He used spells to attempt to force me to release a pen full of dragon spawn - AFTER the wyrmlord had been defeated. I do not trust him.
Bind him and secure him so that he cannot turn invisible again.
I cast Detect Magic to see what magic he might have upon himself.
Remember, the Glitterdust does not make the invisible creature visible, rather it allows others to see him due to the sparkling dust. In my view, essentially we can see a humanoid shaped creature covered in sparkles.
If you despised him so, why were you healing and releasing him?
The answer is heard telepathically by all in the room.
"Naturally, I had no choice but to aid him, otherwise he most certainly would have killed me. How was I to know that I was to be rescued by such strong and able warriors? Once again, I cannot thank you enough for ending the tyranny!"
You are evil, that is clear. I do not know whether you wish to delay us until your true master the dragon returns, or whether you have decided to abandon this lost cause to take your evil elsewhere, but either way, we cannot allow you to go.
You stating that you had to aid him rings with falsehood. He was captured and it was clear that we were simply keeping him alive to be questioned. He was no threat to you.
Mantooth turns to Bofus.
Tie him up and do with you as you will. I cannot condone killing him, but I also know that we cannot allow this evil beast to remain behind us.
With that, Mantooth walks out of the room and takes a watchful position just outside of the room where he cannot see what happens in the room.
That's what he was trying to do??? Get you to release dragonspawn?? *sigh* Like I said, I believe he doesnt' want to follow this earstwhile wyrmlord, but he's sly enough to hide whether it's because he's got other fish to fry. I'll tie him up securely, using the Rope of Climbing.
ONce Mantooth leaves . . .
OK, I think there's no reason to whisper, except so the paladin doesn't hear us. This guy can speak telepathically, no reason to think he also can't hear our thoughts with little effort. He can turn invisible, he's sneaky, he's smart, his loyalties are unknown, he is evil, and he's already tried to kill us by putting Tirion in thrall. Normally I'd say we should let him go with a stern warning, but he's too dangerous. I think we need to kill him. I'll ask forgiveness later.
this is loud enough only to carry in this room, I don't want Mantooth to hear.
Oh, and if Grallak makes *any* kind of move that could be interpreted as escape, or communicating--particualry Mantooth--I'll immeidately stab him.
"Wait! Wait!" The creature declares aloud. The rest comes to you telepathically.
"I know that was a poor decision for Grallak to suggest to the dark gnome to release the dragonspawn, but I am not evil when you compare me to the rest of the Red Hand! I am just making choices to try and survive these dangerous times! Clearly, I may have made some poor choices in my past, but I assure you, I can be of help to you! I know a great deal of information that may aid you in your cause against the Red Hand. I could be willing to divulge some of this information for a small iddy biddy price, mainly my freedom, but not if you plan on killing me. Please, relax and let's not be hasty. Please let us consider some kind of mutually beneficial negotiation? Hmm what do you say, my friends?"
Although Grallak Kur is bound and you can see the glitter dust on him, he becomes very clear once he lets down his invisibility.
The creature is a strange looking gray skinned hobgoblin with a messy tuft of red hair upon his scalp. His eyes look rather large and a bit vacant as he still appears blinded from the glitterdust. He is clearly unable to make eye contact with any of you.
"Thank you," he replies politely. "I am happy to reveal myself to you in this state of extreme vulnerability. Clearly my life is in your hands. I wish to cooperate fully and I mean no offense when I say this, but I am afraid that I cannot drop any further equipment with my hands bound as they are. I meant no offense to you, kind dwarf! As I mentioned earlier, I did not mean to upset you with my preferred method of communication, but I will try talk to you in your common tongue. Now, please ask what questions you have and I will gladly tell you what you what I may."
"First off, what is this particular "local chapter" of the Red Hand up to, in the short-term?"
"This branch of the Red Hand is or I should say was run by the Wrymord Saarvith for the purpose of breeding a platoon of Greenspawn Razorfiends for the invasion of the Elsir Vale. There is a hatchery just outside of this building that is filled with dozens of eggs as well as some young and middle aged hatched razorfiends. The dragonspawn may be young, but they are still vicious fiends that can cause a great amount of damage, especially as they get older."
The strange hobgoblin appears to be telling the truth as far as you can tell.
As you remove the possessions from the creature before binding him, you find the following:
"You speak of this as a branch of the Red Hand. Where and who are the others?"
"Well, the main branch is the gathering horde commanded by Wyrmlord Hravek Kharn! He is the general in command of the horde that will take over all of the towns in the vale. Then there is Wyrmlord Koth. He is in charge of the scouting patrols in the Witchwood. He is basically laying the groundwork for Kharn's troops to invade. I have already told you about Wyrmlord Saarvith and his hatchery. There is also Wyrmlord Ulwai Stormcaller. She is working with the Ghostlord to raise an army of undead. All of these wyrmlords owe allegiance to High Wyrmlord Azarr Khul. Nobody knows where he is located, but he shows up when we least expect it!"
Edvard coldly regards the strange hobgoblin as the others interrogate it, the hardness in his eyes making it clear that he does not trust or look kindly upon the one who calls himself Grallak. Taken out of his reverie slightly as Tirion makes his request, Edvard examines the items and replies "The tools of one who prefers to engender trust through manipulation and mental force... than by truthfulness and honor."
To the one that pleads for his life Edvard delivers a dangerous question "And what of your part in the Red Hand? How many of the vale have you caused to die through your actions?"
"The tools of one who prefers to engender trust through manipulation and mental force... than by truthfulness and honor."
"Hehe." He replies with an edge of nervousness. "Those are just tools that I needed to do my job, but as you can see, I haven't had many customers back here in the swamp besides a few misbehaving lizardfolk. Hehe. Please don't hold those items against me."
"And what of your part in the Red Hand? How many of the vale have you caused to die through your actions?"
"Oh, I doubt I have been able to cause any deaths on my part. I am certainly eccentric with some unusual gifts, but I certainly have not put those skills to work harming innocent people such as yourselves! I think I am just a curious case for the Red Hand and they wished to use me to communicate with those that didn't seem to agree with their plan of taking over the vale. But as you can see, the Red Hand has not met with a great deal of resistance, and consequently I have not had much of a job back here in this bug infested swamp."
"Grollock, ye call yerself? Tell me more about these wyrmlords. Oi want locations an' defenses!
"Well master dwarf. General Kharn is on the move and is likely to reach Brindol before too long. His defense is huge as he travels with an army several thousand strong. Wyrmlord Koth has his own keep that he guards with a manticore somewhere in the Witchwood. Wyrmlord Stormcaller is found far to the south in the lair of the Ghostlord. I don't know where it is located since I obviously have not been there, but I am sure it is well defended by both the dead and the living."
"Where in the Witchwood? Did the goblin keep maps?"
"I have never been to Wyrmlord Koth's hideout, but he took over the ruins of some old keep somewhere south of Skull Gorge Bridge. I am sure that he kept maps. The crazy bugbear was always sending scouts and patrols all over the region."
So, let me understand this. The great fighting horde of the Red Hand consists of the dead Wyrmlord Koth and his dead troops, the dead Wyrmlord Saarvith and his soon to be dead troops, Wyrmlord Kharn, who found that his way into the vale was greatly hindered due to someone destroying the bridge over the gorge and the ferry over the river. And Wyrmlord Stormcaller who is attempting to gather ever predictable undead. Sounds like this great force is not that great. Two commanders dead, one delayed, and one being held in reserve.
"So, let me understand this. The great fighting horde of the Red Hand consists of the dead Wyrmlord Koth and his dead troops, the dead Wyrmlord Saarvith and his soon to be dead troops, Wyrmlord Kharn, who found that his way into the vale was greatly hindered due to someone destroying the bridge over the gorge and the ferry over the river. And Wyrmlord Stormcaller who is attempting to gather ever predictable undead. Sounds like this great force is not that great. Two commanders dead, one delayed, and one being held in reserve."
"I confess, being stationed up here in these swamps, I did not know that Wyrmlord Koth has died or that Wyrmlord Kharn was held up at the bridge over the gorge. Certainly this is more information than of which I am aware. Perhaps you are right though, the cracks are appearing in the Red Hand that may soon scatter the tribes to the mountains. Perhaps the threat is now over for you of the five races."
"What of the Red Hand's desire to open a portal to some strange realm where dragon-gods may emerge? Ever hear of anyhing like that?"
The strange creature replies to you telepathically.
"Once again, you speak of things that I have no knowledge concerning. However, this information would lend itself to the rumor that there is a massive temple hidden in the heart of the mountains where Azarr Kul dwells. We peons have often speculated what the cleric of Tiamat has in plan for the vale, but I never imagined that he would have the power to summon forth the queen of dragons! Perhaps this would explain why he has so many dragons assisting him."
"Oh, you sound like one of the elves from nearby. Yes, I heard that one of the Razorfiends caught one of your kind. I don't think they meant any harm to your kin, the razorfiends just get a little hungry sometimes. Your brother should have just stayed out of the swamp. You must realize that they are savage beasts don't you?"
"Didn't mean any harm?! Your savage little razorfiend slaughtered my brother and mutilated his owl! He was one of the greatest hunters of Starsong Hill, and you are telling me that your dragonspawn meant no harm?! I have no doubt that he was ripped to shreds and digested in acid!"
Tears begin to stream down the elf's face as she begins shouting at the hobgoblin.
"You and the Red Hand are going to pay the price for your hatred and cruetly! Don't you dare ever tell me that they just get a little hungry sometimes! You spawned a deadly beast that is meant to destroy other races and that will no longer be tolerated. I do not see any reason to show you any mercy. You didn't show any mercy to my brother when you created that wretched fiend!"
"My dear lady, you clearly misunderstand me. I am not at all like one of the Wyrmlords! I had nothing to do with the creation of the razorfiends! I'm a victim of the Red Hand just like yourselves! I assure you, I had nothing to do with those evil creatures. I am most sorry for your loss, but I promise you that I had nothing to do with it! Please, do not hold me responsible for the crimes of the others. You all promised to let me free! Now, if you have no other questions, I would like to be released now, thank you!"
The strange hobgoblin begins to sweat and get rather nervous at this time.
"What are you doing, Dwarf?! I promised you information and I have spoken freely. Now you are suppose to release me. You wouldn't go back on your word, would you?"
Oi never gave ye moi word 'bout anythin'. If Oi had, Oi would honor it. Right now, you have valuable information 'bout tha horde an' its generals that tha others don't know--an Oi need te keep it that way. Oi can't let ye go out there an' spill tha beans, see? Now don't make this difficult, Oi promise Oi'll swing true.
"Oi never gave ye moi word 'bout anythin'. If Oi had, Oi would honor it. Right now, you have valuable information 'bout tha horde an' its generals that tha others don't know--an Oi need te keep it that way. Oi can't let ye go out there an' spill tha beans, see? Now don't make this difficult, Oi promise Oi'll swing true."
"Well, if you would honor sparing my life, there is still more that I may tell you. However, as for information, what you have told me will not be of significance. I am sure they already know about the incident of the bridge and the fate of Koth. That is just information that a lowly hobgoblin like me just didn't know. But I assure you I have no need to tell anyone else. Besides, who would could I possibly tell this information to that does not already know it, Master Dwarf? Wyrmlord Saarvith is dead and so are his minions. Now I am a lonely hobgoblin with a mental curse that would prefer to live alone anyway. I assure you, you will not regret sparing my life! Please give me your word! I don't deserve to die here!"
Sense Motive DC 46:
How did you roll a Sense Motive 46? If you really did, send me a personal message and I will tell you something.
Sense Motive: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (16) + 9 = 25 <--for a read
Well, Mister Kur, technically speaking, *no* one here agreed to anything. You simply started spilling the beans.
Hmmm, I'm not sure . . . .
I have more to say, but I need to test something first . . .
I look sternly at the hobgoblin . . .
this is tricky, but I wnat to see if he can read my mind. I make a differentiation between "him picking up my actively trying to telepathically commuicate" and "him reading my surface thoughts." So, I'm going to look at him, and muse where the best place to stick a rapier would be, and see if he reacts to that.
If he can read our minds, it makes no difference where we discuss his fate.
"Well, Mister Kur, technically speaking, *no* one here agreed to anything. You simply started spilling the beans.
Hmmm, I'm not sure . . . ."
"You are all rather unfair in your technicalities. But, nevertheless, I have told you a great deal. You must certainly realize how valuable I have been to you?!"
The eyes of the creature grow large and fearful as Bofus stares him down sternly.
You are certain the creature can read your mind.
Grallak pleads with the halfling telepathically. Please do not kill me! If you need to fool your friends, you could stab me gently and I will pretend to die. I could try to find the eye of the dragon for you. Just throw me into the water and I will swim away and come back with it once I find it. I promise, I will bring it just to you and it can be all yours!
Thanks for confirming that you can read minds. Now I know we can simply speak freely.
OK ladies and gents, I've just determined that this guy can actually read our minds with little effort, not just commuincate telepathically. So there's no real point in tyring ot talk quietly, he can simply hear it anyway.
So here's where I stand. I think this guy is dangerous. I also think he can prove helpful, considering what he's given us already. I think it would both be dishonorable, and not in our best interest, to kill him outiright as he's bound and helpless.
I think he's smart enough to know that we can take him any time we want to, so I doubt he'll threaten us directly. And if we give him a show of good faith--like unbinding him--he may be of use to us. Who knows, maybe we can even reform this guy!
I vote that we spare his life, give him his freedom, and see what else he can offer us for information. He knows what we can do--we took out his fromer boss relativley easily, and if he wants to watch us do the same to the dragon, that'll just cement the fear of us into him that much better!! And now he knows that we know what he's capable of, and anything weird going on we'll be looking for him, and will NOT give a third chance!!
What say you all?
DMHW, can you confirm whether the wyrmlord equipment is "small?"
Edvard shakes his head "Je pisse sur votre logique... Do you so easily forget this creature's honor? It was hidden to our sight and could easily have fled when the goblin lay broken and bloody at our feet... but no. It made the choice to attempt to lure not only myself but also Tyrion to our deaths. No... it does not deserve our mercy, and if your heart is too soft to do what is needed..." letting his words trail off as he draws a dagger and makes plain his intent.
"The powers within my mind are thought of as a gift, but in truth it is more of a curse that you realize. It is for the reason of this 'gift' that the Red Hand has taken such an interest in me."
The hobgoblin communicates to you telepathically. "What is it that you want, Witch? I have not harmed you. I was simply suggesting you go upstairs for your own safety. There is still much that I can offer you, if you will permit me. If you let me free, I can try and find the black dragon and persuade him to leave the area and give you your woods back. Just imagine, you will be free of the Red Hand and their dragons. You will be free to live on your own again in the peace of the wilderness!"