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Author Topic: Orcen duelling. A field report by Ishmael Valaire, researcher to Azhira El'rosse  (Read 6278 times)
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Tharoc Wargrider
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« on: 26 August 2008, 00:12:13 »

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                             ORCEN DUELLING

Whilst it is commonly held that any dispute arising between orcs is settled instantly and with severe violence, recently an hitherto unknown practice has been observed in the Heaths of Eph’denn region of Northern Sarvonia, the extreme southern limit of Osther-oc territory.

A researcher working for Azhira El’rosse on the relationship between the Kaaer'dár'shín tribe and the northern orcs was witness to this fascinating event and dispatched a report back to her by horse-messenger immediately afterwards. The report is presented here exactly as it was written by the researcher.

RESEARCHER: 973VAL
REPORT NO: 1347/22
DATE: 19th SLEEPING DREAMERESS  1668AS

“Mistress El’rosse, I have today been witness to the most remarkable event I think I have ever seen. I am sure that no researcher, even you yourself in all your travels, will have come across such a rare thing as this. I shall endeavour to describe it to you to the best of my memory, so that you may see for yourself what excites me so.

As you are aware, I have been following the northernmost boundary of the Themed’lon Forests for several weeks now researching the Kaaer'dár'shín/Osther-oc relationships in this volatile area. The Kaaer'dár'shín guide you recommended, Varek, is, as you said, an excellent companion, and has afforded me a view of this region which would otherwise have been hidden from me. His knowledge of this area, its people, and of their daily lives is, in my humble opinion, unsurpassed.

However, this is all by-the-by and of no real import to my tale, which I feel certain will be of great interest to you and make an excellent addition to your presentation to the Compendium keepers.

This morning, as I was packing my traveling kit ready for the day's ride, Varek appeared breathlessly out of the small copse of trees we had camped beside, urging me to hurry, as “Friend tell Varek big fing in north. We can 'urry.” While I stood trying to decipher his strange dialect, he was all the while stuffing his few belongings into his pack, and pressing me to do the same. It was obvious that something had stirred his excitement, so I hurriedly finished packing my horse and set off after him across the fields to the north.

When I overtook him a few minutes later, he had calmed down sufficiently to explain in simpler tongue where we were going. Apparently, he had taken a walk into the trees to relieve himself of some great burden, where he chanced upon a local man of his acquaintance. This fellow, having heard of our presence in the area, had come seeking him with some information, in the hope of receiving some small consideration. After convincing the man that I was unable to offer any such token, but assuring him that if the information was as important as he professed it to be, then Mistress El’rosse would be sure to hear of his valuable assistance (it never fails to astound me how many hitherto firmly locked doors your name provides the key to!), the man told Varek that a duel was to be fought at the place where the Kharim River divides into its East and West branches, just west of Eph’Denn, and north of K'taaj. He did not know the precise location of the duel, but suggested that we cross the river and look towards the Heaths, as this was the most likely place. It was to take place before the sun reached its full height on this very day.

Here, Varek stopped talking, but kept glancing sideways at me, as if he had some secret to tell and he was just waiting for me to ask him to reveal it. I decided to allow him his small victory and told him that if that was all, then I could see no point in rushing like this, as petty feuds between locals held no interest for me.

With a small smile on his lips he said “What, even if the duellists are a pair of Osther-oc herdsmen?”
I could not believe my ears! Two orcs were to fight a duel? Never had I heard of this before. I pressed him for more information; what reason lay behind this duel? What were Osther-oc doing this far south? And, more importantly, why had a duel of this kind never been reported before?
Alas, he could not furnish me with answers to any of these questions, or to any of the many more I asked him during our journey.

Presently, after an uneventful but exhausting ride of some three hours, we came upon the village of K'taaj which lies at the great fork in the Kharim River. All seemed normal, the inhabitants were going about their business in the manner of village-folk everywhere, there was nothing to suggest that anything unusual was afoot. There was, however, a noticeable orcen presence, but I was surprised to see that the locals, whilst not being overly friendly to them, were not treating them with the hostility we have come to expect from the Kaaer'dár'shín. Seeing my puzzlement, Varek explained that during particularly harsh winters, the nomadic Osther herdsmen were forced further south than usual seeking food for their cattle, and this brought them into contact with the northernmost Kaaer'dár'shín. While at first this had led to much fighting and death on both sides, over the years these two enemies had come to tolerate one another, perhaps realising that the harsh conditions they both endure as a fact of daily life was enemy enough . He told me, much to my disbelief, that so used to each other had they become, that the one almost seemed to rely upon the other for their survival in these extreme conditions, the Osther herdsmen bringing furs and rare jewels from the north to trade for tools, salt and cloth from the south. These clans of herdsmen are seen by those Osther-oc who live further north as almost a separate group from themselves, failing to understand why they find it neccessary to involve themselves with the Kaaer'dár'shín . They call them "M'ogm-oc", a derisive term for their nomadic habits, or "Ch'ron-oc", an even worse insult which suggests that they are no better than the vermin they choose to do business with.

We had by now ridden to the far side of the village, and Varek stopped outside a grim-looking dwelling made up of animal hides hung over a wooden frame. Thick, oily smoke curled sluggishly from a hole cut into the top of what I hesitantly thought of as the roof. The stench surrounding this hovel hung in the air like a warg fart, assailing my sensitive Caltharian nose and seeming to seep through my thick fur coat and settle itself onto my skin, making me itch all over. I was, to say the least, hesitant when Varek announced that we should have something to eat while we learned more about the coming event. He tied his Landesh to a pole outside the entrance and stooped inside.

I cannot adequately describe the sights, smells, and tastes I was subjected to during our brief stop in the latrine Varek called an inn. Suffice to say that when I have recovered from the experience, I shall forward a report to you as usual. My guts are dancing a jig now, as I think of it.

Varek spent much of the time inside the bromer talking with a burly Kaaer'dár'shín man who I assumed was the owner. By the time he returned to me, I was more than ready to get outside to breathe fresh air again and, as it transpired, to heave-up the greasy whatever-it-was that I had been served inside. Whilst I relieved myself of the contents of my stomach, he explained to me that a duel was indeed scheduled to take place today, at a place just to the north of the village, a couple of straals across the Kharim River, and the two combatants were members of Osther herding families. One of the families had lost their entire herd to the ice-storms on the journey down from the southern Caaehl Mountains. The other family had arrived at the Heaths of Eph’denn the week before with only a handful of their herd still alive, and had settled just across the river from the village to let them graze and regain their strength while they waited out the worst of the winter weather.

Two days ago, they realized that one of their herd was missing, and while searching for it they came upon the recently arrived family camped not far away. Hung from racks around their camp were the freshly butchered remains of a Baneg. Knowing that the family had arrived without a herd of their own, they immediately accused them of stealing the beast. The head of the herdless family denied any wrongdoing, claiming that the carcass was one of their own animals which they had found buried in the snows to the north of their camp, and they had dragged it back to butcher and salt it ready for their journey back north, hoping to trade the skin, horns, and hooves for some provisions to help them on their way. This claim was rejected with a snort from the angry herdsman, who demanded the body of his beast back, or a duel to settle the matter.
Fearing for the lives of his family if the meat was taken from them, the poor herdsman was left with no choice but to fight, and so a duel was called, and both families returned to their camps to prepare.

This is where Varek’s knowledge of the matter ended, and I still had not found answers to the many questions I had posed on our ride to this remote village. We resolved to find some Osther tribesman who would be prepared to trade us the information I sought, for nothing is gained for nothing from an Osther, or as Varek would say, “Tek nuffin' fer nuffin' from oc.”
As Varek knew these people far better than I, and was able to speak their tongue, I thought it easier (not to mention safer) to let him find us someone prepared to instruct us in the mysteries of orcen duelling. He said that he knew of one who may help us, if he could be found, and set off into the crowds to seek him out.
Presently, he returned, pushing his way through the throng, with the smile of success on his lips. The orc he presented to me,
(an old, weather-beaten fellow with a broken tusk and long plaits of grey hair reaching down his back) said he would tell us what we wanted to know. All he asked in return was that I report what he said honestly, and that I ask you, Mistress El’rosse, to remember his name the next time you are in this area, and that you come to share a meal with him and discuss your researches. His name was Ba’kal, and I agreed to his requests. I hope this was not too presuming on my part, my Lady?

He has lived in the area for many years now, the loss of his family during the trek south, and an injury to his leg which left him unable to walk for much distance leading him to stay in the village, where, from what we later learned, he is well thought of as a wise and loyal resident, who’s opinion on village matters is often sought and respected.
Even though he has been separated from his people and culture for many years, he is still fiercely proud of his heritage, and takes a keen interest in any news from his homelands brought down by the Osther herdsmen every year. It transpires that he is a keen student of Orcen history, customs, and culture, and not having a written language of their own, he is keen to see all this knowledge preserved for future generations before he dies.
NOTE: This fellow is an invaluable source of information on all aspects of the Orcs, and I strongly recommend that you dispatch a researcher forthwith to record his knowledge. He is intelligent, friendly, and very keen to talk.

Offering us to sit with him while he talked, Ba’kal removed a battered clay-pipe from his boot, and began to pat himself all over, as if looking for something. Varek, realising what the old orc was up to, pulled his pouch of pipeweed from his belt and offered it to him. He took it without so much as a nod and helped himself to a generous pinch, which he proceeded to roll into a tight ball between the palms of both hands. After stuffing the ball into his bowl with a thick thumb, he again began patting himself and searching his pockets. Varek tossed his flint and striker to the orc with a small grin on his face. After drawing furiously on his pipe for a few seconds, he slipped the flint and pipeweed into his pocket, blew several impressive smoke-rings, and began to speak. (Although Varek translated the old orcs words for me, I have taken the liberty of further translating his dialect so that you may read through this converse without recourse to your own translating parchment.)

“So, young sir, you wish to know more of the old ways of my tribe, eh? Well, first let me say that what I shall tell you has been told to no other white-skin, in my knowledge, and I only trust you with this because I have heard many good things about your Mistress El’rosse and the fair manner in which she speaks of my people. Besides, I grow old, and the time when I shall at last go to sit with K’ahn’uck grows ever closer, and if I don’t make sure that the old ways are remembered, then who shall?
I expect you have many questions fighting to be asked, yes? Well, mayhaps my words will benefit you more if you ask them as we watch the fight. Come, walk with me and I shall tell you a little of the history of the Khq Ar’Dok, which in your tongue means ‘The fight of two’.

Many years ago there was in my tribe a great female warrior named Choan. She was a ferocious fighter and her very name struck fear in the hearts of all our enemies. I have heard of late that Mistress Alysse has been writing of her deeds, and this gladdens me greatly, for she is worthy of remembrance.
Under the leadership of Choan, our scattered people came together into a powerful army, capable of defending our territory against any foe. She realised, however, that our numbers were not great, and that each battle we fought would reduce our count so that soon we would not have sufficient numbers to repel attacks. At this time, also, there was much unrest between the recently joined clans, and many of our people were being killed by their supposed brothers.
Choan called a great meeting of the elders of all the clans within our tribe and told them that if we were to survive then we would have to stop wasting strength and lives on petty feuds and instead unite our efforts in defeating our enemies. She knew, though, that in the times between fighting, warriors can become restless, and restlessness leads to ill-temper, and this ill-temper needs to find release ‘ere it turns into violence against the wrong person. To this end, she told them, she had devised a way of deciding any dispute within the tribe. These are the original rules of Khq Ar’Dok, as told to the elders by Choan herself, and they still hold today as they did then, although there are now many different interpretations of them, some even allowing the deaths which Choan had sought to avoid.”

If any clan should have issue with another, or any individual have grievance against his neighbour, then in the presence of others they must call for Khq Ar’Dok, and state their case for this claim.
The one who has claim made against him may then dispute, and some effort must be made to settle the matter by discourse, again in the presence of others.
I f no accord can be reached, then the claim for Khq Ar’Dok must again be made, and the two sides must withdraw to their camps to prepare.
Each side will have two moonsets to make whatever preparations are needed before the fight, with the duel taking place when the sun reaches its height on the following day. During this time each combatant must employ a person to represent them in any meetings with their opponent before the fight. It is their duty to try to reach agreement without recourse to Khq Ar’Dok.
If these attempts fail, then on the morning of the day after the second moon, a field of combat must be agreed upon by both sides, which is nearer to neither one camp nor the other.
 A circular arena of no less than ten peds across and no more than twelve must be prepared on clear ground.
 Any witnesses to the duel must stand around the edge of this circle and must step not a single foot inside.  At the appointed time, both fighters must enter the arena from opposing sides, wearing no more than a loose cloth around their waists, and walk to face each other in the centre of the circle. No weapons must be carried.
Each fighter will be accompanied by the person selected as their spokesman, whose roles will noiw change to that of judges of the Khq’Ar’Dok.
Using his right hand, each fighter shall grip the inside of the right arm of his opponent, near to the elbow.
The judges will then each tie a leather thong of no less than three fores length tightly around both gripped arms, and each shall check the others bonds for honesty.
The spokesmen shall now remove themselves from the arena, and return with a weapon of their employers choice. These shall be placed on the ground behind the fighters, no more than one ped from the arenas edge.
Both judges will now take up positions facing each other across the arena, at a point directly facing each other and between the two fighters. Their role is to ensure fairness during combat.
The winner of the duel will be the one who can, using any means at his disposal, take his opponent across the arena and gain his own weapon. Once the weapon has been used to cut the thongs which bind them together, the winner is decided and the conflict is deemed as settled.
Once the winner has been called, no further issue can be allowed by the loser, unless a separate matter arises, but not within one full moon after the first Khq Ar’Dok.

“As I said, young sir, there have been many different accounts of these rules since Choan first spoke them, but these are the true words. As they are given here, they allow for as much bloodshed as any orc can deliver upon another using only one hand and no weapon. Wise indeed was Choan when she gave these rules, for they allow each man to exhaust his anger against the other, but ensure that death is unlikely.

Over the years, many corruptions have been seen to the true rules. For example, when two fierce warriors meet on the field of Khq’Ar’Dok, it is not uncommon for them to end the matter not by the severing of the bonds which tie them, but by killing their opponent. I have not heard of this for many years, though, and I can but hope that this practice, which goes against all that Choan taught us, has fallen into disfavour.
These days, the Battle of Two is used more as a sport between clans, with each having their champion. When a bout is called between two clans, they come together in a great gathering, and there is much drinking, feasting, and singing between the two. However, as you shall see today, there are still those who seek to live as our ancestors did, and that is no bad thing, if you will allow me my opinion. Now, I must speak with the elders of the two clans here and seek their permission for your presence at the fight. I suggest that you do not go any nearer to the arena until I return.”

Having been engrossed in the old orcs tale, and scribbling furiously in my notebook, I had failed to notice that we had arrived at what I realised was to be the arena for the fight. A large, circular space had been cleared of rocks and I counted at least fifty or sixty orcs stood around the boundary of this space, some talking loudly to their neighbours, others stood silently looking at the crowd gathered around them. Small orcen children were chasing each other around and between the legs of the adults, one of them earning himself a clip around the ear when he ran between his fathers legs without ducking far enough. I spotted several groups of boys engaged in mock Khq’Ar’Dok battles, pulling and twisting each others arms to the cheers of their friends. Varek, as I should have expected, had wandered off towards an Osther female who was sat stirring the contents of a large pot hung over a fire. Even though I had been left alone amidst all these orcs, the only human in sight, I felt strangely secure. At no point did I feel in danger, even though I was becoming increasingly aware of a multitude of eyes looking in my direction. They seemed to regard me more as a curiosity than a threat, which given their size and numbers, and my lack of weapons and fighting prowess, was probably a fair assessment of the situation. As I continued to watch the gathering throng, I realised that there were a large number of Kaaer'dár'shín spectators gathering, like myself, at a discreet distance from the arena. This suggested to me that they had attended events like this before, and were aware of the boundaries set by the Osther elders.

Presently, Varek returned with Ba’kal hobbling along beside him. Varek had a large bowl of neep stew in his hand. His capacity for eating never fails to amaze me, considering he is such a slight fellow.
Ba’kal told us that he had sought permission from the clan elders for me to attend the duel. He had told them of my acquaintance with you, Mistress El’rosse, and of my role in chronicling the history and customs of their tribe. After much discussion they had agreed to my presence, but asked that I stay back from the arena, using a large boulder nearby as my vantage point. He had agreed to this request on my behalf. He asked that we make our way over to the rock immediately, as the bout was about to begin, and the elders would hold back the fighters until we were in position. He excused himself from accompanying us, but his injured leg prevented him from climbing. He would join us after the bout was over, when we could further discuss the event over a drink or two. I got the distinct feeling that it would be at my expense, but so eager was I to gain more knowledge from him that I agreed immediately. You will find the resulting conversation listed under “Sundries” on my expenses sheet.

No sooner had we seated ourselves atop the boulder when the noise of the crowd below began to die down. On both sides of the arena, orcs were straining their necks around to try to catch a glimpse of their fighter. Almost exactly at the same time, two large, almost naked orcs emerged from shelters behind the crowd on opposite sides of the circle. I could see that they were evenly matched in height and size, so the contest would be decided on skill. I made a mental note to ask Ba’kal what happens if one opponent is much bigger than the other. Surely Choan had made some rule on this matter?

Each duellist had with him his spokesman, who proceeded him as they made their way towards the circle. As they reached the edge of the crowd of spectators, a small passageway opened up in the crowd to allow them access to the arena. As they passed between the gathered throng, some orcs called out what I imagined to be words of encouragement to their man. Once both fighters had entered the clearing, the crowd closed the gaps behind them and once again fell silent. I spotted several small groups of spectators on the edge of the crowd quietly talking and gesticulating towards the duellists before swapping small handfuls of something. Varek told me that they were more than likely betting on the outcome of the fight. Gambling has apparently become very popular amongst the northern orcs, and a contest such as this was obviously too good an opportunity to miss. Some could even be seen dashing between those spectators stood around the circle, and the Kaaer'dár'shín who were stood some peds back from the action.

By now, the four orcs were stood facing each other in the centre of the circle, with the spokesmen in front of their respective employer. A short conversation passed between them, which from Ba’kal’s description I knew to be the final request to settle the matter by discourse. This request obviously failed, as the two spokesmen stepped aside and the fighters altered their stance into what Ba’kal informed me later, is the traditional posture for this moment; bent forward from the waist, legs slightly bent, the left hand resting on the left knee, right arm held out to the side with the hand spread wide, head raised to allow them to stare straight into the eyes of their opponent.
At some unheard signal, both orcs swung their right arms with considerable force until with a loud SLAP! they had a grip on their opponents right forearm, just below the elbow. The force of this first blow is used by the duellists to test the strength of their foe, it being considered a small victory to land the harder strike.
The fighters used the next few moments whilst their spokesmen prepared the leather thongs to bind their arms together to flex their fingers, trying to gain a better purchase on their opponent.

When both were satisfied with their grip and positioning, the spokesmen approached and began to bind their arms together with the sturdy leather thongs, weaving them intricately around each other in what I am told is a traditional pattern, passed down from the times of Choan. I regret to inform you, Mistress Azhira, that I neglected to enquire as to the purpose or meaning of this procedure. Perhaps I shall make a return to this village in the future, to enable me to discover the answer from Ba’kal.

Immediately they had finished this task, the spokesmen checked each others knots to ensure their tightness, tugging on them and turning them to remove any perceived weakness. When they were satisfied that all was as it should be, they took their leave of their employers and made for the edge of the arena. They returned after a few moments, each carrying the weapon of their employers choice (in this case they were an Ashz-oc Kle’Vaar and a traditional bone-handled Osther-oc shortsword). These were then placed, as I had been told to expect, behind the combatants at a distance of one ped from the edge of the circular arena. The spokesmen now took up positions facing each other across the width of the arena, at a point where one could see the other directly between the two duellists. Their roles would now change to that of judges, ensuring that the rules of combat (which must be agreed by both parties at some time before they enter the circle) are observed.

It was at this point, Mistress Azhira, that the signal for the duel to begin was given. I witnessed the whole brutal, bloody battle, which lasted quite until the sun had moved low in the sky, each orc gaining the upper hand in his turn, before relinquishing his advantage to the other. Suffice to say that a winner was eventually decided, more by exhaustion than overwhelming strength or tactics, and the sight of the bloodied loser being helped to his feet by the victor, and then embraced and toasted by him was ample evidence to my eyes that, as we have long suspected, there is much more to orcen relationships and culture than has previously been thought.

After much consideration, I have decided not to include a description of the fight, as my main concern was with the reporting of the events surrounding the duel, including the history and rules of engagement. To sully this with gratuitous tales of bloodletting and violence would, I feel, lessen the impact of the discovery of orcen duelling, turning it from the important revelation it undoubtedly is into just another grisly occurrence of orcen violence.

I hope this report may be of some small assistance in your continuing research, my Lady.

I remain, madam, your obedient servant,
       Ishmael Valaire, Caltharian


P.S.  If it may please you, My Lady. After the bout was finished, we made our way back to the village with our new-found friend and sat with him around a fire, where he answered many of my questions regarding the relationship between his tribesmen and the Kaaer'dar'shin. As I thought the report regarding the duel to be of the utmost import, I dispatched it to you as soon as I had completed it, even before the ink was dry!
I shall forward another report containing all the information I obtained from Ba'kal during our interview as soon as I have had chance to translate it. I pray this doesn't cause inconvenience to your presentations to the Compendiumists, Madam.
 


« Last Edit: 14 September 2008, 18:19:11 by Artimidor Federkiel » Logged

Use the force, Luke.

And if that doesn't work, try switching it off and back on again.
Azhira Styralias
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« Reply #1 on: 26 August 2008, 00:30:22 »

clap clap

Bravo, Mr. Tharoc! I've looked this over briefly and don't have time today to give lots of comments...so expect some later.

It's nice to see some Northern stuff getting up. And here I was losing faith in you, what with you working over on the Nybelmar Darkside and all... :P
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No, I would not want to live in a world without dragons, as I would not want to live in a world without magic, for that is a world without mystery, and that is a world without faith. And that, I fear, for any reasoning, conscious being, would be the cruelest trick of all.
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« Reply #2 on: 26 August 2008, 00:36:36 »

Me? Nybelmar? Perish the thought! T'was a mere trifle I am using to stir up the rivalry with Mira.
I am a northerner by birth, and a northerner I shall stay, have no fears about that!

Sarvonian by birth, Northern by the grace of the Gods.

And yes, I realise that I haven't included the conversation Ishmail had with Ba'Kal after the duel had taken place. I forgot, ok? I'll add it some time this week. After all, I've claimed for it on expenses, so I'd better put something up or Azhira will have my guts!

And before some smarty-pants asks "How come you didn't tell us about this before, seeing as how you're an orc?" the answer is simple. Nobody asked.

Ooh, one last thing. If you've never heard of an Ashz-oc Kle'Vaar, or an Osther-oc shortsword, don't worry. I hadn't until today! I'm working on an idea for a comprehensive, illustrated entry on Orcen weaponry (and possibly armour), so they will be described in there.

« Last Edit: 26 August 2008, 01:36:02 by Tharoc Wargrider » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: 26 August 2008, 21:34:38 »

I love it, I love it! Let's do a uri and see what we got here... thumbup

ORCEN DUELLING

Whilst it is commonly held that any dispute arising between orcs is settled instantly and with severe violence, recently an hitherto unknown practice has been observed in the Heaths of Eph’denn region of Northern Sarvonia, the extreme southern limit of Osther-oc territory.

A researcher working for Azhira El’rosse on the relationship between the Kaaer’dar’shin tribe and the northern orcs was witness to this fascinating event and despatched (dispatched) a report back to her by horse-messenger immediately afterwards. The report is presented here exactly as it was written by the researcher.

RESEARCHER: 973VAL
REPORT NO: 1347/22
DATE: 19th SLEEPING DREAMERESS  1668AS

“Mistress El’rosse, I have today been witness to the most remarkable event I think I have ever seen. I am sure that no researcher, even you yourself in all your travels, will have come across such a rare thing as this. I shall endeavour to describe it to you to the best of my memory, so that you may see for yourself what excites me so.

As you are aware, I have been following the northernmost boundary of the Themed’lon Forests for several weeks now researching the Kaaer/Osther-oc relationships in this volatile area. The guide you recommended, Varek, is, as you said, an excellent companion, and has afforded me a view of this region which would otherwise have been hidden from me. His knowledge of this area, its people, and of their daily lives is, in my humble opinion, unsurpassed.

(You might want to mention that Varek is a Kaaer half-orc to make the readers clear on that right away. Also, the northernmost borders of the Themed'lon is where the Kaaer colony of Eph'denn lies and no Osther-Oc presence would be there. Perhaps you mean the northernmost boundary of the Heaths?)

However, this is all by-the-by and of no real import to my tale, which I feel certain will be of great interest to you and make an excellent addition to your presentation to the Compendium keepers.

This morning, as I was packing my travelling (traveling) kit ready for the day's ride, Varek appeared breathlessly out of the small copse of trees we had camped beside, urging me to hurry, as “I just ‘eard tell o’ some rare dealin’s afoot a few ‘ours ride north, an’ if’n ya don’ get a shift on, yu’l never know what yer’ve missed.” While I stood trying to decipher his strange dialect, he was all the while stuffing his few belongings into his pack, and pressing me to do the same. It was obvious that something had stirred his excitement, so I hurriedly finished packing my horse and set off after him across the fields to the north.

Is Varek speaking the Kaaer tongue? Do you understand it? His speech reads like some English Cockney...lol Perhaps give him a bit more...stilted dialect? Perhaps throw in a few orcen sounding words here and there?  thumbup)

When I overtook him a few minutes later, he had calmed down sufficiently to explain in simpler tongue where we were going. Apparently, he had taken a walk into the trees to relieve himself of some great burden, where he chanced upon a local man of his acquaintance. This fellow, having heard of our presence in the area, had come seeking him with some information, in the hope of receiving some small consideration. After convincing the man that I was unable to offer any such token, but assuring him that if the information was as important as he professed it to be, then Mistress El’rosse would be sure to hear of his valuable assistance (it never fails to astound me how many hitherto firmly locked doors your name provides the key to!), the man told Varek that a duel was to be fought at the place where the Kharim River divides into its East and West branches, just west of Eph’Denn. It was to take place before the sun reached its full height on this very day.

(Ohh! My name is revered throughout the land! Hail Queen Azhira! lol

Here, Varek stopped talking, but kept glancing sideways at me, as if he had some secret to tell and he was just waiting for me to ask him to reveal it. I decided to allow him his small victory and told him that if that was all, then I could see no point in rushing like this, as petty feuds between locals held no interest for me.

With a small smile on his lips he said “What, even if the duellists are a pair of Osther-oc herdsmen?”
I could not believe my ears! Two orcs were to fight a duel? Never had I heard of this before. I pressed him for more information; what reason lay behind this duel? What were Osther-oc doing this far south? And, more importantly, why had a duel of this kind never been reported before?
Alas, he could not furnish me with answers to any of these questions, or to any of the many more I asked him during our journey.

Presently, after an uneventful but exhausting ride of some three hours, we came upon the village which lies at the great fork in the Kharim River. All seemed normal, the inhabitants were going about their business in the manner of village-folk everywhere, there was nothing to suggest that anything unusual was afoot. There was, however, a noticeable orcen presence, but I was surprised to see that the locals, whilst not being overly friendly to them, were not treating them with the hostility we have come to expect from the Kaeer people. Seeing my puzzlement, Varek explained that during particularly harsh winters, the nomadic Osther herdsmen were forced further south than usual seeking food for their cattle, and this brought them into contact with the northernmost Kaeer. While at first this had led to much fighting and death on both sides, over the years these two enemies had come to tolerate one another, perhaps realising that the harsh conditions they both endure as a fact of daily life was enemy enough . He told me, much to my disbelief, that so used to each other had they become, that the one almost seemed to rely on the other for their survival in these extreme conditions, the Osther herdsmen bringing furs and rare jewels from the north to trade for tools, salt and cloth from the south.

(Yes, you touch on something I've been considering. I hate the fact that every single Osther-oc is hostile towards the Kaaer. My thought was to perhaps a certain small clan or clans who actually have an active truce going with the half-orcs. They trade in small amounts and make contact periodically. The distrust is still there to some degree, and the orc clans are probably not on the best of terms with the rest of the tribe, so in a sense, they are outcasts themselves and find some measure of friendliness with the Kaaer. Though I don't want to expand this much more so as to not completely tear down the wall of hostility I've built up between the Osther-oc and Kaaer to begin with...

So perhaps give a name to this rogue clan of Osther-Oc? And a name for this village would be nice, too.)


We had by now ridden to the far side of the village, and Varek stopped outside a grim-looking dwelling made up of animal hides hung over a wooden frame. Thick, oily smoke curled sluggishly from a hole cut into the top of what I hesitantly thought of as the roof. The stench surrounding this hovel hung in the air like a warg fart, seeming to seep through my thick fur coat and settle itself onto my skin, making me itch all over. I was, to say the least, hesitant when Varek announced that we should have something to eat while we learned more about the coming event. He tied his horse to a pole outside the entrance and stooped inside.

(The most common horse in this area would be the Landesh pony, unless you have a different breed. Just trying to keep the cross-referencing going here!  thumbup)

I cannot adequately describe the sights, smells, and tastes I was subjected to during our brief stop in the latrine Varek called an inn. Suffice to say that when I have sufficiently recovered from the experience, I shall forward a report to you as usual. My guts are dancing a jig now, as I think of it.

(Your terminology is decidedly Terran in nature (inn, fart, guts, dancing a jig...What tribe does Ishmael belong to? A southern Sarvonian tribe, is my understanding when I read his dialogue..)

Varek spent much of the time inside the bromer talking with a Kaeer man who I assumed was the owner. By the time he returned to me, I was more than ready to get outside to breathe fresh air again and, as it transpired, to heave-up the greasy whatever-it-was that I had been served inside. Whilst I relieved myself of the contents of my stomach, he explained to me that a duel was indeed scheduled to take place today, at a place just to the north of the village, and the two combatants were members of Osther herding families. One of the families had lost their entire herd to the ice-storms on the journey down from the southern Caaehl Mountains. The other family had arrived at the Heaths of Eph’denn the week before with only a handful of their herd still alive, and had settled just across the river from the village to let them graze and regain their strength while they waited out the worst of the winter weather.

(It's probably best to keep the entire tribe name when referring to them in entries. I refer to them as Kaaer informally only because I write the name so often that I had to shorten it somehow...lol)

Two days ago, they realized that one of their herd was missing, and while searching for it they came upon the recently arrived family camped not far away. Hung from racks around their camp were the freshly butchered remains of a Baneg. Knowing that the family had arrived without a herd of their own, they immediately accused them of stealing the beast. The head of the herdless family denied any wrongdoing, claiming that the carcass was one of their own animals which they had found buried in the snows to the north of their camp, and they had dragged it back to butcher and salt it ready for their journey back north, hoping to trade the skin, horns, and hooves for some provisions to help them on their way. This claim was rejected with a snort from the angry herdsman, who demanded the body of his beast back, or a duel to settle the matter.
Fearing for the lives of his family if the meat was taken from them, the poor herdsman was left with no choice but to fight, and so a duel was called, and both families returned to their camps to prepare.

(I have not defined any kind of salt or spices to keep meat. In fact, I don't think that salt exists in Caelereth as we know it...perhaps invent some kind of new additive and give it a name and develop it later? Maybe an orcen name that the Kaaer also use and learned from them?)

This is where Varek’s knowledge of the matter ended, and I still had not found answers to the many questions I had posed on our ride to this remote village. We resolved to find some Osther tribesman who would be prepared to trade us the information I sought, for nothing is gained for nothing from an Osther, or as Varek would say, “Y’get nowt fer nowt wi’ an orc.” (Again with the strange Terran dialect... huh)

As Varek knew these people far better than I, and was able to speak their tongue, I thought it easier (not to mention safer) to let him find us someone prepared to instruct us in the mysteries of orcen duelling. With his usual extraordinary luck, the first orc he asked, (an old, weather-beaten fellow with a broken tusk and long plaits of grey hair reaching down his back) said he would tell us what we wanted to know. All he asked in return was that we report what he said honestly, and that we ask you, Mistress El’rosse, to remember his name the next time you are in this area, and that you come to share a meal with him and discuss your researches. His name was Ba’kal, and I agreed to his requests. I hope this was not too presuming on my part, my Lady?

(Nope, sounds good to me! *makes a note on her schedule to speak with Ba'kal soon... ;))

He has lived in the area for many years now, the loss of his family during the trek south, and an injury to his leg which left him unable to walk for much distance leading him to stay in the village, where, from what we later learned, he is well thought of as a wise and loyal resident, who’s opinion on village matters is often sought and respected.

Even though he has been separated from his people and culture for many years, he is still fiercely proud of his heritage, and takes a keen interest in any news from his homelands brought down by the Osther herdsmen every year. It transpires that he is a keen student of Osther-oc history, customs, and culture, and not having a written language of their own, he is keen to see all this knowledge preserved for future generations before he dies.
NOTE: This fellow is an invaluable source of information on all aspects of the Osther-oc, and I strongly recommend that you dispatch a researcher forthwith to record his knowledge. He is intelligent, friendly, and very keen to talk.

(I like that you found a source within the tribe to help with information on them. His name I am sure will pop again more often!)

Offering us to sit with him while he talked, Ba’kal removed a battered clay-pipe from his boot, and began to pat himself all over, as if looking for something. Varek, realising what the old orc was up to, pulled his pouch of pipeweed from his belt and offered it to him. He took it without so much as a nod and took a generous pinch, which he proceeded to roll into a tight ball between the palms of both hands. After stuffing the ball into his bowl with a thick thumb, he again began patting himself and searching his pockets. Varek tossed his flint and striker to the orc with a small grin on his face. After drawing furiously on his pipe for a few seconds, he slipped the flint and pipeweed into his pocket, blew several impressive smoke-rings, and began to speak. (Although Varek translated the old orcs words for me, I have taken the liberty of further translating his dialect so that you may read through this converse without recourse to your own translating parchment.)

(The orcs smoke pot pipes? Hey! Bong Pipe parties, anyone? lol)

“So, young sir, you wish to know more of the old ways of my tribe, eh? Well, first let me say that what I shall tell you has been told to no other white-skin, in my knowledge, and I only trust you with this because I have heard many good things about your Mistress El’rosse and the fair manner in which she speaks of my people. Besides, I grow old, and the time when I shall at last go to sit with K’ahn’uck grows ever closer, and if I don’t make sure that the old ways are remembered, then who shall? I expect you have many questions fighting to be asked, yes? Well, mayhaps my words will benefit you more if you ask them as we watch the fight. Come, walk with me and I shall tell you a little of the history of the Khq Ar’Dok, which in your tongue means ‘The fight of two’.

(Good! New words and phrases!)

Many years ago there was in my tribe a great female warrior named Choan. She was a ferocious fighter and her very name struck fear in the hearts of all our enemies. I have heard of late that Mistress Alysse has been writing of her deeds, and this gladdens me greatly, for she is worthy of remembrance.
Under the leadership of Choan, our scattered people came together into a powerful army, capable of defending our territory against any foe. She realised, however, that our numbers were not great, and that each battle we fought would reduce our count so that soon we would not have sufficient numbers to repel attacks. At this time, also, there was much unrest between the recently joined clans, and many of our people were being killed by their supposed brothers.

Choan called a great meeting of the elders of all the clans within our tribe and told them that if we were to survive then we would have to stop wasting strength and lives on petty feuds and instead unite our efforts in defeating our enemies. She knew, though, that in the times between fighting, warriors can become restless, and restlessness leads to ill-temper, and this ill-temper needs to find release ‘ere it turns into violence against the wrong person. To this end, she told them, she had devised a way of deciding any dispute within the tribe. These are the original rules of Khq Ar’Dok, as told to the elders by Choan herself, and they still hold today as they did then, although there are now many different interpretations of them, some even allowing the deaths which Choan had sought to avoid.”

If any clan should have issue with another, or any individual have grievance against his neighbour, then in the presence of others they must call for Khq Ar’Dok, and state their case for this claim.
The one who has claim made against him may then dispute, and some effort must be made to settle the matter by discourse, again in the presence of others.
I f no accord can be reached, then the claim for Khq Ar’Dok must again be made, and the two sides must withdraw to their camps to prepare.
Each side will have two moonsets to make whatever preparations are needed before the fight, with the duel taking place when the sun reaches its height on the following day. During this time each combatant must employ a person to represent them in any meetings with their opponent before the fight. It is their duty to try to reach agreement without recourse to Khq Ar’Dok.
If these attempts fail, then on the morning of the day after the second moon, a field of combat must be agreed upon by both sides, which is nearer to neither one camp nor the other.
 A circular arena of no less than ten peds across and no more than twelve must be prepared on clear ground.
 Any witnesses to the duel must stand around the edge of this circle and must step not a single foot inside.  At the appointed time, both fighters must enter the arena from opposing sides, wearing no more than a loose cloth around their waists, and walk to face each other in the centre of the circle. No weapons must be carried.
Each fighter will be accompanied by the person selected as their spokesman, whose roles will noiw change to that of judges of the Khq’Ar’Dok.
Using his right hand, each fighter shall grip the inside of the right arm of his opponent, near to the elbow.
The judges will then each tie a leather thong of no less than three fores length tightly around both gripped arms, and each shall check the others bonds for honesty.
The spokesmen shall now remove themselves from the arena, and return with a weapon of their employers choice. These shall be placed on the ground behind the fighters, no more than one ped from the arenas edge.
Both judges will now take up positions facing each other across the arena, at a point directly facing each other and between the two fighters. Their role is to ensure fairness during combat.
The winner of the duel will be the one who can, using any means at his disposal, take his opponent across the arena and gain his own weapon. Once the weapon has been used to cut the thongs which bind them together, the winner is decided and the conflict is deemed as settled.
Once the winner has been called, no further issue can be allowed by the loser, unless a separate matter arises, but not within one full moon after the first Khq Ar’Dok.

“As I said, young sir, there have been many different accounts of these rules since Choan first spoke them, but these are the true words. As they are given here, they allow for as much bloodshed as any orc can deliver upon another using only one hand and no weapon. Wise indeed was Choan when she gave these rules, for they allow each man to exhaust his anger against the other, but ensure that death is unlikely.

Over the years, many corruptions have been seen to the true rules. For example, when two fierce warriors   meet on the field of Khq’Ar’Dok, it is not uncommon for them to end the matter not by the severing of the bonds which tie them, but by killing their opponent. I have not heard of this for many years, though, and I can but hope that this practice, which goes against all that Choan taught us, has fallen into disfavour.
These days, the Battle of Two is used more as a sport between clans, with each having their champion. When a bout is called between two clans, they come together in a great gathering, and there is much drinking, feasting, and singing between the two. However, as you shall see today, there are still those who seek to live as our ancestors did, and that is no bad thing, if you will allow me my opinion. Now, I must speak with the elders of the two clans here and seek their permission for your presence at the fight. I suggest that you do not go any nearer to the arena until I return.”

Having been engrossed in the old orcs tale, and scribbling furiously in my notebook, I had failed to notice that we had arrived at what I realised was to be the arena for the fight. A large, circular space had been cleared of rocks and I counted at least fifty or sixty orcs stood around the boundary of this space, some talking loudly to their neighbours, others stood silently looking at the crowd gathered around them. Small orcen children were chasing each other around and between the legs of the adults, one of them earning himself a clip around the ear when he ran between his fathers legs without ducking far enough. I spotted several groups of boys engaged in mock Khq’Ar’Dok battles, pulling and twisting each others arms to the cheers of their friends. Varek, as I should have expected, had wandered off towards an Osther female who was sat stirring the contents of a large pot hung over a fire. Even though I had been left alone amidst all these orcs, the only human in sight, I felt strangely secure. At no point did I feel in danger, even though I was becoming increasingly aware of a multitude of eyes looking in my direction. They seemed to regard me more as a curiosity than a threat, which given their size and numbers, and my lack of weapons and fighting prowess, was probably a fair assessment of the situation.

Presently, Varek returned with Ba’kal hobbling along beside him. Varek had a large bowl of neep stew in his hand. His capacity for eating never fails to astound me.
Ba’kal told us that he had sought permission from the clan elders for me to attend the duel. He had told them of my acquaintance with you, Mistress El’rosse, and of my role in chronicling the history and customs of their tribe. After much discussion they had agreed to my presence, but asked that I stay back from the arena, using a large boulder nearby as my vantage point. He had agreed to this request on my behalf. He asked that we make our way over to the rock immediately, as the bout was about to begin, and the elders would hold back the fighters until we were in position. He excused himself from accompanying us, but his injured leg prevented him from climbing. He would join us after the bout was over, when we could further discuss the event over a drink or two. I got the distinct feeling that it would be at my expense, but so eager was I to gain more knowledge from him that I agreed immediately. You will find the resulting conversation listed under “Sundries” on my expenses sheet.

No sooner had we seated ourselves atop the boulder when the noise of the crowd below began to die down. On both sides of the arena, orcs were straining their necks around to try to catch a glimpse of their fighter. Almost exactly at the same time, two large, almost naked orcs emerged from shelters behind the crowd on opposite sides of the circle. I could see that they were evenly matched in height and size, so the contest would be decided on skill. I made a mental note to ask Ba’kal what happens if one opponent is much bigger than the other. Surely Choan had made some rule on this matter?

Each duellist had with him his spokesman, who proceeded him as they made their way towards the circle. As they reached the edge of the crowd of spectators, a small passageway opened up in the crowd to allow them access to the arena. As they passed between the gathered throng, some orcs called out what I imagined to be words of encouragement to their man. Once both fighters had entered the clearing, the crowd closed the gaps behind them and once again fell silent. I spotted several small groups of spectators on the edge of the crowd quietly talking and gesticulating towards the duellists before swapping small handfuls of something. Varek told me that they were more than likely betting on the outcome of the fight. Gambling has apparently become very popular amongst the northern orcs, but is frowned upon by the tribal elders so it is usually conducted in secret.

(Not sure why the tribal elders would frown upon gambling...seems that they would be fine with it...no need to give the orcs a sense of morals about something such as this, I think.)

By now, the four orcs were stood facing each other in the centre of the circle, with the spokesmen in front of their respective employer. A short conversation passed between them, which from Ba’kal’s description I knew to be the final request to settle the matter by discourse. This request obviously failed, as the two spokesmen stepped aside and the fighters altered their stance into what Ba’kal informed me later, is the traditional posture for this moment; bent forward from the waist, legs slightly bent, the left hand resting on the left knee, right arm held out to the side with the hand spread wide, head raised to allow them to stare straight into the eyes of their opponent.
At some unheard signal, both orcs swung their right arms with considerable force until with a loud SLAP! they had a grip on their opponents right forearm, just below the elbow. The force of this first blow is used by the duellists to test the strength of their foe, it being considered a small victory to land the harder strike.
The fighters used the next few moments whilst their spokesmen prepared the leather thongs to bind their arms together to flex their fingers, trying to gain a better purchase on their opponent.

When both were satisfied with their grip and positioning, the spokesmen approached and began to bind their arms together with the sturdy leather thongs, weaving them intricately around each other in what I am told is a traditional pattern, passed down from the times of Choan. I regret to inform you, Mistress Azhira, that I neglected to enquire as to the purpose or meaning of this procedure. Perhaps I shall make a return to this village in the future, to enable me to discover the answer from Ba’kal.

Immediately they had finished this task, the spokesmen checked each others knots to ensure their tightness, tugging on them and turning them to remove any perceived weakness. When they were satisfied that all was as it should be, they took their leave of their employers and made for the edge of the arena. They returned after a few moments, each carrying the weapon of their employers choice (in this case they were an Ashz-oc Kle’Vaar and a traditional bone-handled Osther-oc shortsword). These were then placed, as I had been told to expect, behind the combatants at a distance of one ped from the edge of the circular arena. The spokesmen now took up positions facing each other across the width of the arena, at a point where one could see the other directly between the two duellists. Their roles would now change to that of judges, ensuring that the rules of combat (which must be agreed by both parties at some time before they enter the circle) are observed.

It was at this point, Mistress Azhira, that the signal for the duel to begin was given. I witnessed the whole brutal, bloody battle, which lasted quite until the sun had moved low in the sky, each orc gaining the upper hand in his turn, before relinquishing his advantage to the other. Suffice to say that a winner was eventually decided, more by exhaustion than overwhelming strength or tactics, and the sight of the bloodied loser being helped to his feet by the victor, and then embraced and toasted by him was ample evidence to my eyes that, as we have long suspected, there is much more to orcen relationships and culture than has previously been thought.

I have decided not to include a description of the fight, as my main concern was with the reporting of the events surrounding the duel, including the history and rules of engagement. To sully this with gratuitous tales of bloodletting and violence would, I feel, lessen the impact of the discovery of orcen duelling, turning it from the important revelation it undoubtedly is into just another grisly occurrence of orcen violence.

I hope this report may be of some small assistance in your continuing research, my Lady.

I remain, madam, your obedient servant,       Ishmail Valaire   

(Very impressive, Tharoc! I do love this new aspect of the orcen culture. The dueling was detailed and described nicely. Perhaps a tad more cross-referencing is needed...were there any other Kaaer at this duel? Is there some kind of religious significance to the duel? Is the Choan entry ever going to get done? lol Nothing major, though. Overall, an excellent addition to the orcen knowledge base.)
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« Reply #4 on: 26 August 2008, 22:00:04 »

Thanks for your comments, Azhira. I'm glad you like it.

I'd just like to clear a couple of things up with you before I start to do the changes.

The tongue Varek speaks is my own. I accept what you say about it, and will change it slightly. Can we assume that he speaks a dialect all of his own, considering that it probably consists of Orcish, Tharian, and whatever other bits of human-speak he has picked up over the years? Of course, he only uses this dialect when he is speaking to a non-Kaaer.

I think we should have a name not just for this particular Osther clan, but for the many other extreme southern/outcast clans as a whole. Perhaps they aren't outcasts at all, they may just choose to live their lives this way?

I desparately wanted a name for the village, but as it falls squarely within your territory, I didn't want to presume that I could just pick one at random. That honour, my Lady, falls to you!

Fair comment about the gambling, I should have seen that myself.

BTW, I created Ba'kal purely as a tool for yourself. He may come in useful for you in the future ;)

Right, I'm off to find a suitable race/tribe for Ishmael.
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« Reply #5 on: 26 August 2008, 22:28:41 »

Salt definitely does exist.  We have both seasalt and rock salt; though actual entries haven't been created, you may feel free to take both or either for granted and use them freely in your entries, receipts, spell castings, and purification rituals.   Enjoy!

P.S.   Great submission!
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« Reply #6 on: 27 August 2008, 01:04:47 »

This is EXCELLENT!

Not only is it a great entry, it provides us with access to an orcen specialist for longer term information collection.  I like this.  Great work!


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« Reply #7 on: 28 August 2008, 03:44:03 »

Ok, Az. I've addressed the changes/additions you suggested, bar two. I think that the village where the action takes place (being well within your region) should be named by yourself.

Right, I'm off to re-write the bit which deals with the exact location of the duel, shifting it further north to the edges of the Heaths.
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« Reply #8 on: 31 August 2008, 21:14:49 »

Ok, Azzy. I just need you to come up with a name for the Kaaer village, and I'm struggling a bit with a tribe/clan for Ishmael, if you have any suggestions?
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« Reply #9 on: 01 September 2008, 08:37:24 »

Lemme think on it, dear Tharoc. I'll get you something today or tomorrow!  ;)
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« Reply #10 on: 01 September 2008, 11:14:09 »

Ok...a bit of something new from my Kaaer nomenclature ideas...

Village - K'taaj (sounds orcen and has some of my new Kaaer nomenclature syllables...)

I think Ishmael sounds either Caltharian or Helcrani. I'm leaning towards being Caltharian judging by his personality and speech (not that is anything officially in an entry, but in my mind, he seems...a bit British, like how I picture the Caltharians. But that's me... ;)

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No, I would not want to live in a world without dragons, as I would not want to live in a world without magic, for that is a world without mystery, and that is a world without faith. And that, I fear, for any reasoning, conscious being, would be the cruelest trick of all.
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« Reply #11 on: 02 September 2008, 04:52:40 »

You'll do for me, Azhira!

K'taaj it will be, and Caltharian he shall be.

But not tonight, Josephine, it is waaaay past my bedtime already.

Until tomorrow, then.

EDIT: Actually, it will only take me a moment, so..........

EDIT 2:.............There! K'taaj and Caltharian-ised.  BTW, are you happy with the new dialect I have given Varek? I tried to make it sound as if it was a mixture of different languages, but with his rough twang being the over-riding factor.
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« Reply #12 on: 02 September 2008, 05:25:53 »

clap clap

Yup, its wonderful, Tharoc! Works for me just fine. Great work! I am glad the orcs are your thing now. You'll definitely add a unique touch to them.

*pets her orcen bunny*

Now shoo! Off to bed with you.  :D

EDIT - A tiny thing...all spellings of the tribe are like this: Kaaer'dár'shín...with all the accent marks and stuff. I've had to go back and revise all my entries, too...
« Last Edit: 02 September 2008, 05:28:00 by Azhira El´rosse » Logged

No, I would not want to live in a world without dragons, as I would not want to live in a world without magic, for that is a world without mystery, and that is a world without faith. And that, I fear, for any reasoning, conscious being, would be the cruelest trick of all.
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« Reply #13 on: 02 September 2008, 05:34:13 »

Okay, no probs.  I'll have to copy & paste them in, but I should probably have done that a while ago, anyway.

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Use the force, Luke.

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« Reply #14 on: 02 September 2008, 05:55:18 »

@ Azhira:  One last thing before I away to bed. In the phrase "Tek nuffin' fer nuffin' from oc", the word 'tek' is how we in Manchester say 'take'. In the context I have used it, it could be Kaaer for either 'take' or 'get', or both.

I don't know if this word would fit into whatever ideas you have had for the Kaaer tongue, but I think it sounds sufficiently Orcish enough to use.
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Use the force, Luke.

And if that doesn't work, try switching it off and back on again.
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