( this is my halforc characters diary from the Thel Dinge campaign on the PW world of Karador a few years ago. Journal begins in a small sleepy port town where he works as a lumberjack. Will add further entries soon)
Spent a few hours today scrubbing down the shack walls. Piggys place is finally off the outside walls, now just gotta work out what I'm gonna do to Fenhorn. Better get some rest, orcs killed my dogs and ox damnit, im gonna have to lug logs myself again untill I can afford the gold and time to go get another ox.
Days take: 85 gp
Today was a surprise. Went to work in the morning as normal, when I came back was stopped by a messenger in town. I still can't believe the message he gave me. I'm supposed to be the son of a Thane thats high up in royal circles and wealthy. Apparently they found me because he died and I was in his will. Gonna have to buy some funeral clothes and travel to Kalamon. At least I don't have any animals that need looking after right now.
(The received message is attached here to the bottom of the entry)
It is with great sorrow that I must inform you that the Thane Zed of Thel Dinge, warlord of the north has passed on. He has recognized you as one of his children and as one of his heirs in his will. His wake will be held at the royal castle in the city of Kalamon with the King himself delivering the Eulogy. The doors will open at 8:00 pm central standard time and The King will speak at 830 pm central time. I look forward to seeing you there to discuss matters of grave importance.
Lawyer of The thane of Thel Dinge.
The passage to Kalamon was relatively uneventfull though long and boring. Left me with a lot of time to think about past wounds. All that time I spent years ago trying to find my family with no success. It's typical that years after I'd given up hope, they out of the blue decide to find me. Fate can be a strange beast. Still don't know what to make of that. I was abandoned, not sure if I want to know this Zed that left me on the doorstep of an orphanage. If it wasn't for the promise of some serious coin and maybe some answers, wouldn't even be bothering with it all.
I'm writing this from inside the hull of a ship. An unexpected journey, heading off to the estate of my father. The funeral ceremony was quite a dazzling affair. Lots of rich folk which look like they were wearing more then I make in a year. I couldn't believe it, Buster Fenhorn was there, though I should of realised he would be, this being a state affair to be attended by no less then the king. There was no way that rich little brown nosing prat would of missed that. I wore a hood but he recognised me anyway, mocking me with that piggy insult he loves to use. I really hate that. I ignored him and he started calling one poor woman a half breed and all sorts. That guy is truly in need of a permanent attitude adjustment.
There was an incredibly lifelike statue of father on display beside an urn of his ashes. Although very well made, the statue didn't really do him many favours, he almost looked fearfull rather then strong and commanding. Finally the king arrived to give the eulogy. He looked pretty tired as did the queen. That was unexpected, I thought they would of looked a bit more spry. I couldn't believe it, here was I only feet away from the King and queen, now that is something I had never believed would happen to me, a lowly half-cast. The king spoke of my fathers deeds which were both heroic and impressive. It seems he earned his title as Thane by repelling an army of gnolls led by a white dragon, united under a white banner. By the way the king spoke, it almost seemed as if he had known father personally. Tired now, write more later.
Entry 78, continued.
It was quite strange, the king thought that father had left his fortune to the kingdom, but fathers lawyer, sir Hugo, pointed out and presented documents proving the contrary, father had left it all to us, his children. The king seemed displeased and embarrassed. I now have a bunch of half-brothers and sister which I find quite strange. None of us talk much, though that may change as time goes on. I've managed to get their names though.
We're all nobles now, figure that! Me, a noble ha!. It was almost worth all the gold in Karador just to see Fenhorns face at that moment. All these years since we first crossed paths he has looked down on me and gloated about the fact that he was a noble and I was common trash, and less then that even cause I'm a halfbreed. Then, just like that, I'm a noble just like him. Really really gotta love fate sometimes. He still didn't stop with the piggy thing though, it's ok, I got time to work out later what I'm gonna do about that, now the playing field just evened up. Don't really know that jerks business or what he actually does, but he did threaten to stop shipping to Thel dinge. I'm no merchant type and know little of these things, but even to me that sounds bad, if he wasn't bluffing and actually pulls it off. Wait and see.
Sir Hugo gave each of us a letter which father had written before he died. He spoke of another sibling called Ayak, which he had completely cut out of the will. Hugo seems to think father might of met with foul play. That's disturbing, I find myself realising that if that is the case, it could of been any of my present company, though by the sounds of fathers letter, Ayak does sound like a more likely culpirate if the aquisition of his wealth and title was the goal.
Seems father was good at planning ahead though, he has written in his letter to us that he wants us to form a ruling body and rule Thel dinge together. The idea being after 5 years, the people would vote who would ultimately take rule and become the next Thane. When I was younger and seeking out my family, I read a fair bit about orcs and their clans, curious as to that half of my heritage. If this is going to be anything like what a clan leader has to overcome to become the chief, the future is not looking so rosey any more. Sure I can see that I'm pretty much the biggest one here, but as that books professor pointed out, strengh alone does not give an orc chieften leadership or sustain it. He found that it was a combination of cunning, guile and betrayal, backed by alliances and a strong fist. Sure this isnt an orc clan, but I got a bad feeling the same kind of rules are gonna apply. I can see I'm gonna struggle, practically all of my present company look smarter and wiser then me, the only one which doesn't look like a threat is Yolo the drunken bard, but then again I've yet to see his form when he's sober. Not looking forward to this, I don't like crowds and it's really hard for me to make friends. Usually people hate me for what I am or are just nervous around me cause of my size. The only people that have ever tried to make friends with me are those that need somebody beaten up, or are outcasts themselves seeking strengh in numbers. Accept for Hansen though, he was a true friend, wonder how he's doing as a soldier, maybe one day I'll track him down. I'm thinking the best course of action for me will be to get to this estate, load up on as much gold and stuff as I can, then take off back home before I get a knife in the back.
The past three days have been hell. My plan to make off with a substantial booty has failed before it begun, turns out that there isnt any here. Even if there was, our only means of transport, the ship that brought us here has been burnt to a cinder. We arrived in the middle of the night to our fathers town to find it beseiged by goblins and heavily damaged. The walls had multiple breaches and scores of murderous goblins running free in the streets. The last three days have been spent fighting off goblin bands and repairing the breaches in the walls. Tsaroth the eldest of us has proven to be incredibly usefull. He was able to somehow bring the tree's to life to help us barricade the damaged walls with huge pieces of destroyed buildings. This display of magic was both frightening and amazing. It probably saved days of skirmish and haphazard repair work. I really don't like the thought of what would happen if he turned those tree friends against us. I saw Tyrial use magic to quell some of the fires. I've not seen much magic in my entire life, and beholding him ply his art was quite impressive. He has a head for tactics too I noticed, scouting the perimeter and giving us direction when we were overwhelmed. The others too do quite well in a fight but seemed mostly guarded about their talents. Malekith and Xalarm seem to be hunters, setting traps and things. I'ts been too hectic to observe what the others are capable of, but I shall make it a point to watch them, I need to know what I'm dealing with out here, miles away from home, where the stakes are so very very high and my murder is a real possibility.
We found what was left of the townsfolk held up in a building with the cattle and chickens. Women, children and old folk. All the men by accounts had been taken by an army bearing a white banner. This does not bode well. These people need our help and without it, will surely succumb to the goblin hoards eventually. There is much that needs to be done here and what remains of the townfolk have turned to us in their desperation. Supplies are low and the coffers it seems by sir Hugo's account are empty. Honestly don't know what we are going to do, I brought little food and supplies and had no idea I was going to find myself in this situation after fathers wake. I hope the others have more of a mind for this sort of thing, we're going to need some serious planning.