With the ministrations of Qova, Hern was much better the next morning. With his return to the table, the three began to put their plans into motion.
A thorough search of this section revealed only one obvious way in: the original door. Hern set to work securing it with a bar on the inside. As they would leave, Arbiddance would Wizard Lock it so that no one else could force their way in, even if they did know the locking mechanism in the arch.
The secret door in the hall of gargoyles unnerved them. Even with a hard search, none of them could find the mechanism that opened it. Finally, Arbiddance concluded that it probably could only be opened from the other side.
"Which puts us at the mercy of whatever's on the other side, if anything," he mused. "At best, we can pile up the rubble from the pillars in front of it; if it opens into the hallway, then it's blocked... if it opens the other way... then we'll at least slow down whatever comes through it." They would leave the door into this hallway open and count on the draft of smoke from their campfire to alert them to any changes in air pressure due to opened doors.
The bodies of the goblins, gargoyles and worgs had been dragged and dumped into the room with the collapsed floor. Hern had tied off the door to a spike in the opposite wall... easy to unhitch from their side, but next to impossible to force from the other side.
This left the inventory of the goblin treasure room. They concluded, due to the age of some of the items, that in all probablity the goblins had found this room and its contents and simply added to it. After an hour or so of carefully pouring through the stuff, Arbiddance had this list:
-4,330 gold coins... at least half of it minted during the reign of King Gorthis the Halfhauser.
-2,900 silver coins... with the same age category.
-20 bolts of cloth in various stages of worth and condition. Most was usable.
-12 shortbows (unstrung) and 200 arrows.
-an entire suit of plate mail armor.
-an oil portrait of someone's really ugly female relative.
-a large iron pot that would serve amazingly well as a gong.
-a motley collection of male and female clothing of various sizes and conditions.
-a bundle of 50 torches
Then there was the question of the locked chest. Since none of the dead goblins had a key on their persons, and since the chances of the one single goblin that escaped having that key were slim, the trio concluded that it had predated the past occupants. Hern smashed the lock, and Arbiddance slowly lifted the lid.
The three looked down, and saw within a small brass bottle, covered with arcane sigils, stoppered and wax sealed. Arbiddance smiled at the sight.