Monday, May 23, 2011

Fiction: "A quick meeting"

In a darkened corner, of a twisting alleyway, of an ignored side street of Stormwind City, the building stood, plain and unadorned except for a simple flag hung in the window - blue and white trim, a golden compass in the center.

The rains fell, hard, and the cobblestone stood fast against the clanking of Obsidium plate boots... and as the rainfall continued upon the cold steel, freezing slightly about the man, the simple building remained closed - the doorway wider, taller. And a simple sign, printed in plain common: "Knock."

The visitor laughs, before pushing, slamming the large door open, as he pushes in, the rainslick armor frosting over as he enters the building, leaving the door open. Inside the main room, bookcases stood tall, yet half empty - the walls were covered, plastered in various maps of Azeroth in a number of different stages of completion, varying in detail and size, of areas all over the world... and domineering the room, the number of desks in the middle, and the draenei woman sitting at them. She moved, her head low, her horns tilted forth. She shuffles about papers, and stops speaking abruptly, without a pause to look up towards the man. Silently, she continues poring over document after document, before the man breaks the silence, clearing his throat rough.

"You didn't knock," she states, calmly. "It's a simple instruction. If you cannot follow it, I will not help you."

Rain water runs fast, the sounds of it splashing from the rooftop upon the stone streets echoing, and the man raises one gloved hand, shaking frost and water from it, before sarcastically cracking his gloved hand against the door, one rap of his gauntlet against wood. The woman raises her head, eyes raised and locking onto the man - her eyes shone bright, yet, wrong. And when her eyes met his, she sighed slightly. "I'd hoped I'd fallen out of interest of the Ebon Blade after I refused to enlist in the Alliance army."

"Then you know why I'm here," the man spoke, his voice quivering with an unearthly reverb, "Rumor has it there's a little group about here that spends it's time chasing dragons... and I figure, if these stories are true, then the rag tag little band of misfits ought be plying their craft where it really matters - the island of Tol Barad needs skilled warriors defending it."

The woman pauses, her face unmoving as she watches him speak. He shakes his head, and continues to speak, "You're wasting the talents of good men and women, dragging them along on your little hunts. And for what? Because you can't face an enemy that stands eye to eye with you? Because you've become a coward? Visper Almaasy, what do you offer the world? Before, you were something, you were a force to be reckoned with, but now? You waste your unlife with your little maps and pictures, and silly little hunts. What do you get for it?"

"Sometimes, I get to wear armor. I like armor," she says, her tone flat, her speech controlled. None of the unholy energies that scar the death knight's voice echo, though her attention wanes, and she returns to the papers before her, "I shall pass."

He crosses the room, and his gloved hand smashes the papers out from her hands, before throwing everything off of the table - at his full height, he stands above the woman, his eyes narrowing, as he locks his gaze with hers, "You'll get every single one of your little fools killed, and for what? A bit of honor? And what happens when you've finished, left standing alone while every one else who put their false trust into you has died, Almaasy? WHAT WILL YOU HAVE THEN?"

The woman finally looks up from her papers, her face still stone solid, her eyes unmoving, except for the flash - the hint - of a twitch. Her voice strains, and she struggles to hide her own touch of death in her voice, "You'll say whatever you wish about me. You can. And you have. And you will. But you will not speak ill of-"

"Or what, Almaasy?" he grins, "Don't tell me The Butcher went soft..."

The draenei exhales, turning to another batch of papers, before the death knight continued, his laughter harsh, "I suppose that's why you never finished Shadowmourne. I hope your laziness isn't catching up to the rest of your people," he stopped to laugh again, leaning forward on the table, closing the distance between himself and Visper, slapping the other batch of papers from her hand.

"You could stop anything I'm doing here but you won't - you won't go to war with the Horde, because you've lost your taste for it. Why do you even continue to exist?" 

She turned, and her hand shot up from the table, grasping the man's jaw. Her face remained emotionless, unreadable. He pulls back, frantic, but her grip tightens and she pulls him back to the table, pushing back her chair and raising to her full height, towering over the man. Her hand clenches tighter and harder, cracking ice and growing wet with the rain water falling upon it...

Her voice cracks, and the hint of unholy energy was shattered, unable to feign otherwise, as she speaks, "Say anything. Anything you want. You can say whatever you want about me. I will not be upset - no, really," she says, her grip tightening, as if to say otherwise. The death knight struggles, trying to skitter away.

"I know the idea of a death knight who doesn't want to go to war is odd," she continues, "But I do not intend to waste my unlife on old hatreds - instead, I am going to defend - it is like you do. Only instead of standing at a safe point and screaming at my allies for not performing to my standards, I am going to stand shoulder to shoulder with them."

She releases him and raises, crossing her arms in front of her, breaking her stern countenance for a sneer, "How is it, you say, in common? Get out of here, you nerd." 

He staggers back, grimacing, and growling.

"And close the door when you leave. I do enjoy having the living here once in a while," she says, pointing to the doorway, before settling back into her seat, crossing her legs as she watches him leave, abrupt - unflinching as he slams the door hard enough to knock papers and maps free from the walls...

No comments:

Post a Comment