Day of Ashes (IC)

World’s End Tavern: Role-play and Fan Fiction
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Whether the Death Knight had heeded his warning or not didn't matter he was finally leaving, and the cat needed to do the same. Finishing off the black clad man he had pinned down the druid bolted for the exit, good everyone who survived is out, these men won't be claiming anymore lives today. The cat burst through the door, bringing an enemy with him, he quickly dispatched him, by ripping his throat out. As he finished the man he saw Bryah running towards him, “A couple of people have headed for the trees, we should meet up with them there.” The druid nodded, the compound yard was insanity, kill squads running all over the place, chasing down survivors, as the druid ran he faded into nothingness. Running through the compund he followed the familar scent of Maraph, he found him in a secluded area away from the fighting. Sammuroth could see he was meditating, but they didn't have time for that, giving the young druid a light shove he said, "You can't stay here alone, come on apparently other survivors are holding out at the treeline, you can recover when we are in a safer place."

Not waiting for the worgen's response he dashed back onto the field, avoiding making contact with anyone, even those he might be able to save. He was just about to the treeline when he heard the engines, damn it, what now, looking up he saw a giant airship, and his instincts told him they were not friendly. His suspicions were confirmed as the airship mowed down a group of people he recognized as member of the security detail, they tried to mask themselves as the enemy. Normally a good plan, but the higher ups in the enemies chain of command would be able to recognize anyone that was not one of their own. The cat barely dodged out of the way as the bullets strafed through his general area, he hid in the shadow of one of the nearby buildings. He watched as the airship began bombarding the treeline, he cursed under his breath, he had to get over there, but how much longer could the others stay there. He didn't have a choice, the druid took a deep breath, and made a break for it, he watched the trajectory of the bombs, so as to avoid being caught in one of the blasts. Still stealthed the druid made it to the treeline, he could see some of the others trying to fend off the enemy, including Adrian, and Bryah. Sneaking up behind Bryah he whispered, "If you hadn't noticed this place isn't safe anymore, we need to find a better more defensible location." He made sure to stay stealthed so she wouldn't know exactly where he was just in case her trigger finger was a little twitchy.
Moloch staggered in the direction the Death Knight's unexpected move had flung him in. Anticipating a follow-up attack, von Zinzer brought his sword up in a guard position, only to hear Renlis deliver one final taunt before running through the carnage and out of the building.

"You have skill, Moloch, I'll give you that...however, I'm going to have to put a little pause on our battle here, for people need me. But I will tell you this, the next time we meet, I will fight you again....and I plan on beating your face to a bloody pulp."

"Hmph." Moloch snorted as he started leaving the hall himself, heading to the Compound. "That may be your plan, Death Knight, but plans have a way of changing." The noble continued wandering through the chaos of the encircling lines until he finally found Major Graber, holding a battleaxe and bandaging a slash across his arm. "Major. How are we doing?"

"One last attack should finish them." The orc replied. "Casualties were higher than expected: the Pandaren used those Dragon Gun flamethrowers to inflict heavy losses on us when we charged. Still, we killed a higher portion of them. Simple attrition means that we will win this, and soon."

"Good." Moloch replied, caring for his own sword as he talked. "Prepare the men to attack on my command, and have the gunships move in. We start as soon as the gunships are in position.


Zherami nodded coldly as the gunship fired another shell -the fifth one so far. The woods were briefly illuminated again, and the Commodore judged that his quarry had been softened enough. The Draenei turned around and made a waving motion to the lookout.

"Bring us down to the ground!" he called over the engines. The gunship almost immediately began lowering itself: one of the advantages of the design was that it was light enough to not be crushed under its own weight while on the ground. The captain exited the control pit and walked up to the Commodore, who was readying his weapons and armor.

"Sir, why are we going to ground? It seems like we have the advantage in the air." Zherami shook his head as he buckled on a piece of plate armor.

"The same reason we had to carry out this whole ambush in the first place, instead of using Sigma Base for a saturation bombardment. Because indiscriminate bombing is just that: indiscriminate. It's great for inflicting mass, random casualties, but when you need to know that someone is dead, you have to have boots on the ground when they die." The gunship approached the ground, sending up a driving storm of snow before it finally settled on the earth. The engines cut off with a faint whine, and Zherami nodded at the forest. "Our prey is in there somewhere. It's up to us to hunt them down. You know the orders: no witnesses, no survivors."

The Commodore jumped off the ship into a snow bank, landing agilely on his feet. Zherami now wore the full battlegear of a Draenei Vindicator: dark, pulsating purple crystalline armor covered in inky black veins. He wielded a round shield made of some silvery metal, and a single-handed warhammer with the head made of the same material as his armor. His soldiers, inclined to a less flashy and more practical entrance, let ropes down from the gunship before sliding down. They were armed with the more familiar black trenchcoats and gas masks: the sole difference was that they were using carbines and swords rather than bayoneted rifles.

Commodore Zherami gestured towards the woodline with his hammer. Parts of the forest blazing were merrily from the earlier bombardment.

"Find them all, and kill them!" he shouted. His soldiers stormed forwards: there were over forty of them in that wave not counting the fourteen soldiers already in the forest, and they quickly dispersed during the charge, maintaining a spacing of at least four meters between each person. There were a further ten remaining on the gunship. Zherami remained in front of the gunship in a position that allowed him to keep tabs on both his soldiers and the gunship. The captain and two other soldiers stayed near him.
"If you hadn't noticed this place isn't safe anymore, we need to find a better more defensible location." Bryah turned to where the voice had come from and grinned. "Sam! It's not safe to sneak up on me like that when I have a rifle in my hand. Still it is good that you're here."

She turned back to the trail and took a few shots at a squad that was approaching them. "We know, it's not safe here. Sandara and Sydric have a plan, of sorts but we have to make sure we have everyone, and I think there are still two people at least out there," she gestured in the direction of the camp, "somewhere." She turned back to where the voice had last come from, hoping he was still there. "By the way, you can show yourself, I'm not going to shoot you."

Sandara saw Bryah talking to something, but she couldn't see what. It was unlike Bryah to talk to thin air so there had to be someone there. The death knight walked over to her daughter, hand resting on the trigger of the stolen rifle, but pointing it towards the ground. "Bryah, who are you talking to?"
The huntress rolled her eyes. "Sam. Remember, the druid who is always in cat form I told you about?"
"Oh of course." Sandara relaxed her grip on the rifle and walked over to greet the new death knight. She saluted with her right hand closed into a fist and held over her left breast, above the place where her heart would have been. "Brother." She lowered her hand and tried to look non-threatening for a death knight. "The girl is safe. We have a common enemy and it is only by both horde and alliance working together that we can hope to get out of here alive."
Sammuroth stayed stealthed, but he nodded at Bryah though she couldn't see him, "I am not concerned with you shooting me anymore, but this will give me the lement of surprise when needed. For all the enemy in the gunship knows, I am dead, and we can use that, I hope," the bombings had stopped, and the cat looked at the airship. Was it just him or was the ship getting lower to the ground, know it definitely was, and the cat smiled, "Perfect." As he thought the enemy was exiting the ship to see if they were alive or dead, and finish off any who were alive, this could be their chance. Turning to Bryah he said, "We need to strike back, and I think the enemy has just given us that opportunity, Bryah I need you to do me a favor. I need you to find anyone who is an expert at stealth, we are gonna take the enemies airship, I need the rest of you to stay here, and distract the rest of the enemy. I doubt they left very many back on the ship, a small team should be able to take it, anyone you find have them meet me by the ship, and make sure they stay hidden, if the enemy catches on to this plan we are doomed. I will mark where we should meet," he didn't wait for the woman's reply instead he began making his way in the direction of the airship.

The enemy had finally made a mistake, with the airship they could fall back, and get reinforcements, and return to wipe out the enemy. His plan may have been put together quickly, but he believed it was their only chance of getting out of this alive. Finding a decent staging area, the druid made subtle scratch marks in a nearby tree, marks only someone skilled in espionage would recognize as a sign, that this was where they needed to be.
The druid seemed to have a plan to take over the gunship. Syd nodded in approval. "Remember death knights do not stealth, however, we could make something of a distraction...but we are still a bit vulnerable. I suggest those of us with uniforms lead the main force of the ground assault away from the ship. But we have to stay far enough ahead of them so they do not recognize us. Oh by the way I think we have a couple rogues who followed us they might still be heading this way. Two orcs from the security team we came with. They were holding back and keeping watch on the back trail. Perhaps you can use them to take the ship? I am sure they would be delighted to help."

As he said this the orcs in question appeared a dozen feet away from behind some trees. They were cautious around the Alliance, but lifted rifles up in a universal gesture of unity. They had no desire to be fired on, but wanted to help. They had seen the ship lower down and were eager to take it over.

Sydric had to admire the orcs ability to hide in plain sight. It was rather dark yet so hopefully they were still pretty well hidden from the gunships crew who were searching for them. The screen of brush and trees around them had not yet taken any damage from the gunship. By sheer luck it had gone beyond their position and the burning woods made for some light, but not a lot.
As wonderful as it was to see new forces to come join their lost cause in escaping the clutches of Moloch's army, Kialla couldn't help but feel a slight twinge of contempt towards the two death-knights. Friendly or not, creatures of the necrotic sorts didn't sit well with the draenei, but the dire atmosphere helped her to keep such prejudice in check. She nodded silently, eyes lowered to the ground as the elf turned towards her, questioning about the crystal.

She leaned against the tree as she watched the remainder show up, bringing their number to only about twelve... maybe fifteen at the most. Fifteen against an army of several hundred. Odds were still almost nonexistent, but better than just the three of them. Adrian and Bryah were doing a fairly decent job at picking off the advancing soldiers at range, but given time, their position would be compromised by that action.

The draenei flinched as another shell exploded not far off behind them amongst the trees. The explosion told Kialla the defiant little band still remained secreted for the moment, as the ship was seeming to be firing blindly into the trees in search of them. She wondered how long it would be before a shell would find its mark in their midst. Suddenly, the humming engines whirred loudly, and through the foliage she could make out its large, black shape slowly dropping towards the ground. It was landing!

It was Sam that spoke up first.

"We need to strike back, and I think the enemy has just given us that opportunity, Bryah I need you to do me a favor. I need you to find anyone who is an expert at stealth, we are gonna take the enemies airship, I need the rest of you to stay here, and distract the rest of the enemy. I doubt they left very many back on the ship, a small team should be able to take it, anyone you find have them meet me by the ship, and make sure they stay hidden, if the enemy catches on to this plan we are doomed. I will mark where we should meet."

'So, you're going to be target practice while they steal the only available way out of this pit....'

Kialla did not find much comfort in the thought. Suppose they decided it 'too risky' to come back for them... or can't find a place to land amongst all the soldiers and still safely get them on-board? Many scenarios played through the former vindicators mind, each playing out very badly in the end. The light was indeed difficult to see in the dark this day. Yet, it was a plan, and the only one that made any margin of sense. No matter the cost, she knew, somebody needed to make it out alive to disclose what happened.

Finally, Kialla stepped forward, glancing between Sydric and Sandara. An idea sparked in her mind. Quite a few rifles and ammo packs lay back in the woods where she'd neutralized the kill-squad. Perhaps those, combined with one of the erupting fires deeper in would make plenty of noise to create a distraction....
Sandara stepped forward and spoke up. "It's time to put our factional differences aside. We have to work together on this one. No one is being left behind. We need everyone."

She looked at the female draenei who glanced between her and Sydric and sighed. Her voice softened, becoming less harsh. "If only there was a way I could hear what you want to say." She raised her voice to speak to the group. "Any rogues go with the druid. Bryah, I need you and Adrian to create a distraction so that our close combat fighters and stealthers can get aboard that ship. Now move it, we don't have much time."

Sandara looked at the draenei. "Not you. We need you up there, but we need you to be able to communicate with us first. I plan to get that crystal back for you, but first, we need to get that ship. So I was wondering, if I gave you some paper and a pen, whether you could write what you want to say?"

Bryah looked at Adrian and grinned. "Alright, let's lay down some covering fire." She took a few shots at the guards then came up with an idea. "Do you have any grenades that just knock an enemy out without damaging anything around them?"
Adrian prepared to open fire on the gunners that were directly facing the tree line when Bryah had an idea.

"Do you have any grenades that just knock an enemy out without damaging anything around them?" he lifted his head and smirked.

"I thought you'd never ask." he said to her. He turned around and opened his backpack and produced a small bag. Untying and opening it up, he showed that it was filled with cylindrical grenades with small circular cuts along the sides. He took two out and handed the pair to Sandara. Another pair to Sydric, and another pair to Kialla. Six remained in the bag which he kept for Bryah and himself.

"Easy peasy stuff right here, kids." he began. He lifted one out of the bag to demonstrate, "these are perfect for taking this gunship. Simple little banger. Just pull the pin, throw it into a room, and pop!" he made an exploding impression with his hand, "explodes loudly and brightly. Blind and deafen anyone in the room temporarily with no damage to the surrounding area." he put it away and looked up again, "Don't pull the pin and drop it accidentally. It's an impact trigger explosion so once it hits something, it's off." he said.

Placing the bag between Bryah and himself, he rested his rifle back on the long and began taking shots at any soldiers in sight, waiting for the others to move in.
Maraph came out of his meditative state and, after making the sure the coast was clear, took on his cat form and slipped out of the visible spectrum. Making his way towards where he could smell the others he eventually found them and caught the plan that they had planned out. He slunk his way near the group after they had spelled out theplan and swiftly took on his human form again and said, "Sorry. I drained alot of my mana in that fight, I'm ashamed to say that I'm not as useful in a fight when I dont have access to my magic than when I do but I can and will help." He then looked at the blood elf huntress who seemed to have taken charge if the situation and stated, "Just tell me what to do and I will follow your orders to the letter."
"Sorry. I drained alot of my mana in that fight, I'm ashamed to say that I'm not as useful in a fight when I dont have access to my magic than when I do but I can and will help." Bryah turned to the druid to reassure him and smiled. "It's alright, the only ones not affected by the anti-magic shield are those who don't use any form of magic in their attacks. Right now, we need anyone with the ability to stealth to meet up with Sam, a druid like yourself, he'll have further orders. Once we take the gunship, Sandara, the female death knight has a side mission that requires a person with stealth. I suggest you talk with her about it."
Who had time to 'write' this out! Kialla thought hard how to explain briefly what she had in mind... once again she found herself cursing at the fel-empowered orcs who had inflicted this condition on her long ago.

She glanced back at the landed ship where several soldiers were charging into the forest... it would only be moments before they would overrun this cursed place. Time was much to short to elaborate something in writing....which would be difficult, if not impossible due to the large amount of snow billowing around them. No, they might want her to help take the ship, but she was no stealth figure. Sure, the snow helped silence the clop of her hooves, but, not only did they risk her getting seen on the way there, but once she climbed aboard, her hoof-falls on the wooden deck would only alert everything around. Certainly they would raise an alarm.

Kialla shook her head, instead rattled her rifle at the two deathknights, and pointed into the forest behind them. She waved her hand, beckoning them to follow. With that, she was gone, hastened strides plowing through the snow as she hurried back to the area she'd run across the kill-squad. She found them easily enough, though the bodies were already frozen cold. Perhaps their stiffness was to her advantage.

She grabbed a couple of the ammo cartridges and slung a rifle over her shoulder. She knelt by one of the dead humans, contemplating whether the idea was truly going to work, or was merely a folly that the enemy would see as the ruse that it was. Regardless, she could only hope for the best. Perhaps in the swirling snow, they would make the mistake she needed them to. Heaving the body up, she locked her arms beneath the dead man's arms. Between the rifles, and her dragging the body, hopefully Sandara and Sydric would get the basic gist of the idea.

One of the trees decimated by the exploding shells lay almost directly between the advancing search party and herself. Flames were consuming the obliterated trunk, almost too perfect of a spot. Hopefully the few trees in front of it kept them from being illuminated to the soldiers looking for them.
Zherami stood in front of the gunship, observing the progress his troops were making from his position. The snow was starting to slack off, and the burning fires in the forest provided some decent silhouettes from his perspective. The Commodore's grip tightened around the hilt of his hammer when he heard an exclamation from one of his soldiers. The ex-Vindicator barely restrained himself from rushing into the fray with his men: the only thing keeping him from leading the charge was the possibility of another group taking advantage of the momentary confusion.

Rifles started to fire as soldiers lined up targets, and bullets streaked back at the attackers as the defenders acquired more assailants. Within twenty seconds, thirty soldiers were starting to converge on the holdout area. Soon, a shape rose up from the ground, threw down his weapon, and began sprinting away, briefly crossing in front of one of the shell-started fires. Zherami's experienced mind classified it as an orc from the silhouette. A clatter of rifle fire greeted the attempt at flight, and the figure lurched as though struck. The orc staggered on a few more paces before collapsing to the ground.

Even with the casualties sustained in the brief exchange of rifle fire, there were still twenty-eight soldiers surrounding the position in a dispersed pattern. Forty more were still scattered around the woods, ardently searching for any more groups that had escaped their attention.
Renlis listened to what the others were saying. He'd had to agree that taking the gun ship was a good was GETTING to the gun ship that was the problem. Peeking around the tree he was hiding behind, he could point out at least 30 soldiers that they had to get past, and then of course 40 more soldiers being sent further into the woods to sniff out any more groups they might have missed, mostly being themselves. He watched the Orc go down and sighed...though he managed to kill at least two before he fell, so that was two less to worry about.

The Draenei's plan for a distraction..wasn't going to work. No, he figured they would have to do this the old fashion way...

"Well if you wusses are gonna stay here and keep planning...I'm going to thin out some of their numbers..." He grinned, pulling out his swords before suddenly dashing from behind the tree. Nish called out something behind him, but he didn't pay any attention to her elven swearing as he ran straight for the Orc's corpse. Stabbing his blades into it, he pulled it up to use it as a meat shield to run towards the bitallion of soldiers.

Of course, he was noticed, and shot started fireing. Pulling one blade out, he raised it to his head to deflect any shots made towards it, the rest at range simply glanced off his armor or struck the dead corpse he was carrying. He neared the closest soldier and used the blade he was using to deflect bullets to stab straight into the man's chest, replacing his meat shield with a fresher one. He then used the other blade to do what the previous one was doing, deflecting shots.

He'd continue doing this about another 3 times before some of the bullets began to get past his thick armor now that he was in a closer range. Spotting a near by tree, he used his meat shield to give him cover as he made his way over. He waited there for a few more moments for the shots to calm down before moving from behind it again to continue his hit'n'run technique once more "COME ON YA BASTARDS! YE TO COWARDLY TO FACE AN OLD DEAD MAN WITH A SWORD?! WERE ARE YOUR BALLS?!"

Nish swore constantly as she watched the Death Knight leave "Well, looks like we have no choice now. He may be a Death Knight but he certainly isn't going to kill 30 odd men by himself....I'm going too!" With that, she herself ran from cover, her fans in her hands. A soldier caught sight of her and raised his rifle to take aim. Nish would be a lot faster than a plate wearing Death Knight, and seeing as she still had use of her Chi, she managed to infuse the air around her to enhance her movement speed, zipping left, right, and behind trees where she could to avoid being shot.

She then got close enough that she unleashed five slicing blows on all fatal areas of the soldier's body, sending blood flying. More soldiers had caught sight of her, aiming to take fire. She grabbed the body before it could fall, and then used Renlis' technique of a meat shield to absorb the coming shots. Dropping the corpse when the shots calmed, she slammed her foot into the ground to use the snow to cover her approach. With a blue and gold blur of her beaded armor, she dashed from the snow cover to strike down yet another soldier before diving behind a tree to avoid more shots.
The snapping of twigs, and an orc Rogue was up and running. Not soon after to be cut down by a hail of gunfire. He didn't make it far at all. It was go time.

"IT'S FINALLY GO TIME!" Adrian shouted and laid into his weapon with the familiarity of a decade of heavy combat experience. They were devastatingly outnumbered, and that was just how he operated. The crosshair of his scope seemed drawn to the chests of soldiers. Adrian firing two shots in quick succession easily put down most targets then and there, but sometimes required a third to the head.

"I'm going to set up some traps to cover our rear flank. I'll be right back," he said to Bryah. Staying low to the ground but moving quickly, he pushed to the end of what he deemed a safe perimeter. He produced several explosives. Special fun ones. Exploding outward in a 60 degree arc in the direction it was facing, sending shrapnel and ball bearings out to 200 meters. He affixed several of these with overlapping fields of fire to trees about the average torso height and went out several meters, staking in trip wires every few feet.

Grinning madly and satisfied, he turned and beat feet back to his position next to Bryah, a bullet impacting the tree a meter few inches from his head. Ducking and taking a deep breath, his head was cleared and he sprung up, dumping several rounds in the direction it came from before reloading a fresh magazine.

"Flash grenades are between us. Use one if you need it," he said to Bryah, and returned to suppressive firing so the ship could be taken.
Watching the marksman fire with such accuracy made Syd well aware he was no match for him. Instead of a gun he had his twin axes and no shield. The grenades might come in handy however. He stuck them in a pocket and peered from behind a tree, the screen of branches covering his face.

The other death knight had made a daring run and managed to take out a few of the approaching soldiers. Followed by the monk who used the snow as cover. Syd nodded and moved low to the ground and towards the few he saw were close. Three close together, maybe a few yards separated them as they moved. Staying behind some bushes he waited until the center one was almost on top of him before leaping up in his face and swinging his right hand axe in an arc to knock the gun aside. He followed it closely with his left axe to smash it into the man's face.

The other two saw him and opened fire. Syd felt one bullet glance off his plated ribs and it knocked him aside enough to make the other shot miss him entirely. Unfortunately for the man firing the first shot it left him in the path of the second and he went down with a yell, hit in the stomach.

Using the tactic he had seen the other death knight use, Syd lifted the dead man up to use as a shield and made a beeline for the second shooter. He could feel the slugs hit the corpse as he ran. Just as he neared the gunman Syd flung the dead soldier at him. The flying corpse hitting the man just as Syd came up and finished him with a double swing of deadly axes. There was another three approaching him from that direction and Syd hoped Sandi had his back. He did a duck and roll into the snow and came up just as they started shooting at him.

The darkness was his friend as the snow and ice did not harm him. But the nearest gunman had been able to aim better than the last ones. A bullet lodged in his left shoulder and spun Syd around. He was able to swing an axe before he went down and knock the gun aside before he felt another shot from the second shooter. He went down with a thud and lay still, letting them think he was truly dead. The bullet had gone clear through his thigh, missing the bone by a fraction.

They came running towards him and one leaned over to check him out. Sydric shot a plated gauntlet right into the man's throat and crushed his windpipe. Using the man as a shield for the other two who leveled guns at his head, he felt the bullets strike the still alive (but not for long) gunman on top of him he lifted the corpse up and shoved it into the man on his right, knocking him down. The man on his left shot point blank into Syd's back, the bullet punching through plate armor and going through his kidneys. Now this would kill most anyone else, but a death knight does not use those organs and it was merely a hole in his back now. Syd turned with a feral grin and chuckled, "You cannot kill me I am already dead!"

The man hastily tried to get off another shot but he was too close and Syd used his axes to take him out quickly with a left jab at his gun and right to the head. The man he had knocked over was on his feet again and too far away for Syd to stop him from shooting a round into his leg. Syd stumbled as the bullet hit bone this time, but he was able to throw his right hand axe to land squarely in the gunmans head.

"Hmm...six down and a few more left let's see if I can clear a path to the ship.." he moved forward at a shambling gait now as both legs were shot. He did not make it far as he crumpled to the snow in front of the man he had thrown the axe into. Digging into his pockets he fished out a few bloodworms who promptly started feeding on the still cooling corpse. It was faint, but Syd was able to draw some necromantic magic from the bloodworms symbiosis and healed his legs enough to walk. He was not concerned about the hole in his back, but the wound in his shoulder was making it hard to wield his left hand axe now.

The bloodworms would take time to generate more healing for him and he lay low in the snow watching the rest of them move forward. He picked up the gun from the dead soldier and tried to aim it at the men standing behind Zherami. He was no marksman, but through the scope he could see the guns on the ship trained in their direction.
Spattered gun-shots sounded as Kialla moved towards the flaming tree, cutting down the orc rogue as he took off running. Immediately cries went up amongst the soldiers, and a good number of them turned towards the renegade group.

"IT'S FINALLY GO TIME!" Adrian shouted and laid into his weapon with the familiarity of a decade of heavy combat experience. Kialla dropped the body she was dragging and it fell with a heavy thud. Too late for any kind of surprise now...she watched as Renlis and Sydric bolted foward crying with glee as their weapons found fresh blood.
Kialla bolted, running off to the side in a wide arc as the soldiers caught sight of her large figure silouhetted in the firelight. Bullets hailed around her, and she stopped dead behind a tree, her heart accelerated dangerously as she listened to the projectiles imbedding themselves in the trees around her.

As soon as the spray pelted past, she dove out again, legs pumping hard as she ran like a bat out of hell into the fray. Both deathknights had made good use of themselves already, as bodies littered the ground behind them. Still, there was plenty more soldiers to keep them and herself occupied, if not overwhelmed.

The first soldier she caught up to was mere yards from Sydric, his rifle coming up to take a shot at the deathknight, thinking he had a golden opportunity at the deadly monster. Just as the man had the undead elf within the sight, a heavy jolt shuddered through the man as a larger draenei body slammed him, knocking the rifle clean from his hands. Kialla's sword followed immediately after, the blade driving through his chin and into his head. Blood poured from the wound, drenching both the hilt and her arm in the warm gush.

Ignoring the red river as it coated her armor, Kialla held the man upright as she spun around him, placing him between herself and two other soldiers that had set their sights on her. Both shots were well placed, and probably would have dropped her where she stood had the body shield not made its placement seconds before.

Dropping the body, she charged forward, bringing her sword low and slashing it upwards at one of the soldiers chest. He spun the rifle in his hands, bringing it down to block the blow. She was surprised at his agility as the man moved with her blade, bringing himself behind her.

Initially his motive was to grapple her into position for his firing partner, but found himself at a severe disadvantage at doing so as he realized that she was a good foot or so taller than he. The hesitation was all the draenei needed.

Bringing her sword down sharply at her side, she twisted her hips as she brought the sword up again in a predictable slash, much as her first one. The man once again brought his rifle high to block, but her gauntleted fist followed directly afterwards, smashing into his chest. Grabbing the front of his coat, she ripped him forward, making his head snap backwards like a whip.

Barely had she pulled him close that a loud 'CRACK' rang in her ears while the second assailant fired his rifle. The bullet found home in the back of his partner. The man cried in agony as Kialla shoved him to the ground, stomping a strong hoof dead center on his chest. There was a crack, and the man curled up in a tight ball as she turned towards the second.

There was little time for the other man to reload his weapon before the draenei was on top of him. Her sword flung at the man in strong, agile strokes while the man expertly deflected them with an equally quick twist of his rifle. Suddenly his other hand flew out, grabbing her forearm and yanked her downward, his own arm strength surprising Kialla as she stumbled forward.

The man did not miss the opportunity and he swung his rifle like a club, catching her legs and sending them out from beneath her. She gasped as the rifle still slung over her shoulder pinned itself diagonally beneath her as she fell heavily on her back. In the same fluid motion, he brought the rifle in an arc, slamming down at her face.

Pain reverbrated through her arm as she reached up, snatching the stock of the gun with her left hand, stopping it dead. Ignoring the pain, she held it tightly as she brought her sword down, cleaving off half of the man's forward most foot. He howled in agony, as he hopped backwards, letting go of the gun. A look of shock flashed across his face as he glanced down at his foot...or lack thereof. His own gun came flying hard, cracking across his skull and he collasped to the snow, blood spilling from where the wooden stock made impact.

Once more, the crack of gunfire rang out as soldiers took aim at the draenei, and she dove to the ground. Bullets sang overhead, vanishing into the snow just beyond her. She barely started getting up when a second spray caught her by surprise, this time coming from a different direction.

'Dammnit, the ship gunners!' She realized as bullets strafed through past her and the others amongst the confederate group. Two of the shots rang across the side of her chest plate forcing the air from her lungs in the impact. Though her armor held, it certainly would leave a welt or two on her chest.

She forced herself back up to her feet, and found herself facing not just another soldier, but one clad in an armor that looked all too familiar. An armor that she had once worn... The sight sent visions of the past swirling through her mind.

', how could you!?' She stood, panting as she stared at the male draenei before her. For a fleeting second, the world stopped around her as emotions mixed within her heaving chest, forcing her to give pause. Even the soldiers surrounding her fled from her awareness. How, in all they stood for, could a Vindicator have supported a cause such as this!

Bryah cursed as the orc rogue started running for the gunship. It was a foolish, suicidal move borne of impatience. A thought that was vindicated a moment later when gunfire felled the rogue.

"IT'S FINALLY GO TIME!" The huntress shook her head in disbelief as Adrian started firing into the soldiers, felling them with brutal accuracy. He seemed to be thoroughly enjoying himself and she had to admit, his enthusiasm was contagious.

She watched as the others rushed forward, engaging the enemy when they came into range, and fired shots where possible to cover their advance. However, the slow speed of reloading frustrated her. She needed to reload faster.

Adrian spoke to her, a pack in his hands. "I'm going to set up some traps to cover our rear flank. I'll be right back." He crouched, staying low to the ground but moved quickly. The marksman was grinning like a madman when he returned pleased with the traps he had set up. He slid into position just as a bullet whizzed past his head and landed in a tree, then returned fire, using several rounds to eliminate the person who had fired at him.

Bryah shook her head and grinned at him. “You crazy fool.” She reached for a pouch on her left leg, that was slightly smaller than the one on her right. Inside it were two wooden forms. One was simply shaped like an elongated letter U, with a small wooden peg at the end of each leg. The other was a wooden box, slightly longer than her crossbow bolts and about ten bolts high. The box had a wooden lid on it and was slightly tapered, at the base it was the same width as the bar of her crossbow, at the top, it was the approximate width of a bolt.

She took her small crossbow out of its pouch and readied it for firing, attaching the wooden box to the central bar and locking it into place with the pegs of the handle. She then filled it with bolts from a pouch around her waist. Each bolt was tipped with steel to make them heavier and deadlier. The main drawback of the repeating mechanism is that her range decreased markedly. The modified crossbow was accurate in short range, at most about on hundred yards, and to be deadly, she needed to be within about 50 yards. The advantage, was that she could fire all ten bolts in about fifteen seconds if she chose to, instead of taking about fifteen seconds just to reload.

Her grin broadened and took on a distinctly wicked slant. She nodded to Adrian's comment about the flash grenades then looked to find a spot where she could be at her deadliest and still protected. “Cover me, I'm going in closer.”

Sandara was about half a minute behind Sydric but it wasn't enough. She sped up and found him lying on his stomach, trying to shoot as many guards as he could while his blood worms healed him. “Save your strength Brother.” She lined up a shot at some guards that were advancing on them, and was pleased to see that she had hit her target where she had aimed for.

In the years since the invasion of Silvermoon, when she had been a Farstrider defending the city, Sandara hadn't handled a ranged weapon and she had worried that her previous skill had been forgotten. That fear appeared to be unfounded, muscle memory kicking in to help her remember her former skill. “Don't worry, we're going to be fine. You need to worry about drawing as much as you can from those worms.”

A soldier approached them, two others right behind him. Damn it, that's something we don't need right now. The three men drew closer and were in danger of discovering their hiding place. Sandara looked at Sydric and saw that his bloodworms were starting to shrink and in need of a fresh supply of blood. Those soldiers will do perfectly. She focused her aim and felled all three with a shot between the eyes. She broke from cover long enough to drag the corpses within reach of the worms.

The death knight looked towards the ship, and then towards the area where they had been. Bryah was starting to move forward, but the human was still behind her, covering her advance. Sandara was worried. The last thing they wanted was to have to leave anyone behind. She looked back to the ship, judging how far that the marksman would have to run, and didn't like the answer her mind gave.

Bryah managed to find some cover and was choosing her next target when she saw some arrows leave the ship and hit the draenei in the chest. Amazed that the woman's armour held, she pushed down on the handle to load an arrow then fired, repeating the action until every one of the ship's gunners had been hit. Although she was within the lethal range for her crossbow, the height of the ship meant that the gunners were actually only just within her accuracy range. So while she couldn't kill them at that distance, she could definitely injure them and stop them from firing. She just had to hope that one of the druids or a rogue had managed to get on the ship to finish the job for her.
As the orc rogue started running away the druid had to forcefully stop himself from moaning in frustration, the quality of orcs has dwindled over the years it seems, he watched as predictably the coward was gunned down. Well so much for strategy, the Death Knights were the first to enter the fray cutting a swath of death across the field, well one thing was for sure they were definitely distracted now. Unfortunately the vindicator had not moved from his position Sammuroth needed someone to get his attention as well, since it looked like he would have to infiltrate the ship alone.

Not that it mattered the druid was used to working alone, he preferred it, since he had no idea when the "other" would try to seize control, so for him it was generally safer to work alone in these types of situations. Besides he tended to do his best work alone, if his hunch was correct there couldn't be more than ten people left on board the airship, a few to operate the turrets, and the rest to keep the ship in the air. The point was is that they would be distracted with their own duties, obviously he would have to eliminate the turret operators first. The problem behind that was that Zherami would most likely notice when the turrets stopped, and might send some people back to investigate.

The cat was a sly strategist though, and wouldn't go after the turret operators first, he would opt to take out the engineers left on board. Even if the ship crashed it was close enough to the ground to where it shouldn't take too much damage, and then they could just get it airborne again. Another problem though was that once he took care of those left on the ship he wouldn't be able to do much more, he obviously couldn't operate a turret to provide covering fire. He had to hope at least one or two other people got on board soon after his work was done, but he still needed someone to get that damn vindicators attention.

Finally he found his distraction as the draenei, he had no idea what her name was, hell he didn't know who half of these people were, other than Bryah, Adrian, and Maraph, he had not been formerly introduced to the others. That didn't mean he wouldn't do everything in his power to make sure they all survived this day, Zherami's attention was square on his counterpart, and that was all the cat needed. Still invisible, the druid stealthily made his way towards the ship, luckily there appeared to be an opening for him to enter that was easily within his leaping distance.

Focusing all of his strength in his hind legs, the druid jumped strectching out his claws to grip the platform, they dug into the floor, and the druid pulled himself up. Well he was in, now began the messy part, and it appeared his first victim was right in front of him, whether the man was taking a break, or he had just come from checking a minor issue, it didn't matter. As the man walked down the corridor the druid quickly caught up with him, and silent as death he pounced, bearing the man to the ground he qickly clamped his jaws around his throat, silencing any screams of warning he might give. The man's life soon left his eyes, more blood covering the already blood covered feline, "I am sorry, I know what you are trying to do here, but this didn't have to happen this way. May Elune guide you to the hereafter, and may she grant you peace," the druid whispered his prayer, he did indeed understand the desire to end this war, but not like this, not with wholesale slaughter.

Once again he faded from view, and went on to continue his dirty job, this would be a small dose of his vengeance to these people, for taking his shan'do, and the other leader's lives.
Maraph watched the fight, knowing that in his weakened state he would be of little use, and absorbed more of the energy from around him. When he was restored to an acceptable level of energy he swiftly melted into his cat form and sprinted onto the battlefield that had been a place for supposed peace merely hours ago. Two black clad enemies saw the panther and charged. The young druid leapt at them, releasing a frightening roar, and knocked one of them onto their back where he was quickly able find the gap between the helm and chest armor and slashed the mans throat. The other enemy swung their mace at the feline but Maraph sprung away and got in close to the mace wielding warrior. In a cloud of smoke he reappeared as his human form and, while still in the air, launched a devastating roundhouse kick to his assailants head, knocking them unconscious.

After landing back on the ground he quickly located the one that the huntress had told him about and ran after her and her comrade. When he neared them he saw a slight shimmer in the air near him and his nose twitched. Alerted to the would-be assassin he coiled the muscles in his legs and launched himself forward. He pulled back his arm and, once within range, sent a vicious right hook into where he assumed where the stealthed rogue's head was. The rogue was sent flying a few feet, having their illusion shattered, and gawked at what they saw had done so and retorted, "How the hell does a shrimp like you punch so hard?! You cant use your magic!"

Suddenly Maraph's eyes took on a demonic look before he halfway transformed his left arm into worgen form and easily clawed the assassin in the chest before kicking him into the ground where one could hear bones crunch under his foot. He gave the assassin a look of pure hatred before kicking him into a tree where he fell unconscious. "Just 'cuz I cant use my magic doesn't mean I cant kick yours or anyone else's !@#, ya got it!" he yelled at the unconscious lump. Maraph the ran up to the former threat and kicked him in the head, the sound of cartilage breaking signifying that he had broken their nose. "And that's for calling me short, you bastard! I'm not short! Everyone else is just tall, okay?!" He then turned back to the two death knights and grinned before saying, "So, I was told you needed someone with stealth?"

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