Lenar was swinging his halberd again and again, with every motion hacking more bodies from the mass that surrounded them. Silent remnants of recently dead townsfolk were gaping at them, jaws dropped, hands outstretched as if to hug them. But this limelight in their eyes was the worst. He did not how is this possible, but this flickering flame-like light was like the impression of focus, determination and great intellect. As High Paladin he knew few things about the dark art of necromancy, but knowing and seeing it in person were two different things. Especially if you experience included fight for your survival.
His small garrison was caught in the open field during regular patrol duty. Ominously silent crop fields suddenly bursted with activity when hidden zombies stood up and assailed them from the all sides. As good and well drilled soldiers, they quickly formed circle formation and put up a good fight, but they were simply too many enemies - sooner or later they will overwhelm the defenders.
Grim thoughts suddenly left Lenar when he heard a distinct screech of Basilean griffon. He glanced to the sky, not too late to see fiery spectacle. Griffon's rider lifted his left hand high, holding something in it. Then his hand was ablaze and from it three white-hot sword-like shapes bursted down, into the horde surrounding them. Where blades touched the ground they exploded, hurling burning bodies high in the sky. When Lenar blinked the afterimages away he could see mighty Elohi already hacking amassing zombies with their flaming weapons. But this was not yet over. Again from the lifted hand of High Paladin something like a comet shot out, spreading wings of fire in mid-air, only to take full material shape - shape of living heraldic beast of Basilea, a Phoenix.
What occurred next was a roar and heat of unnatural fire leaving only a black circle of smouldering corpses around them. Finally griffon landed near by, its rider jumping from the saddle on the ground and approaching Lenar.
Without drilling into the details of his visit here, Rainhard told Lenar about more problems coming their way. Ambushing zombies were only a vanguard of the real enemy. Necromancer who raised and controlled them was coming their way.
Lenar order his people to form ranks again and move out of the damned, smoking fields.
Lenar, his troops and Rainhard positioned themselves on the left flank, behind the crops and a small shrine. Paladins sent their fastest units to the right flank - battle nuns riding ferocious Gut Panther along with the angelic host. Their adversaries, as if moths drawn by light, gathered on angels' flank, sending only small detachment on the opposite side of the battlefield to counter living there.
Without a single sign, horn or a word even, undead wave started its slow but inevitable march. However, not all enemies were shambling monstrosities. There also were lightning fast monstrosities... Two regiments of undead Werewolves got ahead of the main army, one of them dashing at full speed towards Elohi - too obvious bait tactics for such an experienced and otherworldly creatures. Not wanting to commit all forces in pointless attack, one of the angels decided to sent Lancers forward to intercept the other wolves regiment. Apparently they underestimated speed of Gur Panthers - they bypassed running Werewolves in a blink of an eye and crushed into the other regiment with an impact, hacking monstrous creatures with their deadly koliskos.
This shook the confidence of the vanguard - wolves broke their pace and started to look behind their backs to see what's going on with their brethren. Elohi knew this pack mentality was the weakness the could leverage. They jumped into the air and crashed in the confused Werewolves' ranks, while the flaming Phoenix, soaring through the skies, descended and breathed fire into the ranks of immaterial Wraiths, creeping their way towards center of the field. Unfortunately, even holy flames of the Phoenix could not harm the semi-corporeal figures.
On the other side of the field, both armies were moving slowly towards each other. Skeletons bypassed the shrine and entered the crops near it. Lenar and his people stopped at the edge of the fields and braced themselves there.
Sudden charge found the Werewolves completely unprepared and resulted in their annihilation. Without a second of rest Sisters turned their mounts around and started to build up charge pace, pointing their blades towards beasts fighting with the Elohi, now assailed by not only wolves, but also the Wraiths, flickering in and out of the existence.
Rainhard, confident in the outmaneuvering skills of his griffon landed near the shrine an readied himself to charge the armoured skeletons regiment in their flank. However he underestimated the dark art his enemies possessed. Skeletons elite turned around to face him and before he could react, armoured, lonely figure behind them shouted some strange words, echoing with power. Suddenly the Revenants started to move impossibly fast, leaving the trail of afterimages as they crushed into him in an instant. His tactical charge changed into desperate fight for survival.
Combined might of Elohi and Lancers finally overpowered cornered wolves, but at the cost of their material forms being destroyed. Once again their sparks flew back to the amulet wielded by Rainhard, leaving Sisters and the Phoenix to face the Wraiths.
Skeleton horde finally charged through the crops and crushed into Lenar's people. However, due to Skeleton's poor martial prowess and a difficult terrain they had to cross, resulted in very low losses on the people's side. Even the numerical advantage could not do much.
Seeing how his charge plan failed and also seeing the clumsiness of his enemies, Rainhard decided to shoot into the air, leave his former pray and help on the other flank - Reventas were slow and Lenar should not be threatened by them in the near future, but the Wraiths were being very hard to kill. Otherwordly flames of the Phoenix were slowly tearing through their mystic defenses, but there was a danger they could massacre Sisterhood before their demise. And so he lowered his lance and charged unsuspecting Wraiths in their backs.
Skeletons pushed again. This time Necromancer behind them casting spell after spell - one of the them surge the Revenats forward, while the other caused the rusty weapons of the skeletons to emanate an eerie light and sharpening them. Again undead proved to be faster than expected. Combined power of Necromancer and Revenant King's spells resulted in unexpected charge of the Reventas in the Basilean flank. Men-at-arms were nearly butchered, but the presence of their leader at their flank pushed them beyond their physical and mental limits and let them survive the onslaught.
However before Rainhard, Lancers and Phoenix arrived with help, Basileans were finally broken, last man standing still hacking with his sword before his body was pierced by a dozen magically enhanced spears. Only Lenar managed to fight his way out of the combat and rendezvous with Rainhard.
With Necromancer still pumping magical force into them, Skeletons quickly reformed their ranks and breaced for the impact of incoming Basileans. They crushed into the wall of spears with fury and zeal - characteristic traits of Basileans, famed across all of Mantica.
Skeletons were holding their ground but the Necromancer foresaw their demise and decided it was time to flee. He knew the Abyss was swarming with activity. This gave him boost to his powers but also stirred other dark forces across the land.
He knew he will soon find more fresh bodies to raise an army. And again and again...