Musings of an Azeroth Mage (Book 13)
- - by Archin
(I'd like to thank everyone for their participation in the trial of the Brey's. I really had a lot of fun and hope everyone else did as well! Special thanks go out to Poynard, the Crimson Hounds Brigade and Wendall, and the individuals that testified against the Brey's.
For a transcript of the trial and some events afterwards, please see Transcript_of_Trial_of_Archin_and_Yumeko_Brey.
I couldnt believe my ears!!
Archin Brey, you and your wife are to report to the judicial hall immediately for your trial.
Trial!? In the span of virtually forty-eight hours, the judicial system of Stormwind managed to push our entire criminal case through the bureaucracy and put the Breys on trial!?
What an outrage!
Those two stupid, sniveling little Hounds marched Yumeko and I straight to that accursed building, and I took it upon myself to berate them the entire way. What a travesty of procedure! We hadnt even had time to prepare our case, or get our witnesses, and already were on trial?!
An abuse of power, plain and simple, and it merely goes to show the depth to which Stormwind will stoop in order to punish innocent people!
Well mostly innocent, I suppose Anyway
I took my teacup and teakettle with me as we walked from the Jester. I figured it would be a short procedure, in which we would be found innocent.
A HUGE group of people were present in the hall when I arrived. I couldnt believe the number of folks that had come to the trial to defend and rally behind me. It truly was inspiring, I must say!
Wendall Harken stood there like the idiot that he is, and I threw my teacup straight at him. That wasnt enough, and I launched my teakettle at him too, but that #@%$! Kiiyue blocked the kettle in mid air and threatened us both. Osrien Poynard presided over the room with the deadpan idiocy that this masterful hopscotching moron has so eloquently proven to me time and time again!
I was charged with two counts of assaulting an officer, one count of abuse, one count of torture, and one count of murder, while my wife was charged with four counts of summoning a hostile demon, two counts of assaulting and officer, one count of inducing a riot, one count of abuse, one count of torture, and one count of murder.
Trumped up charges, to say the least.
The entire trial was a sham, a black eye on any and all judicial proceedings. Shortly into the procedure, after we both pled not guilty, my wife was pulled from the room because she had spoken out too much. I say, they must have been aching to get a guilty verdict out of us; they would do anything to undercut us.
A transcript of the abomination has been disseminated, so I need not go into many details. I took the arduous task of defending my family on my shoulders and did the best that I could. The Night Elves that claimed to be experts on Demonology, yet were not arcanists of any sort, were quickly shot to pieces by my masterful judicial eloquence. However, Poynard, being the consummate idiot that he is, barely even recognized the tremendous gains that I was achieving.
I had destroyed the prosecutions case that my wife was summoning a dangerous demon. Why, not one that witnessed the event even knew anything about demonology. There was no expert testimony! There was no Arcanist about! All it was were magic devoid Night Elves claiming they saw some human walking with a demon. Hardly substantial in a case of this magnitude!
With the demonology charge out of the way, I took the next task at hand: The charge that Yumeko and I had tortured and killed a girl, and then subsequently blew her to pieces.
I admit, the evidence against us was somewhat strong. A girl by the name of Vixeena.
V I X E E N A I have to remember that name anyway
A girl by the name of Vixeena claimed to have heard and witnessed the torture and subsequent murder of that stupid little girl. I was ready to shoot her down as I had the others, when Poynard denied it!
Denied it! Obstruction of a man trying to prove his innocence! I cannot believe it!
Then, after her testimony, Sirithil Nightstone, she-witch of Stormwind, claimed that she had caught Yumeko and I with blood all over our bodies, and that they had seen some of the damage that had been wrought.
I explained the situation to Poynard, but he seemed more interested on the lighting in the room than any etch of truth or fact! Wendall even produced a piece of charred flesh which in other words means meat that I burned and want to produce as false evidence. But again, I destroyed his credibility.
Even with Poynard trying to stop me from spouting the truth, I was destroying all comers!
I wanted to make a statement to the group, to my dear friends who were backing me, and to Poynard so that they could hear the final thoughts of Archin Brey on the matter. But oh, when Poynard heard that I was going to speak and wow the audience, he quickly ordered me to leave and Wendall dragged me out.
I took the ouster like a man and didnt waver or flinch. I wasnt going to show weakness in front of that man. I was totally positive that my defense was sound.
Of course, when I was ordered back into the courtroom, I was shocked and appalled to learn that Poynard had found the Breys guilty on all our crimes, save for the murder crime! What rubbish! What absolute crap!
Yumeko was sentenced to have an iron-tongue, a contraption that prevents the wearer from speaking, be installed and have to wear it for four days. She also was denied any casting or demonology of any sort within the walls of Stormwind and was to be dunked in the Stormwind Canal seven times.
You know what kind of disease lurks in that horrible, commoner filth water?! I should have sued Poynard for trying to kill her!
I, on the other hand, was to be caned twenty-five times! Furthermore, I was told I could not cast magic in Stormwind unless for an educational purpose, and that I was to be interred at the Eastvale Logging Camp and perform hard labor for an undisclosed amount of time.
If this is not social injustice, I dont know what is!
So what if I tortured and murdered that girl! Hell, Ive tortured and murdered several people, the morons! It is clear, more than ever, than I am the victim in this entire charade! No one would miss any of those people that I took care of. They were strains on society!
Yumeko had the tongue installed immediately and was dunked. Meanwhile, I had to wait for my canings and my internment, until certain arrangements were to be made.
That iron tongue contraption was a joke. I popped it off my wifes mouth as soon as I could, but made it painfully clear to her that she had to wear it when out in public.
Those bastards. Those blind, idiotic, nonmage bastards.
The fact remains that my masterful defense cleared us of any murder charge, which in my mind was the most serious charge and as such, the Breys won the day. Aye, I beat that judicial system! Amidst all of their ploys and tactics, I stood tall and proud and proved to the populace just who was lying, and who was the wrongdoer.
I went to bed smiling. I had won.
I didnt think that when I got caned shortly thereafter
The heavy pounding on the door signaled the unwelcome awakening of Archin Brey.
Archin Brey? Mr. Archin Brey its time to serve your sentence a gruff voice boomed from behind the door.
Archin sat quietly in his study just outside of the Trade District in Stormwind. Seated at a table with his monocle firmly against his eye and wearing a simple vest and trousers, he didnt appear to be the blustery, know-it-all Mage that he appeared to be outside of his door. The Former Dalaran Mage lowered the book that he was reading and called to the door, I say who is there?
The pounding resounded louder through the door, We have a written order to detain and cane you, Professor Brey, and if you dont open this door well be forced to knock it down and arrest you for resisting there was a pause, well resisting arrest.
Professor Breys face slackened and his face paled as he thought for a moment, and then nodded quickly and hurried over to the door, throwing it open. Standing before him were three burly men, dressed in commoners garb, but they held a writ that possessed the Kings seal and the signature of Magistrate Poynard.
Let me see that he grabbed the document from the mans hand and gazed at it, noting its authenticity, and then smiled back at the group, Oh didnt you hear Ive already been caned but two days ago, Im afraid you gentlemen are late.
With an appraising eye the man looked Archin up and down. The Mage was standing quite tall and moving quite fluidly for having been caned recently. He didnt buy it. Well then, youre going to get another twenty-five With that, Archin was dragged out of his house and taken into Elwynn Forest.
Now we know that yer a Mage, one of the men said quietly, so dont try any funny stuff, or else well shoot ya where you stand. The man stood with a crossbow and eyed the Mage carefully. He leaned against a tree and watched, while the other man stood on the other side of Archin, and the third, the largest and strongest of the men, held a long cane in his hand.
Archin stood defiantly, with his chest thrust out and his head held high. His monocle remained against his eye, This is ridiculous! As a matter of fact, I think I would like to appeal this ruling right now! You have no right to batter an academic!
Normally, bud, Id say yer right. But youze been found guilty o some pretty harsh charges an this is what we have ta do. The man slapped the cane in his hand and eyeballed Archin, who was now bound at the wrists with his arms behind his back. Now, you got twenty-five hits comin up, so turn round and lets just get dis over with.
Ill blast that head of yours straight off you shou Archins words were cut off suddenly by a swift crack to his shoulder from the cane. He staggered backwards and fell to his knees, gasping for air. The man circled him and cracked Archin straight across the back, throwing the Mages chest forward and sending him falling hard into the earth.
Cmon Mr. Brey.. if you can stand up and remain up, I can get all these hits ova with fast.
Archin gritted his teeth and force himself to stand. Leaves clung to the side of his face and pain shot through his back, Go on then hit me again
Another stiff blow rocked Archins frame, but he stood still and shook, taking it. Another, and another, and one more, slowly moving down the mans back. The lowest blow, hitting Brey in his lower back, rocked him forward a few steps, but he did not fall.
The fellow administering the caning, to his credit, wasnt taking a particular joy out of beating the forty-one year old Mage. He paused between each blow, allowing Archin time to recover and stand straight, only to send another blow across his back.
After fifteen blows, Archin Breys legs gave out. The back of his shirt was now slightly blotched with red as the repeated hits had broken his skin. Beneath his tattered shirt lay bruises that spanned his entire back, and welts and torn skin to match. His knees sunk into the dirty, muddy ground and he squinted up at the trees of Elwynn.
The man with the cane beat the sides of Breys arms now, battering him left and right with every blow. Archin was in a haze. A delirium of sorts as he tried to reconcile with himself the trouble he had gotten himself in. He jerked with every blow, but focused on something else.
He focused on Yumeko his wife and how he had gotten here largely because of her. Yet, as his back bled and his arms swelled; he was still far happier now than he had ever been. He had done horrible things. Things that would make most people cringe. But he was happy. In his stubborn, true, and headstrong heart, Archin did not have any regret.
Such a realization probably made Archin Brey a despicable, remorseless man. He felt remorse for the acts that he had committed. However, if they were a means to continue his relationship with Yumeko, it was the price he was willing to pay.
Twenty-three blows left Archin sprawled on the grass. He hadnt the strength to stand nor to kneel. He simply lay on the grass. Had it not been for his breathing, one would think him a corpse. The back of his shirt was shredded now, and the dark blue and black welt and the crimson blood that rolled down his skin was a harsh reminder of the pain he had to endure.
The fellow with the cane stared down at the Mage, and then bludgeoned him once in the lower back. Archin didnt move. He had focused to such a point that he could not feel the pain. His mind had transported him away from his nerves, to focus on nothing more than his wife and his child.
One last blow, the harshest, against the center of his back, and the blood covered cane fell no more against his back, arms, and body.
Wiping his forehead, the fellow looked down at Archin, I gotta say Sir you took it like a man
Tears dripped from Archins eyes. They gazed through the blades of grass with a dead stare as he continued to engulf his entire being with his mind. The fellow leaned down and cut Archins bonds, leaving him to lay there. The three men spoke to one another for a moment, eyed the lying man, and walked out of Elwynn. They knew he could still protect himself. Goldshire wasnt that far away and they werent responsible for bringing him back.
Archin Brey laid there and silently let the tears stream from his face. The mud molded to his angular features as the grass swayed in the breeze around him. The leaves, giving way to that winter that would come, fell silently around his prostrate form as he laid, swelled, and bled silently.
His monocle had remained against his eye throughout the entire ordeal.
So I have to beg the question as to why I havent written in this raggedy old book for so long. The answer is quite simple:
When you chop wood for a living, your hands hurt bloody bad to do anything even remotely refined!
Slaving away, day in and day out at the Eastvale Logging Camp has definitely taken its toll. Before, I got up at five in the morning to read a book and sip some tea. Now, I awaken just as early and step out into the chilly, misty air of Elwynn Forest to chop down wood for commoners!
I am wonderfully self contained, however. No one needs to protect me from raiders, kobolds, or the Defias. Why, if anything even remotely dangerous approaches me, its cinders before it even has a chance to act!
But oh, the days are long and the nights are short. I arrive back at the cabin around seven at night. Just long enough to grab some dinner and collapse in bed. Occasionally I am granted some reprieve and am able to wander back into Stormwind, but usually few are about to greet me.
I have to admit, it is not the back breaking work or the long days that hurt the most. No, it is none of that. The most pain comes from the loneliness.
A funny irony, is it not? I, Archin Brey, the man who reveled in being alone for most of his life, now feels so lonely that it borders on despair.
The first few weeks, I would receive visits, letters, and well wishes. But life moves on, things change, and times change the focus of individuals and now I am certainly just an afterthought on the minds of so many people. Theyve all but forgotten Archin Brey, who works needlessly in Elwynn Forest.
However, such a fact is excusable. I understand the mind and how it can fall into a lull and forget about such things. I do not fault those that are guilty. We all have lives and have many things to focus on. I dont need visits or well-wishes to keep going on. My heart and drive will do that.
But oh, Yumeko! How I miss you my dear!
She has not visited, even once, and it twists and contorts my heart in ways that I never thought imaginable. Puzzling and perplexing it is, my wifes absence, and it worries me. Unlike my previous wife, of which I would instantly believe she was gallivanting around with some low-life in my absence; Yumekos love is true. Truer than any spell I could cast, and something is preventing her from visiting. I have no doubt.
I spend hours at night alone in my bed, sitting and looking out the window. I watch the sun dip down and the moon rise, and as the fog and mist slithers across the forest grass, I wish to see that felsteed ride up with my beautiful wife atop, smiling at me.
But she doesnt come.
Instead, I relegate myself to sleeping, sometimes no more than two hours a night, and then awaken and work more.
Nevertheless, the work has paid off in other respects. While I am battered and weather-beaten, I feel ten years younger. I must say that Yumeko, while already impressed by my stature, will find the slightly greater bulk atop my chest and arms a pleasant surprise, I am sure. My goatee has grown into a full, broad beard, and my lips, though split, always upturn into a warm smile at the thought of my wife.
Oh how I cannot wait to hold her. How I have longed for her softness against me!
Yumeko, what is keeping you my dear? Why are you absent in my life now, when I need you most?
Remember, Archin, to dismiss the red splotches on the page when you read this years later, thats just some blood from a gash along my index finger, but its nothing fatal, I assure you!
I am nearing completion of my work. Just a few more days and I will return to Stormwind. I miss the Jester and the greetings that were there always when I entered. I miss so much. But of all, I miss my wife. I love her, more than anything, and long to see her. I miss my darling son, Karkune, and I miss my family.
I do not have the strength, nor the focus at this time to discuss serious matters. I have enough to deal with already. But know this: Archin Brey will be returning! And very soon at that.
And Yumeko, my sweet and lovely wife, wherever you are I am coming! I will see you soon!
The axe leveled against the log and sent wood chips flying into the air.
I really could give a damn what this stupid log goes toward, Archin grumbled to his coworker, I just want to get home.
Another fellow, his back to the forty-one Mage, slammed his own axe into a separate log. Unlike Archin, this man was a hulk, and it was clear he had done this job for a living. His arms were large and a thick, grizzled beard covered his weather-beaten face. Much like his Mage counterpart, the man wore a pair of overalls and a plaid shirt.
Yah but iffen this is yer home, Archin? The man called back as he snapped a log in two with his own, much larger axe.
Then, Archin grumbled as he raised his own axe over his head, you need your head examined. snap He was now halfway through the log. He never could keep his pace up with Giles.
Taking a breather, Archin gazed up through the foliage of Elwynn into the dimly lit morning light. Much like Giles, he wore a pair of overalls and his red shirt, but the blustery, cantankerous, and spotless Brey was certainly replaced with a different character. His face was weather-beaten and his hands appeared rough and rugged. His perfectly trimmed beard and sprouted into a wiry mess of sandy red and gray hairs, trailing down his prominent Adams apple and crawling towards his chest. His shirt was already unbuttoned at the sternum, exposing his tanned chest. Even the Mages arms appeared a bit larger. Hed been doing a lot of work.
A swing and only a quarter left of the log. A jabbing pain shot through the mans back and he winced, gripping his lower back and tensing up.
Your back still hurtin, Archin? Giles commented as he swung his axe again.
Archin had thrown his back out a little over a week ago, which had left him bedridden for several days. Amazingly enough, hed recovered remarkably quick, and was back out working.
With a soft groan, Archin nodded, Yeah, it still hurts He swung his axe again and stared up at the sky again. Finally, the log was split in two.
Archins back was still sore, but that wasnt what was truly hurting him.
He missed his family.
Giles continued to ramble about a drinking story, but Archin was only half listening. In that sky held the innumerable opportunities, and the answers to all of his questions. Somewhere, if he were just up there, he could gaze down upon the lazy, waking world and find his family.
For some reason, they hadnt found him.
Finally, something Giles said snapped him out of his trance.
They say you did some pretty awful things, Archin.
Huh? The mage muttered as he turned to face the much larger man. Giles faced Archin and rubbed his balding head.
They say that you killed people in Stormwind, and that is what got you here. Giles looked at the smaller man with an inquisitive eye.
Archin flushed, though it was hidden beneath his tan and the dusk of morning, Well, I uphold that I was framed. Come on, Giles, Ive been here what, over a month? Do I appear like a murderer to you?
A broad, warm smiles spread across the lumberjacks face, Naw you might be a bit grumpy, but you couldnt kill no one. I was just foolin with ya! The lumberjack laughed loudly and began working over another log.
This didnt make Archin feel any better.
With a sigh, the former Dalaran Mage turned and began to hack away at another log. It was such drudgery. Such a constant routine, working out here. For hours, hed hammer and hack at wood, and in his idleness, he did not think about magical devices or gnomish contraptions. He didnt think about hypotheses that would change the world or historiography.
He only thought about his family. He only wondered why they hadnt visited him.
And tonight, as with every night, hell do the same thing. Yes, that sad, melancholy Archin Brey, who is trapped in Elwynn Forest, chopping away at timber, will do what he always does.
Hell light a lantern and sit upright in his bed. Hell bring a book to his eyes and try to read, but it will be useless. Hell be unable to concentrate, and hell peer across the silent, still room at his window, and hope and pray for a fiery hoofed steed to come galloping up to the shack in which he lay. And if a lightning bug, or a wandering merchant manages to get into view and offer some semblance of outside light, hell spring from his bed, invariably knocking his book to the floor, and peer through the window, only to have his hopes dashed against the wall.
And with that, hell turn and drag his feet back to his bed. Hell gingerly ease his sore body into the warmth of the bed, and still feel so very cold and alone.
The work in Elwynn forest was easy. That was hardly a punishment.
Being away from his family was agony. One he suffered through every moment of every day.
End of Musings of an Azeroth Mage Book 13
[<--- Book 12] [Book 14 --->]