Heads or Tails
Karak Azgaraz is one of the many dwarf strongholds scattered throughout the Grey Mountains, none of which are as wealthy or as magnificent as the surviving karaks of the Worlds Edge Mountains far to the east. It has stood nestled among the flinty peaks southwest of Ubersreik since long before the Empire was founded. Its once rich veins of gold and silver are largely mined out, forcing the hold to rely on trade with the Empire to make ends meet. Though its treasure stores are legendary to men, they are modest in the eyes of dwarfs
A Living Architecture
Dwarf karaks all consist of a series of descending levels, or deeps, excavated within the mountain by successive generations of dwarfs, and Karak Azgaraz is no exception. Its exceptional craftsmanship extends from forges and breweries to its most sacred temples. Dwarf culture resonates throughout the architectural space given to defense and dwarf traditions. From the engineering chambers to the rune-trapped treasure vaults to the Hall of Deeds in the Heroes’ Deep, Karak Azgaraz is as much a testament to the great skill and heritage of the dwarfs who live within its fortified walls as it is their home.
The Grudges of Karak Azgaraz
The Book of Grudges lives and breathes with the karak’s history. Each year, King Thuringar Orc-hewer addresses an assembly in his throne room to identify those grudges which have been settled and to recite those which have been added over the previous year.
Chief among those grudges Thuringar has entered but not yet declared settled is the great grobkul he called forth against the nasty skulkers who assassinated his father, King Zaladrin, and his elder brother, Gunrig. A river of black blood will flow, but the grudge demands more. One thousand times one thousand goblin skulls the king has demanded for the crimes they committed against the dwarfs of Karak Azgaraz. Nor shall the dwarfs limit themselves to goblins, but Thuringar has called for war against orcs and all foes of dwarfs.
The Hold of the Fearless Axes
King Thuringar’s thirst for vengeance concerns the more conservative of his Council of Elders. The war effort has successfully and rapidly expanded into orc territory but strains the karak as it drains the coffers faster than they can be replenished. The High Priests, including Hokar Stormbeard, lend their support to the war effort and its glories while conservative longbeards such as Loremaster Rudger Halkinsson champion more conservative views.
Though the king’s thirst for battle places greater strain on an already challenged karak, his fierce attacks against his enemies have increased the karak’s reputation for boldness, and it has of late lived up to its name as the “Hold of the Fearless Axes.”