The Edge of the Knife

Caves Under Casimir

The party, along with their patron, the bard Nestor, set off into the depths below the mining city of Casimir. They came across a cavern that was hiding a gang of orcs. The party narrowly defeated the orcs and uncovered mysterious crates containing arcane magic nullifying items. The crates bear a company logo that says " Nul-Arc" and the Ashby-de-la-Zouch shipping manifest stamp. There was also an obvious underground water route to the sea in the caverns and it appears that the crates were brought through that route.

Nestor is troubled by these strong anti-magic items appearing so close to the borders of Nanmor and the connection between this Nul-Arc company, the pirates cum shippers of Ashby and this group of orcs operating so closely to civilized lands. He sets it upon himself to uncover more of what is going on and decides to enlist the help of the party that has been so useful thus far.

The ropes creak as the small boat is lowered further into the darkness. Looking up you can barely see the flickering lights of the stalactite you began your descent at. All around you is darkness, your torches seemingly not penetrating the void. Lower and lower you go, an excitable human, your patron, explaining the mission you’re being paid for, for perhaps the third or fourth time.
“This is a great opportunity to document the depths below Casimir. We have been trying to determine the origin of this impossibly large cavern and the source of the lake at its bottom. All of our attempts to sound the depth have met with failure, and never before have we sent such a prepared expedition to attempt to map the caverns that can be found down here. Truly these are exciting times!”
An interminable amount of time later, the boat gently hits the water with a surprising splash. Where before there was only darkness the light of the torches now shows ripples in the lake’s surface. The talkative human at the back of the boat unties the rope attached near his seat and casts Animate Rope to let the winch operators at Casimir, far above you now, know that you have reached the lake. His nimble fingers then tie a sunrod to the line.
“Come, it is time for us to begin by finding the northern edge of this lake,” he says as he indicates the direction to go.

Once party finds caverns:
Nestor suggests tying the boat off to a piton.
Have party determine order.

If party spots Perception DC15:
A short distance into the caverns you see a message on the wall, crudely written in Common. It reads, “Dwarf stink reach down here make Gok sick.”
Knowledge (Nature) DC 10 to recognize as orc graffiti. This lets them know to be prepared.

If party doesn’t make the Perception check, stumble into the first chamber.

Orcs roll Perception at -6 to make a DC12 check to notice the party if party is prepared.
You see three monstrous looking humanoids standing around a smoldering fire pit apparently having some sort of conversation. The glowing coals provide just enough light for to barely illuminate a large natural chamber.
Knowledge (Nature) DC5 to recognize them as orcs.

During the battle, roll Perception DC10 at -8 each round to bring the orcs from the next room. Once an orc falls, the other two will attempt to retreat to the next chamber.

Another large chamber holds four more of the brutish creatures. Boxes and crates are strewn around the cavern floor, making footing treacherous.

During battle in this chamber, roll Perception DC14 at -5 to determine if the warrior and fighter hear the combat. Once there are only two orcs left, they will try to escape to the west chamber.CC

North:
The cavern dips down and fills with water past a point. The water seems to be gently moving, and a very faint but unmistakable smell of salt hangs in the air.

West:
A middling sized chamber opens up, and you see two humanoids bent over an intact set of crates at the other side. One is the same as all the others you have fought so far, though he appears to be of a higher rank, with better quality weapons and armor. The other is similar, but unmistakably different from the rest of the brutes. His gear is of the same quality as his compatriot, though he carries a ranseur instead of a falchion, but his posture and actions indicate a higher degree of intelligence. When they turn around, he is quite clearly part human.

Following the battle:
Your patron heads over to the crates and examines them.
“Interesting. These crates bear the stamp of one Nul-Arc corporation and the shipping marks of the city of Ashby-de-la-Zouch. They have also been heavily waterproofed. What could these creatures be doing with these kinds of items?”

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mazzoli

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