Dobzahnsky's lab wrecked!

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Professor Gregoric Dobzahnsky pressed the accelerator on Ol’ Betsy, pulling the bike slowly up the winding ramp to Ironforge. The cold wind frosted his cheeks and chilled his bald head. His goggles began to fog so he twisted the defoginator switch then quickly swerved to miss a sleeping Ironforge guard who had put up his tent midway up the ramp. The cart teethered to Ol’ Betsy slide to the side and ran over the guard’s legs.

“Oww! Whaddya want?!” the guard screamed as he awoke, only to be confused by the cloud of dust, snow and exhaust that followed in Ol’ Betsy’s wake.

The cart was heavier than normal. Dobzhansky had tied two live hogs to the front of the bike to weigh done the front. He wasn’t sure if they had died from exposure or if his ears had just gotten used to the perpetual squealing. Still, riding through Kharanos with a pair of squealing hogs and a roaring engine gave a brief touch of bravado usually denied those in academia.

Finally he reached the top of the summit. The Ironforge guards stopped him.

“Papers, short stuff.”

Dobzahnsky rolled his eyes, “Oh yeah…because I’m a gnome.” His affect dropped to zero. “That’s dynamite.” Dobzahnsky pressed the green button on the back of Ol’ Betsy and a box shot out of her side on a long spring with the customary BOING. The box dangled there for a moment then popped open on its own.

“It’s in the box,” Dobzahnsky said. When the dwarf reached in the professor revved the engine, startling the dwarf slightly.

“Whaddya got in the crate?” the dwarf asked.

Dobzahnsky looked over his shoulder at his cargo. “Don’t touch that you, mindless oaf!”

“What is it?” the dwarf began pawing at the silvery tarp that had been nailed over the square box. The box shuddered. “What is that!”

“I said do not touch that!” Dobzahnsky hopped off Ol’ Betsy and raced to the guard. “You don’t know what you’re playing with!”

The guards looked at each other. “We can’t…”

“Listen to me, both of you! Have you ever heard of the Titans?”

One of them nodded, “Crafters they say.”

“Yes, master craftsman, better than any dwarf or gnome. They made a device of such a lethal nature that they say any that look upon it will turn to stone! The Eye of Agamemghonsticus… the Third…of the damned! Now if you ruffle it too much you might very well turn yourselves to stone permanently! Now the Explorer’s Leagues needs to see this.”

“We can’t let unauthorized loots in,” the guard said, “ya ain’t paid no taxes on it. And it’ll all get logged in the logbook here.”

Dobzahnsky beckoned the dwarves closer, looking both ways to be sure no one is listening. “Listen, gentlemen. This artifact is the find of the century. The Explorers guild is going to need two strong gents like yourselves to be posted as special guards. These guards will have privileges I assure you. Special privileges. Of the grain variety. Now I’ll put a good word in for you both. But we have to keep this between us. The Brotherhood of the Eye!”

As Dobzahnsky finally pulled his bike and cargo to rest outside the entrance of the old Gnomeregan Tech University entrance in the rear quadrant of Ironforge he suddenly became alarmed that the front door was open. He drove the cargo over to the trapdoor, nodded at a passing smithee and then pressed the red button labeled: exhaust hyperemitter. Ol’ Betsy gave a deep cough and belched out a thick oily gas cloud. He activated the trapdoor and before the smoke cleared was in the basement of the University with his cargo.

His lab was not well lit. He had spent most of his budget on the Species Matrixizer Rod of Truth that he bought in Ashenvale. It didn’t seem to work. Still, even in the thin light of Ironforge lanterns he could see his cell doors had been broken open, his cabinet with all his experimental notes burned and most of his precious instruments smashed. His gnomish eyes grew wide and his upper lip quivered. He snorted back a tear.

Tossing on an ice barrier for protection, he walked into his cage to see what happened to his last experiment. The sheep remains of a sheep lay in the corner with its abdomen torn open. The salt and lime he had used to decompose it after it gave birth had not dissolved it as well as possible. He would have to flush the remains into the water pipes again. He hated doing that, every time he did there would be outbreaks of dysentery throughout the town. Sooner or later someone would figure out where it was coming from.

On the other side of the room was the troll, still chained to the bamboo wall by his hands and feet. This would had strenuously objected to the mating experiment. Dobzahnsky had tried to explain to him the importance of experimenting with the polymorph spell…to determine if the life essence is changed during the spell such that regular mating could take place, or if outward superficial changes allowed the life seed to remain its trollish properties. The Darkspear troll seemed to have no appreciation for the important scientific work of the professor, and had strenuously resisted mating with the sheep even when under the effect of Dobzahnsky’s polymorph.

“Tusk Stroking and Drum Banging: the Rituals of Trollish Love” lay torn on the floor. The professor had read it in an attempt to motivate more regular copulations between the subject and his appointed mate. He blushed as he thought of how silly he must have looked banging on the raptor-hide drum and singing in a high pitched elder gnome voice. He drew the line at raptor love impersonations. He couldn’t quite get the tail to stay on anyway. “Damn book didn’t work anyway,” he mumbled to himself.

The troll was dead. He had a crushed pelvis from the look of it. Internal bleeding must have done him in. No cuts or anything. It looked like someone took a battering ram to his midsection.

In the last cage was their offspring, or what was left of it. A white, curly haired troll boy…or sort of. The professor switched his goggles on night vision to get a better look around. It always gave him a headache, but he didn’t want any surprises. It lay on the floor, curled into a ball. Dobzahnsky lifted one of the two-toed legs. The joint was stiff…the mix didn’t work well. He dipped his head to look beneath.

“Female” he said quietly. Well, it had survived, he thought. When he left she was on the verge of a lung collapse. “Damn vandals.” He put his hand out to roll her over but before he could touch her she twitched and collapsed on her back.

He leapt back in fright, conjured a fireball in his hand and held it back ready to throw it. The girl’s stomach had been cut open. Thin, straight cut. Professional. Her wound began to open ever so slowly like the petals of a bloody flower.

“Trogg balls! What is that?!” Dobzahnsky muttered to himself. As he looked closely he saw a tiny worm-shaped stalk come peeping out of the wound. It was the stem of a plant.

Dobzahnsky hurled the fireball at the corpse almost out of reflex. It flew wide and slammed into the remains of his Professionally-improved frostfire reflection disk and the ball came hurtling back at his face. The gnome hit the ground as the fireball singed what was left of his hair from his scalp then slammed full strength into his cargo.

As the professor got to his feet the cargo box came alive and began to shudder and shack violently. The lanterns on the walls shook with it, throwing shadows here and there and disorienting Dobzahnsky. He tore the night vision goggles off and pulled back the silvery tarp.

The troll slaves in the cage stopped shaking it and looked down in fright at the professor.

“Well it’s time to get you out,” Dobzahnsky said. “You got a lot of cleaning to do!” He opened the door of the crate. The troll slunk out in fear, his hands instinctively going to where his tusks would have been had they not been pulled before he went into the cage.

Dobzahnsky made several kissing sounds and snapped his finger. The snowshoe rabbit hopped out of the cage. “I’m going to need some kind of funnel…”

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