Our third session started off with quite a bit of fortress-building. A trap was constructed at the fortress’s cave entrance, such that anything much heavier than a dwarf that tried to walk inside would get hit in the face with a tree trunk. I believe that was Tordek Beardhammer’s idea, even though his player wasn’t with us during the session. Our fortress also now includes a couple workshops and a small farm. Better yet, prospectors found deposits of both magnetite (an iron ore) and granite.
In the process of all that mining, the entrance to a subterranean cave was found. It turned out to be quite large, and contained both a small pool of water and a phantom menace that inflicted Shydar Ale’hat’oont with a particularly toxic poison. It took quite a bit of effort to identify the invisible threat as a Phase Spider, which have the unfortunate habit of wandering into the ethereal plane, where physical attacks can’t harm them. The party closed ranks and tried to wait it out, quickly squashing the beast when it materialized to attack them.
The cave cleared, building continued. But only a week later, a watchdwarf noticed something quite odd about the pile of waste rock that was being used to block off the east end of the fortress’s valley: it was shrinking. A more careful examination revealed toothmarks on some of the rocks, which the dwarves considered to be quite worrisome. They kept a watch throughout the night to discover what kind of creature was eating their useless chalk; it turned out to be an Ironspine Dragon. A debate broke out over what to do with the ironspine, complicated by the possibility that it might be intelligent, friendly, or both. Ironspines are also known to be burrowers, making pit traps less practical than they might otherwise be.
The session ended before a solution to the ironspine problem could be agreed upon. Nevertheless, everyone got to level up.