Why Do We Fight?

21. Siege of Orgrimmar, Ringo's Tale | December 25th, 2013 | No Comments »

Loch Modan

Beli Flinthammer leaned in the doorway, looking out over Loch Modan. The smell of cooking feasts carried across the valley from Thelsamar, the Explorers League camps across what remained of the lake and probably even from hunters’ campfires. Everywhere but here.

Bael and Lucky ran through the mud, playing Polymorph Tag — players who get tagged had to act like a sheep for one minute, which admittedly the great black cat had problems doing as well as the boy. Her son refused to open the gifts Greatfather Winter had left beneath the tree or touch the stockings or let her begin cooking the Feast of Winters Veil: His father was coming home, he insisted, and they would would be waiting for him.

Beli sighed, scanning the horizon. There was a screech and she spotted the ungainly figure of a Northrend proto-drake lifting off from a distant pasture, a sheep in each of its hind claws. With Ringo gone, Rusty had gone a little wild, and what remained of the Flinthammers’ fortune, accumulated from the dungeons of four continents, was quickly flowing into the coffers of local shepherds instead.

Her family had invited her and Bael to visit them in Stormwind for the holidays — they had been hard at work repairing the damage Deathwing did to the Valley of Heroes — but Bael would have none of it. She’d explained how far away Orgrimmar was, and that the Alliance mages were busy moving the wounded soldiers to safety and didn’t have time to help soldiers get home for the holidays.

Beli’s stomach was starting to growl and the boar wouldn’t stay good forever; she was going to have to start cooking soon and just deal with Bael.

She quietly began to sing Ringo’s favorite carol:

I’ll march home for the feast.
You can count on me.
Please have ale and roasted boar,
A new gun ‘neath the tree.

Winter’s Veil will find me
Where the oak keg gleams.
I’ll march home for the feast,
If only in my dreams.

She dabbed at the corner of her eyes with her sleeve — some smoke from a nearby feast must have gotten into her eyes, and opened her mouth to sing again:

I’ll march home for the feast.
You can count on me.
Please have ale and roasted boar,
A new gun ‘neath the tree.

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The war has many fronts

21. Siege of Orgrimmar, Ringo's Tale | December 18th, 2013 | 1 Comment »

Holiday time in Thelsamar

Some days he was a paladin, bringing the power of the Titans to rampaging murlocs and kobolds surrounding town.

Other days, he was a mage, flinging frostbolts and accompanied by his trusty water elemental, mastering secrets far beyond those understood by his family or classmates.

But today, Bael Flinthammer was a dwarven rifleman, a mighty mountaineer like his father, Ringo, accompanied by the great black lion, Lucky, brought to Loch Modan as a cub from the Barrens of Kalimdor.

Bael crouched behind a bush, his rifle in one and and reaching the other back to Lucky, commanding him to hide in the shadow of a nearby tree, as he looked for the tracks of the enemy: Thelsamar was surrounded by them, including troggs and ogres.

No tracks here. Bael crept forward, pushing the bushes aside, like a real hunter would … probably. His father hadn’t had much of a chance to teach him this stuff before he’d left to find a cure for the king — the real king, not the Council of the Three Hammers. But he’d be back soon, and then he and Bael would be best buddies, and he’d teach his son all about tracking animals and stalking the enemies of Khaz Modan in the hills surrounding Loch Modan.

But for now …

Bael stalked onward, using his other senses: murlocs stunk, as did ogres, and both troggs and kobolds tended toward noisiness. There were voices ahead.

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