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A Waterlogged Journal - Nazjatar Campaign Battle Reports

Started by Verzan, July 18, 2020, 07:08:04 PM

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Verzan

A condensed collection of Waterlogged papers written during the Nazjatar Campaign.
Each page was written carefully in char sticks by Verzan Skywise, some might hold notes from their former owners but they have been ignored now. These pages detail a number of reports from the events of the Campaign.

---

I thought having a thousand threads about the campaign was a little cluttered so am going through and posting each in order here as one collection.  Thank you for having a read, it was a real pleasure to write them and attend so much of one great story.

Verzan

Battle Report - Suddenly Naga on the Scuttle Coast

Rrosh’tul spoke in the spirit link and called the clan to gather at the centre of the town. There was trouble, a raiding party from the town had not reported back from their patrol and he was pretty clear that while the Guard were aware of the matter, they were not mobilizing to investigate it and leave the town itself under defended.

So it fell to us.

Almost twenty members of the Red Blade clan rallied to the Rrosh’tuls call and we marched down to the shore to investigate the goings on. From the Sky the evening was clear and the weather fair though we lost the light early.
Just as some movement on the beach was spotted, strange figures shrouded in shadow that scuttled away from the sound of orcs approaching, fleeing in the direction of the Tiragarde Keep. Keeping low in the sky, myself and Rykana continued to scout ahead using ship wreckage as cover but saw no further movement among the broken bodies of great ships that scattered the shore.

That was until the clan were confronted by the grim scenes that depicted the last moments of the missing raiders lives. They had been brutally ambushed and tridents pinned their corpses into the timber of the boats. None survived.
When the clan approached the scene itself, it became clear we had missed something scouting the shoreline in dim light.
Throatrender and Coldfire were ambushed by Mur’gul while investigating the ruins.
They had been lurking in the wreckage and were rapidly dealt with.

---

As the clan passed the shadow of the keep a hidden Naga encampment was revealed cunningly tucked back between the outer edge of the coastal wall of the keep and the beach itself, its placement was perfect but the banners they placed at its entrance gave much away.
At that point we knew there were more than a few stray Murloc creatures, voices spoke among the ruins of Tiragarde and from where we perched they hissed quietly and colluded about the details of a relic they were searching for - while it seems they had very little success in finding it, it was proof they were here with purpose.

Fighting happened rapidly after the camp was discovered.
Dozens of small Mur'gul were cut down alongside a handful of Naga present on the shore. They were taken by complete surprise, this was a good thing as no sooner had the first lot been dispatched a second group mustered from below the waves and charged the clan.

The second wave was dealt with and no major injuries were suffered by the clan orcs due to the quick actions of the clan menders present at the time. Yet this was not the end of the fighting.

A large crash announced the presence of a particularly monstrous Naga creature armoured heavily as it slithered from the water up the coast to engage the orcs. The ruins of the Keep became unstable and rapidly those of us in the Sky who had been using them for cover turned the stonework to the clans advantage in taking down the sea monster.
The rocks tumbled down as smaller creatures leapt from hidden pouches across the large Naga’s spine to lash out at the clan
Though the giant was wounded by the tumbling masonry it still fought on.

It was not until Ragehowl struck a mighty blow against the beast, cleaving both its arms from their sockets and painting the shore red when it finally fell cursing us with its dying breath,  suggesting there was more to this than a regular raid as it deployed some sort of magical orb that shattered on the floor with a flash of light and spray of sea water.

But with the creature gone the nights fighting was over.
And the Rrosh’tul has ordered extra patrols to be made.
This does not seem to be the end of the matter?

It is understood that members of the path of cunning left camp in the early hours of the morning to recover the bodies of the fallen patrol and build pyres for them.

-- Verzan Skywise

Verzan

Battle Report - Get in the Sea Red Blade, No Really. Signed the Naga.

**Written upon broken scraps of old paper soiled by salt, dried and smoothed with stones. This charcol report has been made on campaign and will in future need rewriting to something more ledgible**

Though Horde messages had arrived earlier in the day suggesting further Naga activity on the east coast of Azshara, it wasn’t clear if the clan would respond to them. Certainly when the hour came for us to ride out an eclectic bunch of clan orcs gathered.
When there was no sign of the Rrosh’tul, Thur’ruk or Varo’gor. The duty fell onto the shoulders of Karnna Blackfeather as a Bloodrider of the clan to lead us out. It concerned me at the time, something has happened between Blackfeather and the Rrosh’tul, something spoken in words. Now they seem to be drenching themselves in shadow magic and care not for the consequences.I am worried because I have known Blackfeather for a long time now and I know they are better than this.

Regardless of my feelings, command fell to them and their behavior changed instantly as it did. Blackfeather took charge and quickly mustered the orcs to investigate the missing Goblins.

Rykana and myself got orders and flew along the coast cutting out the visit to Orgrimmar by flying over Bladefist bay. It was an effort to give the clan less ground to cover when they got to Azshara and for the most part it worked.
We located the abandoned Naga camp at the Ravencrest Statue ruins suggesting the Naga had been very active in the area. There were many cages and four scrying pools to be found but no Naga and no captives, only the remains of their occupation in the area.

A fly over on the coast discovered where the Naga had gone.
They were not being subtle. A ritual was taking place upon the shore fuelled by the blood of the Goblin workers they had kidnapped. The Sorceress casting announced her intent to teleport away and a hurried effort was made to distract her and her guards from getting away.

I know nothing of magic and perhaps might have been less keen to engage knowing what I know now, but to begin with from the sky we engaged to save the Goblins who were being drained of the blood for this ritual. It was tragically too late to save them in the end.

Clan orcs raced across the shoreline to engage the salty snake faces, ready to throw more fish back in the sea where they belong. Fighting the Naga was the easy part.
It was what happened next that caused the trouble.

---

I’d like to say we were prepared for what happened but I sure as hell wasn’t and I'm pretty sure nobody else was either. The Naga spell casters ritual was interrupted but its effects not stopped by shots from Urzoga and Coldfire.
None of us could have expected what came next. The orb of sea water the sorceress had been casting into broke with a flash of blinding light the force of the magic must have caused us all to blackout as when we woke we discovered ourselves to be in lands unknown.

We are without weapons, armour and mounts. We had nothing.

We find ourselves upon the bottom of the sea except we are not swimming or drowning, huge walls of water lift up as barriers reaching for the sky. There are vast jungles of uncountable corals here and ruins beyond them that look older than Night elves, sea creatures sail across the skies like birds. Everything is cold and damp.
There is currently no means of contacting the mainland, though there is a radio of sorts among the wrecks of ships. It is gnomish clearly in technology and constantly playing the same song which at least for the time being masks the many noises of the orcs gathering in the small encampment we have claimed under the shelter of a massive rock ridge.

Orcs were quick to salvage things from the nearby wrecks of several ships. We have managed so far to clothe ourselves and fashion a very limited number of crude weapons, there are many mouths to feed here.

We also find ourselves in the company of the Little Duke Salinius, a mighty water elemental and clearly weakened by the Naga who had him imprisoned within the orb that brought us to here - wherever here is.
He was instantly handed to the Gosh’kar Riverscale to handle. He made it clear, his people are prisoners of the Naga in the area and that if we were to aid the little Duke he would have his power restored to him and we would have our way out of this place.
With little choice in the matter, Blackfeather agreed that the clan would aid the elemental.

There are plans currently for a group of us to climb the ridge and begin to map,
while others are keen to arm themselves and hunt. We have to make ourselves strong before we can enact any heroics on behalf of the little Duke it seems.

There is a very real feeling of threat in the area from Naga, at any point they might manifest and net us. Don’t think any orc wants their blood drained from their veins to power their magic like those poor saps they got on the beach that is for sure.

--Verzan Skywise--

Verzan

**Written upon broken scraps of old paper soiled by salt, dried and smoothed with stones. This charcol report has been made on campaign and will in future need rewriting to something more ledgible**

Battle Report - Massacre in Murloc town.

There isn't an orc in armour and between us we have perhaps a dozen or so weapons.
Each orc has taken it upon themselves to fashion something that suits them; examples range from Thronks small mast turned club to the many naily planks our warriors seem to favor, even Rrosh’tul Ironclaw has fitted his stump with a large crab claw.
I confess, he appeared quite bemused by our suggestion to tie a small angry crab to the claw in order to give the weapon more ‘pinch’
It is a humble state of affairs right now and it feels like if any orc takes a good hit in combat then they will really feel it. The menders continue to report that their magics are impaired right now and progress on making that not the case is slow.

--

Tonight was the first time the little Duke Selanius called us to arms to help his cause properly. He must think we are ready despite the limited armoury at our disposal, even encouraging a few orcs to fashion some naily planks of their own - I wonder if this is proof water elementals share some warriors preference for them.
By now we’re all pretty aware the little duke has got an eye for scrying, he seems pretty aware of most of our actions despite his limited powers. Turns out he’s been peering around at our local area and not just watching us piss and has become aware of an imminent threat.

A tribe of Murlocs north of camp.

Most he said were enslaved by the Naga or worse have submitted to their rule and work in partnership. There was a hint that some groups might be in quiet rebellion against them but when Starsong questioned further, no insight was given about if they could be found as potential allies. Instead the little Duke was pretty clear on things - this group had to be wiped out. All of them.
These weren’t creatures he deemed fit to be our allies. After all he described them as ambushers who capture the unaware, surrendering them to the Naga for slavery or sacrifice and eating any who are not good enough for either. To add to this, there was another reason for us to seek out the Murloc tribe and butcher them. Their Oracle leader controlled powers ‘not their own’ Something about storms we’d all figure out some hours later.

Using the map scribed from above the little Duke marked on it a salty trail to follow that guided us without incident toward the Murloc camp. Once there the Rrosh’tul Ironclaw quickly dispatched two scouts, myself and Karnna Blackfeather, out through a narrow passage to investigate the lay of the land.
The place was less village and more the aftermath of a tsunami or other such disaster inflicted upon such a place. It was littered all over with debris both tidal and murloc made. Trash was everywhere. It was an expansive sight but it was clear ‘life’ for these Murloc creatures existed around a collection of primitive huts scattered here and there throughout the debris.
I came back to report while Blackfeather kept eyes on the village itself, seeming to count their numbers. Each grouping of Murlocs seemed to be around four or five when gathered around their huts.

Keeping our heads down and our step silent the clan orcs pressed themselves into single file to stealthily approach the village. Plan was simple. Get in quietly and ambush them before too many of them realised we were there. They would always figure it out but with luck on our side we felt sure we’d get half their number on the floor before it mattered.

Separating into two groups. Rrosh’tul Ironclaw led one and Blackfeather the second smaller team, that I found myself part of. While I cannot comment about the tactics of the second team, it felt we might have been an orc short in ours.
Ironclaw got his team far around the vast village bypassing one of the mobs of Murlocs that would later make their presence known. To the far back that team went and in sight of the suspicious Murloc Oracle, while Blackfeather got my group to one of the closer mobs of Murlocs. Waiting for the Rrosh’tuls signal seemed to last forever but it came and then suddenly fighting.
At the top they dispatched their mob with ferocity. At the bottom, we just didn’t have enough knives and the Murlocs we couldn’t bring down quick enough sounded the alarm.

Another swarm of Murlocs raced to our position and Blackfeather ordered myself and Riverscale to withdraw. I don’t know what her plan was by sticking behind, maybe she could have gotten away into the shadows but these Murlocs weren’t having any of it and it almost cost her big time. As we became overrun and were forced to flee, the Rrosh’tul ordered most of his own team to quickly come to our aid. We needed it.
They formed up over a gentle salty stream flowing through the village’s center as we joined them.
The murlocs charged but fell swiftly to some good old fashioned orcish violence from all those involved.

---

I can only speak of what I saw when we got up the hill toward where the Oracle had been engaged by the Rrosh’tul and other clan orcs. There had been drawn out fighting against the powerful opponent here, gusts of wind buffeted their team and Starsong had been hurled down the hill a half dozen times. In response the clan shaman utterly destroyed the building where they had been perched, using their magics to bring it down--
On top of one of our own.
The Mercenary travelling with the clan known as Sootskin almost died to this. They, through means I do not know, seem to have escaped an unexpected meeting with Shargul.

Down in the stream, we dispatched the last of the Murloc villagers and charged to regroup with those already fighting the Oracle. It was hard to tell where the Oracle ended and the air elemental began in the chaotic fight.
Until they were parted ways under the heavy weapon strikes of the clan, that is. Utterly surrounded, its efforts to draw the breath from Thronks lungs failed as the giants lungs were mighty and would not be conquered and it died a less than glorious death under our makeshift weapons.

---

In the short time that followed, orcs took stock of what trash in the murloc village was salvageable. The effort was hasty and while I believe we got the most of what could be taken, there was no deep search of the camp for fear that we could be spotted during a lengthier unpicking of the place.
The most notable items taken were two great cannons. Kul’tiran in design, they seem in working order once we get the powder dried out.
The last thing to note were the actions of those who discovered a sacrificial altar within the camp, two strange dead creatures lay recently slain atop one of these altars. Like no creature many of us had seen before one held a token around its neck which marked it out as a servant of Neptulon. The little Duke explained very limited details about them, naming them Ankoan but marked them out as present within this area and a potential future ally for the clan against the Naga, should we choose it, But approaching the strangers may not be simple, they are apparently quite standoffish people.

--Verzan Skywise--

Verzan

Battle Report - Two Air Elementals become One. UnRomantically.

It was a vision tonight that brought the little Duke Salinius out to ‘demand more’ of us again, calling us into action and away from the camp building we had been occupied with. He had been watching as he always seems to in the watery pools.

This time he saw a Naga Sorceress by the name of Lady Shi’vass twisting her magic against air elementals previously believed to be allied with the Naga. The little Duke shared with us his vision, showing it to us in a sheet of reflective water, where we were beholden to a grim reflection of the Sorceress’s sacrifices of both GilGoblin and Ankoan scattered all around before a group of Elementals were merged together and it did not seem that they were entirely in agreement with such a union.

The ritual, while cast, was not fully completed. Like soggy paint it still needed time to fix.
The little Duke was asking us to go to the vast cavern where the Elementals had been merged, find them and destroy them.

Now when it came to the matter of orcs to lead we had both Varog’gor Throatrender and Bloodrider Blackfeather present, yet it was myself who was asked to Alpha as a ‘test’. While unusual, there wasn’t time to discuss it further so I stepped up to take command of our small group.

Once again the little Duke marked my map with a salty trail. I led the small group of Red Blade hurriedly along quite a distance across this strange and alien landscape, there was little time to stop and behold the wonders of the great rays sailing across the star filled skies or the corals luminessing with bright neon glow. We had to get to where the elementals had been merged before the magic fixed them into something more powerful and destructive.

Two burly Naga guards stood between us and the erratic form of the elemental. Armed with huge weighty lances and nets. None of us fancied trying to handle them and the elemental together while armed with our crude weapons and lacking almost all armour.

Blackfeather stepped up to make a distraction, while the rest of us scattered among the corals and rocky outcroppings. We would ambush them as soon as they were chasing her. Except that wasn’t exactly how things happened, Blackfeathers first distraction worked almost a little too well as one guard came forward but then seemed to lose interest. We needed them both and it took a brave move on her part to show herself and get chased.
The Naga focused on her and seemingly only on her as the closest one hurled its spear to strike Blackfeather’s leg, slicing deep into her flesh as we leapt from our hiding place. We descended on the guards as Thronk smashed the furthest along the path with one mighty strike of the ship’s mast he carries while the one we were fighting, the second guard, was a little harder to bring down and got to throwing its net, entangling Throatrender.
Time was always pressing. Zakarah Sporefang rapidly got rid of the net, while it was a dog pile to take down the second guard before he could become a further danger. The large naga soon fell victim to our blows, skewered on the end of the first guard’s spear as we readied to advance on the elemental.

I can remember encouraging Thronk to snatch up one of the enormous cages the GilGoblins and Ankoans had previously been snared into before their demise. The giant orc hefted it up and it became a battering ram. As the clan formed up about him to press forwards, Only Blackfeather was not with us, still wounded and bleeding heavily from the spear strike, so Rykana Skywise went back for her.

The air rushed around the charging orcs with dust and sand blinding many. But it did not matter, Thronk was like a giant stood before the twisted abomination of air before him and with one mighty throw, hurled the Naga cage at the monster. Where all of our weapon strikes seemed feeble his throw was doom and split the elemental, weakening it immensely as the cage was shattered from the impact.
The elemental reeled from the strike and clouds of thick toxic air rushed around to choke the orcs close by. Some of us were stricken as the foul air burned our lungs from within. For a moment the battle seemed stuck in stalemate as our strikes failed to bring it down.
Lightning erupted across the platform shocking those close by and again orcs dropped down. You could hear the air surge and rush with a voice of its own speaking in tongues we did not understand.
When Thronk again leapt forwards, grabbing the binding of the elemental and tearing it down to ground but bindings come in pairs and quick on her feet Throatrender, using Thronk as a springboard to get the needed height, grabbed at the second binding. Ripping it from the winds and shattering the elementals form.

It was defeated. We collected what remained even as orcs continued to recover from the effects of the foul air and lightning.
Our victory however was short lived. Above us a great monstrous serpent steered across the sky over head. Quickly noting our numbers and strength with its big glowing eyes before rapidly retreating southwards before even our swiftest Marksman could take aim to try and bring it to ground.

I have reason to believe this is the same creature the Mercenary Sootskin reported seeing over the last few days. Whatever it is, it clearly held intelligence of its own and has noted our presence and informed whoever its masters are of our numbers.

I urge all orcs currently in the camp to prepare themselves for hostilities in the coming days.

We must prepare for battle.

â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"

Verzan

    Battle Report - Dangerous Hydra

    From what I know, it has been around a week at the writing of this report.
A number of orcs gathered together to share stories of the week we have survived. For my part I felt responsible and when normally I would be telling tall tales and speculating that the flying Ray the Naga scout with is secretly in charge. I tried to inform many of the words I am writing here in these reports, so we all knew as much as we could about the current situation.

With so many gathered it was clear we could take action together. We were presented with some choices. Two in particular seemed the best and we were torn between hauling wreckage and metal back to sure up the camp defences or hunting a greater beast with our numbers.
In the end the matter was chosen between us. We would hunt and orcs would have food in their bellies and make do with what defences we already had and were able to pull together from the main camp itself.

All of us had heard the sound of the great Hydra across the coral plains not far from the camp. They howl out their song like gulls in the morning letting everything smaller than them know just who is the largest beast across this strange landscape. They were not hard to track and Zelyr the Bloodied quickly found the trail of one of the larger beasts.
When you are the largest creature on the plain I guess you don’t need to be subtle about where you are, you won’t find any other challengers fit to take your territory.
We stalked it across the landscape for a short time, the coral here seeming to have a magic like luminescence to it that only seems to shine at night.

When first we sighted the creature, the hydra was sleeping under the overhang of a ridge. She slept and we made efforts to get into position, crawling across the seafloor and scampering through bushes of kelp. I don’t know who it was - sounded a heck of a lot like Takkat Warwolf and Thronk got themselves caught up in a kelp bush but I was far enough forward I could not be sure.

The Hydra emerged out from her sleeping nest. However big we thought she was, she was twice that. Twenty foot of monster with three angry heads and talon-like claws as big as your forearm, made her presence known.

The beast bristled and the orcs answered her call to battle, some leaping from the ledge behind with others sprinting across the dead ground to cut at the creature. But it wasn’t enough, her hide was like armour our crude weapons could not cut.

Gul’rok Ragehowl was the first to call out to alert the clan to the discovery her underbelly was not quite so armoured. As those quick on their feet, the Mercenary and Karnna Blackfeather got in up close and slashed at it.
Great talon tipped feet stomped and kicked at the orcs even as we made our discovery. This creature refused to die easily and her thick hide made for a challenging barrier for all those at ranged or, in Zakarah Sporefang’s case, as they rode upon the monsters’ back and she rescued me from a crushing stomp from the greater hydra by hauling me up to join her there.

    Our ride on the monsters back was brief.
She threw us off and as she did, a spray of boiling hot saltwater coated the sand. I could hear the calls of those skilled in combat who saw the Hydra’s crop fill with the water and like many I rolled like it was the breath of a dragon chasing after me to roast me. The Hydra’s boiling breath hit none.

Many wounds opened up across her underbelly and it seemed as the beast bled out across the hot sand she became more erratic and more dangerous, throwing orcs about her and causing the injuries we had all feared when we set ourselves this mission.
It had to end quickly and though many orcs shared this motivation in their arm as they struck out to bring the creature down, it was myself and Karnna Blackfeather were the ones to take the kill. I remember calling to her ‘I’ll go low…you take high’ expecting her to strike out and kill the Hydras many heads while I used my short size to open up her belly.

Then something happened - I cannot be sure if it was magic or something else. There was an eruption of gore as the main head of the Hydra exploded with shadow. Unbelievable force you could feel in the sand below even as I cleaved the belly with the old sword we had recovered.
    The hydra fell dead into the sand.
Orcs hurriedly lashed ropes around the body and dragged it back to camp. While behind Urzoga the Unbroken and Zakarah Sporefang did their best to clear away the bloody trail that led straight to our camp. Unknown to me until we got back to camp, Sporefang did this with a broken leg and made no complaint of the injury.

We got the huge Hydra back to camp.
The hide was handled by Thronk and Takkat Warwolf for the most part. While the butchering was undertaken by Gul’rok Ragehowl. Nakobu tested himself again by mending Zakarah Sporefangs broken leg. We suffered few other major injuries though there wasn’t an orc who went out hunting that didn’t come back with some bruise or slash from the beast. I am glad we fought it in such numbers.

My belly is glad to be fed without concern I am eating more than my share. I cannot be alone in this though I am concerned our choice to hunt leaves the camp less defended than it could be.

    â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"

Verzan

    Battle Report: Red Blade vs Naga Army

We always knew they were coming, maybe some of us wanted to think they would come later and in fewer numbers than they did but they were always going to get to us.
    If only we had more time.
It was just before dawn when those restless souls who could not sleep recognised the thrum of large numbers of enemies moving in swiftly upon our position. Quickly orcs mustered to either side of the camp. Many of us in the beginning simply stared out across the darkness of blue o’clock in disbelief. The numbers of enemies we faced were almost uncountable, they weren’t here for capture, they were here to take down an entire clan, such were their numbers.
Rapidly, orcs manned the two cannons in the camp and the kelp bales we had prepared were lit, smoke choked the skies over head and we made ready for the coming wave. Naga split their forces at the foot of the ramp. A huge hulking brute creature stormed towards the hill on one side while another force slithered around to the far entrance.

Battle thought so distant was finally upon us. The cannons in the camp sounded, Thronk taking shot at the brute while Ragehowl took aim and thinned the swarm on the opposite side. The Brute didn’t fall to the first shot but it definitely looked like it was reconsidering its life choices. Orcs on both sides of the camp cut the Naga down, some claiming three or four as they pressed forward into the enemy charge but for every one we took down, many more took its place. It was like wading through a tide of snakes.
I confess, in the first moments of the fighting it was almost like the Naga couldn’t hurt us; they were ineffective in their attempt to ambush us unprepared. Sure some orcs were a little nibbled and scrapes were had but there was nothing major to report.

The fight dragged on, the never ending tide of Naga thrown against us left walls of snakey bodies before our fighters. Notably Zelyr was the first to fall over, injured but fighting with their crude axes on the floor and if you didn’t know better you might have believed that was the plan all along, she was determined not to die without making a heap of enemies around her. Some noticed the Sorceress leading the Naga force, Lady Shivass. Karnna Blackfeather insisted on trying to get to her, take out their leader and stop the attack. Many of us spoke out against this, I tried to order her to stay on our line and for once, she remained. I feel sure now that if she had gone she would have almost certainly died.

On the far side of camp our spell casters fought a dogged battle against the Naga. Draz’hul Dusklight, Bashul Starsong and Meri Soulwalker. Zelyr fighting in front of them and Gul’rok Ragehowl manning the cannon.

While on the hill side of the camp there stood a line of skirmishers the Mercenary Sootskin, Takkat Warwolf and Karnna Blackfeather. Behind them and up on the rise, Thronk manning the cannon and Urzoga the Unbroken firing arrows down upon the Naga.
I was with neither group. Ready to bolster their ranks should any fall but mostly rolling balls of flaming kelp down the hill when needed and protecting the Duke Salinius.

It was clear our position was going to be over run and though we were going to give it our all to hold out as long as we could, the outcome was unavoidable. We would show these Naga how orc clans fought and they would pay a heavy price for every orc slain.
The little Duke Salinius had other ideas, taking up a position at the center of camp and defended by my sword he began to cast a ritual. Salt glittered across the limbs of every orc and some of the supplies. Even as we tried to rouse those who for many reasons could not defend the camp.

The plan changed. It wasn’t about taking victory here any more but for the orcs to hold off the Naga for as long as the Duke needed.
By now injury had brought half our number to their knees. Draz’hul Dusklight fought valiantly from the floor with his spells, Ragehowl on the cannon went down to a Naga weapon strike, Sootskin rallied from a bitey wound and these were the orcs I could see. Somewhere beyond the rim of the hill they needed to fight a moving retreat, they were almost beyond rescue. I called for them to pull back and heard my words echoed by Warwolf.
It was in these moments that orcs like Urzoga the Unbroken saved many. Her shots at incoming bolts of cold ice shot by Naga witches, showering us in nothing more harmful than salty snow.

    Just when things were about to get much much worse.
    At the point when orcs would fall to their wounds and not rise again…
    Magic happened.

The Dukes ritual completed and we were enclosed in a bubble of watery magic, nothing the Naga shot at us mattered any longer as we were gently lifted from our positions. The orbs that we were within rapidly picked up speed and floated hurriedly across the night sky, any hope of charting our path back to the old camp was lost but it was also lost to the Naga we had evaded.
Dawn broke over the great sea wall and for a moment you could forget that we had been inches from almost certain death. Then the bubble burst. Flinging us to a place the elemental Duke could recall would not have any Naga. A ruin of ancient Kaldorei design, among a vast pinkish coral forest. We were miles from our start point, lost again and without much of the shelter we had come to appreciate at the old camp.

As soon as orcs could walk, we salvaged the meagre supplies the Duke deemed worth of rescue to keep us alive and headed out to a more enclosed set of ruins scouted out by Karnna Blackfeather. There, many orcs exhausted and wounded from battle dropped to rest.

I have requested for now that there are no campfires and all orcs are cautious when exiting our location. We might have a roof protecting us from flying Naga scouts for a time but with the force they expended trying to take our camp, it will not be long before they are hunting for us again.

Those who are able are to do so take their turn on watch. We don’t know where we are right now or what dangers the red coral forest or Night Elven ruins might hold. There is some talk of restless spirits?

Water is our biggest pressing concern. The glass vials we had been distilling with are damaged and we are at the mercy of when rain falls. We have lost much and I do not have all of the answers to the problems we might face in the coming days.

We must be cunning now if we are to survive the next few days and nights.
Look after each other, Red Blade.

    â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"

Verzan

    Battle Report: Three Keys and a Giant Ghost Dog

An arcane anomaly had caught the eye of the little Duke and, while he had little information to share with us, he felt certain that if we did not investigate it and potentially stop the source of the magical presence there then others would be drawn to our area and they could be the same Naga who attacked our last camp.
Besides which there was a chance this power could be used to empower the Duke and the stronger he gets, the closer we are to the rescue of his people and finding our way home.

Using Karnna Blackfeathers map of the surrounding area again we followed a trail marked in salt by the Duke. The anomaly wasn’t far from our actual camp and quite a number of orcs rallied to investigate the goings on.
Maybe it was the larger group of us that drew the strange dog like creatures we have discovered here from their lairs to attempt an ambush. They raked at orcs with claws and sprayed acid from their jaws, seemingly unaffected by it themselves. One would have gotten me good if not for the quick reactions of Nakobu. Fighting the ambushers was a brief skirmish and many could report the beasts wolf like claws. We adopted the name ‘Acid leapers’ for them which was slightly more accurate than fish dog or scale faced gill garn.

The ruins just beyond our camp made you feel small. Broken and littered around us they were massive night elven buildings that I had yet to explore properly but towered taller than the walls of Orgrimmar even now as they lay in broken assortments like trees scattered after a particularly rough spring storm.
It was easy enough to locate the anomaly but deactivating it would not be simple.

There was a magical barrier and when we approached it a small glowing orb that seemed to speak in elven yet any who heard it felt they could comprehend the words spoken. A strange experience as I mostly learnt the naughty words in Thalassian to further upset some elves and little else. When we attempted to speak with it, it seemed to move on its own with a purpose preset into its function, ignorant of our words.
    We followed as it spoke of keys to unlock the barrier in our way.

Following was the right move as quickly it led us across a broken bridge and toward a shattered tower. This was the first we saw of the ghosts - I say we, many of us could not see them but were made aware of their presence. Of those I could see, I remember seeing a pair trapped on opposite sides of the bridge, that moment locked forever in the ruins here as two ghosts that would never rejoin each other’s company again.
But there were more. Those sensitive to such spoke of a vast market place sprawling beyond the bridge, at times we could all see the faintest shimmers of the specters of the past moving about their business. Locked in moments long past before the ruin of this landscape.
Within the tower close by we were led to find an elven magi and at first we attempted to speak with her but she either did not understand us or held only contempt in her spirit and attacked. By her side unusually was a wolf spirit which swept those upon the stairs down to the floor below. As bolts of magic rained down on the clan, it was not clear if it was right to fight them but once battle began, they had sealed their own fate.
Ghost wolf and magi slain, their grim goo collected in sail cloth sacks we discovered among it a coloured stone. This was the first of three keys.

    The next was close by, a huge stone tower had toppled, forming a bridge to a colosseum shaped rampart. It seemed precarious and I asked for volunteers. Karnna Blackfeather, Nakobu and Zelyr the Bloodied stepped up.
Using the rope we had salvaged they climbed bravely up. Zasa Riverscale watching over them should something happen then her mastery of the earth might ‘soften’ their fall. None fell and quickly they recovered the second key from above.
Speaking briefly of chained and tormented wolven spirits they had laid to rest, twisted animals that seemed to have been the origin of the Acid leapers we see today and from those creatures another key fell.

The small arcane ball continued ever forwards with the twelve strong posse of Red Blade orcs following it at a pace. Drifting up a vast verge and across through the ghost filled ruins of ancient times we found ourselves led to a great open circle of stone. Within which lay a great acid leaper ghost.
By now it was clear this would hold the final key needed to resolve the arcane anomaly. Quickly orcs scampered into position along the rim of the disc like shape. Covering ground and getting close, waiting for the call to pounce.
I confess. It had not been entirely my plan to leap the stone rim and to reach the ghost hound first but I sounded the attack and felt compelled to charge. Those precious seconds stood alone with the ghost felt like forever before Thronk, Zelyr the bloodied and the others reached me.

Surprised by the ambush the acid leaper quickly fell shot, slashed and cut by the crude weapons of the clan orcs. As it thrashed, seeking to knock us away from its ghostly form, Kulgha Wolfheart let loose a final arrow from her perch atop the stairs and tore through its ethereal skull, severing its form. With a final simpering howl the creature seemed to find its release, its body degrading rapidly to goo that was hurriedly collected. We also gained our third keystone.

The route back to the arcane anomaly was uneventful. I gave my stone to Soulwalker, Riverscale kept hers and Nakbou had the third. Many orcs took up position guarding the structure and the casters from further acid leaper ambush, while those within began to decode the puzzle before them.
It appeared to be based on the colour of the stones each had. The warding was a greenish colouring and the orcs appeared to figure it out. By adding the blue and yellow coloured key stones together to merge their colours into green or at least this was my understanding of the matter.
Once merged the barrier dropped and the contents within were accessible.

It could have been treasure, it could have been even more ghosts but what I wasn’t expecting was an unspoilt and ancient library. Untouched by time and ocean there were books, paper and fragile things here. When Riverscale lifted one of the books a fancy orb at the center of the room put that book back with the magic of teleportation.
It wasn’t the library we had been working toward but the orb.
Prodding it, lifting it. Searching the room revealed very little that could switch its long running power off. When Riverscale someone found a clue, the keystones we had spent all evening finding. Combined together they would merge with the orb and switch it off.

I am glad we could switch it off, it seems that it would have been a great shame to smash such a thing and I do wonder if that would have had greater consequence.

With the orb in hand, armfuls of cloth and paper, bags of ghost goo and the bodies of two of the acid leapers we returned to our hideaway. Victorious for the night but very weary. I cannot report that there were any major injuries, we’d been kicked around and nibbled by the acid leapers but nothing more serious.

I will not speak much of the fraying of tempers that followed but morale seems to be low. How long will we be here? It seems like there is no clear end to this and Thronk with Riverscales aid are still some way away from being able to fetch our water supplies back up to what they had been.

    â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"

Verzan

Report â€" Now we can speak fish person?

The Duke called the orcs together again, there is almost no pattern to when and if he will call for us. It happens sometimes and then other times it does not. This time it came after days of us resupplying our new camp, he must have thought that we were strong enough again to invest in some deadly peril.
This conversation with the elemental came at about the point some of the camp were discussing about whether or not we would remain stuck here in this place for a longer period of time and what that might mean. He did say he was good at scrying, maybe he noticed the slight change in our tone. We may never know.
The Duke also confronted us about our suspicion of his purpose in using our clan for help. He was quite surly about the fact some had suspected him of foul deeds. This gripe was put to rest as best we could, after all we all have something to lose should the Naga win here.

I have no great tale of adventure to speak of tonight nor stories of action. When the Duke approached us we questioned if he might know where his people were being held. That we might get orcs scouting a way to rescue them and start making steps forward toward getting home. This was not what he had planned for us.

The little duke gave commands to the orcs. Some were asked to chop herbs found on the seafloor others were asked to grind down the bones of sea creatures. Combined, our efforts created a thick and gloopy potion of sorts. Each orc took their sip and were imbued with the power to converse in the languages of the tides - for the night at least. Come dawn the powers of the potion would subside.
This was especially odd because not everyone drank the potion that night. Some orcs approached the group later and we could understand them but they could not understand us.

The next request was for a small amount of life blood drawn from each of the orcs present. Though not all the orcs agreed to this, myself and Thronk stepped back from contributing our blood to the ritual and this seemed to down power it slightly. Though I am no ritualist so I cannot comment for what side effects this might have had.
Upon completion of the ritual a shape appeared in the water of a floating orb. The face of one of the Ankoan (the fish people) we had previously only seen as corpses sprawled across Naga shrines. Sacrificed to evil purposes.
The face of one of the Duke’s loyal followers belonged to an individual known as Farseer Okada.

Our questions were not the most creative but they were things we needed answers to, asking if they had warriors, which they did though not as many as we would have liked and then asking them of how the Ankoan were attacked, if there had been any weapons of note the Naga had used that we had not already seen. Their answer was to speak of spell casters, siege weapons and hulking brutes. All of it far beyond our ability to handle as we had seen at our previous camp.
The numbers of Ankoan seem low. They have enough to spare on a potential attack together with the clan but I do not want to speculate on the cost of failure here for both of us. They have lost many warriors and cannot do this assault upon the Naga alone.
They also realise that if they are to remain in this underwater place, they need this victory. If things remain as they are, with the duke as he is, their sect would be whittled away to nothing over time.
There was a suggestion that they had tracked the captured to somewhere close to the Northern wall away from our location and that going there would be perilous. We could agree that more scouting was needed.

At the end of the brief communication with our clan, the Ankoan arranged for a meeting due in several days time. They were not clear on the specifics of where or when just that they would signal and we would have to be ready to muster when they did. As far as I know we did not betray the specifics of our location to them either, though I cannot be sure if the Farseer could pinpoint the signal from the ritual orb that we had been using for communication.

We of course had many more questions than time and everything else seemingly would have to wait for the signal and our chance to meet our potential allies.

    â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"

Verzan

Battle Report â€" Rescue Mission Fish

There was a purple flash in the sky like a flare, it was powerful enough you didn’t need to see it, you felt it. For those of us who did see it, it came from the area of a ruined temple we had been told the Ankoan had been hiding out within.
Duke Salinius appeared but he said that he did not recognise the signal and was not sure if it had been from his people or if it was something else. The orcs quickly mustered, whatever it was we would go there and investigate.

Our group was large and moving at haste through the ancient ruins, even the acid leapers didn’t seem to fancy their chances attacking us and the travel was quite uneventful. With the exception of Srelok Grimtide whose lack of his wooden leg slowed the pace, that was until our light user levitated him and he floated along with the clan. This saved valuable moments.

We pressed on past many of the places we had been before but as we rounded one corner the Duke seemed to call our swift pace to a halt. He advised that we were not far now and two scouts volunteered to head out, Karnna Blackfeather and Zelyr the Bloodied.
While others like myself, Zakarah Sporefang and Suhaan all kept a watch hiding in the nearby kelp. Something was happening down in the ruins beyond our perch but the figures were hard to identify - we had to wait for our scouts.

When they came back, the pair informed us of fighting, of a barricade at the temple and Naga trying to knock it down. We needed to act swiftly and pushed forwards to behold a sight of chaos across the temple grounds.
A great obsidian obelisk stood ominously at the heart of the grounds, three Naga witches cast their magic about it protectively. It seemed that any creature unlucky enough to die close to this evil stone would have their souls drawn into it, consumed by the magic and rendered down into motes of power. Some of the Ankoan had already fallen prey to this but we had our chance to stop more.

Karnna Blackfeather and Meri Soulwalker seemed to lead one group. They wanted to sneak around the main entrance where there was fighting between heavy Naga Myrmidon warriors and Ankoan. They jumped a tall wall and broke into the far corner of the temple grounds, their aim was to take down the Naga spell casters.
I made the choice to charge at the main steps leading up into the grounds, where the Ankoan clashed with the Naga. We came here to save fish people and that was what I would do - I was not alone in this choice. There wasn’t time and clear information for us to have spoken about this plan. It happened. I took one group and the others made their choice. Thankfully on this occasion it worked.

At the far side of the yard the group with me: Thronk, Takkat Warwolf, Gul’rok Ragehowl, Suhaan and Nakobu pushed the Naga back, taking very light injury in the process before we pressed our advantage, fighting alongside the Ankoan until the Naga Myrmidons were defeated.
Away from us, Blackfeather and Soulwalker’s team: Kulgha Wolfheart, Urzoga the Unbroken, Zelyr the Bloodied, Srelok Grimtide and Zakarah Sporefang. They were quick to leap the fence and press the surprise ambush into taking down the Naga casters with little fuss and very minimal injuries. While Soulwalker targeted the Obsidian Obelisk with void magic - It took three great blasts of this shadowy magic to first crack and then shatter the stone. When it was shattered a blinding flash of brilliant light erupted from within. When we could see again tiny motes of broken souls seemed to fall down where it was once standing, collecting at the base of the broken Obelisk.

Our forces converged upon a giant Naga brute attempting to force his way through a barricade into the temple. The creature was immense but we had the surviving Ankoan with us slicing at the beasts thick hide as much as any of our crude weapons. It thrashed and a hero save was made by Srelock Grimtide as he rolled under the beast to rescue Wolfheart before she was stomped.
The Brute took the combined efforts of the clan orcs and Ankoan to fetch down. The final strikes were made by Myself climbing up onto its back and striking at the back of its head to get the creature to rear up before Wolfheart shot it in the throat and Zelyr the bloodied cleaved her way into the creatures chest - it was something more mining expedition than killing from what I saw afterwards.

    â€"

In the end we were left to peel back the barricade behind which a dozen Ankoan sheltered. They offered us bandages and water, seeming to thank us in their ocean dialect. We had only the Duke to translate between our two peoples.
Things were far from over. By the shattered Obelisk Soulwalker sat trying desperately to piece together the fragments of the broken souls as if trying to glue together broken glass. They had once been trapped within and there was no saving them.
Regardless of how much Duke Salinius explained that these were no longer souls and mere motes of power now. Many orcs spoke of their dislike for this magic and the repurposing of the souls, nothing he could say would change the mood. A mood which clung to the actions of the Duke and the choices made by the Ankoan who decided that their fallen brothers and sisters would not refuse the Duke a chance to be restored to full power, the souls were already destroyed and the Ankoan consented to their remnants at least being used for something. A sacrifice well made in their minds but in the minds of the orcs something more controversial.

It was only later that I realised we had made the right choice prioritizing the protection of the Ankoan in the early stages of the battle. Had we not, perhaps more souls would have been shattered within that Obelisk. Though I am convinced we could have subdued the Naga we fought rather than slaying them and adding their souls to the Obelisk by doing so.

Ignoring the opposition of Red Blade orcs, Duke Salinius drifted to the broken souls rendered to motes of power. Drawing in their dwindling light into his own flowing form before, with a great crash of sea waves and a wondrous blue light, he was restored to his towering elemental form - no longer quite so little. It was a strange victory.

A quiet walk home carried with it a heaviness. Perhaps we should have asked the Ankoan for armour or weapons or something more than the healing supplies that we left with. The mood brought on by witnessing the Duke restore himself to full strength was a feat but maybe it should have been gained through other means, even if those who had contributed had been willing.

Some Ankoan returned to camp with us. They plan to scout the Naga encampment to locate their captives, there is an invite for members of the clan to go with them. A number of us plan to go.

Every step we take now feels like it is one pace closer to getting this clan home.

    â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"

Verzan

Battle Report - Salty Freedom

The night was different from the others. A nervous energy left many orcs restless and we gathered together speaking of what was to come. Speculating as to whether those who had not been transported with us like Vraxxar Wildmark had been forced to collect up our missing belongings from the beaches perhaps believing we had been vaporized. For the record, we now know that Srelok Grimtide might prefer his pyre to be egg shaped, Bashful Starsong a star shape and myself favoring a triangle. Many others were just traditional pyre sorts.
    This was not unusual pre battle humour from a gathering orcs.
Those of us who had scouted spoke about sights witnessed in the Naga caverns below. Karnna Blackfeather speaking of the large numbers of enemies within and how difficult the fight to come would be, while my sister offered up possible vectors for an attack based on our time spent down in the caves. There was also a brief discussion of Attack plan A - kill the Naga and attack plan B - kill the Naga violently. The Rrosh’tul was in favor of plan B.

Duke Salinius mustered the orcs to his call once again. He did so without ceremony, the Ankoan present were ready for fighting and he expected the orcs of the clan to be so too. The time had come to face down the Naga witch Shi’vas and free the captured water elementals they had snared.

With the Duke now restored to his normal form the water elemental bristled, so close was his target and with the Red Blades help he would achieve what he set out for. Our plan was simple - rather than fight through the Naga defences getting into the cavern. We would use the Duke’s magic to pass through the sea wall in spheres of salt and work our way to an opening at the back of the caverns where we could arrive up close and personal to the witch herself. We could never have swam this distance, it’s clear the Naga did not expect any attack through the sea wall itself.

    Their mistake was our advantage.

Duke Salinius wrapped us in bubbles of salt water, protecting us from the crushing power of the ocean and keeping precious air in our lungs. We sped through the sea wall and even as Naga swam up from their outposts to engage with us these bubbles of salt lashed outwards to destroy them utterly. Blasting them and clearing a path before any alarm could be raised.

We smashed out of the ocean wall at the far side of the cavern with a wave and a roar. Battle began in earnest moments later as the shock of our arrival did not last long. Naga Myrmidons came to the defence of their Sorceress, while elementalist jailers mustered their powers to defend clutches of ten ensnared elementals. The Dukes people we were here to rescue.
Orcs ran to take up positions on the left and right flank of the fighting while the Duke himself swept to the vanguard of the assault, engaging the sea witch in magical combat. Great blasts of swirling tidal magic filled the air with vapour as the Sea witch Shi’vass threw a stream of powerful magic toward the elemental only to be countered by a forceful blast of salty water of his own.

There was no time to stand and gawp in awe of the powers being thrown across the middle of the battlefield. I found myself on the left with the keen voice of Zasa Riverscale at my back, who only once or twice needed to be reminded by the Rrosh’tul Noshmarak Ironclaw not to speak over his orders. It felt good to have his clear head guiding us.

While on the right flank Bloodrider Karnna Blackfeather was trying her best to keep the pace moving forward. Although I did not see what happened on that flank I know many orcs took injury. Garbled reports through the spirit link suggested at one point almost all of them bar Urzoga the Unbroken had taken injury and were down. They clearly had found the strength of the Naga forces before them.

While those of us on the left swept through their number like shears to wheat. Thronk, Rykana Skywise, Kulgha Wolfheart, Riverscale and Rrosh’tul Ironclaw. There were moments when our bonds to those fighting on the far flank were tested as those we cared about fell into the sand injured, I remember Kulgha Wolfheart wavering when she knew Gulrok Ragehowl was down, I asked to go and support them but was refused. We kept on course, all of us. Not one Red Blade orc took a step back, they kept the momentum going and elementalist after elementalist fell in our attack. One was even taken down by the deft throw of a rock from Thronk.
We rounded the corner at a pace after that, Naga Sorcery filled the air shrouding the whole cavern in mist and darkness but that wouldn’t stop us. Rrosh’tul quickly gave us permission to enact the previously mentioned plan B and we were all too keen to do it.

The team on the right, though bloodied, did not give up the fighting. Karnna Blackfeather and Urzoga had worked together to bring down a second elementalist. Freeing even more of the Dukes people to stand with him against the witch. As more and more of the elementals escaped their bonds, the Dukes power increased and the witches’ petulant words seemed to hold less and less worth. The beam of salt grew and grew and she was rapidly straining merely to hold it back.

Rounding the corner brought us to regrouping with the other orcs. I can remember dashing past Urzoga the Unbroken to snatch up a coral torch and hurl it at the last elementalist in the tower. As our group swarmed to finish her off. Rykana got Urzoga back to her feet, we were not leaving any Red Blade orc behind today.
Meri Soulwalker, Srelok Grimtide and Zelyr the Bloodied all were down for a few moments longer when other clan members scooped them from the sand racing a few more meters back around to where we had arrived.

By now a throng of nearly seventy elementals swirled around their Duke. There wasn’t sound rather than a roar of waves that filled the cavern with the atmosphere of a storm.

‘Stay close to me! This shall sting momentarily!’ the Duke called with a voice that boomed like thunder. We should have known that he was not explaining the purpose of such a statement, so many orcs were down in the waters about our feet. They were not dying as far as I could see but whatever magic we had was long spent on keeping them alive already. They tell me that Bashul Starsong radiated out a tremendous portion of healing magic to stabilize the injured before it was too late.

In the next moment you felt wounds about your body tense. They bled outwards and for a moment it sat weightless in the air. I watched as a shard of ice lodged into my forearm was forced outwards, the blood below being drawn out by the Dukes magic, my arm tensed in momentary pain. I looked and saw all the orcs around me suffer similarly, even those of the clan who were fighting for life upon the sands.
Our blood was drawn up into the Dukes turbulent form and then channeled outwards into his beam of salt. It was the surge of energy needed as it rapidly overpowered the magics of Lady Shi’vass, catching her hands and arms then over her flesh. Rendering flesh to salt. You could hear the screams of the Naga but you cared little for her plight as the Dukes powers turned her form to salt.

With the witch made into a salt formed statue the cavern was silent but for the rush of water about the Duke and his kind and the harsh notes of disgruntled orcs who growled their frustrations of blood being taken from them and their wounded allies without their permission. Not all orcs shared this view. A pragmatic few clearly believed this secured the victory and little fuss was made beyond that.

We left the cavern through the same means as we had arrived. The travel was uneventful and our exchange with the Duke back at our camp brief. We were victorious. Our time at the Ocean’s bottom was now over. Chances are we would never see the red coral forests, ancient night elf structures or the pillars of great stone graced by nesting flying rays ever again.
    Good. Orcs belong in Durotar.
And it was to Durotar the Duke’s magics chartered our course home. Throwing us from the sea unceremoniously with many of our supplies gathered from our time in Nazjatar on the Scuttle Coast where this adventure had first begun.

    We had survived and it was good to be home.
    â€"Verzan Skywiseâ€"