Scrolls of Lore Forums  

Go Back   Scrolls of Lore Forums > WarCraft Discussion > WarCraft Fan Works

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-13-2014, 06:03 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default Missing in Action

Quote:
**Author's Note: This story is a direct continuation/spin-off from "All I ever Wanted To Do Was Study." If you have not read that story, this one might be a little confusing, at least at first. ***

To: James Braddock
C/O Innkeeper Lei Lan
The Lazy Turnip
Halfhill - Valley of the Four Winds
Pandaria

James,

Hollus Fenweaver told me it was best to let you find me first, but I was never very good at taking his advice, I'm afraid. I have returned to Stormwind following the completion of the mission we started at the Exodar and immediately made inquiries as to your whereabouts through my contacts at SI:7. They tell me that someone with your name has been seen living with the Anglers off the coast of the Krasarang Wilds, but that you make weekly visits to Halfhill to trade and pick up supplies.

I cannot adequately express the shame and remorse I have over what you have had to suffer for my actions. I do not presume to ask your forgiveness, but as I have returned to discover I am a man of some means, I ask that if you have any need whatsoever, please let me know. There is no measure for the debt I owe you.

I beg at least a cursory response within the next two weeks so that I am assured I have found the right man and can know you are at least well. I will not approach if you do not wish it, as I expect you to be rightly angry over these turn of events. You may reach me any time in Old Town, and if the matter is urgent, any SI:7 agent should be able to summon me at a moment's notice.

Regards,

Shadrach Moongrasp
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-13-2014, 06:04 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

To: Archmage Shadrach Moongrasp
Old Town
Stormwind City


Shadrach,

It is somewhat bizarre addressing someone else with that name, even after all these years. No doubt Hollus Fenweaver was at least good enough to inform you that I have survived these past five years with most of my sanity intact, although I must confess, I did not refrain entirely from influencing further changes to the timeline while I was locked away. I am sure you will understand.

What you apparently do not understand is how absurd it is for you to have any guilt over the matter; until we were "separated" I agreed that this was the price that had to be paid for my brash stupidity. I have paid it, and I am at peace with it. My only wish is for you to enjoy the same.

You need not worry. I am fine, and while I am not wealthy, I also am not needy - the fish are plentiful, the weather is tolerable, and the drink is affordable here in Pandaria, and I figure after 1,901 days as a prisoner in Blackrock Mountain, I've earned a bit of a vacation here.

No doubt the war effort will demand much of you - I fear that now you are the one burdened with this duty. From what I hear, every hero of the Alliance has been called upon to avenge Theramore. I wonder if Fenweaver made it out... but I digress; I am under no such obligation and will spend my foreseeable days pursuing exotic fish and consuming exotic variations of Pandaren brew. You needn't stay away, but you are not obliged to visit, either.

Regards,

James Braddock
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-13-2014, 08:08 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

To: James Braddock
The Lazy Turnip
Halfhill, Pandaria

James,

What changes did you make to the timeline? I know I screwed up plenty, having returned my younger self with considerably more confidence and talent than I was supposed to have at that point in life, but I'm not sure what, exactly - my memory is a complete mess.

Your magnanimity is impressive, and humbling. I wouldn't mind coming down to visit, but, as you rightly guessed, I am chasing Orcs all over Azeroth for SI:7 and don't expect to have any time off anytime soon.

I confess - I am curious about how you survived Blackrock Mountain all these years, and how you kept track of time and just up and left, as you implied, on exactly the 1,901th day.

- Shadrach
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-13-2014, 08:09 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

To: Shadrach Moongrasp
Old Town
Stormwind City

Shadrach,

It's a long story, and I'm not sure I'm ready to tell it. Maybe after I've had some more time to get some more distance from it.

Good luck hunting Orcs.

- Braddock
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-13-2014, 09:00 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

I frowned at the letter and set it aside, staring into the fire crackling in the hearth of the small living room. The message was already a week old; I'd been in Durotar, on an intelligence gathering mission for SI:7. There were rumors of unrest within the Horde and talk of rebellion, and it was critical for the Alliance to understand where there might be an opportunity to divide the enemy from within.

"What's the matter?" Nina asked. She'd just walked into the room after putting the baby down to sleep.

"This letter. It's very... curt. Not quite rude, but he makes it pretty plain he doesn't want to talk about Blackrock Mountain."

She sat down in a chair opposite mine, also facing the hearth. "I had over a dozen missions into that hellhole when Thaurissan was in charge. They held countless slaves in conditions that make an Orcish prison look pleasant. It was so bad I often thought of putting some of them out of their misery myself."

"Yeah, I know. I spent time there, too. That's why I can't help asking - I can't imagine surviving over five years in that place, let alone deciding to stay longer if I knew I could leave."

"What do you mean?"

"He said, very specifically, that he spent 1,901 days there. That was the exact length of time Hollus told him to stay out of the way. If he had a way to get up and leave on day 1,901, you have to figure he had the ability to go sooner than that. Maybe much sooner."

"You don't suspect he switched sides?"

"No."

"How can you be sure?"

"Because I wouldn't."

"But he's been through pain you can't imagine. And he's had to survive it without your gifts. It's not a nice thought, but it is a possibility, Simon."

She always called me by that name now, ever since I'd come back from my temporal excursion and had discovered it was the name I'd been given as a child. For my entire adult life, I'd been called Shadrach, and was quite used to it, but she liked the name Simon, and thought it fitting to use it as a tribute to the parents who had lost me so long ago.

"Yeah, it's not a nice thought," I admitted, "and I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt until I have real evidence to the contrary."

"Fine," she said. Usually, that meant I was in trouble. "But what are you going to do about the fact that he doesn't want to talk to you right now?"

I stood up and shrugged, "I have no idea. The Pandaren campaign is escalating, and it's likely my next assignment will be down there. I had thought of checking in on him, maybe even seeing if he was fit to join me on some operational work, you know? Get him back in the saddle... but now..."

"Alright, well, I suggest you let him know you're on the way. Oh, and let him know someone came by HQ today asking about him."

"Who could possibly be asking about him?"

She smiled, "Now you see my point about him turning sides? How else does he have any friends checking in on him after all this time?"

"It's possible there were fellow escapees. Even prisoners make friends with other prisoners."

"That's a stretch." She actually rolled her eyes at me.

"Whatever. Who was asking?"

"Dunno. Matthias said they didn't get her name. Said she looked like a priestess of some sort. The agent told her they didn't have any intel, but that she could to come back at the end of the week and speak to you about it."

"End of the week?"

"Well, he had no way of knowing you'd get back four days early."

"Fair enough. I'll spend the next few days at the office and keep an eye out for her. In the meantime, I'm going to get a letter off to him right away, and maybe see if I can get a rise out of him with this news."
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-13-2014, 09:08 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

To: James Braddock
The Lazy Turnip
Halfhill, Pandaria

James,

Sorry, I didn't mean to pry about your time in the mountain.

The Orc hunting is likely going to bring me to the shores of Pandaria very shortly. Maybe we can get a beer when I'm down there.

I also wanted to let you know - SI:7 reported a priestess asking about you at headquarters today. I didn't see who it was, and she didn't leave a name. If there is someone you'd like me to put you in touch with, let me know.

- Shadrach
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-13-2014, 09:22 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

A soft knock on the door pressed through through the sleep and hangover.

"Go'way... sleeping" the man muttered into his pillow.

"Mister Braddock - you have a letter. It is marked urgent. The sender included extra postage to have it brought to you immediately, even if you returned to the Anglers." Lei Lan, the innkeeper, called through the door.

He muttered an unintelligible curse, and slowly pushed himself up off the bed. His head was pounding. Too much Jade Witch Brew with Jogu last night. The Jinyu could drink like a fish...

"Mister Braddock, come get your letter! I have soup on stove!" Lei Lan was very persistent.

He stumbled across the room and opened the door just enough to receive the scroll, closed it, and sat back down on the bed. What in the hell could be so important?

He rubbed his eyes and read the letter.

He stood up with a start, shocked, and read it again. And then wept.

She remembered.
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-14-2014, 03:12 AM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

To: Shadrach Moongrasp
Old Town
Stormwind City

Shadrach,

It wasn't the physical pain that I needed distance from, or even the psychological torment. It was the loss of the hope that had carried me through the last four years in that place.

Hope that has now been restored. So, now, I suppose I should tell you the story. It needs to be told.

First, you need to understand what it was like when Hollus transferred my consciousness into the mind of James Braddock. It was like invading a man's home, while he is helplessly unarmed in his own living room, and cutting him to a thousand pieces. I had to watch it, and I had to feel it. I felt his agony, his confusion, and his sheer horror as Hollus ripped his mind apart and obliterated the remains. He apologized for it, of course, assuring me before he left me alone in there that he had to be certain none of James's consciousness was left to torment me later.

But I was alone, very alone, in a body that did not feel right in any way. I had watched as every shred of that man was annihilated, and then I had taken all that was left of him. The disorientation was staggering. It got much worse when we went through the portal.

I don't remember coming out the other side. I awoke, later that day, chained to the wall of a dark cell in Blackrock Mountain. I was in terrible pain. They had beaten me severely in an attempt to wake me, and had their priests use dark mending to keep me from being left dead or crippled, but their healing only went as far as what was necessary to keep me alive. It's not like Light-based or even Druidic or Shamanic healing, which offers relief from pain and peace of mind. You are left intact, but with all of the pain, and more. This is how they like to break down their captives - knowing that the pain will never end is a strong incentive to avoid the ire of the masters, and to tell them whatever they want to know.

And I told them everything. They didn't believe a word of it, but I told them. They beat me bloody in that cell for half a day straight, certain that I was an Alliance spy crafting some terribly insane story to taunt them and insult their intelligence. After a while, I think they decided I simply must have been mad.

In a way, I was. The transference had left me alone in an empty mind. I had memories of my own, but it was like there wasn't enough of me to fill the space. So, after a while, I learned to retreat deeper within the cavern of my own head, away from the pain. They came close to killing me, several times, but decided that even though the body of James Braddock was soft and weak, his will was sufficient to put him to work in the mines. I was sent deeper into the mountain to join the slaves that pulled the dark iron ore from the most inhospitable caverns in the mountain.

It wasn't long before I started using the space in my head to keep track of the days. In fact, I soon found I had a tremendous memory for detail. If I had the time, and enough parchment, I could write down, in excruciating minutia, every event of every day of the last five years, three months, and twenty-six days, but that would be tedious. The irony of this gift, which would be so helpful to a spellcaster, was not lost on me.

As it were, the most salient points can be told in summary. Most of the days were filled with the same repetitive grind. Wake early. Cough down bitter, cold soup. Haul ore all morning. Choke on moldy, hard bread. Haul ore all afternoon. Fight for a decent supper. Sleep, with one eye open, and pray you haven't drawn attention from a guard or prisoner that wants to shiv you in the dark.

Most prisoners, especially the human ones, don't last more than three months in Blackrock Mountain. The Dark Irons don't care - there are always more slaves to take - and they only grow more wary of you the longer you manage to stay alive. There is a mechanism in place to cull the heard - it's the Ring of the Law.

Ostensibly, the Ring is a place to send criminals to face judgment. If you've ever invaded the fortress, you've likely had to fight your way out of there at one point or another. But while well-armed heroes make short work of the spectacle, what you don't get to see is that every evening, if a slave wants to eat, he has to fight in the Ring. You don't have to win; you'll get a few ounces of boiled rat or hound or whatever excuse for protein is on the menu if you participate - but if you want a decent meal, you have to win.

If you'll recall, James wasn't in very good shape when you left him. He was the son of a rich lord who had never done an honest day's work in his life. And I was not trained as a fighter. But I was determined to survive, and I didn't mind the pain. The pain I could ignore. The dark mending didn't even bother me after a while. So, I fought. Sometimes three or four times a night, just to get enough food to stay alive, because I wasn't winning. I wasn't trying to win. I figured there was no point in trying to win. I didn't want to mark myself as a threat, and I didn't want to change the course of history by defeating someone I wasn't supposed to, so I became a walking punching bag.

Days turned to weeks, and weeks to months, and I was earning enough sustenance to build muscle during the long hours I spent pushing ore carts. The masters grew suspicious, but I remained stoic, silent, and, in their opinion, entirely mad. There was one Dark Iron, however, that was not so convinced. Coren Direbrew was certain I was hiding something, so, on day number 139, he took me off cart duty and dragged me back to a storeroom at the Grim Guzzler.

"Yer not as stupid as they say there, Braddock. I think yer up to no good here. Nothing short of an Ogre can take the kind o' beating you take every night around here."

I shrugged. He continued. "I'll reckon yer on a mission o' some sort... and I'll be damned if yer not the most patient human I ever seen. But ye'll not be lettin' yerself starve for it. So, I'll not waste me fists tryin' to beat it out o' ye... but when yer hungry enough, you go right on and speak up."

And so he left me there. After four days, I literally starved to death. He had the priests bring me back, and keep me on the brink of starvation for 9 hours while they fed half the population of Shadowforge City right in front of me. I said nothing. Defeated, but resolute, Direbrew switched tactics. I was fed beer. Lots of it. It was bitter swill, and it only served to wreak havoc on my internal organs given the lack of solid food I'd had, but I was good and drunk. And I still said nothing.

So, Direbrew took another approach. He decided as long as I was going to be a mysterious punching bag, he was going to find a way to profit from it. He started feeding me. This was not much of a reprieve - I still had to pull ore cart duty, and Direbrew is a lousy cook, but I was getting decent meat on a regular basis, and lots more of his rotten beer. He asked me if there was one thing I wanted - anything - and he'd get it for me, as long as I did him one favor.

I thought for a long time about this. All I really wanted was to be left alone to serve out my remaining days in that shithole so I could walk out alive and start my life over. It wasn't much of a goal, but I figured I had a better chance of not having my head taken off if I at least pretended to get along with someone who could provide a little protection.

"OK, what's the favor?" I asked. They were the first words I'd spoken to him. He was taken aback.

"By me beard! It speaks!"

"What favor do you want from me?" I repeated.

"Ah! Well, assuming what ye ask isn't too unreasonable, what I'd have ye do is simple. Just win a fight once in a while. Say, every week or two. Ye've done nothing but lose for so long, nobody bets against yer opponents. But if once every so often, ye were to win, I'd have an opportunity to make a fair bit o' coin."

"Everyone knows you've got me here in the Guzzler. The bookies would get wise very quick."

"Aye, except I'd not be fool enough to make any bets."

"So how would you make any money?"

"Ye don't think the bookies would pay handsomely for this information?"

"Fair enough. But I'm not a trained fighter."

"Bah! A girl can be taught to throw a good punch. It's takin' one that's hard for most - and ye've plenty o' experience at that! I'll train ye meself!"

"Alright."

"But first - what is it ye be wantin'?"

"I want to learn how to make the beer."

"What?" He was truly flabbergasted by this.

"The beer. I don't have the belly of a dwarf - I'd like to learn to make it so I can brew my own. If I'm going to live like this, I'd prefer at least to have a pint at the end of the day that doesn't turn my stomach into stone."

He glowered a bit. Then he laughed. "Hah! Very well then, we'll get you into the brewery after the fights for an hour a night. You can cook up yer weak swill, and I'll fatten me purse a bit with yer iron jaw."

And that was the arrangement. Direbrew trained me to brawl. He even went out of his way to let everyone know he was doing it; said he wanted to make me his own personal prizefighter. And, as he promised, he never bet on any of my fights. But once every ten days or so, I'd pick a weak opponent and just barely beat him. Nobody got wise. I stayed well-fed. I learned to throw a decent punch. And I got pretty good at making beer.

But even that routine grew old. Pushing ore cart after ore cart, I had developed muscles and calloused skin so thick I hardly had to think about mentally overcoming the pain - I simply didn't feel much of it anymore. I fought, night after night, without thinking about what I was doing. In truth, I shrugged off most of the kicks and punches thrown my way, letting them glance off as I dodged and weaved out of the way, letting them land only so much as to convince the crowd I was actually struck when I decided to take the fall and be counted out. That's when the real misery set in.

Without the physical pain to fight off, the mental anguish had room to creep in. Despair. Drudgery. Hopelessness. I began to wonder what the point was. I was only 9 months in; I had an eternity remaining, and I was trapped in my own head with no real outlet but alcohol, no real stimulus but pain; and I was fast growing immune to both.

I was literally at the brink of suicide when it happened. I had hauled a cart of dark iron ore over to the Black Forge to be smelted. One dwarf stood guard while the other handled the delicate process of forging bars from the raw ore. I stared idly at the river of lava below the bridge where I stood, resolved that there was really no need for me to go on living - the timeline would be preserved if I ceased to exist, and a dive into the lava would end it quick. I stepped closer to the edge, when I heard her:

"Hurry UP Madmartigan! Ugh... I canNOT believe I have to drag you down here for this. If the guild didn't need a meatshield so bad, you would NOT be worth my time. Honestly! What kind of scrub isn't attuned to the Core yet?"

It was a common sight. Azeroth's greatest adventurers wanted to plunder the Molten Core, and there was an elf near the entrance of the fortress that would transport them directly to the deepest part of the mountain in exchange for a small fragment of the rock from just outside the entrance. With that, he could bind a piece of their life essence to the exact location where they wanted to go, and, well, I'm sure you know the rest.

But this group was different. This pair... her voice... was so familiar. From a lifetime ago. A lifetime that wouldn't exist for me.

The dwarves ignored them, but when I started walking toward them, the guard held up his axe.

"Just where do ye think yer goin', slave?"

Without a thought, I backhanded the axe from his hand, and with the same motion, squatted, and spun in a circle, my right leg extended to sweep his knees. He let out a short scream before landing in the lava below.

I kept walking toward the pair. The warrior was chipping away at the wall with the hilt of his sword. The dwarf who had been smelting the ore yelled at me to stop.

I kept walking. He tried to tackle me from behind. I sidestepped him and sent him over the bridge to join his friend.

I was only a few feet from them now. The warrior pulled the fragment he needed from the wall and turned to face me, somewhat confused. The woman... the priestess... she was a priestess then. She just rolled her eyes.

"Ugh. A filthy slave. Let's go, I'm late for my raid on Naxx - I still have a TON of splinters to farm."

It was her. I couldn't believe it. It was actually her.

"Eloona?" I asked.

The warrior lowered his sword. "You know this guy?"

She ignored him. "How do you know my name? Wait, it's because I've run this like, a thousand times... even the Dark Irons think I'm famous, right?"

I shook my head. "No, from another time. You were also called Niamora."

She went pale. "Madmartigan, hearth out."

"But, I need to get back to..."

"HEARTH. OUT."

And so he did. Then she turned to me. "THAT is my real name. My TRUE name. Now, I don't care if it's an old wive's tale, but I don't take any chances - nobody ALIVE anymore knows that name but me. How do you know it? Are you a demon? Is it because I found this book?"

She pulled a book out of her pack. It was ancient, and obviously a spellbook. "Where did you get that?" I asked.

"Dire Maul. Those old Highborne Elves have stacks of them. I figured they wouldn't miss just one."

"This... this is demonology. You're a priest now..." It was starting to make sense.

"Yeah, I know, but shadow is kind of weak, and I hear warlocks are having all the real fun these days."

I held the book and opened it, looking at the first page inside the cover. The runic writing was blurred and illegible, as all magic writing is to me now. You cannot imagine how frustrating that is. But this book... it had a mind of its own. The letters suddenly came into focus.

*You have strong will, James Braddock. You miss the loss of your true power, do you not?*

"This book..." I muttered, "I can read this book."

"I know, right?" She was practically gleeful. "I mean, the language is, like, 10,000 years old, and it just translates itself for me! I've only just started with it, but it's amazing!"

I looked back at the page. The text had shifted again.

*You need not be powerless, James Braddock. You are already strong enough to cast the summoning. Let me show you how to make the Pact. Let me show you true power.*

For a brief moment, I was tempted. I missed the rush of power that came with the command of the arcane. But I'd also learned to become pretty damned stoic over the last 9 months.

I tossed the book into the lava.

"What are you DOING! Are you INSANE!?! That book was one-of-a-kind!"

I grabbed her by the shoulders. She was taken aback at the suddenness and the force of it.

"Niamora, you need to listen to me very carefully. You will not believe a word of what I am about to say, but listen. I do not belong here. I am out of time, out of place, out of my own bloody damned skin here, and I am here for one reason and one reason only: because I did something to screw with the timeline 3,000 years ago. But I have also seen the future, and it is a future where your demonic pact leads you to a terrible end. I am willfully violating the one rule I cannot break right now to tell you this, and you MUST believe me. You must NOT pursue that course of study. Ever. It will end in the sort of tragedy that can destroy thousands of lives, including your own."

"You're right. I don't believe you. Now let me go, before I mind-control you and walk you into that lava to get my book."

"Mind control... mind control... that's it!"

"You... want me to walk you into the lava?"

"No. Listen, I've studied. A lot. And I know how the spell works. You've got a limited amount of time to make the subject take a few actions before his will recovers and kicks you out, but you can 'hear' them yelling at you the whole time, right?"

"Basically. It's not very pleasant. Especially on Gnomes. Who knew they were such little perverts?"

"My point is, if the subject is willing, they can show you whatever they want, and let you stay however long you want."

"Not without permanent damage."

"My mind is a little different than most. And you don't like me very much anyway."

"Fair point."

I grabbed her hands, and placed her palms against my temples. "Then have a look. You need to see. You need to believe."

She stammered. "I don't want to. Let me go."

"Don't you at least want to know how I know your name?"

She sighed, took a deep breath, and cast the spell.

I showed her everything. The time we spent at Lakeshire. The attack at the Dark Portal. The Bronze Dragon. Her future self. Twisted. Evil. Ruthless.

Her death. The sacrifice she had to make to stop herself.

But it didn't stop there. I let her keep watching. I let her see... feel... what her death had done to me. How I'd felt about her. How I'd never told her.

I let her see the trip to ancient Arathor. How I'd ended up in Blackrock Mountain. The price I had to pay. And how I was willing to pay it all over. Just to save her.

She collapse. She sobbed. I reached out to comfort her.

"No! It can't be. Get away from me!"

"Niamora, you have to..."

"STOP CALLING ME THAT!"

She fumbled through her pack, and pressed her thumb against her hearthstone. And she was gone.

So I decided not to throw myself into the river of molten lava that day. I didn't have any trouble about the two dead dwarves; when the next patrol arrived and asked me why I was sitting by the cart alone, I pointed at the spot on the wall where the warrior had dug out a fresh chunk and shrugged. They just assumed the over-eager adventurers had slain them.

I went back into the routine, buoyed by the slightest hope that I'd done something to prevent a great tragedy, and to save someone I'd never been able to admit meant so much to me.

But there was also doubt. If I'd changed the timeline, shouldn't there be some consequence? Shouldn't a Bronze Dragon show up to smack me around a bit and re-set things? Or what if she just blew me off? What I'd shown her was traumatic, but I was good at getting over trauma - it wasn't like someone else couldn't. Maybe she hearthed home, started drinking, passed out, and chalked it all up as a bad dream.

Then, 98 days later, someone walked into the Grim Guzzler and killed every dwarf in the place.

"JAMES BRADDOCK. WHERE IS HE? I SWEAR TO THE LIGHT I WILL MELT THE SKIN FROM YOUR FACE IF YOU DON'T SPEAK NOW, YOU DARK IRON PIECE OF..."

"I'm right here, Eloona." I said from the storeroom where I'd been stacking kegs.

Coren Direbrew came running over. "What in the name of...!"

She never took her eyes off me when she smote him with the wave of a finger.

"You know, he's really not supposed to die right now." I said.

"I'll resurrect him and the rest of these morons later. I need to talk to you."

"Let's have a drink." I gestured to an empty table. I mean, they were all empty now, but I found one that didn't have too much blood on it.

"I'd rather not. I don't care for this Dark Iron swill."

"Neither do I. They let me brew my own." I offered her a pint.

She took a sip, nodded, and said, "I thought for sure you were a demon or an old god manifestation or some damned thing sent to screw with me for weeks after, well, you know..." I could swear she blushed.

"What changed your mind?" I asked.

"A month ago, the Dark Portal re-opened. I... recognized it. From your memory. I didn't waste any time going through. I had to know."

"You found A'dal."

She nodded. And then she started sobbing uncontrollably. "It's... it's all true. All of it. What you showed me. What you've been through here. Why... all of it is true."

"Eloona, I didn't... I'm not here because of you. It's not your fault."

"You're risking making all of this... this pain, this... you could be throwing it all away for me!"

"If that were the case, I'd have heard about it by now, I think."

"Then why are you still here? They don't even have you chained. They think you're totally broken, but you could just walk out..."

"Well, not exactly. There's quite a few guards between here and the surface."

"You know what I mean. You could leave, right now, with me."

"I can't. I made a terrible mistake. I'm paying for it. I didn't think I could do it, but now I know I can."

"How?"

"Hope. You've given me hope, Eloona."

She smiled. "Actually, I don't use that name anymore. It's just Niamora now."

"Oh. Well, last time you kind of told me to stop calling you that, so..."

She punched me in the shoulder. It felt good.

We talked a while longer, but not long enough. And I knew she had to leave, or I would never be able to let her go.

"Alright, fine, so, according to your calculation, you've done 377 days here so far."

"Exactly."

"That means you have, what..."

"1,524 days left. Four years. Two months. Two days."

"By the Light... that's so far off. There's no way you can do that..."

"I have to do it. I CAN do it now. I'll find you when I get out."

"Alright. In four years, two months, and two days, I will be waiting at the door for you. If I'm not there, come find me at Northshire Abbey - that's where I try to spend most of my time these days."

"A far cry from the Slaughtered Lamb..."

"Yeah, well, that career path just wasn't working out for me."

I smiled. "Finish resurrecting these guys. The morning shift will be along shortly. I'll need to get to work."

She cast the spell. Groggy dwarves began to shift back to consciousness. She kissed me on the cheek. "I'll be waiting."

The next four years, well, those are a story for another time. I fear this letter is already at risk of never fitting in the mailbox as it is.

I searched for her when I left, but she wasn't at the entrance on the surface. I went to Northshire, and nobody had heard of her. I inquired at Stormwind, where I was sure they'd know every priest and priestess in the kingdom. They said they'd lost so many in the Cataclysm - some vanished without a trace, some joined the Twilight's Hammer with Benedictus, and many were simply killed in action. They had no record of her, and after a week of waiting for her at Northshire, I left. I wanted to get as far away as possible. For all I knew she had died sometime in those four years in some foolish campaign, lost and forgotten to everyone but me.

Now I know she lives. I would very much like to see her again. So, please, extend my invitation. I will await here at Halfhill.

Regards,

- Braddock
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-17-2014, 12:23 PM
DarkAngel DarkAngel is offline

Priestess of the Moon
DarkAngel's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Northwest Ohio
Posts: 568
BattleTag: Samael#1487

Thumbs up

Ha, ha! We finally learn the fate of the other copy! Hopefully, he fared better than the sheep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
I am fine, and while I am not wealthy, I also am not needy - the fish are plentiful, the weather is tolerable, and the drink is affordable here in Pandaria, and I figure after 1,901 days as a prisoner in Blackrock Mountain, I've earned a bit of a vacation here.
Here's one of those examples of things that work when spoken, but not in print. There's just too much crammed in here. Now, one of the advantages of first-person perspective is that you can claim, "It's his words!" The exchanged letter format makes things even more personal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
For my entire adult life, I'd been called Shadrach, and was quite used to it, but she liked the name Simon, and thought it fitting to use it as a tribute to the parents who had lost me so long ago.
Here's another one. It might work if the comma before the 'but' became a semicolon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
She smiled, "Now you see my point
Is it possible to smile words?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
You are left intact, but with all of the pain, and more.
I would have replaced the second comma with a dash to create a stronger pause: those last two words are kind of tacked on. The trouble is there's that dashed construction directly after.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
every event of every day of the last five years, three months, and twenty-six days, but that would be tedious.
The last comma probably needs to be upgraded to a dash or semicolon to differentiate the final clause from the series.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
stoic, silent, and, in their opinion, entirely mad.
With so many commas around, it's better to set off the aside with dashes. It's a visual confusion thing.

Note: it would take more than four days to starve. Die of thirst, yes -- but I suppose we don't have a simple word for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
This was not much of a reprieve - I still had to pull ore cart duty, and Direbrew is a lousy cook, but I was getting decent meat on a regular basis, and lots more of his rotten beer.
Here's an example of something I'm seeing happen over an over: the use of a dash in a causal relationship. Aside from conventional uses (e.g. time), the colon is used in one of three ways: to launch a list (as in this sentence), to indicate a special subcategory of what came before (as in the previous sentence), or if the second clause is the reason for the first. That was a little forced, but I think it got the point across.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
In truth, I shrugged off most of the kicks and punches thrown my way, letting them glance off as I dodged and weaved out of the way, letting them land only so much as to convince the crowd I was actually struck when I decided to take the fall and be counted out.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
I was only 9 months in; I had an eternity remaining, and I was trapped in my own head with no real outlet but alcohol, no real stimulus but pain; and I was fast growing immune to both.
More glaring examples of "too much in one." The second one makes a really memorable line, though.

Hee, hee. MC attunement. How many people even know what that is any more? I feel old.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
a thousand times... even the Dark Irons think I'm famous, right?"
The ellipsis can be used to terminate a sentence, in which case it is followed by space. When used within a sentence, however, the ellipsis replaces the space. More things in English that don't make sense, I guess.

Another issue that keeps popping up repeatedly: numbers. There's a longstanding convention that numbers less than one hundred be written out in words. Admittedly, the rule isn't being followed nearly as much as it used to be. Magazine articles, for example, commonly use numerals -- probably as a space-saving measure. Books, however, are still bound by "proper" conventions. (Major exception: if the name of something includes a number, it stays as a numeral; e.g. Apollo 13.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
"Mind control... mind control... that's it!"
"You... want me to walk you into the lava?"
See note above on ellipses. The first one might be correct in the sense of separate sentences, though.

The minor stuff:
  • exactly the 1,901st day.
  • be certain none of James' consciousness was left
  • mechanism in place to cull the herd
  • He even went out of his way to let everyone know he was doing itsaid he wanted to make me his own personal prizefighter.
  • She collapsed. She sobbed. I reached out to comfort her.
  • I didn't have any trouble about the two dead dwarves: when the next patrol arrived (colon indicates causality)
  • prevent a great tragedyand to save someone
  • "I'm right here, Eloona," I said from the storeroom (same sentence)
Ah, the joys of outleveling content! Good thing she also has her mass res...

Actually, I kind of like the exchanged letter format. Might do something with it some day, but that's beside the point -- the point being that this is excellent work, well-conceived and well-developed. A great many people have trouble pulling off drama and humor at the same time, but you do it with aplomb. You, sir, have subtlety.

I was wondering how the changed timeline had Eloona still alive. No matter how much more powerful the new Shadrach was, Niamora was WAY out of his league. This explains it. Though we still need to find out who that family in the time capsule was.
__________________
Every ending is but a new beginning.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-17-2014, 02:19 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

***Non-Fiction Interlude***

So, we've learned that:

1. Bolvar sucks at sentence structure, and needs to take more time with his punctuation and knock-off all the damned run-ons (as this sentence proves).
2. DarkAngel is a goddamned genius.
3. I'm shocked anyone still remembers the family in the time capsule. Yes, I totally have a backstory for them - and I was actually thinking of spinning them off into the Captain Kaos fanfic...

This one, though, I've been working on for a long time, and really struggled with how to get it moving. I wanted to find a way to offer some detail of the five years in Blackrock while also showing what's happening currently - as I think the events of the past influence what happens now, but not necessarily all at once.

It's very tricky. Coming up with Niamora's "rescue" was tough, and I think it's still a little wonky, but it was the best I could do. What I wanted was some little reward for Braddock; some motivation. Otherwise, why else would he keep living in a craphole for five years? I don't think he's ever been this ultimate survivor sort; he needed something else to keep him going.

But, it's not all sunshine and roses after the 1,901 days are up. Niamora wasn't there, at least not initially. There's a reason for this; and it might have consequences. I also have to find ways to keep Shadrach out of his way. Naturally, he'd want to help his counterpart - so he needs good reason to have some distance. Braddock can't grow if he's got to sit in the shadow of, well, himself (although I had thought of approaching it that way - having him grow increasingly resentful of the fact that Shadrach is still a mage, still has Nina, still has his daughter... all the in-your-face reminders of what he lost... but ultimately decided that would be too much drama, and not enough action).

Thanks again for the feedback - it is spot-on.
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 06-17-2014, 05:03 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

I had to re-read the letter three times before handing it over to Nina. It was unbelievable.

"Soooo... you kinda had a thing for this woman?" was her first comment.

"What? No... I mean... It was a long time ago, Nina."

She just smiled at me. "You don't have to deny it. I'm not TOO jealous. After all, this was you in another reality. You've technically never even met her here."

"That's true."

"But, then again, she's still alive here. I might have to do something about that..."

She was never one to miss an opportunity to give me a hard time. "Look, obviously she means a lot to Braddock. And rightly so; she might have been the only real human contact he had for five years in that place. What I want to know is why she wasn't there for him when he got out like she'd promised. He kind of went off the deep end there for a while when he thought she was gone."

"No sign of her at work today, I take it?"

"No. But we'll find her tomorrow. I'm going to talk to Matthias right now and call in a few favors. If she's still in the city, we'll know tonight. If she's further out, it might take a little longer, but someone has to know where she is."

"Yeah, I'm gonna ask Jenn to watch the baby and go with you. Can't exactly have you out chasing your alternate-reality crush unsupervised."

I wasn't biting. "Good idea. You're better at pressing your brother for favors than I am anyway."

***

It didn't take long. Niamora was staying at the Pig and Whistle. Nina and I found her at a table in the back, in simple gray robes with bronze trim, idly picking at a plate of roast lamb and vegetables.

She smiled, and stood up, offering her hand to Nina first. "Hi, I'm Niamora. This must be really weird for you."

Nina shrugged, "Weirder still for you. I'm Nina. This is Shadrach, who, apparently you know, but haven't met."

"Yeah, and he apparently knows all about me. So, let's not make this too awkward; do you guys want to join me for dinner?"

I sighed, "Thanks, I think that'd be a great idea."

We sat down and waved the barmaid over to order our meals. I couldn't help myself - I immediately unloaded with a barrage of questions:

"So, how come you didn't meet him at Blackrock like you promised? And if you were running late, why snoop around SI:7? Why not just come to me? And how is it nobody at the Cathedral knows who you are? Where have you been hiding the last five years? And.."

"Simon!" Nina interrupted, "That's enough! By the Light, that's just rude. This is dinner, not an interrogation."

"Sorry, it's just, you know, he's obviously upset."

Niamora gave a wry grin, "And you're quite the overprotective brother, as it were."

"It IS good to see you alive." I admitted.

More plates of lamb and vegetables arrived. Niamora began, "I'll get to all of your questions, but in chronological order. Obviously, you've been in touch with him, and he's told you about our meeting, so I'll assume you know his side of it."

I nodded. She continued. "My first meeting with James was obviously very upsetting, and it had greater consequences than I admitted to him later. I had already shown the book to Ursula Deline, and expressed an interest in studying under her tutelage to become a warlock."

"But you were still a priestess at the time..."

"Yes, well, Ursula informed me that, even with the book, I would be starting over fresh. I would have to forsake my priest training entirely and I would be quite powerless for some time. I wasn't quite ready to do that."

"Why not? And what about that sob-story you told me about how your parents had to sell you to Scholomance to pay off a debt to the Barovs when you were a kid and you'd been a warlock since you were practically a toddler?"

She raised an eyebrow at that. "I... don't know anything about that, but, honestly, it sounds like the sort of thing I'd make up to pry a little sympathy from someone. Back in those days, I would do just about anything to get better gear or find my way onto a better raid team. Anyhow, I was orphaned as a child and raised right next to the Cathedral in Stormwind - that's how I ended up a priestess."

I shrugged, "Sorry, didn't mean to digress there. Please, go on."

She finished a bite of lamb and continued, "Yes, as I was saying; when I'd found the book, I was already more than halfway through gathering all the remnants of Atiesh. You know how I was about that sort of thing. There was no way I was quitting before I was done."

"Right, so, why were you still carrying the book around then, if you weren't going to be ready to study it for at least a few months?"

"I wasn't going to let it out of my sight. Ursula wanted it bad. Said it was older than anything she'd ever seen. Said it might have been written by one of Azshara's own Highborne. I was certain it would make me the most powerful demonoligist in Azeroth. Unfortunately, I was probably right."

"And then you ran into Braddock in Blackrock."

She nodded. "It changed everything. He didn't just show me my future; he shared all his feelings about it, too. It was heartbreaking. I couldn't sleep for weeks, and, worse, I had an angry Warlock harassing me about it."

"What do you mean?"

"The deal was, I would let Ursula read the book, in my presence, while she trained me. But when I told her the book was lost, she didn't believe me. She was certain I'd found another mentor, so she spread the word that I had betrayed her, and even put a bounty on my head. Worse, she leaked a rumor to the Church of the Light that I had embraced demonic magic and should be excommunicated. Benedictus didn't act on this, but everyone had heard - there was no future for me at the Cathedral."

"Well, in hindsight, it's no wonder Benedictus didn't do anything formal about it. He might have tried to cultivate you as an ally. What did you do?"

"I changed my name and went into hiding. I didn't have to worry about it for too long - soon, the Dark Portal opened, and I went to Shattrath and allied myself with the Aldor, who had no reason to ostracize me."

"Smart move. It also probably confirmed Braddock's story."

"It did. When I saw the place, saw A'dal, and realized it was exactly as I'd seen in his... your... memory, I knew he had shown me the truth. As soon as I had settled in, I traveled back to Blackrock Mountain to find James and get him out of there."

"But he didn't let you take him."

"No, he was certain that, even though he had already violated the terms of his imprisonment, he had to serve it out."

"So you went back to Shattrath"

"Only for a short while. I was frustrated with not knowing what was really going on, with not understanding all of the quantum mechanics of the timeline, and I started to worry about making things harder for him if he was responsible for anything I did."

"Makes sense; at that point, you should have been on your way to being a fully-trained warlock, and, from what I recall, you had done some substantial things in that role."

"Yes, well, I had lost my appetite for fame and treasure; I just didn't want my salvation to cost any more to the person who had paid for it. It was about that time that I discovered the Caverns of Time."

I finally realized the significance of the bronze trim on her robes. "You went to work for the Keepers of Time."

A fight broke out at the bar. I started to stand up, but Nina was already on her feet. "I'll take care of it," she said.

"Should we help her out?" Niamora asked.

"No," I shook my head, "we'd only get in her way. You were saying?"

A man was clutching his knee, having just had it kicked sideways from the unseen agent. Nina was already planting a foot in the mouth of another while she had a third in a headlock.

Niamora laughed, "You weren't kidding. Anyway, yeah, the Bronze Flight seemed like my best option for not screwing up the timeline. A dragon by the name of Bryiedormu seemed particularly interested in taking me under her wing."

I raised an eyebrow. "She was the one you corrupted..."

"In another timeline, yes, but she was aware of it. She assured me that my absence from time as a warlock would only create a small ripple in the timeline, but that if I wanted to achieve a greater understanding of the realities we live in, I could remain in the Caverns and work with the Keepers against the Infinite Dragonflight."

"So, basically, you've spent the last five years skipping through time. Is that why you lost track of when you were supposed to meet Braddock?"

"Not at all. The Bronze Flight is not completely forthcoming with mortal races. They'll tell you only so much, and you have to observe the rest, but they're very careful about giving out information that could cause you to influence your own fate or that of others in a manner that wasn't intended. I had to pay close attention, and I am always aware of what time it is."

"Then how is it you were late?"

"That was by design. I didn't stay in the Caverns the whole time. I had other leads to follow. When the time was right, I sought out Hollus Fenweaver."

"Why? He's been nothing but trouble." As much as he tried to help, I honestly hoped I never had to deal with him again.

"Because the Bronze Dragons didn't want to talk about you or James. I think now they were probably confused; Fenweaver knows how to avoid their gaze. There's a good chance they have no idea what happened with your trip to ancient Arathor. But I had to know more. If there was any chance I could get James out of Blackrock sooner, I wanted to do it. So, I waited as long as I could, and then I went to find him at Theramore."

"I wonder if he got out of there..." I said.

"He did. When Lady Proudmoore was evacuating civilians, she had the prisoners shipped directly to the Violet Hold. He's there now, if you want to go see him."

"I don't. But what did he tell you?"

"Not much. He said I was doing the right thing, staying out of the way for a while, helping the Bronze Flight, but that I should be careful, and not trust anyone, even them."

"How right he was..."

"Yeah... but he told me one other thing. He said if I truly cared about James, I had to let him get out of Blackrock in his own time, and I had to give him at least ten days after he was set to leave prison before I went to find him. He was very emphatic about this - he said that while James might be fine if I went to him at day 1,901, his destiny would be far, far greater and more rewarding if I would just give him a little more time on his own first."

"Odd. He told me something similar. I wanted to rush to Blackrock when I'd gotten back, but he told me that he was already free of his torment, and that it was better to let him seek me out."

"But you didn't wait for that."

At this point, Nina finally returned to the table. The brawlers had been shown the door, most of them unconscious, and the bartender thanked her by picking up our dinner tab and offering us drinks on the house for the rest of the evening.

"No, I couldn't. I used our contacts at SI:7 to track him down, and then sent him a letter at the inn in Pandaria where he was known to stop by every so often."

Niamora gazed at the table, and idly pushed a blonde lock of hair behind her ear. "Fenweaver wanted him to get to Pandaria for some reason. That's why he told us both to back off. But why? What's so important there that we'd be better off abandoning him to it than being there for him when he got out?"

I looked at Nina. The answer I had was classified, and I wasn't sure I could share it. She nodded.

I spoke in a lower tone, "The war is heading to Pandaria, and in a hurry. There's a lot going on down there, and there's no way to tell what it is he's supposed to find, but he won't be able to stay out of trouble for long."

Niamora shook her head. "It doesn't matter. We've served the whim of fate for long enough."

Nina spoke up, "I agree. We're sitting here bullshitting when we ought to be on a boat south."

Unfortunately, I had no idea how to port to a place I'd never been. "Nina's right. I'll speak to the harbormaster and get us passage on the next ship. The Alliance has vessels heading there almost daily now."

Niamora spoke up, "Find passage, but I'd prefer to go alone. You will no doubt have duties to tend to for the war effort. I am no longer obligated to anyone."

That didn't sound right to me. "I thought the Bronze Flight was actively recruiting more mortals to their cause as Timewalkers now that they'd lost most of their power following the fall of Deathwing?"

"They are, but I resigned from their service long ago. When I saw what Nozdormu would become, I decided I'd spent enough time in their company. I fear too many of them, mortals and dragons alike, become mad from prolonged exposure to the currents of time."

I still didn't like the idea of not going with her, but she had a point - it would be very difficult for me to run off now on an unsanctioned mission. "Fine. We'll get you on the first boat out of here. I'll get a message off to Braddock to let him know you're on the way. You'll find him at the Lazy Turnip Inn at Halfhill in the Valley of the Four Winds."

"Thanks. I'll try to keep him out of trouble." She smiled.

"We'll meet up with you after the main Alliance force makes landfall. Oh, and you didn't answer my last question... why didn't you just come to me in the first place? Why were you asking around SI:7 for Braddock?"

"You weren't home."

Oh yeah. I wasn't. But, "You could have just talked to Nina..."

She gestured at the scattered unconscious men we walked past on our way out of the tavern, "Do you REALLY think it's a good idea for strange women to knock on her door and ask after her husband?"
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 06-17-2014, 05:05 PM
Shaman Shaman is offline

Site Staff - Admin
Shaman's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: The Barrens
Posts: 12,448

Default

Okay then Bolvar ye old card ye, I'll give this a read now!
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 06-17-2014, 05:15 PM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarahmoo View Post
Okay then Bolvar ye old card ye, I'll give this a read now!
Thanks - hopefully the mind-numbing amount of backstory does not deter you...
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 06-21-2014, 09:11 AM
DarkAngel DarkAngel is offline

Priestess of the Moon
DarkAngel's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Northwest Ohio
Posts: 568
BattleTag: Samael#1487

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
2. DarkAngel is a goddamned genius.
And don't you forget it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
3. I'm shocked anyone still remembers the family in the time capsule. Yes, I totally have a backstory for them - and I was actually thinking of spinning them off into the Captain Kaos fanfic...
Truth be told, I had quite forgotten about them myself -- until I re-read the story from the beginning a few months ago. What can I say? I needed something to read.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
So, let's not make this too awkward; do you guys want to join me for dinner?
Calling this out for being correct.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
He was very emphatic about this - he said that while James might be fine if I went to him at day 1,901, his destiny would be far, far greater and more rewarding if I would just give him a little more time on his own first."
And likewise this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
He said I was doing the right thing, staying out of the way for a while, helping the Bronze Flight, but that I should be careful, and not trust anyone, even them."
There are, however, still a lot of long, awkward sentences like this one. The good news is that almost everything in this chapter is dialogue, so it's easy to claim the characters just didn't have English-teacher mothers who taught them to speak in proper constructions. *shudders*

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
"Makes sense; at that point,
I should probably let up on the semicolons. They can, after all, be used as either "strong commas" (as I tend to thing of them) or as "weak periods." As long as they work in the latter mode, I'm just going to let them pass from now on.

One thing I'm not going to lay off, though, is ellipses. Unless it's ending a sentence -- which it can -- there should be no space between it and the next word.

Bryiedormu is a she? The Bronze Dragon naming convention is "-dormu" for males and "-dormi" for females. Then again, they do seem have a penchant for being trans...
EDIT: They would be way beyond quantum mechanics in their understanding of time, however -- which is more of a relativity thing anyway. Better just say "mechanics."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
They'll tell you only so much, and you have to observe the rest, but they're very careful about giving out information that could cause you to influence your own fate or that of others in a manner that wasn't intended.
That one came out as particularly clunky.

The destruction of Theramore kind of blew a hole in the Ori-Bolvar continuity, didn't it? Ori said she was running it as a "what might have been future," though that doesn't exactly work for a story set so close to the "present." Not sure what to do about that. You could claim Theramore will be rebuilt in the next twenty years, but the severity of the fallout makes that pretty unlikely. Hmmmm...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolvar View Post
Niamora spoke up,
Too soon after using the same phrase for Nina?

And the minor stuff:
  • means a lot to Braddockand rightly so: she might have been
  • Nina shrugged. "Weirder still for you.
  • been hiding the last five years? And" indicates sudden cut
  • Niamora gave a wry grin. "And you're quite
  • "It IS good to see you alive," I admitted.
  • when you were a kid, and you'd been a warlock since you
  • I couldn't sleep for weeks, and worse, I had
  • an angry warlock harassing me about it."
  • "The deal was I would let Ursula read
  • that I had betrayed herand even put a bounty
  • everyone had heard: there was no future for me
  • worry about it for too long: soon, the Dark Portal
  • When I saw the placesaw A'daland realized it
  • really going onwith not understanding all of the quantum mechanics of the timelineand I started
  • Niamora laughed. "You weren't
  • "Yeah...but he told me one other thing.
  • had a point: it would be very difficult for me to run off
  • my last question... Why didn't you just come

In all, very well-done. You put a great deal of thought into this, and it shows.
__________________
Every ending is but a new beginning.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 06-21-2014, 10:12 AM
Bolvar Bolvar is offline

(╯�□�)╯︵ ┻━┻
Get Off My Lawn!
Bolvar's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Get off my lawn!
Posts: 19,908

Default

Thanks, I'm trying to clean up the sentence structure a bit. This is really good feedback.

As far as what happened with Ori's SDS: I can't really help that. I need to just file most it into the "alternate reality" bucket and move forward with what we have now.
__________________
You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:12 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.