I agree with Hetros that we should try to do a diplomatic way first, but i also agree with Jon and Pariel that we cannot just accept their warning like that.
But i disagree with what Nacht suggested, sorry, but those are dwarves, a race which lost alot cause of the drows. Provacating them with their death or the death of their families won´t let them waver, it will only harden their resolve to kill us.
We got two active posters there or three, four with me.
So we should use that to coordinat our plan to counter their warning without provocating a war nor been seen as weak. Plus we need to go home to inform Anji. We can let Xenon do so, she wanted to go home anyway.
However, those are DT dwarves, dwarves who hit hard and then run if they fight drows. And like Hetros said we know nothing about them, their name, their numbers, their fighting power, their walls, their equipment, nothing.
If we leave like that, even after a warning from us, the risk that they just leave under the ground, waiting for us to pass to the mine again to raid us is there. And it would become a problem since this is our only stone mine and near mountains with possible iron ore and gold.
So what i propose might be dangerous but that was the same for Brorn and just liek Brorn i think we can get this done with some kind of *safety*.
1.) Someone needs to leave to Ama'varde to tell Anji of this.
2.) We must tell them that we can´t just leave like that. This is/was our mine for ten years and we need it. That alone will let em realize that we will come back even without giving them any kind of warning like *we´ll kill you and your families if you won´t talk to us!*
3.) We´ll tell them we´ll leave (though we´ll stay near the canyon ofc to scout and such)
4.) This is my own idea:
We actually don´t try to start a cold or even a hot war and go straight to the diplomatic discussion!
Now none of us has the right to do so, only Anji has. But we cant let Anji come into possible enemy territory to talk with the duegars. Too risky.
So how do we get it done the other way aka the dwarves comign with us to Ama'varde to talk to Anji like the Sarveltos did back then when they found us at their mine?
Unlike the sarvs the dwarves won't come on their own, they don´t want the mine like we did back then, they just took it. After all we´re just glow eyes who kill their folks and destory their underground homes.
So what else can we offer them to make them *trust* us enough to send a ambassador with us home?
I say, we do what the nobles did in japan, europe, russia, etc. to the times where traits where only mistrusted and hate and back-stabbery was everywhere: A hostage as pawn.
They agree to send one of them with us to talk to Anji over this matter.
We will let one of us stay as *guest* as a pawn that their guy will return alive.
They are only few, i guess that cause first they only did a warn shot, a perfect one in a mist we can hardly see anything mind you. If they had enough manpower, they just had wiped us out like that when we came down like walking targets. Also we only see two of them, that has nothing to say, but if they had a large army, they would have shown as many as possible to impress the enemy and discourage him to attack in the future, like we did with the sarvs first arrival at the mine.
So i´m saying they´re bluffing and that they know we could kill them all in time if we return. So they buying time to either a) improve their defense b) get more help from other duegar settlements underground or c) run away.
None of those 3 options will help us in the future so we have to prevent them from happening in the first place.
And that´s why talking soon is important, not going into a month long cold war with scouting, training and moving troops with the risk of getting peopel catpured or injured. We don´t even have enough gas masks for all warriors against their smoke weapons, if i count right.
But to make them agree to talk with our leader, we have to make that acceptable for them, after all they risk everything and we basically nothing. Even though we know as good as nothing about them, we have the advantage cause they also know nothing about us.
Think of it, what must 2 duegar warriors think when they see a dozen++ strong group of drows with warriors, scouts and miners just to go to a mine which was obviously used before? They must think *damnit, they´ve got alot of people and it seems this mine wasnt abadonned after all, they might want it back.*
They are in a bad positon, we know where their home is, that they got their wives and children there, but they don´t know where we are, how many we are and how good we´re armed. They have to guess from what they see and the reaction they showed today proves that they assume the worst. Else they had killed us all.
But then a much much bigger party would have come, also as i said, i guess they don´t have the fire power to kill around 15 drows to prevent any to escape.
Back to the hostage plan.
The plan to make one duegar come with us (blind-folded ofc, we can include that next week though not this one, too much, too risky) is to let one of us stay as pawn. If their duegar doesn´t return in time, they can kill the hostage.
If the duegar comes they can exchange the drow *guest* to welcome their comrad who will tell them what he saw (a huge city, hundreds of drows, so many many warriors, an illharess with a snow/stone dragon, etc.) and what he discussed with our Illharess.
Same goes for the hostage, he can try to find out as much as possible while staying alive, when he´s a *guest* at the duegars home. And i´m sure the odds would be in our favor (no big defense, only small stone houses, not many duegars, also not seen many warriors).
Ofc there´s the risk to get killed.
Which is why i volunteer for this possible job if enough people agree that a possible long cold war or a short but costly hot war are not acceptable for this situation. We need results and we need them fast. And best way to do so, is preventing them from running away -> having one of them as their ambassador; being sure to know their defense and strength -> having one of us there as *guest*, impress possible enemy with our strength to get better position in negotiation -> Duegar ambassador sees home, strength of our army and our Illharess.
I know this is very risky, for my chara that is, but if the duegar accept that idea and i think they will likely accept cause
a) they want to know what they´re up against
b) they must be also curious about such a huge group of drow on the surface, we are the first drow colony on the surface since hundreds of years after all
c) they might have the feeling that in a war they cannot win and thus negotions might be better this time <- dunno though, but their actions so far seems very careful and non-provocative, usualy done by groups far weaker or who believes they are weaker than the opposing one. Psychology.
d) They can kinda trust us to return their brother/comrad/man home after some days of negotions. After all they have a pawn they can do whatever they want with. They can torture him if their ambassador doesn't return to let him spill the secrets, kill him cruely or sell him as slave in the underground etc.
That will give them a feeling of safety and having kinda control over the situation. And given that they are so less, they won´t simply abadonned their man to the drows. They will wait for the results first.
So, if any of you is still with me after reading that much (lol
), then here are my ideas how the action may sound like. Keep in mind they can always change in wording and meaning ofc. 1 is most important and should get 4-6 votes first while 4 is least important and should only get 4-6 votes if the rest have so.
1. *Go back to Ama'varde as fast as possible. Report duegar encounter to Anji.
* - 74 letters without the **, Anji will hear about this whatever the consequences will be at E-19. That´s a duty we have to do, inform our Illharess and our people is a top priority. Though we all knew that.
2. *"Sorry, we can´t just go like that. Its our mine and we need the stone."
* - 72 letters without the **, it states the fact, it gives off an indirect warning (We need this, it´s ours -> we will return and get it back) but it doesn´t have any kind of provocation or mean words or direct warning. It will makes them unsure, we didn´t just run away like cowards, but we also didn´t made a direct thread to end their lives or the ones of their family if they don´t leave. They can guess we want the mine, its used after all, they saw the miners house. Just like we could guessed that back then in Chel. They simply didn´t knew the old owners. It the hidden whip in this talk.
3. *"Look, if one of you comes with us to talk to our leader, we all leave."
* - 72 letters without the **, its the offer to break the current stalemate without violence and bloodshed, which must be a concern of the duegars or else they had attacked directly. Right now they´re worried that there more of us waiting, worried for thei women and children and their elders, worried that their new home might become their grave and end. But still this offer alone is ofc not enough to make them simply accept that.
4. *"I´ll stay as a warrant that he´ll return. If he doesn´t, you can kill me."
* - 75 letters without the **, that would be me. :/ With that obvious candy they will most likely accept the offer we made in 3. after hearing our indirect warning of 2. The carrot-and-stick policy will always work against a weaker opponent if he believes his aka we are much stronger or more dangerous to him and his folk than he is to us. They know its a dangerous bet, but they have a warrant, a hostage as safety to let their man return home. And that way they´ll get all the information they want to know about us and are in dire need right now to decide how dangerous the situation actually is. Just like we came with our warriors to the svars, an accepted safety to make us feel safer and to give it an more equal negotion ground when our Illhar meet theirs.
We´ve got 22 voters
there given last week. 15 have voted this time, so three advises will get through for sure, but all 4 can go through as well.
However that means alot of coordinating as well as control of *wild voters* who doesnt read the forum/this thread.It´s a kinda crazy and risky plan but with less loss and great gain!
In the worst case they don´t accpet and we have to leave like that with nothing in our hands.
In the second worst case, they kill the hostage after agreeing to the plan.
Third worst, they attack us with no further words. Though then that will make everything easier for us and its the most unlikely scenario.
Best case, they accept, the duegar ambassador and Anji get to an agreement, i get outta there alive and everyone´s happy.
Second best case, they accept, the duegar ambassador and Anji don´t get to an agreement, but i still get outta there alive for the return of the duegar
Third best case would be the second worst case, BUT in that case we have an hostage on our own we can torture and get infos of his clan. One drow for oen duegar.
Now what would us get a *cold* war and a hot one as already discussed here?
-long, while we scout out each other searching for a weakness
-possible no deaths, but can happen, same to captures and becomign prisoner of the duegars
-we gain NOTHING in that time, no stone from the mine for us
-duegars have lots of time to use OUR stone to build up their defense, and duegars are good builders, tmost of heir cities are right now still used for us drows to live in. That´s quality work.
-it can get turned intoa hot war everytime
-short, probably though that´s unsure, depends on unknown enemy strength and their defense as well as how we handle the attack (and given the BS, we aren´t the best warmongers. <_<)
-many injured for sure, much higher chance of deaths.
-even if we win the war, the duegars can escape underground and come back everytime to raid us or to be an eyesore. Not good for our future miners and warriors. We will always need some people there to guard the place though we might need them somewhere else (Kotorcs, ferals, flying horror, crazy golems, etc.)
A talk RIGHT NOW or AS FATS AS POSSIBLE, has the advantage of being short with either a defintiv positive or a definitiv negativ result with only one death. We risk as good as NOTHING, but can GAIN alot, if the negotions are done rightly and that´s up to worry about IF they accept the offer.
So wanna take the risk, my sole risk, and see if my guesses are right and they´ll accpet a talk to Anji under those conditions? (oh please say yes, i thought and wrote so long about this~ D:)Thanks alot for reading till this point.
Please consider this as a real argument and idea and not as a not worth to think about plan.
Some thought the same about Brorn going for stones and thanks to him and his risk we found the duegars now without proper defense and power, in warm spring or hot summer this might have looked differently.