I was going to say that this was another short session, but actually these under-an-hour-and-a-half games seem to be about ideal for us as a family.
If you're coming in late, we have:
Firstborn, playing an Elf Druid/Barbarian (2/2) and his animal companion, a viper.
Secondborn, who is playing a Human Ranger/Rogue (2/2) with a focus on archery.
Beautiful Wife, who is playing a Halfling Sorceress (4) and her familiar owl.
They have been sent to investigate a mysterious dungeon, which was discovered when a section of ground caved in near one of the outlying farms around their woodland town. As Patrollers (i.e. guards who protect the homes outside the city walls) their assignment was to find out what was scaring the family of half-elves nearest the dungeon entrance; it turned out to be a group of goblins which had snuck out and raided the chicken coop. After killing off the goblins on the top level, they found a circular ramp leading down to another, deeper level which was dimly lit by some sort of phosphorescent lichen growning in the cracks between the stone blocks of the walls, floor, and ceiling. They discovered something that had probably once been a temple but which was now infested with giant spiders, fought off a band of goblins led by an ill-fated hobgoblin, and went back to town to report.
Upon their return, they discovered a skeletal owlbear guarding the bottom of the ramp, and defeated it reasonably handily. Further explorations led them to a large room in which the goblins had evidently grown a village out of giant mushrooms. The group decided to bypass the village, and went down another passage instead.
Today, we picked up at the far end of the passage, where a battle - or at least a skirmish - was already in progress. A trio of goblins were facing off against three skeletons and a ghoul. Firstborn and Beautiful Wife decided to hang back and watch, but Secondborn snuck forward along the wall.
The goblin the center of the room turned out to be a spellcaster, and blasted the ghoul with a Magic Missile. That left the two goblin fighters squaring off against the (human-sized) skeletons; they exchanged blows, with the goblins taking some damage but destroying two of the skeletons. Secondborn chose that moment to step in and attack the remaining skeleton, and destroyed it.
That left our three heroes staring awkwardly at the three badly-startled goblins.
Two of the goblins moved to position themselves where they could watch the far hallway (the one the undead had evidently emerged from) and the hallway the characters had come down at the same time. Beautiful Wife and Firstborn stepped back to one side of the hallway, and the third goblin (seeing his way clear) ran past them and back in the direction of the goblin village.
"Well," observed Firstborn. "This is awkward."
The goblin wizard said, in bad-goblin-voice but in the Common tongue, "What you do here?"
"Exploring," said Firstborn, and Beautiful Wife immediately agreed: "Exploring."
"Exploring?" asked the goblin wizard dubiously.
"You killed mushroom farmers."
Beautiful Wife answers this one: "They stole our chickens."
The goblin wizard kind of grunts at that, but he doesn't seem offended.
At this point, the goblin fighter returns with reinforcements: three other goblins and a hobgoblin. Beautiful Wife and Firstbon step into the room, staying out of their way, and the whole crowd stops just inside the doorway. They seem puzzled that nobody's fighting. The hobgoblin says something, and the goblin wizard translates: "Chief Grok wants to know what you do here."
Firstborn repeats his line about exploring, the goblins have a quick exchange, and then the goblin wizard says, "Chief Grok says you trespassing."
Firstborn replies, "...It's a valid point."
After a little more consideration, he offers: "Maybe we could make a deal? We stay on the surface, and you stay down here?"
The goblin wizard passes that along, and the hobgoblin thinks about it and then replies. "Chief Grok says that good."
At this point, the goblins and their chief are all just kind of standing around looking at our heroes, like they're just waiting for them to leave. Firstborn, though, says: "...And maybe we could say that if one group needs help, they could come and ask the other?"
"Wait, we're making alliances with the goblins now?" asks Beautiful Wife.
Firstborn, bless him, just shrugs.
"Chief Grok thinks that good idea," says the goblin wizard.
At this point, the characters decide that it's definitely time to troop back up to the surface and report in, so they move past the goblins and head for the ramp.
Folks, this is going to make the next stage of the campaign so much easier. I honestly hadn't expected our heroes to parley with the goblins; I thought they'd probably jump into the middle of the fight and kill everything. But since they have, and with some degree of success, my plan to get them back down into the dungeon was to have one of the goblins come up and ask the for help. (The goblins, as you may have surmised, have a reasonably serious undead problem.) But Firstborn has conveniently gone right ahead and boldly laid down the groundwork for that, which will make things so much easier.