Apologies for the delay this week, we’ve moved it back a week and I was busy on other things.��However, better late than never��:)
As written by the Hand of Hashut War Council members: Grimstonefire, Uzkul Werit, chaoticRunesmith, Harvestmouse and Hashut’s Blessing.
The Draken Downs Week 4
Across the Draken Downs, the mission to track down the lost Hellcannons had been stepped up.��Hundreds of reinforcements had arrived from the East, having fought their way from the Diabullus and across the Howling Hills.
As Uzkul’s army marched day and night towards the Dragon’s Cave, they were growing increasingly anxious.��There were two of their prized Hellcannons rumoured to be nearby, and by Hashut they could not leave them behind.��The only problem was that they were dangerously close to the caves, and Dragons are exceptionally hard to kill at the best of times.
On the second day of the march they were met by an Arcane Engineer from the city of Zharr Naggrund itself.��The Dwarf himself wasn’t overly important, a nameless Beardling from the Guild which Uzkul outranked by far. It was however the package he carried that was important.
Apparently the forges of the Dark Lands had been working non stop to produce many of these objects. All the Engineer would say was that it was made with the aid of those ratmen. Uzkul grudgingly allowed him to join his army for safety. He’d find out the contents of the package sooner or later.
On the third day of the march, the army cautiously approached the entrance to the Dragon’s Cave.��Even those not trained in the use of Dark magic could sense the air was heavy with the stench of daemonic energy.��Within seconds the army lined up into battle formation, the slaves in front, followed by Immortals and then warriors.��The Priests and Sorcerers would attempt to bless the Chaos Dwarfs and protect them from the fires of the Dragon��
As they marched forwards a glowing shield of magic appeared around them, the flickering blue light following their movement.��Uzkul grinned as he realised the magic shield finished behind the slaves, but evidently they had not noticed.
What they found inside was completely unexpected. The Dragon was there, bellowing out a deafening roar and spewing an inferno of flames, but it’s very being appeared to be changing and mutating.��Around it a pair of Hellcannons were ripping great chunks of flesh out of its heels like a pair of dogs.��Though they were dwarfed by the immense beast, every bite seemed to make them grow slightly larger, whilst the Dragon appeared to diminish.��The daemonic energy unleashed was evidently rubbing off onto the beast, for daemonic shapes could be seen writhing under its skin.��Uzkul sighed, this was going to be a long day.
The Drakwald Deeps Week 4
For many days the combat engineers had kept their attention fixed on the River Delb.��Day and night they watched, anxiously waiting.��Watching and waiting.��Finally after two days they saw in the distance the Hammer of Hashut dragging its fell cargo behind.
The black submersible was clearly visible above the water, an open target for any enemies nearby, but its mission was vital to the war effort and so it was called into action.��Behind the Hammer a massive raft was being dragged.��It was actually a series of rafts held together by thick ropes, for it would have been far too unwieldy to manoeuvre such a thing any other way.��On top of the craft a colossal giant lay, bound from heat to foot in thick chains.��The Nameless One had arrived.
This Giant had been the bane of their existence since the Chaos Dwarfs had arrived in the Great Forest.��From the Giants Tump it had ambushed their forces countless times as the Diabullus was being pulled along the Altdorf-Talabheim road.
Every time he appeared the Chaos Dwarfs had blasted away at him with Death Rockets, Earthshakers and fiery magic.�� Dozens of Dawi Zharr had sworn they had seen the fiend wounded after every encounter, yet he did not die.��The venerable Sorcerer Lord Zharkov conjectured that they were infact being targeted for some unknown reason by a series of giants, not just the one.��Such a claim could not be verified however.
After many weeks of fighting they finally captured the giant.��Lord Zharkov himself had brought the monster down by creating a massive earth tremor under his feet.��Once the giant was down Chaos Dwarf Rocketeers had fired rockets with grappling hooks at point blank range into his arms and legs and pinned the beast down.
Now the Nameless One was the property of the Skaven to do with as they saw fit.��A suitable gift for the ‘master mutators’, and one that the Chaos Dwarfs were happy to part with.
Grakan Bloodfist oversaw the handing over of the Giant, after making sure that the Skaven would keep their end of the bargain.��The mysterious Grey Seer informed him that the thirteen metal chests had been delivered as requested to the designated sites the week before; the Forge Masters waiting there had sent messages back that they would not stop until work was complete.
The Reik’s Marches Week 4
Once more the Hammer of Hashut was travelling out to the Sea of Claws.��The Hand of Hashut council had requested that it break from its tight schedule to tow the Nameless One from the banks of the river near to the Barren Hills.��The massive raft was hard to manoeuvre and had forced the Hammer to travel along the surface several times.��In places where the river was too shallow Ogre mercenaries had been deployed on either bank to physically drag the submersible along, via long tow cables.��In other places they had to torpedo the river bed to make it deeper.
All told the detour had cost them four valuable days, and all to drop off a stupid beast!��Such things could not be dwelled upon for long, the Hammer of Hashut made one final stop to pick up hundreds of Dawi Zharr who had been wounded as they made their escape from the Tomb Kings.��The delay would prove to be deadly for many of the brave warriors, but the worst was yet to come.
Working day and night to fire the engine to full speed, the Hammer of Hashut made remarkable progress out towards Altdorf.��Once there however things went catastrophically wrong.��Dozens of Chaos Dwarfs had succumbed to their wounds and died.��As the submersible made its way horugh the city of Altdorf the dead bean to rise and attack the wounded nearby.��Clawing and scratching at anything they could, in the cramped conditions it was a nightmare.��What could cause the dead to rise like this?
Realising they had to surface or they would never survive to complete their mission, the Crew of the Hammer of Hashut soon learned the cause of the disaster.��All around Altdorf the Tomb Kings had prepared a massive siege.��Their ghostly armada of Bone Ships were in the middle of a hard fought battle with several Empire Warships that had been hurriedly brought into action.��
The cursed magic of the undead had taken its effect even though they were travelling underneath the armada.��
Felling their undead kin once and for all, the Chaos Dwarfs mournfully continued their voyage out to sea.��By Hashut the Tomb kings would pay for this outrage!
The Howling Heights Week 4
Having used the dark magic of the Arcane Book of Alshazzier the Chaos Dwarfs were surrounded by a thick black smoke.��The power of this ancient book was such that the very laws of physics were subservient to its dark magic, perhaps indicating a link to the gods of Chaos themselves.��
Surrounded by a choking smoke and feeling like they were falling and drowning at the same time, it was a great relief when the smoke cleared and the Dawi Zharr were free once more.��The hard ground was beneath their feet but something had happened to the forest around them.
The ancient forest that had stood here for thousands of years was no more, in its place a blasted landscape of burnt trees in every direction as far as the eye could see.��What in the name of Hashut had happened?��Was this in the past or the future?
One thing at least was painfully familiar, the craggy peaks before them were the Lost Mines of Khrazi Drudd.��How curious that the arcane book should have transported them here of all places.��Trusting to fate that they were here for a reason, they made their way towards the Mines and entered the dark tunnels once more.��Ever vigilant should they come across the army of mutant creatures they had faced before, they marched ever onwards and found themselves in the hall where several of their number had been killed by the rolling boulders.��The boulders were there as before, unchanged in any way, but the piles of Night Goblin corpses they had left behind were not there.
The stone rings upon the floor had moved too, revealing a spiralling staircase in the middle of the chamber that went steeply down.��Making a note of the pattern the runic pictures the rings now formed, the army advanced down into the darkness beyond.
After travelling straight down for almost an hour, they found themselves at the entrance to a small chamber with the most bewildering display of arcane architecture the Chaos Dwarfs had ever seen.��Such shapes and runic pictures defied all logic and showed clearly whoever created it must have been in the depths of madness.��At the centre of the chamber lay an immense tomb which had been carved with the most intricate runic patterns.��The tomb itself had been broken into, and carefully removing the slab of stone ontop the Chaos Dwarfs found it to be empty.��Upon further inspection of the coffin lid they could see it was in fact an intricate map of the entire Great Forest as it would have been thousands of years ago.
As they finished taking what rubbings they could, the object they had taken for a statue in the corner of the chamber slowly moved.��From beneath the dusty shroud concealing its face the terrifying stranger groaned one word that was enough to kill several of the nearby Chaos Dwarfs from sheer terror alone.��Before they could think about running the dark magic of the Book of Alshazzier wore off and they were once more surrounded by darkness.
The R�uberthal Week 4
As Rambok was carried away by the great eagle, he reflected carefully on his position. He couldn’t fight his way free, they were flying hundreds of feet above the canopy of the forest, and to fall would mean certain death. The Eagle showed no signs of preparing to drop him, which might mean he was intended to be kept alive as a prisoner.��
With the arcane secrets that Rambok possessed this could not happen, he would be better to fall to his death than face a lifetime of slow torture.
After what seemed like an eternity of flying, the eagle began to descend closer to the trees.��Realising the time had come, Rambok fought with all his strength and prised the talons holding him apart.��Before the eagle could swoop around to catch him he had fallen below the tree line, crashing down at high speed but landing in a small trench filled with leaves.
He had a large cut on his head, and Rambok was sure he had broken a few ribs, but now was not the time for pain.��He had miles of forest to cross to catch up with his army, and all the time avoiding being captured by the Wood Elves.
Ripping off his shredded tunic, he dressed his wounds as best he could and began the long march.��His only weapon was a broad combat knife, but gritting his teeth he swore to Hashut that he would wage a war the foolish elves would never believe.��
The Great Confluence Week 4
Hidden deep within the forest, the Chaos Dwarfs had long been preparing their greatest engineering project to date.��Since the Chaos Dwarfs first learned of the existence of the crown, an army of combat engineers had headed deep into the Great Confluence to start construction of a massive bridge to span the River Talabec.��This bridge would serve two objectives; firstly it would allow the Chaos Dwarfs to control access to the river, and secondly it would allow them and their Greenskin allies to pour deeper into the Great Forest faster than ever before.
After endless weeks of work and a failed attempt by the Royal Gyrocopter Squadron to destroy it, the ‘Bridge of Styx’ was finally complete.��Their hated kin had scattered the builders with strafing fire and dropped torpedoes that fortunately did little damage to the bridge itself.��Deciding they could not afford for such a thing to happen again, the Chaos Dwarfs worked day and night to construct a series of hidden rocket sites along both banks ready to ward off any attacks from the air.��This foresight paid off, for a little over a week later the Gyrocopters returned.��
With a scream like a thousand tortured souls another salvo of daemonic rockets sped up into the sky in an attempt to destroy the Gyrocopters. The flying machines had attacked the bridge all day, and though several of their number had been destroyed, for the most part their hated kin were relatively unscathed. Hobgoblins fired arrows into the air in futile attempts to bring them down, whilst Blunderbussers lined the edge of the bridge, hoping a Gyrocopter might come within range.
Zhathrak cursed as he surveyed the carnage. Scores of hobgoblin corpses littered the ground, as well as the occasional Dawi Zharr, victims of the Gyrocopter’s powerful steam cannons. The bridge had only just been finished, and Zhathrak had been looking forward to punishing the manlings for their victory several weeks ago.��With these blasted Gyrocopters attacking day and night he would have to stay here and make sure no harm came to the construction. Silently cursing his western kin he turned around and stalked back to his tent. He would make them all pay.
The Vicinerator had finally broken free of the Green Heart, but it still stood on the fringes of the dense wood surrounded by blasted and burnt trees.��With the help of some giants it had managed to make its escape with a small number of Chaos Dwarfs.��Meanwhile Garazad and those Dawi Zharr still trapped in the forest had managed to cut a bloody path almost to the centre of the Green Heart!��The war had created a raging inferno over a ruined landscape, but still the Elves fought on.��Darting in between burning undergrowth, sometimes even amid the burning treetops themselves, the battles raged at all levels, day and night.�� Garazad was going to win this war one way or another, and show da boss who the real Orcs were. if only he could ever get out of this blasted forest.
The Talabec Borders Week 4
Over the course of the week many thousands of rockets had arrived in the Talabec Borders.��The hidden silo-pits in the forest had been filled with projectiles; some filled with black powder, some with daemons bound unto them, and some filled with a highly flammable mixture of tar, pitch and other alchemical ingredients.
From his base in the Darkness of Gorgoth at Gorks Maw, Rykarth had received word of the completion of the missile-construction project. He and his Granite Guard had battled their way past the forest-spirits and the elusive Asrai, finding the shelter of the caves and erecting a makeshift barricade of logs over the entrance. They knew what was going to happen over the next 48 hours and they didn’t want to be in the open…
When the hour arrived, rockets raced into the night sky all over the ancient forest.��As far as the eye could see, rockets were rising into the darkness, the trailing flames behind them visible for miles into the distance.��All across the Talabec Borders the death rockets rained down, annihilating all in their path.
In one area an attack had been sighted by the rocket crews, a battle between a gigantic wood dragon and a squadron of heavily armoured Brettonian Pegasus Knights. The daemons contained within the missiles followed the scents of the beasts, homing in on their location. As they connected the night sky lit up brighter than Morrslieb had ever shone, obliterating the flying threats. An ear-piercing daemonic screech called out during the explosion, the unholy entity ripping the souls from the living and destroying the magical balance in the forest far below.
As the sun rose a large blackened area of forest was all that could be seen for miles, but unfortunately the bombardment was far from over.��Even the survivors rose from their shelters another salvo of rockets flew overhead.
Near to the Hanging Tree a squadron of Gyrocopters and Elven Great Eagles had been spotted by Mrythark’s scouts.��These would be the perfect opportunity to test the improved death rocket batteries. Hundreds of rockets were sent up to meet the two parties, many missed, but many Goblin Boom-Divaz found their mark.��Upon impact the rocketeers exploded, instantly killing the fliers. Those that missed continued until they ran out of fuel, before crashing down and destroying large chunks of the forest.
The final night of the bombardment saw the launching of a flaming carpet of missiles. Thousands upon thousands were launched. With a crack they blew apart, multiple shells flying out that caught the odd sentinel and guard here and there. The bewildered looks of the onlookers turned to horror as the sparks quickly grew into an immense blanket of fire descending from the heavens.��Slowly it fell, gracefully falling onto the forest and incinerating all that it touched.��The alchemical fire clung to skin and armour, resisting water and burning its victims slowly and painfully.
The Barren Hills Week 4
Throughout the Barren Hills, the Chaos Dwarfs had been fighting epic battles.��This region and the Talabec Borders to the north were where the Hand of Hashut had decided the hammer should fall hardest.��Countless artillery barrages had been fired, destroying much of the ancient forest, and the fires the Chaos Dwarfs were starting were creating a truly apocalyptic scene.
Thousands of Chaos Dwarfs were pouring into the region through the Peak Pass, and along the Old Dwarf Road.��With a coordinated strike by goblins from the Red Face tribe, the Dwarfs of Zhufbar and Karak Kadrin had been kept preoccupied.��These attacks were essential to allow the Chaos Dwarfs to enter the Empire.��Should it falter they could be surrounded and trapped.��Many brave Dawi Zharr generals had opted to stay behind in the Dark Lands to ensure the safe return of their kin, aiding the assault on Karak Kadrin, or protecting their cities from enemies wishing to take advantage of the weakened defences.
Meanwhile away to the west, armies consisting of thousands of warriors, and many more hobgoblins and Ogre mercenaries were taking countless slaves.��Even if they couldn’t find the Nemesis Crown itself, the chaotic state of the Great Forest had made capturing slaves all too easy.��Numerous times the enemy camps had been overrun before they even knew what had hit them.��As the war went on, miles and miles of slaves were being marching back towards Zharr Naggrund.��This had taken increasing numbers of Chaos Dwarfs out of the fight; for the more slaves they took, the more Dawi Zharr were needed.��They had tried to use Hobgoblin Slavers whenever possible, but the sneaky Greenskins couldn’t cope with the sheer number of prisoners under their command.
The battles the Chaos Dwarfs had fought had been successful too.��Though they had been disappointed by the efforts of the Orcs in the first weeks of the campaign, their allies had finally started to get moving.��The Bitter Moon was still under siege, and around the Marchen Henge the combat engineers had created massive killing fields with their cunning traps.
The war for the Nemesis Crown was far from over, and through their efforts the Old World would learn to fear the name ‘Chaos Dwarfs’.
The Taalford Lowlands Week 4
It had been several days since Borri had single handedly attacked the twin towns of Nadjagard, on the strategically important Talabheim - Kemperbad Road.�� His chaos fuelled rage destroying all in his path.
The Hand of Hashut had ordered that they head with the greatest speed north along the road.��Predictably they had to come out of the cursed forest too far south and within range of Nadjagard’s cannons.��Unfortunately the manlings had prepared a strong defence, presumably after the massacre at the Temple of Invidious Silence.
The cannons had roared from the eastern town of Nadjagard, first hitting the Greenskins, which had brightened the mood a little, but had then hit the Immortals and an artillery wagon. This had sent Borri into a furious rage, who then proceeded to single handedly attack the eastern city.
Seeing their lord spurring forwards Frothwight quickly marshalled the greenskin and Chaos Dwarf forces to follow behind.��This worked well; for once again Borri’s gamble had paid off, lucky fool. The eastern city was far the weaker of the two, but due to it’s construction it housed nearly all of Nadjagard’s artillery.
Since this attack the combined Greenskin and Chaos Dwarf armies had begun the siege of the western city.��A head on attack by Black Orcs, had been repelled with ease by the human defenders, and had left ‘Da Tenderiza’ maimed with a wheel missing.��The colossal siege engine now stood just out of range of the city walls, an annoying reminder Frothwright continually pointed out of how close they were to winning.��With the loss of their siege engine the Orcs were out of their element, and proving mostly ineffective apart from distracting the enemy.
Borri’s remaining three Juggernauts had been ramming sections of the wall testing for weaknesses, and delivering Chaos Dwarfs onto the wall itself.��They had attempted to construct more, but judging how high to build them was proving difficult as the larger ones were harder to manoeuvre in the dense forest.
The Bazooka and Swivel Gun teams were having slightly more success. The small 2 man teams were hard to pin down as they moved in and out of the Chaos Dwarf earthworks.��They hadn’t caused any serious damage yet, but it was only a matter of time.
From the rear of the line on a small hill the lightweight Bombards provided a continual barrage of covering fire. They specialised in small gunpowder artillery, and as soon as the manlings had a bearing on them, they were on the move. Once these lighter machines has done their work, a massive Chaos Battering Ram would be constructed and sent in to exploit the weakness further.
Such a massive undertaking was nothing.��Frothwight and Borri had done this a hundred times before, their ancient warmachines many times more.��They were expert Siege Engineers, and by the will of Hashut Nadjagard would fall…