Part 4 of the Keep series.
“Light me a torch and join me Ereptor. And you, the elf, come too. Let us investigate this cave and report what we see.” Says Zoltan in a casual manner.
“I think we should all go into the cave together. Here, I’ll go get my lantern,” suggests Corran.
Durin thanks Grendel with a pat on the back and turns to the party and says, “Not to sound greedy but perhaps we should look in the direction the ogre came from to find his lair and maybe his treasure? Not delay and we can press on into the caves. If we do continue into the caves I vote we do it together.” So speaks Durin the warrior.
I agree we should enter the caves as one group (together), there are strength in number’s, Grendel begins to light a torch, than thinks,” but perhaps we should find out where the ogre came from first”, agreeing with Durin, “treasure sounds good to me”, Grendel say’s with a smile.
“Hello,” says Ereptor and comes out from the bushes. “I was trying to sneak around him, I didn’t expect it to end so soon.” Now let us go inside.
After hearing Ereptor’s reason for stepping out of the bushes, Grendel just let’s out a short giggle, as he look’s to the other’s, “so what is the decision, are we to track back to the ogres, lair or enter the caves”, let us decide.
“Okay, I can see all your points.” Speaks Corran, “Perhaps we should go in search of this Ogre’s lair, though I think there are more than just 1 or 2 of them, we should be cautious.”
“I believe stealth would be our best ally,” says Zoltan.
“If you insist then by all means go and scout Zoltan, but do not leave us out here too long. I know it is not a great idea to split up the party, but I might have a look to see if there is any treasure nearby. Anyone else is welcome to join me especially if you have a light source.” Durin walks to the trees to try and spot any tracks or tell tale signs of an ogre lair nearby.
“I agree with Corran, lets go fight the smaller creatures first”, Gwynth said in a cautious tone. “The ogres seem to be a little more than this group can handle at the moment, but if you guys really want to do it, I will be sure to guard the rear!”
“Ogres, more than we can handle!” said Grendel, to Gwynth, shaking his head, “if they bleed, they can die, no problem, eh Durin.” laughed Grendel, slapping him on the shoulder, in a friendly gesture.
“Alright everybody,” began Corran, “we are not going to get anywhere being pig headed or greedy. The priest at the inn said to check the caves. That is what I purpose to do, besides the goblins may have a treasure in the cave, and they are more our caliber at this point. I say let us all go in and explore the cave.”
“I think we shall go in now.” Said Ereptor, “We are a big group now so will probably “kick some ass” We need some kind of light, but we also need someone to scout so we will be aware if someone is coming They will probably see the light before we see them.”
“I nominate the thief to scout ahead, he can sneak around, find any traps along the way, I will venture up front with him if, that helps, never ask any one to do any thing your not willing to do yourself, I always say!” but let’s get going, said Grendel impatiently.
“I believe we must always have an advantage. If we all go into this cave, we all may die. But if a few of us go in the hobgoblin cave with stealth, we all can reap benefits in the long run”, says Zoltan. ” Let the thieves go in, hiding in shadows, searching for traps, then we’ll come out at report to you all”
“On second thought, I believe a thief and the elf should go up front to scout. Stealth will be our best bet,” interjects Corran.
“If the thieves want to go in, I say ok. The rest of us will wait here and cover your backsides”, said Gwynth.
“Ok,” says Zoltan, ” Ereptor and I will go into the cave. I’ll use my bow as I pretty good with it. Ereptor, you hold the lantern and use your sword. I have a gut feeling that you are better with a sword than I am. We’ll should go in 200 feet, look and listen, and then come back here to the party and report. You guys be ready. If we come running out, be ready to start fighting. We can always get out of the way, rather easy.”
Grendel say’s in a gruff voice, “we shall be ready, if a fight, arises, already the goblinoids, have tasted my steel.”
“I agree with Zoltan,” says Corran, “his plan is sound, is everyone agreed?”
“AGREED!” Says Grendel.
” Good,” says Zoltan, “then we’re all set.”
“I’m not so very good on sneaking yet,” says Ereptor, “but we can try. I don’t think it is good idea to have a lantern when you shall sneak, but that just what I think. Wouldn’t they see you easier?
“Good luck guys!” sings Gwynth, “Zoltan, need someone to hold your money bag? I’d hate to have the jingling noise alert the goblins!”
“Good, let’s go in Ereptor,” says Zoltan.
The two thieves slowly approach and enter the cave. Leaving the rest of the party outside the cave.
While waiting outside the cave for the return of your scouting party some vultures have begun to descend upon the dead ogre. They are making a lot of noise as they slowly tear at the fallen beast.
While waiting for the thieves to return, Durin turns to Grendel and says “I wonder if those goblins you scared off are going to get reinforcements or even setting up an ambush. That would not be pleasant for our little scout friends. And by the way I did find a trail though the bushes where the ogre came from.”
“Hopefully, the goblin’s were scared off, into hiding more so than regrouping, I really hacked the hell out of there comrade, any way if the scouting party needs us we will be there, besides there only goblin’s, the thieves can hold there own, I would hope” said Grendel in a gruff voice, his attention was sparked when Durin mentioned he found a trail, to the Ogres lair, “excellent my friend, we could always come back to it, good work”.
Durin says, “I wonder how much time has gone by since the scouts have left? Maybe we should go after them if they don’t return soon.”
“I don’t want to go in after them,” said Gwynth thoughtfully,” I say we go check out that path!”
Durin glares at Gwynth and says, “The Thieves may be foolish in their actions, but they are part of our party and you are too. So we need to look out for each other. If they don’t come back in 5 minutes I think we should go in after them. The path will be there when we get back. What do the rest of you think?”
Grendel glared angrily at Gwynth, after she said “I don’t want to go after them”, referring to the thieves instead she wanted to investigate the ogre path, “this is news you could have shared with us before we sent out our fellow party member’s on a scouting mission, I will not abandon them, they could be in danger, I say we go search for them, if you wish to follow the trail, that is your choice, I will search out and find our fellow party member’s, but if they are in danger I am sure they will not be too impressed, that you chose to venture off instead of coming to there rescue, like Durin said, the path will be there when we get back”, with those final words Grendel lit a torch, drew his sword and prepared to enter the caves, with his party, in search of there, scout’s.
“I agree with Durin.” Says Corran, “We should wait. Give them another 5 min. then we’ll enter the cave. I have my lantern right here ready to go.”
“Excuse me oh wise Corran, but didn’t you give you lantern to Ereptor? I guess you will be going in the cave, but you will be going in blind!” smirked Gwynth. ” I guess we can give them another 5 minutes, but don’t expect me to go in after a bunch of thieves.”
Grendel hands a torch to Corran, “I have extra’s, take one, my friend”, he say’s, as he extends the torch toward, Corran, Grendel still wait’s at the cave entrance, ” 5 minutes, than we enter the cave, I wonder what the scouting party is up to”, he say’s as he, look’s back to the party.
A distant scream echoes from the cave entrance.