With the red folder in hand, Kevin and his family dispatched, and their rations in our bags, we set out for the two day journey to Khost. The first day was quiet and we found a farm manor to spend the night at. With only a potato to spare, Endrym decided that the female elf owner should not be required to offer up any additional support.
In the morning, we decided not to attempt to procure any of the pig slop to purify as the pigs looked to need it more than us. Along the way on the second day we were passed by a fat human man, driving his caravan full of a dozen or so slaves. He said he was taking them to Khost, as they are paying the best price. Ciras noted that many of the orcs inside the caravan were pregnant females.
As we neared one of the guard posts for Khost, Endrym noted what sounded like an orc language being spoken in the guard hut. However, four dwarves emerged, and told us we had no business in Khost. When we refused to be on our way, one blew a signal horn and a battle ensued. We dispatched the dwarves, looted the bodies and hut and doubled back before their reinforcements arrived. We noticed that the armor they were wearing seemed much larger once we took it off.
We rested for the night and decided to approach a different guard post in the morning, posing as slavers looking to inquire about pricing. Again, this guard post housed four dwarves. When we said we wished to speak about slave prices, they had us go into the hut as one went to retrieve someone who could better help us. When the sound of a large boulder being dragged to the door was heard, another battle ensued. Three of the four were defeated, with the fourth retreating into the city. Endrym noted that their shadows were much larger than that of dwarves. One of the orcs we defeated was still alive, so we took him away to question him. After some interrogation, he finally began to speak in orc. Just as he did so, he was struck dead by some sort of magic, His dwarf form disappeared, leaving an un-ranked orc corpse.
Next we decided to avoid the guard post and sneak into the city. When we got there we were questioned as to what we were doing. We said we were looking for the slaver that had passed us prior, investigating reports that he was selling poor quality wares. When the guard asked what race he was, “human” was not the response he was looking for. I quickly signaled to Endrym to speak in orc to the “dwarf”, who then responded in kind, noting that we should have said he was an orc. With that we made our way into the city.
We discovered that the few “dwarves” scattered near the city walls as guards were really all orcs being shrouded in magic. Inside the city we saw many pregnant orcs, as well as many younger orcs without rank markings. Food scraps littered the ground as the surplus of food was astounding. We saw more caravans of food being brought into the city as well. This, along with the slaver having pregnant orcs, leads us to believe that they are growing an army here, perhaps being aided by Dark Automanius’ magic.
Unable to talk our way into upgrading our weapons at the armory, we decided that we would tail one of the food wagons as it left the city. Fortunately it is high-noon at the moment, so the fact that our shadows are not actually the size of an orc will be unlikely to be noticed as we make our way out of the city.