It’s been a while since the affair with the Judge and the Bluebirds, and thankfully the city hasn’t erupted in another episode of madness. No, they’ve patiently waited for the arrival of the feuding clans for that to happen, which I’ll admit is consideration you would hardly get from Kratas. My training has gone well, as has the training of the others, and we have hired on a new member to our little group, an Obsidiman Warrior by the name of Lavnic. He’s quiet, but so far seems trustworthy. At the very least, if he is an agent of the assassins, he’s extremely good at seeming as boring as possible. I wasted the better part of a few days making sure of that.
In any event, the two parties made their way to the gate, and Perlag sent us to greet them. Elessar, despite having shown considerable skill at handling unfriendly Orks before, required a bit of coaching before he hit his stride. He’s going to be a valuable ally, but he needs to take charge in the arenas he is best at. People look up to troubadours, they respect them. Still, once he got started, he managed to keep the Ork Leaders from killing each other or insulting either one overly much. The interesting part came from the mercenaries each chief had hired, who began chatting with us and each other as we entered. We set up a meeting with them later to follow up on what they were talking about, and the two factions sent their people to set up camps on opposite sides of the city.
Once we got the Chiefs to Perlag, he began the negotiations, and we met with the mercenaries away from prying eyes. They felt as we did that there was something else causing the clans to go to war, but they weren’t sure what. When it was revealed that each of the rival leaders had been attacked by Assassins matching the descriptions of the ones that had attacked Perlag, that all but proved that a third party was involved and wanted Perlag to fail at mediating a peaceful end to the conflict. That night, we went out to the camps in search of individuals who knew more about the attacks that caused the conflict between the clans. As Karghül was busy with guard duty, I disguised myself as an Ork and acted as an interpreter, since many of the Orks did not speak Throalic, and I was the only other member of our group who saw fit to learn Orkish.
First, we visited the Dancing Tigers, and spoke to an Ork Beastmaster named Crag, who had borne witness to several of the murders, though he had never seen the killer himself. After much back and forth, it was revealed that whatever it was, it drained the blood from its victims before either burying the body halfway in the ground or hanging it from a tree, often with its skin removed, and that someone else always left tracks at the scene, though it was not the creature doing the killing. He gave us a rough location on one of his maps where the killings took place, and suggested that we talk to a Shaman friend of his from the Burning Tooth camp for more information.
We left, giving him thanks and the accommodations he requested, and made our way to the other clan’s camp. We were quickly directed to the Shaman by Orks clearly uncomfortable with the adept and his ways. He was apparently communing with the Spirits, and was still doing so when we arrived. We waited until after he had finished to announce ourselves, and what proceeded was…strange. He spoke in riddles and visions, confirming much of what Crag had told us, and indicating that we had a long journey ahead of us. After much arcane discussion, we left and returned to the Inn, where negotiations had ended for the night by way of thrown furniture. We told Perlag of what we learned, and we discussed what to do next, but the most obvious course of action seemed to be heading out to find this creature, kill it, and bring it back as proof of the third party’s involvement. Perlag agreed, and we will likely begin preparations to leave tomorrow.