Longhorn stood looking over the ruined parapet. The chill wind ruffled his surcoat, whistling eerily between his ribs.

'Still coming?' the voice belonged to Screamer, one of his companions-at-arms.

'See for yourself.' A black column stretched frorn the horizon to a mile away. like an army Of ants Oil tile move.

'Here,* said Screamer, struck by a sudden thought, 'We can talk, right?'

'Yes.' sighed Longhorn. He hated it when Screamer had one of his sudden thoughts.

'And we can see them, right?' Longhorn nodded.



'We're Skeletons. right? No eyes, no eardrums, no vocal cords - but we can see, heat and talk. -Makes you think, doesn't it?'

'I try not to think. There's too damn many contradictions to being Undead. Let's see what Morbius is up to.' Anything was better than Screamer waxing philosophical.

They found their leader in one of the larger chambers, which was fitted out as a workroom. Books, scrolls and spell ingredients littered the floor and several tables, and the Liche was poring over a mouldering parchment.

'Yes, I know they're getting closer, and yes, I know there's lots and lots of them: he said without looking up. 'I'm working on it. So why don't you get to your units and make sure your side of things is ready eh? They should be here in about an hour.'

Precisely an hour later, the mortal army was drawn up before the fortress. Longhorn and Screamer stood in the courtyard with their units, along with Reaper and Hellblade, the other two captains. The gates had begun to quiver under the impact of a ram.

'You know,' remarked Reaper to no-one in particular, 'Being dead already doesn't make this any easier. And where's Morbius? That gate looks like giving any minute:

'Yes, but how can we see it giving?' asked Screamer.

'Give it a rest, will you? sneered Hellblade, hefting his runesword. 'Just be happy we can and concentrate on keeping your bones together.'

As he spoke, the gates collapsed. Screamer and Hellblade broke into a charge, moving their units to block the gateway while Longhorn's troops covered the flanks and Reaper's held the parapet, pouring arrows and rocks onto the mortal heads beneath.

The battle was deadlocked for nearly an hour. The Undead forces were almost halved, but for each Skeleton destroyed four mortals had run screarning away. Then a robed figure appeared from the inner fortress.

'Ah, Morbius.' Yelled Reaper from atop a pile of Elven heads, 'So glad you could drop in. Have a nice kip, did you?'

Ignoring him, the Cache chanted over a pile or shattered bones. and a grey-white mist rose from the ground. When it cleared. the bones fused weirdly into some kind of catapult.

Three armoured Skeletons began to work the machine furiously, loading it with skulls. As the skulls hailed down, the mortals broke, trampling their fellows underfoot in their panic.

'I must admit,' remarked Longhorn as they pursued the fleeing mortals, 'That was one of Morbius' better ideas:

'And here comes another one of his better ideas,' said Screamer, pointing behind with his spear. A two-horse chariot of fused Dragon-bone had driven out of the fortress, and was gaining on them rapidly.

'Here Morbius,' called Screamer as the chariot passed, 'How is it we can see and hear and...'

'Not now, Screamer.'
:lol: LOL :lol: