When we left off, almost everyone had been brought back to the land of the living, and none the happier for it, since we were all in foreign bodies, though it did hold some humor and fascination in certain degrees.
Once we had taken a couple of days to get our legs in our new bodies and prepare further, we ventured in again to the accursed warehouse and its cavernous depths, below. Signs of life were nonexistant, and it appears as if the doppelgangers had all but abandoned the upper levels, possibly for fear of attracting much attention, since there was already some comings and goings to the place.
When we got below, we had a short time fending off the guardian octopus in the water-filled chamber that leads into the lower levels of the complex. Though we had thought that it might take our offering of fish and go, it also grabbed the holder of the bag and we had to fight to keep our companion with us. A decision that we somewhat regretted later, as you will see.
Retracing our steps, we found the rest of the complex to be as empty as the rest until we managed to make it back to a door within the mirror maze where most of us lost our lives. Imagine our surprise when we went in to find none other than Allustan on a throne in the chamber! Many a thought went through our minds, then. Had we been duped? Was this a test for entry into some secret society? Well, no. The Allustan we saw before us changed into a different form almost immediately, and engaged us in battle, casting spells and taking the psion's thrall (the very man we had just rescued from an octopus, I might add, and whom me and my fellow druid had empowered with spellcraft) under his command. The fight with the ensorcelled thrall was a tough one, as his multiple attacks and tough hide made him a formidable foe.
The wizard, himself, had cunningly placed traps in his lair, and tried to control our actions and movements with hindering spells, but we were able to engage him in hand-to-hand combat, at which point he turned into a hulking brute and pulled forth an axe, wielding it with efficiency! By this time, we had surmised that this being was a doppelganger, but his seeming change in aptitudes confused us and we were put on our back foot in an attempt to match skill with this warrior.
Though we cleverly maneuvered his controlled battlefield and worked quite well together, despite our new forms, in the end, it was our brute force, and not cleverness, that won out against the man...thing. We took stock of his belongings and the furnishings of his throne room, finding some infernal device that we wanted no part of, then ventured further into another chamber, this being his bedchamber, where we took stock of (mind you, 'taking stock of' in this sense is the same as 'added to our stock') valuables therein.
Then, we went into what we assumed was the last chamber in these lower levels, a room riddled with silvery spider's webs and multiple women in various states of dress, who claimed to be araneas and the prisoners of the creature we had just slain. We bargained their freedom, which could have been given at any moment, though we were cautious, for any information they could give us and they offered material reward then went about their way, leaving us to decide what to do with this complex now that we know its secrets.
Cast of Characters
Able Nightengale, Gloaming Healer 7/+1 Negative Level - David
??, Goblin Psion (Telepath) 5/Thrallherd 2/+1 Negative Level - Paul
??, Human Warblade 4 - Paul (thrall)
??, Equiceph Rogue 5/Thief-Acrobat 2/+1 Negative Level -Tami
??, Human Druid 5/Planar Shepherd 2 -Taylor
Rill Meadowwhisper, Flind Druid (Shapeshifter variant) 7/+1 Negative Level - Me
Notes: I've not read this adventure path, so I'm unsure if this was it, but it left me thinking that we missed something along the way. The lack of replacements in the dungeon to harry us after a few days was odd, too, but a little suspenseful. I thought maybe we were walking into a large, overly prepared group when we fought the greater doppelganger (Angela told us what it was after the fact, because we all thought it was neat).
No spoilers, please. Just typing out loud here.
Also, I know I'm lousy with these character names. Maybe Angela can clue me in, and correct any class mistakes made if she catches this post.