After the Fall
We scattered after taking out General High Low. Barrel backtracked them a little more to see what he could find in that direction while Throw Down and All Grins went back to the Hoarders and then the Carrots with the gathered papers of the General. Pitter and I flew around to watch the movement of the giants.
We saw very little of importance and Barrel eventually joined us, shaking his head indicating that he had found nothing. I reformed on a rock cropping, breathing in the smoke of death. This shall not happen again, I swore.
As the bodies blazed their last so did the sky, its fiery reds and purples fading to black, my prayers of mourning rising high. We turned and sped back to the Carrots.
We debriefed with A Brick. He was even more somber than usual. I really did not think that was possible. He said that while they had not spoken with Like More for centuries, their people took it as a heavy blow that one of the clans had fallen. Some were seething, wanting vengeance. Others were just afraid. He suggested to us that we might want to keep low profiles and he looked with particular strength at Pitter. He thanked us with some good ale and asked Throw Down to help with going through the General's papers.
In the morning, we decided to fly back to Like More and see what we could see. We found that the fires were dying down and that the giants were starting to mobilize to move out, being commanded by some frost and fire giants. We also saw some squads dispatched to search the surrounding areas.
We flew about and All Grins spotted a little cave on one side of a mountain. We flew in and saw some dwarf tracks leading away which Barrel tracked. We wafted along and caught up to the dwarves. They looked to be in bad shape.
We landed and took form. All Grins led the approach and they seemed hopeful, then they saw Pitter.
"A giant sympathizer! Kill this traitor!" cried this young dwarf, picking up a stone and hurling it at All Grins.
All Grins laughed it off, as the stone clanged into his towering shield. "Young one, well met. I am not a giant sympathizer. This hammer has the blood of many giants on it. But you are half right, we have a sympathizer with us, a dwarf sympathizer! We are friends here to help you."
The young one looked uncertain and I saw him look towards an older dwarf who seemed to be fading in and out of consciousness. I rushed in. "I am Mord, I serve my great lord Kord with this greatsword. I am here to help." And without pausing, I laid my hands on the dwarf and asked for Kord's blessing in healing this dwarf. And in a few moments, he stirred.
"Thank you, kind sir. You are?" said the elder dwarf.
"I am Mord, I serve my lord Kord---"
"Enough, Mord. We are here to help," interrupted Barrel. I shot him a pained look and flexed my arms. He smirked.
"Well kind friends, well met. How you come to be here at this time is a mystery, but one that I am happy to hear about later. We are rather in trouble here." He gestured to the few dwarves around him. Looking around, they all seemed in pretty bad shape. I went around tending them, healing them with the power of Kord coursing in my veins.
"Your clan was the first to fall and we have killed the one that planned this. The other clans still stand. Perhaps you can make your way down to Load It. We can scout ahead and see if the way is clear, " I said.
And so some of us took flight and scouted the area while All Grins talked with the dwarves, learning more of those final dreadful moments. It seemed that this area was free of giants.
"Do you know of other possible escape tunnels we can check for survivors?" I asked.
The elder dwarf hesitated, but then nodded. And so we started to search those areas. We found a few more dwarves and helped them out as well. And then we continued on. And then we found one group that was surrounded by a squad of giants.
We landed and struck out at the giants, catching them off guard, killing two in the first few moments. And very quickly we had dispatched them all, finishing with a well placed arrow in the back of one fleeing giant.
Wiping the giant blood off of us, we approached the dwarves. It was three heavily armed and armored dwarves who were carrying the body of an old dwarf.
"Thank you for that though we had it under control. We are the body guards of Like More, may he rest in peace. We must reach the royal crypt before sundown to fulfill our duty," said the lead dwarf.
"I am Mord, servant of Kord. I can help. Join hands with me." And I gave them the power of flight. They wafted away.
We sat for a bit and decided that we were done for the day. We flew by the destroyed caverns and it seemed that most of the giants were gone. We went back to the camp that they had had, but there was little left. The giants had seemed to dispersed.
And we flew back to the Carrots. There we saw a great flurry of activity. A Brick told us that they were redoubling their efforts to fortify and monitor their surroundings. The populations of all of the clans were starting to beat the drums of war, wanting revenge. Will the dwarven nation rise?
Mords of Wisdom: Escape is always possible.