Feldard studied the wall the guardian indicated, seeking the secret exit that it claimed to be there. It appeared that the door was once locked shut, but had been forced open. He looked over towards the Elf of Stone, “You say the Rahib found another way to the Tower? Do you know how? Is it back before the cave-in?”
“I know not how the man called the Rahib gained access to the Tower Ruins.”
Feldard frowned heavily as he saw the others were once again placing their mission on hold to recover. “Each moment we spend in rest gives the Sisters that much more time to accomplish their foul plan—whatever that may be.”
Hasan turned from Ular-Taman and faced his companions. “I agree with Miklos. There will be no safer spot than here for the rest of our journey. Certainly we shall have no stronger ally should we be forced to fight than we have here. I too can prepare some modest enchantments that could be of assistance on our path.”
Seeing that he was going to be lose this battle of words to others who wished to rest, the dwarf brushed past the others in the doorway. “I’ll keep watch at the tunnel entrance. Call me when you’re ready to move on”
Nicolai assumed a position at the hidden door. Finding it to be devoid of any traps, he listened for anyone approaching.
“What do you know, or guess, about the nature of the Sisters? In your long years here, despite being bound to this room doubtless you may have overheard something?”
“The Sisters were once the apprentices of Elyas, but were corrupted to evil by the will of the Black Opal Eye.”
“Was it the Sisters that subverted your brother? If so why did they not subvert you? And was your brother similarly bound and yet is now released? This suggests that there might be a method by which we could do the same for you?”
“I know not.”
“If this is not possible, our best chance of defeating your brother is to bring him here, but he is unlikely to approach if you are still functioning. Could you ‘play dead’ so that we might lure him in here and entrap him?”
“I am bound by enchantment to guard the passage to the tower against the enemies of the Elyan.”
Talking to the magical construct was not like talking to an ordinary humanoid life form. It displayed little emotion, and the nature of the emotion it did display seemed more of mimickry than authenticity. Its answers were not particularly helpful. Not surprising, considering the thing’s sole purpose for existence was to accomplish its mission. Thusly, it was ill equiped to answer questions much beyond its purview.
Saeth bristled as the Dwarf pushed past her, but calmed down and joined the others as they got comfortable and retreated to their studies. Ultimately, she engaged the Elven construct, Ular-Taman, in conversation. “How long have you been down here?”
“Six generations of the Elyan”
“What do you do to pass the time? Do you sing?”
The construct looked straight ahead in silence. Apparently that was its answer.
“What sorts of songs are typical this far West, anyhow?You want me to teach you one from up North? It’s about this barmaid, and I added a last stanza of my own…”
Miklos turned to the others and in common tongue he said, “I think the best course of action is to remain here so that we may be properly prepare for the onward journey. If he is willing, Nicolai could determine what lies beyond the secret door whilest we rest and meditate. If it is possible, and he can achieve it in realtive safety, he could draw the other guardian here into our trap? This is of course if they meet.”
The priest lowered his guard and rehooked his chain flail. He felt much relieved at the fact that the Guardian was prepared to talk rather than attack, despite the lack of his ability to understand what was being said. At the wizards’ words he sighed, a chance to rest was just what he needed and Miklos was no fool. He certainly seemed to think that the Guardian would keep watch over them. “Well I for one am unused to this armour and any opportunity to shed it is a welcome one. I am extremely tired and I need some rest. I insist that Feldard remain with me so I can complete his healing, I myself am still wounded and engaging in unprepared combat would be folly.
“Unless Saeth is prepared to lend me her sword again, I’m not too keen on venturing far ahead. I will scout the passage, but if there are any problems, I will return straight here. And if you are all still preparing yourselves, this could prove extremely dangerous.”
Nicolai will then move through the door, leaving it open. “If I return, be ready for me. I will try and warn you in advance if I am being pursued.”
“Be well, Niolai, and do be cautious,” said Hasan. “It’s sad the dwarf went the other way. Should he return, and Ilsundral knows I wouldn’t count on it, we will send him to guard your back.”. And the elf returned to his spellbook, while listening with half an ear to the responses of the party’s stony ward.
* * * * *
After some time, Nicolai returned from his exploration of what lay beyond the chamber. In the meantime, despite the elf’s mostly one-sided banter with the guardian Ular-Taman, the spellcasters were able to memorise their spells for the upcoming mission, and the cleric was able to commune with his deity and heal himself and the dwarf back to full strength.