‘You know, I rather think I agree,’ said a voice from behind him. Gundar leapt to his feet and spun round, his hand dropping to the sword at his belt. ‘Thurak’s horns!’ he cried. ‘Where the devil did you spring from?’ There was a strange figure, wrapped in an odd black and white mottled cloak, sitting on a log a few metres behind him. As Gundar said the word devil, his hand hesitated, sword half drawn, and he peered more closely at the apparition. This was an ancient forest, dark and forbidding. ‘Will Treaty!’ he cried in surprise. ‘Is that really you?’ ‘None other,’ Will replied and stepped forward, holding out his hand in the universal gesture of peace and welcome. Gundar seized it and shook it hard
In a desolate northern fief, where can Will find the fighting men he needs to overcome the traitorous Sir Keren and his band of criminals? Across the border, the fierce Scotti tribesmen are waiting for the signal that Castle Macindaw is in friendly hands, and the way is clear to mount a full-scale attack. Time is running out. Will’s courage and ingenuity – and the arrival of an old friend – may be the only things that stand in their way.
This continues the world of Malcolm and Will. The healer has become a great friend of Will’s and continues to help them. One day, Malcolm’s men spot a young man in battle armor. He is said to be the Oakleaf Knight, and the defeater of Morgarath.
The arrival of Horace gives the two young men, mostly Will, confidence. Together they come up with a plan. What is the plan? Will they rescue Alyss?
More farewells, Will thought gloomily as they stood in a silent group by the triple fork road. Will nodded to Alyss and Horace and said in a rushed steady voice, “Good bye both of you. I’ll miss you so much . . . .” He paused, and for a moment Alyss thought he was going to say more. She actually took half a pace toward him. But he finished abruptly, “Damn! I hate farewells!” He swung up into his saddle and, in the same movement, turned Tug’s head toward the southeast trail. Horace and Alyss watched the horse and rider grow smaller and listened as the sound of hoof beats faded. Once, Will held up a hand in farewell. But he didn’t look back. He never did.