At the orc camp

Middle-earth time is:
Nighttime on Highday, Day 10 of June.
Execute the +TIMEFRAME command for year information.
Real time is: 23:59:38 MDT on Sun Feb 02 2003.

Falls of the Gulduin: Outside Sarn Goriwing
You stand before the crashing black cascades of the source of the Gulduin. Strange water, cool and thin but opaque even as it splashes and sprays in the air, flows in a misty black fall from obsidian rocks which hang overhead, then swirls and eddies in a swift, wide rocky stream before tumbling over more falls below, dropping to the long Enchanted River which winds north into Mirkwood. The air is dark and cold, overcast by thick clouds even in the brightest summer noon, and brisk with the spray of the river, but your senses reel somewhat from the merest hint of the potent liquid.
But more dramatic than even the black cascades, perhaps, is the blacker spire of glassy rock which rises from and among them: for between the falls rises a Tower. Hewn, it seems, of the rock itself, it rises nearly two hundred feet above the stream which runs about its base. The uppermost reach of the spire juts above the highest waterfall, rising above a surrounding narrow precipice of stone. Narrow, seemingly empty windows can be seen here and there in the Tower. A long open bridge of fallen trees leads across the stream, to a gate within the Tower wall. It seems the only way in.


The pale illumination of the sky emanates from the Moon, which leers at the occupants of the Uruk Camp through the scattered canopy of trees. The night is unusually silent, the Hordes of Mordor linger complacently within the borders of their camp, arguing among themselves, and yet this does not disturb the silence of the night. The slight wind carries their voices to the South East, away from Mirkwood.
One uruk however, does not share the company with the others within the boundaries of the camp. He sits upon a felled tree-stump, glaring out into the night. His attire of a black metallic hauberk and accessories glimmer in the dim limelight. His stark white eyes glare into the forest, following the movement of animals that have escaped the hunters of Mordor, some unseen phantom that leaves only traces of its presence by moving through the trees. He deems it to be only the wind, and takes a deep draught of ale from a small container fashioned from wolf-hide.

A black shadow condenses on the bridge above the stream out of the darkness of night. A void of impenetrable darkness, it blots out the weak glow reflecting from the running waters as it moves across the bridge, and toward the camp. With its approach, mist raising from the cascades darkens, and all the sounds seem to be muffled by it.

Silently, from the southeast, a entourage of cloaked Uruk-Hai arrive, though they aren't heralded with any greetings - Not many are in this area of the wood however. Four is their number, and they are all cloaked in black. Their lead is a skinny, lanky thing, and apart from his black hide he might not be recognized as an Uruk-hai. They slip in through the tree line, coming towards the edge of the camp.
The skinny Uruk lifts his hand into the air, clenching a fist, and all three behind him halt. The Uruk sniffs the air, grimacing. Garbed in a long, hooded traveling coat, the leader pulls his hood down, revealing a ram-horned helm upon a square-shaped, badly scarred head. He rubs his rough, coarse chin before he turns around and nods to the three behind him. "Retire." He utters with a hiss. The three quickly depart their leader, and slither into the fire-lit camp, in search of food and rest. Incidentally, none of the Uruk-Hai seem to hold any rank.
The group leader eyes the camp suspiciously before his booted legs bring him closer towards it. He sniffs at the air, his eyes squinting in an expression of disgust. A few orcs throw their glances towards the black-clad, skinny Uruk, and some mutter words in Orkish. The name 'Badog' seems to circulate through their whispered words quickly.
As a rather large thug of a Sergeant walks by, his eyes closed as he slurps from a liquid filled pouch, Badog steps in front of the Logaz. Almost bumping into the Uruk-hai, the Logaz frowns, though not before Badog manages to snatch the canteen from the thug's massive paws. With a growl, the Logaz lifts his heavy arms up to give Badog a slap he won't forget - But suddenly something dawns upon the Logaz - a look of remembrance. He snorts, and quickly turns away, walking swiftly in the opposite direction. Badog grins as he begins to down the grog-ish liquid, his legs subliminally carry him towards the foul scent... If any scents within the quiet camp be determined from one another.

As the black shadow approaches, it gains the shape of a very tall man, cloaked in black mantle. He walks with an eerie float, almost gliding above the ground. He approaches the perimeter of the camp. The hordes of snagas part before him, ant the hooded head turns left and right, as if seeking out something. Still, the swarming orcs block his view of most of the camp. A quiet menacing hiss escapes the invisible lips, and like a black wave washes over the camp: these are all the orcs suddenly giving the black figure a wide berth. His way clear, Gothmog walks into the camp.

Standing and stretching, relinquishing his current seating position, Dhar'mon turns to glance to the camp. He sees what he expects to see, and thus suspects nothing of the arriving party. His gaze visits the dark pools of the Gulduin, the sound of the rushing water that he notices only now, as it has been so constant as to fade into the ambience. Habitually, he checks his Hammer at his side.
Suddenly, a twig snaps.. Dhar'mon flinches, and in a fluid motion he pulls his War Hammer from his belt, bringing it around to bear on any possible assailants. He watches a shape move from the treeline, he recognizes the swagger of an uruk and lowers his weapon some, but not completely.
"Little jumpy, Rakarg.." mutters the source of the noise, with some contempt audible in his tone. Over his shoulder, this uruk carries a carcass of an animal. Three orc arrows protrude from the torso of the carcass that swings with the uneven gait of this uruk.
"I heard that.. Dog. Keep your tongue civil, and rolled back inside your skull, or I'll mash it flat." Dhar'mon says, his tone clearly threatening. He turns his back and begins moving into camp. As he does so, he notices the silhouette of the Nazgul for the first time. His muscles tense at the sight, adrenaline coursing through his veins. The glimmer in his white eyes revealing itself as fear. And yet, he does not halt in his movements toward camp. He moves with a steady pace, yet somewhat belated due to his surprise, and his wish to avoid the Nazgul.

With the same gliding walk, Gothmog approaches one of the mid-level orc commanders. Towering over the orc, the Warmaster of Morgul fixes the orc with his piercing look. A hoarse, choked voice drops words, one by one, with no intonation, "Who .. is ... in ... command ... here ..."

The Black Guard Captain continues his trek through the camp, much unlike his usual form when he is indeed in the camp - For today he lurks in no shadows, and hides from no eyes. He continues to gulp down the contents of the stolen grog-bottle when he suddenly turns a corner and is greeted by a horde orcs, slithering quickly away. Badog frowns, and worms his way through the crowd. He glances up the empty way, his squinted red eyes narrowing even further.
Quickly, his right clawed hand clasps the serpent-headed hilt of his scimitar. He draws it an inch or two before he's struck still - A chill freezes him, though it's hard to tell for Badog whether or not it's the adrenaline pumping through his veins that makes him stiff, or if the very ice-cold wind about freezes his joints. A fear he's all too familiar with. He spots Gothmog now, not too far away. As he speaks to a ranked Orc, his voice stabs at Badog like daggers. The Uruk-hai clenches his jaw, and shuffles his feet forward until his joints begin to work again. Crooning and crouching low, he approaches Gothmog, eventually stopping at about twenty or so long paces away from the Wraith. It is there that Badog falls onto his knees, his limbs trembling with fear, cold sweat pouring from his skin... Why didn't he flee when he had the chance, one might wonder...

As the Rakarg moves into camp, he overhears the Nazgul's rasping question. And reels somewhat, as the Dog he was questioning shudders and looks around desperately. The warrior points shakily in Dhar'mon's direction, and scampers off to evade any further questioning by the Nazgul. Dhar'mon's throat tightens with impending dread as he awaits what comes next. He clips his weapon to his belt, and takes a few steps forward. He folds his wickedly gauntleted arms across his chest, pseudo-oblivious to the Nazgul's attention. His spine is racked with a shudder, his blood begins to pound in his ears. Throb-Throb.. Throb-Throb.. Throb-Throb..

Another sound, rather unexpected for the voice of the Nazgul, comes out from the shadows of his hood. "Ahhhhhh", like a long cold breath, but more than that, a sound one might make when suddenly sensing something familiar, like a scent or a voice. The shadow-wrapped figure twists, and the dark void under the hood, where no face can be seen, turns to stare at Badog. The black-gloved hand raises and separates from the cloak of shadows. A long finger points at the Captain, then curls, gesturing for him to raise and follow. Just as Gothmog does that, the darkening mist seem to part somewhat around Badog. Having signaled to the orc, the Nazgul now turns toward the one who was pointed out to him as the one in charge. Another hiss rips through the air, a sharp sound which Gothmog almost throws at Dhar'mon. "Approach"

Loud snorting sounds penetrate the shrouded darkness of the encampment, the sound of a snuffler on the prowl. Soon this noise is given substantiality, and the form of Nerg becomes visible in the guise of two crimson orbs floating in the malignant pitch of the night. For a long while does the ruby gaze stay focused, resting well above the ground to examine the source of this new smell.
Though the eyes of the elite snuffler of Barad-dur do not scan over the wraith, though the smell of the creature does alert small uruk that something is definitely wrong. "Something wicked? Something terrible?" Nerg's voice, like stone being scraped against steel, intones into the shroud of night.
The snuffler hops off the crate he had been perched upon, squatting low to the ground as the moonlight assaults him from above. "Cursed, whiteface!" He hisses, shielding his eyes which had been protected by the shadow of the mountain.

Wracked with a shudder, Dhar'shan watches the Nazgul. He feels.. called forth. As the Nazgul beckons to him, and he has power only to obey. He moves forward, his gait straightening. A strange glint visiting his ghostly visage, beneath his great spiked helmet. With his peripheral vision, he can see the Captain Badog, and pays him no heed. Only to the Nazgul does he move. As he arrives before the Nazgul, he seems to surrender.. Falling to his knees before the dark figure.
"Command me.." Rasps Dhar'mon, bowing his head and planting a tightly bound gauntleted fist into the ground in emphasis.

With a gulp, Badog slowly raises to his feet, his head still cocked low, his crimson eyes still piercing the ground at his feet. Yet he quickly devours the distance between himself and Wraith with an effort that could be similarized to one getting ready to jump off a cliff - It's better not to look. Once Badog can see the shadowy robes in the corner of his vision, the Uruk stops. He stands upright, with his head bowed, in the eye of the storm, per se. His figure, garbed in simple black leathers, appears as nothing but a sentinel shadow at Gothmog's side; a few considerable feet away from the wraith, mind you.

Nerg allows his eyes to adjust to the light of the moon, removing his shielding hands from his face. Slowly will he place those appendages upon the ground, still skeptical and confused at the strange scent that still wafts to him. "What trickery is this? It smells almost dead, yet is fresh like blood." Nerg's confusion will riddle into his words, entwining the tone with a shrill whistle.
Nerg's large nose drops low to the ground, his nostrils flaring open as if attempting to pull the very dirt that he trods on into his nose. He moves cautiously towards the wraith, still not yet paying enough heed to his other senses to take sight of the member of the Nine. "Wicked, foul. Yet sweet like death. I've smelled it before, what is it? It was in Barad-dur, yes, we remember the smell... but who makes it?"

Gothmog considers the Rakarg in front of him for a while. He casts a long dark shadow across the ground littered with filth and onto the orc, a swatch of darkness clearly visible, even though the moon is not behind the Nazgul. With the shadow stretching forward, he appears leaning toward the orc. After a very long silence, he stands straight, with a flick of his hand he wraps the fold of the mantle around him and the shadow withdraws, becoming a part of his robes. The same cold rasping voice speaks to Dhar'mon, even as the Nazgul, apparently quite aware of Badog even without looking his way, raises his finger, commanding the orc to wait, "Tark scouts near Osgiliath two nights ago. With supplies. No supplies from these four. Must be an outpost there. Need to send scouts."

Something compels Nerg to look up from the scent, and his nostrils will completely close themselves so as not to forget the smell that he has been tracking. Yet the nose will once again be opened wide as the old snuffler takes sight of he whom makes such a scent. A loud snort will follow, a herald to the horror that now wracks his body, and snot will be shot from the wicked and perverted nose of the small uruk. A wail will take him, one that Nerg did not know he could make, and it throws his body into a breathless rapture, where the wail takes dominance over his desire to breathe.
He falls to the ground, quickly tucking himself into the fetal position as he throws his arms over his head. The seasoned snuffler is wracked under the vision he had endured, even under his poor eye-sight. There he stays, huddled in his own torment.

Courage rising, Dhar'mon stands. Relief flushes through him, at his ability to do as the Nazgul commands. He cannot meet the Wraith's icy gaze however, and resigns himself to looking at the feet of the Nazgul. He pauses, in thought over what the Nazgul had said. He nods, unable to decided what to do next.
"Y-yes.. It shall be as you say.. I will tell the Captain of your orders." Dhar'mon manages, struggling visibly under attention of the Nazgul.

"You will", hoarse whisper from the dark figure pushes Dhar'mon away, dismissing him. The darkness roils, changes shape, and, when settled a few seconds later, the opening of the dark hood gazes at Badog. The Nazgul leans forward slightly, and the shadow of his tall figure now look more like rays of darkness, black beams projected onto Badog, into him. Suddenly, the dark rays twist and fade, "Shut ... up ... that ... wail ...", if a Nazgul can sound annoyed, that would be it. Whatever he was doing with Badog must take some concentration on the wraith's part.

As the Nazgul dismisses him, Dhar'mon scampers away as fast as his legs can carry him. The dread that had built in his throught never quite releasing him from its cold grip. Only does he calm when he enters his Wagon, and has time to think on what had just happened, gathering his wits as it were.

You +whisper to Barfog, "'What news do you have?' you hear the words in the same hoarse voice, and somehow you are certain that you are the only one hearing it."
Gothmog stands in front of Badog, his posture and the hand, stretched forward to point at the orc, all suggests a conversation, except that there are no words spoken.

As Gothmog 'turns' to Badog, the Lugburz Uruk-Hai peers up at the Wraith, though he seems to level his view up at thing's chest, not daring to look into the pit of shadows that is his face. Badog suddenly lifts a hand to one of his ears, a look of surprise upon his eyes and perhaps a mingling of sharp pain, though after a second, his crimson eyes simply glance around, and returns to a more 'relaxed' posture. His jaw clenches as he peers at the ghastly Wraith, and now and again it opens, though now words come out of his maw.
Barfog +whispers to you, " M'lord, I come from Lugburz. News I brought to the Tower of a recent Captain's death - a reinforcement that was sent not long ago. I also had.. Business in Cirith Ungol. M'lord, I too spied these .. Rangers in the southern woods. I came to bring news to this camp, M'lord."

Gothmog nods several times, or, rather, the deep hood bows down slightly. "Yes... Yes... Yes... These rangers we will have to search for" At one point, the black hand suddenly flies up, and the pointed finger stabs into the air, over Badog's head. "What do you hear about a new tribe which tried to proclaim itself openly?" The only thing which is missing from this scene would be the actual spoken words, otherwise it might pass at a normal conversation, at least as normal as one could have with a Wraith.

Badog almost ducks as Gothmog stabs at the air with his vile finger. Quickly regaining his composure, Badog peers up at the Wraith again, his throat gulping as he concentrates with his mind - Trying to follow the Wraith's lead. " I have no news of this, Master. What is the Will of the Eye? The Vorazg, not too long ago, declared that tribes were no longer outlawed - As long as they admitted their allegiance to Grishnakh himself. A rouse, Lord, to destroy their kind. Their bitter hatred was bled, and they began to slaughter their tribal enemies outright. What, may a snaga inquire, is the Will of the Eye, Liege?"

You +whisper to Barfog, "The Eye will allow nothing to weaken his armies", the hand in the black glove slices through the air, the black finger draws something on the canvass of the shadows with few dashes, "The tribes must be watched" The traces of the finger drawing hang in the air for a few seconds, like a strange rune, then disperse into the shadows. "When new tribe declares loyalty to Vorazg, you will hear about it. Then *I* will hear about it, from you". The black rune is gone now, and Gothmog's hand hangs idly at his side."

Now Badog lowers his head low, peering down towards Gothmog's feet as he bends his back. "It will be so, Master." Badog hisses aloud now, his voice raspy and quite metallic like in its sound. Grishnakh's pet keeps his head bowed, his mouth drawing still for now, and his body tense with the raw tension upon the air.

"Yes, it will", the words are thrown through the air like a stone, pushing Badog away. After that, there is no need for Gothmog to say "You're dismissed". The shadow distorts around the Nazgul, then it stretches forward, as if pointing a way for him, or just splitting the swarming hordes like a wedge, and the Warmaster walks out of the camp, back toward the bridge.

With a cringe, Badog quickly turns and sprints away from the Wraith, darting through the hazy shadows, and quickly escaping to a secluded corner behind a tent. He breathes heavily, his talons tugging on his coat collar as he peers about at the disappearing Wraith. A sneer of anger appears upon his brow before he wipes away the dripping sweat.