“This is an outrage,” Thrall said. He paced the hall restlessly. “I cannot believe the sky-reaver would condone such a thing.”
Varok sat at the table, the pages of Blackscar’s report strewn in front of him. Across the room, Garrosh picked up a few wooden tokens painted blue for the Alliance, a few painted red for the Horde, and a few painted with skulls for the Scourge. He dropped all of them onto the map of Icecrown, south of Mord’rethar, the Death Gate of Icecrown Citadel. With a stick of charcoal he drew a large X onto the cured hide. The report had given this region a name: the Broken Front.
The Alliance had attempted to conquer Mord’rethar, but a Horde patrol had seen the regiment and successfully prevented its assault…by attacking from the rear. Pinched between the Scourge at their front and the Horde at their back, the Alliance forces had perished—but so had the Horde’s. The Scourge too had suffered losses, but the gate remained under the Lich King’s control.
Blackscar’s forces had deliberately waited until the Alliance soldiers were engaged, then slaughtered them. Thrall’s face contorted as he read the sky-reaver’s words: Though it cost them their lives, their selfless bravery prevented the Alliance from capturing a strategic point. Such courage is worthy of true soldiers of the Horde!
“'Selfless bravery.' 'Courage' worthy of the Horde.” Thrall nearly spat the words. “And the Scourge still holds the Death Gate. Is that what he wants? Is this what passes for glory among us?”
Garrosh remained uncharacteristically silent, instead looking hard at the wooden chips upon the map. He could almost feel Varok’s eyes boring into his back, and Thrall’s would also soon fall upon him. It was good the Alliance did not hold Mord’rethar; of that Garrosh was certain. Still he continued to stare at the little wooden markers, and late into the night, long after the other commanders had retired to sleep, Garrosh reread Blackscar’s letter.
Such courage is worthy of true soldiers of the Horde!
He summoned a courier. “Send for Sky-Reaver Korm Blackscar of Orgrim’s Hammer,” he said, handing over a scroll. “He is to return to Warsong Hold immediately. Tell him Overlord Hellscream wants to see him.”