We came upon the Hope Springs, winded from our run from the gate, emerging into the open shore beyond the houses there. A cave giant and two orcs, attached to the larger beasts by chains for the purposes of direction, stood on the far side of the Hope Springs, the giant enlarging the opening they had made under the next layer of the city as we approached. With my dwarven eyes, I made out that there were tunnels beyond the opening, but this had no time to shock me, as I quickly hoisted Leetsa up to the top of a nearby house and positioned myself behind a pile of rocks.
Within seconds of each other, we opened fire, with Thorsten providing support through devastating grenades. Roaring its rage, the giant charged across the springs, its gnarled mouth frothing with fury. Leetsa, Elynnar, and myself continued to fire, filling it with arrows until it ran up directly before me, bringing its fists up high to smash. Elynnar quickly retreated to keep attacking from range, but I knew I could not let the monster pursue someone so unaccustomed to melee combat. So, foolheartily, I leapt up on the pile of rocks, shouting into the giants face as it attempted to pummel both the nearby Leetsa and myself. I landed a solid hit, but it was the efforts of Thorsten and Leetsa that felled the beast in the end, another of Thorsten’s grenades delivering the killing blow by way of fire. It was then I turned my attention to the orc handlers…only to find that they had been pummeled to death in the giant’s mad swings. The battle was over.
Moments later, Kurst arrived, looking far better than the night before, though still bandaged and weary. He commended us for our deeds, charging us to enter into the exposed tunnel across the springs. Curiosity already pulling at me, I readily agreed, as did my companions.
As we reached the opening, I motioned for the others to stay back while I scouted ahead. My keen sight in dark places would make me the best candidate for such things, and I didn’t wish for any of them to be caught off-guard. I believe that this decision may have saved a life in the end, for, as I came upon the first junction in the dark, I was set upon by a swarm of ghostly rats. Calling out to the others, I retreated, attacking where I could and attempting to keep the swarm at bay. It was as my companions maneuvered to help, however, that I was able to strike a blow to the heart of the mass with Incisor, Brinya’s gift to me.
With the rats skittering back into the dark crevasses from which they came, we took a moment to catch our breath. We were sure to face even greater enemies further in…