Raeventus

Sins of a Patriot: Act 1: Rise of the Shattered Son

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“You have failed us, Raeventus.” One of the four silhouettes that surrounded him spoke, the disdain painfully obvious. “Your subordinate… this Frostwhisper, gave us valuable Intel. He warned us of the return of the Legion. And you refused to utilize it, you advised against it.”

 

 

           “You read the reports, my esteemed lords.” The kneeling Magister’s eyes watching over the four silhouettes as he continued to make mental notes of what little information this illuminated council would betray of themselves. Even in his position as Director of Scryer Asset Protection and Acquisitions, they thought him unworthy of their identities. It was maddening. “I felt his inexperience had left him compromised.”

 

 

           “Then why wasn’t he pulled from the field? We have ways to assess his mental and emotional states.” The Second spoke. His voice was much calmer, though still distorted through the methods of this communication.

 

 

           “He was still valuable where he was, ensuring that Vyel did not ruin the finances of the Visca Estate. His extraction would have alerted Rayfeather to something wrong, ensuring less cooperation. And then there is the matter of the Sanc—“

 

 

           A projection of a globe of Azeroth would cut him off. Upon it were green dots scattered in strategic areas around it. The First would speak once more. “Orgrimmar, Stormwind, and Dalaran have all reported direct strikes from the Burning Legion. There are also constant reports of reinforcements being brought in from Hillsbrad, the Barrens, Dun Morogh, Westfall and Tanaris.”

 

 

           “Why Tanaris?” The Third spoke up.

 

           “There are Titan Sites near the area; they may be attempting to seize those.” The Fourth responded.

 

           “We are lucky that everyone is taking this threat seriously, Raeventus. This could have been far worse given the reports we have of what happened at the Broken Shore.” The Second addressed the kneeling elf once more. “I feel we may need to impress upon you the disastrous ramifications of your tactical blunder.”

 

           “One of which we will not tolerate again.” The First continued to seethe.

 

           “I understand the dire situation we are in, my lords. And given the circumstances, I thank you for your wisdom and patience. I have my department looking into ways to counter the Legion Threat.” The Magister’s head would bow lower before bringing his eyes to face them once more through the globe. “I will not fail again.”

 

           “You had better not, Raeventus. We can neither tolerate nor afford such errors any longer. We are fighting for our lives, for the very survival of our race and all others upon Azeroth.”

 

           “It is good then that the Order of Eversong has managed to find a way to re-activate their Emergency War Protocols.”

 

           To this, Magister Raeventus froze. His voice, uncontrollable at this point hissed a single word. “What?”

 

           “Yes, just last night. Is this something else that has failed to catch your notice, Raeventus?”

 

           “Who authorized it?”

 

           “Magister Frostwhisper. Are you telling me that you forget who you granted such clearance to?”

 

           “No, my lord…” The man took a brief sigh, and then a small smile. “I am merely surprised. The man is not prone to taking the initiative without consulting his superiors first. May I see the report?”

          

The Third summoned up another projection, one the size of a page in a tome, and sent it towards Raeventus who quickly skimmed the report. His face was a practiced neutral. Frostwhsiper seemed to be becoming quite the young upstart… “…I’m sure the man has a long career with us as a Scryer. He should be praised for his diligence.”

 

“With the Order of Eversong returning and with their Emergency War Protocols activated, they are going to need as much assistance as we can grant them. How quickly can we activate the Shattered Son Project?”

 

Magister Raeventus shook his head at this. “He is not ready. There are not enough safeguards in place as of yet, should he prove outside our control...”

 

“We knew it was only a matter of time before we would run into something that we would require Him again. This is why we granted you those resources, Raeventus. You have until the end of the week to get him ready. You are dismissed.”

 

They had spoken. It was all the elf could

do to hold back the defeated sigh that threatened to escape from his lungs. His eyes closed for a second too long blink before returning their gaze to the council. His hand reached in the darkness to touch the orb upon a pedestal that relayed the communications. The projections vanished in an instant; the room slowly regained its lighting. This gave him a short time to consider his next move, to regain his composure, before returning back to the world that which was still within his control… for now. He rose from his knees, and proceeded to the door. Now that the communication was over, it was unlocked and slid open with ease.

 

 

           Upon the other side was his always faithful companion. A short and thin woman, her attire that of regality and the unspoken threat of what she was: One of the Scryer’s Inquisition. She eyed him for a mere moment, “I see the conversation went well, Magister.”

 

           “As well as could be expected, Dawn.” His voice terse.

 

           “Your orders?”  

 

           “We were given until the end of the week to activate the Shattered Son. Contact Frostwhisper, we have much to do… and not enough time. Something I fear will be a pattern in the next few months.”

Edited by Raeventus
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Here within the realm of Quel’thalas, the world seemed almost at peace. It had its own problems, to be sure; but if one did not know what was going on to the south or the western continent of Kalimdor, one may be able to remain blissfully unaware of the horrors awaited outside the boundaries of the enchanted lands of eternal spring. The relative peace was enough to allow Magister Vathelan Frostwhisper to slip within his own private reality as he gently rode his Hawkstrider towards the domain of his sworn Lord. He could not help but feel the swell of pride, his grin quite prominent as his eyes looked upon the fortified Visca Manor. He had made his small mark in history, while by no means a man of valor himself… he had enable the Order of Eversong to be reactivated and granted the freedom to move as necessary. With their help, he felt a certain optimism that Azeroth would once more find a way to continue living as they had every crisis past. And when proven right, he would get that date… his first one, actually.

 

“Ah it was about time for you to show up, Frostwhisper.”

 

His hands started to grip at the reigns of his Hawkstrider as his heart threatened to stop even if for but a mere moment. His throat felt dry in the sense of dread from hearing that voice, “Inquisitor, what an… unexpected surprise, madam.”

 

Her head cocked, the twisted amusement playing upon her lips. Her dagger finished its deft work within her hand, cleaning the tiny talons that adorned each of her slender fingers. “Oh Vathelan, why the sudden grimace?” She removed meager weight from the wall as she strode towards him, closing the gap and revealing her ebon robes that marked her position within his organization. “A lady could get the wrong ideas, dear… one may feel… unwanted.”

 

The young Magister continued to stare at his Lord’s home, he was so close. For a moment he considered making a break for it, until he felt the biting of what felt like five tiny daggers sinking into his flesh through his robes and into the flesh of his leg. Her command was simple. “Off.” He bit back any verbal response, rewarding him an even tighter grip before he nodded vigorously, quick to comply as he slipped from his saddle. “Good Boy. Now, into the building.”

 

“But what of my Ha—“

 

“INTO.  The. Building.”

 

He would comply, not protesting any further as he limped until they were within the shambles of a once proud structure of the people of Quel’thalas. He couldn’t recall what this one was, but he was concerned on other matters. “What of my Hawkstrider?” He asked again, now that his leg was free from her torment.

 

“It will be fine. If it is smart enough, it will wander back towards the Manor and be found.”

 

“But what of the Wretched? Or the Manor’s defenses? Even if it is found and stored away properly, do you not think it will raise concerns? Do you not think they will question what happ--”

 

               It took but a small gesture from the Inquisitor, quite done with his blabbering, the tips of her fingers giving but a trace of shadow magic to ensure silence as she scanned the exterior of the ruined building they were in and towards the Manor that loomed across the way from them. Satisfied that they were not seen, she turned her attention back towards the Magister and the business at hand. It had seemed that he had found her dirty work, the five lifeless Wretched that laid before their feet spread about this common room. “My apologies about the mess, Frostwhisper, they were not inclined to share their abode. Even for our brief stay.”      

 

               The young man could was trapped in this deteriorating structure, voiceless at the mercy of such a cruel woman. His lungs filled with air, his emerald eyes wide behind his glasses. He tried to force himself to scream, trying to break her spell upon him through a sheer force of will. It did nothing. His feet shakily moved to back away from her as she approached. He nearly tripped on one of the corpses, its contorted face staring back at him. She had shown her hand, her malice more than evident. He regained his footing, preparing a trembling combat stance. If he was going to die, he would do his heroes proud. He started to draw the mana from his core through his arms and to his fingertips—only to have his hopes of defending himself shattered by her laughter, his body acting against his will.

 

               The dark energies snaked around the Inquisitor’s slender fingers as they moved as to pull the invisible strings of her new marionette. Oh she was certain that he would have some choice words in protest, but she had already taken care of that little problem. Her eyes glinted with a sense of joy as she approached close, she gave a small tug to force him to bow low enough for her lips to grace his ear. She spoke in nothing above a whisper, enjoying herself immensely. “You are so adorable when you look at me like that, Frostwhisper. And I do so wish we could continue our fun little dance, but we have an appointment to attend to.” She forced his face to move where she could lock eyes upon his as the hand that did not hold his leash gently tapped upon a button upon her attire. Only then did her hungry eyes look away and towards deeper into the building. Frostwhisper was at last allowed to stand once more, before making an about face towards a newly formed gateway of a portal before them. “Come now, Darling, we mustn’t be late~”

 

               Each compulsory step towards this gateway exacerbated his sense of dread. Each step was a testament to his powerlessness, her total domination over him. Each step felt like an eternity, and by the time they reached the gateway, he had come to accept his fate. As they crossed the borders and into an unknown domain that would quickly remove any trace of its existence, the Order of Eversong would be robbed of their faithful Magister and Servant, Vathelan Frostwhisper.

 

 

“I’m going to die.”

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            The deteriorating elegance of the forgotten half of Silvermoon gave way to an enclosure large enough for an entire patrol barricaded away by wall of pulsating blue and purple that surrounded the young Magister. Better yet, for the time being, he was alone and free of the enchantment that had forced him to act against his will. It would not last long, he had little time. Taking this small advantage granted to him, he formed two shards of ice the size of daggers, one in each hand. He shifted into a basic but proper combat stance as he was taught in basic training, and awaited her apparition. As soon as he saw her form, he pounced into action.

                                                        

            The plan was simple: Attack while she adjusted to their new surroundings, remove her as a threat, then portal out of here before whatever lay outside this barrier was aware of what had transpired. He launched the shard of ice from his right hand, and before seeing if it hit its mark, he struck with his left. But in there laid the problem:

 

            She was trained for combat, he was not.

 

She was quick to react, her body melting into the scenery around them, becoming incorporeal for a few seconds. Long enough for Vathelan’s two pronged attack to prove utterly useless, and to leave him open as she once again attached her mental strings around him and forced his body to contort in a painful manner to disarm him. His body twisted so unnaturally so fast that his muscles screamed at him, his back threatening to break from the force as he dropped his remaining ice shard from his hand before falling to his knees. Then came her retort, a backhanded slap with enough force that his glasses flew from his face.

 

As the four nails of her hand dragged on his face from the backswing he would hiss in pain, only for it to be accentuated as the barrier dropped and the cold air beyond it came to kiss at the stinging marks. Between the massive alteration in light and the lack of his oculars he may as well have been blind. He could hear the heavy footsteps of metal boots upon the ground before the sharp edges at his throat.

 

“Are you okay Lady Inquisitor?” A metallic sounding voice echoed near him.

 

“I’m fine. He simply had more fight left than I had expected. Restrain him, but do not hurt him. He’s needed… for now.”  

 

            “As you wish, Inquisitor.” The voice reverberated through the knight’s helm. Between the now encroaching darkness and the mere blurred shapes he could make out without his glasses, he could not tell just how many were there as they pulled him to his feet. They forced his arms out before shackling him in some heavy set of manacles, oddly enough seeming to cut the mana circulation from his arms. No matter, he would not try to fight them. He knew better, he was out manned and out classed. So long as he cooperated it seemed it may be possible for him to get out of this alive. Prove his worth, save his life. That would be the new plan.

 

            They checked his restraints one last time before they shoved him forward, satisfied that he was secure. He still had no clue as to what their destination was, what they had planned for him to work on. And he knew better than to ask, none of them particularly seemed keen on answering questions. So he would have to try to figure it out himself. What were his clues? The Portal was not one that gave any indicator as to where they were going to go, coupled with the barrier that reminded him of the one reported to encircle Dalaran after The Fall, he felt it was safe to assume it was intentional that they didn’t want this location found. The deathly chill that permeated the area was another clue. A cold climate outside, likely remote as to not be found. He was practically blind right now, but the sound of these soldiers… perhaps this was some sort of military installation? His mind wandered, scanning what he had read in hopes of coming to a conclusion as to where he may be… So much so that he nearly kept walking into his escort when they halted their march. His brows furrowed as he listened in on mid-conversation.

 

            “Are you sure about this, Inquisitor?” This voice too reverberated. Strange.

           

            “We really haven’t a choice in the matter, I’m afraid. Raeventus has his orders, and now so do we.”

 

             There was a sigh that echoed through the helm before it spoke once more. “Very well. Let them through.” Something powered down, Wards, if Vathelan had to guess. Then rumbling as what he had to guess were massive doors started opening. When the sound died down, the guardian of the door spoke up again. “…Speaking of that devil, it seems he wishes to speak with our guest.”

 

            Magister Raeventus was here? That was a mild surprise, but it put things into perspective. The man had proven himself to become quite prominent since the death of Lord-General Visca. It would also explain why Inquisitor Dawn, his right hand, had been awaiting him… it also didn’t bode well for his chances of survival. He hadn’t the chance to reflect on that, however, as his thoughts were cut off as they shoved something within his ear, it was cold, unrelenting and of a peculiar shape.

 

            “Good evening, Frostwhisper.” A voice emanated from the very object within his ear. It was as cold as the air that surrounded him. A dangerously calm fury, the malice on razor’s edge. “I trust you are found in gentle company in these last hours of the day?”

 

            “M-magister Raeventus! I—“  Vathelan managed to choke out. Only to be cut off. They continued their march into a metal hall, reinforcing the Military Instillation theory. The clangs of metal boots were quieted for him during this conversation.

 

            “Then you remember my name at least. Perhaps it is time to remind you of my position within our Organization, of who you work for.” He would continue before the young man had a chance to retort. “I am the Director of your department: Scryer Asset Protection and Acquisition. It is our job to ensure that the Scryers have the resources required to do what the Seer commands, not for you to play hero.”

 

            “I never tried to pla—“

 

            “You violated your Security Clearance. You committed forgery, for the express intent of removing a valuable asset from our arsenal. I could charge you with Treason, you know.”

 

            “I enabled them to act while you and the Seer sat on your hands. And you could… if I wasn’t a member of the Order.” He corrected Raeventus. “We are under Emergency War Protocols, we are outside your jurisdiction.”

               

            “Brave words coming from someone in your position, Frostwhisper.” There was an audible sneer in the voice. “You seem to quickly forget you are surrounded by my men, in a place you cannot be found. You are very much ‘In my Jurisdiction’ right now. And I would advise against trying my patience, you insolent little shit. One word and I can have you executed or re-educated on the spot, whichever it is I feel like at the moment.”

 

            “Then… why am I still alive?” The patrol halted in front of one of these doors. Vathelan was quick to add a, “not that I am complaining of course.”

 

            “When you went behind my back, the Council took notice. They want Project Shattered Son to come to fruition, in spite of the short time we have had to ensure he is secure and stable for use… they want their Weapon against the Legion. But I will not risk my own Faithful men and women within my service, so… if you wanted him activated so badly, then I will give you the honor. If he kills you, then Good Riddance.”

 

            ‘The Council’? He did not know of what council that Raeventus could be speaking of. The only one that came to mind is what Lady… It couldn’t be, she couldn’t be in on this, could she? To be so power hungry for her husband’s position to do… this? But he would have to consider this another time, for something of more immediacy was brought to his attention. The sound of a ward before them being brought down… The Shattered Son… His shackles were being removed from his arms as Vathelan responded. “…I see… So I am Expendable to you then?”

 

            “You went behind my back, you tried to play the game… and you lost Vathelan.”

 

            “But with risking my life, you are activating Him to fight the Legion, correct?”

 

            “I’m glad you can hear me.”

 

            “…Then I graciously accept. If this is my part in history, then I will gladly play it.” There was a firm resolution in his voice. He was no hero; he was just a man who was in the right place at the right time who made a choice. He was handed two items from Inquisitor Dawn, a new Glass Scroll that had read outs of the Shattered Son’s vitals and his glasses. He put them on, his face determined as he stepped into the dark room… across the spacious hall floated a giant of a man in a vial attached to medical equipment. He played the game, he had won. “Arcane Intelligence Designation: Vindicator, began activation of Weapon: Shattered Son.”

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               The young lord Draco was to stand at attention and to remain silent as his father worked upon the documents before him. It was here, in the Study of Visca Manor, his patience seemed tested for what felt like hours on end. He felt certain this was part of his punishment, but he would endure. He was right for what he did, he simply needed to present his case to his father… he just needed the scratching sound of quill to paper to end. He held back a sigh as his gaze drifted away from his father and to his twin elven runeblades from the Troll Wars that were mounted behind him. He couldn’t help but smirk in pride of his lineage from the tales he had been able to pry from his father as a child. How the blades, massive as they were, were able to combine to an even larger weapon if required. How both forms sung a different dirge for their trollish enemies as they danced in combat. He wished he could have seen it…

 

               But such musing would be lost as he at long last heard the shutting of the ledger his father had been preoccupied with was closed. And then his father, Lord Gladius Visca, gave a small sigh as he shifted back in his chair. The shift caused his long silvery-white hair to rain down and censor the large leather eye patch that adorned the nearly the entirety of the right half of his face. “Your mother told me you fought with the Suncrest boy this morning.”

 

               “I will not deny this, Father. But I had good reason. He was bullying Anguis, and we cannot stand for such transgressions on our family.”

              

               “We serve more than merely our family, Draco. You know this.”

 

               “What are you implying, Father? I’ve not neglected my studies nor my training. How is defending my younger brother from someone my age going to hurt our people? If you’re worried about our reputation, not only is he wrong… I have not yet even reached my fiftieth year. This will be seen as a squabble among rivals, nothing more.”

 

               “I’m not sure if I am proud that you are learning how to play politics so young or not…” The senior Visca sighed as he brought one hand to his face. “You must understand, while my generation was able to crush the Savages’ empire, we may very well have created another. Your generation may pay for it, and it would be best we were united if the time comes. Petty familial squabbles will not aide us in such an endeavor.”

 

               “Threat, father?” The young man’s brows furrowed in both surprise and confusion. “There is no threat. The Moss-skins were crushed under our might.”

 

               “Then you are all too quick to forget the cost of our victory. As much as I hate to admit it, the humans are so quick to breed that they outnumbered us and we benefited from their efforts greatly. But we taught them the Arcane Arts as part of the agreement."

 

               Draco opened his mouth to protest. He had been quick to absorb the events of the Troll Wars! But this admission of potential weakness, it wasn’t like his father. It concerned him. And even worse, “…My apologies Father, but I fail to see the relevance of this in regards of putting Adonis in his place. He was harassing one of your sons. I handled it.”

 

               “Draco.” His father’s voice was firm. “Listen to me. Historically speaking, Arcane breeds arrogance. This is why we are so slow to teach our children the arts. We take our time in hopes they’ll learn the discipline required for such, that we will not draw the attention of the Legion once more. That we will not commit heinous injustices because we Can. Humanity does not have that luxury. They tend to live for a hundred years if they are lucky, so what we take a century to teach one of our own… they try to dive into within decades. And then they pass on this recklessness to their younger ones. If they outnumber us as they do, and try to outpace us in the arts before they are ready… eventually Disaster will follow. I will not sit idly by while this problem festers for us to be caught unaware, we must be prepared. And the best solution is to form a unified front. Your squabble with the Suncrest boy hinders this. And I expect better from you.”

 

                The fire of rebellion within the young lord’s eyes faded as he listened. He bowed his father, his voice much more sincere as he spoke this time. “I… see. I am sorry, Father. I only sought to defend our family from those who think our duty makes us weak.”

 

               “I know your intent, Draco.” At last his son was listening, the stern voice started to melt. “And I appreciate your concern. You need to consider the long term effects of our actions. Do you know why I named you as you are, my son?”

 

               “No?”

 

               “I will not be here forever, Draco.” Gladius’s voice was solemn. His son opened his mouth to protest, but Gladius rose his hand to silence him. “I have dedicated my life to the defense of Quel’thalas and its people. And one day, this duty will befall to you. I named you, my son, for the legends of old of the most powerful and benevolent creatures we had ever known: The Dragonflight. You are to embody their lessons, for the betterment and protection of our people. And when necessary, the strength and wrath of Neltherain himself against those who would seek us harm.”

 

               “Those… are high expectations, how can you be sure I can live up to them?”

 

               “Because you are my son.” The Head of House Visca smiled warmly, “And I have the utmost faith in you. I always have. But, for now, you are dismissed.”

 

               “I-I understand. Thank you, Father.” The young man couldn’t fight the smile growing upon his face. He wouldn’t let his father down, not after his lecture, not after these words of encouragement… the pride swelled within his chest as he opened the door to leave.

 

               “Oh, Draco? One more question.”

 

               Draco paused, the door wide open as he looked back. “Yes Father?”

 

               “Did you win?”

 

               “Of course, Father. I would never bring such shame to the House by allowing someone as deplorable as Adonis Suncrest to beat me.”

 

               “That’s my boy.” Gladius chuckled as Draco slowly closed the door. The movement felt… strange, as if there was more resistance than there should have been. …89... He looked around, his pale brow raised. What was that number? Why—

 

…90…

 

 

 

               His heart felt as if it threatened to explode within his chest. His fist clenched over it, his breathing going ragged as he tried to muster the voice to scream for help.

…91…

 

 

 

               He took a deep breath, his head was swimming as he let out a cry for help. No noise was made. He took another breath to try again…

 

…92…

 

 

 

               As he did so he would feel the phantom pains of water invading his lungs. He tried to scream again, nothing. The ‘water’ threatened to drown him. His right hand balled into a fist as the pain within his lungs and heart caused his eyes to water, his arm sinking rather than slamming into the ground below him.

 

…93…

 

 

 

               From his heart outward, from his fingers and toes inward, his veins would start to feel as if they were on fire. He looked down, much to his horror the very flesh burned a brilliant blue. What was happening!?

 

…94…

 

 

 

               His muscles began to spasm uncontrollably from the agony. Albeit slowed from as if drowning, the motions were none the less violent. And yet they would be halted as quick as they were started. As if some invisible caging entrapped him as he were. His vision began to darken as it blurred.

 

…95…

 

 

               The light of Visca Manor’s corridors would fade in and out of existence. When it was not his familiar trappings, the world would get darker. A singular shape started to form before him. Shorter than stature than he, he could make out a pale flesh tone above, and a purple blob below him. Something shined at mid height of whatever it was…

 

 

…96…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Visca

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Ninety-Six Percent. Magister Vathelan Frostwhisper had lived through the harrowing events of the fall of Quel’thalas, and to him, this may very well be the most terrifying thing he had ever had to experience. Despite his best efforts, he could not merely stare at the Glass Scroll handed to him that monitored the process of what was going on. No, before his very eyes, a man of legends once again stirred within his vial. First his breathing mask had erupted into an explosion of air bubbles, a little worrisome, but they needed to be sure that his lungs worked properly. He would shove the idea out of mind, which was of course, until the Arcane Intelligence designated as Vindicator started its full body synchronization check. It was here when the Shattered Son of Quel’thalas began his violent thrashing.

 

 

“Please… just a little longer…” Vathelan’s voice cracked in his attempts to coo; to the man in the glass or himself, it was impossible to be certain.

 

 

                “Do you really think he can hear you in there?” And then there was this asshole, taunting him with his ear. “Or better yet, even if he could, do you think he would Care? For all we know we are ripping him away from his loved ones in the afterlife.”

 

                The young Magister gave a small sigh; he was at a loss of words. While Director Raeventus may have had a point, the verbal abuse lost its effectiveness twenty percent ago. Now, here at the cusp of both one of the greatest accomplishments of his career and the hopeful resurrection of his greatest hero, he had bigger things to worry about. …Assuming it was Lord-General Visca that came back and didn’t murder him on the spot of his rebirth. He didn’t want to think about the alternative.

 

                Ninety-Seven Percent. Vindicator’s synchronization process continued to work its way through the late Lord-General’s body, the very mana from within him igniting in its activation to accommodate the work of the Arcane Intelligence. It was always beautiful the way the light of the magic snaked its way through his veins, forming what were almost ley lines though out his form. As they finally connected to his cranium, the dimly lit markings of fel appeared as his eyes opened during his violent rebirth. His very flesh seemed to drink from the lines of his veins, but even still he struggled.

 

“Come on, Sir… we’re almost there…”                                            

 

 

“You’re wasting your time.”

 

 

Ninety-Eight Percent. Vathelan did not bother to retort. They had but two percent to go, and then either history would be made or his fate was sealed. The Arcane energies erupted into a brilliant flash around the man in the vial’s skull as the energies traced through his veins, forking from the jugulars to up the temporal and the facial veins until they reconvened upon his oculars. Here a war of color waged for but a second… the sapphire brilliance that matched that within his veins would drown out the dim light of his Fel Taint during this synchronization process.

 

 

Ninety-Nine Percent.   The Lord-General was now certainly awake, his sapphire eyes glaring from the waters of his current prison. His thrashing had stopped, thankfully, but such a boon would be short lived. The brilliance from his veins began to pulse with his heartbeat; the very air around them seemed to begin to tremble. Frostwhisper would have found this concerning, if it weren’t for a more alarming sound grabbing his attention: Something was grinding on something else, and it sounded like it was coming from the vial before him. He started to fiddle with the Glass Scroll in his hand in an attempt to run a quick diagnosis—but stopped himself when the cause became apparent, the very glass of the Visca sized Vial was cracking! The lights began to flicker…

 

 

ACTIVATION COMPLETE.

 

 

 

The trembling air would become deathly still for a mere moment, before an eruption of force emanated from the cracking vial. In a sheer burst of panic, the young Magister surged his mana into what he thought a nigh impenetrable shielding of ice. He sighed from his confines as he watched the glass cut into the barrier, leaving him safe. What he didn’t expect, however, was glowing and bloody fist to punch through the remaining portion of the barrier to grab at his throat. He had no time to prepare as he felt its death grip upon them and send him flying into the wall closest to them. The mist of the explosion may have censored the form of his attacker as his head hit the wall, the room going darker for a moment or two, but it did nothing to hide the burning energies in the man’s veins or his eyes. A voice long thought lost to the world at long last spoke once more; full of rage and hatred it echoed its first sentence from beyond the grave:

 

 

 

Who are you and what have you done to me?”

 

Edited by Vathelan
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                Despite the blood that coated the giant’s hands and arms, it provided no lubrication to grant Magister Frostwhisper any reprieve from the vice grip upon his throat. His own hands weakly tried to pry at the fingers that ensured his entrapment as his head swam from the sudden force into the stone wall behind him—what was starting to very likely to become his forgotten tomb if he couldn’t figure a way to calm the enraged giant before him. His eyes watered, and his lungs felt aflame from desire to cough… only for the air to be denied passage. As Vathelan tried to choke out his answer to the question, something as simple as his name, he would realize the futility of this effort. In a few moments he would pass out from lack of oxygen, and then die from strangulation… he had to think fast.

 

 

                The Glass Scroll! His eyes went wide for a moment in realization, darting behind the furious tower of glowing flesh before him… only to have his heartbreak as he saw that particular one had shattered in the tussle. A dead end. His brows furrowed, trying to ignore the edges of his peripherals beginning to fade. Not much time left.

 

 

Very well, he had another Glass Scroll in his bag! One of his hands started to slink towards his ever trusty satchel he wore slung around his shoulder. Only for his assailant to grip his wrist as tight as he had his throat and slam it against the wall in front of him.

 

 

“No.” The former Lord-General snarled. “Hands where I can see them.”

 

 

That… put a dampener on that plan. The magical energies that still coursed through his attacker’s body seemed as if they threatened to burn Vathelan’s neck. Time was running out, he needed air. His next attempt out of this situation was a blink spell. He would be able to breathe and talk again; he could then explain the situation. He started to summon the mana for the spell…

 

 

…Only to be rewarded with an even tighter grip on his throat, “Final Warning.”

 

 

The Magister complied. Not that he really had much of a choice. His vision was starting to darken now, his panic starting to rise in spite of himself. His mind was racing for a way to explain himself in this predicament. Nothing was coming to him.

 

 

“Your Name, Mage. What is it?”

 

 

He tried to gasp for air, to state his name for the man… but still nothing came out. His panic starting to raise further, his eyes going to the grip at his throat. Why wouldn’t he let him speak? The Mage fruitlessly tried to pry the fingers from his neck again. Nothing happened but the continuation of soaking his gloves in blood… And then it clicked. His fingers went towards the man’s forearm that burned from Vindicator’s workings inside him. Quickly he started to scrawl with the blood:

 

 

 

F-R-O-S-T-W-H-I’…

 

 

The young Magister couldn’t be certain how much or even if he had succeeded in continuing to telegraph his message upon his attacker’s arm before his he began to pass out—the effects of asphyxiation finally becoming far too much to bear. As he drifted back into consciousness, the first thing he would notice was the smell of iron permeating all around him as his body shuddered from his violent coughing… and yet his head remained pinned. He couldn’t see, something darkening his glasses… but he wouldn’t hear the voice of the man from the vial until his coughing subsided.

 

 

“You are awake. Good.” The former Lord-General’s voice echoed upon itself once more. “You and I are going to play a game. I am going to ask you questions, and you are going to answer them. Be truthful, and I shall let you go. Lie to me…” His grip tightened upon the Magister’s skull. “…And I shall splatter your brains upon the wall before me. Do you understand the terms?”

 

 

The mage tried his best to nod, obviously hindered from the man’s grip. In fear that it wouldn’t be enough, he spoke… the taste of metal upon his lips as he did so. “Yes, Sir.”

 

 

“Very well. We shall start with my first question: What is your name?”

 

 

“Vathelan Frostwhisper.”

 

 

“I see you wear markings of my command. Rank and Service History.”

 

 

“Magister, specifically I work as an Agent of the Scryer Asset Protection and Acquisition division. I have a Glass Scroll in my bag, allow me to bring up my file and that should certify my credentials.”

 

 

“Get it.” The late Lord-General commanded. The Magister was slow in his actions to prove he wasn’t a threat. One arm was raised where it could be seen as the other gently slid into the satchel to pull out the pane of glass the size of a cover of a tome. His movements were so slow and deliberate as he did so.

 

 

“I would be happy to access it, but I’m blind at the moment. May I clean my glasses?”

 

 

“You may.”

 

 

“Thank you, Sir.” The Mage took off the framed eyewear, and cleaned it on a spot of his robes he hoped wasn’t splattered. Though his vision was blurred without them, at least he could make out a few shapes. When he placed the glasses back on, he was well aware of the blood splatter from the vial leading to them. The Lord-general was injured, this was not good. He was also without clothes, his body’s glow starting to die down… he had a distinct lack of scarring.

 

But such thoughts would be shattered as he was handed back the Glass Scroll. “Access it. I do not have my Emblem with me.”

 

 

The Magister nodded as best as he could as he took the Scroll. “O-of course, Sir.” He gently pried off one of his cufflinks and set it to the right hand corner of the pane of glass before removing one of his gloves to use his thumbprint as a signature. With a quick few taps upon the Glass Scroll, he accessed the classified version of his own file. He then handed over the Scroll for the other man to see.

 

 

 For a moment, the mage was granted a reprieve from the intensity that radiated from the harsh cerulean energy from his eyes. “Nethergate…” His voice mused before the lights were upon his captor again as his lips twisted into a brief cruel grin. “Remind me, Vathelan Frostwhisper, what was your assignment upon the Nethergate base?”

 

 

“I was a Data Analyst and Research Assistant as per your orders sir.”

 

 

“Correct.” His lips began to fade back into the resting scowl as his eyes went back to the man’s records. His voice became less harsh, “I am glad you survived the backlash, Frostwhisper. Do you have a casualty report?”

 

 

“You were the only Unacceptable Casualty. We lost an estimated eighty percent of our remaining prisoners when we had hit the last call for evacuation of the facility. Most of them Non-Quel’dorei.”

 

 

“Unfortunate, but acceptable.” The grip upon the Magister’s skull started to loosen. “Were we able to halt the discharge from hitting the original target?”

 

 

“Yes sir. The forces on the ground were able to apprehend Hellscream.”

 

 

“Then my death was not in vain.” He relinquished his hold on the trembling mage, “What of my brothers? How did they take the news?”

 

 

“…As well as can be expected Sir. Shaken, but they remained resolute in our duty to our people.”

 

 

“Good. And… did you ever find my wife?”

 

 

“Just recently, Sir.” He gave a small sigh, “She was… unaware of your fall in the line of duty. She has put on a brave face as she tries to carry out your Legacy, but… I have seen indicators of high amounts of stress. I believe she mourns your loss greatly.”

 

 

“That was not her burden to bear any longer. She ensured that.” He spat bitterly, his back turning to the Magister at this report. So cold and dismissive, Vathelan lowered his head… his gaze noting that there were no scars on the back of his form either. But the display of physical power was elegant, years in the working… it was an art much worth appreciating as the flickering lights and shadows threatened to censor such in spite of the still faint illuminations from his primary arteries. “…Son or Daughter?”

 

 

“…Pardon?”

 

 

“She carried my heir to term, did she not?” His voice still resonated a bitter fury. “Did she give birth to my Son or My Daughter?”

 

 

“Son, Sir.” He was quick to answer. “His name is Draco Gladius Visca Junior. He looks just like I imagine you would have, Sir.”

 

 

“…Well that is something, then.” The bitterness that was so prevalent now seemed to be wholly absent. “Do they know that you brought me back?”

 

 

“No sir. This was a secret military project, I do not think even the Seer knows about this.”

 

 

“You have a lot to learn about our leader, it seems.” He looked back at the Magister. “But keep it that way. Better we not cause my family any more harm than we already have. But… I fear this brings my second question of origin. What have you done to me?”

 

 

At this question Vathelan averted his eyes, the voice in his ear once more returning. “Well Frostwhisper, what are you going to tell him?”

 

 

 

“As you know… you were killed in action at Nethergate.” The young Magister could feel himself trembling, both from the deathly frost that seemed to not affect his hero and the sheer terror of the news he was to deliver. How did one tell someone they were now nothing but a weapon for their people? “By the power vested in the Scryers by the Vanguard Initiative Act—“

 

 

“Stop. I understand where this is going, I wrote that Act myself. To think it would come to apply to myself…” Another short but bitter chuckle came from the giant’s throat. “…I will read about the process later, it would seem we have bigger problems. In order to utilize the Act to such an extreme, that would require a state of emergency. Tell me, Magister Frostwhisper…  What threat do we face for me to require me to return?”

 

 

“The Legion, Sir.”

 

 

“Is that so?” Visca raised a pale brow. His voice sounded almost amused by this news. “Who would have thought a Black Dragon could be telling the truth? To be fair, while we knew they were coming and that I had noted the possibility, I did not expect them to appear so soon. I am looking forward to reading those reports.”

 

 

“He is taking this better than I had expected…” The voice whispered in his ear. Vathelan would smirk at such a comment, but it was short lived; as the next line quickly made him once again uncomfortable in his current predicament. “…That being said, he does need to understand his place in the new hierarchy.”

 

 

 

“I will… uh… get you what Intel is relevant to your position, Operative Shattered Son.” He eyed the man in hopes such a thing would not threaten his life once more.

 

 

The ‘Operative’ would turn to face the mage again. “Is that so?”

 

 

“Tell him he is to remain on standby until we can find a handler for him for his missions.”

 

 

 

“There are… many factors we still need to consider with your revival. It was a highly experimental process, you are the first success we have been granted. We need to test your abilities and ask that you sit tight as we find a handler capable to enable you.”

 

 

“No. We are wasting time, I do not Need a Handler, Magister Frostwhisper.”

 

 

“My apologies, Operative. This is standard procedure as it was written within the Vanguard Initiative Act, of which you admitted that you wrote—Sir.”

 

 

Vathelan could see the fury building up in the Shattered Son’s face. He wanted to console him, but he knew that this standard procedure was to followed as the Director had commanded. A few moments passed before there was an audible sigh from the man, “…Very well. But do not tarry, the longer we sit around, the more lives the Legion consumes… including those of our own people.”

 

 

“It appears you have survived the jaws of the Dragon, Frostwhisper. Well done.” The voice sneered within his ear. “Excuse yourself from the room and you will be dismissed for the time being. We have more work for you elsewhere.”

 

 

“That is our intent, Operative, Sir.” Vathelan gave a small bow before heading towards the door. At the entrance, before he paged them to grant him access to freedom he looked back. “And Lord-General Visca… Welcome back to the world of the Living, Sir.”

 

 

 

 

Edited by Vathelan

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Magister Vathelan Frostwhisper, in these final moments of awe before a legend in the flesh, had come to forget where he was. Despite their rocky reintroduction, he knew he would come to cherish this memory… the greatest man he would ever know, bared raw before him in his rebirth, something he had taken no small part in. He smiled a grin most genuine, one that rivaled when someone so wonderful had agreed to take him up upon an offer to get to know him better…

 

                …But such moments would prove fleeting. And somber reality once again took hold as soon as the blast door once again, separating the young man from his idol. It happened so fast. In a flurry he would find the world around him enveloped in darkness. He found himself falling. A metallic fist slammed into his cheek bone. A boot greeted his chest. And his wrists were once again cuffed.

 

“What the fuck was that, Frostwhisper?” That dreaded voice once again filled his right ear, “What was my command?”

 

From the bag over his head he could give a sharp cough before answering. “Which?”

 

He would be rewarded another sharp kick to the chest. Vathelan was sure he felt something crack this time. That wasn’t good.

 

“He was to understand his new place in the Hierarchy, Frostwhisper. He died. The man legally has no rights, he is Scryer Property now. Our property. And to lead him on these delusions of grandeur? That, Frostwhisper, is cruel.”

 

Vathelan had learned his lesson, it seemed, for he did not speak a word. He only coughed, hoping that blood would not come up with it. He felt them lift him up, one set of arms upon each side of him. He would not fight it. He had hit his limit today; he wanted the suffering to end… preferably with his life still intact.

 

“ It seems you are learning. Good. I do hate repeating myself over what should be painfully obvious: So I expect to only have to tell you this once. Do you understand?”

Vathelan would hesitantly groan some sort of acknowledgement that he heard him.

 

“Excellent. To be thorough, let us begin with a review: Project Shattered Son and anything related to him or the resources used are Classified. Well beyond your clearance level, to leak such information to Anyone would be considered Treason. Do you remember what happens to traitors, Frostwhisper?”

 

“…Reeducation.” Vathelan spoke through the pain, he was being dragged elsewhere in the Complex. To where, he couldn’t be sure. He took another breath and continued. “Lord-General Visca deemed that our population as a species was far too few to justify conventional methods of Capital Punishment…”

 

“Correct, we prefer the method of Reeducation. But Lord-General Visca is dead; I am in control now—”

 

“Rayfeather…”

 

“Irrelevant. In time, he too, shall be brought in line. But I digress… We are speaking of what happens should you violate your Non-Disclosure Agreement: I will ensure that before you are killed, one way or another, that you will Suffer for your Treason against the Scryers. Where you have treaded, death will follow. I will burn down the entirety of House Visca: His wife, son, brothers and niece… all of them will pay for your trespass. I will erase Sanctuary from existence. I will bomb Dalaran out of the sky, I will return their last bastion of hope in Orgrimmar back to the ashes from whence it raised from. I will imprison your little friend… the Arath’dorei girl, she will learn the truth of you, she will learn why she will be brought to her fate was because you couldn’t keep your mouth shut. And then you will Beg me to end your life, what I will do to you once I am done will become a merciful killing, have I made myself clear?”

 

“Please… no…”

 

“Have I Made Myself Clear?”

 

Vathelan was silent for a moment; he wondered how much of this was possible. The horrors that Raeventus spoke of played through his mind… and he quickly decided that he had no desire to test his luck, to tempt the man to try any of these things. “…I-I understand Director.”

 

“Then perhaps you are not wholly hopeless after all.” Vathelan could swear he could hear that smug smirk on his face from his tone, which shifted almost without warning. “Now that we have sorted out that unpleasant matter, we can focus on the business at hand. I am sure you are wondering where my men are taking you.”

 

Vathelan did not respond, instead he took the couple of seconds allotted for a response to try to alleviate himself from the taunting within his ear. Having everything you care about threatened as if were nothing was quite unwell for the psyche. And he didn’t want to get an Evaluation and accidentally slip on what he knew… resulting in such threats being a reality.

 

“We have had reports that your Subject is on the move, and we have yet to receive your Tactical Analysis Report on them. The Seer still desires to know if they will be a boon or a hindrance to our cause. Either way, we must make preparations… preparations we need that intelligence for.”

 

                “Wait…” Almost on cue, they stopped dragging him along the ground. The shackles would be unlocked and they would begin to raise him to his feet. “…That doesn’t explain where I’m going?”

 

                “Dalaran.” Rather than hearing the smug voice of Magister Raeventus in his ear, the voice reverberated from behind him. The hood they had put upon his face was ripped off and a foot was set to his back and kicked him forward. Before Vathelan could ask any more questions, the bright lights of the Translocator would fire and the scenery before him changed from the frosty installation, to the worn torn streets of a city usually so full of wonder. Mana seemed to be coalescing towards the centre of the city.

 

                Magister Froswhisper began to try to navigate the city that had turned into a battlefield for safety, his breathing haggard from the pain in his chest.  “CITIZENS OF AZEROTH.” A famous voice bellowed, one of Archmage Khadgar… a notable one time denizen of Shattrath. “TODAY IS THE DAY WE TURN THE TIDE.” Intelligence reports had made mention of his return of the Kirin Tor, even that he was leading it… It spelled hope for the Sunreavers, allies of the Scryers. “TODAY IS THE DAY WE RE-TAKE OUR WORLD.”  Vathelan placed his hand to his chest, channeling frigid temperatures t o help alleviate the pain of his cracked ribs; he had to keep moving to find shelter. “AND SEND THE LEGION BACK TO THE HELL THAT SPAWNED THEM.”

 

                There would be a surge of energy that was released from whatever it was the Kirin Tor were doing. “OUR PATH IS CLEAR.” Vathlean began to lean on the walls for support, his eyes spotting a place of promised refuge: The Legerdemain Lounge. The flash of light would consume everything in its path, including the walls he leaned on and even himself. He was familiar with this kind of spell, though not at such a large scale… a teleportation, but to where? “THE PILLIARS OF CREATION AWAIT. ON THE BROKEN ISLES!” On the war-front, Vathlean should have known. He would have cursed his luck… but for a brief moment, all of Dalaran and its people would blink from existence…

 

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                …And within the very next moment, the famous floating city blinked right back into existence. In nothing more than a couple beats of the heart, the entire city had teleported leagues upon leagues away. From the southern reaches of the Eastern Kingdoms to a set of islands so far north that they neighbored the roof of the world, the spell had worked. As with any normal teleportation spell, the world would slightly displace to accept the new occupant of that particular space—the problem was with such a large target, the astronomical amount of variables that could go wrong in such calculation for such a spell made the likeliness of perfection a delusion. Anyone who was close to Khadgar during the conception of this plan had the slightest warning before they had attempted such a feat. It was a horribly dangerous plan, the amount of things that could go wrong… well; just pray it wouldn’t be of your concern.

 

                And had Magister Vathelan Frostwhisper known, perhaps he would have simply been thankful that the consequences of such a thing weren’t more dire for him. To keep moving, the dulled pain from his frost and the exhaustion threatening to claim him at any moment, he had come to lean on the wall for support. And in the move, between the energy making things slightly incorporeal for ease of transfer and a fraction of an unaccounted for variable in the spell—the shoulder of his robe’s cloth had fused with the wall. Something Vathelan was not aware of until he took his next step. The resulting pain that wrecked through him thanks to his ribs from the way his Scryer uniform gripped at him would be as if an ogre had decided to give one a bear hug. The young magister opened his mouth to give an involuntarily soundless scream, not even his frost magic had the power to numb it enough.

 

The pain was so overwhelming; it threatened to send him into shock. His framed eyes looked, longingly so, at the door to the Ledgermain Lounge that was not more than just a few feet from him now. He thoughtlessly formed a shard of ice within his hand, coalescing the humidity around them until he had enough to create it, focusing his small concentration on making the edge facing away from him as sharp as he possibly could. The result would be an improvised knife made out of nothing but ice, one of which he would use to start trying to slice away at the cloth… each movement rewarding him a sharp agony, that built further upon what already threatened him sending him closer and closer to the verge of shock.

 

The makeshift blade would continue its sloppy but relentless assault until the threads of the Scryer uniform’s shoulder finally gave way—never had he been so frustrated with such fine tailoring! But, as it seemed this night would go, it came with a cost. An instant after the flushing victory of freedom, came the biting frost of the shard and the warmth of his blood that flowed from the resulting injury. The heat of the blood ate away at the edged ice almost as if acid, but that didn’t really matter as he tossed the shard onto the ground as this time he was verbal in his grunting pain. With his now free hand it was all he could do to grip at his shoulder, feeling the heat of the blood—almost like magma upon his chilled skin-- as he stumbled the last bit towards the door of inn. The momentum and lack of ability to function fully would result in a loud thud on the door of the Lounge’s door. One, to his luck, they answered.

 

                Vathlean could hear the grinding of wood against the door before it opened, his ear so close to the entrance as he lay upon their steps. His breathing was ragged and despite his efforts, he could feel his life fluids draining from him upon the stone. As such he was thankful when the door opened, and he heard in his native tongue, “What the Fel happened to you?”

 

The young Magister was being lifted up to his feet, his mind racing as he tried to find the best way to explain what happened without breaking his non-disclosure agreement. He couldn’t be sure this man wasn’t a spy for Raeventus… or—his heart sank when he was at eye level. Those blue eyes filled the young man with so much distrust, even more so than the Director did. He knew what they were responsible for, what he himself narrowly escaped. Perhaps more than the man did himself, considering he saw the aftermath. Even still, he knew how horrible an idea it was to spit in the face of a man who could be his potential rescuer. So instead he came up with a lie that seemed wholly reasonable, “…Demons?”

 

“They really messed you up!” The Quel’dorei looked over the man again before taking Vath’s arm and throwing it over his shoulder and dragged him inside. “You’re one of those Heroes then? That helped save this city before The Six cast that spell? Anything we can do to help you? You really look like hell.”

 

“…Need room… and medic….” Vathelan wheezed in pain, the frost spell quickly wearing off. If the Quel’dorei thought he was some sort of hero that saved the city, and if it got him a chance to rest and get medical attention, Vathelan would be a fool to correct him, even if the magister planned on paying for such regardless.

 

“Of course! Of course!” The man looked over to the woman checking their inventory, the chaos seeming to be something a bit more manageable now. “Amisi! Key to Room Six, and then go get Josie. This man needs medical attention.”

 

The human female raised a brow at the two male elves for a moment before nodding, pulling a key off the rack behind her and handing it off to the Quel’dorei. She gave him a quick peck on the cheek before running off.

 

The High Elf male took the key before leading the perceived hero up the stairs, careful with each step as he was wary of the haggard breathing from the man. “I’ll admit… had my doubts about letting you guys back in after that whole fiasco… but… you guys still rushed to our aid, can’t help but wonder if Proudmoore was wrong….”

 

“She… was.” The Magister managed to speak. “I was once… in the Sun—Arg!” A misstep forced a wave of anguish to rip through him again, leading to the Quel’dorei to apologize in rapid succession before trying to coax him to continue up the stars. They would move even slower up the stairs, his breathing becoming more labored. “I… can’t. I don’t know… if I can.”

 

“If you can fight the Legion a few stairs are nothing!”

 

The Magister’s face twisted in what luckily was mistaken as physical pain rather than the conflict of lying to this man who was being so kind to him. “…How close?”

 

“We’re almost there. A few more steps, you can do it Mister…?”

 

“Frost… whisper.” The Magister breathed out. “Magist…er… Vath…elan… Frost… whisper….”

 

At last the dreaded stairs were over. Now came the trial of the hall, littered with items from the rapid departure of Dalaran from above Karazhan. Though, in comparison, this was much easier. “We’re almost there, Magister Frostwhisper. As you were saying?”

 

The Magister thought for a moment, trying to remember their conversation. Then it struck him. “I was… a Sunreaver…”

 

“…I’m sorry for your loss then, Mister Frostwhisper.” The barkeep’s voice went solemn as he remembered that day, and the violence he read about in the papers that erupted from the former leader of the Kirin Tor and the leader of the Silver Covenant’s decision to purge the city of them.

 

“Magi…ster. Magist…er… Frost… whisper.” Vathelan corrected, beaten as he was, he tried to hold on to what little dignity he had left.

 

“My apologies, Magister Frostwhisper.” The barkeep accepted the correction as he shifted the man’s weight as to better access the door to Room Six. His movements were gentle, careful not to cause the man any more pain as he guided him towards the bed. “Rest well, Magister.”

Edited by Vathelan

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                From the sweet oblivion of a much required rest, a vain attempt to forget what had transpired that night came the sudden rancid odor that brought him back to reality. An involuntary cough sent the sharp pains like daggers through his chest once more, he gasped for air as he tried not to scream from the agony of his wounds—only to force more of that horrible smell of herb into him. His eyes would shoot open, looking for the source, only to find a set of glowing green lights staring back at him.

 

                “Awake at last,” the baritone voice mocked from above him. “I was beginning to get impatient.”

 

                He must have dozed off, and judging by the pain in his ribs, it was unlikely a medical professional—this ‘Josie’—had yet to see him. The young man blinked his eyes, trying to get them to focus. Slowly, thanks to his glasses still being firmly upon his face, the dark room slowly began to pain its portrait in shades of dark grays, blues and blacks. All of which had the same fel-green glow providing what minor illumination from each set of their eyes. The first thing he would notice was how the light bounced off the intruder’s facial structure. His features looked as if they had been soft once upon a time, but weathered by some sort of constant strain. He was bald. A very strange thing for an elf.

 

                “Are we not speaking?” The bald man smirked, “The Director said that we would have to ensure that your silence was guaranteed, it seems you’ve already learned your lesson.”

 

                The stench, he tried to place it. His mind started working through its catalogues… Bloodthistle, there was a case regarding that while he was under apprenticeship of Magister Arcalos. Why was Raeventus employing Thistleheads? His eyes tried to look for more clues in the dark. The outline of his robes, was he another Inquisitor sent to torment him? He held something in his hand, something of lighter color. Looked like cloth. A towel?

 

                “Heh. Either way, I was sent to bring you a gift.” The thistlehead moved to take something out of a bag. A bottle about the size of a foot in height, maybe five inches across? Within it the liquid had a faint glow as it swirled within its container. “We thought you may need it after your hard day today.”

 

                Frostwhisper’s eyes followed the movement of the bottle, trying to use its faint light to gain more details. His fingers were long, spindly. The additional light seemed to confirm his fears of the man’s occupation. His robes fit the uniform of the Inquisition. Even now he could feel the shiver down his spine, as his mind pieced together the implications of their work. He also noticed that the robes seemed a little too tight on him compared to his experiences with Dawn. The cloth he had seen earlier proved to be a reddish color, seemingly still damp. He’d raise an eyebrow before finally speaking, “…What is it?”

 

                “Oh, so you do speak. Good. It was getting boring talking to myself, like speaking to a wall.” He lifted the bottle, “Isn’t it obvious?”

 

                The Magister gave a quick shake of his head. The low light made it hard to make out many of the details, his inquiring mind trying to figure out how long the man had been here. What the intruder could have done to him while he slumbered.

               

                “It’s alcohol. Something special we have been cooking up.”

 

                “I don’t drink.”

 

                “Well then, in case you decide to. We feel we may have gotten off on the wrong foot.”

 

                The Inquisitor began to rise from his seat upon the bed. The glow from his eyes hardly moved from the same height they were previous. This would make him short. Not only that, it would mean his body was disproportionate. His torso must be bigger than his legs. Something for him to file away for future use. Still, Vathelan Frostwhisper said nothing, deciding that potentially provoking his intruder was likely the worst move to make.

 

                “But I have delivered my message and you a clearly exhausted and in need of medical attention from your heroic defense of this fair city… something our allies, the Sunreavers, can use as a foothold back into the city. I will leave you to your swift recovery, we have much to do.”

 

                The Magister said nothing, only watching as he awaited the intruder to at long last leave him be. And still so many questions nagged at the back of his head. This was only accentuated as the short, bald man who smelled of Bloodthistle stood at the door, his fel-green eyes moving to look back at him.

 

                “If you ever need anything, Magister Frostwhisper, know we have eyes and ears everywhere. We’ll be waiting.”

 

                “I-I understand, Inquisitor.”

 

                “Good.” The voice sounded amused as the shorter man opened the door, allowing the light from outside to pour in for just a moment—revealing the Stern Faced Sun upon the bottle of alcohol before once again being almost entirely consumed by the darkness. “Rest well, Magister Frostwhisper. You have a lot of work to do.”

 

                Vathelean Frostwhisper would not get a chance to respond, the room once more dark as the door once again was locked into place. Despite the advice, the young magister would find no more rest for that evening, only able to allow his ever increasing exhaustion to claim him once the sun had once again risen to banish away the horrors of that night and allowing those below to better keep watch.

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                At last the first dawn of the turning tides had arrived. The streets of Dalaran were once again filled with those brave men and women who wanted to take the fight to the enemy, no longer content taking a defensive stance against a foe that threatened the entirety of the world. The stakes, as it seemed to always be, raised from what they were in the past of course. What was once fear of enslavement in death about four years ago, was now a struggle against total annihilation. But some things never changed.  This wasn’t any more obvious than beneath the feet of these heroes; under the streets of the city of wonders and magic was the ever present seedy underbelly of the underworld that seated itself in its labyrinthine sewers.

 

                One could argue, that regardless the city or circumstance, there were always opportunities to ply shady trades if one wished if one could capitalize on such. The Sewers during the campaign against the Legion proved that point, really. With the right amount of charisma and coin, the seemingly racially ambiguous man had convinced the guard to look the other way and effectively rent an area beyond a grating that delved even further into the depths of the tunnel network. This left the man of dubious affiliation and his contact out of sight and out of mind—perfect for their business.

 

                The hour agreed upon for his contact to meet for the transaction had not yet occurred, giving him but a brief few moments of privacy. That of which he would find much to his distaste in a keeled over position as his body forcibly tried to remove any hint of his breakfast. He was fortunate that the cloth designed to cover his facial features had been pulled down to his chin in time as he murmured obscenities to himself for the futility of trying to sate his appetite so soon after the movement of this damnable city. “Fucking Wizards…”

 

                In his ear came the vibration that someone, presumably his client, had crossed the threshold of the parameter. He would have company soon. His hands quickly grasped his hipflask, his fingers working to twist off the cap to hear the heavenly hiss of its contents. He would take a swig of the mixture though he knew it was likely in vain before pulling back up the cloth. This ensured, including the goggles, the mask would censor his face from his client’s discerning eyes as he awaited them to round the corner.

 

                “Nice place.” It took less than a minute for his client to round the corner, a goblin as he had been warned about. With him he carried a metal case cuffed to his right side. It seemed they had brought the merchandise as promised. Good. “What? Couldn’t afford a Parlor Suite?”

 

                “Too obvious. Too many eyes.” The agent shook his head. “I assume that is the merchandise?”

 

                “Maybe. You have the gold?” The Goblin grinned.

 

                The Agent’s fingers were deft in the movement, quickly procuring a golden ingot from a pocket on his person. He held it up so that the light shimmered upon the bar, the faint look of a stern-faced sun could be discerned from the motion. “We have a whole pallet of these for you, in our vault with a device that will allow you to carry it out of there with ease. All you need do is to present the key to the banker, and she’ll handle the rest. Now… you have the shards?”

 

                The goblin lifted the metal case.

 

                “Show me.”

 

                “Alright, Alright. No trust in this industry anymore, I swear.” The goblin flashed a grin as he rolled the dials on either side of the case and set a key into the center before opening it to show the agent its contents. The tunnel they were in would suddenly get significantly colder. A good sign. The Agent would slowly approach the case, tapping the side of his goggle as he hummed, trying to observe the shards in spite of the growing fog from the temperature differences.

 

                “Seems we have a deal.”

 

                “Not so fast.” The goblin slammed the case closed. He flashed another grin, “The Ebon Blade said they would pay double what you offered… Can you match that?”

 

                 “We have done some shopping around for buyers, have we?” The Agent’s lips twisted in a grin, one that would be invisible to the goblin. He recognized the face of this bastard all right. Gently the Agent placed the bar in the Goblin’s hand. “Then we’ll give you two pallets. My employer is far too interested in this artifact to let it slip from his fingers. I’m sure he’ll understand.”

 

                The Goblin gripped at the bar, his grin growing larger as he played with the weight of it. It seemed solid enough, a good personal cut on the deal. The amount of coins that a skilled minter could make out of a bar… it proved quite worthwhile. “Then my employer will be pleased as well. I think we have ourselves a deal.”

 

                A clean transaction, if a bit costly. The Agent handed over the key to the vault promising two pallets stacked his height of gold ingots; the Goblin handed over the metal case containing shards of a legendary blade. Both were to part ways now, the Agent allowed the Goblin first departure. Behind the goggles he watched as the goblin was nearing the corner, his hand reaching for his revolver. “…There seems a problem.”

 

                The Goblin stopped, his mind racing where this transaction could have gone wrong. Had he proven too greedy? His eyes tried to look at the man behind him, but couldn’t get a good look from this position. Reluctantly he turned about face on his heel—only to see a revolver pointed at him. “Whoa, whoa, there buddy… let’s not do anything we’d regret now! Eh?” His hand reached for the streets above him to show he meant no harm.

 

                The pistol within the Agent’s left hand was firmly aimed at the Goblin’s skull, at this range it was a guaranteed kill. He was scared. Good. His right hand reached for the goggles, plying them from his face, revealing the mismatched eyes.

 

                “No! You’re supposed to be dead!”

 

                The Agent said nothing, his gloved finger gently applying pressure upon the trigger.

 

                “Ah shit.”

 

                The gunfire cracked the tense air, its sound rumbling down either side of the tunnel as the green bastard’s brain matter splattered on the wall behind him. With a short stride the Agent searched the corpse to recover both the key and the ingot. His cut for the transaction after all, he wasn’t sure if he was going to take it until now. He slid the bar into one of the many pockets of his gear before fishing out a handful of gold coins, throwing them in a rolling fashion to the direction the Goblin was headed. Either they would make their destined target, those who allowed this meeting to happen—or whoever finally came to dispose of the smell would find them, and decide that this was not worth looking into. Either way, it didn’t matter. The money would do the talking and he would go about his business onto his next mission.

 

                He returned his revolver to his holster, before making an about face to delve further into the pipeline. Satisfied with the outcome, one hand pulled at the mask once more to reveal a smirk as he took out a single cigarette from its pack. After lighting it, he took out a curious device, pressing into it in an odd rhythm.

 

- .-. .- -. ... .- -.-. - .. --- -. / -.-. --- -- .--. .-.. . - . .-.-.- / - .- .-. --. . - / -.- .. .-.. .-.. . -.. .-.-.- / .... . .- -.. . -.. / - --- / .-. . -. -.. . --.. ...- --- ..- ... .-.-.-

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Ninorra walked through the portal, her hands itching for something to hold onto. She hummed a quiet tune, summoning her scythe from it's resting place in one of her enchanted bags. Holding on to the enormous weapon gave the warlock a sense of security. It glowed a familiar red color, similar to the warlock's eyes that iluminated the space in front of her as she walked into the unfamiliar room. Looking around for something to ground her, Ninorra paused to look behind her and saw that the portal leading to the room was gone. With a deep calming breath, she took another step forward and called out to anyone who might hear her. "..hello?"

Her cursory glances would reveal a well lit and decently sized room, the shelves along the walls filled with various tomes. Behind her, where one may have expected a portal to return was a wall mounted mirror intended for someone much larger than herself with the markings of Sin'dorei craftsmanship. As she called out, a voice in the corner of the room at a desk responded. “You don’t need to shout. Miss… Bloodstone, I assume?”

The owner of the voice was a blonde gentleman with handsome features, his voice invited warmth, all seemed to clash with the black robes he wore that covered all but his framed face. Where Vathelan’s glasses were rounded, this man’s were thin and square. “It is good to finally see some results from Frostwhisper.”

Ninorra turned to the blonde gentleman with glasses and smiled, surprised by his cordial nature. "Oh! My apologies. Yes, I am Ninorra Bloodstone." Walking toward his desk, she spared a glance at the room around her. The tomes especially caught her eye, and she made a mental note of them as she turned back to face the bespectacled elf. "Vathelan was kind enough to lead me here. I am the 'handler', as it were."

“A pleasure, would you prefer me to address you as ‘Miss’ or ‘Lady’?” For the first time in their meeting, it seemed his full attention came to her. As she looked around once more she may even notice how the room seemed to be of Dalaran architecture, though the furnishings seemed much more Elven in nature. The books seemed to be of a wide variety of subjects, ordered thusly. “You may address me as ‘House’, if you so wish. My honorific is unimportant.”

"Ninorra will do," she replied, extending a hand toward House, smiling mischeviously. "I take more pride in being a fel-slinging bard than a lady."

“As you wish, Ninorra.”  He took the hand offered, one curling his fingers around her own the other resting above them his moves are gentle and refined. As close as he was, she may notice images forming in his spectacles and the Scryer tabard in a black scheme upon his chest. “I must say, you are a cut above most who visit.”

The warlock shook House's hand gently and cocked her head, regarding him curiously. "Oh? You must not have many visitors," she jested, throwing the gentleman a wink. "Though I must say, it is rather difficult to find your office. I would imagine that might considerably limit good company."

 “The Director’s orders, I am afraid.” His eyes were piercing behind the frames of which he viewed the world from, only further accentuated by his small smirk. “But I am sure you are anxious to get started?” Ninorra grinned, her grip tightening on her scythe, red eyes flashing just a little more brightly. "Absolutely. Lead the way, House."

 “You have one more trip to make before you make it to our compound where we keep Him, I am afraid.” He let’s go of the woman’s hand, turning about face and heading deeper into this mysterious area. “Him being kept here could have proven… disastrous. When you arrive at your final destination, the Director will need to go over some finer points of your duties as well as issue you some equipment to help aide you in your attempts to keep Him under your control.” He spoke as they headed down a hall.

Ninorra followed House closely, taking note of her surroundings as he led her deeper into the secret areas. "Disastrous, you say? Poor dear.. he sounds very unhappy. Do you know of the sort of equipment they will be issuing me?"

 “The process was quite unpleasant from what I have gathered,” they would stop at a door, of which he would use some sort of spell that removed a ward from the pathway. “They will be granting you one of our insignias, I suspect, as well as an additional counter-measure to keep you alive or two should he prove… difficult.”

"Oh, how kind of them," she giggled, reaching to open the door. "One cannot be too careful, I suppose."

“Indeed.” House opened the door, revealing a bare room save for a large… gateway of some sort. The construct in question would be built in a strange design that looked like a marriage of Sin’dorei aesthetic sensibilities and something more… alien. The thing was encased in what looked like some sort of gold filigree, but still spoke of arcane concepts. House would hold the door for her to enter, closing it behind her once she did so.

"Another door," Ninorra chuckled, casting a wave at House before walking to the other gateway. "Thank you for your guidance. Wish me luck!" As the door closed, she approached the strange construct. With her scythe to lead her forward, the warlock approached the alien looking design and studied it for a moment before stepping inside.

House held his hand out for the Scythe. “You won’t need that where you are going, I can have it sent back to your home for you.”

"Oh..." She frowned at the idea and considered for a moment before handing him the weapon. "Very well. Just be careful with it. He is known to grow hungry."

As soon as the hilt of the weapon were to touch his gloved hand, it vanished from the room in a blink of an eye. House nodded in approval. “Simply access your mailbox when you get home.” He spoke before pulling out a strange glowing necklace and set it into the podium behind him. The Machine began to hum to life, and he started to make motions as if pressing some sort of buttons before it fired up and formed a visionless portal within its maw. “It was a pleasure to meet you, Ninorra. Come back to visit any time you wish—Magistrix Dawn will be awaiting you on the other side.”

"Oh, how delightful," the warlock said with a smirk, her mind drifting to her last encounter with the Magestrix. Ninorra waved goodbye to House and stepped into the portal.

The first thing she would notice is the deathly chill of the world around her, soon after would come the obvious barrier of pulsating blue and purple intertwining in color surrounding her. If she looked down she would see an encased rune of some sort… the markings bearing distinct similarities to a summoning circle.

Frowning at the rune, Ninorra looked up and around at her surroundings. Empty-handed, she felt somewhat naked, despite the thick robes covering her. "Hello? Your dog-walker is here."
 “IDENTITY CONFIRMED” A voice would call over some sort of overhead speaker system.

A second longer and the barrier would fall, revealing her escort who held a vial in her hand. “Good Evening Lady Bloodstone, I apologize for the cold. Take this, it will help. And then we’ll go see the Director.” She smiled, though as always it wasn’t always entirely pleasant. The stench of Fel that rolled over her now in the frosty air did nothing to help with that.

Ninorra raised an eyebrow at the other woman and took the vial offered to her. She considered the possibility of it being poisoned and shook her head, taking a deep breath before drinking the contents. "Thank you, dear. Let's go see this Director. I've been through a very long series of doors to get here."

“Yes, a convoluted way to get here. It helps keep the undesirables from finding our location.” The Magistrix spoke before turning to lead the way, over a couple flights of stairs she would have time to get a better look of this place. It looked… more ancient than it should reasonably be, with new additions such a support beams being added to keep the area well secure for… something. The cobbled floor remained in some places. Others it was being pried away in favor of metal grating. “Any questions before you reconvene with Director Raeventus?”

"Not many," the warlock answered, her heels clicking as they walked along the cobbled floors. "Though I hear my charge has been less than pleased with his accomodations? I imagine the Director will want to tell me about it himself, but, if you have any insight I am curious."

As they approached an alcove, the glyphs upon the floor glowing for a moment—before something else beyond them trigged it, causing the floor to shoot up to serve as an elevator for them. Here she regarded the question. “He is anxious to rejoin the fight, after his little… rebellion… removed him from it. And he is also having troubles adjusting to the new chain of command.”
"Well I can understand that much. Going through adjustments can be painful. I only hope he does not blame me for my part in his new role," she mused. "What sort of rebellion?"

“He had apparently found a way to elude us for hours at a time… temporarily escaping our influence and observation. We have no idea what he was doing during these hours, so we pulled him off the field until we could find someone that may be able to watch him more closely.” She stepped off the elevator and proceeded to walk upon a winding staircase around the entirety of a room. In the centre was a tube that went from the floor to the ceiling—originally. Now it was shattered, as if something had busted out of it. "I doubt he would blame you for this, however. Any more questions?"

Ninorra followed the Magistrix up the staircase. "My scythe was taken by House, before I arrived. I believe he mentioned something about equipment? I was undeer the impression that my fel-song skills would be used for this task."

"They will be, we just want to give you a better chance at survival. Your death would, at the least, potentially bring unwanted attention to our workings.”

Ninorra laughed. "Oh, that would be the least of your concerns.. thank you, dear. I look forward to meeting the Director once again."

 “I’m sure.” Her voice makes it impossible for her to decipher its intent, but here the steps lead to one more door. The Magistrix pressed a button, and after a minute, the door would pry itself free… revealing the Director of Scryer Asset Protection and Acquisition sitting at a large multi-paneled desk.

Ninorra approached the desk, smiling with sincere relief. "Well, that was certainly a long walk. I'll have to remember not to wear heels next time. Hello, Director."

 “It’ll be faster next time.” The Director gave a small smile. “Please, have a seat and excuse the mess. The Shattered Son is not the only thing we have worked so tirelessly to rebuild for such a time of crisis.”

Behind her the massive double doors slammed shut.

Ninorra sat down as directed and folded one leg over the other. She placed her hands on her knee and sat up straight, befitting a lady. "Not to worry. I know a thing or two about working amongst chaos."

 “A talent that will prove useful in this campaign, I’m sure.” Behind the man were three banners. The central and most prominent was the Stern-faced Sun she had begun to see more commonly in her workings thus far with them, to the left was the symbol of the Scryers and to the right of the Sun was the crest of Silvermoon. The majority of this large room, was barren as if this was a more recent habitation.

His desk was a different story, littered mostly with files paperwork and strange Arcane Gadgets—the most notable was to his far right, a singular grey cube that seemed to have the surface area of 25 inches per side that effortlessly floated as it bathed in a blue light colum that emenated from the desk. It would occasionally pulse a glyph or set. But it seemed Raeventus paid it no mind for the time being.

Ninorra kept her gaze on the Magister and remained still for the time being. Though there was an air of excitement around her, she seemed content to wait for instructions. "let us hope so. I am hearing a few stories concerning our 'Shattered son' and his discontent. I do hope I can soothe his mood a bit."

“He is used to being the top of the food chain; he needs to learn that isn’t the case any longer. When he fell, the world went on without him. It was only then we were able to bring him back.” The Director’s hand went for something in a shelf at his desk, a large gathering of papers. “If you can soothe him, gain his trust… that may be what we need to get him to reveal more of his secrets to us. I know he’s hiding more that could give us the tactical advantage needed to win this war.”

"Well, never let it be said that I am not a people-person.." She giggled, bobbing her foot gently. "I will do what I can to find more of these secrets that you need.." She smiled and looked up in thought. "I can be quite persuasive when I need to be."

 “Excellent. The sooner this war is over, the less casualties we will have.” He slid the gathering to the Warlock. “Your contract, with the addendum we discussed.”

Ninorra reached for the contract and began to read. She leaned back in her chair and went over the words carefully, her ears twitching every so often. After a few minutes, she smiled and nodded to the Director. "This seems reasonable."

Behind her came footsteps and Dawn would return into view as Raeventus nodded in agreement. “I’m glad you agree. I will reiterate that your Husband is under your supervision in the eyes of our Party. Should he fail to keep the secrets you tell him, you too shall be held accountable.”

Dawn would procure the same type of metallic quill that Magister Frostwhisper had used, and held out her hand for Ninorra’s.

"Oh, you needn't worry yourself about him. I will be certain to hold him accountable," she said reassuringly, taking the metallic quill in her hand before signing her name with a flourish. She handed the signed contract back to Raeventus. "My husband knows where his bread is buttered."

Dawn, seemingly ignored gave Raeventus a wide eyed look subtly motioning at the Warlock before them. The Director merely waved off the concern—and the Magistrix back stepped away to allow the conversation to continue then as she handed the contract back to him. He smiled at her, warm as ever in this dismal office. “I do hope it doesn’t come to that. But now that we have that out of the way, I have a few items for you to further enable you in your duties.” His hand deposited the Contract somewhere before fishing for something else.

Ninorra moved to the edge of her seat, clearly eager to recieve whatever materials were about to be placed in her care. There was a certain childlike excitement in her demeanor, as if she were about to recieve a gift.

Director Raeventus pulled out three items for her: An insignia that had the prominent banner’s emblem upon it, a jeweler’s box and a rectangular pane of glass encased in metal and leather to protect it. “As you have met Frostwhisper, you may be familiar with two of these."

Ninorra eyed the objects carefully, studying them with her eyes. "I believe you are correct."

“Excellent. Do you know how to work them?”

"I would appreciate a demonstration. Vathelan did not explain how they were used and I would rather not misuse them."

“Very well.” The Director picked up the Insignia. “This emblem of our Political Party uses the Scryer technology in order to transmit data, voice communications, and authorization to various Security measures. Ours even allow a beacon for us to pick up for us to summon a portal for your return here to base.”

Ninorra nodded, wathing as the Director instructed her on the use of the insignia. "Far more advanced than our hearthstones, then. Please, continue."

 “That transmitting of data, while useful, is limited thanks to its invisibility from our eyes. That is why this was developed,” The Director picked up the Glass Scroll in his other hand. “It is able to give you a more concise way of finding the information you desire, as well as placing it upon something you can view it from.” He placed the Emblem in the bottom right corner, “We then press our thumb upon the glass to ensure it is us, not someone else who grabbed our device. As he provided her the example, the entirety of the Glass lit up. “From there the Glass will being to learn your habits enough to better accommodate you in your searches. They have gotten advanced enough to send entire reports from to our Arcane Network for someone with the right privileges to find and read.”

"Goodness.." She looked carefully at the glass scroll. "I suppose I will be expected to make reports concerning my charge?"

"Correct."

"How often will this be required?"

 “When you have new information to give us. We will be dissecting the data within in order to gain us more insight into his mental and emotional health, any unexpected side effects of the process, or even a better tactical view of the situation. This will be of vital importance for both research and our campaign.”

"Understood. I will be sure to keep track of any changes."

“Good. Now… that leaves one more piece of equipment that we are placing in your possession.” He opens the jewelry box, revealing a gold bracelet with a red gem in the center.
"Lovely. An early Winterveil for me," she giggled, eyeing the bracelet. "What does this one do?"

The Director started to mess with the Glass Scroll for a moment, and then an ethereal voice came from both the Bracelet and the Insignia: ‘AI:Vindicator Synchronization initialized.’
Once satisfied he began to explain. “This is a new device we are attempting in order to aid you in keeping control of the Weapon. One rune,” he drew it on a spare sheet of paper, “Will use the mana in his blood to use his own strength against him—temporarily paralyzing him. The other…” He cleared his throat as he drew the rune as well. Dawn came back with two large sheathed rune blades. “Will authorize the use of these weapons; allowing the blade to release from their bindings. The runelock will reactivate anytime the weapons are sheathed.”
Dawn spoke up, “We are also going to allow you to present them to him, in hopes the gift will help build a bond between the two of you.”

Ninorra's eyebrows rose with surprise as she looked on the blades. "Well, who would not appreciate such a thoughtful gift?" She chuckled. "A reasonable idea, though. We will see just how much he appreciates them."

Dawn gave a curt nod. “He will likely appreciate what it means in the least. Are we done here?”

Ninorra stood. "I believe so." Looking toward the Director, she nodded at the items. "May I?"

"You may." The Director nodded. And with that Dawn was already headed towards the door.

Ninorra collected the various items and placed most of them into her enchanted bag, save for the bracelet, which she wore immediately. Holding her wrist up toward the light, she smiled and admired the trinket before turning back the Director. "Thank you, sir. I look forward to beginning my assignment."

The warlock bowed her head respectfully, and followed Dawn to the door.

If she paid any mind to the Glass Scroll when she set it away she would see it was at a twenty-three percent synchronization rate with whatever this ‘Vindicator’ was, though the slight pulsing once every fifteen seconds where the red gem would turn blue was probably a lot more obvious.

The Director would bow his head in turn, “I do pray we will hear some results from you soon.” And with that Magistrix Dawn had already opened the door and begun her stride towards wherever it was they were keeping this weapon within this military complex. Ninorra followed close behind, humming quietly to herself.

And down the two would go once more, encircling the room of the shattered pillar and into the alcove elevator. It was here Dawn would hand off the blades to the Handler, “It won’t do us any good if I keep them.” She would claim.

Ninorra took the blades. They were a bit heavy in her hands, but she held on to them all the same. Bowing her head to the magistrix, she smiled broadly. "Quite the weapons they are."
 “Fitting for the man.”

The elevator would come to a stop, and already the Magistrix continued her march through this frozen complex. They would circle around the outer most ring from the central teleportation circle, going around to pass one massive set of doors before stopping at the next. If she scanned the area she may have noticed that there were four sets in total, all in opposing quarters of the Complex. Each of them with a guard station installed, this one was no different. The solider on duty looked over the two of them and her cargo, he didn’t say a word. He simply activated the door, it rumbling open and allowing them to pass. There would be much less stone here, most of it metal, including the grating they walked upon.

Ninorra glanced around at her surroundings, fairly certain that at this point she would not be able to remember how it was they got there. Frowning to herself, her cheerful expression faltered for just a moment as she continued on.

It would not be long before they came to a large, though not nearly as massive or impressive as the door previous. Here they stopped, Dawn’s spindled fingers grasping upon her emblem, holding it before a panel that would quickly shoot open—giving a brief reprieve to both the silence and cold that surrounded them.

Inside was what appeared to be almost an arena of sorts. They would find themselves in the stands amongst men, seeming to be Blood Knight and Ranger alike, cheering and placing wagers on the barred sparring floor of considerable size below. On the sidelines was a man of a distinct set of armor compared to the rest of them, double blades at his hips who seemed to be directing the commotion within the actual ring. A tall and muscular white haired Elven man in simple linens who seemed to be holding at bay a fist of a Golem that was over twice his size.
As the Magistrix started to descend the steps, the crowd behind her quickly began to quiet itself, each step towards the Knight overseeing this killing the mood of the room.

Ninorra's eyes went wide at the sight of the fighting. She smiled at the sight, her cheeks flushed with pleasure at the display of violence and masculinity. She smiled at the Magistrix before turning back to the Knight at the center of the attention. "My my.." she said quietly. "What have we here?"

Already some of the men were starting to try to slip past the Magistrix’s attention as her back was turned, quickly trying to go back to their duties without so much of a fuss. The woman did not halt her advance until she was at the man’s side. From above, the conversation that took place would be lost in their travel—until the Battlemaster shouted into the room, while pulling a lever to retract the barricades meant to protect the audience. “All right men, show’s over! Back to work! I catch any of you lollygagging and it’ll be your hide!”

As the barricades were finally down, one could see better the arena at the feet of these combatants still in a stalemate. It was a gore of Golem remnants of previous conquests. Dawn waved over the handler as she addressed the man as locked in a contest unyielding strength. “Operative, I have brought you a visitor,” her voice almost sang to the man.

Ninorra followed Dawn's lead and smiled brightly, holding tightly to the weapons provided to her. "Hello!" She sang, unable to wave with the swords in her hands. "It's a pleasure to meet you! My name is Ninorra. Would you perhaps like to release your friend and see what I've brought you?"

The sound of her voice brought the giant out of his focused concentration, a voice vaguely familiar spoke. “…Nin…?”As his grip relaxed from the contest of strength, his face turning to confirm the truth of the identity, the Golem gained the upper hand and forced the Elven male to the ground—crushing him under the massive weight of its fist.

"Oh goodness!" Ninorra said, horrified, the blood draining from her face. She ran toward the golem and, still holding the swords, sang a screeching melody that engulfed the creature in shadow magic.


"Crumble, break, into the earth
"Join the element of birth
"Strength be gone, writh in pain
"Only horror will remain"


The full force of the punch would lead to attempting to crush its prey, until its next target would be acquired thanks to her interference. As shadow magic blasted at the golem, it would return with a beam to scan its new target as it began to rise.

“Power it down. Now.” Dawn shouted at the Battlemaster.

“Y-yes, Inquisitor!” Quickly he was starting to work the control panel as the stomps of the behemoth continued its imposing march.

Ninorra frowned at the golem, her mouth twisted to one side of her face as she gathered spells in her hands. "Careful big boy," she said to the golem, her red eyes flashing mischeviously. "I've brought down mechanical creations much scarier than you."

As the shadow magic ate away at the outlines of the Golem as acid would, it continued its march towards the Warlock.“TURN IT OFF. THIS INSTANT.”

“I’m trying Madam Inquistior!” The Battlemaster shouted back in fear of the consequences of failure. His hands working as quickly as the gauntlets upon them would allow.

“Resistance is Fu—“ The light within the ocular vent would flicker, the shadow still eating away at the construct before its power core finally shut off, forcing it to collapse upon its own weight.”

Ninorra shook her head and approached the fallen Knight, kneeling beside him. She placed the swords beside her and used her hands to turn him over. "Come now dear, wake up," she said gently, using her hands to sweep the hair from his face.

The warlock's mouth hung open.

"..Draco?"

The emerald eyes of the Knight looked up at her, confused, his body’s veins beginning to glow momentarily around the areas that took the most damage upon his form. “…Ninorra, Is that…? I did not think you made it.”

Ninorra swept the hair from Draco's face gently, her own expression melting in a combination of emotions ranging from shock to relief. "Of course I did," she said in a hushed voice, her words choked in her throat. "It was you I thought was gone. They said you died, Draco. And you never even said goodbye."

 “One less person I failed then.” His eyes looked away from his companion. At the mention of his death he gave a sad smile, “…I did. I was prepared to ensure peace for our people for… a long time. It cost me dearly, and it seems my time of rest is over. After all the work I have done, I was still unable to prevent the Legion’s return in full force upon our world.”

"Stop being so selfish," she said with a reassuring smile, tears in her eyes. Ninorra reached up to wipe them away with her fingertips. "You are not responsible for every wrongdoing in this world. I'm afraid your shoulders are not nearly large enough for that burden. Now get up and hug me, before I completely lose my composure and embarass myself further."

 “Not every wrong doing, just defending our people from them.” He retorts as forces himself up, the loose linen shirt exposing more of his chest as he does so. He then offers his hand to her to raise her along with him, in spite of his towering presence. “It is good to see you again.”

Ninorra took his hand and stood, smirking up at the enormous elf. "Ah yes, I'd forgotten how very business-centric you are.. here.." she leaned over and picked up the swords, straining with their weight as she presented them to him. "These.. nng.. are for y-you."

Draco took them, to no surprise considering holding his own against that large of a golem, with no effort. He set one to lean on him as he inspected the other. His hands moved to try to pull the blade from its sheath… to no avail. His eyes narrowed for a moment before he gave another gentle smile, and placing it aside. “A shame I am not outfitted for combat at the moment, but come here.” His arms wrapped around the woman.

Ninorra giggled with pleasure as her took her into his arms, her cheeks bright red. She returned his hug, her hands clinging tight on the muscles of his back. "You have hardly changed at all..." for her part, she had changed much since he last saw her. No longer sickly thin from mana starvation, she was curvy with a healthy glow. Her skin seemed slightly darker, and her touch was warmer than might have been normal. "You will have to tell me about all of your adventures."

 “I wish that were true.” He gave a small chuckle. He could feel how she gripped at his back, his memories of his conversations about her with his father nagging at the back of his mind. She would feel the warmth of the energies burning through his veins up his back and towards his skull once more. “If my assumption as to why you have been brought here is true, I do suppose we shall have the time… though we must not allow us to distract us from what is most important. I can at least tell you the declassified sections.”

"That is enough for me," she said warmly, looking up at him with red eyes. "I was intended to be your handler. They said that you were not cooperating. Draco..." she eyed him with a smirk. "You will have to behave yourself with me. I don't want to have to 'punish' you.." she added with a wink.

 “I was applying my skill set where it would be most effective.” The Knight growled momentarily. “I do not care what whomever thinks he is in command thinks. I am trying to limit our casualties by being the most effective at what I was brought back to do.”

"And you will, dear, but you will also have to trust me. I will not lead you astray." She reached up to pat his shoulder gently. "We can do this together. We do not have to quarrel."

 “So long as you do not get in my way, we have an accord.”

Ninorra raised an eyebrow and placed her hands on her hips. "Get in your way, Draco?"

“I will not be hindered in my mission.” He cannot help but stare her down, the blue energy igniting through his veins reached his skull, tracing itself back to his eye sockets where they would once again activate, turning his eyes a bright sapphire once again. “Our people’s lives are at stake, and I will not risk them simply because someone is second guessing my tactics or judgment.”

"Draco..." she said calmly, reaching up to touch his face with her warm fingertips. "Do not try to intimidate me. You left for Outland without a word, and I remained behind. Alone. I learned the demonic arts to serve my people, and I did that alone. I have served in every single campaign, fought side by side with monsters and cretins, all while the fel whisper in my ear. I do it for my people, because as you know, I have seen what happens when we allow the worst to happen. I will not see it happen again. So," she ran the tips of her nails down his cheek. "You cannot frighten me. So do not try."

 “You were meant to stay where you were safe.” His tone was stern. “I am not attempting to intimidate you, I am merely stating fact: I will carry out my mission, I will do what I was brought back to do. If you want to help? So be it, you will have no trouble. This war must be ended before it consumes our people.”

"I know that better than you think. I am not innocent any longer, dear," she said firmly, before smiling again. "I can do more than help. All I ask is that you trust me."

“I do not trust anyone any longer, I died Alone for the cause.” He hoisted the sheathed blades upon his shoulder as he started to march towards the door, his blue burning eyes looking back at her for a moment. “But… I suppose that comes with the job. Come, we have Demons to slay.”

"Always one for the dramatic, Draco," the warlock said with a sigh. "You needn't use it with me. We are friends, aren't we?"

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It was midday in Quel'thalas when Ninorra and Draco appeared in the warlock's home. They materialized in the sitting room, still in robes and armor from their mission to Draenor. "Much better," Ninorra sighed, pulling down her hood to shake out her hair. The sitting room was obviously decorated by her, as leopard print throws lay on most of the red and black furniture.

Draco scanned the room, ensuring that no one else was within the area. “Is it safe… to remove my helm now?”

"Quite safe," Ninorra said as she leaned her scythe against the umbrella stand. "Damian is in school, and will be until the afternoon. As for my husband, I have an addition in my contract that allows him to know of you. I didn't want any unseemly rumors concerning me gallavanting about with another knight getting back to him."

The Knight gave another sound acknowledging her before removing his helm. His cropped silvery white hair is slight disarray from the constant use of the armor. Oh how he missed the comfort of his own designs, empowered by modern Scryer advances, rather than the hunk of metal he had about him. He set the helm upon the coffee table before beginning to remove his gauntlets as he finally responded with a, “I do not wish to put your family at risk.”

"My family is quite safe. We have security measures of our own. My husband is quite the accomplished engineer," she explained, removing her own gloves before retrieving the dreamcather artifact from one of her pockets. "Now, supposedly this little trinket has a way of blocking nightmares when worn. Useful, I'm certain.. but I wonder what else it can do? If there is some sort of connection to ones dreams. Tell me, Draco, are you up for a little experiment?"

 “…Are you that tired already?” He asked as a pale brow raised.

Ninorra grinned. "Oh, I wasn't thinking of exploring my own dreams."

 “I am dead Ninorra, I do not dream.” He sighs as he seems to have to explain this again. “I do not even require sleep; it is terribly dull in those hours. I have meant to ask if you could get me records of what has happened since I was killed, actually.”

Ninorra waved a hand dismissively. "I can get you the records that you require, but you are wrong about your not having dreams. Your mind still works, does it not? That means you still have a subconscious. You may not need to sleep, but that does not mean your dreams do not exist."

 “Who is to say I came back fully? I may be an echo of the man I was.” The Knight sat down on one of the sofas within the sitting room, specifically that in front of his armor. “I may only operate due to the Arcane Intelligence in my head, did you consider that?”

Ninorra shrugged and sat opposite of him on one of the large cushy looking chairs. "Perhaps we should find out then. If at least to put your mind to rest."

 “What is the point at current? My mind is clear and at rest, I am focused on what I was brought back to do: End the Legion threat. I am a Weapon for our people, the only reason I was chosen specifically and allowed to think is because I serve best as a Smart Weapon. Not just a mindless killing machine. If we wanted that, we could carpet bomb the isles with Dreadlances—assuming they figured out the propellant problem.”

"The point is to find out just how useful this artifact can be. Have you considered the possibilities of being able to invade someone's dream? Imagine a target of high importance. The secrets we could learn. Of course," she smirked at Draco and crossed one leg over the other. "I know you have no such secrets, which is why you would make a good test subject."

“So that was your plan all along was it?” He gave a bitter laugh. “How did I not see this coming? You were assigned to me in order to learn what I kept from people. Who exactly are you working for?” The Knight began to stand.

Ninorra cocked her head, amused. "I work for our people, of course. Who do you think I work for? I am the same girl you knew, all those years ago. I have not changed. Why not allow me to show you? Unless you are afraid I might find something less than savory in that mind of yours?"

 “But who exactly? I know things…” he shakes his head. “I am not worried IF you will find out something I have classified—and for good reason—but WHAT you will find. And I classified things for a reason. You do not walk the line I have without doing some things that you are not proud of.”

Ninorra stood and looked Draco in the eye as best she could. "You know there is nothing I will judge you for. Whatever happened is in the past. This is a new day, and you have a new life. Even if it is not conventional, it is still a life of sorts. I know your heart, and I still believe it to be in the right place. If not a bit misguided.." she added with a smirk. "I am the last person you need to worry about judging you."

 “And yet you avoid telling me who it is you report to.” His eyes narrowed.

"I report to Raeventus," she answered, shrugging. "You understand that I am supposed to be giving him updates. They needn't be anything of a personal nature, though. Your secrets are safe with me, but I fear you will not believe me until I prove myself, somehow. Hmm.." The warlock looked around for a moment, as if searching for something. She picked up one if the pillows and placed it on the sofa, sitting down on it to elevate herself. She beckoned him over with her palms facing upwards. "Take my hands. Let me show you exactly what has happened since you have been gone."

His brows furrowed at the name. It was clear, from his confusion; he did not know this person. He was trying to find a delicate way of putting this as he processed this information. He would slowly do as she asked before he finally gave his rebuttal. “Personal information is not what I am worried about, I am dead, my history will eventually be dug into and explored. I am more concerned with my professional decisions, those with ripples that could affect our race, being discovered and put into jeopardy.”

"Draco," Ninorra said firmly. "Sit down. I am not going to put our race in jeopardy. Your father trusted me, because he had the patience to listen. I am on your side. Let me prove it to you."

 “I never said you would do so willingly,” he sat down, taking the warlock’s hands. "Secrets are kept for a reason, however."

"I have very few secrets," she admitted, her eyes glowing brightly. Ninorra sang a tune low in her voice, the glow of her eyes appearing in Draco's as she allowed him access to her memories.

What Draco saw was a manic speed-through of portions of the warlock’s life. How hopeless and lonely she felt when Gladius died and Draco left, how she found hope in her ability to communicate with demons. How she met Vicailde in a bar while performing, and how cruel he was until they eventually fell in love. The war in Outland, her tireless work for the Scryers. The war in Northrend, the painful and difficult birth of her son. The Cataclysm, Sanctuary's betrayal. Ninorra aiding Vilmah, a fugitive of Garrosh's regime. Vicailde serving in the military as Ninorra remained behind during the campaign in Pandaria, researching her fel powers as she raised her son. The campaign in Draenor, Vicailde's disappearance, Ninorra and Corvallis traveling to another future to rescue him. The Legion's attack, the Isles. Her meeting with the Scryers, her instructions for handling Draco. In between all of this, her tumultuous romance with Vicailde, glimpses of violence, blood magic, and the overwhelming fear of eventually succumbing to the fel.

It went by so fast that by the time she was finished, it was almost as if no time had lapsed.

"As you can see," she said as the glow left Draco's eyes. "I am nothing if not loyal. Now you know everything."

 “…I never claimed you were disloyal. It is who you work for, the unknown factor, or a misstep that forces everything to collapse I fear. I have done things, ordered things to be done, that I would not allow others to know—including my widow and my adopted brother. Are you certain you wish to see these? I… am not proud of some of the things I have done to protect us, but I would do them all over again, to ensure the salvation of our people—even if through my own personal damnation.”

Ninorra nodded, her hands in his were very warm, as if she'd been holding them close to a fire. "I am sure, and I want you to know that you are still yourself. You may not dream, but I imagine your dreams remain. I think that if I can use a similar spell, with the dreamcatcher as a guide, perhaps I can see them. Shall we try?"

 “How can you be certain, even if you find what you are looking for?”

"I suppose we will find out together," she said with a calm smile. "That is what experiments are for."

Draco still looked dubious at this idea. “…As you say…”

Ninorra took a deep breath and held on to Draco's hands, singing a similar tune under her breath. Once again, the red of her eyes took over Draco's, but this time it also surrounded the dreamcatcher.

Unlike before, Ninorra would find herself standing in a dark empty space. She seemed to have a physical form in this place, and was dressed as she was in life. "Draco?" She called, her voice echoing. "Draco, it's me. Are you there?"

As soon as she made her presence known, the area exploded with the blue that emanated from his eyes. ‘Intruder’ her own mind would echo at her. But as she called him for a second time geometric shapes would form, slowly creating an image of the man she asked for. ‘Why are you here?’ The formed image would look at her, a brow raised. “Yes?”

"I'm here to see your dreams," she answered earnestly. "To see if you still possess them."

 “I told you, I am dead. The dead do not dream.” The image shook his head sadly. “How are you even intending to make this work?”

"Your mind is intact. That much is certain. Perhaps it is just a matter of letting yourself feel, again." She spread her arms. "This place is your mind. You can project any image you like. You are in full control."

 ‘He doesn’t want to cooperate.’ The Man sighed. ‘This is a fool’s errand.’ “And do what? Live out my failures once more? Reminisce on the bygone eras?”

"Whatever it is you want to see," she shrugged. "What is it you would want to dream of, if you could? What are your happiest thoughts? The moments that brought you your greatest joy, that made you who you are. Remember them, and they will guide you."

“Why? What is the point in this? I failed, I do not deserve Joy.” ‘He won’t listen, I should go.’ “Father would have done a much better job…”

"Your father was so proud of you," she said gently, approaching the image. "He would still be proud of you, if he were here. You were his joy, even in the end."

 “’Was’ being to operative word, Ninorra. I am not the son he left behind, not any longer—nor, I fear, that I shall ever see him again.” ‘He’s too stubborn; I should leave him to his misery if that is what he desires.’

"Your father lives in you. In your memories of him, he is still alive. Perhaps that is what you should see," she suggested. "I think it is what you need, now. To see him again. Remember for me. Can you?"

The Man looked at the Warlock a moment; with a sigh his hand move seemed dismissive as he faded away from existence. “Three against one is not fair.” The world of sapphire would fade to black…

Ninorra remained within the dream, calling out to Draco as the world faded to black. "Draco? Draco!" She started to panic a little. "Don't leave me here, please," she pleaded. "Don't leave me alone.."

 “War is not fair, Draco.” Before Ninorra stood the massive Lord Gladius Visca, he was dressed in full combat regalia. In both arms he carried his legendary blades, those which had murdered thousands of trolls in the wars that made him Legend. His single remaining blue eye stared slightly downward at her… much less so than she would remember previously. “War is about winning or losing to the commanding officers, it is about little more than survival to the average solider. There is no room for the concept of fairness. They will do anything to survive, and even worse… Humans breed far faster than ourselves. Above you, yes, stand your brother and Voren—but your training provides you with the edge needed to counter them. You have been keeping up with your training, correct?”

Ninorra watched the scene unfold around her. The sight of Gladius hale and hearty took the breath from her chest. "..yes," she found herself saying, an ache in her heart.

“Of course, Father.” The voice of Draco would come out of… her mouth? In her right hand she carried a long tower shield, the other a twin edged Glaive. Her… His outfit would be one also resembling the Spellbreaker attire she had seen all the guards of Silvermoon wear. As she looked around the courtyard of Visca Manor, she would see two men on opposite sides of them. Both mages. “We’ll find out if you are lying soon enough, won’t we?” Gladius gave a mischievous grin before getting in a readied stance. Ninorra would find herself mirroring such with Glaive and Shield. “And… Begin!” Her… His body would barely have time to raise the shield before the first attack came. The force felt like the world was crashing down upon them, the shockwave ripping through their right arm.

Ninorra tried to stay calm as the memory flowed through her, but could not help but feel exhilarated as she fought in Draco's body. The shock of Gladius' attack, combined with his ferocity, was impressive. She felt herself smile within the memory.

Unable to withstand the sheer power of the strike head on, Draco’s arm would move to roll the blade away as he saw the second one coming in for the kill. It took fast thinking in order to move out of the way, the glaive being used to help ensure that the narrow escape worked as intended. Then came the assaults from the rooftops, the constant stinging barrage of frost magic. To counter this, he manipulated his mana to form a shield to defend him from its harmful effects. That would help him keep his focus where it needed to be, but it was too slow—he found himself checked by a knee to the chest. “You have to think and react faster than that, Son. I could have killed you right there.”

Ninorra felt the wind knocked out of Draco's body and winced. The training seemed brutal from her perspective, but she understood the necceccity.

 “…I know. You do not have to remind me.” Grunted Draco from the pain, he tried to focus on his breath to recover as quickly as possible, as he moved to reset his guard. He moved his shield back into position. His mind focusing off the frost strikes above him as his mana guarded him. His target was his father, the main threat. The two would begin to circle, looking for any opening they could get against each other. Draco held his glaive out like one would a spear, beyond his shield. Gladius had his massive twin warblades at the ready for any sort of attack. All the while, the assault of frost continued, draining his supply of mana that was used to protect him. He could not simply remain this way; he would pass out of exhaustion first. He needed a plan.

"He trained you well', Ninorra thought, studying the fighting style of both men, memories of Draco's thoughts drifting through her mind. 'There is no mercy in war, and war was in his blood.'

Ninorra could feel his lips twist for just a moment into a smirk before his muscles prepped to spring into motion. The movement was sudden, a step forward as if to strike—prompting the giant of an elf to spring forward towards the challenge. In came the next wave of his devastating assault at the Spellbreaker’s form that had seemingly made a tactical error, striking too eagerly. Even worse, the young Draco seemed to step towards his doom. But rather than move out of the way, it proved to be a feint. The younger man’s muscles snapped into action, forcing his shield forward to greet both blades as he hid behind it for just a second before rolling with the move onto the right hand side of his father. His blind spot. Gladius tried to predict where exactly his son had moved, swung his blade; but missed. Even worse, it had given Draco just the opening he needed. His glaive quickly found itself resting at the side of his father’s neck. And for the first time ever, Draco uttered the words: “Dead, Father.”

Ninorra grinned. The joy of Draco's first first time winning in combat against his father radiated through him. There was pride, but also accomplishment. 'Well done,' she thought warmly. 'I can see why he was so proud.'

Lord Gladius Visca glared at the blade at his neck; the seriousness still remained upon his face. He did not look like the one who had just been bested, in spite of the glaive. His hands raised as he dropped his blades. One waved off the assaults from the men above—and then vibrations could be felt from the metal around the man’s neck down into Draco’s arm. For a moment, there would be uncertainly. This had never happened before, and then it became audible. A deep chuckle as a smile carved through Gladius’s stern face. “You used my old war injury against me, you’re learning. Well done Draco. Now put that away and give your old man a hug.”

Ninorra laughed a little, happily watching the display. For a moment she felt her own emotions regarding Gladius, and longed to speak to him as herself. 'How I miss him,' she thought. 'You were so lucky, Draco. I never had a father, but I could tell yours was one of the best.'

The scene would melt back into the blue abyss, her falling out of Draco’s form. “I did…. He was a great man, he warned me all my life of the Kirin Tor’s betrayal. He trained me to stop them when it came. Instead I fell for the lies, I worked with them, and they slaughtered our people.”

"Their cruelty was not your doing. We all make mistakes, but you can not blame yourself for others' evil deeds. You have given your life for our people, and I am grateful." She looked around for his form again. "I want to help you. I want you to feel that pride, again. That joy. I know it is difficult, but your mind is alive, and though your heart is broken, we can mend it. I believe in you."

 “The most important thing is to stop the Legion. Pride and Joy will be meaningless if the world is consumed in Fel-fire. I need to do what I was brought back to do. Afterwards, when my duty is complete, then we can look at caring for old veterans if that is what you truly desire.”

"You misunderstand. Stopping the Legion is my goal as well. I want peace for our people, and safety. But I know from experience what a broken heart can do to someone. It distracts you, it hurts those around you. If you are going to fight at your strongest, it must be with a clear mind and a whole heart. Do you understand? This is not frivolity. This is necceccity."

 “All the more reason for me to remain disconnected from my old life. I am fine, Ninorra, and while the concern is… touching, I suppose. We do not have time for this. Every second we waste is another second gained as an advantage against the Legion. We do not have time to mourn the dead or attempt to ‘heal’ the dead.”

"On the contrary. If you do not give yourself time to mourn, you can not move forward. Besides.." She looked around in the darkness. "What do you have to lose? You will not defeat the Legion by yourself, not in your state. Your bloodlust is out of control, your anger could put you in danger. Put me in danger. I am doing this not just for you, but for both our sake. Can you not see this? Please, you saw my memories. You saw the consequences of uncontrollable savagery. Please."

 “I am not interested in a pity party; I kept going in life in spite of everything I lost… I will do the same in death. And we keep marching, we keep fighting… when we win, our sacrifices will hopefully not be in vain. War is not for mercy or kindness, it is not fair. It will keep taking from us; the only response is to fight back.”

"And you will get us killed," she argued. "What then? What happens when one of us falls because you were too busy being a murderer, and can't remember what it means to be your father's son?"

The image of the man glared at the Warlock. “I would not expect you to understand. Get out.”

"You don't expect anything from me," she said spitefully. It was clear she felt hurt. "You never did. You think it's all about you and your fight, that you are the only one who can save us. But you've forgotten what you're even fighting for, and that is not the person Gladius was proud of."

 “Everyone I have ever trusted has either abandoned me or died.” She would feel herself being pushed away from him as he spoke. “I know what I fight for, Ninorra. I fight for a people I can no longer be part of. For a place that is no longer my home. I fight so others can live. I Died so that others could live.”

"You are not dead!" She shouted. "You are here, all around me.. why do you want to be dead so badly?"

 “But I am! Look at me! I am but a revenant of who I was, stolen from the peace of the grave for my tireless work towards our people’s salvation! Stolen away from my family!” The force continued to push her away from him, “My father, my mother, my brother and sister… my wife, my two sons…” the vision of him dulled away into nothingness.

"They live through you, Draco," she said gently "You remember them. Their love for you, this is their legacy. You cannot let that legacy die. You must live for them, for yourself. You are not dead."

Ninorra would find herself returned back upon the sofa in her sitting room, his Spellbreaker training had forced the spell to being finished. Here should be face to face with a very pissed off Knight with sapphire eyes that peered at her. “Look at me. I was a man of righteousness, who fell in battle and was brought back by… whatever they did to me. I may look alive, but I am Dead and cursed to walk in the world of the living once more to fight your battles. I does not matter how I feel about it, these are the facts. I have gotten over them, as should you.”

Ninorra looked tired. She lowered her head in defeat. "Alright, Draco. I will not argue with you. I can not make you do anything. I only thought.." She reached up and rubbed her forehead. "..I only thought you might like to see him, again. As much as I did."

 “I miss him, more than you can know… but it is over.” He sighed, “…It is all over. At least we have each other, for now."

"For a long time," she corrected, grabbing his hands. This time she looked at him. "I do not intend on leaving this world anytime soon. I expect you to do the same."

 “We shall see.” He didn’t look at her. “…Eventually all die, and I shall be stuck here. To watch the Quel’thalas, alone.”

"Perhaps. Until then," she reached for the dreamcatcher and pulled it off of her neck. "Stay here, with me. You don't have to be alone, and you can be yourself here. I have to take this artifact back to Baern, and tell the Scryers about our mission. Stay here. It can be a second home to you, if you like."

 “I put you too much at risk, Ninorra.” He shook his head. “If those who don’t know of my return stop by…”

"Nobody just 'stops by'. We have security measures that I think would impress you. Besides," she stood and nodded toward the door. "My husband is allowed to know of you, per my contract, and my son will know you only as another knight. I know it is not your real home, but.. allow me to try."

 “When it comes to defenses and security measures, I am quite hard to impress.” He gave a teasing smirk, “However… I shall take your word that they will be adequate. I will allow you to try to house me, for the time being. I simply do not wish to cause your family harm. Intentional or not.”

"I trust you won't burn it down, then," she said happily, beckoning him to follow her upstairs with a hand. "Come, I'll show you where you can stay. You can have your privacy, and I can fill one if these sad and empty rooms."

 

Edited by Ninorra

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“I am proud to announce the Gravity Engines have been completed in their construction. We are one step closer to ensuring this battle station is fully operational.” It had been months since he had seen these monolithic silhouettes. Last time he had kneeled before them, begging their forgiveness all thanks to the upstart’s actions. This time, he sat within his office—this time would be different. This time he was in control. “Once they are woven into the Acceleration Ring; we shall maximum have mobility on all axes. Which brings us to our weaponry—”

 

“Yes, the reason we are gathered here today.” One of the Council spoke. “We have given you time to adjust, how is the Shattered Son performing?”

 

“…Despite our little setback earlier in the campaign, we have returned him to the field as your collective wisdom has declared. The shards we had purchased to give him the desired edge against the Legion proved to not be from the fallen prince’s Frostmourne as our Intel had lead us to believe. We were able to recover the financial hit we had expected from the purchase. I have sent the Agent from that mission to continue to make an example of those who thought it wise to deceive us. Not particularly clandestine, but we should not expect any retaliation. Only terror should someone try to cross us again.”

 

“Did the shards prove entirely useless?”

 

“Hardly. Despite it not being the blade of legend we sought, my men have managed to forge a runeblade of significance still. We have added countermeasures should the Shattered Son attempt to disobey us once more and have given them to his new handler.”

 

“And whom might that be, Director?”

 

“Lady Ninorra Bloodstone.”

 

“You are entrusting one of our most top secret projects to Ninorra Bloodstone? Someone with the major markers of Demonic Influence? A commoner who married into money and nobility?”

 

                “Gentleman, I assure you… I have my reasons.” The scarlet haired Magister’s lips curled into a devious smirk. “The Shattered Son is hiding things from us, valuable assets we could utilize in this war for the very fate of Azeroth. He is highly resistant to mental manipulation, as I am sure you all are aware, so we need another way to get him to speak. The two share a history, she can get him to trust her—she will gain those secrets we desire for us.”

 

                “Or she could be a security risk.”

 

                “She’s not that stupid, Gentlemen. We know where she lives, we know who she cares about—she knows if she crosses us, she will not be the only one to pay dearly for her betrayal.”

 

                “What of Phase Two?”

 

                “We are undergoing the first trials as we speak.” From corner of his eye he could see a light flicker on. The Director’s smirk began to fade. Still he pressed on with the conversation. He would not be embarrassed this time. “Frostwhisper, despite his notable lack of a report on my desk still… has provided us quite the opportunity.”

 

                “And what opportunity would that be, Director?”

 

                “A specimen for our experiments. She has taken to the Shattered Son’s blood well enough that she—only temporarily—can be like him. The perfect simulation of life, yet with the abilities their condition affords them.” Another light flicked on next to the previous one. He should wrap this up. “With her help, we can develop a prototype before we go to live testing again. After all, what use is a General without an army?”

 

                The Illuminated Council proved silent for what seemed like an eternity. Something that would have irritated him normally, but drove him mad as he was left to wonder what alarms had been set off and why during his conversation. A third flicked on. He had to take action.

 

                “Gentlemen, I thank you for your time. But I have much more to do if I am to provide you a suitable report.” Not the most elegant way to end the conversation, he couldn’t help but scold himself as he cut the transmission. The illuminated silhouettes faded into the shadows as he frantically started to pull up all the scrys within the facility. Now that the call was over, another alarm would trigger as he sifted through the information relayed to him until he found the culprits. He trembled in rage as he activated the intercom, in case the incompetent idiots below hadn’t noticed yet.

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 “I have a theory,” Doctor Peacebloom said as she circled Cat’s restraining chair. “Our most recent attempts lasted forty eight hours. The anti-rejection compound introduced on day four was a failure, due to, I believe, test subject number seventeen hundred and seventy seven’s death knight physiology. The Lich King’s hold on our test subject, while useful in her repeated resurrection, is keeping the subject’s body from being able to permanently retain any physical changes.”

 

Cat lay in her chair, stripped as usual, her cold undead body unresponsive to the cold leather beneath her. After two days of living, followed by yet another death, it was beginning to feel routine. Blood injections, electrocutions, fleshcrafting, life, death, rebirth. Having her naked body poked and prodded for science in the hopeless attempt to give the death knight something akin to life. She sighed as the good Doctor prodded the dead veins in her arms, and introduced the long thick needles that would transport blood.

 

“As our efforts thus far seem to have hit a wall, I have devised a new theory. One that involves the efforts of our first successful test.”

 

Cat blinked. This was new. What is he talking about?

 

“Having depleted our resources, I have requested the participation of the Shattered Son himself. With his cooperation, we will have enough to follow through with our next attempt.”

 

His cooperation?

 

Cat’s jaw dropped at the sight of a new person entering the observation room. Doctor Peacebloom held his hands above the floor, where another restraining chair materialized opposite of Cat. In it, the Sin’dorei sat without argument, his glare fixated on the death knight in front of him.

 

Holy moly.

 

He was enormous, as far as elves went. Tall and broad shouldered, his body was a carefully crafted series of muscles, framed only by long lustrous white hair. His face was clean-shaven, aged only with the faintest hint of lines that led her to believe he must have been much older. With the exception of his massive size, the elf seemed almost normal. Except that his eyes, similar to Cat’s, had a blue tint to them.

 

Swallowing down her discomfort, Cat was suddenly very aware of her nakedness in the chair. She fought to keep her eyes away from the naked elf in front of her, managing to only catch a glimpse of what she was sure he could use to bludgeon someone. If she had a pulse, her face would have been red with embarrassment.

 

Tallion and Inquisitor Everryn worked to restrain him, in the same way Cat was restrained. He stared straight ahead, agitation written across his features. Cat attempted a friendly smile at her fellow test-subject, but was met with an icy glare in return. She turned her eyes and avoided his gaze.

 

“We will begin by draining the amount of necessary catalyst, and then will proceed feed it directly into subject number seventeen hundred and seventy seven,” Doctor Peacebloom explained, as he inserted the same needles used on Cat into the other elf’s arms. The needles looked tiny in comparison to his massive veins. Soon the blood Cat was so familiar with began to drain from him, and into the container, which in turn drained into Cat’s body. Doctor Peacebloom approached Cat then, and placed his hand on her chest to begin the defibrillation process. He sent electric shocks into the death knight’s body, sending her reeling back into the chair repeatedly while the blood of the Shattered Son coursed through her dead veins.

 

“Sir,” Tallion said, as he watched the familiar process of Catalinetta’s body being turned inside-out by the arcane infused blood. “Besides feeding directly from one test subject to the other, what makes this process different from our earlier attempts?”

 

Cat clenched her teeth from the pain as she stared ahead, her eyes attempting to focus on something, anything. All she could find were the glaring eyes of the elf in front of her, as his jaw clenched with indignation. Soon, the pain became too much for her to bear silently, and the screaming began.

 

“The difference is that today, we are introducing another element to the experiment,” Doctor Peacebloom explained, approaching Inquisitor Everryn. As always, the Inquisitor stood with Catalinetta’s runeblade axe strapped to his hip. “Foolishly, I did not consider that a death knight’s physiology is not limited to their own corpse. Of course, death knights are provided with weapons upon their rebirth. These weapons contain elements of the death knight’s essence, perhaps a portion of their soul, and enable the death knight to do any number of things. Regeneration, for example. Death knights who specialize in blood magic can use their axe to feed upon blood in order to regenerate themselves infinitely.”

 

Tallion looked curiously toward the doctor. “So… you will feed his blood to her axe?”

 

“Not quite so simple as that,” Peacebloom said with a chuckle, extending his hand to the Inquisitor. “While she is being fed on his blood in our usual way, and her body regenerates, I will simultaneously use her axe to feed on the Shattered Son directly. I hypothesize that this combination will allow for maximum saturation of his self-sustaining blood, and will therefore create a permanent result.”

 

Inquisitor Everryn handed Doctor Peacebloom the axe. The doctor tested its weight, and held it up toward the light to study the runes. Cat’s screams were slowly beginning to die down as her throat was torn apart and rebuilt.

 

“Quite heavy,” he mused, approaching the two elves strapped down to their chairs. “Of course, we needn’t worry about permanent damage. The regenerative blood will allow for a full recovery once we have tested my theory.”

 

Tallion’s eyes went from the huge restrained elf to the axe as realization suddenly hit him. “…sir?”

 

“Take notes, Tallion,” the Doctor instructed, holding up the axe. “We will see if my theory proves correct.” With a strange amount of grace, the axe fell forward, biting directly into Draco’s chest and ribcage.

 

In its descent, the Axe struck with deathly precision not expected from a man of a more scholarly profession. The weight added to the devastation upon flesh before it eagerly bit and drank into its victim’s unique blood that was being infused into its owner. Lethal Force Detected. The Arcane Intelligence designated as Vindicator announced within the head of the giant elf. Retaliation Authorized. WARNING: No Weapon Detected. The Shattered Son grunted in pain as his ribcage threatened to collapse upon itself, the blood splatter beginning to spray. Assessing Assets… Assets Detected. Advanced Fleshcrafting Found. Thick strains expelled forward, yet un-breaking from its host. Blood Manipulation Authorized.

 

“And now we await the resear--Why are you smirking?” Doctor Peacebloom looked at his assistant. “Why is he smirking?” A terrible mistake. Instead of the blood separating from its host, it instead altered its projection. In an instant, the once viscous fluid altered its shape as it altered the flow of its momentum, forming blades; Blades that aimed and then sawed through his arm at the elbow, devouring the blood as he screamed in both terror and agony. But that was far from all. As it converted his life fluids to his own use, the shaped more blades—directed at his shackles.

 

The resulting sound would be like four gunshots firing simultaneously, all four of the blades moving in such a speed that they broke the sound barrier in their assault upon the Shattered Son’s restraints. The Doctor continued to scream in horror at his missing forearm, the Blood Knight pressed a button to activate some sort of alarms, and the Doctor’s research assistant ran. Those were the threat levels in order. Thus that would be the order they would be handled. As soon as he was free, he took advantage of the chaos to strike at the doctor. A punch, albeit slightly pulled as not to kill him, would hit him directly within the jaw. The man would recoil, trying to muster up some feeble defense to stop the Shattered Son, no doubt. But he wouldn’t be granted the chance. The next strike was the Shattered Son’s knee to the man’s chest, knocking the wind out of him before granting a swift end to the conflict as he combined his fists into a single blow upon his back. Threat One Eliminated.

               

Next Target would engage within the very moment he eliminated the first. Too slow to protect his charge, but the Shattered Son had to commend him in his reaction and eagerness to engage. There was a reason he looked down upon the more heavy stance required to wield a two handed weapon. The Shattered Son was a being made of regeneration and undeath, simply used his fist to strike at the blade to hinder its intended trajectory. His post-mortem strength proved enough to for the “Inqusitor’s” off hand to remove itself from the weapon. The weaker hand, as expected, though that was enough. Pain was enough. As his hand removed itself from his weapon, the Shattered Son grabbed it before moving with the momentum to force it in the wrong direction. He only let it go when he could hear the satisfying crunch as it broke between his strength and the weight of the armor. Unfortunately for the Knight, it wasn’t enough. He let go, but he was still armed. The Shattered Son refused to relent, taking the obviously broken wrist, and using the momentum to continue his assault. He moved, unencumbered, behind the Knight as he gripped him before using his strength against Everryn and struck at his shoulder next. The man screamed at the two pronged attack before letting loose his weapon long enough for The Shattered Son to grip and rip it away from him before gripping it with both hands and strike at the back of the Knight’s head, denting the helmet as he knocked him out. Two down, one to go.

 

According to his estimates, the combat could not have proven to take longer than two minutes. Most likely less than that. The Shattered Son let go of the blade of the weapon as he twisted his wrist to grasp the hilt as it began to fall towards the ground. The third target had already begun his retreat, the blast doors had begun to close themselves as the alarm blares within his ears. He gripped the weapon. This was not ideal, being naked… but at least he wasn’t unarmed. The weapon wasn’t particularly significant, though it was better than your standard affair. He looked to his next target as he gave a practice swing. He had a decent lead, but the Shattered Son figured he could catch up to him still. End the last witness, then escape the attempted slavery of himself.

 

There was one miscalculation, however, as he sprinted toward the quickly towards the rapidly closing doors as an alarm blared about the ‘Containment Breach’. He ignored the aggravating pain as much as he could as the Axe devoured his blood as he tried to grab for the fleeing target, his right arm outstretched, only to be caught in the doors as they slammed shut in order to contain the Threat. He could feel the metal grip at his arm, crushing it to the point his grip on the other side was useless even if he were to catch the researcher. He growled in aggravation as he began to pull away from the door. He could hear the bone crack in protest as his unholy strength tried to pull him away. The Agony got worse as his muscles were stripped in order to grant him freedom. At least it was his right arm, his shield arm. Not his left. He growled and snarled in agony as he felt the consequences for his freedom. He didn’t care. He looked down at the blade that slowed him down, and the girl strapped to the other chair. With his left hand, his only hand at the moment, he gripped at the hilt of the axe until he was able to release it from his person. He looked at the woman for a moment, using the Arcane Intelligence in his head to calculate the movements of his next action before throwing the battleaxe back at her, destroying one of her bindings. He growled a quick order, “Free yourself. And be quick about it, we do not have much time to make our escape.”

               

In the several minutes that the Shattered Son spent fighting the Inquisitor, the Doctor, and having his arm ripped off, Cat was spending in recovery from the experiment. The flesh crafting was never a short ordeal; it took her body time to rebuild itself from scratch, and this was no different. By the time she watched her runeblade axe come flying toward one of her arm restraints, the death knight was breathing deeply with new lungs, her mind buzzing with thoughts that were not her own. Something about threats to be eliminated. Memories of the Lich King’s voice stirred in Catalinetta, and she brought a shaky hand toward her forehead to steady herself. It was then that she became terribly aware of her situation; naked, still strapped to a chair, as a huge naked man stood a few yards away with one of his arms stuck in a door. Grabbing the axe with her free hand, Cat began the process of freeing herself. It did not take long, and her axe seemed “happy” with its latest meal. She cast a passing glance toward the unconscious doctor and Inquisitor before running to the big naked man and raising her axe. “…should I uh… take care of that?”

 

The man growled and snarled like a beast caught in a trap, his bones making threats of snapping as he continued to try to pull his right arm free. “They will live, if we get out of here in time. Help me get this door open.”

 

Cat nodded and grabbed one of the doors with her free hand. Despite the breathing and the heartbeat, she noticed immediately that her death knight strength was still with her. She pulled on one of the doors, forcing the gears to break, an obnoxious squeal sounding as she pulled it away from the naked guy's arm.

 

As Cat pushed one way, the man pushed the other thick metal sheet that comprised the door the opposite direction with his good arm. He grunted as his arm fell free, mangled and useless—for now.

 

The Death Knight attempted to avoid her eyes from the obvious, but it was nearly impossible. She cleared her throat and held her axe to her chest, attempting in vain to shield herself. "..w-what do we do?" She asked, panicked. "They're going to come after us if we leave. They know who we are, don't they??"

 

The Shattered Son didn’t even seem to notice the potentially lewd situation before them; his mind was distracted with the threat before them. “They can try.” His left arm held the mangled one, his blood slithering from the wound to begin rethreading the muscles back into place. The air vents in the room would begin to hum before a fog started to roll from it. The male looked at the event that was about to play out. “Hm. Likely some sort of airborne sedative. We have to move.”

 

Cat didn't bother to hide her discomfort, or her fear. She followed behind the "Shattered Son", running despite her constant worry. "O-okay, but where are we going to go??" She asked as they attempted to make their escape.

 

"Out."

 

"But...” She didn't bother asking again. He seemed to focus on the goal of escape, and that is what they would do. Their bare feet slapped against metal as the two naked elves ran through the Scryers' base, winding their way around staircases until they were met with a wall of Blood Knights blocking their way. "..Oh gaddamn it."

 

"Great, more Children that wish to play Hero." The Shattered Son growled. "How many can you take?"

 

Cat sighed. "All of them."

 

“Good.” His voice resounded with what sounded like approval, perhaps even a hint of being impressed. A memory flashed within his mind. He knew what he had to do. Behind the patrol of Knights before them was the checkpoint, the giant set of doors that separated this quarter of the military complex from its central hub. That was where they needed to go. That would be their ticket to freedom. “You handle them. I will open that door.”

 

Typically in a fight, she would at least have her armor to shield herself. Cat’s fighting style relied on her ability to take blows, and without armor, that meant relying on her abilities as a Death Knight. With a deep breath in her new lungs, she summoned forth the power granted to her by the Lich King, and drew from her body the strength of her own bones to shield herself. With her body shielded, she took a running leap and slammed her axe into the ground below the Blood Knights. A rune spread throughout the area, glowing a sickly red color that game off the telltale odor of rot. 

 

The Shattered Son waited for her to be primed and to begin to lay her cover fire for his workload in their partnership to begin. He set himself lower to the ground, summoning the darker energies that helped bind the world together to enhance his sprint towards the security door that held this side’s terminal. The putrid smell of death and decay was as good a sign as any. As she advanced, she would likely be caught unaware of his speed behind her, granting him the chance to smack down a Blood Knight before the naked girl with the axe murdered him—saving his life before leaping over the man towards the door. He would have to keep an eye on her as he worked it seemed.

 

Cat stumbled back as the smaller security door was thrown, missing her by a few scant inches. The metal crumpled between her and her would-be victim as she turned to her naked companion and blinked in shock. He ignored her for the time being, quickly accessing the Arcane Matrix of the terminal, the massive double doors containing them rumbled open. The door was open. They were that much closer towards freedom. And she didn’t see the point in arguing. “Whatever,” she said dismissively, rushing to follow him as he headed into the central room of their enclosure. “Let’s just get the hell out of here!”

 

“Agreed.” He walked into the room, scanning the area for a moment. The area was massive, and unfamiliar. A strange sensation when it came to Scryer technology and facilities. He would normally like to study his surroundings further—a lay of the land could prove a valuable asset in terms of tactical command. But there was no time. This was only accentuated by the blaring voice that echoed and surrounding them. 

 

“THE SHATTERED SON HAS ESCAPED. I REPEAT THE SHATTERED SON HAS ESCAPED. LEATHAL FORCE AUTHORIZED. DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO LEAVE SOL-ONE.”

 

“Great.” The Son grunted. “We do not have much time. Do you see the central ring?” He pointed to it; there was an odd design upon it. “Get there and stay put. That is our ticket home; I just need to activate it with favorable coordinates. Do you understand?”

 

Cat jumped at the voice and clutched her axe. Turning to face her companion, she seemed both panicked and eager to fight. “Lethal force, he says! Alright fine, I’ll go, just be careful!”

 

“As soon as I set it, I will join you.” He nodded. His voice was less that of a gruff order than he had generally spoken. He waited for her to get to safety before heading into position, his eyes tracing her curves as sped as a blur of flesh, ebon hair and her bleeding axe sped to her commanded spot. He didn’t like how long his eyes lingered, grunting in disproval before heading to the final terminal that was required for freedom. His mind refocused on the task at hand. “Almost free…”

 

The Shattered Son sprinted towards the command terminal, pausing only when he got before it. The other three Quarters within the complex had begun to open. That would have to be the first thing to stop. But how? He awaited a flash of memory as how to activate this device, one of which he hadn’t seen this particular model of before. Knights and Golems were visible now. Come on Vindicator; show me what you have… Before him the screen started to light up. A button labeled ‘Emergency Lockdown’ would appear. That would do. He pressed the button.

 

The doors slammed themselves shut once more. A powerful ward activated on each door, but the Teleporter shut down. That doesn’t work. What now? ‘Teleporter Override’. He activated that button, the lights flaring up around Cat at the central ring once more. It was back online. Coordinates… 001.42.04.39.0.21.02.0 Strange. Location? Unavailable.

 

At the sight, he could hear Cat panicking from the central ring. She held her axe close against her chest as she shouted to him. “Hey!” Her voice was cracking. “Don’t leave me here by myself!” He didn’t answer, but she did distract him from what he was doing momentarily as he looked down at her location. She was safe. But then he began to hear the violent hissing and crackling of arcane energy being released to his right. He had to hurry; they were running out of time.

 

Map of warzone area: Broken Isles. A map appeared before his eyes, he took his finger and traced where he wanted to teleport them to. He took a moment to consider where one may think he may head depending on the location chosen. He tapped on the map. 001.57.40.37.37.65.64.0 Val’sharah. If he had any luck, he could find someone who owed him a few favors. Activate Teleporter on a timer 00:02:00. After teleportation, delete entry in datalog. He hoped this would make them less traceable, he couldn’t be sure. He braced himself to sprint once more. Activate. The timer started its countdown…

 

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Val’sharah, 0400:

 

 

In the soft glow of moonlight, a brilliant flash broke the serenity to reveal the two naked forms of the knights in their successful breakout. The taller man collapsed to his knee in exhaustion, his bloodied and likely broken hand gripped at his right shoulder’s scorch mark from a grazing hit from one of the Assault Golems grazing mana-bolt fire from the chaos of their last little stint at the teleporter. His eyes went down to the disturbed waters from their sudden arrival.

 

Beside him, the much smaller female's bare feet splashed against the stream they landed in. She looked around frantically, black pigtails bobbing as she looked for something familiar. "W-where are we?" She asked quietly, clutching a runeblade axe protectively to her chest. It glowed faintly in the darkness, a bright blue color not unlike her own bright blue eyes. She turned her gaze to the large elf, suddenly hyper aware if his injuries. "Oh geez… you need help!"

 

The Male removed his hand from the blackened flesh, pursing his chapped lips to speak—his throat proved horribly dry, only allowing him the ability to grunt at the moment. Dehydration was kicking in from the blood manipulation. He took his broken and mangled hands to form a makeshift cup, taking a moment to drink in the water before speaking. “Val’sharah.”

 

Kneeling down beside him, the female put her axe head into the ground and leaned on the handle. She watched as he attempted to drink from the stream and winced at the sight of his broken and mangled limbs. "Stop that," she fussed, allowing the axe to fall so that she could use her own hands to give him water. They were small, but they were steady and uninjured. "Here."

 

As he drank from his beaten hands, the muscles within the mangled hand started to slither, re-threading themselves to the bone. He slightly grimaced at the agony from his form using its own fleshcrafting abilities to regenerate from the wound. As such he let his hands drop as he lost most of the water from the warped configurations and the body forcibly moving as needed. He looked as if to protest. Instead came a “…Thank you.”

 

"It's fine," she said reassuringly, allowing him to drink from her hands before speaking again. She seemed less embarrassed than before, the gravity of their situation seemingly weighing down on her as they knelt in the dark. When he drank enough, she grabbed for her axe again and clutched it to her chest. "My name is Cat," she said cautiously. "I don't know if they told you anything about me. They definitely didn't tell me anything about you."

 

“That would be because officially,” his words spoke of a well educated man that commanded respect in spite of this compromising situation. He was clearly a man of the military. “I do not exist. Not anymore.”

 

Cat blinked and cocked her head, attempting to read the older elf through the dim light their eyes provided. "Uh... okay... so... did you die, then? Like me?" She looked him over, as if searching for something. "I guess you can't be a death knight without a runeblade...”

 

“I did die. But I am not quite like you—you are becoming something more like me, it seems.”

 

The death knight's eyes lowered, as if caught in a lie. "Um... sort of. I guess that was the plan all along. I didn't know though," she said quickly, looking up again. "I didn't know they were gonna hurt someone. I was told that maybe if I helped them, they could bring me back to life. Sort of... I guess they did. In a way."

 

“We hurt people for the greater good, Cat. We have always been willing to do what needed to be done for the defense and the preservation for our people. Since the day we rebelled against the Prince, this has been our goal.” He turned to scan the area around them before he began to walk down the river. “It seems I was on the receiving end this time. I understand the logic, but I am no mere foot soldier.”

 

 

Cat followed close behind, holding her axe in front of her as they walked. She was careful to look down, but the darkness made it difficult to see where she was going. She stumbled more than a few times, cursing under her breath as she regained her footing. "Who are you, then? A-and where are we going?"

 

“We are headed south. And my project codename was The Shattered Son.” The answer was short as she had likely come to expect from him as he continued his march down the river. His eyes scanned the hills above before he began to muse. “…I do not know who chose that designation. They likely assumed they were being clever, given my military record. For all my millennia of service, it seems I will be known for the Civil War, and more specifically—the costly but ultimately successful command I was given in Quel’Danas.”

 

"Uh... oh." Cat bit her lip as she listened to the story, waiting until he reached the end before asking. "...I uh... I was actually not trained until the Scourge came back. During the Northrend campaign. I was only old enough to start my knight training by then, and I died, so... sorry if I don't know you or what you did, but... what's your name?"

 

“I am the former Lord-General Draco Gladius Visca.”

 

"Oh...” She paused, walking, her eyes widening suddenly. "..Oh. OH! Oh you were that guy on the posters! I remember, now! I remember seeing you on the posters when I enlisted!"

 

“That would be me.” A thin lipped expression marred his face. There had to be a road somewhere. “And have no concern; in the later years… what I have done was purposely hidden.”

 

"Uh... oh. Okay...” Cat attempted to follow close enough that her eyes would be on the enormous elf's back. She fought hard to keep them up, but found them drifting south every so often despite her best efforts. "I uh... I'm not sure what it means now, that I have your blood in me. I kept dying after a day or so, the last time. I'm not sure if it'll last longer now, since they used my axe on you. I'm sorry about that, again, I didn't know they were gonna hurt someone... but... if I'm this way permanently, I don't know what it makes me."

 

“The next step in the program. And you need not apologize, I am far more durable than that—and it allowed us a chance at freedom. When we reach the safe house, we will plan our next move.”

 

"What about the Scryers?" She seemed very concerned, now. "I... I mean they did this to me so they could use me as an experiment, and now we've escaped.. Are they gonna come after us? After me? What happens if I wind up having kids, someday?"

 

“They shall come after me, yes. That is a given.” He turns to look at the obviously youthful woman behind him. He eyed her for a moment before continuing. “They will likely desire you as well. Though you are less of a security threat. Follow my command, and when I get my way—that will be a non-issue.”Top of Form

 

Cat blinked with surprise. "Uh... g-get your way? What is your way? What does that mean?"

 

“As I have said, I am a waste as a mere foot soldier. We will not defeat the Legion if we do not utilize our assets to their full advantage.” He heard the sound of galloping and grinned as he squatted for a rock in the riverbed.

               

Cat crouched down quickly, hiding behind Draco's massive build at the sound of the approaching hooves. "Oh shit oh shit oh shit...” She whispered, clutching her axe.

 

The galloping came faster and louder as they hid, Draco’s eyes moved as if to track a calculated trajectory of where the rider was most likely to appear. His broken knuckles cracked and popped back into place as he grasped for the rock. His voice was quiet, “He should be appearing over that hill on the trail within a moment.” His hand toyed with the rock to accentuate his point. “Do you wish to do the honors, or shall I?”

 

Cat held up her axe. "If I do it, I'll kill him," she whispered. "Seems kinda mean... can't we just... ask for help? Maybe he'll be a nice knight..." it was awkward getting close enough to whisper without touching him, so Cat covered near Draco's ear, balanced on her toes. Her breath was warm, but strangely enough for the death knight, so was she.

 

He could feel the warmth of the young woman behind him, a soft allure to a previous life. Something to exploit. They had but one shot before the element of surprise was ruined, then there would be far too much commotion to allow them to remain in the cover of darkness. His eyes left the estimated point of arrival, “Perhaps… Go, get his attention. I will cover you.”

 

 

Cat blinked, confused. Get his attention? Oh. "Uh... o-okay." Carefully, the death knight moved away from Draco and crept through the brush toward the end of what appeared to be a path. She took a deep calming breath, steadying her nerves before stepping out into the clearing. In the moonlight, her body appeared pale, nearly as blue as her glowing eyes. Completely nude, she held her axe behind her so as not to frighten the rider as much as simply distract him. "..Uh... yoo hoo?" She called out, attempting to appear alluring as she leaned against a tree.

 

The rider was a young man, likely an adventurer running some sort of time sensitive errand for the druids given his equipment and demeanor. He quickly jerked upon the reigns of his steed, forcing the animal come to a full stop. “Woah! Easy there girl, easy!”

 

Cat cleared her throat and remained hidden in shadow. Though her skin was fresh, it retained its dark hue. Maybe he'd think she was a tiny night elf? "Uhhh heeey there... uh... big guy...” she said in her best Common.”Wanna... uh... hug a tree...?"

 

 “Well, well…. Seems my luck is changing!” The leather clad adventurer grinned as he dismounted from his steed, of which neighed in protest of this obviously suspicious distraction from their task at hand. “An Elven lass, in the nude, all to myself… truly a land of wonders!”

 

"Heh... Yeah! Exactly!" She said with a somewhat panicked voice, her eyes darting behind the horse in search of her temporary companion. "Just uh... come over here, and we'll uh... hug... The trees..?"

 

“I think we can ‘hug’ more than trees, ba—” The adventurer’s horse let loose brays of panic as it, too, saw the imposing figure of her companion stepping out of the bushes. “—What the fuck?!”

 

"Oh thank gods," Cat said under her breath, grabbing the human's sleeve to pull him in and striking him in the face causing him to crumple upon the ground. He likely never even saw it coming. Her ally had presumably followed suit, the cries of the steed had halted and its form lay on the empty road with its master.

 

“Take what you need from him; we still have a long road ahead of us…” Draco was coated in a fresh spray of blood as he approached the fallen human, his foot pressed upon the back of the rogue’s head as he sneered down at him. “This arrogant little distraction is costing us valuable time; I am unsure how much of a lead we have on our pursuers.”

 

"We'll have more of a lead with his horse, and I don't know about you but I'm not a big fan of riding without pants," Cat grumbled, peeling off the human's clothes. She couldn't help but blush as she pulled off his shirt. "Geez...” She murmured, throwing his shirt over her small frame. It was long enough to be a short dress. "..humans are hairy, aren't they?"

 

“The horse is worth little more than fuel at current.” His wrathful eyes did not leave the human under that lay beneath his bare heel; the weight of such a man was likely enough to be cruel enough. The additional force beginning to be applied would be far worse. “If the man has any coin, take it—he will no longer be in need of possessions.”

 

"Uh... oh...” Cat mumbled, digging for the human's coin purse. She found it attached to his belt, which she also stole. "You're not gonna kill the guy, are you?"

 

“This Human sought to breed with one of our kind, a near-extinct species, and thereby has proven a threat to the continuation of our people. A grave sin and a crime deserving of capital punishment.” With every sentence spoken, the pressure placed upon the back of the human’s skull would increase dramatically as it began to dip into his now-supernatural physical capabilities. “Furthermore, he is a witness to our arrival and thereby a loose end that threatens our mission. We fail our mission, we jeopardize our entire campaign. If we lose the campaign, our world perishes before the Legion. If our world suffers, where do you think our people are left?” As if to accentuate his point, the force applied proved far too much for the mortal man’s skull to handle; with a sickening pop, its contents spilled in a violent fashion upon the road and his once trusty steed. Brain matter, blood and bone all.

 

"Geez!!" Cat winced, jumping back from the gore before it splashed on her. "Are you nuts?? I splayed myself out like a piece of candy, of course he tried to... what did you call it? 'Breed with me’? That's freaking psycho, guy." she added sadly, avoiding looking at the corpse again. "One human isn't gonna lose our campaign… and this isn't how I like to do things."

 

“It is not the Human we had to worry about.” The naked elf squatted over the gore ridden body, his fingers shifted through the mess. “It is the information he would grant my former comrades that would cause complications. Complications cause delays in the campaign, a campaign against the biggest threat this world has even known. We cannot afford either, they cost our people the precious few lives we have left.” As he lectured the young woman his hands scored a shard of the victim’s skull, which was promptly used to slice open his hand. His blood flowed into that spilled, mixing enough to grant him influence over the mess. It began to snake over his fingers and up his arm. “I understand that this may be considered heartless by you and those uninitiated with such trying choices. I pray that you, like my Brother, never have to come to terms with the methods I have had to employ over the years. But everything I have ever done, was for our people. Men like me are why we have yet to become extinct, in spite of the crises and genocides his people have consistently inflicted upon our own. But I will not ask you to trouble your conscious with such, no… perhaps this is where our ways part. At least for now.”

 

"Uh... yeah, okay," Cat said with a hint of sadness in her voice. She seemed unaccustomed to the naked man's sense of cruelty, but not to his sense of duty. "I have a home to get back to… someone who loves me, and friends. Do You? Do you have somewhere to go?"

 

“Not anymore.” The former Lord-General of the Order of Eversong rose to his feet. His eyes scanned the southern horizon. “I died in the service of our people during the Siege of Orgrimmar. It needs to stay that way. Now that I am freed, I can focus on the mission at hand.” His sapphire eyes looked back to the young woman. “Head north, you will find a flight point use the money to get home. And if you find a Magister Frostwhisper, tell him ‘The Son Rises Over Suramar.’ He will figure it out.”

 

"You mean Vathelan?" She asked curiously, eyeing the taller elf curiously. "I'll tell him, but... are you sure you're just going to stay hidden? I mean, with what you... with what we can do, we could help a lot of people, couldn't we? You could come with me, if you wanted to. You don't need to go off on your own."

 

“I am not abandoning the war effort. Far from it.” He spoke over his shoulder as he began his march towards the south, each step spoke of a man on a mission. The blood crawling upon him formed a sizable blade upon his wrist. He was at long last unshackled; the secret weapon the Scryers had been let loose upon the world.

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Magister Raeventus, Director of the Shattered Son Project and commanding officer of SOL-ONE marched with furious strides down the halls from his office towards the now defunct Laboratory 31. The Adamantine used in the retrofitting of the compound had been bent and warped by the Subjects during their rapid escape. Impressive, he could not deny, but it only exacerbated his fury. As did the injured personnel whom were picking themselves off the ground from the skirmishes, not to mention that wretched stench of death that lingered in the halls.

 

“Director--” The Knight stood at attention despite his broken arm.
 

“Whatever your pitiful excuses, I don’t care, Everryn. Where is the Doctor?”
 

The Knight knew not to argue, and was happy to pass off the fury of the Magister before him with a bow of his head and a side step to reveal a one armed Doctor Peacebloom unconscious in one of the chairs that their subjects had been strapped to during the experiment

 

“Wake him.”

 

“You heard the Director, Tallion, wake up the good doctor. Quickly now.” Knight-Inquisitor Everryn refused to take his eyes off the livid Magister, his voice threatened to crack as he spoke. This was quite unlike the man Tallion was used to seeing, a man usually stern in his overseeing of the experiments. But the assistant simply did as he was told. He pulled out a vial and extracted the contents with a syringe. A syringe that was hastily injected into the neck of the unconscious man in question.
 

Within a minute the one-armed doctor stirred. His eyes fluttered over the scene, still not entirely lucid. “...Wha… what’s going on?”
 

“So glad you could join us once more in the world of the living, Doctor. We have so much to discuss…” A sadistic smile formed upon the Director’s lips, his wrath still not faded upon his features. “For example, if you would be so kind, could you enlighten me as to how you not only lost Seventeen-Hundred-Seventy-Seven-- But also allowed the Shattered Son to escape?”
 

“Director Raeventus! I--”
 

“In spite of this, surely you have accomplished your task? You can replicate the Shattered Son process on the living now?”
 

“Seventeen-Hundred-Seventy-Seven has exhibited signs of true life. With that--”
 

“That was not your assignment, Doctor. You were to produce a method of using the Shattered Son’s blood to empower our best agents. Not only have you have used an exorbitant amount of our resources on a fool’s errand, you allowed our weapon against the Legion, and a massive security risk, to go free in the process. You have failed me, Sollal ‘Peacebloom’.” The Director was no longer smiling, his eyes shifted back towards the Knight-Inquisitor, “Everryn, you are to assume command over Phase Two of the Shattered Son Project. To make up for his abysmal failures, Sollal has graciously volunteered to serve as Subject Seventeen-Hundred-Seventy-Eight. Let us hope he proves more useful as a test subject than he did as a researcher.”

 

“What? No! Director, please!”

 

“As you command, Director Raeventus.” The Knight gave a deep bow in lieu of his usual salute. This seemed to satisfy his superior, whom gave a simple curt nod before leaving the laboratory.

 

“Our Arcane Intelligence Specialists have been set to the task of using Vindicator to track him, but he has eluded us from using this technique before.” The Inquisitor Magistrix Dawn spoke as soon as she caught sight of the Director’s departure.

 

“Competent as always, Inquisitor.” The scowl melted for a mere moment before he continued. “Relay a message to House to reassign the Albatross. We have bigger concerns than a few charlatans now. We’ll start with our little Magister friend.”

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The already dim lighting of the foreman’s office flickered with the rhythm of the hydraulic presses within the munitions factory below as the sounds of the machines at work would comfortably drown out any unwanted noise inside well before it could be detected by those whom resided in a proximity of the building. With each wax and wane of the lighting the shadows threatened to consume the triad of the office. Two were goblins tied to chairs facing parallel to each other; one a sobbing female, the other an older and unconscious male.

 

Between his captives was the final occupant of the room, a looming monster of a man. It was nigh impossible to distinguished where his silhouette ended and the room began thanks to his dark attire and features. With each flicker the girl tried to get a better look of him as she pleaded for asylum from what malice this imposing figure had planned for them. Though he seemed, for better or for worse, to pay her no mind for what seemed like ages as he shuffled through paperwork from the cracked safe on the wall behind her father’s desk. No matter what she said, what she tried to bargain-- the man didn’t acknowledge her existence since her bondage to the chair.

 

That was, until her father finally stirred from his repose. He groaned as he tried to get his bearings, his hands pulling at his binds before he froze. The realization of his predicament had taken hold. “Shit. Look, we don’t want any trouble… take whatever you want and just… please, don’t hurt us!”

 

“Funny, she said somethin’ similar,” the stranger’s voice was rough, and though the accent was faded, the hint of the Bay lingered. The glove grasped for the revolver that lay beside him, his face turning towards the goblins. The beard made it hard to read his jawline in the dark. The lightless, mixed-matched eyes were a different story. “Problem with that though. You see, if I take your meager stash here… still don’t rightly un-pissoff my boss.”

 

“Boss? Who--Fuck!” The elder of the captives began to thrash in his chair as unleashed an onslaught of curses at his own misfortune. Of all people for them to send… it was the man who was supposed to have died five years ago.

 

“Yes, my boss, the one you sold counterfeit shards of Frostmourne to? And he’s rightly pissed off about it; so much so that I’ve been having to hunt your little start-up cartel to find a way to soothe his temper. And you’re going to help me find a way to do so.” The man picked up a revolver from the counter behind him, he moved in deliberate motions as to ensure his audience could see what he was doing. His right hand dragged a box of bullets where the bound duo could see. The branding indicated it was from this very factory. He unlatched the cylinder and began to load the chambers as he continued his little speech, each sentence accentuated with a new bullet. “He ain’t really a pleasant man when pissed off, this makes my job harder. And by making my job harder, you’ve pissed me off. So, today we’re going to be playing a little game from the good ol’ days.”

 

“That’s what this is about?” The gentleman, if you could call him that, bound to the chair gave a forced laugh. “This… this is all a misunderstanding! We sent one of our boys to deliver the goods, and he ran off with ‘em! Oh that bastard...”

 

“I think you misheard me, we received the product, what was delivered was not what was promised. So we’re going to see if all the products you produce are of poorer quality than what you advertise, or if we’re a special case. Tell me, have you heard of the game Ratchet Roulette?”

 

Neither goblin immediately answered the man’s question, electing to exchange looks for a couple moments instead as the tried to devise a way out of this mess through silent expressions. Then the dangerous man from the Bay got impatient, setting the last two bullets in his gun and clicking the cylinder in place and pointing it at the girl. So the elderly of the two spoke up, “Yeah! I do! But Van… please, let the girl go. She ain’t got nothin’ to do with this…”

 

“Better come up with somethin’ to please the boss then. And quick, you’re already late on your shipment to the Horde as is.” He pulled back the hammer, taking careful aim on the youngest of his two captives. The elder behind him was stammering as he tried to come up with something. “Then we’ll start with the line of questioning. Refusal to answer, I fire. A lie, I fire. Where did the shards come from?”

 

There was no clear answer, just more stammering. He was given thirty seconds to respond before the trigger was pulled. He had aimed for her shoulder, but the bullet struck the gobliness in the neck. Behind him the man meekly cried at the horror of both the gunshot and the sight of his daughter quickly bleeding out as the projectile had struck an artery, causing a flood of her red life fluids to pour like a fountain. “...Shoddy ammo.” The rogue noted before giving a wicked laugh as he turned to point the gun at one of the man’s kneecaps. “Turns out we weren’t a special case after-all! Well, I suppose you should count yourself lucky I found you before the new Warchief… I hear she is known to be quite cruel to those who cross her. Now, I’ll ask again… where did you find the shards you sold us?”

 

“Why did you kill her!? She wasn’t part of this! Why?!” The elderly goblin shrieked in grief. Another non-answer to the question asked. With a sigh, the man spun the cylinder and then shot another bullet.

 

The rogue waited until the scream of agony died down before he spoke again. “Shh. Easy now. From one grieving father to another, I don’t like doing this… I know your pain. But if you don’t tell me what I need to know, he’s going to send me after the rest of your family. I’ll have to line them up as I did you and her, and play this game with them until either I get what I need to ease his anger… or he’ll take solace in knowing all of those stupid sons of bitches that tried to scam him are dead, and that the message was well received by anyone else with the bright idea to cross us. So, I’ll ask again.” He used his thumb to roll the chamber once more to prove his point. “The shards you sold us, where did you find them?”

 

“...Icecrown.”


 

“Where in Icecrown? The Citadel or the area surrounding it?”


 

The goblin remained silent on the matter, leaving his interrogator to give a sigh as he made the motion to spin the chambers once more. He pulled the hammer back before asking the question again. “Where in Icecrown did you find it?”

 

No answer. Van pulled the trigger once more, another bullet was fired into the goblin, his last healthy kneecap. He spoke over the screams of the goblin. “And now you’re probably never going to walk again, you stupid mother fucker. All because you think putting on a brave face is going to save you. It’s not. You have a three and eight chance next time of losing an arm, and then you’ll be running out of appendages. So please, do yourself a favor and tell me what I want to know… see your kids again. What fucking part of Icecrown did you find the shards you sold us?”

 

“At the gates! We found them laying next to a powerful death knight after the battle! We thought we could use it to make some money, get out from Gallywix’s thumb. Please, you have to understand, he tried to use us as slaves!”

 

“Who was in on this? I need names.” The goblin opened his mouth to protest, the man twirled the revolver’s chambers to silence him before putting it to the elbow left elbow of the goblin. “Tell me who your associates were, sell them out to save your own life and limb. They did it to you.”

 

“...Kankle Bentdust, Jord Brightbreak,” the elderly goblin looked away from his interrogator in shame as he started to list names, “Gezmi Fusehammer, Benk and Klek Slicksmile…”

 

“Dead, dead, dead and dead. Who else?” He pulled back the hammer.
 

“Nanak Dullbulb… Memi Niftfingers…”

 

“Also dead. Go on.”

 

“Neshma…”

 

“Last name?”


 

“...I can’t. They trusted me, they were business partners.”
 

“Have it your way.” He pulled the trigger, the goblin flinched with a whimper.  But nothing happened. Just an audible click. “You lucked out… this time. Do you think you’ll be as lucky if I pull the trigger again? Eh?”

 

Whatever the response from his captive, it was lost in the sudden burst of encoded beeps within the interrogator's right ear:


 

- .... . / ... ..- -. / .-. .. ... . ... --..-- / - .... . / ... .- .. .-.. --- .-. ... / ... . . -.- / - .... . / .- .-.. -... .- - .-. --- ... …

 

He gave a growling, “Shut up. I’ll be back with you in just a moment,” before heading back to his original position that overlooked the factory. He took out some sort of mechanical device and tapped in a response in some unknown code.

 

- .... . / .- .-.. -... .- - .-. --- ... ... / ... .. -. --. ... / - .... . / ... .- .. .-.. --- .-. .----. ... / ... .... .- -. - -.--


 

Almost instantly a replay came.


 

.-. . - ..- .-. -. / - --- / .--. --- .-. - --..-- / .- / ... - --- .-. -- / .. ... / --- -. / - .... . / .... --- .-. .. --.. --- -. .-.-.- / .- -. --- - .... . .-. / ... .... .. .--. / -.-. .-.. .- .. -- ... / - .... .. ... / -... --- ..- -. - -.-- .-.-.-


 

For a few minutes the rogue stood before the device, staring at it intently as he tried to decide his next course of action. Behind him, his captive groaned from the pain his wounds inflicted. Van tapped the grip of his revolver for another moment before holstering the weapon and collecting the things on the surface he had been using as his operations table for this mission, the documents included. He sent one more message before departing the office, to make his passage out of the factory and towards his extraction point.


 

- .... . / .- .-.. -... .- - .-. --- ... ... / - .- -.- . ... / .. - ... / ..-. .-.. .. --. .... - .-.-.-


 

“About time you left, I thought you were going to hog all the fun.” A baritone voice spoke to the left of Van as he stepped out of the factory. The rancid stench of Bloodthistle was quick to follow.

 

“Looks like you’ve had plenty of ‘fun’ already.” He nodded at the shorter elf, covered and caked in dried blood. He didn’t want to ask what that was about.

 

“Family’s gone, I want a set.” The Baritone voice said causally, the blood cracking at the corners of his mouth as he grinned before he dropped the paper-wrapped herbs he was smoking onto the floor. He gave it a solid stomp before he started to head into the factory, only to be stopped for the moment by the man leaving.

 

“Easy now. We own this property, Ky--”

 

“Kyrous died with his sister. You’ll remember that, if you know what’s good for you.” He shoved his way past the rogue and into the darkness of the factory proper, leaving his compatriot alone outside.

 

“...I tried.” The rogue finally found words to express himself as he looked up towards the polluted sky, pulling his eye-patch that had been lost in his dark hair back down onto his human eye. He pulled out his pack of Sultry Maiden cigarettes, lit one and headed once more towards his extraction point. He had a long flight ahead of him, might as well get started.

Edited by Raphael Vanderzee

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Cat walked up the stairs toward Vathelan's office, surveying the damaged hall with awe. "Holy moly.. the hell happened here?" She said to herself. The death knight wore black armor, stained here and there with specks of fresh blood. She knocked on the office door. "Sir?"

 

"Come in." A tired voice called from the door.

 

Cat walked in and shut the door behind her. "Sir!" She practically yelled. I have so many things to tell you!"

 

Frostwhisper looked up from a pile of paperwork, only smiling-- If only ever so slightly-- when he saw his visitor. "I would hope so. And... I am glad you have returned, I was afraid I would have to track you down. " He snaps his fingers, his mana feeding his wards once again.

 

"Of course I came back, I was worried at first but I guess they didn't think it was worth hunting me down.. you know what happened, right?? That guy they were feeding me from went ballistic! He broke us both out and ran off!"

 

"...Do you know who he is?" His eyes told he very much did, as he stared into hers.

 

Cat blinked, caught off guard. She shook her head. "No. He was this big guy,  like really big. Everywhere. We had to escape naked, so believe me, I won't forget that anytime soon.. who is he?"

 

"Please, have a seat." The Magister spoke calmly as he started to mess with his Glass Scroll. "I must remind you that our conversations as Classified."

 

"Sure sure.." she sat down and fidgeted in her seat. "I came back here to talk to you before, but you were gone. Then I went to my room and someone had been in there, looking through my stuff.. oh, don't worry, I didn't write down anything about my missions or anything like that, but, it spooked me so Kreyen and I went somewhere to celebrate Winterveil and.. oh yeah, he said he saw you, when I was running around with naked guy! I'm sorry if he got upset with you, he was worried about me.. and oh yeah! Guess what?? We're engaged! Isn't that crazy??"

 

The Magister flipped the Glass Scroll so that Cat could read the article. The headline read 'Lord-General Visca, decorated war hero of the Order of Eversong killed in action during the Liberation of Orgrimmar' the picture would be of the same elf, in full blood knight armor with a Shattered Sun Offensive shield raised high. "Was this him?"

 

Cat raised her eyebrows in surprise. "..woah. yeah, that's the guy. He was a Blood Knight? I didn't know.. but.. it says he died?" She looked confused. "Is he like me, then?"

 

"He was a personal hero of mine. And the reason I pushed for the formation of the Shattered Son Project. We tried to heal him... but..."

 

"But he's fine," Cat said quickly. "Better than fine, he was running around fighting like a pro. Believe me, that's not easy to do when you're naked, but he did it."

 

"Because of what we did to him." Vathelan speaks quietly.

 

The death knight cocked her head. "Whadid you do?"

 

"Fleshcrafting, Necromancy, Augmentations, among other things. I am not... proud, that I helped set this in motion." He sighs. "But... he was our best bet for the Legion. And we knew it was only a matter of time...."

 

Cat leaned forward in her chair. "But they put his blood in me. They used my axe on him. What does that mean??"

 

"Ideally it will permanently alter you into a more favorable state, no?"

 

"Well sure, but these changes.. I mean, I'm pretty much alive again, aren't I? A few days after I got back, I had this massive period, it was seriously like my uterus just decided to explode! Is that normal??"

 

"I... wouldn't know?"

 

"Well, what about the rest of it? It's like, I heard them talking about how they wanted me to reproduce, but now it's like all I can think about is boning and killing, is that part of it too? Does that Draco guy feel the same way? I'm pretty sure I caught him with a crazy awkward boner, but running can do that sometimes."

 

"I... wait. What? He was..." He thinks on this a moment with a 'Huh'. "...I thought that theory may have been a bit far fetched."

 

"Which? About the boners? Seriously, it was not comfortable running naked with him like that. I'm pretty sure he could knock someone out with that thing."

 

"The concept of fertility, this is... amazing." Vathelan tapped his finger upon his chin. He was torn between the description and the implications.

 

"So does that mean I can have kids, then? And if that's the case... if I did, what would it mean for them? Would.. the Scryers wanna study them or something? Would they come out like me, or Draco?"

 

"This... is new ground. I cannot say for certain what is possible and what is not. While I am sure such a phenomenon would be something worth study them, we also would want what is best for the next generation."

 

"So what do they want from me, now? I wasn't planning on escaping or anything, but that Draco guy was kind of... hard to say no to? I followed him, and they said to use lethal force and I panicked. So far, nobody's come after me? So what do I do, now?"

 

"Well... we have a few options."

 

"What... kind of options?"

 

"They're after him. Did he... give you a way to find him?"

 

Cat frowned. "..sorta, but.. he kinda.. I mean, he trusted me not to tell the Scryers. You're one of them, sir."

 

"I am also probably his best resource. He could use us... if we wish to lend aide, of course. "

 

Cat looked down uncertainty. "...I don't know, sir.. seems kinda wrong of me to betray his trust.. don't you think?"

 

"You're not. Actually.... come. A visual representation will prove more useful." The Magister stood from his desk and started to head for the door.

 

Cat stood and followed Vathelan. "If you say so...."

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