Seconded

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Seconded

Post by Guest on Thu Mar 14, 2013 5:47 pm

Kel'dos crept through the shadows of Undercity; there was never a quiet time to visit the city as the forsaken didn't see the need to sleep. However, a Sunday evening was his best chance of completing his personal mission as many forsaken would be attending sermons and the Vile Thorn would be out training or hunting. The Thorn Master's office on the upper level of the inner part of the city was easy enough to find and the door not even locked, so confident were the Thorns on the security of the Undercity and of their reputation. However, Kel'dos didn't stay a moment longer than was necessary and left the sealed envelope in the middle of the desk, alongside other unopened correspondence. Grinning under his mask, he slipped out of the office and headed as swiftly as possible for the exits from the city. He'd forged far more complex documents in his time, it was extremely unlikely that the letter wouldn't be taken at face value; "..that'll teach the cheating smug little git" he smirked to himself.

As usual, Arli was late for the Monday morning Deathmaster's meeting. They had made this a regular weekly meeting, time to review the reports from the meeting the previous evening and to plan and allocate contracts for the coming week - fitting in training and hunts alongside them. Arli pulled down his mask and yawned as he walked into the small Thorn Master's office.

"Mornin'" he said "Am I late?" he added, knowing full well that he was supposed to have been there a good half hour previously. Slipping the meeting time from 9am to 9:30 had just meant that he then turned up around 10am.

"One addressed just to you, rest opened and allocated" replied Dia simply. "Given you a few training missions to run, thought you wouldn't mind what tasks were set you as you couldn't be bothered to be here on time". Shivien sniffed, her face as expressionless as usual. Arli deftly caught the letter as Dia flicked it over at him and a puzzled look crossed his face at the Orgrimmar insignia stamped in the corner.

"Probably a court summons" added Dianthaa helpfully. "Not paid your fine for being obnoxious in a built up area?"

Arli returned a sarcastic smile as his slid his thumb under the seal and opened the envelope. The parchment inside was thick and with the Orgrimmar seal once again in the top corner. The letter itself brief and to the point - he was being seconded to assist a temporary Horde base in Krasarang Wilds and was required to depart immediately. The secondment would be for fourteen days and he would be under direct command of the Horde base senior officer. Arli scowled deeply and stared at the letter as Dianthaa and Shivien edged either side and read it over his shoulder.

"What the feck...no way...NO WAY am I going" exclaimed Arli, flicking the Orgrimmar symbol.

"It looks very official.." said Dianthaa.

"You have to go" said Shivien simply

"I don't feckin' have to do anything!" snapped Arli

"Because if you don't, they will undoubtedly want to contact the Thorn Master to ask why you have not turned up" she added.

Shivien and Dianthaa looked at each other, exchanging a small nod.

"She's right, Arli. Besides, it's only two weeks, hardly any time at all" said Dianthaa a little too cheerily.

Arli looked from one to the other, they were right, there was no way they wanted anyone in authority asking questions of the Thorn Master. His shoulders slumped as he sighed "ok....fine...but you'd better keep me up to date on comms, if I'm gonna be stuck with a grunting of orcs I'm gonna want somethin' interesting to talk about"

"I'm sure you will find something to talk about, you seem to abhor a silence around us anyway" replied Shivien with the faintest of smirks.

Arli screwed up the call-up paper, dropping it and kicking it into the upturned rib cages that acted as a waste bin under the table and without word, yanked the door open and stormed out to get the next Zeppelin to Orgrimmar.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:58 am

The base Commander didn't quite know what to do with the latest conscript from Orgrimmar. For starters, he was an elf and the base was exclusively orcs - as he preferred, less tensions and trouble when the base was of just one race. He looked at the young elf standing across the desk from him, the conscripts seemed to get younger "or perhaps I'm just getting older" he thought to himself resignedly. At least this one only claimed he was sent to the base for two weeks, although when the paperwork arrived it unfortunately might indicate longer.

"Since the paperwork from Orgrimmar hasn't arrived yet, I am going to need to fill out your personnel file myself. Name?" asked the Commander as he scanned down the all too familiar form.

"Still Arli Sunblade, as it was when you asked outside" replied Arli with a faint smirk.

The Commander put down his pen and looked up at the young elf. "This is going to be a very long two weeks if this is how you mean to continue"

Arli straightened his face and looked straight ahead.

The Commander picked up his pen and carefully wrote "SUNBLADE, ARLI" on the form.

"Any specialisms? Skills? Crafting abilities that will be of use?"

"I'm an Assassin"

The orc commander glanced up at the elf. He did indeed have two fine daggers at his hips and a number of throwing knives strapped along the side of each thigh. But he himself had a guitar, a misguided gift from his mother-in-law, but it didn't mean he could play a note. The Commander scored through the specialisms and under 'Job Role' wrote "SCOUT".

"Personal belongings" he said as he fetched a small Hessian sack from one of the many crates in the large tent.

"None" replied Arli

The Commander wrote "SUNBLADE. A" and his personal identification number from the corner of the form on the thick card tag attached to the drawstring of the sack. "Your tabard, that jewellry on your ear, two pouches on the belt" he said as he wrote.

"What? No way." scowled Arli. "This is my Thorn tabard and comms, I wear them all the time and I need my 'thistle and you think I'm trusting my hard earned gold in some bag in a tent?"

The orc scraped his chair back and walked to the opening of the tent, gesturing the young elf to follow him.

"See that building?" he said, pointing to a square tin window-less construct across the camp. "That's The Box, it's not quite high enough for a grown orc..or elf...to stand up in and not quite long enough for him to lay down."

Arli looked across and nodded slowly.

"It's where we put those unable to follow orders. I think we have two disgruntled orcs in there right now" added the Commander before turning and walking back to his seat. Arli followed and without a word removed his tabard, comms and the two pouches and placed them on the table. The items were placed in the sack which the Commander casually threw into another crate.

"Oi..careful, my comms..." scowled Arli.

"Next of kin" said the Commander, returning to the form.

"Disowned me" replied Arli with a small shrug

"Can't think why" thought the Commander to himself. "Well anyone we need to inform should you die in service?" he said

Arli pondered a moment. "Yeah, Lord Abulos Sunwing, let him know. Oh..and Dianthaa, Shivien and Squad of Vile Thorn. Would be good to tell Chey and Kel, oh yeah and Sab and Cat..I mean Catari too 'cos.." Arli stopped as the orc held up his hand.

"One is enough". The Commander paused. "Now listen well as I will only tell you once. While here you will be functioning as a Scout, the day starts at 7 bells and you breakfast and come to this tent for your orders by 7:30. Do not be late." The Commander droned out the usual rules. "No drinking apart from the rations you will get with your evening meal, no drugs, no leaving base unless instructed as your role is a 24/7 one and you may be called upon at any time to scout an area on identification of suspicious activity."

Arli nodded, half listening. Sounded a bit of a skive unless he had to work with someone.

"One sec...I can scout alone? Don't need some orc holding my hand" interruped Arli. "What time do I finish? Any Inns nearby? I do get paid right?"

"Were you even listening and did I say you could ask questions yet?"

"Well no...but you didn't say I couldn't" laughed Arli.

The Commander scraped back his chair and walked to Arli, taking him by the arm and marching him across the camp towards 'The Box'.

"Wait..no..no..no..no" said Arli, realising what was happening. "I was listening honest..uh...something about bells an..fel no, you can't put me in there with two orcs!"

The Commander continued his steady pace, his grip on Arli's arm immovable. In reality 'The Box' was rarely used, there was little trouble on base and the most if got used for was if some orc managed to get his hands on extra ale rations and got a bit too drunk and disorderly.

"C'mon..." pleaded Arli. "Orcs can't tell if us sin'dorei are male or female as it is let alone in the dark...I don't want no grubby orc hands on my-"

The Commander swung open the door and pushed Arli's head down so he ducked into the small tin building. To Arli's immense relief, the box was empty and as the door clanked shut and was locked, he slid down the wall and sat by the door.

"It's dark..smelly...and airless" he thought to himself, wrinkling his nose in disgust. "...bit like the forsaken" he added in his head, laughing out loud a little hysterically at the relief of being in solitary.

The Commander walked over to the Quartermaster. "An hour in there should be enough to take the edge off his arrogance". He paused and the two orcs looked at the tin building as laughter echoed out through the small vents. "Make it two hours. Get him a Scout's tabard and get his dogtag made up as I've a feeling we may need it. When you let him out give him his kit bag"

"Yes sir" replied the Quartermaster smartly.

The Commander turned and started back to his tent, adding "...and you'd better show him just where to set up his sleeping tent. Seems that race have a lot of inbreeding"

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Wed Mar 20, 2013 12:44 pm

Arli wandered over towards the Command tent, still feeling awkward in his Scout's tabard. It wasn't just that it was a little too big for him - the tabards in stock at the base were all made to fit the frame of the orc and not the more slender blood elf - it was that he had worn the colours of the Vile Thorn for so many years now he felt somehow naked without it. He was early for the 7:30 meeting, after so many months of expertly cooked and presented breakfasts courtesy of the Sunwing estate, having been presented with the basic breakfast rations of cold meat, crackers and what looked like a herbal tea of some sort, he'd quickly consumed the small portion he deemed edible and passed on the rest to the orc across the table from him.

"Mornin'" said Arli cheerfully as he entered the Command tent.

"You forgot to salute" reminded the Commander as he smoothed out the large map on his now cleared desk.

"Ah yeah.." replied Arli, smartly saluting with an accompanying "Moooorn-in!"

"One strike, three and you know where your day will be spent, elf" replied the Commander matter-of-factly as he placed a large pebble at each corner of the map. Arli grinned, he liked a boss with a sense of humour. Arli sat on the edge of a supply crate, watching as each of the five orcs arrived and noticing that not one forgot to salute the Commander as they did so.

"Good morning, scouts" said the Commander. Arli took this as his cue to join the rest and sauntered over to stand next to the map.

"The airbourne scouts will cover these zones" said the Commander, stabbing five large zones; "...and no, elf, you are ground based" he added as he saw Arli open his mouth to speak.

"Lucky me" replied Arli dryly.

"As always, you can extend your coverage should you feel the need." Arli glanced at the five nodding scouts, they wore the same tabards but insignia sewn onto the shoulders showed them to be of a higher rank than himself.

"Your zone, elf, will be here" said the Commander, stabbing his finger at an area at the furthest reaches of the zonal map.

Arli looked at the area, whereas the other zones seemed to be mostly of wooded patches interspersed with ruins, settlements and stretches of coastline dotted with small islands, his seemed to be solid woodland bordered by a stretch of coastline - and it looked a good hours walk away. He looked up at the Commander "What am I scouting for, squirrels? Nothin' but feckin' trees there".

"Report any Alliance activity, do not engage with them but you may track and find where they are going. I expect a report filed each evening and the airborne scouts will follow-up any reports of activity the next day. Ensure you remain unseen"

"Great. So I get to walk around in the shadows and follow feckin' squirrels and deer all day while the others get to fly around and go for a beer?"

"Strike 2"

Arli clamped his mouth shut.

The Commander looked along the line of scouts, "Any questions?"

"Do I at least get a ground mount?"

"No" replied the Commander tapping his lip with two fingers to remind the young elf that one more strike and his patrol would be of a 5' square tin box. The gesture wasn't lost on Arli who just scowled and nodded slightly. The Commander knew he was being unfair sending the elf out on foot and to a zone known to be empty of activity and a long distance away, but it would keep him away from base all day and hopefully tire him enough so that he wasn't his usual mouthy self at mealtime.

"Hellscream's eyes are upon you, do your duty well" said the Commander with a salute, which was returned sharply by five of the scouts and a little belatedly by the sixth.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:50 am

As with the previous two days, Arli saw neither Alliance or Horde within the zone he was allocated to patrol.  He no longer walked in the shadows and periodically would head to the edge of the forest to where the treeline met the shores of the calm sea and spend a short while sitting on the beach and enjoying the warmth of the sun on his face after the cool shade of the heavily forrested zone.  

Deciding to explore a little further, Arli headed into the next zone and once again found himself close to the forest edge and near the beach.  As he headed towards the sunlight and warmth he was surprised to see the silhoutte of someone standing close to the waterline.  Slipping quickly to the shadows, he silently made his way to the edge of the forest, listening warily for the sounds of any others nearby.  Arli grinned to himself as he recognised the familiar and shapely silhoutte standing fishing at the water's edge; stepping from the shadows he gave an appreciative whistle.

"You followin' me?" He laughed as she spun around, the look of confusion quickly replaced with a mirrored smile.

"In your dreams, Sunblade"

"You do more than just follow me in my dreams" he replied with a wink as he pulled down his mask and strolled over to her.

"Ever thought of a career change and working for the steamy novel writers?"  she replied with an arch of her eyebrow.

"My lines that good huh?" Replied Arli, laughing as she nodded slowly.

"Actions speak louder than words..." he replied as he reached for Robi, then with a sweep of his leg and twist of his shoulders knocked Robi off her balance and falling backwards, Arli holding her as she fell so as to break the impact of the fall, pinning her beneath him.

"I win" he grinned

"I let you"

"No wa-"  started Arli, silenced with Robi's kiss.

As their lips parted, Arli propped himself on his elbows and looked down at Robi.  "I've missed you, it's been too long"  he spoke quietly. 

Robi smiled slightly, holding his gaze " ...it has". 

"I've been drafted.."

"I saw..the tabard..?"

Arli nodded slightly, unable to tear his eyes away from hers.

"Another week or so....stuck here...but after, I can stay off comms a few days, come over to Gilneas?"

"I'd love that"

Arli smiled and kissed her lightly.  "But right now, this is Horde territory and not all the Horde treat their prisoners like this......you'd better go.."  he finished, still holding her gaze and making no effort to move.

"I should.." she replied, wrapping her arms around his shoulders and pulling the unresisting Arli closer as their lips met.

A rush of air and a heavy thud in the sand caused Arli to spring to his feet, pulling up Robi and swinging her behind him and drawing his blades as in a defensive stance he turned to face whoever had arrived.  The orc slipped from his Wind Rider and faced Arli, his axe drawn as he assessed the situation.  Arli paused, if the orc was going to attack then he would have already done so - but he was one of the airborne scouts from his base and undoubtedly recognised their resident lone blood elf.  Arli sheathed his daggers and shifted his stance to appear submissive.

"Follow my lead, I won't let anything happen to you" he spoke in Thalassian as he looked at the orc, knowing Robi would be able to understand most, if not all that was said and hoping the orc hadn't studied his language.

The orc strode forward and back-handed Arli hard across the face; "Speak orcish"

"S..sorry" replied Arli, wiping his lip with the back of his hand and pausing at the sight of smeared blood.  "I..forget sometimes..sir...I..I..said I was just playing around, I was going to bring her in as a prisoner, I swear."

The orc grunted in distaste, Arli flinching appropriately.  Causing others to underestimate him had always been his biggest strength and his younger looks and the over-sized tabard added to the illusion.

"Blood elves....always think with what's in your trousers and not what's in your head."

Arli lowered his head and mumbled "sorry, sir"

The orc roughly shoved Arli aside, causing him to stumble a few steps, as he grabbed Robi by the wrist, twisting her arm behind her back as she yelped in pain.

"I will take her back to base, you will be dealt with when you return, elf.  You're a disgrace to the Horde"  he finished, spitting into the sand at Arli's feet.

Arli nodded slightly, not raising his head as the orc turned and pushed the squirming Robi in front of him and towards his Wind Rider.  The orc had taken barely three steps when Arli swiftly unsheathed his dagger and leapt forward, both hands on the hilt of his dagger and using all his strength to drive the dagger into the back of the orc; the sharp blade driven to the hilt, pierced the orcs heart as the force of the attack knocked the orc to the floor.  The orc released Robi as he fell; Arli rolled away and to his feet, his dagger embedded in the twitching orc's back.  Arli looked at Robi as she quickly scrambled to her feet.

"You ok?"

If she replied, he didn't hear as a loud screech pierced the stillness of late afternoon, the Wind Rider rearing and screeching at his master's demise.

"The trees!" Yelled Robi as they both sprinted for the thick cover of the woodland that the agitated Wind Rider would hopefully not be able to get through easily.

Arli suddely came to a halt a short way into the woodland. "My...my blade, it's in his back...they'll know it was me"  stuttered Arli as he turned and looked at the still body on the beach and the screeching Wind Rider pacing up and down the forest edge.  Robi stopped and looked at the ashen faced Arli, he was right, his daggers were very distinctively elven having been handed down through his family links.

"I'll distract it...go!" Said Robi, sprinting back towards the beach calling and waving her arms as the irate Wind Rider spotted her and ran along the edge of the treeline.  Arli sprinted across the beach, using both hands to tug the blade from the dead orc's back, his foot on the orc to brace himself.  Another ear-splitting screech as the Wind Rider caught sight of his master's attacker and took to the air, swooping down on Arli as he sprinted back to the safety of the dense woodland.  Arli glanced over his shoulder, swearing as the Wind Rider dived, rolling as a claw slashed across his back and sprinting the last few yards into the relative safety of the woodland as the Wind Rider screeched loudly in anger.

"Run...this way, back into my patrol zone...should be no other Horde there..." said Arli as Robi caught up with him and the two headed deeper into the forest.

The two ran until the screeching of the Wind Rider faded into the distance, finally slumping against a large old tree to catch their breaths.  Robi glanced at Arli, despite the exertion of the run he still looked pale and shaken.  "You..ok?"  she asked, "...the Wind Rider...caught your back.." she added leaning back to peer at the bloodied gash across his back.

"I'm fine.." came the reply although he didn't look up from his crouched position against the tree.  Robi slid down the tree and crouched beside him.

"Shall I take a look, clean it up?" asked Robi after a long silence.

"No..no it's ok, I'll get sorted back at base..say...say something attacked me..or..something" he shrugged slightly.  "Doubt anyone will care to ask, they'll just fix me up".

"Are you ok though?" asked Robi after another unusually long silence.

"I just said, I-..."

"No, I mean -you- ...you seem quiet..."

Arli turned to look at Robi and forced a smile, standing up he offered his hand and pulled her to her feet.  "I'll be ok...you should go though.  They might search or something."

"If i can get to an Alliance base, I can get someone to fly me over to get Derek...he'll still be flying around the area." replied Robi.

"I know of one, not too far, I'll take you as close as I can"  he replied, pulling on Robi's hand to follow him.  Robi tugged him back and shook her head.  "Not until you tell me what's wrong".

Arli looked at Robi, no point trying to bully her into following him, that would never work and there was no way he could just walk and leave her to find her own way there.  He couldn't tell her he actually felt nauseous from killing the orc to defend her, even though it was the only option he had.  He couldn't voice his fears of being caught and losing his place in the Vile Thorn.  He couldn't tell her how much he hated them being apart for so long.  But, he had to get her to safety and he had to get back to base, the gash across his back was far more painful than he cared to admit.

"Just tell me when we can meet in Gilneas, that's all I need to know."

"Answering with a question...."

"Please?  Drop it eh?  Just tell me when."

Robi sighed and kissed his cheek.  "As soon as you know when you will be free, send me a letter and I'll be there waiting."

Arli smiled and nodded; "I will, if we ever get out of here?"  he laughed and tugged on her hand, this time she followed.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:30 pm

After making sure that Robi was safely back at the Alliance outpost, Arli made his way back to base as quickly as he could, only stopping to clean the orc’s blood from his blade and to wash his own blood from his face in a stream. By the time he returned, the scout’s body had already been found and as the main topic of conversation and speculation, his wounds were tended without question and the Quartermaster similarly gave him a new tabard and armour kit to use to repair his torn leathers without questioning why. Arli retired to his tent and methodically and carefully repaired his leather armour, not wanting to join in the speculation as to how the scout had died.

The Commander tucked into the hearty mixed-meat stew, soaking the bread in the rich gravy as he observed the troops under his command. He watched with amusement as the elf poked and picked at the bowl in front of him, finally pushing it across the table to the orc opposite and getting up and leaving the table, not even touching a drop of his ale rations. Fussy lot these elves. Still, at least his plan of tiring the elf out seemed to have worked as he was clearly lacking the exuberance exhibited at his arrival on camp, although perhaps he had been a bit harsh on him. After all, with the unfortunate death of one of the airborne scouts there was now a Wind Rider free; yes, he’d let the elf join the airborne team tomorrow and see how he got on. The Commander stood up and banged the table with his empty ale mug.

“My brothers of the Horde!” he called out as silence swiftly descended. “One of our comrades died an honourable death today, in service of the Horde. His life will be toasted tonight with extra ale for all, we will celebrate his service to the Horde and the honour of his death in that service!”. The Commander sat back down as the troops cheered; the ale would help them celebrate the life given, although it was take without honour by a dagger to the back, his attacker not even being honourable enough to face his opponent in battle. Still, a death in service of the Horde was an honour in itself, perhaps, thought the Commander.

The next morning Arli took the longer way around to the canteen area, keen to avoid the stable area and having to face a crazy-eyed and sharp-clawed Wind Rider. Arli queued with the orcs and took the plate of meat and crackers, as usual, refusing the herbal-looking tea and drawing a mug of water instead. Sitting at an empty table he picked at the crackers and a few bits of the fatty meat, before pushing it away and leaving it to whoever would want it. Arli walked moodily over to the Command Tent. He was hungry for proper food, he could use a few bourbons right now and desperately needed some ‘thistle. Saluting the Commander and then sitting on a crate, he waited sullenly for the daily orders to be given. At 7:30 on the dot, the Commander spoke.

“Good morning scouts” he said, pointedly looking at Arli who got off the crate and walked to stand with the other four, arms folded across his chest. “I want these zones scouted today by air” he said, pointing at the marked zones on the map. “Keep a sharp eye for Alliance after what happened yesterday. I want the attackers found and brought here, their death will avenge that of our comrade.” The orcs all nodded in agreement, as did Arli who stared fixedly at the map. “Elf, since we have a spare Wind Rider now, you will join the airborne scouts to see how you perform.” Arli looked up quickly; “What? No!” he snapped as the Commander raised a brow at his insolence. “No..I mean I’m a trained Farstrider” lied Arli, “..I’m much better scouting at ground level, up on a Wind Rider I’m feckin’ useless” he finished, adding “sir” after a pause. The Commander sighed and shook his head slightly “Elves..” he muttered under his breath. “Very well, patrol as usual, elf”. Arli looked relieved, no way would that Wind Rider let him anywhere close enough to ride it. “Yes sir, thank you sir” he replied with a relieved smile.

Arli jogged lightly away from the camp and south-west towards his patrol zone. “Sod this” he muttered with a glance behind to check that the camp was now out of view as he veered off to the north. He'd head towards what passed for civilisation around these parts and see if he could 'acquire' himself something better to drink and ideally to smoke.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Sabien on Thu Apr 04, 2013 12:53 pm

Sabien dusted the seat of his pants as he dismounted from his rider. It had been a long ride, he was windblown, hungry and desperate for a smoke. He'd recently been fighting with the Sunreavers, but was now battle weary and had decided to take a day or two battlefield leave to recharge his batteries. Tired from the journey decided to land at the farm he had once worked and see if Souchin would give him some hospitality.
"Hey" he called as he mounted the steps to the house. "Wheres everyone?One hungry elf here..."

The place was deserted, he glanced around, not vacated in a rush but looked as if it had been empty some time, he walked back into the yard, crops in the field hadn't been tended for some time and the animals were freely grazing on them. Checking the mail box he found several demands for overdue turnips and leeks and a letter addressed to him.

To my honoured and esteemed friend Sabien.

I have decided that for the present my duty is with my people and our battle with the sha, I have therefore left this farm in your strong and capable hands. There are several orders waiting to be fulfilled should you choose to honour them. I have harvested your own herbs and set them to dry as your race do.

Thank You my friend.

Souchin.


"Feckin what!" Sab swore silently as he scrunched the letter up and threw it away. "Ah well here now might as well see whats to eat..."


Soon he had a meal under way, had cracked open a bottle of bourbon, rolled a thistle smoke and was now sitting on the steps smoking and enjoying the sun, a welcome change after the dank dark swampland of Thunder Isle. As he waited for the food to finish he thought "as he was here now anyway" he would walk around the farm-fields and see what was salvageable.

Arli had come a lot further north than he anticipated in his hunt for civilisation, thinking he'd best get back he was now headed to the nearest town to catch a flight back to as near as he could to his patrol area. His feet ached and his stomach grumbled as he hurried towards the flight master. A savoury smell wafted past on the breeze, his stomach protested and Arli paused, he looked at the farmhouse that was the source of the smell, he saw a tall, broad and distinctly sin'dorei male mount the steps, discarding a cigarette or thistle end as he did so. Arli resisted the urge to run and pick it up. A double take, it was Sabien, Arli could scarcely believe his luck, he hurried the the gate then with an air of nonchalance slowed his pace and sauntered casually into the farm.
"Hey Sab..." he called brightly "Thought I saw you..." he pasted a grin on his face.
Sab turned at the unexpected call of his name then looked slightly puzzled as he saw his callers identity.
"Hey kid..." he turned again and came down the steps "What you doing here?"
Sabien looked as Arli's cool demeanour slipped slightly and raised a brow.
"Jus' passin'" replied Arli with a smile "Didn't think you were still being punished by Chey..."
Sab scowled. "I aint, I dropped by to get some food, found the little twat has fecked off and left this all to me..."
Arli nodded and laughed slightly. Sabien eyed the young elf, something didn't feel quite right, no Thorn tabard, no mount, the kid must have walked here, so much for jus' passin' '.
"I'm just gonna eat..you want some?" Sab asked not waiting for a reply and went inside.
"Yeah sure..if you could use some company I can hang around a while" replied Arli, the look of relief that flitted across his features wasn't lost on Sab.
"Thistle on the table..help yourself to one" Sab nodded towards the supply. "I said one kid..."
Arli hastily put the extra joint back on the table.

The food finished Sab and Arli sat on the steps, drinking bourbon and smoking in silence. An armoured Orc walked into the farm.
"Wonder what he wants?" Sab said turning to face an empty step, Sab's brow creased as he wondered where the fel Arli had disappeared to so feckin quickly without a word.
A brief discussion with the orc revealed that he was there for some supplies, Souchin was supplying them with produce weekly. Sab quickly explained the situation, gave the orc the packed crates and sent him on his way. He walked back to the house to find Arli inside.
"Where did you...?" started Sab
"Wanted some more of your cookin" Arli forced a laugh "Came in for more"
Sabien studied Arli's face and noted Arli didn't meet his eye and his cheeks had reddened slightly.
Sab placed a hand on Arli's shoulder and pushed him into the chair. Arli looked up slightly nervously, wondering what Sab was going to do, smack him one for eating?.
Sabien pulled up a wooden stool and straddled it facing Arli.
"Ok kid..." he started "Youre in trouble or somethings troubling you...out with it"
"Arli laughed and shook his head "Theres nuthin..."
Sab looked at Arli skeptically and raised a brow "really?" he said ironically "Don't treat me like an idiot..you know what I do with fools..." Sab cracked his knuckles.
Arli flinched slightly and Sab looked concerned. The kid didn't flinch usually, yeah he'd pale a bit then gabble some excuse, something wasn't right here and Arli, he decided wasn't going anywhere until he told him. Sabien couldn't rationalise to himself why he felt this fraternal or even paternal concern for Arli's well being.
"If theres a problem kid, tell me, probably nothin we can't sort between us all"
Arli looked up a touch of suspicion on his face which faded as he saw the Sabien was genuine, something about Sab reassured him and he laughed inside, Sab reassuring? He started to shake his head, it was none of Sabs business..but..he knew where he was with Sab, he would always tell him straight, Sab set boundries and Arli kept to them. He trusted Sab.
The shake of his head became a nod, "Ok....."

Sabien listened without interrupting as Arli, falteringly at first, told him of the orc on the beach and how nauseated and reviled he felt at what he felt he had to do. Then as Sabien offered no judgement continued to tell about Robi, their history and how events and the relationship between them had changed so quickly, how he tried to fight it but couldn't because fundamentally he didn't want to. She made him happy when they were together and he her. Sabien, although silent kept his eyes on Arli, his expression changing to that of surprise when Arli mentioned Robi. He knew there had always been 'something' there but never assumed it was anything more than bragging or wishful thinking on Arli's part and artful manipulation of that by her. As Arli told Sabien everything, Sabien could see the relief in Arli as he shared his burden, his face and body language relaxed slightly and his voice which at first had been tense and faltering was now back to normal, Arli occasionally now adding the odd glib comment about his irresistability to the opposite sex. Sab laughed wryly and added a dry "Yeah..."
"So..thats it Sab...I don't know what to do..." Arli finished and looked at Sab as if asking for an easy answer.
Sabien whistled softly through his teeth. "Fel kid, you don't do stuff by halves do you?"
Arli laughed lightly and shook his head "Never have done, but what shall I do..?"
Sabien looked thoughtfully at the floor for a moment then looked up to face Arli.
"Nothing you can do kid, play dumb about the orc, you weren't there theres nothing you can add, just stick to it" he said "I doubt they'll investigate it though, too many people dying at the blades of others, probably this sort of stuff going on all the time, scores settled, grudges played out..all blamed on the other side, to be honest kid, I wouldnt give it any more thought, the guilt, well thats something you'll have to learn to let go of, or learn to live with" Sabien paused and looked at Arli. "You've probably done worse things to closer people...Kel and Thorns? They could have killed him and Chey remember..you did what you felt you had to then am I right?" Arli nodded "This ain't any different kid, think how bad you'd feel if you'd let Robi be taken."
Arli looked sharply at Sab, his eyes filled with the realisation of the truth in Sabs words and nodded, for the first time since he sat down with Sab, Arli smiled. "Yeah..thanks Sab" Thanks seemed a bit lame and inadequate for the enormity of relief Sab had given him, he opened his mouth to try and remedy it, Sab as if reading his thoughts merely grinned and shook his head.
"The human wench though..you won't stop seeing her will you?" it was more a statement than a question.
Arli shook his head "I can't Sab..you wouldn't understand, you being a heartle...er like you are"
Sab raised an eyebrow and Arli paled slightly "Er I mean..er...well you know...." he gabbled
Sabien burst out laughing. "No worries kid, I know what youre saying..don't believe it all though.theres one that knows I do have some heart"
Arli saw a look that he couldnt quite fathom flick over Sab's features, he desperately wanted to ask Sab to explain but didnt quite dare.
"Just be bloody careful kid, with Robi I mean, if youre caught I doubt theres anything we could do to help, wouldnt be for lack of trying though..trust me kid, we've got your back" Sabien laughed lightly and clapped Arli on the back, signalling that this particular conversation was over.

"Cheer up kid" said Sabien a little later as they sat on the steps again smoking yet more thistle.
Arli laughed "I'm ok, just wonderin how to get some feckin gold, Im skint again and with this drafting not likely to get any anytime soon..."
Sab nodded sympathetically. "Aye, pay is pretty damn poor I hear" Arli nodded.
Sab flicked the thistle roach into the yard and leapt to his feet, "Come on kid..Lets get you back to your base but on the way..what say we lighten a couple of purses and fill our own?"
Arli looked up confused "Huh?"
"A couple of quick highway jobs" replied Sab "Stand and deliver...."
Arli looked half excited half disbelieving, Sabien was prepared to take him on a job? Just the two of them? "Yep I'm in..."

On a borrowed windrider Arli rose and wheeled left while Sab wheeled right, they circled once and flew side by side in a general south-easterly direction, eyes scanning the ground for a potential target. It didn't take long, after a few minutes in the air, Arli signalled to Sab and pointed below them,Sab looked and nodded. Using hand signals Sabien issued the order to Arli to sweep in low and continue past the group, in the few seconds they would assess and decide their course of action. Arli looked puzzled for a moment as he interpreted the order, Sabs hamds moved quickly and he was out of practice with the signs. Sab grinned and slowed the signals, he was forgetting this wasn't Kel, on the rare occasions he and Kel needed signals their hands moved with lightning speed and signs were often abbreviated.
Arli nodded his understanding and sent the rider into a shallow dive. Side by side they flew past the small group, four in all, two human males, a female Kal'dorei and a female pandaren, lightly armed it seemed and leading a laden wagon pulled by a single yak. The riders peeled off and rose, landing a short distance away on a precipice.
"Ok" began Sab, "first thing we knock the panda out, taking no chances that it isnt one of those fancy footfighters..we land we get as close as we can unseen. You knock the pandaren out, I'll take the scrawny looking human walking beside her. Luckily theyre both at the rear, the other two we just hold up, cut the yak loose and fly off. got it?"
Arli nodded and repeated back to Sab in bullet points, Sab grinned and pulled up his mask.
"Go!"

Arli crept forward as silently as a ghost, Sab nodded impressed. Positions taken Sab raised three fingers, Arli responded with two then Sab with one. As his hand lowered both sprung with exact precision, two dagger hilts landing at the same time on different temples, two victims slumped silently into the arms of their attackers where they were unceremoniously dumped on the ground. The others walked ahead of the cart oblivious to the plight of their comrades.

Swiftly and quietly the two sprinted to make the distance that was now between them and the cart, again the signal, three two, one, and they sprung again matched stride for stride. This time the blows were lighter merely unbalancing the victims and dazing them slightly. Arli behind the human male, hand over his mouth blade against his neck. Sabien held the Kal'dorei with her arm twisted harshly behind her back. She whimpered in pain and tried to struggle, Sab yanked on her twisted arm. "Stop it" he spat. "Be a good girl sweetheart, and no-one gets hurt, just give us gold, jewels and whatever else you got thats valuable"
The human male tried to twist from Arlis grasp, Arli pressed the blade deeper to his throat. "Just try it..." Arli snarled. "I'll slice you ear to ear...boss won't like it, but he'll get over it...." he drew the blade edge slightly across the neck, drawing blood. The man stopped his struggle, the blade was razor sharp, there was every chance it would slice him open before he had time to feel it, the grasp of his attacker was strong and confident, a seasoned killer he had no doubts. Better to lose a little gold than eight pints of blood. He realised that it was going to be futile to resist them as it appearred they had already disposed of their two comrades.
"Give them what they want" the human called to the elf. Her face pale with terror and a touch of anger she nodded.

Within a few minutes the bag Sabien thrust at her was full, mainly with gold coins and a small amount of jewellry and weaponry.
Sab nodded at Arli and on cue Arli raised the dagger and struck his captive hard on the temple. He fell heavily to the ground, Arli making no effort to break his fall. The girl looked at Sabien, terrified. Sabien winked at her over his mask. "Don't worry sweetheart..I won't hurt you" she smiled nervously and mouthed a thanks. Sab nodded to Arli. "But he might..."
Arli came forward and struck the elf squarely, bowing slightly as she crashed to the floor at his feet.
"Ok kid lets git before the other two come round"
Arli nodded as he slung the bag over his shoulder before running back to th outcrop where the wind riders patiently waited.
"Good work kid" yelled Sab as he leapt onto the beast and urged it skyward. "Right lets get you back"

They landed as close as they dared to the base where Arli was long overdue. Sabien handed him the gold from the haul. "You take it...." Arli looked surprised Sab merely shrugged then without explanation smacked Arli hard on the face.
Arli staggered back shocked "What the f...?" he started angrily
"An excuse kid...tell them you were attacked, its why youre late...taken captive and beaten...thats the evidence"
"Oh yeah, well thats alright then..." said Arli dryly. "That feckin hurt...."
Sab grinned as he leapt back onto the rider and whistled to the now riderless one. Arli watched him out of sight, then with a quick dishevel of his hair he fixed a pained expression on his face and half ran half limped into the camp.

Sabien

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Re: Seconded

Post by Sabien on Tue Apr 09, 2013 10:24 am

The two elves swept low in perfect tandem, peeling gracefully, one to the left and one to the right, to skim past a trundling wagon that rolled along the dusty and deserted road.
Three human females, dressed only in casual travelling clothes sat on the front seat of the cart, even at their distance and above the beat of their riders wings they could hear drunken laughter from the occupants.
One turned and pointed as they passed. "Look....belfs.." she screeched excitedly, then called loudly "Hello handsome" before blowing them a kiss. All three women, now standing and swaying unsteadily, waved and shouted what Sab assumed were suggestive comments judging by the faint flush he noticed on Arli's cheeks.
A quick hand signal to Arli returned with a nod and thumbs up and the two wheeled their riders to land in the road somewhat ahead of the cart.
"Did you see what I did?" asked Sab
Arli grinned and nodded. "The one in the middle had enormous ti..."
"I meant the jade in the back" replied Sab with a grin.
Arli reddened slightly "I know..as I was saying the one in the middle had enormous Tian Monastery jade earrings"
Both laughed.
"Nice recovery kid...and aye she did"

As the cart rounded the bend and into view, they slipped from their riders and walked towards the cart.
The girls looked down at the two elves and giggled. Sabien looked up and winked. "Good Evening ladies" and with that pulled on the yaks rein causing it to stop.
One of the girls glared angrily. "What do you want horde scum? Looking to score a few cheap points for killing unarmed alliance females?"
"Unarmed you say?"replied Sab "good of you to tell us"
"We ain't here as horde" said Arli eyeing the women.
Two off them giggled and shamelessly made eyes at Arli. "So what are you here as...?"
"Why not come down and find out?" grinned Arli. Sab raised a surprised eyebrow, the kid flirting and not a red cheek in sight...
The two girls stood dithering for a brief moment unsure what to do as Arli smiled up at them, then one elbowed her companion aside and held her hands out to Arli.
"Help me down then..?" she half smiled as she eyed the elf. Arli took her hands and then caught her as she half jumped half skipped down. Arli lowered her to her feet, holding her lightly around the waist.
"Now me..." the other called, and Arli gallantly repeated the gesture.
The third stood huffing and muttering sullenly to herself.
"Not joining us?" called Sab not looking up as he rolled a thistle smoke.
"I don't trust horde..." she scowled
"Fair enough" replied Sab with a shrug and handed the thistle to one of the girls.
"Want to try this?" he asked.
"What is it? Is it Bloodthistle? Ive heard of that, what does it do?" a barrage of questions as one girl took the smoke, examined it and smelled it.
Sab lit another, exhaling the aromatic smoke. " Try it"
"Don't be so stupid" shouted the third girl "It will be poisoned or something"
Sab looked up at her with a look of disdainful amusement. "Yeah sure sweetheart, get a kick out of poisoning myself" he inhaled again and passed the rest of his smoke to another girl. "Here, Ive smoked some proof its not poisoned.."
She took it and gingerly took a small drag and coughed. "Ohh its strong..but sweet..its nice..." she took another longer drag then passed it to her friend.
"Why would we want to poison you?" asked Arli with a laugh "If we wanted to kill you we would have..."he rolled his own smoke. "Got any bourbon girls?"

A few moments later the four were sitting against the cart smoking and drinking, watched by the third scowling girl.
"This is wrong" she lectured "Fraternizing with horde...its immoral"
"Reminds me of Naim..." grumbled Arli with a smirk.
Sab looked up at her. "For fels sake woman just shut up...we're not going to jump up and shout "We will have justice" then cut your feckin throats. We're having a drink and a smoke in attractive company, when were done, we'll be on with our business...and no sweetheart that isn't "horde" stuff..."
"You might be rapists..."she countered.
Sab laughed. "You could be so lucky...don't worry sweetheart, we're not going to rape anyone.. waste of energy I reckon, plenty around willingly without forcing..."
"So you say..."
"Shut up woman, youre pissing me off now"growled Sab "either come down and join us or shut the feck up"
The girl glared angrily at Sabien, crossed her arms and sat down on the cart seat with her back to him. "Hmmph.."
Sab laughed and quietly and shook his head before taking a small swig from a bottle and returning to the conversation. Arli now had one arm draped around a girls shoulder, holding the thistle smoke while she leaned in to smoke it. "Yeah thats it..as if you were going to swallow it then stop and exhale slowly..." he was saying, laughing lightly as the girl coughed. The other girl sat close to Sab, he turned and winked, she smiled coyly back.

They spent a restful pleasant hour or so, just smoking and talking, the girls yawned and rested one each against the elves.
"Right girls you look all in" said Sab "Time for us to get on with our work" He took his arm from around the girls shoulder and stood up, Arli did the same.
"Aww...don't go" said Arli's girl sleepily
"Got to..boss says so..." he replied with a wink.She rose to her feet and draped her arms over Arli's shoulders.
"Put these two in the back of the cart kid" said Sab in thalassian. "I'll take care of the frozen maiden there"
Arli nodded and put an arm around each girl "C'mon.." he grinned "Lets get you two in the cart"
Sab smiled to himself as he watched the two girls eating out of Arli's hand as he guided them to the back of the cart.
"Pretty name....suits you..." he heard him say as he lifted the first girl into the cart.
He grinned as he saw the girl simper into Arli's eyes, kid was quite the pro he thought, so how was he so entrapped by Robi? Sab shrugged he had no answer but he was determined to get one sooner or later. He looked up at the sullen female.
"Get down" he said
She glared angrily
"Why?"
"Because Im telling you to thats why."
She laughed "And why should I do what you tell me to..horde scum?"
Sab grinned humourlessly "Because if you don't Ill come there, smack you one and kick you down, got it?"
"You wouldn't..anyway I thought you were going to now to finish your business..." she snorted.
"Try me..." replied Sab taking a step nearer. Arli saw the look on Sab's face and knew he wasn't bluffing.
"I'd do as he says lady...really..if you want to keep your jaw in the same place" said Arli "He hits like a feckin train"
The girl looked at Arli with contempt then back at Sab as her eyes met his she swallowed hard, his whole demeanor screamed 'don't piss me about'.He held out his hand "Down"
As she placed her hand in Sabs he yanked at her arm and pulled her ungraciously off and threw her unceremoniously aside. "Wasn't hard now was it?" he snarled.
"Thought you were going..." she spat as she scrambled to her feet.
Sab grinned coldly "We didn't say that..we said we were finishing our business and that sweetheart is lightening you lovely ladies of your valuables"
"Youre bandits?" gasped one of the girls in the back "But...I thought..."
Arli smiled. "We had a great time, youre lovely girls..but..meh.." he shrugged breaking off as she lunged towards him. He laughed and easily pushed her back. "Aw c'mon..don't spoil a good day and look at it this way...at least you'll remember it for a long time" he said laughing as he gestured her to remove the jewellry.
"I knew you were no good..." hissed Sabs charge as he pulled the heavy jade amulet from around her neck. She slapped his face, Arli whistled through his teeth and shook his head "Bad move"
"Will he kill her?" gasped one of the others.
"Nah, he'll smack her back though..."
"We have to help her"
Arli placed an arm around each girl and smiled at them in turn.
"I wouldn't he'll only smack you as well..you two just do as we say huh and it will be ok" Arli said matter of factly.
"Are you going to hurt us?" asked the other. Arli turned to face her, she was terrified, her fear probably heightened by the narcotics they had smoked. He shook his head and smiled. "Course not..youre too pretty for that" She smiled nervously slightly reassured and Arli gestured for her to load the jade into his pack.
All three in the back looked up sharply as a cry followed a whip like slapping sound. "Told you..." grinned Arli.

The third girl stood rubbing her face, she looked dazed, fel thought Arli, Sab must have hit her hard.
"She ok?" he asked in thalassian.
Sab nodded. She looked up as if on cue. "You havent heard the last of this, you've incompently robbed us without hiding your faces, I'll make sure youre caught..." she said stiffly.
"Oh aye?" laughed Sab "come on then describe us..."
The girl looked up but somehow down her nose at Sab but said nothing.
"I'll help you ...bloodelves..taller than a human male, both had green eyes, arched eyebrows, long ears and one had a little goatee beard....best of luck with that one sweetheart" Sab continued derisively
The girl snorted.
"We set kid?"
Arli raised the two packs filled with jade and nodded.
"Good work kid, now lets get out of here"
Arli turned to the other two females and inclined his head "had a good time girls, see you around" he winked. Sab laughed quietly as he watched the girls, despite having just been robbed by the young elf, blush and return his smile.

Sab raised his hand in a farewell. "Goodbye ladies, thanks for a lovely afternoon..safe travels"
He turned to the third and gave a sarcastic salute "For the horde" he laughed.
"You are beneath my contempt...I suggest you get out of my sight before help comes..." she snapped.
Sab sighed and shook his head. "You really are one uptight wench, get over yourself...you know lady..you really should go and get yourself laid..nothing wrong with you that a good man couldnt sort..."
Her eyes widened "Oh and I suppose you think youre the one to do it?" she spat scornfully.
Sab laughed heartliy "Fel no, I wouldnt screw you with his." he jerked a thumb towards Arli.
She raised her hand and swung in to slap Sab, he caught her by the wrist before it could impact. Yanking her arm down he twisted it savagely behind her back, she yelped as he banged her against the side of the cart.
"Don't push your feckin luck woman" he hissed, he leaned over her and she cowered back in fear of another smack. He smirked coldly before kissing her hard and savagely. Her free hand punched at his shoulder for a moment. Pulling away he released her arm "Thats what you need woman..."
She stood speechless and just looked at Sab who grinned before turning on his heel and walking away.
"Come on kid, we gotta go"
"Er..comin..." Arli replied and slinging the packs over his shoulders trotted quickly to catch up. He glanced back at the three girls, he half expected to see at least one of them chasing after Sab with a dagger, but no, she was still standing where Sab had kissed her, her hand on her lips and her face flushed. The other two were jabbering excitedly, Arli laughed at the snippets he heard, no "are you ok...?" or "has he hurt you?", only "Oh you lucky thing...he was gorgeous..what was it like? did he taste nice?"

They mounted their riders and took off into the darkening skies, again in perfect tandem they skimmed past the cart, Arli blowing them a kiss as he flew by, which was returned by two, the third merely looked up and smiled.



Sabien

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Mon Jun 10, 2013 3:34 pm

(( Finally getting around to finishing this. It would have happened a while ago and I've had the rough story in my head with no time to write it up ))

The sleeping tent was unusually warm and bright when Arli finally awoke the next day and it didn’t take him long to realise that he had overslept, possibly by a half day or so. Still feeling chilled from the previous evening, Arli stretched and sauntered over to the Command Tent to report in for duties.

“Morning, sir” said Arli, saluting with a relaxed smile on his face.

“Barely” came the reply. “The morning is almost over and you, elf, have some explaining to do.”

“Sorry sir” replied Arli. So he was late, big deal, an afternoon in ‘The Box’ would just give him a few more hours sleep he reasoned silently. “Overslept, not like me at all” he added.

“You failed to report in last night” said the Commander, “We wasted valuable resources in looking for you. There was concern that you may have met the same fate as the Scout we lost recently”.

“Ah...”; Arli shifted uncomfortably, his smile slipping a little.

“Well?”

“I...got captured...” replied Arli with a small shrug as he brushed his bruised face with a wince of pain; Sabien having punched him on dropping him back at the camp the previous night so as to make his disappearance 'authentic'.

“I see, and they tortured you with Bloodthistle and alcohol?”

“Sir?” replied Arli with a puzzled look on his face, his mind racing to think how he was going to get out of this.

“Elf, your armour reeked of the drug and your breath was heavily laced with the smell of alcohol. Your somewhat noisy arrival back on the base in the early hours of the morning did not go unnoticed.”

“Ah...” replied Arli again.

“Well, you have reported in at last so will be assigned your duties for the day”.

“Yes sir, sorry and all that”

“The scouting duties have already been assigned so you will work on the base today.”

“Yes sir” replied Arli with a grin; no long trek to patrol an empty zone although a few more hours sleep in “The Box” was probably a preferable option to what would most likely be an afternoon of shifting supply crates around the base.

“Follow me” said the Commander as he stood up and walked from the tent, Arli quickly falling into step alongside him. Arli grew puzzled as they walked across the camp, past the canteen area, skirting thankfully around the stables and past the delivery area which was stacked high with crates of supplies, finally stopping at the far side of the base.

“The Latrines need cleaning out and redigging” said the Commander, not seeing the crestfallen look on Arli’s face. “All of them”

“...seriously?”

“I don’t want to see your face on base until the job is complete elf and unless you want a report filed to Orgrimmar for abandoning your post and going AWOL, putting Horde soldiers at risk to find you then you’ll make sure that you do a very good job indeed”

“Yes..sir..” replied Arli as with a short nod, the Commander turned and headed back into the base.

~~~

It was late evening by the time the Commander returned and with a brief "That will do" signaled that Arli could end his ordeal. Wearily, Arli made his way down to the river and waded out, fully clothed, until the slow moving water was up to his waist. Holding his nose and taking a deep breath he dropped under water, holding himself submerged as long as he could bear it in the attempt to wash away the unsavoury odours that now clung to his clothes. Finally Arli waded back to the waters edge and made his way wearily back to his tent. There was no way he could stomach any supper, even if there was any left, having retched up so often that afternoon that he'd lost count.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Tue Jun 11, 2013 12:02 pm

The days following the elf's punishment were, the Commander was pleased to see, uneventful for their lone Blood Elf. He would be at the Command Tent on time, accept his orders for the day without question and return promptly, filing a short report of each day on his return. The only slight annoyance was that the expected letter from Orgrimmar to dismiss the elf from his command, still hadn't arrived.

Arli slipped from the path and headed deeper into the forest, using the narrow tracks left by animals to guide him deeper into the woodland and away from potentially prying eyes. With a quick glance around he reached into an inside pocket and took out an almost depleted pouch of Bloodthistle, the remnants from his visit to Sabien a few days previously and the only thing making his long, boring days bearable while on patrol. Rolling a thin smoke he lit it and carried on his way, following the narrow track, tripping on the occasional root, and lost in thought on how the Vile Thorn were with his absence and missing the company of his Thorn brethren - even if not with him they would have been on comms and he would have had someone to talk to. Arli stumbled...a gunshot and he gasped in surprise at the pain in his back, instinct telling him to run for cover. He managed a few steps before faltering and falling to the ground as darkness enveloped his mind.

Heavy footsteps crashed through the undergrowth and came to a sudden halt.

"Och, we canna skin that" said the first dwarf in annoyance

"Aye but at least we know that gnomish contraption works" replied the other, his eyes tracing the trip wire up to the shotgun hidden in the tree behind him.

"Some consolation" grumbled the first as he tugged the depleted syringe-bullet from the elf's back and adding "well now what, kill him?"

"No..I'm a trapper, nay a murderer" replied the second as he turned the elf over with his boot. "Young 'un too, his Ma will be expectin' him home for his supper" he added with a laugh.

"Canna tell the age o' one of them blood elfs, could be a hundred and ninety-seven for all you know"

"Aye, or barely out of his teens. I'm no havin' the blood of a child on me hands" said the second, hoisting the unconscious elf over his shoulder. "We'll drop him at that Alliance Keep place, enough knock-out in that syringe to stop a Elekk in it's tracks, he'll be out for hours."

~~~

Muffled voices permeated the darkness that surrounded him, the thick fog in his mind trying to translate into his mother tongue and make sense of what was happening.

"I know he wants to see him but he aint awake yet"....."Soon will be"....said the voices as with a slap, Arli's eyes opened and took in the two human faces peering at him.

"Wake up sonny"

"Up yer get"

Arli blinked as he was hauled to his feet and with a guard either side, was led stumbling from his cell.

~~~~

Officer Braithwaite paced slowly back and forth as he read the last file of the day. Two hunters had dropped an unconscious blood elf at the Keep, the notes said. He'd been stripped of weapons and locked up , the hunters indicating that a strong sedative had been applied and that the elf was unlikely to wake for a few hours. A further note had been added by the receiving officer to say that the elf has been very well armed and a large number of throwing knives had been removed as well as two very well crafted daggers, in addition the armour he wore was not standard issue although the tabard marking him as a scout, was.

"Want to read it?" said Braithwaite to the SI:7 operative leaning against the wall in the darkened edge of the room. The man replied with a shake of his head and carried on trimming his nails with a small blade. Braithwaite turned to the door as the blood elf was marched in; a young Horde scout, should be a simple interrogation and then he was done for the day.

~~~~

Arli quickly glanced around the room as he was led in; it was lit by a single bright light above him, before him stood a man in officer uniform and he could just about make out the shape of another in the shadowed part of the room. The two guards gripped his shackled arms firmly as he was brought to a halt before the officer.

"Name, rank, number" said Braithwaite.

"Lightblade, Scout, 1337" replied Arli compliantly.

Braithwaite opened the file and looked at the single sheet before looking back at Arli.

"The dogtag says Sunblade" he replied evenly, he didn't have time for some Horde idiot playing games, he'd a date that evening and wanted to get this over with as soon as possible. "Now, shall we try again or do I ask my men here to break a few bones first?"

Arli cursed under his breath at both the fogginess that remained in his head and at the Horde Army insistence of them wearing an identification tag at all times. "Sunblade, Scout, 1337" he replied, adding "sir" for good measure.

"Better...and tell me wha-" started Braithwaite

"Sunblade? I thought I recognised....he's no scout" said the SI:7 operative as he partly stepped into the pool of light. "He's Vile Thorn".

Arli's eyes darted to the man, his eyes widening slightly in recognition.

"You are sure?" said Braithwaite

"Without a doubt, he's a Thorn"

"You'll feckin pay for this..." growled Arli through gritted teeth as he glared towards the partly-shadowed man.

"Then my interrogation ends here" interrupted Braithwaite. "Your seniors in SI:7 will do a much more thorough interrogation, no point wasting my precious time. Return him to his cell and make sure he has a guard all night. I'll have him put on the first boat out in the morning".

"Yes sir" replied the guards in unison as they turned sharply and dragged the elf roughly away.

Braithwaite opened the file and in neat script wrote "Identified as Vile Thorn by SI:7 operative in attendance. To be shipped to Stormwind on the next available boat for processing at SI:7" adding his signature with a flourish.

"Sign, please" he said, pushing the file to the SI:7 operative who neatly added his name and signature.

Braithwaite glanced at the signature then looked up at the man. "Good work, Blayke. I'll ensure your superiors know of your excellent efforts here"

Blayke simply replied with a half smile and small nod of acknowledgment.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:52 am

Getting access to the captive Vile Thorn was easy enough for Blayke to secure; no one questioned the need for an SI:7 Operative to gain access to a prisoner at the Keep with such a large contingency of them using the Keep as their Pandaria base.  The guard outside of the door read the access papers and then with a satisfied nod unlocked the door to let Blayke into the cell, locking it again once Blayke was inside.
 
Blayke glanced around the small, damp cell – being located deep under the Keep it smelt musty and airless and was dimly lit.  He looked at Arli sitting against the wall, hands shackled at the wrists with the shackles themselves attached to a heavy chain secured to the wall.  Although Arli didn’t look up, he could see fresh bruises on his hands and face, indication of the guards having taken the opportunity to deal a little retribution to one of the Vile Thorn.  Blayke stood silently and waited as minutes passed before Arli finally looked up at him.
 
“Come to gloat, eh?”
 
“Not really” replied Blayke.  “More to thank you for turning up when you did, identifying you has boosted my status significantly”
 
“My pleasure” replied Arli dryly as he again dropped his gaze to the floor and the cell fell into silence.
 
Blayke waited a few more minutes in silence before he continued, this wasn’t a social visit after all.  He wasn’t here to raise the spirits of the captive, more to play on his predicament and see what could be gained.

“They won’t hang you tomorrow” said Blayke finally.  “They’ll interrogate you for a day or two, have you been to their interrogation suite before?”  Blayke waited a moment for a response, Arli giving no indication that he was even listening.  “No, of course not, you wouldn’t be here now if you had.  Good security, they have the best, well, as to be expected of course.”
 
“F’ck off, Blayke”  replied Arli
 
“If your Thorns are going to rescue you, then they had better do it tonight.  Little chance of getting to you once you are in the SI:7 base”
 
Arli laughed bitterly and looked up at Blayke. “Rescue me?  Thorns don’t do rescues....screw up and you are on your own.  Escape on your own or die trying...”  Arli lifted his shackled wrists.  “No feckin’ chance of that now is there...”
 
“They’ll probably hang you within the week though” continued Blayke impassively.  “Might make a show of it, good propaganda to have the crowds see a Thorn swing from the rope”.
 
Arli dropped his gaze again.  He knew Blayke was right and he couldn’t see any way he could get off the path that would lead him to the gallows within a matter of days.  Heavily shackled and expertly stripped of weapons and thieves tools; always under guard and even if the Thorns thought him worth saving, well they didn’t even know he was captured, let alone where.
 
“Anyway...thanks” said Blayke with a half smile and tilt of his head in a small nod as he turned towards the door.
 
Arli looked up.  His pride was stopping him using this one chance of changing the path he was on and if he didn’t act soon, it would be lost to him.  Pride would be little consolation as they slipped the rope around his neck.

“Blayke...” said Arli, his heart thumping in his chest as Blayke paused. “Help me”
 
Blayke allowed a smile to flicker across his face before he turned and looked back at Arli.

“Why?”
 
“For Robi”
 
Momentarily taken aback, Blayke quickly recomposed himself.  He knew the elf was one of Robi’s “belf boys” but nothing more, surely?
 
“She has plenty of informers” he replied. 
 
Arli shook his head slightly.  “I’m no informer.  We are together, she lost Shay, don’t want her losing me too...”.  Arli knew it was a gamble but all he could think to bargain with.  From Robi’s comments she knew she had run-ins with Blayke but he’d also stood by her side in tougher times and if nothing else, he knew that Blayke might like having something he could hold over his former Commander.
 
Blayke paused in thought for a moment and then nodded slowly.  “Maybe I don’t....but what’s in it for me?”
 
“Money? I can get you gold”
 
Blayke shook his head.
 
“Protection from Vile Thorn, you’d be on a safe list, untouchable” added Arli quickly.  “When..if..I die then Thorns will seek vengeance, look for how I got caught, how I got identified....they’ll find you, Blayke”.
 
Blayke recalled his clearly printed name and signature on the interrogation sheet, as well as being the talk of the Keep for identifying a senior ranked of the Vile Thorn.  Arli had a point, no point in letting him know he was rattled however.
 
“You threaten me?  I expected better...” he said coolly and turned again for the door.

“No..wait” replied Arli, an edge of panic evident on his voice.  “No..no threats, I’m just telling you how we work”.  Arli swallowed, his mouth felt dry, “No threats, I mean it”.
 
Blayke turned back, a feeling of satisfaction that he’d got Arli just where he wanted him.
 
“Then, my belf friend...” he said in a low voice as he crouched down before Arli, “This is how it will work...”
 
Ten minutes later Blayke rapped his knuckles on the cell door which was immediately opened to let him out.  Without word or glance he left the cell and walked back towards the upper levels, a spring evident in his step.
 
Left alone in the dark cell again, Arli rubbed his eyes tiredly.  Blayke had struck a hard bargain, he’d agreed to so much simply in exchange for Blayke contacting the Thorns and letting them know of his situation.  Whether or not they would rescue him, he couldn’t tell but at least now they would know where he was and where he would soon be.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Thu Jun 13, 2013 1:26 am

Blayke crouched outside of the Undercity entrance, his best chance of finding a Vile Thorn without being caught by the patrols.  Fel it had cost him enough in mage portals and summons to get to Eastern Kingdoms and then to hire the fastest Gryphon available to fly him to Tirisfal and all in a matter of hours but it would be worth it compared to the deal he’d struck with Arli.  It was still dark but in a few short hours the sky would start to lighten and Arli would be dragged from his cell to the first boat to Stormwind, the longer it took him to find a Thorn, the less chance they had of intercepting Arli’s his inevitable trip to the gallows.  Had time permitted, he could have found Robi and left it to her to sort out contact with the Thorns, wash his hands of the whole thing but he didn’t know where she was and couldn’t waste even a moment getting the message to the Thorns.  If Arli died then his deal died with him.

 Blayke readied himself as a clearly female figure started to cross the courtyard from the Tirisfal gates, a grin spreading across his face as she walked through a pool of lamp light....Dianthaa.  As she got closer he looked around and then stepped from the shadows with a grin.

“Hello, sweetheart”

“Blayke” spat Dianthaa, quickly drawing her blades, her stance changing ready to spring at him.

“Calm down, sweetie, got some news about your boyfriend”

“I don’t have a boyfriend” she snapped, shifting balance slightly.

 Blayke grinned but got ready to roll out of the way of the spitting harpy should she launch herself at him.  “Of course, your ex, Arli.”

 “He’s not here”

 “I know that, had a pleasant chat with him earlier although the cell he was chained in was less than comfortable”

 “What? Where?”

 Blayke laughed, “Wouldn’t you like to kno-“ Blayke stopped suddenly as a cold blade pressed against his throat, a forsaken hand across his mouth.

Dianthaa smirked and nodded as Blayke was dragged backwards and further into the shadows of the ruins, lifting the blades from the sheaths on his belt and throwing them behind her as he glared angrily at her, annoyed at himself for forgetting the basic rule that a Thorn rarely walked alone.

“Ok Shiv, let him speak”

Shivien removed her hand from Blaykes mouth and grabbed the hair at the back of his head, the blade staying closely pressed to his throat

“So...sweetie.....where is he?” asked Dianthaa. 

Blayke ignored the snigger behind him.  "What's in it for me?" he asked, gritting his teeth as the blade pressed into his neck, drawing blood and the cut stinging from the poisoned blade.  "He's been caught by the Alliance, they know he is a Thorn....play nice or you won't find him before he meets the hangman".  Shivien yanked his head back and growled "you're in no position to bargain, human".

"She's right y'know" said Dianthaa as she drew her dagger, admiring it briefly as she muttered low into her comms.  With a smile and a nod from Dianthaa, Shivien released Blayke's hair and placed her hand over his mouth as Dianthaa grabbed his hand and slammed it against the wooden supplies crate, driving her dagger through his palm.  Blayke's yell of pain and subsequent cursing was muffled by Shivien's hand and the laughter and snigger of his captors.

"Where is he now, what will they do with him and how many guards blah blah...you know the drill" said Dianthaa, drawing her second blade as warning.

~~~~~~~~~~

The two Deathmasters sat in the Thorn Master's office and frantically scribbled their plan on the map of Stormwind, crossing out and redrawing as they threw around their ideas with the Thorns they could contact over comms at that time of the morning.  They'd let Blayke go after getting as much information from him as they could and as a gesture of thanks at informing them had even distracted the patrol so he could get out of the city unseen, despite the trail of blood dripping from his hand.  A plan agreed, the Thorns applied fresh poisons and headed out as dawn reluctantly broke over Tirisfal.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Thu Jun 13, 2013 5:25 am

Arli awoke with a jolt as the cell door slammed open and four heavy-footed men entered his cell.  Two grabbed him and roughly hauled him to his feet, gripping his arms while a third started work on replacing the shackles on his wrists.

"Don't remember ordering a wake-up call?" quipped Arli. "And where is the cooked breakfast delivered by your naked daughter that I ordered?" he added with a grin at the guard standing by the door.

The guard moved quickly and backhanded Arli across the face with a gruff "Shut it, Thorn".  Arli smiled at him as the grip tightened on his arms.  The shackles replaced on his wrists, the third guard pulled off Arli's boots and started fixing shackles to his ankles.

"Boot polishing service?  Take care eh, they cost more than you earn in a year"

A fifth guard entered the cell, unfastening a length of cloth wrapped around a black leather hood.

"About time, he's a mouthy little git" said the fourth guard.

The two guards held Arli steady as the gag was placed around his mouth and the leather hood pulled over his head and fastened at the neck.  Arli stumbled blindly as the guards directed him out of the cell, tripping on the steps as they half dragged him to the docks. 

~~~~~~

As the scouts headed out for the day, the Commander sat at his desk and took out a parchment and pen.  He'd had enough.  The elf had yet again failed to return and would probably turn up sometime over the morning, reeking strongly of alcohol and drugs again.  He was a disgrace to the Horde and there was absolutely no way he would tolerate him under his command any longer.  He would write a strongly-worded letter to Orgrimmar and have it couriered over that very morning, demanding that the elf be returned to Orgrimmar and punished for his dereliction of duty and for his continued disobedience to commanding officers.  The letter would conclude that he wasn't to be returned to the outpost.

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:47 pm

After what seemed like hours, Arli was once again hauled to his feet and dragged up stairways before being brought to a halt.  He could smell the sea air, hear the sounds of the docks and the city and although he remained in the darkness of the leather hood fastened firmly against his throat, he guessed it was still daytime by the welcome warmth of the sun on the back of his neck.  He stood calmly, head held high in a determined effort to look relaxed and confident although inside he was terrified of what lay ahead for him in the coming days.

~~~

The Vile Thorn moved silently across the Cathedral Square and headed towards the Canal District.  They couldn't be sure if Arli would be taken to Stockades or to the SI:7 base itself so an ambush point was chosen close to the docks themselves, a route that Arli's captors would have to take no matter which place they were heading to.  The Thorns took up positions in the shadows of the buildings and alleyways with Assassin Adept Ashwood and Sam sent ahead to scout to report on any sightings of their Deathmaster.

"Boat docked" came the call a number of times, followed shortly by a report on it being a passenger ship or just delivering crates of supplies.

"Could be this one"  said Sam over her comms.

"Looks military" confirmed Ashwood.

Dianthaa and Shivien exchanged a glance, then instructed over comms for Thorns to ready themselves and check their poisons.

"Blood elf on the deck, blackleather armour, Scout's tabard, hooded, could be him?" said Sam

"Heavily guarded...we will try and get closer" added Ashwood.

Hurried reports followed from Ashwood and Sam on the number of guards, how well armed they were and if they were accompanied by light users, battle healers or maybe even stealthed scouts. 

Dianthaa and Shivien listened keenly, the odds looked fair and although a little outnumbered, there were ways to incapacitate targets without having to fight them directly.  Finally Sam said "They're moving out" as both Sam and Ashwood slipped behind the SI:7 agents that flanked the hooded elf, careful to keep their distance so as to remain unseen.


"I can see them" hissed Dianthaa over comms.


 "Thorns, ready blades" instructed Shivien as the faint swish of blade being drawn from leather sheath whispered around the Deathmasters. 

"Wait!" came the frantic voice of one of the apprentices over comms.  "Guards, whole lot of 'em and heading your way"

Dianthaa spun around and looked down towards the City as a group of heavily armoured Stormwind Guards came marching into view.  The decision to send the less trained Thorns to scout the approaches had been a wise one.  The Thorns stepped further into the shadows as the guards marched close by, their step in perfect unison, halting before the group of SI:7 agents.


"You're late" spoke the night elf to the captain of the guards, "We couldn't wait any longer and had to start moving the prisoner."

"I think you will find we are perfectly on time" replied the captain haughtily.

The SI:7 agent looked around, he felt uneasy and although he knew he was in the right, standing arguing in the open with this prisoner was unwise. "You're here now, let's get moving."

"Guards, box formation, on my command....go!" called out the captain, the group of ten guards forming a boxed guard around the smaller group of SI:7 agents, the captain of course leading at the front.

The night elf glanced around uneasily again, his hand twitching to the daggers at his side.  "Move out" he said, pushing past the captain, his agents following him as the guards marched alongside.

"Shiv...?"  whispered Dianthaa, giving a small sigh as Shivien shook her head.

"Thorns, hold your blades." said Dianthaa quietly into the comms.  "We are outnumbered, they have plate and healers as well as the SI:7 shadow walkers..... I won't risk Thorns lives, I can't...."

"Yes Deathmaster" came the whispers back on the comms.

Dianthaa looked towards the City as Arli and his captors moved swiftly out of view "we can replan and come back..before..well..." she looked to Shivien, "..we can, can't we?"

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Fri Jun 14, 2013 6:43 am

Having spent the previous day in darkness, the brightness of the windowless cell was a welcome change, at least initially.  The white-tiled walls reflected the light from the line of concealed lights in the ceiling as did the white-marble flooring.  Stripped and ordered to dress in the basic jail clothing of loose cotton shirt and trousers, Arli was then taken to the cell and left in the silence.  The lights remained on all of the time and Arli soon lost all idea of how long he had been there and whether it was even night or day - the sounds of outside deadened by the thick door and walls.  

The interrogations happened irregularly, often just as he thought they had done with him and he could get some much needed sleep, the door would open and he would be dragged out again.  Question after question, repeating the same things over and over.  Information on the Horde was easily given but on Vile Thorn and Undercity, on the Sin'dorei and Silvermoon, he gave little.

It was hard not to fall into despair.  His hopes of a Thorn rescue on the journey to wherever he was now, had been dashed and if what Blayke had said was right, well there was no way the Thorns could break him out now.  That was of course if they even wanted to; it was deemed that when a Thorn became captive it was through their own fault and so other Thorns would not be risked to rescue them from their stupidity.  Arli felt that he was here through no real fault of his own, but the Thorns wouldn't know that.  As for Blayke, he may have decided not to risk finding the Thorns anyway, they would think him still seconded to the Horde base in Pandaria.

Finally, one day, or night, he wasn't sure any more, he was taken to a bare bathroom and allowed to bathe and was provided with clean clothes before a medic appeared and silently tended to his cuts and burns.  As she left, he was taken into an adjoining room containing just two chairs facing each other and told to sit, his guards standing a short distance behind him. Within a few moments the other door into the room was opened and a smart but plainly dressed elderly man entered and sat on the chair opposite Arli.

"My son, we are all as one, blessed by the light" said the elderly man in a soft, reassuring voice.

Arli looked at him, a sinking feeling at what this all meant.

"The light will forgive those that seek forgiveness for their sins and welcome them in the eternal afterlife"

Arli nodded slightly.

"All things must come to an end, my son.  The path you chose was but a short one."

"Didn't exactly plan to reach the end of my path just yet, never been good with maps" replied Arli with a false laugh. 

The elderly man's expression didn't change.

"Sometimes, we take the wrong path and.."

"Yeah.....yeah mine leads to the gallows doesn't it?" replied Arli, forcing a smile.

"...I can help you find your peace with the light, my son."

Arli shook his head and stood up quickly, the guards rushing forward to grab his arms.

"S'ok..." protested Arli.  "Not gonna do anything, just...I'm kinda done here.  The light can decide for itself on whether or not it wants the pleasure of my company."

"As you wish, my son...if you change your mind before morning then I can return.  Light bless you"

"Shadows protect" replied Arli with a wink and a grin.

Back and alone in his cell with no need for the false bravado, Arli sat against the wall and wrapped his arms around his legs and rested his forehead on his knees to protect his eyes a little from the brightness of the cell which suddenly seemed to be making his eyes sting...

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Sat Jun 15, 2013 10:46 am

"So, you want me to delay the execution, is that correct?"  asked the senior SI:7 Commander.

"Indeed" replied the Captain of the Guard.  "Make it a public execution, be a good moral boost for the people to see one of the Vile Thorn swing on the gallows".

The Commander pondered a moment then flicked open the folder on his desk marked Vile Thorn - Sunblade. "It's a possibility, the interrogation shows that he was captured whilst on Horde duty with indication that the Horde, let alone the Vile Thorn, are not aware of his capture".  The Commander scanned a few more lines "...the recount of his capture by two hunters would also indicate that the intel provided by the Thorn whilst under interrogation is indeed correct".

The Captain nodded "There's been no reports on increased activity in the City from Vile Thorn since he was brought here.  I do believe they would have tried to break him out by now."

The Commander nodded slightly as he continued to read.

"Slip it a day or so" continued the Captain "Time to get some posters printed up and a gallows set up outside the gates.  His hanging will be good warning to the rest of them."

"An admirable plan, Captain." replied the Commander with a small smile.  "Apart from the major flaw that would be clear advertisement that we hold one of their Thorn officers, right now we have the advantage."

"Then advertise on the day, I can get the town criers out"

"No, we execute him tomorrow at dawn.  This is the execution of a murderer of our people, not a Darkmoon Fair side-show".

~~~~~~~~~

Blayke slipped into the shadows of the wall outside of the Undercity gates and waited.  He regretted not seeking out his former Commander, Robi Kaezlan.  She would have known how to contact Vile Thorn that wouldn't have resulted in him having a heavily bandaged hand, he scowled to himself.  Looking towards the Zeppeling tower he saw a lone forsaken walking towards the city, it's Thorn colours clear in the light as they left the tower.  Lone, ha! he through as he pressed himself against the wall.  As the forsaken got closer Blayke called out;

"Tell your Masters, he is executed at dawn"


The forsaken quickly drew his blades and crouched into a fighting stance.

"The courtyard, close to SI:7."  added Blayke.  As the forsaken melted into the shadows, Blayke cursed under his breath and quickly and silently made his way towards Silverpine.  He'd done as much as he was willing to do, there was no way he'd assist them any further, not even for the potentially profitable deal that he'd made with Arli

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Re: Seconded

Post by Guest on Sun Jun 16, 2013 3:51 am

Arli awoke from his fitful sleep as the food hatch banged open and the usual meal was pushed through. He looked at it for a moment before reaching over for the tin mug of water and taking a few sips.  Ignoring the basic rations of bread and cheese he placed the cup back next to the plate and resumed sitting against the wall.  It seemed not long after that the cell door swung open and he was hauled to his feet and escorted out of his cell for the last time.

The mists hung low over the Stormwind foothills, the low rising sun not yet having burned it away on the chilly late-spring morning.  The mists shrouded and muffled the sounds of movement as shadowy figures in black tabard, decorated with a single chaos star in red or yellow, made their way to the base of the city walls.  The faint sound of plate armour being lowered to the ground signaled that the guard above had been dealt with and as the ropes dropped down, the figures started to climb.

The Stable Boy yawned as he slopped the buckets of mixed feed and entrails into the troughs lining the coop of Gryphon stables.  How he hated the early shift, especially the day after pay day when he'd spent the few coppers his Dad allowed him from his wages on cheap beer.  The troughs filled he wandered to the back of the stables and lay on the hay bales and closed his eyes - chance to grab a few more minutes of precious sleep before the Gryphon Riders from the Guard would arrive and he'd have to go help with tacking-up.  The sleeping boy didn't notice the shadowy figure that followed him down the line of troughs or how the Gryphons head's drooped one by one shortly after it passed by.  As the stables fell into silence, a shadowy figure slipped away speaking softly into his comms "Mission completed, Deathmasters...poisons taken...all quiet".

Arli shivered slightly in the cool damp air as he was led across the courtyard.  He recalled being told how in the last minutes of life, the condemned man would feel a sense of peace and acceptance of their fate.  He couldn't remember who it was who had told him that, but he knew they were a fecking liar.  Arli pushed his shoulders back and lifted his head - at least he'd die looking unafraid.  At the back of the courtyard stood a single solid pock-marked post, a leather strap attached at waist height.  The SI:7 Agents roughly pushed Arli back  and pulled his arms behind the post, buckling the straps securely around his wrists.  Arli looked at the line of six marksmen across from him, evenly spaced with rifles resting against their shoulders; each looking straight ahead but none making eye contact with him.

"Ready Arms"  called the first marksman as in unison, each marksman lifted their rifles to a shooting position.

Arli took a slow breath, the seconds ticking by seemed like hours.

The first marksman winced in pain and then quickly turned to his left, shooting the second cleanly through the skull and then firing at the third, a glancing shot into the face, the marksman screaming in pain and staggering back.  The fourth marksman recoiled in horror, the shot missing him completely and wounding the fifth as a throwing knife pierced the back of the first's skull and he dropped to the ground as a forsaken cackle echoed around the courtyard.

Arli quickly looked up to the top of the city wall, a giddy rush of relief at seeing the forsaken priest in the colours of the Vile Thorn Outrunners, seemingly having mind controlled the marksman.  A screech to his right as a large ghostly bird of prey swooped in, distracting the last two standing marksmen as a shield shimmered around him followed immediately by a smoke bomb.  "Idiot" said the familiar voice behind him as the bindings on his hands were cut and a dagger pressed into his hand.  "Took your time" replied Arli returning Dianthaa's grin as Thorns slipped from the shadows, fighting, stunning, disarming and blinding the SI:7 agents and guards that started to appear.  Too many to take on in a fight, the Thorns and Outrunners concentrated on sowing confusion and distraction.  A lone sin'dorei hunter in the Outrunner's colours stood across from the priest, calling out commands to his spirit hawk and firing deadly plate-piercing arrows from his longbow into the courtyard below.  A forsaken monk stood casting healing mists on the Thorns below as the Priest cackled and jumped as she cast her curses and shimmering protective shields. Arli followed closely behind Dianthaa as she called out orders into her comms, looking across at Shivien who signaled the retreat - mission accomplished they needed to get out as fast as possible.  Within seconds, Wind Riders wheeled out of the misted foothills and swooped into the courtyard.

"Watch out for Air Patrols" called out Arli


"Sorted" replied Dianthaa with a grin, jumping on her Wind Rider and signaling Arli to get on behind her.


The wind-riders soared into the skies as the hunter fired arrow after arrow at the courtyard below, his spirit hawk screeching and swooping, the confusion allowing the Thorns to make their escape.

"Thorns, all out?" asked Arli as he peered behind him, looking for air-born patrols but seeing nothing but a lone Dragonhawk soaring into the skies followed by the spirit hawk.

"What?"  called Dianthaa as she urged her steed on.

Arli shuffled closer and wrapped his arms around Dianthaa's waist as he leaned on her shoulder "I said, Thorns, they all out?"

"Yes"  replied Dianthaa, slapping his leg as she said "And keep your hands to yourself"

Arli laughed and held on as the Wind Rider swung sharply, heading to the closest Horde base at Stranglethorn.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  // ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Re: Seconded

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