Salvatore the Cleric rolled on my random henchmen table before this morning's expedition. He got the result of "d6 mercs". Further rolls indicated 5 "desperate locals", which I decided were men who lost their families to the Dragon. Nearly mad with grief, they signed on in hopes of causing the Dragon some annoyance before they died. Here are their fates, in chronological order.
1) Blasted to a blackened skeleton. Should have thrown the torch instead of walking up to the volatile chemical and igniting it by hand.
2) Left to guard a corridor. Shredded by giant rats.
3) Drowned when the halfling opened a secret door holding back 12,000 cubic feet of water
4) Traded (along with a magic ring) to a wicked silver spider with a body the size of a VW beetle. What did the party get in exchange? Their own miserable lives.
5) The last one fled when the silver spider attacked, so he didn't see the party callously sacrifice his buddy. He survived.