It is the year 3010 of the Third Age.
Word of mouth has come to the Ranger NPC Helvorn that Orcs have been sighted near Bree. Helvorn dispatches his young apprentice Huntsman, the, known as the Hunter, to scout out the woodlands of the south Chetwood, and investigate if there really are goblins this close to the town. Hunter has recently returned from his 18-month long initiation Ranging, and this is his first mission as a full Ranger.
Hunter brings his friend Herbs, or Salabon as Hunter affectionately calls him, and together with Hunter’s wolf companion Grey Cloak they take to the woods. Hunter has not searched far when he comes across signs of Orc activity, and together they set out on the trail.
Going around the Midgewater Marshes, the pair come across a caravan just south of Weathertop, just as a band of Orcs attack. Hunter and Herbs intervene, and together with the caravan guard Baran Sîdhoneth and the elf Eldacar they vanquish their foes. Salabon saves the life of a wounded mercenary, and Hunter takes prisoner one of the Orcs, who is carrying a scroll written in some sort of black speech. It is unreadable to him.