Dinner with the prince was informative and interesting, not to mention filling. Deaton was given a letter of marque and not so subtly asked to deal quickly with a loan shark who was bilking people out of their futures through high interest loans. After finishing his meringue he went quickly about the business of tracking down the loan shark and his enforcer and extracting from them the proof he needed to hand them over the the Watch, with a few bruises and cracked ribs added to the mix.
Meanwhile, Luc and Amarack headed south toward the mountains that same evening, making good time that night before camping. They would make contact with the small group of miners the prince had said were in distress first thing in the morning, and would discover that one miner was dead, the victim of some underground beast, and that the survivors reported that they’d been under surveillance by goblins up in the surrounding hills.
Not wasting any time, Amarack and Luc followed the lead of the miners to a small opening in a ravine and climbed underground, finding their way to a small cave, full of webs. Using both magic and the blunt force of Amarack’s hammer, the pair confronted and crushed a giant spider. They also found what the miners said was likely gold in a handful of rocks in a nearby flooded tunnel.
Once above ground again, the pair was alerted to the immediate presence of goblins up in the surrounding hills, watching. Amarack approached directly while Luc moved stealthily around to one side. Once in range, Amarack was confronted by a large hobgoblin, in rustic armor, who demanded that he and the others leave his land. Instead of attacking, the cleric began to negotiate with the savage warrior, refusing to back down, and refusing to be baited into insulting or attacking him. Luc transformed himself into the likeness of a hobgoblin and, although he could not speak much of the language, thoroughly confused both the hobgoblin chieftain and his two goblin flunkies to the point that G’Toch was willing to continue talking.
After Amarack told G’Toch of his flight from the Mourning and the plight of New Cyre, and how his honor was tied up with that of his people, the hobgoblin accepted an invitation to meet with Prince Oargev and discuss the possibility of some sort of pact or agreement between New Cyre and the Torvasch tribe.
Luc rode ahead to New Cyre while Amarack and his guests followed, eventually delivering G’Toch to the prince’s home for negotiations, from which all others were barred. His goblin riders were given humble food and drink and left to sit in the front garden, under the constant but polite watch of the house guards, while Luc and Amarack, after formally introducing the hobgoblin to the prince, were dismissed.