The party journey from the small jetty to the Old Laboratory. Wading through the shoulder high grass was easier for some than it was for Dain. The party were able to make their way to the Laboratory thanks to Ivellious and Pete’s keen sense of direction.
The party decided to climb in through the facility’s high windows which were roughly ten feet from the ground, and checked the main door for traps. Finding none the armoured members of the party entered and the party set about investigating. Inside the building seemed to have been abandoned and over time damaged by the wildlife.
Corran could sense magic below them, and Dain found some healing potions in a cupboard. The party discovered a grand library where the books had either been stolen or destroyed however in the room there was a hidden trap door which Ivellious’ elven eyes detected. The party descended into the basement level and found two rooms.
The first seemed to be an office of sorts, containing some paperwork and the journal of Professor Iven riz Hammend which Garridan took a quick look through were he was able to work out that Hammend’s experiements were failing and he had succumbed to the temptation of power, taking one of Ozymandias’ orbs and his experiments started to finally succeed but he spiralled Into madness soon after. This facility was abandoned due to his paranoia and it seems his research assistants were fired or possibly just left behind.
The second room was behind sturdier doors, huge metal containment doors. Dain wasted no time in bashing the doors down, causing huge amounts of noise in the process. Once inside it was clear this room was the source of the magical energy Corran detected, a ritual circle in the centre covered in Iron roots, and the back of the room was covered in rare and expensive magical components including some Mandrake root which Garridan wanted.
Garridan was able to discern the nature of the circle, and that the metal roots probably harnessed the Volcanic energy and brought it into the ritual circle, allowing Hammend to transmute whatever he wanted. The group left the circle well alone, gathered some of the jarred ingredients despite Ivellious protesting everything here was unnatural.
As they left the basement level and made for the exit, the magical ward on the door was triggered and party were ambushed with Garridan warning the party as the windows around them began to shatter as raptors dived into the room, surrounding the party.
The party battled hard against the agile and intelligent beasts, barely overcoming them, with Theodore using his illusory mirror images to avoid otherwise lethal bites and claws, and Pete being severely wounded as a Raptor bit into his torso and punctured a lung. After the battle Ivellious climbed up to the roof, and Pete fashioned a Raptor-talon grappling hook and followed him. Dain also climbed up onto the roof after Pete. They surveyed the surroundings and Ivellious noticed a small village on the island in the centre of the Loch. They also looked to the purple at the edge of the map, concerned with Ozymandias’ connection to the colour and the purple light that seemed to be connected to the Forest of Chaos. The party decided against heading there as the Forest of Chaos was enough to send them mad already. Ivellious was worried the island may be a village of prisoners so the party headed back to the jetty where they had spent the night before.
The party’s journey over the water was uneventful and they arrived just before nightfall. As they approached the village they realised it was smaller than they thought at first, it was only a handful of huts but the huts were very small. The party heard a ringing bell, shouts in a squeaky language and small figures scurrying. Corran lifted his hammer to empower his voice and told the village that they came in peace. Garridan suggested he tried in Gnomish as he had recognised the language, he attempted to teach Corran the phrase but it didn’t quite come across right, resulting in a small arrow landing nearby.
Garridan attempted to step forward, using Mans as an eye in the sky to locate the gnomes, and tried to calm their nerves. In response a second arrow missed him by a wide margin, although he heard a gnome boasting about how he thought he’d got one. Garridan then told the gnomes to surrender their arms or he would rain down fire upon them, and exploded some minute meteors a safe distance above them. They threw down their weapons and scattered. Garridan reminded the party he wasn’t exactly a diplomat. Using Mans he tracked down the oldest gnome and once Mans started talking in Garridan’s voice the old gnome collapsed in fear. Garridan then introduced himself and eventually the gnome realised that the “giant invaders” weren’t (at least initially) hostile. Once they traded promises of not eating eachother then the Gnomes agreed to return to the village.
The gnomes explained they were trapped on the island due a great sea beast eating their kinsmen who attempted to cross, also the mainland was dangerous and the giant grass forests were impossible to navigate. The gnomes sustained themselves by farming and fishing.
Dain offered them alcohol and T-rex meat.
Pete entertained them with interpretative dance stories relating to his many trophies.
Garridan, Theodore, Ivellious and Corran discussed offering the Gnomes safe passage to somewhere that wasn’t a tiny island near a volcano in a dinosaur infested park. Garridan translated and told the gnomes they could stay, or they could come with the party under their protection. The gnomes said they would sleep on it and discuss it amongst themselves, obviously worried about the great sea beast that the party hadn’t seen on their way to the village. The party made camp next to the gnomes’ village and readied themselves for escaping the park tomorrow.