4 Irontooth Enclave

Not every orc or half-orc is a pirate, thug, or baby-eating monster; there are children, weakened elders, and peace-loving types among the hulking humanoids, just as with any race. But the racists of Scurvytown don’t make that distinction, and they forced many orcs living in the district to move to the harsh slums of Bloodsalt. Faced with this injustice, the Irontooth clan—a respected family of half-orc scholars, craftsmen, and merchants—has done its best to make a community within Bloodsalt, a neighborhood where weaker orcs can live without being victimized by hobgoblins, pirates, or humans.

Togar Irontooth didn’t have to concern himself with the injustices being done to his people. The half-orc historian was a respected, well-off lecturer at the Freeport Institute who owned a manor house in Drac’s End; he didn’t need to care about what was happening to poor orcs in Scurvytown. But the aging half-orc had always loved his father’s people. An expert in orc history and politics, Togar had contacts and associates in almost every orc family and group in Freeport. Disgusted by how the humans of Scurvytown were treating his people (and how the Captains’ Council was letting it happen), Irontooth decided to relocate this family to Bloodsalt and dedicate his remaining years to protecting and helping those civilized orcs and half-orcs forced to live in the district.

The decision cost Togar dearly; he lost his position at the Institute, he lost many of his friends and professional contacts, and in the end, he lost his life. He sold his manor in Drac’s End, bought land in Bloodsalt (along with a farming plot to the east of Freeport), and erected several small but livable houses behind a sturdy fence. While the land was cheap, the labor was expensive, as were the guards he had to pay to protect his enclave from pirates, thieves, and hostile hobgoblins. Many orc and half-orc tenants moved into his houses, but because he kept the rent low, he made little money back from them. For months, Togar struggled to keep the Irontooth Enclave afloat—and then he stepped into a hidden sinkhole of fuming acid while walking down the street. The half-orc scholar died shortly afterwards, surrounded by his grieving family and tenants, while creditors and opportunists prepared to steal his possessions.

But the Irontooth Enclave held them back; the tenants and the remaining Irontooths joined forces and fought off the invaders. They were aided in this by Hatchetblack, an orc pirate who threw in his lot with his weaker cousins, and by Togar’s old associates at the Freeport Institute, who petitioned the Captains’ Council on the enclave’s behalf. The word came down to the Militia to leave the Irontooths alone, and the hobgoblins reluctantly gave the enclave a wide berth. Togar’s half-siblings rallied to organize the enclave tenants, turning what was once simply a housing estate into a true community.

The Irontooth Enclave has weathered the storm, but life is far from easy behind the estate’s fence. Many adults work for the Reclamation Project, while others look after children, till the fields on the Irontooth farm, or find any other work that can keep the enclave financially afloat. The head of the enclave, Torya Irontooth, does her best to maintain alliances with merchants and scholars in Freeport proper, relying on their patronage to deter the Redblade Militia. It’s a struggle to feed and protect a community that never stops growing; almost every week, another family or group of orphans seek shelter at the enclave, and the Irontooths refuse to turn anyone away. But despite the odds stacked against them, the Irontooth family and their community keep working and refuse to give in to despair, fired by the memory of Togar Irontooth and the belief they can make Bloodsalt a safe homeland for a more civilized orc race.

The Irontooth Enclave is a large stretch of land within Bloodsalt, measuring three blocks wide (not that Bloodsalt has blocks or even proper streets, but the area’s the same size). A six-foot fence of sharp wooden stakes surrounds it, which is enough to deter the odd drunken orc pirate looking for loot or company. Were the enclave to sustain a determined assault by the Militia or a gang, the fence wouldn’t be enough to hold them back; the community’s leaders know this, but it’s the best they have to work with. Entry to the enclave is through a heavy gate on the east side, facing the Irontooth farm and the sea. A pair of orcs—usually pirates loyal to Hatchetblack—guard this gate at all times.

Inside the fence are about a dozen single-story houses, one of which is larger than the others; this is the Irontooth “manor” where Torya Irontooth and her half-siblings live. The manor also houses Togar Irontooth’s extensive library of historical documents, perhaps the best such collection outside of the Freeport Institute. The remaining houses are simple but comfortable dwellings that each house one or two orc families. Demand for housing has outstripped supply, and a number of inhabitants must live in tents. Two barns flank the central house, one of which is used for communal meals, meetings, and get-togethers; the other serves as a forge manned by Tureg Irontooth, whose high-quality smithing is another source of income for the enclave. A large tent near the entrance houses Hatchetblack and some of his followers—as well as two cannons from his ship, which he’ll use without hesitation to defend the enclave.

The enclave also owns a small but successful farm not far to the east of Bloodsalt; Togar bought the land cheaply in the early days of the Reclamation Project. Two orc families, who grow barley and onions in the alchemically treated earth, work the farm. The enclave uses some of this for its own food supply and sells the rest. The farm is close to the beach, and the orcs also have a pair of fishing boats at a small dock; Hatchetblack’s ship, Champion’s Cry, is anchored just off shore, and a trio of pirates stays at the farm to protect it.

Prominent NPCs
Torya Irontooth The rarest of creatures—a beautiful half-orc. Before the Irontooth family’s relocation to Bloodsalt, Torya was a socialite of sorts, with connections throughout Freeport’s upper-middle class. She resisted the move to Bloodsalt, thinking it was beneath her; when she finally did relocate, she found almost all of her aristocratic friends considered her little more than a novelty and no longer wanted anything to do with her. The rejection spurred Torya rather than shattered her, making her realize her family and her people are more important than social recognition. She still maintains some connections within the Merchant and Eastern Districts, but she works with them to protect and finance the enclave, where she is regarded as the community’s glamorous leader.

Hatchetblack: A massive, dreadlocked orc pirate, who dresses in spiked leathers and is always armed with two razor-sharp axes. While he looks bloodthirsty, Hatchetblack is surprisingly personable, a former gladiator who gained a sense of both honor and showmanship in the arena, not that that makes him any less fearsome in combat. If anything, his training makes him much more dangerous than most of his barbaric peers. Like Togar Irontooth, Hatchetblack believes in a lost orc civilization that upheld ideas of justice rather than barbarism. Hoping to fulfill Togar’s dream and prove orcs can be not just equal but surpass humans in compassion, Hatchetblack and his pirate followers have sworn to defend the enclave. He is, of course, hopelessly in love with Torya Irontooth but has yet to find the courage to tell her of his affections.

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