Minutes went by before a dim pulse of light pierced the storm and they could hear a faint ring from below. In a flash the winds ceased and the ashes slowly feathered to the ground. Three figures stood in the middle of the barrens, two of them armored and wearing the red and black stag of the Kingdom Elkhart. One carried an ornate lantern as they accompanied a very tall man dressed in black robes. The white owl perched atop his shoulder while he held the small scroll in his hands, a dim light emitted from it’s surface. The bats listened to the man as he whispered to himself,
The parchment flashed a white light and he quickly strapped it to the owl and sent it off. The three figures headed south, the robed man taking point and moving quickly. His long strides were unmatched by his counterparts. The bats followed them for a moment, still waiting over head for the next move. The men walked across the dead plains for a short while before the robed one stopped. His right hand revealed a wand made of polished redwood while his left halted the two soldiers.
There was a long silence as the Elkhart men waited nervously behind the black robed man. They looked up at the dark sky, anticipating it might fall this night. The man they traveled with was a sign of bad times ahead. Stories of his legend filled the halls of the Elkhart garrison. He arrived when the world needed him, when an evil unbeknown to them would strike. The fear of death crippled their minds and left their hands shaking, the man holding the lantern wanted to speak but his words were lost.
In front of them they watched as the air began to change and the ashy ground slowly morphed into earth. A blurry wall of green and brown shades filled an area several yards across before quickly snapping into focus. Plants and trees could be seen scattered across leaf strewn soil. The soldiers were in awe as the small patch of forest appeared from nothing. The bushes quickly shuffled sending leaves into the air before a very colorful gnome rushed towards them. He stopped at the edge of the portal-like aapparition.
“You know we have forbid this! It’s too dangerous to leave your forest unwatched. We cannot risk the remaining scrolls!” The black robed man contested.
“She's not alone Gantis, you know this!” Nim shouted as he stomped his foot, a fierce wind erupted from his sole. The soldiers winced but Gantis stared Nim down, a sense of apprehension held both of them still.
"We mustn't lose our heads! Do not surrender your patience at a time when it is needed most. You will know when it is your time to act, but for now you must go. " Gantis said as he looked the gnome in the eye, his words trailed off into an eerie silence.
Nim stared at him without a word said, he knew Gantis was right, but he couldn't wait as their plan fell apart. His mind began to race but he remained lethargic as he turned away and walked. His ears twitched at the sound of slight taps from above the trees. The quiet amplified the smallest sounds, he cocked his head and closed his eyes to listen. The forest of Nim was beginning to fade from the Rethis Barrens when the air became deathly still.