Kaz, Guidsmar and Mr. Buttons rest at the Garuda’s for the night. The next morning, they return to the node and Guidsmar attempts to transport them to Hellstrike. He is absurdly successful, landing them in the forest a few hours from their destination. Unfortunately, a guardian awaits them. A sphinx threatens to devour them if they fail to solve its riddle. Mr. Buttons and Kaz fail, but Guidsmar guesses the answer and convinces the sphinx to grant them access to the node on their quest to keep the nezumi and vanara invasions at bay. The party agrees to patrol the area before they continue on to Hellstrike.
While scouting, the party spots a group of farmers with a load of cabbages in a cart. Mr. Buttons uses his ring of invisibility to approach, and discovers weapons beneath the cabbages when he sabotages the cart. When he overhears them discussing an attack on the sphinx, the party attacks. During the ensuing battle, Guidsmar sees through their illusions and discovers that they are vanara.
The party leaves two vanara alive, Suspenders the cleric and Jackalope the rogue. These two tell the party that an evil rain is blighting their homeland, and that they’re plagued by undead. Thus, they and the nezumi (whom the vanara seem to despise) are attempting to bring their myriad gods to Celidor. They warn of a larger raiding party that will come in a week.
The raccoon folk contact Guidsmar with news that Titania wants a monopoly on their chocolate, for which they charge 100 platinum pieces per piece. The capricious gnome suddenly ends the conversation.
Sparkles watches the vanara as Guidsmar consults with Hellstrike. At Nellene‘s suggestion, he works with the librarian to create a map that shows the location of the book that is summoning the great old god behind the blight and undead. The map points to the same location as Kyle’s treasure map from the flayed nezumi sorcerer—a point on the ocean to the west.
Meanwhile, Mr. Buttons seeks training for his smilodon and Kaz finds out more about Ksarral. Ksarral failed to protect a town whose name is lost to history. A hydra defeated him and devoured the village. His fancy katana was of no use to him.
In the morning, Jackalope attempts to steal Mr. Button’s ring of invisibility and the cat man kills him outright.