Right now, as of this moment, we have no expenses. We are well supplied with food that is more than sufficient to see us back to civilization even if we stay here another week or two. We have oxen. We have wagons. We don't need to return with all of the expedition gear that we left with. We could make better time with a single wagon pulled by horses, given that there are half of us returning than left and we can travel light.
The first need is to identify and appraise what has been recovered to date. It would be prudent to put these items to good use on our return trip. An enchanted sword does us no good locked away in a chest, for example. But we were hired to perform a job and just because most of the expedition died in the orc attack doesn't relieve us of that duty. We should return with what we have recovered and not consider it personal loot.
We can return later, at our own expense, and loot as much as we desire.
Please consider that the magic to enchant items is not lost, but an enchanted blade from 3,000 years ago holds archeological value above and beyond the value of the mere enchantment. A 3,000 year old set of enchanted plate mail would be a princely ransom. A small chest of coins that date from the founding of the Old Empire is worth far more than the weight of the gold. We stand to gain far more, both in reward and honors, by returning with intact artifacts. Everything thus recovered from the temple, coinage included, is an artifact of the Old Empire.
As we have no present expenses, there is no reason to parcel out the gold as coinage. Nobody has any need for the money at this moment, unless someone is aware of the presence of a pub or tavern or chandlery that I don't know about. As we do have present need to protect ourselves, there is ample reason to temporarily loan and sign out the use of specific items of arms or armor for use until we return. Provided, of course, said items can be properly identified and appraised.
Please consider Master Saraldawan and myself to represent the interests of the surviving backers of the expedition in this matter.
Here's the inventory of the loot from the skellie room:
100 pieces of gold
suit of plate mail armor, human size
2 suits rigid leather armor, human size
I have erred, Reuben. I was of the mistaken impression that the shields and weapons wielded by the skeletal warriors vanished to dust along with them as soon as they were defeated. If in fact they did not, then most certainly they should be recovered for their cultural and archeological value. As should the chests themselves, although I suspect that I was not very clear about the need to recover all seven of the chests purely for their cultural and archeological value.
Reuben, I suspect that some amongst us may be mistakenly perceiving the items recovered from the catacombs of the temple as "loot" when they truly are not. Consider, please:
Seven statues in the temple
Seven dieties, or perhaps seven aspects of the same diety
Seven skeletal warriors
Seven items of value: plate armor, shield, sword, mace, leather armor, leather armor, pair of daggers
I should think that a complete collection or set from the temple would consist of recovery of all seven statues from the temple, all seven chests, and all seven offerings of value along with copies or reproductions of all of the inscriptions from all seven statues in order to reproduce the temple itself in the North Lands.
Reuben, another thing occurs to me to discuss with you:
The temple upstairs, like the room with the skeletal warriors, had alcoves and shrines for six dieties or aspects, and was clearly established in the central recognition of the seventh. This figure is the "bearded older robed male carrying a staff". It is this diety or aspect that I am particularly interested in learning more about. Who is this? By what name is he known in the North Lands? By what name was he known in the Old Empire? What is his significance? Perhaps Master Saraldawan can shed some light upon this subject for me.