A Life of Sin
He squinted his eyes as a line of sunlight came across his face, growing wider as the door was pushed open. He lifted his head as figures came toward him. Silently, they released the cuffs from his wrists and dropped him unceremoniously to the cold stone floor. Such treatment meant nothing to him, as he was used to it, but his body ached from being suspended by his wrists the entire night. They gave him no moment of rest, simply dragging him to his feet and forcing him out of the cell and through the dungeon back the way he had been shoved the night prior. Once in the courtyard again, his eyes beginning to adjust to the day, he saw that two small wagons were already set up for the trip to Silvermoon. Two humans, a man and a woman, were packing a few things into the first wagon. He assumed that they were the emissaries the captain of the guards had mentioned.
"Here comes our fearless heroine..." a guard muttered.
"For a woman of the cloth, she sure is a bitch."
He turned to look, spotting the priestess as she came towards them. He was a bit surprised by her appearance. The day prior she had been wearing flowing white robes accented in pastel colors, much like any other priest or priestess would wear, with her pale blond hair pulled up into a pile on the top of her head. Today was a completely different woman. She was dressed in simple clothes and her nearly white hair was pushed back from her face with a headband, left free to tumble down her back.
When he had first spotted her and the children in the woods less than twenty-four hours ago, he had thought nothing of them. He merely followed because it made his own trip easier, if not slower, but he had been ready for a rest by that point. For some reason that he couldn't explain, he simply couldn't travel onward when he knew that the females would be stripped of their belongings, their safety, and upon catching the reek of blood and sex on the males, he had known they would be stripped of their innocence and dignity as well. He still hadn't quite decided if intervening had been a good idea. On one hand, the women were safe, but then on the other he had been a fool to stop and ask if she was alright after they'd run into each other the second time. If he had kept going, he could've easily avoided capture, but once again there she had been and she had succeeded at keeping him alive.
He growled when he was abruptly shoved forward towards the second wagon, orders being barked at him to move his feet and to climb up into the wagon.
"Put him in the seat next to me, gentlemen," the priestess spoke up.
"What? Sister, are you mad? He could take the reigns."
"He won't do that so long as I'm sitting beside him. If you put him in the back it will be more difficult to keep an eye on him. Help him up there. He can't do it himself with the way you've got him all chained up."
The guards looked at one another and back at her, but her expression was one that said she was not to be questioned. With a little assistance, he was sitting on the bench seat of the wagon, his chains anchored to the wood to prevent him from jumping off and running away. He sighed to himself and watched the continued loading down of the wagons, keeping an eye out for the rest of his armor and his weapons. He knew that Elwynn Forest was not the ideal place for an escape since, no doubt, word had spread quickly of a blood elf being captured. The plan was for the Red ridge Mountains, just past Lakeshire, which was the only Alliance outpost in that region. If one could still call that place an outpost at all. It had once been a growing village and was now reduced to barely anything because of the presence of the Horde.
His thoughts were interrupted when the priestess... Isis was her name... climbed up beside him.
"Hello again, elf," she greeted him with a smile.
"Sinu a'manore," he nodded.
"You're not going to play stupid on me once again, are you? It's a long trip to Silvermoon and I was hoping for conversation."
"No," he smirked. "I just enjoy my native language... and confusing people."
"You do seem to be quite the troublemaker, but you can just as easily get someone out of trouble it seems."
He looked at her, seeing her smile to be warm and genuine, an obvious repeat of her thankful gesture from the day before. He nodded in understanding and returned the smile before glancing around once again to watch the others and look for the weaponry confiscated from him. They had all but stripped him bare in the searching, leaving nothing on him but a light undershirt, his pants, and his boots. Though, they had even taken those away from him at first in order to search for more weapons. They'd actually had the nerve to give him a lashing just for carrying extra throwing knives in his boots and another small dagger in a sheath strapped to his calf. He had no doubt that most of his smaller items were stolen by the guards along with his gold.
"Those coldhearted men beat you, didn't they?" He jumped slightly when he felt her warm hands on his bare skin, looking back at her. She was peering underneath the back of his shirt at the slices from the whip. "And for no viable reason I'm guessing."
"Because I had weapons concealed throughout my clothing, Priestess," he answered. "Being an elf alone is reason enough, however."
"These wounds need to be tended to before we leave. You're still bleeding."
"The scent of your blood could cause trouble if any predators catch wind of it," she said more firmly.
"You don't hear me complaining about the scent coming off of you," he growled quietly, meeting her eyes. "You can't exactly stop that, though... Or can you?"
She blinked at him with wide blue eyes, her fair cheeks flushing with color at her embarrassment. "You.. you can...?"
"I can. We have keener senses than humans." He smirked. "Are you sure you want me sitting next to you now, Priestess?"
She scowled and crossed her legs, turning herself to front so she didn't have to look at him, and he couldn't help but laugh outright. Perhaps this trip wasn't going to be completely void of entertainment after all. He enjoyed making women blush, though usually under completely different premises, but hearing her insult him was even more enjoyable because she was supposed to be kind and understanding to all creatures. He wondered if he would hear her pray for forgiveness later on, or perhaps her prayers would be to save his damned soul somewhere between Stormwind and Silvermoon.
"Ah... There are my things," he muttered as he spotted his bow and quiver among a few other parcels being placed in the wagon ahead of them.
"That's the last of it! Let's get out of here!"
"Well, it's about damn time," answered one of the emissaries, quickly turning his eyes up to Isis. "Oh... forgive me, Sister.
She giggled. "Damnation does have some holy reference, Curt. I'll forgive you this time."
The elf watched as the rather large, muscular man smirked and came over to the wheel of the wagon, standing up on it so he could speak to her easier. The two of them conversed, mostly about the impending journey, but he noticed a familiarity between them. They knew each other as friends. This was surprising to him considering that he was working with him. He had been lucky enough to avoid being seen exiting Curt's home before the guards spotted him taking a bite of the freshly baked bread Curt's wife had given to him. His inside contact was an associate of the priestess that he had rescued. What were the odds? And furthermore, what implications could it have when he made his escape.
"So if this rotten beast gives you any trouble," Curt said as he jabbed a finger in the elf's shoulder, "you just let me know and I'll be sure to crop those big ears."
Said ears twitched slightly before folding back more against the side of his head. "Kim'jael..." he growled, knowing he knew what it meant.
"Thought you said he spoke English?" Curt looked again to Isis.
"He does, but he's moody... and for good reason I'm guessing."
Curt snorted and shook his head, jumping back to the ground and heading for the other wagon, casting a glance over his shoulder at the elf with a smirk. Perhaps the priestess beside him would read it as arrogance, but he knew that was his way of letting him know all would go as planned despite this problem. They had planned for this at Curt's insistence. "Always have a backup plan in case the first one goes wrong," he had said. He couldn't help but wonder if he'd had some sort of premonition, or maybe it was the fact that things never seemed to go perfectly to plan.
"So, cranky elf, what is your name?" Isis asked as the wagons began forward.
"Just call me Sin."
She gave a small squeak of amusement. "You don't honestly expect me to believe that you're the Sin? The one of legend?" She glanced at him. "If you were Sin, you wouldn't have been captured so easily."
"What makes you think I was captured?" He looked back at her. "Maybe this is just part of a very elaborate scheme to kidnap a priestess and use her as a virgin sacrifice to my evil Horde-affiliated Gods."
"Well, I'd have to say your plan is a failure from the start."
"Why? You're not a virgin?" He smirked.
"You pervert!" she snapped, getting him to laugh once again. "Honestly, didn't your mother ever teach you not to speak in such a manner in the presence of a lady? Much less a lady of the cloth!"
"I'm a bastard child who never knew his mother, so no, I'm lacking in those mannerisms," he countered.
She went quiet again at that statement. Why did he tell her that? Not that it mattered or not what she knew of him and he could always say that he was lying later on if something came of it. It was the truth, however, and he wasn't sure just why he had blurted out such honesty. He looked at her from the corner of his eye, seeing her cheeks were pink once again. At least the virgin joke had worked.
"Very well." She said a few moments later. "Sin it is."
Although she had expressed a desire for conversation, Isis remained mostly quiet as the wagon party began it's long trip out of Stormwind's gates. Sin looked up at the walls over his shoulder, musing over how easy it had been to merely scale the low-lying mountains on the east end of the wall and drop down into the valley below without detection. If the humans had any idea how vulnerable they were... He faced to the front again and stared out into the forest, watching the deer bound through the underbrush, catching the occasional glimpse of the large forest spiders that fed upon the rabbits. His mind wandered to Silvermoon, where this unlikely crew believed they were taking him, and the stark difference between Elwynn and Eversong Forests. There were no lions here, nor were there dragonhawks. On the other hand, there were no Scourge skeletons and zombies either. Sin definitely did not miss those vile creatures.
All too soon they passed through Goldshire, making their way towards the west, past an abandoned lookout tower, past the logging village. The further they traveled, the more scarce the trees became, leaving large patches of sun shining down without shade to ease the heat. The grass slowly turned yellow and then brown before dying off all together. Beneath it was revealed the reddish dirt that Redridge was named for. The last of the Stormwind patrol waved to them as they passed through Three Corners on their way towards Lakeshire.
In the front wagon, Curt turned in his seat to look back at him, giving a barely noticeable nod while waving to Isis. She snickered slightly and waved back, shaking her head.
"He is a strange one," she muttered.
Sin didn't voice his agreement, but he did smile a little. Again he wondered just how long the time of them had been friends. Would Curt have any qualms about what was to take place because of Isis being here? The front wagon pulled to a stop, causing the guards to come alert.
"Why are you stopping?" one of them asked, riding up to the front wagon.
"I'm sorry! I know we're nearly to Lakeshire, but I just can't wait any longer! Nature calls!"
The guard protested, but Curt paid no heed, jumping to the ground and hurrying towards the bushes. "You go right ahead and chase after him!" one of the other guards spoke up. "I'm not following!"
"I hate escort missions," muttered the guard that had tried to stop him.
Sin smirked a bit at that, but then looked at Isis. "Is this collar cutting into my neck? It feels like it is?"
Isis blinked, leaning to inspect him as he craned his head for her to see. He had rubbed the metal against his flesh purposely the entire trip and it was now raw and seeping a slight bit of blood. He kept his expression blank as she played perfectly into their game, unlocking the collar so that she could attempt to adjust it. Sin shoved her away, yanking the length of chain to pull the bolt out of the wagon seat. He leapt from the wagon, quickly whirling the collar over his head as his only weapon, watching as the guards drew their swords and started after him. However, he made no attempt to run away. He stood his ground, expertly swinging the chain to swipe the legs of one horse out, dumping it and its rider. He narrowly dodged the whistling sword over his head, whipping around and hitting the soldier in the back of his helmet with the heavy collar, successfully knocking him out. Behind him he heard a loud crack and a yell of pain, turning to see Curt was retaliating on his behalf already.
"Get my gear!" he yelled, hurriedly getting himself out of the rest of the shackles before claiming one of the guard's horses as his own.
He moved to answer the call, his eyes going wide at the sight of the sword coming down towards his face, but it stopped abruptly with a golden light crackling around him. Sin blinked in confusion, as did the soldier.
"Didn't count on that one, did you?" Sin smirked, giving a fierce kick to the man's face and snatching the sword out of his hand, impaling him straight through the chest. "Curt! Move your wide arse!"
"Thanks for the show of gratitude," Curt growled as he tossed Sin his bow and quiver, the daggers following. "I couldn't find your armor or all your knives."
"Just as well, I want new ones anyway." Sin mumbled, looking back towards the wagons, seeing Isis standing there watching them. "Thanks for saving me again, Priestess! Nothing personal!"
He laughed to himself as he mounted the horse he had stolen, taking off at full gallop towards the safety of Duskwood with Curt by his side. Duskwood was contested territory. So long as they avoided the city of Darkshire, which was a human outpost, they would have no trouble passing through and on to Dead Wind Pass. There would be no more worries of capture once they were there and the rest of the journey to their destination would be simple, if not long.
"Hey," Curt spoke up. "We have company."
Sin looked over his shoulder, spotting another horse following them. "Is that the damned priestess?"
"It is. She's a hard-headed woman."
"You're friends with her?"
"Not exactly. Merely an acquaintance. I've attended church before." Sin looked at him with an arched brow. "A few times... mostly on holidays..."
"I don't even know you!"
"Don't be an ass!" Curt looked back once again. "We should stop, though. She won't give up."
"And what do you propose? That we just calmly explain to her everything that we have planned and expect her to understand?"
"Well, why not? That's what you did when you met me!"
Sin blinked and slowed down. "Point noted, my friend, but are you positive that she can be trusted?"
"She saved you from being beheaded despite the fact that you were killing soldiers," Curt said, slowing to a stop with him and looking back as Isis caught up to them. "I believe, if anyone can be, a woman of the cloth can be trusted."
"And what of shadow priests and priestesses?" Sin pointed out.
"Don't change the subject." Isis slowed to a trot not far from them, looking at the two of them unsurely as she approached. It was an awkward situation without a doubt. Sin and Curt looked at each other a moment, Sin nodding him on. "Sister Isis, why have you followed us?"
She sighed, "Where shall I being to answer such a question?" She shook her head. "First of all, I was charged with the task of taking that murderous elf to Silvermoon City. He is my responsibility. Secondly..." She paused again. "Secondly, I.. What on earth just happened? Curt, what are you doing? Are you a betrayer to the Alliance?"
"I have betrayed no one, Sister. There are other affiliations that are more important than the Alliance. I have a responsibility to the safety of Azeroth."
"The two of you just killed four innocent creatures in Azeroth. What of their safety?" she demanded.
"The needs of the many, Sister! You know that sometimes sacrifices happen and decisions must be made quickly if we are to survive. Believe me or not, but I am not a betrayer of anything and Sin is an ally, not an enemy as his reputation makes him out to be."
Isis blinked, looking from Curt to the blood elf. "Then... You truly are Sin? The heartless rogue of the stories that give children nightmares?"
"The funny thing about legends, Priestess," Sin explained, "is that they become more and more fantastical each time they are retold. If you were to listen to a fairy tale about me in Silvermoon, I would be portrayed as a great hero, fighting with honor and fairness for the glory of the Sin'Dorei." He snorted. "Believe me, I am neither hero nor fiend. I am merely doing what must be done."
"This explains why it was so easy for you to gain access to Stormwind... and why it's easy for you to kill without mercy," she frowned.
"Priestess, take yourself back to the wagons and wait for someone to come save you as I did just yesterday. Go back to your fantasy that Stormwind is impenetrable at that someone like me is truly the greatest threat to your faultless nation." Sin snapped, then looked at Curt. "We have no need of more baggage."
Curt blinked as Sin turned his mount and started off down the path once again, sighing and looking to Isis. "If I were you, I would do exactly as he says, Sister Isis. I apologize for you being involved, but where we are going is no place for a lady."
"And what of my responsibility?" she asked.
"Merely a ploy by that arrogant captain of the guards. You made a fool of him and now you shall be made a fool of in return." Curt started to leave, but a second thought came to him. "Why did you defend Sin in the first place? Why were you so determined to keep him safe, even when watching him kill the guards just now?"
"Because..." she began, but then stopped, looking down as if thinking deeply. "I can not believe my own intuitions. He is Sin... and yet even with that knowledge, my heart is telling me that he is a good man. He's someone that should not... Someone that can not die. He seems... important somehow."
"Female intuition has never made sense to me, Sister." He shrugged. "I can do little to stop you, as I won't threaten your life, but Sin just might if he is determined that you should not be allowed with us. If you're going to follow, I would do so at a great distance."
With that, Curt took his leave of her, spurring his mount ahead to catch up to his companion. Isis shook her head, covering her face with one hand as her thoughts jumbled with her emotions. She turned the horse to head back, knowing the other emissary was still there and no doubt frightened, but her chest tightened. She looked back into the shadowy depths of Duskwood, seeing the spider webs dangling thick from the branches, knowing firsthand the treacherous paths.
"Oh, don't be so foolish," she scolded herself. "Mere spiders won't kill him. He killed off six bandits in mere moments. He laid waste to armored guards with only a little assistance from Curt and I. Dear Lord, forgive me, I helped him to kill those men." She whimpered, biting her lower lip. She was worried about what her heart was telling her. "Always follow your heart..."
She turned the horse back around, setting to a swift trot after the two men, with one hand on the reigns and her other hand on one of Sin's throwing knives in her belt.
DISCLAIMER: World of Warcraft and all associated concepts are property of Blizzard. I stake no claim over any of their awesome ideas.
SPECIAL THANKS: To Jesper, for being such a perfect, living muse; always inspiring me by simply being himself.