Testament to the two young ones at the table, they were visibly upset and crying when it happened and I was describing their 2 months of abuse and torture, but amidst the “I hate this game” noises – they had fire and determination in their voices and mindset that they were going to come back here soon and kill every god damned goblin in the cave.
Write up follows:
They were led and guided to a beaten man named Bailey, an ex-adventurer who lived near Beggar’s Corner, a crappy section of the keep where many of the drunks and homeless congregate. Bailey was a big guy, almost 6’ 3” and 280 lbs. He had a wicked scar running from under his hair line and down to his jaw. He didn’t want to talk to us, content to drink his beer. William had brought him a jack of ale and the only advice we got from the broken man was that if the battles ever get too big or beyond your control, just run. Better to drop your pack and escape and live then to fight on and die.
Disturbed by this we thanked him and left him to his devices heading back to our room and getting some sleep for the day tomorrow.
On the 26th of Deathmonth we awoke and met Loq and Corg. We all went shopping, a variety of throwing knives, some cloaks, and an additional sword (William was seriously going to use it to give to the Lizardman in the Capashin Swamp). By 9:30 AM we were on our way and were heading back to the Caves of Chaos. We talked to Proserpine to invite her along for this but she asked for one more day before coming along.
We left, making good time on our trip to the Caves. We were pleased to run into the gnomish party that we had met earlier. A few of their members were wounded but they seemed to be of good cheer. It seems they had pressed on to the Hobgoblins, made some headway against them, but then gave ground when reinforcements showed up and the tide of the battle was changing. They did manage to snag some loot before leaving but in reality, they excursion seems to have cost them more than they made. They were heading back to the keep and would rest a day or two before trying again tomorrow.
Shortly after 11 we were back at the ravine and it still seemed empty. Assured that no one was paying us much mind, we made our way to the goblin cave and entered. We discussed options and decided that we wanted to head further into the goblin cave and get the 25 pairs of ears we needed for Quasar and his goblin sword. So we readied torches and set off.
We passed the original split, then the side corridor where the fountain was, continued on through the former guard room (stripped clean of everything) and the secret door where the ogre once lived. There were a few smaller alcoves but they were empty and we moved on, getting deeper and further than we ever had dared to go before. There were goblin voices ahead and some light. It sounded like a lot, and Charlotte let us know there was over a dozen voices. It seemed like a lot, but we figured if we went in and hit hard at least once, we should startle the goblins and maintain the initiative.
It didn’t go that well.
The group went in and the goblins within were sort of prepared for us. There were not a dozen, or even 20, but more like 30 of the greenskins. Men, women, children. The children swiftly were herded back to the rear of the cave and two women ran on to alert we assumed others. Charlotte tried to shoot an arrow but missed and the goblins there disarmed her and tossed her bow behind where the string was snapped. This caused the thief to draw her dagger and try to engage them in a fight but she was surrounded by 4 of the goblins and they beat her savagely.
Log, Corg, and William tried to press in and get to Charlotte but the three warriors were separated from each other and then picked apart and hacked and beaten. William received a terrible blow to the chest and he passed out and he heard Loq screaming out for Zeus’ help.
The party was then taken, stripped of their gear and belongings and after that they were abused and tortured by the goblins for the next 2 plus months. Charlotte had her head shaved, William developed a rasping cough, and the two of them were whipped and burned often. Loq had his right hand beaten cruelly by hammers so that he couldn’t wield a holy symbol in that hand again (or so the goblins assume). Corg though, our friend and companion for months no, he was the last one standing when the party went down, so the goblins made an example of him and tortured him for days before cutting his head off and feeding his body to the goblin tribe.
Finally we heard some human voices were arranging to sell us back to the Baron for some amount of money that was going to further enrich the goblin tribes. They were evil sounding and their voices made the group ill to hear. But the transfer was made on the road north of the Capashin Swamp on the 3rd of Airmonth. We had Corg’s head in a basket, we were wearing crude homespun bits of fabric wrapped around us, and the goblins took a bag of gold in exchange for us and we were helped onto a wagon and headed back to the Keep.
We had tears in our eyes and were exhausted, happy to be going home, but haunted at everything that happened. Charlotte and William and Loq all looked at one another and made a vow at that point. “We swear that we will go back and make those bastards pay.”