The normally cynical Charlie Stilton, wanders around the massive encampment with thinly disguised awe on his face.
The more he’s seen of the orcs and gnomes, the more impressed he’d become.
Impressed that such contrasting peoples could find a way (even temporarily) to co-exist.
The Orcs were big, brutish and easy to anger.
The Gnomes were almost as small as he was but jovial and amicable.
Yet, they not only tolerated each other but were actively interacting. They really did seem to be working together in a common cause.
Still the dichotomy between them was jarring. Brightly patterned and designed silk tents, fascinating air-ships and alchemic powered devices set between dull hide teepees and crudely constructed, wooden animal carts.
The athletic little Halfling sauntered towards the periphery of the camp. After encountering the Snowlbears, the confounding mist machines, the oblivion moss and the orc guards, he felt confident that no mercenaries would be able to blunder through to this clearing in any troubling number.
Charlie then looked up at the open sky above him…
How though, were the Gnomes keeping themselves hidden from above?
There are illusions in place to disguise the fires. He can even see the half-visible illusionary tree canopy above him. But surely they can't be enough?
The Black cloaks have raven familiars that would eventually see through the spells...
Squinting at the real trees surrounding the clearing, the Halfling glimpses something glinting through the branches…
Another Gnomish contraption?
Just then, a large wood pigeon flies through the illusionary tree line.
Charlie sees a momentary flash from one of the other treetops…
What was that?
The smoldering bird, wings folded, plummets to the ground, just to be guzzled up by an opportunist guard dog.
‘Aaaah’ smiles Charlie Stilton. Confidence fills him as he realises why no aerial spies have been able to spot the camp and report back to the dragon prince.