Hogar’s Journal (Translated from Giant)
Year 781 of the founding of the City
7th Day of Meloramensis – Part II
Thunderspire Mountain – The Horned Hold, Western Fortress
There was only one way forward from our position. As I expected, a set of double doors opened onto the second bridge. As Eligos pushed the doors open she was caught full in the face by some sort of slime. The mucus clung to her face and sizzled loudly as it ate at the flesh or her face and neck. The culprits quickly became apparent, two zombies stood behind a thick iron bound door at the other end of the bridge, peering at us through a hatch.
The cadavers dripped with slime and their stench, though stench hardly does it justice, perhaps taste would be a better description was nauseating even from a distance of 60 feet. Heedless of the smell Minron ran to try and force the door open but it resisted even his massive strength. Rodney summoned a column of flame behind the door to burn the zombies, if they were hurt by it they showed little sign. I attempted to shoot them through the hatch but missed twice. Glen ran up the hatch and stabbed the spear end of his ugrosh through the gap at the zombies’ faces causing them to retreat a couple of steps.
Overcome by uncharacteristic bravery Vic took advantage of their retreat to teleport to the other side of the door and unlock it from the inside. He got swarmed by three duergar soldiers for his trouble. Hearing the click as the lock mechanism released the doors Minron shoved them open, reached into the room, grasped Vic by the scruff of his neck, hauled the half-elf bodily into the air and deposited him back on the bridge out of harm’s way. He then stepped forward roaring his defiance and taking Vic's place amongst our enemies.
Rodney moved up behind Minron and send a thunderous blast of energy into the room engulfing Minron, the duergar and the zombies. Minron stood his ground unfazed as our enemies staggered backwards away from the door. Eligos, Glen and Minron took advantage of the space Rodney created and pushed forwards into the room.
The three of them disappeared behind the door, lost to the din of battle. I could see the corpulent zombies spit where my friends must’ve been engaging with duergar and then hear the hiss of their corrosive spit as it ate away armour and flesh. Suddenly the loud crash of a door flung back on its hinges rang out above the din. There followed a brilliant flash of light to which the world surrendered its presence.
A high pitched whine filled my ears, blocking all other sound. White light permeated my entire field of vision. To all intents and purpose noting existed outside the extents of my body. Except my bow. I could feel the sweat smoothed leather grip in my left hand, the brooding tension of the string in my right. My enemies could not have moved far, even blind and deaf I am still a dangerous opponent.
I reached into my quiver, drew my fingers across the resin smooth poplar shaft of an arrow, up and over the coarse feathers of the fletching until they settled upon the nock. Without thought, through the practised movement of countless shots I notched the arrow and heaved upon the string. The goose feathers tickled my cheek and the soft thrum of the tensioned string resonated in my ear. I loosed and the arrow slapped its way through the length of the draw and out into the void.
Perhaps a minute passed in darkness. When my vision eventually cleared a devilish imp with a scorpion’s tail was attacking one of the duergar. Immediately after successfully striking the duergar the imp vanished from sight.
One of the zombies and one of the duergar seemed to have disappeared. There were however two piles of ashes on the ground suggesting they had been incinerated. I assumed that this was the work of Rodney but later learned that the source of the blinding light was a duergar Theurge who had slaughtered his own companions in a ball of flame in order to attack our party. By remaining outside the room I had escaped unharmed.
My vision restored I set my sights on the last remaining zombie and sunk two arrows into him, this was sufficient to see him returned to the underworld. Moving into the room I resolved to dispatch the Theurge and sent another two arrows at him, both of there wide of their mark however. The room was another entrance hall, similar to those we had seem as we entered the previous two sections of the hold with three doors leading from it. Part of the ceiling had collapsed leaving rubble strewn across the floor.
Only two duergar soldiers and the Theurge remained now. The rest of the group moved to overwhelm them but before they could press the attack the Theurge summoned a hail of molten stones down upon our heads. The blanket of molten rock was sufficient to knock myself, Diefenbaker, Rodney and Old Vic to the ground. The heat of the stones seared and cauterised flesh. The smell of roasting meat instantly became all pervasive, a rival even to the lingering stench of the dispatched zombies.
A swipe of Glens ugrosh was sufficient to cleave through the Theurge and into one of the remaining soldiers, Killing them instantly. I picked myself up and put an arrow into the chest of the last soldier. He staggered to one of the doors opened it and cried out
“Mirklemoor they've broken throu...”
He was unable to finish his sentence as my second arrow passed through the back of his neck and came to a rest protruding from his mouth.
Battered and bruised myself, Vic, Dief, Minron and Rodney all bore visible wounds from the skirmish. A rest was seriously called for but Mirklemoor having been alerted to our presence called for us to press on.