An Assassination

Date: 12/08/2013 at 23:36
From: Anonymous
To : Everyone
Subj: An Assassination

A muffled shout rang out across the firmament, drawing attention to the fortress of Dun Valley.

As adventurers from across the land flocked to the barony, they came across a gruesome sight: the fallen body of Vukub Ysin'zhu, the Ogre Baron. Two orc soldiers and a lone ogre knight flanked the fallen leader, their expressions blank.

The dragon Rinzai Da'Navi thundered into the reception hall and immediately began assessing the situation. Who was the culprit? What threat did they pose to others outside of the barony? What was their motive? The dragon quickly moved through the fortress, searching for answers. As he did so, Sir Antonius Agarwaen, Ahmet, and Kayeil Inamora-Vorondil descended upon the scene, each raising identical concerns.

The orcs and ogres continued to stare gormlessly at the bloodied corpse of the Baron. Sir Antonius attempted to quiz them, but to no avail.

"Baron... Baron gone." The ogre knight mumbled. "Who lead us now?"

The knight turned his gaze upon his comrades, hope crossing his befuddled features. The soldiers wildly shook their heads.

Antonius sighed.

Kayeil leant over the corpse of the baron, and retrieved a splinter from the wound in the ogre's chest. With a frown, she inspected the bloodied wood.

"Silver flecks," she intoned. "From the crownwoods, maybe?"

Ahmet pondered. "Istarion?"

The trio nodded, and quickly departed for the distant city.

- - -

Carefully, Ahmet broke through the fronds of Istar jungle. Sir Antonius and Kayeil followed in his stead, eyes peeled for any sign of unusual activity. All was quiet in the tropical forest. As the trio moved into Istarion they divided, hoping to cover more ground. It was not long before Ahmet located Eriador, the Tsol'dasi merchant master.

Eriador immediately inspected the splinter, quickly determining the type of wood to be a light, silvery oak.

"A trick," he stated. "Near enough to a crownwood to fool most, but not near enough to fool me."

The trail was quickly dwindling, and the trio began to ponder.

"Who has history with the barony?" enquired Ahmet.

"The Tsol'aa of the Aalen, perhaps?" suggested Kayeil.

"It's our only lead. Let's go." Ordered Sir Antonius.

After thanking Eriador for his hospitality, the trio departed once more.

- - -

"Have... Have you seen him?"

The group stood before Selaana, a huntress of the Tsol'aa village. Tears stained her cheeks, and her hands wrung before her in agitation.

"Have you?" she whispered.

Ahmet raised an eyebrow. "Who, huntress?"

"... Kallion!"

The group shook their heads, and the Tsol'aa uttered a soft whimper. Slowly, she began to explain.

"He disappeared a few days ago. He took everything... His quiver, his bow... And it's so unlike Kallion to want to leave the village. He hates outsiders... Loathes them..." Selaana paused, dabbing at her eyes.

"How was he when you last saw him?" Kayeil asked.

The huntress paused. "His usual self. Parading about the village, telling tales of how he was destined to rule... Being scolded by the king, of course." At this, Selaana offered a soft chuckle.

Ahmet moved to comfort the huntress, offering a small smile.

"You don't think..." Kayeil began, looking to her companions.

Selaana's eyes widened. "What? Do you know where he is? Where?!"

Sir Antonius shook his head. "No, no. I'm sure he'll return soon, huntress."

Selaana nodded slowly. "He'll have been hunting... That'll be it. He'll come marching through the forest, wielding a great prize, and bring it straight to the king. Proof that he can provide for his people, he'll say. Yes..."

Offering small smiles of reassurance, the Ahmet, Kayeil, and Antonius left the huntress. The trio were silent, afforded with grim knowledge: Kallion's disappearance was not a coincidence.

Still, questions remained unanswered. Who had assassinated the Baron? Where was Kallion? Perhaps more importantly, who would rule the barony of Dun Fortress?

Penned by My hand on the 20th of Aeguary, in the year 642 AF.