With the bulk of Simon’s Rest’s military forces out in the countryside dealing with pressing threats (the necromancer, chief amongst them), Simon’s Rest’s defenses are woefully weakened. Rumors of riots, sightings of shadowy assassins and word of a small army marching on the city put General Oldmoore into a frenzy, leading him to suggest the imposition of martial law. Ezra, who has had command of the city bestowed on him by default, is near the breaking point.
After interfacing with Minoc Heart Intelligence, Valindil is set upon by a member of the Brotherhood of Ravens. He is struck by a dagger with a fearsome poison, and while he resisted its effects at first, later succumbed to them. The assassin escaped Valindil’s wroth, which was revealed to be by design, when a woman of much beauty informed him that she does not yet wish him dead. It also turns out Valindil is an elf in the world.
Tarare, on his way back from MHI is greeted by a rattish little beast: the Nezumi, Goku. Goku informs him his master Nogiyana is still alive. Nogiyana was the maoren who slew Slen, and was presumed dead when the jail the Riders assaulted collapsed. According to Goku, Nogiyana managed to survive. After Tarare chases off the nezumi, Nogiyana revealed himself, much the worse for wear. He reveals his intentions of seizing control of Simon’s Rest, but first, Tarare must be dealt with. Unfortunately for Nogiyana, Tarare has learned a few new tricks. With one spell, he incapacitates him. Tarare believes him dead, but his inspection is rushed by the outbreak of a riot.
Tarare deals with the riot while Valandil struggles with his poisoning. By creating a multitude of ghost sounds in the crowd, he manages to get people worried about their homes, sending many of them away. Some looters remain, so Tarare enlarges himself and projects his voice, playing on the crowd’s selfishness. They disperse and he and Valandil make their way to the House of the Sapphire and Rose, where MHI is housed. From the stout brick walls, they snipe an army of about 150 soldiers, filling the street with bodies.
Tarare stands atop the mountain of corpses and roars like a Tyrannosaurus Rex.