Downstairs in Fort Copped, Mercy met her match with the orcs that had slipped inside. As the battle died down above, Mercy attempted to flee from the orc who chased her. Soldier Jeni was much more easily subdued and trundled away.
Nix, who felt the need to investigate the soldiers she had sent to care for the wounded, entered the Keep of the Fort. She sent Brian downstairs to search while she investigated noises in the back of the Fort. Feeling that someone had slipped over the wall, she left out the back gate to investigate.
Alice, having left her position on the Tower due to a lack of any additional weaponry, came out into the barracks and saw signs of a scuffle. Investigating, she saw the unconscious body of Brian tucked into one of the cubbies and then rushed upstairs and out the back gate in pursuit of Nix.
Koram moved down from the crow’s nest and found Jerol with the body of Donnell. The quiet Jerol told Koram that he could not save Donnell and that Mercy was needed. Koram agreed and went to the infirmary to find that Mercy was missing. Mandy agreed to do what she could for Donnell, but made no promises. On his way out, Koram found a dizzy and disoriented cat.
When Koram snapped the cat back into the waking world, the cat immediately began snuffling about like a pig, searching for a scent that its weak nose would have trouble finding. The cat slowly led Koram up and out the back gate, where Nix and Alice had already gone.
Calvin meanwhile kept the fight going between the Fort and the orc raiders. Down to two final orcs and the leader, Calvin downed another orc and leaped over the wall to give chase to the leader. The leader quickly outpaced Calvin and after several minutes, he finally gave up the chase and returned, bringing in two unconscious prisoners among the dead and dying orcs.
Koram, to get a head count, sent Keith and Andre through the Fort. As they looked for soldiers, Calvin was told that Mercy was missing. He immediately interrogated the orcs by breaking their leg.
One orc, who appeared to accept the pain doled out by Calvin calmly answered questions. He told Calvin that the orc raiders came from the south to attack the Fort. He said that the chief had not ordered a kidnapping, and that it was not a kidnapping raid. He also informed Calvin that when they do have kidnapping raids, they take the victims to “new home.”
Lastly, he told Calvin that he wished to not be punched any further.
Nix and then Alice made their way to a small area where Nix had seen orcs signs before. The are had tents and more orc signs. Investigation showed that the orcs had been there and likely had staged the raid from there. Though neither Alice nor Nix were trackers, they could see that some orcs had returned and had since left, going south.
Calvin, tired of fruitless questions, got Koram to continue the interrogation. Koram, who had been watching over Mercy’s cat, agreed to question the orcs while Calvin watched cat. Unfortunately for Koram, he did not tell Calvin to watch the cat at the fort, and so Calvin and the cat continued southward, following the cat’s nose.
Koram’s questioning did not give much additional material, but did learn that the Orc Chief, Bull, was brought to this area by someone else, though the orc did not know why. Koram also learned that while orcs do not eat humans, their pet Ohgroke does.
Calvin then met with Alice and Nix who were returning from the orc camp, and he turned them around, the three of them now continuing to the south with the cat.
Koram, realizing that his three Unit members had left in search of Mercy, ordered Keith, Andre, and Jerol, three of the four able-bodied soldiers to take the horse and cart and place additional weapons and supplies on it and go south to support the mission as he watched over the Fort with Alex.
Later in the day, Mercy awoke in a small wagon that was bumping down a path. Blindfolded, it was hard to orient herself, but she did hear the orcs speaking to each other. Apparently, one orc was unhappy that there had been a kidnapping. When she tried to speak, she was silenced by a fist to the head.
Calvin, Nix, and Alice continued their pursuit. Nix, eager and determined kept a tremendous pace, but Alice and Calvin lagged behind. Willing, but not able, the party had to rest before moving forward. Nix then finally noticed the arrow sticking from Calvin’s arm and berated him for not speaking up early.
As she removed the arrow head from him, the wagon arrived with supplies.
Mercy awoke in a small, interior room with Jeni nearby. They waited patiently, unable to undo the bindings on their hands, but at least they were not blindfolded.
After several hours of waiting, an orc finally arrived with food. Mercy, afraid it may contain poison, did not eat any of it. That apparently insulted their captor, Chief Bull who came in later to interrogate the two of them.
Chief Bull kept a persistent series of questions, asking after “it,” or the “gift,” that was meant for him. He said that he bore no ill-will, but that the lady in his head had told him that there was a gift and he demanded to know where it was.
Mercy, unaccustomed to such questioning went through every area of the fort with the Chief, saying she would show him everything. Still, he left unsatisfied with her answers, and she and Jeni remained, still prisoners.