So, I have played another evening with the lads, where they continued to explore the Tower of Zelligar (AKA, The Old Watchtower).
Much resting was the order of the day, as wounds abounded. The NPC Fighter, Mohag, was reduced by the Hobgoblins to 0hp and under the rules should be dead. But, as I explained last week, he was saved by making a CON roll and the intervention of the other NPCs, the Cleric (who calls herself The Mystical One) and Yor the Magic User. But he needed (still needs) some time to recover, along with permanently losing one point of CON. Bork the PC Dwarf also took a lot of damage in the fight with the Hobgoblins and Gnoll, so decided he too needed a lot of rest before any more fighting.
Meanwhile, the PC Fighter, whose name is Tuh, decided to go exploring. Making his way to the roof, he poked about in a pile of straw and sticks, only to be attacked by three Stirges. Luckily, he managed to kill them and only took 2 points of damage, though that was after all half his total. Rummaging around in the straw and sticks he did find a wooden tube that it took him ages to look inside. Good job he did as it turned out to be a scroll-holder with a Web spell inside.
Jericho, the PC Elf, decided for some reason to pick on Yor the Magic User. Yor's reaction to this was so extreme that he left the tower, at which point Jericho tried to restrain him and a dagger-fight ensued. For the second time since leaving Threshold, and only really a few hours since recovering from 'death', Jericho lay unconscious in a pool of his own blood, reduced to 0hp. Yor has vanished. Luckily, The Mystical One, having finished tending to Mohag, went looking for Jericho and Yor, and found Jericho at the bottom of the ladder that is visible on the drawing here from the Oubliette blog.
Getting Tuh to help manoeuvre Jericho up the ladder, The Mystical One again bound Jericho's wounds and I made the CON roll. Luckily, he made it again, but I don't think he can sustain this for long. By the end of the week he is going to be down to CON 4 and unlikely to take many more serious injuries. Already, he's gone dropped from an initial Con score of 11 to 9. He's now more likely to die at 0hp than survive. Perhaps that might make him more cautious. Perhaps not.
Tuh and The Mystical One, the least-injured members of the party, pulled up the ladder from outside for the evening, just in case. However, shortly after sunset, they heard a weird shrieking coming from somewhere below them (one of the rumours that led them here in the first place was 'weird shrieking coming from the Old Watchtower'). They rushed down the ladders to see what had happened to Bork the Dwarf, who was sleeping in the Gnoll's bed in the (first) basement level - to find him peacefully asleep, but the eerie sound coming up form the floor. Queue more searching for a secret door.
Long and the short was they left exploring the lowest level of the cellar and tried to sleep as best they could. Deciding that rest and recovery was what was needed was probably a wise move. As Jericho had had a good long rest by now I rolled for his recovery - as he only has 3hp, he luckily managed to fully recover. Tuh only managed to regain one of his lost hp. Bork gained 3, but had lost 7. Still at 5hp he considered that he was pretty fit - so they lifted the flagstone that it took them ages to find, and went down to confront the thing-that-shrieked.
There they found, not surprisingly, a Shrieker. They also found a Skeleton, which seemed to have something wrong with its legs. They didn't care about that detail. Sensibly deciding that the Skeleton was a bigger threat than a singing mushroom, they attacked it as brutally as they could manage, easily disposing of it in moments. Turning on the Shrieker, they made short work of that too.
Then all that was left was to loot the room. A trapped chest was no problem, as Bork made his saving roll. Another scroll, and a mysterious bottle that they haven't dared to test yet. But at least the party has fully explored the Old Watchtower, and if Jericho can avoid provoking any more fights with the NPCs (and being randomly killed in the face), perhaps they can get on with exploring a bit more of the wilderness and maybe, just maybe, get back to Threshold with some of the giant-spider-legs-in-sacks that they promised the frightened townsfolk so many days ago...