The crisp autumn evening air held no hint of the horror that awaited. Only the sharpest ears could have heard the crackle of magical energy as the imperceptible border between planar levels was torn open in a jagged oval shape. On the other side of this rift the landscape looked much the same, albeit in a more sinister, almost ruinous form. Through the portal a number of red-robed individuals hurried, their hoods pulled up to obscure their faces, foul weapons in their red-gloved hands. Wordlessly they pointed to the doors along the inner courtyard of the small castle they were now inside. On the walls above them the sentries stood oblivious to their presence as they watched dutifully over the ramparts for any external threats to the castle’s inhabitants. The red-robed invaders moved with eerie silence as they speedily made their way up the stairs to the tops of the walls and began savagely attacking the guards. Still the red-robed menaces poured from the planar rift until well over a hundred of them had breached the defenses of this place.
The doors of the castle had not been barred because this inner courtyard had been considered to be safe. Now the red-robed infiltrators burst through them and with pure unfettered malice slew everyone they came across. The servants that were still awake tending to the fires in the hearths and cleaning up in the kitchen. The masters of the castle and their guests sleeping blissfully unaware in their rooms. The men-at-arms that were bivouacked in the great hall, exhausted from having been on patrol all day searching for any sign of the perpetrators of a crime just like this in the next estate over. Even the loyal hounds belonging to the lord of the house were put to the sword.
A fire was set in the castle’s barn, and flammable oil was poured out to set the entire castle alight afterwards. The red-robed murderers, their weapons dripping with the blood of this accursed manor, now made their way just as quickly back through the portal with the jagged edges. The magical crackling began to wane as the rift resealed and soon there was no trace of it having been there at all. The fires spread and across the rolling landscape this same horrific scene was played out a dozen more times in the fortified manor houses that dotted this region.
The Scarlet Sect had announced its arrival.