“We need a plan,” Geralhd observed. “If these reclusive folk are as hostile as you suggest they are then we can’t just walk in unannounced and expect them to greet us with open arms.”
Blacknail, Ilisti, Garen, and him were still staring down at the town of Herstcrest from a hill out in the forest. They had come a long way to find the town, and now they had. Of course, some of them were here for different reasons. Geralhd thought the was tagging along on a scouting mission, while Ilisti was here to conquer the place.
“We could sneak in after nightfall and kill all their leaders in their sleep,” Blacknail suggested.
“Um, what would that accomplish, exactly?” Geralhd replied uncertainly. Garen and Ilisti didn’t look convinced either.
Blacknail smiled sheepishly. “It’s just sort of what I do?”
“Well, we will keep that option in mind,” Ilisti responded dryly. “However, I believe a less drastic first move would better serve our ends.”
Garen looked thoughtful. “We could just take the town. Even without the hobgoblins and their skill as infiltrators, our troops could undoubtedly march down there and seize that gate with minimal losses. The people are highly unlikely to be organized or effective soldiers.”
“We don’t actually know that these people are hostile yet. We just got here,” Geralhd pointed out firmly. “Striking first would be unconscionable. A lot of innocent people could easily be hurt by such a reckless course of action.”
Ilisti nodded. “I agree. I would rather not create any unnecessary grudges or resentments among the populace. When we move on the town’s rulers, it must be with secure motives and moral justification, so that we can maintain a good relationship with the common folk.”
“I think you mean if we move against the town’s rulers.” Geralhd replied warily.
Ilisti gave him vague nod before looking back at the town. “As you say.”
Geralhd frowned. “It’s obvious that we need to talk to them. A delegation is the obvious answer.”