Hasan pulled himself up from over the slain great cat. He waited to catch his breath, then said, “My new companions, we have traveled far together in this deep. It is clear we are now coming to where we must end our journey. For me, I must end it now, in either success or death. For you, no such urgency is at stake.”
The Siswa elf saw the exagerated eyerolls Feldard and Nicolai exchanged. Nonetheless, Hasan continued, “Hear me out. As we face the sisters or their accursed successors, we cannot prevail if we cannot count on one another. Nobody who leaves now would face my scorn, for we will face a terrible foe. But for those who will join me in opening that door,” Hasan gestured as dramatically as he could, this role was really growing on him, “for whatever reason, be it glory, justice or mere curiosity, must pact with me to not turn back from what we face, or we shall sink faster than a skiff with a rotted plank. Come now! Let’s go.”
The elf spun toward the door, armed with his pathetic blades, an enchanted ring and torque, and a firmly set jaw.
For a moment, the dwarf considered making mockery of the elfs attempt at a stirring speech, but something of the mans’ firmly set jaw gave him pause. Instead, Feldard thumped the handle of his axe on the floor three times. “I’m in.”
Maruc slapped Hasan oh the shoulder in a comradely fashion. “Halav has guided us to you, doubt not His wisdom. We are chosen for this purpose, have faith in your friends we will stand at your side.Or possibly right behind you in some cases.” He turned a winked good naturedly at Nicolai and Miklos.
Nicolai squinted and rubbed his eyes. The elf’s words chimed not at all with him. He was still trying to work out what the point of all this was. Noble, yes but … he guessed it was the thrill of the unknown that drove him. That and trying to stop these people from committing suicide. Talking of that he checked the door.
Satisfied the door was safer than what lay beyond Nicolai stepped aside and allowed the others to continue.
The priest backed out of the way and allowed Hasan and Feldard to breach the door. He braced himself behind his shield half expecting some blast of sorcery. Miklos filed his wand away and waited to counter what magic the witch might through at them.
On the other side of the double doors was a 20-foot square room bathed in soft golden light. Glowing 15-foot wide silver arches opened through the north and south walls. A pair of steel doors, carved with more elven decorative woodland patterns, stood across from them in the center of the west wall.
Beyond the north arch lied what must be thousands and thousands of gold pieces, giant gemstones and ornate jewelry, all overflowing from exquisitely carved chests. A glowing domed sealing sent reflective light bouncing off the polished marble floor and treasure horde.
The room through the south arch was identical to the north, but it is empty.
As Nicolai surveyed the room for any threats, he noticed some Elven writing above the northern arch.