But then the rumors started. Someone had been let in the front gates. A small group of emissaries from the Rebel forces, if what was said could be believed. Garkhen himself, overhearing the conversation as he had his evening meal, did not know what to make of it. It seemed speculation was rampant over what it could mean. Were they delivering an ultimatum, revealing their alliance with these dark forces? Were they proposing an alliance against an unexpected (and very dangerous) third side in the war? Or were they here for something else entirely?
Garkhen was not sure he even believed anyone had come, much less some of the rumors about the group. But then a messenger from Captain Telarnen arrived, ordering Garkhen to come meet with him. He could feel the eyes of all present on him as he followed the messenger out of the hall they had claimed for their mess.
It wasn’t far to where the Captain awaited Garkhen. The messenger lead him to a door, knocked on it, and spoke briefly with a guard. Then he was let in. The half-dragon saw several of the Loyalist officers he recognized, as well as many he did not. In one corner of the room, a small, mismatched group sat. They looked to Garkhen rather like ‘Irregulars’–the term he had learned for adventurers in military employ.
All in the room were focused on a semi-transparent robed man standing in the middle of the room. At first Garkhen thought him some sort of spirit, but he soon realized the truth of the matter—it was a magical sending, an image of a man who was actually some distance away, speaking through means of spells.
“Clearly, we have no way of proving to you that we have no affiliation with these undead abominations,” the sending was saying, “But I can say this: our strike on their rear will be quite… visible. It will be clear before you sortie that we are not betraying you.”
One of the Loyalist generals snorted derisively. “Well I suppose we’ll just wait for that proof to make our move, then.”
The guard who had let Garkhen in quietly steered him to Cpt. Telarnen’s side. The Captain saw his soldier approach, and leaned over to speak with him.
“Rebel emissaries,” he nodded at the odd group in the corner. “They have put us in contact with their generals via this wizard.”
Garkhen nodded, to show he understood, then whispered a question. “Why have you asked for me, sir?”
The sending was speaking again. “That would be acceptable, yes. But our attack will be much more effective if your troops are prepared to sally when we strike.”
Captain Telarnen took a moment to listen… or perhaps to think. “I thought that your… unique perspective might be useful in this situation. Tell me if anything occurs to you.”
The Ferdunan Grand General’s voice cut through the room. “Then we will be prepared tomorrow night. But our soldiers will not move from our walls until we have seen this proof you promise.”
The sending nodded, then seemed to stare off into space. After a moment, he looked back at the Grand General. “Then it is agreed. You will again grant our messengers safe passage?”
“Of course,” he replied, seeming almost insulted at the suggestion he might do something else.
“Then we are agreed,” The sending said. “If you must change the plan, your mages should be able to get a sending to us, but we suspect there may be some amongst those controlling the undead who might well be able to intercept these messages. It would be best if we were not to depend upon sendings.”
And with that, the sending disappeared. Captain Telarnen sighed quietly and turned to Garkhen.
“I suppose I called you too late. Unless you have something you wish to say, Private?”
Garkhen shook his head slightly. “No, sir.”
“Then return to your unit. And keep this quiet for the time being. It’s best not to spread tales until they must be known.”
So, Garkhen finds out something about the Rebel forces. But are they telling the truth? Or are they actually in league with the undead horde? Tune in next week to find out! 😀