The yells and screams of the townsfolk could be overheard throughout the forest. The Grey Company was not fast enough. The battle ensued inside the town's limits. Skeletal Riders trampled the townsfolk under the hooves of their Nightmares.
Out from a thicket jumped Riklaun; he had fire in his eyes. He spun around and started to cast a spell. Just then a nightmare leapt out of the bush.
Riklaun's magic missile took the rider off the undead horse. The horse kept charging though. It reared up, spewing flame from it's nostrils. Riklaun rushed in and drove his sword into the belly of the beast. He sent his other scimitar across it's back, neatly slicing it in two.
He looked up from the dead beast and saw a rider gallop into the inn. "Brisid!" Rik yelled, not knowing that he already had left the inn. Riklaun ran towards the inn, just as the windows blew out. He skidded to a stop and saw two elven females walking out of the inn. They were a little singed, but okay. Riklaun gave a quick salute to Sheil and Nalynn and headed off to find Tizer, silently hoping Brisid had fared better than the inn.
Meanwhile, Dae struggled with his own Rider. He and Tadsbro circled the beastly thing, they sent spell after spell into it. Another rider came up from behind Tad and he whirled around into a crouch. He took the Nightmare's front legs off and the creature tumbled to the ground. The skeletal rider got up and moved in on Tad. Tadsbro blocked the first blow by the skeleton, only to be hit by the second. Wincing in pain, he held up his sword in defense. He started to cast a spell and was hit again. Dropping to one knee, he furiously fought off the blows. Just then the skeleton burst apart, showering him with bone fragments. Dae stood behind the skeleton smiling....
Still in shock from the fact that skeletal warriors were invading the sanctuary of Tel'Mithrim, Tizer removed the bow from his back and began chanting an ancient phrase. Within minutes, a glowing green arrow appeared on Tizer's bowstring and he fired at a skeletal warrior which was approaching Dae Draug from behind. It caught the vile beast in the rib cage and the potent acid dissolved the creature's spine. Without the backbone to support its body, the skeleton collapsed and fell from the horse. However, the night-mare continued to bear down on Dae as he was examining Tadsbro's wounds.
Tizer quickly scaled one of the oaks surrounding the grove as the horse approached. He shouted a warning to Dae and Tad, yet Tad could not move quickly in his condition. As the night-mare galloped by the tree, Tizer dropped down onto its back and steered it to the left, narrowly missing the two Elves. Once upon its back, Tizer removed his enchanted long sword from it scabbard and drove it deeply into the night-mare's neck. Black fluid shot forth from the wound and Tizer leapt from its back onto the ground. He rolled to his feet just in time to see the wretched creature fall to the ground, writhing in pain. He retrieved his weapon from the corpse and then ran over to Dae and Tad to make sure they were okay. Dae nodded affirmatively, but Tad's face was getting pale as the blood drained from his numerous wounds. "We must get him back to the guild hall, mellon, help me carry him through the carnage", Tizer said urgently.
"Aye, place him upon Klack, my eagle, and we shall take him there with great haste," Dae responded.
Tizer picked up Tadsbro's crumpled form and gently secured him in the saddle of the great bird. Dae mounted his familiar and flew towards the guild hall with Tadsbro.
It was then that Tizer spotted Riklaun running through the scattered bones. "Rik, Tadsbro has been injured. Dae took him back to the guild hall for recovery. What are our chances for success without the two of them? Are we still outnumbered?" Tizer asked.
Sheilandri and Nalynn ran up to the pair of Elves. "Brisid is awake! He dispatched a skeleton as he exited the guild hall. They are very close, we must remove them from the immediate area!" Nalynn informed them.
The group of Elves quickly decided what to do.
Continue to Chapter 16