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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2017 7:19 pm 
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Orgoth Stonebow
by razorborne
Status: Private (until Ossia is complete) :bmelee:


Draw, pull, fire.



Orgoth didn’t bother watching it fly, but smiled at the satisfying thud of the massive bolt tearing through the centaurs’ hull. One less fly buzzing around her home, but the swarm was far from gone. Three more harriers crested the horizon, their sails billowing in the wind, and again she was off.



Draw, pull, fire.



The loud splash indicated a miss, but there wasn’t time to focus on that. Other archers would take care of these pests: Orgoth had heard a shout from the north, and she was on the move, barreling across the Blackridge, stone bow in hand, until she reached the ballista.



It was a two-troll rig. There was one of them, struggling to line up the sights alone. And there was the other, flat on the ground, with a decidedly fist-shaped dent around his left eye. Damn. Who’d let Tolrak and Tagamite share a station? The two had been at each other’s throats since the incident with Volchek. Was no one playing attention? And now a raider was drawing close to shore, with no one to stop it.



Draw, pull, fire.



The bolt buried itself in the deck, crashing through a centaur as it did. It wasn't enough to stop them, but it would have to do for now. Tolrak could handle it from here, Orgoth had other things to take care of. She made a mental note to send someone to replace Tagamite on the ballista. This ground was too important to lose, that’s why she’d built the thing there in the first place.



Orgoth’s eyes were drawn north again, as a pair of wilding rafts drifted into sight. Three djinn between them, all eying the shore hungrily. Her shore. They must have followed the damn centaurs here. Perfect. They were too far out to hit, but perhaps a warning shot would scare them toward a softer target.



Draw, pull, fire.



No reaction. Nothing whatsoever. Onward the djinn came, paddling rapidly toward the ridge, when a massive stone crashed through the leading craft. Orgoth blinked. She’d forgotten the catapult. She grinned as the second craft pulled up short and turned away, its sole occupant no longer quite so interested in Blackrock’s spoils. A youngling, then. No true djinn warrior. Still, no sense letting them retreat.



Draw, pull, fire.



The arrow tore through the djinn’s back, and it fell from its raft into the dark waves. Orgoth allowed herself a brief moment of celebration, but the danger had not been cleared. Kemil had brought the full force of its fleet to bear on the Isle of Death, and it would be a long time before her people could rest.



For now, though, the north was clear, and she was needed elsewhere. She launched herself into a run, and the centaur ships were just coming back into sight when a sudden screech cost her her footing. She tumbled down the Blackridge, limbs flailing for any sort of hold. She caught herself, finally, on a ledge, her feet just inches from the deadly tide. Waves lapped at the rocks around her as she struggled to pull herself up.



A massive, stony hand grabbed her wrist, then another, and she looked up into the grimacing face of Karrak as the younger troll strained to pull her to safety on top of the ridge. Once she’d cleared the rocks, she nodded a quick thanks, then with a gesture sent Karrak running to replace Tagamite. She was still young, Orgoth mused, but Karrak had a lot of promise. One could only hope she was strong enough to move a ballista.



And there it was. On the horizon sat a cloud of bats, all howling madly. beneath them was a skiff barely large enough to carry a third of them. Damn it, damn it, damn it. Orgoth shook her head. Why today? If she was lucky, they’d attack the centaurs, and her two problems would solve each other, but Orgoth knew better than that. She was never lucky.



Draw, pull, fire.



Her arrow crashed through the hull of the skiff, and the last of the bats still on board took flight. That settled it. If they hadn’t been coming for Blackrock already, they certainly were now. She launched a few more arrows into the cloud, but arrows were little use against bats. A few tarlaunchers had already begun firing, and for now there was little else they could do.



An arrow smacked into her head. The centaurs. She’d almost forgotten. They were attacking from all angles, taking advantage of the distraction of the bats to close in as much as possible. She grabbed a stone and hurled it at a nearby harrier, crashing through the deck. Another one drifted by to rescue the crew, and she took them both down with a well-placed shot. She was lining up another when a cry to the south alerted her that the bats were nearing land.



Draw, pull, fire.



The bolt caught a few of them by surprise, skewering them and sending them tumbling from the sky. But many still remained. At least twenty were closing in, and they were watching her now. Her shots weren’t likely to hit again. The rest would have to be dealt with by hand. She clambered across the Blackridge, arriving just as the first of them touched down on her shore.



With a swift kick, she sent one flying into the ocean. Another scratched at her side, and she swung her fist into it so hard she was pretty sure its head popped off. That would make a nice souvenir. Perhaps she could mount it on a stick, display it along the shore. She wondered if anyone would heed the warning as she caved in another bat’s skull with the end of her stone bow. A fourth one she grabbed, tore off a wing, and hurled at a nearby harrier. Let the centaurs have some fun. No sense saving all the good combat for herself.



She looked around, wiping gore from her fist on a nearby outcrop. The bats were gone now, but the fight continued. Ertigan had seen an opening to take out Dukot for his territory, and Cavile and Vortag had joined in, as far as she could tell, just for fun. Children. All of them, children. Death knocked at their doors and they couldn't keep their hands off each other long enough to fight back. She sighed and lifted her bow.



Draw, pull, fire.



The shot ricocheted off Ertigan's shoulder, and the troll whipped around to find himself the victim of Orgoth's steely glare. The other three slowly backed away as she drew another arrow, her eyes locked squarely on the offender. She nocked it, pulled the string back, watched realization slowly cross Ertigan's face. The next shot would not be a glancing one. She paused. Waited. Let the moment truly sink in. Then she dropped it and, with a nod of her head sent Ertigan running back to the forests of the inner Isle. He had seen too much battle for now.



With that resolved, she turned back to the centaurs and... no. Impossible. A centaur troop carrier was almost at the shore. Her shore. How had that gotten so close? Damn the bats. Damn Ertigan. Damn every last one of them. Had they taken that long to deal with? Ah, well. Only one thing to do.



Draw, pull, fire.



She hadn’t quite reached the carrier, but she’d punctured its accompanying raider, probably taken out a rower or two belowdeck. That was something, anyway, and other archers were setting up shots at the floating fortress. It seemed to realize its predicament, and quickly turned away. A few shots went after it, but a fresh wave of harriers spilled forth to draw their fire, and soon the target was out of range again. But cresting the horizon…



Orgoth sighed. Djinn again? This was getting tiresome. She began to move, then pulled up short as a rammer drifted into sight around an outcrop in the ridge. It appeared to be Boulderdown, but she couldn’t be sure from this distance. She smiled as the troll ship smashed its hull through the djinn, almost laughed as the harriers turned to flee. No one on the archipelago wanted to be on the receiving end of Boulderdown’s prow. She couldn’t blame them.



As the seas cleared, Orgoth sat down to catch her breath. She scooped up a handful of pebbles, tossing them into her mouth and chewing loudly. In all the excitement she’d forgotten how hungry she was, but now that she had a moment of peace, it consumed her. She devoured a nearby log, even a few fistfuls of dirt, before she settled down to think. There’d been reports of stoneships to the west, but the gargoyles wouldn’t land 'til nightfall, and she’d sent Barile and his troops to deal with them. No, she was done. For another day, Blackrock was safe. She lifted her bow, toyed restlessly with her quiver as she watched the empty waves.



It had been a good day.



Draw.



Pull.



Fire.



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