Chronicle II – Orc
The Orcs of Orsinium have had a troubled past to be sure, but now it seems they will have their own Imperial sanctioned province, and they are thriving. If not respected they are surely accepted by the majority of modern society. The harshness of conflict they have survived has left a great scar upon their legacy, but it is a scar of knowledge and surperior durability. The Orcs are considered the most talented soldiers of Tamriel, and in their company I feel strenght like I feel nowhere else, or is that just the side affect of their firm odor.
As blacksmiths the Orcs have a unique way of the anvil, they create sturdy blades comparable only to the seasteel of the Argonians, with fearsome edges that can carve through the hide of a Dreugh without difficulty. They often forge single-edged weapons with strength equal to the mountainside of the Wrothgarian Mountains. Yes, if the blades of the Khajiit is the hilt of blacksmithing, then the Orc blades are surely the spine.
By chance the Orcs are also brilliant tattoo artists, who would know I would willingly let someone singe symbols into my delicate skin? If anything they are a welcoming people, albeit they take some time to get comfortable around you, once they do, they are faithful for life.
Book 1 – Ritual Legend
In this world of ours there are many mysteries and curiosities, some are identical to aba malatu, others can be solved by simply reading a book, or listening to the whispers of the winds.
In all my travels across Tamriel, I have learned to understand that even the sweetest of forgotten legends and tales of great heroes and weaponry cannot compare to just stopping, and listening to the gilstening sound of the water for but a second. This is such a story.
Just as the Baar Dau hovers over the city of Vivec, every citizen knowing that one day, should they lose their faith it might come crashing down upon them. A young Orc must one day face his fear, that his world might collapse should he not be able to master his rite of passage.
A restless adolescent Orc may be able to plunge a jagged knife with all his might hilt deep into an enraged wereboar without even flinching, or toss himself in the way of danger so he might save those he love seemingly by instinct. But there is nothing as intimidating for an immature Orc than his ritual of ascension to manhood. The Orcs are born with a physique of a bear, and courage to match, and due to their great esteem among equals, respect amongst the sexes and their reverence towards their elders, there is not much that can put the wiggles into a sturdy Orc so to speak.
Not even when a young male approaches the female he has lusted for since he first saw her, is there much doubt nor apprehension in his mind. A youthful Orc can stand still for many an hour waiting for the right time to strike a deer with his hunting dagger, but the time he spends carving the piece of a tree that will eventually become the proof of his devotion and vigor towards his escalating strength and determination may seem eternal and insufferable.
Splinters throughout his fingers, and with the golden brown sprig of wooden glory in his hands, the now even more anxious juvenile carries it towards the chamber where he will spend his next six days of solitude and concentration.
The focus of his angst, the creation of a Wood Sword.
Since the Orcs began gathering in tribes before the incidents of Daggerfall, and when they were hunted by men and mer as beasts, when the time comes for a young male Orc, he must spend six days alone carving and forging his Wood Sword, scorching the wood, merging it with metal through his passion and white hot fire.
The wood may come from any tree, from the Ironwood tree deep in the forests of Skyrim to the high palm trees of Elsweyr, the important thing is the design, and the truth of mind the Orc puts into its making. The entirety of the sword is one piece of wood, the tang, pommel and fuller are all the same lifeline that once ran through the branch of a tree. If the Orc should sliver the fuller or the point too much when carving it, that lifeline is lost the wood becomes brittle and his ascension into manhood is considered foiled by his peers.
Another important factor is the scriptures often put on its fuller or on the pommel. Some carve the names of their loved ones, or the name of the woman that occupies a separate piece of their heart. Some write words of admiration towards their heroes or elders, and some write praise to the gods or daedra they worship.
This is an example of the scripture on a Wood Sword obviously dedicated to a Daedra; " MY SPIRIT AND FLESH MY HONOR IS YOURS"
A special intricate process when regarding the Wood Sword is adding its "thorns", the wood in itself has no edge, and the cutting power of the Wood Sword is determined by these "thorns" that are melted into holes carved in the side of the fuller, formed as they harden and then tempered.
The "thorns" do not necessarily have to be thorns as in the sharp thorns that protect branches and the sill of many plants. They can have many shapes and do not even have to interlock as to make a full edge, in fact, most Wood Swords have "thorns" that are separate and make up a jagged edge to the fuller.
The grip is usually simply carved into the wood, making a naturally tight fit depending on the carvers hand and specifications, another favorite for the grip is boar skin, often with the fur still in place allowing for a soft grip but still providing a non-slippery surface.
Now, the creation of such swords is prominent to the Orcs that strive to be respected by their elders, still some smiths are known to carve and forge basic versions of such blades, however, should an adolescent Orc buy such a "copy" instead of making his own, he will be found out, and he will be cast out from his society and lose the reverence of all his equals.
Many an Orc have been shamed by either failing to carve the Wood Sword, or neglecting to create it all together. This is the reason so many Orc hearts thump an extra time for each second during this trying time in his attempt to ascend to manhood.
The Wood Sword is not essentially created for combat, but if you ever encounter a young Orc armed with his Wood Sword, take my advice and do not stand his way.
Today I have written in the light of Secunda, crossing the path of The Serpent, it is fortunate I remembered to rub Nightshade on my shoulder yesterday, or The Serpent would surely have reached down and bit me.
Book 2 - A Quandao Cloven Heart
It was when my journeys had brought me to the far corners of the Red Ring Road that I first came across a wonderful statue, and what a statue it was.
You see, the statue could tell tales. And such gracious whispers of hope, mercy and murder. Of broken love and broken blades. One story in particular will never leave my heart. (Unless it ruptures of course) The figure holding strings sang of a drama from long ago, involving the great people of the Wrothgarian Mountains.
Oh how I remember dancing on top those hills last time I was there, still clutching what was left of the moon sugar to my chest. And with all those wolves chasing me, I probably should have given them their young back. And how hospitable the owner of The Lucky Giant Pub in Alcaire was, he even loaned me a fork, so I could catch Slaughterfish in Illiac Bay, but that is a story for another time.
The curious sculpture told me of a poor Orc blacksmith, living in Orsinium. She had a mind filled with designs and creativity, but she lacked the strength and longevity to endure the forge for a full day. Her business went slow and so she grew further and further into depression for each day that went by. She had some contracts with nearby Wayrest and the Redguards there, but it was not nearly enough.
Shada gra-Uzgash was the sister of the late Burzum gro-Uzgash, a master blacksmith. They had a very successful shop together, she created the design and proposed the function that the blades should serve, and he, using his talents as an ingenious forger, developed and improved the blades to accommodate her original thoughts. Their specialty was the cleaver, and they were close to perfecting the design when disaster struck.
Burzum was supposed to deliver an assortment of blades to Wayrest one early damp morning, but he never showed up. And three days later, on the 12th of First Seed, a Redguard ship found his corpse floating near the Isle of Balfiera. They suspected he had taken the road through Menevia to avoid the harsh mountainside in the rain, and run across a band of pirates. But which pirate gang had killed him was anyone's guess.
It was only seven days later that Shada learned what had happened to her brother. Suffice it to say that she was devastated. Not only had she lost the one person in the world that she cared for, since she had no other living relatives and had no time for love, but she had also lost her business. Her life had fallen apart in only seven days.
She couldn't sleep nor eat, all she could do to take her mind off things was work. And even though she was no blacksmith, she had learned quite a lot watching her brother at work on the anvil. She put all her anger in every stroke of the hammer, all her fury and despair in every flare that erupted when she struck.
And when she was done, she had perfected that which she and her brother had tried to do for so long.
The Quandao Cleaver was born.
The secret to the blade was that she had shortened it significantly. Almost to the point where it could no longer be called a cleaver, but still retain its original shape and ferocity. The blade was now stronger than ever, and one could lay all one's force on the blade and it would never fail you, but the Quandao's true strength was in that if properly used and with enough force, it could throw even the most proficient of defenders off balance. It was a blade that even Malacath would happily wield.
On the 28th of Rain's Hand, when she had made enough blades, including the new Quandao, she set forth on the route to Wayrest. With her new design and with her new confidence even after the loss of her brother, she was confident she could continue the business she had shared with Burzum, and save his memory.
When she arrived in Wayrest and had unloaded all but the Quandao on the local smith, her blood was tingling with anticipation. But when she presented it to him she didn't get the reaction she was hoping for. The smith burst into laughter, having never seen such a small cleaver he could not believe his eyes. He gushed forth in contemptuous laughter at the slender Shada, standing there with what seemed to him like a kitchen knife compared to the other cleavers. She was ridiculed and embarrassed, but she knew the strength of her weapon. She knew it was stronger than any other cleaver made by any other smith. She had to prove it to him, prove her worth, or she could just give up and go home in despair.
She screamed at him roaring with all the might her voice could carry, he was shocked and could not believe she would go to such lengths because of a simple joke. When Shada had calmed down she proposed what would later be described as the "test of the Illiac cloven heart".
She knew that a great warrior was in town, for she knew him well. He had courted her when she was younger --but she was stubborn, and only cared about helping her brother-- so nothing became of it. His name was Gashk gro-Aggron and was like a brick wall, none could compare with his skill in blocking and heavy armor.
She callously suggested that if she could put Gashk off balance with a single blow by the Quandao, the smith would take back his words and sell the Quandao in his shop. The smith grunted to himself.
He accepted, and ran out of his shop to gather the people prowling the streets down at the docks. Word ran across the Wayrest shore and reached Gashk that he was to block a blow from a woman he cared for deeply, and if he could hold his balance she would be ridiculed in front of entire Wayrest.
Thoughts rushed through the mind of the sturdy Gashk; this was his chance! If he let Shada throw him off balance perhaps she would be grateful enough to reconsider him courting her. But he would have to disguise it carefully --he could not simply pretend to fall off balance-- as they would surely see through that. No, he would have to use other means. If he exchanged his shield with a cheap counterfeit, the shield would not stand the might of an Orcish woman with a cleaver and he might actually be put off balance for real. He hurried to the general trader.
When everyone had gathered at the shoreline, and Shada stood ready with the mighty Quandao in hand, she debated to herself whether or not Gashk would show, and how he would react to seeing her again. She thought of the time when he was courting her, it was not that Gashk was uncomely, not at all. And he was a proud and stout Orc and she cared for him too, it was just that at the time, she had so many obligations.
Come to think of it, she could not understand why Gashk would court her in the first place. She was scrawny, not like the hardy voluptuous Orcish women that she knew got married quickly. She didn't like to bundle up her hair like proper Orcish women do. And she rarely wore clothes that were more complementing than comfortable. When she thought so thoroughly about it, maybe it wouldn't be such a bad idea to talk to Gashk after she had proven herself to that imbecile of a blacksmith.
Her thoughts had put a smile to her face, and just in time, as Gashk approached the shoreline. He was clad in great Orcish armor, and with a bright shield that looked like an alloy between steel and mithril. The crowd awed at the sight of him. The smith proposed that they should get it over with, to diminish Shada's embarrassment, but Gashk interrupted him and briefly told Shada how it was nice to see her again and how he hoped they could meet after, no matter what the outcome was.
She agreed and they took positions, Gashk raised his shield-arm, the shield flared in the sun and blinded most of the spectators. Shada unsheathed the Quandao and built up as much confidence as she could muster.
At the sight of the Quandao, Gashk had his hopes somewhat lowered; he had thought she would at least bring a descent cleaver. Even with the weak shield he could not imagine being put off balance by Shada now.
Shada drew a final breath, planted her front foot hard in the sand, and charged. The blade shimmered in the light from the hot morning sun, as it cut through the shield and into Gashk's chest, it entered through his shoulder and as deep as his spine, cleaving his heart in two. Gashk fell to his knees, and the sand underneath him turned murky crimson. He drew his last breath and dropped to the side, forcing the Quandao out of the hands of the shocked Shada.
The children amongst the spectators screamed in disbelief and torment by the sight of Gashk's lifeless face, covered in blood and in an expression of anguish.
From that day, Shada swore she would never make another cleaver nor any blade for the rest of her life. She died a gardener in the local graveyard, tending to the graves there, including those of her dead brother and lost love, forever being reminded of what she had done.
I was so intrigued by this story that I simply had to find a Quandao Cleaver and the secret of how to make them. So I asked the peculiar statue where I could find such a blade, or someone who knows how to make it. At first the statue neglected to say a word, but after I took a fresh dose of Skooma, courtesy of my newfound friends in Bravil which I visited in Hearth Fire, the statue became as talkative as ever. It told me that there was one living relative of Shada gra-Uzgash living to the East in the City of Cheydinhal named Borba gra-Uzhash.
I bade the statue farewell, and it said something back although I can't seem to remember what it was, something about me knowing a friend of its or something like that. Not important, I hurried to Cheydinhal to see Borba gra-Uzgash as fast as I could carry my backpack filled with Imps.
I arrived on the West side of Cheydinhal just as the 13th of Frostfall came around the corner. I scurried to the local Inn so I would be rested when meeting the related Uzgash. My flesh simply shivered across my bones at the thought of actually holding a Quandao Cleaver in my hand!
Four hours later, the air filled with the cold scent of the river, I found myself enjoying a Frostfall morning in beautiful Cheydinhal. My nose was also filled with the smoke from a new tobaccoa pipe that I bought from a very clever Redguard woman at the inn.
I ventured towards the shop where I could find the Uzgash, Borba's Goods and Stores. I entered with great anticipation, but did not find quite what I expected. This was not a blacksmith at all, but a normal trader. None the less I spoke with Borba, asking in length about her family and heritage, and occasionally about the Quandao.
She told me that she had indeed heard of the Quandao and of Shada, but more known in her family was the story of what followed that tragedy. You see, unknown to Shada, she had a younger brother named Dulg gro-Uzgash. And when he found out that he had a sister, he traveled across High Rock from Glenumbra Moors to Wayrest, only to find that she was already dead, and buried there.
He did however, as the only heir to the Uzgash family, inherit the smithy that used to belong to Shada and Burzum.
In it, he found all the notes and paperwork of the designs that Shada had created, amongst them that of the Quandao Cleaver. Dulg was, unfortunately not as brilliant as his sister Shada, and considered the cleaver flawed. He attempted to improve the cleaver by elongating the blade, turning the hilt around, and making it slender and slightly more curved, thus eliminating the strength the Quandao had become famous for.
But, in his ignorance, Dulg had invented the first Orcish blade that actually handled almost as well as a Khajiiti saber! And although it was not the strongest, nor the sturdiest of blades, that in itself was an accomplishment.
He called it the Brokeback Saber; the 'broken' curve of the blade symbolizing the rolling hills of Wayrest that ended in the Wrothgarian Mountains.
He re-opened Shada and Burzum's shop in Wayrest and sold out his stock of Brokeback's every week. Ever since that day the Uzgash family has prospered and spread as far as the Dragontail Mountains in the North, and Cyrodiil in the South.
I was enchanted by this extraordinairy story of tragedy and luck; or was it the tobacco that had driven me off in a daze of thoughts? No matter, I had to know more, and find out where I could get my hands on an Orcish saber!
She told me of the thrilling heights of the Dragontail Mountains, where most of her family now resides. And it is there that the now great legacy of the Uzgash is brought forth. They are in the process of creating cleavers and sabers for all Tamriel to see. Mightiest of them all is the Dragonclaw Cleaver inspired by both the Brokeback Saber and the Quandao Cleaver. It possesses both the strength and durability of the Quandao, and the handling of the Brokeback, at least considering its size. It is the pride of the Uzgash family proper.
When she told me that she had brought with her a supply of these puissant cleavers and sabers alike I nearly dropped my pipe and bit my tongue. So after purchasing several blades and after hours on hours discussing the secrets and marvels of the blades created by the Uzgash family, she invited me to stay the night and showed me another few secrets of the women of the Uzgash breed.
Book 3 – Ashes That Cleanse
In "The Pig Children" an absolutely fascinating and appalling book, written to inform the citizens of Tamriel about the threat Orcs posed to society at that time, Bane writes that "By all rights, the civilized races of Tamriel should have been able to purge our land of their blight eras ago, but their ferocity, animal cunning, and curious tribal loyalty has made them inevitable as leeches in a stagnant pool." Well, I do not quite agree with Tyson Bane on this matter, as I have thoroughly inspected several Orcish women, and I can assure you there was no blight anywhere on them.
What I can say, is that I have heard many a tale on the bravery and beauty of several Orcs, but none can compare with the story that was told to me when I spoke with a healer in the Great Chapel of Julianos during my pass through Skingrad last Sun's Dusk as I travelled Cyrodiil.
Now it is true that I did not witness any of this, nor have I spoken to anyone related to the people involved directly, but the Breton woman I spoke to had such a beautiful smile so I can only assume she is not lying. And therefore, by process of elimination I can only conclude with that everything about this story is the undefiled truth.
The tale takes place far away form the Seat of Sundered Kings, in the vicinity of what is now Nova Orsinium, but directly after what can only be compared to the Ra'gada of which the Redguards take their name. When the original Orsinium fell to the fury of the other races in 1E980.
In the ruins of Orsinium, along the Bjoulsae River, an Orcish child was born into the rubble of corpses and cleaned in the fetid river spoiled by the dead and the remnants of their lives. This child would never know his mother or his father for he had been abandoned just as soon as he was birthed, like so many Orcish children during that time.
However this ankle biter was not like other children, he inhabited the curse of being disfigured. He was brought forth by birth with a deformed right arm and several blemishes on his face. Yet with this constant strain to his survival, and even without a mother or father to aid him, he survived the cold weather and rough mountains over what used to be Orsinium in the Wrothgarian Mountains.
After living for sixteen years in the farthest and most remote heights of the Wrothgarian Mountains, where the only food was wolves and the only water was the ice that dropped from the sky, he started a journey across the mountains towards Evermor. Why he traveled all that way after staying at the same place for so long is unknown, but maybe it was instinct, the instinct to discover new places or the instinct to find a mate that we all harbor.
It is irrelevant, for on his way there he fell unconscious from the cold. He had not eaten in three days, for there were no wolves in sight, neither had he seen any other animal. The birds were too fast for him and he feared the few insects that inhabited the mountains, for they were vicious spiders hiding in small holes in the rock walls and inside caves. He had been stung by them on many occasions and it was pain like he had never felt before even worse than when he was mauled by a wolf protecting its young.
When he came to he found himself warm again, in fact he was warmer than he had ever been before. The wolf fur he wore around his neck was wet with sweat, and his heart was thumping so heavily he could see his green skin bulging up and down when it stroke. He heard bright yet, hard noises, repeating themselves. Something was being struck, but the sound it made was nothing like anything he had ever heard.
He was paralyzed with fear, he could do nothing but lay still, and when he looked up there was no sky to see. What he saw was brown like on the branches on the small rugged bushes he used for cover to ambush animals when hunting for food. He could not feel his feet anymore, and he grasped immediately to the right, squeezing something with all his might as he panicked.
He heard a great growl as the huge Nord standing very close to him forcibly grabbed his hand. Pulling the young Orcs grip off his thigh and lifting him up on his feet. The tall Nord looked upon the Orc, thinking to himself and wondering what kind of creature he was. He had heard of greenskins in Hammerfell, but not in Skyrim, and certainly not as far North as Solitude. It was unheard of and he had also heard that Orcs could speak the common tongue, which this greenskin could not.
The Nords name was Olav Bjorkeskjegg and he was the tallest and strongest of the Nords in the village of Solitude, he was a blacksmith of some renown, but he was most famous for his beard since it was the harshest and massive beard one could ever imagine. Olav once said, that he did not have such a long beard because it suited him, it was simply because he had yet to find a razor that could cut through it. And whenever he stepped too close to the forge, he would smell the scent of burnt hair, rather his beard than him so to speak.
Since that day when Olav found the young Orc lying in the snow on the Northwestern border of Skyrim, the young Orc lived with Olav until one Middas, 4th of Morning Star. The now twentythree years old Orc had lived with his disability for over 20 years, but he was tired and frustrated, for every year that passed his arm became harder to move and it took more and more effort to get through the day.
The grown Orc never learned to speak nor write, but he was a superb warrior and hunter, even with his liability he was just as strong; perhaps even stronger than most of the Nords he hunted with. The only thing that kept him going with his condition was his strive to perfection, to be better, faster and stronger than anyone around him. So they wouldn’t notice his horrid appearance or his struggle to use his arm.
Of course Olav paid no attention to the Orcs challenged features, over the years he had become like a son to Olav, despite his inability to express emotions through language Olav knew that the Orc felt the same way. He especially treasured the evenings they spent together when Olav taught the Orc the ways of the anvil. At least as best he could without saying anything.
Olav and many of his peers considered it quite curious how the Orc had not learned how to speak even after all those years living with Olav and the other Nords in Solitude, but Olav simply concluded with that the Orc chose not to. Olav was renowned for thinking that the simplest explanation is often the most logical and therefore often the truth and so customarily chose to answer questions he did not know the answer to in that manner.
When Olav was visiting the tavern during the mid day, the Orc began working on the anvil, he had helped Olav in making the swords and hunting daggers he normally sold to the community in the village, but that was not his intent this time. As the years had passed, the Orcs palm on his right hand became more and more crooked, when he was young it didn't matter, because his hand was so small. But now it had become a serious problem as he could no longer properly grasp the handle of a sword, dagger or knife, so on that day he after spending six hours on the anvil. He had created a sword that lay almost perfect in his hand and handled so that he could properly swing it without much pain.
It was a wonder of ingenuity, the blade was thicker on the end than by the hilt, so he would need less force to swing it and its handle had a bulge in the center, so he could grasp with great vigor. He felt empowered, by no means was the blade painless to swing, but it was nothing compared to what he had to endure when hunting with a dagger. He remembered all the words Olav had used to express what the different blades were, but he could remember none that fit his sword, he did however remember that Olav had used the word scimitar when describing the tavern women. She handles almost as well as a desert scimitar he would say, so that's what he named it the Scimitar.
After almost seven hours at the forge and after spending quite some time practicing with the Scimitar and thinking about how Olav would react when seeing it he felt exhausted and fell to the floor on top of a pile of rabbit furs.
Late in the evening that Middas after awaking from his nap, the Orc found himself utterly depressed, he had just spilled a cup of Belladonna tea [Editors Note: Belladonna is famous for the green residue it secretes through its berries, because it is almost impossible to remove if it comes in contact with clothing, tapestry etc.] on the bear-rug that Olav treasured dearly, it was the last bear he felled before the death of his real son. Olav almost never spoke of it, but the Orc knew he would be devastated when he found out that it was destroyed.
The Orc looked around him in great distress, knowing that Olav would return from the tavern shortly as was his custom during Middas evenings. In the Orcs mind, he saw no other way out, he could not bear seeing the look on Olav's face when he saw the rug [Editors Note: It is obvious from this story that it is a very emotionally distressed Orc in question, most likely because of his childhood.] so he did the only thing he could do, run away, into the wild where he belonged.
He grabbed his clothing and threw a wolf pelt over his shoulders, sheathed the Scimitar lying by the forge and ran out the front door, the freezing Morning Star snow gusted against his cheeks like a punch to the face as he ran up the hills to the West. When he had gone so far that he could no longer see the village in the distance he stopped, fell to his knees and started crying. He had not cried since as long as he could remember and his tears froze before they could even leave his chin.
Turning into small droplets underneath his lips, at that moment the snow under his legs turned to ash, and the air smelled like rotten eggs.
A huge figure approached him, speaking in a deep tone of voice that seemed to echo even when the Orcs own cries did not. The figure spoke briefly, he explained that he had been watching the young Orc, ever since he was born on the riverside in Orsinium. He had seen the Orcs suffering and now had come to aid him, by giving him the greatest gift he could give to the Orc. He took the Scimitar from the scabbard that was lying in the ash next to the Orc. And with but a tear from the figures eye it changed, shifted into something else.
When the great figure spoke the mountains shivered and the clouds rained ash and soot, the Scimitar was corrupted, just as the figure was once corrupted and as the Orc was corrupted at birth. It was now the Miscitar, for it was Scimitar torn apart and put back together again. The figure gave the Orc the blade, but the Orc could not understand, he was given a much smaller blade. It was not even as powerful as the Scimitar was, but when he grasped it with his right hand he could feel no pain and as he swung it it almost flew through the air causing him no discomfort. Yet the Orc was enraged, he had thought he would be relieved of his disfiguration, that he would give him the greatest gift he could hope for, like the figure had said.
Then the figure turned his back to the Orc and started to walk away, the Orc shouted, screamed, shrieked, but could not say a word. He tried to run after the figure but he could never catch up with it, no matter how slowly it was walking, the figure briefly halted and explained to the Orc, the one that longs for everything he does not have, is the one that loses all which he has. You were disfigured at birth, but have been given great strength, you never learned how to speak and in turn you never needed to, you never had a father so one was given to you. How much of what you had have you been grateful for? You were given a home and someone that cared about you, but for seemingly nothing you ran away from it. You were given a gift of talent, so you could smith your own blade, but it was not good enough for you. The blade was improved so you could wield it without pain, but you discarded it as not enough.
At that moment the Orc drew a dagger from his belt, it was a dagger unlike all others, one he had forged long ago, when he first came to live with Olav. It was a dagger made to induce a wound that would bleed very fast, so that one thorough stab would be enough. It had an irregular shape with pointed edges at both sides of the dagger and it was much thicker at the starting of the blade near the hilt, than at the end. He held the dagger up it the sway of the torrent of ash around him with his left hand, and then in brought it to his right shoulder burying it deep inside the hand he hated so much. He ripped the dagger from his flesh and fell on his back lying in a cloud of ash and blood.
The figure left him at that moment, and as the ash turned to snow and the snow almost covered him the Orc died with a smile on his face.
On Fredas two days later, the Nords of Solitude found his corpse, lying in the snow half buried covered in soot. Next to him was the Miscitar and the dagger he had used to take his life, on that day Olav gave his Orc son a name, so that he would be given a name not in birth, but in death. The Nords that were present there named him Malachi [Editors Note: meaning Malacath-small, or son of Malach/Malauch]
To this day, Malachi floats in an eternal storm of ash, forever beautiful, forever perfect. It is said that the Nord smith in Solitude named the dagger the Tetela Dagger, Tetela was the name of his Nord son.
When I asked the Breton woman that told me of this marvelous Orc if the story was truly as true as her lips suggested, she replied simply that she did not know if all the details were correct after so many years of telling it, but if you you ask an Orc blacksmith to forge you a Scimitar he will know what it is. And if he spill a tear whilst forging it... It is not a Scimitar that will appear when he pulls it out of the fire.
Book 5 - Gorhak The Half-Orc
The Story of a Broken Head.
This story here I tell, is the making of a jewel unlike others.
I was lost. Rare it was that I lost myself anywhere on Nirn, and let me tell you - I was enjoying it, immensely.
My travel had led me three days ago to The Last Home, a shabby place you can’t even call a village, the kind of place that is at the end of civilized land, the end of the road, the last stop before the wilderness. Of course it’s as the saying goes, cause this wilderness always have more intelligent life or monsters that consider themselves civilized, so that civilized border can be quite pesky as we never really know where it really is..
I had heard of the place in my travels as it was also rumored to be the last blacksmith this far South. I was a little taken aback though when I realized that it wasn’t a forge that made weapons, but rather one that only take care of horses hoofs once in a while. So I took advantage of the other mercantile aspect of the place, and ordered a hot meal and some spiced wine.
I sat down nearby the fire, it was a good fire.
In that inn there was that old orc matron, she eyed me as soon as I entered the room and as I took off my hat I noticed how she was looking at me from the dark corner where she was seated. Her staring was so intense, the yellow of her eyes where bulging out of their wrinkled sockets in an alarming and so charming way. I smiled at her, bowing politely and extended my hand as I introduced myself. She threw her chair closer and I started to smell a peculiar odor, old cheese and stale ale. She told me she had heard of me before, in a voice that sounded like she had wind caught in her throat. She was croaking and spitting on me profusely, and I was really starting to enjoy this fine damsel…when she said to me:
-Green Wanderer hey? I hear you are searching for people that can forge right?
In all my years of wandering the world, if there was something that could get my utmost interest, it was when I was hearing that there was someone I should see. Because when a person is telling me about someone else in this way, it usually meant the person he was referring to me was good, maybe out of ordinary, out-of-ordinary-good…
Her rasping ensued, and she told me of a man who came to this far end of the world as well, but this passed over two decades ago. He was a ranger, and was barely able to stand by himself when he arrived in this same inn.
Korgol Bad-Thumb was and is still the owner of The Last Home. It’s probably due to his bad thumb from where he took his nickname that much is obvious, but this is also what never made him a real smith. His efforts in that field remained few and apart from a few kitchen knives and horseshoes, he never attempted to forge anything else (it is true that his cooking is far better than the wares I was eating it with).
Korgol had a daughter, Kaga, that was rumored to be as beautiful as can be (for an orc). Kaga was also the one who took on herself to have the forge going and regardless of the fact she never had a good teacher, the old lady told me she had a disposition to it.
So that mortally wounded ranger, who came to the inn twenty years ago in a very bad shape, was put in the care of Kaga, and it was her constant dedication to the sick man that finally brought him back to life in a few weeks. After a short stay and deep
to Korgol and Kaga, the nameless ranger took off and disappeared in the wilderness, never to be seen in theses parts again.
As the following months passed, it became obvious to Korgol that the ‘deep
’ the ranger had given to his daughter where indeed deep. Kaga the orc was pregnant of a half-human bastard. An infant born of two different races will never be accepted as an equal by any of his parents races. And she knew it. She knew also that to give birth to this baby, she would most probably die herself, as it is known that this kind of pregnancy usually destroy the mother at birth.
And so, as her unnatural son was born in incredibly hard labors, Kaga the orc went away.
Korgol Bad-Thumb never liked the bastard child, yet he raised him, unable to end this life that came from his beloved daughter. But it was obvious to the child that his grand-father was in fact, hating him.
He named him Gorhak, and his name soon became spoken as a jest by any who passed by the Last Home. Gorhak wasn’t a happy child, he had no friend, and a grand-father that will laugh with the others and never defend him. He saw many travelers who invariably took the job of laughing of him as well..(this is not what the old orc matron told me, but rather what I picked-up much after).
But she told me part the story of Gorhak youth, and finally how one day he disappeared from the small community. Yet she said that it was him I should seek out if I wanted to see ‘someone who can forge right’. In the last year he was around the place, he became the smith of The Last Home, and - most probably out of rage and in need to prove he was worth something - produced a few very well-made blades that passerby where all buying as he made them. Since he left, and haven’t been seen in a long while, none of these blades are available anymore.
Yet the old brown thing of a lady told me she ‘felt’ he was still around somewhere, and maybe somewhere not far. I like feelings like this, they remind me of nothing I should consider as proof - yet they hold certainty and a great promise of wisdom.…it all make sense when it doesn't, as the Dwemers say.
Heated and excited by this story, I woke-up at dawn the next day and charged into the wilderness in search of the Half-Orc boy. Three days later I was in a position I rarely find myself in, I was lost.