The End

-by Rizarah

The troll woman stared out from the high cliffs of Zul'kunda. She was old, now. Her flame-red hair had long ago silvered, died, turned white. Her clear blue skin was now pitted, wrinkled.

She sighed as she stared out across the deep blue sea. Waves crashed ceaselessly against the shore, white foam covering the rocks, the water gurgling happily. Seagulls and other birds sqawked in joy as they dived and wove their way through the salty air, dodging the clouds and snapping up fish.

It had been so long since she'd come here. So long since she'd killed the prior chief, and his shaman, and taken the rule of the city of Zul'kunda unto herself. Eventually, she had chosen a chief from the males, and stepped down to advise as a shaman. She had chosen well. She could hear the chief's voice bellowing orders, even from here.

Her daughter would carry forth, follow her steps, or follow her own. The choice was hers, and Rizarah would never love her any less for it, although she could never say such a thing out loud. Rizarah stood, bones creaking.

She gently, lovingly, took a medium-size pack off her back, and gently emptied it onto the rock she was perched on. Four wooden totems fell out, clattered to the stone. She smiled at them. The first, she took up. It had a flame carved into the wooden --

... "... and I beg you, to give me this, so I may use it in effort to help, in efforts to serve and defend." The people around her; people she did not know so well, watched on, including elder shaman Ruarc, a dead man who called himself Vassali, a very young orcish huntress named Ferani, and a tauren druidess whose name she could not recall. The totem took on a fiery tinge, sprouted a slight flame...

She smiled at the memory. And with the same happiness, same sense of love, she let the totem go. It flared, burned away incandescently, and was returned to dust before even it had touched the rock.

Next, she picked up her water totem, and threw it far away from her, with as much strength as she had left. The totem plunked into the water. But she felt no sense of loss, no horror or regret. She was beyond such things.

The air totem she merely lifted. It grew light, and was somehow carried away by the caress of the winds.

The earth totem, she merely laid a hand on. It sank into the stone, made the rock ripple with its passing. She smiled, and stood. Balanced on the edge of the precipice, she stared forward. A voice sang to her from across the ocean; a lovely voice, rocky and deep, high and whispy, cool and flowing, warm and passionate all at once.

She followed it, followed the rapturous voice.

Beneath her, her body fell away, fell into the water without even a splash to mark her passing...

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