Scouting ahead once again, the Drow found the bottom of the stairwell guarded by goblinoid sentries. After much debate, the Downies decieded to try the password contained in nirian’s note – however this turned out to be a fake and they were soon swarmed by hobgoblin warriors. Again the elf’s divine might had an immediate impact on the battle clearing out most of the grunts, but the remaining soldiers formed a defensive wall that the Downies were unable to break through. The remaining grunts released a deathjump spider from its cage (which quickly used its speed and prodigious leap to flanked the party) and then one ran to alert Kalarel. However quick thinking by Aguirre stopped the messenger in its tracks, and the ranger quickly and brutally dealt with the arachnid threat. As the dwarf soaked up the hobgoblin soldiers best efforts, the last grunt tried to flee, however he was unable to avoid the drow’s keen aim with the dagger and the rest of the guards where finished off without raising the alarm.
Moving further into the Keep, Zoltan was surprised when a creaking door alerted a hobgoblin minion and soon the Downies found themselves attacking a large hobgoblin force lead by a wizened warcaster. Lord Salisbury fearlessly charged the hobgoblin line, opening up a gaping hole and then turning his attention on the warcaster leading the troops. Tiliqua then took advantage of this opening to fire a brutal barrage of tratnyrs , felling the warcaster instantly. Without their leader the hobgoblins did not prove to be a major challenge, and the Downies where soon moping up the last of the resistance.