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de'Arnise Keep – Receiving the Quest
When you visit the Copper Coronet in the Slums District, Nalia will approach you and ask for your help freeing her home, de'Arnise Keep, from trolls. She'll also join your party if you wish. Nalia is a Chaotic Good dual-class mage/thief who can definitely be an asset to a good or neutral party.
After you accept the quest, de'Arnise Keep will appear on your map. Go there and talk to Captain Arat in the southwest corner. He'll ask you to enter the keep through a secret entrance (located just north of him) and lower the drawbridge so he and his soldiers can get inside.
Remember that you need fire or acid to defeat trolls. Captain Arat will give you some fire arrows when you talk to him.
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de'Arnise Keep – Through the Keep
Enter de'Arnise Keep and talk to Daleson, who will tell you what happened and give you some tips for defeating the trolls. He's rude, but you'll risk your good reputation if you're rude back.
Defeat the trolls on the first floor of the keep and head out the front entrance. You'll face two tough enemies in the courtyard, a Otyugh and a Greater Yuan-ti. Try to quickly turn the lever to open the drawbridge, and you'll receive some help from Captain Arat and his men.
Go back inside and head upstairs to the second floor. Head to the southernmost room to fight a Giant Troll and a Yuan-ti mage and receive the Keep Key, which opens most of the rooms on this level.
Use the key to open Lady Delcia's room, located to the west. She won't be that impressed or grateful that you rescued her, though. There's also some treasure in the room near the stairs.
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de'Arnise Keep – Defeating the Trolls
Open the secret entrance in Lady Delcia's room and head down the stairs to the secret dungeon. Some Umber Hulks are guarding the central room. It's an incredibly tough fight, but you can avoid it by following Daleson's tip about distracting them with dog stew. First, kill the dogs in the courtyard and pick up their meat, then cook it on the stove in the first level's kitchen. Hide in shadows and drop the stew at the end of the first westward hallway, and the Umber Hulks will abandon their post to eat.
Now you can go through and face Torgal and his two guards in the room to the east. This is a tough fight, but you can make it easier by getting Torgal to rush at you and leave the room, splitting him up from his guards.
Unfortunately, it's too late for Lord de'Arnise, whose body you'll find by the statue. However, you'll still receive 10,000 GP for completing the quest, which will help you on your quest to rescue Imoen.
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de'Arnise Keep – Flail of Ages
There's a lot of loot in de'Arnise Keep, but one item of interest is the Flail of Ages. The first part is found in the northernmost room on the first level. The second is guarded by some golems near the stairs down to the dungeons – you can grab the flail piece without disturbing them, but if you grab any other loot they'll attack.
To find the third piece, go through the secret entrance on the southern wall of the bedroom near the pantry. You'll encounter the guard Glacias in the central chamber. Either kill him and take the flail piece or charm him and make him hand it over.
Return with all three pieces to the Flail Forge on the first level, where you can forge the Flail of Ages +3, a very good weapon.