With the battle at the camp concluded, Achelies, regains consciousness, ties up the wizard, and proceeds to punch him in the face to wake him.
The Wizard wakes, looks at Achelies and says “Is that all you’ve got”? Achelies punches the wizard again and knocks him out again. Achelies wakes him again with a punch. Achelies confronts the wizard on why he is a target. The wizard explains that Achielies failed his task and is to be brought back to the Red Circle. He also explains he is just a mercenary for the Red Circle and that a note in his tent can explain more.
Achelies notices that his sword is missing and takes the broadsword offered by Brandor. Gromor Bane takes the tents and the group continues on towards the believed entrance to the kaer.
Taru and Gromor Bane notice the worn path on the ground that leads right into the surface of a mountain face. Gromor Bane detects the the dwarven runes embedded into the wall, and the seam in the mountain that represents the entrance to the kaer. After some thought, Gromor Bane Earth Blend’s into the wall under the runes. He pushes back and passes through the wall of the mountain, pressing through what feels like heavy sand. He pushes through to the other side into complete darkness and lights a torch. Before him, he sees a cave that extends into the darkness like a hallway. From the other side of the wall, he sees the runes carved into the inner wall are reversed. He attempts to read the runes but can only decipher what appears to mean “application” and “earth”. Gromor Bane weaves Earth Darts and fires them right into the wall. Instead of dissolving, they stick into the wall. It becomes translucent and Gromor Bane can see the light and outlines of those on the other side of the wall. The group all push through the wall into the black, the darts fall from the wall and they proceed down the hallway.
They follow the descension and notice the magical barriers protecting this pathway. Gromor Bane notice that the runes are broken in areas. They reach a massive pair of wooden doors, swung open. They enter and breathe in air that smells untouched for a significant amount of time. Inside this area, it appears as far as the eye can see the inner mountain has been opened. They have reached the kaer they had been looking for, a massive dwarven city.
The group splits for different important areas of dwarven cities. Gromor Bane, Brandor, and Smorgs head for what appears to be the library of records of the kaer. The building is full of shelves containing old scrolls, all organized by year, shelves carved out of the mountain. Gromor Bane walks to the end of the shelving, passing all the history of the kaer. As time passes in scrolls, Gromor Bane reads the history the kaer, watches as the diligence of recordkeeping wanes, and finally the failed exploration of the world and the notation that horrors were still roaming the surface.
Gromor Bane notices that there is no art in the later scrolls, simply status reports. He also notices that there are number of scrolls missing from the shelves.
In the meantime, Taru, Tyerial, and Achelies reach what they assume is the town hall of the kaer, and find little of interest. Achelies immediate turns around and heads back to the library, and sees Gromor Bane, head down reading scrolls. Achelies, Brandor, Gromor Bane and Smorgs head back to the kaer entrance.
Taru and Tyerial begin to search the kaer for items of value. As they stroll through the homes in the kaer, they find nothing artistic or spiritual in any building, nothing defining. After a dozen buildings, they think they hear something. Rushing back out nothing is found. Tyerial climbs the roof of the nearest building, waves his torch around, but finds nothing.
As Achelies and company head back to the entrance of the kaer, along the wall and elevated they see a lit cave. They head towards the cave. Reaching the wall of the kaer the cave is beneith, they find stairs carved into the mountain leading up to the cave. Climbing the stairs and entering the cave, they see it lit by a fire in the middle, and a giant double bladed, stone axe leaning against the wall. Exploring the cave, they find a gigantic mess of scrolls, art, symbology of passions, and other shinies in the back of this cave. Gromor Bane notices another distinctive slit in the back of the cave. He casts earth darts at the slit, the dart hits the slit and splats into the wall dispersing.
Achelies, Smorgs, and Brandor begin to lift the giant stone axe. They only manage to lift it slightly before dropping it in the ground. The thud is loud enough for Taru and Tyerial to hear it in the deathly silent kaer, despite the distance. Before they can head towards the sound, they sense a large, lumbering creature, and begin to follow it instead.
While Achilies begins to rummage through the stuff in the back of the cave, Brandor and Gromor Bane continue to find the secrets of the slit in the wall, through Earth Blend and just hitting it with a sword. Gromor Bane hears a lumbering step heading towards the cave. Achillies begins to start looking for riches to take, but only finds scrolls that may be of value. Turning around Gromor Bane and Brandor see a semi-sentient, large cave troll, dripping drool from it’s fanged mouth.
The cave troll roars and points at his axe on the floor. From behind the group, a blanket of black slides out of the slit in the wall. 6 Slipshades emerge, 2 of which engage the troll, and the other 4 engaging the group. The battle rages in the cave, Slipshades against Cave Troll, adventurers against slipshades. Taru and Tyerial reaches the battle and engages. Tyerial shoots arrows from the tops of rooftops, Taru, Brandor, Smorgs, Achelies melee and Gromor Bane helps his compatriots by lighting their weapons on fire. The battle rages in the cave and eventually moves out of the cave. Taru draws a slipshade away and mounts his horse and down the stairs with Tyerial shooting at it. The Cave Troll is tore to pieces by the slipshades it is fighting. A slipshade engages Tyerial and knocks him unconscious. Taru comes back around trick rides to launch on to the rooftop to revive Tyerial. Brandor and Gromor Bane are knocked unconscious as well. Smorgs gives ground into a door frame, blocking 4 Slipshades to the best of her ability. Taru lands the launch onto the roof to wake Tyerial. Taru jumps back towards his horse, but misses the landing. Tyerial stands up and begins shooting arrows again.
One slipshade takes an interest in Tyerial and performs a massive armor piercing claw, slaying him instantly, despite him trying to avoid the blow. Achelies manages to run up and pick up Tyerial’s corpse to run out. Gromor Bane follows, while weaving threads for Earth Darts. Smorgs is hit and knocked unconscious, her body falling beneath her body shield. Taru rides up to Gromor Bane, and pulls him up on to the horse. Taru, Gromor Bane, and Achelies, carrying Tyerial’s body run out of the kaer, leaving Brandor and Smorgs unconscious in the kaer.
They rush to the door, Gromor Bane casts Earth Darts at the door, reopening the door. As the door allows light in, the group sees the silhouettes of humanoid bodies on the other side of this shimmering wall. Achelies forces his way through the door to find the wizard the his cronies waiting on the other side.
“Didn’t go well, did it?” says the wizard. Achelies agrees and says he would like to bury his brother (Tyerial) and that he is the sole survivor. One of the trolls passes Achelies into the cave and sees the remainder of the group. All are disheveled. The Troll reports what he sees to the wizard. The remainder of the group pushes their way through the shimmering door.
The wizard looks at the remaining group members Taru, Achelies, and Gromor Bane and simply says “I have a proposition for you.” Achelies says “What is it?” The wizard says he can’t get in to the kaer without elementalist magic. The wizard asks to join forces to find what is in the kaer.
“You’re going to have to do better than that.” says Achelies. The wizard states he has reason to go back in, a map to the treasure trove left in the kaer. Achelies asks if the wizard has a last chance salve for Tyerial. The wizard says he’s never needed one before. Achelies threatens to kill one of the henchman to prove the point. The wizard says it wouldn’t be logical to kill someone who would help in the kaer.
“Do you agree to my terms?” says the Wizard. The group grudgingly says ‘Yes’ after some banter.