Posted on June 19, 2018
We were in the first dungeon of a new campaign based on subversion and king-replacing. Most of us were new to each other, and the dynamics of which one of us was the fast-talker and which one the rules-lawyer had yet to be established.
After we’d hacked and slashed our way through the first large room full of gnolls, we questioned one about the layout of the caves and what we would find. We learned about "the two big magic guys" down one passage, and the REALLY SCARY THING down the stairs. So we continued down a hallway, carefully opening one door we successfully heard to be empty, and then crept to a second where we heard some 'muttering' inside.
"So what do you do?" asked the DM.
Everyone hesitated, so I said, "I knock."
There was a collective gasp made up of “What?” "But.." Then my friend put his head in his hands.
“The muttering goes silent,” said the DM.
“I knock again,” I replied.
“The door opens, and there's a troll. He garbles something and tries to shut the door again.”
“I stick my foot in the door and yell, ‘No, wait, we just want to talk!’”
The DM paused a moment. “Roll.”
Among the treasure we'd picked up along the way there was a Circlet of Persuasion. I had also dumped skill points into Diplomacy, for no good reason other than it's uncommonly useful. I *also* had a relatively high charisma, as I wanted to be able to work well with animals. Which meant my natural 20 turned into a 30 with all the buffs.
The DM stared at me, shaking his head. As the troll, he said, "Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to be rude, please, please come in! All I have to offer to drink is this water from deeper in the cave, I'm so sorry."
As the Rogue frantically tried to figure out which poison we could dose his water with, I spun the tale of how we were trying to help the dungeon monsters, and we'd heard from one of the gnolls about various other things—and wasn't there one mob that was really more powerful than it needed to be?
The troll agreed, and hemmed and hawed, giving us more information about the two magic guys, and lots more about the level boss. After a few more hand gestures behind my back that got translated into "make him easy to convince", the Rogue poison master finished his prep.
We set around the water some more, and the troll suddenly stood up and said, "Yes, yes! We SHOULD do something about him! We must organize the rest of the monsters on this level and stand up to him! You'll help, right?"
And that's how I convinced a dungeon monster to organize the rest of the monsters to help us take down the boss of that level.