Warcraft Fan Fiction ❯ The Cronicles of a Spy ❯ New Friends, New Enemies ( Chapter 6 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Istalri awoke to the sound of someone creeping closer to her, even half hung over, she was still quick on her toes. She opened her eyes when it stopped and a hand was gently placed on her shoulder, she glared up through the sun at the fel green eyes of the warlock that was used to drinking every night.
“Ah, so the stories of the rogue on the Alliance side aren’t all true, you can still awaken at one touch.” A sly smile crossed his lips, and she sat up. A flick of the ear told her they were the only two awake.
“What is it Nyhm? I know we’re on the tip of a continent and all, so it can’t be more than 5.” She yawned. “And, if you think that Alliance rogues are hard to wake up, maybe you should sleep with one more often.” She didn’t bother to turn her head when a resounding slap hit the back of her hand.
“What’s the matter, don’t like being told the truth? Without that girly of yours, you’d be in huge trouble with the ladies, they swarm all over you until they see the bolt of fire.” By this time, she had stood up, half spotting her lover, whom seemed to be sleeping at first glance. She knew better, but she didn’t let on; and actually leaned in, lightly grabbing his chin to make sure his eyes were locked on her.
“You may be the ‘pimp-lock’ you proclaim, but I’m not biting. You may have cut down some of the alliance before they got started, before they could become an asset. Really though, thank you for that, only the strong deserve to survive.” She pushed him back into a conveniently placed chair and turned around, only to hear the familiar Sizzling of magic, and dodged to the right. Instead of its intended target, the Immolate hit the tree across the courtyard, and burnt it to a crisp. “Now now, temper temper, what would the host of the party say when he finds all of his shrubbery burned to little more than a twig?”
His eyes widened, and what would have likely been a chaos bolt fizzled to smoke. “You...” She grinned at him, knowingly unarmed, but it didn’t matter for the moment. “If you ever come near me again, you’ll be not only burnt, but I’ll see to it that your ashes are sent to the twisting nether!” He turned and walked away, and she sat down in the very chair he’d been sitting in. Eyes closed, and she felt the warming touch of Vega’s hands.
“I do believe…I’ve made my first enemy here.” She chuckled, leaning her head into his stomach. “And I was sooo trying to be friends with them.” Her eyes opened to see a concerned face looking back at her, then tilted it down, noticing others waking up, or pretending to wake up. Those that were pretending either had a ghostly white face, or one that was hot with anger, the others spoke to her warmly in good morning, and some offered her a drink. Her mind was fogged still from the drinks, and their voices echoed, but the talk with the warlock had sobered her to near clarity.
A few hours later by the river, she felt eyes on her again, and turned to find the firey mage staring her in the face. Ista turned her head back to the water and skipped another cap across to the other side. She was fully expecting the firey mage to just start to throw fire at her, but instead she sat a few trees away.
“You feel that way? Lok’Tar Ogar, victory or death; honor in life, or die by the sword?” When she didn’t answer, she sighed. “I heard you talking to my lock...I heard what you said about him, and that’s what I thought too, when I first met him, I walked out on him when he invited me and a few friends over.” Now Ista’s eyes were on the mage, and an eyebrow raised questioningly, yet she still said nothing.
Another sigh came from the mage, followed by her standing. “Would you say something already?”
“My apologies, but when someone steals my breath with memories I have no right to share, I tend to remain quiet…Yes, I feel that way, I certainly wouldn’t be here if I wasn’t as strong as I was…” She turned back to the water. “To your memory, I give one of my own:
My Parents never sheltered me, though my father tried, my mother had soon left, we didn’t know where she had gone; only that she wasn’t with us. I know that the horde are at least on speaking terms with all of their races…but my life, I wasn’t welcomed by most of them. It wasn’t until I was assigned a…” Her eyes shifted to the mage, who had moved over to sit just to the left of her, so she didn’t have to speak as loud. “…Until I was assigned my path by the night elf leader, the moon priestess, and given my markings. Then they were forced to accept me as I was, and I moved to Stormwind on my own. Still I was treated as the Death knights were when they first declared peace with both sides.” She hadn’t realized that she had been tracing the markings with her fingers until she stopped retelling a bit about her past.
“I’ve spoken to Nyhm, he’s still not happy, used to having girls woo over him and such, I think you’re the first girl that was truly not interested in him, and now, I’m going to ask you why you’re not. It has to be a good answer-.”
“Logically it has to be a good answer because if it’s not you’re going to use that fire dragon spell you’ve been using the time and proximity to focus into existence, on me. Yes, I noticed, my hearing is just as good as yours is, despite one ear being cropped.” At the growl she chuckled. “Yes, I’ll answer your question. The reason I don’t like him, is because my heart already belongs to someone else. Oh sure, when I was younger, before that, I thought about all sorts of others. Orcs, Humans, Draenei, Blood Elves, Night Elves…hell, even Trolls, who we’re said to have ‘mutated’ from didn’t escape my fantasies…But I never found one that would treat me as a being, and not a monster, until Vega. He truly cared about me, and was…What’s the word…Ah well, he tended to me when I was treated badly, and is the one who healed my ear after it was cut off.”
“Isn’t that just his job, to heal the injured?” Istalri looked at her thoughtfully, biting her lip as she thought, then sighed, receding to the water again to skip another rock. “Well?” The voice invaded her senses again, and she resigned to answer this time.
“It’s…different. Here, I’ll give you an example. One human mage, being as stuck up as they are in their own section of stormwind, in their tight fitting robes and trying to make their rack’s look bigger with some enchantment, you know the type I’m sure. She decided to insult me, granted, her insults were correct, I was a traitor to the king, and here I sit now as proof. But to come so close to the truth, to have no grounds, I hit her, and broke her jaw, pushing her back through her own portal. Vega wasn’t there to see it, but the most he did was bandage her up and let her wallow in her own pain until I told him to either kill her or heal her.” She blinked to herself, she was telling the truth, to someone she just met...Gods, she must have gotten smashed harder then she realized last night. “But, if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back, I have a tournament to prepare...” She stood, bowed her most courteous bow, and turned to leave, stopped by a hand on hers.
“I have the spell to transport you to Orgimmar…no charge? Just gather your male and mount, then go.” A smile creased the half blood’s face, and she walked back into view, realizing from the sizzling that she was going to have to put on an act, and dodged a firebolt from behind her, that enough to spook the hawkstrider to her side and Vega to the other, though she looked at him with eyes of confidence, not that of fear. Another convenience, the portal opened in front of them, and a bolt was aimed in a way that would have chased them into the portal. Instinctively all three of them ‘ran’ through, and the portal closed behind them. Once through, and sitting on their rumps, Istalri cracked up laughing.
“No charge my ass! If that act wasn’t worth 5 gold I don’t know what was.” Vega looked at her like she was crazy, but it only made her crack up even more. It took a few minutes, but she managed to regain her composure, but she finally managed, and stood up, walking down the road with the two following her. She said nothing, but her outfit was drawing stares. It dawned on her that Cel didn’t know the way, but with him following her, she looked at Vega, he was waiting for her to speak, his eyes watching her while his arms were behind her back.
Finally she broke the silence. “How much of the conversation did you hear?”
“To the point where you said someone else had your heart, then I left.”
Silence followed again, and continued until she reached the door of their quarters, stopping to bend and pick up the big crate of entries, she’d have to sort them out and have a drawing for teams out in the open later. Opening the door, she set them on the table and walked to the chairs. Sitting in one, she motioned the way for Cel to go, he would be sharing the stable with Vega’s charger. Her eyes relit as Vega moved the chair beside hers and sat down, placing a hand over the top of hers.
“So…who is he?”
She looked at him dumbfounded, mouth hung agape while he looked into her eyes seriously. She broke from the hand grasp to kiss his lips and breaking it only when she was out of breath, watching his eyes, and cupping his face in her hands.
“You should have stayed a little longer, dearest angel, you would know that that man, is you, despite this jealousy that you’ve had lately…” She blushed under her skin, and looked away. “You’re right, I more than like you...and you’ve been around glyphs to know that they don’t glow unless the heart is pounding fast. I love you, Vega, and while it’s sad that it took over hearing a conversation to get me to speak up…it’s the truth...” She sighed. “Pathetic, I know, but...”
He put a finger to her lips. “We’ve been sleeping in the same bed for the past week or more, you don’t think I noticed the heat of your body against mine, and how fast your heartbeats when we’re together, or how your cheeks flush…or how you mumble my name in your sleep and snuggle closer to me? Girl I’m not blind, nor am I stupid…but making sure that I’m the one that you have in mind and it’s not the proximity of our bodies that is making you think of me; is what’s important. I braced myself for disappointment when I heard the conversation, and even just now, yet I see there was no need.”
Her one long ear folded, and she squirmed under his gaze, listening to his words, she blushed further. “Two things then, Vega…one: Don’t ever say those things in public…and two: do you return those feelings?” Unlike him, she hadn’t prepared herself for this talk, nor the ideal that she would ever be having this talk, never being so…exposed. Well…I guess we’ll find out how he feels now… She swallowed and tightened her throat, waiting for his response.
He relaxed, and noticed her getting tense, then watched her, he sighed, and took her hands in his. “My little bird, I have to wonder if you were listening. Do you think that I would say those things, endearingly, and not return your feelings? Of course I do.”
Hours later, she sat with her head on the table, her eyes closed, she was napping over her work. The Numbers had been set by the names that were given, they would randomly choose their own teams, all but she and Vega at least. Now she was catching some shut eye before the tests for both of them came to the surface, though she awoke to the slight touch against her back, instinctively she reached for the dagger that wasn’t there, nor was her belt, and she cursed under her breath. What stood behind her was no more than an image, but one she knew well. The doors had been frozen to the frames, and she glared at the glowing eyes of the child she had once given advice to.
“Arthas,” she hissed his name, and stood, she still had to look up at him, but with her standing it was less of a stretch. “What do you want, you fool.”
The chilling voice laughed at her, and her eyes saddened, but she kept her composure other than that. He motioned through a death gate that appeared, and she shook her head. The eyes narrowed, and then the voice spoke instead of laughing. “You are still not ready to accept your fate, fine, but one way, or another, you will be mine in the end.”
She took a deep breath, the air was contaminated with his aura, and it made the room cold. “Your minion took my blood, your filth took lives that I might have called friends, your lies took my truth, and yet, here I still stand. I am PROOF, that the words that you failed to hear are true, but that’s the way they must be. One way or the other, In the end, Arthas Menethil, you will bleed by my hands.” As she spoke, a heat took the room in the form of a red energy that surrounded her hands and took her body in stride. She placed one hand against the chest of the image, right where the heart would be, and pushed through it, turning it back to dust. She drew back her hand, and as the red glow faded, she looked at the palm. In her hand, there was a shard of the armor she had just punctured, and she crushed it before going to the doors and ensuring that the others were still asleep or resting.
To her surprise, she had opened the door just before the blood elf paladin had charged into it, and sent him into the chair she had been sitting in. “Tianara…and just what do I owe the displeasure of this visit?”
“Thrall wants to see you, and you wouldn’t answer your door.”
“It’s called something called resting after finishing the brackets and setup, maybe you’ve heard of it.”
“Ha-ha. Very funny, now, let’s go.” He grabbed her arm with one unguarded hand, and earned a pencil through his palm for his trouble, he immediately let go, howling in his displeasure, and looked back at her with a glare. With his good hand he swung a punch directly at her face, and with her reflexes, she just ducked, making him break his hand against the wall.
“Idiot. I’m not ready, would YOU go see the lord in these clothes?” She motioned to the brightly colored getup that she’d been given, and walked through the door into her room. She left the door open, but stripped back to her underclothes, then dressed in the darkest clothes that she could find, even though it was a sunny day. She still felt the chill of the lich king upon her, and swore she would check her room for any of his dead rats when she got back. Biker gloves completed her look, and she ducked another punch with the same broken hand as she stepped back in the same room, absently stepping over the slush that had been made with the visit.
They walked through the city, having him occasionally try to relieve some of his anger with her along the way, usually forgetting that his hand was broken and trying to attack her with that. While on the road she was courteous enough to grab his wrist to keep him from hurting it further against any other object, and once when she noticed it had started to bleed, she grabbed it with her upper arm and bandaged it. This got a grunt for a reply, but he didn’t try anything from that point on. They were about to the Valley of Wisdom, and she sighed, breaking the silence.
“Any Idea what this visit is about?”
“You left your place without an escort yesterday.”
“Ah, not true, Heja was our escort.”
“Regardless…It was not an approved vacation.”
She sighed again, so this would be one where she got yelled at, well, at least it was something that showed they cared that she was there. The rest of her walk was in silence, and she kept herself composed and proud, walking behind the taller male until they got to the halls, then she bolted around him, and forward, pulling the lever to close the doors behind her. She continued this pattern with all the inner doors, grinning as she found herself alone with the king. She bowed deeply, then looked around, pulling a stool over with her foot.
“M’lord, may I speak freely with you?” She asked, her eyes met his, and she echoed his pose, even as he leaned forward with interest.
“Seeing as I don’t have to keep my guard up apparently, I’ll hear you…This time.”
She smiled at him, a brilliant smile that seemed to belong to a child. “Then let me tell you a story.” Her face grew serious. “When I was young, I was told that I would do great things when I grew older, and since that point, I have seen things, things as both sides joint together. I understand that you and Varian have your differences, and I would like to be the person to see that happen. My original plan was to see the king die by your hands, as he had tried to do so many times to you. Now I wish to see him fall by my own, and with that being the case, I would be the one to see the new alliance as one you could join sides with.” Her voice spoke with command he’d never seen, and yet she was still as kind as she could be. “This is what I would like you to consider, if and or when, we’re in the ring together.” She paused though, thinking, clearly, and her next sentence was back to the soft girl that had smiled at him. “Sire, I will not leave your team to being random, if you so wish to have a healer on your team…say they’re name and it shall be removed from the random ballots.”
She tilted her head as she got the rousing laugh from the orc, he had a fierce grin on his face. “I need no healer, nor anyone, I will wait at the top, and IF, you and your healer, I presume you’re added in already, make it to me, and win, then I shall bow to you as the new ruler.” The glint in his eye told her he was still laughing, and that he would keep his word. She nodded and stood.
“Oh, and as to my un-escorted welcome party in Silvermoon. It was not my intention to spook you, or your guards, nor was it my idea to leave, but I can’t seem rude and uppity to the blood elves, lest they might think I’m as egotistic as they are.” She saluted, then turned and moved the lever again, kicking the stool back in place as she walked through the door, but she could hear the king’s laughter behind her. Tianara had given up on the outer doors, so she walked to the Valley of Honor, where she knew of the pond, and sat around it, watching the fish swim by, until she saw an odd one, and watched it. She could have sworn that it winked at her, and it splashed water at her as it swam away. She’d heard rumors of an old fish that was hard to catch, but she didn’t remember the name. She remembered however, that she thought it was just the locals telling lies to get her to sit around for hours on end. Standing, she dusted her pants off, and walked back to her quarters, which happened to be in the same section of the place she now called home. Her eyes closed for the moment while she thought of the day’s events, and she smiled to herself.
Two blocks from home, she was shaken from her day dream by an arrow loosed in front of her, clearly not meant to hit her, but enough to catch her attention, she looked over to the source of the arrow, a bow in the hand of a blood elf rogue, and she recognized his face almost immediately. A smile crept over her face.
“Yo, Val,” She raised a hand in greeting, and he put the bow back upon his back, two axes at his side.
“I’ll be damned…Istalri?” he laughed at her, slapping his knee even. “I should have known you were serious when you said you’d be switching sides soon.”
She wrinkled her nose at him, dismissing his claim. “Yeah, and you’re the bastard that cut my ear off for lying to him while we were alone in ravenholt. If you ever call me a liar again you’ll find yourself in a world of hurts.” She let her hands clench into fists, then walked onward to her quarters, but he followed her.
“Okay, so you weren’t lying, but you’re still a half breed-” he didn’t have time to finish his sentence, he had to duck as a punch came aimed right at his head, but he didn’t count on the kick that came after it, which pushed him back onto his rear, one of her feet against his throat while she balanced on her hands.
“I am what I am, but you utter that slur, and I’ll make it so you never say another word.” She bent her elbows, then pushed back, hopping back to her feet. “I trust you signed up for the tournament, in which case, I’ll see you there. Be prepared.”
As she walked home, she let her shoulders slump, both the unwelcome visit, losing the paladin and putting the rogue in his place, had wiped out most of her strength, and it was still the day time. She walked through the door to find Vega cleaning up the water from the Ice that had melted, and she yawned a bit while watching him. That’ll be hard to explain… As she started to open her mouth, he looked up at her, and her courage melted in his gaze. He nodded at her, then continued his work. One of the side effects of that energy expulsion, she’d learned, was un natural heat, that both felt and smelled like her. Thankfully, he didn’t ask any questions, and had opened the windows to air out the place. As he stood, she walked over to him and wrapped her arms around him, holding him in a warm embrace before walking to the bed and flopping down for a nights rest, Spooky’s crystal thrumming against her chest.
Eyes seemed to watch her from every direction, and rightly so. She’d chosen to demolish Stormwind, and she felt as if she were floating over the landscape. Looking down, she found a bird of fire, not Cel, but the very ideal of her namesake, a phoenix, staring back at her. She tilted upwards, and the bird followed suit, leaving a bright trail behind it. It was only until she left the air above the surface of the water that the bird dissappeared, and it struck her that she was the very bird that her eyes met.
The travel continued to a floating island in the sky, much like those found in Nagrand of Outland, where she landed, and felt the firey pelt of the bird leave her, turning into flecks of feathers as she walked towards the formidable fortress. Though it was strong, it was beautiful in her eyes, Sweeping banners and red topped spires, while the bricks themselves were an ashen grey. Each window along the spires were outlined in a cross between climbing roses and Lilies, and before the gates were bushes of flowers she didn’t know the names of. The guards greeted her with respect, opened the gates and the door for her, and she found herself escorted by a person of each race.
As she passed a mirror, she found her hair a silky silver, and her eyes had lightened to the point of almost being white as well. Atop her head sat a more defined tiara, much like the circlet she had been given. Gold in color, the tiara had a tangle of feathers and petals, that she guessed were from a rose, shaped within the soft metal, while in the center of the piece held a single cardinal ruby that had been cut, delicately, into the shape of a blooming morning rose. The moment in the mirror passed, and she walked down a hall lit with magic spheres the color of the cold fire that burned in the eyes of many death knights. She heard one of the voices ask her a question in a tongue that she couldn’t decipher, and she responded in kind, then took a seat in one of the five thrones that lined the back wall. Soon the others joined her, one by one. The likeness of Thrall joined her on the right, while a human Girl she didn’t know the name of took the left, Followed by one of the Thunderbluff leaders, she guessed, by the look of the Tauren’s outfit, who took the last seat on the right, and the Moon Priestess took the last seat on the left. Her hands folded in her lap and she sighed in relief.

She awoke at dusk, eyes still groggy, but Vega’s smiling face shook her out of her slumber quick enough. Sitting up, she remembered that she’d slept in her clothes, and took his hand as he lead her to the table. Before her was dinner, Talbuck roast, Cranberries that had been canned and were sweet, and fresh bread, while Dalaran’s finest wine sat in two glasses on either side. Candles kept the table from being hidden in the shadows, and as she sat, he pushed her chair in.
“What’s the occasion?” Her eyes looked up at him, and he smiled back at her, a charming smile that warmed her body.
“I’ve become a full fledged Paladin here now, Just as you can, I can go around freely, wear my weapons, and not be afraid.”
“What Wonderous news!” She laughed a little, then took a solemn glance back at him. “I knew you would, that it would be a piece of cake for you.”
At his nod, she softened further, reaching across the table to where he’d placed his hand, rubbing her thumb over it as she took it within her own. “Something…isn’t right?” He looked up at her, shook his head.
“Yes, something isn’t right…You knew, yes, how you knew, you still haven’t told me, and now that we’re together, I think I should know.”
His request stunned her, and she looked down at her plate. “After dinner, lets not darken the mood upon this joyful day.” Though he didn’t respond, he said grace, as was in his order, and began to eat, they went through the rest of the meal without speaking.
Her eyes closed as he took away the plates, one hand to her forehead. Her jaw clentched and unclenched as she thought, and as he sat back down, only then did she open her eyes. He sat, waiting for her explanation on how she knew what would happen, and she was going to have to drag this out. Perhaps he would get bored and stop wanting to know about how it came about. She took one last deep breath to ready herself, then began:
“To understand why I know, I’ll have to tell you a bit more than what you wish to hear. I will try to make it as short as I possibly can. My heritage: From my mother’s side, I have many priests, many druids, a few warriors and paladins. From my father’s side, I have Priests, warriors, and Druids. The Common there, of course, is Priests and warriors. Now, from my mother’s side, there was appearently in my heritage, one of the high priestess’ from the sunwell. She was considered a seer.” He’d perked up as she’d started to single one person out. “She had visions of a sort, and some of these abilities carried down through the generations. However what she saw, were disasters, and never focused around herself, so as such, she couldn’t do anything about them. Most of the people they passed down, were selfish, and couldn’t see anything beyond their own nose, quite litterally. The only thing they could see was themselves.” She paused again, this time to take a drink of the wine, aware of his shifting. “On my father’s side…” As she spoke she set the glass down. “…The druids saw the rain, the shifting of the wind, and the call of the earth around them, and expanded further to the point where they could speak to the trees and the animals as well as the clouds in the sky. There was one there that held the rare element of fire, which was the complete opposite of what a druid stood for. He found his place battling the creatures that sprouted from the nightmares in the emerald dream, shortly after his soul mate gave birth to their child.” She smiled, satisfied with the drawn out story, he was looking a bit bored, and it was time to get back to herself, she hated to dwell on her own abilities, that’s why they were so well hidden, even to herself. “Now…as for myself. I too inherited the seer trait…as much as I hate to admit it…I can’t see anything in the near future that has to do with myself, unless it emcompasses others as well.” She looked at him, his eyes had lit up with curiousity, and as she thought he would, he interupted her.
“So, the way you knew about how easy it would be, was that you saw it?” She nodded the affirmitive, and he laughed. “Well, at least now I know I’m not crazy.” She raised an eyebrow at him questioningly, and as he stopped chuckling, he spoke again. “ Sometimes when you sleep, you talk, love.” She blushed, she wasn’t sure how much she spoke during her visions in her sleep, but she couldn’t help but stammer over the revelation.
She cleared her throat after a few moments, still blushing. “Do you want to know the full thing, or not?” When he straightened, effected by her now serious mood, she continued. “From my father, I gained my name, and from my father’s line, I gained my second gift.” She held out her hand to the candle, she blew them out with the movement, and took a candle out of the box, replacing the burnt candles, one by one. He watched her, and she smiled again, this time apologetically for taking so long. When everything was set, she closed her eyes and focused, when he was about to ask what she was doing, she spoke a single word. “Fire”, of course the candles sprang to life at their tips, burning a blue green for a moment before turning to their typical reds, oranges and yellows. She opened her eyes, though they were weary from the amount of energy it took even for just that little bit. He was staring wide eyed at the candles, and then he looked at her, and with mouth agape, snuffed the candles.
“Can you do that again?” His breath came shallow, and she shook her head.
“Twice in one day is nearly impossible…especially when the first time is caused by an evil sort of ice that tries to corrupt everything it touches.” She looked even more tired than she had before, and his eyes widened further. She laid her head on her arms, resting on the table while she watched him, but slowly her eyes started to drift back down to where her dreams began to take over, and though she tried to mouth an apology, a yawn came out instead. Her vision blurred between her lashes, though she saw the figure that she knew was Vega, stand up, walk over, and manuver her out of the chair, and carry her out of the room. She felt the soft bed beneath her, felt the shoes and belt come off, as did the outer clothes, and the last thing she remembered from the day was snuggling up against him, looking into his eyes.