The Heroes descend to what feels like the relative safety of the 5th underground level. Marching back toward a safe zone, the Heroes find that the Dwarves have moved out of the Cistern Room and taken up a secure staging area in the first, large Storage Room the Heroes had explored.
There is plenty of light, and a lot of activity. Strike teams of Dwarves assemble and march out as others return from the dark hallways and report their findings. The Heroes are greeted by Dwarf sentries at the hallway junctions and Storage Room doors.
Captain Ironhaul spots them, and asks an update on their progress and their findings. The Dwarf commander listens, obviously aware of how worn-out the Heroes are; after all, it is about 4AM and the Party has engaged in five or six fights during their waking day. That kind of mildly strenuous day for a Dwarf, must be a punishing marathon for Humans, Ironhaul thinks.
The Heroes unload a considerable supply of magic shields, Dwarf-sized magic armor, and enchanted Dwarven War-Axes for Ironhaul to distribute to his men. The Dwarf commander is especially appreciative of this gear – certainly it will boost their strength against however many Duergar and monsters lurk in the floors above them. Though it must be rid of the Duergar stench, first.
Ironhaul gently suggests that the Heroes take some time and rest. This room is entirely secure and if a problem arises which the Dwarves cannot handle, they will wake the Heroes for assistance.
The Party doesn’t need convincing. Setting up camp in a secure, well-lit corner of the room, the war-weary Heroes manage to slough off their armor and throw down a blanket before collapsing into a welcome, heavy, death-like sleep.
To the Heroes’ surprise, a full eight hours have passed. Ironhaul is in good spirits. His forces have swept and secured the entire 5th underground level. One patrol encountered a squad of stealthy Duergar Rogues, and lost a Scout. Lester offers his condolences and regrets for the loss.
Apart from that incident, there were no issues. No other entry-tunnels were discovered. Ironhaul’s forces have followed the path of the Party up to the 4th underground level, and not only secured the rooms and hallways explored by the Heroes, but pushed past those boundaries and taken almost half of that floor, with some combat involved. The Dwarves have had a very productive eight hours while the Party slept.
The Heroes are well-rested. Taking a meal and memorizing spells for the day, the Party makes ready to move out and explore further. It is now 2PM on Day 7.
The adventure ends here for the night.