59 – When Chuuls Attack

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(You’ve entered the reeking slime cave (Map Area #2) in the Deeper Caverns. You are divided amongst the two boats. In the lead boat (deeper in the cave) are Cobb, Jumrak, Kronic, and Sikich; while the trailing boat holds Soggul, Thrakazog, and Vash. You’re relatively close to one another (the boats are within 10 feet ), huddled around Thrakazog’s spotlight (your sole light source inside the dark cave). Ahead of you (Map Area #3), the cave becomes more shallow – about hip deep.)

Bad Feeling

Slime Caves

“I’ve got a bad feelng about this.” Thrakazog mutters loudly enough to be heard. “There’s chewed-up beasties under the water here, the stink of someting awful that leads me to believe it could be alive, and nothing that remotely resembles a defensible position. I say we get outta here.”

Cobb is still considering Thrak’s previous comment. “No really; what the hell is a lobster?” asks the albino scavenger. Undaunted, he stalks forward, listening intently and scanning the ground for more traps, or prints of any kind showing what may have come through here.

Soggul responds, but doesn’t look at Cobb as he is constantly looking around for danger. “Before my time in the holes, when I was on the surface, we called them Red Klackers. I used to swim down and gather them to eat.” The mutant’s head jerks ahead, thinking he heard something. “In my travels, I-I met many people. Some d-did not know how to get f-food properly.” The good memories coming back were getting washed away by the increasing panic coming on. His breathing gets heavier and heavier as the group moves deeper in the cave. “Friends! I long for the s-surface. Let us p-put an end to this q-quickly.”

Thrak is really quite nervous at this point. Having just taken a tumble from the boat going through the rapid, injuring his body and his pride in doing so, he’s very hesitant to snoop further into the cave with nothing but the rocking boats to serve as transportation and potential defense. He wants solid ground under his feet if anything nasty happens!

He adds, “Let’s get back across to the other side, park these boats, get some ground under our feet and decide then what to do.” Thinking back to the video feed of the second dome, he suggests the small building (Map Area #32) just north of the glowing fungus.

If the rest of the crew insists on going forward in the cave, Thrak will go along with them, but he certainly voices his preference to get back out. “Probably a good plan, eh Soggul?” he says, knowing the mutants aversion to closed spaces.

Looking to Thrak, Soggul smiles. “Yes, a very good one.” He nods rapidly before his head swings wildly behind the group in paranoia.

Kronic sneers, ignoring the fears of other party members. “Alright get all your gear together… this cave better lead to somewhere! Lets get out of the boats and drag them with us empty throught the shallows. Thrak and I will be at the front, Soggul you take the rear. the rest push the boats and stay in the middle. Keep the boats to the outside so you have a bit of a barricade betweem yourselves and… well whatever is in here. I hope this pistol still works wet if we need it.” (He pours some more water out of the barrel to illustrate his point.)

“What do you all think?” he asks.

Misinterpreting the disapproving looks from his allies, Kronic swiftly adds: “Well I’ll pull a boat too of course! But lets drag them with us just in case… maybe they will afford us some cover. Or maybe we will need them on the other side?”

When Chuuls Attack

Perhaps it was Thrakazog’s spotlight, or maybe your continued discussions your course of action. (Or maybe the GM is just a rat bastard.) Something approaches from the depths; from beneath the boats…

(DC 20 Perception Checks for the PCs… Cobb gets 5 +5 = 10, Jumrak 11 +3 = 14, Kronic 5 +5 = 10, Sikich 8 +3 = 11, Soggul Natural 20, Thrakazog 18 +2 = 20, Vash 5 +9 = 14. Soggul and Thrakazog succeed, and are not surprised; everyone else will miss the first round.)

Suddenly, some underwater movement catches Soggul’s attention. “What’s that?” he shouts, pointing with one of his arms towards the water between your two boats. (I’m getting visions of the garbage chute from Star Wars here.) You all spin around, looking into the murky depths. Thrakazog’s spotlight moves wildly from spot to spot, and at the last instant he catches a horrific aberration as it emerges from the water!

(Normally at this point I’d call for Luck Checks to decide the victim, but this time I’m going to pick on Sikich since his player is no longer with us.)

Chuul

Like some large insect or monstrous crustacean, a creature lunges from the depths, its pincerlike claws snapping angrily as Thrak’s spotlight reflect off its mottled, armoured carapace. Its small dark eyes fix upon Sikich with a hungry stare, and its tentacles dripping slime from its mouth squirm excitedly.

(Initiative checks for those not surprised: Chuul 14 +7 = 21, Thrakazog 18, Soggul 9 +2 = 7. The others will roll next round.)

(The chuul’s Attack roll against Sikich is 13 +12 = 25… Sikich spends a Luck Point to force a reroll; 17 +12 = 29, hit for 10 damage. Sikich is down to 1 HP. Chuul attempts to grapple Sikich; the roll is 14 +17 = 31. Yikes.)

Water sprays everywhere as the bizarre crustacean surges towards Sikich, catching the lanky mutant in its monstrous claws. Sikich hisses then cries out in pain as the claws bite deep into his scaly flesh and lock tight, trapping him in its grip! Also, the weight of the large creature on the boat causes it to capsize, spilling Cobb, Jumrak, and Kronic into the water!

In fear and desparation, Thrakazog lets rip with a burst from his assault rifle!

(Some die rolls needed here… First the GM rolls the percentile dice, mumbling something about wet ammo, and gets 55%. Next he rolls for Thrak’s Attack; 11 +2 = 13. Maybe it’s time for a Luck Point; reroll is 19 +2 = 21! Critical hit for 20 points of damage! And finally a check to see if he hits Sikich by mistake… 61% is good.)

The shots echo in the confined cave, drowing out the shouts and screams from the group. Thrakazog manages to bury a number of bullets in the creature’s back – more than enough to kill most humans (or humanoids), but the monster doesn’t even acknowledge the attack!

Panic rises once again within Soggul, and he tries to control his fear. (DC 15 Charisma Check is 15 +1 = 16; good enough.) The energy pike already in his hands, Soggul spears the aquatic menace…

(Attack roll 17 +1 = 18; hit for 4 damage + 7 subdual. Percentile roll is 60% and Sikich isn’t hit.)

…and a pulse of electricity fires from the weapon’s tip as it (barely) pierces the creature’s shell!

(Do our heroes never get a rest? Whitewater rafting, and now this… Everyone else will be able to join the battle next round. The shallow portions of the cave (Map Area #3) are a short distance away; those in the water could swim there as a full-round action. The mouth of the cave is about as distant, but the capsized PCs will need to swim past the chuul.)

What are your actions?

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~ by K-Slacker on 18-Mar-08.

10 Responses to “59 – When Chuuls Attack”

  1. ‘Get your gear together,’ he says…‘This cave better lead to somewhere,’ he says.” Thrakazog sneers and the snide tone in his voice is more a product of suppressed fear than any real enmity toward Kronic. He realises, too, that it was his own suggestion that led them to the cave in the first place. Best just to deal with the situation at hand than make things worse.

    Assuming a wide-legged stance in his boat (at least, as much of one as the width of the boat will allow), Thrak steadies his tail to highlight the chuul in his flashlight’s beam and jams the but of his rifle into his left shoulder as he sights down the barrel to take another burst shot at the offensively reeking beast.

  2. “Horrid monster!” Soggul shouts as he pulls the pike back. Using one arm to protect his body with the tower shield, the mutant uses the other two to drive another blow into the beast. “To the shore!” (If the second strike hits…) Soggul pushes off the large creature with his long weapon, using it to push the boat to shore. Sweat began to pour from beneath the three-armed man’s armor as his lungs labored hard from being on the verge of panic.

  3. It’s amazing what kinds of useless information flows through your head when you are being barely conscious, being squeezed to death by a giant mutated lobster but suddenly Sikich remembers a bit of Useful Trivia – an outlander’s trick that may be useful in this instance.

    Sikich goes completely limp in the Chuul’s grasp, hoping that it will believe him unconscious or dead and thus release him.

  4. Cobb tries to gulp a lungful of air before he crashes into the water beside the boat. All the while terrified that the monster may be reaching for him in the murky water, Cobb desperately tries to gain his bearings and orient himself in the direction of shore. With a heave he kicks his feet frantically and tries to surface as he makes for shore.

    Once on shore he’ll quickly ensure that he didn’t lose his pack in the water (worried about Blinky!) and ready an attack in case the creature comes ashore. He’ll otherwise trust his shaky limbs to help the others out of the water before he resorts to firing in the direction of grappled allies.

  5. (I assume you mean the far shore, Cobb? Away from the cave?)

  6. Vash continues to scan the interior of the cave until the large crustacean attacks them. “My God, is that a….Rock Lobster?” He asks, having heard of the great song from the lore. He had his rifle ready. As soon as his companions were clear, he fires. He takes the one shot before slinging it, leaping out for the wounded Sikich. He moves to drag him somewhere safe and solid so he can treat him. “You’re going to be okay, stay with me.”

  7. (OoC- The one we were going for.)

  8. (It’s not really a ‘shore’ inside the cave, just the water gets too shallow for the boats.)

  9. OoC – Vash totally deserves extra XP for that Rock Lobster comment. Frickin’ hilarious!

  10. Kronic takes a deep breath and swims to attack the lobster thing… Claw vs Claw to help Sikich get away. I’m already wet…

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