Elendria awakes at the Garuda’s after a two-day hangover, straps the hallucinating Kyle (who found Garuda’s store of magic mushrooms) to the back of Stampy, and gets herself teleported by the Garuda back to Hellstrike.
She immediately runs to Varin, who grants her audience. He’s with Marle in the aviary. Marle politely leaves, and Varin explains that although Elendria is a wonderful gal, she just wasn’t the one. Elendria senses that Varin and Marle genuinely care for one another, although Marle seems to have ulterior motives. She wishes them the best and leaves. On her way out, she’s pestered by Nestor, who raves about Marle’s beauty and kindness, and mentions that no one seems to know much about her family or background.
Meanwhile, Xena approaches the group. She and Mr. Buttons are both members of the Blazing Branch, and recognize one another. The rest of the group remembers her usefulness during the battles in Hell. She joins Guidsmar, Mr. Buttons and Kaz in heading to the Vanara headquarters a day’s ride south of Hellstrike.
Guidsmar gets audience with the head of this company of vanara, Ythis. Ythis is convinced that the party can help the vanara gain their land back, so he agrees not to attack the sphinx for now. He also sends for powerful warriors from the neighboring cells, gathering a couple more vanara (Bethas and Ajuz) to join the team.
Elendria meets the team on the way to Mossport to set sail toward the point marked on Guidsmar and Kyle’s maps. They discover that Mossport has been swallowed by the mist. Guidsmar passes out spectacles, and a familiar mechanical bird drops off a folding boat. Everyone gets on the small ship and heads deep into the ocean, where they fight a poisoned whale that becomes undead once defeated.
The party spies an armada of ships packed with undead. Mr. Buttons uses his ring of invisibility and a potion of hide from undead to sneak on board the largest ship. He easily finds the book, as well as Lucien, the midget halfling albino that they once had killed. Lucien is now undead, and is standing over a living mage reading the book. Mr. Buttons attempts to scratch them both with poison. He instantly becomes visible, the poison has no affect on Lucien, and the mage passes out.