I fear that I”ll have a fight on my hands. When we leave this cursed place and we go to burn Ragnara”s body, I”m afraid some of my companions will try to loot her body. In particular I still don”t trust the bard, Submera.
There is something wrong about her. I know the story, the sad story of the curse and maybe that is what niggles at the back of my mind when I look at her. I wish I knew.
I agree with Sadi that since Ragnara loaned me her hat of disguise, that she would not mind if we keep it. The rest of her gear should be burned with her. As I understand her faith, she will want her gear with her when she enters the Great Hall of her ancestors. That means that the Adamantine great axe, the mithril breastplate, the vest of enlarge, those things belong with her on the pyre.
Her death at the hands of the Fire Giant was sudden and senseless. I cannot help but blame myself. She was such a wonderful soul. Simple and full of joy. The magic doors delighted her and if I”d cautioned her or if I had taken the time to heal her properly, perhaps she would be walking beside me still.
We wisely decided to retreat from the Giant. The glowing hot anvils that he used as missiles were too much for our group. He killed Ragnara in two blows. How could we have prevailed? And, now that I think back to those crazy few minutes, perhaps it was the confused look on Submera”s face when we discussed in quick, hushed voices how to retrieve Raggy”s body, maybe that is what is really bothering me about her. I”ll need to ask Acgar, but I am pretty sure that she even voiced surprise aloud that we would risk ourselves to get Ragnara”s body. Who is this woman?
Myntilly”s solution was brilliant — greater invisibility — to cover herself and Ragnara. A quick levitate spell and we had the body. Now, the question was where to go to find Alek.
We decided to back to the intersection where the Hill Giants attacked. The boulders were still there, of course. Past the boulders, to the right was another set of magic double doors. As I stepped close, the doors opened to reveal a large beautiful room and four 10-foot wide moles.
Their tails were long, furry and thick. The sound of the tails flicking against the polished stone floor was eerie.
I get the feeling the moles had been enlarged by magic. They were awkward in their movements; their attacks ill-coordinated. I heard Cinder give a sad sigh as she reached for an arrow. I understand the sorrow at killing the creatures. This is not a fight they would choose. One more unnatural and evil thing I have seen in my travels. We made short work of them — as I said it was more a chore than a fight. Cinder, from atop one of the boulders had a clear shot at the lead mole.
Once the moles were dead, we started to search the room. Myntilly, Acgar and Sadi moved to the far end of the room. As they got towards the archway, three beautiful angels appeared. Their wings shimmered in the light.
The one in front held out a large golden chalice and in a soft, resonant voice she said, “We give thanks to the brave adventurers! You have restored our temple to it”s glory. You have destroyed the vermin that desecrated it! Rejoice and drink deep! All of your hurts will fall away!” And she held the cup out to Myntilly. Myntilly reached towards the cup, instinctively.
But before her fingers could touch it, both Sadi and Acgar yelled “Don”t drink it!” And at their words, the angels became bent, ugly hags. The lead hag threw the cup at Myntilly and lunged at her with hands spread, claw-like fingernails poised to rip flesh. The second one reached out with one finger to Acgar and touched her arm in a almost gentle stroke. The third waved her arms and the dead mole beside me stirred. “Great,” I thought. “We have to kill the poor moles all over again.”