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Author Topic: Bryald’s Journal - Part 6 – Arrival at Ergel’s Keep  (Read 1604 times)
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Kane
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« on: September 10, 2009, 04:32:19 PM »

After an arc of hard marching along what remained of the Fortress Wall, in the midst of a poring rain, we finally arrived at our new home, Ergel’s Keep. The dull gray skies matched the company’s mood as we saw the keep for the first time. It sat on a squat hill, a small, tired and battle scarred fortress standing sentinel over the hardscrabble and lightly forested foothills of the Highhorn Mountains. There were no signs of a village or town nearby; we were isolated, exiled to this remote outpost, ordered to spend our lives defending the all but forgotten northwestern frontier of the Kingdom of Erenland. 



As we approached the gate the signs of past battles were clearly visible. Sections of the walls were blackened and bore signs of repairs, both ancient and recent. The hill surrounding the fortress was pitted with natural and manmade gullies channeling the rainwater away from the walls. The ground was uneven, slick from all the rain; any attempt at scaling the hill would be treacherous. The only level ground was the road up to the gate, and that was barely wide enough for a single wagon. Adding to the bleakness of the scene was the lack of a single tree or bush; nothing grew or was allowed to grow on that hill. 



Once in the courtyard, we were greeted by the commander of the company we were relieving. He had his men help move our supplies into the garrison warehouses and our horses to the stables. The fortress was larger then I expected; the walls were over 200 paces long and easily 20 feet tall. Like many of the forts we’d seen, the keep was sized for a much larger garrison, maybe four to six companies. We entered the fort from the east. To our left, along the south wall, were a small smithy and stables that could hold a hundred horses with their tack. Directly ahead, along the west wall, were the warehouses and a covered well and cistern. The barracks were to our right abutting the north wall. The strongest point of the fort was the northeast tower, which was probably the original keep before the walls were built. 


That night, once we were dry and fed, Sergeant Yorin told us what we could expect in the coming days. The company we were relieving would depart within the next 2-3 days depending on the weather. That would leave just our company and the thirty odd permanent residents; the smiths, grooms, cooks, carpenters, and a mason. A few of those were former soldiers who had retired from service, the rest were local dorns. In a few weeks, at the end of the harvest celebrations, a company from House Fallon would come to winter over. Until then, we’d be responsible for patrolling the local area and maintaining the keep. It was clear that the sergeant wasn’t happy about the state of the keep and that we’d be busy doing work that didn’t require a sword.
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Against the Shadow  |  Forum  |  Midnight & RPGs  |  Games and Stories (Moderators: Kane, Bleak Knight)  |  Topic: Bryald’s Journal - Part 6 – Arrival at Ergel’s Keep
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