|Unit Races:||Orcs, Gnolls, Ogres, Beasts and Demons|
The Border Forest has always been a dangerous place, and travelers and merchants usually go far out of their way to avoid it. Fortunately for those who live on the outskirts of the forest, the various tribes of orcs, gnolls and other savage monsters that inhabit the woods are at constant war with each other, and raids outside the forest are few and far between.
Several months ago, however, the Border Forest grew ominously quiet for a few days, and then the sound of war drums began to echo across the countryside. What emerged from the forest was more terrifying than any of the savage raiding parties that had come before: thousands of orcs and gnolls marching together, united in purpose. Within a week, several large settlements on the outskirts of the forest were ruthlessly and brutally decimated. But these were no ordinary raids. Instead of returning to the forest with their spoils, the horde began a steady march toward the ruins of Zhentil Keep.
The humans and elves in the area have dubbed this army the "Border Horde" from their origins in the Border Forest. But, as yet, their motivations are unknown and their leadership is unclear. The timing of their incursion is certainly noteworthy - the whole region is already in conflict: the Zhentarim have returned to claim their ruined keep and are opposed by the knights of Cormyr. And now the Harpers, too, have arrived to join the fray. Perhaps the Border Horde simply sees an unprecedented opportunity to pillage amidst the chaos of war. Indeed, they attack indiscriminately - Zhent, Harper or Cormyrean, it makes no difference. Their mission seems to be split between wanton destruction and searching the ruins for "shiny things".
Using large quantities of brandywine, Harper agents were able to coerce an orc into mentioning that the leaders of the Border Horde are guided by a "voice" that speaks to them in their dreams, and they seldom know their marching orders sooner than the night before. It's possible that the Zhentarim have extracted more information via torture, but if they have they are not sharing it. One thing is certain: as long as the Border Horde persists, no one around Zhentil Keep is safe.