The Frost Potion – Page 13



There is no ladder leading down into the GreenShaft, but Jack has a coil of rope in his pouch that serves well enough in its place.

Once in the chamber at the bottom of the shaft, he approaches the skeleton cautiously, blade ready, in case it should prove to be another of the Ogres’ undead servants. But the grisly thing does not move as he approaches. Now that he is here at the bottom of the shaft, Jack can appreciate the predicament of the man whose flesh once sheathed these gore-stained bones. This is an oubliette. By all appearances, the Ogres tossed their prisoner in this hole and simply left him to die.

The man’s skeleton is still fully clothed and his grinning head rests on a leather satchel, the pillow of his final sleep. Jack skewers the most aggressive of the many rats climbing over the skeleton and carefully withdraws the leather satchel.

The contents are surprising. In their haste to toss their prisoner to his doom, the Ogres did not bother to search the man for treasure. In the satchel, Jack finds a purse of gold, an excellently crafted silver war hammer, and a rare and beautiful stone, milky white with a shining inclusion of tawny gold diamond. It is a Cat’s Eye Gem, highly prized by collectors of precious stones and by practitioners of arcane magic, who use such things as foci for their spells.

The man certainly has no further need for his treasure, but it sits ill with Perilous Jack to rob the dead. After a moment’s thought, he hits upon a way to assuage his conscience. Working methodically, he kills every single rat he can see.

“Now maybe you can get some decent rest,” he whispers to the skeleton. He pronounces the benediction of the Lady Malkat upon the dead man and climbs his rope back up into the lair of the Ogre Magi.

Add 25 Gold, the Silver War Hammer, and the Cat’s Eye Gem to the Pouch of Ghrul.

All that remains now is to explore the chamber above the Ogres’ Lair. Turn to 17.