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“Yes, thank you. Please, let me know when you’ll be needing more of those.”

The alchemist shook his client’s hand, and the client left. The moment he was out of sight, the Blood Knight began squirming and scraping at his side, but it’s impossible to scratch an itch in the dress plate armor he’d worn to the sale. He briefly contemplated jamming a dagger between the plates of steel, but thought better of it. Instead, he tried to suppress the irritation as he walked back to the semi-permanent room in the inn that he called home.

The Knight’s vacation away from curtailing pirate and nomad activity in Tanaris had been spent working, though mixing elixirs wasn’t nearly as exhausting as cutting up humans in the Light-forsaken desert. A nice, quiet night alone was-

As the Knight thought to himself, an elf stumbled out of the doorway to the tavern in front of him and collapsed in a slowly growing pool of his own blood on the steps.

The Blood Knight sighed and shuffled over to the face-down elf, grabbing the arm of the elf and attempting to flip the body over onto its back. However, the Blood Knight’s arm bumped into the blue-cloth-clad arm of another elf attempting to do the same thing. He looked up at the priest, and the priest looked back at him, and both dropped the wounded elf back into the puddle of blood.

“You,” Varendil said.

“You!” Saelar said.

“I assume you planned to strip this fellow of his things before you healed him?” Varendil asked, eyeing the pauldrons on his adversary’s shoulders.Varendil Dawnblade hated Saelar Dawnblade. After a falling out several decades before the wars, Varendil had returned to Silvermoon after its sacking only to find his father’s armor missing from the wreckage of his former home. This was expected, but what wasn’t expected was when he saw his cousin Saelar wearing the spaulders of that same armor a year later when both men came looking for any unclaimed assets from their family.

“I sure hope this guy’s badly hurt. If it turns out to be too much of a challenge for your skills, I’m sure you’ll run off and leave him to his fate.”

Saelar Dawnblade hated Varendil Dawnblade. The aforementioned ‘falling out’ was when Varendil, newly married and the father of a newborn girl, panicked at the weight of responsibilities and ran off to join the priesthood. The adolescent Saelar hadn’t taken it well. After Silvermoon fell, a newly tried-by-fire Saelar had found an undamaged set of shoulder armor in the ruins of his uncle’s home, and knowing they’d be going to Varendil otherwise, took them for himself. It wasn’t his fault they were perfectly suited to the one career prospect that came his way later; an experiment in harnessing Light energy his brother Mehlar got him into. After all, he’d be fighting in close combat, and it’s not like his cousin the priest needed them.

Varendil straightened his posture, and Saelar stood up straight, trying to ignore the itch.

The elf lying between the two groaned, and the priest blasted him with healing light apathetically while the Blood Knight channeled a quick heal of his own.

“I think I’ve got this, Saelar. Since I’m an actual healer, not a swordsman with barely enough intelligence to wiggle fingers.”

“Your father was a swordsman, Varendil, or have you forgotten? He gave his life for cowards like you in the Second War.” Saelar glanced down at his shoulder armor. “Looks like I’ve taken up his mantle. I’ll keep the Dawnblade family name going, whereas you can go follow in his footsteps and, y’know, die.”

“Yes, quite the achievements you have, cousin. Doing what, precisely? Slicing up trolls in Stranglethorn? Maybe you’ve served in the Ghostlands – it’s reeeeal spooky there.” The priest rolled his eyes, waggling his hands for emphasis with his last few words.

Inside the tavern, a commotion began brewing.

“Yes, you’re quite accomplished with your track record of hiding behind people in plate who are actually capable of accomplishing something.”

The priest growled and held up his hand, a signet ring on one finger. “Yes, Tirion Fordring and the Argent Crusade are quite grateful. Why don’t you ask them how much hiding I do?”

Saelar smirked. “I’ll pass. I’ll ask Aeryliss. I’m sure she can tell me how you ran up north, then came home and tried to act like you hadn’t abandoned her as a baby.”

The priest’s eyes flared and he growled. “Sorry, I don’t have time for this,” he said between clenched teeth.

Both Blood Knight and priest turned to walk away from the tavern. Each walked into the other, and at the impact, each snapped.

Varendil reacted more quickly, the contact making him reflexively shield himself. At the flash of light, Saelar jumped past him, drawing his sword and swinging back at his opponent. The priest dodged and sent a bolt of light toward the younger cousin, where it fizzled against Saelar’s Divine Shield. A burst of light issued from the Knight’s feet, and the priest stepped out of the consecrated ground before taking a moment to dispel the shield protecting his cousin.

The priest held out his hand and a brilliant missile issued forth. The Blood Knight ran in before swinging with a holy blast at the priest. And what was ostensibly an assassin came running out of the bar, tripped over the slowly dying man on the steps, and fell right between the two combatants, taking both hits. His body jerked this way and that before falling onto the glowing ground and beginning to sear against the burning Light there. The crowd that had pursued the assassin out of the bar crowded around the two combatants to see the spectacle.

“Wow… I mean yeah, he did try to kill this guy, but you two didn’t have to kill him,” one bystander said, scratching the back of his neck. A tauren druid waded through the crowd to pull the now-unconscious target’s body out of the pool of blood and heal him.

The crowd swarmed around the two fighters, several persons attending the body and a few more tending to the wounded target of the now-dead assassin. A tense Varendil scoured the swarm of people, but by the time the crowds parted, Saelar was nowhere to be found.


8 Responses to “The Dawnblade Family Name”

  1. 1 lanuriaparty April 14, 2009 at 9:48 PM

    Very Venture Bro-ish, which I am loving almost as much as you.
    You write fighting and battle scenes very well. Very jealous.

    • 2 Taylor April 15, 2009 at 12:00 AM

      Besides the fact that the line about not having to have killed the guy was read in my head by the voice of #24, I didn’t think this one was that Venture-y. Thank you for the paranoia that I’m humping their style.

      • 3 lanuriaparty April 15, 2009 at 8:17 AM

        It’s a good style and you write it very well! No shame in writing in a certain style.

        HP Lovecraft knocked off a lot of Poe’s work and no one complains. You have a style, you have great works. Don’t be ashamed it came from a TV show…people would kill to be able to write like you

        and by people, I mean me.

  2. 4 aeryllusion April 24, 2009 at 5:10 PM

    I’d just like to say that I thoroughly enjoy reading your stories. You should write more.

    I particularly enjoyed this one… and not just because you mentioned Liss =X

  3. 5 lionessa93 October 23, 2009 at 5:40 AM

    Wow. Awesome. Quite Enjoyable ^_^

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