They emerged from the hidden valley with threatening clouds overhead. They were about half-way back to Cyntyr trail when rain started to fall. Heavy drops poured onto them, the forest overhead doing little to lessen the falling water. Spirits quickly darkened, and the call to halt for the night was gladly accepted. It was a long, wet night though for any shelter they constructed either collapsed under the deluge or was blown over by the wind.
Shortly before dawn the storm passes and the group gets a short, grateful rest before having to get up and continue their journey. The sun was a welcome sight and warmed their spirits as much as it did the air around them. Gwyn and Davik are the first to notice a tracks in the soft, muddy ground near the trail. Closer inspection reveals a dozen or more tracks emerging from the South and moving toward one of the rocky ravines running along the nearby mountain range.
The group pauses and discusses the ramifications of the tracks. Nephelle points out only those by order of the King are allowed into the forest at all. Dreyhan squats down and closely inspects the tracks, trying to determine who or what may have passed through. It was evident to him that the tracks had been made by humans wearing boots…not unlike the ones currently in use by the military. After their brief discussion, they decided to follow the tracks and investigate who it was that was trespassing on the King’s land.
They follow the tracks for about an hour when they catch sight of movement ahead of them. Picking up their pace, they enter into a clearing and realize they’re looking at a Bysynth patrol, which caused confusion for there had been no patrols dispatched in this direction. Running through the middle of the clearing was a wide, shallow river. The patrol stood on an island in the middle of the river and appeared to have been investigating a tall, white obelisk protruding from the ground.
Shadows cast by the bright sun overhead fell onto the patrol and one of them turned in response to the hale of the group. A beam of sunlight falls onto his face and they see a piece of rotted flesh slip from his jawbone as he opens his mouth and gives voice to a ululating cry. Six more of the undead monsters turn toward the Agents and shuffle around what could only be their commanders. Despite the entire patrol being in various states of rot and decay, they drew their weapons and prepared to engage the Agents.
Dreyhan wasn’t much more than a blur as he flew over the river and tore ferociously into the body of the nearest undead soldier. Chunks of skin and bone were ripped free and the man staggered back slightly before beginning the attack of his own. As Dreyhan blocked blows, he recognized his foolhardy action as more men shuffled around him and did their best to slay him. He spun from one block to another, knowing it was only a matter of time before he fell.
Just as he caught sight of a swinging sword to his left, a rallying cry sprung from the rest of his party as they too launched into attack. Arrows flew, swords swung, and blood sprayed from both parties. Through the midst of the chaos, Rothelar strode past the mayhem to stand in the middle of the river. Raising his arms, he cried out, “Resuscitabo Immortui!” Light coallesced around him then exploded outward in a silent flash. A couple of the undead soldiers collapsed and the rest were blown back several feet. They slowly rose to their feet and shuffled away as fast as they could.
The group caught their breath then thanked the cleric profusely. They then looted the bodies and divided up the coins they found. One of the soldiers had a number of garnets in a pouch on his belt. Rothelar took one of them, examined it with his one good eye, then placed it into the socket of the other. Turning to the rest of the group, he grinned wildly then asked, “How does it look?”
Nephelle extended her senses toward the obelisk and realized it was an ancient elven standing stone, but could not deduce its purpose. The group took one last look around the clearing before heading back toward the trail and the promise of a warm bath and a soft bed awaiting them at the palace.