when walking through the woods. Jolly Tom was a lot of fun to come up with, so since we're doing Lovecraft week here for Shocktober 2010, I thought I'd make a bit of a sequel drawing upon something Tolkien already made creepy and try to twist it a little more.
Here's the premise again to remind you:
Aragorn leads the assault on Sauron to the Black Gates, just like in the real story, but since Frodo doesn't destroy the Ring, Aragorn is killed (or lost to Sauron - new Witch-King possibly?), and Sauron starts spreading his forces. War has broken out completely and no where is safe except the most well-defended strongholds of the Elves. Yes the whole "Sauron wins the war" thing has already been done with the Midnight D20 setting, but the emphasis here is on Eldritch horrors, so it's definitely different enough.
For centuries men have cursed the name of Fangorn Forest. Orcs and goblins do not dare to cross its borders. Even the woodelves, with their constant efforts to rehabilitate Mirkwood, have foresaken these woods for lost. What could keep both Sauron's minions and the champions of good out of this everdark country?
Some call it the Dark Mother. You see, the treeherders have been driven from the forest. If on the off-chance you are able to track one of the Ents in their far-wanderings, they will not speak a word of Fangorn. The great forest is lost to a blight older than Saruman and more ancient than Sauron. The Ents always warned of her influence on their fellows - the huourns - and rather than succumb to her touch, those who still had the will, left the forest and their herds forever.
Left unchecked, the trees of Fangorn have embraced their Mother. They grow grey in trunk and leaf alike, and the corruption is unlike any other dark force's influence on the land. The most shocking development of Fangorn is the great seige the Lord Sauron is building around the forest. Even larger than the seige of Kings Gil-Galad and Elendil in the Second Age, this move has dumbfounded those few leaders of men, dwarves, and elves still remaining in Middle Earth. One thing is certain: the Dark Lord is desperately trying to keep something in Fangorn from getting out.