More questions today. More trouble in our path.
After we camped at night as far from the zombie attack as we could get, we headed off on the trail again.
It was foggy and the trees were very unusual. The branches in the sky reminded me of hands reaching toward the sky in vain. Also of unusual note was the fact that it seemed like as we went that the entire grove of trees was dead. No leaves. It all seemed to be fairly recent as well. It would be most unnatural for such a large amount of trees to be simultaneously killed off in such a large area and so completely. A contaminated water supply? Possibly. Some other unusual force of nature I would assume. My inquiries of any such unusual behavior got replies of no known disturbances. So strange.
It was very foggy. We could hardly see the road. As it grew darker with the tree canopy and all the fog, we debated on wether we should stop or press on. Apparrently the correct answer would have been to stop sooner.
In the road a section of it had been dug away and our lead wagon got stuck in it and broke a wheel. The horse, now freed and frightened ran off into the woods. Now stranded in what by all means appeared to be a trap, we moved quickly to come up with a plan to continue out of the target zone.
We determined that if enough of us walked we could cram the luggage onto the still functioning cart, but only barely. Everything moved pretty quickly and I saw Milo, the caravan leader, talking with others about something and seemed upset, but I didn’t catch about what.
Finnian, one of the (half?)/orcs headed off into the woods to look for the horse that had run off because we could hear it out there somewhere. Tensions were high as we were pretty sure that we were about to be attacked by someone or something at any moment. With the orcs superior nightvision we were able to find the horse.
What we found was not pretty. It had been attacked by some thing or things and was lying in much pain. Finnian moved towards it, comforted it slightly, and then put it out of its misery with a stab to the heart. I was planning to do the same, but as usual Finnian took the initiative and did it quickly while I watched for what had attacked the horse to attack us. Fortunately it did not.
As we followed a trail Finnian had left back to the wagons, there seemed to be some trouble ahead as we came into view. Everyone was on edge and apparently seeing another pair of ghostly figures with glowing eyes.
One thing other thing that was unsettling at this point was that we also heard a horse whinny in the distance much like before. The horse we had found was most definitely finished off, so what did this mean? Was it another horse? Were we wrong and it wasn’t quite dead? Or was it revived in the same way as these people had been turned into zombies? If so who would do such a thing? what would be the point of reviving a horse? Does it just happen around here in this unusual forest? I would not mind getting to safety before finding out.
I think Finnian mentioned seeing them before and was likely what unsettled him after the zombie ordeal. I didn’t see them myself but everyone is extremely on edge.
After we got everything loaded up, we headed out as far as we were willing to go to get away from the past ordeal, and eventually made camp again.
While I tried to sleep for first watch I had a very unusual dream. Or was it a dream? I couldn’t fall asleep and thoughts were racing through my head. Then it felt like I could not move from my bed. I felt like I was dead. As I looked up past the fog and the trees as much as I could, I contemplated life and what it would mean to die. I determined I would very much not like to die, at least not until I have accomplished something great and beautiful. Old memories that I hadn’t thought of for a long time bubbled to the surface of my mind. I must continue this journey.
In the morning we determined that heading on foot the entire way would be a problem and decided that a few of us would head out faster to see if we could procure a second cart to get us back moving at full speed. Finnian, URSA and I moved out for this task.
Along the way we met an old man headed the opposite direction in a raggedy old cart. We asked if we could borrow the cart for our task and of course pay for his services, but he seemed to be somberly on his way. He wasn’t headed anywhere in particular it seemed, but just away from the town he left. From the conversation and a glance in his cart, it looked like he had lost his family and was taking them away to bury them. An unfortunate task, but one that we did not see fit to deprive him of and we continued on.
We finally approached the town sometime later. From a distance the town seemed very still and as some might say, dead and when we got farther into the silent town, we found that to be more true than we expected…
Then we found a pile of dead bodies burning as we had the zombies on the road.
What is this terrible place we’ve come to and why is it so damaged?