Thursday, January 14, 2010

Pitch and Arvoss

Pitch was woken by Shaurria's paw poking him repeatedly in his side. He followed her, yawning, up to the kitchen, where they found David Langston already up. They got their breakfast, then went outside into the early morning sun.

Pitch was mildly surprised when Shaur suddenly mrrowled, then trotted forward. He looked up to see her death knight, Arvoss, standing in the street just in front of the Pig. Shaur went up to him and headbutted, then shifted out of cat. "I killed a clefthoof!" she told him, her excitement undimmed by the night's sleep. "And a mammoth! Pitch 'n Sky helped." "Tha's great, kitten," Arvoss replied. "Did ye get yer breakfast?" She nodded, shifting back to cat as she did, and he grinned at her. "A'righ', ye mind runnin' ahead a bit? Ah'd like t' talk t' th' young fella 'ere." Shaur nodded again, looking a little confused now, and headed up the street.

Pitch watched her go, then looked back to Arvoss and gave a bit of a start. The death knight's friendliness had dropped, and he was staring at Pitch like he was thinking of how to get his hide off. Pitch swallowed, hard. "A'righ' lad, ye wan' t' give me one reason t' nae 'ave ye gelded oan th' spot?" Arvoss asked him, face looking like it was carved from stone. Or ice, Pitch thought, as the temperature seemed to have dropped by a degree or two. He gulped again. "Uh, I'm not sure what you've heard, but I didn't touch her," he replied. "Not like that." Arvoss' glare didn't soften one bit. "Then wha' in th' bloody Laigh' did ye think ye were doin'?" he spat. "Nae word bout where ye were goin', jes' off by yerselves fer naeone could ken 'ow long?"

Pitch took a second to make sure he understood the death knight- some humans had the strangest accents!- then sat down and looked at him, expression slightly offended. "It was a hunt," he said. "A rite of passage, you could call it. She earned it, and it was past time for it anyway." Arvoss blinked. "A wha'?" Pitch sighed. "She's a Druid of the Claw," he patiently explained. "We hunt, fight. And one of our tests is to find the biggest opponent we can, and try to beat it in a fair fight. There are several such animals in Nagrand, and I took Shaur there to see how she would do."

Arvoss' glare returned in full, and it was all Pitch could do to keep from wilting as he started in again. "She's still young, an' ye 'ad nae righ' t' decide tha' fer 'er," he began. Pitch's temper, which was rather strained from the last several days, finally frayed. "Oh, are you a druid?" he interrupted. "Do you have the experience to make her choices for her? How long would you have her cooped up here, bored and lonely, before you decided she was strong enough for something like this? Like I said, she earned it, and she was ready. The fact that she passed proves it. She's now a full Claw." He sat back, glaring back at the human.

Arvoss blinked again, then opened his mouth. No words came out, however, and after a few seconds he shut it again. "Hrmmph," he grunted, looking at the druid with surprise and something resembling respect. "Sae she killed a cleft'oof by 'erself, eh?" Pitch grinned. "A huge one. The dominant bull of the whole area. And she did it by herself, too; I didn't even have to leave my bird-shape." He paused, and the grin faded. "I, uh, didn't have anything to do with the mammoth, though. That was Sky's idea."

Arvoss actually chuckled a bit. "Ah can believe tha', she's a bit o' a crazy one." He peered at Pitch closely; the druid shifted a bit under the scrutiny, wondering if there was something else he had done wrong. "If ye dinnae mind mah askin'," Arvoss said, still studying him. "Wha' exactly d'ye wan' wi' Shaur? She's too young yet t' be lookin' fer a fella, an' Ah dinnae 'ave t' be an elf t' ken tha' much."

Pitch blinked. "Umm, what? Oh." He thought for a bit; Arvoss waited patiently, but his arms were crossed over his chest. Finally Pitch took a deep breath. "I'm not trying to mate with her," he said firmly. "But, she needs a mentor, or something. There's no other druids around here regularly except Windstar, and she's not much older than Shaur. I may still be young myself, but I know enough to teach her." He stared back steadily as Arvoss continued to study him, then the death knight nodded. Pitch managed to hold back his sigh of relief as he said, "A'righ', then. Ah willnae tell ye t' keep away fra 'er. Jes', if ye're goin' t' do sommat like this again, tell folks wha' ye're doin' 'stead o' runnin' off, ye 'ear?" Pitch nodded, and Arvoss seemed satisfied. He nodded back and walked off after Shaurria.

Pitch watched him go, then he sighed. He thought for a bit before following. Shaur would be alright, since it seemed that Arvoss would be hanging around for a while, and he really didn't want to face the death knight any more than he had to. With a silent request for forgiveness to Shaur, he headed for the Northrend boat. There was still that worgen cult in Grizzly Hills to take care of.

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