Treegarth of Orthanc

For Fangorn is old, old even as the Elves would reckon it.
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Ent High Elder
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In days of yore the Ents were roused from Fangorn Forest and marched to Isengard, overthrowing the black-hearted white wizard and taking back his lands. Of that great event we are told...

Trees are coming back to live here, old trees, wild trees. The Watchwood we will call it. Not a squirrel will go
here, but I shall know of it. Leave it to Ents!


Welcome to the Treegarth of Orthanc! the old land once enclosed by a ringed circle of stone. The strong stone tower still exists in the center, but the rest is covered by wild trees, planted ages ago by the victorious Ents.

(OOC: We welcome one and all to use this thread how you like - to RP in the region of the Treegarth, and to our Wizard friends who may wish to explore the tower of Orthanc that no one has set foot in for many a long year....)

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There in a rustling sound in the deep green forest. The ringed circle of stone outside the tower was long obliterated by twisted vines and old trees. Above ravens cawed looking down on the dense woodland, tree canopies in various shades of green. Deep shadow was underneath them. There was a creaking sound. One of them started to move. It was a round puff of deeply lobed oak leaves that shifted then seemed a float as it stared to moved toward the tower. The ravens perched there took off flying when they espied the shine of eyes under the thick crown of the Oak. The tree kept moving until she, yes she found water.

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The wind blew change through the forest. It was an odd, confused sensation, as if the trees were waking up from a sleep they didn't know they had been under. A walker through the woods that day would have noticed the leaves grow a little greener and the air grow a little fresher as the stagnant air of slumber was pushed from the woods. So it was that Lindol felt a stirring in his roots and his bark prickle. For reasons he didn't know, both he and the forest were now awake. Shaking the moss from his legs, Lindol moved through the woods. Life was seeping back into his old stomping grounds - nests had been built in many of the trees, housing birds and mice alike. As he meandered through the woods, Lindol found himself drawn to their edge; towards the great stone circle where Orthanc found its home. A question played on Lindol's mind: what had woken him from his sleep? However this question was replaced by a greater one: what had put the forest to sleep in the first place?

Weathered Ent
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The water was tricking at the edge of the forest and the sunlight danced off ripples and they lapped at the edge the stream. The water puddled into a little pool. The Huorn dipped her dry roots into the cool water and gazed mesmerized at the light reflecting off the water. She waded out into the water. It would have been an odd sight to see the smallish Oak with the thick crown scooting out into the pooling water. But then Oakie's ear branches flicked. She heard something slipping through the moss laden trees. She turned around and faced the forest. The forest was a line of green. The tower was nearly smothered by the green.

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Ult woke up...he had been asleep for how long? He had no idea. And he had dreamt for so long. Very strange images, and very strange things he had seen in his dreams. He stood up, and stepped on an empty keg that was laying around and bumped his head against an outstretched branch of a tree. Suddenly some rats were speeding away and he was curious where they came from. When he looked closer, he saw a very big rat hanging from his robes. It was then he saw the state his robes were in...it had holes, it was torn, some part of his belly was showing. Ult shook his head and put his hand on a nearby tree. It was at that very moment it started to rain. Not even a bit, but a downpour. And the trees around him didn't really prevent much. Ult stood watching and before him there was a huge plain. Where to go to?

Enting
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It started with a light tingle from deep below. Eurie slowly opend up her eyes while a bird was singing it's song close to her ear. Did this little creature awoken her? Now that would be a suprise she thought. A deep rumble started to arise when Eurie moved her head left and right to see how the forest looked like after her deep sleep. Nothing really changed, the fellow trees still whispering in the winds, the animals minding their own buisiness. The bird made a high pitched noise and flew up the moment Eurie started to move her limbs. These old things needed some stretching. After her stretching, which took quite some time, she stood still again. Feeling the wind across her face and starting to think again about the tingle. It has been some time since she seen her fellow ents en the curiosity about how they were started to grow. Let's take a quick look she thought. A loud rumbling escaped her mouth while she started to laugh about her own joke.
After some time of travelling she came near the old tower Orthanc. Great stories can be told here, much memories stuck in stone.

Fea
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Her eyes opened slightly, and then clenched shut again, as if the light was too much to bear. A deep breath rustled the curled birch bark of the Entwife, and she tried to open her eyes again. Almost. One more deep breath, and her eyes finally shot open and absorbed the bright sunlight of the day. She looked down at her arms, and at her roots that had delved deep into the ground. Yes, she has become quite treeish. But what had stirred her? She tried to remember her name, where she came from, who she was. For now, she couldn't. But she was warmed by the rays of the sun, the coming summer, and....something else she couldn't quite identify.

Weathered Ent
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Oakie felt the big drops of rain falling on her leaves, running and falling into the water. She watched them make ripples that spread out in rings. Sun peered through the cloud, and shone through the drops the clung to her whispering leaves. She gazed out over the plain tawny colored plain. She could actually smell the moistened grass as the rain died down and the sun peered out from behind the clouds. The sun warmed the landscape. A steam started to rise from the banks of the river. Drops dribbled from her leaves. The dark clouds moving off to the East rumbled. The Huorn shook the drops from her leaves. They now shone, washed by the rain. The Huorn sparkled in the warm sunshine and the breeze lifted her leaves again, exposing the silvery undersides. It created a shimmering two toned effect.
Huorn of Fangorn

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Image
Rosylvatica
Somewhere near the stone tower.



Morning settled over the lands and the sunlight barely kissed the mossy undergrowth on the woodland floor. A crimson brown doe just shy of two years cautiously entering the woodlands. Her orbs, golden in color, were alert and with each step she took, she glanced into the shadowy depths for predators that hunted in these lands. She had no choice, she had to get to the other side to the clearing where her herd was settling for the night or face the fact she might have to sleep in this place alone. Her head lifted at that thought and she sighed, knowing that the journey was going to be a big one. Why did they have to pick this place? Could they not have stayed in their lands where the grass was tender and the plains were vast? Instead, their leader had decided that it was best to move for the safety of the herd but she has always known it was a lie. He just didn’t want to fight the Buck, Alvian for the leadership of the herd and in leaving the plains, he is nothing but a weak leader in her eyes.

The Interlocking branches of a sturdy beech formed a thick canopy above her head and she glanced up, searching for any sign of life but the silence was down right creepy. Since when did a forest not have any creatures in it? Hell she would be grateful for the familiar chattering sound of a simple-minded bird but with each passing moment, she was getting more and more worried. It wasn’t meant to be like this right? Her daggers pressed into the mossy ground underneath her and she paused, lowering her nose and sniffed at it. She needed to rest, to take a few minutes to catch a breather and maybe have something to eat.

Two days of traveling, no stopping to even have a nap and she was getting to the point of collapsing in exhaustion.
'Well… a few nibbles won’t do me any harm' She thought, her brown orbs focusing on the moss at the base of the beech tree as she tenderly plucked at it with her ivories and lowered herself into a more comfortable position. Since the forest was quiet, she naturally assumed that there was no danger here, there wasn't but she wasn't alone either.


Rosylvatica was lulled into a deep slumber. A slumber that she has remained in for quite some time. Enough time for her branches to become tangled, her roots deep, reaching and her canopy to be variegated in patterns of pink, white and green. However, despite this slumber, something was nibbling at her bark. Annoyingly consistent enough to arise her from her slumbered state.

A lone bird was approaching and landed close to her ear, singing the song of its people. A song, that was distracting her from her current problem.
'Will..you...be...quiet' She snapped, flicking one of the low hanging limbs towards the creature only to... accidently make contact and the bird, that was nestled quiet comfortable on her, was now flung across the air in a far greater speed then what he would be in flight. 'Well my bad' She thought, focusing her round eyes from the flying speck that was the bird to the doe that was nestled beneath her.
'Now....what...do...we..have..here?'
Characters: Lilath(Elf) Beril(Human/Dwarf) Garreth(Dwarf) Blossom(Orc/human) Rose(Ent)

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Ult was looking around: "Strange he thought . I could have sworn for a moment ..." Ult turned, and looked again where a few moments before there was a tree, but now it was an open space. He turned back walked a few steps forward, and then suddenly turned around as to see suddenly someone, or something would have been there...But there was not. His robes were soaking and the rat that had been hanging through a hole in his robes, had decided to go back, somehwere in Ult's robes. Ult then said: "Stop that, Sinderella, you are tickling me" Well clear it was the rat had a name. She had a name for sins i thepast, so to say. Ult decide to stay near the border of the trees, for at least there was shelter. The large plain ahead was slowly turning into a very muddy plane.
Last edited by Ult on Wed May 27, 2020 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Image Earane Ancalime - a flying visit

At this point the wind decided to be as unhelpful as possible, filled her cloak like a balloon and ripped her off the building, carrying her off toward Fangorn like a galleon in full sail. It was probably not the moment to be concentrating on the fact that she'd left both hat and staff in the tower, but it's all she could think of - well, and the rapidly approaching treetops.

The rapidly approaching treetops were, close up, quite uncomfortable and pointy-looking. Not a good landing spot, in fact... quite some way up from the ground.

The wind, evidently taking pity on her unwilling aerial gymnastics, dramatically changed direction and reduced in velocity, deciding to blow vertically up her cloak so that it billowed out like the skirt of a large bell, which had the side-effect of slowing her down. She spent some moments in brief contemplation of stepping gently down onto a larger branch, and climbing down carefully, untouched by the mishap. As it happened, she wildly misjudged the angle and speed of descent and panicked, grabbing at anything which might have slowed her fall. She passed the treetops at speed, the long thin fingers of the topmost branches the equivalent of whips, resulting in no few lacerations to hands, forearms, neck and face, a mouthful of leaves and a punch in the solar plexus from a heavy bellyflop onto a largish forked branch.

"Nnnnnnnggh," she groaned weakly, about two minutes later when she remembered how to breathe. She slowly turned herself lengthwise onto the branch instead of hanging over it like a limp sock and lay there. She was done. No, really. She might have cracked a rib of two there, and she still was some yards from the ground ... climbing down could wait, she shut her eyes again and hoped it would all be over when she opened them.

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Something about this place seemed off to Ducky. Everything was going particularly tree-ish here. It seemed like the last activity had been fairly recent, but all the actors seemed to have re-vanished. The trees were thick, but Ducky had noticed the stone outcroppings here and there. It seemed that it used to be a wall. Ducky's memory was coming back to him. This used to be a place of magic and power, once upon a time. He had not been here for many a year, and he felt more familiar in the thick undergrowth that Fangorn produced wherever it reached than he was amongst what remained of rock and stone, now. But he felt he had to push onward. There was a strange draw to the place. Was it a desire for knowledge? For companionship? Something...darker? He could not say. Certainly there was darkness here, but perhaps that was the work of the huorns, who clearly had a heavy presence round this ring.

He brushed aside another thick branch, and suddenly the tower, the Treegarth, came into view. A magnificent sight, unlike any other on Middle-earth. He knew he had to reach it. He hoped he would not go tree-ish himself in the process. Who or what might be inside?

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Ducky sat now on the steps of the tower. It seemed mysteriously unaffected by the over-growth of Nature all around. It afforded Ducky a peculiar vantage here, looking out upon a near-jungle, but not himself a part of it. The place had been difficult to reach, swampy and thick. Roots had tugged at his legs the whole way, and pools sucked at his ankles, trying to drag him under. He did not suspect any malcontent from the trees though. Its obscurity of location did not (yet) imply any evil. They had just come in a destructive mood, to wipe out the industries of Saruman and replace it with green.

Green was the dominating color out there, a vibrant one, but deep and dark in many places as well. It was a beautiful view. Ducky munched on a sandwich he had packed. There was probably some food stored in the tower too though. He was pretty sure he remembered where the salted meats were stored, as well as the snacks. He wanted to go exploring soon and see what was left.

He was expecting a visitor though. At least one. He wouldn't venture inside the tower until his potential apprentice caught up to him.

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Quaegomar

”Hrumm…” said Quagomar as he lifted, slowly, from the riverbed and continued on his way. Behind, trees rustled, branches shifted — and here or there a root might even be seen, pulling free from the soil and slithering across the land before burying itself again as the herd traveled slowly on. They had gone greatly out of their way, to tell the truth, and Quagomar was glad to have found the trickling creek which was once the mighty Isen. This here… ”Hoooomhruu” murmured Crowhome, searching for the word. This was the runoff, what little water was released each day from the great lake of the Isendale.
The herd was sparse, though soon it would not matter. The Watchwood was strong, and Crowhome’s herd would mingle with others. He had gone far out of his way in search of the wing-herd, the flock, long delayed in returning after their migration. Now they roosted in his hair and along his shoulders, not to mention in the many branches of his slowly shifting herd and raised such a noise that it was a wonder the ent could stand it.
Still, he loved the birds — they had defended him in the hard days, when their cousins the crebain had come suddenly into the service of the Tree-hewer. Few would sing the songs of the Battles of the Birds, and few would remember the valor of Broa son of Droa and Enn son of Fenn, but Crowhome would.
The oakish ent smiled softly as he passed through the Treegarth, and sent out a great hrummmm of greeting which would thrum through the wood and alert his fellows to his presence. And here, indeed, was the the great lake of the Isendale — though Quagomar had been long in the coming indeed, and it was less a lake now and more a boggy field through which the river struggled to push.
”Hrmmm.” murmured the ent thoughtfully. Perhaps something could be done about that. It would not do to clog the river too badly, if the time had come for it to flow again.
But here! What was this? Fire flashed in the heart of the oaken-ent, and the memory of biting axes, and of sharp beaks and the brave sacrifice of Enn son of Fenn. Fury! The Tree-cutter, the Land-killer himself—there, on the stair of the tower—A wizard!
It was good that Crowhome was not a hasty ent, or he might have done something rash in that moment. As it were, he halted within the boundaries of the wood and watched and, when it became clear that the wizard was not moving, Crowhome whispered and sent bold Broa son of Droa soaring upward on the wing to spy out this wizard and determine his intentions.
Could Saruman truly have returned?


(OOC: @KingODuckingham I have no idea if you're still watching / interested in this thread, but here -- I've given you a bird to play with)
In the deeps of Time, amidst the Innumerable Stars

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Drifa

Though the tales tell that dwarf women seldom walk abroad except at great need, there are always exceptions. Some dwarf women desire no husband and enjoy their independence. Most dwarf men are too fully engrossed in their crafts or food and ale. Drifa had no patience for such single-mindedness. She enjoyed walking abroad. She was a wander at heart. Mind you; she never refused the help of some love-sick dwarf when it came to heavy lifting and such.
She had heard rumours that the Rowan trees in the Treegarth of Orthanc were heavy with berries. She was so very excited to pick a few sacks full. She had perfected the best jam ever from her last year's pickings. It went splendidly with her afternoon toddy.
Arriving at her destination, she removed her sacks and harvested the berries. No axe did she carry.
Last edited by Drifa on Thu Jan 20, 2022 11:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Gwaihir, temporarily visiting the Treegarth
From high up in his eyrie in the Misty Mountains, Gwaihir watched the dawn sun peel over the eastern edge of the world. A blaze of red, pink and orange light bathed the sky in rich hues. He perched still and silent with his head held high. For he was a great eagle. The warm light shone upon his golden-brown plumage, carefully preened as if his life depended on it.

The sun rose higher in the sky and finally a crisp blue sky was unveiled, clean and pale, and it warmed his golden-brown plumage. As the day rose, the creatures who dwelt upon the ground below began to stir. Only then did he unfurl his great wings, set his claws on the edge of his eyrie and take flight.

It felt good to stretch his wings. The trees below were a great green swath across the land and the snow atop the mountain peaks glistened white while their western flanks were cast deep in shadow.

After a short flight south, Gwaihir saw the dark tower of Orthanc piercing the sky. The place had changed since he plucked Gandalf from its clutches but he spied a few robed figures about the place. Wizards? How unexpected. There was one in a tree (Earane) and another sitting on the tower’s steps (Ducky). It seemed there may be Ents about, too, though they were harder to notice because they moved so slow. And there was a dwarf (Drifa) harvesting berries of all things.

He swirled among the thermals high above the strangers for a time just to keep an eye on things.

(OOC - anyone feel free to engage (or try to engage...) Gwaihir while he's here. otherwise he'll just sit and watch cause that's what eagles do! :lol: )

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Crowhome / Quagomar

In the stuffy warmth of the shepherded wood, Crowhome was standing and enjoying the sounds of the wood. There was a stream trickling somewhere nearby. It made him sleepy.

Broa, son of Droa

Far overhead, Broa was on the wing. It was good to get above the canopy--and he tried to, as often as he ought. Crowhome was, well, his home--but there was no need to stay shut in all the time. The sun was on his feathers... The wizard could wait. From here, Broa could see that he was no Saruman, who they had last been seen nearly crawling from the tower, a beggar in the valley he had ruled. And rightly so. Rightly so.

A shadow passed over Broa and he dove, on instinct--but no, it was no great hawk diving for him, but a bird flying higher, much higher in the air. A great bird-- Could it be that the King-Race of High-Mountain-Roosts had come, to speak with the the Shepherd-Lords of the Valley-Garth?
Broa shook the thoughts from his head. It had been long since he had talked to any but those who roosted on Crowhome, and the kindly old Ent's way of speaking was infective, in some degree. The unusual dialect would never fit a King-Raced-Bird of--No, an eagle. They were called eagles in the common way of speaking.

So Crowhome soared up--up, up, and let out as he approached the high-circling bird a raucous cry. "Hail King-Raced-rauc" That was wrong. "Hail Eagle, of Northern Peaks. What news from the frost-feathe-hrauc- From the stony northern heights, I mean. What brings you here to ride the warm winds of the Gap?"
In the deeps of Time, amidst the Innumerable Stars

Ent Ancient
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Gwaihir
It pleased the eagle to see the expanse of trees growing and unfurling their leaves around the rough hewn stone of the tower. The land appeared to be healing from the terrible scours and scars left by the White Wizard who had once sought to deceive all and that was good news.

Gwaihir was uncertain what to make of these new wizards. It would require more careful observation and there were none more suited to the task than he. Some wizards were poisoned with malice, like Saruman, but Gandalf had been true and loyal and blessed by the Valar themselves. So Gwaihir held him in high esteem.

He gave his wings a lazy flap and circled again. At least the wizards appeared still, unmoving, not destroying anything. As his gaze scanned further, he spied a very small feathered creature (Broa) taking to the air. The bird flew up, his wings pumping furiously, growing closer and closer to the height which Gwaihir now soared.

He blinked a golden eye at the bird who spoke in a strange dialect. There were many kinds of speech among the kelvar and Gwaihir did not presume to know them all but the crow became easier to understand the more he spoke.

“Naught has summoned me here but the need to stretch my wings and set my gaze upon lands not visited of late, young crow. In the northern peaks, the snow melts as it does every year and the rivers flow forth and all things are at peace save when orcs emerge and must be hunted,” he told Broa. “I flew south and thought to see many trees and naught else. Yet here I see a thing most unexpected. Wizards! What can you tell me of such a sight, crowling? Have you lived in this place for long?”

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Fuin

The elf was traveling the lands exploring after the filth of Saruman had been washed away she road calmly up to the edge of the Treegarth, from afar she could see an eagle circling high above and gave a wave knowing she'd been seen by the eagle, though she had no way of greeting the noble bird any further than that. She sat at the edge of the forest, looking at the trees a smile on her face just enjoying the look of these new trees unfurling leaves and branches skyward. She slipped off of the back of her horse and gave it a pat knowing Gwaihir would leave the steed be, and slipped into the new and beautiful woods.

She headed for the massive tower that raised from the center to see how the forest was doing, she knew there would be huorns and ents about but was shocked to see other foot prints in the woods and she headed to see who was in these woods. She slipped around quietly noting that there were berry trees stripped of their riper berries with only the young ones left and she figured it was a rider of Rohan come to pluck berries though she hadn't seen any other horse or hoof prints. She laughed at herself when she saw it was in fact a dwarf (Drifa). "Is the the harvest going well?"
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The berries were for the sack and the jam and for dwarf feet, which is why one could not help accidentally dropping them on the ground from time to time - especially the overripe fruit. Drifa, having removed her heavy boots, purposely stepped on the fallen berries so she could feel them squish between her toes and the bottoms of her feet. Oddly enough, she enjoyed the sensation of the berries bursting beneath her feet. And, having discovered another pleasure from this activity, she did it for the benefits it reaped.

During the last harvest, she made a fantastic discovery. Having spent the day stomping about on the berries - her boots off due to the warmth of the day - she had collected all she could carry and began preparing herself for the journey home. Sitting down on a nearby rock, she took an empty hemp sack from her bag that she had been carrying along with her and began to clean the berry skins and juice from her feet. She scrubbed with the cloth until she had most of the berry off. When she finished, her feet felt surprisingly silky smooth with only a slight pink colour from the rubbing and the berry juice. The stain would come off when she was near water and soap, she assumed and put on her boots.

A fortnight later, having made it back to her halls, she was surprised to find her feet still smooth and silky, with nary a callous to be found. She had always suffered from dry and calloused feet because of the rock floors in her Mountain home and the heavy boots she wore. But now, her feet were silky smooth, like a pink sapphire to the touch. She concluded that it must have been the combination of berry and hemp, a natural exfoliator. And so, she spent the next months leading up to the following year's harvest, scrubbing her feet every new moon with a few saved berries (that had not gone into the jam pot) and hemp cloth. Her conclusions had been 'berry on.' Her visits to the rowan grove were now a two-fold adventure which she amusingly called her Toe-jam Adventure.

And here she was, a year later, stomping about the place. It was not as warm this year, but not too cold that she could not take off her boots. The rowans were laden with berries, and as the saying went - "The more berries on a rowan tree, the more severe winter will be." The expression did not concern her overly, for she spent most of her winters in her warm halls. But it would be a long winter if the old saying held. So she picked a little more fruit than usual. She also gathered rowan twigs from the ground and placed them in a pile near the sitting rock. She had heard from a traveller she had met on the road that burning rowan wood (or mountain ash as some called it) and spreading the ash it created on the threshold of your abode could potentially ward off werewolves. She had heard many an eerie howl on her trip to the grove—some making her beard stick straight out. One could never be too careful. It may be that it was all superstition, but she would have a long winter to get through if the prophecy came true, and every little distraction helped.

Humming to herself, as she stomped and gathered, she suddenly heard laughter from the trees. Turning, she saw an elf (Fuin) standing looking at her. The elf appeared friendly and asked her how the harvesting was going. Brushing some leaves from her beard, she bowed low and said.
Greetings! Drifa at your service! The harvest is proceeding wonderfully, good elf. I have picked enough fruit for both the jam and my feet and enough twigs to ward off a pack or more of werewolves. What brings you to the grove?"
Last edited by Drifa on Thu Jan 20, 2022 11:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Fuin looked at the sack of berries and the bootless dwarf. "It is good to hear that harvest has gone well." She said returning the bow gracefully "Fuin at your service, and I see you are looking to have your feet well moisturized by the berries" She said picking a berry, looking at them closely she knew the berries well they were not so good for eating, not without some decent cooking but often elves would add such berries to soaps that they used to keep their kin soft. "I am just was traveling and came to enjoy the woods, I remembered Isengard when it once had trees about it before the war. Now it is better I think." She said softly. "And it's good to see dwarves tending their feet as an elf would though you are being a bit more aggressive with the berries than us elves would be."

She looked at the pack of twigs, she had not seen werewolves in a very long time and the last time she had seen them had been in the first age and had been absolutely terrifying. Those werewolfs would not have been stopped by some sprinkled ash, but she felt that Drifa was perhaps doing it more to keep her mind busy? At least the elf hoped so. She had heard wolves, which were frightening enough but they were not weres.

The last week of her traveling she had heard a few wolf calls but nothing that had overly worried about them they had not been coming near and she did have her bow on her so she was sure she'd be able to defend herself especially since her mount was a war steed not a trail horse for children. "I figured I'd travel through here and perhaps Fangorn itself and a few other forests. After all I have not had a chance to travel since the war and now things are beginning to be green and good again so I felt it would be good to remind myself as to why I wanted to stay in Arda rather than travel the straight road to the West."
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Broa, son of Droa

"Naught has summoned me here..." said the great-king-raced-high-dweller (Gwaihir), and went on to speak with the authority of the peak-dwellers, who roam, Broa knew, the misty-world-spine from the far north to these southern valleys. At the mention of the wizard, Broa dipped his wing subtly and turned, continuing to circle the Eagle while surveying the foot of the stair below.

"Indeed!" cried Broa "We did not think to see Wizards here, either-- We being my murder and I, the dwellers of the herd of the great-twisted-shepherd-of-the-motley-floc-hrauc! Pardon me, of the Tree-Herd called Quagomar, called Crowhome in this tongue. My murder and I, we have only come here recently, traveling with the herd of this ent from the depths of Fangorn-wood to the East, where long we dwelt in fear of this place. Rauc! But now we are here, and the Nest-guider, as we call him when speaking hastily, he sent me to seek out the very same wizard whom you espy there on the steps, and to determine his interest in the valley, and to confirm that it is not, as we feared, the old master of this Valley returned. But, no--there are wizards in the woods, and wizards on the steps, but none of them seem to be the cruel-robed-long-bearded-rauc to be Curunir, as he was called."

Broa dipped again, doing his best to incline his body in reverence and apology to the Great Eagle. "I hope you will forgive my stumbling tongue, Great Master of Northern Eyries. It is long since I held converse with any winged folk besides my murder-cousins, and we are long adjusted to the unhasty speech of the Tree-herds."
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Gwaihir
“Indeed I, too, am glad it is not Curunir returned to bring back more malice and destruction.” He released a sudden cry: screeching, shrill and piercing to express his disdain for the one called Curunir who had cruelly kept Gandalf captive in that very tower. “You must forgive me now, little crow. That was not aimed at you but at the memory of the one who stains the name wizard.”

Crowhome, did you say?” Gwaihir asked Broa. It reminded him of a name once given to Gandalf. Stormcrow. The eagle knew it was intended as an insult but did not understand the particulars of crude Man-names. Stormcrow seemed a nice enough name but no one asked the Windlord what he thought about it.

“That sounds like a Tree-Herder I ought to meet. You will lead me to him. Tell me what you are called while we descend. I am called Gwaihir, the Windlord.” He flicked the feathers at the ends of his wings as if to beckon the smaller bird along and began to descend lower and lower in slow circles until at last he alighted on the topmost branches of a large tree with very strong branches. There were few trees here strong enough for such a great eagle to perch in so he had chosen this one with a careful, discerning eye.

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Broa, son of Droa

"Then meet him you shall, Gwaihir, Lord of Winds." He dipped then, descending beside the mighty eagle toward the clearing dominated by it's perch-worthy tree. Then Broa croaked, calling in the language of the crows--And there, some distance away through the thick and tangled wood, his murder called back, rising up from a grove of ancient trees in a dark cloud...

Quagomar, Crowhome

The birds were calling to each other, in their own language. Crowhome listened, carefully as he could, but could catch only scraps as they all shrieked over each other. Confoundedly hasty birds, they were -- and their dialect was muddled enough with Quagomar's own that he could not say for certain what he heard and what he only thought he heard. Lord-king and Great-winder--perhaps a storm, then? A maker of great winds? But -- no, the confoundable declinations of the language of birds...

Anyway, they were rising up. There was something there, in that glade some distance off. Crowhome roused himself and trod slowly after them, humming and then singing softly to himself as he went. "Hroa, loa, hrum-dey-doa, in the Valley grow in the Sun we know... Hrao, hao, hroo-dey-dao... Grow green and fair in the Valley..." It was a hasty little rhyme, not proper Ent-speech, but Crowhome thought it made for good singing, and the trees seemed to like it. They rustled softly as he passed, and creaked with the creaking of his knees -- but all in all, the ent could move quietly when he wished to move quietly, and it was quietly that he came up upon the clearing and the great tree. Then he stopped, and thrummmed with joy, and cried out:

"Hail, light-bearer, hail, King of Mountain Peak. Eagle in the eyrie, ox in pasture-- 'great-winder' indeed. Now I understand, at least a little of my friends' foolish chatter." Crowhome did his best to bow, moving stiffly at the waist -- more like a tall tree bending gently in the wind than any man or elf. "Welcome to the hateful-valley-regrown-in-Fangorn-sple--hrooom, welcome to the Treegarth, I ought to say. Welcome to the Vale of Orthanc. I am Crowhome to men, though the elves call be Quagomar. I do not know what language you prefer--It is long since I have held discourse with the winged-messengers of Sulimo."
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Gwaihir
The crow (Broa) spoke in the language of Gwaihir’s distant brethren and a beautiful flurry of black feathers rose up from the trees and into the sky. The eagle watched the murder of crows move together as though with a single mind.

Content on his perch with his wings folded up and the sun pleasantly warming his feathers, Gwaihir was in no hurry to meet the Tree-Herder. When Crowhome appeared and bowed to him, the eagle inclined his head with much respect. “Crowhome, Quagomar, honorable Tree-Shepherd,” Gwaihir greeted him, "thank you for welcoming me to your home. The language of Men will do as long as it is not too abrasive for you to speak in,” he offered.

“Many seasons have passed since I last visited this land and much has changed since then. It gladdens me to meet you, one who cares for the trees and who also cares for the crows. They are often unjustly vilified and they, too, deserve a place to nest. But though I appreciate your actions, I have come to ask - what you know of the wizards hereabouts if you do know anything? Is all well in this valley of trees?”

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Crowhome

"Roohm, hoom..." murmured Crowhome to himself. It took some thinking over, these questions of the Eagle's. The Wizards.. The Wizards... Did I know ought of the Wizards? A season ago, perhaps, or ten seasons, he had sat in a glade many leagues from here, in converse with the... speckled-root-and-tree, scent-earth-and-earth-dyed... the brown wizard, Radagast. But, Crowhome you fool-- that was not what the Windlord desired. It was hard a-times, in these modern hasty days, to recall that folks were not asking when they were asking, as the line went, but merely...

Ah, but an answer. The Windlord desired an answer. "All is peaceable in the valley, or seems to be... At least, it has been since I came, though I was late in the coming. My herd is a ragged bunch, as prone to wandering as I am to sleep... Yet, yes, there is a wizard on the step and a wizard in the wood, and perhaps two children, one eldest and one shortest, if you'll pardon the joke.

Indeed! The valley blossoms with life, and the children are a part of that blossoming. They have their place, and so long as they do not overfill it I do not fear them, though I am curious... But then, we live in curious times, as you surely know, great Master of the Winds.
"

Broa, son of Droa

As if to prove Crowhome's point, Broa and his kin rose up in a great cawing cloud, sure to be seen for miles around.

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Gwaihir
While he awaited the Ent’s answers, Gwaihir cast his golden eyes across the forest and spied the dwarf he had seen while flying above. The berry-gatherer was now accompanied by one of the Firstborn. It was a somewhat unusual pair to see, certainly, but the Eagle did not give them much heed. He could see from afar they were having an amicable conversation.

The Ent reported no trouble in the valley and that the land was blossoming. There was a freshness to the air and the Winds here were welcoming. Gwaihir could feel this peace Crowhome spoke of in his very bones.

“I see the eldest and shortest and they seem as peaceful as this valley. Those are glad tidings indeed and welcome ones.” With a flurry of feathers, Gwaihir shook out and ruffled his wings. “You speak true words of wisdom, Crowhome. All things have their place in this world and it is not for me to interfere save when a great need calls.”

It was not so long ago that the Eagle had interfered. When shadows grew in the East and War scarred the trees, the valleys, the mountains and all the beasts and beings calling these places home. He recalled still the Battle at the Black Gate where he fought claw and beak against the foul wraiths upon their terrible winged beasts. In the storm of fire and darkness, the ash burned his every breath that day when darkness threatened to destroy all. Still, he had flown ever onward in search of those noble Halflings who so bravely and selflessly wrought the The Enemy’s defeat.

“I, too, am ever curious and thus I roam the skies to see what may be discovered.” His voice lowered and took on a warning tone. “But fell deeds may go unnoticed even by keen eyes.” The eagle shifted his claws upon the branch and snapped his beak as if agitated at his own words before he resettled once more.

Gwaihir nodded his head at the Ent. “I hope you will watch over this place and its denizens with care in the years to come, Crowhome. If ever the peace in this valley fades, send one of your crows to me and my kindred in the mountains. The crow who brought me hither seems both sharp of mind and strong of wing. He would make a fine messenger. For now, I will bid you farewell, Crowhome, great Tree-Herder, Nest-guider and bird-friend.”

With that, he inclined his head and breast in a deep bow of respect for the Ent before he spread his wings and took to the air where he met with the crows and Broa once more.

“It seems there is naught to be troubled about in your wood,” he cried out to the crow. “I will bid you and your murder farewell for now until we meet again.” He blinked his eyes at Broa in a gesture of friendship before he soared up, up, away above the sea of green with effortless grace.

As he circled the Treegarth one last time, the Eagle felt renewed lightness and vigor in his wings knowing that all was well in this verdant and green valley lush with life and rebirth. This was the way of the world. Gwaihir released a shrill cry of joy which echoed over the valley for all to hear before the great Eagle disappeared once more into the endless blue to the north.

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Elmwhisper the Ent

Beneath a bright sun, Elmwhisper stood in a grove of tall trees. The bark was a dark mahogany brown and it peeled away in pulpy layers from the trunk and branches. The waxy leaves gleamed bright green in the sunlight; they were tough, strong little things. In the spring, white blossoms dappled green boughs and birds mated and raised their young in this place of plenty. This was Elmwhisper’s herd and each tree, each leaf, each blossom brought him great joy.


But it was only a dream...

He awoke from a deep sleep feeling forlorn, wistful for a time and place long vanished. His herd, he had failed them, every one, and now there were none left of his old trees. It had been so long he no longer recalled their name. Not in Entish or any other language. His heart thrummed with a deep longing. He had not acted soon enough to save them. Still he remembered the very last tree. It was one thing he would never forget in all his years. Elmwhisper had stood by her side, watched her leaves fall, one by one until none remained and her life ended, fading away like fog beneath a burning sun.

He reached up and wiped a single tear from his face. He allowed himself a moment to feel his sorrow. The moment turned into many by more hasty folks' measure. The sun rose higher and pierced the canopy of his sheltered home when he finally rose and helped himself to a morning draught.

Refreshed and rejuvenated, the tall Ent made a move at last and left his home behind. He took slow, measured steps and observed the forest around him. The waters of the Limlight sang to him a neverending song and what leaves had fallen under autumn’s touch crunched underfoot.

When he reached the grove of trees they called the Watchwood, the Treegarth, he spied a great eagle flying overhead before the winged one disappeared into northern skies. He wondered at it but did not give it much thought. Elmwhisper was here to tend to the trees, to heal the land scarred by the crooked hands of a wizard.

Ah, but what was that he spied with green eyes glowing? Faint curiosity stirred somewhere deep within as he studied the Firstborn (@Fuin Elda ) and the dwarf (@Drifa ). He was not one to be too hasty, no, he would watch first and learn what he could before he approached them with caution. They looked friendly enough but one could never be too careful.
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'Yes ,' she nodded her agreement, 'this area seems to have been well tended since the war.' She smiled at the Elf (@Fuin Elda ).
'That is a fine bow you have there. If I was a werewolf, which I am not!' Drifa added hastily.
She was a dwarf, after all, with an abundance of hair and whiskers. And with her boots off and her skort hitched up to prevent it from being soiled by the berries, her bare legs did show more dark, downy hair. Hairiness was a characteristic of one afflicted with lycanthropy, and a dwarf had to be careful.
'Ai, IF I were, I would be wary of you and your bow,' she said with a grin. A wide grin showed her straight white teeth with no canine tooth visible.
Her sack now full to bust with berries and with enough twigs in the bundle to carry, she made her way to the sitting stone and sat herself down. As she took the burlap cloth from her sack, she remarked on the Elf's horse.
''That is a fine looking horse too, although, I am not an admirer of horses and no judge of what is a fine horse or not. But it looks quite healthy and clean!' she exclaimed with enthusiasm as she began to scrub her feet with the cloth.
'I like clean! Even though I do spend a good part of my time cleaning, I like it. You wouldn't believe the dirt that dwarf boots carry into the halls of my Mountain home. Especially 'male' dwarf boots. And of course there are so few of us women-folk that, the cleaning jobs seem to be a perpetual chore. But like I said, I like it.' Shaking the cloth to dislodge any berry pieces, she looked up at the Elf and suddenly said in a lower voice.
'Have you had a feeling like someone is watching us? I have not said anything because I was not quite sure, but now, I feel like we are." She raised an all-knowing eyebrow at Fuin, then looked around. In a shaded corner of the clearing, she was sure she saw (@Lailyn) green eyes aglow. Surprised, she sat up straighter, alert. Turning quietly to the Elf, she nodded her head in the direction she had imagined the green glow and whispered.
'Over there.'
Last edited by Drifa on Thu Jan 20, 2022 10:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Fuin smiled as the dwarf at her kind comment about her bow, only to smile as she hastily added she was not a werewolf. The old elleth couldn't help but laugh as she continued wide showing her teeth to let her see the teeth or lack of werewolfish teeth.

"Hahah yes werewolves learned to fear this bow many ages ago, though I was not the one to wield it though I did eventually carry that on." She said with a laugh. "They learned plenty to fear Dwarven axes plenty as well." Fuin for her part was happy to look about the woods and take in the sight of the light filtering through the leaves as the dwarf sat down and cleaned off her feet before she brought the elves attention back to the dwarf. She glanced at her horse he had wandered in after her and she shook her head.

"He is clean is is a very picky horse when it comes to his tending though he is smart enough to know that he can't be washed and brushed daily when we are on the road though I do keep him brushed." She said giving her horse a look for he was eyeballing the sack of berries that the dwarf had picked, "Also keep an eye on him he is a brat, he may try to eat your berries even though he should know better." She kept looking at her horse and pointed away from the sack of berries until he gave a nicker and moved away to chew on a tree instead.

"I don't doubt it, even elves sometimes bring dirt in on our boots, I suppose it is easier to clean as the wind tends to sweep our floors almost as much as those that do the sweeping." Fuin chuckled. "I am not generally one to do the sweeping I must admit except when I don't have an apprentice to clean the forge I run." She blinked as Drifa spoke softly about being watched.

Fuin paused, she was used to being watched in forests by the trees, though she had almost forgotten that this forest was not part of Fangorn. "Hmm." She said softly and then followed the nod to see some green glowing eyes and she smiled. "Sooth dwarf. 'Tis a shepard" She said softly, "I do not recognize them for I have met a few over the years, but I have never heard of an ent be dangerous especially to those picking berries." She said softly and called a greeting to the ent @Lailyn in elvish, a language that the trees of old hand been taught so she assumed that the ent would know what she was saying.

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Elmwhisper the Ent (he/him)
Hearing the elvish words flow from the Firstborn's tongue was like listening to the stars twinkling in the night sky. The voice was soft and gentle as a breeze and it beckoned him, easing any worries he had about their intentions. Elmwhisper found himself taking measured steps toward the two visitors. The Ent towered over them both and his short spiky hair shone green as the forest leaves in the sunlight. His face was smooth and bare of any beard, almost young for an Ent except for the wisdom and sadness in the depths of his green eyes.

"It is long since I have spoken aloud in your language," he greeted the elf in the Common Tongue, "but I always loved it's rhythm and it gladdens my heart so to hear it. Even so, I should like to speak this tongue so that your friend may understand." He gestured toward the dwarf with a long arm. His six fingers outstretched wide in a friendly way before he bent stiffly at the waist in a little bow of greeting to them. To him, they appeared as old friends, and he lacked knowledge or memory of any feud between elves and dwarves.

"I have had many names but now I am called Elmwhisper. I welcome you to this wood my brethren and I are tasked to watch over. Watch we will and watch I do..." He trailed off for a moment, his eyes unfocused somewhere in the distance or perhaps another time entirely before he gave his head a shake and returned his attention to them. "I see you have found the ah, hoom, what is the name..." He paused. "Those tiny fruits so many creatures like to eat. I hope you find them nourishing." He smiled.

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Fuin

She gave a bow to the ent as he came forward and introduced himself after bowing, happy that the elvish seemed to draw the ent out so that @Drifa could meet the ancient being. Ents and dwarves really met each other especially since Ents that were awake were so rare though with the Cleansing of Isengard had woken a good many of them for a short while. "That is most kind and gracious of you to be so thoughtful of my new friend." She said cheerily. "I thank you very much for being so watchful, it is something that must be done especially now that the forests of the world are sadly diminishing in many places." She said wistfully, being almost as old and full of memories as most ents were, though there were some that were insanely older than she was.

She smiled as Elmwhisper motioned to the berries. "I enjoy them in jam, more so than raw, I am afraid I do not enjoy them raw terribly much myself." She plucked a few more and put them in her pouch. "I will be taking mine home to cook as there is no way I could safely make jam here in this forest a fire here would not be something I feel you or the other trees of this forest would overly enjoy or appreciate."

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Snak (She/her) and her fell-crow, Vit.

You could say Snak was a tree orc. She was reared among the great evergreens on the north of the world. She hunted among the great forests of the Ered Mithrin. She had spent three days in a tree hiding from a rival orc clan when she was merely ten. She was home among the pines. And yet she knew better than to enter this wood willy nilly.

She had ritualistically buried her hand ax in plain view of the trees. She could not shake the feeling these arbors had eyes. She made a small smokey ceremonial fire of wet deadwood. The practice of controlled burning for the health of the woods had been observed among her people for centuries. She hoped the trees would see it as a small token of good will. She had ran the sticky sap of this place through her hair until it could have stood up on its own and she wove the twigs of Fangorn into her locks. If she was to survive in this cursed place of supposed living treefold, she knew she must present herself appropriately.

I had been two days since she had seen Vit, her fell-crow. It rarely disappeared for this long unless there was danger on the currents above. Snak wondered whether there was Eagle-kind (@Lailyn ) in this place and shuddered.

A lunatic of a Dwarf shaman @KingODuckingham had sent her here a month back. At the time she had not planned on listening to the crazy old fool. Yet her journey was coming to a hard dead end. If the Treegarth proved to be another dead end, she figured she would have no other choice but to return home and try to reconcile with her folks.

The orc left her ax behind when she entered the Fangorn. But her dirk would remain on her hip. Death was almost certain in this place for her kind. She would not enter the halls of the dead this day without something to defend herself with on the other side.

The air was heavy in this wood. The trees felt alive. Every hair on Snaks body was electrified. She kept her face low sniffing for trouble. Elf fold or men. Or worse could be lurking around every corner. She ran her hands through trees as she walked. It was a beautiful forest. No rival of the great spruces on the roof of the world. But it had its own charm nontheless. The trees here felt alive in a way Snak had never felt before. She stopped at a particularly old and twisted tree. The knots of hardwood, the snarly bark. She couldnd't shake the feeling that she was looking at something alive and old and... benevolent? Pretty, she though, and moved on.
Her wariness proved wise when she sniffed the she-dwarf @Drifa. And what was that other smell? that was not elf was it? Snak spat.

It's a filthy elf (@Fuin Elda)! What was an elf doing all the way out here in the wilds? Shouldn't it be in a bright hall somewhere eating pheasant with apples or some other rich meal? Snak was a ghost in the pines of the north. She was not confident that she could be just as invisible in this wood to any non-tree eye. But she would try her best. Slowly, Snak crawled through the underbrush like a worm to get a better look at the elf-dwarf pair.
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Elmwhisper the Ent
“Indeed, to be watchful is a thing most important and oft-overlooked,” he agreed with Fuin. “I failed to watch carefully enough in the past and too many trees were lost…” A sorrowful look stole over him as he recalled his lost herd and the swaths of bountiful forests that once spread far and wide.

The dwarf had not yet spoken and Elmwhisper hoped he had not made her feel unwelcome. He had no quarrel with the stone-digging folk, nor anyone else, so long as they let his trees be. As far as he observed, Drifa was not here to fell branches but to gather berries.

“Ah, yes, berries! That is the name, thank you.” He chuckled softly at his own forgetfulness. Thousands of years of memories could bury those small details. “Yes...you are right,” he rumbled, a bit on edge at the mention of fire. “I do not want to see fire in this place ever again! That wizard was allowed to burn too much and dig too deep!”

Elmwhisper, being an Ent of a gentle disposition, kept his anger contained. It was in the past and trees grew here again. He reached down and ran his fingers through a bare patch of soil, drawing a handful up and rubbing it between his fingers. It was rich and dark, full of minerals and good things. He inhaled the earthy scent and released a pleasant sigh that sounded like a soft whistle from a woodwind.

“The land is healing,” he said with contentment. “And now it provides berries to you and your friend just as it should. This pleases me.” His eyes shone with pure happiness. “A forest that thrives provides. I intend to see that it does.”

“There is a bountiful grove of chestnuts nearby. There will be fallen nuts this time of year that may or may not be edible, I do not know...if you would like, I will show you the way if you promise to leave some to sprout into new saplings,” he offered them in a show of trust and generosity.

Though the Ent professed watchfulness, the presence of the tree-orc (Snak) hidden among the brush, was as yet, unnoticed by Elmwhisper.

@Drifa @Fuin Elda @Lokktar Ogar

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As Fuin@Fuin Elda explained that there was nothing to fear, Drifa hastily put on her boots. Maybe the elf had no one to fear, but she was a dwarf with an axe; in the woods where these beings took care of the trees. She had heard stories that these creatures were 100 feet tall and had fists and feet the size of small ponies. Besides, boots were good to have on your feet if fighting (or fleeing) should arise. Stuffing her cloth into her pack, she hoisted it onto her back in preparation. The elf seemed all smiles, and soft words as the tall Ent made his way towards them.
The Ent towered over them (mind you, not 100 feet, but tall enough to a dwarf). She couldn't help but be mesmerized by the depth of the being's deep green eyes ( green eyes, green hair) and smooth skin. What a beautiful being he was. He spoke in elvish then the common tongue. And to her delight, he bowed (although a little stiffly) to her and the elf in greeting and calling himself, Elmwhisper @Lailyn . He inquired about the berries, though he was unsure what name they had at first. As the elf explained the jam, she shook herself from her enchantment. Any misgivings she might have had were also gone as she remembered her manners. Nodding and bending and bowing and waving her hood before her knees (in proper dwarf fashion), she said.
"Greetings Elmwhisper! Drifa at your service! It is a pleasure to meet you! May I be so bold as to say you have beautiful eyes! I have never seen the likes of such eyes before. Such depth! Such a magnificent green! Wonderful!" Blushing slightly under her beard at her forwardness, she continued regardless.
" I use the berries for jam and as a foot exfoliant." Looking at the Ent's large feet (trying to count how many toes he had), she wondered if it would do him any good, then continued.
"I was explaining earlier to Fuin the benefits of rubbing the crush berries on one's feet. It has kept my feet smooth and callous-free for a whole season. A callous-free I am back to gather more." Remembering her manners, she added: "With your permission of course."
Blushing once more, she bowed again, took a deep breath and smiled at the Ent and Elf.

Elmwhisper then began to tell them about a grove where the chestnuts may be ready for picking. Drifa had roasted a few nuts in her day, finding them quite tasty. But she wondered if she could carry more. She had her bundle of sticks and berries to carry home. "Bah!" she thought. She decided that two handfuls of the nuts would not be too heavy, and she would not appear overly greedy. Suddenly, she felt, smelt, heard, something foul (@Lokktar Ogar ). She looked at the Ent, wondering if such creatures passed wind. Did elves? Nay, it was something else. The foul smell was deep-rooted in Dwarven memory. She looked around the grove. Another premonition, maybe? Hopefully, it was a delightful one like the last. But the foulness felt/smelt/sounded otherwise.
Last edited by Drifa on Thu Jan 20, 2022 10:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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In Rubble and Spoil
The Drowned Foundries

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It was terrifying how dark water could be, how oppressive. Water was essential to life, yet it was a killer without equal. White cap, foamy waves cresting over aquatic hills were beautiful, the subject of poetry and saga, but the deep, dead, darkness was the stuff of nightmares. If he had it his way, Drudkh would never go near water again. The lap of water against his skin was akin to the crawling of a spider across his chest. It was cold and insidious. It was going to be the death of him.

How long had he been trapped down here? Days? Weeks? Longer? There was no way to tell but the incessant dripdrop-dripdrop-dripdrop from somewhere in the cavern. There was no light down here, not anymore. There was nothing but water, deep and black. It was cold down here, so cold. Drudkh didn’t understand how he wasn’t dead. He should be. He was the last one alive. When they had been attacked, or what his unit assumed was an attack, they were getting outfitted for new armor, getting measured by the blacksmiths to make sure the new armor fit. Then the devil himself open his mouth and the sound of crushing filled his ears. The roar of something primordial and angry. The sound came from everywhere at once, there was no time to recover. The water moved like a slavering beast, atavistic and hungry.

Before any of them understood what was happening the waters poured in and crushed everything. Water was a foe no uruk could defeat. The commander ordered them up, back to the surface to mount a defense. He was washed away, grabbed by the icy water, and thrown like a rag doll into the wall. Even in his armor, he did not stand a chance. He left nothing but a screaming echo and a red stain on the wall. Even the stain didn’t last though. There was so much water. How could there have been this much water in all the world? The rest of the unit panicked. Water was coming from everywhere. It was exploding out of every crack and crevice and opening, filling the world with icy, black death. The fires were snuffed out, plunging the foundries into total darkness. There were screams. So many screams. They almost drowned out the roar of the water as it poured in. Drudkh couldn’t remember if he screamed or not. Everything was a blur. He was getting measured one moment, the next he was running, naked and barefoot through the darkness with nothing but a blade in hand. He wasn’t even sure how or why he had a sword. What good could hardened steel do against the rage of a river? They say uruks do not know fear or pain. That was a lie. Uruks knew fear, they knew it better than most. It was certainly all Drudkh knew as he ran. He didn’t know the foundries. He was rarely underground. He would have cursed his luck if he’d had a spare thought to feel sorry for himself.

He found a cellar, a storeroom with a big iron door and dove inside. By the time the waters locked him, there were a dozen soldiers and laborers in the storeroom. How long ago had that been? He was the last one left. Eight bodies floated in water that reached up to his chest. He was the last one left. He’d told himself, he’d sworn, he would not resort to anthropophagus, but that had been days ago. There was no one coming to save them, there was no way out. He was going to die alone, freezing, and drowning. In the grand scheme of things, what did a little cannibalism matter?

He coughed. The sound was wet, echoing off uncaring walls, throwing back a mocking, weeping cry. The cough soon became a fit. He coughed hard enough to pull a muscle in his back, he heard the tear as much as he felt it. He hacked and spat into the water, adding his own mark to the waters of his death.

He began to shiver. He shivered so hard his back seized. He stumbled and went under the water. The world went strangely quiet and muffled. It was quiet below the water, the stillness so intense that Drudkh couldn’t tell where the water ended and the cavern began. There were still sounds above him, banging and clanging, awful sounds of iron snapping and wood splitting. There were screams too, so many screams.

The earth shuddered and something fell. There was a huge SPLUMPH of something falling into the water and a ripple at knocked him over, plunging his senses back into the icy, black cold. He breeched, gasping for air and grasping at air for purchase. When his senses returned to him, he saw something insane, something impossible. There was light. Blessed, cursable light. It was weak and pale, barely worthy of the title of light, but it was nonetheless. A strange feeling washed over Drudkh, a warmth in his chest. He was not going to drown in this hole. He laughed. The sound felt strange and unwelcomed in this tomb. He didn’t care. The echo was all wrong, but he didn’t care; all that mattered was that he was going to live. He laughed and laughed. The world was a place of sheer, unadulterated madness. He was going to escape!

🧚
Strange Fruit got holes in the flesh but it ain't gonn' spoil cause it never was fresh

Balrog
Points: 5 867 
Posts: 3513
Joined: Mon May 18, 2020 11:02 am
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In Rubble and Spoil
The Drowned Foundries

(Private)

As he crawled away, pushing himself through spaces and gaps in the stone that in no way should have allowed him to fit, the putrid stench of his rotting brethren began to lessen. Thank the black pits for small miracles. Drudkh had never understood the sensitivity to smell that a few of his colleagues had, but after spending hours, or days, or weeks among the dead, he finally understood a little. There was no way to tell how long he’d been down there, how long he’d been suffering in the darkness. Time was a strange thing, it only moved when it felt like it, and down in the drown foundries, it did not feel like moving. Everything moved as slow as a beetle through the mud, his thoughts, too were sluggish. The olfactorial overload he’d suffered dulled his wits, at least that was the best his dulled wits could come up with. The sensory overload had been so strong that it dipped into sensory deception, he could see and hear the smell the longer he was down there, and he could smell the darkness closing in on him. If he had not found the crack in the rubble, he would have gone insane. He had no idea, yet, if he hadn’t.

Vivisepulture was a strange phenomenon, a confrontation of one’s worst fears, psychological and physical, a terrifying descent in a great yawning gap. The wizard said that they had been bred without the knowledge of fear and pain, but he was wrong. Like any demiurge creator, the wizard had no idea what it was that he was creating. Uruks were so far beyond him now, they’d outgrown their creator, the only thing that had kept them in line was loyalty, misplaced as it seemed to be now. Fear and wonder did not factor into it. His voice was hypnotic, powerful, and suggestive, but even then, it could only go so far. Drudkh, personally, was over his sense of loyalty. It had gotten him nowhere, it had gotten friends and companions killed, drowned and crushed by stygian waters bursting from all sides at once, tearing apart stone and wood and metal as if it were all dry leaves before an angry wind. He shivered. However long he lived, the uruk would never be able to rid his memory of that singular image. It had been the moment that proved the wizard was no more than a man, and that the real masters of the world were at work. Horror both physical and psychological.

He was cold, so deathly cold. It was a wonder he hadn’t succumb to the water. Perhaps he was meant for something else, some other god plucked him out of rubble and spoil to watch him die in some other far horizon. He wasn’t sure how he felt about that, but right now all that mattered was that he was not going to die here, his body was not going bloat and float like an obscene lily pad in a swamp of corpses. He squeezed through the wreckage and collapsed on the floor. His energy had been sapped by the cold. Despite being an uruk who could race across countries in a single day, he felt weak and feeble. In the corridor he found himself in, the only sound was the scratchy echo of his own ragged breath. It came in fits and starts, he felt himself on the edge of panic once again. It shamed him, feeling this weak and ineffectual. But what was he supposed to feel right now? Angry? Vengeful? Of course he was, but they were secondary. The will to survive, the will to live, was the only thing keeping him moving, and fear and panic were stronger motivators in that regard. If he dared, he might have laughed at the absurdity of his situation.

He began to crawl, furtive and timid as a mouse. There was no way of him knowing who or what had attacked Isengard so suddenly, and anything that could have swept them aside like this was not something Drudkh wanted to blindly run into. Most of this hallway had collapsed now, something heavy from above it had fallen and crushed the very stone foundations. It was a horror trying to maneuver around the mangled bodies, twisted like heated wire into shapes that resembled nothing of life. He saw their faces, knew them, saw their final moments of horror and terror as they were crushed.

Hoom-humm-hooooooom

Something that was not the sound of his breath rattled across the stones, shifting and tearing the weakest from their moorings. The whole place shifted under his feet just slightly. He was not alone down here. There was something stalking him through the corridors. A game of cat and mouse was beginning to play, but fate had cast Drudkh in the role of the mouse. He shivered; the residual effects of the cold water were still getting to him. He needed to get out of here. He needed to move. He needed to find a way to get out of the foundries and back into the open air. Perhaps some of his comrades had survived, perhaps he was not the only uruk left alive in this miserable hellhole. The thought was fleeting, quickly strangled by the reality of the situation. He was the only thing left alive here. Likely he was of only a few uruks left alive anywhere. If Isengard had been attacked, then it was logical to assume the battle at the Hornsburg went poorly. Damn the bloody white handed wizard.

hummmmhummmhummhummm

The sound was closer, the echoes reverberated against his chest. Whatever it was out there, it was moving closer, it had caught his trail. Drudkh threw caution to the wind. He was getting nowhere skulking about like a weasel. He began to run, pressing himself through the slightest cracks in the rubble, pushing himself further and further into places brought to greater and greater ruin. The once lit corridors of the foundries had become a caliginous labyrinth. Once, before the end of the world, this had been the way to the armory. Did it lead that way still? Or was he going toward an inevitable dead end? He could still feel the echoes of the creatures in his chest, a psychosomatic reminder that whatever it was, it was much, much larger than himself.

hoooooooooom

The sound felt nearly on top of him. His instincts told him to turn and fight, to kill whatever it was or be killed. Better to die facing his enemy than to be split open from behind. He might have acquiesced to that instinct if he had a weapon, if he had armor, if he had anything other than his own unmailed fists and claws to attack with. As such, he didn’t. So he ran. Heedless of any sound or commotion he might make, Drudkh burst through the crumbling stone passageway and into a large, cavernous room. There was not a single sound to be heard other than the frantic thumping of his heart. He smiled though as his breath caught up with him. The armory, or what might have once been called the armory, was still intact. The waters that destroyed the foundries had already found their way through here and gone on to better quarry. If it were possible for an uruk to feel relief, he felt it just now. There were bodies, mangled, bloated, and twisted, but none of the faces were those he recognized. These corpses were those of the snaga that no one paid any mind to, and he kept up that tradition by ignoring them in favor of the weapons on the wall. By some iniquitous miracle, there was still a good selection, not everything had been washed away and destroyed. He smiled and let out a growl of satisfaction. He had his choice. A long sword, a spear, an axe? All decent weapons, but none of them held a candle to the beauty of the ringed-dao blade. The same evil luck that had given him safe passage to the armory now presented him with another gift: there was one such weapon here, buried beneath a dozen broken blades and splintered pieces of armor. He held it aloft. Despite the almost complete darkness, the blade seemed to shine. There was another beside it, a dao blade without the rings with a long-tapered hilt and oval pommel. He’d been trained in the use of dual broadswords. Whatever god had plucked him out of the lake of corpses had seen fit to arm him. Armor was harder to find, but he managed to find a helmet that fit him and, for now, that had to be enough. The white hand of the wizard had been washed off the dark iron, leaving it unblazoned. Fitting, Drudkh thought. He placed it over his head. When he did, he felt a sense of calm wash over him, a true sense of relief.

hoom-hummm burárum

The thing was here. There was a sound of cracking stone and tearing lumber as it moved into the room. Drudkh only caught a glimpse of the giant thing, limbs much longer than they ought to have been with curling fingers and eyes shining deep amber. He ran. What else could he do? There was a chimney that led to the surface in here, it was the only place light could have gotten in from the outside. He lunged for it and began crawling up like a frantic spider. The crushing thing was behind him, ripping and tearing up the ground he’d just been on, crushing stone with hands with too many fingers. There was a sound of anger and frustration. Drudkh understood all too well. He did not slow his ascent though. Any moment that thing could rip out the chimney and tear him to quivering shreds. He moved closer and closer toward the light, away from the horrendous cacophony of rumbling and smashing. Finally, he reached the surface. He squeezed through the claustrophobic space and breathed the free air as deeply as his lungs would allow. He chuckled, he had no energy left in him for the belly laugh his improbable escape required.

Hmmmm, well now… what… do… we… have… here?”

⭐
Strange Fruit got holes in the flesh but it ain't gonn' spoil cause it never was fresh

Balrog
Points: 5 867 
Posts: 3513
Joined: Mon May 18, 2020 11:02 am
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In Rubble and Spoil
The Despoiled Fields of Isengard

(Private)

At first, he was so shocked he didn’t move, he couldn’t. He felt nailed to the very spot from which he’d sprung out of the ground. The irony was no lost on him as he stared up at the creature. It was bent over him, gnarled and twisted like a great bramble of thorns and ancient vines. It was one of them. It was an Ent. He’d heard some of the other scouts tell tales about them: trees that were not trees, daemonic spirits of the primordial forests. He assumed they were lying, scouts were often wont to exaggerate the things they found out in the wilds, Ents were just some old legend, a bit of folk horror to chill the spine when the wind whistled a strange tune at midnight. No. They were no myth. This creature towering over him was no legend. It was a living, breathing, monstrous and looming doom. The Ent was at least fifteen feet tall, perhaps more, with a trunk as twisted and crooked as the mesquite tree. There were thorns along the many branches that sprung from the things back and head, thorns that looked at least two inches long and sharp enough to pierce iron helmets. The creature was girthy, a massive bulk that moved with terrifying alacrity. The skin, or what passed for skin on a creature like this, was deep brown mixed with black. The eyes, the eyes! Drudkh stared into eyes of crepuscular bleakness. In those eyes he saw a thousand, thousand years of pain and torment, growth, death, and rebirth. He saw stares reflected in those abyssal eyes, stars that had long since ceased to skin in a sky filled with twinkling lights. It stood over him, considering him, an immense hardened shadow.

If he was going to die, he was going to die fighting. He was an uruk after all! He pulled the two dao blades from his back and prepared to charge. He roared in defiance and rushed the Ent, cyclopean as he was. The Ent did not move, it watched him until in the final moment, swung out a huge hand and batted Drudkh into the stones. He heard (and felt) something crack behind him. The wind was knocked out of him, his breath stolen in that moment, and his limbs suddenly felt too heavy to lift. He tried to move, to dodge the oncoming attack, but he was too slow. Nothing that large should move so fast. The Ent’s hand was on him, it grasped him and held him firm. The blades fell from nerveless fingers. The uruk and the Ent stared at one another for a long moment. Then the hand began to squeeze. It squeezed and squeezed and squeezed. Drudkh could feel all of his bones on the verge of snapping, there was a horrid shrill whining in his ears, the drone of a hundred thousand bees from all directions at once. His eyes felt like they were about to burst. The breath escaped him. He wanted to shout defiance at this creature of blackest nightmare, but the very air of his lungs was stolen from him, pushed out and expelled meekly into the air.

The Ent opened its great maw. Nothing in all the world could have seemed so dark in that moment. Drudkh thought he knew fear before, thought he understood the truth of the most vestigial and reptilian emotion. He had never been so wrong.

I should… devour you… for all the… suffering… you’ve caused… I should… blot… you out... cast out… the… stain of your… existence.” The voice of the Ent was deep, deeper than anything Drudkh had ever heard, deeper than the furnace bellows, deeper than the war horns, deeper than the voice of the wizard. In the spaces of breath came the sounds of groaning wood, creaking and bending to shape itself around something unnatural and unwanted. It squeezed him tighter still.

I… have killed… a… hundred of your… fellows… and I will… kill a hundred… more.” The sound filled Drudkh’s ears. He wanted to scream to shut the sound out, but there was no breath left in him to do anything but whimper.

You are a blight… a plague… a wound… a wormy disease…

Crows appeared out of the sky, a dozen of them. They were massive creatures, larger than the crebain the wizard used as spies and messengers, they looked closer to eagles than the carrion birds they were. The sound of their cawing was loud, louder than any of the horror Drudkh had already endured. The rushing waters nor the crushing of the iron fortifications were so loud. The mouth of hell had truly opened wide her mouth and roared, taking the last of the uruk’s strength, mental and physical. He waited, merely waited. Death would come, black, cold death would embrace him and the fires of oblivion would carry him across the stars.

But nothing happened. The birds sang a demented song, dancing as they landed in the branches of the Ent, nestling into their place. A thousand eyes stared at him, and his mind began to fragment.

They say… I should… make you suffer… that I should… let… you live… force you to… live… to serve me and… mine… serve us… until the shadows… of the forest… return and cover… the earth… once more… what say you… worm?

The Ent dropped Drudkh, who fell like a stone, barely conscious and barely alive. He leaned, twisted, and wavered on the air like a dead tree. The Ent reached up and took a branch from his back. The crows roared and cawed with great amusement. He twisted the branch into a crown, thorns pointed inward, and thrust it upon Drudkh. The thorns indeed, could pierce iron.
Strange Fruit got holes in the flesh but it ain't gonn' spoil cause it never was fresh

Orc
Points: 132 
Posts: 27
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2020 2:26 am
Snak, an orc native to Angmar and the northern pines at the roof of the world. Newly come into possession of the Pakon Stazim, she searches for a fabled creature to sell on the black market. The Fae folk of the Treegarth.

The Fauth-Hai, she called them. The Hidden Folk. They were hard to find. The hardest creature she had ever hunted. She had hunted panthers in the north country. She had killed wargs that were terrorizing her sheep herds. She had hunted men and dwarves. But these folk were different. She had thrown her bones and consulted with the crones. All the signs pointed to the place that once housed the White Wizzard. The father of the Uruk-Hai. This old wood was a dangerous place for folk like Snak. She had heard stories since she was a girl about the choking vines and crushing roots. Tales whispered by firelight of trees that were as alive as anyone. Trees sleeping like bears. The thought made her shudder. But the creatures she hunted were worth it. They were going to make her a rich orc. She had left her shop, the Pakon Stazim in the Black Market in the care of her goblin snagas. They were good lads. And she did not have much in inventory anyway. Hopefully, in this horrible wood, she would find some.

Snak had had to wrap the bottles tied to her belt in cloth so they would not clang together. If the trees really were asleep, as she hoped, she had no desire to wake them. This was a different hunt. Snak kept no snares. No traps. No weapons save for her long knife for protection. She had found a staff on the edge of the Treegarth and had used to to help her manage her way in the thick undergrowth. Her people were custom to wearing long thin scarves in layers to keep the sun at bay. In the woods country, Snak was a ghost. She would need to be a shadow if she was to leave this wood alive.
Proprietor of Pakon Stazim
He/him

Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
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Afird Splitax
The room fell hard, and dust and blue smoke filled the air. Afird coughed and waved the dried meat in front of his face again, peering through the haze. The whole pub had been transported through time - tables, chairs, mugs, ale, and confused-looking dwarves. As the dust and creaking of the room subsided, he spotted the hobbits. He wasn't sure how they fared and was rising to go to them when the noise level increased tremendously with dwarven voices - questioning, flummoxed, and scared.

"Oi! What is this?" asked a dwarf with a half-empty mug of ale in his hand.
"I have blue dusshh all over my beard!" cried a dwarf with two missing front teeth.
"I don't think we are in Khazad-dûm anymore, Tohtoh." said a scared female dwarf with braids in her hair to her companion, who was extremely short and had fallen off his chair onto all fours.

Afird listened to the grumble and rumbling as he approached the hobbits. He was quick enough to roar, "Ai, keep your axes in your belts till we find out where we have land, right?"



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Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion
* V Z Q W D A O*
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W O E J I*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion- 30+32+10+18+18 = 108 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11= 109 pts


Tarquinius Fieldhopper/@Akhenanat, you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
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Afird Splitax
Some people, most likely the ones who started the rumour that all dwarves smell, believe that when a dwarf with an axe is near a tree, he falls into a mouth-foaming frenzy, mindlessly chopping and cutting branches and stems like one possessed. However, this is not true. Although they may look alike due to their long beards and stature, not all dwarves are cut from the same stone.
After searching unsuccessfully under a few tables and hiding spots for Tarquinius Fieldhopper and reassuring the dwarves and hobbit lasses, Afird stood outside with his mouth gaping wide. He had landed in paradise. Beauty is subjective, and not all dwarves appreciate the beauty of trees, but at this moment, Afird is a true believer. As he stood admiring the trees in the grove, he experienced a moment of euphoric pleasure, which brought a tear to his eye. The grove was green and pleasant, with many trees, avenues, and a clear pool. A magical feel was in the air, so he thought. And he couldn't help but think that the hobbits would love to see this stunning sight. So, he returned to the pub entrance (which was now just an entrance, the door having been lost at the travel gate most likely) and called out to the hobbits.
"Oi! Come and see where we have landed, good hobbits."

Image
Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion
* V Z Q W D A O*
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W O E J I*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion- 30+32+10+18+18 = 108 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11= 109 pts


Fuchsia Meadowsweet/@Pele Alarion, you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

High Warden of Tower
Points: 3 404 
Posts: 2258
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 2:58 pm
Fuchsia Meadowsweet

She had ended up in a very spinning dance by some very merry and tipsy Dwarves, and that in combination with the sudden appearance of the dazzling gate had left Fuchsia rather dazed. She had simply fallen on the ground wherever it was and squeezed her eyes shut in attempt to stop her world from spinning around and around.

"Coming... coming..." she responded faintly when she heard Afird's voice, and then began to crawl towards its source with her eyes still shut. Eventually Fuchsia opened her eyes and scrambled back to her feet unsteadily, her eyes still somewhat unfocused.

"Where are we now?" she wanted to know.

~~~~~
Play:
WOE vertically, using E of OUTER, also forming SO horizontally.
WOE = 4 + 1 + 1 = 6 + 5 (MEB) = 11 x 2 (DW) = 22
SO = 1 + 1 = 2
Total = 24
Quote:
"Ho!
Ho!
Ho! to the bottle I go
To heal my heart and drown my woe.
Rain may fall and wind may blow, And many miles be still to go,
But under a tall tree I will lie, And let the clouds go sailing by.
Ho!
Ho!
Ho!"

FOTR, A Short Cut to Mushrooms
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Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
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Afird Splitax
Afird still stood marvelling. He had travelled to many places selling his craft, which he did not wish to reveal but thought it instead: axe crafting. However, he had never seen anything like this clearing. Whoever tended to it had a magical touch. And, there was no decrepit shed or fear of legendary Mewlips. But there was a pub full of dwarves. This thought put a slight frown on his brow. Although they were his brethren, he knew some could be heavy-handed with an axe. So, he decided to keep the drinks flowing to keep them away from the enchanted glade.

He tore his eyes away from the greenery and sparkling blue pool and searched for the hobbits. He needed their help to keep the stranded dwarves happy until a new gate opened, hopefully. He exclaimed,

"Oh, dear Fuchsia Meadowsweet, it is the trees! And the avenues and the birds and the pool. Hurry, see! But not for too long. I will need your help keeping those dwarves in line. Have you ever worked in a pub? And where is Rilla Banks? And Tarquinius Fieldhopper? Has he been located yet?"

Image
Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion
* V Z Q D A N E *
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W O E J I*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion- 30+32+10+18+18+24 = 132 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11= 109 pts


Rilla Banks/@Lail, you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

High Warden of Tower
Points: 3 404 
Posts: 2258
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 2:58 pm
Fuchsia Meadowsweet (just a RP post for the fun)

"The trees? What?" Fuchsia hastened towards the doorway to take a look at what had to be a magnificent scenery, and indeed it was! Her eyes grew big and her mouth opened into a perfect O as she looked over the beauty before her. All she wanted was to run forward and disappear among the trees, and yet... perhaps she should remain. Else, how would she be able to get back home if the strange place-shifting gate appeared again? If it would ever return her back home, that is.

Besides, perhaps all those Dwarves really did need keeping in check. "Well, no. I have never worked in a pub," she admitted. "And not sure if I could come up with anything entertaining enough to keep their attention. Perhaps it would be worth finding the other folk to help."

Turning towards the pub she hollered with all of her might: "Rilla! Tarquinius! Report in!"
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Ent Ancient
Points: 2 692 
Posts: 1826
Joined: Sat May 23, 2020 11:34 pm
Rilla Banks

Oooo there it was! A piping hot platter of roasted potatoes (that's PO-TAY-TOES, mind you!) lathered with herbs and butter was on its way to Rilla. She bounced on her toes, mouth watering, and reached for her first bite--

and it disappeared into thin air in a haze of strange blue smoke!

Rilla dropped her hand, mouth still open gaping ready for food like a hungry baby bird, and blinked in rapid succession. "But-- but whaaaa?"

She shook her head, closed her eyes, squinted them, and pinched herself like her mama always told her to, but NO. This was NOT a terrible, horrible nightmare in which delicious food disappeared just inches from her tastebuds.

This. was. real. (unfortunately for Rilla's stomach).

Rilla's chin wobbled and tears pooled in her eyes. "Where's the food?" she wailed and stomped off in search of answers.

Instead, she found Afird and Fuchsia which was quite good enough for her. She glanced at the trees and birds and lovely little pool. "Um, yes, that's very nice but--" Her stomach grumbled loudly , --"is there anything to eat?"

JOIN horizontally on the second edit: yep I meant first N in Anon
8 + (1x2 DL) + 1 + 1 = 12
+ 5 (quote) = 17


"You will leave the woman to me, or you will join Forweg."
- Unfinished Tales: NARN I HÎN HÚRIN (The Tale of the Children of Húrin), Turin among the outlaws

Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
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Afird Splitax
A hobbit was shouting, and another had loud stomach grumblings, disrupting the peace of the grove. Afird chuckled in his beard as he had grown fond of these two hobbits. Fuchsia Meadowsweet had never worked as a cup-bearer, and Rilla Banks was the most authentic hobbit he had ever met, always thinking about food.

He took both hobbit ladies by the elbow and led them back into the pub, assuring them they need not worry about the food and drink. He instructed them that the cookhouse behind the bar had plenty of meat, bread, pie, potatoes, vegetables, eggs, and cheese, along with barrels of ale. The plan was to keep the food coming steadily. When a dwarf was staring at an empty plate or cup, it was time to load them up again. He smiled at them and nodded his head to emphasize his point.

Then he said they could hide behind the bar and spy on the dwarves or entertain them with songs or poems. He added that the dwarves enjoyed songs about mining, stone, gems, and witty ditties about the length of one's beard. Afird rubbed his chin in thought and continued speaking, saying they could keep the dwarves happy with this nonsense until another gate opened if one opened. He was praying that one would open for the sake of the hobbits. Mind you, he did not fret if he had to spend some time in the magical grove. He turned around and looked longingly outside, then suddenly remembered Tarquinius Fieldhopper and suggested they get the dwarves some drinks and quickly search for him.

'What do you say, ladies? Shall we give it a go?'

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Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet/Pele Alarion
* V Z Q D A N E *
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W E H E R*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion- 30+32+10+18+18+24 = 132 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11+17= 126 pts


Elanor Starsley/@Lady of Shadow , you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
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Afird Splitax

Image
Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet/Pele Alarion
* V Z Q D A N E *
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W E H E R*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion- 30+32+10+18+18+24 = 132 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11+17= 126 pts


Tarquinius Fieldhopper/@Akhenanat, you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
Image
Afird Splitax

Image
Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet/Pele Alarion
* V Z Q D A N E *
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W E H E R*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion - 30+32+10+18+18+24 = 132 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11+17= 126 pts


Fuchsia Meadowsweet/@Pele Alarion, you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

High Warden of Tower
Points: 3 404 
Posts: 2258
Joined: Thu May 14, 2020 2:58 pm
Fuchsia Meadowsweet

She would have wanted to go out and explore the grove, but Afird took her and Rilla who had appeared and was all hungry back into the bar.

Fuchsia really did not want to entertain the Dwarves nor run around fetching food and drink for them, but it appeared that such was the price for keeping them lot out of the beautiful outdoors. The Hobbit exhaled a deep sigh and could not help but roll her eyes. Suppose she could do that for Afird's sake.

"Tarquinius!" she called as loudly as she could. "Mr. Tarquiniuuuuuuuuuuus!"

And then grabbed some platters with food and a couple of tankards and went among the Dwarves - she could look for their missing travel companions as she did that, right?

"There's no stones, no pretty gems,
But a plate of tasty hams!"


It was a little song she came up with on the spot and sang it as she slid the food platters and tankards onto the table with the hungriest Dwarves.

~~~~~
Play:
MAZE horizontally, using M of METTLE
MAZE = 3+1+10+1 = 15 + 5 (MEB) = 20 x 2 (DW) = 40

Quote: "Their twisted boughs, stooping to the ground, were overridden by a clambering maze of old briars." TTT, Journey to the Cross-roads
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Khazad Elder
Points: 2 981 
Posts: 2065
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:32 pm
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Afird Splitax

Afird was pleased with Fuchsia Meadowsweet's enthusiasm. And when she came out with platters of ale, food, and a short little ditty, he grinned from ear to ear. Now, if Rilla Banks joined in, time would fly by, and maybe, just maybe, another gate would appear to take them all away. Grabbing a mushroom pie he spotted in the cookhouse, he approached Rilla. Bowing low, he extended the pie (which fit in the palm of his big hand, for it was a single-serve pie) and offered it to the hobbit, saying.

"Here is some fare, Rilla, that your stomach grumbles for. Enjoy!"

He bowed to her once more then, not waiting to hear a reply , hurriedly returned to the bar, grabbed some mugs, and filled them with ale. As he did so, he took up Fuchsia's song and added a new verse.

"There's no heavy rocks, no precious stones
But mugs of ale, amber colored, frothy and cold!"



Image
Your seven letters are whited out between the two asteriks. Please highlight them to discover what they are.

Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow
*V I A G F F O*
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat
*BLANK L E B K L N*
Fuchsia Meadowsweet/Pele Alarion
* V Q D N C H P *
Rilla Banks/Lail
*T I W E H E R*



SCOREBOARD
Elanor Starsley/Lady of Shadow - 11+11= 22 pts
Tarquinius Fieldhopper/ Akhenanat - 26+13+10+11= 60 pts
Fuchsia Meadowsweet /Pele Alarion - 30+32+10+18+18+24+40 = 172 pts
Rilla Banks/Lail - 27+28+20+23+11+17= 126 pts


Rilla Banks/@Lail, you have 48 hours (but will accept some delay due to RL) to make your play. Good luck!

GAME BOARD LINK
The Michel Delving Mathom-House (OOC)
The world was fair in Durin's Day

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