Admiral Strun,

You've asked about the Yovaesh Orcs in terms you would be wise to reconsider. Need I remind you of the barrier reef that keeps our ships from approaching? Whether or not the orcs lack a navy has no bearing on this discussion of conquest you seem so enamored with, at least until you figure out a way to suddenly uproot several stones of material from the ocean floor without the orcs noticing. Even then, you'd have to deal with the special, regenerating nature this coral seems to have along with the very real possibility that it was created by art magics designed to last for generations.

You may not be aware of Yovaesh lore, considering your thinly veiled distaste for non-humans in general, but I am and I know there's a legend you need to hear.

As the soothsayers tell it, the coral reef around Yovaesh Port did not exist when the Yovaesh Clan first made landfall: something that our historical charts of the area can confirm. That same legend tells of a great fear among the clansmen, that one day an invasion would come from the south to wipe them out if they stayed. Corval IV was king at the time, so their fears were not unfounded, given his legendarily foul temperament. Their tribe was also small, an easy target for anyone with a hatred of orcs and enough steel to back it up.

By this point, you may be wondering why they stayed if the legend was true? In fact, the Yovaesh Clan very nearly abandoned the island back in the time of this legend. They had the resources to support themselves should they have decided to stay; but that meant little when they had no form of defense against the Adelunan and Egjoran navies. In the end, they decided to leave.

Now among these orcs was a legendary artist, Gro'Bashure. He was renowned for his portraits of dragons and had a cabin aboard the orc flagship. He returned to that cabin the night before his people's scheduled departure, supposedly to weep over his latest portrait of a rainbow, sea serpent. He was tired. His people were tired, and the legend says he made a wish that night before going to sleep: a wish that his people could finally find a place to call home.

As the story goes, Gro'Bashure later awoke that night to see the dragon from his painting gone. The beast had come to life and was circling over the entire island, its roar arousing everyone from sleep. Yovaesh soothsayers proclaim that this serpent didn't attack anyone, however, despite the fact that it could have destroyed their small fleet with a single whiff from its enormous nostrils. Instead, the serpent peacefully sunk into the ocean surrounding the island, leaving only a small opening between its mouth and tail for ships to pass. The dragon slept there, quickly turning into a reef and breathing new life into the area. This became the Yovaesh Barrier Reef that we see today, and the orcs believe it is a magical ward sent from the beyond to guard them.

Preposterous, you might say, but you can't deny that there is something otherwordly about that reef. Barrier reefs don't just appear overnight, after all, even if this one apparently did. So let me repeat my advice that you seem too daft to heed thus far: stop requesting that our majesty reconsider her decision to leave Yovaesh Port alone.

Good day, Admiral.

-Lyndrel Agrippa, Chief Scholar of Queen Qendresa I