Just as the full darkness of nightfall enclosed around them, Lystra and Belt made the gates of the Flaming Fist Fort. Despite seeing no sign of continued pursuit for the majority of their flight, they had not slowed their mounts, fearful that their foe may have some unseen trick up their sleeve.
With the breaking of the dawn, a rider came thundering up the Coastway upon a white steed whose coat was marred by a hefty splattering of mud. The rider himself wore blue finery as well as a silver breastplate upon which had been etched a rearing griffon. A silver helm he wore as well, the visor of which he lifted upon reaching those guardsmen who stood watch at the gatehouse. Not long after, Commander Adrian Durham was roused from his cot within the southern tower and within minutes he was striding forth, his helm held in the crook of his arm, to meet with the rider just within the cities’ courtyard.
Seated astride Shadowflight, just within the eaves of the Wood of Sharp Teeth, Lystra surveyed the open grasslands that stretched to the east of the woodlands. Unlike the lands that comprised the majority of the coastline to the west that were rocky and oft-broken by small ravines and dells, here the land was, for the most part, flat and covered in a healthy growth of plains grasses and small shrubbery. This was the stomping ground of the Elturel Hellriders, she knew, and where she hoped to spot the hunting party with whom Duke Belt rode.
“Night in this city seems darker these days,” Ethon mused to himself as he stood outside of the clinic/temple of the followers of Ilmater that was tucked away along a grungy street within the Baldur’s Gate slums.
Rendrick awoke slowly from his slumber. Having had little rest since he and his companions had first entered Cloakwood, a fact they had likewise noticed, it had been insisted upon that Keira and Tiberius would split the watch that night, allowing the Ranger a much-needed full nights sleep. Though he had been against their proposition at first, he had relented when even Katarina joined in on their behalf. Waking now, grogginess fogging his mind and a stiffness clinging to his limbs, he knew that one full night's sleep had not been nearly enough.
Within the tunnelled sanctum of the Talosite priests, far beneath their House of Rolling Thunder, the Sellsword Kharne stood patiently within a circular chamber, a large contingent of Storm’s Rising Mercenaries, bereft of their normal company colors, as well as the hulking Barbarian, Dorn, arrayed behind him.
Kormak and Jaryn stood in silence, side by side, amidst the carnage in Myrna’s Grove. Whatever tears were to be shed had already fallen and now reigned a stoic quiet, broken only by the chirping of crickets who seemed content to resume their song now that the chaos of the battle had subsided.
With a forceful jerk, Kivan was wrenched from the dreamlike state of Reverie into which he had lapsed whilst slumped in the saddle of his equally haggard mount. Though Elves retained the majority of their wits whilst in Reverie, the constant action over the last few days had left him drained and less sensitive to potential threats around him. As such, as he awoke, the Ranger whipped his head about, desperately ensuring that there were no Orc raiders lurking near at hand. Discovering that he was indeed alone on the open plains, he returned to his hunched position, exhaustion gnawing upon each of his muscles, as well as upon the corners of his mind.
Night had fully engulfed the land when the Percin caravan hauled itself into the small roadside dell Rendrick had ear-marked for their first night’s camp. The ranger, Keira, and Tiberius led the way into the sheltered space, guarded on all sides by high outcroppings of stone and roofed by the canopies of great oaks that had taken root there. All three were exhausted, their fronts covered in mud, evidence of their recent labors of dislodging the latest wagon wheel.
Like a thread fed expertly through the head of a needle, Jherek stole through the backstreets of Baldur’s Gate. His course taking him ever nearer to the city’s slums, and his ultimate destination that night.