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DeclanRavenholdt
DeclanRavenholdt
Posts: 37
Joined: May 7th, 2014, 5:11 pm
DeclanRavenholdt

Eclipse: Stepping Stones to Darkness

Postby DeclanRavenholdt » April 13th, 2015, 10:53 pm

The brisk walk from the garden behind the Cathedral in Stormwind flew by. Before Smithe knew it he stood at the door to his home within the city. He quickly took his key and unlocked the door. Without bothering to shut it, he rushed inside towards his study. Behind one of the many paintings lay a small space carved into the wall. A dusty book lay inside bound in chains to prevent one from opening it. He took one of his many keys and unchained the book. He grabbed it and made his way to the door. Brother Paxton, whom had been sleeping upstairs met Smithe at the door of the room.

"Reverend. When did you get back? And why are you in such a hurry? Did the meeting not go well?" Without a second thought, Smithe's right hand lunged forward gripping onto Paxton's throat. The glove that had covered his right hand lay on the floor. The mark bestowed on the Reverend by Vionora glowed violently as he strangled Brother Paxton. Paxton's body stop twitching as it hit the floor. Smithe's face remorseless as he gazed upon his old friend.

"I am sorry old friend. But sacrifices must be made if we are going to survive the darkness that is fast approaching." Smithe lit a candle and set it with the flame touching one of the bookshelves. "If they will not stand with me, then they will receive nothing from me. The time has come for this world to be put to the flame. Light willing, I will rebuild it in due time." Smoke began to fill the room as the first shelf of books caught fire. Smithe took one last glance around his library. "Shame I must destroy such a beautiful collection." He looked back to Paxton. "But sacrifices must be made . . ."

With the old tome in his hands, he quickly made his way through Stormwind to the stables. As he was saddling his horse, bells began to ring in the distance. The fire would burn out quickly, but its work was already done. He raised his cloak to cover his head and spurred the horse onward. How ironic that he would leave his home under cover of darkness while watching it burn, just as he had done in Gilneas some time before.
Woldemar Steyer, The Blind Seer

DeclanRavenholdt
DeclanRavenholdt
Posts: 37
Joined: May 7th, 2014, 5:11 pm
DeclanRavenholdt

Re: Eclipse: Stepping Stones to Darkness

Postby DeclanRavenholdt » April 15th, 2015, 7:42 am

Darkness. Reverend Smithe scoffed at the thought as he rode through the Gilnean headlands. Since his flight from Stormwind the day before, he had been bogged down by endless nagging thoughts. Some he could simply pass over, and others that would not be so easy to forget. Perhaps what Lord High Commander DelaCroix said was true. What if all I will succeed in doing is damning myself to the darkness for eternity?

A bolt of lightning in the distance broke his concentration. It was certainly for the best. These kind of thoughts would only lead towards his demise now. There is no turning back from what must be done to survive. His glance jumped to the book he had been holding his entire ride. He took a deep breath and turned his gaze forward once more. In the distance lay the ruins of the village he had once called home before Gilneas fell. Within the ruins, his chapel, or at least what remained of it.

Smithe dismounted his horse at the entrance of the ruins and lead the horse inside. He found a rotting beam that was still anchored to the wall and tied his horse's lead to it. Nostalgia flooded his mind as memories of attending extravagant parties and hunting with his noble friends. A thought soured some time ago by news of Lord Godfrey's death within the halls of Shadowfang Keep. Smithe focused himself and returned to the task at hand.

The chapel itself was of nothing in comparison to the cathedrals in Stormwind and Gilneas nor even the chapel at Light's Hope in the Plaguelands. It was a small stone building that held twenty people on a crowded day. Now, it was just a shell. The roof had long since collapsed and all that remained were the heavy stone walls. He set his sack of supplies down opposite the door, and placed the dusty tome on what once resembled an altar, though now an unadorned block of stone.

Smithe had grown tired. Though he knew before he could even contemplate sleep there was work to be done in preparation for the events that were surely to come. He grabbed a sharp knife from his bag and made his way to the altar. He opened the book and flipped through the pages until he arrived at the page describing a ritual circle to be used in rituals of a necrotic persuasion. He took great effort in carving the circle into the floor at the center of the chapel. Next, he dropped the now dull blade and grabbed candles from the sack. He placed them around the circle where the book required and then placed the remaining few on the altar.

Before the ritual, there was now only one thing that he needed and he made certain he had it on his person. He took a pendant from around his neck and placed it on the altar. In time, it would take the place of his soul. It will be imbued with the power to conquer death itself. The loss of his soul would be but a small price to pay.
Woldemar Steyer, The Blind Seer

RiktheRed21
RiktheRed21
Posts: 113
Joined: March 29th, 2014, 11:06 pm
RiktheRed21

Re: Eclipse: Stepping Stones to Darkness

Postby RiktheRed21 » April 22nd, 2015, 2:49 am

Hours ticked by in a blur of blood and sweat in the clinic tent of Stormshield. Vemynisa hadn’t worked on the front lines of a war since she had lived in her own version of Draenor, several decades ago. How strange it was to find herself home again, in an environment that had once been prominent in her life. But this clinic was different from any healer’s circle she had ever taken part in. People from many strange races and origins were brought in with wounds of all kinds. There were cuts, broken bones, missing or shortened limbs, burns, poison, toxins, shrapnel, corruption of the mind, body, and soul, some with frostbite, some with arcane burns or fel burns, even burns from the Holy Light itself.

Vemynisa had to summon all the knowledge from her past as a healer to treat so many different types of wounds and diseases. And in the midst of it all, there were those suffering from the plague that their medics couldn't even treat.
It was a nightmare for her. She had always been better at thinking things over before committing to anything, yet this clinic required immediate diagnoses and treatment. It was more first aid than extensive healing, which is why long-term patients like the death knight Brinnea Velmon had to be moved quickly back to Stormwind, Darnassus, or Ironforge to free up bed space for more wounded. Vemynisa looked over Velmon’s condition chart before looking at the woman herself. Brinnea looked young for a human. Her body was frail and pale in her current state, and according to her record, her blood was turning black from her infection. Void magic was a common source of wounds in Shadowmoon or the southern spires, but not in Ashran.

The death knight seemed to be dreaming in her sleep. Every few moments, she twitched slightly, mumbling something in a different tongue, or perhaps it was only gibberish. Vemynisa watched her eyelids flicker as the eyes beneath the flesh moved back and forth. Focusing for a few moments, trying to will the woman to open her eyes, Vemy realized, not for the first time, that time was both a better healer than her, and a better killer than any soldier. She shook off the nauseous feeling in her stomach and moved closer to the patient. She felt for the woman’s pulse by instinct, and of course found none. Something moved in the top corner of Vemy’s eye. Looking up, she saw icy blue eyes staring back at her. Then she felt a frozen, iron grip on her neck.
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Brinnea sat up quickly, shouting something unintelligible. Her right hand was gripped tightly around the draenei woman’s throat. The clinic began to slow down around her, as if time were coming to a halt so soon after she had woken up. Someone screamed, someone grabbed her shoulder, trying to wrench the draenei from her grip. Instinctively, she brought her empty palm forcefully into the man’s nose, which crunched under the sudden pressure. She sprang from the bed, throwing the healer in her grip before her, clearing an exit for her. She sprinted through the opening in the tent, not looking back to see if she was being followed.

A voice whispered in her head, Feed. Just the one word sent a fatigue shock through her body. She felt her need for blood, compiled by this new craving. It forced her to stop in her tracks. Doubled over in agony, she screamed, or maybe that was someone else. Her vision went blurry, as if she were passing out, but she refocused a moment later on bloodstained hands. Her own hands. Panic rushed through her mind, shooting down through her veins like a shot of adrenaline. She started running again. Only vague images flashed through her mind, the glint of the sun off a guard’s armor, moss growing on cobblestones, her own haggard reflection in the edge of a sword, a splash of crimson on blue and gold, the faint glow of a portal under the bright sunlight…

The rest was a rush of unclear scenes painted before her eyes. A room fully of portals, cloth-clad mages, the flash of magic, twinges of pain, roads, canals, buildings flew by like birds in a panic. Then everything stood still. Was she asleep? Had she been dreaming from the start? Then she felt a weight in her legs. The weight became sharper as her senses began to return to her. She opened her eyes, and saw a horizon of blue sky slashed with clear, shimmering water. She lifted her head from the sandy surface beneath her, and slowly sat up, supported by her hands. Out of nowhere, her legs were engulfed in a wave of pain. She bit back a yell and fell back into the sand. She clamped down on her lower lip, hard, trying to dull the immense throbbing stab of agony in her legs. After the wave finally subsided, she tried to lift her head again, even slower this time. The pain sharped slightly, but to a bearable degree. Brinnea felt her thighs over. Her hands came back covered in black blood.

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Hours later, she managed to crawl a ways up the beach. With every attempt at movement, she yelled out for someone, anyone to help her. The sound of crashing waves behind her was her only answer. She had long since stopped wondering where the black blood had come from, or where she was, how she got there, or where she thought she was going. Now she had found something new to worry about, the rising tide. The sound of crashing waves had grown steadily louder since the sun had set. She was crawling towards a distant jungle, Stranglethorn maybe? In all the time she had spent crawling, the jungle had gotten no closer than the tide had. After another hour of crawling through dunes, she felt a trickle of water on her toes.

It didn't take much longer after that for the tide to engulf her legs. The salty sea water would have increased her pain, but she had lost the feeling in her legs since she started pushing the blood out of her body. Wherever the black blood had come from, it didn't belong in her undead body. She made an attempt at standing as the waves rushed against her midsection. The pain was gone, but her legs weren't responding like they should have. Not much longer afterwards, the water began to rush over her head, and dragged her slowly back down the beach.

Brinnea tried using the runes in her body to freeze the water instead of sinking under it, but she realized, with a start, that her runes did not respond to her. As her body sank into the deeper parts of the beach, she tried desperately to cast a spell, any spell to get her out of this mess. Instead, she felt more black blood pump from her heart. Wait…my heart is pumping?

Then the voice from before said, You must live on, you must feed! Then the water around her exploded, her vision was fogged by something dark and oppressing, and her body began to drift into the abyss.


((Members of the Alliance might hear of a death knight patient going insane and murdering a guard while fleeing through a portal to Stormwind from Ashran. This death knight apparently escaped into the woods, with some guards in pursuit, but she was not found.))
"I am the Night!" -Brinnea, Rikthered, Cynthya, Orgog, Kazarak.....

RiktheRed21
RiktheRed21
Posts: 113
Joined: March 29th, 2014, 11:06 pm
RiktheRed21

Re: Eclipse: Stepping Stones to Darkness

Postby RiktheRed21 » April 24th, 2015, 7:34 pm

“My BLOOD!” Brinnea screamed as the priest’s rowboat slipped away from her, towards the dark smudge in the distance. “No! You cannot have it!” The spot where he had touched her, marked her, was burning like a wildfire. She could feel the black blood fading. Slowly, the mark was pulling her master’s power from her. It felt like dying again, only this time in heat and flame.

The rock she had clung to in her rest was lapped at by lazy waves. A brief rain storm had passed not long ago, and her legs were no less torn than when she had last awoken. Standing was impossible, and swimming after the thief was more so. Her newfound power, the soft voice in her mind, it was all slipping away as that man drifted further and further from her. She tried to stand again, and the effort drained her greatly. She slipped on the wet rock, and landed face-first. Strangely, it didn’t feel like the first time she had slipped into unconsciousness in such a manner.

In her dreams, she saw her master’s shadow scattering before an oppressive flame. The flame came closer, and as it did, she recognized it as the mark that had branded her. Two circles, moons, nearly overlapping. The vision burned into her mind like a sunspot on the eye. She tried to scream, but she had no more voice to do so.

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Kazarak crouched on the edge of the zeppelin that would take him to the outpost where his life in the Horde had begun. His balance was unshakeable, partly due to his dexterity, but also thanks to the element of wind, which circled him as his communed with the spirits he had long missed. Stranglethorn had been his home for half of his life, until his visions had led him to the Horde, to Kalimdor. He breathed in the wind, smelled the salty sea, felt the warmth of the tropical sun, and basked in the view of the vale in all its glory.

Then a ripple in the air threatened to throw the troll off the zeppelin. His instincts took over, and he backflipped back onto the deck of the airship before he leaned too far off the side. Kaz felt the spirits’ unrest in his soul. They were panicking about something, some impurity to the north. He cast his far sight on the source of the disturbance, and found some rocks off the Savage Coast. On one of them lie a human woman, around which drifted dozens of corrupted spirits, crying out in agony as the aura around the woman tainted them.

A shrill voice brought Kaz back to his body. “Kaz! We’re here, are you gonna get movin’ or what?” The shaman turned to look at his surroundings. The zeppelin had docked at the outpost tower, and most of the crew had already disembarked. He was not accustomed to being distracted for so long.

He addressed the goblin who had spoken, “Tell your cousin that our meeting will have to wait until tomorrow. There is a threat to the spirits nearby, and I must deal with it myself.”

The goblin shrugged as Kaz moved past him. Since he was in a hurry, the troll shifted into his ghost wolf form and padded down the tower, out into the jungle at his fastest pace. It took him a short time to reach the shore, and from there he walked across the waves to the woman’s location.

She was frail, pale, and bleeding black blood all over the rock. Her auburn hair was short, but messy, her eyes were shut, and both her legs were hamstrung. She looked as if she had been recently bandaged, but water damage had torn through her wound dressing. The aura about her was of the void, but he could also tell the woman herself was a death knight.

“You be causing quite the commotion, scourge-born. How are we gonna fix this?” Kazarak did expect a response, but the woman replied weakly, “He has taken my blood, the blood…of my master.” She used her finger to trace a symbol on the rock. Two nearly overlapping circles.
"I am the Night!" -Brinnea, Rikthered, Cynthya, Orgog, Kazarak.....

RiktheRed21
RiktheRed21
Posts: 113
Joined: March 29th, 2014, 11:06 pm
RiktheRed21

Re: Eclipse: Stepping Stones to Darkness

Postby RiktheRed21 » April 28th, 2015, 12:43 am

As the girl’s condition worsened, she became more aware of her surroundings. She didn’t seem to appreciate being locked up in a troll’s hut in the ruins of Zul’Gurub. That made it harder to keep her alive, but Kazarak persevered. He wasn’t about to let her roam free, corrupting the spirits of his homeland with her presence. Still, he questioned where healing shamans found the patience to deal with people like her. She tried to fight him off at first, out of self-defense. After that passed and she realized he was only trying to help, she spoke to him in the Common tongue, telling him to leave her be. He needn’t concern himself with her well-being, she said. Kazarak replied in what little of the Common tongue he knew, “I do dis fo’ my home, the spirits. Ya presence, this darkness…it is bad for dem.” She glared at him when she was awake and shuddered as if cold while she slept. Kazarak awoke one night to find her thrashing about on the floor, growling and groaning as she painfully clawed her way to the entrance of the hut. He carried her back to bed. She fought him, but he held on too tight for her. She sobbed like a child when he put her back in bed.

Kaz’s attempts at healing her revealed to him only that her infection was draining, not by his hand, and much too quickly to be natural. Even as it went, she seemed to be growing weaker. Kaz made a decision on the third day he was taking care of her. He would take her as far as Darkshire, and the Alliance could handle her. His skills were not enough to cure whatever ailed her. Besides, the infection that tainted the spirits would soon be gone. Her body was not his problem. Mostly, he doubted why he should let her live at all. Humans had never shown him mercy, especially not the Alliance. He explained his plan to her, and she nodded back. Kaz had no idea if her acceptance meant anything.

The next day, Kaz lifted the death knight onto the back of a Horde pack kodo from the barrens. He had loaned it from Grom’gol after a quick trip south. To his surprise, the girl had not tried to leave while he was gone. She trusted him more than he had expected. The kodo carried their weight easily along the road to Darkshire. Kaz left the beast hitched to a tree a few miles away from the human town and then carried the girl the rest of the way. By the time he could hear human voices calling out in the distance, she had not spoken a word to Kaz. Finally she chose to speak, “Shaman. I am sorry I was difficult for you. You were nothing but selfless, taking care of me when I was sure to die otherwise. My name is Brinnea Velmon. You don’t have to remember me, but I will never forget you.” She closed her eyes, as if the effort of the announcement took all the strength from her. Kaz was speechless.

The human voices were drawing rapidly closer. He did not fear a fight, but he thought it best not to soil his hands so soon after the girl had displayed her gratitude. He tucked her up against a tree, lingering a moment before he left her. “Kazarak be my name, Brinnea Velmon,” he said reluctantly. “I will not forget ya.” He shifted into a ghost wolf and ran back to his borrowed kodo. Along the way, he couldn’t stop thinking about whether or not she had heard his name.
"I am the Night!" -Brinnea, Rikthered, Cynthya, Orgog, Kazarak.....

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