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  #251  
Unread 20th of January, 2011, 07:27
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The party was no more sure how to continue than they, and so the silence dragged on. Slowly, everyone's eyes turned to Ieza; she was, after all, the first to aid them.

She shivered abruptly, prompting Laban to coil tightly next to her. "I, um--suppose you'd prefer if we closed the doors?"

Once someone had done so, she forced a laugh. It was weak, but took some of the tension out of the air. "With that out of the way... Call me Ieza. I'm a... an adventurer, I suppose. What do you call yourselves?"
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  #252  
Unread 21st of January, 2011, 00:40
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"The magic needs time to recharge," the one who hadn't spoken earlier replies dismissively to the suggestion to close the doors, clearly proud to know this little factoid before realizing that he spoken aloud and again relapsing into silence and starting the silent negotiation with his partner over who would respond to the question.

"Is it safe now?" Sertanian's voice asks from the shadows as Lorien moves to close the doors to the north, reminding the whole party of the former prisoner's presence. "Have you killed some more hobos?"

Hearing Sertanian's voice, seems to resolve the dispute between two creatures with the first to speak apparently having been 'elected' spokesman, "We are Kieran. You searching for prisoners?"
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  #253  
Unread 21st of January, 2011, 01:54
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Ril paused. "...yes. We're, uh, recovering them. We'd like to leave as soon as possible."
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  #254  
Unread 21st of January, 2011, 04:26
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Lorien regarded the creepers coldly. He might make an exception for a friendly minotaur, but in general he had no use for monstrous folk, and he greatly mistrusted the looks of these two. He held his silence for the moment, though.
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  #255  
Unread 21st of January, 2011, 11:41
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"Recover? Leave? You will take the prisoners away?" Kieran replies. "The Red Hand will not like that. How do you convince them?"

"Kill every last one of them," Sertanian replies, walking into the room, having apparently decided that if the party is talking with someone then the danger must be over. "We routed the Red Hand out of the Elsir Vale a couple of decades ago and we'll do it again if necessary. And this time we won't leave a single hobgoblin left alive to spread the tale again."

Looking confused, the two Kieran (it's not clear whether "Kieran" is a name or a species) look around for someone to confirm or deny Sertanian's assertion.
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  #256  
Unread 21st of January, 2011, 11:46
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"One step at a time. First we make sure the prisoners are safe. Then we can work out further plans. Hobbs that happen to be in the way we kill, but otherwise let's not go looking for trouble."
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  #257  
Unread 21st of January, 2011, 12:05
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Lorien abruptly slapped Sertanian on the back, sending the man staggering a step in the process.

"That's the spirit! No mercy for the hobbos!"
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  #258  
Unread 23rd of January, 2011, 01:46
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Sertanian is clearly staggered by Lorien's friendly slap, a not too subtle reminder of the man's age and recent captivity.

Nodding his head as if in agreement with the sentiments just expressed, the Kieran spokesman says, "We can show you the prisoners. Hobgoblins are not very secretive about where they keep them."

Something about the Kieran's offer of help, however, strikes Ieza and Ril as insincere. He's not lying directly, but he isn't exactly telling them everything either.
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Last edited by Black Plauge; 8th of February, 2011 at 06:33.
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  #259  
Unread 1st of February, 2011, 11:46
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"That... would be helpful. Most likely." Ieza spoke deliberately, eyes constantly shifting back to Ril. She could tell that he didn't trust them, either. Still, neither of them seemed up to the task of wheedling more information out of the creepers, so trusting them was probably the best option for now.

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  #260  
Unread 8th of February, 2011, 07:37
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"We take you to loud dwarf first. Hobgoblins treat him very badly."

Leading the way back through the complex, the Kieran retrace the party's steps to this point, taking them all the way back to the first room with it's moving braziers. From there, they take the East door, opposite the one the party had taken. This corridor starts as a mirror image of the west one, but after turning the corner heads up a long set of stairs, where an ominous glow emanates from the top.

[OOC: I'm having some problems with my CC3 installation (I'm having to recreate it on a new computer) and need to work them out so that I have access to my maps again. I'll continue this update once I get that worked out.]
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  #261  
Unread 22nd of February, 2011, 09:33
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Reaching the top of the stairs, the lead Kieran pauses to allow the party to catch up, giving them a chance to view the room before entering.
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  #262  
Unread 24th of February, 2011, 05:20
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Crossing under a lintel inscribed "Von Jallach Family Tomb" the light from the party's sunrods begins to overwhelm the glow they had seen from the stairs, but not before the first ones into the room (Taraka and Lorien) notice the source: a set of ruins glowing on the floor.

Across the room from the stairs, Taraka's eyes are drawn to two nests which appear to be the homes of some needlefang drakes, a diminutive cousin of the guard drake that the hobgoblins had with them earlier.

Turning the corner at the immediate top of the stairs, the Kieran coos softly at the needlefang drakes sending those roused by the party's approach back into their nest. "Pets," he declares proudly. "Bring big bads down to our level."

Rather clumsily disguised in the cooing, however, the Kieran is passing a message to someone. The message is in Elven, enabling several party members to understand it: "Powerful hobgoblin enemies. No key."

"Avoid runes," the Kieran continues in a normal voice in Common, "Old magic like fire guardians. Runes hurt those who step."

Put on the alert by the message, Ril glances nervously around the room, getting the feeling that there is someone there that he can't see. Oddly, however, the room seems to lack anyplace for someone to hide. All the alcoves, save for the two which contain the nests for the needlefang drakes, are empty, providing evidence that the crypt was never used.
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Last edited by Black Plauge; 24th of February, 2011 at 05:32.
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  #263  
Unread 24th of February, 2011, 08:20
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Ril stifled his initial urge to panic, and casually waved at the others not to react, assuming they'd picked up on something suspicious happening.
He did, however, become very interested in the room, peering into the various shadowy areas, though he masked it as "keeping an eye out for runes."

[Active spot checks? Can I do that? I'm assuming you'll roll them anyway.]
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  #264  
Unread 28th of February, 2011, 01:06
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Taraka recognized the message in the Kieran's cooing but did not immediately react. He focused on not stepping on the runes. He kept glancing about, doing his best to take in everything so that when the shoe dropped he was ready.

[Active Spot Checks, too.]
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  #265  
Unread 15th of March, 2011, 00:57
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Put on edge by the overheard message and the sense of an unseen presence, Ril glances around the room in what he hopes is a surreptitious manner, but cannot confirm or deny his earlier feeling.

"Runes only in center of floor," the Kieran remarks to Ril's peering. "They glow too. Very hard to miss."

Opening the door, the Kieran continues to lead the party into the next room, from which the party can hear the sound of flowing water as soon as the door is opened.

Taking a final glance around the room, Taraka gets the same strong sense of an unseen presence that Ril got earlier, but also cannot pin point a source for that feeling.

As the party's lights flood into the adjacent room, the first thing that catches the eye is a fountain of clean water, a groan and a voice from the far end of the room, however, soon draws the attention away from this sight.

"Back for some more," the weak but clearly resilient voice declares. "Beat me all you want, I still say you're nothing more than dirt and stupid to boot."

Looking to the far end of the room, the party sees a badly beaten dwarf shackled to the wall. His face is a mess of bruises, swelling his eyes shut, and he dangles from arms in a similar state. His left ankle swells ominously and his right knee is bent at an awkward angle. He clearly has had a very rough time of it.
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  #266  
Unread 15th of March, 2011, 09:05
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Merde.

Ril raised a hand to the group, stopping them from doing anything hasty.
He glared at the nearest Kieran and snapped off in elven, "Someone is going to have to explain this now before problems start."
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  #267  
Unread 16th of March, 2011, 12:11
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"Hobgoblins not nice to dwarf," the Kieran responds in elven, "We tell you before."

Confusion, fear, surprise, offense, and several other emotions play across the Kieran's face as he finishes, apparently realizing for the first time what language the exchange had taken place in.

"Heh?" the dwarf groans, "Elven? You're not hobgoblins. Who are you?"
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  #268  
Unread 17th of March, 2011, 17:11
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Ril thought for a second. What.
He grumbled back, now in common (why had he spoken in elven?), "Yes, but why is the hobgoblin prisoner in your... home? I assumed we were being taken to the Hobgoblin's 'jail' as it were."
He glanced at the dwarf, then added in broken dwarven, "We're from Brindol. We're here to get you out. What do you know of the dark-skinned things?"

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  #269  
Unread 17th of March, 2011, 23:23
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"Kieran not live with dead," Kieran replies, reverting back to common and making a face at the thought, "and especially not with not-dead. Hobgoblins split prisoners up. Make them easier to handle."

"From Brindol, eh?" the dwarf asks, "Then how about a drink of some of that water I can hear. The hobgoblins haven't given me anything since they captured me and the others and it's been pure torture having to listen to that fountain for hours without a drink."

After getting a drink, the dwarf continues: "Your accent is worse than an elven beer," he says, wincing in mockery, "but I haven't seen any dark-skinned things, unless you're referring to the undead they keep threatening us with. Not that I've seen those either. I'm just not inclined to discount those threats given our location."
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  #270  
Unread 18th of March, 2011, 00:33
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Ril continued to grumble in dwarven as he moved to the dwarf. "Eheh funny. 'Dark skin' I mean the... almost goblin like creeping things."
He pulled a flask, offering it to the dwarf. "You know the elven speaking things just behind me with the small dragons and such. I'm trying to understand whose side they're on."
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  #271  
Unread 18th of March, 2011, 01:45
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"Son, my eyes are so swollen shut that I can barely see you standing next to me," the dwarf responds, "The only goblins I saw before that happened, however, have had the usual greenish-yellow skin and spoke their own guttural language or common. The hobgoblins did have a couple of riding drakes and a guard one, though, if that's what you mean by `small dragons.'"

"Now how about getting me out of these chains. As much as I might enjoy talking to you, right now I have the choice between pain in my legs or my arms. I'd much prefer to lie down."
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  #272  
Unread 18th of March, 2011, 02:07
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Ieza hustles to the dwarf almost on instinct, but hesitates about ten feet before him. "...Right. Ril, can you pick the lock on his shackles?" She tries to focus her attention on the dwarf, but constantly checks back to see what the creepers are doing. Laban is even more focused, coiled and swaying its head as it watches the one near the fountain.
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  #273  
Unread 18th of March, 2011, 05:32
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Taraka didn't know much about magic, or indoor plumbing, for that matter, but it struck him as odd that the fountain would be here and that the water would be quite as clean as it was. His attention shifted back to the dwarf as Ieza and Ril discussed opening the shackles. Sometimes the ranger wished he had the ability to pick locks, but traveling through the forests meant that his exposure to things like shackles was limited.
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  #274  
Unread 18th of March, 2011, 13:01
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Ril slipped back into common, mumbling under his breath. "You know it's not really like I pick locks all the time you know. Not really my thing."
He pulled out a couple metal rods, just springy enough to be used for picking locks.
"I mean look at these things. Not proper tools, because I'm not a proper lockpick. Can be put away for carrying those things. Not proper at all. We could be here all day since I don't know what I'm doing."

[Thievery checks 5 22 14 11 17 then take 20 or whatever]
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  #275  
Unread 19th of March, 2011, 00:02
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While Ril's first attempt at picking the locks does well to prove his muttering true, he must have gotten lucky with his second attempt as the old locks spring open without much fuss.

Sighing in relief, the dwarf grabs at Ril's arm and uses it to support some of his weight as he slumps to the floor.

"Much better," he says in common, "I'm Adronsius, by the way. Could I have the pleasure of your names? Have you rescued anyone else yet?"

Meanwhile, the Kieran watch passively, mildly interested in what is going on, but making no moves to interfere or interject.
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Last edited by Black Plauge; 19th of March, 2011 at 00:06.
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