|10-22-2010, 05:07 AM||#1|
Join Date: Oct 2010
Inspired by Titans Land RP
Clan BaH of US East and myself are proud to bring you a story about the horrors of war.
Thorm and his sister laughed happily as they kicked their leather ball around the red dirt of Durotar. The sun was high in the sky, burning down onto the red land. Thorm didn’t mind the heat; he was quite used to the sun blazing overhead in cloudless skies, and as a young orc of eleven years, it was good for him. He was getting hungry though. He smiled as he caught the scent of the wild boar his father had slain roasting over the pit behind their hut.
“Hey Roma, let's go see if supper is ready.” He grinned at his sister.
“Can't you ever take you mind off your stomach?” Roma laughed back. She was three years younger than him, but was already his equal in mind. “Mother already said she would call us when it was done.”
“I know,” Thorm scowled, crossing his arms, “But what if she forgot? What if she fell asleep by the fire?” He argued foolishly. “Then our supper would burn and we’d go hungry.”
Roma shook her head, chuckling at her brother’s thick-headedness. “Very well, we can go see.”
At the same time, halfway across the world, a young man named Robert Parker was ploughing a field in Elwynn forest. His mule was being stubborn and refusing to go any further. He sighed and approached the mule, pulling a carrot out of his back pocket. The mule looked at the carrot longingly and pulled forward a few inches, just to have the carrot pulled back slightly. Robert chuckled and continued to tempt the mule until the field had been finished, smiling and wiping the sweat off his brow as he finally fed the carrot to the animal.
“Heh… Good thinking, Rob,” His father laughed, slapping his hand down onto Robert’s shoulder, “Let’s go inside and eat. I could use a meal.” His father, Thomas Parker, finished, chuckling and walking back to the house. The two were instantly greeted by the heavenly smell of a hearty stew that was already being served to two other young boys.
“ ’Bout time you two came in for supper,” Robert’s mother, Nancy Parker, smiled, lightly kissing her husband on the cheek as she prepared two more bowls and finally her own.
“Thanks honey,” Thomas smiled, “You’ll be happy to know that the fields are almost ready for planting season.”
They had just sat down to eat when there was a knock at the door.
“Well now who could that be?” Nancy asked, curious. They didn’t have anyone nearby that would come to their door, especially at suppertime. Thomas stood, irritated at the delay in his meal, and opened the door to find a Stormwind guard.
“Greetings, sir. I’ve been ordered to issue an alert to everyone in the area. There have been several sightings of orcs in these parts, and the king thinks it best if this area were evacuated.” The guard said slowly, giving the family time to digest what they had just heard.
“Evacu- What? We’re not going anywhere. This is my land. A few orcs are no match for my rifle. Come back when there’s an army coming.” Thomas snapped back, trying to shut the door.
The guard pushed his steel booted foot in the doorway, preventing it from being closed. “That’s the thing sir,” The soldier continued irritatedly, “We think that there very well might be an army coming through.” The guard paused, as Thomas opened the door again, “There’s been some issues in Northrend with the Horde. We’re in a war. The King has already taken control of Theramore in preparation for a strike against Durotar. It’s quite possible the brutes are trying the same, and we can’t take any chances. Reports of orc scouts are coming in and its possible that an army might not be far out. Go ahead and finish your meal. I’ll wait. But after, I’m going to have to ask you to gather your things and come with me.”
Thomas sighed, looking back at his family, concern saturating every one of their faces. “Alright,” He sighed, returning to his place at the table.
Thorm gnawed at the bones of his piece of boar meat, trying to get every last scrap of meat free from the carcass.
“Well, Thorm,” His father, Thorg, began, smiling, “How about we go hunting tomorrow? Catch us another one of these?”
Thorm smiled widely, understanding what his father was asking of him. He had just been given his first steel axe yesterday, but he didn’t expect his father to actually ask him to accompany him hunting. “Of course, father. It would be my honor.” Thorm grinned, looking to his axe at the door.
The day passed and Thorm was barely able to sleep in anticipation of the hunt, but finally found rest, sleeping soundly through the night. Finally, far before sunrise, he was awoken by his father.
“Come, I know where the boars drink in the morning. But we must hurry, they leave for other lands when the sun rises.”
Thorm nodded, following his father out the door, reaching for his axe as he did so. He loved his axe. He loved the way it felt in his hands. He loved the weight of the head. Someday he would be catching beasts for his own family to eat, and this axe was his ticket there.
Finally they reached the watering hole, where dozens of wild boars of varying size and age drank.
“Which one, father?” Thorm asked, before his father put his hand to his lips and gave him a stern look. The boars had quite apparently heard them, and stared in their direction for several second before returning to their drinking. Thorg turned back to the boars, slowly approaching them and beckoning his son to follow. He spotted his target, a large boar of many years, and drew his hunting bow. He nodded at Thorm, making sure his son was observing, nocked an arrow, and carefully took aim, drawing his bowstring taut. Finally, he fired, his arrow flying through the air into the boat’s haunch. He was quick to follow, charging at the boar, his axe at the ready. Thorm ran after, swinging his own axe clumsily. Thorg made sure he got the boars attention, staying away from the beast’s razor-sharp tusks as he let his son position himself behind the boar. Thorm gritted his teeth, focusing on where he intended to hit, raised his axe above his head, and brought the blade down upon the boar’s spine, smiling as it fell to the ground.
“Good, my son,” Thorg smiled, snapping the beasts neck to make sure it was dead, and nodding to his son. “Do not forget mercy, my boy. This is overlooked by many orcs, but it is as much a part of honor as any other. We have bested our opponent, and by granting him mercy, we show our honor.”
Thorm nodded, watching as his father hoisted the immense beast over his shoulder, before stopping suddenly.
“What is it, father?” He asked, looking up confusedly.
“I don’t know. I smell humans. That’s not right,” He paused, noticing a troop of mounted humans coming over the horizon. “Stay here. I need to see what this is about.” He finished, dropping the boar and walking toward the humans.
Thorm watched as his father walked into the distance to meet the strangers. His father grew closer to them, and closer. And then he fell. Thorm stared in shock as his father dropped to the ground, barely able to see the bow that the human held.
He turned and ran as fast as he could home.
Robert’s feet hurt as he continued to march toward Stormwind. He was a fit and strong young man, but even for him the miles and miles of walking were hard to endure. He couldn’t imagine what it was like for his mother, who was not only older and more frail than he, but was also carrying his youngest brother. He looked back up at the marble spires of Stormwind. The massive city loomed in the distance, but it was hardly a welcome sight. Dozen of other families from around the province were also marching miserably toward the capital, forced from their homes.
Finally, they reached the gates, where they were counted by the guards and directed to a shelter. The family continued walking, the normally busy Trade quarter eerily silent as the tired refugees made their way to the shelters. They reached their designated shelter at last, Robert’s father signing his name on a sheet of paper the guard at the door held.
“Why did we have to leave?” The middle son, Joseph, asked. “I don’t like walking.”
“Neither do I,” Rob answered, sighing, “But we have to. There might be danger at home?”
“Then why did we leave Ethel?” The child asked back, teary-eyed. “And the cows?”
“There isn’t room here,” Rob replied, forcing himself to hold back his own tears. “They’ll be safe though.” He promised, knowing he was probably lying.
Thomas sighed, shaking his head at his son. “Listen Joseph, whatever happens, you’ll be safe. Stormwind is a safe place to be.” He answered, trying to reassure his children, but also himself. Stormwind had only fallen once before, and it was due to treachery. They wouldn’t make the mistake of trusting an orc again. Stormwind would hold.
Another guard entered the shelter, and began approaching the men. Thomas could hear the sighs and quiet protests from where he sat, and he already knew what the guard was there for.
“Sir,” The guard began, walking over to the family, “I’m afraid I’m going to ask you and your son there to come with me. You’ve been drafted.”
Thomas nodded, while Robert sat dumbfounded, giving a helpless look to his father, and then at his mother.
“Come, Rob,” Thomas said at last, placing his hand on his son’s shoulder, “We have a duty to do.” He nodded, turning back to his wife. “I love you all. I’m coming back, I promise.”
Rob stood quietly, before looking back up at his mother and feigning a smile. “Me too, mom.”
His mother nodded sadly, holding her other sons closer. “May the Light watch over you,” She whispered.
Thomas nodded and followed the recruiter to the Armory.
Thorm ran and ran, tears in his eyes, not even noticing how much his legs ached. The sun was rising on his right, and he could see the outline of his hut.
“Mother! Mother!” He cried out frantically, approaching his hut.
His mother was soon out the door, meeting him, fear all about her face. “What, my son? What happened? Where is your father?” She inquired, deeply concerned.
“They got him. Humans. Humans shot father.” Thorm managed to say, on the verge of crying.
Pain shot through her heart as if it were the arrow that slew her mate, and it was visible on her face. Then something hit her nostrils that made her heart race, adrenaline pouring into her veins. She smelled humans. Close.
“We must go. We must hurry away.” She answered, nodding and taking Thorm back to the house. She quickly packed several pieces of dried meat and bread into a leather bag, “Roma, Roma! Wake up.” She commanded, stirring her daughter.
“Huh? What?” Roma asked foggily, noticing her brother, “Why is Thorm here? Did father go hunting by himself?” She continued to inquire, rubbing her eyes.
Her mother shook her head, reaching for her daughter’s doll and handing it to Roma. “We must go. It is not safe here any more.”
Roma gasped slightly, and then nodded, teary-eyed, as she put her day-clothes on and followed after her mother and brother outside. Thorm could now smell the humans as well, anger surging through his heart. His father had done nothing to them. They had killed him in cold-blood. And he had been so helpless to do anything to prevent it.
He hurried after his mother as they ran north. They ran for several more minutes before stopping to rest. Their mother sighed and broke a piece of bread and meat for her children to share. Roma cried quietly, clutching at her doll, as she accepted the food. Thorm eagerly ate his meat, before looking back for a moment. Smoke rose high into the sky in the distance. He wondered for a moment what the source was, until he realized that it was coming from his hut.
Robert groaned under the weight of his armor as he walked with his company. The armor had been designed for someone much larger than he, and it was quite heavy. His father saw how his son shifted under the weight of the steel armor, and tried to smile.
“You’ll get used to it in time. Hopefully this is just a false alarm,” he said quietly as they marched toward the gate. They finally reached the gates of Stormwind and halted, waiting for further orders. A commander ascended the wooden stage in front of the rank of soldiers and began to issue orders, Robert and his father’s company were being stationed in Darkshire alongside another company. Robert sighed as they began marching again, his feet still aching from the journey he had just made. The sun was waxing in the sky and made his armor even more unbearable. But he continued to march. It was his duty as a man of the Kingdom of Stormwind.
Finally, they crossed into Duskwood. But something wasn’t right. The smell of smoke permeated the woods. They could see the town in the distance, but there were no lights coming from the buildings, nor could they see the lanterns of the Night Watchmen that normally stood guard. They drew nearer to the city, and Robert suddenly heard a collective gasp come from the forward company. He soon realized why. As they entered the town, they found that the entire village had been burned. What had been a large bonfire smoldered in the town square.
A soldier cried out in despair. Robert thought it was merely at the state of the town until he caught the smell that radiated from the burnt heap. He looked closer and realized that it was the remains of the townspeople.
He screamed in shock and disgust, collapsed under the weight of his armor and vomited.
Thorm continued to run, the sun beating down on his back. It seemed hotter too. The whole world seemed more hostile and unforgiving. The stones under his feet felt sharp and painful. The hot air stung his eyes. Where just the day before he hadn’t a care in the world, now everything seemed to intensify his pain. He did not even find comfort in the food his mother had given him.
What was wrong with these humans? Why did they kill and destroy and burn? He almost asked his mother why they wanted to kill them, but managed to keep his mouth shut as they stoicly ran north. He already knew the answer she would give anyway.
They were humans.
They hated him.
He vaguely knew why they were so filled with hate. His parents had recounted the stories several times before, regret lacing their faces, sadness in their eyes. The orcs had once lived on another world, but they were tricked by demons into killing their world, and had to come to this one to survive. They had fought the humans in the two great wars, and were eventually defeated and imprisoned. He barely remembered the prisons. He had been freed when he was only four years of age, so he didn’t remember very many details, but he remembered the feelings. The feeling of being watched all the time, the constant sadness of his parents, the gnawing hunger.
He realized that his mother hadn’t partaken of the small meal that he and his sister had shared, and he felt terrible. He remembered his own hunger from the camps so long ago, and realized that his parents must have felt even worse, having given him much of their food.
He continued to walk on, holding his sister’s hand, and noticed she was crying slightly. He held her closer, trying to comfort her, even though he felt the same inside.
Robert stood, in shock at what he had seen. The Horde had not only burnt the village, but the villagers as well. They were monsters. His heart quivered with rage as he looked at the smoking pile of corpses. Men, women, children. None had been spared. What if it had been his family? He could not fathom such wickedness.
His father tried to say something comforting, but couldn’t find the words. In truth, he was as shocked, outraged, anguished, and infuriated as his son was. The only thing he could think of was the memory of Stormwind burning as a child. This was a painful reminder of what the orcs were. They were not people. They could not be reasoned with. They killed indiscriminately and without mercy.
Suddenly, a horn was sounded and the forward company began marching south. Robert and his father looked up as their captain began barking orders to continue their march.
Robert felt tears stinging at the edges of his eyes. It was just overwhelming, the fatigue, the death, the prospect of the possible battle to come. He whimpered slightly as he continued to force his feet up and down, marching in rhythm with the rest of the company.
They marched south, out of the gates of the city, moving down the road toward the jungle of Stranglethorn. They marched for hours, finally getting a bit of light as the sun peeked in from between the treetops. The canopy overhead was growing less dense as it gave way to blue sky.
Finally, they reached the border of Duskwood, a deep gorge splitting the jungle in the south from the forest in the north. A single wooden bridge crossed the canyon, which surprised Robert, as he had expected the Horde to have burned that as well.
The forward company was beginning to cross the bridge, when a foul odor presented itself in the air about them. They paused a moment, unsure of what the smell was, when a projectile smashed into the side of the forward rank that was crossing the bridge. A greenish gas radiated out from the spot where it had hit, instantly striking terror into those that could see it. Seconds later, another barrel exploded as it hit the side of the bridge. Cries of agony and fear rang out through the gorge, as both companies turned to run. Robert looked back, empty armor and green puddles lying where men once stood, until finally there was only one rank left. Robert was speechless. He knew what had happened, but he couldn’t believe it. Even the slain villagers he had seen hours before were less appalling than this… travesty. So many dead, without warning, in seconds.
The calls of the captain broke through the shared shock of the company as he ordered them back to Stormwind. They marched quickly, despite their fatigue, almost running back to the capitol.
Thorm continued his swift walk behind his mother. He couldn’t tell where they were, but he could tell he was much farther away from home than he had ever been before. He kept pace with his mother, even though his feet hurt. His sister was having trouble keeping up though. She clung to her doll as she hurried along, stumbling at times as she tried to keep up with her mother’s long strides.
Suddenly, over the hilltop, they saw the group of humans that had burned their house to the ground. Thorm began to say something, but his mother covered his mouth and quickly hurried out of their sight. They waited. And waited.
Finally, Thorm’s mother cautiously looked back over the hill.
And fell to the ground, pierced by an arrow from one of the knights. Thorm screamed in horror, pulling his mother closer and cuddling her face with his own. She smiled and kissed him on the forehead, before standing and facing her attackers. One of the knights dismounted and drew his sword. Thorm’s mother growled and yelled out, before kicking the knight to the ground, using his own sword to impale him upon the ground. But she was too late to stop the sword stroke another knight brought down upon the back of her neck.
Thorm cried out and ran at the knight, beating upon the human’s metal plate armor with his fists in anger. The human prepared to strike down the young orc until he was stopped by another human that appeared to be an officer.
“Hold Johnson, we can certainly get a gladiator out of this one, and the other there will make a decent slave. At the very least we could sell her to the goblins, I’m sure they can find a use for her.”
“Roma, run!” Thorm yelled in Orcish, before he was subdued by the bigger and stronger human knight, and bound hand and foot.
Roma froze in place, weeping, before she too was bound and thrown over the saddle of one of the knights.
Roberts legs felt as if they would fall off. He marched and marched and marched and marched. The sun was waning in the sky now, and the faint glow of the Blue Child could be seen cresting the horizon. Finally, the tip of Stormwind Cathedral’s spire appeared over the edge of the landscape. Robert heard his father breath a small sigh of relief, which he soon echoed. They were almost there.
They marched for another hour, nearly forgetting their fatigue with the prospect of rest so close ahead. Finally, they reached the gates, barred fast against any possible threat. The captain of the company approached the gate and let out a long rich clarion call on his horn, the signature trumpet blast of Stormwind Kingdom. A helmeted head was seen over the gates in answer, and looked down upon the returning rank. The man disappeared again from the top of the gate. Moments passed, and finally the gates opened, allowing the company passage.
The reached the Trade quarter, which was in the midst of being transformed from a bazaar of sort into a fortified choke point into the city. Scattered gun emplacements were being assembled on top of the buildings, shielded by large planks of wood or metal. Basic battlements were being set up for archers to fire from. Carts and stray bits of stone and wood had been assembled into a barricade barring access to the market square. The city was preparing for total war. Robert only hoped it would be enough, the scene of his forward company dissolving within a cloud of green gas still burned fresh in his mind.
His captain vaulted over the barricade, moving to speak with his overseer. Robert could not hear what they said, but it was clear by the uneasy tone in the captain’s voice that he was afraid. The commander sighed audibly, before turning to Robert’s company.
“Alright, boys,” He called out, “You’ve been marching all day. Go get a meal, sharpen your weapons, prepare for battle,” The commander finished, a grim tone in his voice. He knew that many of these young men would not survive the night, if scouts' reports were to be trusted. Damn the Horde. Damn it to the pits from whence it crawled out so many years ago. They were bad in the first war, but never before had they possessed a weapon as potent as the Forsaken Blight. Even the terrible power of the orcish warlocks was dwarfed by the sheer genocidal capacity of this weapon. Today would not be a good day.
Robert followed his captain to the old town, as it was called. Among the newer buildings, if you could call them that, many remnants of the first Stormwind stood, undefeated be the Horde in the First War. Robert had only been to Stormwind once before, but he had never liked being here. In contrast to the busy, joyful tone of the Trade quarter, or the Mage quarter, Old town was a veritable ghost town. Those who stayed here were quiet: thieves, spies, ruffians, veterans. All those who did not belong to the merry atmosphere of the rest of the city gathered here, and lent their gloom to the attitude of the district. Where in the trade quarter one might hear singing or music over the constant chatter of the market, Old Town was quiet, resolute. It had seen the destruction of the rest of the city, and it was forever changed. Even the stonework seemed old and bitter, crumbling in places, cracked in others, while still elsewhere the white marble was seared with black soot, where once flames had licked as they consumed the city.
Robert followed his company to the mess hall, where another group was already leaving. He entered the building, standing in line to receive his food. He waited almost half an hour, before finally reaching the end of the line, where a black-bearded dwarf stood with a pot of grayish semi-solids.
“Enjoy yer chow, boy,” The dwarf grunted, leaning forward and ladling a large spoonful of the severely unappetizing slop into his bowl. Robert groaned and moved on, taking a seat next to his father. Thomas chuckled slightly, patting his son on the back. “It’s not your mother’s cooking, but it’ll fill your belly, and we’ve gotta take whatever we can get if there’s going to be a battle.”
Robert hesitated for a moment, and took a bite, grimacing as he choked down the “food.”
Throm struggled against his bonds, trying to knock himself off the horse, but received a heavy strike from the back of the knight’s steel glove. His vision went dark for a moment, and when he could see again, there were stars twinkling in his eyes, despite the fact that there was still light in the sky. He tried to struggle again, but stopped when he saw his sister laying limp on the back of another horse, whimpering slightly.
He couldn’t leave her behind. Even if he managed to escape, he could not honorable leave his sister to whatever fate the humans would put he through. If he could even escape at all. His hands and feet were bound, and he could not run if he made it to the ground. Besides, even if he could have, the humans were on horseback. His spirit screamed within him, thinking about what had transpired. The deaths of both his parents to the same accursed humans. His capture, and his sister’s, to be taken ancestors know where, to face humiliation and torment, no doubt, if not death. His screaming soul found release as he gnashed his teeth and let out a genuine orcish warcry, a powerful mix of lamentation and rage that burned his throat in its intensity.
“Shut up, little greenskin,” The knight spat, backhanding Thorm again; harder this time, knocking him out cold.
When he awoke, it was dark. He looked up, noticing metal bars holding him into an uncomfortable small cell. He looked around, trying to find his sister, but couldn’t. Nearby, many other orc youths of various ages were also locked up. He stood, placed his thick hand around the bars and began pulling, pulling with all his might. His face went flush with exertion as he tried to bend the bars, before he screamed in pain, his muscle tearing slightly.
“It’s no use,” One of the older orcs, probably somewhere around sixteen years of age, muttered, “Those bars are made of thorium.” The youth nodded, pointing to a number of burst blood vessels underneath the skin of his own arms.
“Where is my sister?” Thorm cried, slamming his fists against the bars, recoiling slightly at the pain.
The youth shrugged. “If she wasn’t killed on the spot, they’re probably taking her to a camp, if she’s lucky.”
Thorm didn’t want to think about what might happen if she were unlucky.
“Supper, ya little piggies,” A voice called out from another room. Soon, a large heavy-set human entered, holding a tub of cold porridge. The young orcs in the cages about Thorm pushed small trays out into the hall, allowing the human to dump an amorphous blob of the tasteless food onto each tray, before they pulled it back.
Thorm looked down, finding a similar tray at his own feet. He frowned in disgust at the status of the tray. It was if it had never been washed. Nonetheless, he pushed it under the bars, allowing the human to plop a spoonful of the gruel onto it.
“This’ll ‘av ya grow up big an’ strong, t’ earn lotsa money for yer masters,” He laughed. “Word ‘as it that th’ King is comin’ too. E’ll just love seein’ ya strappin’ young orcs ready to put to work.”
The elder youth growled and gnashed his teeth at the large human, turning his pained arms on the bars again in a futile attempt to pry them open.
Robert had just finished sharpening his sword, smiling tiredly as the blade bit deep in a target dummy modeled after an orc.
“Nice work, Rob,” His father smiled heavily, fatigue and sleeplessness showing in his eyes. Rob wasn’t used to fighting with a sword, and his technique was poor, but passable.
“Soldiers, to your stations!”
The cry went through out the district, being yelled by many different captains and commanders at once. Thomas looked up and beckoned Robert to follow him, quickly reforming their company behind their captain. The quickly marched across the canals to the Trade district, Roberts company was placed behind the barricade, behind two other companies of soldiers. Thousands assembled all over the city. Dozens of gun emplacements lined the roofs of the buildings in the district, and countless archers stood with them on the roofs. Robert looked forward nervously at the flimsy barricade. There were two different gates that the Horde would have to get through to get to his position, and that was comforting. But the Horde had the Blight, and that could bypass any obstacle.
Suddenly, a horrid cry rang through the air. A cry of thousands of Horde voices ripping through the air in a massive battle roar. Robert’s heart skipped a beat as he began to hear the thunderous booming of countless feet that he knew were charging at the gate.
Robert braced himself. The Horde army wasn’t even in the city yet, and yet his adrenaline was flowing like water. He hated this slow, agonizing wait. At least in battle you didn’t have time to fear, or so he had heard, but now, pure terror filled his being. He wanted to turn and run. To forsake the city and everything and simply survive, but he forced himself to stay. His father was here. His mother and brother were here. His will forced himself to overcome his emotions. This was his duty.
War drums echoed in throughout the streets, as the sounds of battle continued to ring out behind the gates. A massive boom thundered through the air underneath the black stormy skies.
“That’s the ram, son,” Thomas muttered grimly. Another deep booming sound beat against the soldiers ears as wooden ram met wooden gate a second time.
“Up! Up! Look up!” A soldier cried. Instantly everyone’s eyes were on the sky, where three zeppelins flew menacingly through the sky. Suddenly, barrels began raining down from the airship, raining down and exploding onto the ground, releasing deadly blight onto groups of unfortunate soldiers.
“Bring them down! NOW!” The commander ordered, and instantly the deafening explosions of several cannons were heard. Two of the Horde ships were hit, falling to the ground onto the armies, crushing those unlucky enough to be caught beneath them. The cannons were turned onto the last ship, along with any guns the ground forces had, and they brought it down quickly.
Just as they were breathing sighs of relief, they heard the last sound that they wanted to hear. The snapping of wood and a sound of the war drums and screams of battle growing closer. Robert cringed. There was only one gate left between him and the Horde. He took his shield off his back and held it up with some effort, as it was quite heavy. The Horde would soon be through the arcanite portcullises and at his barricade.
“The ogres! Bring them down!” He heard from the walls, “Bring them down now! Don’t let them reach the gates!”
Robert cringed. Ogres? Orcs were one thing, but he had heard stories of the ogres. Unstoppable, his father had called them. He looked over to his father, who shared the same expression of uneasiness that he wore. Finally, he heard the sound of metal on metal as some vile orc or ogre beat on the gates. The sound intensified as more joined in attacking the portcullis. Suddenly, the gate shattered, causing waves of orcs to spill into the Trade quarter.
The front lines were immediately cut down by the gun emplacements and archers, but dozens took their place. Like a wave of green bodies, they smashed through the impromptu barricade, crushing those in front as they spilled over and around and through. Robert gripped his sword tighter as the human lines surged forward to meet to the Horde. The humans were smaller and weaker than the orcs, but they had the advantage of superior arms, armour, and discipline.
Suddenly, one of the ogres that had broken through the gate barreled through the Horde ranks, knocking down everything in its path. Its hideous single eye locked onto Robert’s short form, and a wicked smile crossed it’s face. It raised a huge stone mace over its head, and prepared to strike, forcing Robert to hold his shield up to protect himself, knowing that he’d be crushed anyway. But it was all he could do.
He waited for the deadly strike, but found that it never came. He lowered his shield and looked up, seeing a red haired man in gilded armour thrusting a lance at the ogres face, forcing it back. Finally, the soldier scored a killing blow to the ogre’s throat, causing it to gurgle in pain and fall in a slump to the ground.
“Who was that?” Robert yelled out to his father, who had just slain a troll berserker, and was still sweating hard.
Thomas looked up, hearing his son. He didn’t really have time to talk, but ignoring him would be demoralizing. “That’s General Marcus Jonathan, Rob,” He called out, dodging a troll‘s spear. He wasn’t fast enough to stop the Tauren’s axe though. The massive bullish beast grunted as it brought a large metal axe blade through his sword arm, separating it just above the elbow.
Rob cried in shock, seeing his father so injured. “My dad! He needs help!” He yelled, not knowing what else to do. He saw the General turn in his direction, and then look over to where his father worked to defend against the Tauren. General Jonathan instantly was upon the beast, using the lance to puncture its back several times. The Tauren cried out in anger and turned, only to have its throat pierced by the lance, causing it to fall back onto Thomas.
General Jonathan quickly worked to roll the Tauren over and off of Thomas. “There there, soldier. You are going to be alright.” He said, seeing the soldier’s son standing nearby. “Come here son, I want you to stick by me. I’ll make sure the medics get your father to safety,” The General nodded, motioning a pair of priests to carry Thomas away. Robert nodded stupidly, following the General back into the fray.
The General fought spectacularly, carving a swath in the Horde’s ranks, but there were just so many of them. Eventually, they were forced back just by the sheer numbers.
“Retreat! To the Keep! Protect the Prince!” General Jonathan called out, watching his men go. “Go on son. I’ll take up the rear,” He nodded at Robert.
Robert turned and ran with the other soldiers, watching over his shoulder as the General fought back the armies, before turning and letting the archers cover him.
Finally they made it to the keep, watching the Trade district burn as it was overrun by the enemy.
“Figures you would run, you pitiful human pigs…” A voice laughed as a very large brown-skinned orc made his way through the ranks, just out of bowshot from the keep.
Robert had never seen a brown orc before, but he was too focused to worry about it now.
“My father was wrong about you people,” the brown orc laughed, “You are nothing but beasts, to be butchered and forgotten. Come, Horde! Kill these pink-skins and let us take this land! For the Warchief!” The orc cried, charging forward with his soldiers.
“Dammit,” The General muttered, meeting the orc in combat. “Glory to the Alliance!”
Robert watched, fighting off another orc, as Marcus fought the brown orc, who was apparently the leader.
And then, the brown orc was down. It had happened so quickly. The brown one had charged, the General had dodged, swept the leg, and then it was over.
Now they just had to deal with the rest of the army.
Thorm sat in his cell, on the brink of despair.
Both of his parents were dead, his sister was gone. His whole life was falling to pieces.
Tears appeared in his eyes, but he choked them back. He had seen one orc cry already, and he had been dragged off, only to come back covered in welts. Besides, crying wouldn’t do any good. It would only serve to show him as weak.
He sighed, retreating into the corner of his cell, watching as the cat pounced on a rat that had been nibbling at a crust of bread the guard had dropped before falling asleep.
“Make way for the King!” The herald yelled, causing the sleeping guard to stir, before snapping to attention. Finally, a brown haired human in grayish armour, decorated all over with the human symbols of the lion and eagle, stormed in, followed by another human who’s face was wrought with fear, as a dog who has just been scolded by its master.
“What is the meaning of this!” The more regal looking human shouted.
“My Lord, my King, they are… were meant to grow into gladiators for the profit of the kingdom and the entertainment of our people…” The cowardly human stuttered.
“ENTERTAINMENT!” The king yelled, slamming his fist into the stone wall instead of into the commander’s face, as he wished. “Are our people entertained by this war! Did you forget that it was an Orcish Gladiator that freed the orcs and led them against us? We cannot take them prisoner, we have tried that already,” the King answered, growing calmer. “The first time they were cowed by withdrawal from the Fel, but we have no such convenience now. They will rise up again and they will continue to kill our people.”
The commander’s face grew pale. “Then what shall we do? Kill them? Children?”
The King paused a moment. “I don’t… I don’t know. If we have to, then we must.”
“But they’re just children! Killing adults is one thing, but this…”
“Surely you cannot think that these children were born into innocence? They will grow up and take arms against us!” The King cried, punching the wall again. “They are beasts, just as their parents. We must choose between eternal war with them, or we can end the threat now. They must be purged.”
“Surely there must be some other way!” The commander begged.
“Dammit, Caldwell! As your king I command you to execute these prisoners!” The King barked.
“Very well,” Commander Caldwell sighed, reaching for his keys and moving to Thorm’s cell.
Thorm squirmed back to the corner, trying in vain to escape, when there was a crash and several loud yells outside.
“Lord Varian! The Horde are attacking!” A captain cried, running into the room.
“Dammit,” Varian swore, “Well then, stop standing around! Rally the troops! But I want their “Warchief.” He must pay for every human life that has been lost to his damned people,” He finished, drawing his strange sword from his belt and walking out.
Thorm waited in a strange mixture of fear and hope. If the Horde was successful, he’d finally escape. But if the Alliance won the day… He sighed and tried to listen to what was happening.
He listened to the sounds of battle for almost two hours, until finally the commotion died down. Thorm waited in silence, afraid to breathe, not knowing who would come through the door.
Finally the door opened and the sunlight blinded him. In the door was a large armored silhouette… of an orc.
A tired, bloody orc that Thorm instantly knew to be his Warchief entered, followed by a large older looking orc with long grey braids hanging from his head and jaw.
“I come to free you,” Thrall said quietly.
Every trapped orc in the room stood and cheered, as the older orc began smashing in the thorium locks with naught but his fist. Finally, Thorm was freed, stepping out and embracing Thrall about the waist.
“M-my, sister… I don’t know where she is…” He stuttered.
“We shall find her,” Thrall nodded, patting Thorm on the back and smiling. “High Overlord Saurfang here shall see to that. He already has his raiders prepared to search out every camp they have set up in this swamp.”
Thorm smiled, and followed the Warchief outside, where a human woman stood.
“I am returning to Orgrimmar, Jaina. Perhaps there is still time to fix this,” Thrall nodded sadly.
Thorm looked up at the human woman and sneered. The humans would pay for what they had done.
They had done it. They had managed to defeat the Horde army.
“Begin tallying the survivors. We must inform the families,” General Jonathan sighed.
A high elven mage appeared before the general, materializing out of thin air.
“General! The King is dead! What are we to do?” The mage managed to say, stumbling on his words.
All of the color left Marcus Jonathan’s face, before a terrible look of anger passed over him.
“The beasts have slain the King..” He said calmly, “And they have left the prince an orphan. They must pay,” He paused, looking at his soldiers. “Prepare the ships. We sail for Durotar. We will annihilate the Horde or we will die trying. Let us end this war.” He said quietly, making his way to the docks.
Robert looked back at the burnt Trade quarter, and then back to the General that had saved not only his life, but his father’s, and followed.
Thorm looked into his small fire where a haunch of kodo roasted. His hair, graying from age and pain, blew in the cold Desolace wind. He turned around and looked as the kodo corpse behind him, a makeshift scarecrow impaled in its side to ward away the carrion birds. He’d have to make another kill soon, as he had almost exhausted all usable parts of the beast.
He hadn’t seen another orc since Orgrimmar fell. He wondered if he was the last one. Many times he had thought he had seen his sister standing in the distance, but it was always a trick of the light on a tree or rock.
He had to keep moving though… He was rare game to the Alliance. Many times had he found an elf or dwarf stalking him, as a hunter stalks its prey. And every time, he had killed them. He felt nothing. He had even grown tired of hating. He only had one goal, and that was to survive. To survive in this world that had rejected him, whatever that meant.
Suddenly he stood and reached for his axe. He had smelled that which he hated most. Human. He looked around, finally spotting his enemy on the hill. He did not even give pause before attacking. His father had tried to negotiate with humans, and he had died before they even let him speak. No, humans only understood death, and that’s what he would give it.
The human fought back, carefully avoiding Throm’s attacks, and landing his own on the green beast’s unarmoured hide. The massive beast knocked him to the ground, but he rolled out from under the orc’s axe strike. The human thought quickly, twisting his own legs to trip the orc. He got to his knees and slashed the orc’s hand, forcing him to drop the axe. Without pausing, he ran his sword between the orc’s ribs, impaling him to the ground.
“My name is Robert Parker. Remember that in hell, you son of a ------” The human muttered, turning and leaving the sword in the ground.
Thorm lay there dying, but the human’s words enraged him. He thought back to his mother, standing there against the humans as she defended him and his sister. How dare the human say that.
He ripped the sword from his chest and leapt at the human, swinging the sword at Robert’s neck, cleaving his head from his shoulders.
“If only you knew my parents…” Thorm grunted, his vision growing blurry. “You would not have said that…” He groaned, falling to his knees and then collapsing to the ground, his vision fading.
As his eyes closed, he thought he saw his sister standing nearby. It must have been a trick of the moonlight.
-WarlordSaurfang US East Warcraft III, Rbd (Wow Twisting Nether), Skeeran (Wowhead)
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This is a story that I hope people will read multiple number of times.
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