For this last part, I must rely on Eloc’s report for I focused upon completing the ritual work before me. Eloc took Gar, Ray and the men at his command forward. The plan was to ambush the demon and slay it before it reached me. The objective, therefore, was simple: kill it before it killed me. That you read this letter spoils the question, so I shall instead emphasize how Eloc and his company did the deed. I assure you, My Lords, that Lord Eloc merits consideration for induction into the Order of the Immortals for his actions this time.
Eloc let Ray direct them to the demon’s location, where they set an ambush upon the demon as planned. As expected, this initial encounter did not go as well as the men had hoped; a few of them got slain out of hand in the first push, and a few more died by its hand before they broke contact and began to execute the next phase of the plan. Eloc told me that those yet living held their nerve, with difficulty, and withdrew in good order to the next point where they would do it again.
Ray ensured that they broke contact and got ready, body and soul, for the next attack. They did again achieve surprise on the demon, despite it now being wary of attack, and they fought it again hard and fast. This time they avoided losing any men, but they did not do much harm to it either. With this in mind, Eloc pushed himself and took a risk to wound it about its knees; Gar went with him while Ray distracted the demon, but this proved to be very difficult and before they smote its knees and stunned it both Eloc and Gar took hit by the demon’s giant-sized club. Again, they withdrew in good order.
At the third fallback point Eloc and Gar rallied the men while Ray quickly tended to their wounds, but barely so as Ray’s depths of power now began to run low and he had to reserve what he had left to deal with the demon. The demon again fell into their trap, but he took to the offense right away and Eloc had to quickly seize the initiative to avoid being routed. Nonetheless, several more of the men died in the melee, crushed by the demon’s infernal might as expressed by being crushed by the club in its hands.
If not for a desperate throw of power by Ray, the demon would not have been slowed enough for the men to break contact again and fall back to the next point. This came at a price, and Ray’s used his power reserve to make that happen. It wasn’t that his patron left him, but that his mortal flesh can’t hold that much power without harming him, something that you My Lords understand far too well. As this now left no more resilience amongst the men, yet the demon lives.