This week I read:
Last Days by Adam Nevill
This is the second Adam Nevill book I’ve read, after The Ritual back in 2020, and I greatly enjoyed this one too. It’s about an independent film-maker hired on short notice and for a lot of money to make a film about a hippy suicide cult from a few decades previously, specifically focussing on the paranormal aspects of the cult. It’s done really well, it was creepy, I thought the build-up was really effective.
The idea of 500-year-old undead phasing through solid walls as they force their way out of hell and into our reality—leaving behind horrifying images burned into the walls which fade in the presence of daylight—is great.
I’ll definitely be picking up some more Adam Nevill books.
Volumes 11 and 12 of Delicious in Dungeon by Ryoko Kui
Well, the demon turned out to be the bad guy after all. Figures.
Anyway, this brings me to the end of the physically published manga: there are some chapters left, but they’re not in volume format yet. Which means given the translation lag, it’s realistically looking like late 2024 / early 2025 at the earliest before I’ll be able to finish the story.
The Halls of Arden Vul
We managed to fix the Miro issue, so we have now switched over fully from Owlbear.
It was another fun session, in which I managed to stall the players for close to half an hour of real-time by just having the apparently-evil NPC wizard being willing to negotiate fairly with them. It was totally in-character: he knew the party was dangerous, and was willing to give up quite a bit just for their promise to leave him alone. The players couldn’t get over the idea that there must be an ulterior motive, that this must be a trap or a trick somehow—but no, this is just the result of them gaining a reputation for being wizard-killing badasses.
On the other hand, the players have been drastically underthinking some of the rumours they’ve previously gathered. A while back they got one about a secret door in a fairly distinctive room near some landmark. The players found the landmark a couple of sessions ago, walking through the distinctive room to get there, and the penny… hasn’t dropped yet. I even reminded them at the start of this session (and by the way, they passed both the landmark and the distinctive room again this session) to keep an eye on their rumour list, since they were exploring new territory.
There’s only so much I can do. I don’t want to just come straight out and say “hey guys, don’t you think this room you’re in right now sounds like the one in that rumour?”
Next week: Black Sword Hack!