A report from Master Nigel Pereme to His
Majesty, King Mykel Endarr II
May 07, 2005
Upon completion of our journey into the lands west of Lorinorea and due south of Mydian, I have come to the following conclusions –
The majority of the land is comprised of open grassland, with a few areas of thick forest. The plains were roamed by nomadic tribes of barbarians and seem to be very fertile. To the west is a large river, used by many merchants traveling south to the sea. In Mydian they call this the Cumberland River. It meets up with another large, unnamed river and continues south to the sea. Where these two rivers meet is a stone keep once the home of the largest barbarian clan. It is now controlled by undead and is believed to be their stronghold. There are many old villages in the area that are now used as outposts for the undead army. There were no signs of any existing barbarian clans and it is presumed that they have retreated to the east. South of the keep is a mountain range that is home to the dark elves. These mountains give way to rolling foothills and eventually fade into an arid, desert region. The majority of this information was provided by the dark elves and has not been confirmed by us. It is my opinion that these lands require further exploration.
After collaborating with the remainder of our party it was concluded that the best strategic move for gaining control of the area would be to attack from the north, taking the smaller outposts and weakening this undead army before continuing to the stronghold. We should be careful in keeping an escape route open in case we are met with more force than we can handle. I have included a map with this report showing the lay of the land to the best of my ability. It is important to remember that this map was drawn based on information we received from the dark elves and that this information has not been confirmed by us. Due to the resistance we met at the first outpost we were unable to explore any further. The dark elves gave us approximate locations of all known outposts and those are represented by gold flags on the map. Upon further exploration I will update this map and keep your majesty well informed of any changes.
Master Nigel Pereme
Royal Cartographer’s Guild of Evandarr
I have also included excerpts from my personal journal, in which I included details from our journey.
15th of March, 605
Today we arrived in the lands south of Mydian, our boat sailed slowly down the river as the land became less inhabited. We passed a small creek early in the morning heading southwest, but continued on. I hope we get to explore it on our return. An hour later we arrived at a small dock and tied down our boat. There was a road heading east-northeast and one heading due south. We decided to take the road to the east. It appeared well traveled and very old. We walked for nearly an hour before we saw wooden buildings up ahead. There were no sounds and the place seemed to be deserted. As we approached there were many tracks, mostly humanoid in nature. Yet the place seemed to be rundown and rarely used. We made camp in a large, empty building and threw a circle around it. I only had a short time to inspect the area as they went about preparing our camp. I found houses with beds but no blankets, a tavern with no food or water, and one cabin that could not be entered. There was an indestructible lock upon the door and some form of writing overhead. At this time I was ordered back into the circle as night was steadily approaching. That night we saw undead start to come out from the woods, but none ever ventured too close.
16th of March, 605
We awoke this morning and I was excited to be able to go out and do my job. A group traveled with me as I first set about mapping the village itself. After completing my sketch of the village I chose to head east out of town. There was a road headed outside of town that seemed to drop in elevation very quickly and I wanted to see where it went. We traveled for some time before the woods opened up and we came to a large lake. There was an old dock yet no ships. It appeared to not have been used for some time. Based on my idea of our current location and the direction the creek had headed from the river I assumed that the creek ended here at this lake. This would make a great point of entry into the area so I made note of it on my map. We then returned to camp and prepared for the night. As darkness came so did the undead. And they seemed to be more prevalent this night. Some even began to venture towards our circle. As their numbers grew they seemed to get closer and closer, I began to feel very uneasy. I had not encountered such creatures before, I had only read of them in books. The undead were now clawing at the circle trying to get through. There were so many we could not count them. It was very hard to sleep and I found myself awake for most of the night.
17th of March, 605
The undead left right before sunrise, retreating into the woods. We left the circle and tried to follow their tracks but they seemed to disappear once they hit the wood line. Today we decided to follow another road that headed back west and slightly north, which after a short travel led us to another much smaller village. The condition of it was much the same as the other and we found nothing there of interest. I made a map of it and once done we headed back to camp to meet up with the others. Sir Grayhelm informed us we would be departing in the morning, having verified the presence of undead and completed our mapping of the area. We were to head back to the river and return north, inspecting anything else we desired along the way. At dark the undead returned again and there numbers seemed to grow. The entire village was packed with them and they seemed to be guided by something this time, trying desperately to get in the circle. For the first couple of hours there seemed to be only zombies and skeletons, but as the night grew on more sinister undead joined them. There were rotting corpses with glowing eyes, and discorporeal creatures that seemed to give off a cold, bone-chilling aura that could be felt through the circle. I had read that some undead could not be stopped by circles and began to feel very worried. Suddenly we all saw a greenish light that was traveling towards us from the woods. The undead seemed to move out of its way as it approached our circle. Sir Grayhelm ordered us all to prepare for a fight, not knowing what this light was or what it could do. I drew my sword and waited, standing in the center of the circle. The light approached and as it reached the circle I heard a crackling noise, and looking at the circle I saw veins of blackness coursing through it. The others were too focused on the light and didn’t seem to notice. They were shouting orders at each other preparing for the worst. The light seemed to pass right through the circle and began to swirl as it took a solid form. There standing inside of our circle was a handful of zombies. Some of our group panicked and left the circle, only to be cut down by the many undead outside. I was in shock and couldn’t even remember my spells or that I had a sword in my hand. I watched as the rest of our party fought them off. As quickly as they destroyed those there were more behind them and the light continued to grow as more creatures entered the circle. The others were fighting them off as Sir Grayhelm ordered us to retreat except for Dame Kareria, Dame Dunmir, and Fadrok. Miranda told me stay behind her but I stood still, frozen in fear. She grabbed me and shook me out of it, and I scrambled to grab my things and follow her out of the circle. The undead were everywhere as we cut a path out of town. Finally we had enough room to make a run for it and I ran for my life as the undead came after us. I was running frantically and suddenly tripped on a root. Within seconds the undead were upon me, clawing my flesh deeply. Nica, Ravasa, and Alayenn held off the undead as Miranda pulled me to my feet. I fought through the pain and grabbed my things, looking back I saw that Nica, Ravasa, and Alayenn were surrounded as bigger undead joined the zombies. They seemed to be coming from every direction. Miranda ran to help them but was stopped by Alayann, who asked her to take me and the rest to the ship and go. Miranda suppressed the urge to help her comrades and grabbed me hard as she took off running. We met up with Reskar, Raroc, Kiri and Aldan and headed for the ship. We ran for some time, my legs getting weak as more blood left my body. Miranda stopped long enough to heal me and when we took off again our way was blocked by undead, these creatures had glowing eyes and moved much faster than the zombies. Miranda stood in front of me and began casting destroys, she slayed a few of them and swung her sword masterfully, clearing a way for us to make it to the dock. She pushed me onto the ship and told me to untie it. She and the others turned around and held off the approaching undead as I untied the ship and she jumped on board as we heard a commotion coming from the woods. We looked back to see Fadrok running towards us with many undead right behind him. Miranda and the others leapt off the ship and ran to him. Miranda healed him as the others held off the approaching undead. I was barely able to keep the ship from floating away as they made it aboard. Fadrok told us that the others had fallen and there were more undead coming by the minute. Miranda spoke to all of us, “We must return to Evandarr with our information so that they did not die in vain. We will have a chance to avenge their deaths but only if we escape alive. Let us leave here before their fate becomes our own.”We traveled north along the river slowly, fighting the current. I took the time to take in all that had transpired. Miranda’s bravery had saved my life, as well as the others. And for that I owed her, and I silently vowed to follow her, whatever she wanted us to do.