As is customary with a patient regaining consciousness after injury, I introduced myself (in Dwarven, for his benefit) and told him he was stable and safe. I asked him his name.
The Dwarf Cleric replied in a rough, unfamiliar language. I looked around to my associates. Spiritz understood it. He volunteered a translation. What the Dwarf Cleric said to me was a most impolite invective. He’d said it in Abyssal.
What followed was an orderly interrogation. At least, for a while. In turn we each took the opportunity to ask a question, either in Common or in Dwarven, according to each person’s fluency. The Dwarf Cleric seemed to understand, but would only speak Abyssal, and only at Spiritz after the Dwarf realized that our mage was fluent.
I asked if the Cleric and his Dwarf associates had been prisoners of the hobgoblins. What Spiritz translated was not an answer. BOB asked the Cleric what his relation to the hobgoblins was. Again, no answer. Pulp, a Cleric who is decidedly not an Evil cleric as this Dwarf was, strangely had absolutely nothing on his mind to ask the Evil Dwarf Cleric sitting right in front of him.
Lunk remained quiet, only watching. Alex observed as well, arms crossed, as attentive to our questions as he was to the translated answers. Gord swaggered up, Dwarf to Dwarf, and demanded to know what the cleric was doing with the hobgoblins. Sneering, the Cleric replied. Spiritz smirked at his answer, and paraphrased the translation : “He doesn’t like you very much.”
Alex then told the Cleric to answer our questions or else I would Consecrate the Dwarf Cleric’s soul. This bluff was more than a surprise to me, and it had no effect on the Cleric. Except, maybe, to lower his opinion of us further.
Unprovoked, the Dwarf said something to Spiritz. I watched Spiritz’s reaction. He seemed surprised, or somehow interested. But whatever the meaning, Spiritz did not translate it to us.
Then BOB said an idea out loud. It was what has troubled me all day. BOB’s suggestion was the start of the slide into anarchy. Which, then, makes me question my future with these…associates of mine.
BOB suggested we heal one of the other Dwarves to wake him up, then kill that Dwarf in front of the Cleric to convince the Evil Dwarf to talk. BOB said this in all seriousness. And he looked ready to do it if the group gave assent.
I strongly objected. I felt like I was the only one to call a very bad, very evil, idea for what it was. To my dismay, no one else opposed BOB as strenuously. Pulp seemed indifferent, Gord uncertain. Alex didn’t seem to support BOB’s suggestion at all. The rest of our party who was within earshot, said nothing against the idea. That’s unsettling to me.
Trying to reason with the Dwarf, I asked something different. I asked the Dwarf if he and his associates were from this area, or if they had found themselves transported here by some kind of magical means. I remember mention of the hobgoblins being lost and disoriented in the marshes near Yissic’s village, and how they and that Displacer Beast were quite foreign to the area.
Spiritz said the Dwarf said that we were “half-wits” and that we had been “listening to child-like stories.”
Then, to my horror, Spiritz took up a rusty, dull metal axe from one of the dead Dwarves, and approached the Dwarf Cleric with a look I did not trust for an instant.
Journal of Dr. Marcus Grant
Healing Cleric of Pelor, Order of St-Jude Academy (Silabrek)
43rd Day, grasslands, territory of Ælim.