The next morning dawned clear and bright, in stark contrast to the oppressive gloom of the previous two days. Taking it as a good omen, the adventurers continued their journey south, confident that they would soon find and eliminate the source of the undead infesting the southern woods.
After a few hours, they came upon a large clearing. The morning sun slanted down over an ancient, ruined building with a sheer mountain ridge rising behind it in the distance. The sinister stone structure stood two stories, and was shaped like a squared-off "C", with the east and west wings extending forward to create a partially enclosed courtyard. A weathered stone obelisk rose in the center, surrounded by dry grass and scattered piles of dry bones.
Leaving cleric Enlail to guard the horses, Dixn stealthily scouted ahead and confirmed that the bone piles were actually dormant undead—sinister sleeping skeletons sure to attack if startled. Attempting to take them by surprise, the party snuck slowly through the sylvan surroundings as Dixn took up a sniping position along the side of the building.
It was all going quite well until Carrion tripped on a root, accidentally blasting a blaring bleat from his bagbpipes.
Awakened by the noise, the bone piles rose up—assembling themselves into a pair of skeletal minotaurs wielding massive axes, and a trio of accompanying archers.
Seeing the undead rise, Dixn cast a spell which illuminated half the courtyard with spectral flames that clung to the skeletons as they passed through it. Taking this as his cue, knight Treize began loosing arrows—the flames of Dixn's spell seeming to guide them to their mark. Moving as one, the skeletal archers stepped forward and fired, one of their arrows catching Razi in the shoulder.
In the brief but breathless battle that followed, Carrion revealed previously unknown powers, hexing and blasting the skeletons with strange spectral energies as the others fought from the cover of the tree line and Dixn flanked the undead from behind. Monk Cade stepped to the fore, drawing the skeleton's attention, relying on his aura to quell their violence—and his reflexes to catch an arrow bare-handed when one of the skeletons managed to resist.
Seeing this, knight Treize hurried to Cade's side and the two warriors proceeded to anchor the battle, fighting the skeletons head-on as the others attacked from a distance. As Carrion's arcane blasts sundered the last of the skeletal guardians, the party emerged victorious—though several had been injured in the short but serious skirmish, some severely so. Spying no further signs of danger from the weathered building or the surrounding woods, the adventurers agreed to take a brief rest and recuperate before continuing on. Treize, Zakariya, and Dixn also took the opportunity to try and collect useful components from the skeletons, while Carrion simply took a large tooth as a trophy.
Session XP: 1,075