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AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA... A.
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Remember to shout your lungs out every once in a while!!
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<dances>
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This is me testing the shoutbox, because shouting is a great stress relief and it would be a shame if it doesn't work.
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THE SHOUTBOX. Omg. This was like proto-Discord.
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*Grabs a camera to record what happens*
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*prods shoutbox*
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<dances>
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Swedish Pagans?
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Reflections

Started by Sadok, August 06, 2015, 03:53:53 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

Sadok



It was morning, and the familiar sounds of the jungle were all around them â€" insects buzzing around his head, exotic birdsong, and the sound of flowing water from the nearby stream.

Sadok lay there with Rhonya curled up on her side, her eyes closed. She seemed restful, as if she were just thankful to have something to hold, someone to put her arms around and sleep. For his own part, Sadok held her close, his hand lightly smoothing her bare side as he buried his nose in her hair and sniffed up the familiar scent of someone he loved and trusted.

Sadok still wasn’t quite sure what to make of this fresh development. He had developed a hypothesis that his Vision Quest had gone catastrophically wrong somewhere along the way, and with his mind and spirit untethered from reality, he had slipped from nightmarish tableau to another as he fumbled hopelessly for a way back â€" stuck in the hall of mirrors of his psyche, his worries and fears and hopes and dreams endlessly refracting back and forth.

There had been some common ground in these visions. All took place in the jungle, which led Sadok to believe his body was still in Stranglethorn; and nearly all took place beside the same winding river that now trickled so pleasingly near the couple. That was harder to psychoanalyse. Was it a flowing river of illusion, running with confusion? Never gone, flowing on and on...




He had seen Vashnarz in the prime of her youth, full of the innocence that defined her early days with the tribe â€" but as faint recriminating whispers spilled into the air from far away, her form twisted and writhed into a vengeful half-wolf beast whose claws swung at Sadok. Fleeing her, he ran as hard as his feet would carry, but quickly started to slip and stumble over the jungle overgrowth. As the beast pounced upon him, and all faded to black, only two words called to him endlessly: “YER NEW, YER NEW, YER NEW, YER NEW.”

It was shortly thereafter when he came across the towering form of Rargnasha, a thirty feet tall colossus of flesh and plate-armor, bloated with his own self-importance. He was scooped up into the giant Bloodmark’s hands with the greatest of ease, and could feel the life being choked out of him as indistinct but patronising words cascaded like glorious rainbows tumbling from the sky. Speeches, battle-cries â€" all things focused relentlessly on the honour of battle and following the commander’s orders.

And then there were other strange visions â€" innumerable iterations of the tribe in retreat due to his own shortgoings, the Horde’s townsteads wreathed in flame, a tribe where Siyahgosh had become an authoritarian tyrant, commanding all to wear cat-masks upon their heads. He had endured Keishara and Vezara’s advances, had survived a hateful Rhonya’s grief-filled rantings, even fought off his own children twisted with dark magicks. Yet his mental, physical and spiritual energies were eroded by the endless nightmares, and soon he sought refuge in a strange cave in the jungle â€" a cool, dark cul-de-sac.

In the entrance of the cave, a figure ancient beyond reckoning slowly went about his sacred practise, chanting lowly. “With their blood I dyed the Frostwind peak red as red wool; while the ravines and the torrents of the mountain swallowed the rest of them.” He performed his invocations to the Spirit of Earth, reaching his hand into a stemmed cup with strange incased herringbone decorations, and scattered a rich golden dust into the air. Sadok, the unseen observer, thought it smelled of sandalwood.

Catching his breath, he simply watched the ancient shaman tend to his duties. He soon began to fashion strange disembodied limbs from terracotta â€" a left leg, an arm severed at the elbow, half of a torso, even a crude wolf figurine. As the shaman cast the terracotta to the flames and stood upright in military stance, his fist clenched to his forehead, Sadok began to understand what he was seeing. The ancient orc had assumed an attitude of prayer, burning anatomical votives, as though it would mend or safeguard whatever the clay pieces represented.

He walked deeper into the cave, finding a set of tall cedar gates with tree-trunks as door-posts, and grotesque alabaster statues with the heads of wolves standing guard to ward away evil spirits. Sadok contemplated whether he should go forward â€" he was not evil, but he was absolutely a spirit not where he was supposed to be. Frowning stubbornly, he pushed hard against the gates, with their embossed frescoes of wolves and riders hunting.

Gaining entrance after much exertion and finally pushing one gate aside, he found himself in a long narrow corridor, dimly-lit by torches. Each side of the corridor was decorated with an elaborate frieze of various scenes of warfare â€" prisoners or tribute-bearers brought before a great orcish warlord; the warlord and his companions hunting wild animals; the warlord leading his embattled riders to a great victory against overwhelming odds.

As he strode along the corridor, walking into the darkness, he heard yet more voices calling to him across the stale air â€" a booming, proud boast from another ancient voice.

“I AM IMPORTANT, I AM MIGHTY. THE VALIANT ORC WHO HAS NO EQUAL AMONG THE WARLORDS OF THE FOUR QUARTERS OF THE WORLD.

THE WONDERFUL SHEPHERD WHO IS NOT AFRAID OF BATTLE. THE GREAT FLOOD WHICH NONE CAN OPPOSE. THE SHAMAN-KING WHO MAKES THOSE WHO ARE NOT SUBJECT TO HIM SUBMISSIVE. THE GREAT WARRIOR WHO TREADS ON THE NECK OF HIS ENEMIES, TRAMPLES DOWN ALL FOES, AND SHATTERS THEIR ARMIES.

THE SHAMAN-KING WHO RULES WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE GREAT SPIRIT-GODS, WHO COMMANDS SUPPORT FROM ALL LANDS, WHOSE HAND HAS CONQUERED CREATURES OF THE ICY MOUNTAINS AND THE SEAS, FASHIONED THEM IN WHITE LIMESTONE AND ALABASTER, AND PLACED THEM AT MY GATES. I HAVE ADORNED MY SETTLEMENT OF KRAAG’GOL, AND MADE IT GLORIOUS.

I AM MRUTHGOR, THE CELEBRATED SHAMAN-KING.”

…And by the time the boast had finished, Sadok believed he may have walked the same corridor for days. He continued to trudge onwards, knowing that it was the only way forward, until the shadows started to draw closer and he was enveloped entirely in darkness. He felt cold and constricted, as if the walls were now closing in about him in the pitch black. He let out a muffled cry of panic, as he began to realise there was no escape.




And so against all odds, Sadok found himself in the jungle overgrowth once more. His eyes were glazed, with a tired and far-away look in them, his clothing ragged and torn to shreds, his skin cut and irritated from various stumbles and falls. Collapsed face-first on the ground, he felt exhausted and defeated… but the rancorous hunger in his belly and the fatigue in each of his spread-eagled limbs seemed to suggest it was over. He had finally found his way out of the endless nightmares.

As he lay there in the humid heat, listening to the birds and apes chatter, he started to feel flies or hands or -something- crawling over him. He swatted away the invisible insects and sat up, peering around. It looked the same as Stranglethorn ever did andâ€" he stopped in his tracks as his ears picked up a familiar voice in the distance. It was Kyrazha. She’d come for him.

He started to crawl towards the sound of the sweet, soothing voice, near the river. He was not disappointed when he saw Kyrazha sat upon the sandy bank â€" naked, heavily pregnant and contentedly washing herself, droplets of water glistening in the tropical sun. He tried to call out to her as he slowly slumped towards his mate, but his throat was dry and sore, and he only let out a choking half-sob. Finally, after much spluttering, he was able to speak. “Y’came fer me… thank y’.”

Then everything started to go wrong. She couldn’t recognise him, and as he insisted he was Sadok, she started to grow increasingly alarmed and distressed. “Ya can’t be Sadok. ‘E died, mont’s ago. Let’, said ‘e woul’ return, an’ never did. Be ya a g’ost, come ta ‘aunt me even more?”

No. Sadok couldn’t be dead, he said. He was out of the Vision Quest now, he was beaten, sore, hungry â€" but alive. Kyrazha would not budge. “I foun’ ya… broken, starved an’ dead, ‘alf eaten by da wildlife.” She grew angrier, accused him of playing a prank on her or simply lying â€" and nothing he could say would convince her otherwise. Soon the ruckus attracted more attention, as Sukeenah’s veiny green eyes emerged from the jungle to eye Sadok deviously.

Sukeenah smirked snidely at Sadok as she moved to comfort Kyrazha, stroking her hair and putting an arm around her waist. “Sssh… it’s all alright. He’s not real. You’re safe here, with me.” The sight of Kyrazha and her unborn cub caught in Shadra’s proverbial web was enough to enrage Sadok, but Sukeenah was undeterred â€" accusing him of abandoning Kyrazha, and reminding them of their own drunken tryst. “We had quite the fun time, I enjoyed it…”

She invited Sadok to look at his reflection in the river as confirmation of his death, and as Sadok begrudgingly obliged her, he saw his own corpse looking back at him â€" ripped and torn skin, milky-white eyes, rotting flesh. The sight was enough to send Sadok reeling into a murderous rage, as he turned to lunge at Sukeenah, hoping to bring down fist upon fist on those smug, blueskinned features. He may be dead, but he was taking the Spider-Witch with him.

But all turned dark again as he pounced into nothingness, Sukeenah’s echoing laughter sounded in his ears â€" “Mine, little orc. You were mine, your mind is mine, I took what I needed from you… and now I’ll take your mate as well, and your child. Itsy bitsy spider, spun her web so carefully!"

Awakening from the phantasmagoria again in the same old jungle, Sadok despaired. The Vision Quest would never end â€" dead, alive, or whatever he was. There was no escape, no way to win the game.




And so when yet another familiar voice bid him to come to the river-bank, he simply accepted his fate and walked towards it. He found Rhonya again, but unlike the prior time, she actually seemed happy to see him. “Sadok! There you are, love. I was getting worried already you wouldn’t come back.” Hurrying over to him, she gave him a big hug and gave him a kiss on the mouth as though it were the most normal thing in the world.

It was only then, as her lips found his, that Sadok realised that when you cannot win the game, the only winning move is not to play. And so instead of being shocked and trying to flee the vision, he kissed Rhonya back. He kissed her firmly and deeply, holding onto her as if she were a lifeboat in the middle of a stormy sea. He had always loved her, in spite of everything. She had never loved him the same way. And even if it was a vision, even if it was a lie â€" he would take this over any of the other hundred nightmares.

Later, as they lay sweaty and naked upon the riverbank, their panting breaths mingled, he looked down upon her. There was a shy but satisfied smile on her lips, her cheeks were flushed with exercise, and her loving whispers were hushed and husky. If this was a vision, it felt utterly real â€" even if this wasn’t the Rhonya he had known, she seemed indistinguishable to him.

Of course, she hadn’t believed his claims that she was an illusion on his Vision Quest â€" but then, when she explained carefully and affectionately to him that he had simply hurt his head again, he wondered whether that wasn’t a more reasonable explanation. Maybe this -was- reality, and everything else he had known was a dream. Maybe he was dead, as Kyrazha and Sukeenah had insisted, and this was his afterlife.

He knew one thing, however â€" he wasn’t going to stray from Rhonya’s side anytime soon. As she stroked his head gently, Sadok realised just how tired he was after all of the nightmares and visions he had experienced. He needed to rest if he was ever to regain enough spiritual willpower to return to his body, and Rhonya could provide that for him. She seemed so happy and content to be around him, and in earnest, he felt a kind of safety and security in her arms that not even Kyrazha had provided.

They made a good couple, Sadok reflected upon himself that morning as Rhonya lay there, her chest rising and falling softly as she slept. His bonhomie soothes her nervousness and guilt, and her infinite kindness and understanding made him feel better about himself. She liked to talk problems out, unlike Kyrazha, and he didn’t feel the same constant paranoia that she would be attracted away to a better male like a firefly to light.

Things would be perfect with Rhonya… if it were real. The Rhonya he had known was so careful and proud that she would never act upon feelings towards a mated orc, even if she had ever had them towards him. And as the Rhonya beside him had explained, they had only found one another after Kyrazha’s untimely death. He didn’t want Kyrazha to die so they could be together â€" he wasn’t even sure if he would leave Kyrazha if Rhonya declared feelings towards him.

Sadok inhaled deeply, then gave his Rhonya a soft kiss on her cheek. She murmured unconsciously, a slow smile curling around her lips. The sight filled Sadok with a strange melancholy â€" maybe dreams were sweeter than reality, but they cannot last forever.

((OOC announcement: I've stopped playing WoW for an indefinite period of time. I may be back one day, but until then, Sadok is stuck in an endless Vision Quest.))

Kozgugore

That's quite the (temporary) goodbye! Very appealing story, but he'd better make it out one day, damnit! Take all the time you need out there though. For what it's worth, we'll hold the fort. All the best until then though!
Kozgugore Feraleye - Chieftain of the Red Blade

Gashuk

Awesome story! Kind of feel bad for Kyra...But none the less, epic.

Hope to see you back soon!

-Gashuk, Son of Garrak-
"When the ashes fall and the green winds blow, the lone wolf dies, but the pack survives."

Umaua

Hope you'll be back one day!
And they call me insane? I am the most sane person around!


Wornag (Kronnor)

Hope you will return. You were the first orc Kronnor has talked to from the tribe. You were the one to accept him into the tribe, so it would be a shame to become just a memory.
Also, nice story.

Rhonya

Poor Sadok all messed up and stuck. <3
Take the time you need and you know we'll be here when you should wish to return!
"For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack."

Rashka

Who's gonna throw (bad) jokes at Rashka now?! D:
Rashka Facebreaker - Battlesworn of the Nag'Ogar

Grogok