Hasan looked at the path ahead. “I don’t like the looks of that cave,” the elf said flatly, “but I remember hearing words before that we wouldn’t want to proceed leaving it unexplored. I suppose the same applies now. Still, the first thing will be to get there. Ludo, I suppose the honor is yours?” The elf’s head disappeared into the neck of his mail shirt as he pulled the old mail up. Hasan tucked his mail shirt into his backpack, to ease his movement during the climb down the canyon.
Ludo looked at the crags and handholds for the climb down. It looked not too difficult, if you discounted the huge drop and certain death if one should fall. Turning to Stephan “Tie the ropes together and secure the end of the rope to that tree. I will loop the rope around my waist and climb down. The rope will provide a useful safety line for the less agile members on the descent and if necessary to help us all get back up.”
Ludo carefully made his descent. Confident in his abilities, he took his time to ensure he found good hand and foot holds as he descends. Once at the bottom of the gorge, he took up a position near the entrance to the cave.
Miklos followed next gingerly testing the rope before he descended, moving away for the base before anyone had a chance to fall on him.
“Da,” Stephan nodded at Ludo and prepared the ropes as directed. He watched the rogue’s progress noting where the foot and hand holds were. All in all, Ludo made it look easy.
“Easy for him. But how about us with heavier equipment?”
Despite the woodsman’s idle concern, he quickly made to follow Ludo. “Best not leave the lad alone down there. Arrows and bolts at the ready please!” he made his enigmatic request of those in the party with distance weapons to cover he and Ludo while separated from the others.
Alone for a couple minutes on the rock face, Stephan felt the crisp morning wind trying to send him swinging like the pendulum of the old time piece back at Sukiskyn Hall. Alighting at the bottom, he quickly drew his blade and checked the surroundings keeping close attention the on cave opening.
Maruc looped the rope around his armoured frame and took the weight. He’d carefully watched Ludo lightly lower himself expertly with one to to seemingly insignificant touches with his feet. The reality was altogether different after just feet feet Maruc’s sore palms were burning against the course rope.
While the others descended, Feldard had removed what armour he could and strapped that to his pack. It weighed heavily on his back but at least he could move somewhat. His turn was approaching far too soon. This was one of those moments when Feldard didn’t like being last. He knew all eyes would be on on him as he clambered down the wall. No easy task.
At the bottom, the others watched as Maruc continued to make his descent. He awkwardly dangled in mid space rotating like a child’s mobile. There was little or no grace to his descent.
The priest was about halfway down when, suddenly, from out of the dark cave-mouth came a disgusting lizard with pebble-colored olive skin. It was enormous, about 8 feet long. Large white spikes stood erect from its back. It stared stupidly for a moment before thundering to the attack.