Journal of Miyara Kyosuke (67)

    We move on out, and head up the long staircase to an area at the top we had not seen.  We are back up near the throne room.  This room is just off the corridor to the north, and appears to be empty.  The room has one other door.
    There are no furnishings and the room is empty.  There are decorative relief carvings of grotesque faces around the wall.  They are of dwarven craftmanship.  GQ says these are stylized figures of dwarven gods.  Only five of them remain intact; the others have been broken.  There were none on the north wall, and that is where the other door is located.
    Pireseri searches and finds no traps, but something that disarms a trap.  It used to be a tongue of one of the faces, but all that remains now is a metal tab.  Apparently it triggers a trap or something in the next room that we have not yet seen.
    The other door opens into a stairway down about 30-40 feet, ending in an octagonal room.  There are no obvious exits, but Pireseri says that there's a secret door in there.
    I lead down the stairs.  Pireseri still hasn't seen what the tab in the top room might operate -- the connection ended in the rock between here and there, which seems odd and is bothering him.  Hosei tries to sense magic, and gets a faint glow from the mouths on the wall carvings.
    Miyara asks GQ if they should pull the lever, and GQ says yes and explains.  This was the King's bedroom, last line of defence was a magical trap, and the lever stops the magical trap.  Baruku goes and presses the lever, which moves very easily.
    We go down and step into the octagonal room.  It is empty, and there are more carvings of dwarven gods on the wall.  It feels comfortable and cosy here, despite the lack of furniture.  There are no stains, no bones, nothing here.  Pireseri points to the secret door.  It is not trapped, and triggered by poking into an eye of a deteriorated stone carving.
    Beyond the door are stairs back up again.  I continue to lead.  At the top of the stairs, a short hallway.  To the west it ends in a door.  Pireseri says it opens into yet another octagonal room.  To the east there are stairs down to a secret door into a square room.
    The octagonal room has been trashed by orcs.  The furniture is trashed, and there's a huge pile of charred, miscellaneous debris.  GQ says it used to be the vault.
    We go into the vault.  The orcs seem to have unlocked the door rather than broken it down.  I start digging through the pile of debris for valuable items.  Others look in their own ways.
    Hosei sees nothing magical.  Pireseri sees nothing he hasn't seen before.  I however find a map, which I give to Miyara.  She in turn shows it to Rabena, and then GQ since it's written in dwarvish.  It is of the lowest levels, and we have been in the areas it shows.  We all continue searching, but there is no more.
    The door exiting the room is also not trapped, but is locked from this side.  Pireseri says it leads to stairs down.
    For the time, we go back out of the vault, down the stairs at the east to the secret door at the end.  The door is not secret from this side, and there are no traps.  The room contains, according to Pireseri, a small amount of intact furniture.  There is a table and two chairs, and the walls are unadorned.  There is a doorway exit to a hallway headed south.  We search the room, but there is nothing of interest.  GQ says this is the Counting Room.  Pireseri says the hallway has a pressure plate in the floor which will drop portcullises to close off the passage.
    There is a trapdoor in the ceiling of the Counting Room, and it is there that the trap needs to be disabled.
    The hallway goes south 30 feet, then turns west for another 30-35 feet.  There is a door at the end, and Pireseri says it continues on the other side, turning north-south  with stairs up to the north and down to the south.
    First we go up, where it turns back to the east.  There is a door to the north, which leads to a circular stairway down to the same level as the down stairs from the hallway.  We continue along the passage to the east.
    It ends in a room, with a secret door that we open into a natural cavern with a ladder down, again to about the same level below.
    Beyond on this level here are areas we have been before.
    Those stairs all lead to an area of which we were previously unware.  GQ says that has the main audience chamber as well as the overlooks to the burial chambers.  The corridor stairs lead to the back of the audience chamber, while the stairs lead to the front of it.  The Queen has no idea where the ladder might lead, although she assumes it was part of the guarding of this area.
    So of course we check the ladder first.  Pireseri looks down, and says there are no traps and it leads to a small room.
    I lead us down the ladder.  The small room opens to a hallway leading to the non-secret side of a secret door.  There are no traps, and I open it to the room beyond.  That room seems to have been some kind of guard room, now containing a bedroll of a modern dwarf.  There is a door to the north.  I search the bedroll, but there is nothing here.
    I open the door to the north, and Miyara shouts for me to stop.  It is too late.  There is a stilleto in the far side of the door pegging a note to the door.  It is from Cranneg (correct spelling) to the military, and states which traps have been made operational again.  The room is circular with three other entrances -- a slope down, a door leading to circular stairs -- this is the front entrance to the audience chamber -- and double doors.  The Queen says she does not know where the slope leads, possibly guards quarters -- Rabena says it leads to the part of the hold that we are avoiding because the dwarves could be there.
    Miyara tells me not to open the door until it's checked, but she is too cautious and I open it first and step into a large, mostly empty, room.  The others follow me, affirming my decision.  There are three stone thrones at the west end.  The room is 15 feet high and once had tapestries on the walls.  There used to be curtains between the room and the thrones, and the room is covered in orcish graffiti.  The center throne is the grandest, and that area is full of graffiti too.
    GQ says the throne is for the King and his lieutenants.  The current inhabitants are clearly using this as a bedroom, but there are no dwarves here currently.
    Miyara tells me not to do that again.  I stare at her.  Pireseri and Hosei say there are no secrets and no magic, aside from a small aura around the thrones.
    The other door leads to the back entrance to the chamber, where there were stairs on the level above.  There is a secret door in that corridor leading down to an overlook for the lake.
    We go down the corridor.  Before we get down to the ledge, we find a bunch of rocks here for no apparent reason.  They are about four feet high, forming a partial barrier in the corridor.  We clamber over them, then go out to hte ledge.
    The ledge is about 15 x 10 feet, overlooking the Lake.  There are no railings, just a ledge about twenty feet above the water.  We look down, and now that we can see the Lake we can see it was not intended as such, just a large chamber that somehow was flooded with about two feet of water.  It is a natural cavern, not significantly worked.  There are a few places where rocks have fallen from the ceiling, and others where the floor looks to be slightly cracked.
    To our end of the chamber is a large throne on a plinth which rises out of the water.  We see two other overlooks in this chamber at this level, and at the water level there are three obvious entrances.
    Hosei says the whole place is magical, particularly the throne.  He backs up out of the magical area, at the back of the ledge.  He returns and tells us about it.  Hosei asks GQ about it, why it's magical and what is the magic.
    GQ gives him a look like he's completely stupid.  She does not deign to answer.  She leaves.
    Miyara asks Pireseri to look into the cavern.  The plinth and throne have no compartments, but there are hallways and compartments going off in all directions.  They are, I say, probably burial chambers and tombs, reminding Miyara of the notes we found.
    We have explored pretty much all we can access at present on this level.  Miyara and Rabena consult over the maps to see where we could go next.
    We proceed at Miyara's direction.  I lead while paying attention to Pireseri.  Miyara is right behind me, as is GQ.  Baraku takes the rear guard.  We have gone back up to the vault and to the stairs beyond, and those stairs are seriously and secretly trapped.  Pireseri disarms the trap which have dropped a portcullis on us, trapping us, and then would have caved in the stairs.  We proceed.  At the bottom we re-enable it.
    At the end of the stairs is a short passage which leads to the lake.  I suggest that we can get to hte lake here, but not to the tombs unless we go through the temple with the ritual.
    It is clear that the dwarves have been gathering stones from the water and putting them on the beach here, and have been studying these stones.  We find a note sitting at the piles of stones.  There are two piles, with some artisan tools, paper for notes, and separate from by amongst it is this note:

3 : 2 : 1 : 1  Hargrim
6 : 4: : 12 : 26 Yala
4 : 3 : 8 : 31  Kadun
5 : 2 : 7 : 70 Jrenka
1 : 1 : 9 : 73 Fenni
6 : 2 : 7
2 : 3

    The stones have been picked at but not shaped.