He indicates a section on the shelves
and you take a book to one of the tables to read through it.
The book is most enlightening,
tracing the history of the Citadel.
The Black Tower was built by Balthus Dire's grandfather.
As it became a sanctuary for the forces of evil,
law and order gradually made way for chaos
as the monstrous creatures battled their way up the power hierarchy.
Dire's grandfather eventually found it necessary to protect himself
from his minions by setting up various protective traps
between the creatures and his own dwellings,
most notable of these being the Doompit Trap
and a magical Combination Lock on the door to his own room.
The combination of the lock is 217.
You read further about the various secret passageways that permeate the Citadel.
You may then choose either to ask the man for the section on Balthus Dire,
or the section on Creatures of Craggen Rock,
or you may leave the room through the door at the far end.