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(Part 10) For a complete list of this series, please go here.

“Ugh,” Aerissa groaned, shooing flies away from her face as she dropped the heavy bag from her shoulder.  The smell of Knucklerot's head was getting worse.

He'll be here soon.

Aerissa nodded, pushing the bag aside with her boot.  They had decided to move up along the Dead Scar in order to intercept Luzran, the other abomination on the wanted poster, before he came across the remains of Knucklerot.  Pulling a skin of water from her pack, she took a long drink.  The woods felt warm this evening.  Her skin still felt damp with perspiration from the earlier fight.  She poured some of the water over her hair and face.  Gasping from the cool water, she wiped at her face and shook her wet hair.

The did not need to wait long before Luzran was spotted coming up the Dead Scar towards them.  Aerissa felt more confident after the last success as she notched an arrow onto her bow.  She scurried, crouching low, to the edge of the woods, trying to stay hidden amongst the trees and rocks.  Her and Locke exchanged looks as they seemed to communicate their coordinating attacks.

Aerissa took aim at Luzran's throat, letting the arrow fly as Locke dashed in.  Luzran appeared to be more nimble than Knucklerot.  He did not get tripped up over his own feet as Locke moved in and around between his legs.  Aerissa continued to fire off arrows as rapidly as she could, keeping good aim around his neck.

But then, Luzran swatted at Locke with a meaty hand, sending him back a few feet behind him.  Luzran turned and plodded over to where Locke landed.  Aerissa loaded her bow with multiple arrows, hoping to distract Luzran long enough to allow Locke to regain his footing, but her arrows fell short.  They had gotten out of her range.

“No!” She cried out as she emerged from the edge of the woods.  She ran out onto the Dead Scar, getting closer so she could resume her attack.

Several arrows flew true and penetrated his back, blood and puss oozing from the cursed flesh.  Luzran tried to pull the arrows out with the third arm upon his back.  He bellowed in pain.  Aerissa watched Locke, willing him to get up.  He laid on his side, unmoving.  Luzran swung around to face her as he continued to reach at his back for the arrows.  His grotesque face twisted in agony.  Aerissa shook her head, stepping backwards.

“Guuhh!” Luzran focused on Aerissa and came charging at her, the ground quaking beneath his massive weight.

Aerissa's heart felt like it was about to burst free through her chest.  Fingers shaking, she continued to fire off arrows as she backpedaled.  Her eyes darted from Luzran to Locke, saddness and anger flooding her body as she saw Locke still laying there.  Luzran was quickly closing the distance between them.  Aerissa stumbled over rocks and bones as she walked backwards.  She was afraid to turn her back to this monstrosity though and knew she couldn't outrun him.

Luzran's stench was overwhelming the closer he got.  His breath reeked of death and decay.  The taste of bile was in Aerissa's throat.  He was getting so close.  She didn't have a weapon capable of fighting him hand to hand.  Panic took over her mind and body.  She looked one last time to Locke.

But he was gone.

Aerissa's mouth opened to scream, but no sound came out.  Luzran was almost upon her.  He swung his chain at her, his favorite weapon.  As the chain arced, it went past where Aerissa's head had been.  Aerissa fainted, falling to the ground with a thud.

Luzrun let out a deep belly laugh at the sight.  He thought he'd hit her with the chain.  He stepped closer, leaning down towards her still form.  “Foooo-”

The word cut off into a scream as Locke ran up behind him, leaping, and sinking his fangs into Luzran's backside.  Locke shook his head, his jaws still clamped upon the tender flesh.  Aerissa's eyes flew open.  She blinked twice, staring at Luzran's face, so close to hers.  His face contorted, slobber falling from his rank mouth.  Luzran turned to see what was hurting him from behind, but he couldn't turn to see far enough.  Aerissa clenched her jaw, staring at the exposed neck as he looked away from her.  She quickly plunged her throwing dagger into the side of his neck, twisting it to open the wound further.

Aerissa rolled out from underneath the hulking shadow before he dropped to the ground.  Locke did not release until he saw Aerissa roll out to the side.  He flicked his tongue about his mouth, then wretched upon the ground.  The plagued flesh in his mouth for so long had been a bit much to handle.  He limped over to Aerissa.  Aerissa gulped for air, petting his head.  He stared at her, letting out a high pitched whine.  Aerissa could tell by his eyes how much pain he was in.

“He hurt you pretty bad.  Worse than the other one did,” She said as she ran her hands soothingly through his fur, surveying his wounds.  He had many cuts and bruises, and what felt like a cracked rib or two.

I thought he had us both.

Aerissa nodded in agreement.  “I thought so too.”  She wrapped a fresh bandage around his wounded paw before wrapping his chest.  “You must be careful until we can get those ribs looked at properly.”

Locke stared back at her wincing.  Thank you, Aerissa.

She then checked herself over.  She had faired better than Locke.  Though she suffered multiple cuts and bruises as well, she did not have any broken bones.  Eyeing the rotting corpse beside them, she hopped up to her feet.  “Oohow!” Inhaling a sharp breath, she fell back onto her bottom.  Gingerly she touched her ankle, feeling the swelling and tenderness of the sprain.

“Must have twisted it before I fell,” she sighed, wrapping her ankle several times to give it support.  She got up more carefully this time and got to work on decapitating Luzran.

Before you fell? I didn't think you had fallen.

She narrowed her eyes at Locke.  “What do you mean, you didn't think I fell?  Why else would I lay on the ground before a charging enemy?”

Locke's mouth seemed to turn up at the corners in a Lynx smile.  I thought you were playing dead.

Aerissa rolled her eyes.  “I wish there had been strategy involved.  But no, I thought you were dead, and thought I was about to be… and fainted.”  She let out a heavy sigh.  After she added Luzran's head to the bag, she kicked at him several times with her good foot.

Leave it be.  We must get back.

Aerissa nodded, hot tears welling up in her eyes.  She hefted the bag over her shoulder and began the trek back to the inn at Tranquillien.  The pace was slow at best due to their injuries.  After a few miles, Aerissa could no longer bare to carry the bag which held the proof of their deeds.  Instead, she dragged it behind her the last half of the way.

As she neared the first guards, the Blood Elf guard gagged, covering his nose.  “What is that smell?”  He held out his weapon, a warning that she was not to come any closer.  The Forsaken guard on the other side of the path shrugged, eyeing the large bag with interest.

“I've…come…” she panted, dropping the sack, “…to claim… my reward…”

** Please note that some of the events included in RP pieces are based upon actual in-game role play.  Also, some of the events and/or character names may have been altered during the transition from in-game RP to story formation. **

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7 comments

  • Very nice, something told me Luzran would be tougher than Knucklrot.

    I’m curious as to how the townspeople will react to Aerissa now. Will they treat her differently?

  • Thank goodness Locke was able to distract Luzran. The story still fills us with the wild emotions of the fight with the giant abominations. Well done!

  • I love how you change the terminology around…but I would consider it a feign death trick…or a distracting shot…instead she used many arrows and fainted, etc.

    I really like that 🙂 Makes the story really come to life and yet still reminds us that it has originally come out of Azeroth. It’s as if the characters are real.

  • @Gaming Diva – Yeah, that Luzran… I couldn’t let him be an easy take down. I almost didn’t write out that part and was going to pick it up from her getting his head, but figured that wouldn’t be fair. And it will be interesting to see what happens when she turns in those rotting heads. 😉

    @Keli – Thanks 🙂 Yeah, those two guys are known by a lot of players, which made it kind of fun. And good ol’ Locke, comin’ to in the nick of time!

    @Cait – Thank you for that feedback. I was sort of unsure of using some of the wording as I did, so I’m glad to hear you liked it. It’s especially interesting (to me, anyhow) because I do have a couple readers of the story that have not played the game. And I try to keep that in mind when I write these, and try not to write assuming everyone knows what certain spells are, etc.

  • I never imagined how horrible it must be to lug two gigantic abomination heads back to town. Your writing brings that to life.

    The snarky part of me wished there was a young healer behind Aerissa doing his own thing, and when she “feigned” Luzran would go after the healer. 😉

  • @Kimberly – Just think if she would have stored those heads in the bank for awhile D: Hmm, need to find pocket healer for the story, methinks! 😉

    @Byaghro – Honestly, no healers were hurt in the writing of this piece. I swear!

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