Father passed to me many words of wisdom in his message. His stance on Gods, Dwarves, & Love all seem to be accurate from my short albeit eventful experiences since leaving Twilight house. But it was his recommendation to play a game that intrigued me most. Chess teaches you to strategize, to develop tactics on the field of battle to achieve victory. I believe this is the lesson he wanted us to learn from the game I have grown fond of. I have tried to develop my own combat tactics thru trial and error and though it is a work in process I feel I am having success.
It wasn’t until I began to research the topic of tactics & strategies that I noticed our reckless pattern of behavior. I have recently uncovered a wealth of information to aid us both on and off the battlefield. I will take these lessons learned and gradually impress upon my brothers there effectiveness.
While in Obadiah’s library I began researching famous dictators and their rise to power. I came across a book written about a dwarven general (Stone shield something, I can’t recall) and how he went from a common miner to one of the most feared warlords in history. The book detailed some of his more famous tactics and a few stuck in my mind.
1. “Never underestimate your opponents”. He dictated that several of his victories on the battle field were won because his opponents didn’t respect him as an equal. They were ill prepared or poorly motivated for the battle and thus were defeated.
This is an advantage we will never have. Our physical stature dictates that we will never be overlooked by our opponents. If anything we have been the ones to underestimate what our opponents can do. While I don’t think we should “fear” every opponent, our overconfidence is evident.
2. “The enemy of my enemy is an ally”. . While doing researching on his opponents he would take note of other conflicts they had in the past. He would then partition his opponent’s adversaries to join his ranks and eliminate the common threat. This gave him not only strength in numbers for his upcoming battles but inside knowledge of his new ally. Should the day come his ally turned enemy he would have intimate knowledge of their tactics on the battlefield.
He would not call them a friend, only an ally. Apparently it was akin to a business agreement. Pooling resources seems like common sense; however he perused unlikely alliances based on a common enemy. We have done the same with the 7’s. It started with Jaren, his animosity towards the 7’s has spread to our group. And in searching them out we have now allied ourselves with Obadiah a former victim, and Tamros & The Creeping Rose who has been fighting them longer than we know. I can see this one going against us as well. If the green-cloak cultists start asking around about us I could see them stumbling upon the 7’s who might also be investigating us after interfering in two assassination attempts.
3."Never fight a two front war”. Stone shield was a master at walking the line of diplomacy. He always knew who his next opponent would be, but they never knew. He was cautious enough not to fall victim to his own enemy of my enemy strategy. The greatest warrior will eventually fall against an endless wall of blades. Never did he spread his manpower or resources so thin he couldn’t recover.
Our list of opponents seems to grow longer each day. The green-cloak cultists “Minions of the Skull”, the assassin group known as the 7’s, & now we can add Mothlo Tu Ervan an extra planner creature of unknown origins to this list. There are others I have forgotten to mention, but they will make themselves known I am sure. The quality of our adversaries might also be worthy of concern. When one must enter into unspeakable contracts before an information broker will even utter the name Nightstalker it’s time to pay attention. I doubt such safe guards would be taken if we’re asking questions regarding Obadiah.
We have violated every one of Stone shield’s rules of war. If we were common men I doubt we would survive the week. But we are more, children of Nissian, and ancestors of Tiamat. When our power fully develops we will be a force the likes of which the world has never seen. We must be cautions not to challenge the entire world before then.I must impart the general’s words of wisdom onto my brothers. “I know one day I will rule a vast empire, but it does not have to be today”.