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A new dagger for Zlinka
#1
Zlinka sat on the steps of the Hall of Legends in Orgrimmar. The sun had not yet come up, and the valley's colors were soft with the indirect light of approaching sunrise. The air was crisp and sharp. It would be a cold, bracing day.

Zlinka held two daggers in her lap: an old one and a new one. She picked up the old weapon, the [item]Gutgore Ripper[/item]. It was familiar with long use, its hilt resting comfortably in the cup of her palm. The blade was notched and barbed to give it additional cutting edges. The grip was black and red and tied with a crimson ribbon. A dark, heavy smoke flowed from the weapon, over her hand, and toward the ground in a falling grey veil.

She had pulled this dagger from the smouldering body of Garr many months ago. Over the ensuing nine months she had carried it into countless battles. She had kept its edge keen and its hilt spotless, sharpening it and cleaning it with soft leather after every battle. It had served her well, but its days as her primary weapon were over. With a sigh, Zlinka wrapped it in a piece of suede and put it in her backback.

Zlinka turned to the other item in her lap. It was a long, flat box made of beautiful warm wood. The fine golden grain of the wood was interrupted with tracings of inlaid silver. The weapon inside was a gift, a gift for participating in guerilla border skirmishes against the Alliance, skirmishes that were not quite serious enough to threaten the peace treaty between the two factions. Nevertheless, the Horde's interests must be defended, and Zlinka had spent many weeks holding critical blacksmithing factories, lumber processing mills, mines of precious metals, and agricultural resources against the incursions of the Alliance. For her faithful service, Seargent Thunderhorn had slipped this box into her hands this very morning.

She undid the catch and opened the lid. Inside lay a magnificent dagger, the [item]High Warlord's Razor[/item]. The blade was sinuous and lithe, like a silver serpent. Its surface was so brightly polished it had no color of its own -- it reflected the pale blue sky, the ochre of the valley walls, the tawny hide roofs, and Zlinka's admiring golden eyes. Zlinka thought Its lack of intrinsic color was fitting for a rogue, someone who slipped into the shadows and blended in with the background.

The guard was mounted with two forward-thrusting points that looked like the wings of a stooping falcon. The grip was wrapped with a dark red ribbon. The pommel was fitted with a little carved skull, as if reminding the observer that this work of art was indeed a weapon.

Zlinka lifted the dagger in her hand. It was light, lighter than the Gutgore Ripper, and she knew an enchantress who could make it lighter still.

Zlinka stood. She slipped the dagger into her belt. Tomorrow, the Portal would open. Tomorrow, the fel forces that were already leaking into the world would be unleashed.

Zlinka vanished into the shadows. She was prepared.
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#2
((Great story! *bites tongue about Zlinka being prepared*))
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