Novel excerpt… lets count the Orcs!
Presented for your perusal another chapter in the adventures of “Nano Noveling Nitwit and the Case of the Too Many Words”.
This little section is a bit I had been planning since the beginning, a meeting between the chieftains of the two Orc tribes that inhabit the Caves of Chaos. They each have a secret entrance to this meeting room and regularly come to converse and drink as equals and rivals.
I wrote this whole scene in one big glurge and you can see it in the text, there are some glaring inconsistencies. So here’s your assignment… can you read this chapter and then tell me a few things. What are the names of the two Orc Cheiftains? What are the names of the two tribes? Which tribe goes with which?
When I get back to these guys a little later I have it hashed out but during the writing of this chapter, done in the middle of a Nano trance, I’m pretty sure I mixed up all three of those things.
In a small stone carved room a door opens and a sliver of flickering torchlight stabs into the darkness to illuminate a small round table and two stout wooden chairs. A burly Orc slips into the room and closes the door behind him. With the small torch he bears he lights the large brazier next to the table. Taking a seat at the table he opens the stopper on a bottle of harsh Orcish whiskey and pours two glasses. He waits to drink. After a few moments the door across from him opens to admit his counterpart. The second Orc chieftain closes the door behind him and takes a seat across from the first.
“Well met Garrul, how is that new wife I sent at midwinter treating you.”
The second Orc grimaced, picked up his glass and downed the whiskey in one swallow.
“Gah… The bitch is a feisty one Hallar, she’s tried to kill me twice already. But she squeezed out a pair of brats with the spring and that has settled her some.
Garrul downed his own cup and waited for Hallar to refill them as was customary in these meetings. As long as anyone could remember the the two clans of Orcs that resided in the Caves of Chaos, Garrul’s own Redeyes and Hallar’s Crooked Fang had held to an uneasy truce. Exchanges of wives between the two tribes had kept the peace for many generations now. They usually met in this secret room once or twice a year, to trade news and drink and plot warfare against the hated goblins and their hobgoblin allies. Garrul didn’t trust his opposite number as far he could spit, but Hallar was the closest thing he had to what the softer races would call a friend.
“I trust you’ve heard the news? That the ogre is dead at the hands of human interlopers?” he said once the glasses were refilled.
“Yes, my guards saw it happen, as best as they could under the accursed sun. This changes the balance of power doesnt it. Without the ogre to aid them We can finally smash the filthy little goblins to bits, take their caves and have that much more room for wives and loot.” the Redeyes chief laughed and downed another shot of whiskey. some went down the wrong way and he dissolved into a fit of laughing and coughing.
Hallar waited for Garrul’s fit to subside. “Of course first we must deal with the humans. My scouts tell me that after dispatching the ogre they fetched up a mule from a hidden place in the valley and they are setting up camp in the ogres cave. It seems they mean to stay, perhaps to steal back some of the gold we steal from their caravans.”
“Then we smash them like we smashed the last lot of them, those fools who called themselves Dragonslayers.”
“These fools have a wizard, and some priest of Law. They will be no easy pickings.”
The glasses were refilled and both orcs sat and drank in silence.
“Perhaps I can offer a course of action” came a third voice, seemingly from all around them. A shadow detached itself from the wall and loomed over the brazier. A cowled figure was outlined by the flickering light, but the illumination could not pierce the deep shadow of its hood to reveal the face beneath.
Hallar cursed and Garrul cast his chair aside fumbling for his sword.
“What treachery is this from the Crookked Fangs!”
“You know as much as I Garrul, this sorcery is none of my doing.” be too drew his blade, a wicked curved black thing.
“Set your weapons aside my friends, I come in peace with a great opportunity. A way for each of us to get what we want.” the shadow seemed to loom and fill the room as it spoke.
“How do you know what the Redeyes want spirit?” snarled Garrul. Hallar let his blade settle back into its sheath.
“You… You are from the dark temple are you not… A place even folk like us fear as accursed. A place that has lain empty and silent for years. I went there once on a dare when I was young, you have the smell of it on you.”
“THe clan chief Of the Crooked Fangs shows wisdom… Are the Redeyes interested in what I have to say as well?”
Garrul nodded and eyed his counterpart suspiciously. “the Redeyes will not allow the Crooked Fangs to feast at a table that they should rightly share. What is this opportunity you offer spirit?”
“Good my friends, listen well, and I will tell you how the Orcs of the Caves of Chaos can rule this entire river valley, and rid us once and for all of the Keep and it’s defenders.”