Several Gaaldron encampments had been found taking hold in the barony’s deep woods. The heroes of Travance searched out these encampments, one by one, and eliminated them. Many of the innocent, kidnapped townspeople were rescued in the process, and the heroes put a stop to the construction of some waygate designed to amplify the power of portals.
After a long battle Saturday night, a letter was found on the corpse of the Orc general. Written in Vardaak with complex ciphers, the heroes of Travance translated and code, cracking it before too much time had come to pass:
When this letter finds you, we will have just completed phase one of the waygate construction. The alliance you made with the Duke will usher your people into a new world of prosperity and you will go down as the greatest high priest of all time. The lands that Gaaldron currently sit upon will be a small price to pay in order to claim the entirety of this side of The Rift. The land here is vast and expansive; after our move, we will conquer every inch of its soil! Because the lands of Travance are so expertly developed, we will be able to use their structures as shells for our new capital, making construction that much easier.
You are wise to be wary of the Duke, for that filthy human would surely break his word and try to slaughter us as we moved in a large slow herd through their kingdom. With the waygate complete, our portals will be amplified and we will be able to vacate the entirety of Gaaldron to this side of The Rift in a short amount of time. Our goblin engineers are currently examining The Rift tunnels and figuring out how best to destroy them once the move has been made. No great decision is an easy one, but you lead us to the correct path; although a few idealistic and shortsighted Orc generals may stand against you for abandoning Gaaldron, they will be dealt with quickly. Allow your attention to stay focused on helping the Duke win the war for his kingdom. We will make sure that when you have succeeded, a safer and faster route will be in place for our peoples’ relocation.
- General Thogrim
* * * * *
Hystern Meldicia mulled over the past few days as he turned over in his satin-lined featherbed, a welcome change from the hard prison cot he had slept on for the past ten months. Several days ago, the Count had him brought up from his prison cell and gave him his freedom back. In an odd twist of fate, he was offered a chance to redeem his family name by aiding the Kingdom of Kormyre in a civil war in which his own sister was on the other side. The count’s hard words had stung tremendously, but upon reflection, Hystern found them to be true. All his life he had been manipulated and used by outside forces and even his own family, whereas the very people who once placed him in a cell for treason now trusted him with their lives. Life to this point had been a wild journey filled with uncertainty, but there was one thing of which Hystern was certain: He would not let down the first people in this world who put their faith in him. The Count had told him that he would likely never be king, however he had been presented with an opportunity to truly serve his kingdom, to right his past wrongs, to live and eventually die as a good man. For all his life he had felt like a tortured soul, but as he drifted off to sleep that night, his soul was—for the first time—as calm as still waters. Someone else had written his story up to this point, but when he would wake the next morning, his story would finally be his own.