Lt. Gordon‘s suspected Droog meeting spot is a large, derelict building once known as Arkham Asylum. As the Punishers quietly make their approach they keep their eyes open for any opposition. For now the area seems deserted. Norman orders Gravilla to ascend to a good lookout position and watch for Droogs. The goliath leaves the party and climbs up a warehouse to keep watch. Wistark creeps stealthily to the asylum’s main entrance and listens for noises on the other side. Through the door he hears breathing, a rhythmic snort reminiscent of someone snoring. The wizard silently tries the door handle, but something inside blocks any attempt to quietly open it. He sneaks back to the group and relays his findings.
Ignatious creeps around the building to look for another entrance, but finds there to be nothing suitable at ground level. The Punishers direct their gaze upwards and notice that the large domed roof of the asylum sports a crack. And not just a crack, but a crack that is wide enough to serve as a point of entry. Despite his injuries, Grimlock offers to climb up there. He is given a rope and begins to scale the side of the building. The wounded dragonborn manages to be very quiet on the first half of the ascent, but by the second his tiring limbs betray him and send chunks of noisy rubble raining down to the ground below.
Eventually he reaches the crack in the stone dome, fixes the end of the rope and signals for his companions to climb. If it is hard for one person to climb up a building in silence, it is impossible for four. Though the adventurers strive to be stealthy, further loose debris crashes loudly onto the ground. The Capital Punishers hope fervently that there is no-one within earshot to notice. As the last climber joins the one-eyed dragonborn on the roof, the group prepare themselves to breach Arkham. Grimlock peeks inside.
In the days when the asylum was operational, the interior of the dome was held up by four stone pillars. Now only three remain, and the fourth lies broken on the floor. A balcony runs along the dome’s interior, and a ladder provides access to the floor below. Part of this balcony lies in pieces around the smashed column, but it is something else on the floor that is the subject of Grimlock’s attention. It is a drake, asleep up until a few moments ago, now awakened by the noisy climbers. It yawns and stretches its large, sinuous body as it gets to its feet.
A second yawn reveals a second drake. This one is huge with a low, heavy, reptilian build. Grimlock is transfixed by it. He stares with his good right eye, taking in every detail. The rest of the group grow impatient as the ‘quick peek’ begins to feel like an eternity. The bulk of the huge lizard blocks their only entrance. Wistark nudges the dragonborn from behind with his staff, but Grimlock does not feel it. Finally, he turns to face his comrades, but does not move aside. He says only, “The great drake is mine. You will not interfere”, before squeezing through the crack in the dome, leaping off the balcony and falling out of view. Wistark runs in after him, stares at the scene below and wonders what could possibly be going through Grimlock’s skullfucked head.
The fall to the ground is only an average one for Grimlock – thirty feet or so. He tries to aim his body as he falls. The two drakes glance upwards and see him. Suddenly he realises he will not make his target. He spreads his arms and legs in an attempt to buffer the impact as he slams into the ground between the two drakes, landing heavily on his fractured chest. His broken ribs are suddenly agonising and he lies stunned with his face in the dirt as the drakes begin to rake at him with claws and teeth.
Encounter: A Reptilian Intellect
The Capital Punishers fight a horde of dome-dwelling reptiles. The battle is not easy, and though the group emerge victorious they are too tired to explore the asylum. They retreat into the city and face unusual problems in their search for a place to stay for the night.