Here we go. Fast travel to Ironfist requires us to sleep two days, then take a boat to the Misty Islands, then take one more boat to Ironfist. Ugh.
Anyway, we arrive at the castle and head north, to the base of the mountain where the Oracle lies. The Shadow Guild Hideout awaits!
The entry is a narrow hallway with two doors to the left. We go up to the first and announce our presence with some Ring of Fire casts. This kills some thieves hiding in the room. These thieves have a stunning attack that delays the next action of a character, so killing them is annoying...if we were to let them get close.
We go to the second door...and BOOM! Trap attached to that door - don't mess with it. (I remembered that the trap was in this dungeon, but not exactly where.)
Go back to the room behind the first door, and there's a button in the north wall. Does it open the other door? No. Instead, it opens the secret door to the north, at the end of the hall. Beyond it are some thugs, who specialize in breaking things, like our armor and weapons. They mass up and charge, and we shoot em down with arrows and fireballs.
Past the secret door/wall: Two doors on the right, one more on the left. We use up the rest of Cate and Eno's spell points Ring of Fire'ing the first room on the right, then open the door and whittle down the enemies within. Huaryu uses up his spell points on healing, so we duck outside and rest.
Back to the dungeon. We clear the remaining room on the right. Then take on the one on the left. This room is actually set up so Ring of Fire can't hit everything (yet more proof for my theory that it's ability to hit through walls is intended). However, we can take advantage of something else: namely enemies too dumb to fit through the tiny doorway.
They can't hit us, but we can melee them freely. Guess what: they die.
Inside this room is a chest, which has a very interesting letter from someone calling himself the "Prince of Thieves". It reads:
Continue with your work in Castle Ironfist and New Sorpigal. The buffoons in the south are unprepared for us, so you should be able to reap a wonderful harvest from them. Remember to make your examples sharp and clear, and the sheep will follow you anywhere.
We'll be hearing more about this guy later.
Now across the room to another door, which opens to a second hall, running parallel to the first. More thieves come from the north end, and meet their end, due to also not being able to navigate the doorways. Some hideout.
Facing south, we now see a door on the left and another on the right. Same deal, and that right room is clear. Now for the room on the left...which is the storeroom. Plenty of bags of items and gold, plus barrels of stat-boosting liquid. We take it all and drink deep.
Also, there is another button, which opens another secret door at the south end of the hall, extending this one too. More thugs come at us, and then die. A door to the left opens up into the first room we explored, allowing for an easy exit. We do so and rest up again.
Now there is one last room on the other side to hit. We do so, with much Ring of Fire and a little arrow cleanup afterward. Another chest in here, this one with a Guild Key. Hmmm, wonder if it works on that trapped door from the beginning?
It does, and behind it we find Sharry, the healer from New Sorpigal. Wait, don't tell me...
Shadow Guild Hideout complete!
That was short <yawns>. Now to return Sharry home, and then get started on a real