Charred body of God, what are you doing out here at this time of night?


A days walk from Abbott's Ford and Rannish, on the way to Newarre, Chronicler seeks hospitality as night approaches but mistakes an open fire for a homestead.

Noticing a figure dressed in a thick cloak and a small cook fire with a pot hanging over it, Chronicler's hopes rose. Then he caught a foul scent mingling with the woodsmoke. It reeked of burning hair and rotting flowers.

Stepping into the circle of firelight, Chronicler surprises the man who springs to his feet with what appears to be a sword but is really a long dark cudgel. After a brief exchange, the man encourages Chronicler to come to his side of the fire as there are "Demons in the shape of big, black spiders" in the trees.

After stepping to the other side of the fire Chronicler saw something dark moving in the trees. Black shapes, many-legged and large as cartwheels. One rushed forward, springing up at Chronicler causing him to fall. As he fell, he glimpsed more of the black things and the man holding the iron cudgel ready with both hands.

Regaining consciousness Chronicler learns they had been attacked by five Scrael. The man asks Chronicler to help him burn and bury the bodies. Chronicler recites the words of a children's song: 

"Let me tell you what to do.
Dig a pit that’s ten by two.
Ash and elm and rowan too—

He losses consciousness again when getting up to help.

Kote removed his tattered cloak and the leather blacksmith's apron picking up the spade to slowly and painfully dig. 



Night is upon Chronicler. He is walking in the countryside Half Way to Newarre after failing to buy a horse at Abbott's Ford or Rannish.