Fruits of the Forest
The Free Dwarfs explore deeper into the Forest of Bowland that Surrounds their Home
Since the Free Dwarfs of Bowland moved into the ruined Dwarfhold they now call home, they have spent more and more time exploring the ancient forest that surrounds the Mountain to the north. They have encountered many denizens of these Primal groves and have, mostly for the part of the Rangers tasked with these explorations, developed a peaceful relationship with the spirits and fauna of the deep heart of the Forest.
The Free Dwarf Stone Priests have had great success with their efforts to communicate with the deep spirits of the Mountain itself, since the Dwarfhold was destroyed by the Dwarfs dark cousins and their slave armies, a cataclysmic event which left the once mighty hold roofless and open to the sky except for the more far-flung mines and galleries which occupy the ring of cliffs around the new Dwarf surface settlements. The Stone Priests have entered these forgotten mines and passages to commune with the very spirits of the rocks themselves and have succeeded in raising a large number of these huge creatures to help defend the Dwarfs new holdings. They also aid the Free Dwarf miners in their quest for minerals and ores to help the former refugees to regain their past glories of metalwork and jewellery.
This was just the beginning as the Free Dwarfs adapted to life on the surface they formed companies of Rangers to help protect their new settlements and to help maintain contact with their new neighbours in the Human settlements to the south and to explore the Forest lands to the North, to facilitate this they even trained some of their fierce berserker Brock riders to traverse the forests, both to aid the Ranger companies in their fights and to allow swift reinforcement for the far flung outposts in the Forest itself. Equipped with short spears and shields these bands of fierce warriors are a common sight patrolling in the Forest of Bowland, often in the company of the Centaurs of the Nature Realm.
The Forest of Bowland is a longstanding bastion of the Realms of the Green Lady and the HerdFather, the groves and thickets of the Forest are home to many creatures and spirits, all of whom have a part in the defence of their forest home. The Free dwarfs learned quickly from the Forest Warriors and in turn have aided the Forest Folk with their defence of the southern Borders of the Forest of Bowland, striking up a firm alliance to the benefit of both. The aid of the Dwarfs has allowed the Forest to build up a fearsome defence and any trespassers into the leafy abode of these warriors risks a swift death at their hands/hooves/branches.
The Latest of these Warriors to come to light in the Forests of Bowland are the Centaurs. These mighty warriors are a blend of forest folk and horse, they maintain all the speed of cavalry with the fighting ability of normal herd warriors, allowing them to swiftly deal with any incursions into the forest, either directly, with the mighty BrayStriders crashing from the trees to rain blows on their enemies or as the smaller, wily BrayHunters that stalk their prey with their bows before closing in to finish them off. The Centaurs are led into battle by the Mighty Centaur Chieftain, Flaxhoof and many a foe has regretted passing the boundaries of the forest with ill intent.
The Druids of the Forests have been very helpful to the Free Dwarfs, helping them to treat with all the various creatures of the forest but mostly with the ferocious Dire Badgers which have become the signature of the Bowland Dwarfs so much that they are known as the Brock Clan. The Druids themselves aid with the healing of the land and creatures and also lead the Forest Folk into battle to the aid of their erstwhile Allies and in return the Stone priests have aided the Druids by sharing their knowledge of the summoning and control of the Earth Elementals that abound in the Brock Clans hold.
Amongst the denizens of the Forest are the Tribal warriors, although bestial in appearance these mighty warriors are stout hearted and fierce in battle, the tribes contain many different types of warriors that band together in Clan groups to fight for the Forest. They are led into battle by the Druids and their own Chieftains.
The deep parts of the Forest contain many unusual beasts and in some of the valleys around the Brock Clans Hold there can be found the mighty Hydras and occasionally they will march with the tribes when the need is great.
There are also large numbers of Lycans that live in the forest, unlike their evil undead cousins the Werewolves, these noble creatures fight for the Goddess with all their might and are a welcome addition with their speed and ferocity. Especially when they are led by their Champion and Hero, MoonFang.
Even the Mighty Trees of the Forest themselves can be found fighting to protect their homes, the Tree Herders and Forest Shamblers march to War when the need is dire.
There are a lot of exotic creatures that call the Forest is home, the Scorchwings are one example of this and also recently the Druids have had success allying themselves with the proud and fearsome Air Elementals of the High Mountains and they have even persuaded them to march forth on behalf of the Forest and Brock Clan on occasion.
The Partnership between the Forest Forces and the Brock Clan has been a long time in the making and with the departure of the smaller Dwarf Clan Raven who have headed back North to see if they can reclaim any of their ancestral homelands, the mutual aid between Forest and hold is as important as ever, especially with the increased threats from the resurgent Nightstalkers and the insidious Twilight Kin , not to mention the ever present Abyssal Dwarfs and occasional Ogre Raids. This little corner of Pannithor is far from Safe.