|DM Note: It's been assumed that there's been some resting done between sessions. Otherwise they'd have died quite early on.|
Although he'd not managed to get it open, the last orc archer had unfastened the door into the next room, and Caitlin and Yoshin cautiously cracked it open and looked inside.
1. A small unoccupied antechamber greeted their eyes, ten feet by fifteen, with doors in all three remaining walls. As they examined the doors, Yoshin cast a Mage Armour on both of them, learning from last time when the lack of it nearly killed them. Deciding on the south door, both of them examined it carefully for traps, despite no especial skills in that line. Their inexperience was rather illustrated as a sullen twang announced the triggering of an arrow trap and a rusty missile zipped between them to smack into the stone wall behind. Slightly shaken, they progressed into the corridor beyond and opened the door at the end.
18. In what was to become a typical process, both tried unsuccessfully to open the door as quietly as possible, then smashed it in despite the resultant noise. Beyond lay a fifteen by twenty-five foot room, once more unoccupied, but divided by a yawning crack opened by some shift in the rock in the thousand or so years since the fall of Sinval. Some heaps of sacks and some barrels stood on the far side of the crack.
Yoshin walked cautiously to the edge and peered in. The ragged hole extended down as far as he could see, and even if that was as far as it went he had no desire to fall into it. Unpacking his backpack, he unearthed his coil of rope and made one end fast around his waist, before handing the other end to Caitlin. The human belayed the rope around her waist and braced herself as the slender elf took a short run-up and sprang nimbly over the gap to land safely at the other side.
Any hopes for copious treasure were dashed, however, as the contents of the far half of the room turned out to be no more than they appeared... horribly decayed food stores, most no more than dust. Yoshin jumped back over the crack and the companions headed down the corridor to try their luck elsewhere.
10. Another door crashed open under their ungentle attentions, to reveal the remains of a bathing-chamber. Sconces in the walls, once filled with jars of costly oils and ungents, now held little more than dust and fragments of pottery; though Yoshin noticed a glitter of metal in one. Looking closer, he found a folded razor, obviously better crafted than the average as it had not decayed. Though it was little use to a bearded elf and a human woman, he took it along; it was potentially saleable.
6. Exiting at the far side of the bathroom, the pair crossed a hall and once more failed badly to open a door with any degree of stealth. As a result, when it did open, they found the seven kobolds inside quite alert and prepared for them, weapons raised. Caitlin bristled, recognizing them, but Yoshin held up a hand. "We have no quarrel with you," he said, speaking their own language, "we're just passing through after killing the orcs near the entrance."
A slightly larger kobold came to the front of the group. As the leader, he had clearly been entitled to the best of the group's loot, and just because it had been heavy armour designed for a being twice his size appeared to be no reason not to wear it. Two glittering eyes peered out over the gorget of a suit of banded armour, the tassets dragging on the ground behind him. "You killed the orcs?" he asked in the yappy tones of his kind. "er, yes," answered Yoshin, unsure of his ground. "Why do you work for them?" The kobold shrugged "They feed us, when we make traps for them. They feed us people like you! And they don't kill us, often." He brightened. "You killed the orcs? Does that mean their rooms are free?" "Yes," replied Yoshin, "you're welcome to them."
Immediately, the kobolds lost interest in the two adventurers and began packing up to move quarters. The pair were just leaving when a thought struck Caitlin. "Are there any more orcs in these ruins?" she asked. "Oh, yes," said the leader helpfully, lifting fingers as he counted. "One, and one, oh! and one, and one... no more than one!" he concluded, holding up about six fingers. She sighed and followed Yoshin out of the door.
17. Strangely, the room's two exits led to the same place, a twenty-foot square room that looked once to have been a music room. The instruments scattered on a raised stage area at the far side were long crumbled, but Caitlin stumbled on a cylindrical metal tin with a slot in the top. A little work seperated the two halves, to reveal some ancient Sinvalese gold coins inside - it was a collecting box. Equally pleased with the box as with the money, they took both and moved on.
15. For once they managed to get this door open silently, their movements covered as they realized by the sound of sharpening. Four more kobolds were here, these preparing weapons; their leader wore a night-black mask dotted with glittering gems. Emboldened by his previous success, Yoshin stepped firmly in. "Hail, Oh Great One!" he began, trying hard not to look down on the Masked Kobold despite being double his height.
The black-visaged reptillian recoiled with more than a touch of burlesque, striking a pose as he faced the intruders. "We met your compatriots down the hall," continued the elf, "and like them we don't want to fight you. We killed your former orc masters, and you'd be wiser to let us pass through - "
Caitlin nudged him.
"There's no other door out of this one," she pointed out quietly.
" - let us pass unmolested," continued Yoshin not missing a beat.
The Masked Kobold eyed him for a moment. "This other group," he declaimed, in a curious ringing voice utterly unlike a kobold's yappy staccato, "Describe their leader." Yoshin nodded. "Big armour; and helmet," he said firmly. The Masked Kobold swept a magnificent bow. "So! You did meet them. I go - and we shall spare you," he concluded magnanimously. Falling in behind, his henchbolds followed him out and they were gone.
7. At this door - for once - they paused to listen, and were rewarded by the sounds of fighting. Carefully peering in, they discovered a goblin and a hobgoblin, going at it tooth and nail. After a little whispered discussion, they elected to attack the bigger creature first and weaken it, so when it killed the goblin it would be more easily defeated. Yoshin launched a Magic Missile at it, and Caitlin followed up with an arrow.
|DM Note: Fumbled Diplomacy check by the normally urbane elf here... gave Peace no chance at all I'm afraid.|
This was rather more effective than they expected, as the arrow drilled the reddish humanoid between the eyes and dropped him in his tracks. Blinking over the corpse, the goblin hesitated, short mace half lifted, as Yoshin attempted to persuade it that they'd come to help it. A moment later, snarling "Elf! Kill elf, kill the elf!" it leaped the body and charged at them, grazing Yoshin as he backpedalled frantically trying to recast his long-expired Mage Armour. Disdaining the hazards of shooting into melee, Caitlin loosed again at point-blank range and killed it with a single shot.
Session Date: 10th Feb 2013