Mouseguard: Fifth Patrol

Entry 2: 1154, Heart of Spring

A rescue in the depths; A cornered rat; A leader's guilt

Shortly after returning to Lockhaven, the fifth patrol was mobilized for an emergency mission. Captain Tryndall—one of Rowan’s former tenderpaws, noted for his occasional rashness—had failed to report, and Gwendolyn feared for the worst. The mission was to locate Captain Tryndall’s missing patrol and determine their fate.

Captain Rowan was able to successfully track Tryndall’s movements from his last known location, tracing him to the city of Copperwood, where he had apparently stalked a small band of weasels to the city’s famous mines. The patrol was greeted with relief by the workmen, as one of the primary mine shafts had been damaged in the preceding day, sealing the weasels (and Tryndall’s patrol) inside. The fifth patrol volunteered to descend down an adjacent mine shaft to rescue the guard mice and drive out the predators.

After searching through the dark, the patrol encountered a heavily wounded weasel captain, who was half-delirious and slowly dying from a poisonous wound. The weasel informed the patrol that Tryndall’s patrol was still alive (as his band had planned to use them as food), but trapped, and would not survive unless the patrol could recover them quickly. In exchange for medical treatment, the weasel revealed the patrol’s location, then escaped into the depths of the mine when Garrow attempted to double-cross it.

Following the weasel’s directions, Rowan located the delirious captain Tryndall and his surviving patrol members and saw that his wounds were treated. Garrow tracked down the escaping weasel captain and killed him just as he escaped the mines, and Clove located the source of the poisonous bites: a bloated, gangrenous wolf spider. Fearing her odds against it, Clove chose not to kill the spider, and the patrol escorted Tryndall’s wounded team to safety.

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