LotFP: How we Beat Death Frost Doom

Last night we had a fun filler session.  It just was… a bit goofy, and maybe not in line with any principles of REAL ROLEPLAYING that I sometimes discuss.  But it was a good time none the less.  Spoilers for the Adventure “Death Frost Doom” Follow.

It was an off-week for Kaigan anyway and we were down a player, so one of the other players (Who Plays Upton in the Leaky Bucket Crew), decided to step up and run an OSR styled one shot.  And, just for the hell of it, decided to run Lamentations of the Flame Princess and the module “Death Frost Doom”, which, as he described it afterwards, is basically an unwinnable troll module.

I’m down, and end up rolling up a fighter, but honestly going through and picking out a full kit of OSR inventory is not what I was feeling up to, and so, despite rolling really well on starting silver, I very quickly decide on the following loadout:

  • A longsword
  • A Chain shirt
  • As many torches as I can carry

After giving that loadout half a moment’s thought, I add in a tinderbox to light the torches and a backpack to carry the torches in.

My only ally (played by the player of Axe in the leaky bucket crew) is a specialist who showed up a bit earlier than I did and some spent some time actually packing gear (although, ironically he rolled much less starting money than I did).  His character had a real name, but he had labeled his digital character sheet as “This One” just to indicate that was the sheet he was using that one, which is what we ended up calling him (and made a few “Who’s on first?” type jokes in the process).

We started at the foot of the mountain, and had to make our way up the path to get to this old cult temple that supposedly had some valuable stuff in it (or so we heard anyway).  This One and I headed up the path until we heard what sounded like someone chopping down a tree.  I called out to them while This One hid.  After a moment, a man appeared in the snow.  This One decided to try and surprise attack him with his sling, but hadn’t actually put any points in the relevant ability, so only did regular damage and then managed to roll a 1.

What appeared to be an old man, became visible, head bleeding slightly from a rock that hit him out of nowhere.  I have my hands up and This One is still hidden so I manage to convince him it was just an errant rock/evil spirit and that I mean him no harm (and I actually don’t).

He invites me back to his home, which I accept with This One sneaking behind.  His surrounding reek like whatever waste disposal method he’s using isn’t doing its job, but I don’t say anything.  He brings me inside and offers me some racoon stew, which I only some what hesitantly accept (and minorly wonder if I am going to be saving vs poison).

I talk with him and somewhat befriend him, he tells me that stone slaps we have been seeing around are gravestones for those that have died on the mountain, and he is trying to make one for all of them.  When I tell him of my mission he urges me to reconsider, saying that no one who goes up there has made it back.  I tell him that I have no choice as the live of adventure is all I have left, but if I find something of worth, I tell him I will stop by on the way back so that he knows I have returned.  He takes little comfort and that and tries to restrain me.

A few lucky rolls gets me the better of him, and I merely knock him out.  I leave before he wakes up, but This One wants to kill him and loot his cabin, but I insist otherwise.  He seemed harmless and I didn’t want to murder or rob an old man for what little he had.  He’s not happy with it, but I admit I am willing to go to blows to defend this man if need be and so he concedes the point, although points out that he has the only blanket if we need to make camp on this snowy mountain.

We continue up the mountain, soon enough hearing the howls of some wild beasts.  I, having plenty of torches, keep one lit and occasionally wave it around threateningly, which seems to keep whatever it is at bay.

Thing get increasingly spookier as we go up until we arrive at a graveyard.  A spooky tree is nearby, as well as a cabin.  I don’t trust the tree but eventually we determine it’s not TOO likely to come alive and attack us.  We find a noose hanging from the tree which This One doesn’t like but isn’t brave enough to trust it.  He wants me to get it down, but I am not going to climb the tree.  I end up burning the Noose and we call it good.  The gravestones are uninteresting, This One wants to dig one up to make sure they’re dead, but neither of us brought a shovel.

It’s getting dark and due to some confusion we think we actually have a bit of ways to go until we get to the summit (although this is actually our destination and the enterance to the dungeon) so we decide to see if we can rest in the cabin.  There is no response to our knocking, but the front door is stuck, but not locked.  We search and find the back door that actually opens, although there are some tracks leading away from the door.

This One doesn’t want to head inside, so I go in first.  I hear some music coming from a nearby room and find a harpsichord that seems to be playing itself, but not when I look at it.  I try playing the same song, but am not good enough at harpsichord to do so.  In the same room, I find a painting on the wall, it has some spooky skeleton stuff going on in it and a perfect likeness of me in it.

More importantly though, I recognize this Painting as the work of a famous long-dead artist!  I chalk the likeness of me to coincidence and take the painting out of its frame for transport, this can sell!

I do a bit more searching and find a bedroom with a bedroll in it (and an actual bed), along with some purple powder.  I keep searching and find a pantry, another bedroom (which seems to have been used recently by the person who left the footprints) and a dining room with a mirror in it that I avoid going into because my natural instinct in these types of dungeons is to avoid mirrors if possible.

I head back and show This One what I found.  He doesn’t see the figure of me in the Painting, but still agrees that it’ll probably sell for a decent sum.  Personally, I think the painting will have us set, and the old man’s warning is still fresh in my mind.  That said, it is late and to go down the mountain at night seems like a worse idea than spending the night in one of these beds.

I give This One the Powder to examine and have him take first watch.  The man who was too paranoid to even enter the house before I checked it out decides he needs to try the powder and gets high off of it, and decides to explore the house himself instead of keeping watch.

He riffles through the other guest’s things and finds a bit of silver for his trouble, and then explores the dining room, finding the mirror to seem normal but be fairly unbreakable (it actually only reflects those with chaotic alignments, which he was).  He also finds a trap door in the room, which he covers up, as well as a moose head with weird eyes and an old clock.

The clock has its time wrong so he tries to correct it which ends up stopping time for a while, leading him to the conclusion that I had died, resulted in him stabbing me to be sure and then looting my stuff.  He also followed the footprints and found the dude dead, but also with weird eyes.  He cuts off that dude’s head, brings it back to the moose, and swaps the eyes, which brings the head to life and attacks him.  It’s only a head so he is able to fight it off reasonably easily.

He then decides to try putting the eyes in ME, but the GM throws me a bone and decides that the time freeze effect is over and I wake up feeling like I’ve been stabbed (because I have).  I ask him what the fuck happened and his is freaking out because I am dead and walking around, and insists it is my watch.

While he sleeps I burn the purple powder and take my stuff back, then I practice my Harpsichord until morning.  We both have nightmares but I end up more rested than he does, he wants to sleep in, but I want to get off this mountain today and sell this painting.

I tell the old man of our adventure on the way back down the mountain (and kinda gloss over where This One was when I first met him) and thank him for his worry.  He is happy to see me alive and, while he suggests I burn the painting because it surely is cursed, we part on good terms.

We then begin our long trek to find a town big enough to have someone rich enough to afford the painting and call it there.

We didn’t really explore much of the dungeon (most of which was beyond that trap door), but as I mentioned above, the GM admitted that he busted it out for a one shot because it’s basically a troll module, and, in his opinion, finding something valuable (of which the painting was one of the more valuable treasures available) and getting the heck out of there is probably the only winning move we could have taken.  Apparently going deep enough, if you survive all the death traps, you eventually find out the whole mountain is made of corpses and they all come to life and try to kill everything.

We managed to not trigger a zombie apocalypse, get out alive, and escape richer for it.  So I am calling that a win.

Current PaDC score: 27/31


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