Adventures of Caelereth

Archives => Frozen Darkness => Topic started by: ghun on May 14, 2009, 12:31:40 AM

Title: Orc Encampment
Post by: ghun on May 14, 2009, 12:31:40 AM
Ghun stumbled over bodies, his own kind and human, as he made his way across the battlefield, stepping on frozen bodies hearing their bones crunch under his feet.

His left side was bleeding profusely and every chance he could find some loose snow and ice he would stop, put his club down, grab some of the snow and ice and pack it into his wounds to try and stem the blood flow and numb the pain. On one of those occassions he turned and looked back toward the human city. Its wall still stood. Its gate still stands. Hundreds of his countrymen lay dead, but with a grim smile of satisfaction among his kin's dead were many human as well.

He continued southwest past the battlefield to the tents of Ph'ragh's army. Smaller tents encircled the half moon area that spread from one side of the human city to the other. The more important you were to the army the larger your tent and directly in the center of the encampment stood the tallest, Ph'ragh's and his wifes and next to it was his own with Mhr-uck, his Shaman waiting for him.

Two orc guards standing at the entrance of Ph'ragh's tent came to attention when he neared the threshold. He stopped, breathing heavily as one went inside to announce his presence. Soon he came back out, holding the flap of the heavy tent open so that he could go on in.

Ghun marched into the tent. Its floor was covered with multi-colored deer and bear skins; Ph'ragh's wife's influence. She was in one corner of the tent cooking food over a fire. Ph'ragh, along with other leaders, were on the other far side of the tent where is was much colder; pouring over an ice sculpture. The sculpture was created in very crude detail, but as Ghun came closer he could see that it looked liked the human city, along with the river behind it, and where the orcish armies were situated.

Ghun stood there until Ph'ragh acknowledged him with a cursory glance. "What of the battle Ghun?" He asked.

"Walls, gates, stand. Many dead," Ghun responded.

Ph'ragh grunted. "You failed."

Ghun stood there remembering his fallen kin. The sight and sounds of them screaming in pain as they died. The bloated bodies he had stepped around. The wounds he carried. His anger went unchecked."No! You fail! Not take Ghun's advice. Ghun warned but you did not listen. Human city's walls too strong. 'Trebuchet against walls', I said. You wanted ships destroyed. Two are. Two stand. Trebuchet cannot reach. Now, no more boulders to throw."

The leaders of the other clans stepped away as Ph'ragh slowly turned and faced Ghun his face was a mask as he stared at Ghun. Ghun stood there staring back, not giving an nailsbreath. "Leave, all of you, except Ghun," Ph'ragh finally ordered.

The leaders quickly departed.

Ghun did not watch them leave but stared straight at Ph'ragh. After the leaders left Phry'ag walked up to Ghun and without warning, his right hand swept around and slapped Ghun on his cheek. Ghun did not move. He knew he had done wrong by challenging Phry'ag, especially in front of the other clan leaders.

"You will never do that again. You do and I will have your head," Ph'ragh said.

Ghun nodded.

Ph'ragh pointed to a chair. "Sit."

Ghun stumbled over to the chair, using his club to keep him upright and gratefully sat down. Ph'ragh went to the opening of his tent, opened the flap and ordered a soldier to fetch his personal healer and then he closed the flap, turned, and sat down next to Ghun waiting for the healer; both orcs not saying a word.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: Ph'ragh on June 09, 2009, 08:17:50 AM
Once they were alone, Ph'ragh turned back to Ghun.  Ph'ragh wasn't sure he liked this orc.  Before coming here, he had not known the orc, but was stuck with him as his second in command, and now had to live with it.  It wasn't that Ghun was not a brave warrior, or capable fighter. No, in those aspects, Ghun was one of the most fearsome in this army.  Ph'ragh would have a hard time trying to find another that could match the ferocity that Ghun showed in battle.

But, it was the times outside of the melee that Ph'ragh found he couldn't stomach long periods with the orc.  Something in Ghun's blind hatred and short-sighted approach to the battle that irritated him.  Ghun only thought about the next life that he could extinguish; the bloodier the better.  And though Ph'ragh had no love of these humans that had been enemies of the orc tribes for years, he only wanted to do the job.  Win this war and get him and his people, and especially She'tah, back home safely, that was his priority.  But Ghun was more than that.  Ghun wanted to kill just for the sake of killing, and Ph'ragh wasn't sure how that was going to help his people.

"Like always, Ghun, you do not see the whole plan.  You cannot see past the battle in order to see the war.  I have a plan for the tebuchets."  Ph'ragh began to pace the length of his tent, his heavy footfalls echoing in the small area.  He pondered the thought of telling Ghun, but decided against it.  No, it wasn't the time, nor did Ghun need to know.  Still, there were things that Ph'ragh needed done that he knew Ghun was superbly suited to.

"I want you to lead the attack on the south gate.  Iguk almost had it breached last night, but he failed.  I need you to break through their defences.  We need to get inside those walls."  Ph'ragh walked over to the back of the tent, grabbing an object from a pile of hides and casually tossing it onto the floor, where it rolled to a stop near Ghun's feat.  "Don't fail me again, Ghun.  Iguk did twice."

The disembodied eyes of Iguk stared vacantly out from his lifeless head at Ghun's feet.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: ghun on June 10, 2009, 01:51:16 AM
The healer had stitched up Ghun's wounds and then left. Ph'ragh had been sitting there watching but silent until the healer left and only he and Ghun were alone.

Ph'ragh then began speaking. "Like always, Ghun, you do not see the whole plan.  You cannot see past the battle in order to see the war.  I have a plan for the trebuchets."

Ghun balefully stared at Ph'ragh. What plans? No boulders he thought.

"I want you to lead the attack on the south gate.  Iguk almost had it breached last night, but he failed.  I need you to break through their defences.  We need to get inside those walls."

Ghun's eyes opened wide and he smacked his lips in anticipation of another chance to kill more humans as he watched Ph'ragh pace. Finally Ph'ragh had said something that made sense to him. The southern gate of the human's city was more vulnerable and easier to attack in Ghun's eyes. "Ghun will do as Ph'ragh asks. Ghun will break down gate. Ghun will kill all human Pit'ry'uck!"

Then unexpectedly Ph'ragh threw something at Ghun and it rested at his feet. Ghun looked down at sightless eyes staring at him from the skull of Iguk. Iguck had been a close friend and warrior of Ghun's. Ghun slowly lifted his eyes till they rested on Ph'ragh's face, his eyes narrowed and his right fist clenched and unclenched unconciously in anger.

"Don't fail me again, Ghun.  Iguk did twice."

Fail! Ghun did not fail. Ph'ragh failed. One day Ph'ragh's head hang on Ghun's neck. Ghun thought. Ghun stood up, grabbing his club. "Ghun not fail. When attack happen?" Ghun asked.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: Ph'ragh on June 27, 2009, 12:37:53 PM
Ph'ragh was relieved when Ghun had left the tent.  It allowed him a moment of peace, before he had to go outside and take command of his troops.  It promised to be another long night, but he was looking forward to it.  Victory was in sight.

He leaned down and grabbed the braided hair of Iguk's lifeless head.  He stared at it for a moment, then snorted in disdain as he tossed it into the corner of the tent.  One less person to fail him.

"Do I need to have that fool staring at us all night?"

Ph'ragh was somewhat startled by the female voice that came from behind him.  He spun about, then smiled as his wife entered the tent.  "You do not like the heads of your enemies adorning your home?"

She'tah leaned her club against the wall of the tent before stepping toward her husband and embracing him warmly.  "If they are worthy.  Iguk was a fool.  He was not worthy of your trust, and he should have died like a dog.  Cutting off his head was too honourable a death for him."

Ph'ragh held her close, breathing in the strong scent of her mixed with warg, which is where he assumed she just came from.  She was a very strong woman, full of fire and spirit.  He released her and watched as she removed her leather armour. "You have brought the supplies up to the front?"

She'tah nodded.  "Yes.  More stones for the thrower."

Ph'ragh smiled.  "Good."  He grabbed his large club, hefting it in his hands. "Then I go to battle.  Soon we shall break through the walls.  Then a glorious victory."  He turned to leave, but a hand on his arm stopped him and he turned to face his wife once more.

She'tah paused for a second, as her yellow eyes searched her husbands, and her heart and mind desperately tried to find the words.  She then cast her gaze to the floor of the tent.  "Do not get killed, my husband."

Ph'ragh grunted and nodded and was about to leave, when a nagging doubt held him from leaving.  "What is it, She'tah?  Are you injured?"

She'tah shook her head, and chewed her bottom lip.  She had to tell him.  He deserved to know. "I am with child."  The words seemed to catch in her throat as she spoke.

Ph'ragh felt as though a north wind had just blew through the tent, and through him.  For a moment he stood staring at her, at her belly, as if trying to see if it was larger than it had been the last time he saw her, which was only this morning.  He blinked a few times, while searching for words to say.  This was a complete surprise to him.

She'tah searched his face, then her eyes dropped. "You are angry.  I am sorry, husband."

Ph'ragh blinked and stepped toward her. "No!  I am not angry, I am... surprised."  He reached out and placed a trembling hand on her belly. "How long?"

A wave of relief swept over the orcess.  "I believe I have been with child for three months."  She leaned into Ph'ragh and placed her head on his shoulder.  "It shall be a boy.  It will be the greatest warrior our people have ever seen."

A boy?  He was going to be a father.  A son of his own.   Emotions came to Ph'ragh that were very new to him.  Then, a fear came to him as well.  "You will no longer be part of the fighting.  You will stay to the rear."

She'tah pulled back, her eyes ablaze.  "I will not!  I will fight!  I will kill.  Our son will know the blood of our enemies long before he is born.  He will emerge from me knowing what it is to vanquish a human; to savour the taste of victory.  I have that right, husband.  Do not take that from me.  Do not take that from our son."

Ph'ragh studied his wife.  She was determined, he could see that.  There would be no changing her mind.  Yes, his son would be born a warrior.  How could he not, coming from this woman before him.  She was his woman, in every sense, and he was proud of her.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: Ph'ragh on February 18, 2010, 01:49:31 AM
It would be dawn soon, perhaps an hour away.  In the southeast, the blackness of the night was beginning to give way to the obtrusive nature of the injera.  Ph'ragh came in from his walk around the camp.  Beside him walked another orc, one of his trusted leaders.  They entered his command tent.  Iguk's head still stared lifelessly at him.  What did the dead see?

"Bring thrower to wall near gate."

The aide looked questionably at the orcen leader.  "We have no stones for thrower.  Useless human machine."

Ph'ragh smiled with yellowed teeth.  "Not useless.  What of Ghun?"

The aide was obviously troubled.  "We losing ground.  Why you not send more orc there?  Not enough orc to win."

"No.  Not enough orc to win.  Gate too small.  Human too many.  Need bigger gate, then send all orc.  Crush human."  Ph'ragh smashed his fist into the palm of his other hand.  "Human die."

It was obvious that the aide did not agree, and would have sent many more troops to reinforce Ghun and his bloody attack at the southern gate.  Ph'ragh was fine with that.  They didn't have to understand his reasons, as long as they obeyed his orders.  Iguk was a symbol of what would happen if they did not.  He had a plan.  It was a complex plan; one that most of his brethren could not fathom.  Was that to be the fate of his kind?  To never be able to see further into the future than their next meal; their next mate?  Was he so different that he alone saw a larger vision for himself, his family, his people?  This was a war that meant far more than counting individual deeds of heroism.  His son to be born would not have to suffer at the hands of these humans.  Not these humans.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: ghun on February 22, 2010, 09:35:22 AM
A small orc made his way through the encampment seeing the larger tent in the middle, he made his way toward it. He knew that depending upon Ph'ragh's mood he will probably get a hand cut off at best and his head cut off at worst after he delivered this message.

He finally reached Ph'ragh's tent and was met with someone going out of Ph'ragh's tent. The larger orc stared at him. "What you want?" He asked.

"My name is Throg and I have message from Ghun to Ph'ragh," Throg answered.

The aide to Ph'ragh wondered what Ghun's message was? He needed more men, but Ph'ragh was not going to let that happen.

"I will take you inside," the aide said. He rapped on piece of wood hung by the entrance to Ph'ragh's tent and then entered, Throg followed.

"Ph'ragh, a messenger from Ghun," the aide said, noting Ph'ragh's wife standing next to him.

Throg came forward cleared his throat and spoke what he had been ordered to memorize from Ghun. "Ghun say we brake through gate, burn many human houses, take many human lives. If Ph'ragh had given men, city would be ours. Ph'ragh did not give men, human's had time, they kill most of my men. Ghun badly wounded. Ph'ragh not come to help Ghun, Ghun not help Ph'ragh. We go."

Throg stood there awaiting his fate.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: Tharoc Wargrider on February 24, 2010, 06:15:44 AM
Tharoc was quietly grooming his warg in preparation for the coming patrol, going over the mission orders in his head, the route he would take, and which of his troop he would take with him. He was, at 15, by any standards young to be commanding a full troop of orcen warriors, but his combat skills and leadership qualities were beyond question. It didn't hurt, either, that his father was one of the most renowned warg breeders and trainers, not to mention fiercest warriors, in the history of orcen warfare, who had the ear of many of the generals and decision makers.

This was his first posting since qualifying top of his group from the prestigious Ashz-oc Military Training Camp. All he needed now was to take his first head and he would be regarded as not only a Warrior, but more importantly (for him, at least) as an adult.
Although he excelled in all aspects of his training, the one thing he lacked was a killer instinct. His parents, especially his elven Mother, had instilled in him the importance of tolerance towards all others, regardless of race, tribe, religion or creed. His Father, despite his glorious military past, had himself seen the damage the orcs were doing to themselves with their constant warring, which served only to deepen the other races’ hatred towards their kind. In an age where most of the orc tribes had found territories of their own where they could, on the whole, remain unchallenged, actively seeking out confrontation was nothing short of madness.

Coming from such a strong military background, Tharoc struggled oftentimes with the need to prove himself as an orc, which meant on the battlefield, and the need to explore the lands beyond the limits of his territory, learn about the paleskins who lived there, of their customs and heritage, and to teach them of his. Most of all, he dreamed of being one of the first orcs to be accepted outside his own race. How could he think of such a thing when he was expected to kill one of the very people he sought to befriend before he was allowed to go outside his lands.

These thoughts filled his mind much of the time since his posting to this Gods forsaken place. Thankfully, he had been assigned to patrol duty which kept him away from the worst of the fighting and, as yet, he hadn’t had to draw his blade in anger. Still, his luck could only hold out for so long.
He finished brushing the coarse hair on his mounts’ flanks and picked up his heavy Patrol Leaders’ saddle, throwing it easily across the back of Valkree, his constant companion since they were both knee-high to a myrmex. As he reached down for the broad leather straps that held the saddle in place he felt a shove in his back, forcing his face into Valkrees’ ribs. He snapped his head around and stood up sharply, ready to rebuke whoever it was that thought it would be funny to push him and expecting it to be Iguk, a soldier from his home village who had been inside the tent for what seemed like an age already.

His eyes narrowed and he growled to himself when he saw the back of Ghun stomping his way angrily away from Commander Ph’ragh’s tent. He despised that bad-tempered bastard. “Now there’s one ‘ead ah’d tek gladly, an’ never even a secon’ thought,”  he said to himself. He punctuated his words by spitting a large gobbet of steaming spit after the orc. He couldn’t understand why Ph’ragh tolerated the little shit. Ph’ragh was an orc with honour, killing only when no other option was available. Well, most times at least.
Ghun was a different beast altogether. He was a throw-back to the days when orcs had to fight for their survival, kill or be killed. He‘d slay a dozen enemies just to feel their blood on his face. He killed for one reason and one reason only; to satisfy his own blood lust. There were even rumours amongst the lower ranks that he’d been removed from his previous posting after executing his whole squad for not slaying the women and children of a village they had taken over. Not that Tharoc doubted Ghun's capabilities on the field of battle. His name was legendary amongst all the orc tribes. He'd seen with his own eyes the ease with which the one-armed thug tore his way through rank after rank of enemy troops. Mind you, it was the bloke who took his arm that Tharoc knew he should be wary of.

Just then, he spied Ph’ragh’s wife, She’tah, slip under the flap of the Commander’s tent. “Damn, she’s a fine lookin’ female,”  he thought to himself, knowing better than to put voice to his opinions on that matter. She was a bloody fine warrior, too. Fierce as any male, but with the respect and honour in battle he himself aspired to. She’d been keeping herself away from the fighting of late, though, he’d noticed, and the way she held her hand across her muscular stomach as she approached the tent gave Tharoc an idea why.

“Well,”  he sighed to himself, “if’n ah'm reet about ‘er, th’Commander’ll be wantin’ t’finish this battle soon as possible ah shun’t wonder.”  As he mounted his warg and rode across to the huddle of orcs waiting nearby, he wondered also about just what that would mean for him.

Title: Re: Orc Encampment
Post by: Ph'ragh on March 09, 2010, 12:45:09 AM
Ph'raqh stood there, listening to the message relayed by the small orc.  His yellow eyes narrowed at the threat from Ghun.  That orc was going to be trouble.  He couldn't afford to lose any men right now.  And he sure did not need to deal with this.  He looked over to his wife.  "Leave us."

She'tah nodded and left the tent.  She well knew that tone of voice from her husband.  Just as well, for she needed to check on the wargs.

When the female was gone, Ph'ragh returned his attention to the messenger.  What to do about Ghun?  Really, there was not choice in the matter.  This was a challenge to his authority.  There could only be one result.

Ph'ragh stepped toward the messenger, and smiled through yellowed fangs.  "Do not be frightened.  I do not hold you to blame for Ghun's treason."  He placed a gentle hand on the messenger's shoulder.  "I need you to do me a favour.  I need you to deliver a message back to Ghun.  Can you do that?"

The messenger nodded.

Ph'ragh smiled once more.  "Good.  I need you to tell him this."  A bone knife slipped between the orc's ribs and pierced his heart.  Ph'ragh's grip on him tightened as the orc struggled for only a moment, as death came quickly.  Releasing the orc to fall to the floor, Ph'ragh looked at the aide.

"Take his head to Ghun.  Tell him that if he turns coward and leaves, I will hunt him across the heaths and anywhere he might run.  I will spread word of his cowardice to every clan I come across and he will never again sleep through the night without wondering who will show up to take his head."  Ph'ragh sheathed his bloodied knife and stepped from the tent.

He stormed over to where the thrower was being hauled by wison closer to the wall.  A slight changing of the wind made his nose wrinkle.  He turned to see several orcs dragging large leather skins wrapping around a bulk inside them.  One orc stopped, as the skin he was dragging suddenly spilled its contents.  A bloated body rolled out onto the snow.  Ph'ragh snarled and unconsciously took a step backward. 

Plague.  How many had died from this curse?  There were only a few in the orcen horde who could even handle the bodies.  Those who had suffered from the disease and somehow lived through it.  Not many, and those that did were often shunned as being touched by death.  Still, Ph'ragh saw a use for them.  Once one had the disease, it seemed as though they could not get it again.  If that were true, then they could handle the bodies of plague victims safely.  That made them valuable, especially if you wanted to use those bodies as a weapon.

Whether they broke through the wall, whether they invaded the city and dealt much death, Ph'ragh was going to deal these humans a blow that would be felt for generations.