Betrayal and Destruction
Ceylin knew her lover was up to something. The entirety of the Twilight's Hammer Clan was in high spirits these days but Maz'Actaz was over the top, yet unwilling to explain why, this made her uneasy.
She woke up alone that morning, got dressed and made her way from their sleeping quarters down to the living space. He was not in the cave, she would have guessed he had gone for a ride since the temperature was not so bad in the morning but "The Twilightning" was still there, perhaps he had summoned his students for some hellosh trial or simply gone for a walk.
The hours passed, she had been busying herself, but now she was worried. She walked around the camp, asking in vain if anyone had seen him, it wasn't until she met one his students who claimed he had seen him by the oasis this morning, he had disappeared quickly though.
Ceylin rushed back to their cave, certain that Maz had used the Geoscepter to travel across the groundwater systems of Azeroth, something he would not do out of dire need.
She went straight to his study in hope to find clues about where on Azeroth he had gone. She searched for a long time until she found a single letter that seemed out of place, it bore the seal of Atal'Loa.
You may strike on the day this letter arrives. The Master and most of his Atal'ai are in Kalimdor assisting the Darkspear Tribe rebuilding our island homes. The city lies in a hidden valley in east Stranglethorn, the map included will guide you.
Remember our deal, only strike down Chaa's foul wife, no other casualties or destruction.
Signed; Ynji Toto'wo.
Ceylin frowned, yet another traitor within her old "Tribe"? She hurried to her own quarters, without asking herself why Atal'Loa's quartermaster in Orgrimmar hated Vazja enough to want her dead. She did not care, she was no longer a part of Atal'Loa.
The letter seemed like the last of a series of letters, perhaps Ynji and Maz'Actaz had been writing for months without her knowledge and Maz had forgotten to destroy that one in his excitement, the map that was to be included was gone though, he most likely took it with him.
She was now in proper battle robes and prepared to teleport to Stranglethorn Vale, she was sure of two things, if Ynji's treachery was true then Maz would not be able to control himself and wreak utter chaos and destruction upon the hidden city killing many trolls who certainly did not deserve to die.
The other one was the possibility of this being a well constructed trap. It was hard to believe that Bamboo'Chaa would risk giving away the location of his seat of power to his most hated enemy like that but perhaps the Shadow Hunter had grown tired of Maz outwitting him and would be ready to take such risks in order to add his head to his collection.
She took a deep breath, focused on the dark jungles of Stranglethorn and suddenly she was there, at the entrance to the hidden valley that sheltered the city that had been her home many months ago.
She ran down the path, past the city gates, hoping she had made it there before Maz. For a moment it looked like she had made it, the city seemed to be asleep but then the earth began to shake, not in a powerful shock like it had been in the last few days, but in a building, melodic rumble.
She looked up to see the shadow of her beloved madman, he had placed himself upon a pillar overlooking the area. She called out to him but he was too far away to see or hear her, he shook the geoscepter and forced the earth to lash out in pain, a massive quake shook the ground and a loud rumble could be heard. Ceylin turned around and saw he had brought down the massive temple in the city's center, smoke and rubble were all that was left of it now.
Maz'Actaz swung his terrible weapon again, they seemed to be as one. Now fire spread from hut to hut, he cackled at the cries of terror and death, it was music to his ears.
Innocents were dying, Ceylin knew she had to stop him but was unsure how to do so, without him damning her a traitor to their clan and his heart.
Now the waterlevels began to rise, she had never seen him dare to inflict such massive damage with his ancient weapon, then she remembered his fear towards it!
She snuck closer and using the geomantic skills she had learned from him she began to wiggle the earth around his pillar and she also sent a fireball to a hut she knew to be simply a storage.
Maz was forced to drop to his knees to not fall down, he stopped his attack and stared at the staff in his hands and muttered to himself; "No! I cannot lose control of it! The new casing might be over heating it's heart! I better not risk it ... Enough has been done here anyway." Then he made his way down to the water for a quick escape.
Ceylin had overheard him and was pleased with herself, he was right though, enough had been done, the city had burned and the still rising water washed away it's ashes, many were dead. Ynji had been right about the bulk of the troll forces being away, but those were soldiers. Most of the dead were women and whelps. Perhaps Bamboo'Chaa's wife and offspring among them and if so then he would certainly never rest in his hunt for her mate. This made her angry. Maz was nowhere to be seen, she would have her talk with him once back in Silithus.
Few Days later:
Elder Yaktarr Foulmouth, veteran of the great wars and ambassador of Orgrimmar was seated at his favorite spot in the Razorhill inn, his mug kept only half full due to the quakes, there was no reason to spill good ale. The inn's door swung open, and another elder entered, but this one was a troll, dressed in dark robes made out of fine silk. He knew that troll, Jozuua, a priest within his tribe and a servant to the troll-warlock Bamboo'Chaa, he had met him once in the past when hoping to be able to arrange a meeting with his leader in their settlement in Stranglethorn but the elder troll had not been helpful.
Yakatarr suspected something had happened in order for such a troll to enter a orc tavern.
"Drink, a strong one", demanded the troll, once he had his drink he noticed Yakatarr beckoning him over. Jozuua strode across the floor to meet him.
"Ambassador", he said dryly while bowing his head.
"You sound shaken, troll, and not just by the quakes, tell me why", said the orc.
"I shall do so, perhaps you can do me the favour and bring the news to Grommash Hold", replied the troll, sniffing his drink.
Yakatarr nodded and asked him to go on.
"A few days ago I and the master learned that tragedy had struck in the holy land, our settlement was torn asunder and most of those who had not followed the master to Kalimdor were killed."
"The local tribes attacked?" asked Yakatarr, raising a brow.
"No, we were well hidden, this was the wrath of the Loa they said ... The master rushed off to investigate, leaving me in charge, but now he is lost too."
Jozuua took a large sip of his drink.
"I guess it's not the burden of leadership that troubles you ..." said Yakatarr.
"You're right ambassador, it does not ..." Jozuua paused to take another large sip.
"But this morning I found one of our own, our local quartermaster, Ynji Toto'wo, dead in his home. He had hanged himself, leaving a letter claiming he was sorry for the pain he had caused us and that he would rush to the spirit world to be damned by the keeper of the dead."
"You think he had something to do with the disaster?" asked Yakatarr, stroking his beard.
"I don't know, he was a youth, cursed with terrible eyesight, very devoted to the master, who in his kindness had given him a useful role within Atal'Loa instead of viewing him as a useless whelp."
"Sounds like you got mystery on your hands."
"Exacly, orc, and I wish to get to the bottom of it. But I fear I cannot do so while leading our warriors, so I have dismissed them from service, encouraged them to aid our allies, the Horde."
"As an ambassador of the orcs I am pleased to hear that. Allow me to offer you my help in return. We shall find your chieftain and solve this crisis", said Yakatarr, offering the troll a handshake.
Jozuua was surprised by the alien gesture but he understood.
"All help is welcome now, this be a surprise since Atal'Loa not been so keen on the orcish rule in the past."
"That is the past and we orcs know a thing about putting the past behind us, you trolls should learn it too", grinned Yakatarr.
"Maybe we should, Mon, maybe we should ..."
For Nihli it all had started much earlier. Month, two... how long had the nightmares went on? Fire, more fire, destruction death, running trolls, grounds themselves breaking... waters flooding over everything. Even that this felt more powerful, more true, it could not be that way. She was feeling her power slipping, her reality trembling. This was not real. It made absolutely no sense. It could not be that way.
Nihli decided that she would be way better off outside the Vale. She didn't want to lose her mind in the presense of people who thought of her as their oracle. Oracles should know what's real and what's dream and Nihli was pretty sure she had got them mixed up now. After deciding Nihli felt she ought to tell Winkuen. He had promised to be with her after all and protect her until she'd be reunited with the father of her child. She told Winkuen about her decision and her reasonings. He didn't quite agree with her choise, especially regarding her insanity, but wanted to follow her despite her telling him the choice would be his. He could have stayed too.
The nightmares wouldn't let Nihli to be even in the safe haven of Thunder Bluff. It was not long ago Nihli woke up in middle of the night in very solid realisation that one of them was true. She was not far from giving birth right there and then. Her mind quickly told her it's just her insanity reaching further upon her. It allowed her to survive the mental blow.
But sadly it was not over. Nihli kept feeling strangely upset and she had to travel away for a while. Her well meaning tauren friend couldn't just understand and Nihli didn't even want to bother her with this wierd thing. She took the next zeppelin to Durotar in hope that the familiar environment and friends in Sen'jin would make her feel better. When she was going there she felt led, and oracles should take notice in to things like that. So instead of turning towards Sen'jin, she went to the Valley of Trials and met Zothzala and Andasu in there. She started to talk to them about what had happened, but they didn't know. It was very embarrassing. She felt more insane than ever. Zothzala promised to go see the situation so she could finally be at peace about it. Nihli returned to Thunder Bluff, somehow feeling restless, but unable to place it with all the stupid visions she was seeing.
Later, Nihli noticed there was reason to say some nasty words pretty much aloud and then sing legends.
After meeting Nihli in the Valley of Trials, Zothzala quickly departed for Stranglethorn Vale to see if her vision was true, promising to send her a blank white paper if her vision was true, then a more darker one if it was not true.
As he arrived in the Jungle vale of Stranglethorn, he prepared himself for a trip to the city of Atal Loa. After a decent time of walking and sneaking through the jungle, he finally arrived at the city. Before him stood a ruined city, once proud and thrilled with life. Now, it was nothing more than a graveyard for innocent trolls. Huts and buildings were burnt, tremendously large cracks had split the earth and the whole area was flooded.
Zothzala did only wish that his eyes was lying to him, yet, as he approched the ruined city with a closer look, it became more and more real to him. But what could cause such a massive damage? Could this possibly what all the tremors have been about? He did not know for sure, but what he knew was that this information would have to get to Nihli and the other leaders of the Horde. As he prepared himself to return to Grom'gol and take the first Zeppelin back to Durotar, the shadow of the night had already fallen.
The jungle was more threatening than ever before, hearing faint noises of movement and of other animals far into the distance, Zothzala approched every tree and and bush with swift movement, hiding for a few short moments before sneaking up against the next tree or bush. He peered around himself with shifty eyes, trying to hold his breath everytime he was hiding in attempt to make himself more hidden.
After a long time in the jungle at night, struggling to remain stealthed and still make a moving progress, he eventually arrived at some old ruins which somewhat seemed familiar. He had seen this place before. Breaking out of his sneaking approach, he walked around by the old ruins, trying to figure where he was and where he had seen it before. But, before he could find out, a light in the distance appeared and came closer. It looked like a fire. Instantly, he tried to find a good hiding spot yet without luck. He was forced to run back the way he came from but only to find a light looking the same way.
As he looked for alteraltive routes to get away, more lights appeared and came closer and closer for every passing moment. When they came close enough, he found himself surrounded by the lights which appeared to be tourches. Snarling to himself he drew his shield and axe fiercely, going into a defensive position. Then the lights stopped, maybe ten meter away from him. Peering around him, nervously, a shade approched him. When close enough, it lit a tourch and the appearance of a troll came to view. A large, evil grin covered it's face along with orange and white markings. His hair coloured in blood. It was no other than a Bloodscalp troll.
"Did ya miss us... Zothzala?" said the troll with a proud voice. "Wat be bringin' ya back ta dese lands, traitor?"
Zothzala lowered his eyebrows, making a angry appearance on his face. He studied the Bloodscalp troll's face even futher and then finally recognized it. It was the one Witch Doctor that helped him flee from the tribe in the first place. Shocked, he blinked his eyes which and stared at the troll who once used to be his friend. The witch doctor only smiling at him with his evil grin with the tourch in hand and a large voodoo staff in the other. The other tourches had slowly closed around him while he was focusing his attention on his old friend.
Not knowing what to respond on his question, he grinded his teeth together, tightening his grip around his axe and drew his shield closer to him. Then the Witch Doctor spoke again.
"Join us now, Zothzala, an' all be forgiven."
Zothzala saw the lies shining in his eyes like the moon shines upon the water. He took one last look around all the trolls which surrounded him, then he looked back at the Witch Doctor. His heartbeat was raising. Sweat started to shine upon his forehead in the light of the tourches. He took a deep breath and prepared for his final words.
"I'll be waitin' on da odda side, mon..." said Zothzala with a cold stare, knowing his fate was sealed and was not to return from this battle.
As the sound of silence echoes in the jungle, Zothzala raises his hatchet and chops off the Witch Doctor's arm in a single blow and then bashes his spike attached on his shield right into the Witch Doctor's throat. All the trolls surrounding him charges towards him, a few with a tourch and axe in hand, others with bigger weapons. Zothzala never returned, nor did any form of letter ever reach Nihli, safe in the mighty Tauren city of Thunder Bluff in Kalimdor.
What truly happened that night, nobody can tell for sure, but the face of Zothzala was never to be seen again, nor was his voice ever to be heard from again.
This vision was true. She knew it as powerfully than she knew she was not insane. Even that the insanity would have been preferable to all this. Nasty words escaping from her lips in languages of Orcish and Zandali and even old Viletusk dialect wouldn't fix the damage.
To calm her mind, and because no one else would, since they didn't see what she saw, she sang the legends and burial songs.
The spirit of great warrior, on his journey to underworld shall have the glory of the last battle All his slain enemies march before him, but he shall not be afraid Powerless before him, like in their life they fall with the blow of his axe, spikes of his mighty shield His heart is measured in the heat of the battle. It brings glory and honour to him and shame to his enemies, for it is brave and true The gods bring him riches and forever he be revered Take this song with you and go brave Never to return, but always be remembered.
OOC Notes Edit
This RP story marks a major change within <Atal Loa> In-character and out of character.
AL 's efforts in Stranglethorn Vale have been cut short, forcing the guild to retreat to Kalimdor until the missing monarch returns, Those most battle able joined the Horde and others found a home on the re-captured Echo Isles.
The guild has officially disbanded.
The reason why are my ongoing RL matters that suck away my play time, I am simply unable to be a guild master at the moment, I hope that will change one day.
This was written due to a OOC need, it's always terrible to see guilds disband due to OOC reasons so I made a IC one with the help of my love, Jenaiya.
Many of our core members have already found themselves in new guilds, This story gives them a reason for the change (without branding them as traitors.)
So yeah. Bamboo'Chaa and AL have been put into the freezer, I will focus on my other characters who I've ignored a whole lot though the years due to Bamboo.
Thank you and I hope you enjoyed the story.