Ringo Flinthammer leaned on the railing, looking down from the poop deck with a smile, listening to the troops sing a navy song that dated back to the Second War, called the “Tides of Darkness.” It was a song of grim determination, about pushing the orcs back through the Dark Portal, and seemed appropriate.
Archmage Khadgar himself was supposedly on one of the other ships in the Alliance fleet, heading round the Cape of Stranglethorn, and now heading for the Blasted Lands. They were bypassing the Gilnean outpost of Surwich, which was both too far from the Dark Portal and not fortified enough to withstand an Iron Horde counterattack if they landed there en masse.
A sound of a young gnome getting sick over the side brought Ringo’s attention back to the upper deck.
“Ye doin’ all right there, Pazerp?”
“Sure, sure,” the young SI:7 agent said, wiping her mouth with the gloved back of her hand before lowering her goggles back over her eyes. “I’m pretty much out of things to throw up at this point.”
“Ah reckon we’re gettin’ pretty close,” Ringo said, turning to point, then stopping. “By Magni’s stony balls! Do ye have yer spyglass on ye?”
“Always!” Pazerp chirped, pulling it out and peering. “Those shapes — Horde zeppelins, over the bay where we’re supposed to be docking. They’re landing ships there, too.”
“If they’re part o’ Garrosh’s new army …”
A boom from up ahead silenced the singing soldiers. It was followed by a whirring, buzzing noise that Ringo knew from somewhere, although he couldn’t immediately replace it.
Then one of the zeppelins exploded into flame and a large iron orb plunged steaming into the ocean waters.
“Iron stars!” Ringo roared as more booming explosions echoed down the red cliffs and more buzzing whines filled the air. “Man the lifeboats! If he turns those on us, the ship will …”
Ringo found himself rising up in the air, spinning over the ship, looking back down on it as it burst apart before he ever heard the explosion. He plunged back toward the burning wreckage below him, and everything went black.