DM: @krforget93

Damian (Paladin 7) @Waylander322
Hanbal (Fighter 6, Warlock 3) @Genthrock
Nahil (Sorcerer 8, Warlock 2) @Neal
Cavendish (Fighter 7, Warlock 1) @Troy
Aneksi (Warlock 2, Sorcerer 2, Paladin 1) @SlyOkami
GarGot (Druid 7, Barbarian 1) @Tim

Mission Date: 08FEB2022

Summary for the impatient:

  • Sir Coel is still out visiting castles with Mr. Alexander who is the owner of Blackchasm Keep
  • The basement underneath the keep is much larger than we initially thought
  • Powerful spellcasters are still lurking down there
  • Most of the coffins we found had no bones or skeletons in them anymore
  • The task of clearing or exploring the basement is not done yet

On another winterday a group of adventurers assembles again to take on the dangers that lie in the basement underneath Blackchasm Keep. Several adventurers have been slain in the attempt to clear out the undead in that basement and to not risk any further lives a call was made for more experienced adventurers.
On our travels we find a building 4 hexes on the road west of Port Mirandia. There are some scorched makrs inside of something that might have exploded. We didn’t check any further.
One hex east of the location of the castle we find a ruined building that we also didn’t investigate further. Looking at past logs it might be some sort of temple or shrine to a deity related to slaughter?

Arriving at the keep we see a cloud of darkness surrounding the moatlike area around the keep. Hanbal attempts to see into the darkness with his devil sight but couldn’t see to the bottom. We then threw in a large rock over the edge and it took several seconds before we heard it hit something. We estimated the dept of the moat of darkness to be at least several hundred feet deep.
Walking over the bridge we notice an eerie sensation and a feeling of being watched near the statues of the gargoyles near the entrance. It is the same as on previous visits however.

Nigel, the faithful servant of the keep, is already waiting for us at the door. We learn that Sir Coel is still traveling with Mr. Alexander and that they are visiting some castles together. As Sir Coel was also missing on the last visit we assume that Sir Coel or Mr. Alexander have most likely many castles on the island.
As it happened on previous visits we are asked not to cast anything in the keep unless we are in the basement. Our gracious host allowed us entrance to the library however and served us another exquisite meal in the throne room.

After the meal Nahil was taking some time to look through some of the books in the throne room. There is some sort of disturbance that is caused by Nahil when he fiddled around with some of the books but I’m not sure what that was about. Previous logs mentioned hidden passages in the castle but it didn’t look like Nahil found one from where I was sitting.
When talking to Nigel we learn that the castle is centuries old and that Mr. Alexander acquired this keep several years ago. That would mean that Sir Coel is not even the rightful owner of the keep. And if there were vampire like resonances reported about Sir Coel then I am unsure if I want to know what Mr. Alexander might be. I’d assume that Mr. Alexander takes at least the role of a friend if not the role of a superior to Sir Coel.

Back at the library, which I would dearly recommend every adventurer to check out IF you know what you are looking for given the sheer size of it, we found a note on the table that read something about Zal Mada. Crossreferencing with previous logs that would be linked to Yuan-ti and the Mhair but I have not been following their history at all. But having a note like that lying around might mean that Sir Coel or any of his guests might have some interest with them.
We are offered some guest beds for the night which we gladly accept and get some rest before heading to the basement the next morning. I remember waking up in the middle of the night soaked in cold sweat and an eerie feeling all around me. Looking around I didn’t sense anything besides that and tried to go back to sleep soon after.

After a nice breakfsat on the next morning we head down to the basement. I’d like to note here that the same stairs that lead to the basement also lead to the uppder levels of the keep.
Arriving in the basement we notice some sort of rotten smell of decay that comes every so often from the northern door. I place a magic circle in the entrance of the basement to block any movement of undead through the area, hoping to prevevent an ambush and a possible escape of undead from the basement.
Our group then slowly progresses further and checks out the coffins on the walls to make sure there are no unpleasant surprises this time around. 

While looking through the coffins we are facing an undead creature that is able to heal itself. I’m not entirely sure but my best guess is that this creature is somehow related to vampires as those are the only undead creatures I know of that have the ability to heal themselves.
From there we are able to make sure the southwestern part of the basement is secure before heading towards the stairs that so many adventurers died at in previous adventures. We find the tomb of Augustus the Defender opened and empty and prepare for a big battle up ahead. Bolstered by magic and the inspiring words of Nahil we feel ready to face what might be ahead of us.

In the following fight we are facing three armored skeletons and a three headed skeleton leader that apparently is some sort of spellcaster. I charge ahead making use of my wings and challenge the skeleton leader directly. That might have been not the best idea as he pointed with one of his bony fingers at me and I could feel a surge of necrotic energy washing over me. I’m certain that if it wasn’t for my protecting spell that I would have died right there leaving my party members unprotected. 
If you read this then take it as a warning to expect all kinds of tricks that the creatures in this basement might have. They certainly should not be underestimated!
However we are able to defeat the skeletons but their three headed leader is able to teleport away.

Luckily Nahil summoned a doglike creature woven out of shadows that is able to track down the skeleton leader. We gave chase behind the dog that ran off into the darkness and follow it all the way towards the northern part of the basement that was sealed until now.
We find a long declining tunnel there and some sort of junction that we turn at towards the right. Continuing running behind that shadow dog we see it jump of an edge somewhere into the dark and stop. Ahead of us is a circular passageway that leads further and further down into the dark. Every ring or layer is around 100 to 150 feet further down.

We decide to follow the pathway further down and find that it it has a steady and quick decline ot it. it is definitely not natural but likely done in a hasty manner.Towards the bottom we stand in front of an impenetrable darkness. Nahil and Gargot attempt to dispel the darkness with some scrolls I brought but both of them fail to do so.
To get further intel Aneksi si then flown by the Gargoyle that Gargot summoned earlier into the darkness and reports of an exit of the cave. There is asupposed to be a massive chasm roughly 100 feet large from one wall to another. In addition there are several tunnels up ahead but all of them in the same darkness. One of our party members raises the theory that one of these tunnels might lead into the Underdark.

We decie to head back as we already spend some of our available spells and other resources. On our way back we find roughly at mid level two tunnels. There are strange rocks jutting out of the walls. It almost looks like it might be some sort of tail that is caught in the rocks. Some of them are fistsize and others up to 25 feet large or larger. Hitting on the rock makes some gas come out that hurts us.  
Finally we make it back to the keep and are handed some coins from Nigel for our efforts in the basement. After that we decide to simply head home to tell others of what we found. It is definitely not the end of the story of the keep and much left to explore. Plus on of the undead spellcasters is still alive and that is never good. Let me know if you gather a group to go back there as I would love to join that.