“What is it?” asked Trogdar, holding the blue paste up to the lantern.
“It’s medicine,” replied the Wizard, a faint smile playing across his lips.
“Why would they have it?” asked Trogdar, indicating the broken and dismembered bodies of Night Goblin archers cast about the floor.
“To make them better?” said Jandyr matter-of-factly as he picked through the robes of the dead.
“Then you should have it,” said Trogdar, proffering the bottle to the bleeding Wizard.
“No!” said the Wizard sharpishly, coating his arm in ice, “Bad for Wizards, makes our minds dull.”
Jandyr raised an eyebrow but said nothing as he continued looting.
“You take it!” the Wizard continued, “Here’s 20 gold, you take it.”
Trogdar looked at the outstretched paw of the Wizard suspiciously. For him to actually give up any Gold was concerning, but the eagerness with which he did so…
“Nah, I’m not that stupid,” said the Barbarian, replacing the bottle on a small table.
“Go on, dare you!” said the Wizard, still offering the Gold and hopping up and down in anticipation.
Short-arse stood aloof and shook her head in bewilderment. Goblin blood dripped from her armour as she calmed her rage with deep breaths.
“Fine, I’ll eat the stupid paste,” said Trogdar, snatching the Gold from the Wizard’s hand and sticking his fingers into the bottle. The sticky substance clung to the rim as he gathered a healthy measure and shoved it down his gullet.
“I think you’re meant to apply it to your wounds, not eat it,” said Jandyr, holding a coin up to the light to check its authenticity.
“Tastes alright,” said Trogdar, smacking his lips together as he ate it.
The Wizard jumped from foot to foot as he stifled a giggle. Trogdar looked at him from the corner of his eyes and shook his head.
“Feel pretty good actually,” said Trogdar, putting the bottle in a pouch at his waist, “Full of energy.”
The Wizard stopped jigging and stood crestfallen.
“Gimme some,” he said, reaching out with his bony arms for the bottle.
“Thought it made your wits dull?” asked Trogdar, holding the Wizard at bay by his head. The Wizard grunted as he strained and struggled to no avail, the Barbarian easily keeping him at arm’s length.
“Are we going to get on then?” asked Short-arse impatiently.
“I think there’s something back in that other room,” said Jandyr, pausing in his labours, “could we just go and have a quick look?”
A howl echoed down the corridor outside and the scuffle of clawed feet could be heard in the distance.
The Warriors looked at each other before making a hasty retreat to an opening on the other side of the room.
“They’re chasing us,” said Jandyr as he ran.
“I bloody know!” said Trogdar. Head down, the berserker didn’t notice as he trod on a loose stone flag which sunk into a recess in the floor. Whirring mechanisms were released, and a large stone fell onto him, blocking half the corridor as it did so.
“AAARGH! ME LEG!” cried Trogdar, his foot and lower limb trapped and twisted. “WHERE’S THAT BLUE PASTE!?”
“Here, here,” said Jandyr, hurrying over and retrieving the bottle from his waist. “Would you like me to make up a herbal remedy?”
“NO I WOULD NOT!” screamed Trogdar, swigging half the bottle and pouring the rest onto his leg.
The sound of scrabbling claws on stone grew louder in the distance as the Dwarf and Elf heaved at the rock, desperately trying not to break Trogdar’s leg.
“Give it here,” said Trogdar, the paste beginning to take effect. He sat upright and pushed the rock across his foot, the sound of bones breaking clearly audible.
The Wolf riders rounded the corner in front of him, slathering tongues and snapping jaws as prominent as the crazed Goblins atop. Trogdar shoved the stone as hard as he could, sending it bouncing down the corridor and into the pack. Pained yelps and cries of anguish were heard as the boulder stopped the ravenous horde.
Supported by Jandyr and the Wizard, Trogdar hobbled on one leg as they made for a door at the far end of the corridor. The scratching sound came again as the Wolves were driven up the stone, the first poking its head over the top as the Warriors opened the wooden door.
“How are we going to keep it closed?” said Trogdar, sinking to the floor in pain as they hurriedly tried to shut the door behind.
“Aha!” cried the Wizard, reaching into his tunic and producing a set of metal spikes. As the door neared its recess, a Wolf shoved its muzzle through the closing crack, growling and sniffing the sweaty Warriors.
Trogdar kicked out at the Wolf with his good foot, the beast recoiling in pain as the Elf and Dwarf managed to get the door shut. The Wizard jammed the metal spikes into the gap between door and floor and quickly retreated. There were loud thumps from the other side, but the door held fast.
Trogdar relaxed, casting the lantern around the room for the first time. As he lit the far corner, 8 pairs of beady red eyes looked back, and a large net made from heavy rope and metal fastenings was cast at him.
“GOTCHA!” came a high-pitched squeal as 3 more nets flew out of the darkness.