After surviving the trap that Grimskull laid for them, the guild teleported back to Oganis Ford. Well, most of the guild. When they arrived, they discovered that Damien had remained behind. Jonar, Cedric, Sak, and the head Kithlanan scout were teleported by Talia Arzhaelnos back to Grimskull Island. Cedric was to guard Talia while the others looked for Damien.
The scouts headed for the ruins. There was a path leading down to a depression in the ground with half-buried obelisks and pyramids made of seamless dark stone. The path lead to an opening in one of the pyramids. Three sets of footprints lead into the ruin; seven led out. The group quietly wafted down the hallway leading into the ruin. The hallway ended in a small chamber. Two very crude statues of hooded figures, carved out of the same black rock, carried torches of blue flame. There was writing on the back, which Jonar copied. Jonar also heard whispers, which he attempted to memorize to repeat back to Telios or Talia later. On the far end of the chamber was a stairwell headed down. The scout team decided that they’d explored far enough and returned to Cedric and Talia.
Jonar showed the copied writing to Talia. She stated that they needed to leave, now. Sak and Jonar wanted to take a quick look around the tower, so Talia reluctantly agreed to leave in 15 minutes. The reconnaissance of the tower proved what the guild suspected—that it was empty. The scouting group returned to Oganis Ford.
The next day, Telios, Cedric and Jonar went to Karad. Telios petitioned and received space inside the temple of Frendila to return Araceli from the dead. Telios managed to convince Araceli that she had been dead for three months, during which time the Dark Lord Damien had wreaked havoc. Cedric, Jonar, and Telios were having a hearty laugh at Araceli when Damien himself appeared.
As he later said, he had stayed overnight on Grimskull Island and explored the outside of the ruins the day after the scouting party had been there. He and Telios had come to a similar conclusion about the ruins: they were remains of an ancient, humanoid civilization Vauljuran, “The Dead Souls.” Damien had further discovered that sorcerers had entered Vauljuran ruins. Three of them emerged, later to become the sorcerer-kings who forged the Swords of the Deathsong. Other Vauljuran ruins had been sacked, but the one on Grimskull Island looked to be in better shape. The guild determined that they would explore the ruins to see what they could find out about the swords and how to destroy them.
As they remembered that the research for the ritual for the siege of Milsylla was to be completed the next day, they further decided to put off the exploration until Milsylla had fallen.