[We're entering the forest on foot so Writer's spy can meet up with us...]
After a few more minutes of rowing, with Vakarr at the oar, Per'dra spotted an embankment that looked safe to climb. "If our attackers are still looking for us," she explained, "then perhaps it would be best if we hide in the forest and look for someone who knows this territory more closely." Suddenly, she had an idea. "In fact, if we turn this ferry into a funeral pyre for Oleg, the one who first manned it, that might throw our pursuers off course and make them think we're dead! I hate to sound grotesque and morbid, but the stench of burning flesh might convince them..." After seeing nods in the dimness from several of her fellow passengers, Per'dra and her companions steered toward the slope.
Once all of them had clambered off the raft and stood on level ground, the Bard took Oleg's enchanted lantern, opened it, and lit one of the log oars. Tossing it on top of the ferry's planks, she gave a mighty push and sent it sloshing into the blue-black waters of the Cherna River: the Seventh Snake. She and the others watched the swift current engulf the ferry as it burned, tendrils of fire curling and then roaring around Oleg's body. "Rest in peace," she said again, and then rejoined the others. She would have sung a dirge, but who knew how much time they had before the Purge--or its spies--discovered them once more? Thus, she signaled for everyone to move out.
With Oleg's lantern in hand, and her two short swords sheathed at her sides, Per'dra had taken the lead. However, someone soon strode up beside her...