Belmarniss can now sorta muddle along in the local common thanks to aggressive use of comprehend languages to hand-translate books after roping a local into teaching her the alphabet. Also she hates teleport traps with every fiber of her being. Also she has figured out at this point that she somehow leveled in sorcerer instead of wizard during the business with the pirates and has no idea why that happened or whether it will happen again. And she has sold this stupid arrowhead to two different curio shops and given up as it seems to be cursed. And she just needs to keep doing what she does, she guesses, till she can teleport herself home. The Yawning Portal is a nicely ironic name.
He turns to examine Enserric, looking enthusiastic and like he has completely forgotten about the problem of the sentient golems. "Oh, how fascinating - that's not a standard intelligent weapon, is it, I can see the soul-strands woven into - that'd be quite tricky but I do believe I have something in here that'd fit, let me-"
He strides over to one of the cabinets and begins rummaging through golem chassis. After a few minutes, he hauls out a six-foot-tall iron golem, fully articulated and looking more like a suit of armor than a standard golem. "Here's the thing! Bit of an early draft of my current form - it's fully functional but I wanted something with more, mm, form than function, you know how it is..."
"And... how would the transfer be made?"
"Oh, your wielder would simply touch the blade to the soul housing in the golem's chest."
Deekin promptly does so.
And the chassis wakes up.
Its eyes clang open, revealing two glowing blue sparks. It flexes its hands. It lifts one leg, places it down, lifts the other.
It lifts one hand to gingerly touch its intricately articulated face.
"I... believe it has worked," Enserric says. "By the gods, you've done it."
"Congrats," Belmarniss tells Enserric. "Comfy?"
He reaches out takes the sword from Deekin. It shimmers and transforms into a longsword, which he puts in a resting position over his shoulder. "I am now."
"Oh, good. - how's putting yourself in a golem work?"
"Thinking of an upgrade?" Enserric asks drily.
"It's not terribly difficult," Alsigard says. "The real challenge for me was retaining my spellcasting abilities - took almost a century of research, I almost didn't make it. I'd hoped for a general solution, but the one I came up with leaned quite heavily on my having constructed the shell with my own magic."
"Ah, pity. Seems like a more socially acceptable option than going lich or something is all. Do you have, like, a general solution for people who happen to be wizards, or..."
"I have one for golem-crafters," Alsigard apologizes, "which is not quite the thing. I could likely teach you the trick in a few years, given a sort of accelerated course of study?"
"Maybe I'll circle back for the purpose later! I'm not very old for an elf so it isn't urgent."
"I'm sure I'd welcome you as a student, I do still somewhat owe you all for your intervention. Is there anything else, or should I set to defusing this holy war that my wayward children have apparently engaged themselves in? -right, you said you wanted troops for a battle! I can contribute a dozen high-quality golems, non-sentient of course; would that suffice?"
"Every little bit helps!"
"Excellent! Give me one moment..."
He sets about activating the golems from one of the cabinets. Soon, a squadron of twelve ten-foot-tall golems stands ready: one mithral, one adamantine, the rest iron.
"I doubt they'll fit up the stairs," Alsigard says ruefully. "I barely will myself. Shall I teleport you back to the entrance?"
"Sounds more convenient all around. Though I am curious how the dispute resolves. - are you sure they'll still recognize you?"
He nods. "One benefit of my conversion is that I remember all of the override codes without needing my old mnemonics."
He waves his hands, and there's a flash of light, and the party is standing outside the door to Alsigard's dungeon.
And how are the other golems reacting to this eventuality?
They follow where she leads!
Enserric looks around. "Gods, I had no idea how much I missed being able to see more than ten feet in a given direction."
"That little? I don't think you mentioned, that sounds awful."
"Yes, it was - not even really sight per se, it was more of a blind-sense. I could hear farther away, but visually I was very limited."
"I am very glad we could help you, Enserric," Jojo says earnestly. "You have been a friend to us."
"Yup. Welcome back to some of the benefits of the humanoid body plan."
"Oh, don't let's be sappy."
They continue along toward their landing site. Along the way, they run into the duergar who gave them the map of the first level. They scramble to their feet when they see the party and their war golems.
"Welcome back, strangers," says their leader. "Looks like you found some friends?"
Enserric smiles thinly. "You could say that."
"Make new friends but keep the old, one is adamantine and the other is iron."