The Return of Thuringwethil IC Thread.

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The Return of Thuringwethil IC Thread.

Postby SmogsFlame » Tue Oct 23, 2007 12:54 pm

It was Antaka' s wet nose pressed in his neck that woke him up. He sleepily tried to push her away but because she was lying on his right arm he tried to do it with his left. It was only then that he noticed that it had been bandaged and that he was lying in a bed instead of still being in the stable.
What happened?
A few foggy memories began to float in. He had been unconscious most of the time but he recalled that Agoth and Arail had managed to bring him to his room. He remembered vaguely that Agoth had put a leather belt in his mouth and had asked to bite. Morwë had instinctively obeyed and a few seconds later a searing pain had burned through his left arm. He had tried stay awake after that but the dull throbbing pain in his arm, blood-loss and just plain exhaustion had gotten the better of him.
His movements had woken up Antaka and when she realized that he was awake too she began to happily lick his face.
You're back, you're back!
She jumped of the bed and began a frantic catch-the-tail dance like a little puppy. When she finally managed to bite her own tail she lost her balance and fell. Hawk began to laugh. Antaka glared and began to scratch her ear trying to regain a bit of her lost dignity. Morwë swung his legs over the edge of his bed, still wiping a tear from the corner of his eye. Suddenly everything began to spin again and his vision narrowed. He lowered his head in his hands and waited until it passed.
You've lost a considerable amount of blood, you can't expect that everything already works properly, do you?
When his fit of dizziness had passed he raised from his bed and walked to the door, careful not to make any sudden movements that would make him dizzy again. When Antaka noticed what he was doing she tried to nudge him back in bed, like a mother wolf would do with her wayward puppies. Hawk began to crawl her behind her ears however and she immediately forgot what she had intended to do, pushing his hand to the more itchy spots. He chuckled
-No match for my scratches heh?
He caught his reflection in the mirror above the wash-basin. The person staring back startled him. He was a lot paler than usual and he still wore his cut and bloodied clothes. He really should change them. If he came down like that they would take him for some murdered ghost. He searched in his belongings for clean clothes and carefully changed. He changed the bandage on the same occasion. Though the method that Agoth had used to close the wound was a rather crude one, it had probably saved his life. The wound was healing nicely now with no sign of infection and only throbbing faintly. The abundant flow of blood had kept it clean and the immediate closing of the wound had prevented it from infecting after the flow had stopped. He put a new bandage on it. Soon it would begin to itch and after that it would only be new scar he could show off to his brother's son next time he would go to Ithilien.


Once he was ready he descended the stairs. He didn't have his boots on so Arail and Agoth didn't hear him come down. They were discussing something with worried expressions on their faces. Agoth had his sword in his hand and there was a bunch of broken wood next to him that might once have been a table. Morwë raised an eyebrow. What had happended here? He voiced his question aloud. Both elf and Rohirrim whirled around.
Agoth was the first to react.
-Hawk! What on Middle-earth are you doing here? You're not in a state to walk around.
'Why am I walking then?' Morwë asked with a quick grin. Agoth frowned but then grinned back.
-If I had known that almost killing you would cheer you up, I would have done it earlier.
Hawk gave him a half-smile.
-Almost dieing also makes people hungry and I think Antaka wouldn't say no to something either.
'Well that's really a sign that you're getting better,' Arail said with a laugh.
Just on that moment,Willum entered, still a tat sleepy-eyed and tying an apron. His eyes widened when he noticed Hawk.
-Morwë, You're up!
-Yes, up, walking and very hungry.
The little hobbit smiled and dashed away to prepare the breakfast. It was not before long that delicious smells came from the kitchen and Antaka was pacing rounds in anticipation. Suddenly she pricked up her airs.
Noticing this, Hawk motioned his companions to be silent. They listened. At first they couldn't hear what had caught the she-wolf'd\s attention but then they could hear it.
The faint sound of hooves and becoming louder.
-Someone's coming.
They went outside. Morwë felt vulnerable, barefeet as he was and with only his dagger to defend himself. But when the saw who was coming they realized that there wasn't much to fear. It was a young Rohirrim and his horse looking rather hungry and unkept. He looked as surprised as they were when he noticed them.
' Hail Eorlingas,' Agoth greeted.

Arail saw the young Rohir approach them, both he and his horse looking tired and disheveled. She wondered momentarily whether he might be an acquaintance of Agoth’s. There was a slight tension in the air around them, reminiscent of the pressing calm before a storm, and a sudden feeling came over her.
“We have to leave,” she mumbled, loud enough so that the other two could hear.

“Today, if it is possible, but within a two-day at the very latest. I cannot tell why, but I have a feeling it is urgent.” She was not one for premonitions, but this one she could not ignore; it clawed at the back of her mind and refused to be silenced. She also had the odd sensation that the unknown Eorling that came towards them was involved in the whole thing as well. The sense of urgency and growing impatience that she felt made her a tad uneasy as it battled with more logical thoughts of how long it would take to get the equipment needed, and whether Morwë would have to rest more before setting out. She did not like it, but none the less the need for haste was evident.

In the back of her mind she registered sounds of activity inside the inn. Quite certainly it was Vana who was up and about preparing the breakfast. The smell of coffee and biscuits wafted through the air before long, making more than one person stir from their sleep and coming down the stairs. A new day had begun in earnest, and she wondered what it would bring with it, good or bad.

Agoth listened to Arail speak as he watched the Rohirrim ride up slowly on his weary horse, sword still in hand. "Then it's settled. We gather supplies today as quick as may be, and then ride upon the marrow."

Normally he was not so distrusting of his own countrymen, but he was not about to recieve another unpleasent surprise. Evil traveled in many forms after all.

Agoth stepped down from the door as the rider approached, and sheathed his sword. Trying to add a light tone to his voice he asked. "May I take care of your horse for you? Our stables are not the best, as they are not finished, but they are coming along nicely. They will surely see your beast safe and dry tonight. Would you yourself care to come inside and get warm by the fire and have a spot of breakfast?"

Agoth watched the man carefully trying to gauge him, and guess who he was. The crest on his shield seemed familiar but then again there were to many families to remember them all. For all he knew he had faught alongside this man. He seemed about the proper age to have been at Pelenor.

Agoth took care of the man's horse then went about gathering the things they would need for the many days, mabye even months ahead.
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Postby Swordsman_Of_The_Tower » Wed Oct 24, 2007 7:33 pm

Siegwulf watched wearily as the man approached him, he looked vaguely familiar, then again, Rohirim men all tended to look alike unless they were friends or kin. He mustered as warm of a smile as he could which was a basic curling up off corners of his mouth. He could sense that these people didn't trust him, were afraid of something, maybe him, maybe something else. He patted his horse on the head and slid off of him lethargically. He was sore, dirty, he thought of the prospect of a real bed, a real meal, a real fire, real music and stories. They were all things he enjoyed and took comfort in this existence. He took the horse by the reins and bowed for the man in front of him and introduced himself, Siegwulf son of Siegric, man of Rohan, servant to king Eomer. He watched as the man and the horse disappeared into the simple but homey stable. He himself, his back and whole body aching and sore, left his spear, his axe, his shield, and his back outside and went into the inn, eager for a hearty breakfast, and perhaps someone to talk to.
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Thu Oct 25, 2007 3:00 am

Turning after the man, she could not help but examine him as closely as she could, assessing his character. He had spoken few words, presenting himself as Siegwulf, seeming at the same time reluctant to speak to strangers, and yet in need of company. The traits were easily recognizable; she bore some part of them herself. There was little else she could mark about him; he looked like any other of the Rohirrim that she had ever met, and deciding whether he was friend or potentional foe was likewise hard. The only thing that she presently had to go on was the fact that he did not feel foul, but impressions she knew could be all too deceiving. None the less she hoped for the former, they had no need for additional trouble now.

Shaking her head she hurried after Agoth into the stable, deciding to get under way with all that needed to be done as soon as possible. Morthil neighed softly when she came to her stall, for once seeming to be in a good morning mood. She did try to crush her up against the wall when Arail bent down to examine her hooves, but that was only ritual and to be expected. Noting that the mare was in good health she brushed her off quickly and went off to check on her equipment. The light saddle and tack that she rarely used hung where she had left them earlier, the oiled and supple leather gleaming in the sparse light. Slipping a carrot to the mare, she stole out of the stable, pausing to revel in her surroundings for a short while. It was a fine morning, the clear air raising her spirits. Her step was light and swift when she next entered her room.

Looking at her reflection in the mirror she made a grimace as she caught sight of her messed-up hair. Pouring water into a nearby basin she washed quickly, changing into the grey tunic and leggings which she normally wore while travelling and ran her deft fingers through the hair to weave it into the usual braids. That being done she commenced with packing her belongings once more. The spare clothes went into one bag along with various other things; checking her healing supplies she noted that some herbs were running low and definitively needed restocking. Sighing, she sat down on the edge of the bed. She had travelled often in her time; her feet had trodden countless miles, often alone, since she had reached adulthood. She had not always known what road to take, but this complete fumbling in the dark that they were to undertake now filled her with unease.

Trying to get something else to think of, her slender hand closed around the handle of her sword. There was a glitter of metal as she drew forth the blade, and the soft whisper of steel rang through the air. It was a simple but elegant weapon, given to her by her father. Merilég it was called, “rose thorn”, and the dark handle was carved in relief with waves and roses. Finding no marks on the blade, she re-sheathed it and began studying the many arrows, making sure that the shafts were straight and the white fletchings undamaged. Working was good, but she had done this so many times that she did not have to think of what she was doing, and a wandering mind was not what she needed right now. Muttering to herself she left once again and went down to the common room.
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Postby SmogsFlame » Thu Oct 25, 2007 6:51 pm

Agothien stabled Siegwulf's horse. "The poor nag."

He thought to himself as he brushed the animals coat, and filled the food and water troughs. The making sure there was plenty of hay for the horse to eat and straw on the ground for bedding he shut the stable doors and walked into the commen room of the Inn. Picking up the gear on the footstep and carrying it in with him.

Willum had wasted no time in presenting a tray of food the the strange man who called himself Siegwulf. Siegwulf for his part was trying not to wolf down the food as fast as possible.

Agothien walked over to the desk and picked up a key and ledger before walking back to the newcomer. "Here you are good sir, if you will but sign this ledger and take this key, you'll sleep well this night."

Agoth picked up the man's gear and carried it up the steps to an unoccupied room and layed it out beside the bed. The design of the sheild caught his attention again. Where had he seen it before? Upset that he couldn't remember he walked back into the commen room and set the key down on the table to front of Siegwulf.

He then set off in search of Arail and Claymore. He found Arail on his way back up the stairs. "Ah here you are. Would you care to follow me?"

Arail looked confused but did as Agoth asked. He led her into the kitchen and into the walk-in pantry, where all the bins of vegetables and the like were kept. Moving aside a barrel of ale, he exposed a trap door in the floor. More confused now then ever she followed him down the steps and into a small room dug below the Inn.

"Me and Willum dug this last year after I decided to stay and help run the Lucky Fortune. Since then we've been slowly stocking up. It never hurts to be prepared after what happened last time. It's only known to me, and him, and the lady Aerin." Agoth paused to look at Arail's wondering eye.

The room was filled with all many of weapons, from axs and daggers, to swords and spears, long bows and crossbows. There was quite a variety to choose from. There was even an old grindwheel for the sharpening of blades.

"Whatever weapons we need we'll be sure and get them here tomorrow before setting out." Agoth said as he led the way back up the steps.

At the top he added, "And please find Clay and discreetly show, and tell, him what I just showed you. Right now I need to see to the guests, and my own weapons and gear."

Arial nodded as Agoth left the kitchen. Outside Siegwulf had about finished with his meal, so Agothien decided to talk to him. Sitting down across from the Siegwulf Agoth began to speak. "If ya don't mind my asking, where do you hail from and where are ya planning on going. The crest on your shield is vaguely familiar. I feel I should now it, yet somehow I cannot place it."
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Sat Oct 27, 2007 1:49 pm

Surprised as she was with what Agoth had shown her, it felt good to have something to do, however small a task, so she went through the inn in search of Morwë, finding him easily enough wolfing down food in the common room. Walking over to him, she discretely bent down and whispered in his ear.
“I am sorry to disturb you in your meal, but Agoth wanted me to show you something right away. Follow me.” He looked puzzled, but followed her none the less. Into the kitchen and down into the hidden armoury they went.

“Well, this is it,” she said in a low voice, motioning with one hand towards all the weapons. While Morwë stood silent, she studied the contents of the room more closely. She wondered how Agoth and Willum had ever managed to get a hold of all these things, let alone hide them at the inn. Most of the weapons were made by human hands, but she thought she spotted some Elven craft as well, a couple of longbows as well as some knives and a sword.
“If we need any additional weapons before we set out tomorrow Agoth told me we could get them here.”
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Postby Swordsman_Of_The_Tower » Thu Nov 01, 2007 6:46 pm

"If ya don't mind my asking, where do you hail from and where are ya planning on going. The crest on your shield is vaguely familiar. I feel I should now it, yet somehow I cannot place it." Agoth said as Siegwulf downed the last of the food,a hearty portion of bacon, fresh bread, bacon, and an apple. Siegwulf looked up at the young man, he looked familiar, like he had seen him before if not spoken. He doubted it, Rohan was a big place, a big place where quite frankly, there wasn't great diversity in appearance.

"My name is Siegwulf, son of Siegric, I hail from the town of Snowhall." Siegwulf answered politely with a nod.
"And as to where I'm going, I can't say I'm exactly going anywhere." He said. He wiped his mouth with a cloth napkin and took the final swig from his mug of cider. Siegwulf debated in his mind momentarily as to whether to speak of the events on the road.

"I" Siegwulf said stopping. "Believe I much tell you something, I felled three creatures on the road, not far to the west." He waved his arm vaguely
"They appeared to be orcs, or some mix of orcs and men." "I will not lie, I have experience with arms, as I'm sure you as one of the men of Rohan would understand, it is a necessity." He stopped, lowering his head. Then mumbled.

"If I may ask good sir, If you and your company are going on a journey, I would humbly ask to accompany you." Siegwulf was desperate for human interaction. He also had another motive, he thinks that this man was at the Pelennor, and perhaps he can understand his pain like no one else.
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Postby SmogsFlame » Fri Nov 02, 2007 11:03 am

Agoth frowned at the mention of the half orcs. He'd known that they wouldn't give up but them being around and not attacking made him uneasy. It was a good thing they wouldn't be here to endanger the Inn much longer.

Agoth nodded sadly. "Yes I do understand the need to go about armed. Even when doing so brings back bad memories."

"If I may ask good sir, If you and your company are going on a journey, I would humbly ask to accompany you." This was an unexpected turn of events. Agoth was just beginning to feel like the man was just that. A man that was running from something, and wanted a quiet place to rest. But this request was strange.

Here he had just met Siegwulf. Agoth hadn't even given Siegwulf his name yet he had somehow known about the company setting out. If not the next day then soon.

Not wanting to build up to much false hope, in the event that Siegwulf wouldn't be coming with them, he smiled and replied, choosing his words slowly. "I'm sure that could be arranged. Of course I would have to speak with my companions before hand. Ah, but here forgive me. I have not even introduced myself yet. I am Agothien. Agothien son of Agothdun. My father's mother was Gondorian, and she named my father."

Agoth trailed off upon spying Morwe and Arail come out of the kitchen. He nodded his thanks to Arail then stood up to walk out the door. "Excuse me please Siegwulf. I must attend to something in the stables."

At the door Agoth caught Morwe's eye and jerked his chin towards the stables. He closed the door behind himself and went into Hatha's stall, and began checking his equipment.

A moment or two later Morwe appeared at the door. A questioning look on his face. Agoth told him all that the man Siegwulf had said. "Well what do you think friend Morwe?"
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Postby Claymore » Sun Nov 04, 2007 1:41 pm

Morwë thought a moment about what he had just learned.
Finally he said: 'I think we should take him along.'
-What does make you think that?
-He's a lost man, wandering. I don't think he means any harm. He just seeks a purpose, something to give meaning to his life… And since we don't really know what we will have to face I think that any person who can battle three orcs on his own is worth taking along.
-Are you sure about this?
-Yes and even if he does mean harm I prefer to have him with us where we can keep an eye on him. Better to have an enemy in plain sight than behind you where he can but a knife in your back. But honestly I don't think he is an enemy.
Agoth nodded.
-You have a point.
Hawk stayed silent for a moment absently stroking Hatha.
-Do we have any idea where we are going, by the way?
-Not really. The best place to find clues how we can destroy the thing would be at the place where it was made but the Isle of Werewolves sank to the bottom of the sea long ago.
-We could go to Imladris. And I guess that we if can't find what we seek there we can still go to Minas Tirith.
-That's an idea. I'll ask Arail what she thinks of that plan
Morwë nodded.
-I'm going to pack and see if I can find an extra shirt.
-Ah yes I believe I pretty much cut it up.
Hawk shrugged and grinned.
-Better a shirt than me.
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Postby SmogsFlame » Sun Nov 04, 2007 5:33 pm

Agothien had a wry grin on his face. "Aye. I suppose it was."

As Morwe turned to leave on his hunt for a shirt Agoth, laughing, called after him. "There are several shirts in my room you can barrow. It's the least I can do after cutting yours to bits, and then burning you ta boot."

Hatha snorted and shook his head. Agoth turned to his horse. "Don't you be making fun neither. Else I practice my medicine on you."

The horse merely looked at Agoth and stamped a foot. Agoth smiled and continued about his work, cleaing and repairing Hatha's tack. He sharpened the lance that he carried when he traveled with a small wet stone. He checked the saddle and all the straps, going down his mental checklist of things to do.

When he was satisfide with his work his picked up the saddle bags and threw them over his shoulder. He scratched Hatha's blaze in parting, shutting the pen door on his way out.

He walked inside, and up the stairs. Catching Arail on his way up, and told he about his conversation with Siegwulf and then Morwe. Asking the same questions he had asked Morwe.

Her thoughts were much the same. "So it's agreed then. We take Siegwulf with us, for the time being. But we must watch and be careful until we know more about him." Arail nodded and continued down the steps.

Agoth went up to his room and found a grinning Morwe on his way out with a shirt or two in hand. Agoth packed his remaining clothing, tinderbox, arrows (these he sharpened with the little wetstone in his belt), the few cooking things he had, bed roll, heavy clothing for any nasty weather, and a coil of rope.

"Never know when you might need a good stout rope." He mumbled to himself.

He checked his bow for nicks, and his bow string for fraying. There was none of either. He smiled to himself. So far so good. His daggers were good, and his shield was not splintered or cracked anywhere. His sword he would check later tonight in the armoury. He would pick up a battle ax from there too. He had a spot on the inside of his shield that would hold an ax. Always ready at hand, though it would make his shield arm heavier.

He left his bags in his room and trotted down the steps. Something about preparing to actually do something had lifted his spirits considerably. He went down and escorted Siegwulf up to his room.

"Oh and I have some good news. My companions have agreed that it will be alright for you to accompany us on our quest. The nature of which cannot be releaved yet, I do hope you understand. Anything else you need we'll be happy to help you with. I do suggest you get some rest though. We leave in the morning. Oh and don't worry about your horse. I've seen to him and will continue to do so as the evening wears on."

Agoth turned to leave but stopped halfway. "We've all got things we'd rather forget. This place is a blessed place for rest and forgetfullness. You'll find sleeping easier and more refreshing here. Is there anything else you want that I can get you?" A small smile creaping across his face. This head-of-the-Inn business was actually quite refreshing.
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Postby Claymore » Wed Nov 28, 2007 2:15 pm

Morwë went to his room, the borrowed shirt in his hand. Time he packed and checked his gear. Having already spent three years on the road it was a familiar routine. He threw away the cut and bloodied tunic and replaced it with the one he had borrowed from Agoth. It was a bit too large in the shoulders but who would care? Most of his belongings were still packed and he had already checked everything when he left Ithilien. He checked his weapons meticulously however. He did not know what to expect and he didn't want to have a nasty surprise. His bow had gone a bit 'wild' as his father had used to say and he would have to keep it strung for a while. The string had frayed somewhat on the place where he nocked but he had several spare strings. He had arrows enough, he would just have to retrieve them after battle for arrows usually did not have the length his bow required. His dagger and his sword where in a good shape with no nicks he could see and well honed. He thought of getting a quarterstaff but dismissed the idea. They would travel on horse-back and the staff would only hinder him. He rose from his bed but suddenly everything started to spin again. He wildly grasped at something for support while his vision blackened.
Stay calm. It will pass, it will pass
His vision narrowed a bit more but before it went all black it began to widen again. Hawk slowly let out his breath. Suddenly he noticed Antaka who had poked her head around the corner when she caught his panicky and confused thoughts. She gave an asking whine.
-It's nothing Antaka. It passed. I'm just not as strong as I thought yet. I'll only have to be careful not to overexert myself.
The she-wolf came nearer and laid her head on his lap. He began to stroke her head somewhat absently.
-I just hope it won't happen in time of need. If only we knew what we were facing.
'Who sent those half-orcs for example,'he asked almost to himself. 'Is there someone out there who is actively searching for the orb, or did the Bat herself sent for them?.....And we don't even know what the orb exactly is, why it woke up and how dangerous it is.'
He sighed.
-I just hope we will find the answers we need in Imladris.'
Antaka, a bit confused by this sudden monologue, tried to cheer her friend up by licking his face. Morwë laughed.
-You are difficult to bring down aren't you?
She yipped and wagged her tail.
-Come on we still have to prepare the food of the journey. I guess we will want to travel as quickly as possible.
He saw Antaka lick her lips.
-Oh no bottomless pit. This time you'll have to keep yourself in check. You're NOT going to steal food.
The she-wolf's ears dropped a bit. Hawk smiled and went down the stairs to the kitchen. Willum was busily preparing breakfast for the customers. Morwë only realised now that in all the confusion of Siegwulf's arrival he hadn't eaten yet and he was still very hungry. He took the opportunity to snatch a heel of bread while he was looking for provisions. Antaka made her puppy eyes to poor Willum and was rewarded but a bone with still a lot of meat on.
'Antaka, I said something, didn't I?' he said with an amused tone. The she-wolf dropped her ears but didn't look particularly guilty.
-You're incorrigible.


The rest of the day was spent making preparations. All of them were used to travelling so everything went smoothly. Siegwulf didn't have to pack in fact and he snatched some sleep while the others were busy. The young Rohirrim obviously had had a rough time. Hawk had another fit of dizziness while looking for spare blankets but he managed to hide it from the others. He didn't want to burden them with worries about his health. Only Antaka knew but connected as they were it was impossible to hide something from her.
That night, with Antaka's warm body pressed against his back, he had trouble falling asleep.
Where will this all lead us? We know next to nothing about this thing
A chilling thought came over him.
We may not even survive
Antaka gently nipped his ear.
Sleep. It's good
She was right, it woudn't help if he was tired.


The next morning greeted them with a clear sky as if nothing was wrong. A gentle breeze was blowing and with the sun warming their backs only the first yellowing leaves reminded them that summer was coming to an end. But Morwë wasn't fooled by this and he was tense. The others were too in some degree he noticed. They mounted and were seen off by those who stayed behind.
' Is everything going to be okay Hawk?' Willum asked. 'You're still pretty pale.'
-Don't worry about me. We will be fine. If we stay on the move they may not even find us. In fact I think you should worry about yourself instead. They might come here to find out where we went.
-Well, they will have a very special welcome.
Morwë smiled at the hobbit's courage.
' Come on,' Agoth urged. " Off to Rivendel.'
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Postby SmogsFlame » Wed Dec 05, 2007 7:35 pm

Agothien, long spear in hand and shield on his back, sat atop Hatha watching the terrain pass by him with careful interest. He did not care for getting surprised by any evil things.

He his nerves were not quite as on edge as he would have expected. Both he and his companions were more then capable of handling themselve and all armed to the teeth. Agoth had made sure of that. He himself had brought a double headed battle ax that he had fastened to the inside of his shield, along with an extra quiver of arrows wrapped inside his bedroll.

He shuddered at the thought of what else was wrapped carefully inside his blanket. The whole cursed reason for this dangerous mission. Hopefully they would find some answers in Rivendell. If anyone knew what the evil objects were and what to do with them the elves would. The ones that are left that is.

He couldn't really blame the elves for leaving Middle Earth. If he could leave would he stay? He probably would not stay if he had the option of leaving. What was there here for him? He asked himself.

He shrugged, and shook his head to clear it. Now was not the time to be daydreaming. His friends were counting on him. How he came by this honor he still could not figure. Either one of the elves would be better suited, he thought.

He drew himself up in the saddle and took a deep breath, letting his left hand drape over the pomel of his sword, he twisted in the saddle to look Morwe, Arail, and Siegwulf each in the eye and offer them an encouraging look. Morwe nodded, as did Arail. Siegwulf barely met Agoth's gaze and only offered a weak smile.

There was much about the man that puzzled him, and Agoth planned on speaking much with him on the trip.

A small yip down beside Agoth caused him to look down, as Hatha danced a step away from the noise. Antaka was looking up at him with an almost frown on her face. Agoth laughed. "Don't worry. I had not forgotten that you are also part of our group."

She seemed pleased and continued to trot slightly ahead of the group testing the air with her nose and super sensitive ears. The wolf had an uncanny way of seeming to know what one was thinking. At times Agoth found it unerving but mostly he did not. A fact he found odd. He shrugged, and turned again to look at his friends.

"How are we holding up back there? Nobody tired? Or need to stop to take care of some business?" Agoth chuckled to himself.
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Thu Dec 06, 2007 4:50 am

The air was clear as glass as morning came, the sun upholding the illusion of summer for a while longer. But Arail felt the sadness in the wind caressing her cheek; she had felt it every year for as long as she could remember. The trees were mourning the approaching winter; it was almost a lament that came to her ear. A bit of it rubbed off on her, but it could not diminish her relief at leaving at last, nor the uneasiness that seemed to hover over the entire party, tenseness in wait for an unexpected attack. She sighed. Nothing to do about that, not now, no use to mull over the endless stream of all possible maybes. It would indeed be sad to leave this place behind, but the road called, and that road led to Imladris, however briefly, and after that... To the East.

Saying their goodbyes the group set out, keeping a good pace without interruptions. The wolf trotted ahead of them, her fine senses picking up anything that they might miss, and when Arail strained her eyes she could see Menelor soaring through the air high above the party. Evil would be hard pressed to sneak up on them undetected. But it did not necessarily have to sneak up on them, it was already in their midst. She cast an uneasy glance at the bundle wrapped behind Agoth’s saddle. He had accepted to carry it without a word, but she did not have to be able to read minds to sense that he was wondering. Wondering why not Morwë or she herself took it, when Elves were known for their strength and ability to resist things beyond human measures. For her part the answer was simple: she was afraid.

She was loathe to admit it, but it was the truth none the less. The spirit had been inside her mind, had very nearly crushed her, it only rook the memory of how close it had been to make her shiver, and now she feared that she would not be able to win a second time. True, now that she was aware of it she could take precautions, but keeping the protective walls up around her mind was tiring, and she would need all her strength if an attack actually came. She did not doubt that it would, but she was unsure of how it would come, if the Vampire would dare attack all their minds at the same time.

Always questions, always what ifs. Hopefully they would find some answers in Imladris. Shaking her head and berating herself for letting her mind wander, she scanned their surroundings. White flashed by in the corner of her eye; the fletching of one of her arrows. It abruptly recalled the memory of the white seagulls wheeling above the water of Forlond, the home of her youth. It was odd, really, that she still thought of herself as young, when she had lived past her second millennia, but there was still so much that she did not know, so much to learn. And in this group she was by far the oldest, in all probability at least one or even two millenia Morwë’s senior. Strange. Strange that her heart was not longing more for the sea, especially as she was of Falathrim blood, born and raised by the water, even though it was long since she had lived there now. Strange indeed.

Agoth’s comment brought her back to present time, and, shifting slightly in the saddle, she meant to stay there.
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Postby Claymore » Wed Dec 26, 2007 4:10 am

They went carefully. Antaka scouted ahead and sometimes Morwë would get off his horse and accompany her. Arail's falcon was soaring overhead and they regularly shifted position in the line to avoid that it would always be the same who had to watch their backs.

It was on one of of their scoutings, two days later, that Hawk and Antaka met the ranger. They had split but though they could not see each other through the trees, they were close enough to hear one another if one was in trouble. Suddenly he heard Antaka growl. It was not her threatening snarl, the one she made just before attacking. Rather it was a low growl meant to warn and to scare. He unslung his bow, quickly notched an arrow to the string and broke through the bushes that separated him from Antaka.
'Hold!' he shouted to the man who was aiming at the she-wolf. 'Antaka calm down.'
The man whirled around and directed his arrow to Morwë, only to find himself already held at arrow-point. He had a much shorter bow, one also fit for hunting as well as for war and made to use in the woods. Morwë however was already at full draw and his arrow was aimed at the man's chest while the other still had to draw properly.
-Master, lower your bow and I will lower mine. Antaka won't hurt you, unless you attack her, as will I. I do not wish trouble.
The man squinted in the sun to see who was behind the bow. Hawk stepped aside so that the man did not have to look in the sun.
'You're an elf,' the man said slightly surprised.
-Yes
-They are fewer of you these days. What brings you here? Are you going to the Havens?
- No, me and my companions are going the other way.
-Who are they?
-Who are you master, to ask so much questions and to threaten my friend?
-I'm a ranger it's my duty to know who are crossing the lands of the King. Those last months we've had some unwanted visitors we hadn't seen in years, so you will have to excuse me for being overly suspecting.
-Unwanted visitors?
-Orcs, half-orcs and other scum. We have to be careful. We don't know what this means yet. Most of times they only pass through and steal some livestock, but we got a report that an inn was attacked a month ago and we heard other disquieting tales.
-What happened to that Inn is true. Me and my companions were at the Inn at that time.
-Truly? Could you tell me more?
-I think my companions will be able to tell it better than me. Alone I may forget important information.
-True
The others where quite surprised to see him return with the ranger, but they agreed to tell about the attack. By some unspoken agreement they did not tell the ranger about the orb and Thuringwethil though. The ranger took his midday meal with them after what he left.

'I don't like what that ranger told us,' Agoth said later that day.
'Do you think it's somehow connected with what we're carrying?' Arail nodded to the bulge in Agoth's saddlebag.
-I hope it is not.
' Well we can't be sure of that till we have reached Imladris,' Morwë said while nudging his horse to a trot.
-Come on we still have a bit of road to go.


With the ranger's warning in their minds they went even more carefully than before. They set up double watches at night and only hunted in twos.
By some strange stroke of luck they did not encounter any troubles however. Three days later they entered the Trollshaws. Everyone was on edge by that time.
We've had too much luck . Something is bound to happen sooner or later and we won't like it.
Antaka didn't range out as far as before and Meneldor flew in tight cirkels above the party. The horses too seemed to feel the unease. Hatha, though a well trained warhorse, was skittish and Morthil did everything to honor her nickname. Hawk suspected however that this time it wasn't out of spite. Himself had trouble to calm his mare and Morning, Siegwulf's usually so placid stallion, was pricking his ears by every little sound.
Morwë unslung his bow, keeping only one hand on the reins.
-Have you seen something?
-No, but I don't like this ... calmness. We can expect something nasty I think....soon.
The others followed his example and he heard the sound of swords being loosened in scabbards and strings being tested.
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Postby rowanberry » Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:56 am

The sun was already sinking, and Jarni knew that, they wouldn’t get past the Trollshaws before it would get dark. So, he and his two companions turned from the road, and led their pack ponies into a small dell on the roadside, sheltered by a cliff wall and some coniferous trees. Snorri unburdened and groomed the ponies, while Jarni and Falin gathered some wood and made a fire. The three dwarves had some supper – cram, dried meat, and apples – and then, Snorri took the first watch, while the other two rested.

Jarni wrapped his blanket around him and leaned on the cliff wall. He didn’t like forests very much, although sometime, he had to pass through or take shelter in one. At least in this place, there were some proper bones of the earth visible to make a dwarf feel at home…

Three hours later, Snorri woke him up for his watch. It was dark now, but the moon was rising and giving so much light that he was well able to see their campsite and some ground around it. The ponies moved in the shadows cast by the trees; they seemed somehow uneasy. Jarni thought it somewhat odd, even though he wasn’t any kind of expert with horses; usually, the ponies just ate and dozed rather peacefully when the travellers stopped for the night. And yet, the night was quiet, there was nothing exceptional to be seen…

It was quiet. All too quiet.

Now that Jarni thought of it, it had been so already when they set up the camp. Usually, there was some sound and movement among the trees: birds chirping, squirrels looking for food, the occasional fox passing on its wanderings. Now – nothing.

Then, he thought that he heard something or someone move a bit away from the camp. Of course, it could be just an elk or a deer. But then, there came a sound that sounded like a muffled curse to him.

He stood up and listened for a while. Whoever was moving in the woods wasn’t heading for their camp, but somewhere on his right.

He took a few steps closer to the road, and saw a small light, as if there had been another campfire in the direction to which the nightly wanderers were going.

He went back and woke up Falin. “There’s some strange folk about”, he said. “I’ll go and have a closer look. You keep watch here while I’m gone.”

The other dwarf nodded and took his position. Jarni grabbed his weapons: a travel axe – it wasn’t quite as good as a proper battle axe, but useful in many ways - two throwing axes, and a dagger, and started to follow the strangers, moving as quietly as he could.
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Thu Dec 27, 2007 3:46 pm

The appearance of the ranger and the news he had to tell had unsettled them all even further, and the unspoken tension as they entered the Trollshaws was so thick one could easily have sliced it with a dull buttering-knife. The area they had passed through had been uncharacteristically quiet, and this territory was harsher by far; some nasty surprise was bound to come their way, probably ere the day’s end.

Arail had a harder time than usual to control the black mare, but she knew that for once it was not due to a bad temper. All the horses were nervous and on edge, ready to balk at the slightest odd sound or motion. Not that there was much of that...it was too calm, too still. All rode constantly on edge, scanning their surroundings and keeping a weapon close at hand.

Nothing happened.

Darkness fell over them once more, and camp was put up on routine. If they were extremely lucky and nothing came in their way, they would be out in a matter of days. In her mind, the chances of that sunny outcome were slim. She and Morwë set out together with Antaka to hunt and scout. Animals they found, if scarcely, but nothing else. It was a gloomy and silent meal; all of them were wrapped in their own more or less bleak thoughts, and none felt up to the task of making light chatter. She volunteered to take the two first watches, something to which the others did not object much. She did not need to sleep as often as the humans, and her mind was far too alert to allow rest besides.

The night was even more unnaturally silent than the day had been, not even her sensitive ears could detect the usual activities of nocturnal beasts and birds. It was as if nature itself held its breath for what was coming towards them. Then the itch that had been present between her shoulder blades all day intensified, and she strained her eyes even harder to try and pierce the surrounding gloom. She kept the small fire at her back as she quietly circled the camp-area, not wanting to disturb her night-vision any further. The twin knives lay comfortably in her hands, their blades long enough to label them as short swords. She froze suddenly. There had been something...there! The soft sounds of several feet, trying to move silently through the sparse thickets. It came from the northeast, still a short distance off, but moving straight towards them. Moving soundlessly she crept back to the camp. Crouching by Agoth’s sleeping form she shook him awake, covering his mouth with her hand so any startled cry of his would not give them away. Grey eyes snapped open, and his hand closed instinctively around the sword hilt before he recognised the face that hovered so close to his own, illumined by the soft firelight.

“There are strange folk creeping up on us,” she whispered hurriedly into his ear, “coming from the Northeast, and if they are friendly I am a dwarf! We are under attack! The storm has come over us at last.”
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Postby Claymore » Sun Dec 30, 2007 4:25 pm

It was two hours after midnight, when Antaka nudged him out of sleep.
Something is coming
This woke him up as thoroughly as a bucket of cold water. He immediately grasped his sword that was lying beside his bedroll and looked over to were Agoth lay. Arail had already woken him up. Morwë got up and walked over to were Siegwulf was sleeping. Like Arail had done with Agoth he quickly slipped a hand on the Rohirrim's mouth. The young man stiffened for a second and surprise could be read in his wide-open eyes but as soon as he realised what was going on he relaxed. Hawk removed his hand.
-Be ready. They are coming at last.
Siegwulf nodded and went for his axe and shield. The clearing where they were camping was too small to use his long lance.
Hawk turned his attention back to Arail. ' Arail! Wich way?' he hissed. The other elf nodded north-east.
So they haven't spread out yet he thought with grim satisfaction
The companions settled in the formation they had agreed to. The two Rohirrim with their heavy shields, in the middle where they would bear the brunt of the first charge. The lighter and less-protected elves, right and left, ready to attack the flanks or fold back to protect the backs of the two humans. Antaka had disappeared in the bushes ready to attack their enemy where they would not expect it. The horses, standing at the other end of the clearing, were nervous.
I hope they won't bolt once the blood will start to flow. We can't use that now. Hatha will probably stay and Morthil seems to have strong nerves too but my mare is not a warhorse and neither is Morning for that matter

By now all could hear their attackers approaching. Then suddenly their enemies stopped. Somehow they had noticed that they had lost the advantage of surprise. Faintly Morwë heard a harsh curse, and then the attack came. They were eight or nine orcs and half-orcs in total and the companions would probably all have been dead now if they hadn't expected it.
They are too much to outflank
'Fall back!' he yelled to Arail. They formed a tight circle of flashing steel and two of their enemies fell. The others came more carefully, having seen what the four fighters could do. They concentrated their attack on the elves knowing that without protection they would be easier to kill. The two Rohirrims did not dare to turn to help them, for as soon as they did that their assailants would make use of that and attack them in their backs.
We're not going to make it! We need help!
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Postby rowanberry » Tue Jan 01, 2008 11:37 am

Jarni soon discovered that the suspicious folks were a bunch of orcs and half-orcs, and were trying to sneak at whoever was in the other camp. His hand clenched on one of his throwing axes, but he didn’t do anything yet; if those filthy creatures were going to fight others of their own kind, they could gladly finish each other off.

But, the campers were alerted, before the dark creatures could catch them unawares. When Jarni sneaked closer, he saw that there were four people, two humans and two elves, and something that looked like a wolf; but sure, humans and elves didn’t have wolves in their company? So, it had to be a big dog of some kind.

And very soon it turned out that the orcs outnumbered the humans and elves about two to one. Furthermore, although the two human men seemed to be properly protected, the elves were quite lightly armoured, and the orcs started to press on them.

Jarni grabbed a throwing axe from his belt.

A half-orc with a nasty looking dagger had got dangerously close from behind to Arail, who was fighting off another attacker. But, before it could get its hands on the elf, it fell dead, with a small axe embedded right between its eyes.

At the same moment, Jarni jumped from the shadows, the travel axe in his hands. He swept the nearest attacker off its feet, and then, swung his axe downward on its neck. Amazingly quickly he turned against another one, letting out the ancient war cry: “Baruk Khazâd!
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Wed Jan 02, 2008 8:35 am

Fish-brained fool!’ she cursed herself as she struggled desperately to fight off the large half-orc that seemed all too eager to plant that scimitar of his between her ribs. Her pack lay but a few feet away, and with it her chainmail. What madness had possessed her to forget to put it on, when she had anticipated this attack for days? In these close quarters it was difficult to put her sword to use, and as she was as good as unprotected it was only the superior speed and agility of her kin, paired with the deadly steel of her knives that managed to keep her alive. But for how long? They were still outnumbered, and it would take just one lucky blow from any of their attackers to erase all hope.

She saw a minute opening in the brute’s defence, and quick as thought her blade had found its mark in his chest. Sidestepping to avoid the descent of the body, it was only a sickening thud, followed by a loud groan that alerted her to the presence behind her. Spinning around, knives ready and her heart in her throat, she stared straight into the face of another beast, its hand raised with a wicked looking dagger in a tight clasp and something that looked like a small axe deeply embedded in its face. Turning once more, she caught sight of a small shape that crashed into one of the Orcs, a large axe wielded in its hands. One of the last things she had ever thought to hear rang through the din.

Baruk Khazâd!” A dwarf? Clearly the Valar did not mean to end her song just yet. A small grin tugged at her lips as she got into the fray once more.
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Postby Ulugz » Thu Jan 03, 2008 12:25 pm

The fire was crackling cheerfully away, quite unconcerned that it was making far too much noise for Ûlugz's taste. But the old grey warg laying beside the little orc, had fresh wounds from their last battle. Clean hot water was necessary to change the bandages to keep the flesh-rot away. Not to mention cooked meat was better by far than raw, and these elf cursed woods at least seemed rich in game. Moonshadow and Nightfang were accomplished hunters now, and would certainly bring back plenty for the spit Ûlugz was carving.
A snapping branch in the darkness could have been from any number of harmless causes, but the large ears of both orc and warg were instantly alert. The yell of "fall back!" carried clearly over the more muffled sounds of what was an apparent attempt to ambush a nearby camp.
"Ai-Yah" the tired goblin sighed, shaking her shaggy head, "So much for a quiet night. No friend, you stay here, your wounds are too fresh to fight again tonight" The massive grey warg whined in frustration, but lay back obediently, as Ûlugz strung her powerful black-horn bow. Pausing only a scant second to choose an envenomed arrow, she slipped silently into the surrounding darkness towards the fray.
Suddenly the forest seemed alive with the racket of someone charging heedlessly past the unseen orc, seemingly bent on running recklessly into the fight. The skulking orc cringed as the newest combattant hurled an ax with barely a pause to aim, at an opening in the trees ahead where the sounds of battle were concentrated. Quickly following in the dwarve's wake, Ûlugz arrived in time to see the stocky fellow vault over his first kill and neatly sweep the legs out from under another huge Uruk-burz before cleaving it's thick neck.
“Baruk Khazâd!”
"Oh Ho! A Dwarf! No wonder." The little orc chuckled to herself. "Well dwarves are better as allies than as enemies, and those Mordor apes are in with those meat-wasting wolf killers we're after, or I'm not an Uruk."
And without hesitation she aimed with deadly precision and buried a posionous shaft up to it's black fletchings in the chest of the largest of the remaining brutes. Quickly deciding that these overgrown snaga wern't worth wasting her valuable toxins on, Ûlugz drew and fired three more ebon arrows in rapid succession. Of the trio that were hard pressing a pair of horse-lord looking men, one fell with a clean shot through the eye, she only managed to take out the sword arm of another and wound the third in it's side. Cursing the unpredictible struggle in front of her, the little orc moved into the small clearing drawing her scimitar. Arrows were too risky in this melee now....
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Postby Claymore » Thu Jan 03, 2008 1:34 pm

'Baruk Khazâd!'
Morwë quickly threw a look over his shoulder and was just able to see the strange dwarf plunge in the melee, before he had to snap his attention back to his foe.
The Valar be praised!
His opponent thought to behead him while he was diverted but Hawk ducked under the half-orc's swing and his sword drew a red line over his enemy's belly.
I was faster he thought with grim pleasure.
Suddenly he heard the snap of an arrow being released and he feinted out of instinct. He soon realised however that it had not been intended for him as he saw another orc crumple, a black arrow embedded in his eye.
Black? Dwarves don't use black arrows if they use any. And the other people...
His thoughts were interrupted by a message from Antaka.
There is another wrong-smelling-one here in the bushes, firing arrows at the others.
Firing arrows at...... Don't attack! Watch him. Kill him if he tries to call on reinforcements
The she-wolf's mind withdrew from his.
An orc shooting at the others... An inside quarrel?
He had been so lost in thought that another of the brutes nearly ran him through with his scimitar. He barely deflected the blow with his dagger. The blow jarred his whole arm and he felt a thin line of pain blossom on his side.
Think later! Now you have to keep your attention on this fight.
With the dwarf fighting at their side and the mysterious help of the orc the fight was now equal. A corner of Morwë's mouth curled up slightly.
Good
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Postby SmogsFlame » Fri Jan 11, 2008 12:12 am

Agothien crouched low. Shield deflecting attack after attack. He was angry. The fight was awakening olds angers and fears. He was swinging the large double bladed ax as if it were a light training sword.

'Baruk Khazâd!'

"What now?!?" Agoth growled.

"Help, that's what." His mind asnwered.

The fight was starting to turn, and it only further invigorated him. Lifting the ax high over his head, he hurled it at an oncoming orc. One of the blades embedded itself almost completely in the orc's chest, and it fell shrieking to the ground.

Deflecting a sword blow with his shield, he drew his short sword, and began weaving a semi circle about him and Morwe at his back. The orcs slowed, but only for a moment at the sight of the sword. "Come and get your share, orc filth!" He screamed.

It took all that was in him to wait and let them close the distance before he attacked. He planted his feet and turned his shield. Then never letting the sword go far from his body, he adopted the style that had saved his life, and that of countless Rohirrim during the War of the Ring.

Most orcs outweighed and outmuscled humans. So one would not easily win a fight with full on blows. The style that had been practiced for years by his people was fast and light. Blocking and slashing in glancing blows to minimize the damage to his sword arm. Keeping the shield almost square in front of himself he wove a tight pattern close to his body and simply let the orcs blunder into it. Slashing a cutting multiple times, in a short amount of time.

An arrow's wistle, caused him to duck his head under his shield and double his body over slightly at the waist. An instinctive move, but it cost him. An orc swung his ax and it connected solidly on the shield, knocking Agoth to the ground. Letting go of the shield he rolled, once, twice, and sprang to his feet.

The roll saved his life but nearly cost Morwe his. Agoth's move had left his back exposed and Agoth had to fight twice as hard with sword and dagger to regain ground. He fell three more orcs before he realized that no more were to be found.

Cleaning his dagger on his pants leg his sheathed it. His shield had a sizeable knick in it, but the blow had been across the grain, and had not split it. Putting it on his arm he turned to survey his surroundings.

Friends, all seemingly OK. Dwarves, seemingly friendly and unharmed. But there was something else, something wrong. Then it hit him there was an orc armed with a wicked scimitar standing in the shadows off to one side.

"Orc!" Agoth cried. He turned his profile towards the orc. Left foot leading. Shield high, sword pointed around the side. He walked a few steps to put the orc more towards the center of his companions. If it ran it would surely be cut down in an instant. But why wasn't it? Neither was it attacking.

"Odd." He thought.
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:40 am

The attackers had stopped coming. It took a second for her mind to register that, her eyes scanning the area and finding only friends. Agoth stood close by Morwë, and Siegwulf was not far from them. All seemed unharmed, as did the unknown Dwarf that had come to their rescue. But there was something... She had begun moving toward it even before she had figured out what it was. She circled the creature, placing herself so that its sharp nose would not catch her scent, her soundless step giving away nothing. It was smaller than she had thought at first, merely the size of a goblin, but it held a strong grip on that wicked scimitar and an enemy was an enemy regardless of size. The small ones could often be the most dangerous. She saw that Agoth had also caught sight of the orc and had begun moving towards it, but then he stopped, a puzzled look crossing his features. The creature wasn’t moving, it just stood there. Fine by her. She glided up behind it, her eyes demanding her companions to keep quiet. The orc yelped when the keen blade of her knife pressed against its neck, making futile attempts to escape, but even though it was surprisingly strong for its size she had the upper hand this time.

“Don’t hurt me!” it pleaded in remarkably good Westron, even though the guttural accent of its own tongue was still present.
“And why should I let you live, orch?” Her tone was harsh, there was nothing she could have done to change that even had she wanted to, and her eyes simmered with hate.
“You and your kind are an abomination; I have fought you for all the years of my existence. Would you have me believe that you are any different from them? Would you not have killed us all in our sleep if you had had your chance?” She simply could not help herself; when it came to orcs no ice walls in all of Arda could control her fire.
“I am a friend,” it stated. Its voice seemed tight like from pain, as if the contact it had with her knife caused great discomfort apart from the sharp edge pressed against its throat.

“Arail! Wait!” It was Morwë’s voice that called to her. When she looked at him he seemed to be listening to something, surprise and disbelief crossing over his face.
“I think, I think it is telling you the truth. Antaka has found some wargs, and...It seems she came to aid us.” His words came slowly, as if he was trying to put things into order, not quite believing them.
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Postby SmogsFlame » Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:14 pm

Agoth coughed and sputtered, supified. Eyes large, he stared at his friend as if the elf's ears had grown over three feet tall. He had trouble finding his voice.

"Wh-What! Morwe, my friend, have you been hit on your head?! By all thats good and green in all Middle Earth I cannot believe that you just said that this orc," He spat vehemently. "is a friend, means us no harm, and came to our aid."

Tears of anger and hatred stung his eyes and his hand hurt it was clamped on his sword hilt so hard. He could not help it when he began to shake in silent fury.

Orcs were no friends of his. To him they represented all that was evil and wrong with the world, and were a constant reminder of everything that had been taken from him. Never would he (if he could help it) spare a single one of they're cursed race.

"I speak the truth." Arail translated for the orc.

Agoth's eyes bored holes into the orc, as if his hate alone would be enough to spear the creature to death.

"People say many things that they do not mean when there is a blade at their throat. Surely you of all creatures would know all about what things are said when blades cut to pieces all that is good and decant. Things like women, and children, and old men. What things have you heard orc spawn?!? Women screaming as they and their children were slaughtered. Men scream things as well. Especially when they see the one they love cut down from behind by cold blooded animals like you."

Tears were openly streaming down his face, and his whole body quaked. He stared silently at the poor orc still under the close gaurd of Arail's blade. His next words were so quite they were almost a wisper. "What have you to say to that orc? Explain yourself if you wish, before I kill you."
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Postby Ulugz » Sun Jan 13, 2008 12:26 am

The overgrown Mordor-spawn that caught her poisoned arrow in the chest, was still twitching and foaming at the mouth as the fight ended. Ûlugz chuckled nastily to herself, even though she no longer served the the white wizard of Angrenost, old rivalries died hard, and the pompous attitudes of the Uruks bred to serve the fallen eye itself, had always irratated the little orc. The bright gleam of gold at the monster's throat caught the little orc's eye, and she paused for a closer look, momentairly forgetting her surroundngs. The cold reminder of a knife at her throat, was a sharp surprise. Even her remarkably keen ears had failed to regster the silent elf's approach.
"Don't hurt me" she yelped, the elven steel burning her flesh with the mere proximity of the cold fire of it's poisonous purity.
“And why should I let you live, orch?” the elfess hissed with hatred
had she wanted to, and her eyes simmered with hate.
“You and your kind are an abomination; I have fought you for all the years of my existence. Would you have me believe that you are any different from them? Would you not have killed us all in our sleep if you had had your chance?”
"I am a ...Friend" Ûlugz croaked the recently learned word with difficulty. Ally was an easier concept to understand, but the day-folk put great store by the bonds of trust that came with their friendships. The wiry little goblin owed her life to an elf and several humans who had taught her this friendship concept years before, and she hoped the word would ease the fears of these new people. It didn't seem to be working though.
"Ai-yah" she thought to herself in disgust "Of course it would have to be a sparkly that killed me."
"I speak the truth" the little orc gasped, slipping partially back into her childhood black-speech in distress.
Surprisingly it was another elf that came to her defence. A dark lad with the smell of wolf about him, spoke of someone finding the wargs as he pleaded with the others to wait.
Fear for the wounded warg left alone by the fire flooded the little orc, causing the terrible pain of the elven kinfe to be momentarily forgotton. Surging against the surprising strength of the elfess restraining her the little orc shouted
"Don't you hurt that warg! He's already wounded from fighting these cub killing Snaga earlier. You day loving tree runners'd have twice as many of these tunnel-less scum to fight if it wern't for him and the pups. Only a Morghul-rat'd have so little honor as t'kill with no sport like that."
The knife at her throat was pulled away, slowly, as if with great reluctance. as the humans and elves alike gaped at an orc challenging thier honor over the life of a warg.
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Postby rowanberry » Sun Jan 13, 2008 7:21 am

Jarni was at least as surprised as the others when still someone else joined the fight, shooting arrows at the orcs from behind. And, his surprise was even greater when that mysterious helper turned out to be another orc! He felt the old disgust and hatred of those filthy creatures raise its head inside him.

And yet, this orc had only killed members of its own species.

He half expected another orc hoard to appear from the shadows, but it soon turned out that this small goblin seemed to be alone.

Jarni could also sense something else in the orc that was unusual. He couldn't quite specify what it was, though.

The female elf held a knife on the orc's throat, and one of the human men, a man of Rohan judging from his looks, also spouted death threats at it. Jarni stepped in front of the man, who looked like he could attack the orc at any time.

"Don't kill it just yet. There is something strange with this orc."

The man looked at him, furiously. "And, who are you then? Are you in league with that... that..."

Jarni bowed politely. "Jarni son of Rogmar, at your service. And I definitely don't have anything to do with that filthy creature; Durin's folk don't have dealings with orcs and goblins!" He spat in the direction of the orc. "My travelling companions are respectable dwarves, and are watching our camp some distance to the northwest along the road. I noticed the gang of enemies heading your way, and followed them because I knew they couldn't be up to anything good. But, this little goblin doesn't seem to belong to that party."
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Postby Arail Fordorthien » Sun Jan 13, 2008 12:19 pm

Silence followed the orc’s angry outburst. Surprise registered on the faces she could see, the same surprise that she felt but would not dare to let surface. Surprise mingled with the constantly flaming anger that she tried very hard to keep in check. This orc dared to question her honour! Her hand was nearly quivering from the held back emotions as she forced herself to slowly ease the knife away. She did not trust herself to not slit its throat in a weak moment. Not that the orc would get very far regardless if it would try to bolt. Agoth’s eyes were brimming with hate and grief as he glared at the orc, ready to spring on it any moment, his painful memories clearly clouding his mind as much as her own hate was affecting her. Siegwulf seemed tense, trying to keep his eyes trained on the orc while at the same time carefully watching Agoth, a hint of understanding evident in his eyes, and glancing a bit nervously at Morwë. He seemed the calmest of them all, probably listening to Antaka. She had not fully understood the bond between him and the she-wolf, but she did not wish to pry into other’s secrets, and now was certainly not the right moment to do so. What he said about the orc was greatly disturbing, though. As were the news brought forward by the strange dwarf, Jarni.

She knew that orcs fought eachother almost as willingly as they fought anyone else, but that one lone orc, as it seemed accompanied only by a warg or two, would attack another band; she could not put it together. The fiend might very well be lying through its teeth to save its own hide, as far as she knew that would not be beyond one of that wretched race. She stepped slowly in front of the orc, sheeting her knife as she did so.

“If you wish to save your hide, orch, you’d better tell us what you are up to. But speak the truth, and speak quickly, or our patience might wear out.” The orc seemed unwilling to answer, whether out of fear or stubbornness, she could not tell. Stubbornness might not be the wisest of characteristics to employ when faced with five hostile warriors, she thought dryly. Still nothing but silence. It truly got at her nerves, and coupled with that impudent remark about her honour, she could not keep quiet. Her bearing was rigid, hands kept purposefully at her sides so as not to frighten it; her eyes and voice were cold as ice when she spoke.

“You have my word that I will not do anything to harm you or your wargs if you do not act against me or my friends first. May my soul never leave the Halls of Mandos if I break that vow.” She took a step toward the orc, her tone low as she continued. “But prove me right and you won’t live to regret it. Is that enough to reassure you? Speak!”
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Rivendell

Postby Andalion » Sun Jan 13, 2008 1:14 pm

It was late. Or early, depending on how you looked at it. The cold breeze of night flushed out bad dreams and dark thoughts, spreading a new layer of serenity over and already tranquil place. Rivendell was at peace this night. Many were still awake, but those that were stayed silent at this hour, listening to the nocturnal life about them as only the elven kind could. One of them was not of the elves, though, and yet he stood as their equal, the perfect portrayal of the wild serenity that Rivendell clung to. At least, this was the outward appearance, and to some extent the degree of control that this man had over himself. The only bit of him that made his tenseness obvious was the way his he gazed down at the flow of the water from the patio on which he stood.

“You should find your peace for the night, Andalion.”

He didn’t have to look over his shoulder to know who it was. His elven friend was the only one to sound so comfortable around him in Imladris. The fair-haired boy of an elf (yet of course, he was older than Andal), stepped up beside him, placing a delicate hand on the stone rail.

“Sleep is the place of peace, my friend,” the elf continued.

“Not for me.” They contrasted almost perfectly. For every bit of sublime grace the elf exemplified, Andalion painted a picture of the utter wild. And yet not so much a difference between them that Andalion looked a barbarian. It was more the edge to him, the aura about him that gave off the truly wild appearance. Tonight it seemed, at least to his friend, to be more intense.

“Your nightmares do not keep you from sleeping in the end.”

“Were it that I could go without sleep forever. I would delight to find myself capable of such.”

His elven friend tipped Andalion’s head to look at him. Amber stared into a pale translucence, but to the elf, the lack of color only accentuated the depth. He sighed softly, smiled warmly. “Ah, my friend; it is not for me to say how these dreams shall go, or what it is that they portray. I understand what they contain, true. You have told me that much. But they grow stronger and darker the more unsettled you are…so why have you chosen to come to Imladris?”

Andal smiled softly. “I felt it was necessary.”

“Which was it this time?”

“It was the wind.”

His friend cocked his head, eyes closing for a moment, lips pursing. “It will come soon, then?”

Andalion looked back down into the water below, finding solace in how easy it was on the eyes…his eyes. The water was his brother, the wind his sister, the earth his mother, the great mountains his father. With the quiet touch of a sister the water eased his mind. This was all he had.

“Yes,” he said. “Very soon.”
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Postby Claymore » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:23 am

Like Head-of-the-Pack had said she watched the wrong-smelling-one. When the wrong-smelling-one joined battle however Antaka decided that it wasn't of use anymore and went to investigate an even more intriguing thing. She had smelled wolves. There was another pack close. She followed the smell. Strangely it was mingled with that of the wrong-smelling-one. Finally she found them. A old grey wolf even taller than she was and two younger ones somewhat smaller than herself. She had seldom met other wolves but she knew the courtesies. She let them smell her first as she was the visitor but she did not show any submissive behavior. She was of another pack, none of them where of a higher or lower rank than her. Finally when the the courtesies were paid she asked them what had led them there. The response she got was one of the most unexpected. Wolves however can't lie and she knew their story for true. She send a message to Head-of-the-Pack.


Morwë observed the goblin. Everything was screaming to him to kill that one too but he was curious. Why had it helped them? He would have to act quickly however if he wanted to get that information. Arail was tight to slit the creature's neck right now. He was tempted to let her do it. The fact the orc had killed the others didn't mean it meant no harm to them. But Antaka's message got in between. Hawk's eyes widened.
-Arail! Wait!
Arail's head whipped around.
-I think, I think it is telling you the truth. Antaka has found some wargs, and...It seems she came to aid us.
The others were surpirsed if not shocked outright. But though they did not like what he said, they did not kill the orc. He sighed. Never in his life would he have imagined that he would have to defend a goblin on day. His hand was still itching for his sword but he contained himself. If Antaka spoke the truth, and she always did, this one at least had the right to tell it's story.
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Postby Ulugz » Wed Jan 16, 2008 11:55 pm

“You have my word that I will not do anything to harm you or your wargs if you do not act against me or my friends first. May my soul never leave the Halls of Mandos if I break that vow.” She took a step toward the orc, her tone low as she continued. “But prove me right and you won’t live to regret it. Is that enough to reassure you? Speak!”

"Humph" Ûlugz grunted in reply. The hall of Mandos ment nothing to her, but the statement itself was reassuring. The situation was still dangerous, but when elves started spouting their mythology, it usually ment they were willing to listen.
"What I'm up ta is almost the dwarf's height, I doubt I'll be gitten any taller." She growled in her thickly accented Westeron "I've nothing 'ginst yer folk. Fact is, any help killing these stinking beasts, I'll take. Yer was fightin' my enemys, I joined in, nuthin more.

"Why are you enemys with your own Kind? one of the yellow-hairs demanded, disbelieving.

"What!? This muck? They aint my kind any more than yer kin to a hobbit! These scum r'spawn of the fallen tower. They'r big 'n mean but dumb as a stone-troll. The fools'l burn a whole village fer no reason. Not fer slaves fer the pit or meat fer the pot, they'll just let everything lay to rot'n go t'waste. Then the goblins and our wargs git the blame when the stupid king's men come a slaughtering in revenge."
The little orc breifly gave vent to a string of untranslatable orcish curses before spitting.
"They'l even kill wargs fer sport, tho cutti'n up a den full of helpless cubs aint very sporting. I don't know what got this bunch so far from the ash-heap they'r from, but I aim t'drive 'en back, even Iffen the wargs 'n I are alone again."
As she spoke, the little orc carefully laid her scimitar down at her clawed feet. Gingerly she touched her already blistering throat, the elf-blade had not needed to cut to leave it's mark on her flesh.
"d'yer mind?" she grated, indicating her drinking flask
"I find I don't have the spit t'spare like Jarni-Son of Rogmar there. Now, now, don't git yer beard in a knot master respectable dwarf. Durin's folk may not've dealt with goblin kind. But many a'nuther dwarf hall's bigger on account of a goblin's exploding powders. We can share a mountian without fighting over it."
The combination of distrust, disbelief, and outright hatred on the faces surrounding the beligerent little orc was only to be expected. Humans were understandably not happy about being considered tasty prey by uruk-kind, and the yellow-hairs were as protective of their horse-flesh as Ûlugz was of the wargs. Dwarves were jealous of the caverns, that the goblins were forced to share with them. And elves, well, elves were elves. They had some weird notion that orcs were a corrupted imitation of themselves. Not much room for reconciliation there. Not that the uruks ever cared to try.
Still, no-one was attempting to kill her yet, this might just be surviveable.
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Postby SmogsFlame » Fri Jan 18, 2008 1:53 pm

Agothien opened and closed his mouth several times. He looked around at the people around him in a similar state. None in the company had ever heard an orc speak so. Especially when it was outnumbered five to one.

A typical orc would be squealing and wimpering and begging for mercy by now. "No." He thought. A typical orc would never have let itself be captured alive.

"So what?" Part of him argued. "What difference does that make? An orc is an orc no matter how it speaks. And all orcs are of a like mind. Kill!"

"But this one has proved otherwise." He frowned at the unseen voice in his head that was argueing on the side of the little orc.

Agoth finally manages to find his tongue. "Nothing against us, you said? But in nearly the same breath you admitted to having tasted the flesh of my brothers, my brother's wives, and my brother's children at least once. For that you deserve death."

"Answer me this small one. Why should we spare you? To us you are an enemy. And one dead now, is one less to bread more for tomorrow." Agoth cocked his head to one side observing the little creature. Everything about this one was wrong.

"Why have you not asked that we spare your life? Only that of your wolves? What reasurance do we have that you'll not bring a company of your wolf riding kind down upon us even if we were to free you? Perhaps even now you are simply distracting and stalling us while more of your goblin kind ambush us whilst we debate. Better we kill you quickly and be moving on."
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