Horde: Chapter 13
The light blinded him when the cloth came off. He held his cuffed hands in front of his face until his vision slowly returned. He first saw a Orc who held the cloth, he wore a mask made from the head of a wolf who looked at him with a angry snarl. Next to the orc was a Devilsaur that was sniffing at the golden haired prince. When the beast started drooling the orc gave him a fast pat on the muzzle which made the devilsaur growl but otherwise backed off.
The orc turned and said something in his orcish tongue which a another voice replied to. Anduin did not see where that voice came from but he recognized it was General Torakk’s.
The orc with the wolf mask took Anduin by his shoulder and pushed him forward.” Walk.” He said in accented common.
The prince did as he was told as his vision came back. He saw he was in a glade of sorts, near a large tree with auburn leaves. He noticed Horde banners and this clan, he assumed, own banners were placed all over as well as tents, crates and even a few kodo’s, wolves and other mounts. It seemed this clan made this place their base of operations.
He saw a large orc, covered head to toe in plate armour, spar with a orc with one eye. A Houjin Pandaren was brewing something in a cauldron when they passed. She looked up, smiled and waved at the young prince with child-like glee. Anduin could not help but smile and wave back. The orc behind him grunted something in orcish, which the pandaren replied to, before he nudged the prince forward.
Several shaman, orc and troll and tauren, were meditating in a small alcove, near a bonfire. He smelled the incense which heavily radiated the air. A bit further several witch doctors were dancing as they chanted a dark, primal rhythm. When the prince saw a blood knight sparring with a tauren death knight did he realize this was not a clan at all, but a proper warband. A microcosm of the Horde in one fighting force. The orc held the prince by his shoulder and guided him to a stool and a table. Anduin sat down.” The general will speak with you shortly”.
“Thank you.” Anduin replied. “ Any chance this bounds may-“
But the orc already has turned around and left with his Devilsaur in tow.
Minutes passed as Anduin tried to place himself. The orc general told him he was in Grim Batol and it seemed he was telling the truth after all. He was in the Twilight Highlands, that much was clear from where the zeppelin had crashed and the large auburn leafed tree. That meant several Wildhammer clans were nearby who could help him if need be. He slipped away from Horde captivity before in Pandaria, he could do so again here.
Hopefully he had a opening soon. He had to find those Wildhammers so he could look for Valeera and the others. Did this Beastmaw Warband know of Rexxar, he wondered.
A cackle drew Anduin back to the present as a small imp leaped on the table.
“Hey!” the fel creature shouted.” Are you REALLY the prince of Stormwind?”
The young man raised his brow and replied honestly.” Yes.”
The imp burst out into laughter and pointed his little finger at him as he doubled over. Anduin peered to his right and saw a goblin in a purple black robe roll his eyes. Clearly this was the imp’s master.
“You saw me killing that troll earlier?!” The imp screeched.” I threw a fireball right in his FACE!”
It took every effort not to verbally insult the creature.” No, I did not.” Anduin replied.
“Ah don’t worry, you’ll see it again when we go after those True Horde again! Maybe we can throw you in to, as canon fodder.” The creature smirked with his yellowed sharp teeth.
Anduin looked up as he saw General Torakk walk up to them, with a wolf and a sabrecat by his side. His eyes furrowed behind his own wolf mask when he saw the imp. He looked to the goblin warlock. Both shared a glance and enough was said. The goblin snapped his fingers which made the Imp groan annoyed and follow his master.
The General sat down on the opposite side of the table as both his companions took their place next to him and spoke.” You are a long way from home, Prince Anduin.”
“I could say the same, General.” Anduin replied.” Last I checked this is Alliance land.”
“We do not plan on staying.” Torakk replied.” There is business that needs doing and we will leave when it’s over.”
“The True Horde?” Anduin asked.
The general nodded.” Zug zug. We made the mistake of not stopping Zaela and her men from escaping Orgrimmar after the siege and now she threatens to throw the Horde into another civil war. Once we find her we will remedy that mistake.”
“And the rumours of her child?” Anduin asked.” Will you kill it to?”
The orc shifted his weight.” What were you doing here, Prince Anduin?”
The prince told the truth since it seemed they shared the same enemy. He told him about the trip to Booty Bay, the betrayal suffered there and the flight afterward. He also mentioned his trump card.
“I was with Rexxar and his companions along with Trade Prince Gallywix.” Anduin said.
The general frowned at that.” Thread carefully, Prince Anduin. Rexxar is a Champion of the Horde and his name is not spoken lightly.”
“I speak of the truth, General Bloodrain.” Anduin replied.” Surely there must’ve been signs of his presence on the zeppelin?”
“The zeppelin that crashed and burned for hours? We can catch scent a lot faster and better than humans but there are limits.” But Anduin saw doubt form in the orc’s eyes.
Anduin pressed forward.” Have you seen other members of the Alliance. Did you catch them or…?” he left the alternative unsaid. Thankfully Torakk shook his head.
“You are the only member of the Alliance we have seen here, except for the Wildhammers.”
The prince had to risk it.” And a blood elf? A rogue, long blonde hair, red outfit?”
The general shook his head.” We know who your bodyguard is, Prince Anduin. She is not here.”
“Then…where can they be?”
“My shaman claim they have vision of people being trapped in that mountain.” Torakk motioned to Grim Batol.” Among which Rexxar. If your servants survived the crash, I assume they would be there.”
“So…why are we here? And why am I a prisoner?”
The general gave a wicked grin.” All your gallivanting in Pandaria with Lorewalker Cho and you still know nothing of history? You are my hostage, my ransom. I seek combat with your father for dishonouring us in Orgrimmar. His claims that only his mercy allows the Horde’s survival. That is a mockery that needs to be remedied.” He spat to his side as his wolf and sabrecat growled.
“You want to…attack the Alliance?” Anduin was confused.
“No, I want to fight your father. One on one. Warrior against warrior. One of my warband saw him fight once, back when he was called Lo’ghosh. I want to see for myself if that nickname is worthy of him.”
Anduin shook his head.” I can assure you there is no need for bloodshed.”
“There is every ne-“
“General!” the blood knight with auburn hair from before and the orc with the devilsaur ran up to him.” One of my kin is headed this way!” she said.” Several True Horde are giving chase! Two Protodrakes and a few wolf riders.”
“Is she hurt?!” Anduin stood up quickly.
The blood knight raised her brow.” No, it’s a he. And he seems badly hurt.”
The general grunted.” Shakela get yourself, Ironmaw, Hirgma, Rocmar and get them to saddle up and save that elf. Gorvar, get Asther, Reeds and Margosha. I want those damn drakes out of my sky.”
“Do I have to work with the gobos…?” the orc asked but a single glare from his general said enough.” Dabu.” With that both ran off. Torakk motioned the human prince to follow him, a wish Anduin obliged.
The general shouted at Chey-Mi, the friendly Pandaren from before, and the shaman and the orc mage who seemed to be a twin of the plate covered orc from before. A few other warriors stood ready as their mounted bretheren charged ahead, followed by the two orcs, a devilsaur, a imp and two goblins.
The mounted orcs charged past the wounded blood elf and slammed into the opposing wolf riders. The orc in plate was riding a motorbike but unlike the models Anduin saw in Stormwind this one was decked out in spikes and crude fire arms. He formed the tip of the spear that crashed into the wolf riders. The ranged group immediately opened fire at the proto-dragons in a mix of arrows, bullets and magic. When the battle was joined the general shouted at the pandaren who immediately rolled down the hill and picked up the wounded blood elf in her strong arms before she effortlessly, and with a big smile on her face, ran up the hill again.
The battle did not last long since the True Horde did not expect this ambush. Shortly the Orc with the devilsaur jabbed the warband’s banner into a slain protodrake as the warriors celebrated. Meanwhile the shaman and Witch doctors tended over the wounded Sindorei male.
The Warband spoke in a heavy orcish accent but Anduin could understand some of what was said. Clearly none of them knew this blood elf nor did they know of any Horde operations going on in this area. It was obvious that the elf was not going to make it despite the efforts of the warband. The prince looked around and noticed no-one was minding him. He could easily escape.
But when he saw that man breath, his skin as pale as snow…he knew he had no choice. He moved over to the dying blood elf, he noticed the general held back the others who tried to intervene, and prayed to the light. He led the warmth of the light fill him and flow into the wounds of the Sindorei. He felt the man coming back to life as his energies were slowly being replenished, his wounds closing and above all the smirk appearing on his lips.
“G-general Torakk…” the blood elf chuckled.” I didn’t know you…employed human royalty…as healers?”
“Everyone pulls their weight.” The general folded his arms.” Who am I speaking to?”
The blood elf coughed as he sat up.” My name is Halmadir…and I am your only chance to stop Zaela and the True Horde once and for all.”