Before we got to resting I figured that any remaining goblins from below might try to sneak up on us during the night. So I rigged up a little surprise using their own tripwire and various bits of metal to make noise. Not surprisingly we heard it go off in the middle of our rest, followed by the sound of a rapid retreat. I couldn’t help but chuckle – goblins are soooooo dumb!
After resting we headed out, confident in our fully refreshed arsenal. At the bottom of the steps there was a hallway that ended in a strong locked double door. There was no sound on the other side so I tried to pick the lock. Silly me to expect a well crafted dwarven lock in this former dwarven stronghold – it threw me off completely that it was crappy goblin manufacture! I even broke off a damn tool making all sorts of noise. If goblins had a clue about craftsmanship…but no, it actually took me two tries to get the damn thing open.
Unfortunately something on the other side must have heard me with the lock and we opened the doors to an arrow! Inside a large room were three hobgoblins and two goblins – including one of those damn shaman. He threw a cloud at the door and the two big hobgoblins came to meet us. One hobgoblin stayed back to shoot arrows and the one goblin stayed back to protect the shaman.
The cloud obscured our vision and the hobgoblins were well armored so the battle was tough and we were taking a beating. I dodged through the front line and out of the cloud to get a shot at the hobgoblin archer and the shaman. Though I hit them hard with my arrows they responded in kind and soon I was bleeding from several wounds. Fortunately the cleric and paladin with the support of the wizard had finally cracked the hobgoblin phalanx and gotten into the room. The paladin managed to get over to me and despite being blinded gave some divine healing. Somehow we finally managed to wear them down and finish off the goblin shaman.
There was blood, spent arrows, and scorch marks all over the room – slightly too much of the blood being from us! The goblins had a disgusting bedroom with some valuables…but I guess indicating that a goblin bedroom is disgusting goes without saying.
In the main room was a long staircase that curved around the outside of a cylindrical chasm that fell away several hundred feet into the ground. When we got to the bottom there was a long hallway that seemed to lead to some sort of burial chamber. Standing vigil over the sarcophagus was an ornamented goblin shaman who wanted to chat for a bit. He seemed a bit insecure in his devotion to his “god” so we tried to sow some doubt. I figured this goblin was crazier than normal and was right – he held to his beliefs and then did some transformation that turned him into the ogre king!
The battle was on and we waded in. The ogre king/shaman had all sorts of horrid tricks up its sleeve and seemed to be almost unkillable! Of course at an inopportune time my bow cracked and was useless. So I charged in with my knives stabbing for all I was worth. The wizard tossed out this huge ball of flame that flailed at the ogre repeatedly burning him. Meanwhile the cleric and paladin seemed to be pulling out every divine trick their gods provided them.
The paladin was taking a beating and actually seemed to back off for a moment and what happened next was really…weird? Disgusting? Strange? The paladin’s blood seemed to boil out of his armor and leap out at the ogre burning it wherever it touched him. I’ve seen a lot of pretty strange and disgusting things in my time but that made the bile rise in my throat.
Finally, between the cutting, stabbing, divine powers, and flame the ogre king visage fell away from the goblin shaman and he fell dead.
We all kind of looked at the Paladin, but no one said anything.
In the sarcophagus was a creature that looked like an ogre but wasn’t quite the same. We cleaned up and grabbed a few odd items that were in the room then started our long trek home.
On the way back to Loudwater the Paladin, who had been rather quiet suddenly spoke up. He explained that the whole “blood” ordeal was something to do with his destiny or some crap. I don’t know – it was some kind of divine magic mumbo-jumbo. He said it just “happens” some times which is some cause for worry as I hope it doesn’t happen to one of us! I thought I saw the cleric Rong making some notes about it but I’m not sure. The wizard looked a little disgusted but coming from a guy that likes to burn and blow things up, that isn’t necessarily meaningful.
When we finally returned to Loudwater Kurvar told us that the ogre king was actually an “Oni”. Apparently that is some sort of magical ogre-like creature not native to this area but the goblins worshipped it. As I mentioned before, goblins is sooooo dumb.
So now we’re looking to take some of our gains and buy some nice gear from Garwan’s shop.