“We yet live…Kforedz.” Stephan would normally have addressed a ruling female as ‘my lady’ but found it difficult give this particular lady sported the head of a jackal. “Did you suspect that something in the crypt might have brought us to an untimely end?” The Traladarian did not expect an answer and simply smiled back at what he took to be a courteous acknowledgement from Kforedz.
“Indeed, we found the Tome and more beside,” interjected Hasan. “A great crypt lay below the temple, but buried lay no more. We were attacked by the dead, a great power from ancient days, but we repelled that assult and found this Tome.”
Miklos interjected, “Yes, it is very clearly outlining a religious ceremony of some type, but Hasan and I could not understand it. You will need to tell us what you read and what it means for the Vale as soon as possible. Come now, let’s begin. I will show you what we have learned ourselves. Come now, quickly, this knowledge is surely precious.”
“Easy, Miklos,” insisted Maruc. “Kforedz, I will remind you that you swore last night to bring peace to the Vale, and that never again will evil slavery stain the Hutakaa. That was the price of our services rendered — nothing less. We have done what we swore. Now you must tell us how this Tome will advance your cause and ours.”
Feldard hung back as Hasan and the humans spoke with the Hutaakan priestess. The dwarf knew he wouldn’t be needed for a while as they discussed the tome, so the dwarf found himself a quiet place to sit down and relax.. maybe find himself an ale or two to drink.
While those more astute in such things discussed the tome with Kforedz, Stephan monitored from a short distance just in case the situation turned sour. He longed, however, to join Feldard who seemed to have acquired a pint of ale and was actively reducing any stress he may have built up.
Kforedz anxiously studied the contents of the ancient book. The normally reserved priestess got visibly more excited as she continued her reading.
Ludo followed Feldard to look for a pint of ale, finding the tome he suspected would only be the first step. He thought about the challenges ahead. This valley seeped with a source of evil that need to be defeated. Thsts what drew the Sons of Night here.
This village was not the source of evil, nor was the Vault where they had located the book which Hasan had passed back to the Hutaakans. No it was somewhere else. He chuckled to himself, what was usually the source of evil? Money and religion. He smiled, he better not mention that to Maruc. The Hutakkans had very little money that he had seen, could it be the Tralder? Slaves usually had very little money, so most likely not. No it must be elsewhere in the valley, another settlement that they had not been told about. “Feldard, I suspect we will have to go deeper into the Valley on the morrow to find what we are looking for, there is more to this valley than meets the eye. If we had some horses or mounts we could move faster and cover more ground.”
* * * * *
“You have done it. This shall be our salvation!” she proclaimed to Miklos, Maruc and Hasan. “I need to speak to you all,” she said as she sought out the full contingent of adventurers.
“Tomorrow we must travel to the Temple of Pflarr and perform the Cleansing Ceremony. Please, will you accompany us?” She implored the heroes. “I fear that without your protection, we will not be able to perform the rites. If we are successful, the dead in the Valley will finally be put to rest and peace may be restored.”