Brinnea’s better judgement told her what she was about to do was foolish, rash, and could very easily get her killed. She dismissed these thoughts. Now was the time for some decisive action. She was tired of people taking advantage of her family. She steeled her mind as her cloud serpent descended into the bay at the southern tip of Stranglethorn. After landing, she found the shadiest corner of the city and approached a group of goblins in the middle of some sort of deal.
The goblins turned, abruptly cutting off their conversation as Brinnea approached. One of them, a woman with thick green hair, glared at her and said, “This is a private meeting, pal! Why don’t you scurry off and bother someone else?” Brin rested a hand on one of her sabers casually and replied, “I’d like to speak with Ephraim Duhfek.”
The dealers’ eyes were all fixed on her now. Some of them started chuckling. The woman in front did not seem amused in the slightest. “You have the nerve to demand a meeting, after all you did…and you don’t even send a note first? That’s just disrespectful.” She snapped her fingers and a pair of hobgoblin bruisers stepped out from a nearby hut. The goblin pointed at the death knight and scooted out of the way as they hobbled toward her. Brin didn’t bother drawing her weapons. The brutes lazily swung their wooden clubs at her, and she caught them one in each hand. Then she tugged on them, disarming the hulking simpletons in a swift motion. She delivered a pair of strikes to each of their heads, and they went down with a loud grunt. The goblins were already scurrying away, but Brinnea death-gripped the mouthy green-haired one back to the alley.
“P-p-please,” the goblin said, trembling, “Don’t kill me like you did Remy! I’ll t-t-take you to Ephraim, I swear!” Brin flashed a false smile. “Lead the way, preferably through the backways, we wouldn’t want a misunderstanding with the city guards after all.” The pair of them made their way through the allies to a small fish butchery on the edge of the water. The back entrance was blocked by four guards, two goblin bruisers and a pair of hobgoblins. The goblin escorting Brin got some strange looks from the guards, but she cleared up the confusion, saying, “New muscle, boys. Nothing to worry about!” They were allowed in, but after taking a few steps, Brin took a sharp blow to the back of her head and was blinded by a linen sack. She felt her weapons get stripped off her belt and then a rough hand dragged her into another room.
After the bruisers had sufficiently bloodied Brin with their clubs, she was tossed into another room, where the sack was removed from her head. Looking around, she counted a dozen goblins, armed with knives and wooden bats fitted with rusty nails. The sound of slow clapping rang out from behind a pair of the bruisers. A familiar shrewd voice echoed throughout the small room, “This is rich! I spend months, nay, years searching for you, tracking you down, sending hit squads after you across two different planets, spending only the Light knows how much gold, and you see fit to come to me after all this time.” Ephraim Duhfek shuffled into the circle, his bruisers at his back. He made a tsk noise and shook his head at Brinnea. “You sure know how to ruin an old goblin’s fun.”
As Brin began to stand, all dozen of Duhfek’s bodyguards raised their weapons. She looked the goblin in his sharp green eyes and said, “I came to ask some questions.” The goblins stared for a moment. Duhfek let out a hysterical laugh, and the rest quickly followed suit. “Some questions?! Oh, this is richer than a frosted chocolate ca—“
A sharp crack cut the goblin off. Brinnea had sprung faster than one might have expected from a death knight in full plate armor. She grappled the nearest bruiser and snatched the weapon from his hand, then cracked him over the head with it, all in one swift motion. The two goblins on either side of her lunged, one aiming to kneecap her, the other slashing at her waist with his knife. Brin threw her newly acquired club at the knife, knocking it free from the bruiser’s hand. She swung around and parried the other goblin’s club before breaking her own across his head. As the rest of them closed in, Brin swirled around again, grabbing a surprised looking bruiser by the collar and hurling him into a gathering back of his buddies. The other half leapt on her back, dogpile her in a flurry of clubbing and stabbing. She struggled against their assault, allowing her plate armor deflected the knives. Brin called on the power of her runes and froze the air around her. The goblin’s attacks slowed, even as the others started to pile on as well. With all her strength, she shook the goblins off. She charged one, kicked him, and then moved to the next one. One by one she bruised the bruisers until they were all disarmed and unconscious. The room grew quiet. Brin faced the exit, and saw Duhfek opening it to escape. Thinking quickly, she grabbed one of the bruisers trying to limp away and tossed him at the door, forcing it to slam shut. Then she death-gripped a shocked Ephraim back to her, grabbed him by the shirt, and lifted him far off his feet.
The goblin snarled under his breath. “Are you going to send me to my brother, huh? Huh?!” Brin kept her face void of any expression and her voice calm and steady. “Only if you give me a reason to. Like I said, I have a few questions for you.”
Brin pressed the goblin up against a wall forcefully. “You have ears all over, huh? That’s what I’ve heard. So tell me, what do you know about a kidnapping in the Barrens?” The goblin snorted. “The Barrens? The entire Barrens? Lady, there’s kidnappings everywhere, especially in that shithole.”
Brin backed up a bit and slammed the goblin back into the wall. He yelped in pain at the impact. A small flicker lit up in the back of Brin’s mind. A flicker of amusement. She snuffed it out immediately and focused. “Fine then, let me be more specific. The Cup and Caravan was travelling through the Barrens last week. One of the Twilight Empire was with them, a priestess. She was taken, and I want to know who did it.”
The goblin groaned from the pain in his back. He spoke again, this time more carefully, “I don’t know nothin’ about that. You want word on the Barrens, you go to Ratchet.” Brin replied, “Fine, next question. What does the phrase, ‘Peace through annihilation’ mean to you?” The goblin looked stunned for a moment, then started laughing. Brin narrowed her eyes. “What’s the joke?”
“You- you’re friend? She’s dead! Oh, the gods do have a sense of humor after all—,“ Brin threw the goblin across the room. He rolled into the wall opposite from Brin, groaning and coughing, but still laughing lightly. The death knight picked him back up and slammed him against the new wall. The goblin continued raggedly, “That phrase…was coined by a Horde-based group…called the Grim. They don’t take prisoners…at least not for long. They only care about killing Alliance, or anyone else the Horde says is their enemy.”
Brin held the goblin up, not saying anything for a while. Finally she said, “And where can I find them?” The goblin replied, “I don’t keep tabs on them! Far as I know, they haven’t killed anyone I particularly care about.” Brin’s fists tightened. “But! But, but but, if they did take this friend of yours from the Barrens, they’ll be keeping her in Horde territory. So if you want to go in half- or fully- cocked, be my guest. No skin off my nose.”
Clamoring echoed in from the next room. More bruisers were likely on their way to find out what was taking their boss so long. Brin let Duhfek go and made for the door.
A few minutes later and she was in the air again. Her body was bruised and many of her bones were broken, but she didn’t feel any of it. She couldn’t. Whoever the Grim was, whatever it was they wanted with Skylah, Brinnea was going to make them bleed for what they had done. No one would bring harm to her family while she had the strength to defend them. Not anymore.
"I am the Night!" -Brinnea, Rikthered, Cynthya, Orgog, Kazarak.....