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You'll receive this quest from Danley (in Phandalin).
Danley will tell you that a mysterious mining company recently swooped in to claim the cold iron mine to the southeast, and he'll ask you to investigate the mine to see if anything shady is going on.
When you enter the mine, you'll meet Daniel Merriwether and Chester Paulson (#1). They'll complain that Danley has a grudge against them, and that he's just trying to soil their good name with his accusations, but if you have enough ranks in the right skills (spot, spellcraft) or have the right companion (Umoja) with you, then you'll eventually realize that Daniel and Chester are ogre magi in disguise. You can also reach this conclusion by trying to purchase cold iron from them, as this will cause them to make up flimsy excuses.
Regardless, when you discover the illusion, Daniel and Chester (Gromcheck and Radbur) and the rest of the mineworkers (orcs and ogres) will turn against you, and you'll find some decent equipment, including a
Gromcheck's Walking Stick
, when you kill them. If you loot the locked and trapped storage room in the back (#2), then you'll also find
Hide Armor +2
, 600 gp, and more.
After clearing the mine, when you return to Danley, he'll reward you with 1000 xp and 1000-1500 gp. Then Danley will head over to the mine, and Phandalin will start producing cold iron.
1 - Daniel and Chester
2 - Storage Room
- World exit.