The Encroachment of the Gap of Rohan

Welcome, before you read the story below I would like to mention that this story is an interpretation of a game played two weeks ago. The game is Lord of the Rings: Middle Earth Quest from Fantasy Flight Games. It is a superb game where one player is Sauron vs. the other players as the heroes offering a unique asymmetrical play style. This story follows one of my friends as Eometh. Links to the sources, game’s website, and additional info will be after the story. Enjoy!

lordsofthedice_middleearthquest_eometh_travelling_4“Eometh, the rider of the Mark”

Eometh gripped his spear tightly in his right hand. The reigns of his horse, Lightfoot, held tightly in his left. His ears were filled with the pounding of earth from hooves, the battle cries of men, and the heavy breathing of horse and rider. He looked ahead to see Erkenbrand leading the charge, his red shield and black horn easily identifying him.

Looking past Erkenbrand, Eometh’s eyes spotted their target. An encampment of Dunlendings traveling too deep into the Gap of Rohan, a trespass of land that could not be taken lightly. It was only a week ago when the Lord of the Westfold, Erkenbrand, sent out word for additional riders in Edoras. Just a week ago, when he stood atop that high hill of the capital of the Riddermark, and looked out at the expansive plains.

His mind drifted away from Edoras, to his old home with his parents, and the love and knowledge his parents gave him. He hated himself for always giving them trouble, hating the responsibility and work given, always dreaming for freedom. Eometh could feel his heart clench at the memory of his parents being taken away by the Dunlendings. Now he was a free Eorlingas, able to do whatever he desired, but with no one to share it with. He found himself doing the only thing he learned how after his parents were gone, ride for the Riddermark.

lordsofthedice_middleearthquest_eometh_card“Eometh’s character sheet”

“Let no spear falter, riders of the Mark!” Erkenbrand bellowed over the sound of horns blown by the wildmen of Dunland, preparing for battle.

Eometh’s heart pounded in anticipation, the grip on his spear tightening for the inevitable clash. He closed his eyes briefly basking in the comfort of darkness before reopening them to see the faces of the wildmen much closer. They held crude weapons, wore leather armor, and thick fur over their dark skin. Few wore helmets to protect themselves preferring to reveal their thick unruly dark hair and beards as they roared in preparation for battle.

His eyes watched the first few wildmen vanish under hooves. Eometh’s eyes turned down for a split moment to see a wildman lying dead, his head crushed in by a hoof. Looking back up, he spotted a wildman further ahead, stumbling backwards from a blow to his shield. The wildman quickly got back to his feet, axe at hand. Eometh raised his spear and ran it through the man’s body, nearly causing Eometh to lose his grip.

 lordsofthedice_middleearthquest_overview_10“Different angle of Eometh’s starting position on Edoras, to the west is the Gap of Rohan”

Following a couple other riders, Eometh’s spear ran through several more wildmen, each of their bodies falling limp to the ground, adding to the growing pile of the dead. His eyes scanned the battlefield for more targets. The encampment of the Dunlendings, once filled with dozens of tents surrounding fires, was now all flattened. Trees close by were now saving what few wildmen were left as stragglers rushed for the protection.

Snapping his reigns, Lightfoot returned to a full gallop as Eometh repositioned his hand on his spear to be ready to throw it. His eyes locking on a wildman nearly about to reach the tree line, with a release of hand, Eometh watched in triumph at the wildman now lying dead in the grass. Pulling back on the reigns he quickly climbed off Lightfoot close to the trees; his sword already in hand. He looked between the trees already spotting several wildmen running through the foliage.

lordsofthedice_middleearthquest_overview_13“Overview of the map, you can see the Gap of Rohan two spaces west of Eometh. The Gap of Rohan lying south of Isengard”

The sound of a horn forced Eometh to turn around to see Erkenbrand near the center of the destroyed camp blowing his black horn for the return of all of the riders. Looking back to the trees Eometh grimaced and sheathed his sword. Climbing back onto Lightfoot he gently reigned the horse into a trot back to the gathering Eorlingas.

“Most of them are dead, Lord Erkenbrand, but there is still at least a dozen running through the trees.” A nearby rider called out.

“Do not bother with those left alive, we will catch them tomorrow along our route to Dunland.”

“My lord, Ormod has fallen!”

Erkenbrand turned towards the soldier that had shouted from behind, his face darkening slightly at the news of a fallen comrade, “give him a proper burial. As for all of these Dunlendings pile high their corpses and burn them! Afterwards we ride for a more suitable spot to make camp for the night!” Erkenbrand called out to all of the riders.

Eometh could still feel his heart pounding. Walking towards the dead wildmen with his spear, he pulled the weapon out and grinned at the grievous wound. Looking towards the tree line, he could feel anticipation surging through him in the hopes of killing more wildmen.

lordsofthedice_middleearthquest_plot_cards“The eye of Sauron waits to unleash its true power”

Notes:

-This session of Middle Earth Quest was the first one played by me and my three friends, so if you see any pictures depicting a mistake in this post or future posts it is because we were all new and inexperienced.

-The miniature of the Ringwraiths was broken when we played this session, but since then Fantasy Flight has sent me a new piece for future games cause they are amazing.

-I am not a Lord of the Rings expert, my knowledge is based on the movies, games, and the wiki below. So there may be terminology mistakes as well as mistaken interpretations of characters and regions of land. If so I am sorry.

-Finally, this game takes place 17 years before Frodo leaves the shire. The game starts on the Third Age 3001 when Frodo receives the One Ring and Bilbo leaves the Shire and ends on Third Age 3018 when Frodo leaves the Shire with the One Ring. This first part of the story takes place during the Third Age 3001 during the first part of Eometh’s turn when he moves to the Gap of Rohan. The next part will be Eometh continuing his first turn.

Information on the board game:

Fantasy Flight Games

Board Game Geek

Sources I used:

Lord of the Rings Wiki

Tolkien Gateway

I hope you enjoyed the story! Critiques, Suggestions, and Questions are all welcomed!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s