The Dreadwood Tavern
A Nest of Vipers
Adarji ibn Farrokhruz stood in his chambers which overlooked the whole of Requitae. Below, across the massive cavern that separated the stronghold from the rest of the city, he could see the Heart-Tree of the town, still withered and black from the Yuan-Ti invasion that seemed such a short time ago. The town was still healing, and though it had healed well, several buildings were still little more than burnt-out shells, where the memories of those who once lived there were too hard to bear.
He returned to the tactical map drawn out across the table. Flags, were pinned into the map. Some were burgundy, and these marked the position of Keolandish troops. There were several flags clustered around Requitae, others set out around the town in scouting missions. Some flags were blue, and these represented Druidic forces. They were much less clustered, though many accompanied the red flags. Finally, there were green flags. These were the rarest of all and marked sites that the Yuan-Ti had been known to occupy, either in their guerilla skirmishes or in strongholds and safe-houses. Adarji had sent troops into these areas before, and found nothing each time. The elusive opponent had continued to slither away. Adaji was accompanied by his second-in-command, Thomas Senegal. Although Thomas was not a good strategist by even a long shot, he had a good feel for the troops and knew who would work well together in a platoon.
A knock on the door. The soldier stationed there opened it a crack and announced that a scout – the 23rd beat – had arrived for report. Adarji plucked one of the red flags from the table and bade the scout enter.
“High Commander,” the scout said, “We have found evidence of the main Yuan-Ti encampment,”