Post by Sergeant Stonzgrinda » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:10 am
Yellowed and crumpled now with travel stains and wear on its surface and edges, an unfolded parchment, its seal broken, sits under a stone weight. Mote laden sunbeams from a near window cast bright bars across the parchment, but most of the writing remains in shadow. The fading runes run in neat red columns. In Orcish, they read as follows:
To: Warmistress Kil’Gora Darkhowl, of the Bloodfury Clan, born to the Warsong
From: Acting Commander Stonzgrinda, of the Bloodfury Clan, born to the Whiteclaw
Re: Bloodfury Clan Situation Report
Date: 1st Day, 11th Moons, 2nd Year of Horde Warchief Garrosh Hellscream ((November 1st, 2013))
Lok’tar Ogar, Warmistress Kil’Gora. Strength and Honor to you, and may the spirits and ancestors watch over you and yours. I am sending this message through one who is unknown to me by name or clan, but one who has proven his worth and support to Bloodfury Clan through actions, and who assures me that if it is possible by mortals he will be able to bring this message safe into your hands.
Much has happened since you went on maternal leave. Little of the news is good, but the Clan is recovering and we press on. In order, I will present the following summaries to you:
1. Declining troop strength and leadership turnover within the Bloodfury Clan;
2. collapse of the Vanguard, increased isolation and potential new alliances for Bloodfury Clan;
3. escalating Hostilities with Clan Blackrock / Dark Horde;
4. presumed violent confrontation between the Dark Horde and Bloodfury Clan, and loss reports for those Missing in
Action and presumed dead or in hiding;
5. continuity of mission and clan recovery;
6. present overview of Horde war and economic achievements;
7. Kosh‘harg of the vernal equinox, 3rd Year of Horde Warchief Garrosh Hellscream and decision points.
1. Declining Strength
After your departure Bloodfury continued for some time on its own momentum. After a while though, the desertions began. Few at first, and no great loss, but the loss rate did escalate. After a few months, the Runes of Command opened up for any officer. The shaman Nawzkullz seized them with the intent to preserve the clan intact and unchanged. He established himself as Vigil Keeper to await your return, and handled the day to day business of the Clan.
Maintenance is not leadership, and the clan really began to bleed out at this time of uncertainty. Eventually there were only three orcs reporting for duty. Nawzkullz, Torgal and myself. Nawzkullz suffered what he claims was some kind of psychic attack at that time. He plundered the clan vaults, transferred all of our gold, and had no recollection of these deeds. Nawzkullz rightly considered himself unfit for duty after this. He saw that I was the most active of all our comrades, and wished to make me acting commander, or duty officer. I have never been an officer, I am a simple grunt, and I refused. Nawzkullz informed me that he could compel me to take the runes and I laughed at him for this. However, the next day I found that he had stepped down. In his place was a young whelp who had not yet completed her training in the Valley of Trials! SHE had been given the Runes of Command! She informed me that she held the runes for me, at the request of Nawzkullz. She also said that if I did not take them, she would keep them, and the clan would be her to do with as she willed. I took the runes.
When I next saw Nawzkullz I demanded an explanation for his actions. He informed me that he saw my increased efforts to move the clan forward, and knew that I could keep an oath. I told him I had no intention of keeping command. He said that this was not necessary, but he did require an oath. I asked what it was. He insulted me by requiring me to do my best for the clan, which is already a given. He also said that at any time you returned in the next six months that I would return the clan to you, and that if you had not, I would continue leading until your return or find another permanent Warchief or Warmistress who was worthy of that honor. I took that oath, and remain bound by it to this day. The six months have passed, but I as acting Warchief have decided to extend them until the next vernal Kosh'harg.
Recruiting is difficult. Few orcs remain who have not been taken up into the Horde warmachine, or who are worthy and capable. Desertions continue. For every four new recruits there are three desertions. We press on, but it is slow and grinding work.
2. The Collapse of the Vanguard
Warmistress, I know the Vanguard was important to you, but it is dead. Frozentusk appears to be in receivership. It is run by a Blood Elf of no significant experience, and has one troll still on its roster. That troll has not been seen in months. I have heard that Grugek died at Wyrmrest. This is not confirmed, but he is long gone from Frozentusk. Horns of the Shu'Halo looks strong on paper, but they remain in their lodges in Thunder Bluff. Perhaps this is because of current political tensions. I have spoken to their Chieftain, and offered our support in rebuilding Horns if we could be of any assistance. He was polite but placid about the situation. We are all that remain in Kalimdor. Vanguard is a name now. It has passed into history. We still live and we press on.
3. Escalating Hostilities with Clan Blackrock and its successor Dark Horde
You will remember our difficult relations with Clan Blackrock. They grew far worse under the successor organization Dark Horde. As Bloodfury weakened, they grew stronger. They had more members, more activity, and frankly more ferocity. I regret to inform you that Leppender Steelspine is fallen. She died in some random skirmish in Shadowmoon in the Old World. Our clan's weakness, and my own newness to command may have prompted Ripgut to make his move, as we were at our most vulnerable. Warlord Ripgut mocked me about the decline of our clan, but told me I was worthy to enter their ranks as the lowest common soldier, provided I developed a taste for bootpolish. I replied that when the last Blackrock was buried, a Bloodfury boot would tamp down the soil and pray to their ancestors for them. I spoke out of stubborness and pride at the time, as we were few and they were many. But my promise was kept. Bloodfury honor is true.
I put a spy into Dark Horde and was able to monitor them to an extent, but not enough as things turned out. Eventually, blood was drawn, and it was ours. I was called to the Den by the bearer of this report who found Chander, and saved him. He refuses to name himself, but has proven his goodwill to my satisfaction.
The shaman was bleeding from several deep wounds. What he told me made my blood boil and freeze by turns. Warlord Ripgut had in the dark of night, armed and armored, attacked Chander at his rest and overcame him. Ripgut then abducted his nieces, Leppender's children. We learned later that they were subjected to forbidden warlock sorceries from our darkest days. Their growth was forced, and these two innocents were turned into fully ripened orcesses, yet with the minds of the children they still were in spirit and in their hearts. By last report, they were not being physically harmed. Nevertheless, we decided as a clan, that at that point we were on a war footing with Dark Horde. We barely made a squad, but there is a time to take a stand whether there is any chance of victory or not.
4. Presumed battle between the Dark Horde and Bloodfury Clan, and loss reports for those Missing in
Action and presumed dead or in hiding.
Warmistress, as we who remained prepared to die, the Dark Horde ceased to exist even more quickly than it arose. Half of what remained of our active duty orcs suddenly disappeared, notably Kurgutz, Luuhk and Chander, but others too. At the same time, Dark Horde dissolved in some mutiny, desertion or other calamity which remains unclear. At the same time, both clans were shattered, with Dark Horde now becoming a mere band of brigands called Road Warriors, and Bloodfury back to only a half dozen orcs. I have searched high and low, and spoken with many. I am left to assume that some desperate battle was fought without my knowledge, and that if there are any survivors, they are few and fugitive. Batakru, Chander, Kurgutz, Luuhk and others are simply gone. The whereabouts of Leppender's daughters is not known to me, but I continue to search. One I had promised would always have the clan to watch her back. I will not renege on that promise. I also regret to inform you that Murrough has never reported back. He was with the navy, desperate battles have been fought, and I am left to presume he has been lost at sea. We are a remnant now, but Bloodfury dies hard.
5. Continuity of mission and clan recovery.
Warmistress, above all things, to our dying breath, we press on. Recruitment continues, and we do as much as we can with who and what we have. As a jest of the Ancestors, the dissolution of Clan Blackrock began the recovery of Bloodfury Clan. One of their most capable officers, Sisanej, was the first to come to us, seeking a new home. I was reluctant at first for obvious reasons, but she convinced me that she had no hand in or knowledge of the attacks on Leppender's family, or knowledge of the disappearance of either Bloodfury or Blackrock personnel. She convinced me of her honor and her zeal to serve. I signed her on. She has since risen almost overnight to the rank of Kor'kron. My decisions regarding Sisanej are the best ones I have made. Other Blackrock orcs followed, and Bloodfury Clan today is an alloyed metal of both clans. Features of both can be seen. Each alloy has been made stronger and benefited from the other. We are no longer divided, orc against orc.
We are and will remain committed to the principles Thrall showed us. We return to the ways of our ancestors, and we will not just claim, but will in fact embody strength and honor. At the command of Horde Warchief Garrosh Hellscream, Bloodfury Clan was in the very first wave hitting the beaches at Pandaria, and our clan banner was placed with others in the steaming ruins of Thunder Hold even as fires were catching and fresh blood spread across the tiles beneath our feet. I know this because I planted the banner there myself. Kor'kron Torgal remains behind to secure the Old World and the old territories of Azeroth, and Kor'kron Sisanej is reserve to switch back and forth as needed. Presently she is in Pandaria to free me for duties back in Orgrimmar.
6. Present overview of Horde war and economic achievements.
Under Warchief Garrosh Hellscream, we have spent our last coppers and mine and harvest without stop to feed the Horde warmachine. We attack in all directions at once. We do not shrink from frontal assaults on prepared positions, without regard to fatigue , hunger or depleted supplies or inferior numbers. We do not have reserves, as all of them are committed, save for a rather heavy guard of Kor'Kron in Grommash Hold and around Orgrimmar, which is finally repaired. I remember you as a cunning and sophisticated strategist and tactician. I am sure you regard these economic and military policies with all the joy and enthusiasm that I do. We do as we must, with what we have.
We did not fail to observe the past autumal Kosh'harg. By my orders, all available orcs observed the sacred day. Both of them; Nawzkullz and Sisanej. Nawzkullz declared that all requirements were met. Male and female, old and young, tales, recollections, competitive games and the reverence of our ancestors. We have kept our faith.
7. Kosh‘harg of the vernal equinox, 3rd Year of Horde Warchief Garrosh Hellscream and decision points.
Warmistress, I pledged to hold the runes of power until you returned, or a permanent worthy successor was found. I swore to do this until the Kosh'harg just past. Of my own will, I have renewed that vow until our observance of the vernal equinox coming. After that, we must press on with or without you, and the runes will no longer be held for your hand. Always and forever, if I have anything to do with it, you will always be on our roster and welcome to return. But command will have passed to another.
There are some who name you as a deserter. Some say your name should be stricken. I hear these people, but I will not heed them. I know that if you have not returned to us, it is because you are not able. Nawzkullz assures me that you live, and that you are a mother. More than that he cannot see, and I do not inquire into his occult practices as it makes both of us uncomfortable.
Warmistress. Know that you are honored. Know that you are missed. Know that to the best of my ability to the last bit of body, soul and spirit that I have, I will do all in my power to keep Bloodfury honorable, alive, and strong, in that order.
Send word if you are able. Come to us if you can. If you can do neither, I will assume you cannot.
Strength and honor, Warmistress Kil'Gora Darkhowl of the Bloodfury Clan. May your ancestors guide and watch over you.
Stonzgrinda. Grunt and acting Warchief of the Bloodfury, the finest orc warband that ever was.