Yes really, we found goblins!
Not unlike the classical tales told in Deutschland for millennia, these tiny, grotesque, yet ferocious creatures were revealed to be the cause of the missing pets we were originally alerted by.
After our initial forays into their ocean side cave, we had collected our fair share of injuries, committed several tactical “miscommunications”, and even managed to capture a living specimen. (However long it lasts slung across Tychus’ back like a (disgusting, foul smelling, semi-intelligent) vicious fox caught and caged by the hounds back home.) On second hand, that is too great an insult to the foxes back home.
The subsequent discussion of whether to head back and report, or finish exploring and clearing the caves was mostly solved by our band-aids of eldritch seeming aura, and the simple reminder that this was indeed still a test of our team.
We managed to clear the rest of the caverns without much incident until we at last came to a rather large underground grotto. There groaning and calling for help next to the pool near the center of the chamber was a small man. We saw the filthy rags and heard the strangely accented english as he claimed to be a goblin captive, but did not see through his mask until it was too late. Tychus took no chances with him, roughly assessing him and making him prone before Reid could get started with a real medical exam. I (Jack) and the Archive started checking the rest of the room in opposite directions when it all went to scheisse.
First, despite Tychus’ best efforts, and Reid being in the way, the small man caught a gruesome blow across Tychus’ face, and managed to jar Reid off balance. The Archive was set upon by 2 large dogs (goblin dogs I am now sure), as well as several more of the lightly armed goblins themselves rushing through a yet unseen passageway. I was also facing 3 of the swift killers, but was able to quickly dispatch them with the timely aid of my teammates.
Unlike in our previous encounters the Archive was the first to be severely wounded, (maybe damaged is a better word for a living construct) and was unfortunately temporarily crippled by the unrelenting goblin dogs. They and their keepers left their first target immobile across the room to target the 3 flesh and blood intruders. Reid and I (Jack) managed to finally down one, while the other met with such an unexpected backswing from Tychus’ hammer that it ended pinned to a rocky spike like a giant sized (nightmarish) specimen.
The final opponent was by far one of the most incredible yet. An evil shape changing Doppelgänger of that American cartoon warrior Master Splinter was cavorting around the room. If I had not seen something other than Archive taunt Tychus and live I might not have believed it. While Reid and I futilely attempted fire support, our recognized heavy could not seem to even connect solidly, while at the same time being cut to ribbons in return. By the time our medic had a moment to spare from seemingly continuously molding Tychus Findlay’ wounds back together, and his wits about him he was running to assist our fallen team member. Our opponent threw one last barb, and seeing himself greatly outnumbered, he ran.
We were unable to catch him as he slipped out a crevice to the beach outside, but we were able to finally make contact again with Colin. As I (Jack) explained the situation, and was about to ask for further orders or eyes, I was almost instantly cut off! Our only priority now was to secure the Archive, and bring it back to base for repair (healing?)! We quickly stabilized the worst of our wounds (pride not among them this time), and gathered a few small things from cavern for further study as we made our way back to our van, and then home. The bag of horded items from the cave with its strange sword that seems to vibrate at a most discordant frequency, our captive, and even our friend stone faced friend will require much study (and healing, or is it repair?) and effort to sort out when we get back. On the way we must celebrate, and of course, stop for our cigar chewing friend to continue his diet of terribly unhealthy vices by stopping at a hamburger drive through. Although tasty, I do not thing that I will ever fully get used to the chopping of words that Americans seem to love so much. (Burgers are magistrates, and kings are, well, Kings, and they make such a ridiculous name together.)
At least I will have much to write about in my next email to my feste freundin (girlfriend) in central america.