In our last adventure, the PCs had ended up going back to Highbay, with the vague plan of trying to take advantage of the tragic demise of their former dear friend Sandy the Warlord, hoping to go to her former center of power (the Dread Fort) and take everything that wasn't nailed to the floor. All except Bill, who decided to stop off to visit retired super-adventurer Anthraz first, and the Fishman Fisherman who had last been seen getting apparently wiped out of existence when the Wizard Nikos' former hovel imploded.
-The Fishman Fisherman is in an extradimensional space, of infinite emptiness.
"I don't have time for this Matrix shit."
-Fortunately, Nikos tells him to go back to the material plane, and warn his friends not to try to follow him to the Crown of Creation. He literally drops the Fishman Fisherman down from the heavens.
-Luckily, there's something to break his fall:
"Pillows! Conveniently placed pillows for sale!"
-"What were those pillows made of?"
-"BOLT-0 IS GLAD TO SEE THE RETURN OF HIS FRIEND!"
"Are you really 'friends' with this newb?"
"INASMUCH AS ONE CAN MAKE FRIENDS WITH CANNON FODDER"
-"So Sandy's really dead?!"
"Well, we didn't actually stick around to see her final death, so you know, if there's no seen body."
"BOLT-O IS FAMILIAR WITH THE PRINCIPLE OF 'WE COULDN'T FIND THE BODY'"
"So what y'all are saying is that she's Schroedinger's psychopath?"
-"We'll be going to the dread fort as soon as we're healed up."
"I don't know. I'm pretty sure that place is above my challenge rating."
-Highbay has changed somewhat since the last time the PCs were here. The gang war they'd inadvertently started between the cyrilic/Goldhalcon mafia and the Bharata/Draconian mafia allowed the Highbay authorities to get rid of both sides, and set up the relatively harmless local dealer 'Old Crazy Jim' as the new criminal kingpin. For Highbay, that's a total victory.
-"Goddamn kids today, going to the tatoo parlor and getting a new body."
-"I've been stabbed through the spleen more often than you've had orgasms!"
-Highbay's market is not like other town's markets. Case in point, the "Armor and Meth Emporium".
-BOLT-0 is thinking of staying behind in Highbay and resuming his former job as a Councillor.
"BOLT-0 MAY NOT BE THE BOLT-TURNING ROBOT THIS CITY DESERVES, BUT HE IS THE BOLT-TURNING ROBOT THIS CITY NEEDS"
-Suddenly, an enraged minotaur teleports in out of nowhere and charges at the party.
"Oh fuck you!!"
-"You were exercising Warrior Privilege when you slaughtered that minotaur!"
"Warriors don't have any privilege"
"In this system they do, they can attack more than once a round!"
-Meanwhile, in all this, Bill the Elf got booted by a fairly grumpy Anthraz, and ended up back in the valley at the base of Mt.Parnassus searching for his Primo Staff. He saw that the vast numbers of refugees had all either died or fled, and there were mostly ruined tents and corpses left on the field. He finds the corpse of his former body, but his Primo Staff has been stolen; presumably by whoever it was who also wrote "bill was here" on his armor.
-Eventually, Bill did find one crazy old woman named Elsa cooking what he suspected was human flesh in a pot.
"where are you from, Elsa?"
"But which old country?"
"No, that the name, Old Country!"
-Suddenly, out of nowhere, a Minotaur teleports in, swearing obscenities, and attacks Bill! He's in a dire spot, but Elsa helps him out with a well placed strike to the minotaur's head with a frying pan. This buys Bill exactly the amount of time he needs to abandon Elsa to her minotaur-based doom by teleporting away.
-He teleports to Highbay and quickly finds the rest of the gang. "You guys, someone wrote "bill was here" on my old armor, and it wasn't even me!"
"ARE YOU CERTAIN? YOU ARE A NARCISSIST!"
-Meanwhile, Ack'basha returns to the temple he'd made in town, only to find that it was occupied by a cult of a few dozen fanatical shaven-headed robe-wearing followers of his, chanting "Hare Ack'Basha, Hare Ack'basha!"
-"What should we do now, master Ack'basha"
"Well.. try to all the things you can to improve the city."
"We will, master! We'll fool them all!"
-Needing some weapons, Bill goes to the local "Weapon & LSD Emporium". Noting he lacks any cash, he just charms the proprietor. He then realizes he needs some food, so he gets the now-charmed businessman to make him dinner. Unfortunately, the roast was laced with LSD (not for any special reason, just because apparently that's what you do in Highbay when you have a guest over for supper).
-"There is a certain logic to this plan, similar to the logic I use for finding Scriptural artifacts"
"Whatever you might say about Zeke, he really believes his bullshit. Not like Ack'basha!"
-That night, staying in three separate places, Ack'Basha, Chu, and Bill are all attacked by violent Minotaurs. Bill's attacks when he's stoned out of his mind on LSD, so Bill channels his friend Bob Shoggoth. Bill will regain consciousness next morning to find that both the Minotaur and his host and much of his host's house and roof were torn to shreds by giant tentacles.
-Meanwhile Ack'basha is inside his temple, which is under a permanent Holy Sanctuary. The Minotaur can't come in to attack. Instead he's forced to pace furiously outside the door shouting "Come at me, bro!!"
-Chu and Zeke Bodean manage to take out their minotaur attacker, with a bit of help from the owner of the Silver Moon Inn, where they were staying. The innkeep's weirdness factor only increases by virtue of his owning a large blaster pistol behind his bar counter.
-Chu later goes to find Ack'Basha, only to realize the Minotaur is unable to attack BELIEVERS in Ack'Basha's temple, but he could attack unbelievers. Luckily, Ack'Basha baptizes Chu; though not to save Chu, just to avoid getting a casting penalty the next day.
-Meanwhile, the furious Minotaur has stripped off his shirt. "I'm nearly naked now, but that just makes a fight more intense! Fuck you!!"
-The Minotaur is slain, and the PCs start trying to get some clues as to why the hell minotaurs keep teleporting in to attack them.
"That last Minotaur said he was from some place... some city.. I don't remember which he mentioned. Minotauria?"
"It wasn't Minotauria, you idiot, you just made that up!"
-The PCs continue to try to investigate the next day, only to have yet another Minotaur attack. This one charges Bill and gores him with his horns!
"Bill's got the higher ground now, guys!"
"...because he's suspended by the horns that ran through him."
-"My friends, my skills as a scriptural archeologist lead me to think that these minotaur attacks are the work of powers of evil!"
"Dude, like half this party could be called 'powers of evil'."
-BOLT-O has done some research in his alchemical tower, and tells the PCs that these crazy minotaur attacks may be related to an ancient ritual called the "Sacrifice of 1000 Minotaurs". Some wizard is teleporting the minotaurs in for the PCs to kill, and if he gets them to kill 1000 of them he'll become immortal.
"wait.. at 3xp per minotaur, that's like 3000xp!"
"So... you're saying we actually want in on this?"
-Suddenly, another minotaur attacks!
"Whoops, it's Minotaur-o'clock, you guys!"
-This time, there's a second minotaur, a she-minotaur wearing a bikini-chain-mail around her udders.
"I was going to ask if female minotaurs are hot, but that description pretty well made it obvious they're not"
"Well, unless you're a fucking furry."
-The She-Minotaur takes out Ack'basha with a vicious attack!
-"Holy shit, she dropped Ack'basha! Bill, you got to spellburn!"
"I have nothing left to spellburn, dude! Look at my stats, I'm a fucking amoeba!"
-Even so, Bill tries to do his Sequester spell, but the end result is just an enraged minotaur that crosses the fire trap and keeps attacking.
"Great, now the minotaur is on fire! You only made it worse!"
-Finally, an incredibly fortunate roll on a Choking Cloud spell drops the minotaur attack. Ack'basha makes his luck roll and turns out to be still alive.
-The party carries on with its investigations, but wants to restock on equipment, so they go back to the house of the merchant that Bill had charmed and accidentally got killed in an LSD-and-Lovecraftian-Monstrosity-fueled craze the previous night. Bodean bets that Ack'basha, who isn't present, would never approve of robbing the possessions of a dead man.
"You really don't know Ack'basha, do you?"
-When they get around to telling Ack'basha:
Bill: "yeah, its not like we killed him or something"
Bodean: "You LITERALLY DID!"
"Sure, but that doesn't count"
-"So Sezrekhan won't help us figure out which wizard is sending the minotaur against us?"
"He's not interested."
"Does he no longer care whether you live or die?"
"I'm pretty sure he never did!"
-"Well, my friend, you could still renounce your daemonic master and come back to the Lord. G.O.D. forgives all things!"
"BOLT-0 NOTES THAT RECENT EVIDENCE ABSOLUTELY DOES NOT SUPPORT THAT CLAIM!"
-"So we're just going to rest up a few days and then go to the Dread Fort like before? And totally ignore the problem with the minotaurs? That's a horrible plan!"
"Yeah, well, I'm a horrible person."
That was all for this session. Having resolved nothing, and with much of the party having almost died, the PCs just decided the mystery of who was sending the minotaurs after them was just too damn hard to solve, so they're just going to keep killing minotaurs as they go along, and carry on with the plan of milking the Dread Fort for all they can steal, before Sandy's warrior legions figure out she's dead.
Currently Smoking: Mastro de Paja Bent Billiard + Rattray's Old Gowrie