Instead of going directly to the swamps to look for the missing soldier, Shintar and Wolfy opted to return all the way to Kvirasim to get reinforcements. The journey is made longer by having to circle around the river they sank the ferry in earlier but at long last they make it back to the starting town and easily gain the services of Thalen Firegoti the mage, Aeternus Sand the druid, Alice Plays the dwarf, and the warrior Cooper Mantly.
The new team.
The team get to flex their muscles on the way back South, slaying orcs and ogres that get in their way and are rewarded by gearing up at the Gashok markets before changing course Westward into the swamp. Aeternus' druidic skills are very handy in hunting game and healing various party members of illnesses on the journey, while Thalen's herb finding skills are leaving a lot to be desired.
Eventually they reach the vile swamp and find it to be inhabited primarily by zombies and swamp rantzies...