In the Third age before the War of the Ring rumors began to spread of an artifact from a previous age was deep within the caverns beneath the Misty Mountains. Exactly what this artifact was is not known with some claiming it to be the missing One Ring and more ludicrous theories of it being a Silmaril. Whatever it was the rumors were enough for both the Servants of the Dark Lord and the Free People to take notice. Each assembled a team of competent but still disposable warriors to send down into the uncharted depths of the Misty Mountains. Through tunnels infested with feral tribes of orcs and the ruins of long forgotten dwarven holds all in search of something that may not even be there. @Valonox @High_Adept_Zeth @BadDo9 @Grall_Stonefist On the Western side of the Mountains of Moria a group of nine reaches their destination after a long ride from the Elven town of Rivendell. The grand forested peaks of Misty Mountains greeted them with their awe inspiring beauty. However their purpose there did not lie within them but rather under. With the Great Dwarven City of Moria under the control of orcs they needed to use other means of entering the depths. That said they rode until they came upon the entrance of a small cave that was pointed out on the map they had been given. It would take them underground into old passageways not used for centuries and beyond those into the depths. For this they were given ancient maps that would help guide them in their search though these would only be useful for so long as they are expected to move into uncharted tunnels. As they finally reached the cave they would dismount as this would be as far as their horses could take them. Their steeds would be taken care of by a local woodsman and his family while the group would be on their quest. The burly man and his sons helping them unpack their supplies for the journey underground. Among food and other necessities they were given special talismans that would produce light when commanded to. Light, something that will soon become one of their most treasured resources in their journey as the flame of Anor could not pierce miles of stone. Though some in their company possessed vision that could function in the darkness the majority could not. From the woodsman they also receive a vast quantity of firewood as they would likely not find any trees growing in the stone. After a brief count of supplies there group was ready to begin their real journey all it took was the courage to move forward. @Kalle @Wincent @Vlayden @bossaroo @Azathoth On the opposite side of the mountains five riders made their way towards a large jagged black metal gate guarded by Uruk clad in armor made of the same metal. They had been sent here under orders from the Lord of the Nazgul himself. They first were assembled in Dol Guldur through less than gentle means. Most of them simply being dragged off from their normal place in the Dark Lord’s armies to find themselves being told to go to Moria. The exception to this was the Goblin Mercenary who was simply hired and threatened vigorously. The landscape of the east side of the Misty Mountains was drastically different than that of the west. The forests were stripped of their trees to feed the forges of the Dark Lord’s war machine leaving only stumps and a blackened landscape. Black clouds hung in the sky blocking out sunlight allowing the goblin of their group to not be blinded. As they approached the guards one of the stirred as evidently they had fallen asleep. He was startled at first but quickly opened the gate letting the group into Moria knowing better than to question who they were. What followed was a short trek down several flights of stairs that numerous goblins and orcs choose to build shacks and huts next to it. This shanty town stretched the entire way as shacks being built on top of each other reaching the ceiling. Primitive rope bridges and zip lines hung over their heads with some orcs looking down at them. Though the denizens on the ground quickly avoided the new arrivals on their vicious mounts. Their Wargs growling and the Goblin’s spider clicking its mandibles as the moved downward to eventually face another gate. This one however was not guarded and actually barred from the inside, the entrance into the depths that even the goblins wouldn’t go. Their mounts seemed hesitant to move any further with the exception of the spider which seemed indifferent to it. It wasn’t like the Wargs would be useful navigating the caves anyways so they could be left behind, they could probably survive by eating any of the orcs foolish enough to go near them. Irregardless they all knew the consequences of not following the orders given to them so they would need to head down as soon as they had their belongings taken off their mounts. Lest they take too long and have someone sent to encourage them into moving with more haste.