After retreating into the surrounding forest, the heroes watch and see another lizardman appear from around the stone building and drag his friends out of sight. A few minutes later they all rush across the clearing and disappear into one of the other barrows.
Taking advantage of this, Alf and Magnus cross to the building and nip inside, and are immediately confronted by the injured zombie that is still standing there: Alf takes it out with a well-placed thrust of his spear, but then hears movement from the stairs. Magnus looks down and sees a ghoulish creature moving up the steps: he incinerates it with a blazing burning hands; but it is not alone, and a wave of intense cold emanates from the tunnel below and an undead creature wielding a spear and wearing ancient bronze breastplate starts moving up towards them.
Meanwhile, outside, the others were on guard, with Callum standing in the trees nearby the hut. He spies a dozen or more undead spilling out of the barrows, and fires off an arrow into the rusted door to warn Alf and Magnus; he also sees more ghouls and ancient undead creatures coming from the barrow nearest them, as well as the lizardmen coming back out of the barrow they vanished inside of. The rest of the party move in to do battle.
What follows is a clash between the living and the dead: arrows fly, spears jab and swords cut, skeletons are shattered, zombies beheaded, ghouls vanquished, and the ancient warriors, barrow wights, prove dangerous with their intelligence and prowess, each surrounded by an aura of intense cold that cuts to the bone.The heroes take blow after blow, but deal more than they take, aided by magic missiles cast by Magnus, and Jacob‘s expert sword-cuts. Ratkin sent an arrow into the back of Callum by mistake, but found himself much better with his sword than he expected, cutting down a zombie as he charged it from the rear.
Then the battle turned as a ghoul managed to wound Alf, and the warrior found his muscles freezing. He toppled over, a skeleton still rearing over him. The lizardmen moved in to fight Magnus, seeking revenge for his sleep spell, but a timely use of the Ring of Many Colours reinforced his armour enough to deflect their blows. One of the lizardmen cut down the skeleton about to deal a deadly blow to the fallen Alf, and for a moment the heroes were confused as to whether they were fighting against or with the undead.
Turned out not to be the case, as the lizardman grabbed Alf and put a blade to his throat, threatening to kill him. The heroes began to withdraw, Magnus trying and failing to blind the hostage-taker with the light form the ring. The lizardman then dragged Alf inside the hut, and Magnus withdrew from the fight, following them, dodging blows, and lobbed a globe of darkness over the lizardman and Alf, who promptly fell down the stairs. Outside, Ratkin darted inside the barrow, hoping to cut them off before they reached the tunnel below.
Leaving the others outside to face the dead who just carried on attacking…