Students of Strixhaven EP 23 – Crunch Time

The party stand in the security office at Quandrix, with Vestan having just been plane shifted away by an unknown assailant. They wrap things up with Captain Annette Dawn, with her taking the ‘tuning fork’ for safekeeping and asking the party for their discretion on the events, to avoid a panic among the student body.

A few days later Arth approaches the party. He confides that he lied about Vestan taking the chest, and that he still has it, having kept it a secret from Captain Dawn. They discuss what to do with it, and agree to research the spell it is apparently tied to. Trix recalls coming across a book discussing Conjuration magics, but can’t remember the specific name. Sometime later they make their way to the Biblioplex and look through the shelves. They eventually find a dusty book called The Writings and Musings of Leomund. Reviewing the book in greater detail they find a chapter about Leomund’s Secret Chest and read about what it does:

You hide a chest, and all its contents, on the Ethereal Plane. You must touch the chest and the miniature replica that serves as a material component for the spell. The chest can contain up to 12 cubic feet of nonliving material (3 feet by 2 feet by 2 feet).

While the chest remains on the Ethereal Plane, you can use an action and touch the replica to recall the chest. It appears in an unoccupied space on the ground within 5 feet of you. You can send the chest back to the Ethereal Plane by using an action and touching both the chest and the replica.

After 60 days, there is a cumulative 5 percent chance per day that the spell’s effect ends. This effect ends if you cast this spell again, if the smaller replica chest is destroyed, or if you choose to end the spell as an action. If the spell ends and the larger chest is on the Ethereal Plane, it is irretrievably lost.

Leomund’s Secret Chest (D&D – Player’s Handbook)

They consider what to make of the information, and realise that if Vestan hasn’t yet chosen to end the spell, or if the spell’s effect hasn’t ended, they might be able to access the contents of the real chest on the Ethereal plane if they can find it. Arth mentions he might be able to ask Professor Brenneth Blackstone for assistance with inter-planar travel, but that they might also need to use a Locate Object spell scroll once they arrive. For now however they agree to focus and deal with their pending end of year exams which are coming up in two days time.

Two days later, the party are in the midst of preparing for the exams. First up is Magical Physiologies, their shared class taught by Veralda Lang. They walk into the exam hall and sit down for the first part of their exam, which is multiple choice about the disposition and habits of Owlbears. The party (excluding Arth) do well, passing the first component. The second part of the exam is a written essay about taming, training and handling Owlbears, consisting of an animal handling check. Both Arth and Khorvus do well, with natural 20s, they feel empowered to write lengthy articles about what they know of the monstrosities. Edolkar struggles a little bit, still adapting to long-form written theory, while Trix panics, writing instead about Owls, and not Owlbears. As the students leave, Khorvus enquires about why they couldn’t do another physical exam like for the Slaadi (thanks to Changeling Professor Rixi) and finds out that Athena, Trix’s cousin, put in a complaint. The party then move off for their individual exams.

First up, Khorvus goes to Silverquill campus for Introduction to Oratory Techniques. To change things up a bit, each elective class has a unique sort of puzzle involved, instead of just rolling more dice. Khorvus’ challenge consists of a crossword puzzle, which is included below for you to attempt as well:

A crossword puzzle consisting of four 'across' spaces and three 'down' spaces.


1) The founder dragon of Silverquill
4) One of three components for spellcasting
5) A component used for Minor Illusion
7) Absence of light, also a popular 2nd level spell.


2) One of Silverquill’s philosophical foci
3) The source of raw magic for arcane spellcasters
6) The Silverquill Dean of Shadow

With the assistance of the out-of-game players (and in-game Edolkar who happened to be walking past who coughs out an answer), Khorvus is able to complete the crossword puzzle and gain access to Silvery Barbs, a powerful counter-spell.

Arth undertakes a simple written examination on Quandrix campus for his Introduction to Forms and Fractals class with Professor Deekah, before being directed to leave through a set of doors towards the rear of the examination hall. As he walks through, he finds himself in a locked courtyard. The door he stepped through is firmly locked, and in front of him is a weird triangular-shaped door, filled with a number of smaller triangles. Can you figure out how it should open?

Arth makes use of his knowledge of fractals and exponential equations to unlock the door, stepping through and learning Vortex Warp.

Edolkar travels to Witherbloom campus for The Danger of Misidentified Spell Components with Professor Willowdusk. One by one, students enter a small laboratory hut until it is Edolkar’s turn. He enters and is given a puzzle task of preparing exactly 5 cups worth of Honeybark Extract, a spell component. He is given only a 7-cup jug and 4-cup jug, so must carefully balance and pour between the two. Edolkar is given access to a sink to tip contents out, and can fill the cups as much as needed from a tap, but must provide to WIllowdusk exactly 5 cups worth. Can you figure out how to do this by pouring and filling between the two jugs?

Edolkar makes quick work of the challenge, finding a suitable way to pour and empty between the two jugs to reach 5 cups worth exactly. He provides this to Professor Willowdusk who congratulates him on passing the course, and helps him to finalise learning the Entangle spell.

Trix travels to Kollema Hall on Lorehold campus, to attend her exam on Examining and Identifying Historical Arcane Artifacts, taught by Osgir. This would normally be held in his workshop, but it is currently closed while he inspects the ‘dode door’ in greater detail. Trix’s puzzle takes place in the form of a logic puzzle, which is included below.

GM Note: This was my first attempt at making a logic puzzle (which Michelle enjoys), but we quickly realised during play I didn’t construct enough clues correctly to reach a full answer. The clues provided below have since been modified to be solvable. I hope you enjoy!

You can read more about “Logic Puzzles” on Wikipedia

Updated Clues:

  • Of the artefacts discovered by Futsil Eagerhorn and Felstrum Stormbane, one uses Conjuration magic and the other uses Evocation magic.
  • The artefact discovered in a busy market square uses Transmutation magic.
  • Neither Kalandriel Mooreseeker nor Ethan Myers discovered the Gem of Brightness or Daern’s Instant Fortress.
  • The artefact that Abjuration magic was discovered in a forgotten society.
  • Only one of the following is true:
    • Futsil Eagerhorn discovered an artefact in the foothills of a kingdom.
    • Felstrum Stormbane discovered Daern’s Instant Fortress.
  • Kalandriel Mooreseeker did not discover an artefact that uses Transmutation magic.
  • The artefact discovered in the depths of an unexplored cavern uses Evocation magic.
  • Daern’s Instant Fortress, the artefact that uses transmutation magic, and the artefact discovered in an unexplored cavern were discovered by Felstrum Stormbane, Ethan Myers and Futstil Eagerhorn.
  • Ethan Myers and Futstil Eagerhorn discovered the Universal Solvent and the artefact that uses Conjuration magic.

Trix successfully recalls the information she needs to pass the exam, and promptly answers the questions. With everyone having completed a ‘challenge’ for their final exams, the party all walk to the Bow’s End Tavern to celebrate the end of the year (and the end of this season of the podcast!).