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Journey To The South - A Pandaren's Tale

Started by Grekthar, January 20, 2018, 08:44:37 PM

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Grekthar

It did not feel right leaving Rhonya or Kogra of the Red Blades behind in the conditions they were in, physical for the latter, nor mentally for the former but I had to see what had happened in the south… to see where that sword from the heavens had landed and struck. My Cloud Serpent Ruby and I left the Crossroads, following the light of the strange red star that hung in the sky, using it as our guiding compass. It had appeared in the daylight sky the morning after that… that figure had disappeared and the dust had settled.

We flew through the night over the Barrens, both Northern and Southern. The Southern looked like it had fared little better than the Northern half. A tower here and there in need of repair, some of the trees had been knocked over… but all in all it looked the same as ever it had.
We continued on, our path taking us over the plains of Mulgore for a time. Surprisingly, this land looked as peaceful as ever. Perhaps the high mountains surrounding the plains had safeguarded it from the worst of what had transpired? A glance over towards Thunder Bluff showed to the Pandaren’s eye that it looked to be intact as well. Testimony to the Tauren’s architectural capabilities.

By the time we ventured out of the air of Mulgore, the dawning sun was starting to rise, and yet the red star persisted in shining in the sky. Ruby grumbled at me as we reached the thick canopies of Feralas, and I was about to agree to let her set down so she could have some rest when something struck me as very odd on the horizon. I looked over towards it once more when I realised what was wrong with what I was seeing.

There was a mountain where there should not have been. I blinked my eye a few times to make sure that it was not simply lack of sleep playing tricks on me, but there it was. A tremendous mountain in the distance… except it was not a mountain. Not one in the natural sense at the least. “It… it cannot be…” I whispered, unable to raise my voice any higher as a dread I had not felt in a long time, if ever to this degree, began to fill me. Ruby growled at me again before she took us beneath the canopy, blocking the not-mountain from my sight.

With the not-mountain gone from view, I found my breathing evening out once more. I had not even realised what was going on with my body until that moment… Sweat had formed on my brow, and it was not from the heat of the Feralas jungle. “My thanks old friend.” I said, the golden Cloud Serpent just harrumphing at me in turn before she dropped me off of her back, and took off into the jungles depths. I blinked before chuckling. “Fine, fine. I’ll walk from here on if it'll make you happy.” I yelled after her, a roar my only reply from her, followed by the squeal of one of the local wildlife. “Well at least she’s got herself something to eat.” I mused as I began to walk.

I decided to continue going straight south, or as close to that as I could given the terrain. I realised that my destination was the desert lands of Silithus, guessing purely on the fact that all the trees in this region appeared to still be standing. There were two routes I could take. Either through the Thousand Needles, and then Tanaris, and thus into Un’goro Crater which would be the long way around… or I could try to cut over the mountains that divided Feralas from Silithus.

I chose to take the shorter route. There had to be a way through the mountains… I doubted that Ruby was keen to let me travel through the sky if it meant that I was going to have another panic attack from the sight of that terror in the distance, so I had to find a way on foot.

I feel like I'm the only sane one in this Tribe. And I have four elementals living in my skull!

Grekthar

It took me several days, but I finally managed to find a route through the mountains of Feralas. I enjoy the jungle as much as the next Pandaren, but the local ogres and elven ghosts were... less accommodating than they usually are in this part of the world. The spirits were riled up, the recent event in the desert beyond forcing them to relive the worlds first shattering with a startling clarity... Oh the stories they could tell if they weren't so intent on trying to make anyone who crosses their path join them in death. And the ogres... it seems that Cho'gall's legacy from the time of the Cataclysm is still present amongst some of their number. That or they've taken it up again believing that now is the end times they seek. My old bones just pray that they are not proven right.

As I climbed the mountains, the canopy of trees began to fade away which in turn revealed once more the mountain that was not a mountain. Ruby was by my side as I climbed, nudging me now and then when I felt my breath catching in my chest, my paws shaking and threatening to send me toppling down to the bottom of the mountain. A part of me knew that I had to achieve this unspoken goal, that I had to see this for myself, under my own power... but a part of me truly wished that my Cloud Serpent friend would just give me a lift to the top of this mountain! Once I reached the top, I took a well earned seat, gazing out across what was once the desert of Silithus.

The sight before me... I had no words to describe it other than utter destruction. The titanic sword was buried deep into the desert, and yet it still ranged into the sky as tall as the tree I had seen atop Mount Hyjal, far to the north of here. As my eye followed the blade upwards towards its hilt, I could maybe have been mistaken given the overwhelming feeling of seeing this thing before me... but I could almost swear that the blade was... well, moving. Or at the least, there was something flowing along it. I dared not get a closer look at the sword to confirm or deny this... but the red energy set in the hilt of the blade... That I could see clearly. It writhed and seeped out, to my mind not too dissimilar to the way that the Sha of Pandaria's energies did when they infected the land.

I shuddered at the connotations of such an analogy, and turned my gaze back to the former desert that had been Silithus. Something caught my attention that thankfully could occupy my mind for a while. It was groups of goblins and their machines, surrounding the point of the swords impact with our world. What they were doing I could not quite tell... With some dread I realised that I would need to descend the mountain for a closer look. I glanced over at Ruby who rolled her serpentine eyes at me before scooping me up onto her back, and we slowly descended the mountain so as to not attract any undue attention.

As we drew closer to the ground, I could just make out some strange rock formations here and there. Rock formations that were the focus of the goblins efforts it would seem. Ruby let me off at the base of the mountain, and with a curt nod from myself she rose into the sky, taking up position in the mountains. A Cloud Serpent is a little conspicuous out here in this part of the world after all. I began to make my way closer towards the nearest formation that the goblins had yet to begin their digging at, keeping my eye open for any signs of trouble. It would appear that I did not need to wait for long however, as from out of the shadows sprang forth a human garbed in black leather, armed with a pair of daggers.

"Who are you with Pandaren?" they asked, judging from their pitch I presume they were a female. "I am but a simple wanderer Miss." I said, raising my hands to show that I was unarmed and had no intention of starting a fight. I even offered an apologetic smile, but apparently my answer had been the wrong one as she charged towards me, her blades clearly seeking to end my life. I moved forwards, stepping inside of her guard and bringing my arm up to smack into her own before she could adjust herself. She brought her knee up, and I noticed from a glint of light that there were smaller blades attached to her kneepads. I brought down my other paw to bat it aside, earning a small scratch for my efforts but the worst of the damage had been avoided... or so I had thought.

Almost immediately I felt a sense of dizziness begin to wash over my body. "Now you die Horde filth." spat the human as she lunged towards me, thinking that being dizzy and nauseous would be enough to secure her victory. But alas, she had never faced a Pandaren familiar with the Ox Style of combat before. I worked with the nausea, and blocked her strike before slamming a paw straight into her forehead, rendering her unconscious. I shook my head to clear it a little, but the poison that her blades had been coated with was not that willing to disobey their mistress' last wishes just yet. But even though she had tried to kill me, I could not leave her like this, so I removed a roll of cloth from my pack and covered her prone body with it. I then covered the cloth with what I could of the surrounding dirt, to hide her from any wandering eyes.

I rubbed my head, sweat forming once more. "I'd better... move quickly..." I muttered, stepping towards the golden blue rock formation. As I stumbled towards it, my paw caught hold of it to try and use for balance... and almost immediately I felt a thrum of power and energy fill my like nothing before. My eye widened at the sensation, before looking out once more at the ground around me with the goblins at work. New formations were forming all the time around the sword... And if each of them held the same properties as this one... I broke off a small shard in my paw, and began to quickly or as quickly as I could in my poisoned state, make my way back towards Ruby's location.

I did not get far however as I felt darkness overtake me, and the last thing I was aware of was my Cloud Serpent swooping down and grabbing me in her claws... I could only hope that she could take me somewhere safe...

I feel like I'm the only sane one in this Tribe. And I have four elementals living in my skull!

Dekuul