It didn’t take long for Bregan to recount the previous day’s events, though with how long the day had dragged on, it seemed as though it should have. His words were heartfelt and raw, but Rae gave no indication of her opinion on the situation, or whether she would help them. When Bregan finished, she remained silent, then looked toward the bundle in the corner, which had not moved since they’d entered the cave.
“Cheota would not have sent you if she didn’t believe I could help, but I have a situation of my own here. A dear friend of mine has been poisoned by Silith, Queen of the spiders in Webwinder Hollow,” Rae spat to the side, turned her gaze back toward Bregan and Thratar, and scowled. “The antidotes I’ve gathered from the other, smaller spiders, do nothing but slow the advance of her more deadly poison. I need to go in there and murder the lousy arachnid, harvest her poison, and bring it back to make an antidote.” Rae turned to face Bregan, who stiffened under her intense gaze.
“I understand your plight, and I would certainly like to help pay the Grimtotems back for some of the scars they’ve given me, but I cannot leave my friend to die. Your friend will likely survive for a time, otherwise they would have killed her in the raid, whereas my friend barely has a day left,” Rae finished, her voice quiet, and she bowed her head.
“Why have you not killed the beast yourself? You seem more than able,” Thratar grumbled, and grudgingly admitted, in a roundabout way, that she had bested him earlier. Rae gave him a predatory smile in return, but her delicate brow drew down in frustration.
“I need someone to watch my back when we go in there. She’s surrounded by many other spiders, all willing to protect their Queen. I might be able to kill her, but I likely wouldn’t survive the harvesting if they massed and attacked.”
Thratar nodded, and then looked to Bregan, whose expression mirrored the Blood Elf’s in regards to frustration.
“Bregan will remain here with your friend while I go with you to kill this spider Queen, then we’ll find the Grimtotem bastards and give them the same end as the spider,” Thratar said, and though Bregan wanted nothing more than to simply be off and looking for Talida, there was no denying they needed someone more familiar with the terrain.
Bregan gave a terse nod, and Rae’s shoulders slackened just a hair, and the relief was evident around her tired eyes.
“He’s slipped into a fevered dream that I cannot wake him from, but if you can manage to get some water in him without drowning him, or even some stew liquid, I would greatly appreciate it,” Rae said as she moved about the cave and gathered a few supplies.
Thratar stood and helped Bregan to his feet. The Orc clapped the Tauren on the shoulder, trying to reassure him, but not even Thratar could keep the worry from his eyes, and it churned Bregan’s stomach to see it. Please let them be safe and make a quick return, Bregan prayed, while Thratar waited at the entrance of the cave for the Blood Elf.
Rae gave one last look to the back of the cave, a nod to Bregan, then the two of them were off. Bregan looked to the bundle and sighed, but he proceeded to gather some stew liquid in one of the bowls, and a small cup for water from a barrel near the cave entrance. When he sat down near where he thought the person’s head was, he pulled some of the blankets back to find a Troll, sweating and eyes twitching behind his lids.
Bregan did his best to get some liquid past the Troll’s cracked, dry lips, but as soon as the spoon would touch him, the Troll would thrash. Switching tactics, Bregan searched about for some kind of rag, but when none could be found he cut a length of fabric from the bottom of the blanket. He dumped the stew liquid back in the pot, rinsed the bowl, put some of the water in it, then dipped the cloth in the cool water. He ringed out most of the water before placing the cloth on the Troll’s forehead, but when one of his fingers brushed across the Troll’s hot, bluish skin, something foreign stirred within him.
It was like a surge of water trying to break forth from underneath hard-packed earth, and it took Bregan’s breath away. Hand trembling, he gingerly removed the rag, then he licked his lips and rested the palm of his wide hand on the Troll’s forehead. Something pushed outward from his center and down his arm, eliciting a gasp from the Tauren and Troll alike. It was as though Bregan could feel the poison sluggishly coursing through the Troll, feel it giving him a slow death, and whatever was within Bregan washed over the poison, like a river washing away debris that choked its flow.
Bregan pulled away his hand and fell backward to sit on the hard floor of the cave, exhaustion wringing his limbs like a hard day’s work in the fields at harvest time. The Troll’s eyes slit open, briefly, then he sighed and rolled over to a more peaceful, normal rest. Bregan tentatively reached forward again, the slightest touch on the Troll’s arm, and though he could sense the poison still in his system, it was greatly reduced.
Now Bregan was just confused. He’d done magic, though what kind he couldn’t say, and it made no sense. Trainers would wander through the plains every generation or so, and test the young adults of villages to see if they contained any power that could benefit from training. Bregan hadn’t even been a blip on anyone’s radar, and had moved on with his life. However, with the fatigue setting into his very bones, there was no denying what he’d just done.
Sounds at the mouth of the cave echoed over the stone, and Bregan grew wary, since the two had not been gone long enough to have been successful. Perhaps they would pass by, since the opening is well concealed, he hoped. He had no such luck, though, and his suspicions were confirmed when two humans in full armor came into the cave. Their swords were naked in their hands, and they halted when they saw Bregan. Their faces were concealed behind their helmets, so their expressions were lost to him, but the weapons in their hands didn’t leave Bregan wondering about their intent.
He could barely move, the Troll was asleep, and Thratar and Rae wouldn’t be back for a time. Just as he finished his assessment, the human on the right spoke to the other, and they both rushed Bregan at the same time.
“No!” Bregan yelled, and threw up a hand in a gesture for them to stop, and the power rushed forward again, different this time, and sizzled along his nerve endings. The last thing he could remember was the humans’ panicked shouts, then all fell to darkness.
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter One
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Two
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Three
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Four
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Five
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Seven
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Eight
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Nine
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Ten
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Eleven
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Twelve
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Thirteen
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Fourteen
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Fifteen
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Chapter Sixteen
Becoming: Bregan’s Story, Final Chapter