The group held its ground and waited for the others to catch up, as it was obvious that the troll had noticed them. Once Detta caught up, she stopped about 30 feet from the troll, and after using Detect Evil, began to speak diplomatically. "Are you Sigurx? Pardon the sneak, but we were expectin' one a bit more violent. Now, I am against hurting anyone that don't deserve it, but some sod over at Fort Ramsgate wants yer head. Don't suppose you could tell us why?"
"I's a troll. If there ain't no bounty, then people don't know we exist," the troll replied with a shrug. "I's Sigurx, but you probably know that, assumin' ya can read."
Detta chuckled. "Took me a few years, but I got the hang of it." She puts a gauntleted fist on her hip. "Why do you dislike the goblins and not us? The hobgobs, right?"
>Detta rolls Diplomacy. Result: 17
The troll hoisted the giant club on its shoulder and eyed Detta for a moment with the one good eye. "Ya see this burn?" he asked, pointing to the massive scarring on his face. "That's why. Gobs been tormentin' me fer years. They only recently stopped."
A wince. "Years?" Detta said with a frown. "The bastards..."
>Detta rolls Sense Motive. Result: Natural 1. The troll seems incapable of lying. At least, not well. Kyra also rolls Sense Motive with a result of 20. She receives basically the same result - The troll does not seem very good at lying. He has a lot of anger and frustration at the hobgoblins, though, but also, oddly, a lot of fear towards them.
Detta shook her head. "Name's Detta. Turns out my friends and me 'ave a job for driving off some folks that carry the same banner as we jus' found in a hobgoblin cave not far. If you tell us everything you know 'bout them, I promise we'll give the bandy-legged shites what-for."
>Detta rolls Diplomacy. Result 22. Detta's annoyed that the hobgoblins would do this to anything, let alone a troll.
The troll snorted in anger, apparently recalling the abuse he had faced previously. "I've gots some info on them gobs, fer sure. They met up with some human shite. One of them two warring groups that have been playin' footsy over that tower for years. He had some lady with 'im, and she got the gobs to fight fer em. That's why they left, finally leaving poor ol' Sigurx alone. You take em out, and maybe I'll be grateful."
Tapping her chin, Detta hummed in thought. "How many hobgoblins went with the shite and the lady? And, oh, a few'll meet my axe at least, Sigurx. Doubtless."
"Eh... how many... Erm... More 'n you lot, fer sure. Numbers ain't my strong suit." The troll shrugged, almost apologetically. "If you saw that cave of theirs, then you can probably guess as good as I."
At this point, Kyra has left the bushes and stood by the Dwarf, bow still drawn but not taking aim. Valerio decided to make himself more presentable via fixing the tears of his clothes using a Mending spell.
Detta raised her hands. "Right, fair." She eyed the troll's club. And sniffed. "Have you got anymore facts about the humans they met?" Detta asked.
>Diplomacy again. Result: 12.
The troll gave a shrug. "That lady is craftier than she looks. Other 'n that, dunno much about em. Wasn't around long enough to have tea 'n crumpets, if ya know what I mean."
Valerio waltzed towards Detta after his clothes are properly mended, his hands raised as a peaceful gesture.
"Right, right," Detta put one foot forward and raised a finger. "One more question, then we go hunting and leave you alone. You like the taste o' squirrel, Sigurx?"
"Squirrel? Bit crunchy fer my taste. Lots of small bones. Will do in a pinch though. What of it?"
"Well..." Detta produced the squirrel Valerio handed her earlier. The lifeless dented thing dangled by the tail between her thumb and forefinger. "Fancy pants 'ere-" Detta jerked her head in Valerio's direction. "-is adamant that this not go to waste. But, well, we don't so much need it. Waste of food ain't nothing good. You want it?"
>Roll Diplomacy again. Good thing you got ranks in it. Result: 24.
Valerio protested with a timely "... Hey!"
"Quit whining Val, you said to offer it," Detta said.
The troll eyed the squirrel, then the paladin, then the squirrel again. He stepped forward and held his massive hand out to receive it. "Thanks, I guess," he said, still unsure of the gift. "Free food is free food, right?"
"Could have addressed me by my name, you know. My pants aren't that fancy..." Valerio said to Detta.
"They's pretty fancy," the troll muttered.
With that being said, Valerio clears his throat, before giving a big ol' diplomatic smile. "Why, thank you. I'd also like to say that your..." He notices the troll is wearing a stanky ol' loincloth. It's tattered, barely covering anything, and certainly not fancy. "... That loincloth of yours is quite exquisite, as well. Compliments your... sinuous muscles, and your... beautifully green skin! You look of a troll nobody wants to mess with!"
"Sure..." the troll replies hesitantly, looking down at his loincloth then back to Valerio, a somewhat confused expression on his face. "Ceptin maybe them gobs, I suppose."
Stifling a snort, Detta handed over the squirrel and answered the troll. "Call the food appreciation for your time, Sigurx. Now." Detta straightened and smiled. "I won't make you do promises, Sigurx, but if I hear about you causing any more bother for the pink-skins about this place..." She waggled a finger. "I'll be coming back to'ave a stern chat to you, alright? You been nice to us. Keep it that way for the good folks wanderin' the roads, if you please."
"Ah, yes, the hobgoblins. Right and proper shitesniffers, aren't they?" Valerio added.
"I's keeps to me own. Only bother those lookin' fer a fight. Too old ta go beatin' up on people, but that don't stop them from takin' shots." Sigurx sighed and turned back to Valerio. "Look, you been good to me. I ain't lookin' to sniff no one's shite, so what is it you want?"
"Good enough for me, friend." Satisfied, Detta nodded deeply and took a step back to wait.
Valerio, however, continued. "Like my friend Detta said, we're no friends with the hobgoblins. And I'm sure you'd want to get back at them, too, if you got the chance? We can arrange that, if you'd like, as a way to play on both our strengths."
>Roll Diplomacy. Result: 25.
Sigurx snorted, then stopped to think for a moment. "I's listenin..."
"As you can tell, we're small and puny, all the four or five of us. We won't be able to take 'em all on our own in an all-out assault, that's for sure, but we can sneak in and take out the bulk of their ranks, or at least a nice chunk of 'em. Sigurx, on the other hand, is big, and strong. You can smash their faces in like it's nothing! But of course, being big and strong and all also means you're pretty noticable... unless us small and punies can sneak in their fortress and prepare you a nice and proper entrance."
"Right..." The troll seems to be nodding, but is having trouble following the specifics of what Valerio is saying.
Valerio's smile almost faltered. Almost. "So here's what I'm suggesting. We sneak in and cut down their numbers some, perhaps even take out whatever it is that burned you, while you wait a good distance away, far enough so they won't see you, but close enough so that you can come in at any time. And then you just sit tight and wait for our signal. Once we call you in, you'll be in fine shape to come crashing in and smashing some hobgoblin skulls!"
>Roll Diplomacy. Result: 26.
Sigurx scratched his head, trying to wrap his brain about the whole proposal. "So... you's sayin' you want me to follow ya, then wait fer you to tell me to bash some squishies? Dunno how I's gonna hear your signal and not be seen, though. That tower sees a long ways."
"We'll make a smoke signal. Do you think you'll be able to see that by the treeline?"
Sigurx shrugged in response. "Might be. Somethin' loud might be better. Tower's usually burnin' somethin to stay warm or ta eat."
"I might have a spell to call you in... if not, then we'll make sure that the smoke will be distinct. In a pattern, if you will."
"Hrm... And how do I let ya know they's spotted me? Cause small and puny can be strong in many numbers. I ain't lookin' to be burned again."
"We may have a spell for that." Valerio mentioned, and started thinking to himself for a second. He looked back at his allies while he did so. "We'll most likely be on a rooftop or a balcony when we send the signal, so we will be able to see you from the treeline. If you don't think it is a right time to go in, then you can stay in the trees if you'd like. Otherwise, roar your loudest if you're planning on going in after we call."
"If you's plannin' to sneak in, you probably wants to do it at night. Gobs don't see so good at night, so you's be sneakin' easier. But if they see me, I's chargin' in the front door. Might give you lot a distraction at the least." Sigurx sighed and shook his head. "Guess it'll be one last glory run for ol' Sigurx. Give me a bit to grab my things, and we can go."
The brow furrowed an arched quizzically atop Kyra's face. She seemed genuinely impressed that these two had managed to convince the trog to potentially give its life to their mercenary's quest.
>The group has successfully recruited Sigurx. The party gains 1600 EXP.