Klaatu made a sweeping gesture to Andimia and the group walked into the cave. The large trunk lay open near the forge, which was still glowing with an unusual heat. Cabinets were open, and flasks, bottles, and containers of different powders were on the shelves. Several of these were also in the trunk, along with a small anvil, some smithing tools, and assorted wrapped packages. Braandu clumped over to the trunk and stood there, waiting.
The mole man walked over to the weapons rack. A variety of finely-crafted swords, spears, pikes, and shields gleamed there. There were several different kinds of metal apparent in their manufacture. None of the implements were painted, or even had leather grips. Just the finest, polished, unadorned metal. Steels, brass-colored alloys, the twinkle of gem-points functionally imbedded in blade edges, and unknown metals; all made to exquisite standards but without any trace of paint, tassles, artwork, or insignia. They gave the impression of crisp, cold, brutal efficiency. Light and strong. Reliable and effective. The warrior would have to add his or her own "art".
"Here." Klaatu said. "You might use a few, a few of these arrow points." He picked up a long, apparently very heavy arrowhead from a box by the forge and with a quick flick of his large hand, flung it across the room -- where it imbedded itself with a "ching" into the granite wall at eye level. A few chips of granite fell to the floor. The point did not fall. "They are unexcelled, unexcelled for long range shots, or for penetrating heavy armour. My archers were greatly feared." He walked over and with some effort, carefully pulled it out of the stone with a pair of pliers, avoiding the sharp edges honed on the arrowhead.
He then pulled out what appeared to be a hand-and-a-half Bastard Sword of about three feet in length. It seemed to be much too thin to be able to withstand the rigors of combat. With a practiced motion, he drew the metal under his nose quickly but carefully so as not to let the edge cut him -- and gave it a satisfied and noisy "Sniff" as if it smelled delicious. Then, with a quick and easy swing, he flicked it toward a lump of iron slag by the forge. The blade sliced off a piece of the heavy metal, which flew through the air and landed on the floor at Andimia's feet.
With a flip, Klaatu reversed the sword and caught it by the blade. He tossed it hilt-first to the half-elf. His fingernails were apparently also made of metal, and they made a metallic scratching sound as the sword slid lightly over them. The blade still keened with a high musical tone as she caught it handily. Even after cutting off an inch-thick piece of iron, the ridiculously thin blade was undamaged, barely nicked. It was laminated, forged in rippled paper-thin layers, made up of several kinds of metal, bonded to a deadly razor edge that sparkled and glisted from thousands upon thousands of nearly invisible gems that reflected microscopic rainbows. A unique masterpiece, of untold value. Totally plain, but totally beautiful.
"It's yours, if you want it. Or check the rack and choose something else, something else more to your preference. You might say making these is my hobby, my hobby." He obviously knew the value of such weapons, and was unsufferably pleased with himself.
"Or, you can have a useless lump, a useless lump of Gold." He sniffed again, but this time with quiet derision.
While this went on, Braandu shuffled back and forth from one foot to another. Then, he walked over to the corner and picked up an enormous maul, with an iron handle that ended in a point, just like the shovel. The black hammer-head was easily a full hand wide, and massive. The blade opposite to the hammer was much too big for such a tool. Long and sharply-pointed both up and down, it appeared to be a silver battle-axe blade, and was of a different metal. Unlike the other tools visible in the cave, it was adorned with gold filigrees and deeply engraved runes. It had been skillfully welded into the head of the hammer. He stuck the handle in his belt so the huge head protruded above, across his belly with the dirty tunic, out of the way of his massive arms. Then he filled a good-sized bottle with water from the well, and hung that from another spot on his belt. Finally, food from the cold-well went into a bag on his belt and more into the chest.
He stood there again and looked at his father. Expectantly? That was unknown. The narrow vertical slit from the base of the helmet over what would have been mouth and nose, and the horizontal slit for the eyes showed no eyes or face beneath. Only a smooth stretch of shiny metal glinted, as if Braandu wore a mask of glistening metal under the helmet.
Klaatu looked at Andimia and said, "What will it be, my dear?... rest tonight, or leave right away? It is all the same to me and my son, my son."