Balfurous lumbers about in the middle of the Nagarep, his band of possessed Ilythiiri Elves covered in the blood of Morlan women and children. With a fling of his massive arm, Balfurous discards the remains of a Morlan child; the pain and torment of those he released will feed him for months. “Dysmier…” He grumbles “I feel it, close. The other half of the key is still lost to us, but there is hope. Before I released them, the Morlords were sure of one thing. Travance has no idea what we are looking for.”
* * * * *
In the town of Altrion across the Riftgate, a young boy played at the top of an enormous bell tower that sat atop the highest hill. From up there he could see so much and so he spent most of his days watching people come and go. Today he saw the hundreds of tents in the far corner of town, dropping one by one. The massive encampment that had been there for months now seemed to be readying itself to move. Earlier this morning he heard his father talking to his mother, “The New Dawn is moving north. Finally we’ll be able to move in the streets and not touch shoulders at every step. With the strain this has put on our resources it’s a miracle we still have food and water, I worry about the oncoming winter...”
The RiftHorn blew loud; it always did when a caravan was entering or exiting the Rift. The boy turned his gaze upon the RiftGate’s mouth. First exited a single wagon, and another, and then another. Three was the standard size of a caravan, four or five if it was a large group. He watched in amazement as the caravan continued far past that, eight, nine, and ten. Each wagon was overcrowded and scores of men or perhaps women dressed in hooded robes walked casually beside the wagons that they apparently could not fit in; fifteen, sixteen, seventeen. After about ten more minutes, the boy stopped counting and simply stared at amazement; never before seeing so large a group come through at one time.
Who are they? Where are they going? After a while he noticed that they passed strait through town and joined the already large encampment that was packing. This little boy had never seen so many people gathered in one spot before; combined they must have been ten times the normal population of the boys town, perhaps more than that. Where could a group of such a size possibly go? Who could possibly accommodate them? Where could they settle? The boy’s thoughts were stuck on those questions and many more, and as the night came, so did this camp of unbelievable size finally move. Their combined footfalls caused a gentle and disturbing tremor upon the earth, such that the bell next to the boy almost rung itself. When the trembles ended, all he saw were a thousand tiny lights flickering in the distance, seeming like a sea of flame or fiery snake, slithering away into the distance. Before the boy went home for the night his mind lingered on one last though; no doubt wherever this camp went, the demons left in the world would buckle to their dominance and fall before them to beg for mercy. With a group so large, no sane creature with half a mind wouldn’t…
* * * * *
The Morlords gathered their scattered people together as best as possible. Some wished to stay in caves near the surface, others wanted to seek out other Wargas to join, still others wanted to stay and fight back. One Morlord stood up high on an outcropping and shouted out to the crowed with his mind. “Our families are dead, our Nagarep overrun, and Balfurous has access to the Morbethara Door. Let him open it! Let him go through and when he has passed let us shut it behind him, to be locked away!”
From the crowed, a sea of thoughts went quiet. A young Morlan woman was the first one to pick up a jagged stone and throw it at the Morlord; and then an older Morlan warrior, and then next a giant Morlord with a scar across his eye. Eventually the number of stones increased, pummeling the Morlord who dared project a thought of the Door here, unprotected. Stone after bloody stone bounced off the offender’s body, until finally, the Morlans descended upon it, and devoured it. The bones of this Morlord were collected, for later they would be made into tools and weapons… It was their way.