From the safety of a shield wall of his friends Tarigoz and Laurel, Ssinkar commanded the Troll to "Sleep".
The Troll, filled with awe and rapture complied, his eyes drooping and the fight leaving his bones. Tarigoz stabbed it in the gut with his longsword dealing a vicious blow. Laurel followed suit, her scimitars flashing in the light as they slashed at the awestruck Troll like a pair of scissors cutting cloth.
Across the room, the lead Bugbear, slashed Wulf across his muscled torso parting skin and bone. The Euborean's blood sprayed wildly across the room as the battered Barbarian, beset on all sides, tried to hack at a second Bugbear.
As the Troll shrugged off the rapture, Ssinkar reaffirmed his Holy Command and the Troll's eyes drifted once again to the floor. Tarigoz over-extended himself and his swordthrust was turned away by the Troll's thick hide.
The third Bugbear stabbed at Nyx and she fell to the ground in a crumpled pile of fur. The lead bugbear, sensing that the Barbarian was beaten, playfully nicked at Wulf with his Scimitar. Embattled and battered, Wulf called upon his primeval instincts and the rage welled up inside him. With a mighty downward swing of his two handed sword he cleaved the second Bugbear in two from stem to stern.
Meanwhile Jan the Sell Sword dodged and parried every blow sent his way but his own swordplay was similarly unsuccessful.
Threats from ABoveFrom the room above came a bellowing Ogreish roar
"Will you lot stop fighting each other, If I have to come down there and talk to you again, I'll kill you all myself!"
Fighting tears from her eyes, Styx stabbed aimlessly at the Bugbear which had killed her sister.
Ssinkar knelt at the lifeless corpse of the young Phylus and rifled through her belongings until he found the potion of healing which Asdos had given each of them and forced it down Nyx's throat. The cat girl coughed and spluttered back to life as the magical concoction coursed through her body.
Tarigoz slashed hopelessly at the now conscious and reinvigorated Troll which responded by punching him in the head with his huge fist. The blow knocked the Knight of Wulfschlossen for six leaving stars in his eyes and a fist shaped dent in his steel helmet. Laurel chose her moment wisely and stabbed the troll under the left arm with one of her scimitars.
Fuelled by adrenaline and anger, Wulf hacked viciously at the lead Bugbear with Norse fury and the will to continue the fight left the Bugbear alongside copious amounts of blood.
Concious of the noise that the battle was causing, Ssinkar invoked a zone of silence around himself encapsulating all in the room save for the softly sobbing Styx who was just happy that her sister was alive.
In the hallowed silence of the Ssinkar's prayer, Tarigoz reacquired his focus and rained down a flurry of serious blows on the Troll who seemed to be shrugging off his earlier wounds.
Meanwhile, the lead Bugbear felled Wulf with a desperate riposte as he wildly searched the room for an escape route.
Outside the zone of silence all that could be heard was the creaking of her leather armour as Styx silently backstabbed the Bugbear in front of her and with a noiseless terrifying roar it collapsed on top of Jan.
"That's better, now keep it down"
bellowed the Ogre followed from the room above.
The remaining Bugbear fed towards the spiral staircase in the North East corner of the tower dodging opportunistic attacks from Nyx's Nunchucks and Jan's nine-ringed sword.
Ssinkar had silently moved around to engage the Troll and brought the full force of his staff, tipped with the heavy bronze tip carrying the likeness of his goddess, down upon the Troll's head. An expertly aimed swing of Tarigoz's sword parted the troll's head from its body and sent it sailing overhead and into a pile of detritus in the South East corner of the room.
A Dead Troll Base from Micro Art Studios
Laurel dropped her scimitars and an arrow flew across the room from her hastily drawn short bow bouncing off the stonework of the stairs. Jan swiftly extricated himself from under the corpse of the Bugbear and ran their fleeing leader through as he tried to climb the stairs. The fight was over.
Under the cover of Ssinkar's zone of silence spell the party regrouped. Wulf's unconscious form was searched for his potion and he was quickly returned to health. Kicking the Troll's head aside, Nyx discovered a trap door in the floor. Tarigoz discovered a shield far finer than his own hanging in a display on the wall. Laurel investigated the fireplace, discovering a loose stone behind which was secreted a long wooden box with a finely fashioned lock.
Into the Cellar
Opening the trapdoor revealed a set of wooden rungs set into the wall acting as a rudimentary ladder. The cat sisters descended into the darkness and discovered what was clearly a cellar stocked with some weapons. A single door was set into the North East corner of the room.
Tarigoz climbed down and lit a torch, immediately moving over to the door and opened it. The torchlight illuminated a short 40ft section of the tunnel which was clearly manmade with sturdy props and beams to prevent it collapsing. His knowledge of siegeworks came to mind and he was reminded that fortified complexes, like the way-station, often had secret passages designed-in to them to allow defensive forces to retreat or reinforce from other buildings. However, Nyx's heightened sense of smell picked up the fetid odour of something long dead and decaying drifting down the corridor.
Above ground Laurel had pressed the other cat girl to try her thievery on the locked wooden box, which she excitedly agreed to. Pulling out her picks she stabbed and twisted at the keyhole and with a ping a poisoned needle jabbed out of the box pricking Styx's paw. She immediately fell to the floor with a swoon. Ssinkar who had been studying a pair of vellum scrolls rolled his eyes skyward to his Goddess and read out the words from one of the paragraphs. The ink on the page glowed briefly and then the text disappeared as did the look of pain and anguish on Styx's face. Using up Styx's potion of healing, the Phylus came to with one less life but having learned a valuable life lesson.
Despite her curiosity having cost one of her nine lives, she was unbowed and with the trap neutralised she picked the lock revealling the box's contents. Her prize?
Three small vials of liquid, a potion of poison, a potion of heroism and a mysterious white fluid which could not be identified.
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