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Archive for February, 2011

It’s too late for wanting

((OOC note: Since the story itself is so unclear on the details, I would have you know that Dyna was finally married to her long-betrothed Strahm, only for him to be taken away by an Old God worshipper known as the Apophan. He was turned to a weapon to be used against the White Sigil, and Marius was forced to either relinquish him to the enemy or kill him when they were cornered on enemy territory. Marius killed Strahm, and his body is in cold storage, with little hope of regaining his soul. Everything is NOT okay.))

She moved through her days like a shadow and a whisper, a prayer to float and a drop of rain to plunge inevitably to the clammy cobblestones below.

The touch of cold steel in her belly, of hot blood warming dewy earth- these things lingered in the back of her mind as she maintained a smile, as her wounds healed. The bandages were itchy but clean kept; the broken ribs mended slowly but steadily. Pain was manageable, so long as she didn’t maintain her rigid training for a week or two. Restlessness plagued her by day, driving her far from the safety of the Quel’Talan’s silvery wards. Her booted feet carried her to the Pig and Whistle where she tasted only the cheapest, most rancid of wines- she was off duty, after all. Her thoughts fluttered from place to place, and she wondered how Marius was, how Ziichi was, how Mayru was; she dwelled in depressed silence on Heliorn’s losses, and her heart seemed to turn into so much a stone, weighting her chest. She didn’t worry for Strahm, though. He was fine. He had to be fine.

She practiced listening in silence, trying to see what danced beyond the subtlies of speech; sometimes she watched from a distance and told herself stories of what was being said. She had little patience for these things, though. It was only wishful memories that drove her to try. Strahm would be back soon, but until then- who was keeping an eye on things for the Sigil? Her husband was so talented, so clever- so good natured that his absence was a thread that ran through her days, his smile lingering at the edge of every thought or daydream. Soon, soon…

And yet, that strange, maddening energy continued to plague her. She couldn’t stay still, she couldn’t linger in any one place for too long. Always she felt it, driving her forward; her body, so long hardened by rigid training and as strong as it had ever been, demanded movement and exercise that her mending injuries simply could not accomadate. As night cloaked the skies in star speckled darkness, she felt little desire to sleep, for her nights were stranger still than her shiftless days…

Her dreams were full of hurt and dread that lingered on in the mornings, until she could chase away their spectre with motion and thought, until the blood and horrible, near-silent combat would vanish into the backdrop of her day. She focused on getting better; on moving so that her ribs weren’t jostled, on breathing softly and walking with her head held down, her pale, angular features shadowed by the broad rim of her husband’s black hat. But even that couldn’t banish the night’s recollection of wet bone cracking against cold, broken rock; of the damp tearing sounds that were skin and muscle being eviscerated with a clawed hand.

There were better things to focus on, now. She had so many friends to pray for…

Kialthos’ betrayal stung like a bitter tonic that lingered in the back of her throat. That he should be in league with the Apophan was more than Odynae Vindalis could bear, after so much devastation. He tried to talk to her, but Ziichi, proving markedly wiser for someone several years Dyna’s junior, was right. There was nothing he could tell her that she ought to hear. Too often she had forgiven enemies, too often had she turned the other cheek only to be betrayed.

She knew herself and her weaknesses well enough to know that she was the last one who ought to listen to Kialthos, because she wanted so badly to believe that people were good, and that she wasn’t betrayed, again…

It would be alright, though. He’d be home soon enough. Mayru would be well again after their excursion to Ahn’Qiraj. They could all be together, and life would be- complete.

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February 7th

 

That bastard!

Of all the things- I’d never suspect! He’s so old, so- so crass and unsmiling, and his only joy seems to be tormenting others and fighting! What could she have seen in him? But then, he must be so very different than he used to…

He grew up with two parents, but he never talked about them much. We visited his mother’s grave. Why don’t I know these things? Light, what is wrong with me, that I never bothered to ask??

Just because I remember nothing of my childhood doesn’t mean that such applies to everyone else, too…

He’s got to tell him sometime. He has to. It isn’t my place… is it?

Being back in Stormwind feels- almost unnatural now. I must confess, my two months of quiet was perhaps a much needed break from the chaos of the city. Everywhere I turn, there’s a strange face, and so many voices, each so loud! At length I managed to lose myself in the early morning silence of the Cathedral, where none disturbed my prayer… unfortunately, I feel asleep without distracting noises to keep me on my toes.

What is wrong with me…?

I’m- almost reluctant to go back. I kind of see the appeal, now, of a solitary life. Perhaps that old bastard had the right of it.

But I’m being foolish, of course. My fiancee awaits me, and I’ve friends that I dearly missed. I wonder if Tia has been found? And Edd? And Mayru with Lothrias- she’ll have to tell me everything!

I suppose I’ve missed Sigil, too, though… I doubt if my absence was noted. I don’t seem to be the asset I’d hoped for them. The only times I see Marius are when I’m about to be reprimanded for something. I guess that’s unfair of me, though. I see him very seldom anyhow. I guess I just- got a strange sort of thrill from being out there with just that horrible man. He was a bastard, for certain, but- we did some good things. And sometimes I lose track of what it is to just go out there and Do Good without having to worry about gathering a dozen people.

I mean. I could have died. It was stupid and reckless and–

So liberating.

Mmn. I don’t think it’s worth it.

Of course it isn’t. I love Marius. I love the White Sigil. I have the best job in the entire city.

I wonder how Fiorna has been? And Rosalinde?

Has Audran made any headway in Darkshore…?

 

I know this wariness will fade in time. I love my family. I love the people around me. And when I was out there, with none but the stars to keep watch, I missed this.

So why is it that I long for the quiet?

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Too long

January… ???

I’ve always been a poor liar.

But telling anyone about this would be stupid. I’d be removed from duty again. I’m beyond lucky, to have escaped with my hide intact- why I ever trusted the man is beyond me, other than that Strahm told me to. I can’t just go around recklessly involving myself in things like this, I’ll be killed and bring misery down on those I love best–

Oh, the hell with it. What we did was right, even if it was stupid. What Marius doesn’t know won’t hurt him. I was following orders and I don’t regret it. Those men and women we saved today were being systematically tortured, to what end I don’t know and I don’t care- plainly said, I can’t regret my recklessness. We did the right thing.

I’d better finish this up before the old man finishes sleeping off his hangover. No doubt he’s got some ghastly training exercise for me when he arises. He’s not all bad, but Light help me, he’s a horse’s ass in the mornings and when he’s coming off his drink.

I don’t know what hour of the night it was. I was already awake- as the days pass, seeming endless, I find myself less exhausted and with more energy to miss home, so I was missing home, of course. Teacher woke up and found his fetid wine jug empty, and it was the last- so of course it was up and off to go filch some from our Northern neighbours. Naturally. Light forbid actual preparation and purchasing of nonessential supplies, or going to town in a friendly area. No no.

There was a hole in the wall, and he started some mayhem with explosives and hurried us through. We killed some Forsaken to silence interception, and crept through the darkness for some miles, away from the discord of his illusionary attack. We came to a manor house, patrolled by more Forsaken and with some military muckymuck residing therein. Silvers said he’d provide distraction, but that I needed to investigate the fields behind it. He was going to fetch booze and that I’d have some task ahead of me.

So he hurled another grenade like a git and started bellowing like he’d lost his last marble, and the walking corpses came at him like a pack of wolves, and there was nothing for it but to do as I was told and if the madman wanted to get himself killed in pursuit of rancid wine, that was fine by me–

And then I saw it.

The smell struck me from some distance off, but I didn’t catch sight until I was right there. The moon unfurled from behind some clouds and what I thought was a field of cabbages was not a field of cabbages…

They were people. People buried up to their heads in dirt, senseless from who-knows-how-long being trapped there- I did what I could. The first one I hoped might help me unbury the second, and I freed him with an aegis of Light, but he was in such poor condition… they all were. Gibbering and half-mad with deprivation. I did what I could. The poor bastard.

What I did next was not the smartest moment I’ve had in my life, but I couldn’t think of a different way to accomplish it half as quick. I gathered Light to me, and never has it felt so sweet, so right and easy… I felt it in every part of my skin, in every muscle and veins, rushing through me giddily- I ripped up the earth and ploughed through the fields with it, managing to bring slight comfort to those thus far imprisoned with the regenerative properties of my craft, and freeing them en masse. It was a righteous storm, and I the harbringer of justice that night…

Unfortunately, it was night. When things are dark. And holy energy is called Light for a reason.

I heard the battleshouts of Forsaken and I’d spent myself freeing the prisoners. They were in no condition to fight- barely fit to flee, as it was. I directed them to run, intending to stay behind and delay the pursuit- but they just stared at me, moonstruck. Our collective hides would have been in the proverbial stewpot had we not had unanticipated help from our Gilnean colleagues.

As the first of the Forsaken came rushing, I had my glaive at the ready, exhausted but determined- however, his spine was severed and his corpse reduced to a twitching mound before I had time to engage. From no where, a wolfish man offered me a wink and a savage grin before vanishing into the inky shadows again. The sudden howls of an army of Worgen were our salvation that night. When I turned to lead the way out of that Light-forsaken field, the former captives followed, as Worgen battled Forsaken in the rearguard and we fled our way to freedom amidst the chaos of our fortuitously simultaneous surprise attacks.

I didn’t think to see my Teacher again, but fortunately he made it out, the old git. I thought I’d seen the last of him, but I was wrong. He was half drunk and still cutting down Forsaken when he caught up, howling and laughing like it was the funniest damned joke he ever saw…

We weren’t pursued. They had their hands full with a major Gilnean incursion, and a handful of captives were the least of their problems. I saw smoke and can assume that the old manor was torched, but I do not know what happened at the end… I had my hands full with my group of former captives.

We left them at the aptly named Refuge Point, under the care and guardianship of the small outpost there. They are to be sent home to their various families. Thank the Light.

I asked my Teacher if he knew about the coordinated Worgen attack… truth be told, I thought perhaps this was all some grand scheme of his. A brilliant one, at that.

He just laughed, took a plug of his liquor, and laughed some more, shaking his head. Said we were damn lucky.

I’m glad we lived.

I don’t think I could have gone peaceably to the Light like that. Without having seen the man I love and the family I miss for what feels to be months.

I want to go home so badly, it burns in my stomach and drives most everything I do. But I won’t complain. Not out loud, anyway. Not after I broke so many bones just to be here, hell.

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