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Sleepless Nights

 
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Jutaka
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Joined: 02 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 4:01 pm    Post subject: Sleepless Nights Reply with quote

Vaeldrin barely managed to undo the last of the straps and drop his Battlegear to the floor before collapsing onto his bed above the Legerdemain Lounge. He knew he should clean his gear and replace it on the rack beside the wardrobe; the partially frozen blood and ichor that crusted it would soon begin to melt and most likely stain the richly woven rug; but he didn't think his bruised and strained muscles could do the work. The siege of the Lich King's citadel went on, the battle ebbing and flowing as one side or the other gained the advantage, and the pack of Bad Moon Rising put in its share of time in the butcher's yard.

He told himself that he would simply close his eyes and take a moment to regain his strength before rising again to properly stow his armor, but he barely finished the thought before drifting into a deep sleep. He recognized the dream immediately, it had been the first truly meaningful one he had had under the Tauren Shaman and Druids who had taught him to walk the Dream. His teachers, Mokola and Kahote, had impressed on him the importance and power of this particular dream and he had always been strengthened and uplifted by its message. He relaxed and let it flow over him.

He stood at the edge of a vast plain lit by a moon that took up half the sky. A soft and pleasant breeze rushed past him, laden with the smell of growth and life, setting the grass of the plain swaying in time to the memory of drumbeats. Gradually at first, but then with frightening speed, the breeze changed. It grew colder, sharper, and the smells it now carried were full of death and decay. A blood-red darkness was creeping across the plain and through the sky, turning the once pure brilliance of the moon to shadow. He staggered back a step in the face of such an onslaught, feeling alone and insignificant there on the edge of what he now knew was the battleground where a fight for life itself would take place.

Dark, formless shapes were rising up in the heart of the darkness, as innumerable as they were indescribable. On the verge of giving in to panic, Vaeldrin turned and saw behind him a spreading light. There, over the horizon, lay hope. He could feel it in his very bones. The only way to stop the coming darkness was to seek out the source of that light, that life. A howl of defiance rose there and was soon joined by others. Hundreds took up the cry, wolves united as a pack. Strength and unity made flesh.

But the triumphant wolf howl was cut short as the ground shook and heaved before splitting open with a deafening roar. Flames shot into the sky, consuming the stars themselves. The world trembled and screams filled the air as the pack plunged headlong into the fiery abyss. He dropped to one knee as the once verdant grassland turned to ash all around him. Barely seen through the smoke and ash and flame, the moon itself cracked and shattered apart. As a flood of molten rock crashed down upon him on that dead dream plain, Vaeldrin woke and flailed out of the bed. Sweat soaked and tangled sheets trailed after him as he stumbled across the room, nearly tripping over his discarded armor, before coming to rest with his back to one corner of the room.

He somehow had Bryntroll in his hands, its length pulsing with a cold that reminded him why he usually only handled the thing with his gauntlets on, and he stood panting as if he had just run a mile or fought for his life. The last images of the nightmare still burned behind his eyes and he could swear that he heard the last echoes of deep mocking laughter. Somehow, he didn't think he would get any more sleep this night.
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