Return to the Necropolis: Prologue

Michael O. Varhola

that items acquired for personal use did not count toward the monetary treasure that would be divided amongst the adventurers. Had he been given some sort of an offset when they claimed the sets of masterwork hoplite armor that they even now wore? The fact that they had needed to come back for these items should not have made a bit of difference, but he had gotten used to the irrationality of the women to some extent and decided to defer to them on this point. Purchasing everything he would need for his alchemy shop likely would have cost him about as much as the building he had bought for it — and he had little left after doing so — so it was still worth it to accede to their demands in this regard.

There was no hurry as they were in for the night, so Paros took his time sorting and loading his glassware, burners, tools, jars of chemicals, and other items. While he did, the women made themselves comfortable on their bedrolls, got out their dice, and began to play one of their complex games of chance, using the hoard of gems they had split for wagers. When he was done, Selene collected some of the containers and other items Paros had not chosen and took them to use back in her village.

During the night, the walking corpses that haunted the cemetery sensed the presence of the mule and began to pound and claw at the door of the mausoleum in an attempt to break into it. It did not seem likely that they would succeed, but their eerie moaning caused the animal to become panicked and it began neighing, kicking, and banging itself into the walls; the adventurers became concerned that it might injure itself or even knock the door open and be killed by the undead monsters, and so they brought it into the embalming chamber to spend the night with them there. Confident though they were in the security of the room — and in their ability to flee through one of the doors if the other was breached — they had a night of fitful and nightmarish sleep and rose early so that they could be ready to leave right at dawn.

When it was light, the party departed and made good time back to Kos City, stopping to buy lamb kebabs