Scores of strange faces have descended upon Enonia as of late. Most are naught but chaff – profiteers, snagged by the lure of new money flowing into the economy (with all the king’s men many leagues away). Still, a few are different. Outdoorsmen, who speak of vaguely of interest in forces and disturbances and balances – not entirely unlike the Trollkin. They are largely dirty and unkempt and could well be hermits, perhaps of the holy variety, perhaps not. I shallt be watching them closely. And Shoeless Joe hath returned, mayhaps having drunk his entire share of our joint findings. I shalt watch him closer still.
Our destination was the remains of the Wayfarer’s Inn, our hopes being that the dragon had driven out the goblins, but that we could yet find where the cellar entrance had been, and excavate our way in.
Fire beetles dining on venison impeded our path, but we were happy to delay until they were done, relieved to have only encountered them and not The Dragon. Our hopes of tunneling in withered upon inspection of the ruins. No hints of the former layout remained and our memories failed to recollect the precise cellar location. With no guidance, we had no desire to dig aimlessly, and abandoned our plan.
Our next sojourn was to the Dwarven Mine. The area remained unchanged from our last visit, particularly that there was no sign of orcs left behind to occupy the region. We found our way in through one of the known entrances. A hidden door was located, but, saving for an unpleasant trap, none could find a thing of note in the short corridor beyond.
Next we stumbled across a pathetic kobold survivor and the rodents he considered pets or guards. He claimed, with plausible sincerity, that the king, his clan, and his family had been slaughtered and he hoped only to survive and find more of his kind. Some seemed as if they might make to slay him, but he was permitted to tell his tale and be on his way.
We excavated some rock and carefully lowered ourselves down a series of ledges. Had they not been prior traversed in safety by Teela and others, I know not whether I should have attempted such a climb. The descent placed us in an enormous labyrinth of Dwarven mining tunnels. A major branch was chosen and we followed it far. Along the way, we chanced upon some form of demon imp, but the pest presumably respected our numbers and fled. Having no desire to stray from the path or meet any of his associates, we pursued it not.
The corridor came to pass, none too soon, in the form of a giant spiky door. We opened it and peered inside, finding it to be enormous. The room inscription spoke of guardians, and we, running low on light sources and feeling unprepared for such a great undertaking, turned back.
On the return, we were stopped by an undying patrol, consisting of two dwarven corpses and one of their automatons. The dwarves were appropriately cowed by the Light and the contraption put up little fight.
Back in the upper level, we did a brief bit of reconnaissance and mapping, exeunting the hill by means of another corridor.
Mazlor, beacon of the Light