Keepers of the Clans

The Battle of Stonefang Gorges

The day of decisive confrontation between the Frostfire ogres and Frostwolf orcs had arrived. The Frostwolf orcs were both exhilarated and trepidatious about the looming battle and each addressed it in their own way.

Dak and Bob stared deep into one another, sharing some communion only they were privy too and preparing their magic. The old man had many mysteries and many more secrets.

Tor’vash donned his hide armor for the first time, an elaborate Frostwolf embossed on the chest. He normally eschewed armor considering it a show of weakness, but even he felt the weight of the threat facing them and chose the added protection. It took several hours to get used to moving in the slightly restraining armor, but soon he regained his light step and moved to the front ranks awaiting his companions and the chance to draw first blood.

Vash, brother to Tor’vash and eccentric bone priest, performed his usual rites of worship to the ancestors while the animated skull of an ogre hovered around him like a vulture awaiting a carrion meal. He cast bones into a small fire while reciting the stories of great battles fought by legendary orcish ancestors. From each tale he drew strength and from the portents in the bones and smoke he drew knowledge. Lastly, he doused the fire and gathered the ash. He used the ash to trace the tattooed lines of the holy symbol drawn on his left arm: the skeletal structure of his arm wrapped in thick roots.

Oguk sat a vigil on a plateaued area overlooking the gorges. He was an orc more in tune with nature then his allies. Whereas they tended to turn inward, he found calm in the contemplation of the external world around him. He gauged the wind speed and direction, mentally adjusting how he would need to take his bow shots to accommodate. He viewed the sharp stones jutting up from the belly of the gorge like teeth, the gorges namesake. Fighting on the bridge would limit his mobility and he would need to avoid the edges lest he was knocked over the side. His cat, Tony, sat at his side sniffing the air for scent in anticipation of the hunt.

Indigo worked with the archers whom she would be directing from the rear. Her brother, Igorak, sharpened his steel claws with a smile. He planned to move about where needed and had agreed to compete with Vash and Tor’vash for most ogres slain. Drek’Thar, the most powerful shaman among the Frostwolf clan, patiently meditated. Durok had been called from Wolf’s Tale outpost to join the battle bringing with him the several dozen orcs under his command. The entire clan swelled with confidence when at last Durotan emerged from his command tent fully armored and armed with an axe in each hand.

The horns and drums began the call to arms and the orcs split their forces between the 2 land bridges that spanned the Stonefang Gorges. One half of the council led the fight at each bridge backed by warriors while archers and shaman provided support. The Frostfire ogres met them on the land bridges with ferocity. Oguk moved swiftly about harrassing the ogres with arrows as the tried to corner him. Tony held one edge of the bridge against ogre advancement while Vash and Tor’vash danced around each other pinning ogres between them with deadly results. Dak flew above the fray bringing down lightning upon his foes and healing energy to his allies.

The ogres numbers were incredible, and despite all the Frostwolf effort they kept coming in waves resulting in a stalemate on the land bridges where the advantage of their numbers was neutralized. The tide was definitively turned when Drek’Thar summoned 2 elemental creatures of immeasurable size and power. None knew he was even capable of such a thing, but such an act came with a high cost. The summoned elementals made known their anger at such an imposition by impaling Drek’Thar’s eyes on spikes of ice and stone. The orcish forces retreated from the land bridges as the elementals pursued the ogre forces that had started routing at the sight of the creatures. Ogres were crushed like decayed fruit beneath the weight of the rampaging elementals, and screams could be heard echoing for hours along the gorges and among the mountains into which the ogres sought refuge.

The Frostwolf orcs rejoiced in their victory knowing that they had made their dominance of Frostfire clear. Their clan would now be the uncontested masters of the region and their children could be safe. The fallout of Drek’Thar’s summoning was not yet known and though he was blind, he would allow no other to assist him. “I asked for this”, was all he said in reply before retiring to his tent.


dcdice29 Dbreker

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