The Looting of Firnismill


here were rumours of bandits roaming the route ahead and we soon began to suspect peril behind every bush with hushed whispers. Our leader knew these paths well and had obviously seen the truth in such tales before. He urged the beasts onwards, only allowing the briefest of respite at a babbling brook. All were glad when we reached safer lands to camp for the night, our fears quickly forgotten when immersed in another tale of bygone days.

Spreading south from the Aramon Mountains, the orcs reached the tranquil rolling hills that were home to the halflings. The peace was shattered as the war cries of the orc clans echoed across the meadows and through copses as they robbed and pillaged. After years of wandering, sometimes close to starvation, the orcs sought to gather provisions before instigating revenge and war against Albar. No orc can be satisfied without wreaking havoc though and before long field and burrow alike had been set alight. Firnismill was first to burn, with Pennymill and Old Willow falling soon after, and before long plumes of smoke rose across the land.

Orcs are restless by nature and have a tendency to plunder a settlement and enslave any inhabitants they haven't murdered, before continuing on their path of destruction. Assuming the halflings to be helpless and with their loose communities lacking unified leadership, however, the orcs saw an opportunity. Annexing the halfling's land, the warlords put the population to work gathering and preparing provisions.

The orcen warlords were harsh rulers, using whip and stick to command obedience, along with any other cruel means that amused them. Such mistreatment only served to propagate a steely determination in the robust halflings. They organised an effective underground resistance movement and all too often their new masters were left flummoxed by goings on as supplies disappeared and they were left to look foolish. Before long the sheer stubbornness of the halflings even gained them a certain respect from their subjugators.

The orcs learnt the hard way, with the halfling's uprising shaking the clans to the core. Orcish proverbs from the time proclaim “The loudest tyrant dies by a fist in his sleep” and “Trust no cook who is your slave”. Just a few months after the orcs arrival they were driven from the rolling hills and pasture by an angry mob of halflings accompanied by a legion of elves and dwarves in the name of the Aramon-Alliance. With Firnismill liberated a remarkable stash of the finest foods, ale and wine that had remained hidden from the orcs was broken out to celebrate.