Warning!AN: The characters, places etc belong to Blizzard. Anything marked with * is quest text, and completely and utterly theirs. Also, disturbing Death Knight stuff. Don't read if you're interested in snuggly fluffy mansex!
Thassarian surveyed the small, formerly clean inn they had made their base in. Right in the heart of enemy lines, it now housed some of the finest upcoming Death Knights in the scourge. All of them crowded downstairs, watching him - eagerly awaiting their next set of macabre orders. There were none, of course. No official orders at the moment, but he had a plan to get rid of them for now. There hadn't been a moment of privacy since Koltira had returned, wounded and full of contempt for his rescuer.
"The cry for vengeance must be heard, Death Knights. Commander Plaguefist and a company of Death Knights are on their way to raze the Chapel of the Crimson Flame. If there are any Death Knights imprisoned at the chapel, Plaguefist will get them out. You can still catch them, if you hurry. The chapel is due west of here."*
"Glory to the Master!"
There had just been one setback. Orbaz.
"Orbaz! You will escort them. I will remain and plot our next course of action."
Orbaz gave him a withering look that made his dead skin prickle, if such a thing were possible. From beneath his helm, his eyes flickered with a malevolent light, before turning toward the armour-clad Death Knights in his command. There was no mistaking his distaste, but he could hardly refuse such an offer.
"Very well... Thassarian. Death Knights! With me, before I decorate these walls with your entrails."
Orbaz and his troop of Death Knights filtered out, like a black swarm - their footsteps heavy on the damp ground outside. There was no mistaking their purpose and desire to slay the Scarlet dogs in their own sanctuaries. Nor was there any doubt in his mind, that these were special Death Knights. Though bound by the icy will of their Master, something else lurked deep beneath the surface. Just out of the way of his grip. Perhaps it was the mass production of Death Knights that gave him a loose grip. Certainly, there had been no reprimand for rescuing Koltira. Loyal service to the Lich King must afford certain free passes.
Musing silently, he set a ward by the inn door, before removing his heavy saronite gloves and placing them on a pile of maps and documents from Archerus. There were scant few moments alone, though he had no intention of spending his next hour or so alone. Shaking his head, he set off upstairs to the room where Koltira lay. The marks flayed into his back ran deep, the ones made without a whip ran even deeper still. Several more wounds on his chest were heavy burns - presumably from holy magic. Many of these crisscrossed across the runes tattooed across his upper body. Some of the lesser wounds had already healed. Such was the benefit of the necromantic magic keeping them alive. None of that mattered, though. There had to be measures taken to ensure the worst ones healed fully.
"Koltira. Sit up."
Shaking the shoulder of the Elf, he felt a sharp pang - one that hungered for vengeance, just as much as Koltira did. Swallowing, he picked up a small case of supplies used for patching up wounds and fine stitching in abominations.
"Thassarian, you contemptable fool. You should be out there, slaughtering those mongrels in my name."
He sat up and peered at Thassarian. It took Thassarian a moment to realise that he couldn't read his expression. Shoving the thought away, he held up the stitching kit and gestured for the older man to turn around.
"What does it matter? Everyone except me is answering your call for vengeance. Now, turn around and be quiet. Unless you want me to freeze your vocal chords."
The next few moments were spent in peace, and he couldn't help but take a perverse enjoyment out of stitching his companion up. Drawing the muscles together crudely, as well as the skin, he heard Koltira let out a low hiss of pain. Running a cold, dead hand over the stitched wound, he tilted his head and secretly relished the slight twitches of pain.
"Leaving me to die would have saved your hide."
Koltira growled lowly, tilting his head to peer around at the human. His expression was contorted into one of unreadable indignation and contempt - one that suited his marred elven features, even in death.
"We are brothers in death. Even Orbaz is our brother, all of us serve the Master - do we not?"
Thassarian shook his head, continuing to stitch up the worst of the wounds. Some of the necromantic magic had started to mend the surface of the wounds, a wondrous distortion of the Light. Koltira went quiet, no doubt pondering his comrades response.
"Orbaz is the very same brother, that would betray you to Arthas. You have seen how our Master punishes foolishness, Thassarian. Each of your deaths will be worse than the last."
"He knows, already. Yet there has been no reprimand. Perhaps he will have more use of us as weapons of his destruction than throwing us to the ghouls. Such a shame to waste those who wish to raze this world..."
"Ghoul rot! You are becoming as human as that wretch, Sir Zeliek. All this talk of brotherhood will do you no good."
Thassarian shifted himself to face the elven Death Knight, taking in the rotted ears and flesh that appeared to have followed suit. The areas with the thinnest flesh gave way to bone, and his neck had dark marks - most likely, a Geist had caught him unaware and strangled him. Only his body seemed untouched by the rot; perhaps due to the array of runes littering his flesh. There was no mistaking that it was a valuable addition for a Death Knight. All too often, they allowed their wounds to render them useless. Eventually, they would find themselves devoured to the bones and muscles by an array of insects, disease and blight. It explained why nothing had taken residence within the wounds, too. The runes still provided protection for his body.
"No response. How fortuitous."
Distinctly aware of the elf scoffing in distaste, he ignored it and set to work, the screams piercing the air sending pangs of hunger through him. The razing of the chapel was well under way. Fortunately, there were few terrible wounds left to stitch together. The burn marks were another matter. Those would need to be covered in a bandage. It wouldn't do to have his second-in-command lying about when things were about to get interesting.
"You should be causing those screams."
Peering at his comrade, Thassarian finished his stitching. Koltira regarded him silently through his eerie, glowing eyes. Dimly recognizing the way Koltira was going about things.
"We will. When your wounds heal, Koltira. Those scarlet dogs don't stand a chance."