Empire's Foundation

Convalescing in Landshut

Tuesday, May 27, 1550

The lads set off early Tuesday morning from the Whistling Plowboy, heading towards Landshut. An hour on the highway and they spot a ruined church tower from the road. They head towards it, and after breaking through the treeline see an overgrown churchyard and a burned out stone church.

They approach carefully, and two nasty ghouls claw their way up out of the ground, snarling and hungry. Marx approaches and smashes on in the skull, toppling it over, destroyed. Then Tomas closes with the other, smashing its ribs with his spiked club. Another ghoul claws its way up out of the ground while Tomas dodges the gnashing teeth and grasping claws of the undead terror in front of him. The two ghouls are rather easily dispatched, however, and they are dragged away from the cracked headstones, and Marx sets to work extracting the hearts of the gray-skinned monsters.

As Marx is elbow deep in the second ghoul, Tomas sidles back toward the cemetery, awakening two more gnashing gray ghouls, who have only a bit more luck than their erstwhile compatriots, one of them landing a bite on Tomas’s shoulder before being dispatched. Tomas drags his prizes over to Marx for processing, and then sits down against the wall of the church to rest himself.

They bundle up the extracted hearts in a piece of linen cut from Tomas’s tent and make their way to Landshut. It is a small town, without a market license and barely a wall, but it is hospitable and well kept, the castle looking down majestically from atop the hill. However, Marx is feeling rather ill by the time they have arranged for accommodations in the inn. Headache, a bit shaky, breath hot in his throat. So the pair head for the cathedral.

Inside they are interviewed by an older priest, white of hair, who seems quite concerned about their encounter with a ghoul as they were setting up camp in a meadow. He asks them to stay in the church’s medical hall for a day so that if they have indeed caught ghoul fever they might not spread it to the citizens of the town.

By the next morning, it is clear that Marx has fallen grievously ill. He cannot even sit up in bed, and can hardly speak. Tomas takes his leave as soon as he is able, so that he can get the hearts back to Dachau, collect their bounty, and return with the tithe so a cleric from Munich may be fetched. It is an agonizing week for Marx, attended by one or two brothers during his illness. They do all they can for him, but sadly, it is not much comfort to him. At last Tomas returns, and the cleric is sent for. Four days later he arrives, and invoking the healing power of Saint Raphael the Archangel and the mercy of the Eternal Virgin, Marx is cured of his disease. However, it is more than a week before he feels himself back to his previous strength. On the morning of Tuesday, May 27, he feels himself quite well enough to travel once again.

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Greenbeard

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