Since the signal, an eerie quiet consumed Port Limbert. No one spoke. They just watched, bows at ready, over the shafts of their arrows – a score or more eyes scoured the dark for signs of the encroaching enemy.
A massive fire raged across the northern horizon, making perfect silhouettes of any on the wall for an army approaching from the south.
“Chaos. Not so much,” Erebus laughed to himself as his trained eye scanned the kill zone of flat ground and low grass just beyond the wall, “The LAW of cause and effect makes your tactics as discernible as if you’d sent a raven ahead with an announcement.”
Explosions and shouting erupted in the distance. A force of some size was ripped through the town that lay to the south of Avignon. Destruction and fire tore through the town with unnerving speed. Beyond the wall all could hear the advance. The noise was unmistakable…the sound of heavy armored shock troops running in close formation.
They were heard, but not seen.
“The siege engines would make you pay dearly in this formation,” Erebus whispered quietly to no one in particular, ”What better way to render them useless than to…”
Then he saw it. Trampled grass in clearing ahead.
“Connor. Light my arrow,” Erebus whisper-shouted and stepped back to give Connor room, “And be quick about it” Connor deftly doused the arrow with oil and set it ablaze. Erebus estimated the location of the target and placed his arrow firmly at the feet of the approaching mass.
“There they are!” Erebus shouted to his comrades. “Loose your arrows! I’ve marked the advance!”
The familiar din of War instantly engulfed the space around him. The staccato shuk-shuk of arrows was soon followed by cries of alarm as the alert spread along the wall. The deep, bass crackle of conjured lightning followed along with an ear splitting whoosh as air was sucked in to fuel a fireball.
Cries of triumph and oaths of valor came from the wall as the defenders made claim to feats and kills they had no way of truly knowing when fighting the invisible in darkness.
The enemy, a degenerate mass and fetid mass answered their discovery with a throaty roar and leapt forward at the wall.
Their speed was astonishing. In bounds they were upon the wall, seeming not to truly need the ladders they had raised. The initial few were turned back with arrows but several of the vanguard managed to top the wall.
The clamor of steel against steel rang out in the air. The musty, rancid stink of the hoard wafted up the wall with each attempt to scale. Men screamed, either at the sight of the twisted enemy that had descended upon them or from wounds the beasts unleashed with unthinking fury.
Erebus saw the thing top the wall and lock its attention on the smallish form of Lewanna. He moved to intercept. Erebus led with an upward shield-punch that caught the creature in the throat, crushing bone and cartilage with a wet crunch. Erebus saw his opponent was off balance and dying and finished him with a full-shield bash that sent the limp form back over the wall.
Erik, nearby, starred blankly, processing what he just witnessed.
“You’ll have to move quicker if you want to be in this fight!” Erebus barked. “Look to our flank. We can not leave it unguarded,” he added as he moved past the dwarf.
To his right, Connor unleashed lightning magic that sent another creature back over the wall and to his doom. Avari, cleaved at the shadows with his sword as they came over the wall. Keal’s summoned skeletons fired into the darkness, adding more to the noise of battle than the casualties.
The capable defenders were spread too thin. Erebus realized this a moment to late…
Several hulking shapes crested the wall…one to his right…another to his left…they hacked their way through the less stalwart and made their way over the wall and into the streets of Avignon.
These were followed by a truly massive ogre…it moved with more swiftness and agility than would seem appropriate…and was upon them. With a with a full swing it connected with Lewanna…and sent her up into the air and over the wall with an unpleasant crack. After watching her body impact with the ground, it leapt down to finish her.
Erik moved past the skirmish on the wall to Valentine’s post and looked over the wall into the darkness. A few defenders, Erebus, Emrys, and Kael remained on the wall. The others moved to engage the creatures on the ground or to help Lewanna.
Those that made it over the wall were quickly slain by the mass of defenders in the streets.
Losses were tallied and everyone moved to secure their posts and made ready for the next wave.