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About IlleLatro

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    http://thebanditspost.blogspot.com
  1. The Bandit began his caper in the early morning hours, with the stars still twinkling brightly in the desert sky and the sun only a line on the horizon---so faint one wondered whether one simply imagined it in anticipation of the day. Soon the eastern sky would mix the stars and the inky night, like cream stirred into a dark tea, and then it would cover the firmament, the same tea spilled and spreading on one's linen pants. The sun would then put on a new pot of water, the kettle's bottom glowing from its heat, until the suddenly the spout would be turned out and its boiling blue would blanch the heavens. None of that mattered to the Bandit, because day and night has no meaning within caverns. He, Jimmy, and a set of acolytes-turned-porters made their way by torchlight into the bowels of the mountainside. The Pooh-Bandit led the way, easily navigating the spacious passageways, the layout and progression of which had been made familiar from hours of roaming them with Jimmy. Over the many weeks of the Bandit's term as Pooh-Bah, the two had taken to withdrawing into the underground complex as an escape from the crowds of worshipers. This had enabled many a long and opaque conversation as well as reconnaissance of the cavern's chambers. It had been Jimmy, however, who had originally guided the Bandit to today's destination. They walked in silence except for the ephemeral hum of the cavern, the scuffling of their feet, the hiss of the torches, and the scratches coming from the boxes carried by the acolytes. Despite the gloom of the unearthly hollows within the earth, the Bandit's spirits were high as they descended ever lower. He was always a bit giddy in advance of a heist, the thrill of a madcap caper almost matching the rush of possessing the riches themselves. Almost. And, if his backhand calculations of the dimensions of the hidden chamber were correct, today was apt to count as the biggest score of his long and lucrative career. Additionally, and not to be dismissed as irrelevant to his good spirits, it had been nearly two months since the cleansing of the ink spring, with no weird or inexplicable occurrences since. And so, with the curse behind him and mountains of treasure before him, the Pooh-Bandit led his gravy train down an offshoot passage much narrower than the rest. The ceiling was also much lower, so much so that the Pooh-Bah's ceramic noggin occasionally scraped at it. The walls were lined with glyphs and reliefs and sparkling quartz crystals (beautiful, sure, but common and therefore not worth the Bandit's attention) and also a row of repeating squares just about waist-height---or head-height, if one was a pygmy. These were hollowed out eight-by-eight inch blocks that created dark recesses barely penetrated by the glittering torchlight, a row of seemingly endless, sclera-less eyes that glowered at the trespassers. As if to block their gaze, the Pooh-Bandit lifted one of his lanky arms to hover a three-fingered hand only inches away from these openings. He held this position as he continued forward, although his pace slowed. He stopped when he felt a soft breath of air pass through his fingers. "Roight, my pleasant pygmy companions, this is it. Jimmy!" The Pooh-Bah's high priest immediately began barking orders at his acolytes. The gibberish echoed up and down the passageway in coincidental time with the flare of the torches. Meanwhile, the Bandit squatted, lowering his viewing square to line it up with the square where he had stopped. He put the flame of the torch at the opening, which burned brighter and sputtered and dazzled his vision. He rested the head at the bottom of the wall-square and gave it a firm shove. The torch skidded maybe twenty-five yards down a gently inclined vent, then dropped out of view. In its place, a now-glowing pile of golden treasures and sparkling gemstones continued to light the far end of the vent. The brilliance of the hoard was sufficient even to make out the rough stone surface of the vent all the way to its near opening. "Jimmy! Rope!" The Pooh-Bandit stepped aside as an acolyte, at the high priest's order, came forward and slid a weighted rope down the opening, which, as he stood next to it, the Bandit noticed was half-again narrower than he. He turned and looked to the other wall, where the boxes had been stacked. Under the gibberish of Jimmy's constant direction, the acolytes were lifting the lid of the uppermost box in order to scoop up jumping rats into their hands. These consisted of the trainees with the most consistent performance record. The acolytes began dumping them into the vent. After about three dozen of the critters had been released, the Pooh-Bah lifted a hand. "Hold!" "Jababimalama!" Jimmy bellowed. The acolytes stopped adding rodents and returned those already in their hand to the boxes. The Bandit approached the vent opening and squatted onto his haunches to peer into it. He just caught the end of the furry procession as it scurried out the end of the vent and disappeared down the rope. He waited, waited some more, realized he had stopped breathing, took a breath, and then waited some more. A few seconds longer and a furball appeared at the rope, backlit by the chamber beyond. It scampered up the vent and into the Pooh-Bandit's waiting hands, squeaking in consternation as the troll's vise-like grip seized it. As it squeaked, a gold nugget dropped from its mouth. The Bandit snatched this treasure before it hit the ground, then held it up for examination while the jumping rat squirmed vainly in his other hand. Pure gold. "Whoop!" the Bandit cheered, tossing the rat to an onlooking acolyte. He pointed down at the rodent as the pygmy caught him. "Double cheese that beautiful creature!" "Dabalabajamajimajama," exclaimed Jimmy, and the pygmies cheered. One cracked open another box and pulled out a chunk of cheese to reward the furry little thief, and (at Jimmy's gibbering commands) another pulled up an empty box next to the vent opening, into which the Pooh-Bah deposited the gold. The Pooh-Bandit peered into the opening and grinned as he saw the black outlines of more little furballs scampering up the vent, laden with treasures. The Pooh-Bah and his acolytes formed a line, with the Bandit and an acolyte at the front, catching the packed rats. They would then toss the treasures into the empty crate while handing off the rat to another acolyte waiting with a piece of cheese. These rotated in pairs, giving the rewarded rodents time enough to finish their cheese before dropping them back into the vent so that they could repeat the process. After about a dozen or more jumping rats had been rotated back into the vent, the Bandit grinned to himself. About the same time, the pygmy acolyte helping him catch rats let loose a panicked stream of gibberish. He alternated between jamming his face into the opening and turning back to yell at the others. A rat leaped onto his face and he threw it into the treasure box, not pausing a moment as he continued to jabber at everyone and no one. The Bandit grabbed him, shoved him aside, and squared himself up with the vent. At first, he couldn't tell what the idiot pygmy had been on about: rats were still scurrying up toward the opening, with other furballs headed down the other way. Then, he noticed that some of rats were not really scurrying so much as staggering about the vent. And a couple were no longer moving at all... ...except for the twitching. What in the world? The Pooh-Bandit pulled his face from the vent and glanced over at the acolyte who had first noticed something was amiss. He lay against the wall, gasping, his eyes wide in fear, one hand lifted a few inches from the floor in a feeble attempt at supplication to his god, the other bunching his vestments in a grip of agony. He seized suddenly, then stilled, his arms flopping down. A piece of gold fell out of his hand, bounced along the floor, and rolled up between the astonished troll's toes. At the same time that the Bandit put two and two together to realize that the gold-darned treasure must have a death curse, a trio of panicked jumping rats---still carrying their cursed trinkets---leaped out of the vent and onto the hapless troll. "Yaaaah!" He screamed, swiping at the little curse bearers to try to shake them off him, and stumbled backwards, right into the treasure crate. What little spoils had already been placed their clinked ominously as his rear end crashed down upon them. At this, every muscle in his body suddenly decided it was time to save his ass. He rocketed up from the crate like there was a goblin firework lit in his butt, launching skyward so fast that he literally smashed into the ceiling, bounced off the wall, and then tumbled down onto the passage floor. A hundred chattering pieces of ceramic rained down along with him. Then things got really crazy. The acolytes began yelling and pointing at the Bandit. Jimmy boomed out a stream of gibberish over them. A line of squeaking, panicked, cursed-treasure-bearing rats streamed from the vent. They headed straight for the acolytes. The nearest acolyte was suddenly swarmed by the little monsters and began screaming in terror. The other acolytes scattered, knocking over the crates. Jumping rats and moldy cheese spilled out onto the floor in a few glorious moments of fuzzy pandemonium. All of this before the Bandit had managed to sit up and shake off the stars circling about his head. An acolyte, his face contorted in rage, rushed the sprawling troll, a ceremonial kris lifted high---ok, well, at least medium---above him. Then Jimmy came out of nowhere and wrapped his stubby little arms around the Bandit, taking the knife in the back. The Bandit roared. He sent one hand sweeping along the floor, scooping up several panicked rodents and flinging them into the attacker's face. His other hand seized the wrist of the knife hand. As the blade exited his high priest's flesh, he tilted his wounded friend off of him and twisted his enemy's wrist in one clean motion. The kris tumbled to the floor. It bounced once, twice, and then it was in the troll's hand. He braced the pommel against the floor and jerked the acolyte down, eye-first, onto the blade. The remaining acolytes were mostly dashing up the passage in a mad panic, excepting for an enraged pair conducting a tandem, ululating charge. The Bandit sprang up to meet them. He rammed his fingers into the eyes of the one on his right while his left hand sliced into the abdomen of the other with the kris. Then he was swiftly stalking up the passageway after those who fled, a disemboweled and a garroted pygmy dying in his wake. He left none of his former acolytes alive. He could not afford to, if he hoped to escape himself. After dispatching the last of them, he hurried back down the passageway to where Jimmy lay. The pygmy high priest shuddered and coughed. The Bandit knelt before him and cradled his head. Jimmy looked up at him and lifted a hand to wrap his fingers around the troll's lengthy tusk. "Jabadibajuba, O Pooh-Bah," he said. And then he died. ----------- Jimmy should not have died from his wound---certainly not as quickly as he did. But when the Bandit rolled him over to examine it, he saw that the high priest had ended up laying on scattered pieces of the cursed treasure. The Bandit left the golden trinkets where they lay and stole out of the caverns. He made his way unobserved through the ruins, wondering with each step if he were about to keel over dead from the curse. He reached the oasis and untied the reins of a camel. He would leave this place no materially richer nor poorer than as he had arrived, though he felt like someone or something had stolen bits of his guts. "Let's get out of here before the curse catches back up to me," the troll murmured to the camel. The reader can easily forgive the Bandit for his misunderstanding the nature of the curse that had afflicted him, as---like the Bandit---the reader is not in a position to be any wiser. So far removed was the cause from the effect that the Bandit formed no association between the two; the cause had completely slipped his mind as an event, as absent in his thinking as mention of it in all the words preceding. Moreover, rarely is one conscious of one's own death, and never does one reasonably suppose, without disembodied experience, that one wakes up from death rather than mere unconsciousness. Finally, and perhaps most important of all, removed as he was from rest of the world in these remote desert ruins of Uldum, he was not aware that he was not the only one suffering from the symptoms of the curse. After all, the Bandit had not been the only one to touch Fey Darkweald's deathwork box, so many months ago in Winterspring. Yet the Bandit had not escaped far from the role of the Pooh-Bah when further clues began to cause him to reassess his understanding of what the fel was going on. For instance, just before mounting, he patted the camel on the neck. And it dropped dead.
  2. The Pooh-Bandit leaned against the worn stone wall encasing the training ground below. He and his right-hand pygmy, Jimmy the Shrimp, surveyed the progress of the Pooh-Bah's minions as they scurried to and fro. Lesser Pooh-Bah acolytes were frantically keeping the whiskered trainees focused on their task, lest they scamper off to congregate in the corners. The Bandit grinned beneath the Pooh-Bah mask as one particularly cantankerous trainee bit the acolyte trying to get him back in line. Maintaining order was a bit of a high bar for this activity; really, what the Bandit surveyed below was controlled chaos. "We're making rather good progress, considering our subjectities," he said. "Ya jubajibawaba," Jimmy agreed. "It's taken longer than I ever would have thought, first sneaking into this gods-forsaken place, but it looks like I really will get my massive treasure cache in the end." "Jimalimajubajabalamabimabama?" "No, no, I don't think it would be wise for me to stick around after I've looted it all. However, I apprecimate the offer." "Lubajiba!" The Bandit enjoyed talking with Jimmy. He was a good listener, and always ready with an apt reply. Perhaps his poor handle on the Orcish language had already made him used to speaking incomprehensibly. But here, although meaning certainly was at an impasse, the Bandit couldn't help but feel that the pygmy and he exchanged understanding through their respective gibberish. Jimmy smiled as the Bandit laughed to himself. "La jibajuba?" "Roight. I will even miss it, I think, as strange as that sounds." Below them, the acolytes were resetting the training grounds. This involved a lot of ululation, stomping, and hand-waving that might have looked more like frenetic spiritual ecstasy if not for the rodents hopping out of the way. These were rats of the local persuasion, peculiar fauna with exaggerated back limbs that caused them to always be bouncing about like a gnome on springboots. "After all, I've been King before, but something about the godhood crown o'er pygmies and pygmy rats rests easy on this troll's head." "Ak jimajumalumalomajuma," Jimmy agreed. The jumping rats had all flowed over to the far side of the enclosure, where a mound of gold coins had been piled. These were ignored, as the horde's current focus was attempting to leapfrog one another out and over the enclosure's wall, away from the terrifying pygmy acolytes chasing them. However, as the rat wranglers withdrew back to the other side of the training grounds, the frantically bubbling stew of fur and tail simmered down. " 'Course, it ain't really a crown, in this case, but a mask." The Bandit knocked the ceramic mask with a hand. "One that's a bit heavy, I'll admissiate. But it's been peaceful, really, between the occasional moments of abject terror that you lot would find me out and tear me limb from limb. Or the real grand Pooh-Bah descend and smite me for my impertinencing impersonification." Now the pygmy rats had engulfed the yellow pile of gold like a single large rodent swallowing a speck of cheese. "I guess I'm used to masks and impersonifications, Jimmy. Heh. You know what?" "Jubajiba?" "I think, in some ways, I feel more real here, behind this mask, than all the days I've walked about the rest of Azeroth without it." "Lubajibajubalamajama." Jimmy was always quick with affirmation. "Hey, look!" Individual hoppers were now breaking away from the swarm, racing toward the acolytes across the grounds. Glints of shiny gold in their mouths, forepaws---and in some cases, both---caught the afternoon light as they streamed away. "All roight. Faster than ever. It's looking promising, Jimmy." "Jamajimajaba!" The little pack-rats' path to the other side of the grounds was impeded by a maze of stone and detritus. They poured into it without hesitation, at which point onlookers could only see glimpses of fur and occasional gold flitting through the cracks. Unfortunately, the first several iterations of this exercise had resulted in the critters stashing the loot out of sight. Sifting through all that mess to find a few gold coins had eaten up more of the training time than any other activity. The Bandit leaned forward. "Here's the moment of truth, my dear pygmy priest." At the far end of the junk maze, pygmy rats emerged and began hopping toward the acolytes, still bearing their golden burden. These they dropped at the acolytes' feet in exchange for a piece of more edible gold---that is to say, cheese. The Bandit raised his fists into the air in triumph. "Cha-ching!" "Ja-jiga!" Jimmy echoed.
  3. Welcome. My one Alliance-side character is Lasmon, if you want some in-game RP sometime.
  4. As one would expect of such a gawky-yet-gaffed troll, the Bandit was a zen master when it came to first aid. That's how he knew something was wrong. The desert winds had a tendency to blow dust and sand into any wounds suffered by the pygmies. These then would become irritated, itch and swell, and thus gravely endanger the bearer's entire life from a simple scratch. All of which the Bandit knew could be prevented with even linen cloth. Yet he also knew that applying first aid after the wound had festered was simply putting a bandage on the problem. In fact, without regular changing of the bandage, it could make the problem worse by trapping the ill vapors of the wound. Yet every pygmy he bandaged had been healed. This, of course, secured his position as the grand Pooh-Bah, worshiped day and night (which would have rather made sleeping difficult if not for his mask's ever-staring eyes). His adoring worshipers did all that they could to seat him in the lap of --- well, if not luxury, at least adequacy. They brought forth offerings of desert fruits and roasted meats, and he fascinated them by tossing the foods into his tooth-gap and smacking noisily. He made sure to include appreciative belches. With a tilt of his head, he could even manage pouring drinks down his gullet, though it did tend to strain his neck a bit. He had begun to form an understanding of sorts with the High Priest, whom the Pooh-Bandit had taken to referring to as Jimmy the Shrimp. The Bandit maintained Jimmy's position as most favored among the pygmies, deferring to his eloquence and judgment when anything actually had to be decided. For his part, Jimmy maintained devoted attention to his Pooh-Bah's needs, responding instantly to the slightest movement of his hand. Both aspects of this working relationship had been sealed when Jimmy had helped the Pooh-Bandit solve the need to heed nature's call. The Bandit did not imagine most high priests got into their line of work to deal with their god's crap. But Jimmy was quick to show adeptness at handling the Pooh-Bah's pooh breaks. At the Pooh-Bandit's signal, he would immediately have acolytes bring up censers of incense. Then, the two of them would withdraw into the cave, presumably for top secret god-and-priest conferences, and the Bandit would make use of an urn. When they returned to the public, Jimmy would make a speech, presumably instructing the crowd with the special enlightenment he had received. Pretty sharp, for a pygmy, that Jimmy the Shrimp. And since Jimmy looked out for the Pooh-Bah, the Pooh-Bah looked out for Jimmy. He made sure that Jimmy, and his acolytes, received a portion of the edible offerings. And when a rival had challenged Jimmy's position before the Pooh-Bah, the Bandit kicked the punk into the burning brazier. He couldn't afford to tolerate internal politicking. He was already in over his head with all the miracles he had been performing. After the Pooh-Bah had healed all of the pygmies with festered wounds, a new class of supplicant began to arrive. These appeared to have some sort of cough. You can't put a bandage on a cough. So, the Pooh-Bah had signaled for Jimmy to keep these supplicants away. However, one slipped through anyway and had the audacity to throw himself upon the Pooh-Bah's feet. The Bandit gave him a vicious kick to the throat, and Jimmy had immediately roared to have the impertinent fool dragged away. But apparently the Pooh-Bah's kick had healed him. He returned the next day to gibber his endless gratitude. And, soon following, so many hacking and sputtering pygmies came to seek the Pooh-Bah's heel of healing that even Jimmy was unable to maintain order. So, with little other option, the Bandit began miraculously healing all of these coughing pygmies by resting his foot on their throats. During one of these sessions, a pygmy that the Bandit recognized as one of Jimmy the Shrimp's acolytes ran up with an urn of water. The first thing that the Bandit noticed was that the water was clear, instead of the brackish filth he had seen most of the pygmies imbibing. The second thing he noticed was that all of the pygmies seemed very leery of the urn. They gave the acolyte wide berth as he approached and even continued to maintain space around a spot where a bit of the water had sloshed out onto the ground. The acolyte sat the urn down before the Pooh-Bah, then began to make some sort of oral petition. Jimmy interrupted him with a growl. Looking somewhat chagrinned, his underling cut off his speech and approached Jimmy instead. Jimmy and the acolyte had a heated discussion. Suddenly, the acolyte whirled and marched back to the urn and began to chug the water. All of the nearby pygmies---even the unflappable Jimmy---gasped. Then the acolyte lay down before the Pooh-Bah. The Bandit turned his window toward Jimmy, who made the signal used to indicate someone who needed to be healed of the cough. Which was strange, because the acolyte seemed fine. But, not one to doubt Jimmy, the Pooh-Bah placed the sole of his foot against the acolyte's neck. Still, he was curious about this urn. He rose, allowing the acolyte to scurry from beneath his foot before moving forward to inspect the water. Nothing else was in the urn, the water being of such clarity that he could easily see all of its contents. The Bandit leaned forward and sniffed. Nothing smelled awry. He took a finger and used it to stir the water within the urn. It seemed like normal enough water. Then Jimmy approached. He looked at the whirlpool the Bandit was creating with his finger, and then faced the crowd and began another oration. The pygmies listened with rapt attention. Then, with great ceremony, Jimmy picked up the urn and drained its contents. The masses roared their approval. What the fel was going on here? Jimmy began shouting excited orders, and pygmies began scurrying about the plaza like a plague of rats. The Pooh-Bah towered among them, a stationary pillar in a sea of movement. In short order, with a quickness and efficiency that actually impressed the Bandit, they had constructed a large palanquin, complete with shade of palm fronds. The Bandit allowed himself to be seated on the chair, of sorts, near the back, while Jimmy stood on the forward platform, never for a moment ceasing in his loquacious exuberations directed at the crowd. Then they rose, hoisted aloft, of sorts, by many pygmy hands. The crowd cheered, and all moved as one out of the plaza, chanting and singing and dancing in parade. Meanwhile, the Bandit sat nervously. On the one hand, at least he was going somewhere. On the other, he had no idea what was going on. The wild procession wound its way through the rings of the ruins, with pygmies scampering afore and behind and aside (lest they be trampled). At various junctures, celebrants would break off from the parade and pour down a side-turn, by which the Bandit inferred that the main procession itself must be taking a longer way about in order to accommodate his posh palanquin. Finally, he found himself carried out past the outer wall of the ruins, at an exit opposite of the side where he had first entered, and then they marched along a trampled path at the foot of the mountain. Sure enough, they rounded a foothill and came upon the already-waiting crowd of pygmies who had taken the various shortcuts. A cheer went up from the masses. Jimmy gave forth a burst of stadium-host gibberish, and the crowd cheered yet again. Then Jimmy began an oration of some kind, addressing the crowd with authoritative vigor. Meanwhile, the Bandit was keen to observe as much as he could from his little window to the world. The crowd had gathered around a stagnant pool, its water black as oil. Although not audible over the buzz of the crowd, swarms of flies buzzed visibly in the air. The Bandit followed the highest concentrations of these to the carcasses of hyenas and other desert critters, all scattered about as a warning to the quality of the pool's refreshment. From this spring bubbled death. And they were carrying the palanquin straight toward it. As they reached the pool's edge and began to lower the palanquin, Jimmy the Shrimp leaped from the palanquin and belted forth a grand finale of gibberish that ended with his thick limbs outstretched to the seated Pooh-Bah, who faced the pool, his back to the crowd. A tense silence followed, one in which the Pooh-Bandit could feel thousands of beady little eyes on the back of his neck. The Pooh-Bandit rose. He walked in the ponderous gait of godhood---or, perhaps, in the reluctant gait of a rogue way in over his head. As he neared the inky pond, he saw that the water itself was likely clear. Every inch of stone beneath the waters, however, had a fuzzy black coating so deep in its charcoal coloring that only by tilting his head could the Bandit catch the faintest glimmer of contours reflecting the light. Without really thinking about it, he plunged a hand into the waters, which proved to be of crystal clarity when he had something other than the growth-covered rocks beneath them to look at. He grabbed one of the rocks---which turned out to be a skull, actually---and inspected it beneath the surface. It was slimy and slick. Wherever his fingers rubbed, wisps of dark fuzz separated themselves from the bone and clouded the water. The Bandit hadn't noticed how closely he had been peering at the object. Suddenly, clear water poured into the mask, both weighing it down and startling him into dipping it deeper into the surface of the water. The water's drag on the mask, its weight, and the Bandit's sudden movement all conspired to send him toppling head-first into the death pond. Well, fel, he thought as water rushed into the god-noggin and dragged him toward the the middle of the pool. [[ The Band Of Heathens – Medicine Man ]] Between the bubbles and the inky dark rocks, he could not see a gold-darned thing. With a sullen crack, the idol's head hit bottom. He brought his legs down and righted himself beneath the surface, but his feet must have kicked up a cloud of the black growth, because still could not see light anywhere. Luckily, this was not too different from his first brush with the depths of Vash'jir. He turned himself around, facing the direction he was pretty sure he had fallen in from, and simply started walking slowly across the bottom. With every step, slimy film gushed up between his toes and licked at the bottoms of his feet. He trudged on with the calm unconcern that one can only obtain when he already considers himself dead. He should have reached the shore already. Most likely, he had traversed himself deeper into the pool, where any minute now his body's need for air would trump his self-control and send gallons of this killer ink to stain his lungs black with death. "Poor pygmies," he thought. "They'll be devastated that their Pooh-Bah drowned." About that time, the pressure against his noggin suddenly lessened. Another step, and the water about his face suddenly surged forward and away, accompanied by the sound of splattering. As the water poured down, his heart leaped up into the heavens and started a jaunty jig of celebration. He kept trudging forward, and his shoulders broke the surface, and soon he was standing upon the bank of the dead well. He placed his hands on either side of his head and shook himself like a sodden wolf. The pygmies stared at their imitator god in absolute awe. The Bandit glanced over at Jimmy the Shrimp, who seemed overcome by emotions, his lip trembling and his pudgy hands wiping at his eyes. The Pooh-Bah faced the crowd and raised his hands above his head. "I HAVE RETURNED FROM THE DEEP, DARK DANK, MY DEVOTED DOLTS, AND NOW I AM PROLLY GONNA CROAK!" A cheer rose up like an ocean tide, and then the pygmies rushed him, sweeping past him in a surge of celebratory exhilaration. The Pooh-Bandit spun and watched as the hapless fools all strode into the pond, cheering and laughing and splashing. And---oh dear---drinking. The Pooh-Bandit didn't think he'd want to slurp up any water these guys were bathing in even if it weren't from a tainted source that was going to poison and kill all of them. But the jubilant pygmies did not seem to mind at all, scooping up great sips in their disproportionately large hands. Doomed, even now they danced in the water and hugged one another, certain that their false god had saved them all. And, of course, days later the Pooh-Bandit would realize that their faith had not been misplaced. He had saved them. Somehow, his plunge into the dark depths had cleansed the water of its ailment, and now the pygmies had access to much better and more plentiful water than they had ever had in their lives. The Pooh-Bah had blessed them all with his power. The only problem was he had absolutely no idea how he had managed to do so.
  5. [[ That's what I loved about it -- really introduced the character via story. Edits, sure, but great imagery even so! [[ My Alliance-side character is Lasmon; I'd love to RP in game with Light-forsaken Radergan sometime, too. ]]
  6. Life as the Pooh-Bah of pygmies was not so grand. Living amid ruins gave them little in the way of opulent food or treasures. Furthermore, the Bandit quickly learned why gods generally remain aloof. Dealing with worshipers was tedious. An endless line of similar transactions until they all blurred into one: grovel, scrape, grant blessing, tears, grovel, abandon, rinse, repeat. And it could not be annoying simply because the worshipers were pygmies; after all, would not the Bandit be little more than a pygmy in the presence of an actual god? Would not the most fantastic mortal offerings be but rubbish to one who had tasted ambrosia, clothed himself in radiance, and bedded himself in clouds? Perhaps that was why the gods always seemed so cranky. The Bandit would have been more cranky if he weren't so terrified. He had been performing miracles. When the pygmies first bowed down before the Pooh-Bandit, his mind immediately began racing as to how he could maintain this status well for as shortly as possible. He had no magical abilities with which to impress the crowd and cement their impression of him as their god. The only things he could make disappear were items of value from pockets and vaults. Although rogues' abilities at stealth seemed night to supernatural at times, in truth it was mere natural practice and talent, which meant that it suffered physical limits such as being nigh useless when you were an object of worship with a giant ceramic mask on your head. Therefore, with no better alternative, the troll went all in on his bluff. If he were a god, after all, he would feel no need to demonstrate his power. Instead, as his worshipers chanted his god-name, he turned away from them with great gravitas. Slowly, treating each footstep as a mighty act of god that might split the ground if he were not careful, he "returned" to his stone throne. He sat his imponderable weight upon the seat and then impassively received the pygmies' adoration. "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" For an hour. "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" Or maybe two. "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" Or maybe it merely seemed that long. Finally, the high pygmy priest rose and gibbered the others to silence. Then, he turned and approached the Pooh-Bah's throne while on his knees, which seemed like a meaningless gesture to the Bandit, seeing as how it not at all changed the pygmy's height. Hands upraised in a wave offering, the short high priest addressed his god. "Libajibajibajibalibajibajajalibiba! Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" echoed the crowd. The Pooh-Bah raised his arms in acknowledgement. This set the crowd off into another round of "Pooh-Bah! Pooh-Bah! Pooh-Bah!" The Pooh-Bah quickly lowered his arms. Thankfully, the chanting stopped. The high priest continued as if he had only paused for breath. "Pooh-Bah jibawumpajibajabalibalibalabalibalabajilababaruwajibala! Jibalawuma?" He prostrated himself again, but silence reigned this time. After a few moments, the Pooh-Bandit realized this was because he himself was silent, and he was reigning, and the high priest had apparently asked him a question. Which, of course, meant that he had to answer. Which was easy, because even though he had no idea what the pygmy was ululating about, there could only ever be one answer. "YOU DARE QUESTION THE POOH-BAH?!" At this, all the pygmies gasped and wallowed about on the ground in fear. The Bandit had to hand it to the high priest, though; the dude kept his exterior cool. Of course, the sweat that started beading across his brow probably helped with that. "Jibalawibalalu! Majibalibajibajabaja, jibalibilabilibilabiliba wump, Puba majibilibili jajajajalalala! O Pubalibilija O Pubajibajaba O Pubajilibilibilu! O Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" Oh boy. This was going to go nowhere fast. And the Pooh-Bandit wanted to be somewhere, anywhere else, fast. He was contemplating a new line of interaction when a wail went up at the rear of the crowd. The Bandit fought the urge to jerk his head toward the sound, maintaining the facade of the Pooh-Bah by slowly bringing his ponderous gaze to the disturbance. It looked like a small group of individuals were making their way through the crowd. Murmurings of gibberish broke out as they progressed, with members of the crowd apparently objecting to the contingent's actions. Yet each angry gibber was met with an angrier and firmer gibberish reply. "Pibapibapibapapapipapuba! Pooh-Bah bah-phui!" From beneath the mask of the Pooh-Bah, the Bandit began feeling a little sweat trickle across his own brow. As the group drew closer, he saw that they carried something between them. Porting their package through the plaza's pack of pygmies impeded their progress out of proportion with the already problematic project of plotting passage past the press and into the presence of the Pooh-Bah. After an eternity, in which the angry buzzing of the crowd had risen in decibel until the Bandit found himself thinking of hornet nests, they grew close enough that he could see why they were navigating the throng so carefully. Between them they held a canvas, perhaps from a tent or blanket, which they had to keep stretched taut to bear the weight of a wounded pygmy. A wounded pygmy, the Pooh-Bandit soon realized, which he himself had wounded in making his way to the top of the citadel. Oh dear. The high priest shouted at the group. One of its members shouted back the same gibberish as always. At this, the high priest turned and squinted at the Pooh-Bandit. "Pubajibalaba?" The jig was up, or about to be, anyway. The Bandit tensed in preparation of the escape plan he had been formulating during all the various chanting, the crux of which involved freeing his noggin from the Pooh-Bah mask by headbutting the pygmy priest and then fleeing into the darkness of the cave behind him. He hoped it was more of a cavern. The group had made it to the front of the throng, gently laying their injured comrade before the high priest. The Bandit could see through his gap-tooth window that the poor pygmy was feverish and wild-eyed with the pain of the poison that the troll coated all of his weapons with. His heart twinged at the sight of the little guy suffering like that, and so he didn't notice at first what the other pygmies were doing. They were all kowtowing before him. They apparently expected him to save their dying friend. As it happened, the poison did have an antidote. And the Bandit naturally always carried a couple of vials of the antidote on him. In other words, the Pooh-Bandit very well could heal this guy, or at least seem so. He grinned to himself. He rose with great gravitas, then raised his arms. "POOH-BAH WILL SAVE THIS PYGMY!" he declared. Then he strode forward and knelt before the mortal beneficiary of his mighty grace---that is to say, his patient. Oh my. The poison was at a later stage than he had thought. (Apparently it really had been a couple of hours of chanting "Pooh-Bah!") It was entirely possible that it might be too late for the antidote. On the other hand, this meant that the effects of the antidote, if it did work, would be all the more recognizable and immediate. The Bandit moved as quickly as he could---without breaking character, of course---to pull out a vial and pour its contents into the dying pygmy's mouth. Then he clamped his large hand over the pygmy's equally-large mouth and forced his swallow reflex. Pulling out some strips of windwool bandaging---a fabric fortuitous in that his facile followers were feasibly unfamiliar with it---the ersatz pygmy god began to also dress the physical wounds. By the time he had finished, the pygmy's breath had calmed and the patient had fallen in a peaceful sleep. The Pooh-Bandit rose and returned, imperiously, to his throne. He had succeeded. The artifice of his status as a god among pygmies remained intact. He had no need to get himself cornered by a throng of angry munchkins chasing him through the crevices of the cave. The sleeping pygmy's friends examined his work, and then rose to their feet in elation. "Pubapibajibajaba! Pooh-Bah!" they cried. The crowd likewise rose and erupted in chorus. "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" Oh joy. After what seemed like an interminable amount of chanting, during which the Bandit began to consider the merit of using one of his ornamental feathers to make an attempt at puncturing his own eardrums, the cadence of the crowd changed. Murmuring arose at the back. The Bandit peered at this new disturbance to the worship, thankful for it, but wary nonetheless that it might ultimately end with enacting the aforementioned head-butt-and-tail-turn plan. Rightly so, for his wariness was warranted. Word had spread throughout the ruins of the arrival and actions of the Pooh-Bah, and now a new influx of worshipers poured into the already clogged square. As they slowly trickled forward, the Bandit noticed a pattern among these new pygmy pilgrims. From every corner and crag and crevice within the ruins, the sick had come out to be healed. Oh no.
  7. Since it all started out like a coincidental blessing, the Bandit didn't realize how cursed he was. Of course, he should have known better. One never meddles with the whammies. "Whammies are for shammies," he'd say. Even pretending at them as a con was more likely than not to end up facing actual mojo---either through a jealous competitor or ignorant self-accident or sheer bad luck. And, like any good troll, the Bandit preferred to stay away from the voodoo. Until, that is, he fell into the role of the Pooh-Bah. Literally. Uldum had drawn the Bandit like a moth to the flame. First, he was always a schmuck when it came to a pretty face. Second, he had heard tale of great riches buried out in the desert. Sure, many of them had already been picked over by other adventurers now off sipping green tea, but that also meant that he had little in the way of competition still searching Kalimdor for the remaining great finds. Third and last, he had always found the sites created by the Titans fascinating---and nostalgic. After some initial setbacks, he earned the trust of the local civilized populace, the Tol'vir. Then he headed off into the desert with little more than a couple camels and nebulous legends of riches buried in the sand. A week or so later, just as he was realizing he probably should have brought some more water, he found the ruins. Rows of thick stone walls encircled a vast gateway into a mountainside. The layout of the ruins formed a still-apparent citadel formation, with rings of successively larger and higher battlements. The stone blocks of the walls were massive, so much so that it caused the Bandit to wonder how any enterprise could have been large enough to hew, move, and stack them; and then wonder again how any forces of nature or war could have been powerful enough to break the many crumbled-down holes in their line. The rubble blocked passage as often as they allowed it, which, combined with many wind-blown piles of sand, resulted in a virtual maze to the central gate. There, a great yawning hole opened into the mountain against which the ruins lay, framed by humongous stone pillars---one piece to each side. It all looked as if the mountain had vomited up geometric innards out onto the desert, or perhaps as if a race of gigantic ants had carved up its insides and brought them up to the surface to form a mound. This latter idea seemed particularly apropos to the Bandit, because the entire ruin was crawling with pygmies. The greedy troll figured there surely must still be treasures buried within that mountain, and he was certainly not going to be deterred by a horde of half-sized pipsqueaks. So he tied up his camels behind some foothills and then sneaked into the ruins. He wound through the maze of pygmy camps, sticking to the shadows and lightly running along the tops of the abandoned battlements. He was only forced to sap or stab a couple of the suckers, and so he made his way to the mountain's mouth without much event. That is, at this distance, it looked much more akin to the vomiting mouth than the ant pile. A great red bonfire of a tongue burned within a brazier before the gaping opening in the rock. Such waste of the scanty sources of fuel in this region likely meant that the flames served some religious purpose, probably in worship of the idol that sat on the stone throne centered beneath the gate. The statue had a body fabricated of skins, feathers, and claws, with an over-sized ceramic noggin portraying flat features showing apparent displeasure over the cavorting and kowtowing pygmies. The inert god almost seemed to breath in the slow and steady hum created by the indecipherable chanting of the worshipers. These last came in a long, seemingly endless line from the lower tiers of the ruins in order to pay their ritual obeisance. Worst of all, too many pygmy eyes were locked on the statue, and the blaze of the bonfire cast all shadows away from the cave entrance. It seemed unlikely to the Bandit that he'd be able to sneak into the structure without instantly being spotted and set upon by a thousand screaming pygmies. Waiting for a couple of hours showed no sign of change in the circumstance. Watching from the shadows, however, the Bandit made two interesting observations: (1) the gate's gigantic jambs stretched high overhead with detailed relief etchings all the way up, and (2) some ancient ropes or vines criss-crossed the top crossbeam. Presumably, the Bandit could scale the sculpted stone and then use the ropes to make his way into the darkness of the interior before dropping gently back to the cave floor with the aid of his flexweave cloak. After all, it wouldn't take but a few moments before the troll could be above the eye level of this crowd. The Bandit made his way over to the outside jamb and inspected the situation more closely. Even with weathering, the relief went in to a depth of several inches, providing plenty of opportunity for grip. He grinned and almost clapped his hands in exultation---but he remembered himself. Then he put his thick trollish fingers to use, scrambling up the surface while using the corner of the jamb itself to obscure his ascent. As he rose, he got a very close look at the panorama depicted on the jamb, which seemed to tell a story of tendrils coming out of the ground and throwing Tol'vir to swirling winds in the sky. The higher he ascended, the more that pieces of the sculpture occasionally crumbled beneath his grip, imperiling his climb and sending down small showers of gravel and rock; thankfully, these effects were drowned out by the religious ceremony of the pygmies. When the Bandit had reached the sculpted whirlwinds, angrily zapping defeated Tol'vir, he had also reached the top of the jamb. The troll glanced down to the thrumming crowd below. The pygmies were still immersed in their ceremony, none the wiser that an interloper was about to enter into their god's dark abode. The Bandit edged his way over to the outer corner of the jamb in order to get a better look at the next phase of his infiltration. It didn't look good. They were ropes, sure enough, and although they had once been strong and thick, now they looked rotted and dubious. At the far end he could see a few that had unraveled to the breaking point, dangling down from the overhead ledge like the rotted husks of snakes who had buried their fangs into the ceiling and starved. Worse still, the ropes themselves were half again out of the reach of arms even as lengthy as a troll's, which meant that the Bandit could not tug at them to ensure their ability to support his weight. Perhaps he could climb overhead and work his way back down a tested rope? He looked up at the cross ledge, but the relief here was too worn away to grant proper hand- and foot-hold. In the middle of pondering this difficulty, the Bandit became suddenly aware that the scene had grown deadly quiet. A shout had gone up, and then the pygmies had ceased their chanting. The troll slowly, timorously turned his head to look down, absolutely certain that a horde of pygmy eyes would meet his gaze. But he was wrong. Instead, some sort of pygmy high priest had quieted the crowd. This eminent personage was now waddling around the brazier, slowly making his way to the fabricated god, which sat directly below the gate. The leader then turned to face the crowd and gibbered incoherently. When the horde shouted its terse response as one, the Bandit almost lost his grip from the startle. "Roight," he muttered to himself. "Best keep movin' before my finn'rs fail me. Or before somebody looks up." He had little choice at this point. Attempting to scramble and scrape up the weathered overhang would certainly draw attention, as would retreating back down the side of the gate. He would simply have to guess at the sturdiest rope within range and take a leap of faith. As the call-and-response continued below, the Bandit took a deep breath, and then another. The pygmies' cries became more frequent and heightened in intensity, which helped the troll to psych himself up for his plunge. He breathed in and out in time with their voices, and when the high priest reached an apex of gibberish, which was held long and loud and which was soon joined by the cacophonous roar of a thousand screaming pygmies stamping their feet and beating any available surface with any available object, the Bandit launched himself toward the ropes. Hand and fingers outstretched, he sailed through the air. For a few brief moments he almost felt as if he hovered weightless, moving with the same feeling of semi-slow-motion as in the depths of Vash'jir, as if the shouts of the pygmies kept him aloft in viscous noise. Then his hand closed around the rope, and time and gravity likewise resumed their grip upon his reality. His weight sank sharply down. His grip pulled the rope with him. His feet kicked out wildly. His heart leaped up into his throat. He felt the rope stretch rigid and taut. Then, with a snap, he no longer felt the rope at all. The momentum of the jump and swing sent him tumbling head over heels. He made one, then two full backwards flips, which gave him just enough time to realize he was about to slam headfirst onto the pygmy god. Then all of his perception was consumed by tremendous pain and flashes of light and the pitiful sound of shattering kiln-fired clay. After that, darkness and silence. At first, the Bandit simply assumed he had fallen unconscious. However, he soon realized that, if he were unconscious, then he would not be able to be guessing that he was unconscious. Besides, his back and legs and feet and wrist and head and tusks all began to throb terribly, also indicating at least a semi-conscious state. Yet, the world remained absolutely dark. He found that he could move his hands, but his limbs felt restricted. His head also felt as if it were being held down by a great pressure. Perhaps he had been unconscious, and the pygmies had blindfolded him and tied him down? He began to push himself up, and it hurt. His initial yelp at the pain turned into loudly spitting a gob of blood out of his mouth, most of which seemed to simply splatter all over his face. "Bah!" As the sound of his exclamations faded, he began to hear the confused murmuring of a crowd. He pushed past the pain and rose unsteadily, straining his neck and back against the strange heaviness about his skull. A square of light suddenly opened up before him, revealing an identically shaped shard of ceramic lying on ground illuminated with flickering light. As he turned his head more upright, he could feel some of the weight on his neck and back now being supported by his tusks. However, he could only see a cracks of flickering light where he was used to seeing his tusks. He continued to rise up, pushing himself onto unsteady legs, and bringing the brazier, the walls, and the wide eyes of a horde of pygmies within the view of his little square window. The foolish troll and fool pygmies stood staring dumbly at each other, each side unsure as to what to do. However, one does not become high priest of the pygmies by not knowing proper protocol when one's god suddenly inhabits his idol. The ceremonial leader boomed out authoritative gibberish. The Bandit snapped his head over to sound, and watched as the high priest threw himself to the ground and began chanting. The pygmies around him immediately followed suit. The Bandit, staring through the square gap in the teeth of the idol's noggin stuck on his head, watched as a wave of prostration swept over the pygmies. All the while, the voices grew louder as they chanted in unison: "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!" "Pooh-Bah!"
  8. IlleLatro

    Debris

    Profitable Information, Volume III, excerpt begins from page 67 [....] for we always presume that Dead and Gone are interchangeable. Yet, for a good trader of secrets, differentiating the two and tracking their status across personages can be absolutely invaluable. The Lich King and his ilk, and a variety of foes throughout the history of this sphere (and the crumbs of Draenor) clearly demonstrate that one can be Dead, But Not Gone. Likewise, and all the easier to accomplish, can one be Gone, But Not Dead. Naturally, great advantage -- and sometimes, thereby, profit -- can also be had by allowing others to confuse the two with regards to one's self. I myself have spent several good periods Gone, But Not Dead in an effort of speculative dispossession of my death against those who might have valued a profit in it at the time, with the obvious examples of SI:7 and the Trade Princes detailed in the previous pair of Volumes, and then again during the period of great transitions known now as the Deathwing's Cataclysm. Through upheavals in land and nations, many Dead and Gone were left missing, making it all the easier for those who wished to be Gone, But Not Dead. Simultaneously, this particular period brought a horde of goblins boiling up out of the Undermine and into the Horde, increasing my personal difficulty at not blipping across their Doppler scry devices. Since the one Trade Prince had effectively signed me up for War (see Section 87 of the Second Volume), this troll decided to become a casualty in the heightened conflict and be Gone altogether. However, the problem with being Gone, But Not Dead while making one's living in commerce and secrets is a subsequent lack of opportunity to conduct commerce and collect secrets. Striking deals naturally requires someone else with whom to reach that deal, the accumulation of inventory often accumulates attention, and meeting with birds naturally means not being entirely Gone. In other words, an effective affectation of Gone requires the Death of profitable operations -- or, perhaps in a more accurate sense, a freeze. So as the Lich King came out from beyond his Frozen estate, this troll entered his own state of frozen assets, and as Deathwing destroyed the land and scattered debris in his wake, my carefully built network likewise collapsed. Yet one advantage aligns with Gone, But Not Dead in that, when outside of all others, you are in the best place to locate and track other outsiders. Quite so, to be Gone is often to be in the places where none others are, which is exactly where one will find others wishing to be Gone. And so, as I hid amidst the rubble of the World, I occupied my time seeing who else I could find scrabbling about the debris. Unfortunately, I found some Dead. And I found some Gone for Good, had they any choice in the matter. But, after many a year, I noticed a curious stirring, as if the shifting of the tides, which seemed to be pooling together various interesting personages long Gone [....]
  9. "Izza deal," said the troll, clasping Faelenor's hand and shaking it. "Five K down paymen' 'n'next we meet, twenny K 'pon fin'in' 'er, t'be paid 'n'avvance 'case ya get kill't, an' 'nuth'r twenny-five large t'be paid o'er five years or equiliven' s'rvices renn'r'd, plus expenses." "Now," he said, taking a finger to pull down at the lower lid of his left eye, "Le's fin' out wot we know, eh? Ya 'ave arready been lookin' fer 'er, yes, so mus've foun' sumtin'r udd'r. Write all ya know an' 'ho ya've connack'ted, an' wot they knew, an' sennit by secure means t'my 'Rgr'mm'r office, wot!" Faelenor frowned. "I'm not paying you to find out what I know." "Nah, butcha wan' t'fin' 'er quickly, yes, so no sense payin' me t'fin' wot ya've arready l'rnt, no? An' wot if'n ya've uncov'r'd a clue e'en t'Bandit dinn't know, hah! T'ponnentiation's there, wot." The frown did not leave Faelenor's face. "And what will you be doing in the meantime?" The Bandit winked and gave big, tusky grin. "I'll go follow a few leads o' me own, an' be colleck'tin' t'things she left wi' me 'case enny'un came lookin' fer 'er an' met t'qualificatin's." "That she left with you? Then you do know something! I'm coming with you!" The troll pushed two large hands against Faelenor's chest, then removed them meekly (with a brief detour to helpfully straighten his collar and shirt) and smiled sheepishly. "Ah, no. Ya 'ired me, now lemme do my job, wot? Aff'r ya sen' me yer 'nf'rmacation, we'll meet an' I'll tell ya ev'rythin' I know 'r 'ave l'rn't. An' if'n ya fin' too much time on yer 'anns, then ya can al'ays go an' see if'n t'Wil' Wom'n o' Duss'allow 'as enny 'ns'rs fer ya." He narrowed his eyes. "Cuz I ain' riskin' mine neck talkin' t'that'un 'bout 'er."
  10. Although he squawked loudly at the sudden addition of the blood elf's hand to his shoulder, the Bandit listened quietly to Faelenor's final offer. He looked at the gate and then at the blood elf. He pulled on his tusk. Then, after a few moments, he snatched Faelenor's arm and pulled the two of them into the thick hedge that lined the street. "Ya got'sum funny 'deas, elf," said the troll, slightly preoccupied with keeping branches from poking his eye or tangling about his tusks. "Like Sa'Rna St'rsum'm an' Fey D'rkweal' 's t'same p'rson, wot! Like she can be foun' if'n she don' wanna. Like enny'un but yer fren'ly neighb'r'ood Bandit can 'elp ya wi' doin' so. An' like if'n ya could, dat she 'ouhn'n rewar' ya fer yer eff'rts wi' an'arrow 'tween t'eyes." Faelenor started to respond but the Bandit held up his other hand to stay him. "But t'funny 'dea mos' inn'ressin t'me, wot I need t'know 'fore I can charge ya t'unspeakical sums ya 'ave jess agree'n t'pay an' poin' ya on yer suicid'l way, 's wot ya 'ntenn t'do whence we fin'er?"
  11. The Bandit pointed at Faelenor. "Yer right out o' yer min'!" His eyes locked on the wanderer, he raised a finger. "One, ya canna pos'bly pay my askin' price fer that, an' two," he continued, raising his other thick troll finger, " 'tis askin' t'impos'ble." The Farstrider smirked at the troll. "Really. It's just a simple test of your methods, it's not--" "Now that ain't it t'all!" exclaimed the troll, an annoyed expression cracking through his face paint. He turned and waved over one of their audience elves, the one who had made the obscene gesture. "Oy! C'mere a sec'n, wot! Yeah, you!" The elf sauntered up next to the table, his arms crossed but an amused expression on his face. "Yes?" " 'ow 'ould ya like t'earn some coin?" The Bandit reached out and hovered a hand above the table. He snapped his fingers and a silver coin dropped onto the surface. Four more quick, successive snaps and a pile of five silver lay before the elf. "Ask my frien' 'ere if'n ya canna look at 'is book." Faelenor's smirk threatened to etch into his face as he displayed the journal page to the elf before the latter even had a chance to ask. "Ah. Bribe someone else." " 'S t'bes' way t'stay alive," quipped the troll in a flat tone as his hired elf stood scratching his head in confusion at Faelenor's writing. "Hey, isn't that the killer--" "Yes, yes," interrupted the Bandit, his usual bubblyness back in his tone. "Now fer yer paymen'. Do ya still wan' t'five silver, should I write ya a bank note fer t'full amoun' I owe ya, ten, so's ya can split t'fun's wi' yer frien' there?" The elf pondered this new possibility. "Ten silver?" "Yah, I don' carry that much on me, but yer services're worthy, wot, an' so if'n ya don' min' t'inconveniation, ya can get t'full amoun' f'rm t'bank." He paused, and then slapped his thigh. "Aw, heck, I s'pose I ought t'toss'n n'extra 'un an' mak'it 'lev'n t'pay fer t'trouble, wot?" "Take the bank note, I want my cut!" called the elf's companion from the other table. "Okay, fine. Eleven silver sounds good to me!" The Bandit smiled, sweeping the five silver coins into a side pocket while producing a check and charcoal stick from another. His tongue stuck out sideways as he scrawled the numbers onto the bank slip. He then leaned back and watched the two elves leave as they headed off to redeem the note. "A fine cheat, but you never asked him what it said," observed Faelenor, watching the Bandit closely. The troll looked askance at the ranger. "I didn' 'afta." Then, rising, he faced Faelenor and quite nearly growled, "...cuz wot'eva t'quessun, t'answer 's 'death.' " He leaned back, pushed himself up from the table and stood with a smile beaming from his face once again. "I mus' 'pol'gize, I don' think we can parnn'r aft'all. See, I like t'stay alive. Now, if'n ya 'ill 'scuse me, I oughta vanish f'rm t'city 'fore t'bank tells those two there ain't any accoun' by that numm'r." Without waiting for a response, he turned and headed out the inn's Gate-side exit.
  12. From WoW Discussions today. The politically correct term is now "Draenei-Azerothian," buddy.