Following the battle in the graveyard, Kadfina seeks out Wolfgang’s Hounds, and signs up with them. As a new recruit, Wolfgang gives her a basic retainer only, with an agreement that she will get a bonus for each foe slain, and a share of any spoils the Hounds take from the battlefield.
They are employed by the Empire as one of a number of forces responding to Beastman raids on the northern border of Reikland. The relief effort is force-marched through a storm for three days and nights, at the end of which, Kadfina discovers a leak in her pack which has caused her blankets and cutlery to become waterlogged and start to rot. Just outside of Lecheim the Hounds come across a small warherd. Kadfina acquits herself honourably in battle, killing several beastmen, although not before one managed to deliver a mighty blow that severely dents her shield, almost breaking her arm.
Wolfgang happily rewards her with a bonus, telling her that she has proved herself in combat. However, the Hounds have no work for the time being, so they return to Altdorf, with Wolfgang promising to get in touch with Kadfina when another job if offered.
With few other options, Kadfina returns to Rorgni’s smithy for the next couple of months, taking up lodging in a small room in a boarding house in the dwarf quarter. She toils away at the forge during the day, producing workmanlike but unremarkable metalwork, and manages to repair her shield. By evening she joins the Hounds for crossbow drills at the city’s archery butts, followed by sessions in the tavern.
The only event of note is that she tries to beat her plate helm into better shape at the forge, but instead has an accident and manages to damage the lining. She patches it up as best she can, but it is rather cumbersome to put on from there on. She also discovers that the damp from the previous month had also seeped into her sling bag, causing it to start rotting as well.
Finally Wolfgang contacts Kadfina. There is no job per se, but greenskin incursions have been increasing to the south, and a bounty has been placed on orc and goblin heads. Normally the Hounds don’t lower themselves to bounty-hunting, but the potential reward is large enough to tempt them. As a grudge-born dwarf, Kadfina is only too happy to go greenskin hunting with the Hounds.
The reports are true, and the Hounds enjoy a prosperous fortnight of battle, waylaying and wiping out several goblin scouting parties and ambush groups. As they are heading towards Helmgart with a cart full of greenskin trophies to claim bounty, they happen upon a patrol of Reiksguard who have been surrounded by an Orc horde and are fighting for their lives. Kadfina leaps into the fray, and the Hounds join her, rescuing the Reiksguard. Kadfina in particular manages to cut down one of the biggest and meanest looking Orcs just as it had knocked the Reiksguard captain to the ground, and was about to deliver the killing blow. She takes as a trophy from the downed Orc the jagged metal faceplate it both used to cover it’s face and draw blood when butting foes.
The Reiksguard captain introduces himself as Captain Zaltzmann. He is currently stationed at Helmgart but is expected to return to Altdorf in three month’s time. He is immensely grateful to Kadfina for saving his life and rewards her with a gift of a Storm Lantern. He suggests that, if she were to tire of the mercenary life, she look him up should she be interested in a more fulfilling role in the Imperial Army. The Reiksguard allow the Hounds to claim the bodies and bounty on the entire Orc horde, helping them transport the bodies back to Helmgart. This represents an immense payday, and the Hounds celebrate in fine style when they return to Altdorf, with Kadfina claiming her share of the spoils.
With no immediate work available with the Hounds, Kadfina is resigned to return to the forge when she is contacted by Lady Gabrielle Marsner. It would appear their debt to her is due to be paid.