Thursday, 23 July 2009

Prologue: Sitting in the Dark

Hajar Stonebeard, High King of Karak Al Kaika, sat on his throne and brooded. His kin had been Wronged. Not wronged in a way that a human would understand - Wronged. In a way only a Dwarf could be. Wronged. With a capital W. In the flickering light of his lamp he leafed slowly through the Karak Al Kaika Book of Grudges, letting the anger if his ancestors wash over him as he contemplated the Wrongness of it all.

Hajar had been made king when his father had passed away a scant thirty years ago. Since then he had urged those under his rule to work harder. He had introduced new techniques invented by his Engineers which, far from bringing on the doom foretold by many of his more conservative advisors, had increased productivity many times over. The Hold rang to the sounds of hammer on metal their coffers overflowed with gold as Karak Al Kaika enjoyed a period of plenty and prosperity. Still, Hajar was not happy. His people might be increasing in wealth but their honour was still stained. From every page of the Book of Grudges the voices of his ancestors cried out to him, telling him that money alone was not enough. Money simply gave him a chance his father had never had - the chance to right some of the Wrongs. It was time, he decided. Time for the Dwarves to turn their hands to making weapons of war. Time to sharpen their axes and polish their chainmail. Time for his people to be avenged. Time for the Dwarves to march to war.

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