“I understand you’re not in the business anymore,” Leif said carefully, “but I need information, and if you could help me with that, I would appreciate it. I need to know if there are any particularly powerful draugar in the area. The one I’m looking for may not be aggressive, other than to protect its land or its family, just unusually strong.”
“I’m guessing you mean a haint,” Dan said. Haint, ghost, yurei, it all meant the same: the unquiet dead. “We’ve got a few nasty ones around here, I suppose, although not as many as places without a family of Walkers in residence for the last hundred years. Can you be more specific?”
Leif’s mouth thinned; he glanced away, out the window in the direction of the big oak. “I’m tracking a necromancer,” he said at last. “And I don’t mean the sort who approaches the entrance of the Underworld and politely requests an oracle. Rúnar Ingmarsson is a powerful sorcerer, able to conjure up the souls of the dead to bind them to his will.”
Despite the relative warmth of the fall day, Dan shivered. Walkers were meant to help the dead pass on, in peace if possible, but by force if they were intent on harming the living. Binding them to this world was against everything he’d ever been taught.
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