Troll Hunting

In the Kendring Clan a person who wants to make a name for themselves can do so by slaying the clan’s enemies, the trolls. There is a long tradition in the clan of troll hunting.

Some novices launch their own troll hunts. They seek out the places where trolls are known to live, in the caves, shadows and mountains, flush them out and fight them.

For inexperienced or unprepared warriors this is dangerous in the extreme. Firstly, experienced troll hunters prefer to set traps for the trolls rather than go seek them out on their home turf. Furthermore, Dark trolls are far from stupid and are skilled in the ways of ambush. They see in the dark as well as the day and will wait in shadows, or for the cloak of night to strike. They are not easy to find, let alone fight. Those who try to delve into a troll cavern often come back hurt, or do not come back at all.

However, novices who return unharmed and with grisly mementoes of their conquests, such as heads, ears or tusks, will be feted by their clan and welcomed into the Night Brothers. Such warriors are reckoned as heroes.

The second and slightly less perilous way to earn the respect of the Night Brothers is to accompany them on a troll hunt and make a first kill. Such hunts become more common towards Dark Season and Storm Season when the Uz are most active and roam the tula on the search for food.

Warriors of good standing can persuade known members of the brotherhood to take them on a hunt. As skilled hunters and fighters of trolls, the Night Brothers help keep the newbies from making elementary mistakes and pass on the survival basics. They can teach trollsign and other tracking techniques. They have access to magic that can help against the trolls.

However, the experienced men tend to do much of the fighting on a hunt. Novices can be a nuisance in a fight and are often ordered to stay out of the way. It might take more than one troll hunt for someone to notch up their first kill. However, some hunts run into trollkin, the stunted, cursed and stupid spawn of the trolls. These do not count as proper troll kills, though the Night Brothers may sometimes extend their fellowship to someone who killed a lot of Enlo.

Troll hunts comprise small bands of men, maybe no more than seven or eight at most. Each troll hunt begins with the arming of the men with their magics, some granted by the guardian spirit of the Night Brothers, known as Pole Star. The spirit does not pass its magic onto novices, which is another reason why they are often kept at the back of a fight.

Raids into troll strongholds are rare. The trolls are most effective on their own ground. However, ambushes can be mounted on the clan lands, when packs of trolls roam the countryside on a hunger march. This is why most hunts take place in those seasons when the trolls are most active. The first will begin in Earth Season and the last will be around the beginning of Sea Season.

Troll Hunting

The Book of Kendring Percyprune