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"From Door to Door" (2x81) is the eighty-first episode of the second campaign of Critical Role. Continuing their search for Yussa and hoping to find a possible boon in their struggle against Obann, the Mighty Nein wander the Heirloom Sphere into rooms of ever-growing danger...

Synopsis Edit

Announcements Edit

  • Sam is back as the spokesperson for D&D Beyond without, however, actually speaking, since this week he is appearing as the newest member of Blue Man Group. Sam has unexpected mouth-marshamallow catching talents. He also learns of the difficulty in removing spirit gum after his performance.
  • Pub Draw is back Wednesdays at 5:00 pm Pacific on Twitch.
  • UnDeadwood, a four-part supernatural Old West mini-series GM'ed by Brian Wayne Foster premieres Friday, October 18 on Twitch. VOD will be available on YouTube the following Sunday.
  • Matt produces photographic proof of how adorable Taliesin and Ashley were as children.
  • The first six-issue run of the comic book series Vox Machina Origins is now available in trade paperback at local and online retail shops. The hardcover version is also available in both the U.S. and U.K. stores.
  • New merch: a "Pub Draw" pencil case and an "UnDeadwood" deck of playing cards in both the U.S. and U.K. stores.

Previously on Critical Role Edit

So, last we left off, the Mighty Nein, discovering that there had been an absence of paths to success during a series of failures to try to stop Obann in his plan toward whatever nefarious scheme he has that involves the Angel of Irons, you returned to Nicodranas to begin to gather the allies you did have, discovering that Yussa, the archmage that resides there and that you’d had some previous dealings with, has gone missing, seemingly finding himself traveling into the Heirloom Sphere that you had given to him not long ago. The Heirloom Sphere, AKA the Folding Halls of Halas. Happy Fun Ball. The servant (Wensforth) of Yussa, requiring aid after three weeks that his master had been missing without any sort of confirmation, communication or seeming signs of his return, asked you guys for permission to call in an ally. Through his own anxiety you agreed to allowed him to do so, and he called in a female wizard in her early to mid-fifties from a far-off land called Tal'Dorei, known as Arcanist Allura Vysoren.

With your help, you began to put together the pieces of what happened and what was necessary, which was that somebody had to delve into this sphere. As it is also referred to by some as the Archmage Bane, Allura is well aware of the dangers of herself going in there, and decided to let you guys take care of this venture, and she would remain with a magical item that allowed you to communicate a few times a day, should you have any questions or need some correspondence between the two of you. Going back into the puzzle ball, Caleb managed to unlock straightaway a means into the Sphere's Folding Halls, and you began to make your way from room to room, venturing to a location known as the Garden, where you had encountered some sort of terrifying froghemoth, and various frog-like humanoids that seemed to be gathered around it in its presence. You managed to slaughter most of them, defeat the creature after it swallowed two of you, watched its body sink beneath the waters of the pond that it seemed to be awaiting in, and began to find out where you could pass next.

With a few different doorways or paths at your disposal, you climbed up the edge of the mountain that existed in the Garden, and plunged into the cavern there as you realized some sort of construct seemed to be following you. So after you had all ventured through this tunnel and found yourself transitioning into this next chamber, within the many, many Folding Halls, you emerged on some sort of a rock and metallic lip, overlooking a rolling chaotic sky on all sides of burning purple clouds and storms flashing bits of occasional purplish lightning in the distance, as little chunks began to slowly rotate and float, some close, some far off. Glancing up and down, you could see that you're on the outside lip of some extensive tower, built of rock, stone, metal, and gears in some ways and shapes. You see it shifting in places. You hear the metal grinding and pushing, echoing throughout the atomosphere around you, and the tower seems to curve away, and then downward as well, almost like it's bending before it fades into the mist of the distance. And that was where we left off. So, Mighty Nein, as you emerge here, the wind beginning to whip your hair around, glancing out at this expanse before you about ten to fifteen feet before you were to tumble off the edge into whatever oblivion awaits you, what do you wish to do?

Part I Edit

The Tower Dimension - @BlackSalander

Fan art of the Tower Dimension, by BlackSalander.[art 1]

Emerging onto the spiral walkway circling the Tower, the party notices a doorway emitting green-blue light two spirals above them. Looking downward at the spiral pathway, in places it is broken or has gears emerging onto it, and the tower itself bends and shifts in strange ways. Around them in the void, islands of rock float and collide and gravity seems to fluctuate. Fjord spots a structure emitting a faint purple glow on an island orbiting below.

They have maintained contact with Allura through the mirror, though she can offer no guidance. They decide to head down when they hear approaching heavy footsteps and see a clawed hand on the doorway behind them. Running down the spiral with the golem in pursuit, they come to a place where gears emerging from the tower block the pathway entirely. Beau rides the front gear upward and sees that it is the first of about ten feet of deadly grinding gears that must be crossed. She uses Step of the Wind to jump across safely to the other side. Jester Polymorphs into a giant owl and grabs Nott and Caduceus, transporting them across. Caleb jumps on Fjord's back and attempts to cast Fly on them both, but the blue light emitting from the face of the golem catches them and the spell fails.

Fjord and Caleb (still on his back) are now alone against the attacking golem who severely injures both of them and affixes a metallic collar around Caleb's neck that silences him, preventing any spell cast with a verbal component. They leap onto the gear and as they rise, leap off into the void where the hovering Jester manages to snare them in her talons and fly downward. She deposits Fjord and Caleb on an island containing a doorway floating just off the Tower and is heading toward the rest of the party when they see the golem jetting toward them. When its blue antimagic gaze hits the doorway on the floating island where Fjord and Caleb are, the doorway disappears.

Caduceus manages to Command the golem to turn itself off, and it begins plummeting in an odd outward arc away from them, allowing the doorway to re-emerge. Jester, who has dropped her Polymorph, pushes Nott off the edge of the walkway into the weird gravity, and with Feather Fall and Fjord's use of the whip to snare her, she makes it to the island, where Caleb drags her through the doorway. Jester Polymorphs into a giant eagle and transports the rest of the party to the island and through the doorway.

They find themselves in a large 40-foot by 100-foot room, the Arcane Armory, entering through a double set of heavy metal doors. Nott manages to get the collar off of Caleb, and he pockets it. There are boxes and crates at the far end of the room, but Nott notices a 15-foot stretch of floor between them and the end that looks different, with three piles of ash on it. There are two ballistas at the far end of the room, pointing toward the trapped space. Through testing, they discover they are triggered by pressure on that area of flooring. With the golem approaching, Jester (still in eagle form) flies Caduceus and Caleb across while Beau jumps it. In the crates they find two magical boxes.

When the golem enters the room, Jester flies back toward it, drops eagle form, and Commands it "off" again. Caleb Fireballs it but they learn that fire only heals it of damage. Beau jumps back over the trapped floor to the golem and attacks it, joined by Jester, while Fjord uses Eldritch Blast to damage it. Nott notices glowing elements of the ballistas resemble the machinery she saw in Gelidon's lair. Caduceus jumps onto the control seat of one of the ballistas, seeing five buttons and a firing lever, but his intelligence can't decipher the meaning of the different-colored buttons. Pushing one at random, he fires a blast of cold energy at the golem. Nott then does the same. Beau succeeds in stunning it.

They continue to whack away at the golem. Caduceus hits a different button, but the resulting lightning attack hurts Beau and Jester in addition to the golem. Jester Commands it "off" once again. Nott's intelligence finally figures out the ballista's buttons, and they find acid is a straight line attack that won't harm the other surrounding party members. Nott gets the How do you want to do this? with the ballista's acid.

Break Edit

Part II Edit

As a giant eagle, Caleb ferries Beau and Jester to join the others at the ballistas. Nott unlocks the two boxes they found, and Caleb identifies the contents as a Headband of Intellect, which Beau takes, and a Rod of the Solitary Scout, which Jester keeps for now. The party takes a long rest, with Fjord standing watch all night outside the dome.

When they wake, Jester uses the mirror to contact Allura. Caleb asks about the war, and she tells them there has been an attack on Hupperdook. Jester is immediately concerned about Kiri's welfare. In addition, the Empire has retaken the Ashguard Garrison at the loss of many lives.

Nott is able to use thieves' tools to disable the charging mechanism of the ballistas to lengthen the amount of time between their shots, and after setting them off deliberately, the party runs out of the room and back onto the rocky islet floating just off the Tower. Caleb, in giant eagle form again, ferries the party up the Tower to the door they had seen earlier above the entrance. The door opens on a black void which they are sucked into and deposited in the Golem Workshop, where Caleb find instructions for assembling a golem servant.
Little Willi - Black Salander

Fan art of Little Willi, by BlackSalander.[art 2]

They agree to try to do it, and over four hours with each party member contributing a skill challenge in the process, succeed in building a squat golem that bonds to Caleb. He names it "Little Willi".

They push open the next door, and enter a strange hallway leading to the next room: the Experiment Chamber, smelling of old wet rot and chemicals. Green glowing orbs affixed to the wall provide flickering light across a thin layer of liquid covering the entire floor of the room. About ten glass pillars filled with murky liquid and holding dim shapes within are set along the center of the chamber at different elevations. There is a very faint rhythmic beating sound similar to a heartbeat.

Nott stealths to the nearest, cracked pillar, and sees a rotting corpse within. Fjord edges along the wall and can see that each pillar contains a warped humanoid shape, resembling the portrait of Halas but with cancerous growths with teeth and mouths where they are wounded. There are also three empty broken pillars. A shape drops from the ceiling: a hulking nine-foot-tall humanoid covered in pustules and boils, with four heads and six arms, its face bearing hair and beard reminiscent of Halas.

Featured Characters Edit

The Mighty Nein Edit

New Edit

Returning Edit

Mentioned Edit

Inventory Edit

Adjustment Count Item Source Destination Notes
Destroyed 1 rainbow stone Fjord golem Thrown at pursuing golem with antimagic ray, but Dispel Magic fails to activate
Acquired 1 Headband of Intellect Arcane Armory, Folding Halls Beau Raises INT to 19
Acquired 1 Rod of Solitary Scout Arcane Armory, Folding Halls Jester +2 to spell attacks, casts Grease, Magic Mouth, & Expeditious Retreat
Acquired 1 Collar of Silence Golem, Folding Halls Caleb Prevents wearer from speaking and casting spells with verbal components, unknown if it still functions

Quotations Edit

  • Jester: (about the Diadem of Intellect) What if it makes me look like a princess?
    Caleb: You already do.
  • Matt: (in the Golem Workshop) Materials are half set up here. It would take maybe about three hours to attempt it.
    Caleb: To make a golem servant with this--?
    Sam: Who would dote on you.

Trivia Edit

  • The Mighty Nein were updated about the current state of the war between the Dwendalian Empire and the Xhorhas Empire:
    • The Kryn launched a nighttime assault on Hupperdook, damaging and/or destroying the factories that created many of the Dwendalian war-machines and siege engines.
    • The Dwendalian Empire launched a counteroffensive in response to the assault on Hupperdook, by attempting to retake the Ashguard Garrison. While the counterattack was successful, the loss of lives on both sides makes it a Pyrrhic victory at best.
    • Allura Vysoren considered the conflict to have been "brought back to a central point", which suggests that the war is currently at a stalemate and/or the imperial borders are now at the status quo ante bellum.

Link to Episode TranscriptEdit

References Edit

Art:

  1. Fan art of the Tower Dimension, by BlackSalander (source).  Used with permission.
  2. Fan art of Little Willi, by BlackSalander (source).  Used with permission.


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