This tower seems to be under construction – at any given spot it has cranes, scaffolding, and/or odd smoke stacks belching black smoke. The tower itself is about probably about 100ft wide. We walk around to the “back”, where two ruts lead up to what looks like a loading dock. The rolled door at the top is pulled down and secured close. The door is quite stubborn, but we’re able to budge it enough to squeeze through/under. Aakpesh goes first, then I limbo (yes, limbo – I felt for some reason that a bit of flair was in order (NAT20!) ) under the door and on in.
The other side is a dark room, with a number of oily metal-looking crates, and one is open. Inside it seems to only contain a bunch of straw. And, it smells ozone-y, like after an electrical discharge. Like freshly-struck lightning. But my eyes had apparently failed me, as the crate contained a mason jar with a vibrant green fluid. Apparently it is a drug you drink called “Numerian fluid”. It makes you more insightful for an hour, but the chance for addiction is high. Many of the other crates are sealed, and unlike the door, resist our attempts to open them.
We open the only door and are greeted with a blast very loud noise – there’s a lot of machinery here, going up tower. There’s a less-than-safe looking stairwell without a railing wrapping around the inside wall. As we ascend, Tenlow gets hit in the face with a burst of smoke, and falls to the ground. He’s okay though, and makes his way back to us. We don’t make it much farther until we come across a gap in the stairs. Aakpesh of course makes it with relative ease, but I wouldn’t exactly call “jumping upwards over a gap in stairs” one of my strengths. We tie a rope under armpits (as a safety) and get Mr. Preston to give me a boost. I barely grab to bottom stair, and thankfully Aakpesh pulls me up.
We arrive at the top, finding a trap door in the ceiling. Jacques opens it a bit and throws a stun grenade in. When we enter, we find a dwarf with a metal pegleg unconscious on the floor. I stabilize and then heal him, and wake him up. His name is Ironfoot and he calls this tower the Black Iron Foundry. In conversation, the Technic League comes us, and like most before us, it makes him skittish too.
He takes out a number of jars, each a different color, and glasses. He goes to take a drink, and Mr. Preston knocks it out of his hand. The dwarf is rightfully incensed as it costs him 250g to make the drink. After things calm a bit, everyone else takes a shot. Upon seeing Aakpesh grow some metal mesh armor, I can’t help myself. I take a shot, and thankfully resist its addicting effects. I don’t develop armor, but I do feel wiser – wise enough to know not to take another drink (I get +2 to wis for 3 days).
Things are fuzzy for a bit though, and next thing I know, Jacques touches Preston with neural inhibitor. I have to admit, it is a bit amusing.
Ironfoot invites us to dinner. He claps, and two menacing-looking drones peel from walls. They return not with malice, but with a roast. It has 7 (or is it 9?) legs. And – I’m not really sure – they step back and seem to look proud?
Well, darkness starts to descend outside, and it seems to make Ironfoot nervous. While we appreciate his courtesy, we feel it’s best to be on our way.