Leaving the crypt, the weary party of ape-slayers descend the other staircase and find a dungeon, with cells holding the brittle bones of more lion-headed skeletons; one of which has an elaborate bronze headdress shaped like a spitting King Cobra which is taken as loot. There is nothing else they can find, so they head back to the whirlpool of fire and test if it is dangerous by lobbing parts of dead apes into the fire: nothing incinerates, and each piece of flesh disappears instead; a rope is lowered, but is severed at a point 30′ down.
Not wanting to risk it, they instead make camp in one of the now empty rooms and tend to their wounds. Corvin is still weakened, and is so tired that he falls asleep quickly.
In the morning (day five in the jungle) Zarkov casts the stones, using an augury to see if the whirlpool would be safe for him: the stones say yes, but still no one wants to risk it, so instead they head off to the tower where the exiled prince is imprisoned, determined to break him out, ideally without killing anyone, just in case it turns out to be the wrong thing to do and they need to apologist later. Following the river and trials, they eventually reach the tower as the sun sets. Under cover of darkness and taking a difficult route up the mountain, half-carrying Corvin, they manage to sneak up to the tower and ready themselves to assault it. Looking through the key-hole, Corvin spies a guard inside, on watch. Halmary uses the line-of-sight to cast his Hold Person spell, freezing the guard in place. Corvin picks the lock and they quietly and quickly pile inside, spiking shut the door that leads into the main interior. Corvin also steals a gold bracelet that the guard is wearing.
They head upstairs, checking out rooms as they walk around the corridor. On the opposite side they spot another lion-headed guard, who is too slow to react and is quickly Held by Zarkov. Through a door, into a luxury bedroom, and another stairs leads upstairs: and there they find the Prince, Sinba-Vek, a human dressed in finery and who is amazed by the presence of such strangers; and then is overjoyed when Idni tells him that they are there to rescue him. He agrees to go with them, giving them the key to the chest in his bedroom as a reward (coins, gems, magic wand, all taken), and they lead him out before the guards recover.
Amazed at their success, they take the Prince to the first ruins they found and to the Sage. There is a reunion of sorts (the Sage, it turns out, wants to go home, and he knows that only if the Prince is freed can he do so) and the Sage tells them that the fiery whirlpool in the ape-ruins is indeed the portal they seek; he also seems impressed that they have slain the apes.
So back to the ruins, not resting, walking on through the night. At the whirlpool they all jump down, one at a time, the Prince waiting until most have gone through. Zarkov jumps last.
They fall through fire, then darkness, and suddenly find themselves in…
…to be continued!
End of Session
Kills: None, just held two lion-headed guards and freed the Prince, taking the Sage with them as well.