Far into the swamp is an abandoned (and supposedly haunted) trading outpost that is slowing being devoured by the water and muck. The mages, witch and Skeek determine that an ancient temple is the location that Valicross used, and try to trigger any traps that might be on the door.
The door itself comes alive in a parody of wood nymph, which is just as arrogant as Valicross was. It warns them that it is tied into the magic support structure of the place, so destroying it would in turn destroy the lair. Instead, it agrees to let them pass if they answer a riddle but if they fail, it wants Morgan's spirit in payment.
The witch quickly figures out the correct answer to the riddle, and the others agree with him, so the guardian lets them pass but now without dropping a hint about something that gets Morgan upset.
Inside is a chamber of horrors, where Valicross conducted his lich ritual. Tapping into Qing's spirit-eye scout, Morgan is able to see the necromancer perform some of that ritual, as well as a glimpse of some sort of spirit captured in a crystal.
Olivia begins searching through the crates in the room, carefully avoiding the traps set on them. The first one is full of her own things, which Valicross collected including a voodoo doll of the Skeek wearing a wedding dress. The second crate she checks seems to have items that belonged to Madame Natasha when she was first captured by Valicross.
The books in the room are all blank, until magic is applied to them. Qing reads one that talks about an ancient method of resurrection that bypasses the whole 'undead' business. Morgan finds one discussing theories of fusing spirits and living beings to create new lifeforms.
Figuring this couldn't be all of the necromancer's belongings, Morgan checks out one of the coffins. After a corpse is flung onto him, it turns out there is a hidden door inside which leads downwards.