Category Archives: Crushbone

Bloodboil


You say, ‘Hail Talisyn Stormwing’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘Greetings, _____. You must forgive my rather [inhospitable mood] this day, if of course it comes forth to you in what speech we have.’

You say, ‘What about your inhospitable mood?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘ I am merely… troubled by the conditions of my change in stations. I once guarded Kelethin from the vile Crushbone Orcs, but it seems a new terror has arisen within our forests. It is the duty of a ranger, and I do not complain in the least, but the [mutilation and corruption] that slithers through the forest still brings a pain of anger to my heart.

You say, ‘What about the mutilation and corruption?’

Talisyn Stormwing furrows his troubled brow in confusion and surprise. ‘You need ask such a question and receive answers in the form of words to understand what it is that surrounds you, Danian? Have you neither heard nor seen the vile creatures that inhabit the putrid lands of Mistmoore to the south? Or have you not seen the creatures forged from the very shadows that lie not to far from our homelands? The Teir`Dal beasts that have made camp not too far from the entrance of Mistmoore’s lair? These evils, some ancient beyond our pilgrimage from Tunaria, have torn and marred these precious, beautiful forests. Unfortunately, a [greater evil] has descended, and thus my presence here.

You say, ‘What about the greater evil?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘Not too far in the recent past did Firiona Vie, the lovely and gracious Champion of Tunare, return to our homelands. In her return, she sought to bring forth the avatar of our sacred Mother to seek guidance on her path — the path of Elven Kind. Little did the Champion know that The Faceless was close at bay, and through means unknown, his power was greater than that of our sacred Mother’s. In a petty display of his new found power, the Lord of Fear [furthered the corruption] of these natural lands.

You say, ‘What furthered the corruption?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘I cannot say for sure, and neither can our elders. None know for certain how or why this was done. All we know is that [the beings that were closest to Tunare’s grace] were reaved from her grasp, and now roam as the undead or worse.

You say, ‘What about the beings that were closest to Tunare’s grace?’

Talisyn Stormwing closes his eyes and bows his head for a moment as if in mourning. ‘The Faerie Folk that called this place their home have been changed into unnatural monsters of Cazic’s will. They thirst for mortal blood and flesh, and have lost all innocent, grace, and reason that was once their existence. But they seem incomparable to [the greatest loss] to be turned in Cazic-Thule’s favor.

You say, ‘What is the greatest loss?’

Talisyn Stormwing raises his head, his features remaining solemn but stern. ‘Equestrielle, the maiden unicorn, was corrupted by The Faceless himself and through vile trickery, he convinced the angered and frightened Firiona to remove her horn to cease the spreading of the disease. In honor and regret, the Champion did so, but now that once beautiful and sacred being roams as a blood thirsty, uncaring monster who kills any and all mortal beings. She is why I was sent, as The Heartwood Master knew that any other would end her life in mercy or the others she would harm and thus he entrusted to me [these tasks].’

You say, ‘what about these tasks?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘I am here to observe, warn the travelers that would pass through these infected lands, and to gather what evidence that I can to further the research of the council of magics at Felwithe. However, as I am the only one that has been charged with such tasks, it has been quite difficult. I do not know if I can withstand seeing such destruction and chaos before even I find mercy to be the proper route. If only they would send [assistance], if only for a day.’

You say, ‘I will assist you’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘I would be eternally grateful for your company, _____ and your pledge to this cause. However, I cannot expect anything of you. If [you are sure] that you would be willing to aid all of the Faydark, then I will be willing to give forward what knowledge I have gathered thus far.’

You say, ‘I am sure’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘Then I thank you, _____, and the entire Faydark thanks you. I have been studying and gathering evidence of the [Frightlings], or the distorted Pixies. I have already given several specimens of these creatures to the researchers, but I have found a great use for them beyond research. If you can bring to me one of their every so tiny skulls, I will do all in my power to cleanse that object so that it may aid you further in the tasks of the forest.’

You say, ‘What about the frightlings?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘The Frightlings are what the corrupted Pixies have been calling themselves. I have found through my extensive scouting of the area that one called Bilewretch who acts as their leader. I have dreamed for many days now of his destruction at my bow, but unfortunately that would cause me to abandon my post, and leave myself vulnerable to attacks from the [Undead Sprites.] However, as you have pledged yourself to the cause, if you would bring me proof of Bilewretch’s destruction, I shall reward you greatly for your service.’

You say, ‘What about the undead sprites?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘They are the twisted monsters of what used to be the noble Faeries of the forest. Now, they are but fleshy beings that desire only to bring death for their dark amusements. As with the Frightlings, these unnatural beasts are lead by a fearsome creature that has named himself Bloodboil. Another despicable being that I wish to bring a swift death to, but cannot for fear of abandoning my post and failing my master. If you would be so brave and bring to me proof of this monster’s demise, your efforts will not go unrewarded.’

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The History of the Fae


This is a history of the Fae. Its pages cannot be completed at one time, but must be gained through valor and experience.
Through my own experiences, I can gain knowledge and insight into the Fae.

Tunare, Goddess of nature, gave us life. As she walked through Greater Faydark, flowers sprung up beneath her feet. One of these flowers turned its face toward her as a heliotrope to the sun. “You are precious,” said Tunare, laughing and gently cupping the blossom in her hands. And so, the first Fae were formed of blossoms and Tunare’s laughter. That was the beginning of the Dream Ring, the first Ring in which the Fae realized that their lives were indeed precious.

Life was quiet for the Fae in those distant times. One of the Fae learned the language of the Feir’Dal, our brothers and sisters of Tunare. In time, all Fae learned some Feir’Dal words and added them to our own language, Faerlie. And Joleena took her new language skills into Kelethin, the city of the Feir’Dal. She lives amongst them for a time and when she returned, we made her our first Queen.

Our people had often lived in small bands, roving through the Faydarks. We recognized that we had much in common with the Feir’Dal, and so over time, many of the Fae migrated to live near the trees which formed its base. Many of the Fae died in the Burning Ring, when the armies of the War of Fay crossed the woods, burning everything before them.

Those who were not killed were horrified. We had never witnessed so much death and destruction! And though emissaries were sent to Felwithe, the Koada’Dal sent no help. Much of Greater Faydark and Kelethin were burned, yet the First Children did nothing. Instead, they closed themselves away once the War had ended. And so began the Ring of Sadness.

We helped the Feir’Dal rebuild Kelethin. Who else had they to turn to but the Fae? Queen Cydney oversaw our contributions, channeling our Fae magic to heal the trees and restore the Faydarks to beauty. We mourned, for Queen Cydney’s spirit bud, holding all her memories and experiences, was lost to us forever.

Each Fae is formed from the spirit bud of one of the ancestors. By maintaining the blossom, the Fae can reawaken its spirit and remember threads from the distant past. Many of us who can recall the Ring of Sadness prefer to remember the Quiet Ring that followed it instead, for the Age of War did not touch Kelethin until later.

As the gods seemed to withdraw from us, the Fae’s magical influences seemed to wane as well. Through we had moved away from Kelethin itself, remembering the Burning Ring, Queen Saphrina encouraged us to move back. “There are dark forces everywhere,” she said. “It will be safer for us to join with the Feir’Dal before it is too late.” And so we did, building a wall of brambles to keep the city safe.

The Crushbone orcs proved Queen Saphrina right – they took her life and destroyed her spirit bud. This was truly the First Ring of Chaos. Deterred by the thick brambles we had raised beneath the city, the orcs laid siege to Kelethin, never envisioning from which direction our help would come.

They crept in from Lesser Faydark, an army of brownies, and decimated the Crushbone orcs. They had never been our particular allies before, rescuing us had been incidental to their love of battle. Queen Jillian granted them the status “Friend of the Fae” from that moment onward. The siege was broken, yet the wars raging around us did not cease. Nor did the orcs let up their attempted assault on the city.

An uneasily peaceful time followed – the Ring of Leaving. In a very short span of time, we witnessed some of the remaining Feir’Dal and others leave Faydwer. They spoke of receiving a vision, a word from Tunare. And as time went on, we let the brambles protecting Kelethin dissipate as we moved into the city ourselves.

We thought that troubles times lay behind us now, yet the Ring of Trials had only begun. All around us the lands began to change, groaning and breaking apart. Built into the trees, Kelethin withstood the trembling earth below. We felt we were being tested, but had no way of knowing if we had passed.

The last trial was the death of our young, beautiful Queen Liivika, just two days before her wedding, leaving the Fae to mourn yet again. Some began to question how Tunare could leave us. Others argued that she had not left, that we simply needed to learn how to live like the Feir’Dal. We Fae lost some of our innocence, but we know that we are not alone. Our spirits tell us this.

Changes were wrought, some not as obvious as the madly swirling seas and others very evident. We were growing taller and the shapes and colors of our wings began to differ. The Ring of Regrowth marked a period of rapid changes amongst the Fae. Sadly, during this time two of our Queens disappeared and we were unable to recover their spirits.

The Second Ring of Chaos began with what Outsiders call the Shattering. Shards of Luclin rained down around Faydwer, but fortunately, most of Greater Faydark escaped unscathed. A few of Kelethin’s platforms caught fire and burnt, though most of the city was untouched. Queen Sephria and later her daughter Queen Kilina were both killed by the rain of debris which stopped as suddenly as it had started.

Some days, we wondered what had become of those who had left Faydwer. Where did they go? Did they perish in the Second Ring of Chaos? Would we ever see them or their kin again? For our spirits continued to renew and continued to remember. And then ships arrived as well as parties crossing into Greater Faydark from elsewhere, and we knew that times were changing. Again.

Thus began the Peaceful Ring, which continues to the present. Given our history, we wonder – Peaceful for how long? Queen Oola oversaw the rebuilding of the parts of Kelethin that had been destroyed and left the city to her daughter Amree, our current Queen. Who knows what our future holds, now that Outsiders come once again to Faydwer?

The Hammer of Below


The Hammer of Below begins amidst the conflict of the unworthy. It is a relic whose path led through the abyssal lair of the last child of the Ocean Lord. It is within that hold, a prison of Prexus some would say, that the omega did vie with the intellect. This battle of egos will someday begin the mortal quest of Stormhammer.

Deep sixed within an oubiette, many adventurers have perished. He is the last of his kind, the last of the Norrathian children of Qisallis. With a physique formed of fish and Dal, the omega guards his keep. Those who enter find themselves eternal residents of this deathly realm. What was once a city of deep learning has become a memorial of a race long forgot. The omega allows no departures from this ancient place. Here by his side the creatures of Qisallis flutter and float and incarcerate those who seek what is not theirs. No one escapes, but the intellect defies this law.

A great power of the abyss meets a legendary intellect. Such a confrontation is made for the ages. It all began with a threat of knowledge, a release of a secret… a taunt of the highest power. The great intellect that hailed from Mount Erudition delved into the ancient ages and uncovered the reason for the omega, the hidden force behind an extinction of the children of the Ocean Lord. Entering into the murky ruins, he entered armed with only this lost truth. It is all he needed.

With a threat and a boast the intellect defies his host. The one from below is enraged and mad that his secret is released, a secret of great sadness. To the one that did taunt, death would have arrived if it were not for the supernatural stalemate. A power that was the unwitting end of a race is also wielded by a highman. The intellect directs a threat of destruction if his demands are not met. The power that could destroy an entire race within the blink of a titan’s eye could be unleashed by one who has studied and mastered the many circles of the arcane. The omega must comply and the great intellect wins the day.

The keep of the abyss has been compromised and the great intellect threatens to return. But the omega strikes back in silence and within a vision granted the eyes of the intellect shall be redirected. A vision is given of a great relic of below, a hammer of the gods that once lay in the hands of the first kind of Kaladim. This vision was granted to an unscrupulous stout by the name of Duskan Hammerhand. In the vision, the hammer is secreted beneath the great cauldron, within a barnacle-encrusted tower. Here it is guarded by goblins of the abyss. Here is where Hammerhand shall find it.

Duskan recognized the holy relic of the dwarves. Delusions of grandeur lead him to a foolish attempt to retrieve the hammer. The witless bandit dives into the cauldron and locates the citadel of the abyss. His entry depicts his great skill, but the halls of water are not gracious to guests. The goblins of the abyss are quick to spring to action. Their movements were as fluid as the tides. His dreams of being the lone hero are in vain, his mission into the barnacle citadel, futile. Barely escaping with his life, the stout rises to the surface. He knows he must return to Kaladim and lick his wounds. The glory of rescue shall be a joint venture of rogue and guard.

Crawling along the short, near death and barely coherent, Duskan manages to convince a party of passing trotters to escort him to the kingdom of the dwarves. There, Duskan is brought before King Kazon Stormhammer and explains his vision and his ordeal. The king organizes an expedition to recover the hammer. At the lead of this assault are three dwarven champions; Boric Stormhammer, Kalek Orefinder and Fenric Ogrebane. These three heroes are aided by guard and trotter. Trotters have a tendency to fall into the ventures of the ancient empires. What it is they seek is not glory, but riches and power. Their mettle is soon tested as the mission to retrieve Dagnor’s Fist begins.

The march to the cauldron is long and hard. The heroes of the kingdom reached the shores. Battling back the vanguard of the abyss was done at ease. The battle continued into the murky depths of the cauldron. The heroes breached the barnacled-keep and cut down the forces within. The final defender would not be so easy, or alone. The goblin Tide Lord faced the heroes in a battle for the hammer. Although the Tide Lord was powerful, the heroes found an advantage. When victory was near, Phinigel Autropos did appear. With power unmatched, the omega stymies the heroes, driving them back. Then without reason, he vanished. The heroes are victorious, so it would seem. The hammer is won.

The victory march back to Kaladim is interrupted. A Teir’Dal hero and his dragoon raiding party appear and a violent battle ensues. In the skirmish, the heroes are outnumbered and each falls against insurmountable odds. Valkis D’Vinn, leader of the dragoons, carefully seals the captured hammer in an enchanted chest, and orders his group to march to the nearby kingdom of the orcs and ally to Neriak. But Fenric is not dead! His ability to feign death is unrivaled. Through words heard upon the field of defeat, he heard of the destination of the hammer, Crushbone Keep. When the evil army is departed, the injured hero crawls back to Kaladim and with him comes the location of the hammer.

A final operation to reclaim the hammer of Dagnor Butcherblock is undertaken. An army of Stormguard and trotter is organized. No force could keep them from reaching the doors to Crushbone Keep. While Stormguard warriors battle Crushbone centurions a band of heroes enters to find the chest that holds the hammer. The sealed adamant chest of Thex passes into the possession of the heroes. The victorious force returned to Kaladim to deliver the chest to King Kazon. Unfortunately, the chest was impregnable, a stolen device of gnomish invention. The hammer was locked within.

Within the borderlands of the Teir’Dal Empire the key of the chest awaits. Such a place is unfamiliar to a dwarf, but not to trotter. The trotters are hired to retrieve the key. In a long expedition into the Ashlands of Tunaria, the final heroes do find the owner of the key. Captain Na’Var and his dragoons are met. The struggle for the key is long, but the trotters proved their strength. The key is taken and makes its way across the Ocean of Tears to meet the hands of the king of Kaladim. The heroes are honored and the Hammer of Butcherblock has returned to its home.

But this is not the artifact behind these words. In this tale of the hammer of the first kind of Kaladim, the riddle of Stormhammer rests. What once restrained the glorious radiance of the hammer now reveals the riddle. Through a path of a divided key, it will lead a hero. Listen well to whispers of champions and the journey shall begin. The Stormhammer, hammer of below, hammer of the thunder lords, hammer forged in the Underfoot and lost to all. This hammer shall wait beyond turmoil, beyond war and beyond cataclysms. Within Destiny it awaits.

Rise of the Orcs – The Rousing


“Rise of the Orcs – The Rousing”
Second Edition

This book highlights the turning point when the orcs would start to become a force to be reckoned with.

The following historical account details what some stories describe as the “return” of the orcs. Once primal savages, the orcs would become frightening masters of tactics and strategy not seen on Norrath for nearly thousand years. The following facts have been taken from many different sources ranging from fragments of parchment to tales told by elderly elves.

The Deathfist Orcs: By the Age of Turmoil, the Deathfist orcs would become a formidable threat to the city of Freeport. Having grown in size, the Deathfist orcs would absorb all of the surrounding tribes, making them the largest tribe on Norrath. Their numbers would prompt the Overlord of Freeport to send his armies against these savages from time to time in an attempt to keep them from destroying all commerce. This would change one day, however.

When one of the Freeport Militia raiding parties failed to return one day, several search parties were sent after them. When none of them returned either, one third of the Militia was sent to find the cause of their disappearance. Of the twelve hundred soldiers that left to search for the patrols, only seventeen would return to describe what happened to the legion. Their tale would change the way people viewed the orcs the world over.

As the legion reached the last known site of the troops, they spotted several orcs fleeing into a narrow ravine. Following them into the ravine, they spotted the mangled bodies of their fallen comrades. At that same moment, a wave of boulders fell from the surrounding cliffs, closing off their escape. That was when the hundreds of enraged, trained elephants were let loose by the Deathfist orcs. At full speed, they began to stampede through the ravine… straight for the doomed Militia.

The Snow Orcs: During this time, the Snow Orc’s numbers would be reduced drastically. Having been driven to the eastern half of Everfrost Peaks, the Snow Orcs were wedged between the lair of a mighty dragon on one side and the ever-expanding mammoth-tusk trade on the other. Were it not for a change in the way they used their weapons, the snow orcs would count this time period as their last on Norrath.

The shamans of the Snow Orc tribes would at times raise the bodies of the fallen, friend or foe alike. These icy boned skeletons would then be sent loose to wander the frozen wastelands, attacking anything it would find. The Snow Orcs hoped that the skeletons would one day find a barbarian or adventurer and kill them. By some unknown means, the Snow Orcs would change tactics and start using their undead minions with surprising efficiency.

Cleverly hiding their actions from everyone, the orcs would begin to bury many lines of skeletons beneath the snow outside the entrance to the great dragon’s lair. As great heroes would come running out of her lair holding some stolen artifact, a group of orc shamans would be waiting. At the precise moment, all of the shamans would raise the skeletons to life, trapping the raiding party inside a circle of hundreds of skeletons. It wouldn’t take long for the undead to overwhelm the heroes. The Snow orcs would then take the artifacts from the dead adventurers, flay the flesh from their bones, and add them to their army of undead.

The Crushbone Orcs : No one knows for sure where they acquired them, but by this time in history the Crushbone orcs would be seen carrying weapons of dark elf make. Rumors tell of a dark elf ambassador being seen in the highest tower of the orc’s castle, so it can only be assumed the orcs had brokered a deal with their people. Considering the less than philanthropic nature of the dark elves, it is still a mystery as to what the orcs were providing in return.

The Crushbone orcs would claim a stunning victory against the elves of Kelethin one fateful day. Amassing their highly trained armies, they launched an attack against both the dwarven city of Kaladim and the high elven city of Felwithe. The residents of the tree city of Kelethin split their forces to help defend their allies’ cities and were able to stop the orcish legionnaires with only minimal causalities.

Little did they know, the true target of the orcish assault was the city of Kelethin. Attacking with their real army, the Crushbone orcs would succeed at chopping down two of the ancient trees supporting the wood elf city. By the time the wood elves would return home and put a stop to the orcs, half of Kelethin would be destroyed.

Rise of the Orcs – The Rejoining


“Rise of the Orcs – The Rejoining”
Second Edition

This book details how the orcs would organize into armies the likes of which had not been seen on Norrath for millennia.

The following historical account details what stories would describe as the main turning point in the rise of the orcs. No longer primal savages, the orcs would organize into armies the like that hadn’t been seen on Norrath for millenia. Several accounts of thus time period still exist in varying forms, which have been condensed together within this volume.

The Deathfist: Having defeated the Freeport Militia on several occassions, the Deathfist orcs would cause the city’s armies to rethink their strategies. During this time, the Emperor of the Deathfist orcs would be visited by a being of immense power. This visitor would cause the Deathfist to send out a call to all of the minor tribes that made up the entire empire.

The Snow Orcs: Efficiently using many ancient artifacts acquired from the Dragon Vox, the Snow Orcs would begin to push back against the barbarians. Eventually laying siege to Halas, they would signal the death-knell for the rugged barbarians. The Snow Orcs would immediately change direction, however, after meeting with a strange visitor. Leaving Halas behind, they began marching to the south with a determined pace.

The Crushbone: Not much is known about the Crushbone orcs during this time period. Having taken part in a great war that ravaged the continent of Faydwyr, these orcs would fade into obscurity. All that is known is that a small group of Crushbones would sail across the ocean on great ships they built, intent on joining up with the Deathfist on the main continent. They claim their motivation for doing so would be due to a directive given to them by a mysterious visitor.

Snow Orcs: Marching through the frozen tundra of Everfrost Peaks, the Snow Orcs would gather every tribe along their way, eventually forming into a great army. They would continue this march, annihilating everything in their path. Rather than raiding and capturing small villages along their way, they would simply kill everyone and raze the buildings to the ground. This march would eventually end when they reached the homeland of the gnolls, Blackburrow.

Having evidenced the wanton slaughter they had caused on their way to the gnolls home, one would expect the orcs to have done the same to the dog-men. Instead, however, the gnolls were waiting for them and invited the orcs inside their den. No battle took place that day, and the orcs passed into the winding caves without harm. Making camp at sites prepared for them, it become evident the orcs and the gnolls were working together.

The residents of the nearby Qeynos received word of the plight of Halas and would send forces to help the barbarians. None of their forces could reach the frozen tundra due to pact between the gnolls and the orcs, however. All that would be learned during this time was the orcs now residing within Blackburrow were no longer guests, but instead dominators. By now, the Snow Orcs of Blackburrow had enslaved every last gnoll and were using them to mine or for their war efforts.

Deathfist Orcs: Not long after their visit by the mysterious stranger, Emperor Gash would begin to mobilize every member of his tribe into a great army. Spanning from the southern Rujarkian orcs to the western Kithicorian orcs of the Deathfist Empire, they all were given orders to arm themselves and collapse their nomadic camps. The stranger’s message was then delivered to every orcish soldier – War.

Amassing their mighty armies within the Desert of Ro, their ancestral homeland, the orcs began to march south. Just like the Snow Orcs, they would decimate anyone and everything within their path. From gypsies to desert madmen, there was nothing left alive in the Desert of Ro after they had crossed it’s endless dunes. They would continue their march until they finally reached the southernmost Innothule swamp. This was where their forces were joined to an even larger army.

The Second Rallosian Empire, comprised of ogres who regained their long-lost intelligence, welcomed the orcs into their ranks. Joining together into one great army, the Deathfist orcs watched as their Emperor bowed one knee and swore fealty to the leader of this titanic army – The Avatar of War. When the Avatar stated that the Deathfist armies were larger than he had expected, Emperor Gash smiled enigmatically and told him, “If this is the case, then we have already won, your Divineness.”

Rise of the Orcs – The Deadtime


“Rise of the Orcs – The Deadtime”
Second Edition

This book details the histories of several orcish tribes when they were nothing more than savage beasts.

The following historical account details the early years of the orcish people. Not much is known about these savages, for most that has been written about them speak only of their predations rather than their personal histories. The following facts have been taken from many different sources ranging from fragments of parchment to tales told by elderly elves.

The Deathfist Orcs – Before the Rending, Antonica was much larger than it is today. Many orcs would roam this once great continent, banding together in tribes. One of these tribes called themselves the Deathfist orcs. Making their home near the city of Freeport, they were a deadly threat to travelers.

Preying upon merchant caravans traveling to the nearby fortress of Highhold, the Deathfist orcs would acquire goods of all types, ranging from foodstuffs to finely crafted weapons. Attracting the attention of nearby brigands, they would ultimately come to an unspoken agreement to not get in each other’s ways, sometimes even joining forces with each other.

Working alongside their Dervish Cutthroat partners, the Deathfists would become enough of a threat to Freeport that the city started issuing bounties for proof of their deaths. This would continue for many years to come, but the city was never able to fully exterminate these ruthless savages.

Snow Orcs – One of several tribes of orcs living on the great continent of Antonica, the Snow Orcs had managed to thrive by choosing to migrate to a desolate, frozen wasteland. Living in the land that was once called Everfrost, the Snow Orcs had only one major enemy to contend within upon those frozen plains – the barbarians of Halas.

An uneasy peace would exist between their barbarian neighbors and themselves. Due to this truce, The Snow Orcs were able to devote more time to worshipping their god than their other tribal counterparts in other lands. One of the few tribes known to have shown signs of having more than just animal-level thought, the Snow Orcs would create small temples to perform primitive rituals and ceremonies to Rallos Zek.

The barbarian clans would eventually unite, causing the shaky truce to come to and end. Destroying every temple they could find, the barbarians would wage war upon the Snow Orcs for the coming centuries. During this time, the Snow Orcs would revert to savagery, all but forgetting their shamanistic qualities.

The Crushbone Orcs – Another tribe that would by migrating far away were the Crushbone Orcs. In a weird chapter of orcish history, the Crushbone tribe would build a great fleet of crude boats and rafts and sail off to the former continent of Faydwyr. Never before had anyone seen a level of ingenuity evidenced by these primal savages. Many of the orcs would survive the crossing of the ocean, which is the most astounding part of this tale.

Wasting no time in making new enemies upon this new continent, the Crushbone orcs would begin warring with the native dwarves and soon after, the elves. Being overwhelmed by the cooperation of the dwarves and elves, the orcs would be routed battle after battle. Were it not for finding an abandoned outpost in a secluded vale, the Crushbone tribe’s history would have ended there.

Using the fort as a base of operations, the Crushbone orcs would soon begin to turn the table on the elves and dwarves. Launching surprisingly organized raids upon the tree city of Kelethin, the Crushbone orcs would become a force of destruction rather than annoyance. Eventually seeking aid from adventuring types, the elves would find that the Crushbone orcs had organized into a haphazard army, but one that could not easily be put down even with the combined might of the elven and dwarven nations. In hindsight, this would be the first warning of what was to come.

Edicts of the Emperor


A collection of the decrees of his most royal highness, the supreme ruler of all the Faydark and eternal lord of Crushbone Keep.
by Emperor D’Vinn

Long has it been our happy privilege to lead Clan Crushbone in our war against the lesser races of Faydwer. Our orcish legions bravely charge into the forefront of battle, overwhelming our enemies with brutality and might.

As the gods ordained in ages past, the Teir’Dal have overseen the expansion of our empire. Orcs serve as the arm that strikes our enemies down, bravely following our leadership and wisdom. As is written in the scrolls of the Prophet, orcs were created to serve the Teir’Dal Empire.

There are heretics who arise within our ranks from time to time and challenge this sacred bond between Teir’Dal and orc. All faithful members of Clan Crushbone are required to report such insurgency at once so that they may be swiftly dealt with.

Our victory over the light elves is inevitable. Most of these accursed foes have been driven out of our forest. They are a shadow of that they once were, due solely to our victories in battle.

But as of late a new menace has arisen from the lowest corners of the Faydark, a weak race calling itself the Fae. Because they have lent aide to light elves in their rebuilding of Kelethin, the Fae are our enemies as well.

It is therefore your duty to our throne to capture these Fae, as well as the dwarves, gnomes, and elves that have long lingered in these lands, for use as workers in our mines. They will deliver the raw materials necessary to carry out our campaign of conquest.

No action against these Fae shall be considered to harsh or extreme. They shall be sent to the Hall of Truths, where they will tell us all we want to know about their kingdom. Then we will destroy their city and shatter their foothold on the forest.

Remember your duty to our throne and the preservation of the D’Vinnian Empire. As your liege, we will lead Clan Crushbone to even greater glory in the years ahead. Faydwer is ours, and always shall remain so.

As ever vigilant against those who would challenge us from without or cause chaos from within. All loyal subjects of our throne will see glory in the days ahead. Those who oppose us will see only bitter and everlasting death.

Clefts of Rujark Creature Catalog


By Jergo Wheybringer
Travel down the old Orc Highway in the Sinking Sands. Where the road forks, a short spur heading into the sandstone hills leads directly to the Clefts of Rujark.

As the name implies, this is a bastion of the Rujarkian orcs. Indeed, the majority of the Clefts’ residents are orcs of one sort or another.

Why they have congregated in such numbers and diversity is anyone’s guess, but it is clear that this is an area in which much happens unseen.

Over lengths of time unimaginable, layer upon layer of sand and stone have compressed into bands of brown and pale blue.

Within these bands are mineral deposits which the orcs mine industriously within the deep and narrow canyons. The Clefts include an array of tunnels in which the orcs can take the ore from its raw state to finished product without ever leaving the area.

Heavy wooden doors (wood imported from Zek, judging by their thickness and quality) barricade the Clefts’ entrances. Scaffolding of the same high-quality timber provides access to higher levels within the canyon.

Within the Clefts, a variety of denizens make their homes — some by choice, others by force. The orcs have never turned away free labor from external resources, such as unfortunate local Dervins.

The Steelslave orcs patrol the lowest level constantly, often in the company of fierce marrowjaws that are somewhat, though not entirely, domesticated.

Turning into any of the passages, one may encounter miners and toilers, or perhaps orcs simply taking a breather from the backbreaking labor.

Sunlight rarely penetrates the Clefts to its floor, leaving the air dry but not unbearably hot. Within the mines themselves, the thick stone walls keep temperatures very mild indeed.

Almost pleasant, though the company could be improved upon!

As one travels higher in the Clefts, there is a change in both temperature and personnel. At the highest levels, one will encounter orcs bearing both Deathfist and Crushbone markings.

With its vast network of mines and tunnels, the Clefts of Rujark can take many days to explore.

With a bit of luck, some excellent provisioning and a band of well-trained friends along, you might consider a trip through these orc-infested canyons at least once. It is nothing less than an adventure of the highest sort.

You might even be lucky enough to glimpse the harpies diving from above to pick off orcs on the ramparts! It is a truly breathtaking sight.

A Tome of True Crushbone History


Journal: A preservation of Truth
by Vergeth Jawcrush, a loyal son of Crushbone

I must write this quickly. It won’t be long before I am branded a traitor and locked away, or perhaps subjected to some worse fate. But I cannot remain silent while my beloved empire crumbles around me.There was a time when Clan Crushbone was pure. We could stand against any of the races that challenged our rightful rule of Faydwer. But little by little we have been corrupted from within, and now that corruption threatens to destroy our way of life.

What do I mean? I wonder if, by the time someone reads this, it will even matter. The damage could have already been done, and the glory of Clan Crushbone may only be a memory. But I must try.The Teir’Dal came to us long ago and established a kind of alliance. It made sense, for we shared a common foe in the light elves. Our mutual interests even resulted in them sending an ambassador to stay with us. That is how the usurper came to be here.

D’Vinn was ever near to Emperor Crush, whispering in our great leader’s ear of plans and promises. The emperor had proven his divine right to lead us through countless battles against our enemies. What had D’Vinn ever proven? Nothing, except his ability to deceive.This snake lived in our presence for generations, standing beside many emperors. His venom was inflicted so gradually it went without notice. After a time, many believed that D’Vinn was as important to us as our own emperor. Oh, mighty Rallos, how could we have been so blind?

When the War of Fay reached its end and the Teir’Dal lost their grip on Felwithe, D’Vinn brought many of his kind to our keep. He said his mages would teach us their dark arts of necromancy and make us stronger. The promise of such power appealed to the Emperor.Thus the corruption spread under the guise of fortune. Our keep was expanded and made stronger, though much of the castle would be taken up by the Teir’Dal. Even as we seemed to grow more powerful, we could not rid the lands of the accursed light elves.

D’Vinn used this unrest to his advantage. Working with the Prophet, who was hungry for power of his own, the devised a plan to take control. The Prophet claimed to have received a vision from Rallos Zek that told him our army would never know victory until we atoned for our losses in war.The Prophet told Emperor Crush that he must make a pilgrimage to a sacred shrine hidden in the Loping Plains. Once a blood sacrifice was performed, Clan Crushbone would once again know Zek’s favor and be victorious in battle. To appease his people, the emperor agreed.

No record exists of what happened next. Not long after the emperor departed, D’Vinn came before us and announced that our leader would be gone for some time. He showed us a document signed by Emperor Crush naming D’Vinn as his regent.Some of our bravest warriors expressed doubts about the validity of D’Vinn’s leadership. They quickly disappeared or were silenced. D’Vinn acted as if nothing was wrong, as bit by bit the Teir’Dal assumed positions of greater authority within the keep.

While my people are fierce in battle, we are sometimes too easily misled. Over the years, D’Vinn gradually took more and more power until he was ordained emperor without a bit of resistance. Most orcs came to believe that it was natural for a dark elf to lead us.My family kept the truth alive and passed it down, ensuring our past would not be forgotten. I write this knowing my time till soon be at its end. Please, if you read these words, keep the memory of our empire alive and liberate us from the great deceiver, D’Vinn.

Into the Depths of: Firiona Vie


Overview

The elven outpost of Firiona Vie has endured constant assaults from the inhabitants of the surrounding lands. Frogloks from the Swamp of No Hope persist in their hatred of the elves for reasons not clear. Other creatures such as the Drolvargs and the Drachnids have also made their hostility recently known to the outpost’s settlers.

The outpost itself poses a major threat to any who have not earned the acceptance of the elves. Those of dark intent who venture foolishly into Firiona Vie will find themselves quickly dispatched at the end of an elvish blade if they are not wary of their actions.

Background Lore

Several centuries past, the first landing by elves was made at what is now Firiona Vie. However, the elven forces were slain within a single year of their arrival by froglok raids orchestrated by Venril Sathir. Two hundred years later, the elves landed again in the area. This time, they were able to resist the onslaught of froglok attacks. However, a new enemy reared its head in the form of the Forest Giants and the fledgling outpost was once again destroyed with the elven troops either slain or sent sailing back to Faydwer.

For another two decades, the elves would abandon their attempts to land and successfully establish an outpost on Kunark. When the kidnapping of Firiona Vie, heir to the throne of Felwithe and the champion of Tunare, reached the ears of King Tearis Thex, orders were issued for the elvish army to return. An army of immeasurable proportions arrived to fend off the frogloks, although the giants were no where to be found, due to their internal strife occupying the entirety of their meek attentions. The new wave of settlers erected a fort and named it in dedication of the champion who had inspired their success – Firiona Vie.

Adventurers, mercenaries, and frontiersmen arrived on the shores of the new outpost, led by Galeth Veredeth, Firiona’s mentor and a seasoned knight of great prowess. The growing town was fortified further and began to trade with a more peaceful Forest Giant tribe in the Dreadlands. A grand, enormous statue of the outpost’s namesake stands in the center of the octagonal courtyard – a gift made of mithril and white marble from the dwarven sympathizers of Kaladim. However, the outpost lacked completion due to the continuing froglok raids.

Sir Galeth Veredeth

In his youth, Galeth Veredeth was a knight of unsurpassed skill and he was unrivaled in his devotion to the hierarchy of Felwithe and the grace of Tunare. Galeth was knighted when his blade and leadership proved instrumental in the success of the elven king’s forces during a heated confrontation with the despised orcs of Crushbone. Years would pass and Galeth’s prowess upon the battlefield and his loyalty to Felwithe would earn him a seat among King Tearis Thex’s advisors and closest guardians.

Source: http://eqplayers.station.sony.com/news_article.vm?id=52022&month=092010