Origins [Short Story]

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Origins [Short Story]

Post by Tuomas/Decurius on Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:10 am

(Note: This short story is a sort of an OOC explanation of IC events happened during the period in which GLF and Greymane Legacy tried to get Gilneas back, and it's set in that period. It also serves to explain OOC some things about both my chars. The John Grenier here first character is -not- the Grenier Blackwrath leader of War Sect. As purpose, it's meant to be seen alongside those events, much like wow novels are to be read keeping in mind wow story.)

He woke up, panting heavily. “Another nightmare.” Getting up, the blue-eyed worgen looked at his left, his soon to get married one turning under the bed’s sheets, snoring in the sleep. Tuomas smiled lovingly and got out of the room and of the building, going upstairs. Shaking his black mane at the seemingly never-ending rain, he looked over the roofs of the city, spreading all around the terrace. “So much done, still so much to do.” A bunch of Gilnean survivors and civilian recently had tried to take back control of the whole peninsula, ravaged first by the Shattering and then by the plague deployed by Sylvanas, and they seemed to be successful. Successful, with the price of risking soldiers’ lives in rush actions. Tuomas gained various new scars, after joining the Gilneas Liberation Front, the first military force of Gilneas, which was in first line when the time came to take over and control the town. Though sceptic, Tuomas fought, risking his life. For what? Yes, he lived in Gilneas, he had been part of Gilneas’ Army, married a Gilnean woman, but he didn’t even know if he was born in Gilneas and who his parents were. He never felt Gilneas as his ‘home’, but more like an unwanted host in there. Still, he was hit by those people’s hopes and dreams: lost his, Tuomas gave himself to theirs looking for a purpose for himself.
“Not able to sleep?” Tuomas, taken from his thoughts turned to the voice’s direction. “Oh, Sergeant. Didn’t know you were there, I’m sorry. “ Tuomas straightened a bit, gritting slightly his teeth, in pain-his chest still bandaged ‘cause of a serious wound suffered during training- and saluted the Sergeant, Allonia Miral. “Don’t worry. Are you prepared?” “For what, Sir?” “You’re getting married in a few days, not something that happens everyday.” Tuomas nodded:”I still feel a bit uncertain. I… promised myself never to fall in love like this anymore. I have a past of great unluck with love relationships.” “Really? Wanna talk about it?”

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While Tuomas was beginning to tell his tale, not too much far, in Stormglen, another worgen wasn’t able to sleep. Though the tides were cradling him, he kept turning in the bed. He had never been really able to sleep or rest in years, but he didn’t think that returning to Gilneas would have disturbed him so much. And more now that he met that woman, Liliyana her name. How much she did recall him the woman he gave everything, even his soul, for! Still he had to focus: everything was going as planned, even better. No time for dallying about the past. After another half an hour unable to sleep, he snorted, took his staff and he began to have a walk towards the Blackwald, destination Tal’Doren. Rumors were spread about the great tree to be corrupted. As a long-time scholar he knew that that was almost impossible, and certainly unrelated to his activities in the Blackwald. After all, he just worked on the ley lines to obtain a powerful place to experiment about arcane magic. While owls were singing their creepy call, and the leaves were rustling above him, Grenier couldn’t help but wonder: if the rumors were true, who could have been so powerful to corrupt a place like that with fel magic? And with which purpose?
He was evil, and he knew that, was a conscious choice, but whoever did that wasn’t just evil, was also tremendously powerful, and that meant dangerous, even for him. Though he was a very powerful ‘dark mage’, as he liked to call himself, warlock wasn’t actually the right definition, and though that had a price, he understood that such a threat had to be stopped. Gilneas, with its new inland government and an open-mindedness that almost reached foolishness, could become, and already was in a way, a haven for those people rejected by other Kingdoms, due to their allegiances and scholarships in Dark Arts. It was just his interest to protect this new-found home, and let it rise and grow, as a tree from the seed. He couldn’t but grin at the metaphor, one fitting a druid, not for sure a fel user. A fel user now in slight pain. Being corrupted to the core, staying under the roots of Tal’Doren produced in him an internal pain, a signal that he shouldn’t have been there.
Grunting, he began to walk back to the little sea town, when a sudden natural desire stroke him. Instead than going directly southward, he went to the west of the wood, where a graveyard was, very old and now, as many other places in Gilneas, abandoned. After passing the gate, he entered the little graveyard, the tombstones ruined by the continuous rain, or covered by dead leaves. Not that he needed to read them: he perfectly knew where was the one he was looking for. In the farthest side he found it. Cleaning it from the leaves, he touched the tombstone, a tear falling down as he whispered:”Marguerite.”

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“Thus you don’t know your last name, nor the names of your parents?” The Sergeant was quite surprised, her eyes a bit widening. “Yes, Sir. I lived in an orphanage since I was little, I have just flashes, mental images of my life before getting there. I remember the smell of the earth, the one of the rain, carpets of leaves all around my house, and just an image of my mother…” “How was she?” “She was… Yes, I know that said by her child seems banal and a bit ridiculous but… she was beautiful. Long blonde hair, deep blue eyes, fair complexion, sweet voice… At least that is how I remember her.” The Sergeant just smiled, clearly she was thinking that that portrait was a bit too much perfect to be entirely true, and in all honesty Tuomas would have agreed.
“And your father?” Tuomas, already saddened, darkened more his expression. “I have not many memories of him. He was quite a tall man, I guess, but every man is tall for a child, ain’t it? I remember just that he was quite a grumpy person, and that he tended to avoid any contact with me, though I know for certain that I felt loved by him. Still, I don’t get it. If he loved me, why did he left me alone? Why did he abandon me? And my mother? Why did she let him do it?”. Tuomas’ voice was resonating with anger, now. Yes, much time had passed since then, 29 years at least, still he wasn’t completely able to overcome that. A huge flaw he have always had: he couldn’t forgive nor forget. He could live by his issues, trying to put them aside and get on day by day, but it was not so easy, in his case. Cases, actually, as he recalled. “Maybe they had their reasons. Maybe the couldn’t raise you properly anymore. Maybe…” “Then they shouldn’t have conceived me. What kind of people have a child and abandon him? Why didn’t they abandon me before, when I was born? Would have hurt less.” “Tuomas, it’s not your fault. Maybe they had their reasons.” He shook his head:”There’s no reason to abandon a son.”

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Caressing the little portrait engraved in the tombstone, as well as the dirty and weathered letters above it, John Grenier let himself sob and cry, as he didn’t in years, after leaving Gilneas. Like answering to sort of urgent inner call, he began to dig with his bare hands to the side of the grave, ’til he found a little item, the one which he dug himself into years before. It was a little circular music box, identical to the one he had left in Duskwood, some months before. He cleaned it from the dirt and opened it. Surprisingly, it still worked: a soft melody, a lullaby, came from the little metallic thing, breaking the silence around him, and warming his heart. It was their song, and the one which they sang to their baby before putting him to sleep.
*
“He has your eyes Marguerite, light blue as yours.” “Yes, John, and my nose!” She was cradling the little thing in her arms, smiling lovingly. “Open the box, it helps him to sleep.” John smiled and nodded, and opened the little box, and immediately the soft music filled the air in the little wooden house. The music box was a wedding gift, a substitute to the traditional rings: they agreed it was more personal and more poetic and romantic to have each a music box with their portraits, than cold rings. Though, he made the rings too, some weeks after the secret ceremony, as a bit of a surprise for her, when she told him that she was pregnant. Differently from many other soon-to-come parents, he was very happy for that. Yes, he knew in their conditions it wouldn’t have been easy, but he had trust in her and in himself, especially in the fact that he was a powerful mage, and as such there was no need he couldn’t fulfill. Now a little child was smiling at his parents and John felt as happy as he never thought he could be. Even if forced to live away, far from the sight of his own parents and citizenry, he had all a man could desire: a beautiful wife who loved him despite everything, a fit and wonderful son, a house where to live without any issue…
*
“Too good to last…” As the memories’ flow suddenly stopped, giving him a heartache, John couldn’t but think he had to expect it. That something had to make that heaven collapse.

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“So, your marriage ended because of that?” Tuomas was a bit surprised by that question. He snorted and said:”Losing two children isn’t worth a divorce?” “It was nobody’s fault, Tuomas. What happened in those weeks in Gilneas wasn’t anybody’s fault.” “Nobody’s but the King.” There, he said it. Even if he had been, in his past, a soldier of the Army of Gilneas, even if he swore to the King and the Kingdom, he couldn’t but wonder: if the old man, now sitting safely in Stormwind while his people were refuges scattered all around Azeroth, had made different decisions… If he didn’t close up his country with a ‘mighty’ wall. If he didn’t break the allegiances they had, if he didn’t order to free the worgen from the Dream… Maybe, just maybe, his children would be alive, he’d be still human, and perhaps not a fugitive. “The King did what he thought was best for us.” “Great judgmental skills indeed.” Allonia couldn’t but smirk: whatever the allegiances, whatever the degree of loyalty you had towards the King, facts were facts. Gilneas had been ravaged by worgen, which afflicted almost all Gilneans, by an invasion of Forsaken and the deployment of the Plague. Gilneas became a nation of refugees, something a wiser king surely would have been able to avoid. “Ok, perhaps the King didn’t make always the right decisions, but remains that it was not your fault. You really don’t get that you’re not to take the blame?” “She couldn’t bear the sight of the beast who killed her daughter in front of her very eyes. Could you blame her for that?” “No, no, I can’t.” “Nor can I, I agree with her.” “You’re not a monster.” “Says who? An entire kingdom deemed me as a monster, banishing me after I risked my life for it. Forgive me, but I tend to be a bit sceptic about not being a monster. Not sure I care anymore.”

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“Is a man deemable guilty if he tries to keep the people he cares for close, and alive?” While he was staring blankly at the gravestone, he asked himself that question, thinking at how it began. One day suddenly, she began to hacking cough. A simple cold they thought, nothing to really worry about. They just got the mother and the child separated for a while to avoid him to get infected, but they should be fine. Instead, her illness grew ever worse, soon forcing her to bed, every hour of the day. Normal medecines and remedies seemed not to work. Not able to stand that situation anymore he got the near village’s priest, asking for help. If not the Light, what else? The priest, a proud man in his fifties, accepted unwillingly: “What does a miscreant like you want in this church?” “I seek the help of the Light for an innocent. “Who knowing you could be innocent? I am not either.” “Yes, ok, fine. I’m a terrible person: does she have to die because of this?” “How can she stand your sight, I dunno. But for once you’re right. Bring me to her.” Then he accompanied the priest in the woods, to his little house. The baby was in the cradle in the farthest corner, sleeping, while his wife was lying in the bed, deadly pale, coughing.
“It’s almost two weeks by now she’s like this. I’ve tried almost anything, all I was able to was to lower her temperature for a while, but she needs a herb tea every hour to keep it at that level.” The priest nodded, worried. “Didn’t you get what the sickness is?” “I’ve not access to our library anymore, if not I’d have made some search. But as far as I recall, no kind of sickness I’ve ever studied does this kind of symptoms for so much time, especially if treated.” “I’ll try my best, but I don’t grant anything.”

It seemed to work for a few days, but after she became even more ill, as if the period of health didn’t pass, or she was never been healed in the first place. In the end the priest just gave up, after two times more, every lasting less than the one before. Grenier couldn’t help but fall in despair: how the fel he was supposed to help his wife? Not to mention the need of help in taking care of the child. He then resolved to get back to the old ways, the old studies he abandoned many years before, the very reason he was an outcast in his own country. As far as Gilneans were more open-minded than many other human nations of Azeroth, still the study of Dark magics was shunned and those who do it untrusted. And he… he crossed the line of ‘just study’. He used those powers he learnt to gain more influence, and when was asked to give up on them, he was so much addicted that he attacked his own family, his sister and mother, thus forced to flee and live hidden. His father, a man of the Church, never denounced him, but he always kept his grudge against him, for the loss of his daughter. Even after years, when John came to ask his help, he couldn’t forgive him. After all, John had never forgiven himself either.

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“Sure you must have skills under the belt! Not just a lover, but two? And even casual people staying with you while those two were waiting for you home?” “Mpfh. Yes, I’m talented for that, that I can admit. But sharing the bed is not love.” “Tuomas! Don’t tell me that those two who lived in Lakeshire with you didn’t love you. C’mon. If half of the story you just told me it’s true, you’ve been damn lucky!” Tuomas snorted. Sure, he knew he loved them, both of them, and that the short period in which they lived together had been the happiest of a lifetime. But in the end? She suicided, and he began to travel the world, letting him alone. Not that he expected true love from him. After all, he didn’t care at all when he got his own head on the line, quite literally, to save his life. He sighed, and turned to the landscape. The Sergeant shook her head, getting back inside the barracks. Tuomas peered at her, while she was leaving. “What’s wrong with the world?” muttered, before closing his eyes and enjoying the feeling of the rain over his fur.

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He remembered it as it was here and now. The moment in which he got inside the old library of the manor of his family, thousands of books lined up in the shelves, the dust covering them, abandoned after he left that house forever. He arrived then where he wanted to: it was a lonely shelf with some three-four books, but otherwise empty. The book which condemned him, the repository of the ways to use the Shadow magic which brought him to the bitter end of the relationship with his family was there. Still, he had ignored it and took instead another book, a book who himself had never dared to take and read. “De Anima et Viis Preservationis Eius”, ‘About Soul and Ways of Its Preservation.’ , the title stated. The book wasn’t huge, in a purple leather cover and a silken bookmarker: he took it and wasn’t surprised at all by the Introduction: a long and extensive discussion about the soul and the fact that few things could somehow avert its destiny after death. Among those, the use of necromancy, the use of fel magic and the use of Shadow magic. He took his book home, and began to work on it, the child with, oddly, the grandfather, who accepted to take care of him while John would have cared for his wife.
After reading carefully much of the book, he got finally that shadow and necromancy would have taken too much time and dedication to work, time he hadn’t to spare. His wife was slowly dying ‘cause of her illness and he had to hurry if he wanted to keep her with him. So, he ran to the end of the book, where the only sure way to obtain what he wanted was described. He knew that it was a terrible gamble, a gamble which would have caused him to get in allegiance with some of the worst creatures in the universe, and something highly illegal, other than corrupting. He had stopped looking at the summoning ritual described and drawn in the page, staring blankly at the window in front of him, the rain drumming softly on the glass.
“What if I didn’t? What if…?”

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“What if I didn’t? What if… I just hadn’t put myself in that situation? Ignore what was happening and look away?” He had returned to his bed, but couldn’t sleep. Wasn’t the noise of the rain, nor the chill on his spine due to the cold air barely kept out by the wooden doors. Just the repetitive and bad thought, and doubt. He was proud of what he had done, helping in saving a necromancer from death penalty only ‘cause she helped a person to stay alive, but at the same time he couldn’t but ask himself if it had been worth it, in the end. He gave up on his friends, on his reputation, his job and his love to do the right thing. After all, was renouncing to all that the right thing to do? For a person he barely knew? He didn’t know. But now, on the front lines, he found himself doubting the value of sacrifice. Perhaps people should just mind their own business, ignoring the shit thrown towards the others.

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“What do you want from me? What am I to sacrifice?!” There was it, after having drawn the runes and cast the warding spells so to avoid him to flee or worse, he had summoned it. Not that the demon was exactly frightening. Was a little fiery Imp, peering curiously at the man, with a malevolent grin. “So-he spoke with his little screeching voice-you want me to make her soul bound to an anchor, so to avoid her leaving when her moment comes?” “And to be able to call her back, when I’ll find a way to heal her body.” “And what would I get in exchange for such a favor?””What do you want?” “What does every demon want? Your soul. “ John blinked, and took a step back. “That, or nothing. Up to you… mage.” The imp raised an eyebrow, with a derisive expression. John stared blankly at the creature, his mind racing. If he accepted, he would’ve saved her, and his son. He would’ve damned himself though. At the same time, saving himself would’ve have made her die, and left his son with a father exiled and outcast. After seconds which appeared to last as eternity, he nodded. “Deal.” The imp grinned malevolently. “Deal.” And then it began. John lifted the warding spell which prevented the demon to move, readying his wand. He knew he somehow could trust the creature, still…
The demon followed his instructions, and reached the woman’s room, she was almost wax-white, his breath a continuous merciless pant, fever as high as before. The demon, clearly used to such spells, worded something in demonic and instantly, John understood something was wrong. The imp had already eyed the music box tied to his belt, and now had clearly noticed the one close to his wife’s bed. The air assumed a sort of burdening presence as something, John couldn’t really understand what, was travelling through it, lead by the gestures and the voice of the imp. At the same time he began to feel extremely weak, as he clearly understood his soul was departing… Where, he couldn’t say, until the last moment, when the little jewel on his music box, now open as he fell on the floor acquired a purple, dark hue. What…?
“You are a fool, John Grenier, you definitely are. And you’ll pay for your foolishness. Your dear love’s soul is quite more valuable than your own, and has always been yours. As such the deal is respected. I’ll get your soul. The soul which belongs and always belonged to you, the one of the person whom you loved and always loved you. About you… her soul, yours… will be anchored to something in this world, so you will be able to come back. You will keep living with your foolishness ‘til the end of time, and when my master will come and destroy all you care for, you’ll be so corrupted that you will have no chance but to serve him… Master, mage… servant.”
After these words, the demon stopped gesturing, came closer to the now warlock lying on the floor, touched his wand, breaking the spell which made him connected to this world, and disappeared, silently.
*
The rain as always pouring down from a sky as dark as his soul, John Grenier stood on his feet, looking at the gravestone one last time. It was there he brought his boy, Tuomas, just a year later, before getting to a farm and leaving him at the stable, with perhaps the only lie he had ever actually said. “I’ll come back.”
The child, his eyes as blue as the sky, had waited, then had began to cry.

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Turning on his bed once more, trying to get some sleep, he got closer to his loved one, then came closer and, of happiness, he began to silently cry. That person was his business.

Tuomas/Decurius

Posts : 299
Join date : 2011-12-07
Age : 27
Location : Wherever the mind goes

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