Red coughed as he entered the musty room. His eyes scanned it, as he coughed, running everyone as he opened the door. It had to be here. As he walked the isles of drawers, he stopped, at one marked "R". Pulling open the drawer, he began flipping along the files inside, before pulling out one, marked with his name.
Pulling a nearby decaying chair up to the lone table in the room, he opened the file. Looking around quickly, to make sure he was alone, he assured himself that few people would actually come in here. He was certain there were particular people who looked, and updated these things, but he was fairly certain he wouldn't be interrupted.
Slowly, he lifted the first page from the folder, and looked it over. He laughed, simple information. Reading along, he smiled at how some of the information was recorded.
First name: Redamous
Last name: Withheld
Height: 8 ft
Weight: 250 lbs
Shaking his head, he grinned. His last name wasn't withheld, it was nonexistent. Everything else was accurate, and he was alittle suprised that someone had taken the time to update his rank.
Redamous flipped through a few more papers. Copies of his license, his original forms. As he continued through though, things became more interesting. Reports, reports he hadn't even known had been filed.
Glancing at one, he grinned slightly. "Freed at Light's Hope Chapel. Sent to Stormwind as representive of Worgen along with fellow Knights." it read.
Oh, he thought, if only it had been that simple.
Pain. Pain was the only thing in the world as far as he knew. The pike had been driven deep, extremely deep. The guards had ran off, and he now sat here alone, dying slowly.
He deserved it. That's the one thought that kept him sane. This is what he'd earned for himself. Killing his family, he was certain that he'd killed since, that'd earned him this. He didn't even deserve to die, he thought, just to sit here, in pain, forever.
Death, just the thought of death made him smile. He'd be with them, atleast. Maybe they'd find it to forgive him. Drifting, finally he was drifting off. Fading fast. Finally, he closed his eyes, and they didn't open again.
He hadn't really known what to expect when he woke up. But it wasn't this. His mind was a blur. Everything was a blur. Forge, kill, steal, kill. Orders, he thought, perhaps they were. Of course he followed them. Why wouldn't he? What else was for him to do? What other purpose could he serve?
Killing. The joy it gave him, as he viciously clawed at a man, who didn't even know what he was. He was a soldier. That's what all he was, all he ever seemed to have known. There was nothing else. Though there was blood, it seemed to coat the ground after he'd plowed through the area. He was a weapon. The weapon he'd forged, lay still on his back. All he needed were his claws. His mind, a hybrid of the feral and the man he'd been. Except the man's conscience, which seemed as dead as he was.
He didn't need a reason, just so long as he could sate his hunger for blood. A church was his next front. As the Knights charged, he didn't give it a second thought. The minutes that followed he couldn't recall. But once it had finished, he saw the Lich King, he saw him, and just waited for the next order. But it never came. Slowly, slowly, over the arguing, or whatever it was, that went on his mind cleared.
It seemed like at that very second, every face, of every life he'd ended flashed before his eyes. The thought of screaming came to mind, but he just couldn't.
Finally, one of the higher ranking Knights looked at him, "You look like you've got your wits about you. Get moving to Stormwind. Now." the officer stopped, "Names, I'm taking names, we'll finish up the rest when we're done here, but I'm getting the paper work started early."
The Worgen stared for the longest time. Thoughts clouded, he hardly understood what the man had told him. Stormwind, what in the world was that? Name. What was his name? Did he even have one? Of course he'd had a name. But what was it? Redemption. He wanted that. Work with it. After what seemed like seconds to him, he spoke, "Re....Red...Redamous."
The officer nodded, "Redamous, very good, one of the first beasts I've seen around here, reason I'm sending you if you wanted to know."
Red nodded, talking, was strained, hopefully it would come back in time. He followed the others who'd been given similar orders. They rode on horseback, but he ran, like an animal. Through unfamilar streets, in a city he'd never heard of, they rode. The posse ran to the ruler of the city, the king, and spoke of what had occured, offered their assitance. From what Red saw, they needed it. The city was no Gilneas, but as far as he saw, it'd be home. People stared when he walked, murmured to themselves, cursing his kind. Oh he was representing his kind, alright. People saw him as both an animal and a threat. Gilneas had yet to attacked by the Scourge, and many had never seen a Worgen. He could only imagine some's horror.
Up north, he was trying to help. He kept to the smaller assignments, and was hardly ever noticed. Redamous was rarely called upon when it came to doing anything of importance, always being assigned to simple clean up duty, but that didn't bother him. For the longest time, he formed a plan, this was his war. He knew that, but he didn't need to be here, he wasn't contributing much.
After weeks of contemplating, he went AWOL.
The Worgen sighed, as he thought back on it, he should have stayed. But no one had noticed. Well, he'd thought no one had noticed. As he peered through the file he saw reports from one of his old COs, Corporal Coldcart. They were all written in a decent cursive, and were easily read. Red laughed, something told him if Coldcart was still kicking, he was behind a desk, simply writing these days.
"The 'wolfman', as many of the boys have gotten to calling him, though he insists he has a name is worrying the others. They just don't like having to work around an animal. I've sent multiple requests for transfer, please atleast send some word."
"'Redamous' as he insists on being called, has yet to be moved from my squad. It would be easier just to move him."
"Sir, I don't care how good he does in the cleaning jobs. He needs moved, the others are worried to even work around him. I know there are alot more like him, but he's the only one around here, and alot of the boys are worried."
"The 'Worgen', didn't come back to camp. Assuming him dead, or captured. Finding the body will be our main priority, if we are not busy tommorow."
"We were too busy." (There were many of these)
The last one he saw, was a more finely typed report:
The Worgen, known as 'Redamous', returned to the hold today, on May the thirty first. He has pleaded guilty on the charge of being away without leave. Punishment was swift, assigned to the forest working with a group known as 'The Emerald Dream', we have thought the group to be insane and dangerous. We do not expect him to return.
Update: As the group no longer seems to exist, we are closing the book on them. Redamous is still alive, and is to be considered active in duty, a unit should pick him up soon.
But it hadn't been soon. It had taken time. He had been free to walk the streets for a few weeks, and he enjoyed his time doing so. The time between his going AWOL, and coming back to the Hold was mostly uneventful. He'd spent the time travelling. He'd explored the world, and found himself again, regained his thoughts, his past, his present. As he continued to flip through the pages, he laughed, and saw that there reports on his whereabouts during almost all of the time. Nothing specific, and it suprised him that they'd let him be, and he began to contemplate the reason, as he sank into a few memories of his travels.
As Red looked out over the Ebon Hold's railing, the land seemed to go on forever in every direction. He folded the map as best he could, and ordered a flight down to the ground.
Riding to the west, he seemed to disappear right into the sunset. The Worgen rode deep into the night, and into the next day. He rarely stopped, his legs didn't tire from all the running.
He was slowly getting used to the changes brought along by death. He no longer hungered. He never seemed to grow tired, water was no longer needed to sustain him.
Moving west, the sky seemed to grow darker. Night was not upon him just yet, it was an unnatural darkness. For the longest time he seemed to see no signs of life, but finally, further up the road, he saw what appeared to be an outpost. Figures came into view, shadowed sillouettes on the horizon.
As he moved through, they shouted in a language he didn't know. They're flesh seemed rotted, and they began to charge at him, arrows flying through the air. He didn't stop running. Charging forward, he managed to get away, and eventually, the sound of their footsteps stopped.
Finally, as he got deeper in what he had read as enemy territory on the map, he turned south. His destination wasn't far now, not far at all. Hours later it came into view.
The Greymane Wall looked about the same from this side, he thought. Looking it over, he stood back on two feet. What exactly was his plan? There was no way back in. There was no reason to go back in, they'd have shot him on sight. Perhaps he just wanted to see it again. He smiled for the first time in weeks. Just seeing it did give him a good feeling. The feeling that home was just feet away.
Turning around, he sighed. It wasn't home anymore. Running again, this time, he turned his attention to the east.
Weeks passed. He moved from place to place. Staying usually not longer than a day, three at most. As he slowly headed south, the terrain became more rocky, the temperature rose. This came to an end in the Swamp of Sorrows.
As he slowly walked down the road, the next town almost in view, he heard a rustling from a nearby bush. Turning, sword at the ready, he saw three men emerge.
"Hands up," one yelled, a gun in his hands, pointed right at the Worgen's head.
He complied, his hands going up, the sword going on the ground.
"What is it?" another asked, eyeing him up and down, "It's got glowing eyes...like on of them, uh, Death Knights! That's what it is!"
The man with the gun nodded, "Got to be, but I still haven't ever seen one like this. Looks like a wolf with legs." he stepped closer, "Money, now."
Red shook his head. The man grew angry, "Listen here pal. Give it over, or we're putting you back in the ground. Simple as that." Slowly Red inched towards them, readying his claws, he gave a low growl.
The second man looked to the third, and elf, seeming to be afraid, "You're a druid...can't you people like calm these things down?"
The elf shook his head, "I've never seen anything like that thing, I...don't know." Red had never liked the elves he'd been forced to work with thus far. They were all too smug. Suddenly the elf seemed to focus on him.
Red's mind seemed to blur. He stumbled forward, trying to get a swing in, unfocus the druid, but he couldn't. He fell flat on his face.
The man with the gun smiled, "Not so tough now are you?" he asked, stepping close enough for Red to claw at his ankles. The man leaped back, but didn't drop the gun, letting out a loud howl.
Red laughed silently to himself, his vision growing darker with every passing moment. As he lay his head down on the ground, he heard a gunshot.
Finally, he could see no more, a second shot rang out, and a third. At last, he was asleep. Certain he would never wake up.
Opening his eyes, Red winced. There was so much light, it was almost blinding. He pushed himself off the floor into a sitting position.
This wasn't the road, he thought, and he was fairly certain it wasn't the afterlife. Looking around, he seemed to be in a one room home. A small bed lay in the corner, and a fire had been built. There were shelves here and there, and some food.
Red's head still ached. He was having trouble focusing still, but it was gradually getting better. As he glanced around the room a high pitched laughter entered his hearing range. Looking towards the door, he expected to see some lunatic run through and attempt to kill him.
Instead, through the door, entered a small Draenei child. Red's eyes widened as he tried to make sense of anything he was seeing. The child turned towards him, showing him her large smile. He'd had a hard time accepting the Draenei. A being from another dimension was just something he couldn't wrap his brain around. But they were good fighters, and intellegent, and he could accept that.
"Hey! He's awake!" the child said, running up to where the Worgen sat. She sized him up quickly, "Hi! I'm Jalona! Do you have a name?" she asked him. The Worgen gave her an awkward nod. "Well what is it?" she said, tilting her head.
The Worgen seemed to stop and think, and when he spoke, his voice was long and drawn out and he struggled with the words, "R-red....daa...m-mous.."
The Draenei clapped lightly, "That's alittle too long though, Redamous? How about..." she looked around the room, before eyeing a vase of red flowers on a table, "Red? That's kinda part of your name....and it's a thing..."
The Worgen raised an eyebrow, before nodding slightly. He glanced up just in time to see another figure, standing in the doorway. Another Draenei, this one obviously an adult. The child went running, and hugged the newcomer's leg. Red couldn't help but smile.
"Mommy! He's awake, and he's got a name!" said the child, pulling her mother along by the leg of her pants. The mother gave a wide smile.
"I was worried you were dead." she said lightly, "Well, as dead as your kind can get. Red nodded. "What? Nightsaber got your tongue?" Red shook his head, grasping at his throat. "Well, you obviously can talk if you can tell my daughter your name." the woman gave a slight smirk.
Red shook his head, grabbing his throat again. For some ungodly reason he couldn't speak more than what he had claimed was his name. Struggling again, he tried to push out a few words, "Can't talk good, since like this." he said motioning to his body.
The woman nodded, "Then I suppose it might come back to you at some point." she offered her hand helping him to his feet, and led him outside. Redamous shielded his eyes as he exited, the light was unbearable. Looking at the sky he could tell he wasn't in Azeroth. "Had to drag you all the way to the Dark Portal, mind you that you could afford to lose some weight. And since we seem to be getting introduced, I am Mokyna."
Red nodded, motioning around, "Where?" he asked. He'd heard of 'Outland' up north, but he had never been there.
Mokyna laughed, "Nagrand, I hunt out here and take it back to the Eastern Kingdoms. Very good business mind you." Red was suprised at how fluently she spoke Common. Almost all the Draenei he'd met had some sort of accent or struggle with it.
Red extended his hand, and smiled as the woman took it, "Red." he said. "How long sleep?"
She nodded, "So I heard." she shook her head, "Been a few weeks it seems. Let's say your lucky you don't need food or drink."
Snapping back to reality, Red frowned when he pulled out pictures, and sketches of the house and it's inhabitants. They didn't need any trouble. But considering he'd never seen the people who had drawn them, he supposed they'd kept their distance.
He'd spent the next few weeks with the pair. Helping the older with her hunting, and playing with her daughter.
After his time there, he'd traveled back to Azeroth. Making his way to Stormwind again.
They'd found him there, as he saw by the reports.
"Worgen sighted in Alliance Military Medical office. Left licensed. Apprehension always possible."
And yet they'd never grabbed him. It made him think. But he saw it as nothing to dwell on. He'd layed low after that, and apparantly so low they couldn't find him again. There wasn't a report for weeks. Then the shattering had occured.
"Worgen found. Requesting permission to grab and bring him to the frontlines." he read on one sheet, with a large, red "DENIED" stamped on it.
The wall was gone. That's what he'd heard. He couldn't have made his way back up north any quicker if he had tried. Flying west this time, his return was much swifter than the original run.
Shaking his head as he saw the wall, he could hardly believe his eyes. Anger fell over him, his fists clinched as he began walking back into the once great nation. The Scourge had their forces at the front, but they seemed to ignore him.
Finally, in the horizon, he saw it. Home. Running now, he burst through the door to find things mostly unchanged. The bodies were gone, anything that was broken was fixed. But it looked like no one had ever moved back in.
Shuffling through the small halls, he smiled in his sorrow, in his memories. As he entered what had once been his bedroom, he saw on the nightstand, a hat. His hat. It'd been a birthday present, he recalled. Taking his helm off, he set the hat on his head. His ears pushed it at odd angles.
Sighing he took the hat off. Looking it over, and idea suddenly popped into his mind. He sliced holes into it, and slid it back on his head. It fit, even though it was a bit small now, it fit, his ears popping out the top.
Also on the stand, he saw two rings. Holding them up to the light, he smiled, placing them in his pocket, an idea of what to do with them in his mind.
Sitting down in an old chair, he laughed as he heard it groan under his weight. Looking on the table the chair was near, he picked up a small book he couldn't recall seeing before. As the Worgen flipped through the pages, he smiled. At one time, he decided, it had been her prayer book. One of verses that had been written inside was underlined, with the words "Show to him soon." near it. He'd been having trouble with faith at the time, he remembered.
It read: "The Light only abandons those who feel they better it." Smiling, he shook his head. Never, would he leave it behind, he swore silently to her.
The next day, Red had returned to the Ebon Hold. His reassignment was odd, but he'd gotten past it. The weeks ran by quickly. Soon enough he was ready to be put back with a unit.
He laughed as he saw the enlistment papers for the 1113th. He was certain they regretted him joining to this day. He searched his pockets, pulling out a sheet of paper, the reason he'd came.
But before he could put it in, he saw the reports of his more recent exploits, with the unit. Tearing the paper up he saw someone had beat him to it.
Replacing all the papers he'd removed, Red simply left the file on the table. If the Colonels or General hadn't seen it by now, and he was sure they had, they would. He had nothing to hide.
As he left the room, he heard the sound of footsteps a short while away. Leaving swiftly, he grinned. He wasn't exactly sure if he had access. But if he didn't, he wished them good luck to try and catch him.