Annoyed to have his daily prayers interrupted, Milo closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He had been summoned to the tavern in Kirin. He would have to assume Kihlgarrah, the tinfoil warrior, had good reason. Seriously, you’d think if you were going to wade straight into a group of monsters you’d have the good sense to wear something tougher than a fringed buckskin loincloth, or at least learn to duck. But then maybe the barbarian was just following the lead of his pal in the orange pajamas, Arnie the monk. No weapons, no armor, and all the grace (and common sense) of a maimed fire beetle. It was no wonder the monk was knocked out more often than the fall guy in a prize fight. During their previous outing with Lady Charity, Kihlgarrah and Arnie had been so resoundingly thrashed by the monsters, that Milo was asked to walk at the front of the party. As Bahamut directs: “Honor and Protection to the Lesser Races.”
When Milo entered the tavern he saw the Arnie still “medicating” his injuries, Arabella the haughty wizard woman who acted like Milo is some sort of minion, and the other halfling, Tifa. Sigh. The sneaking, thieving, literally backstabbing Tifa. One might think Milo would be pleased to have a compatriot, but this other halfling only reminded Milo of why he had been more than willing join the Temple of Bahamut as a child, leaving behind his tiny village with its “gray areas” and nebulous morals. Looking around the tavern, Milo also noticed the distinct absence of the half elf oracle, Narni. Milo could only imagine what she was up to. Well, to be honest, he was quickly learning it was best not to imagine what people were up to. He knew he had been sent to Moonsong by his mentor to be exposed to the wider world, but this past month had Milo questioning the plan.
Milo’s thoughts were interrupted by a towering human in a horned helmet and with an accent that made everything exiting his mouth sound like “hurdy gurdy gurdy hurdy”. Milo had read tales of such men, but had always imagined their voices to be a lot more intimidating. The Viking introduced himself as Sven, Emissary of Lady Charity. ‘Emissary’ with a capital ‘E’, mind you. At least he wore armor made of actual metal and carried a shield. Sven had been sent by Lady Charity to lead the group on another mission into the Prison of Kirin. The Lady had discovered an area infested with goblins, and requested that the group clear them out. Sven also mentioned rumors that the goblins were led by a “demon man”. Milo couldn’t help but be a little excited about the chance to vanquish an enemy worthy of an agent of Bahamut. As enticement to the less honorable party members, Lady Charity sent along 200 gold pieces. The group accepted the offer and wisely used the money to buy Kihlgarrah some thicker armor and an economy pack of healing potions.
Sven led them from the tavern to a cave entrance which was guarded by a lone goblin and a rushing stream. Upon sighting the goblin, Sven let out a battle cry and charged the cave. The fighter’s enormous armor allowed him to sprint only halfway to the stream. At the sight of this curtailed rush, Milo slapped his forehead nearly giving himself a haircut with the blades on his spiked gauntlet. Not to worry, Arnie, the silken whirlwind monk, would show Sven how it was done, gliding through the woods and leaping the 10 foot wide rush of water. As far as Milo could tell, the monk’s over-sized pants cuff caught on a branch or maybe his foot slipped. Regardless, Arnie landed face first in… what turned out to be a 6 inch deep rivulet. Milo could see his companions had spent their recuperating time well.
The racket obviously alerted the goblin guard, who scampered into the cave. It also alerted the goblins hiding in the trees above the party. You can’t make this stuff up, folks. Our stalwart band dispatched the goblins, and discovered that Sven and Kihlgarrah are pretty good at climbing trees but not so good at jumping between them. They also discovered they were missing a monk. Sven told them that he saw the monk chasing into the cave after the first goblin. When asked why he didn’t mention this earlier, he said he “was busy being a flying squirrel and squirrels can’t talk.” With a sigh, Arabella led the party into the cave to find, astonishingly, that Arnie was holding his own against three goblins, having already dealt with three others. Sadly the Law of Diminishing Ninjas took effect and Arnie was knocked unconscious before the goblins were cleaned up. The group now had four healing potions.
In for a penny in for a pound. At least with Sven leading, Milo could guard the rear as the adventurers explored the caverns. The group settled into a rhythm of searching, slashing, and sacking. Tifa’s explanation to Sven that the group liked to check the door for traps and alarms before the hasty Viking smashed through it became something of a mantra as Tifa went over it with Sven at each and every door. The rhythm was disrupted as the party entered a room occupied by three goblins crouching behind overturned tables. Behind the goblins was a prison cell in which both goblins and humans were chained to the walls. According to Arabella, one of the goblins immediately headed for the cell door yelling “Kill the prisoners!” (who in their right mind learns Goblin? Milo wanted to know). The other goblins fired at the party. After a quick fight there were zero unconscious adventurers, three dead goblins, one stabbed prisoner, and one murdered table. Kihlgarrah was disappointed to learn tables were not worth experience points.
Investigating the prisoners Milo quickly determined all the goblins and two of the humans are evil, but the human that was stabbed by the goblin was not evil. Milo rushed to save the human, using one of the remaining healing potions. Meanwhile Sven started slaughtering goblins! The party argued about killing defenseless creatures versus using them as slaves versus freeing them. It was finally agreed upon to kill the goblins but leave the evil humans chained up so that the group could turn them in to the authorities when they returned to town. Milo convinced the group to bring the non-evil human, Keero, along to help fight.
The party kept moving deeper into the tunnels until they opened a room with a large altar and three goblins. The goblin behind the altar addressed them in broken Common, “Good you here! We work together!” Immediately Arabella wanted to talk with this goblin, but before she could squeeze past everyone cramming the five foot corridor ahead of her, Sven blocked the doorway and started insulting the goblin. Sven was quickly answered with two wand blasts that curled fire around and into his armor, leaving him smoldering and unconscious on the floor. Arabella slammed the door closed and revived Sven. The party now had two healing potions left.
Milo was chosen to talk with the goblin. He politely knocked on the door and was invited in. The goblin with the wand was a cleric named Sai. His tribe had been enslaved by an ogre, Rocknar, and Sai wanted the adventurers to kill the ogre. Milo asked what was in it for them. Sai offered to not kill them. After Sven’s experience the party actually considered this not such a bad deal, although it did cross their minds that Rocknar must be pretty tough if Sai didn’t want to handle the ogre himself. Oh well, an unknown danger must be better than a known danger, right? Sai explained how to reach Rocknar’s room, and warned them about a door right next to it which contained Rocknar’s son, Razzlegrin. The party should not, under any circumstances, enter Razzlegrin’s room.
Following the goblin Sai’s directions, the party located the door to Racknar’s room. To the right, the door leading to Razzlegrin’s room caught their curiosity. Why the warnings? Was it a gobliny trick? After Tifa checked Razzlegrin’s door for traps, Sven burst in, setting off a bell alarm that the rogue had failed to notice. The young ogre and three goblins jerked awake and charged the door, blocking entry. Sven tried to bull rush Razzlegrin a couple times, but the ogre just laughed while swatting him back into the hallway. Arabella asked why Sven didn’t just squeeze by the ogre and give the other people a chance. Everyone agreed that was a great idea. Sven managed to get through but was skewered by Razzlegrin’s spear on the way. I guess that answered Arabella’s question, but it did at least allow everyone else to pile into the room. Sven’s body was only lightly trampled – nothing he was going to notice if he ever regained consciousness. It wasn’t as if he was a tracker who could tell halfling and goblin footprints apart. Milo wouldn’t admit it, but he was a little worried about this fight, seeing how swiftly Sven had been dispatched. Kihlgarrah may have also been worried, but his barbaric nature channeled the anxiety into pure rage. Razzlegrin the ogre staggered and fell beneath the relentless swings of the savage Kihlgarrah’s enormous sword. The goblins were no challenge once their leader was down. Another potion was poured down Sven’s throat, leaving the party with a single potion.
The group decided to catch their breath before moving into Rocknar’s room. We shall have to wait to see what awaits them.