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The Court of Umbar

Turgon

Ghost-King of Gondolin
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High upon the headlands above the City of Umbar stood the Villa Falmari, a magnificent building of pure white marble, whose foundations, it was said, were laid upon the rubble of the White Pillar. A monument created by the Men of Númenor in ages past to celebrate the overthrow of the Great Deciever. The pillar had long since been cast down, something the Lord of Umbar regretted dearly, it had been perhaps the finest hour of his people. Alas for the folly of his ancestors! But so it was that Agarloth Serewing had chosen this place to be his court. From this place he would see the restoration of the Númenórean race. Too long had they dwelt in the shadow. There was no strength in the pale remnants of north, and Gondor had long since sunken into insignificance.

Serewing stood upon a balcony overlooking the great bay, the day was fine and there was thrilling flush of wind blowing in from the west, gazing down at his great fleet lying at anchor in the port below, and listening to the raucous cries of his mariners as they made merry in the taverns and flesh-pots along the water-front, Serewing's mind drifted back to the battle fought some months ago in the great gulf of Lhûn.

It was a wonder any of them left there alive. Deserted by the forces of Mornclaur, and starved of the promised support, the Men of Umbar had suffered greatly, and yet by some quirk of fate, they had escaped the net cast about them by the Lords of Atannórë. With the coming of night a thick fog had descended upon the gulf, a gift from Ossë perhaps, but a gift the Lord of Umbar was not about to scorn. Thus the Corsairs of Umbar made there escape. Yet many good men were lost, and Sorontil was not the least of them, Serewing's young kinsman had died valiantly leading an assault upon the flagship of the mighty Jahrdur in the hopes of buying them some time. Yet the day would come when his death would be avenged - and Serewing took comfort in that.
 
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Snaga

The Usual Suspect
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By long and lonely paths, from Methedras messenger came unto the shores of Dol Amroth. There quietly he found a small ship willing to cross the Bay of Belfalas to the scorching shores of the south. His business he would speak to know man, nor any other on two legs or four.

Then at last passing into the city of Umbar, he gained entrance to the Villa Falmari, and came before Lord Serewing. A dwarf he was, proud and undaunted, Dalgrad, kingsman of Lord Telchar who lately had departed from his throne. It was with this news and other tidings that he brought to Umbar. He bowed low with a flourish of rigid formality.

'Lord Serewing! From the lands of Zirak Khazad, and from the Urukgush I bring you greetings! News I bring that Lord Telchar is no more, and the Urukgush now sit at the head of our great realm.

'He wishes to know now how you are disposed towards his land, whether you stand in defiance of the Dark Lord or at his command, for many things have gone awry yet not all the old friendships should be forgotten.'
 

Turgon

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The Lord of Umbar sprawled languidly across the ornate lebrethron chair that served him as a throne. He was never fond of dwarves at the best of times, and for one to disturb him during his afternoon laze, on such a trivial issue as a 'matter of state' did not best please him. But for the fact that it was the Lord Snaga who had sent this creature hither he would have sent him to the arena for a little sport. Gazing down at the dwarf through eyes half-closed and bleary with too much wine he smiled.

'Tell the Urukgush, I am as ever, his comrade in arms. The Lord of Umbar forgets neither friends nor enemies, all in time recieve their dues. But tell him too, that Umbar will no longer be a puppet of the Mornclaur Federation. We have our own destiny. We are the last remnants of Númenor and a high and noble purpose lies before us...' Here the Lord of Umbar paused, taking a deep draft from the goblet in his hand as if to cover up the fact that he had said too much. 'And tell the Lord Snaga it is good to see him back... things have been quite dull without him.'

With that Serewing went back to his musings, he had be thinking lately of adding a Mûmak to his ever growing menagerie of wonderful creatures, in fact he was feeling quite incomplete without one. Yet none were to be found, all away fighting in the Dark Lord's army or some such thing... the merchants of Umbar were indeed a sorry lot.

He was somewhat suprised then to see this Dalgrad fellow standing before him still, feeling quite sure that the audience had ended. Then waving a hand dismissively. 'The Adûnakhôr has spoken, you may leave. But be a good fellow and send in my valet on your way out. Orcish chap... you can't miss him...'
 
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Snaga

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Dalgrad stared with hard eyes for a moment. Then he turned abruptly on his heel, narrowly avoiding a serving-wench carrying a tray of several bottles of wine and a single goblet.

Then he walked on his way muttering into his beard. 'Did I come all this way to be so treated by this drunken pirate?'

He thrust his way through the yawning doors, and swatted away flies that had made their way in from the searing heat outside. Chainmail was not the thing for midday in Umbar, he realised suddenly, as sweat poured off his brow incessantly.

He glared at some cowering wretch who stood nearby, with a worried expression on his face. 'Get in there, valet. Your master wants you,' he growled rudely.

'But ... but I'm his Lord Treasurer... and I dare not go in for fear of telling him how bare his coffers are. This Dorwinion wine is expensive!'
 

Turgon

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'What do you mean the coffers are empty!' Serewing yelled as he threw his goblet at the unfortunate chancellor. 'What happened to all the loot we brought back from Gundabad?'

'My Lord...' The fellow whined as the ruby-red wine trickled down his face. 'War is an expensive business - do you have any idea how much it cost to outfit the fleet for the assault upon Mithlond?'

'How much it cost?' The Corsair growled. 'I thought Lord Goroth was defraying the expenses!?!'

'No my lord...' The chancellor stuttered. 'It is the custom in times of war for the Lord of Umbar to maintain and keep his own fleet. If your magnificence remembers the documents I gave to you upon your accession...'

'Documents!' Serewing yelled. 'Do I look some quill-pushing steward? Go on... get out of my sight!'

With this the steward scuttled back to his dusty chambers. Perhaps next time it would be wise do a little fiscal juggling before coming into the presence of his lord.
 

Snaga

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Dalgrad, who had delayed his departure, making a show of adjusting his mail-shirt and combing his beard to cover this loitering, returned to talk again with Serewing.

'Lord Serewing... I should also remind you that the Urukgush has not forgotten... how shall I put it?' he paused momentarily, stroking his beard. 'The loan?... yes the loan of the fortune of treasure of Gundabad. As it went to good purpose, to equip your fleet for battle, he is prepared to overlook the manner in which you acquired it, but he does expect its swift return.'

Dalgrad fixed Serewing with a frosty stare, but Serewing gave no sign of concern, and merely signalled for a new goblet to be brought.

Dalgrad paused for effect and then added. 'Perhaps you know the name of one of the residents of the Grey Mountains who might be asked to expedite the return of this fortune? No? Does the name of Magnus mean anything to you?'
 

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