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Author Topic: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire  (Read 19017 times)

Magnus

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Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire
« on: January 28, 2015, 04:07:01 pm »

 
Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire


O Armok, Blooded God, to Thee
   we bring these gifts of viscous red;
      That You may turn the goblin's heel
      from Your great Peak, Ilrom Ziril,
   and ward its slopes from risen dead;
Our blood is Yours, and Yours are we!

And Yours are we, and Your desire
   is ours to make reality;
      A tower tall where blood will flow,
      a temple for the world to know
   what was, what is and what shall be;
Your holy throne, the Peak of Fire!

The Peak of Fire, Your sacred land
   in constant threat from forces dark;
      With sharpened steel, the Dwarven gold
      from mineshafts deep and ore veins old,
   our soldiers brave the sunlight stark;
The monsters die by our hand!

By our hand and skill and lore
   Your fortress grows, through sweat and toil;
      The miner, smith and mason's home,
      the brewer, cook and craftsdwarf's home,
   the farmer's home, who tills the soil;
Our Mountainhome forevermore!



Welcome to the tale of Ilrom Ziril, an epic community fortress.
Anyone may join, and anything can happen.

Here are the chapters that have been written so far, this post will be updated when a new one is added.

- Part I: The Tunnel -

Introduction: Armok's Wrath
Chapter 1.1: Strike the Earth
Chapter 1.2: Fruits of Labor
Chapter 2.1: Harvest
Chapter 2.2: Prison Break

- Part II: The Fortress -

Chapter 3.1: Praise the Miners
Chapter 3.2: New Arrival
Appendix: Wallace's journal (by The Big D)
Chapter 4.1: The Beast
Chapter 4.2: Breaking Dawn

- Part III: The Tower -

Chapter 5.1: Wealth
Chapter 5.2: Blood
Chapter 5.3: Fire
« Last Edit: May 15, 2015, 06:57:48 am by Magnus »
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Ilrom Ziril - The Peak of Fire:
An epic saga of weregophers and volcano gods.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148021.0

Taupe

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2015, 04:13:57 pm »

Dorf me as a smith, if you can. I have no doubt that magma forges will be up and running sooner than not, and there is no truer way to feel dwarven again than to forge steel and iron items from the blood of Armok himself.

Awesome setup, BTW.

neblime

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2015, 04:29:33 pm »

Dorf me as a mason!
Shaping stone is what dwarves were born to do.
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I am quite looking forward to the next 20 or 30 years or so of developmental madness

than402

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2015, 04:40:42 pm »

I want to be a miner, but not a typical miner: give me some military skills too so I'll eventually be a warrior miner. Nothing dwarfier than carving goblin skulls like they were hematite :D

also an advice: you might want to put your pictures in spoilers. they're a bit too big :)
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 04:42:52 pm by than402 »
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Iamblichos

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2015, 07:48:47 pm »

Please dorf me as a Smelter... the Furnace is the gate to all things.  I will turn rocks into riches for the glory of our race.
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I'm new to succession forts in general, yes, but do all forts designed by multiple overseers inevitably degenerate into a body-filled labyrinth of chaos and despair like this? Or is this just a Battlefailed thing?

There isn't much middle ground between killed-by-dragon and never-seen-by-dragon.

Magnus

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2015, 03:24:25 pm »

It is the 27th of Limestone, year 254.

The once prosperous and noble dwarven civilization "The Abbey of Heads" has been overtaken by goblins, the dwarven strength and spirit broken under the copper scourges of the green menace. The evil goblin king Snodub Atusluz sits fat on the aluminum throne in the Mountainhome, and sends regular tributes of dwarven slaves and war spoils to the necromancers in the eastern marshes.

One such shipment is you. Captured and held prisoner for decades, you have completely forgotten the taste of alcohol, the weight of a pick in your hands, and the satisfaction that craftsdwarfship brings when stone gives shape to creativity. Now reduced to animals of labor, you and six others of your kind have been dragging the cart for weeks, from the rotting fields outside the Mountainhome and through the filthy trails of the great swamps, inching ever closer to the great necropolis in the east.

When the Peak of Fire erupted, you were halfway through this swamp. The ground shook so violently that the cart broke an axle and grinded to a halt, toppling it and sending the driver headfirst into a ditch. It was then that a great fire arose in you all, a boon from Armok himself, and it rekindled the fury and the hatred that had been sleeping in your hearts. Without thinking, you all acted as one and threw yourselves upon the driver, forcing his head under the fetid swamp water until the bubbles stopped. The whip switched hands, and the remaining crossbowgoblins came to know fear and blood.

A great plume of smoke now rises from the mountain ahead of you. In a concert effort you detach the cart from the remaining axle and carry it on your backs up the steepening hill, towards the inferno at the peak. It is as if your eyes have been opened. Where they were previously occupied with your feet, they now scan the surrounding geology instinctively. You suddenly recall a flurry of names for all these geological features. Gabbro. Gneiss. Basalt. Marble. Here and there are shimmering ores in the rocks, and for each such ore vein you spot your arm muscles seem to harden further, your hand closing around an invisible pick. You are close to the summit now. None of you mind the smoke, in fact it serves only to invigorate you, a welcome change from the fresh air you have been breathing thus far.

The wagon is put down to rest with a heavy THUMP. It's time to open the crates and see what your former masters had in store for the necromancers.
Food.
Finished goods.
Picks! You all take turns to weigh them in your hands, examining the finely crafted heads and swinging them through the air with approving nods.

And then... Then you discover the barrels. Sweet as nectar, the booze flows down your throats. The last remnants of slavery are cast off, and you are free dwarves again. The Peak of Fire - Ilrom Ziril - is your new home, and you decide to name yourselves The New Dominion. Tomorrow you will climb the final stretch and view the Fire up close, but for now, you curl up next to the cart and sleep.

And so begins our tale.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)


The next day:


The first dwarf to awaken is the one the goblins had called "Magnus".
The meaning of this name can best be translated to somewhere between "shit" and "cunt" (there are many, many variations of such words in Goblish), and she has known no other name in her life.

She stretches her limbs and rises to greet the others. It is the first time the group has been able to socialize properly without fear of the green whipmasters. They soon agree that the first thing they should do is to get a closer look at the deity that has summoned them.

A short climb later, they are peering over the edge of a majestic crater.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The red glow in its depths burns so brightly that it is almost painful to look at, yet none of them have seen greater beauty in their lives. Gleaming gemstones encrust the walls of its insides like angelic eyes, beckoning them to take the plunge. They dwarves do not even notice the rain which has begun pouring down. A long while passes without anyone saying anything. Until...

"What a wondrous body," says the one called Taupe.

"It's... like a magnificent father," says another by the name of Neblime.

"Would that I could be so grossly incandescent," says a third dwarf named Than402, "than" being Goblish slang for "slave", of which the Mountainhome now has hundreds, all conveniently numbered.

Magnus thinks for a while, stroking her downy, feminine beard. Then, weighing her words carefully, she speaks:
"How are we going to get the cart down there?"

"Huh?," replies Iamblichos, the fourth in the group.

"Well, we are going to build a temple here, right? To show our devotion and all? I mean, it was Armok who saved us, must have been. And we need to build a temple in his name, right above this holy fire. So we need tools, and supplies. And they are in the cart. I don't know about you, but I'm not too keen on schlepping all the way down the mountainside and up again every time we need something. Especially," she motions to the skies, "while it's pissing on us."

Than402 blinks a couple of times.
"Well," he says, "we could go through it. The mountain. We are dwarves, after all. Those picks looked brand new, would be shame to let them rust, eh?"

"Copper doesn't rust, you silly!" Taupe is only one among them who had been given forge duty in the Mountainhome. They had mostly set her to make chains and cages, and of course torture devices. She always made sure to craft them as fragile as possible, although it hurt her pride as a craftsdwarf. What little she had left, anyways.

"I wonder if there's any good ore down there," says Iamblichos and taps the ground with her foot while stroking her silky beard. "I mean, look at all these tetrahedrite deposits! We'll have enough copper and silver to build a whole monument to Armok once we get some lava furnaces going!"

"And all this basalt would make for some nice blocks to build those furnaces out of. Doesn't burn, you know." Neblime smiles knowingly. One can practically hear him working out tensile strength and temperature calculations in his head.

"What about a basalt drawbridge?" replies Magnus, who has been thinking for a while. "Across the lava."

The others murmur in approval. The temple must indeed require a magnificent drawbridge, if not several of them. Drawbridges are among the pinnacles of dwarven engineering.

"Well, it's settled then. We dig through the mountain and build a drawbridge across the lava!"

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: February 27, 2015, 04:26:10 am by Magnus »
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Ilrom Ziril - The Peak of Fire:
An epic saga of weregophers and volcano gods.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148021.0

than402

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2015, 03:47:19 pm »

looks great. +1 for rationalizing my user name in game :)
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Elagn

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2015, 04:51:06 pm »

Dwarf me as a mechanic, if you don't have one yet, I can wait until you do. I'm assuming you will be getting migrants?
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"Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by it's ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid" Einstein

"Measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so" Galileo

Magnus

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2015, 05:53:42 pm »

Dwarf me as a mechanic, if you don't have one yet, I can wait until you do. I'm assuming you will be getting migrants?

I hope so! Although if not it would be an interesting opportunity to see just how far Toady has gone with implementing genetics. Can you make banjos out of basalt?

We are all Peasants with no skills, I do have a girl available who seems suitable for a mechanic/creative genius, so that will be you. Just the person we need for that drawbridge.

Does anyone know if migrants and caravans care about the terrain outside your fortress area for whether they can reach you or not, as long as you're not on an island? The embark area is a plateau of sorts, the squares surrounding it were all marked as Extreme cliffs. I actually got a Necromancer siege in the first month, but they immediately disappeared off the top of the map... Possibly a bug, but I like to think of it as the guiding hand of Armok striking them with amnesia. Anyway, if they can find us then I assume the migrants can as well.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2015, 05:55:36 pm by Magnus »
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Ilrom Ziril - The Peak of Fire:
An epic saga of weregophers and volcano gods.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148021.0

LuckyKobold

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2015, 06:02:06 pm »

Can you Dorf Me as the most insane dwarf in the Party as designate me as a hauler?

Beirus

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2015, 06:40:16 pm »

Can you dorf me as a military dwarf whenever you get something set up? Or maybe a smith or miner if you need one urgently?
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SkaiaMechanic

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire! (Dwarves wanted)
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2015, 08:04:16 pm »

Requesting a Dwarfing, Any Class, but I'll be the Manager and/or Chief Medical Doctor. Either one works for me. Good writing so far though!
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dwarobaki

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire!
« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2015, 05:34:24 am »

Dwarf me too, please. Military dwarf, spear wielding:)
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Magnus

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire!
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2015, 05:39:53 am »

Dwarf me too, please. Military dwarf, spear wielding:)

You are in luck - our blacksmith likes spears, so they will be in abundant supply!

EDIT: An update is on its way, possibly by Saturday night.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2015, 07:12:35 am by Magnus »
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Ilrom Ziril - The Peak of Fire:
An epic saga of weregophers and volcano gods.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148021.0

Magnus

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Re: Ilrom Ziril: The Peak of Fire!
« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2015, 03:05:11 pm »

Having thus agreed to immediately begin their well thought out and not at all hazardous project, the dwarves now trotted back to the cart and prepared to enter the mountain by force. Taupe and Than402 were the strongest in the group, and they were the first to strike the earth. The basalt was dense but fairly porous, and before long there was a sizeable hole in the wall.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The work was tiring and unfamiliar at first, but the dwarves agreed to dig in shifts while the others busied themselves with games such as "Count the rocks" and "Pull my beard". When nightfall came, they slept on the cavern floor. The next day the rock seemed a bit more crumbly, or perhaps the dwarves were beginning to learn where one should strike and where one should not. On the third day Than402 discovered a more efficient swinging technique, and soon they all found themselves singing merrily:

"We dig through the mountain with a pick with no name
It feels good to be out of the rain
On the Peak of Fire you can't remember your shame
Cause there ain't no greenskins to give you no pain."

The hole was now a tunnel, and the work went smoothly. However, the dwarves had exhausted their knowledge of games to play whilst not digging, and there was little else to do besides eat and drink.

"I've been thinking," said Neblime, "won't we be needing a fair load of smooth, square, even-sized blocks to build this bridge? The rocks we dig out here are fine and all, but they don't exactly fit together very well."

"You're right," said Magnus.

"I suppose I'll be the one who gets to cut all those blocks then?" Neblime's beard twitched ever so slightly, and there was an eager gleam in his eyes.

"That you will. Unless anyone else here wants to do it?"

Even if they did Neblime would not have heard them, for he had already disappeared out of the tunnel and was now vigorously filling a sack with various tools from the cart. He came back a few minutes later and began sketching out a quadratic space on the tunnel floor.

"This here is my workshop, lads and lasses. Keep your mitts off it. I'll be cutting stone from now on, so we'll have enough for the bridge. It'd be best if I did that instead of digging."

"Carve us some seats then, while you're at it!" shouted Iamblichos from further inside the tunnel. "I can't tell my arse from the rock anymore!"

"And we do need a dining table. I'm sick of picking gravel out of my food," Taupe added. The dwarven spirit was indeed one of pride, and not slavery.

"Chairs and tables, eh? I quite agree on that. Guess I'd better get started then."

And so he did. A few hours later the dwarves were admiring a fine piece of furniture.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Yet, when nightfall came they would all be sleeping in the dirt, waking up sore and stiff the next day. Having now seen what craftsdwarfship could do, a few days later the dwarves decided it was time to further improve their standard of living.

"I could do with a bed," said Magnus, to general agreement. "No disrespect to your skills, Neblime, but I'd prefer not sleeping on stone."

"I saw a tree outside," Than402 pointed out. A laconic remark considering the peak was in fact densely forested, but nonetheless true.

"I suppose axes aren't that different from picks. I'm going to go outside and see if I can't chop one down." Magnus did so, and the others prepared for breakfast.

It turned out that axes were indeed not very different from picks. It took but a moment's effort for her to bring down a mighty ash. She returned carrying a decent-sized log on her shoulders, to find the others engaged in their meal.

"Mind helping me bring all these logs inside?"

Taupe dropped the slice of plump helmet she had been chewing on. "Bloody hell, that was quick! Think it'll be enough wood for a bed?"

"Tell you what. You folks go outside and see for yourselves. I've got work to do."

That night the dwarves slept very well.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Winter had now come to the Peak, and the ubiquitous rain showers had given way to gentle snowfall. The dwarves stayed inside the warm volcano where the cold could not reach, but they were getting rather concerned about one thing: the booze. The cart had been well stocked with dried horse meat, but there had only been three barrels of liquor, and they were down to their last one.

"I'm afraid I have some bad news, everyone," announced Magnus during breakfast one day. "We're going to have to ration the drinks."

The temperature around the table sank a few Urists as the dwarves absorbed the reality of this situation. Digging the tunnel was tiring enough already. Sober, it would become a living hell.

One dwarf, who has not been mentioned earlier on account of his unusual predicament, did not seem to mind the grave news. He was his own cheerful self, playing in the dirt beside the table. His name was LuckyKobold, and those were the only words he knew and could speak. The others in the group knew little about him, but they knew that in the deepest dungeons beneath the Mountainhome were gruesome laboratories, wherein the goblin alchemists plied their foul science by conducting experiments on the dwarven physique to see how it could best be broken.

Evidently they had not succeeded with this particular test subject, as LuckyKobold seemed to exhibit an almost superdwarvenly endurance that had proved useful whenever the group needed to haul stone or wood, which was often. His mind, however, was somewhere else. Where, no one could say. As the others continued their meal in somber silence, he scampered off to play in the sand by the tunnel entrance. It was where he spent most of his time when not on haul duty, making strange little patterns in the ground that only he understood.

The next day, breakfast drinks consisted of water that had been collected from a stagnant pool outside. Than402 smelled the nasty substance, clear and odorless as it was. Then he slammed his mug hard onto the table, shaking the others out of their ennui.

"Curses! Whose idea was it to drag our arses onto this bloody peak anyhow? We could have gone anywhere we wanted! There are villages to the south, we could have gone there! They're probably drinking their morning schnapps as we speak."

"The villages are all under the thumb of the goblin army," interjected Iamblichos. "As soon as they learned who we are they would have turned us in to the sheriff. Or worse," she took a tentative sip of her mug and winced, "the Necromancers."

"To blazes with the Necromancers!" Than402 was a particularly nasty dwarf when sober.

"Lucky Kobold!" said LuckyKobold.

"And to blazes with you!" Than402 turned towards the simpleton and shook his mug at him. "We should have left you by the road when the axle broke!"

"Ko-BOLD!" LuckyKobold snatched the mug out of his assailant's hand, and ran off towards the tunnel entrance. Than402 leaned back with a heavy sigh. The others glowered at him.

"Here's an idea," said Neblime. "We turn YOU in to the villagers, and trade for a few barrels of rum in return. They can use your thick head as an anvil."

"ENOUGH!" Magnus rose from her chair. "We can't let this tear us apart! We will find booze somehow, I promise. Let's send a party out to speak with the villagers, see if they're willing to trade."

"Trade for what?" Taupe had been silent so far, but now she was raising her voice as well. "Rocks? Or perhaps there's a sack of coins in the cart that we overlooked?" She gestured towards the tunnel entrance where the cart still stood, and felt her hand brush against a beard. LuckyKobold, who had returned, dodged Taupe's hand and set Than402's mug down at the table with an affirmative "Lucky!". The mug was full of wine.

"How in Armok's left testicle..." The dwarves were stupefied. There had not been any wine in the cart. Than402 grabbed the mug and downed it in one gulp, returning the color to his face.

They all rose from the table and praised LuckyKobold, wanting to know how he had accomplished such a miracle. He motioned for them to follow and led them back to the very entrance of the tunnel, where he proudly displayed a strange apparatus that had not been there a week before, seemingly constructed out of old refuse, beard hair, parts of scrap and discarded rocks. A slow but steady drip of wine fell from one of its spouts into a barrel. LuckyKobold then pointed at his patterns in the sand next to the still, where several jolly-looking plump helmets now sprouted.

"I think", said Magnus later that day, when they had all drunk their fill, "that we're going to need a few more barrels.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The dwarves were now quite content with their daily life, and work on the tunnel proceeded at a breakneck pace. It had grown to be roughly 500 Urists long, and took a sharp bend to the north about halfway through, heading straight for the lava pipe. They could already feel the rock getting warmer at the deepest section, to the point where it had become necessary for the miners to work shirtless.

One night as Taupe was digging the last shift, her pick suddenly sank into the rock wall and hit empty space. A sliver of red light flowed through the hole as she pulled it out. It brought with it the smell of brimstone and industry. They had arrived.

"We made it!! Everyone, wake up! Come look at the tunnel, it's finished, we've finally made it!" she screamed hysterically as she ran back to the living area to wake the others. They all hurried after her, picks in hand. Very soon the hole had become a tunnel opening, and it had breached the pipe at exactly a dwarf's height above the lava, just as they had planned.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Barrels were brought out from the larder, and the dwarves drank deeply as they revelled in the sense of accomplishment that only a dwarf who has just completed a half-mile long tunnel into a volcano can feel. It was a good night.

At breakfast, the topic of the drawbridge came up.

"So," said Magnus after the food had been eaten and everyone had burped as best they could, in accordance with dwarven etiquette. "We have a drawbridge to build. Who knows anything about mechanics and architecture?" No one raised their hand. "Come on, one of us must have some experience with this sort of thing! What did everyone do before the Mountainhome was taken over?"

"Smith," said Taupe the smith.

"Furnace operator," said Iamblichos the furnace operator.

The others replied in turn what their profession had been, but none of them admitted to knowing the first thing about bridge building. It would seem that our dwarves had taken lava over their heads, so to speak.

"Well, we'll just have to improvise then," said Magnus. "I suggest we set up a workshop near the Glow (which was the pet name they had given the lava pipe), and see if we can't work out some schematics. Tools and measuring instruments everyone, let's get to work."


A few months later, at the foot of the Peak:

The bag was heavy, but the dwarf carrying it was stronger than any other dwarf Elagn had seen, and certainly the strongest in the group. She didn't talk too much, which suited Elagn perfectly. Her other companions were a farm hand who hardly spoke at all, and a cook who might as well have been a mouth with legs. Elagn and the strong one got along just fine.

She had been fortunate enough to come across these travelers while escaping from a goblin raid, and felt safer staying with them than going it alone. Having someone else to carry her mechanical instruments was a boon as well, and the strong one did not mind doing so. If fortune smiled on them, they would reach the Peak the next morning. Surely an active volcano must be a safe haven from the greenskins.

Elagn hoisted her backpack to a more comfortable position, and trotted on with a confident smile. Things were finally looking up.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: February 27, 2015, 04:31:53 am by Magnus »
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Ilrom Ziril - The Peak of Fire:
An epic saga of weregophers and volcano gods.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148021.0
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