Colder than the embrace of death

Take a look into the life of a not-so-ordninary servant of the light!

Topic/Postby Lilandris » 19 Feb 2016, 05:02

Colder than the embrace of death

So today I have something new for you. A story featuring the Armored Sister, Kynidris :D It is well overdue that I'd shed some light on her past too, and not just her kid sister. So here it is, a nugget from her past, hope you enjoy! :D And feel free to comment ^^

Colder than the embrace of death

Wintergarde Keep - prior to the assault on Naxxramas

Kynidris shivered, her breath turning into vapor from the cold Northrend weather. She adjusted her scarf and helmet, keeping vigilant eyes on the town below from her position on the battlements. It was eerily quiet, save for the howling wind or the occasional rattle of armor plates. She sighed heavily, she hadn't gotten any proper rest for two days. She resisted the urge to chat with the other soldiers present, in Wintergarde there was little room to be lax while on duty. She decided to grit her teeth slowly instead for a moment. A few moments later the silence was broken by the sound of an armored person approaching from behind.
"Master Sergeant Len!"
Kynidris turned on the spot, stamping her hoof and snapping to attention.
"Commander Wyrrmbane, sir!"
"Report, soldier."
"No signs of Scourrge activity for the time being, the village ruins are quiet, as are the fields beyond. Though I'd say it's safe to assume it won't last."
Commander Wyrmbane grunted and nodded. "What does your gut tell you?"
She was a little surprised by the question. The commander usually trusted his own gut over others'.
"Within the hour, tops."
"Hmh, I was thinking that too."
"And sir, if I may?"
"Speak, Master Sergeant."
"The weatherr in the distance looks parrticularly nasty and it's coming this way. I'm inclined to say it doesn't appear to be completely natural either. I would advise we prepare for Frost Wyrrms or some form of darrk magic."
The Commander looked thoughtful for a moment, rubbing his chin.
"Get me a spyglass."
Kyni turned to her right, shouting over to the rest of her squad.
"Scout! Bring us your spyglass."
The dwarven rifleman skipped out of his position and jogged over to them, presenting his spyglass, saluting, then getting back to his post without a word. The Commander extended the spyglass, stepped up on the crenellations and looked at the weather in the distance, beyond Naxxramas.
"Hmh, I'd say that's a good call, Master Sergeant. Head up the hill and inform the magi. I must continue my inspections."
"Sir, yes sir!"
Kyni saluted and immediately marched off to the mage tower.

----

Back at her post, she couldn't help but think the Commander had been testing her earlier. She smiled at the thought. It was nice to be noticed, much less having the commander value and approve of her advice. But maybe that's what makes a good leader, one who isn't afraid to listen to those in the lower ranks. She looked over at her squad. She didn't have a bad word to say about any of them, but she felt maybe she ought to listen to them a little more than she'd done so far.

She turned her gaze back to the wintry cloud in the distance, it had no doubt come much closer since she mentioned it to the Commander. Her stomach rumbled. She hadn't eaten since she woke from her rest this morning. That was nine hours ago. It was getting colder too, and starting to snow, and the sunlight was almost gone. She heard a deep creaking of wood from a structure in the village below. Then she heard what sounded like rain on the rooftops at first, but a second later it dawned on her that it was something much worse, and her heart skipped a beat. She bellowed to everyone present.
"Ice Blizzard! Sound the alarm!"

She hunkered down to the wall in front of her and raised her shield above her as a roof, as did all the other soldiers that were equipped with shields. The rest clung as close to the walls as they could, attempting to shelter themselves as best they could from the sharp ice about to pour from the heavens. And not a moment later it began, pelting the keep with ice. The alarm was raised, a loud fog horn echoing through the keep and beyond. The ice was loud, it crashed against their shields with great force, and they could only pray it wouldn't last for long. It was debilitating to be stuck in this weather for more than a few minutes, as you couldn't move, and your shield arm would get tired from holding a shield raised against such forces for too long. Some of the ill-equipped soldiers began to succumb to the deadly ice. A couple of the elven bowmen slumped over dead, Kynidris gritted her teeth at the sight, steeling herself to remain stalwart. Blizzards were the one thing she hated the most. The blizzard subsided after maybe five minutes, it would seem the magi had intervened to block the dark magic. It was quite the relief, but that relief was short-lived. Only a few moments later they heard a loud chilling roar from the skies. Frostwyrm! Things were about to get -very- hairy.
"Light help us..." She exclaimed in a sigh through her teeth. She drew her sword and readied herself for battle.
Commander Wyrmbane yelled from his tower on the rear fort.
"Prepare the harpoon guns! Time to kill ourselves a wyrm, men! For the Alliance!"
Kynidris felt as if her heart was hardening, bravery returning, a grin forming on her lips. He's not called 'Wyrmbane' for nothing she thought to herself as she raised her sword in the sky.
"Forr the Alliance!" She bellowed at the top of her lungs, as every soldier in the keep joined in on the battle cry.
"Undead are congregating in the village! Send them back to their graves!"
Kynidris barked at her squad.
"Rifles and bows at the walls, the rest of you come with me!" She ran towards the main gate, with the rest of her squad in tow. "Shields up, swords ready!" She narrowed her eyes at the approaching packs of ghouls and skeletons, clenching her sword tightly in her right hand and hissing to herself. "The 7th Legion won't move an -inch-, Arthas."

As the crowd of scourge made their way up the slope towards them, rifle shots and arrows began thinning them out, though there were no shortage of scourge for the phalanx at the gate to cut down. As a ghoul leapt in front of Kynidris, she thrust her shield out with all her might, connecting with the ghoul's bony face, sending its now-broken body backwards into its comrades, tripping another ghoul over. More came at them and she yelled for the troops to hold the line, roaring as she lunged and stabbed her sword at the enemy, cutting several of them down with relative ease. Ghouls were easier to fight than people with swords and armor.

Another roar came from the skies as the Frostwyrm descended upon the keep. It would make mere men scatter and shiver, but the 7th Legion were the grittiest soldiers in The Alliance. They would not budge so easily. The wyrm spewed its frosty breath at the soldiers as it passed over, it was colder than the embrace of death itself. Kynidris was shivering badly, even though her shield had protected her from the worst of it, icicles forming on her armor and she struggled to speak. They were fortunate enough that there was a short respite from the packs of undead, so they could shake off the cold at least a little. Kynidris slammed her sword against the edge of her shield twice then growled. "Takes more than that to take us out!"
"I've had worse in Dun Morogh!" sneered a dwarven lady in the group.
Commander Wyrmbane yelled from the fort again.
"Magi and riflemen, concentrate fire on the wyrm! Harpoons prepare to fire, on my order!"

The wyrm circled around to prepare another pass, and as it approached, a hail of bullets and fireballs came at it. The wyrm roared in pain from a multitude of direct hits, focusing its freezing breath on its assailants this time.
"Harpoons aim for the torso!"
The wyrm passed over the keep again, spewing frosty death at them.
"Fire!"
The harpoons all fired in unison, almost all of them penetrating the wyrm's torso plates and causing it to crash to the ground with a pained shriek, though unfortunately in the middle of the courtyard.
"All soldiers on the wyrm! Magi repell the scourge!"
Kynidris and her squad moved away from the gate and closed in on the frostwyrm, still roaring and shrieking in pain, seemingly enraged now. It swiped it's big claws, throwing aside several soldiers, and crushing and slicing several more. Pretty soon, Kynidris stood face to face with the abomination, glaring at it over the edge of her shield. The wyrm roared long and loud at her, she clenched her teeth and narrowed her eyes. The wyrm brought its claw down at her, but she dodged aside in time, delivering a counter attack to its wrist. The wyrm did not relent in its attacks however, and kept swiping and clawing at her. She did her best to get out of the way or block the attacks, but at this pace she wasn't going to hold out for long, unless she could gain the upper hand somehow. The wyrm snapped its jaws at her, and she took the opportunity to swing her shield arm at it, connecting with the side of its head with tremendous force. The wyrm staggered away, roaring in pain once more. It reared up, causing some of the harpoons to either snap or lose their hold.

Commander Wyrmbane joined the fray now, charging at the wyrm with his sword raised and a loud battle cry. The wyrm came back down on all fours, bringing a claw down towards the Commander, though he expertly jumped out of the way like it was nothing, then delivered a deep stab to its torso through the cracks in its armor plating. He immediately retracted the sword and retreated out of the way in preparation for the counter attack. The wyrm shrieked again, so loud that windows broke and soldiers had to cover their ears. Even the Commander was a little dazed by the noise and was swept aside by the back of a claw. Kynidris' ears were ringing and she lost her balance for a moment. Unfortunately it was all the wyrm needed to grab her in its other claw, then flapping its big wings to take off. The final harpoon snapped off as it flew off, though it tugged the gravely wounded wyrm enough to unbalance its flight.

Kynidris could hear the troops cheering as the wyrm retreated, though she only wished her plight was over as theirs was. But no such luck for her as she was stuck in the wyrm's clutch. The wyrm couldn't fly very far for its wounds, and came crashing down into a forest a good distance south of Wintergarde. Serendipity was on Kynidris' side, as the claw of the wyrm protected her from the worst of the impact, and as they skid to a halt she managed to wrest herself from the abomination's grip, wasting no time to attempt to finish it off. The wyrm made a futile snap of its jaws at her, but were met with the shield once again. She slashed her sword over its eye, then delivered a stab into its neck. The wyrm wailed its dying breath as it slumped down dead in the snow. In its death, the magic sustaining it was expelled from the body. The raw dark magic taking forming a thick snow storm. And to Kynidris' dismay, her sword was stuck in the dead body's neck, and she was unable to pull it out. She could see silhouettes shuffling in the storm, no doubt ghouls and skeletons. She gave her sword a few more desperate tugs, but it wouldn't budge.
"Damnation! Fine, I don't need a sword to send you back to your graves!" She snarled and clenched her shield firmly in her hand. "Come at me then!"
The pack of scourge descended on her, the first skeleton to reach her received a harsh slam with the shield, scattering the bones over the snow. Kynidris immediately rotated to her right, giving a ghoul a firm punch with the edge of the shield, cracking its skull open and making it drop to the ground. She roared loudly with battle lust. The pack didn't look too large, but there seemed to be more undead stragglers moving in on her position as she fought on.
"Come on! There's enough for all of you!" Bravado seemed to be the only thing left in her that she could draw on for strength, she could feel exhaustion looming, and it would mean the end for her. Her heart beat faster as she smacked and slammed more and more undead coming at her from all sides, fortunately not in large numbers at a time. They seemed too mindless to coordinate, uncontrolled and wild maybe. She felt rage and anger building inside her, she refused to go down like this. She was freezing in the harsh storm too, yet in the deepest reaches of her soul she felt fire brewing. She kept on going, roaring and growling as she swung her shield and fist at her assailants. Then suddenly, she felt like she was consumed by something from within.
"Fire! Destruction! Burn, you fiends!" She heard herself shout, but it was as if it happened by itself, without her impulse. Her arms and her shield caught fire and she gritted her teeth. More scourge came, but they were easily repelled by fiery, concussive force, and after a short while there were nothing but singed and burning bodies left around her. She fell to her knees in the snow and the fire dissipated.
"Damn you Arthaaaaaaassss!" She yelled to the heavens, panting heavily and catching her breath. She'd sustained a wound to her right arm in the fray which she now felt a growing pain from. She was getting colder, her stomach rumbled in a snarky reminder of how long it had been since she'd eaten. She'd lost her ration pack during the flight, and it was going to be a long walk back to Wintergarde.
With pure determination and willpower she trudged through the snow. She couldn't see far in the storm, but by way of the wyrm's landing, she was fairly sure she was moving in the right direction. She clenched her teeth all the way, trying her best not to shiver or succumb to the cold, she prayed silently that she wouldn't suffer frostbite or worse. She was thankful that the Scourge seemed to keep their distance, for whatever reasons. She just kept walking, and walking, clutching her wounded arm as she marched onward.

At last, she could see Wintergarde ahead, keeping her weary eyes peeled for scourge, so she wouldn't be caught off-guard. She marched onwards the last little way. The village was dead silent once again as she walked through it. She hauled herself up the slope to the keep proper, the troops on guard shocked at the sight of the familiar draenei lady coming out of the storm. They obviously wasn't expecting to see her again after she'd been carried off by the wyrm. She looked as battered as can be, much of her armor and her shield black and singed from the fire, and with several dents all over. She didn't look at the guardsmen, just kept walking, straight for the inn where a warm fireplace awaited. She kicked the door open and hobbled inside. The inn fell completely silent as she entered, save for a few shocked gasps of pleasant surprise. They all sat frozen as she walked over to the counter, eyeing the singed armor with dumbstruck wonder. Kynidris lifted her helmet off with her shield arm, letting the helmet clatter to the floor, then she looked at the innkeeper with dark, weary eyes. And with an equally dark and gruff voice she spoke.
"Get me a fucking meal. -Now-." She grinded her teeth, wincing a little from the pain in her arm. She turned to the rest of the room, meeting the stares of the other soldiers. "And will one of you dolts get me a fucking medic, or do I have to go get them myself?!"
The dwarf scout from her own squad, who was sat closest to the door, stumbled out of his seat, almost tripping over as he ran out the door posthaste. Kynidris dragged her hooves as she walked slowly over to the fireplace. She stopped by an open chair, finally releasing her grip on her shield, making it fall to the floor with loud noise. She slumped down in the chair, wincing in pain again from her wound and completely exhausted. In the back of the locale, slow clapping began, quickly spreading to the rest of the room into full blown applause and cheers. She mustered a warm smile at the other soldiers. She couldn't be happier to be back, though she was unable to show it to its full extent. Their cheers made her feel as warm as the cozy fire in the fireplace.
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Lilandris
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Topic/Postby zerkesh » 21 Feb 2016, 14:07

Perfect reading to accompany my breakfast, munching down on a piece of bacon as I read the "Get me a fucking meal" part!

As for criticism the only thing I can think of is that you like the word "She" as an opener to sentences too much, try varying up the sentence structure so you don't end up having 5 sentences in a row starting with the same word ^^
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zerkesh
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Topic/Postby Lilandris » 21 Feb 2016, 17:36

Yeah you're right. I think I have a tendency to do that. Thanks for pointing it out :)
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