More and more of the strange creatures gradually made their way into the the mortals’ shelter. They seemed to have difficulty deciding what to do with them. Some wanted to kill them, while others tried to keep them alive. They argued among themselves and quarrels broke out. After a while one who seemed to be their leader came in from one of the secret tunnels. The savage fighter who had attacked Eveli had calmed down and was talked into letting her alone, but she grew restless and acted like she was going to resume her attack when a gruff command caused her to halt. “Goolma! No kill strangers!” The aggressive creature lowered her sword reluctantly. With no hint of an apology the one who had given the command, a female with a silver crown on her head, turned to Eveli. “What you? What doing in cave of Goblin-folk?”

At first Eveli was at a loss for words. She surveyed the small, ugly creature. “We were only trying to escape from the beasts,” she said finally. “We thought the cave was empty.”

At that the creature burst out laughing. “Ha ha ha, you scared of grors! We Goblin-folk not scared. We hunt grors! Make good food! Goblin-folk hide in secret caves, grors not find us.”

Eveli was still shaken and in no mood to be laughed at by these creatures who had just attacked them. “We’re not hiding just because we’re scared of them. They’ve already killed some of us, and we’ve been in serious trouble! Are you going to help us or not?”

The Goblin-folk leader’s expression grew sour. “You not talk to me like that. Me Goblannah, queen of Goblin-folk. You show respect.”

“I won’t show you respect after your people tried to kill us,” Eveli huffed. “If you’re not going to help us, then leave us alone!”

At that Goblannah’s face became livid with rage. She was not used to being talked to like that. “Kill!” she screamed. “We killyou! Killyou all! Then we eat you!”

Her voice caused the others to go into a frenzy. Eveli was set upon again by Goolma, who seemed to be enjoying herself as she slashed wildly.

“Stop! No kill!” came a cry. Elma appeared, trying to help Mork up the ladder. His right arm and one of his legs were wrapped in bandages, with another one wound around his head. He hobbled forward, supported by Elma and another of the Goblin-folk, wide awake and very much alive.

The queen apparently did not like her command being countered. She glared at the wounded creature menacingly. “Why Mork say stop? I say kill! I am queen!”

“Strange person healed me,” Mork replied. “People healers, help Goblin-folk. Not kill, let all live!”

Queen Goblannah took some convincing, but finally she agreed to let the people live. “Let strange people live, on condition. People work for Goblin-folk and serve us. We make them work hard for us. We teach them to show respect!”

Elma was surprised to hear Mork agree with the sentence. Some gratitude he showed after she had saved his life. The mortals were forced to go with them, down through the secret tunnels to the lair of the Goblin-folk.

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