Prktakk

When the Alliance of Men, Elves, Dwarves, and Halflings turned south, they vainly hoped that the brutish men to the south, the Wild Men of the Scorched Reaches, would also come into the fold as other, more wayward tribes of Men had done under the suggestion of Lothar and the combined might of good. Despite the worry in the back of their heads, they crossed down into the Bloody Neck and were greeted with pleasantries and treated as they had been numerous times before. The leaders of the Wild Men would meet with the leaders of the Alliance beneath the Prktakk.

Prktakk was and is the only permanent structure throughout the lands where the Wild Men hold thrall. It is a single, large tent erected with bones and stones of varied sizes and types and made of a patchwork of skins and furs. On the outside, the tanned-side, it is decorated with myriad symbols, pictographs, and visual stories known in the Xarr language. It is a tent that easily could house a hundred tribes’ leaders simultaneously, even with their varied attendants and entourage. Yet, within Prktakk only the leaders may enter. Within is a single obsidian round table, close to the ground where the leaders would kneel during their ‘Blood talk’ — which is how the tent acquired it’s name, as almost all the communes within were discussions of feuds or territory disputes.

The Alliance were bid enter and wait the arrival of the tribal leaders, who would be on their way. With some reticence, the terms were agreeable with a requirement that the Alliance would meet a week hence with whomever might arrive, and the decision made would bind all the Wild Men, as there was a war to be fought, and people to save and time was of the essence. Surprisingly, the barbarians agreed, after a commensurate amount of ‘discussion.’ And a week later, nearly thirty of the tribes had arrived to entreat with their northern visitors.

The discussion began with Perius describing the situation north, and insisting that should the Alliance fall, the tribes — in their fractured state — would fall to the Lost soon after. The Wild Men disagreed, but listened to the proposal. And then countered with their own conditions, which would have ceded much of present day Mikk to the rightful sway of the roamed lands of their tribes. Instantly, the Mikkens balked — and historians agree that this was planned — when they were asked to concede to the very people who ravage, enslave and rape their people on a yearly basis.

Then the real Blood Talk began, as weapons were drawn and the long-intended ambush began as the Wild Men beset their mostly at-ease northern visitors. Luckily for Lothar, Merla Underfoot was always wary and had disappeared beneath the black table early in the discussion, appearing at that very moment to dispatch Lothar’s surprise attackers, assuredly saving his life and giving him the time he needed to spring into action. Losses were suffered by both sides, but the Alliance beat a hasty and effective retreat, and leaving the Wild Men in disarray as the dead leaders left voids in their balance of power which required filling.

It wasn’t until months later, when Merla returned with her Southern Army, riding hot on the heels of the scattering Lost, that the Wild Men reared their angry head again at Prktakk. Either sheerly out of bloodlust, or in retribution for the earlier failure, or simply to defend their own lands, the Wild Men fought both Lost and Southerns simultaneously in a massively confused melee. It was the surprise and viciousness of the attack which annihilated the southerly fleeing Lost, but also pinned Merla for long enough to arrive too late upon the unfortunate results of Indahar’s efforts to the east.

Prktakk remains exactly as it was, and as a reminder and foreboding location to all northerners, and the first true sign that you are entering the wild Scorched Reaches.

Prktakk

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