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"Jacinth, wait," says Duncan. "Even if we found our way in, we'd still be running from guards left and right an' we'd not get anything we can't steal. They find us in there, they ain't going to be happy. And we ain't about to get through the mountains 'till we find anything ain't dwarven or more friendly. We've had orcs on our asses and not much to eat on top o' that. How're we even gonna survive out here?"
"Tharin, any chance you're kin to these dwarves? Any way they'd you in, and us with you?"
Jacinth shrugs. "I'm not going to try and start a fight, but of they attack us we should attack them back. But yes, let's see if Thårin can work his dwarfy charm on them." she nudges Tharin to the front of the party.
In the common tongue, Thårin explains "I am Thårin, son of Onde, from the North Mountains west of Caspria. We are traveling westward, through these mountains. We had hopes of finding a dwarven settlement here, in order to lighten and perhaps better our load. Is it your clan that has settled behind this wall?"
The dwarf responds in common: "Greetings Thårin, son of Onde. I am Glonfall, son of Galfordt, Captain of the North Guard of Baradaylon. There are no fair folk who walk the lands north of these mountains, nor is there any reason for them to do so. We are indeed of the clan who resides here, guarding the borders of our land from the undesirable things that inhabit these plains and receiving no visitors other than those who who have already passed through our gates to get here. Although your appearance and mannerisms are convincing, you must forgive our suspicions; We have orders to bring you into custody until we better know who you are and what your business here is."
The other dwarves, who already had their weapons in hand, adjust their grips and footing slightly at these last words.
"We have no desire to do you ill, but we cannot afford to be too careful in these parts, especially where mysterious strangers are concerned. I hope that you understand and will come peacefully. Your cooperation will certainly help your case."
"Well, that was very polite. I'm convinced." Jacinth adopts a more relaxed stance, although refrains from putting away her shortspear until her companions are on board and ends up sort of waving it around absent-mindedly as she talks. "To be honest Glonfall, at this point you could probably take me anywhere if there was a chance for a hot bath."
Bardic Knowledge + 4 and Knowledge: History + 6 for Bardaylon, dwarves in the Dunlunns, and the names mentioned.
Valette is very certain that the dwarf captain has no hidden agenda.
Jacinth has heard the name Bardaylon used in several contexts in various songs and tales. Sometimes, it is used as a sort of fancy and antiquated name for the mountain kingdom of Ayolo, although more commonly the name refers specifically to the underground portions of that land, buried inside the great peaks and inhabited by dwarves. Some meanings take it to be its own kingdom, or some sort of vassal state to Ayolo.
Whiskey cannot discern so much as a hint regarding the true intent behind the orders issued to Glonfall or who may have issued them. There is no reason to suspect anything other than the customs of of those who live in a protective border city, but there is also no reason to trust the authenticity of the captain's claims either.
Jacinth frowns. "Well, that part I like less." She sets her shortspear down anyways, unhooks any remaining weapons from her belt, and drops her pack in front of her, then rolls her shoulders and stretches her arms to mask her nervousness. "We've sort of been... accumulating stuff since we set out together, so watch your fingers while you're searching. It might be a little dodgy in there."
She also asks the names of and tries to chat with any dwarves that search her.
What did Jacinth's sense motive yield? Also diplomacy +8 on the other dwarves if the first check didn't cover that.
Last edited by Shakedown : 10-26-2012 at 06:48 PM.
The dwarves don't seem overly friendly with Jacinth, but they are courteous and seem to respond well to her good-natured demeanor.
Opps, sorry I forgot about sense motive. Jacinth can't seem to read any of the dwarves' intentions. No alarm bells, but nothing other than their words and deeds so far to make them seem comfortably trustworthy.
Satisfied to herself that these dwarves did not belong to the Seeker, Valette waits pragmatically for her companions to be searched. I'll just make sure I'm not carrying anything they'll take away before I head over. She lowers her crossbow while she waits.
"I apologize for the discomfort," Glonfall says as his soldiers finish searching the party members. "We will take you to the guards-fort now. You will have to stay there until we can be certain of who you are and what your intentions are. You will be fed and kept well during this time. Hopefully this custody will not last too many days, and we will be able to let you on your way. Follow me."
Two of the dwarves begin collecting the weapons placed on the ground, and two more linger, waiting to follow behind the party once they have started walking.
About to head down after seeing nothing was taken away, Valette pauses. Kept in custody? I don't like that. I won't be anyone's prisoner! After a moment of thought, she casts Message on Thårin and Jacinth. "Thårin, will this guard-post be aboveground or below ground? I need to know if I'll be able to get you out if things go badly and I'm not with you."
Jacinth whispers back "oh just come inside, if things get hairy it's not like you can cast Message through the mountain to check. Besides, it might be fun! You'll have someone other than me to bicker with!"
She then clears her throat and asks the nearest dwarf to tell her all about his braids.
Last edited by Shakedown : 10-31-2012 at 12:31 AM.
The dwarf (who introduces himself as Mauriv, son of Bastrom) is happy to oblige. By the time the combined companies stop walking about 15 minutes later, Jacinth has learned that there is all too much to know about the rich histories of dwarven beard-braiding and hair-braiding (two very distinct traditions) and the many meanings associated with the 147 different weave patterns that vary based on family, profession, status, and personal style.
The company of dwarves has escorted the party all the way back out of the valley and east around the corner of its entrance. Now, the group is halted between the foot of the nearest mountain and a large, grassy hill just to the north, blocking the plains from view.
Glonfall approaches a stony outcropping on the mountain's side and brings his face right to the rock, cupping his hand around his mouth as if whispering to the earth itself. The entire outcropping slides smoothly sideways along the side of the mountain, revealing a large opening that must measure twenty feet across and fifteen feet high. Oddly, there is neither a groan or a tremor caused by the movement of this massive piece of stone.
Beyond the entrance is a finely worked passageway with smooth floors and walls decorated with incredible carved scenes. There are another six dwarves, equally armed and armoured, waiting inside.
"Welcome to the guard-fort!" Glonfall calls as he leads the way inside.
The telepathic bond is silent so long Jacinth starts to think that it has been broken. Finally, Valette speaks. "I can't. I won't be caged again. I'll wait for ten days, try to send word when they release you. I have some items you can trade with the locals."
As the dwarves seal the stone door behind them, the mental connection fades.
Jacinth registers valette's words with half an ear, distracted by the wall carving. "Wow!" she exclaims, running as close to the wall as her guard will let her. "when were these made? Do subsequent generations add to them? Tharin, does your home have similar carvings?" thrilled by the possibility of new stories to tell, she peppers the dwarves with enthusiastic questions. When she notices valette's absence and remembers her message, she sighs and heads to whiskey, Duncan and Tharin to let them know.
Gather information if applicable re: guards and their leaders
Last edited by Shakedown : 11-01-2012 at 03:12 AM.
Whiskey looks up at Jacinth, twitchy browed before looking behind him uncertainly, then around. He seems a little wary of the place. Perhaps for the same reason Valette avoided capture, and the limitations of space was a bad reminder of where they were not long ago.
Nevertheless, he and his larger companion seem calm enough, even as the unfamiliar stale air tickles their sensitive noses.