"Captain Tresh! There's someone at the eastern gate!" The young private all but yelled as he burst into the planning room.
Looking up from a map of the countryside weighed down by an assortment of personal items, the guard captain fixed the soldier with his dark eyes. "What do you mean, there's someone at the gate? We're in the middle of a siege!"
"That's just it sir, it looks like one of their captains."
"And the rest of the force hasn't moved?" Tresh grabbed his helmet from the stand next to the door and slipped it on.
"No sir." The private shifted to clear the doorway.
Tresh paused, nodded, and then quickly sped out of the headquarters and headed for the east gate. The soldiers manning the walls and gatehouse were all on high alert, and the tension in the fort had clicked up a notch with this new development. Upon reaching the gatehouse, Sgt. Casius intercepted the captain. "Sir, he says he wants to talk to you."
Tresh noted the emphasis on the last word. "Me? Specifically?"
"By name, sir."
Tresh considered, brow furrowed in thought. "What do you think of him?"
"The barbarian? Hard to read sir. But fearless, and he seems pretty sure of himself."
"Why shouldn't he be? He outnumbers us 4 to 1. And you've seen the hydra they've got." Tresh sighed. "Very well, let's see what he wants." Looking up to the guards manning the gate, he ordered them to unbar the door. When that was done, the right door was pushed open.
Standing just beyond it was a striking figure. Clad in ornate armor, with a curved single edged bastard sword hanging at his side, the humanoid looked at Tresh with red intelligent eyes. His wild hair and beard the color of storm clouds shifted gently in the spring breeze. He sneered at Tresh, revealing teeth like those of a wolf.
"You are Tresh, captain of this fort?" The words fell from his lips roughly, though clear enough to understand.
"These lands are claimed by the Tyranny of Gortho. You will abandon this fort and return to your puny lands."
"This valley was inhabited until we arrived. We claim it for the Baron of Roesone."
"Your claim..." he spit the word "is of little interest. And I am not here to trade words with you. Abandon this fort, and return to your lands, and you will be unmolested. Refuse, and we will gut you and string you up by your own entrails from the walls of your fort as it burns around you."
Thau'tier, Hobgoblin Warchief, Fighter 8. Plate armor of command (+2 bonus to AC and moral), Bastard Sword "Shock and Awe" (on a hit target must save vs spells or be unable to attack for 1d4 rounds)