(V1: B5) Chapter 5: The Last Refuge

Glóin detailed his plan to us 

Now that we have the Key-stone, the back way into the Dourhand keep will be open to us! You should be able to confront both the Nazgûl and Skorgrím. However, the task will be a great one, and you will need help, so gather a company of allies. Also, since completion of this task may mean the end of Skorgrím, a great boon to Durin’s Folk, I will send my son Gimli along with you to aid in the battle. I will entrust him with both the Key-stone and the secret dwarf-lore needed to open the gate.

‘Now go and gather a company of allies and prepare for the battle ahead. Once you are prepared, speak to Gimli. Together you will set off for the keep, and he shall open the secret way into the inner keep.

‘This will be a great day for the Free Peoples, Eldaeriel and Dimzad! I am eager for your return with the tale of your victory!

We travelled to Rivendell where we met with Gimli.  We then travelled to the dwarf fortress, located in the pass of Gabilizan.  Dimzad and Gimli were deep in conversation for most of our journey.  I think Dimzad is suffering for being in the company of an elven hunter for too long!  When we reached the fortress Gimli explained his plan

Skorgrím must think that the walls of his fortress will keep him safe, tall and broad as they are, but he does not know about the key-stone you recovered.

We will fight our way through his remaining defences, and perhaps I will give him one chance to come out of the main gates of the keep to face me in combat. He has no honour, so my challenge will probably go unanswered. It is just as well, but my axe is anxious for the chance to end this fool Dourhand!

These dwarves will not rest until Skorgrím lies dead and their revenge is complete.  I will be honoured to fight alongside them.  We fought our way through the keep until we came to the main gates where Gimli shouted his challenge.  Skorgrím declined and we made our way to the secret door to gain entrance.  We slew any Dourhands who were foolish enough to get in our way and finally arrived outside the hall where Skorgrím was waiting.  He was in conference with the Nazgûl.  After some posturing by the Nazgûl and all the dwarves, the rider left the keep  to leave Skorgrím to deal with us.  He was no match for the three of us and the dwarves finally had their revenge upon him.  I am also glad that I will not have to deal with his meddling in the future.  As he died though, a strange apparition appeared, cursed the Longbeards and then disappeared…

Gimli was very pleased with the outcome saying

You fought well, Eldaeriel and Dimzad, and we have put an end to Skorgrím’s menace! I am troubled by the escape of the Nazgûl and the apparition that appeared upon Skorgrím’s death, but there is nothing we can do about that right now. At least we have paid the Dourhands for their treachery! Ha ha!’

We travelled back to Glóin’s camp and told him the good news.  He was overjoyed by the news but admitted to feeling unsettled by the intentions of the strange apparition and the Nazgúl’s plans for Helegrod.

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