Besieged!   Posted by Maenae.Group: archive 0
Maenae
 NPC, 42 posts
Sun 22 Mar 2015
at 16:41
Besieged!
I am weary.

As I write tonight's journel notes, I wonder how much energy I might have left to dedicate to protecting Melford Vale.  That task has grown...odious.  Yet I must!  If not me, than whom?

Yet, it has become a grave trial.  With the fall of Ansbach last summer, a flood of refugees has retreated south.  Gone now is Torvil Weston, fallen beneath a barrage of boulders with his guard upon the last day of the Siege of Ansbach.  The Darkshrouds are overrun with giant-kind, their armies reinforced - driven forward really - by the cruel drow.  Our stores are stretched thin trying to feed so many new mouths.

And Garavel, my heart, has grown old before my eyes.  He is as weary as I am.  A week gone I sent him south to seek assistance from the southern realms.  I fear that failure will be the death of him - I pray to Issroth the Oracle that he does not fail, yet my sight has grown dim and I draw near despair.

Few number now among our allies.  Ragnar Drapasson still strides with purpose, though his heart is cold since the fall of his love, Seelah, to the ogres in the mountain passes but two months gone.  Marroar has become puissant in the ways of the arcane and Borya has become mighty, though his harp sings a sad tune as well.

Gone now to the giant horde from the remnants of that band of caravan guards are Hyek and Horace - ach! the scion of Issroth was a great loss! - and gentle heart Irael'Riina, slain by her fell kinswoman, Keshah the Blade.

And yet, we are not without hope - even now, new folk have joined our band.  From the fell beast Nosnra's steading came several hundred orc slaves to join the ranks of those two tribes who are our uneasy allies - a brave lot they are surprisingly - and they ward our northern borders well.

Now we begin to discuss a new strategy, one that will, we hope, catch the brutes off guard, and afford us an opportunity to regain some of what we've lost.  Tonight, I broach the idea to my trusted Captains.

Signed,

Maenae, High Priestess to Issroth Farsight - the Oracle.

Mishpat
 NPC, 1 post
Sun 22 Mar 2015
at 17:08
Re: Besieged!
"Mishpat, please provide us with a status report," murmured Maenae, High Priestess of Issroth.  The old woman sat at her customary seat near the head of the table, a silver chalice filled with water set before her.  She nodded once at her beautiful Matriarch with a smile, and Mishpat turned and faced her audience.

"Greetings, Captains," nodded Mishpat, looking around the table where twelve men and women of various races sat in calm regard.  "I will try to be brief.  Our spies and scouts have confirmed the that rape of Ansbach is complete, the walls torn asunder, the rubble freighted out to be used as ammunition along the northern frontier against the Kingdom of Dragonstone.  There is little left of the Weston holdings beyond ruins."

Her expression is harsh despite the loveliness of her face, but she pierces the eyes of her audience with her own azure orbs as she continues on, "Yet, from that grim battle comes some hope.  Much of the giantish army has pushed north to begin their predations upon Dragonstone's southern border.  Left behind is a force of giants and their minions, led by Keshah and a few of her lieutenants.  For the time being, we do not have enough to attack them directly...but, perhaps, soon."

She pauses thoughtfully at this, then continues, "The Vale has become surprisingly secure.  With the merging of the Red Tusk and Goat Skull clans of orcs, and the addition of the former slaves of Nosnra, we have nearly 5000 orcs who guard our northern border along the slopes of the Darkshroud.  Their hatred of their former overlords is profound and they choose death willingly so that Keshah is hesitant to come against them."

Her report is interrupted by a heavily accented voice.  "Keshah's a wily one, but her minions have grown fat and lazy, and fearful of our swords and halberds," murmured a great half-orc who sat near the foot of the table, between Ragnar and Meris.

"Your folks' courage, Glaurnok, is much appreciated," Maenae said, nodding toward the half-orc.  "Please go on, Mishpat."

Mishpat inclines her head toward the High Priestess and said, "With a modicum of security, and hope that our embassy, led by Sir Garavel, will find success, it may be time to discuss strategies to use against the giants.  I think Her Grace has some ideas to share with you...please offer your thoughts and let us debate their merits."
Maenae
 NPC, 43 posts
Sun 22 Mar 2015
at 17:14
Re: Besieged!
As Mishpat sits, Maenae stands and speaks.

"Even in the darkest hour, hope survives," she said quietly, looking at those assembled with a thoughtful expression.  "Even now, as the armies of the giants cart away the remains of a once thriving city, we find succor in new alliances, and seek assistance from our friends to the south.  Yet I would not wait for such assistance as the Merchant Lords might offer to continue the fight.  We have among us those who are mighty, and who have grievances against the drow and their giantish minions."

"It is my thought, then, to start sending small bands to waylay and harass supply lines and couriers, interfere in enemy communications, such as they are, and perhaps capture important intelligence so that we might be better prepared to face what comes."

"Before ordering you into harm's way, however, I would have your feedback.  What say you?"

Ragnar Drapasson
 player, 877 posts
 Cacophonous Norse Warrior
 THAC0: 17-HP 27/41-AC: 3
Mon 23 Mar 2015
at 00:42
Re: Besieged!
Ragnar sits stony faced as he listens to the report.  He could not even recover his lover's body to return her properly to the elements.  Though he had fought orcs as a young man - they were a scourge in the mountains of his youth - he appreciated the Goat Skulls in a way that he could not belive possible.  Having seen them in action against the giants and their screening forces, he was glad that they were, for the moment, allies.

"Are we talking of total war?  Poisoning their food supplies, driving off or killing the herds, ruining wells?  Such measures may well be necessary, but they would ruin the lands for a generation or more.

"I, for myself, have no qualms.  Others may... and they are welcome to join me.  To stand between us and the Enemy.  At least they'll do some good when they take an arrow or boulder meant for someone who is willing to do what it takes to punish them and take back the lands."

Marroar Silentread
 player, 574 posts
 elf, magic user
 lvl 5, 28hp, AC6
Mon 23 Mar 2015
at 12:09
Re: Besieged!
Marroar nodded as his friend, for now, what else could they be no matter how unusual a wizard and barbarian were when matched on an adventure. "I agree with Ragnar, if we are to do this, then it must be swifter and more brutal than the giants and their masters believe us capable. We must act for victory." The orcs, half orcs and other slaves were proving themselves thus far, and Marroar was thankful for them as well, it was one less burden, for the moment.