As detailed in the e-mail "Blackie Sixteen and the Chocolate Fireball"

This will be a fairly quick recap.  Objects in the recap may be more dangerous than I make them appear, yatta yatta.

There’s more dungeon to explore and a couple items left to be found.  The problem is that we’re at the edge of a chasm, at the bottom of which is not much we can search through, and back the way we came are only some seriously ‘roided out dwarves in pretty decent quantities.  So we’re going to go around the edge of the chasm and check out what’s on the other side.  An attempt to explore via summoned eagle reveals that there in the darkness are a bunch more Duegar (“Giant dwarves”) just waiting to paradox us out of existence.

So we hit upon a plan where we go back to the doors that the dwarves have barricaded against our return, weaken them and bang on them a while.  Then when everyone is distracted that way, we run around to the chasm where Copan has made us a tunnel to the area where the Duegar were on the other side of the chasm.  Of course they’ve run off to help the others, thinking we’re coming in through those other doors.  This gives us a moment to look around this area, which is basically a room with several forges.  Soon as we listen at the door that leads back to the Duegar’s main area, they decide to fortify the door against us, so we break down the door and a fight ensues.  Sound complicated?  Without a map it’s virtually impossible to explain.

So we do the traditional encounter against overwhelming odds.  Mavin rushes in, causing the majority of the group to run in and engage as well.  The dwarves swarm around us and begin to do plenty of damage.  By now we’re committed though; if we flee we’ll lose plenty of people in the disengaging, and we still won’t have a way back to the dungeon exit.  So we fight on, and with the tremendous assistance of Copan’s summoned creatures, we take them down, one at a time.  Their wizard has mirror image up, so Mathius spends most of his time trying to knock down mirror images.  Meanwhile, the meat shields cut away gradually at the little big hordes.  The biggest obstacle at this point is that the wizard keeps using color spray to stun and/or blind team members.

After a few of them are cleared (and STAY down) the tide finally turns to where we can push in on the wiz, whose last gasp is to summon a scorpion creature.  When the wiz goes down, that leaves us up against our own worst enemies:  Ourselves!

We go into a moral discussion about killing defeated foes and the semantics of invading someone’s lair/home and killing them all.  After hearing from the group, Rayson decrees that they be slain.  Pox puts them on a slow boat to hell, dropping them into the watery chasm.  Least pleased by this development is Zuka.

We don’t find a whole lot more in this area.  We need to backtrack to an area across from where the Trogs hang out, higher up in the dungeon.  Turns out this is also part of the Troglodyte lair.  They aren’t happy to see us again.  There’s a discussion via the only player who speaks draconic, Jenna, who tries to bargain for the missing items we seek.  They are not the least bit interested (in other words, she rolls a botch).  Pox does his best to cause a fight, even going so far as to moon them, but they aren’t bright enough to realize when they’ve been insulted.  Jenna spins this into a fight between their boss and our dwarf, where if we win we get to look around “most” of their lair.  I think we all agree to this because we can get an idea of where the item might be hidden away if they do actually have it.

However, Pox loses the fight and must be hauled away.  We leave, dragging our dwarf behind us.

We haul all our goods out of the dungeon and make back for Marakest.  On the way we find more victims of the Wendigo.  We discover some things on them that should probably be returned to the family of one of them, along with the bad news of his death.  Back in Marakest, we train up to 4th and discover the deceased man’s relatives are in Toyful.  For now we head to Krestible to drop off what we’ve found so far with Witlesse.  When we arrive there we discover he’s gone.  He has left us a note (and a package for Rayson).  Seems he’s gone to Toyful and we’re invited to either wait until he returns or come see him in Toyful.  Since we have some things belonging to a dead man’s family in Toyful, we head that way.

In Toyful there is a festival, run by Halflings.  People enjoy the fair and we search around town for Witlesse, but it seems that nobody has seen him.  But we pick up all kinds of weird rumors while searching for him.  One is that rats have taken over the village’s bell-tower.  Another is that a spirit haunts this place.  Our undead/spirit hunters want to go see that, but on route we encounter rats attacking locals in the fair.  The dire rats accompanied by some wererats.  There’s a fight in the streets where a few locals are injured by the wererats and Pox’s improved fighting skills proceed to squash them like they were nothing.  The group makes rat salad, fixes their wounds, tends the locals, then heads for the bell tower.

On the subject of the strange items we’ve been finding that unlock visions, Mathius fond a pouch (a bag of tricks) that did this for him, while the package left by Whitlesse had Rayson’s item, which apparently belonged to his grandfather.  It’s a staff of surprise.