Jenna ends her relationship with her dinosaur companion Flash, hoping to find a younger and tougher mount. Then the Band parts ways with her Uncle Milo and heads north; Flash accompanies Milo. However, Flash soon returns, and Jenna has no success acquiring a new mount.
In the northern Talenta plains, the Band finds tracks created by a mounted party. Jenna turns into a bird and scouts ahead, encountering a Karrnathi patrol heading north with halfling corpses. When about a day’s travel behind the patrol, the characters are ambushed by Karrnathi Skeleton Warriors and Archers. The skeletons are cunningly hidden beneath the ground, which softens to free them as the Band crosses. The ambush puts the characters on their heels, but they rally to defeat the skeletons.
After the battle, Jenna scouts ahead as a bird, and in the night she finds the ruins of a walled town, patrolled by undead. She also observes a maniacally laughing man standing before a bonfire. The Band of the Nine Towers enters the walled town the following day. No soldiers oppose them and the undead ignore them. In fact, there is no evidence of the Karrnathi at all.
The Band enters the only building, which appears to be a temple of some sort. An odd symbol, an eye with a red pupil that cries a single red tear, appears in various locations within the temple. The characters descend an elevator to a lower level, fighting a few more skeletons along the way. Finally, they reach the final room, and face a human Sorceror and Jenna’s undead mother. In a difficult battle, the Sorceror immolates himself in an attenpt to destroy the Band; this only kills Fixit. Jenna’s mother retreats further into the room and somehow escapes.
Fixit revives and says that he was raised for an unknown purpose by a power related to the dread Vol. Fixit knows that they must journey back to Q’barra, and the region of Haka’torvhak, if they are to catch Jenna’s mother, who has become an undead of great power.