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Subject:The Ancient Chronicles, Vol. 1
Date:Sat Sep 6 06:29:19 1997

It has come to my ears that the youth of today are living in luxury,
carousing around the lands in gangs, posing as soldiers of the Eye.
Some do great deeds, some do cowardly ones.  This is only to be expected.
The longer our great race has contact with the miserable forces of the
western peoples, the more we degenerate into wretched clones of them.
Perhaps if they spend more time listening to the words of the Lore, instead
of killing the poor old Loremaster, things would be different.

My skills at relating the Lore have declined over the years, but I will
try nonetheless.  Hence, this, the first of the Ancient Chronicles.  Stories
of events both from my youth, and as told me by now long-dead Loremasters.

Now... gather 'round the fire close, and listen well.  Now begins the tale
of how the orclings defended the caves from a raving, yet powerful lunatic
once known as Setanta the White Istar.

This all took place long before CrazyWolf and his brother made the first
pacts with the wild Wargs.  Orcs were alone in the wilderness, all hands
were raised against us.  Trolls had yet to form even basic intelligence,
wolves snapped at us, the dark humans of Numenor weren't even a rumor.
Our greatest warriors, warlocks, and scouts slunk through the night on foot.
Bree was an armed camp, but then, when hasn't it been?  The Shire though?
Heh.  Easy pickings.  Everyone old enough to swing a sword more than three
times in a row, picked up his or her things and moved on over there.
A fun time was had by all.  Well, not all... the hobbits weren't having much
of a party.

While all the big boys were off terrorizing the round stumpy types, all your
basic snagas, the youngest 'lil tykes, spent time around the home cave honing
their skills and their blades.  Most were small enough that the rats and bats
were considered lethal adversaries.  On the other hand, these snagas were ORCS!
Orcs true to the meaning of the name!  Which is more than many youngsters
these days can claim.  Stuck up little... err... what was I saying again?
Oh yes, the story.

It seems that the pukes were getting a mite tired of our running around
unhindered.  Their greatest hero... a lying, cheating scum of a man named
Setanta, came to the orc caves to "teach us a lesson."   Us!  The Warriors of
Sauron, the Scourge of the East, the Orcs!  Hahahahah*cough*cough*... ha.
Trouble was you see, all the big boys was out west, pesterin' the Shire...
Woulda taken 'em a week to get back, even if we had some way to give 'em word.
Here comes Setanta, riding up all high and mighty on his (very tasty) horse,
and who was there to greet him?  None but a whole mess of orclings.  My very
first battle... I remember it so well...  ... .. .zzzzzzzzz...

*snort*cough* Huh? Wha?  Wassup?  Yeah.  Anyway, there we were, just
the... the... the eight of us.  Oldest was a witch-in-training, real mean kit,
almost old enough to join the raiding parties.  The rest of us were still
learning which end of a sword was the right end to hold.  Heh.  That lesson
was fun... took 'ol Stumpy a few tries to get it right though.  Wasn't the
brightest of us.  So Setanta gets down off his high horse and actually starts
yelling into the cave, at dusk even, daring us to come out!  He didn't know
who was in there, or how many.  He didn't care, he thought he could take us
all on.  Well, this young witch splits us into two forces.  She led one group
right out the main gates, and into a fireball he'd prepared.  The other group,
led by Stumpy, snuck out the secret exit and around behind the whitie.

After slaughtering his horse, mighty tasty by the way, we came up on Setanta
from behind and joined in the fight.  The whitie was just completing another
spell as we struck.  Witchie's crew was battered, and wouldn't have survived
another blast.  What does Stumpy do?  He jumps right onto Setanta's back!
Bites down hard on his neck, and starts kicking and throttling the guy!
This distracted the spellslinger long enough for most of Witchie's group to
withdraw and bind their wounds.  The rest of us grabbed our daggers and rocks,
and piled onto Setanta as well, hoping to knock him down.  He was threatening
our home!  We couldn't let him get away with it.

Well, Setanta lived up to his name as a good fighter.  He held us at bay for
a long time, even managed to slip a dagger into Stumpy's neck.  Poor Stumpy,
he fell like a true Orc.  Gave his life to help bring down the whitie.  I
almost forgot about him...  his mother was a real... well, you don't want to
hear all that.  Back to the battle!  Soon enough, Witchie and her original
group (minus one who was incinerated in the first fireball) came out and piled
on with us.  It was six of us orclings against one Istar.  We'd get knocked off
him, but would just jump right back on and keep pounding away.  He actually
broke free from us once, and tried to run away.  Without his horse, and hurt,
he was easy to track down.  He didn't get far.  The fight lasted almost until
morning, and there wasn't a one of us who was fresh and unhurt.  Finally, just
as the first rays of dawn were lighting up the mountaintops, Witchie managed
to hamstring him.  It was over pretty quickly after that.  When the dust
settled, there were five of us still standing, plus a one more too wounded to
live through the day.  We eight orclings, thought small and weak by everyone,
had pulled down the biggest game of all... an Istar!

That's what it means to be an orc, my young friends.  Savage aggression, yes...
but you also gotta have courage, wits, and a sense of duty.  Don't be afraid
to lay down your life, if it will aid the cause of Sauron.  Be smart enough to
avoid traps, or even to lay some of your own.  And most of all, never shirk
your duty to your fellow orcs!  Trolls and BN's be damned.  They're newcomers,
barely worth considering in the presence of orcs.  Only WE are the true
Warriors of the Eye.  Only ORCS will own the world in the end.  If an orc and
a troll both need help, help them both.  If you can only help one, remember who
your kin are.  We must be strong, to survive the dark (light?) days ahead.
Be yourselves.  Be orcs.

  -- Avcom, the Ancient Orkish Loremaster (semi-retired)

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