Some time later, Leona and Lynnara crossed a tree line, and entered a much more temperate climate. They came upon a small village that Lynnara vaguely remembered passing through before. After dealing with some intense suspicion, a small child directs them to an old woman outside of town. Lynnara rolled her eyes upon seeing the tent the old women lived in, remembering stories of crazy old gypsy women. Of course, Lynnara had never heard any stories of the Vistani.
The two young women entered the tent. The old women proceeded to read their fortunes.
Lynnara was found to be at a nexus, a choice between an earthly existence or a divine destiny.
Leona received a similar reading, but with a more sinister twist: Leona’s choice is between life or death.
The reading tiring her out, the old Vistani seer laid down on her mat and noisily began to sleep. Disgusted with the waste of time, Lynnara walked out of the tent. Leona stayed a moment, mesmerized by the crystal ball. She stroked the top of it, and it promptly disappeared. Frightened, Leona bolted out of the tent, running fast, making Lynnara annoyed at having to chase after her.
After they both calmed down a little, Leona suggested talking to the lord of the castle that loomed over the village. It was decided that news of the Lich King’s power would be the excuse to get in, and then they could get some real answers. This plan went swimmingly along until they got to the castle gate itself, and an argument with the guard lead to violence. They were quickly captured and incarcerated in the dungeon.
A night went by, and a young guard who lived in the village came down to the dungeon, his face coated in sweat. He babbled something about the village being in danger, and begged the two women to save his family. They agreed, and he unlocked the door and lead them out. They walked back down to the village, and entered a nightmare.
The village was infested with zombies. Shrugging, they prepared for easy battles. It was supposed to be a cake walk. Lynnara approached the first zombie, and swung, and that is when the plan smacked into a brick wall.
These zombies were much more powerful than the ones they faced on the beach. They hit harder, took more damage, and seemed more intelligent. It no longer was a battle to win, it was an ordeal to survive.
Running into a building to hide from more undead, they encountered what looked like a family of zombies, one of them they definitely recognized as the small child that told them of the Vistani woman.
The family attacked, and the two women were overwhelmed. Lynnara went down first. Her wounds stopped bleeding through techniques she had learned from the Order, though she still remained unconscious. The zombies moved to cut Leona off from Lynnara, again showing remarkable intelligence. Leona was left to quickly fall below the blows of the zombies.
This wasn’t the end, though. Leona soon awoke, completely healed and with all of her spells intact. The house was destroyed, and there was no sign of the zombies. Leona ignored this, and ran over to heal Lynnara, who still lay unconscious. They left the ruins, trying to explore the village now that the roads seemed clear of the undead. They found an outhouse, and disturbed a crazy man wielding feces and hiding from zombies. Shutting the door after he accuses them of zombies and threatening them with the feces, they walked away.
While rooting through her backpack looking for mana, Leona found the Vistani woman’s crystal ball. After some experimenting, they found they could look into the past of wherever they happened to be standing. Using this, they could see when zombies had entered a house, and so could finally tell which ones were sage.
They explored an empty house, and found some journals in a strange language, as well as what seemed to be a holy symbol. They escaped out of the house when they saw a zombie through the window.
Finding another empty house, with no sign of zombies around, they entered and barricaded it. They needed rest, badly. The battles with the zombies had taken serious toll, Leona’s miraculous healing notwithstanding. Leona laid down to rest, Lynnara offering to stand first watch. It was not long after that when there was a knock at the door. A soft yet firm voice called through the door, asking to speak to a specific woman. When Lynnara responded she wasn’t there, a creepy conversation began. Eventually the tired adventurers called it off and demanded he leave. It was then that the entire front of the house burst inward.
Standing before them was the master of the castle, a coldly handsome portait of elegance and nobility. He warned them that they should be the ones leaving, and to bother him or his people no more. When Leona asked if he could point them in a safe direction, the master smiled coldly, amused by some inner joke. He replied he couldn’t, and walked off into the darkness.
Leona and Lynnara are now alone in the wrecked house that was to be their sanctuary, and the sounds of shuffling footsteps and inhuman groans are steadily getting louder.