Poaching in Durotar

- by Abbi

The plains of Durotar are mostly flat. Spare, austere, sere: they spread out in worn brown majesty, from river to sea, punctuated by cactii and ravines. A small gnome female would stand out against the expanse of nature.

A small gnome female does stand out against the expanse of nature.

Abbi grinds on, determined.

Pan in, zoom closer. She's muttering to herself, under her breath, and sweating under her armor. From time to time she wipes her face, tilting back her helm, then continues. She doesn't particularly try to hide. Why would she?

About half an hour south of Orgrimmar, she catches sight of a brief flash of lightning across the horizon. Her head lifts, and she focuses in like a laser. The lightning is followed by fire, and she smiles to herself in a manner entirely unreassuring.

Her pace picks up: double-time trot.

The orc in her sights grows rapidly. It -- he -- is carrying a shield; she grins again as she sees that. Another grin comes when he sends another bolt of fire into a more or less harmless quillboar. All expression fades when she gets close enough to charge.

She charges, mostly silent, perfectly on point. There's a dull thud as her shield impacts the orc; there's a muffled cry of surprise as her mace comes down against his head. It's that quick. At the orc's feet, a totem quivers for a moment before Abbi's shield slams into it. The plains of Durotar are calm once again.

Abbi drops her pack on the earth and roots around in it, coming up with a coil of rope and a pair of fold out poles. She snaps the latter into position, and uses half the rope to tie them into a travois. Humming to herself happily, she then ties the orc's body to the travois. "Hoof!" And she begins to drag the orc back north.

Several hours later, she's past Orgrimmar. Quite some time (and a few carnivorous fish) later, she's in Aszhara. The Tauren at the Cenarion encampment looks extremely dubious.

"LOOK," says Abbi. "THIS says I'm King of the Ogres. THIS says I'm in charge of a handful of cities. BOTH are total bull$!@%. That is not the POINT. The POINT is I was able to TAKE THEM, no matter who objected."

That's worth considering, from the Tauren's expression. Abbi soldiers on.

"ALSO, you have my WORD that this orc isn't going to be hurt or anything. I mean, not permanently. I'm lending him to a PALADIN, so chances are there'll even be healing. And SHE is a nice person and will want to take him BACK when he's done teaching them."

Abbi is vibrating by this point, somewhat agitated. Her mace is slapping haphazardly across her leg, clanging against plate. The Tauren steps back reflexively.

"I came this way so you could TELL people if they came looking, so nobody would worry too much. I coulda gone to the ELVES, but they're too tall and they wouldn't give orcs the time of DAY. You MIGHT."

At this, the Tauren concedes the point, or at least concedes the risk of standing in Abbi's way. The gnome nods, satisfied. After a brief but intense period of negotiation with the gryphon attendant, Abbi and the orc are on separate gryphons. Both are winging their way to Theramore.

Later that night, Abbi pounds on the door of a small cottage in Menethil. The orc is passed out on the travois behind her; there are several additional lumps on his head that were not there when he and Abbi left Durotar. There's no answer from inside the cottage.


Abbi hauls out a pen and paper and begins to write. When she's done, she frees the orc from the travois and ties him up somewhat more securely. The note gets tucked in between a couple of ropes before she props the orc against the door and heads off in the general direction of Stormwind.

"Dear TRINN," the note begins.

"Remember I was talking to you about the orc mages who use shields, not the goofy glowing ones but real ones? This is one of THOSE. I saw him casting spells, including the fire stuff that guy of yours is supposed to be so good at, and he was carrying a shield while he DID it. So you ought to be able to find out how he does it so your guy can learn.

"Which he really NEEDS to. I know he can take care of himself. He ought to take care of himself BETTER, though. It's just a good habit to be in, no matter WHO you are. Can't relax on past glory and all.

"The orc doesn't speak Gnome or Common, but you two read a LOT so I'm guessing you'll figure it out. Maybe he speaks Elf, I don't know. He's kind of upset, I think. He'll get OVER it. I didn't tell anyone where I was bringing him or anything, so you shouldn't get any MORE visitors.

"Oh YEAH. I also saw this one casting LIGHTNING bolts. So that's another thing mages around here should learn. Although it's not as important as the SHIELD thing.

"Take care.


The night is silent, except for the occasional feeble groan from the orc.
On the one hand, Abbi. On the other hand, Strand.

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