From the Private Annals of the Church of Pelor.
Transcribed by Beltak, Scribe to His Radiant Servant, Tremak the Plush.
The 25th day of Kythorn in the Year of the Ruins Reborn.
One month, I cannot believe it is only a month since we first came. So much has already been accomplished and yet I suppose this should not be of surprise, after all, a presence of danger always imparts speed into a man’s work.
I am not sure what concerns me more, the ferocity of the attack that followed our landings or that it has been the only one since. Less than 24 hours had passed since our first boat struck sand and they came at us again…
We had pressed inland for a couple of leagues when the location of what would seem to be an old, small fort was found. At least they said it had once been a fort, for I could not tell. Barely a whole wall was still standing, certainly nothing that resembled a building to me, but then I am no mason and have no eye for such things. Nonetheless, members of our party were extremely excited and grateful for this find, citing that it would make an excellent stage for the beginnings of a defense and, given time, a home.
Not surprisingly, most found it hard to sleep that night, unsure of our new surroundings and what lay ‘out there’. Despite the insomnia that lay within the camp, none heard them coming, none with the exception of one.
My eyes flicked open as an arm reached down and yanked me to my feet. With a calm, yet assertive voice, Sergeant Valino commanded me to rouse my fellows quietly and move back to the boats. I am not one to make argument, but this command seemed odd. I too could now sense danger in the air but I was under the impression that this was a good defensive post.
“We will not be able to hold this ground this night,” was the Sergeant’s reply. I looked into his eyes as he scanned the tree line and knew this point was not open for discussion.
Gathering our belongings in the dead of night seems almost laughable now. Had we known the full extent of the danger we would not have been so foolish. Thankfully Valino and his men knew.
“Run!” came the command. We looked up from what we were doing, a wall of silence briefly encompassing the camp, then an almighty roar of noise as they descended upon us like a titanic black wave. Whooping, screaming and anger filled yells filled the air as they poured from out of the trees.
We ran like terrified children, dropping any items that threatened to impede our escape. Valino and his men fighting a valiant rear-guard action against insurmountable odds. My journey back through the woods is a blur, all I remember are the screams of terror and pain of those not swift enough to escape our foe. My lungs felt like fire as I fell, crawled and staggered out of the tree line and onto the soft beach.
The boats! Our row boats were gone! Captain Abrahams and The Guiding Fire still lay anchored only a small distance from shore but it may have well been a full league away, we would have no time to swim it. Valino and his remaining men formed one last defiant line in front of us on the sands. Our pursuers had fallen silent, knowing we had no escape, they menacingly walked towards us through the dark trees.
Perhaps it is the terror that filled me, or the strange thoughts that fill a man’s mind before his impending death, but I would not tell you where the mists came from. All I can say is that they were deep and sound-dampening as they swiftly covered the entire beach area. I strained my eyes in an attempt to see what was happening up front.
The advancing enemy had stopped in their tracks and seemed reluctant to proceed. They screamed in anger towards us but I felt a sense of fear in those screams, fear not of us, but of what had enveloped us within its cloak.
“They’re leaving!” was the call that quickly moved among us. “They’re running away.”
The mists slowly dissipated, leaving us stood cold and shaken on the moonlit sands. None spoke for what seemed an age as each man tried to come to terms with the events that had just unfolded.
“Pelor has saved us,” cried one of our priests, “Our Lord has protected us from the evil and driven it from us.”
Whether this was Pelor I could not say but the enemy had truly gone, retreating back to the darkness from whence they came.
The next day Sergeant Valino ordered a full retreat back to the ship, stating that he could not protect us with his remaining men and that we should leave until we could return with a stronger force. This did not happen. The priests of Pelor proclaimed that we were protected now, and that their God was pleased that we were reclaiming these lands. No harm would befall us.
Valino asked His Radiant Servant Tremak if it was Pelor who had given up his life the night before? Was it Pelor who had formed a rear-guard action as everyone else ran for the beach? He then promptly left all the same. I do not believe the good Sergeant and His Radiant Servant will get along.
All the same, a month has now passed and there have been no further attacks. Not even a single sight of the enemy has been reported. Due to this, work has been able to progress at a rate far faster than we could ever have imagined and our small settlement within the ruins of old is growing well.
I still think back to that night on the beach. I do not speak of it but I do not believe it was Pelor that was with us in that mist. I do not believe it was good at all. I think our enemy knew what it was and it frightened them.