Dwarf Chapter 8
zone: Marshes of Madness
Dwarf Chapter 8 Order Storyline
A Bridge Too Far
location: Reekmarsh Camp, Marshes of Madness
npc: Barin Oathsmiter
zone: Marshes of Madness
Chapter Lore: Surrounded by murderous undead and greenskins in the heart of a damp, stinking bog, Barin Oathsmiter was happier than most Dwarfs in such a position would have been.
He and his men Oathbearers had worked tirelessly to mine every ounce of oathgold they could find and load it aboard carts that traversed they road they had recently repaired. Despite the many dangers of the swamp, the work was going well and what had at first seemed a hopeless task now appeared within reach.
A few tasks still remained, however.
Barin cleared his throat, and then addressed the company of warriors assembled before him.
"Lads, ye've done well. We've all worked hard, and made our sires proud. The High King sends his regards and his gratitude, by way of this keg of Bugman's Best Bitter!"
The gathered company roared with approval as Barin patted the lid of the keg and let his warriors enjoy the moment. That had been the good news, and he was in no hurry to move on to the bad.
After a few long moments, one of the Dwarfs exclaimed "Well why don't ye open it, laggard? Do ye plan to keep us waitin'?"
Barin's expression turned somber and the Dwarfs fell silent.
"There's a few things that need doin' before we enjoy this here ale, lads. There's a dam to repair so we can get the road across it. The Boglars are on the rise, and though they may look small and weak, in great numbers they can be as deadly as a Black Orc."
Vandra Sweetrune stepped forward, obviously losing her patience. "By Grungni, we know all this! There's none of this work can't wait a night, is there? What job's so serious that it'll get between me and a full mug?"
The other Dwarfs grumbled and complained, echoing her questions.
Barin took a deep breath, and then continued, his voice now barely above a whisper.
"The Rangers have come back with news of a place to the south - a place where the Goblins have got a tree. Ye know we haven't been able to find the bodies of those who've fallen in battle with the Black Skulls? Well, now we know why. The Black Skull Goblins have taken our fallen, and they've..."
"Have they cut off their heads, Barin?" exclaimed one of the Dwarfs impatiently. They all wanted to get at the beer, and the delay was making them impatient. "By me da's stoutest pickaxe, Old Tipper, I'll take three of their heads for every one!"
"Worse, lad, worse," answered the leader, his expression grave.
Another voice spoke up. "They wouldn't have... they wouldn't have taken their gold and thrown it away?"
"'Tis even worse than that," said Barin with great remorse. "The cursed, stinking beasts have cut off their beards and hung them from the limbs of the tree."
For a long moment, there was no sound but the chirping of insects and the croaking of frogs. Every Dwarf was struck dumb by the horror of the image Barin had described.
It was Vandra who broke the silence. "By Valaya's long golden locks, the beer can wait. Come, sons of Grungni! There's a grudge to be answered!"