The entire party teleported back to the village where they had left Mei to find that most people did not expect them to return. However, they were all happy to find that the menace had departed and that they party was safe. Mei rejoined the group and they left the Elder’s house.
Almost immediately, they were propositioned by a bald man with the garb of a merchant. He needed guards for a trip through the canyon toward the capital city of Luo Yang. The group decided to help him, only to find that his cargo was not merchant paraphernalia, but people: a woman, man, and child. They were joined by an old guard and a younger man who was introduced as the merchant’s apprentice.
Once in the canyon, progress was fairly swift. Vlad and Clik shared a wagon with Alderath and discussed what was happening and where they were headed. Meanwhile, Jeoffrey and Cliona were in another wagon and were having their own discussion. However, the party began to notice that all life was disappearing from the region. No trees were growing, no plants on the ground, and even the wind was gone. Along the ground were hundreds of dead snakes of all types and varieties. The party was immediately put on their guard.
Before long, a few of the snakes transformed into undead snake soldiers holding spears. Though minions, they were violent and attacked the party without mercy. Some alchemical flasks were tossed from the cliff and ignited what little dry foliage existed as well as two of the wagons. The party quickly grabbed everyone and began moving on foot toward the end of the canyon, which was in sight in the distance. Along the way, a crevice appeared that stopped the remaining wagon and forced the party to clear it. Once across, another group of snake soldiers attacked, though they were also defeated quickly.
The party moved to the end of the canyon to find a wall sprawling across the exit. An older man as well as an ancient man both yelled at them to get inside. Once the doors were shut behind them, the party finally caught their breath, safe in He Fei.