11. Deals With Orcs
"I know what you're going to say," Morion said as Khamul opened her mouth.
"I don't think you do," Khamul said.
"You were about to say 'I don't like it here'. Or some variation on that."
"I was right, wasn't I?" Morion asked, grinning.
"Shut up," Khamul snapped.
"Did you reach Gundabad in your travels?"
"I passed it," Khamul said. "I wasn't sure who held it and whether they'd be friendly or not, so I didn't stop."
"It is orcs who hold it now," Morion said. "And it is with orcs such as the ones here that we will build Angmar."
"I don't like this scheme of Sauron's," Khamul said. "I think we should strike at Gondor. Knock Hyarmendacil off his throne."
Morion sighed in exasperation. "For the thousandth time, Khamul! Hyarmendacil is one of the strongest kings Gondor has ever had! His army numbers in the tens – if not hundreds – of thousands! He would crush us like ants! I am sorry for the blow dealt to the Haradrim, but we cannot avenge it right now."
"When can we?"
"When Arnor is no longer a threat," Morion said.
"Arnor is crumbled," Khamul said. "Look at it! It's been divided into three different countries! It's already fallen! Leave it be and let it rot!"
"I will not question Sauron's commands," Morion said.
"Coward," Khamul snarled.
"Firstly, I believe he is right," Morion said. "The way to win this is to make sure Arnor is out of the picture permanently. And secondly, if I disobey Sauron, there is no guarantee he will keep Melkor out of my mind."
"He'll do it for his own interests," Khamul sneered. "He doesn't want Morgoth nosing around in his business."
"I cannot count on that, and the Dark Lord is a terrible master."
"Then throw yourself off a cliff and end it all."
"The Morannon blew up and you were on it," Morion said. "You're still here. I think it would take more than a fall off a cliff to end my life."
"Maybe if I stabbed you again," Khamul said.
"I still don't remember that."
"Vorea gutted you with her spear, too. Do you remember that?"
Khamul sighed and looked around the lands around Gundabad. They seemed more abandoned than a thousand years ago.
"So, where's the orc chief?" she asked.
"He's taking his time," Morion said.
"If he takes much more time, I'm going to cut his head off and stick it on a pike when he finally deigns to show up," Khamul growled.
Morion rolled his eyes, then a bit of movement caught his eye. "Here they come," he said, nodding in the direction where a stout orc surrounded by smaller goblins crept out of the brush.
"Took your time," Khamul snarled.
"We were delayed," the orc chief growled. "And we are not your slaves, Shriekers."
Khamul glanced at Morion, raising an eyebrow.
"Aica has a very interesting warcry," Morion explained. "It has given rise to many legends, not the least of which is something people are calling a banshee."
"So you say you're not our slaves, eh?" Khamul snarled at the chief. "Then who is Sauron to you?"
"He is yet another power in this land," the orc chief said. "No more, no less."
"Morgoth was his master," Khamul said. "And Morgoth was the creator of the orc. Therefore, you owe Sauron – Morgoth's lieutenant – your allegiance in thanks for your very existence."
"We do not believe in debts," the orc chief said. "It is good that we exist, but we feel no need to serve Sauron in repayment."
"We ask a small thing of you," Morion said. "We shall be building a new realm to the west of Gundabad. We need you as spies, perhaps even as warriors, if you would agree to it."
"What's in it for us?" the orc chief snarled. His goblin guards muttered their agreement, their yellow eyes glittering with greed.
"Any raids in which you participated you would receive a share of the gains," Morion said.
"How much is a share?"
"Enough," Morion said. "You do not want us for enemies, and there are many other orc chiefs who would amiable to our demands, and who would also like Gundabad for their residence."
The orc chief hissed. "I don't trust you, Shrieker," he growled.
"You have no reason to," Morion said. "But do you trust the promise of Sauron's revenge upon you should you refuse our generous offer?"
The orc chief hesitated. "Fine," he said. "But that share we get better be damn good!"
Morion smiled. "It will be all you deserve," he promised.
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.