After the party’s disastrous encounter with the Oozes, Lister uses lesser animate dead on Arlyn’s Corpse, creating an interesting (if not unusual) mascot for the party. Strangely Arlyn’s tattoo remains visible on the skeletons bones. Lister and Zyi name her “Fatty”. Fry expresses his disapproval but does not create a huge fuss.

Fry then asks the party to remain where they are and moves off into the Brush. He returns shortly with a new friend. His friend is a strange blue and white Horse whose head is adorned with a massive single horn. The “Horse” introduces itself as Stark – and quickly decides he does not like Lister or the Contents of Zyi’s backpack at all (Bob the snake). He is very disapproving of our mascot Fatty as well. He does tell us we are near the badger tribe and points us in the correct direction, but Strongly advises we leave the forest. After he leaves we travel a bit before breaking for camp.

The night is uneventful until morning. Zyi notices something is bugging the horses when Lister wakes up to a strange “backpack” on. To his horror he realizes a giant tick (~30 pound beast) is attacking him with two companions on the horses and hippogriffs. Lister attempts to petrify the beasts but it is immune to the attack. Fatty begins clawing the beast. The horses and hippogriffs manage to knock off the creatures and run off, at which point all 3 fleas jump onto the closest thing with blood… Lister. Lister is REALLY starting to hate camping.

After Fatty and Zyi’s constructs finish squishing the Fleas Bob gorges himself on the disgusting “treat”. Fry inspects Lister and realizes his has multiple diseases infecting him. And he suddenly realizes how “weak” he is feeling. We decide to rest for 24 hours to give Lister a chance to gather his strength (missing 2 Str and 6 Con). Fry creates a blind for us to hide in, then heads into the woods. When he returns he has befriended a large lizard with a massive jaw and tiny clawed arms (Trex), which becomes his new animal companion. That night he administers some herbs and nurses Lister to health. (Lister shakes off the diseases plaguing him, tho Zyi must use a bit of his luck to overcome his infection)

The following morning we are awakened by voices, one of which Zyi recognizes. He dismisses the Construct he summoned in his panic and introduces to the party his old lab assistant Radar (Ticker…). He is a strange and autistic goblin with amazingly huge ears and quick mind. He is accompanied by a woman named Janda who is some sort of martial spell wielder.

Zyi is ecstatic to have someone who he knows and trusts to accompany them, and with their new friend the party heads off towards the Badger Tribe. Along the way Zyi invites the party to join in a “Mental Collective” with Radar (Ticker…). He explains Ticker has the ability to forge a psycic bond with people in order to aid them with Psionic abilities. The party begins getting used to a telepathic communication they are able to share within the “Collective”, as Ticker calls it.

That afternoon the party is lured into the shade of a tall oak by something blinking at them on the ground. When approached, the party is attacked by the angry tree (Handmans Tree)!

Fatty charges the tree, only to be swept aside and shatters into pieces. Fry’s companion follows Fatty, but is picked up and shoved into the creatures open maw. Lister, who has only 1 spell which will affect such a creature, bravely walks in and begins backhanding the tree with chill touch. Sadly, the tree is strangely resistant to magic. The Tree turns its attentions on Lister, who is brutally beaten. After being viciously bashed and constricted the Tree shoves Lister into his mouth, following Fry’s late animal companion. Zyi desperately summons Astral Constructs but his return from death has left his abilities much weaker than normal. The constructs are barely able to connect with enough force to penetrate the Trees thick bark. The new arrival Janda (staying out of reach) uses a strange sort of witchcraft on the Tree, but is unable to stick it for any length of time. As usual Fry’s firearms do not seem to do much damage and his animal companion does even less… Damn EXP Leecher! Ticker stands behind the party, fixating on Lister with some sort of strange concentration.

Then, miraculously, a skeletal creature with a massive head bursts out of the Tree, followed by Lister. Lister proves himself to be far more resilient than anyone ever realized. With renewed vigor the party’s heroic efforts topple the Hangmans Tree, who in its last act of anger smashes the skeletal creature with whom Lister escaped. Lister brushes himself off, picks up the blinking staff on the ground, and with amusing nonchalance once again declares his absolute hatred for camping.

Moments later the party is in for another shock. Fatty reforms herself, using pieces of the other skeleton to replace broken pieces of her old form. The strange Human/Lizard hybrid skeleton still displays its magical tattoo with great intensity.

The party returns its attention to the blinking item in Lister’s hands which begins a telepathic conversation with Lister. Despite this games constant exposures to telepathic conversations, the party is once again confused by one sided conversations with seemly invisible creatures. The staff introduces itself as Hamilton, a +2 staff of Spell Storing. After searching the body of Hamilton’s late friend the party also discovers and correctly identifies several magic items with a barrage of spellcraft attempts (revealing Janda’s impressive expertise and leaving Fry a little left out).

Discovered Loot Includes:
Hamilton, +2 Spell-storing Staff (Intelligent, Lister takes)
Ring of Sustenance (Lister takes)
Ring of Lesser Invisibility (2/day, CL 5 – Ticker takes)
Cloak of Useful Things (Janda takes).

After deciding whether to be in awe of Lister’s Ridiculous and Tenacious fortitude or the Human-Lizard Hybrid skeleton with the strange magic tattoo the party moves on. Eventually we finally arrive at our destination. A few small caves house the Badgers we are looking for. The badgers greet the party openly all except one werewolverine. We explain the coming shit storm and proffer Blark’s request for aid.

More to come next week!


Light & Dark Lynx189