After having cleared nearly the entirety of Fort Caderyn, Alexander, Brenna, and Macsen decide that it would be good to have a long night’s rest. Upon waking up, the three decide that it’s time to clear out the undead from atop the roof. Once they reach the roof, they are met with a volley of arrows and one of what seems like a spear. Brenna notices that one of the undead is wielding a bow no less than a foot taller than him, and is aiming it straight at her. Two of the undead exchange their bows for swords and charge the party. Alexander plants himself in front of Brenna and Macsen to prevent the undead from reaching them. After defeating the first two, Alexander runs out to slay the others, barely avoiding another volley. Brenna and Macsen follow as best they can while trying to avoid fire. Alexander finally reaches the Greatbow Archer and swiftly acts to fell the foe. Macsen flanks the enemy with Alexander while Brenna looses her own arrows and the fight is won. The three had cleared the roof. Their spoils consisted of the Greatbow and Greatsword that were once the giant undead’s and a box filled with Magitech tools that they assume belongs to Ian Murdock. They return the tools to Ian and stop for another night’s rest, proud that they made a historical site safe for travelers and tourists alike.
The party awakens the next day and begins making their way to Novium, the first stop on their journey toward Brigantia. While journeying, Brenna happens upon some tracks in the ground. Her curiosity overtakes her, against her better judgment, as she follows them to a cave in the woods. Entering the cave, she spots the bones of small animals and hears low growls from within the cave. Attempting to slither inside, Brenna makes an effort to quietly enter and is greeted by four wolves. Brenna uses her skills as a huntsman to show the animals that she is no threat and they leave her be, going back to devour a fresh kill. When trying to leave the cave, Brenna feels what seems to be a small tremor. She starts slowly backing out of the cave, but the tremors seem to follow her steps. Brenna fires an arrow into the darkness, hitting nothing but the rocks in front of her. After fully leaving the cave, Brenna quickly learns that she has tread upon the territory of the fabled Zweihounder. Brenna tries to run, but gets swiped in the back by the Zweihounder’s massive claws. She calls for help from Macsen using their own vocal code. Alexander and Macsen then quickly run to Brenna’s aid. Alexander is quick to put himself in between Brenna and this strange, twin-headed beast. In protecting his allies from this monster, Alexander loses his left eye, the Zweihounder rending through his helmet. Macsen and Brenna are able to defeat the beast in a joint effort and run to Alexander’s side. They are finally able to look at Alexander’s face to see what he looks like, seeing the scars and marks his body and face carry due to his past. Alexander tries to shove them away to keep them from further inspecting his face, but Macsen swiftly administers a sedative to be able to tend to the grievous wound. After making sure Alexander is taken care of, Brenna goes to the side of the Zweihounder. She attempts to calm and befriend the beast, only truly succeeding in the previous of the efforts. The beast lumbers off into the woods, knowing that the humans in front of it are no threat to it or its territory any longer.
After Alexander uses his abilities to help his wounds heal, the group heads back toward the road and toward Ian. Ian is found sleeping in a bush, and wakes to tell the group how inconsiderate they are for leaving him by himself for hours. Ian also informs them of a group of armored men that passed by on the road, the reason for his hiding. The group collaborates and concludes that these men could be none other than the men who ravaged Callaecia only days before. Alexander, Macsen, and Brenna decide that it’s time to make haste for Novium, cutting through the woods in an attempt to beat the armored men to the town. Brenna, Ian, Macsen, and Alexander make it to Novium to warn the guards and the people there. In their suspicion, the group decides that it would be better to go in separately in case some of the men made it before them and had already begun to take over. Macsen and Brenna approach first and, to their surprise, they are asked if they are refugees from Callaecia. The two play off the assumption and are granted passage into Novium while the guards inform them that the town is preparing for a coming raid. Meanwhile, as Ian and Alexander see Brenna and Macsen go in, they make their way to enter the town themselves using Alexander’s authority to easily gain entrance. After hearing about the preparations the townsfolk are making, Alexander heads to the local smithy to have his armor repaired; he is reluctant to be wearing civilian clothing because of his scars, but knows how important it is for a knight to have his armor. To Alexander’s surprise, the blacksmith treats him as if he were just another man, not taken aback by his scarification. When Alexander questions him, the blacksmith calmly replies that he understands that the life of a knight is an arduous one and that scars will be had. Alexander appreciated the thought and gesture more than the smith knew, he then heads to the On The Way Inn for a drink and some information gathering. Alexander hears rumors about a Woman in White that has recently stopped in town, the same woman who has warned the townsfolk about an impending attack. Alexander meets up with the others and exchanges information between them. After the interaction, Alexander is tapped on the shoulder by a civilian and told that he and the party should step five feet to their left. Upon doing so, a pile of lumber falls where they were once standing and are pointed in the direction of the Woman in White who beckons them over. An escort approaches them in her stead.
The woman’s escort introduces himself as Emilio Ensley and a burly dwarf as the legendary Dunban Dropkick. He then informs the group that he and his Madame were the ones that warned Novium of the attack through her visions. The Woman in White speaks, introducing herself as Maicah de Naeri explaining that she has clairvoyant powers. Maicah goes on to explain the situation that Novium is in, telling the group that these mercenaries have allied themselves with a local Gnoll tribe led by an alpha named Gol’Dar Skullsmash. Upon hearing this information, the group lays out a strategy to fend off the incoming raid. Macsen is to create a medic camp to help any wounded, Brenna will take charge of the archers along the walls, and Alexander will command the ground forces. Alexander spends the days before the raid training and encouraging the guards to fight for their lands while Macsen prepares the medic camp and brings people in as assistants; all the while, Brenna helps to prepare the archers and plays a little Dragon Chess in their downtime. Meanwhile, Ian also taught Macsen and Brenna the basics of Magitech Tools.
With the townsfolk prepared for the coming battle, everyone assists in setting up defenses and traps. As preparations are finishing, Brenna spots the coming forces on the Western horizon. Brenna, Macsen, and Alexander take their positions for the upcoming battle and prepare for the worst. As the army approached, Alexander and the spearmen beside him stood fast as he commanded “Loose!” to the archers above. A volley of arrows rained down upon the mercenaries and their gnoll counterparts, killing a few straggling gnolls. The army held position as one of the gnolls was revealed to be the leader, Gol’Dar Skullsmash. They made their way up to the barricades and pitfalls Alexander and the guards had prepared as some of the gnolls were tossed off onto the spikes below. Gol’Dar begins his clash with the Kingsguard in an attempt to break the ranks. Alexander holds his position to protect his people; with one massive blow and a shining blade, he cuts off Gol’Dar’s shield arm. Alexander allows Gol’Dar to give up and flee with his tail between his legs. Gol’Dar escapes only after being shot by Brenna with a roped arrow in an attempt to halt his retreat. Gol’Dar’s fellow gnolls cut him loose and they all flee past the horizon.
At the Eastern gate; Dunban, Maicah, Emilio, and the other guards defenses had been breach. Alexander, Brenna, and the Western Gate forces make their way into town to stop any more casualties. A large gnoll with metal claws in hand slashes away at Alexander and the guardsmen, killing one of the guards in the process. Alexander orders the other guards to flee to prevent any more casualties. As Alexander and Brenna fight off the forces, a third force joins the fray flying the flag of the Vermilion Jackals. The Jackals proceed to cut down the gnolls and mercenaries, chasing out the stragglers that remain. Alexander then demands to speak to the Jackals’ present commanding officer and is pointed in the direction of none other than Caiden Gallagher, Alroy Gallagher’s presumed-dead twin.
A heartfelt reunion is had between Alexander and Caiden. Alexander had grown up knowing the twins and their father. Though Alexander had many a question for Caiden, Caiden understood and asked Alexander to speak privately. Caiden informs Alexander of a dire situation in Brigantia. Alroy, the Alroy everyone knew and loved, is dead. Caiden tells Alexander this and Alexander responds with magics that forced anyone around him to tell the truth and tells Caiden to repeat what he said. Knowing that Caiden cannot lie, Alexander listens to Caiden with a heavy heart. Caiden proceeds to tell Alexander that when he left Brigantia, he turned back to see his brother be taken over by something foul. A being that he had never seen the likes of. Caiden hands Alexander a shard of the Lens of Revelations, telling him to go to Brigantia and see for himself. Caiden explains that the Lens of Revelations was used to reveal the true nature of anything the user peered at through the lens, now shattered into naught but shards. Caiden then tells Alexander about a plan to kill the creature in the shell that was once his brother. Alexander takes the shard and tells Caiden not to do anything rash and to remain hidden until he can investigate things for himself and help come up with a plan that doesn’t involve murder and treason.