"Defend the wagons, protect our people!" Farcus yelled to his men as the nearest undead warrior approached him. He waited as the creature was in range for close combat and sluggishly rose it's sword arm to strike then he bashed the long-dead soldier in the face with his shield.
Then as the skeletal warrior was momentarily stunned by the blow to the face, Farcus promptly sliced off its head. One down.
Meanwhile the other recently risen undead took advantage of the two still-shocked rangers.
And deftly sliced the captain's neck open. It would appear that not all of the undead are as slow as they look.
Recovering from his shock after seeing his captain fall in a flash of cold steel and blood, the surviving militia ranger jumps back to give himself enough time to pull back an arrow. splickt!
Under the combined fire of the ranger and slash of the swordsman, the undead soldier falls, an arrow sprouting from the cavity in it's chest.
"C'mere ya smelly pile o' bones!" Jeered one of the militia swordsmen toward the first of the undead, irritating it enough to provoke it's attack.
After exchanging a few blows and parries, the heavy-armored skeletal soldier is finally brought down with the help of a mounted militia.
"With haste, get back to the caravan!" Farcus shouted to his men as they quickly obeyed.
Meanwhile, the back of the caravan wasn't faring much better. Just as the entombed warriors at the front broke from their rest, more seemed to raise from the ground behind them.
An undead ranger fired at the caravan and the arrow struck true straight through the back of the neck of a clueless villager.
The hooded stranger, like the surrounding pilgrims, react accordingly.
Except the stranger sighs with relief and jumps down from his wagon, clutching a dagger in his hand.
"Finally some action."
He sprints toward the fray while wielding a midnight-hued sword in his free hand, aiming to squeeze between two heavy-armored militia. After but a second or two, the stranger successfully makes it past the militia, who lower their weapons and stare after him in dumbfounded surprise.
"Hey, what hell do you think you're--"
"Coming through!" The stranger replied, a smile slowly growing on his face as he approached the skeleton, which looked just as surprised as the two militia did.
Before the crossbow-wielding skeleton could load up another bolt, the hooded stranger had already sliced off both it's arms. It collapsed as the stranger held his pose in a poor attempt to look badass. The rest of the undead are picked off by another horseman and the rangers.
Hours had passed after the battle. Those that were slain during the skirmish, the captain and villager, were laid to rest where the villagers could find deep enough snow. They labored for awhile while burying their dead, and though it seemed pointless to waste the energy when all they had dug through was snow and stone, the villagers found it the only way to honor them.
"I don't know who you are, but that was quite an impressive stunt you pulled off back there," said Farcus as he approached the hooded stranger.
"Oh, that? I just wanted to put some knife skills to the test."
"Wait... aren't you the caravan's cook?"
"Well... yes. Fortunately these skills can be used two separate ways."
Farcus only shrugged and dismissed himself. Soon they would set off again to finish their descent and off into the unknown. The caravan was safe again and one by one the pilgrims paid their respects and pack up their things. Once again they were on the road down the mountain, each and every one of them hoping that that this first obstacle on their trek would be the last.