Deep within The Dwarven Mountain Halls of Fathlocun, the Spikes of Danger, lay the ruins of a once mighty Dwarf Fortress, known by the name of Melbillaz, Tomescale. It persevered in one of the most inhospitable environments for nearly six decades; producing many battle hardened veterans, and nearly unstoppable dwarven warriors. But one dwarf stood above all others in the records found beneath the halls: Lor Unolbomrek. He led the militia in one final defense of the fortress, against a horde of angry, starving goblins, but before you hear about that, you should know his story.
Seven founding dwarves arrive at Fathlocun, with naught but a few chicks, a handful of yaks, some digging tools, weapons and armor, and of course barrels upon barrels of alcohol. The area is haunted and the undead encroach upon them quickly. The two caravan guards, a hammerdwarf and speardwarf, armed with iron weapons and leather armor, defend the others while they work quickly to dig out a small home in the nearby mountain.
Having survived the initial undead that haunted them for years, Tomescale is now a thriving trade hub. The fortress boasts a huge supply of bone crafts and a rich trading agreement based on gems and stone with the humans to the north.
Years Eleven to Sixteen:
Goblin sieges plague the Fortress, preventing trade and nearly destroying the fortress. The clever tactics of the “siegemaster” dwarf save the fortress countless times, thanks to marvelously placed traps.
Lor is born in the midst of battle. He is the son of the mayor. She raises him carefully, never allowing the goblins to steal her precious child.
Years Eighteen-Twenty Nine:
Goblins seem to have learned their lesson and send only scouts for several years. Small sieges attempt to break the walls, which are crushed by traps and the military.
Lor becomes an adult, and develops a keen bond with a wooden axe crafted by one of the novice craftsdwarves who came to Tomescale some months before. He joins the militia and begins training.
Lor’s skill with the axe and prowess as a leader earn him the position of guard captain in the ranks of Tomescale’s military. At the time, Lor is a Master Axedwarf. His training slacks and he becomes complacent with his prestigious title.
Years Thirty-three to Fifty-one:
Tomescale thrives under the leadership of Lor’s mother, and goblins dare not test the might of the Guard Captain. They have learned that time and time again.
A massive goblin army appears – the largest the fortress has seen to date. They slaughter seventeen helpless dwarves caught outside fishing and hunting. With so many years of peace, they had begun to believe the goblins would stop attacking. The dwarves would not make the mistake again. Lor’s mother is killed in the initial attack. Furious, but stable, he destroys the goblin invasion and orders the construction of a massive entrance to the fortress.
Construction finishes. The massive six story gates to the fortress towers over everything in sight, aside from the mountain that Tomescale itself is dug into. Behind the gate is a huge open courtyard enclosed between the gate and the mountain. There is only one entrance into Tomescale. Beyond the gate is a valley which leads out into the plains. The valley is lined with intricate mazes and innumerable traps. Nothing can reach the gate uninvited. Every trap in the valley is linked to a lever, and only one dwarf has access to the lever… Lor.
No goblins dare show their faces, not after the devastation two years ago. Not even the kidnappers come to steal children. For a time, Tomescale is prosperous. A master craftsdwarf produces an artifact of incredible value and brings it to Lor. It is an axe, by the name of Ibruketur, The Ashen Boulder. Its troll bone handle is lined with rubies. The blade itself is the smoothest steel ever produced in Tomescale, it is a masterful work of art. Lor cherishes the weapon for his remaining years.
The goblins start their kidnapping again, taking at least one child a season. Several pets go missing as well. The militia trains, and watches diligently. Lor keeps to himself, still mourning the death of his beloved mother. The entire fortress weeps for his loss. Her tomb is moved to a catacomb dug beneath the enormous courtyard behind the gate. A statue is erected in her memory and placed next to the entrance.
Fearing another siege, Lor initiates martial law. No dwarves are allowed outside the gate. The main water source is the underground river used to supply the underground farms. The militia waits for the inevitable.
Spring of Year Fifty-Seven:
The siege begins. The goblins arrive with vengeance in their eyes. A massive army, larger than any previous force several times over fills the horizon. The gates are still barred shut from the previous year’s paranoia. There is no way for them to get inside Tomescale. The fortress is safe. Lor wants revenge…
Summer of Year Fifty-Seven:
Lor stares at the army from the ramparts. He is the only dwarf with the power to avenge his mother. He can make amends for her death by killing the enemy before him. As fall begins, he pulls the lever.
Fall of Year Fifty-Seven:
The gate opens. The horde rushes for the entrance. The traps are set. Lor hurries down from his place above the gate. It looks as though he will join his men in the battle that is to ensue within the courtyard. Not many goblins will make it beyond the trap-lined valley though, not many at all… He hurries past his troops, and through the gate. He evades every trap in the valley. He waits for the charging monstrosities. They meet. Dozens fall to Ibruketur in moments. He cuts down his enemies with ease. Gory goblin pieces fill the valley; no living creature passes the dwarf. The militia watches from their post, awestruck. No enemy is left standing. Lor breathes heavily amid the bodies, alone. A tiny scratch on his left arm is the only success made by the sieging goblins. He is now a Legendary Axedwarf.
Winter of Year Fifty-Seven:
Lor sits alone in his quarters. Still holding the bloodied Ibruketur, he falls into a fit. Infection has spread from the scratch on his arm, and he loses all grasp on reality. Every dwarf in the fortress is now the enemy, the goblins that slew his mother. The militia try to stop him, but they are cut down in seconds. Lor has become a god among his fellow dwarves. The entire population of Tomescale watches helplessly as he murders their only defenders. In his fit, he pulls the lever and the gate shuts on Tomescale forever. No goblin shall escape his wrath.
Written by Wakkatata
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