While we were busy scouring the market for cans that were not obviously botox overdoses waiting to happen, the population of Zombietown caught on to our presence and began shambling our way. Now, we had come to slaughter hordes of the undead, kill the Zombie Master, and steal his stuff, but when some long-lost prankster scrawled "population: 666" on the town welcome sign, they weren't just being cute. There were a lot of zombies coming our way.
We hightailed it for the nearest route out of town, bushwhacking a bit around some cars that had been abandoned and were blocking the road. We drove out of the range of their Zombievision (or Magesight, as Iliana liked to call it) and waited for them to forget why they were shambling East. As we approached the town again, it became clear that those abandoned cars had been abandoned with a purpose. They had been arranged nose-to-nose and had been repeatedly set on fire. Several dozen zombies were milling about purposefully. It was unclear whether they were masking a trap or whether they were the trap, but we decided to give it a go.
As always, everyone else thought it was a grand plan to rush toward the horde of zombies. Now, while it's true that we have some spectacular spells and abilities that will crushinate the zombies in large groups, I've always been a big fan of hanging back and letting the enemy come to me -- so much the better when they shamble slowly forward -- and letting me get some serious potshots in.
It started with the Ranger - seriously, what the hell kind of Ranger doesn't own a bow - and soon everybody was just begging for a Zombie pigpile. We were doing well, keeping things moving, getting in a few nice decapitations, but the zombies were crossing the barrier formed by the abandoned cars, and we weren't killing them quite fast enough. Reneging on my otherwise wonderful plan of never getting hit, I circled the fight to try and plug a hole where the Zombies were coming through.
Sort of proving my point about not rushing forward, 8 more of the Flying Zombies leapt down at us from nearby rooftops. For a moment, we thought we were goners, but Mardrunn channeled her benefactor's power through the Crucifix she carries and sent most of the Flying Zombies crashing into the dirt. I summoned my Armor of Agathys and most of the Zombie Minions froze solid and instantly shattered. We were thinking perhaps a little too tactically, though, as we went to wipe out the immobilized Flying Zombies as Mardrunn - who says Dwarves are tough - got surrounded by those still mobile and knocked out.
Phillip rushed to her aid and got her back into the realm of consciousness, but was unable to stop the Flying Zombie at hand from snatching her up and preparing to fly away with her. We all rallied to her aid and a dangerous but worth-the-risk Thunderwave bruised but otherwise rescued her, scattering the remaining Zombies into disarray. Those that remained were no difficulty to pick off, and we made haste through the village before the surviving ravaging hordes could get close enough to the commotion to block our path. Not without looting and burning the bodies, of course. How else would we have found the eight cursed jewels carried by the Flying Zombies. It was unclear what their precise purpose was, but despite many of us being injured, it was imperative we get the gems back to The Wizard as quickly as possible. Matthias and I were healthy enough to make the journey back with haste and a modicum of stealth.
January 29, 121 AC
Two days on the road put us back in the safety of The Village. The evil energies of the gems attracted several swarms of hideous vile rats, but we were able to defeat them no problem. I caught a sniffle, but it was gone in a matter of hours. Matthias briefed the village leaders about the dead friends we found. The Flying Zombies all had familiar faces, and the jewels no doubt expedited necrosis. I took them to The Wizard to study and safeguard, and he entrusted me with a seriously awesome Demonic Halberd. It sang with Warlock Energy, and, despite its bizarre size and scale, it will make a fine Pact Blade.