November 17th, 1878
We had no cover but darkness, and even though that diminutive lunatic forced our hand, she did keep us from being flanked. Our new friends from Lindsborg weren’t experienced in war, and when they tried to charge the farmhouse, they were mowed down. Even that spook Dent had a hard time of it. And then…
Once the attackers make it to the farmhouse, the tides begin to turn, especially with the valiant effort of Atta, one of the Lindsborg captives. Sergeant Caldwell falls to Holden, and Captain Dane flees to the farm’s storm cellar.
When the party enters the cellar, they find the old woman causally eating the heart from the burst chest of Dane. They wait in horror patiently as she finishes (and as Seri loots a sizable pile of ghost rock from the barn). Holden attempts to convince her to lift the curse. During the conversation she mentions that Dane wasn’t working alone, he was delivering the ghost rock to a man, though she never met him or heard his name. Holden unlocks the manacles binding the woman, taking note of the tiny runes carved into them.
Eventually she leaves the cellar with the sound of the Grinder approaching from the distance. She stands outside near a small ghost rock fire that Seri had built, and the party waits anxiously as the Grinder appears out of the dark and approaches the old woman, who pats it and treats it like a pet.
She eventually sighs and sends the Grinder padding off into the dark. She seems to deflate slightly, looking much older, and walks barefoot through the snow in the the dark after it. As she leaves the farm, she shouts over her shoulder to beware the bodies, the dead are walking after all.
The party looks around at the dozens and dozens of corpses scattered around the farm and nearby camp.
“Oh shit,” mutters Onesimus.