Finally had another session of Darkest Nights yesterday. It was a monday one though, which is kinda short. Still, the players got a bit done, and we ended it on a cliffhanger.
- Nathan Stark. Monster hunter chasing the crushing murderer.
- Lucas de Pope. A former mercenary, tagging along for the bounty.
- Bob. Slightly lost sailor. Trying to understand what’s going on.
Starting Date: 23 February 1840
The session began just after the last one. Bob awoke from his drunken sleep (and in denial), and managed to catch up with the others who had just left the Black Hat mortuary. Going to the port, they passed through the market district and bought some things they had found themselves missing: a city map, lock picks (that no one can use) and a crowbar. After that, they get themselves a rowboat in the docks, setting out for the beach they visited the last time.
They find it… much the same as they left it. They don’t seem to have missed anything special, and with that they set out for the old castle. It was there “chief” was supposed to be, according to the exorcised manikins, and it seemed one of the most plausible destinations for the person going boating during the night from their current position. Bob grabbed the oars and they crossed the small expanse of sea to their destination. They arrive at the castle island’s harbor, mooring the boat to the pier. It seemed abandoned, with the only other ships there being well past the point of repair. The first thing meeting them after walking onto the island was a large gate in the outer wall, aged but still sturdy. It seemed pushed into the ground, and one could see that the arch had collapsed and now rested only on top of the door itself. This for some reason prompted Bob to tackle the door violently, actually making it through before the wall collapsed over the door.
Inside, he found the inner courtyard, marked by many years of decline and careless youths come to play around. Lucas and Nathan climb the rubble left of the wall, supported by a rope tied to Bob (as he’s about twice the weight of Nathan himself). Looking around, they find nothing, and proceed to the inner door. The room is a defensive position, in about the same state as the area outside. They proceed around, find some old ammunition for cannons (in a horrible state), and the remains of weapon racks. Up the stairs they find a large cannon tower, and proceed across a bridge to the western tower. It’s more or less identical. The lower floor, however, is different. They find a canteen and some more defensive positions, as well as a set of stairs going down. They decide that down is a good way to go, and do just that. In the basement is, of course, the prison area. The corridor to the cells is guarded by an iron bar gate. They bring out their lock picks, only to realize no one can use them. That being a failure, Bob brings out his marline spike, pushes it into the lock, and hammers it violently with a chair. The lock is shattered, accompanied by a horrible ringing noise that echoes down the corridor.
With their stealth ruined, they just push on. There are five cells in the corridor, each being recently cleaned and fitted with some basic living necessities. In one of the cells they even find a bag of clothes and personal items which contains reasonably fresh bread. People are living here. They continue downwards through another gate, and into a semi-natural tunnel, seemingly following a vein of softer rock downwards. There are some more cells with beds in, these a bit less spartan. After this the corridor splits in two, and they examine both exits. One leads to a large water-filled chamber. The other holds a deep well-like formation, slippery but leading even deeper. Having left their rope behind, there’s no safe way to go down. This leaves the water chamber. They look around finding a small outcropping over the water hidden away some way in, and Nathan’s keen eyes spot a rope bolted to the stone and leading deeper into the cave underwater. Leaving their clothes behind they make a swim for it.
Nathan and Bob are both skilled swimmers, and easily follow the rope through the underwater tunnel. Lucas, in his folly, cannot swim at all, and barely makes it to the other side. The cave is dark, mainly because they were forced to leave behind their lantern, but there is still some light. It seems to be coming from the water, which glows faintly. While Lucas gasps for breath, Nathan follows the rope to the end. There is a small island in the water, were the water glows a little stronger. He climbs onto it, finding a small altar-like bulge (which seems all natural). On top of it is a golden disk, a little smaller than a face. It seems engraved, but it is hard to tell in the darkness. Believing them to be done, Bob swims the way back, but Lucas spots something. In his second sight, the luminescence seems to be coming from small flakes of light that fall away from something on the bottom of the water. Bones, human bones. He manages to get Nathan to get a skull for him, but they have no time to examine it. Bob’s pet rat emerges from the water, squeaking desperately, and they take it as a sign to return. Nathan easily swims back carrying the golden disc, and Lucas follows along with a desperate attempt to carry the skull in his underwear. Amazingly, he makes it back alive, and he even manages to bring the skull!
While alone in the first chamber, Bob heard something. Slow, heavy steps, coming down the stairs, each accompanied by the loud rattle of chains. It’s coming closer. When whatever it is reaches the bottom floor, Nathan surfaces and swims over to Bob. Lucas bursts through the surface half-dying, and still the being is coming closer. They can hear it as it approaches the opening into the chamber…
And there’s were we broke it off. A pretty decent cliffhanger, I think. I am quite happy with this session, as I think it’s starting to get closer to the creepy gothic horror vibe. I am interested in how they will handle the thing that’s coming closer, and the whole situation actually. If they make bad choices they might all die, actually, and that would be a silly ending to this campaign. Well, well, I’m excited for next session, and hopefully my players are too. Perhaps a sunday session, yay! But this is all for today, so until next time!