It maps everything, but doesn't mean I can see everything.
Yeah, but without it, we would have never realized that small hidden chamber to our north exists.
But how do we get into it? That is the question.
Isn't this more important?
Yeah. This is supposed to be a temple. Where is everyone?
Perhaps it's one of those things that when not in use, it is left alone?
Doesn't explain the lack of guards.
There will probably be something with those pools.
You know, most of the time, the pools tend to be fairly impartial as to who they work for. It's finding out how they work that's the problem.
Found the way in!
Odd that this statue is movable like this. It indicates that this hidden area is known about.
Hold on, let me set up the Firewalk.
Where is this passage going?
I'm glad I'm not claustrophobic.
And one Shatter later...
I cast Light!
All this gear is Steel. Helm, Large Shied, Breastplate, Great Mace, and a couple ornamental rings. In all honestly, they're too heavy to cart around, and not cost effective to do so. I eventually just drop them somewhere for more expensive, less weighty objects.
Seriously, I'm already at the point where I only grab rings, potions, wands and scrolls for the cost/weight ratio. Nothing else is worth it.
Where is everyone?
These aren't the pools we're looking for.
Nor is this.
Hold on. We have a map, right?
Well, that means I can break out the supplementary spell.
I'm curious too.
What? You guys never cast Detect Life before?
But that only works on places you've... seen...
There they are. Waiting further in. If we went straight up the middle like fools, they'd flank us.
So we get to ambush them instead?
I like that plan.
I approve of any plan that gives us an advantage.
This seems like a nice spot.
More from this way.
Well, I suppose this is better than them coming all at once from two sides.
Irregular waves make for poor centralizing of Firestorm though.
And they... Bronwyn?
I'm pretty sure that statue cast a spell. Can you check it out?
Well, what do you know.
More like a nuisance, really.
And that's the last of them. Nice going, team.
Curious though, this appears to be a proper cairn.
Is the underscore a working symbol on the Troglo language? And more importantly, why was this written in Imperial Standard in the first place?
Well, it's nice knowing that the altar we're here to destroy has already been bloodied. That'll make our job much harder.
Last one over here.
Yep, buried among all those who gave their lives for the Troglodyte causes, are mothers. Kinda sad when you think about it, but also not without real-world precedent.
Just a dining hall.
And here on the south side, just sleeping areas.
These aren't opaque. We can go through them.
And it'll hurt.
I'll heal, don't worry.
Once my hands stop shaking, I'll take care of that.
Random Basilisk Count posted:
I hate you.
Let's see what the loot is like back here.
We'll have to come back later to deal with this last barrier though.
And another set of cairns, mirroring the ones to the north. Let's see what the stones say.
Triple Patrol? Is this something we want to ask Corie about when we get back?
I think we can skip that question.
Previous kings? Wait, how long have they been active? The projected timeline makes no sense, unless kings are ousted through murder.
Back here is another one...
Heroes die but once, while Cowards die a thousand deaths.
Yeah. Well, that's nice and all, but we still haven't found that altar. There were some passages further back where I killed those magic-tossing statues, so it's probably back there.
Next stop then.
Another straight run up to the altar.
But there looks to be a secondary altar to the south that may need to be eradicated.
Two evil things for the price of one!
Or one could be a distraction while the other is the important one.
I'd say that the hidden one is more important.
How about we deal with the local celebrants first?
Approaching this alter could be problematic.
Oh hey! Remember how the Slime Pits generated Sleep Clouds around them ,and we had to throw a fireball from long range to take them out? Well, this particular altar does the same thing, except with Shock fields.
Before we take this one out, we should check out the other one and secure it.
Or just check out this other building first.
A lot of supplies for their rituals. Robes, skulls, candles...
Not human skulls, thankfully.
Nice to know there's loot for all our troubles.
Isn't it nice when people announce themselves first?
Awww.. no one is here.
They were probably downstairs or around the altar up here.
Too bad for you, being the cook for the day?
Now this is either a trap, or a treasure trove of information.
Well, this is interesting.
Reload. No sense in wasting time or SP on healing when I have multiple altars to destroy.
It's heavilly trapped, and we don't have the time to properly fix that. We should just be going.
Yeah, you're right. Oh well, maybe another time.
More Statues. Just as vulnerable.
Private Altar for the high priests and mages? No way we should leave this unmolested.
Ah cripes! Blade Barriers! Blade is the highest class of barrier spell in the game, and it the most powerful not only because it deals physical damage rather than some flavor of magical.
I also realize that I haven't show something off yet, though I should have. Let's do the colossally dumb thing and pray.
Behold! The Game Over screen! First time you'll see this, and also the last.
But no one would be that stupid. Come on, let's regain our strength, then blow this thing up.
I think we'll just wait here until the Blades wear it down a little.
And stay dead!
I'm more curious as to why it was holding onto Vahnatai weapons.
A mystery for the ages.
Well, let's go look at that chest.
Time to blow up the other one!
Oh joy. Hordelings.
Eight of them, actually, paired up at the corners around the altar. They're speedbumps for the party at this point.
That's two for two. I thin we can get out of here now.
And may we never have to come here again.
* * *
Mentioning the second altar would have been nice.
Second altar? Oh boy. Let me hear your report.
Sure, this is how our mission went down...
Thanks. We'll go talk to Knight now.
You've done us a good turn, Exile. I'll remember this.
* * *
Mayor. We have the permission of the other two now.
He nods. Permission has been attained. Well done. He gives you a battered leather scroll. Go speak with the King of the Troglos, and bring proof that you have spoken with him, and the reward will be yours.
Are you certain you want ... independent contractors like ourselves dealing in diplomacy?
You won't be. You're just disposable messengers. Nothing more.
Yeah, we'll see how long that lasts. Oh, question for you.
I may deign to answer.
Where's the Dervish? We've met two so far, one in Kirzsan and one on Bigail. Where's the one tasked with investigating the Troglodyte menace?
I don't know. You may want to check in Lorelei. They don't have the control we have, and thus would need the help.
... Thanks anyways.
* * *
Now, to find Castle Troglo.
But where to start?