On the Road
The party was encountered by a band of elves, who warned the players that they were passing through elven lands, and that the local Orc tribe had been growing restless. The party soon encountered the proof of that when they were set upon by an orc scouting party – clearly the orcs didn’t know what manner of people they were assaulting. The party soon sent them packing.
Arrival at Hammerfall
The adventurers soon arrived at Hammerfall. There was much to see and do. After seeing of the grateful halfling, the party strolled into the local tavern. There, they found several off-duty militiamen, a group of carousing nuns, and one Karl Ironspine, a gregarious dwarf from the barbarous tribes of the Hammer Mountains, who proceeded to inform the party (between swigs of his vile dwarven liquor) that he was in town on business – specifically, to guard his brother Mikul’s silver mine, just northeast of Hammerfall. Mikul, confided Karl, with his mining and machinery and all, was the black sheep of the family.
But carousing in taverns was not the party’s only business. They went to the local militia barracks to repair and resupply their weaponry. While there, they encountered the captain of the local miltia, Montaren. Montaren proceeded to regale the party with the woes of Hammerfall. They were regularly besieged by raids from the local orc tribe, the Screaming Wounds. Montaren’s men were green as grass, and too few in number to repel the orcs for much longer. And a frontal assault into the orc-held woods was likely too dangerous. After some negotiating – and a heated argument with Clock that almost got the whole gang clapped in irons, Montaren agreed to pay the party to deal with the Orc menace.
After learning what the could about the Screaming Wounds from the local representative of the Royal College, the party bedded down for the night, preparing to set out in the morning to hunt some Orc.
Fighting Through The Forest
The party awoke fresh and rested, ready for whatever perils the forest might hold. The same could not be said for Karl Ironspine. Though the party attempted to convince him to come orc-hunting, he was too busy nursing his hangover to come with them. The band of adventurers set out on their own.
They soon encountered the vanguard of the Screaming Wounds, a vicious and intelligent species of wolf known as a Warg. Surprised by the stealthy approach of Clock and Bertram, the warg was put to flight and then slain.
Utilising their mastery of stealthy, the two canny warriors managed to catch the perimeter guards of the Screaming Wounds quite unawares. The next few warrior bands were not so easily surprised, but they proved no match for Bertram’s bow, Celandine’s magic missiles, Yvanet’s scimitar, Clock’s rapier, or Perin’s mace.
Before too long, the warrior host of the Screaming Wounds were laid low, and the party found themselves in what remained of the chieftain’s camp. The Chieftain himself, and his sorcerous advisor, had wisely decided that discretion was the better part of valor, but they left for our brave adventurers a parting gift. Not only did the party have the two biggest, burliest orcs they’d ever seen to contend with, but the chieftain’s pet – a massive and enraged owlbear!
The battle was fast and furious, and more than one of the brave companions saw the icy claws of death reach out for them – but were snatched away by the aid of their friends. Working together, the raging beast and the brawny orcs were brought to ruin, and the spoils their masters had left behind were the party’s for the taking.
A Better Offer
On the party’s return to Hammerfall, Captain Montaren was duly grateful, and true to his word, rewarded the party for their efforts. And before they could set off towards the most dangerous leg of their journey, Karl approached the party with a better offer. He claimed he could guide the party through the treacherous passes of the Hammer mountains, shaving days off of their travel time, and allowing the party to bypass entirely the ruined land of festering evil known as Scarr. The party accepted, and so it was that they set off north, clad in furs, towards the Hammer Mountains.