Disturbing rumours & reports have been circling the Empire of the Sons for some weeks now about an Orc army spotted marching near the southern borders of the Empire. Orders were given to border towns and cities to perform their own patrols and report on all findings.
Celador, lord of the city of Ló-Ratta, entrusted this mission to two of his City Guard, Kaleb the Dwarven wizard and Kriscaryn Fletcher (or Fletch) the soldier, with orders to observe all they can and report back as quickly as possible.
Having sent them on their way, they decided it was best to visit the market to purchase supplies for the 3 day journey ahead of them. Upon reaching the market district, however, they came across a rather large and brutish looking fellow arguing loudly with a merchant. Being guardsmen, they decided to intervene and determine the cause for this disruption. It turned out that the merchant was overcharging outrageously on a number of his goods, most notably a bronze codpiece, which was the item in question over which the merchant and the tall man were arguing.
Drake, he introduced himself as, was a tribesman come to the city to purchase some supplies (i.e. codpieces). He figured he owed the two guards a favour for resolving the dispute so he offered to tag along where they were heading.
About a mile or two out of the city, the three fellows met a new companion. Clint was his name, a hunter and woodsman. He was running in the direction of Ló-Ratta and, on stopping to speak with the pair of guards, he informed them that he had seen an Orc raiding force advancing along the roads and elected to travel with them as they made their journey to scout out the borders.
That night, Kaleb won the respect of Drake by beating him in a drinking competition and a rather ill-tempered boar didn’t take too kindly to the party camping in his part of the woods. Later in the night, while Clint was on watch, he heard what sounded like giggling coming from up in the trees and woke his companions, only to find the sound was long gone.
Following another 2 days travel, and finding a dead goblin that looked like it got stabbed by a friend, the party arrived at the border region only to find a scene of utter devastation. Farmland and buildings burned or burning, villagers slaughtered. Mothers, fathers, children.
The group noticed a mill that was still mostly intact and decided to check if there were any survivors inside, only to be ambushed by a group of goblins and hobgoblins.
The party fought for their lives and Kaleb took an almost fatal wound but managed to hold on until his companions came to his aid and treated him.
On the horizon, an army was marching towards Ló-Ratta from the south. There could be no doubt, this was an invasion.
After besting the goblins, and having seen enough of the sorry scene all about them, they made their way back to Ló-Ratta, Drake carrying Kaleb all by himself. “The least I could do,” he said.
Upon reaching the city, Lord Celador was quickly informed of his peril, and the peril of all those within the city. Reports and messages were quickly written up and dispatched, in the hope that aid would reach them in time.
“Still,” Kaleb pondered as he was resting in the infirmary, “why would goblins and hobgoblins ever work together?”