The bedraggled Orphan Company members pitched camp by the Great Road until they were rested enough to continue to Altaruk without certain death. They spotted a small group far to the north heading in their direction parallel to the road and broke camp, fearing more Urikite scouts would catch them in their weakened state. Continuing south, the group reached Altaruk, although once again on the brink of exhaustion. They had some difficulties at the gate with the Crimson Suns, the company sworn to protect Alatruk and its environs, But it was nothing name-calling and glowering couldn't overcome. Eventually they secured an audience with Olgem, the middle-aged head of House Wavir's outpost in Altaruk and governor of the region.
They urgently warned Olgem that they had encountered Urikite troops deep within Tyrian territory. They marked the location of scouts they had encountered as well a s where they believed the larger army to be, as they had learned from their onetime captive turned shish-kabob. They also warned Olgem of the intercepted messages so he would find more secure means of communication, or at least send a great number of avian messengers. Olgem sent word to the brigade and a state of emergency was declared. A panicked buzz quickly made it's way around town: travel into and out of Altaruk would soon be cut off, the town expected to come under siege.
Dragonpaw made contact with a member of the N'Kosi trading collective to establish a favorable position during the upcoming crisis while the group went to a less reputable dealer to offload their weapons. On their return they encountered a commotion. A little girl stood in the center of a crowd, her hands tied with a length of rope to a post, while her father pleaded with the large and unruly group. It quickly became clear that she stood accused of defiling, but also became clear that the young child did so unintentionally, if at all. Dragonpaw suggested giving the girl to the Templars to spare her life. Her father was elated at the possibility. The crowd however was not so happy to add to the ranks of their oppressors, though most feared to make that disdain clear.
While the rest spoke with the crowd, Bright Eyes went off with the young girl's neighbor and accuser. She learned the neighbor sounded an alarm after feeling weakness and pain and seeing a bright light. The mob pulled the girl out of her house upon finding the source of that light. Bright Eyes also went into the girl's sparse living quarters and found the proof she sought, a small and weak, but clear, defiling circle encompassing the girl's hammock. It had been hastily hidden by someone dragging a chest on top of it. Also in the hammock was an old tattered felt figurine of a desert rose, which Bright Eyes noted but left.
She returned to the group and gave the symbol for defiler. As Mulses restrained the inconsolable father, Bright Eyes slit the little girls' throat, whispering an apology but also an assurance that this was a far better fate than becoming a Templar. The crowd's blood-thirst quenched, they slowly dispersed with thanks to the company for having dealt with the budding sorceress. The group took the girl's body to a bonfire far from any of the hovels and burned her corpse.
They returned to their room for a much needed rest, still hoping to make contact with any company members nearby and to prepare plans for travelling to Tyr amid the possible siege.