Island of the Lizard King – Part 1

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#7

Island of the Lizard King

Kidnapped by a vicious race of Lizard Men from Fire Island, the young men of Oyster Bay face a grim future of slavery, starvation and a lingering death. Their new master is the mad and dangerous Lizard King, who holds sway over his land of mutants by the eerie powers of black magic and voodoo.

Travelling south from Fang, we begin our story looking for a little rest after recent adventures, adventures that may or may not have taken place in a dungeon full of traps… of death. Amiright? Eh?? Anyway, Oyster bay is our chosen holiday destination, partly because it’s a quiet, lovely fishing village, partly because our brilliantly named friend, Mungo, lives there. I know I’d hang out with someone called Mungo, for sure. Alas, on arrival at Oyster Bay, things are clearly not right. Women and children and crying and when we find our friend, Mungo looks pissed. It transpires that the men of the village have been being kidnapped by lizard men and taken to nearby Fire Island by boat, Mungo supposes that they are enslaved within the islands gold mines. Fire Island was once a prison colony, managed by Prince Olaf who paid an army of lizard men to control the inmates. Unfortunately, the prisons filled and overflowed, Prince Olaf lost interest in the project and stopped paying the lizard men. One lizard man announced himself as king and he lauded over the island and it’s lizardy inhabitants, forcing the former prisoners to mine the land for gold.  The lizard king also went a bit Jimmy Page and experimented with the occult to reinforce his power, his myriad potions and black magic spilling out into the island, creating all manner of mutants and terrible creatures. And of course, the person to stop all this? Mungo. Yes, the fool is going to sail off on his own to rescue the kidnapped villagers, so we’d better go with him and make sure he doesn’t balls it up I guess.

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As we sail over on his boat, Mungo tells us old stories and we learn that his father entered Deathtrap Dungeon and was never seen again. It’s a small world. Our cheerful chatter was however broken by the sight of land, a sight dominated by a huge smoking volcano. Floating into a coastal inlet, we took a right, climbing rocks to a beach cover on the side of the inlet. The sight of six pirates dragging a treasure chest met us as we climbed the rocks, they of course had to die, that chest is mine! Slicing two down before they could react, Mungo and I took on two each. Having rolled up a 9/21/11 character, I might need to make use of that fairly high Stamina score, and that would start now as the 8/6 and 7/7 pirates managed to land a few blows before they went down. Mungo wasn’t so adept however as the final pirate thrust his sword through Mungos chest, leaving him dieing in the sand. Nice one, Mungo. You useless little man.  To be fair though, he had been bested by the 10/6 pirate captain who took my Stamina down even further; a tough start. My friend managed to ask for one thing before he died, ‘Make sure you get the Lizard King for me, won’t you?’. Well, surely the contents of this clearly valuable chest would assist me in this? Probably not, as Mungo had died so we could take a chest full of iron bars off the pirates. Brilliant. I took one anyway.

Up the side of the coastal cliff, a goat-track led up towards the jungle, with the smoking volcano to the west, I took the opportunity to rest behind some rocks and sleep for the night. On exploring the surroundings the next day, the jungle surrounding me was thick and humid and so I started hacking my through the dense greenery in an attempt to make my way to the other side of the trees and find our guys. Predictably though, I wasn’t alone. Three headhunters had been tracking me as I thrashed my way through their homeland, soon enough, the stood out in front of me and  took me on. The three of them weren’t that strong though and I took minimal damage and was able to regain 1 Stamina by eating some of the food they carried with them. Wondering how close I might be to their village, I climbed a nearby tree and did indeed see smoke rising from the south-west, the volcano sat to the north. I took a north-westerly path from here in the hope of avoiding the village, I’d had enough combat for now. On my way though, I stumbled across a long decomposed dead body with rope and a hand-axe laid nearby, so I took them along with me.

Further into the forest, hanging from a tree was a small platform with a vine suspended from it. I started to climb it, but an angry voice told me to go away, I persisted with my climbing and was pelted with coconuts, costing me 1 Stamina. Brandishing a bamboo pole and wearing nothing but canvas shorts was a nervous looking man at the far side of the platform. Figuring he may be of use, I tried to befriend him with some of my provisions. This did indeed soften him up considerably and he began to tell me how he had escaped from the lizard kings mines and had made this little tree-house his home. Handing over more food earned me a map, and reluctantly handing over a third portion of my provisions, I was given the lock-pick my now satiated friend had used to escape from the mines.

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More than five minutes had passed since something had attacked me, so a nearby giant dragonfly restored order by buzzing around me for a few seconds before being chopped to bits, its body hitting the floor near some interesting looking fungus. Because I’m an idiot, I decided to take the opportunity to eat some, as I broke off a piece, the top of the fungus opened up I was sprayed with a cloud of spores, irritating my skin and making me come out in lumps. Applying all my knowledge of dealing with stinging nettles, I grabbed some nearby plants and rubbed them over my sores to instant relief. Eating it didn’t seem like a good choice anymore, so I moved on.

Having circumnavigated the headhunter village, I headed west again and soon found a large clearing, a glowing crystal sitting in the middle. It was warm to the touch and restored a much needed 3 Stamina points. As I continued to hack my way through the undergrowth I was again reminded that I wasn’t alone.

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Before the pygmies could wipe me out with their poison darts, I attempted to communicate and offered them the hand-axe I’d found earlier. This seemed to please them as they began to chant, treating it as some sort of religious artifact. Idiots. Pushing my luck slightly, I motioned that I wanted something in return. They seemed amused by this and gave me some nuts and berries, restoring 2 Stamina points to me. Thankfully, that was the end of them as they scurried off into the jungle with their brand new axe.

Pressing further west, the trees began to thin and the ground became a thick mire which I soon found myself wading through. The jungle was turning to marshland that stretched out ahead of me, but before I could move on any further, a small reptilian creature suddenly darted out in front of me and I called to him. He was a marsh hopper, the text informed me that marsh hoppers were known for leading their victims off into the lairs of much larger carnivorous creatures in exchange for a little bit of the remains for themselves…

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So of course, the logical course of action was to follow him…

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