Priest and Thongor dutifully followed Etheria to the far side of the tower. A tall wooden door was set in a frame of brass. Strange runes were carved upon the frame and on the stone that surrounded it.
"Stand back," said Thongor, drawing his sword, "And I shall hew this portal down."
"Maybe it's unlocked," said Priest, reasonably.
Thongor rolled his eyes. "Priest, you have to get into the whole barbarian mindset. We don't unlock. We hew."
"Is this stuff written down anywhere?"
"Hmmm, no. But now that you mention it, I've been thinking of writing a guidebook. Thongor's Guide to Better Barbarism. What do you think?"
"I was thinking Barbarians for Dummies in your case."
"That's good too. Now get back. There's hewing to be done."
Fifteen minutes later the door was sufficiently hewed for the trio to enter the tower. Not surprisingly, a narrow flight of stairs coiled up the inner wall of the structure. The interior of the tower was mantled in Stygian darkness, lit only by the flames of torches that guttered in iron sconces set deep in the stone.
Thongor said, "He'll be in the uppermost chamber. They always are. I'll go first. Better draw your sword, Priest. We always stalk, sword in hand, into the lair of our foes."
"Good idea," said Priest. "Etheria, you follow Thongor. I'll bring up your..er..the rear."
Slowly the trio mounted the stairs. They wound there way around and around, moving ever higher into the sorcerer's tower. They passed only one window, high in the structure. The dim lights of the city flickered far below.
"I think I can see my house from here," said Priest.
"Shhhh," Thongor said. "The entrance to the sorcerer's chamber is just ahead."
"How can you be sure?" whispered Priest.
"There's a sign on the door that says, The Sorcerer is In," said Thongor.
Priest said, "You're not going to hew that door down too, are you?"
"No, I'm going to kick this one down with one mighty blow and rush into the room, sword at the ready."
Thongor kicked the door to the sorcerer's chamber down with one mighty blow and rushed into the room, sword at the ready. He found himself in a circular room. Torches threw back reflections from a highly polished floor. The walls were adorned in rich tapestries of dark velvet. All around could be seem the tools of the sorcerer's trade. One long table held dozens of glass beakers and retorts. The dead eyes of a mummy leered from a golden sarcophagus that leaned against one wall. At the back of the chamber stood a high backed throne and upon it sat a man clad in robes so deeply crimson that they were almost black. The man stood and appraised the intruders with dark eyes.
"Good work, Etheria. You've brought the men I've been seeking."
"Uh oh," said Priest.