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Campaign Background[1]

The cold late winter rains have turned the roads to grey swampy bogs, intermixed with icy patches of half melted snow. The rutted road once well maintained by the armies of Nyrond leads eastward through the western edges of the Blemu Hills to the river city of Knoptix. The last few villages have long since been abandoned, the fields left fallow two seasons ago when the last major Orc raids decimated the border towns, and enslaved many of the populace. Nyrond responded quickly in force but stopped short of invading the Marches for fear of inciting a larger war.

Her armies still bloody and battered after the last major war fought against Iuz the Mad sixteen years ago have never recover their horrible losses. The treasury having been drained, and monies needed for reconstruction, could not support both efforts at once. It has only been in the past five years that significant progress has been made in rebuilding the armed forces of which you are a part.

Your unit is one of several small raiding parties outfitted by Baron Diesku in the past year to conduct cross border attacks, gather intelligence, and run supplies to the besieged dwarves located in the southern Blemu Hills. The past few assignments have resulted in over 60 Orcs and Goblin deaths with loss of only five friendly troops. Since the Baron started these operations no humanoid groups have crossed the Tessar Torrent and returned to the Marches alive. There have been many Orc slaver parties on this side of the river, and hunting has been good. Still the baron has decided that a single party could probably make the river, and scout its banks southward to the river city of Knurl.

The Barons orders were clear, seek and destroy any Orcs on this side of the river. Make your way east by the old highway to Knoptix, and establish contact with any humans still in the area. Once in Knoptix send a messenger back to the Baron, and await reinforcements before proceeding south to Knurl by the Nyrond side of the Tessar Torrent. If you cant make the city of Knoptix return by any means possible to the Barons keep. A larger party will set forth later in the spring if this group fails to secure the road to Knoptix.

That was over a week ago, and you have made little progress eastward due to the poor weather. Not a single Orc has been spotted, and you have only met a few refuges heading back westward from the border areas. Supposedly a small fortified manor is 4 leagues farther to the east where you might be able to rest, and resupply.

Currently your group stands knee deep in the muddy road trying to free its two wheeled supply cart from the muck. You are thirty leagues west of Knoptix. There is nothing around for miles but barren fields, small groves of oak, and roving bands of Orcs. It is now 9 am, and things wont get any easier from here...

  1. Current Turn, July 2000