November 22nd, 1878
Finding Ronald Patton dead and the rest of the clan missing shook everyone up, but finding out this Father Patrick fellow was some sort of holy warrior on the same quest as everyone else…well…
The party cautiously enters main street Detroit. The town appears to have been abandoned for at least two or three weeks. There are small signs of trouble visible – a spatter of blood here, a bullet hole there – and the symbol of the lion-like Drowned Coyotes is drawn on a few buildings, but there’s no particular sign of wholesale slaughter.
The local saloon and inn is equally deserted, and it appears to have been abandoned in a hurry, desiccated meals sit on tables, etc. From the roof, Onesimus notices that a nearby ranch was burned to the ground.
After leaving the tavern, the party makes its way down the main street of the town towards the sheriff’s office. Outside, they find dozens upon dozens of tracks in the snow, and peering through the windows reveals several dozen dead bodies stacked in the main room. The bodies appear to be in mixed states of decomposition, and the party supposes they were zombies at one time.
Holden and Jacob go to the back of the jail to investigate a wisp of smoke and the smell of beans coming from one of the barred cell windows. After calling out, the occupant reveals himself to be an acquaintance of Onesimus and Jacob, a Texas Ranger named Brady Sims who helped them out in a previous assignment.
Sims reveals he was sent to Abilene for the same reason the two U.S. Agents were – to find Joshua and put an end to the massive sources of evil in the region. He’d been trying to locate the nest of The Red Lion for a week and finally traced the zombie infestation to Detroit. He notes that pretty much anyone who had died in a twenty-five mile radius in the last month or so was likely haunting the place – which is why he locked himself in a cell in the sheriff’s office to eat and sleep (the zombies in the lobby were his doing).
Onesimus inquires about automatons, and Sims does note that “yeah, we have two at the base we absolutely don’t officially have in Wichita”.
Sims notes that there are two primary hives of the zombies, the mission to the Southeast of town, and an old fort to the Southwest. He says the fort is likely the lair of the Red Lion, and he called for backup a few days prior from his superiors, but none has arrived.
The party agrees to clear out the mission, and they assault the gates. Dozens of zombies lay in wait, and a pitched battle ensues…