Previously on Dorngeons and Dorgans, Atlas, Carlos, Cinnamon, and Elephant were making their way through the fearsome Cragmaw Castle. After fighting off a few ambushes they managed to make their way to the head of the goblin keep Grol who was holding Gundren Rockseer hostage. The group fought Grol, his pet wolf, and his associate, who would turn out to be a doppelgänger, in brutal close combat. The battle wasn’t too long though, and after some shape-shifting-baby-kicking hijinks the adventurers defeated the evil doers and freed Gundren. Before leaving the wretched place for good they decided to look around some more when they heard a chilling roar emanating from down the hall…
“So that’s a bad thing right?” asked Elephant desperately trying to hide the small puddle forming in his pants.
It was clear that whatever was making that roar was behind a lone door at the south end of the passage. Carlos cautiously approached the door and placed his ear to it, hoping to hear what it was on the other side. Suddenly the door lurched forward with a mighty thud, knocking Carlos back. Another chilling roar echoed through the hall. It was a strange roar to be sure, it was deep and gravely, but also high pitched and screechy like nails on a chalk board.
Carlos turned back to the group, “It sounds like a bear, as well as some sort of…bird or owl.”
“Like some kind of Owlbear?” asked Elephant.
Atlas gave Elephant a punch on the shoulder, “shut up idiot.”
Carlos interjected, “No…I think he’s right. I can’t remember where, but I recall hearing stories about half-owl half-bear creatures that would stalk the Neverwinter Wood preying on caravans. Story tells of a gre-“
Atlas cut him off, “so how do we kill it?”
Carlos was flabbergasted, “Why on earth would we want to kill it?”
“It’s gotta be protecting some dope loot, why else would a bunch of goblins keep an owl-bear-thing around?”
“He does have a point,” said Cinnamon.
“Did you hear that thing? Chances are it’s 8 ft tall, and has razor sharp talons, what kind of loot is worth fighting that over?” said Carlos.
“The Goblin kind,” replied Atlas.
Atlas had had enough of this pointless conversation. There was loot in that room, and he wanted it. He walked over to a nearby barrel. Popping it open with his dagger he found a heap of rotting meat. He grabbed the biggest moldiest slab of meat and walked back over to the door.
“Here’s what’s going to happen. I’m going to open that door, I will then lure the owlbear or whatever outside with this gross-ass meat. While I do that, you guys get in there and grab whatever goods you can find. Got it?”
They all nodded silently before moving as far away from the door as they could.
“Alright, here goes” said Atlas. He was trying not to show it, but he was freaking out.
Atlas pushed the latch and the door opened a crack. Everything seemed to freeze, no one dared breathe, let alone move. Suddenly the door burst open. A massive white owl-bear barreled out of the doorway sprinting straight for Atlas. Luckily for Atlas the Owlbear wasn’t in a murdering mood, it blasted right past him and ran all the way outside.
After the blood returned to his face, he smirked and nonchalantly said, “Huh, that was easier than I thought!”
Elephant said, “Wait…isn’t Gundren out there?”
The group all looked at each other, then sprinted out after the Owlbear. They emerged from the castle in time to see the beast running across the clearing. But rather than going after Gundren, it ran straight into the woods and disappeared.
Atlas, nervously laughing, said “Ha…ha would you look at that!”
Carlos turned to him with a nasty scowl, “You got lucky. Now let’s go get that loot.”
But just as the four of them were turning to go back inside, they heard a loud hootin’ and hollering’. Turning back towards the woods they saw a band of goblin and hobgoblin warriors riding horses riding towards the castle in a hurry. Apparently the band had seen the Owlbear run into the woods, and recognizing this as their owlbear picked up the pace fearing something was going down at the castle.
Carlos grabbed his companions and pulled them inside. “We have got to go. Come on, we’ll hide in the Owlbear’s room.”
And so they scurried back to where they first found the frightful monster. Each one piled inside before Cinnamon closed the door behind them. The room appeared to be the remains of a large circular tower. The upper floors had collapsed leaving a hole all the way up to the roof. It was dark inside, but a small sliver of light crept in from an arrow slit on what would have been the third floor.
Voices could be heard outside and the sound of feet. The goblins were searching for intruders. A large shadow loomed over the door, someone was about to look inside the room. The four of them quickly ducked behind some rubble. They could see light seep in as the door was thrust open.
“Oi, I don’ see any knobblers in ‘ere.”
And the door slammed shut. They breathed a sigh of relief. They were safe for now. Without missing a beat, Atlas began searching the room for loot.
“It’s gotta be here somewhere”
Sure enough, he found a small box tucked away on some of the upper bits of rubble.Opening it he found some coin a few healing potions and two scrolls. Being such a kind sole, and more honestly having no use for scrolls, he agreed to share some of the loot with the others. Once they were sure the coast was clear they left the room.
Elephant asked, “so what do we do now?”
Atlas replied, “What do you mean? We keep exploring.”
Surprisingly the group all agreed. And so they decided to explore some of the areas they had previously ignored. They returned to the shrine where they had previously fought the Grick. In the southwest corner was a large door, nearly falling off its hinges, that they had yet to explore. Carlos gently opened it trying his best not to let it disintegrate. before them lay a small T-shaped passage. Passages to the north and south led to yet more doors, and a collapsed door ahead of them led to the outdoors. This was the main entry way.
Being the good adventurer that he was, Atlas checked the room for traps. It was a good thing too, because about 5 feet ahead of them was a well-concealed tripwire. Atlas quickly disarmed it, and the group continued on. After flipping a coin, they decided to check the north door first. Carlos slowly opened the door, peering inside to check for enemies, but there were none to be found. The room appeared to be one half of a large circular tower, this one much more intact than the Owlbear’s. A door to the west led to the other half of the tower. This room however appeared to be a storage room. It was filled with a number of crates, and a few spear hung from a rack on the wall. Searching around they found a small crossbow which they gave to Elephant. In addition they found a bundle of adventurer’s gear.
Carlos pulled an axe out of the bundle, “These looks like dwarfish runes.”
Atlas replied, “well we only know three dwarves.”
“You’re right, it’s probably Gundren’s, we should hold on to this and give it to him.”
After that wonderful conversation they moved to the western door. This time they dispensed with the sneaking. Carlos kicked in the door and charged inside. There he found four hobgoblins. Carlos plunged his sword into the chest of the nearest hobgoblin, as his companions rushed in to support him. Cinnamon wasted no time blasting another hobgoblin, and with one well-placed headshot, Atlas took out another. Elephant decided to try out his new crossbow and shot at the remaining hobgoblin, but he wasn’t very good yet and so the bolt merely lodged itself in the fiend’s shoulder. Carlos pulled his sword out of the fallen hobgoblin, and turned to the remaining one, he swung his sword around in a 360 degree arc and finished with a sweet spin move. The hobgoblin’s head plopped on the ground, followed shortly after by the rest of his body.
With the north passage cleared, they headed to the south. The found a similar door leading to a nearly identical tower room, except this one was in noticeably worse shape. The wall separating the two areas of the tower had collapsed along with most of the upper floors. However, the Goblin cleared out most of the rubble and turned the room into a large barracks. Three goblins sit in the far corner playing goblin games. Before they could turn to react they were slain by a volley of fire and arrows. The room was fairly plain. A few beds lined the walls, and a number of small hides were flung about. A pile of rusty swords and daggers lay in a corner. The the east lay a single door.
This door had a keyhole. Atlas bent down to look through it.
“what do you see?” asked Elephant.
“Six- no seven goblins and that war band we saw earlier,” he replied.
Elephant turned to Carlos, “Is it worth it?”
“Well, it would certainly get us a lot of experience, plus I’m kind of a role, I say we do it.”
Atlas said, “Alright, we’ll use our old trick. I’ll throw out some oil vials cinnamon you blast them, and with any luck the whole place will go up.”
“Sounds good,” said Carlos, “I’m going to go after the hobgoblins, remember focus the tough guys first”
As they were discussing their battle plans, the north door opened behind them. The group turned to see a very unsuspecting goblin walk in the room. Upon seeing his three dead friends, and the four mighty adventurers standing over their corpses the goblin let out a large sigh. He knew what was coming for him.
Carlos let out a mighty roar as he charged the goblin killing it. The other three joined in so that the entire group was screaming at the top of their lungs. They hadn’t opened the eastern door yet, so at this point they were basically screaming for no reason. As their war cry rang out through the hall they looked at each other awkwardly wondering what to do now. Eventually their screams petered out.
Atlas turned to Carlos gesturing towards the east door, “Should we go?”
“Yeah, let’s do it.”
Carlos kicked in the east door. Atlas dove inside chucking his oil vials like some kind of badass. Cinnamon and Elephant simultaneously burst into the room letting loose magical fire. Their plan worked and soon the entire room was in flames. While the lesser goblins became completely preoccupied with the fire, the hobgoblins quickly extinguished themselves. The meanest, toughest, ugliest hobgoblin stood up from his seat clutching his greataxe. Still smoldering he pointed towards Carlos.
Carlos quickly vaulted a burning table a drew his longsword. The two foes faced off for a one v one battle, presumably, to the death. Meanwhile the remaining hobgoblins begin to engage the others. Atlas quickly dove behind an overturned table, dodging a volley of arrows. Two wolves, their fur still alight, leaped forward, but were intercepted by Elephant and Cinnmon. With a few more blasts of magical fire the beasts were killed. With the wolves gone, Atlas began firing back at the hobgoblins with his bow. He managed to kill one of the hobgoblins with a well placed shot, but the other was now rushing towards him. Elephant and Cinnamon again sprang into action, this time Elephant used his crossbow, and Cinnamon his quarter staff.Together they killed the hobgoblin.
On the other side of the room Carlos was still battling his hobgoblin, and it was not going well. The hobgoblin very clearly had the upper hand. Every time Carlos attempted an attack, the hobgoblin would overpower him. Slamming down on Carlos with is massive greataxe over and over forcing Carlos to momentarily retreat. By now Carlos was fairly badly hurt. He kept his distance in an attempt to regain some strength. As such the two began to pace around each other.
The hobgoblin was grew impatient, “I’ve had enough of these games! NOW YOU DIE! RARGH!”
The hobgoblin swung his great axe into Carlos’ right side knocking him to the ground. The bloodlust overcame the hobgoblin and he began to cackle as he stood over Carlos swinging his axe over and over, stronger and stronger each time. Carlos held out his sword in an effort to block his attacks, but with each hit he grew weaker. Suddenly the hobgoblin recoiled. Atlas seeing his friend in mortal danger rushed towards the fight. Pulling out his dagger Atlas jumped on the fiend’s back.
“Argh! GET OFF ME!” cried he cried.
Atlas didn’t listen, he buried his dagger deep in the hobgoblin’s throat and sliced all the way across, practically decapitating him. As the beast fell dead Atlas jumped off his back and did a sweet backflip. Carlos looked up at Atlas feeling ashamed, but rather than relish in his companion’s failure Atlas gave him a nod, and let out his arm. Carlos grabbed it, and pulled himself to his feet.
With the four hobgoblins dead, the four adventurers regrouped. They turned to see the remaining goblins. They had extinguished themselves, and were extremely pissed.
“So what do we do now?” Asked Carlos.
Atlas turned to Carlos, “We kick some ass!”
The four of them let out another war cry as they charged into battle. Working as a team they picked off the goblins one by one. It was a thing of beauty. Within moments the goblins were dead, and the battle won.
They sheathed their weapons, picked up the rest of their equipment and headed outside, this time through the front door. They arrived back at the horses to find Gundren safe and sound. He thanked them for retrieving his equipment, and together they headed off for Phandalin.
Upon arriving in Phandalin Gundren thanked them for their help, and told them to meet him when they were ready to head to Wave Echo Cave, the final quest. Afterwards they made their way to the inn. They spent a short while drinking mead and reveling in the days victory. They soon headed off for bed. In the morning they reconvened at the stables.
Elephant said, “Guys, its been fun, but I’ve got places to be, and mushrooms to ingest, I’ll meet up with you guys later.” And with that he was gone.
Carlos turned to Atlas and Cinnamon, “Guys I think we’re ready. It’s Dragon Slayin’ time!”
Will the trio be brae enough to face off against a Dragon? Will they get brutally slaughtered? Find out next time on Dorngeons and Dorgans.