[GM: They are heading through the Thorn Maze because Ariel knows Grung Customs – anyone who makes it through the ordeal of the Maze, gets an audience with the King]
After a short and bloody battle against the Grung warriors, they killed most of them but took one alive. Ariel tried to reason with him but to no avail [GM:perhaps it was Ront walking about with the dismembered legs of the other Grung and threats about skinning him and using his skin as a disguise!]. As soon as he got the chance the desperate captive turned on Ariel, calling him traitor and tried to finish him off. Our heroes decided to kill him and dispose of all the grung bodies by grinding them to a bloody pulp against the razor-sharp thorn spikes, and agreed to try diplomacy with the next bunch. [GM: One of them was heard to say – “Perhaps we aren’t the good guys after all”]
Wandering around in the maze for another 30 minutes or so and Juma’s staff suddenly throbbed and seemed to be pointing towards a short dead-end. They approached to find themselves caught in a deadly combat with an animated thorn tree with long, powerful tendrils.
Once the thorn tendrils had wrapped around a target, they squeezed and tore at the flesh relentlessly [GM:even after two characters were grappled and unconscious! It became a race of spell-levels vs death-saves as Click repeatedly mass healed the two trapped characters, re-setting their Death Saves, while the others tried to kill the tree]
Finally the tree died and they managed to untangle their fallen friends. They ALMOST forgot about the Staff pointing them to the dead-end, but at the last moment Ariel remembered and searched in the soil beneath the deadly tree. In amongst the roots they unearthed the Mask of NangNang – goddess of the Grung.
Perhaps they will gain some abilities from the mask that will help them convince the Mad Grung King that he is getting his booty call from NangNang.