Things are getting truly bloody now. The fight has compressed, with a small no-man’s-land forming around us for a few hundred yards. Forays out have been met by such an oppressive presence of Daedra that they have been abandoned altogether.

If only chance would unleash Bangara upon them. The only thing keeping them at bay is our treeborn defense, but they are steadily losing out to Starlark’s persistence.

Worse, Starlark is in range of our line and there is nothing they can do to stop him. He moves freely through the trees above the Daedra and picks off whoever he pleases on our front. It’s demoralizing, and if he keeps it up the Daedra will be able to break through with much greater ease.

Nianatara is exploring options for escape, but I doubt she will find any. The question was finally posed: Why not just move through the treetops if the Daedra cannot follow? It sounded promising, except we would have to leave behind the wounded – including myself. Only her elite troop has the proper equipment to move quickly, and any mass exodus would be slow, cumbersome, and vulnerable to attack from below.

But what chance do we have in this tiny hole? With pressure on all sides we will either crack or solidify, and unfortunately I’m certain the latter is impossible.

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As for the wounded, there are depressingly few for how steadily the casualties occur. Most are killed, and poison is distressingly common among the weapons of the Daedra. It presents less of a problem logistically, but the emotional toll is immense. Normally it would be the cries of the wounded and their added burden that one would fear overtaxing an army in battle.

In this case, the true cost is the stark manifestation of death looming inescapably among the trees.

I’m glad the children and their caretakers were evacuated as soon as the camp was hit. It leaves these warriors uninhibited for the fight ahead, and in their cornered state I can see them hardening. They’re going to die well, but I do not see a way out of this.

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