Power and Suffering

- by Hathgrimm

(( Quick little story for one of my characters. Enjoy! If feedback is given, I may write more! ))

The orc sat quietly at the table inside of the inn nestled within the Crossroads. Sipping on a small cup of tea, he appeared simplistic enough. Built much like the rest of his brethren, his dark blue hair pulled back in a ponytail and left to dangle and swish as the wind dictated. True to his old orc heritage, his skin was a bright, piercing green, which was easily noticed from afar. Along his square jaw hung strands of straggly blue hair, unkempt and ungroomed.

He cared little for his grooming. He always had more important things to think on. Especially now that she came into his life.

It was a day just like any other. Walking around the Valley of Trials, cursing his stupid luck and damning, quietly of course, those other orcs in his midst who trained the rest of his brethren and those idiotic trolls. Grooming was what he called it. Grooming them to be simple pawns of Thrall, the Warchief of the Horde.

He may be their Warchief. Thrall certainly wasn't his Warchief.

Then, as if fate wished to actually give his luck a turn for the better, she came bounding down the road. Lost and confused she was, a young smallish tauren girl. Of white fur and green, gentle eyes, he could tell from her demeanor several wonderful traits: She was simple. She was naïve. She was uncomfortable.

How easy it was to trick her! Her name was Chakwaina, a simple tauren shaman who wished to learn more of her lessons, but somehow had gotten lost traveling through Mulgore. She truly was an idiot, in his mind, for she had somehow emerged on the other side of the Barrens and into Durotar. Even worse yet, she emerged in his midst.

Perhaps it was out of sheer boredom, or perhaps out of some other unknown force, he had decided to help her. Insofar as helping was concerned, he simply wanted to pass the time. If she was annoying or impertinent, he'd have killed her. But oh! She was so much more. So much, much more!

The work was tawdry, the conversation lacking. She was as idiotic and naïve as he had guessed, but oddly enough, his power seemed to grow when around her.

His power

Years ago, he stood gazing up at the World Tree. That blasted mountain, Hyjal, was the final resting place of their last bastion of hope. If his Master was able to climb to that damned tree and destroy it, the world would be theirs. The world would be his.

They all knew how it ended. Archimonde was killed and the order which he had pledged his life was scattered. With that came the disappearance of his power. Oh his power, how he missed it so! At one time, he was able to rip the life out of a living creature, call fire from the sky, and send bolts of agony through the muscles of those who stood in his way.

But after Hyjal, this was not the case. No, instead he had to live the humble life of a relatively powerless orc. The only thing that saved him from being relegated to peonage was his intellect. At least he was well spoken. At least he could think. That was more than he could say for the tauren, Chakwaina, who had inadvertently stumbled into his life.

Yet while he traveled with her, he felt that heat rise in his chest. The tingling was back in his fingertips. Like a bear waking from a long hibernation, the old feelings of power began to manifest inside of his body. For years, they were dormant. Now, for whatever reason, they were emerging once more. It only occurred once she walked into his life. How could this be? What was so special about her??

Communing with his Masters spelled it out perfectly: She was a lover and practitioner of the naturalistic arts. She could speak with spirits and swore to protect nature. The very nature that had reared its head and shattered his life. But now she was carousing with him, a warlock, and she didn't even know it! He was crass with her, and abusive verbally. She was so trusting; she didn't pick up on most of it.

The belittling of her had somehow granted him some of his power back.

Bizarre as this sounds, it was the truth.

She believed he would help her get home. To lead her across the Barrens back to Mulgore, where she would live with her family once more and never see him again. But this could not happen! She was the key to regaining his power, and power was everything in this orcs mind. Through a truly ingenious and complex web of lies, the orc had managed to find out where she lived, who she lived with, and at the same time leave her thinking traveling to Mulgore would still have to wait. She was a prisoner in Razor Hill and she didn't even know it!

He couldn't help but smile at this thought. It was a dark, sinister smile. His right eye widened and dilated slightly, while his left eye squinted and focused. It was a disconcerting look.

The visit to her family, while she was busy at Razor Hill, was so simple and inconsequential in terms of general danger, it doesn't require much telling. One by one, the mother, the father, and the younger brother, were all dispatch and sealed into tiny, little shards. Their physical forms destroyed, he now possessed their spirits. Spirits and souls, these were powerful tools. Particularly when you wish to force someone to do something.

The tauren's life changed in a matter of hours. She went from naïve girl who was finding her way home, to captive and slave. He smiled to himself. It was so easy. Showing her the shards of her family, he threatened to destroy them and leave them in a veritable purgatory for the rest of their unnatural duration. She balked at him, and in one motion destroyed the shard of her father. One could almost feel the essence seep from the shard and flit into the air around them. He would no longer be returning to his Earth Mother, instead he would spend eternity lost on their Prime Material Plane. A captive, tormented and alone.

That was all it took for Chakwaina to give into his demands. A twisted, sickening ritual involving the bloodletting of the two and her consuming the meat of her deceased family sealed the contract. She pledged her mind, her body, but more importantly, her soul, to the twisted and corrupt warlock.

He could still feel his power growing. His power over her, and his power within himself.

Like one of his demonic minions, she was simply a means to an end. She had no worth. She had no true purpose. Now that he knew how to regain his power, if she did not work out he would simply find another naturalistic type to overpower. But she was so convenient and malleable. It would be a shame to go that route.

And there was something so enjoyable about making a comely tauren female suffer and cry.

She lay huddled in a ball in the corner behind him. Shivering, with tears matting the fur on her face. She had cried more in the last two days than any other time in her life. Her father was gone, her mother and younger brother were held captive in his grimy hands, and at the simplest transgression he would beat her and torture her. Agonizing pain would rip through her body at any moment, and he would abuse her until she begged for mercy.

He finished his tea and rose. Looking over at her, she continued to shiver and let out a gasp while she dreamed. He knew what she dreamt of, and he knew it was twisting her mind in knots. Yes, it wasn't just a physical contortion. He wished to make her mind into jelly, into something she cannot control, something she doubted.

She had no family to rely on. Now she only had herself. It was time to destroy her mind and will.

The orc walked quietly to another corner and lay in a hammock. He didn't sleep. All he needed was one righteous tauren to come barreling into the inn like a lummox to ruin the whole thing.

He instead chose to watch her shiver and whimper, for hours she would gasp softly in her corner, the whip marks and bruises on her skin slowly healing. Perhaps she had learned her lesson. He hoped she did not. He reveled in her suffering.

With a twisted smile, the orc brought his arms up behind his head and spent the rest of his night watching her. He was her Master, she was little more than a slave to him now.

It was power which the orc, Hathgrimm, loved more than anything.

He had a long path ahead of him. She would suffer the entire way.

Wretched little creature! Hathgrimm roared as he booted Chakwaina in the side, How dare you defy a direct order from me!

The docile and traumatized tauren female whimpered softly as the Orc towered over her and kicked her again. She stood at the base of a mountain, in which she had completed a line of work, which led her closer to attaining her fire totem, and she had defied his direct order.

The order, however, was something that not only was totally and morally wrong, but also sacrilegious. At the base of the mountain was a small stone, denoting her shamanistic faith, and served as a marker for those of her faith who wished to better themselves. Hathgrimm, the wicked and evil warlock who had captured her family, tortured her body, and swore to lead her through a life of misery and despair, had ordered her to spit on the stone.

She had bought herself some time, at first. She claimed it would be bad for her to spit on the stone, lest the troll at the top of the mountain hear of it and refuse to teach her. But now, her work at the mountain was done, and he knew she didn't need him anymore. After he ordered her to spit on the stone, she had balked, and he threatened her.

If you don't spit on that stone, I will beat you to within an inch of your life, slave.

His words echoed in the back of her head. She hated him. She wished someone would run by and lop his evil head off. But as she gazed quietly around the landscape of Durotar, there was no such help to be seen. She hesitated, and he kicked her hard, in the side of the face, and she fell to her side.

Get up then, wretched thing, and Ill punish you good and well.

W..wait, she whispered, panicking. But it was too late, he already was stomping down the mountainside.

No! Get your hind end moving, now!

Chakwaina had not heard her name in a few days now. He either called her slave or some other negative name. Cow, wretch, animal, you name it. She had come so close, so very close to freedom at one point. The two of them, after examining the presence of cultists in the nearby cave, had to return to Thrall.

Thrall. He was so strong and proud, and she knew he would protect her, if only she could get a message out to him. Even more, she noticed the shift in demeanor of Hathgrimm when he neared the Valley of Honor. No longer the proud, tramping warlock that she was used to seeing, he skulked around the building and through the interior. He even muttered a cursory greeting to Thrall, which she knew must have made his skin crawl.

While Hathgrimm was busy with other matters in the building, she whispered softly, Help me to Thrall, but the Warchief didn't hear her. The next moment, as she was about to whisper it louder, Hathgrimm grabbed her tail and jerked her away.

My apologies, Warchief, she must be staring in awe of your greatness, came the comment from Hathgrimm, and he rushed her out of the building. Two moments later, after they were out of eyesight, she was lying on her side and clutching her jaw, a recipient of a stern punch to her jaw.

Now, they were making their way back to the Crossroads. Hathgrimm was angry. He was beyond angry, she could tell, he was livid. She prayed to the Earth Mother that he simply beat her body, instead of destroying another member of her family.

It was only the third day, but already Chakwaina had fallen far beyond despair she was living in a veritable hell itself.

ER Emblem Award

This story has been highlighted as a Weekly Featured Story.

Gospel Lightfaith, May 01, 2007

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