Fresh-ish from the defeat of the ghoul Tulwar, the part tramps down the corridor.
Some table talk while there's treasure taking going on - the older boy asks when they can slay dragons; the younger pipes up - 'Well, we can just fight the elf's dragon'. I totally expected that, and was surprised it took so long. Emphasizing a dim view of such proceedings from the remainder of Elven nobility quashed that thought.
Working their way down another few tens of feet, the party comes across the room the dwarf's wolf reported about - a small pool of fresh water in the corner, fire beetles nosing about a trash heap in the other, two exits. The fire beetles don't seem to take much mind of the party milling about, so, the thief scouts down one cooridor, and the fortune hunter the second.
Knibbs comes across a humid room, a infestation of ochre mushrooms crowding the floor. Off to the left, a tall ledge, 8-10 ft high, leads off into the darkness. Knibbs goes back.
Shortly thereafter, Dale, the thief, comes back running at top speed. 'Giant rats!' she yells, skidding to a stop amongst the rest of the party. Sure enough, sets of beady eyes start bouncing towards the party from the dark corridor.
The drow charges the rats, killing the first, and missing his cleave into the second.
ACKS's fighter damage bonus, the drow's STR, his bonus to damage for his Fighting Style (2-handed) proficiency adds up to +5, which takes out average HP 1HD creatures on a single hit. He'l get to cleave a lot. By seventh level, barring magic weapons, he'll be able to cover average 2HD creatures with a minimum roll.
The druid casts Entangle, raising up old roots up out of the cave floor to snap and grab at the rats, slowing them down in their rush down the hall. The drow, dwarf, and noble elf cut them down without too much trouble.
The beetles never really look up. It's a tasty trash heap.
If you're wondering why I'm only showing the PCs ripping and tearing through the opponents without any apparent harm, it's because they are. I dunno what's wrong with my dice.
The party continues down the passageway the rats chased Dale from, traveling for a while, probably up under the middle of the whole hill to the other side where the main entrance was. They find a secret door, and come out into a storeroom, with what looks like a lot of crates and barrels the ogre had taken from the town.
A bit of crosstalk goes on here - the elder boy is anxious to get the ogre. He suggests splitting the party (secondary objective of finding the ogrenapped townsfolk), which I immediately proclaim a great idea. Older, wiser heads prevail.
After some poking around, the party moves up - wider corridors here split to the left and the right, and the wolves inform the party there's an ogre and animal smell to the left. The thief creeps up, begins to hear snoring. Her shoe scuffs a rock; the snoring stops - the drow charges in.
The ogre is laying his head against what looks like a large rock covered in a ratty old bear pelt, slowly waking up at the noise of the dark elf in plate mail clanging towards him. The drow promptly misses his swing.
The wood elf steps over and casts Sleep, the ogre looks distracted for a moment, but it subsides. The thief slips in and stabs the giant with her swords. The ogre swings, misses: his pillow turns out to be a real grizzly bear, which stands up, and completely misses all attacks against the dexterous rogue.
I start switching dice at this point. It's getting a little ridiculous.
The druid summons two giant shrews. Knibbs comes up and slashes at the ogre with his two-handed swords; the elf ranger misses with bowshot. The drow hits this time. The wood elf casts Spider Climb on the drow, who then gets lightly bitten by the bear.
The druid attacks with her sling, the shrews bite at the bear's feet. The battle progresses for a while, the ogre being slowly whittled down, until the drow utilizes his Spider Climb to climb up the cave wall, and leap onto the ogre's back, slaying it.
The bear begins to panic at this point; and the druid and wood elf princess quickly step in to calm it, parley a bit, and the bear agrees that this is no longer the best of dens, now that his 'keeper' is gone. The druid makes sure the bear gets a bite to eat from the ogre's table, and it goes on it's way.
The bear was quickly named the ogre's 'Pillow Pet'.
The ogre's massive, self-spiked club holds a handful of magical weapons, which Knibbs laboriously cuts out of the hunk of wood with a hand axe while the rest of the party searches around.
A rough curtain cuts off a quarter of the room, behind which are more old crates and barrels, and, a secret door! A short tunnel behind the secret door leads to a hole in the floor, with a ladder attached to a side of the vertical shaft going down into the darkness.
...next, what lies underneath!...