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Old 08-25-2009, 07:55 AM   #2
Ba1100n.Boi
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Episode 1: “Lemons”, Segment 1

It’s an amazing world I live in, when I’m sent to collect some plainstrider beaks—and somehow, in the process of getting those items, the beaks break in half as I touch them. Life can go suck a lemon—a sour, rotten melon. Suck it hard.

Thing is I bet that some greater being from up above is doing this on purpose, too—for their own entertainment.

After getting an amount of beaks I felt would be good enough to prove my worth to Sergra, the Orc girl leading the Barrens encampment, I was returned with the most hideous sight.

“Good job, Edgar,” she stated as she looked up to my approaching figure. “Very good job.”

There was something in her teeth… what was that…?

“Erm, yeah—here are the plainstrider horns—ERM—beaks, Ms. Darkthorn,” I politely answered. Hastily I withdrew the horns/beaks (really, I was unsure of myself at this point) from my pack and held them out to her. I smiled, in a miserable attempt to conceal my fear of that thing in her teeth. What exactly was that?

Apparently she caught my stare. “What’chyou lookin’ at, kid?” she bluntly asked.

Somewhat off guard, the question startled me and I seemed to have flinched, as if her words slapped me. “Uh, well, Ms. Darkthorn, there’s something in your—”

“—teeth?”

“Well, yes, and it’s an awful pigment of—”

“—brown?”

“Unfortunately so,” I replied—now quiet, silent, as a bitter smell entered my nose.

She kept chewing whatever was in her mouth, as if it was nothing, and simply replied: “Some troll told me that plainstrider manure has voodoo powers, and it would make me more powerful.”

Silence. Awkward silence. Awkward turtle?

“What’s it to ya, kid?” she stated, killing the quiet.

“Uh—I mean… Well, what now?”

“You can keep the beaks—I don’t want ‘em,” she continued. “Go and get me some Zhevra hooves. Four of them. And be quick about it. I heard from another troll that if you stick them up—”

And by that time I was already out of earshot, off to get those Zhevra hooves, without hesitation whatsoever.

~~~

“Wow! That Ms. Darkthorn person sounds like someone I would never wanna meet!” Justine said, completely amazed by my story. She followed closely to my side, as we walked along the eroded, cobblestone path.

I simply nodded to my head. Secretly to myself, I personally thought Justine would be best friends with a person like that. Ah, wait—that best friend is me...

“ ‘Suck lemons?’ Is that some weird expression Orcs use, ‘cause I never heard of that one!”

I tilted my head to her only slightly, in an attempt to avoid complete eye contact, and answered, “No. I guess it’s my own thing.”

“Oh. Well, I’d figure so. Y’know, because—”

“—I know—” I tried saying—though I knew there was no such thing as trying to interrupt Justine’s speech.

“—you’re gay, and y’know, that kinda makes you different already to begin with!” she joyously said, as if there was no harm in doing so.

“—… that already,” I said, sighing, my voice trailing off. You could never really break Justine’s speed of dialogue. That would be as difficult as finding Mankrik’s wife, only to, behold!—find a beaten corpse.

“So what’s it like being gay, huh, huh?” she pestered further.

My eye twitched in response—

“And do gay Orcs always have eyes that glow naturally blue, and you can’t see their actual eyeball or eyeball color?”

I sighed once more, and came to a stop in my walk. She pivoted to face me, completely—she looked upwards into my eyes, staring with her own silver spheres at my blue ones.

Mind you that she did really have to look up, since I was a good two heads taller than her. Why didn’t I just squish her now, I wonder?

“Erm—the eyeball thing, I don’t know. I don’t think so, though… it’s just there. It’s always been there since birth. My mom said it was a gift from the spirits.”

“The spirits made you gay?”

“No—”

“Then what did?”

Giving up in complete surrender, I kept on walking, bumping shoulders with her.

She followed closely behind—I knew her pet nightsaber was somewhere, too, prowling somewhere I can’t see it—and she kept on sending the barrage of questions.

“So? How do you know?”

Getting this question a lot, I answered, “In the same way you know you’re—”

“Why did you choose to be—”

“It’s not a choice, really, it’s just the way things are—”

“And—”

“You could stop interrupting me and—”

Suddenly an arrow whizzed past my shoulder, it charging forward at an incredible speed. It screeched loudly against the air as it swept past my helmet—and inevitably headed some stray moose on the road.

Instantly the projectile busted through the creature’s skull, causing a sudden burst of blood along with a strange, crackling sound, followed by the brief collapse of the animal.

I simply stood there—though I wasn’t shocked. This was normal—I had to keep reminding myself of that. This is normal, this is normal…

“Yeah! Head shot!” Justine shouted, cheering on for herself. “Boo-yah! 225 points right there!”

“Remind me where you get that number from?” I asked.

“And you’ve never heard of Gears of War 2?”

“You said it was a game…” I said, turning to her.

“Yeah, but, more than that!”

“I’ll never understand you, Justine. Are all Night Elves like you?”

Too late did I realize she would basically rebut with the same material. “And are all gay Orcs like you?”

“Well, no!”

“Well, there you have it then!” she smirked, in her usual “told-you-so” attitude, adding in that sassy “hmph” on top of it all.

And to myself, I thought: for the sake of Azeroth, I hope they aren’t…

~~~

“Look. Splintertree Post is up ahead—you need to stay here, and not shoot any arrows, alright?”

“Okay then!”

Hoping that she would actually do so for once, I made my way into the Orc base, taking a breath of air.

The torches were lit—it was nighttime. Up above the forest seemed to swallow the sky, with its branches and its colorful leaves. Purple, yellow, brown, green leaves would meet the earth occasionally; a gentle breeze sailed them through the air. There was the definite scent of forest—that sort of piney-pinecone smell—and it was a fresh, enjoyable smell. Staring upwards, there were the occasional open patches on the leafy rooftop—from which you could get a peak of the many, sparkling stars of Azeroth.

Ashenvale—it was beautiful.

And looking straight ahead upon where I was walking, there was Splintertree—which to me, looked like a monster, eating away at the beautiful woods. Like an ugly mole on a beautiful grandmother’s face (was that possible?).

“For resources” is what the always said. That we need more lumber, more wood—we are limited on resources and need more. I always thought that there was a better way to do this. Couldn’t we make a negotiation with the Night Elves, in some trade-off for wood, if we needed it so badly?

But then Night Elves despise the Orcs. Why does Justine not? She called me “cute” once, for spirits’ sakes. Then again—Justine is different. She would talk about a lot of strange things to me.

I spoke with the Innkeeper—her name was Kaylisk.

“And you need a place to stay for the night?” she kindly offered.

“No thank you—I’m just about to head off. But you do sell food and water here, right?”

“Sure thing!” she said. She welcomed me inside, where she showed to me a gallery of edibles, munchies, and brews, all neatly organized upon a tabletop.

Not wanting anything extravagant, I ordered for some good amount that would serve as rations for my travels, nothing expensive—I probably got the cheapest things on the menu, actually. Smiling, she continued her politeness: “Anything else I could help you with?”

“No thank you,” I answered. There was something wrong with her smile, though; it didn’t seem right. “I’ll be off now.”

“Good,” she stated—not as polite as before now. It was an unconscious manner, though, it seemed.

I walked out, straying for a moment at the doorway, out of sight from Kaylisk…

I overheard something.

“It’s always the voice that gives it away,” she said to herself—a disgruntled sigh came from her, her single sentence overwhelmed by a peculiar tone of disappointment.

And I continued on, back to Justine…

~~~

There were two dead wolves, a moose, and a giant spider surrounding Justine.

To no surprise—none of them were alive, and instead were already corpses being eaten away by bugs.

“Didn’t I say no arrows?” I said, approaching Justine.

“Yup! But you said nothing about swords!” she smartly responded, as she unsheathed two bloody, curved blades.

“You’re supposed to clean the swords before you put them back in. Don’t you know that?”

“Oh. Oops,” she said, kneeling to the ground and wiping her weapons against the grass.

“And why do I never see your cat around, anyways? What was his name?”

“You mean Kevin?”

“Yeah, Kevin, why’s he never—”

“He’s napping right now,” she interrupted. “He’s napping most of the time.”

“Then is he always napping?”

“Yup.”

Sighing, I gave up. I would probably never see this Kevin cat, ever. If he/it even existed—and by existing, I mean, not a figment of Justine’s imagination.

“I stocked up on supplies. I have to go collect some water from some Well now—”

“Ooh! Can I come?”

“—and yes… you can come,” I said, knowing her question was inevitable to begin with.

“Yay! Yay yay yay!” she cheered, clapping and jumping in the air.

I began trudging off, in some southwestern direction—with Justine closely behind me, as always.
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