Just as the heroes could've made themselves comfortable in Pinefort, enjoying the simple pleasures at the Purple Lamb, they were approached by Lady Assylia, who explained what she needed in return for two pounds of gold. They reached an agreement in a matter of minutes; the heroes were promised two and a quarter pounds and the wizard could leave assured that the old Everfalls Mill will be secured by expert hands.
The next day the team joined a small group of about 20 people setting out for Everfalls and made friends with the locals, who seemed star-struck by their presence, especially after experiencing Quill's performance of their previous adventures. They met the young, enthusiastic Mira as well, who asked them to bring back her dog, Phoenix, that ran away when the True Mist fell; she also explained them in great details about her wizard sister, Cliara.
Upon arrival to Everfalls, they cut the exemplary lashing of the judge short and fought off the few ruffians who claimed to be tax-collectors for the nearby barony of Stratos. With the life of their judge secured, the villagers invited the adventurers to a meal and rewarded them with some antitoxins. Before they could leave for the mill, the heroes were warned to cover their faces in the woods so as to avoid the attention of Graash, the weeping widow, an evil kata of the nearby forest.
About halfway to the mill, they found a bridge that should've been their way over a river rapid broken. Relcor not only found a statue of a water serpent, but also identified it as a wooden figurine of another kata, namely Arash, the keeper of bridges. The party managed to earn his good favor by presenting him with a few gold coins and some seaweed; this way, they could make it through without any trouble.
On the other side, they found a maggot-ridden pile of adventuring gear that used to belong to a woman who must've left it a long time ago. Quill managed to get a short wand out of the disgusting heap but they otherwise left it intact. The avian saw a shape of what probably was a woman about 200 feet away, but the mirage soon disappeared without a trace.
Not much before nightfall, the heroes reached the mill and found a ball of light slowly circling around the building that became faster as they got closer. They found it to be some sort of unnatural protection when they tried to examine it and the ball hit right among them, throwing them apart and knocking Sei unconscious with a terrible force of lightning.
After a quick regrouping and helping Sei back to life, they forced their way into the mill through a ground floor window, just to hear the ball of light appear again outside – and two things growling deeper inside. With Sei's bat familiar scouting the area, they found two man-beasts fighting each other next to the giant millstone, a white raven and some kind of twisted female figure with enlarged hands and dangerous claws. Unfortunately their surprise was ruined by the wretched white raven that had already known of their arrival and notified its master.
After disarming the two man-beasts and freeing the imprisoned miller gone mad with rage, the team finally defeated the spellcaster that was obviously some kind of leader to the others. After searching through the mill, they found traces of struggle but no blood – along with a spellbook and a diary of a wizard.
As the diary that proved to be a property of Cliara explained, the residual force of the True Mist proved to be capable of twisting not only the minds, but also the bodies of those trapped within. As it turned out, this power was undefeatable for her as well, turning her into that crooked figure the team had to defeat in battle.
All that was left for them now was to make their way back to Everfalls and then to Lady Assylia and explain their findings…