The gallant party march off from the site of the battle to gain their freedom from the unsavoury types, for the shelter of the rocky outcrops on the hills nearby. Justin’s faithful hound Muggerscum joins them, after days of trailing the cart the party were trapped in.
On their way up the hillside they almost trip over something in the mist — the smashed remains of one of the unsavoury types on the ground, presumably dropped from a great height by one of the Dark winged shapes that attacked the cart.
Once in the shelter of a cave in the rock at the top of the hill, the smashed planks from the cart they were trapped in not so long ago help get a good fire going.
Sitting in the dry, watching the plain darken and listening to the rain fall outside, the wine they liberated from the bandits (who liberated it from them in the first place) is shared out amongst the new companions, and new bonds of trust are formed.
The party goes to sleep leaving the living construct Untitled No.57 on watch – thankfully the automaton needs no rest to function.
Slumbering, Loic the cleric experiences a strange dream. He is on the stony plain below, the mist deepening all around him. Above, a single clear patch of night sky can be seen, Dark winged shapes wheeling around it. Looking closer, and feeling himself towards it, he can pick out a light shape against the dark sky, perhaps a meteor or a shooting star, or something else entirely..? He tries to concentrate on it but then suddenly finds himself awake on the cave floor.
Time passes and all is quiet, but suddenly Untitled starts – he’s seen something moving at the back of the cave! Someone or something was looking at him! He rises and grabs his axe, but it disappears into a recess into the rock!
Waking the rest of the party, they investigate: Muggerscum picks up a scent and Justin can see a trail of smallish footprints in the earth, leading into a fissure in the rock they hadn’t noticed before!
The party resolve to investigate this intrusion into their repose… Lighting a torch they find a sloping switchback passageway leading into a large cavern – chittering and the flapping of dark wings above remind them of the terror of the Dark winged shapes, but it just turns out to just be some bats leaving their roost.
Meanwhile on the ground, a skeleton is slumped against a stalagmite, seemingly dragged there from outside. The fresh tracks lead further into the caverns. Proceeding, the party is attacked at the entrance to another cavern by strange creatures!
Roughly half the height of a man, with red skin, black gimlet eyes and squashed faces, they wield weapons made of a strange metal. While, they may have had surprise on their side, their diminutive size and lack of armour means they don’t last long at the hands of the angered party and are soon taken down.
Looking at the fallen small red creatures, their weapons seem to be made of a gold-silver metal with a strange texture that none of the party have seen before.
Moving through the complex of tunnels and caverns, more of the small red creatures are found. Loic attempts to appeal to a group of them in the name of Astarte and peace, but they attack regardless, and have to be defeated — their frantic final squeals are in no language spoken by any of the party, so no understanding can be reached.
Living areas of a sort are found, with more of the creatures and utensils and crockery made of the same strange gold-silver metal. Also a strange kind of cloth abounds, worn by the creatures or used to store things in, its appearance somewhere between fish-skin and rubber.
Of more use to the new friends are some gold-silver metal flasks of some kind of drink or soup the creatures seem to be fond of. Loic takes a sip and finds some of his wounds healing by themselves…