One more of the little pests came up from the northern shore, late for the party.

Since these guys seemed to hate shock spells, I let him have it with a lightning storm spell. Laurenna took care of the rest of him.


The bodies of Ricklings and their boars lay everywhere. The castle was now open to us.

Or, so we thought.


We circled the entire castle, going around the northern face first, but found no entrance.

Eventually, we came to the southern face, where we found a huge door.


The prints in the snow indicated that this door had let out a bunch of Ricklings recently. Unfortunately for us, the door was locked up tighter than the Telvanni vaults. No spell would open this huge door. There wasn't even a handle on it, meaning it would only open from the inside.


"I guess Korst Wind-Eye was right when he said there wouldn't be any direct way to get into this place." quipped Laurenna.

"I guess not." I replied. "He did mention a recently discovered entrance just north of the castle, under the water." I looked at her and smiled. "Feel like going for a swim?"

"He he, you know, cold doesn't bother me." she replied. "Lead the way."


We used a water-walking spell to look around the area just off-shore.

Suddenly, just below us, we saw a cave entrance. "That has to be it." I said. "Let the water-walking spell wear off and we'll head in there."


Sure enough, there was a cave entrance just a few feet off-shore.

I didn't know what would be waiting for us on the other side, so I took out my mace, and the two of us swam inside.


Once inside, it was just a short swim to the nearest airpocket.

"Damn, this place is dark." said Laurenna, pulling out a torch.

Just then, from up ahead, we heard the sound of little feet scampering in our direction. That could only mean one thing: more Ricklings!


I pulled out my mace, expecting nothing but trouble. It was just one Rickling.

I raised my mace, waiting for him to attack, but for some reason, he chose not to.

Instead, he put his blade away, looking at me in a most peculiar way.


"Whoa!" shouted the little Rickling. "A Breton! Ugly thing, aren't you. Too tall."

"You talk?" I asked. "Who are you?"

"Huh! Ugly Breton, I am Krish, Rickling warrior. What business you got at Castle Karstaag? And make it quick! No time to talk!"

"We're here about the death of the horkers." I said. "We want to find out of the master of this castle has anything to do with it.

"Dead horkers? Mmmmm, rancid horker meat." he said, licking his lips. "You're asking the wrong guy. I know someone who might be able to help, though. But I've got my own problems!"

Interesting - a Rickling with problems. I just had to ask him what kind of problems those might be.


"The master...Karstaag that is...has taken off. Gone." he replied. "Don't know why, don't know where. Didn't seem like he was coming back. So, some of the boys and I figured we'd take over the place." He spat on the ground. "Dulk has been running the show upstairs. Moron. Toady. Master's pet."

It was clear he didn't like Dulk. I could see Laurenna holding back a laugh.

"So you guys took over his castle?" I asked.

"Right." he replied, with a big grin on his face. "Sneak attack. From below. Very clever. We even made a deal with a pack of Grahl to act as muscle. Didn't work out so well."

"Why is that?" I asked.

"See, these Grahl aren't the most trustworthy."

"I can imagine." I said, having encountered one guarding the Skaal's 'gift of light' from an earlier quest. "What happened with them?"

"Turned on my guys." replied Krish. "Uh, ate them, actually. I'm the only one left. And I can't even get upstairs now."

"And upstairs is where we need to go, correct?" asked Laurenna.

"Right!" he replied. "And neither can you. See, no one can enter the castle without the mast...Karstaag's blessing. Which I have. I figure, you help me get past the Grahl, I'll get you into the castle. Then you can ask little Dulk anything you want. So, come on! Let's move it!!"


"He certainly seems to want to get to the castle as badly as we do." I said to Laurenna.

"I'm not sure if I trust him." she replied.

"Tell you what." I said. "Keep him here. I know how to handle these Grahl with leach spells. I'll clear the tunnels and come back for you."

"What am I going to do with a Rickling?" she asked.

"Don't know." I replied. "Tell him a funny story. Maybe he'll tell you one back." She looked at me funny. "Don't worry." I said. "I'll be back in a few minutes."

"Ok." she replied, "But if he tries anything funny, he won't be the one laughing."

"Just don't kill him." I cautioned. "We need him alive to get into the castle."


With that, I headed deeper into the maze of tunnels Krish had mentioned. He wanted to go along, but I told him to wait right where he was. He certainly didn't want to get in the way of the leach spells or a blast of God's Fire.


There were certainly enough deadly Grahls in the ice caves here. At least seven of them attacked. I used up every single Amulet and Ring of Leaches I had with me. I eventually switched to Dracula's Ring for the last Grahl, finishing it off with God's Fire.


Eventually, I made my way back to where Laurenna and Krish were waiting.

"Ha! You kill them all!" he laughed, "Well, then, ugly one, I show you how to get into the castle."

With that, he lead us up a short path and eventually found a hole in the cave wall. Since Krish had permission to enter, we entered the castle with him.


We found ourselves in the banquet hall. Table for twenty, nicely placed, too. Several Ricklings came to greet us, blades drawn and blood in their eyes. The mace that Heart-Fang had given me came in pretty handy. Laurenna and Krish took care of the other two on the other side of the table.


Four more Ricklings attacked, resisting the enchantment of the mace, but not the physical force of the thing hitting them on the noggin.



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