2018-10-13 - Save Britches and Stake No Prisoners
Missi, Iotas, Ishkur, Kett, and Marlow were hanging around the Guild hall one afternoon. They found Purity's barkeep Lilac reading a letter from her pen pal Ricter. He had planned to portal into Sigil to finally meet her in person, but some riots and other trouble in his hometown caused him to cancel his trip. To help Lilac meet her potential beau in person, the party agreed to investigate the riots. One hour of paperwork later, they stepped through a portal and into the town hall of Carfax.
There, they found Mayor Kemp (an older woman with an eyepatch) holding back barred doors that kept a peasant riot at bay. Despite her confusion, she appreciates that the party has arrived to help. The riot, however, did not, and easily broke down the doors en masse. The angry mob of armed villagers stormed into the town hall and loudly expressed their concerns about the local prison's lack of correspondence. Six weeks prior to that day, they lost contact with their loved ones in said prison, and are angry the town refused to do anything about it. Iotas assured them the party would investigate, seemingly calming the crowd.
This calm doesn't last long as an old, gaudily dressed man identified as Helvig barges in and accuses the prison's Warden of being a vampire. The crowd is equally confused, annoyed, and riled up (to Mayor Kemp's chagrin). In the ensuing arguments, Ricter, Helvig's son and Lilac's pen pal, pulls the party aside and asks for their help. In addition to the ensuing prison investigation, he charges the party with rescuing his sister Elisabeth. She disappeared from the family home the night before she was to be sent to a convent. Ricter fears a vampire might have taken her as revenge on the Helvig vampire hunters. Ishkur and Missi bring up payment, which Ricter offers and Iotas bargains up.
The party heads to the prison and notice a bunch of stakes set up in front of the prison; some hold the crumbling bodies of skeletons piked stem to stern, while others are covered in ashes. They encounter a cleric named Tobias, who asks why they have come to the prison. Eventually, Missi gets the group to agree they are prison inspectors come to inspect the prison. Tobias is initially unsure, but some intimidating reassurance from Ishkur convinces him. Tobias suggests Ishkur should be less intimidating in the future; oddly enough, the half-orc barbarian agrees.
As Tobias leaves to let the party into the prison, everyone agrees he's a weenie of the highest degree. Marlow and Ishkur notice something was off: Ishkur believed the priest wasn't wearing any pants beneath his robes. As they discuss the potentially pantsless priest, ten minutes go by and they're not in the prison. Ishkur starts to climb up the prison walls, convincing a guard to let everyone in. Meanwhile, Iotas breaks out the wine and starts sharing. With his and Missi's help, Ishkur gets the guards to let the party in.
Inside the prison, the prisoners are hard at work, supervised by the guards. The "inspection" begins with a guard mentioning a string of vampire attacks over the past few weeks that have been killing off the prisoners. He leads the party down to the lower holding cells, where most of the previous vampires were found. Down there, the party finds a set of faulty flickering lights, some weird pipes, and a woman crying out for help in one of the cells. She gave birth while serving as a debtor, and she wants to be let out. Kett cast Zone of Truth and determines while she's not lying about the debt, she is a vampire. The interrogation is cut short when the woman chucks her baby through the bars at the party. Additionally, some blood elementals break out of the pipes.
Iotas, Missi, and Kett make quick work of the woman, killing her in her cell. Her baby, however, is another story. It latches onto Kett and bit him, requiring both Kett and Marlowe to electrocute the bloodsucking infant. While Iotas and Ishkur take care of one of the blood elementals, another pops up and starts harassing Missi. With enough electrocution damage, Ishkur crushed the baby to death. In a stroke of brilliance, Iotas snuck behind the remaining blood elemental and cast Dissonant Whispers, resulting in its swift death via Opportunity Attack Gauntlet.
Once the chaos dies down, the guards examine the carnage and lead the party back up to the surface to continue the "inspection." Kett realizes the party forgot to ask the woman they just killed anything about their quest to rescue Elisabeth or kill the vampire. He also gets a really nice hammer from the armory. The prison inspection ramps up: anyone not wearing pants will be severely punished.
The party ventures on to the warden's house, which is filled with taxidermied hunting trophies. After a quick inspection and a few relayed messages, Missi and Marlow's familiar locate Elisabeth, who's getting ready to hunt some vampires. Iotas disguises himself as a woman and introduces himself to Elisabeth, who sees through the disguise but lets him in. She is glad they have some help killing the vampires, but she refuses to go back to town and be sent off to a convent. Ishkur runs up to join them and potentially kill the warden for Helvig's bounty (if the warden is a vampire (or not wearing pants)).
The warden, a heavily armed drow woman, states she's not a vampire and asks why the party broke into a prison. At the mention of Tobias, the warden realizes he is the vampire, as the prison hasn't had a cleric in weeks. With a short rest to clarify any misunderstandings, the group heads down to the chapel to hunt down Tobias. Kett and Ishkur move the altar enough to find a secret passageway into the crypt, where Missi finds a trail of bloodless bodies. As everyone files into the crypt, they start burning the bodies.
The party finds Tobias the Cleric praying before an altar. He is wearing more sophisticated priestly robes, but no sign of pants yet. After some deliberation (and the entertained possibility of turning Tobias into a cow), Iotas and Ishkur volunteer to get in the room first via Dimension door. As Ishkur charges to hit Tobias (who is absolutely a vampire), the charm from earlier kicks in. Upon seeing that the vampire is wearing a pair of brand-spanking-new pants, Ishkur now feels compelled to kill his friends. With the plan shattered to bits, the party attacks.
Marlow creates an illusory wall to give Iotas and himself some partial cover from Ishkur's attacks. Kett attacks Tobias directly, taking a few crossbow bolts from the nameless ghouls hiding in the crypt's walls and some hits from Ishkur. Missi stabs Tobias with Safety First, only to get bitten and have her blood sucked. Iotas responds by polymorphing Missi into a T-rex. Ishkur attacks the T-rex, which has a vampire cleric in her mouth.
Iotas peaces out to look for the warden and Elisabeth, who are fighting off an army of flaming skeletons. He takes out three of them, but the warden tells him to go kill off the vampire instead. He returns to find Kett staking Tobias, Missi the T-rex charmed into attacking her friends, and a dead nameless ghoul with a crossbow on the floor. Iotas un-polymorphs Missi and countercharms Ishkur, who helps Kett stake and paralyze Tobias. Missi snaps out of it and goes to find Tobias's coffin.
Kett loots Tobias's body and takes a few of his priestly vestments (but not his pants). Missi finds Tobias's coffin, information about his past as a coroner (and vampire of, like, three weeks), and a whole drawer full of new, unworn pants. She and Ishkur doubt the pants are real, and throw a pair in the coffin with Tobias's body before it's burned. Elisabeth and the warden return from their skeleton-killing activities (and offscreen declaration of love), and the party finishes their prison inspection.
As the sun rises over the prison, the prisoners are set free for their service against the vampires. Everyone returns to town (in pants), Elisabeth avoids going to the convent, and the party is paid a pretty hefty sum. Back at Purity, Lilac eagerly waits to hear their stories in exchange for a free drink.
Too many puns were made in this session
Iotas received Inspiration for the Opportunity Attack Gauntlet
Missi received Inspiration for a particularly good pun
This is now the DM's favorite session she's ever run