Windhammer, Copyright Wayne Densley 2008 All Rights Reserved


Pallenten quickly proves herself a worthy mount. As the early gloom of the dawn recedes before the brightness of the rising suns you begin to appreciate the great heart and stamina of this horse. Riding swiftly south towards the village of Baellum you estimate it will take no longer than a few hours to reach, the ground disappearing in a rush beneath the horse's powerful strides. You have no doubt that to walk the same distance would take you the better part of a day and a night and you can see why the Prefect gave you such a special mount. Upon its broad back you can feel its strength, and as the great steed thunders steadily onwards you take the time to consider properly your situation, and what you should do next.
At the speed at which you can travel on Pallenten it will take no more than two days to reach Stoneholme. Although the exact location of the fortress entrance has been lost for many years, you know it lies at the southwestern base of the Devkraager Tor, the highest and most prominent mountain of the Krodestaag Ranges. Even now, with some two days of travel ahead of you, the Krodestaag mountains can be seen through the morning haze of the southern horizon. Towering above all the other heights of that distant range is the snow capped summit of the Devkraager Tor. You consider that finding the mountain will be no problem. The entrance however, may prove far more challenging.

:dehr faeyen mar cem eshal'il:

Reaching into your pack you pull out the envelope from the Tak Lovar. Inside is the handwritten pass from the Prefect. You smile as you realise that it may provide you with safe passage, but only as long as those Kalboreans who take offense to your sword allow you to show it. Still, it is a measure of protection, and one you shall make use of if the circumstances warrant it.
In the envelope you also find a small folded map of the area you will be traveling through. From your knowledge of northern Kalborea you have a number of possible routes you can take to the Krodestaag mountains. You can follow a well-travelled path, one that takes you along the road south through Baellum, Miller's Crossing and then on to Das Frontiere, the provincial capital. Kal Dor Tarma lies four hours travel further to the south, and from there you can veer southwest and spend the night at Kal Mulmi. From the town of Kal Mulmi it is possible to strike out directly west and meet the foothills from there. At this point you will have to leave Pallenten and ascend on foot into the shadows of the great mountain. For a traveller this is the easiest route to the Devkraager Tor. The prospect of passing through Das Frontiere is not appealing however. Too many bad memories and close escapes for your liking. Even the thought of the place makes the white collar at your throat feel uncomfortably tight.
Another path takes you away from Das Frontiere, but the way is somewhat harder. The south road passes through Baellum and then turns towards Miller's Crossing. From there you can veer southwest to Melem's Fork and then on westwards towards the ancient Ring of Stones. Journeying directly south from the stones will bring you also to the base of the Devkraager Tor. Both routes have their difficulties; passing through the main towns of northern Kalborea can be a risky business for a Dwarvendim at the best of times, but there are times however, when you have little choice. There is of course, the option of leaving the road and striking out directly for the mountains, covering the distance across country, only sporadically meeting either road or human habitation. Perhaps that may be a viable proposition as well.
Pallenten's gait does not change as the flat plains give way to a series of rolling green hills before you. Looking ahead you see nothing but grasslands cut randomly by small streams and animal trails. You consider carefully which of the routes may offer the least danger, but you know the path you take will depend entirely on what you encounter along the way.
The pounding hoofs of Pallenten carry you swiftly towards Baellum and it is not long before you stand on a slight rise looking down onto a broad plain. The village of Baellum lies at its centre, surrounded by neatly partitioned farmlands and a series of circular fortifications. Encamped in orderly rows about the settlement is a large force of Kalborean Soldiery, no doubt awaiting the fall of Maenum. You can see in the distance another column of armed men moving up from the south. Before you can nudge Pallenten forward you are hailed by a small boy. He is calling for you to wait.

If you have the skill of Lorecraft turn to section 450. If you do not, but you wish to speak with the boy turn to section 135. If you can see no reason to tarry here, turn to section 232.

This book, and its associated books and other documents in the Chronicles of Arborell series are the intellectual property of the author, Wayne F Densley, and all rights are reserved by him. Windhammer is best viewed at 1024 x 768 resolution. Any questions regarding the Chronicles of Arborell can be answered by emailing the author at densleyw@shoal.net.au
Windhammer, Copyright Wayne Densley 2008 All Rights Reserved