Part of the quietness has to do with the number of survivors. Even the battle-tested fifth squad was pretty badly banged up, but the first four squads were beyond decimated. Only twenty-five soldiers of the original century answer the call when Sergeant Wyndshof takes roll near the central campfire in the grim hours before dawn.
1st Squad has but two lads left: Aryn Blest, the fresh-faced lad Marin and Alelip had saved from two gnolls, and scrawny young Ken Rivers. 2nd Squad boasts twice as many: Giles Baker, Hank Cooper, Hans Potter, and Rufus Withers. 3rd Squad answers with five: Nate Beck, Joshua Clairmont, Will Fellman, Luke Smith, and Mick Taylor. There is a bleak moment of silence when Wyndshof calls for the men of 4th Squad to sound off; they had been on watch at the time of the attack, and are unrepresented now. 5th Squad has fourteen veterans, more than half badly wounded but still fighting: Bill Adamson, Vic Binder, Butch Dawson, Jake Fender, Drew Innman, Matthew Kingsford, David Laughner, Ian Maresblood, Pete Olman, Alan Reynolds, Leo Stonecutter, Kyle Tanner, Drystan Untersanger, and Julian White.
The support staff is still intact, as Rives, Alelip and Marin held their own in the middle of camp and Betsey, Karina, and Alice remained safely ensconced in the chaperones' tent.
Leadership-wise, Strakker was slain defending the east end of the camp, and the other sergeants also fell in the field of battle. Wyndshof shakes his head and mutters something to himself before raising his voice to address the gathering. "Iron Hearts, while victorious today we have suffered great losses. Furthermore, our camp is within unsafe territory if the strength of our defeated adversary is any indication. While prudence might demand a swift withdrawal to Oakhollow, my judgment of the situation is that to do so would be exactly what the enemy expects, and that a withdrawal will leave us vulnerable to an overwhelming follow-on strike." He pauses, letting this sink in, before he speaks again. This time, he sweeps his vision across the fire-lit group, catching the eye of each in turn. "We will therefore break camp as soon as possible and proceed southeast to our designated duty station, the watchtower of Baden Falls. There, you will each have the opportunity to choose: to stand with your blood brothers and defend the tower as we were ordered, or to depart with the 3rd Eastgard Company and be reassigned to another unit. I will not make anyone stay with me--if need be, I shall hold the fort alone." He waits again, then gives a closing word. "Unless there are any questions, your are dismissed to begin packing the camp. It's going to be a rough hike--four miles uphill, in the dark, with carts. Make sure you're ready."
With that, he steps away from the campfire and heads for the captain's tent.