The third wooden door is much larger than the previous two, wide enough to drive a wagon through. It is unlocked and untrapped, so Corryn and Cathal take the lead into the cavernous, dark room, where they find that the center drops off into a large pit. A glistening catches Corryn’s light, and upon closer inspection, they find that the pit is filled with huge, insect-like creatures with humanoid faces. They continue further in, taking the right path around the pit. Unable to resist, Tyree creeps in, still carrying the catatonic Linda, to have a look and confirms that the pit contains the same beasts he fought outside of Verchiel, when he and an army of Grey Wardens defeated seven mothers and thousands of their horrific children…
Corryn cuts off Tyree’s embellishments and indicates that he and Berchan should head around the left side of the room. Berchan protests about being saddled with the stupid Avar, but Corryn insists. Cathal confirms what Corryn fears, that they have indeed found Berchan’s sister Izot, but he hopes to spare the boy the gruesome sight.
Before Tyree and Berchan get very far, Marius shouts a warning as a pair of Avar warriors attack him from behind. Broga and Armon draw their weapons and clash with the barbarians, allowing the mage to escape and enter the room. The sound of battle and the scent of blood draw the attention of the writhing insects, which start to mass at the edge of the pit. Armon kills one of the attackers, but Marius stays his hand before killing a second one, contending that they need someone alive to question and find out what happened here. Armon uses the pommel of Aamar Fin to knock the warrior unconscious instead, but everyone looks around, holding their breath, fearing that fight was far too easy.
The clinking and stomping sound of heavily armored combatants confirms their fear, and four short and stocky Darkspawn, Genlocks, appear at the edge of the torchlight and block the doorway. Broga and Armon turn to face the new threat, and Berchan screams in anger and joins the fight. Tyree, still carrying Linda, doesn’t engage, but notices that the creatures from the pit have climbed upon each other and are dangerously close to escaping their pen. He gently sets Linda down, then moves to the dead Avar and kicks him unceremoniously into the bugs, both knocking them down and distracting them. The Avar is immediately covered with the things and the disturbing slurping sounds of their feast nearly drown out a similar sound from just behind him. Tyree turns around to see Linda, crouched and spiderlike on all fours, over the body of their captured Avar, his throat torn out, blood running down her chin, and madness in her eyes.