After making it to Oria my companions decided to seek out the Druid, Daely. It didn’t take us long to find her in the infirmary. She was working to keep the injured from slipping to the afterlife. There are many that would call this noble. And she certainly took this duty seriously.
She understood how to prevent death, a topic of little interest to me. I broke away and found Oria’s library. I was able to discover more information about my brother’s current state. I discovered that he is a Boneclaw! This diabolical undead nightmare from hell will be quite the task to handle. I must practice more if I am going to stand a chance against him.
After a few hours of study, I decided to meet back up with my companions at the Flying Fish Inn. I found out from Smokejack and Lavinia that we were setting out with Daely in the morning. It appears that the Lannerethian Council is taking refuge in a protect portion of the forest nearby. All this means for me is that we have miles of forest to traverse. This is a lot of ground to cover and plenty of places for the undead to hide. I just pray we don’t stumble into Nathan while we are out there. We are unprepared and I am not convinced that Daely could best him in combat.
We prepare for our travels early in the morning and meet with Daely at the north most gate of the city. She moves with unnatural purpose and haste for an Elvan woman who is long overdue in this world. She mentioned that our location was ‘her’ part of the forest. I’m not entirely sure what that means but I hope it changes from the dreary landscape that stands before me. The rain is coming down and the land is definitely suffering at the hands of the dark magic surrounding the army of undead we are maneuvering around.
By my guess, we traveled for no more than half a day when we encountered our first group of undead. By my count we are looking at four undead hounds and a humanoid outfit in robes. We only had a few moments to prepare ourselves for the coming battle!
I drew my hammer and spoke for the first time during our trek. “They are coming” is all I spoke as I loosed a Kelgore’s Firebolt at one of the hounds initiating the coming battle. The firebolt races through the forest and smashes into the lead hound. Now with molten rock embed into the rotting flesh of the beast it charges with its three other companions. My warning came just in time and Daely was surrounded but managed to keep their attacks at bay long enough for Lavinia, Smokejack and Sanjin to intervene. My contest lept into the fray. “This is no ordinary undead” my mind races through all my study as I spot it casting Expedious Retreat. I was able to prepare for my opponent and met him head on! His claws clashed against my hammer as I came at him with everything I had. His stench filled the air as he roared in my face. I knew from that first clash that this foe would not fell as easily as that Dwarven mercenary back in Valbridge. I managed to push him back breaking his forward progress. As I ready myself to strike again this hellspawn lunges with unnatural speed, biting and clawing at me with a ferocity like I have never seen. ‘It is only at the precipice of death do we truly feel alive.’ I say to myself. ‘This beast will take me to the edge.’ I manage to block all of his incoming attacks and come back at him channeling all of my arcane power into a single blow. I catch him in the lower abdomen. My strike feels like it hit a solid brick wall. The head of my hammer bounces off this creature’s hide and the electrical pulses merely singe his hide. In amazement that at my most powerful I couldn’t but singe this beast I was taken back. Just enough time for my foe to swipe the back of his clawed hand striking me in the side. The force of his blow was tremendous! I hear my ribs cracking under the force. Out of the corner of my eye I see Sajin enter the fray to assist me. His blows seem to hit the same wall mine did. As Sajin strikes the beast turns his attention for a moment. Willing the pain of my ribs away I lunge forward a swing the head of my hammer wide, aiming for the beast’s head. I do not remember if I connected or not. I must have left myself open for another strike, because the next thing I remember is standing up with blood pouring down my face. I look for my foe and see that he has doubled in size! I’m feeling my head get light, I’ve lost a lot of blood and I know I cannot continue this fight. I retreat and try to offer aid to my allies from afar. I work my way behind a tree to regain my thoughts. I’m certain it is moderately safe for me to peak around the tree and loose a Disrupt Undead spell. As I peer around my foe instantly turns and charges me! My vision fades to black and my last thoughts are “Death’s door… at last!”
My vision returns and I awake to witness Daely and my companions standing over the newly re-dead corpse of my foe. I found out quickly that Daely struck it down using her powers to manipulate the weather and calling lighting to aid us. Apparently she is more powerful than even I anticipated. Also, in line with my original observation, she healed all our wounds. A painful experience; having your ribs magically put back together is.
We continued forward on our journey to meet with the council. Daely lead us through an area that seemed to be protected from the raging storm that is, obviously, magical in nature. This land makes me sick. Every animal going against the natural selection. Everything is joyous. Too joyous. We eventually make our way to a small cave cut out of a hill with a massive dwarf guarding the entrance in. I can see that this man has seen more than his fair share of battle and would be more than a match for me.
Daely walks past the guard with not even a nod. As we go to follow her we are staunchly halted! We travel all this way just to have our progress inhibited by a man more stoic than Sajin! This is highly frustrating.
We wait for almost an hour before Lavinia convinces this dwarf to allow her to pass. Shortly after that we are allowed inside. We enter into a room that is deceptively big with a round stone table inside. Surrounding this table are the Lannereth council members. They were discussing the origins on the Undead army and the situation at Morrlund, the Dwarven capitol. Our group provided as much information as we could.
As a reward we were gifted a large sum of coin and tasked with traveling to Morrlund and finding out. This task excites me! This should take us right to the heart of the undead. Maybe in our time there I’ll uncover and master the secrets of undeath!
As we set out back to Oria to restock and resupply for the journey we meet an Elvan Warrior. His armor shined in the sun, his sword was larger than life. He represented everything good in the world walking in one damn package. Disgusting. The seer amount of optimistic crap emanating from his aura is enough to make any sensible person sick. His name was Tahlaer – He took a moment to tell us just how important we were to the Solrah and how we were important to the vanquishing of the undead forces. He mistakes my intent. I do not care if they are eradicated. I simply wish to understand them. Shortly after he finishes another embodiment of ignorance appears. This man came in riding a dragon of all things! I won’t be insulting him to his face.
We made it back to Oria with little issue. Smokejack tripped over a root. I chuckled, Lavinia laughed until she cried, Sajin even smiled. It was a good day.
We arrived at Oria and got right to work prepping for the journey. We devised that the quickest way would be to travel north to Jord and hire the services of a boat and crew to carry us down there. We also decided that we should equip ourselves better. Through the shopping experience I met a wizard whose name escapes me now. He offered to imbue my newly purchased Warhammer. I agree, this wizard had a strange sense about him. I felt as if I trusted this passerby. When he imbued the hammer he also inquired about the book I was given back in Valbridge. He claimed to be a friend of the man who gave it to me and that he could decrypt the book. In exchange for this act we were to go investigate a large spider and its connection to peoples’ disappearance in recent weeks.
Begrudgingly we agree to this arrangement. The book is worthless if we have no way of reading it. We travel Northeast about a half a day following the trail of spider web along the path. Sajin and Smokejack claimed there was nothing there, but how would they know? I am the one with the knowledge of magic after all! How could they possibly spot an illusion that I could not?!
We follow the trail for half a day. At this time, I’m inclined to entertain Sajin and Smokejack. I simply use my attunement to the arcane arts and try to detect any magical properties. While doing this a giant spider appears and starts to charge us. Steeling my resolve, I concentrate on the detection and see that they were right. This illusion is very life like. Reading for combat I wait as the spider charges us. Without moving a muscle, I wait for this fiend to attack and to my relief it dissipates.
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