One blemish. One blemish was hardly unnatural for a fledging fortress and many seemed to believe that Feb was unhinged before the founding of Evontobul, so his demise was hardly unexpected. Within a few days normality (well, the drunken chaos Dwarfs call normality) had returned to the rough-hewn halls of Loverscanyon and the Dwarfs had all but forgotten about the incident (although the dried bloodstain would remain throughout the fortresses reign.)
But indeed trouble was never far in Evontobul and Ogmund soon found himself in Elgrich's office once more, facing a Dwarf who was as furious as she was deranged. In the perpetual confusion that engulfed the fortress a forge had been established, and while orders were being placed, they were not being fulfilled. Considering Ogmund was the head miner, Elgrich had decided he was evidently the person to blame.
"The metalsmiths aren't smithing any metal!" Her voice was at fever-pitch. "Why in the name of all stoney-goodness aren't they?"
"Because they have no fuel to work the forges." Ogmund was a tactful talker, but even he found it hard to keep his cool when an ugly dwarf's spittle was forming a film over his face.
"Well why isn't there!"
"Because we haven't found any." Ogmund's voice remained calm, barely calm. "These tunnels are mined into igneous rock, all the scholars agree that coal cannot be found in stone such as this."
"Well find some different stone then!"
Ogmun wished it was that simple. "There is another solution." The promise seemed to catch Elgrich's ear, so he continued. "We could dig deeper, down in search of a magma chamber, the heat from the molten rock could power our forges."
Elgrich's plump, twisted face lit up, the prospect of a lava powered device in her fortress no doubt enthralled her. "Make it so!" she cried, before scrawling feverishly into her journal.
The hunt for the magma began in earnest the next day, although it was slow business and wearisome. Although the population of the fortress had grown to 22 dwarfs, there were only two pic-axes and so the work was limited to Ogmund and his young apprentice Urist. Still, there was hope the search wouldn't last too long, the abundance of Igneous rocks meant that the magma must surely be somewhere near.
While this was going on the fortress continued to thrive, sure there was no wood or metal to be had but stone, food and importantly alcohol were in abundance. The farms were hugely successful and the brewers ever more so, every dwarf had their own bedroom and a newly fashioned, if somewhat small dining room had become the centre of attention. Indeed, if you were to ask the average dwarf they might have informed you that life in Evontobul was actually rather pleasant. For Ogmund however the pleasantries were at an end and for his apprentice Urist, well it seemed life was. For after weeks of searching, they found the magma chamber.
"Let it never be said that Urist wasn't enthusiastic about his profession!" Ogmund would drunkenly recall on later days. "If anything, well the lad was a little too enthusiastic." It was indeed Urist's enthusiastic digging that found the chamber, the problem was that having found the chamber, well the lad didn't stop. "Dug right into the bleedin' magma!" Ogmund would sigh, a solitary tear of manliness trickling down a grubby cheek. Whatever Urist's last thoughts were, they must have been desperate and painful. Having been doused in super-heated molten rock he realised (too late) the error of his actions. Frantically the young dwarf tried to crawl back to the exploratory tunnel where Ogmund watched in horror. Urist died in that tunnel, the horrific burns claiming him. Ogmund swore softly, the ad's pic-axe had been lost to the lava, now he was going to have to do all the work.
Work on excavating the chamber continued slower than ever with Ogmund having to stop after every other swing of his axe for a refreshing beer (and every after every sing for a bitter curse). And it seemed the fate of the Fortress' inhabitants was sliding from bad to worse, for dire news came down from above. Evontobul was besieged. A force of goblins and trolls had found the fledging fortress and lunched an attack. Luckily Elgrich had the good sense to pull the drawbridge lever and seal the fortress off from the attackers. Only one dwarf had been trapped outside (an unsuccessful Fisherdwarf) who was written off as collateral damage (in Elgrich's mind at least, he poor Dwarf's family used slightly different terms.) The death toll now stood at three dwarfs in two years (eminently acceptable, if Elgrich was to be believed).
The sudden siege had shown the dwarfs one thing however, their small fortress was not unknown to the enemies of the world and as such their safety was no longer guaranteed (if indeed it ever was). In response to this a five man militia was drafted, spearheaded by Cog Conglussman, one of the more level-headed Dwarfs in Ogmund's mind. This militia was useless however unless they had weapons and armour and thus Ogmund found himself under greater and greater pressure to get the magma chamber prepped for the forge.
Thankfully he was helped in this regard. For after days of digging he found a new opening, a new opening that led into a vast cave. The cave bordered the magma chamber ending in a sheer ledge that dropped down into the broiling liquid below. It was the perfect site for a magma forge. After a quick inspection by the new-formed militia the cave was deemed "safe." And without much further ado, construction of the forge began.
This meant that Ogmund's work was finally at an end. After weeks of toiling in the deep tunnels he relished the chance to return to the higher halls and enjoy a fine meal and a finer drink. But Ogmund was learning that you can't always have what you want in life, especially if you live in Evontobul, for no sooner had he left the mining tunnels did a frightened Dwarf grab his arm.
"Have you seen Feb, the woodcutter recently?" he asked, is voice shaking like an Elf in a forest fire.
"Several weeks ago, rotting, on the garbage dump." Ogmund replied roughly. It was true, the mad-dwarf body had been dumped outside in the hope that carrion would make off with it. The frightened dwarf squealed in reply and ran off down the mines.
Odd, Ogmund thought and not for the first, or last time.