A/N: So it's that time of the year again. Orctober! ...And yeah, it's gonna be Halloween later, but I made my Halloween story last year, so I'm doing this instead. I started working on this story a while ago actually, shortly after finishing up The Green Wanderer. But then I kinda put it on hold, and wound up publishing Help Not Wanted instead, and began working on a new story that'll be coming out later (I really should get back to working on the Tails Series, but damn it. Fantasy just won't leave me alone.)
So once again, same as the last three stories. This is another entry in the Legatum universe I've started, and it's fully self-contained. There's no need to read Smirvlak's Stone, Help Not Wanted, or even The Green Wanderer to understand the events of this story. This is gonna be a little different though; usually I publish my stories all at once, or over the course of a couple days. This time around though, I'm gonna post a new chapter once or twice a week. Seeing as the story isn't fully done yet, I feel like it's a proper motivator for me to actually get around to finishing it, as opposed to starting on it, then dropping it after four or five chapters.
Anyways. This story takes place in the heavily orc-populated kingdom of Kosslivo, about twenty years before The Green Wanderer happened. After the kingdom is taken over by a brutal tyrant of an orc named Chorn Torgash, a soldier within Torgash's army decides to start a rebellion to free the kingdom from his ruling. But he soon realizes that his vendetta against Torgash will be violent and bloody, and that the state of the kingdom may end up getting worse before it gets better.
Story contains sexual content, violence, gore, swearing, and all that typical nasty stuff you see in all my stories. :p
Now with all that said and done, enjoy the story. :)
He observed the two of them with his arms folded, watching as the young orcs fought each other in the field. The older orc sniffed as the smaller orcs snarled and wrestled, rolling around in the grass and looking to gain an advantage over the other beast. Suddenly, one of the young orcs punched the other, shorter orc in the groin, causing him to shout. The taller orc snickered before he got on top of the short orc and punched him in the face four times.
"I win, brother! Now say I'm victorious!" the tall orc demanded.
But the shorter orc just snarled at his brother, not caring about the blood on his face or the cracked tooth in his mouth. When the taller orc grew impatient, he punched his brother in the mouth four more times.
"I said, say that I'm victorious!"
The taller orc punched his shorter brother in the mouth again, firmly knocking his tooth loose. Just as he was about to break his nose, the older, burlier orc observing the two of them stomped towards them and grabbed both of them by the collars of their clothing. He lifted both young orcs off the ground, causing them to yelp as they thrashed their legs around.
"LET-LET GO! LET US—"
The father smashed both orcs' heads together, causing the two of them to shout and groan. Snorting and scowling, the father looked down at the short orc and blinked.
"Lorfthar! You had your brother at a disadvantage at least six times! You must pay attention to your foe's movements; throwing punches and kicks is not how you win a fight!"
"He-he punched me 'tween the legs!" Lorfthar whined.
"Yes, he did. And he won, didn't he? But you didn't."
The taller orc sneered as he laughed. "That's right, Lorfthar! I won and you didn't!"
The father turned to the taller brother and spat in his face, causing him to wince. Afterwards, the tall orc grumbled and shook his head.
"As for you, Bogglon, you are far too cocky for your own good. You fight the enemy; you do not taunt them. And you are full of vanity! When you win a fight, you do not drop your trousers and piss on your enemy's face! You offer your hand and you help them stand back up! Do you understand?!"
Bogglon took a moment to respond. But then he saw his father snarling at him, showing off his slobbery teeth and the sharp tusks hanging out his mouth. Bogglon exhaled and nodded.
After the father spoke to both brothers, he loosened his grip on them and let them fall to the ground. Then he walked back over to the fence in front of the field and leaned against it before snorting.
It was getting close to winter now. Plants were already dying. The leaves were shades of brown, orange, and red, now brittle and easy to crush. The grass was no longer growing, and the wind had a bone-tingling chill to it. Snow would be falling soon, and all the orcs needed to prepare. The old orc blinked as he looked down at his daughter, watching as the teenage orc struggled to aim her arrow properly. Up ahead, about two yards away, was a deer that was trying to eat the last bit of grass still growing within the woods. The father looked down at his daughter again, just as she began to lower her bow.
"The hell are you doing?"
The daughter shook her head. "I-I can't…I can't, Father. This isn't right. Look at it; that's just a deer!"
"That is food, Aesslee. Not a deer."
Aesslee huffed and moved her booted foot against the ground. "And what of this, Father? This isn't grass we're standing on. It's food for that deer!"
"It is a vicious cycle, yes. But we were not put on this planet to debate such trivial matters. There is two hundred pounds of meat, bone, and fur over there. Claim it."
"No, Father. I won't—"
The father placed his burly green hand on his daughter's right shoulder, and she immediately stopped talking. "Daughter. You will grow old. You will have children of your own. Your husband will not always be there. Your husband may die, and leave you alone to fend for yourself and your children. You cannot feed your children and yourself with nuts and fruit alone. We orcs need meat. So tell me, Aesslee. When your children are crying for food, are you going to take off your shirt, make 'em suck on your tit and become dependent of milk? Or are you going to come home with enough meat to last a whole week?"
The father took his hand off Aesslee's shoulder and folded his arms. The daughter pondered for a moment, surprised that the deer was still there. She stared at the animal for a moment, before she inevitably notched another arrow to her bow and aimed. The deer was just lifting its head when she fired, sending the arrow through its neck. The deer fell to the ground without a sound escaping its mouth and lay still. The father smiled widely before he reached down and rubbed his daughter's head.
"Make sure you don't hesitate next time. Our food runs faster than us, unfortunately."
"Yes, yes, I know."
The father and daughter walked over to the dead deer. After Aesslee removed her arrow, the father picked up the carcass, grunting as he hauled the deer over his shoulders. As the father and daughter began to walk home, Aesslee looked up at her father and blinked.
"How come I don't have a crossbow? I thought those fire better?"
"Crossbows are for twats. They take too long to reload and make more noise. Stick with the bow and arrow; it's better for you."
Aesslee blinked again. "Uncle Korlox owns a crossbow."
The father paused and blinked. "I stand by my statement."
Both of them lay in bed together, listening to the wind blowing gently outside and some of the vagrants wandering around the kingdom. The naked orcs shuffled around in bed for a moment, trying to get as comfortable as possible. The male orc smiled as he reached over and fondled the female orc's breasts, shortly before she reached over and slapped his hand.
"No," she barked.
The male orc grinned. "C'mon, honey. One more time?"
The female orc chuckled and turned to face her lover. "You've said 'one more time' so many times that we ended up with three offspring. That's enough."
The male orc shrugged. "Four is bigger than three."
She slapped him against his bald scalp again, causing him to shout. "No."
"ARGH! Okay, okay, fine. We'll have it your way."
The female orc giggled as she lay back down, while the male one lied still, looking up at the ceiling. Both of them stayed silent for another few minutes before the male orc looked outside the window again, blinking. Then he sighed heavily.
"It's so queer, y'know? Both of us…our children are fully grown now. Aesslee is with a group of huntresses. Bogglon and Lorfthar are both training to be blacksmiths. And we—"
"We're getting old, my love. Yes, yes, I know."
"That's just it…how many of us can say what I just said right now? You read up on our history, about how things used to be and…well. I'm surprised our race isn't extinct yet."
The female orc sat up slowly and exhaled. She reached over and caressed her husband's bare chest, feeling all around his abs.
"What troubles you, Harvon?"
Harvon grumbled and shook his head. "I dunno, Selmyn. …I just feel like an axe is hanging above my head by a thread. I've been waiting all my life for it to come down, and it hasn't yet. But it feels like that thread is getting weaker…"
"And you fear that those humans will cut it."
"Or the dwarves. Or the stilios. Or the drakos. Or the trolls. Or the werewolves. Or the—"
She slapped his head again.
"OW! STOP DOING THAT!"
"Then stop all this foolish talk. If something dire occurs in the future, we shall deal with it together, as we always have. Spending all this time thinking about what could happen will do nothing but make you fear everyone and everything."
Selmyn exhaled as she lay back down on the bed beside Harvon and blinked. "What matters is the present, not the future. Perhaps we should relax and enjoy what is, not what could happen later."
Harvon exhaled as he nodded. "Perhaps you're right."
As the couple lay in bed again, Harvon looked over at the green orc's breasts and grinned. He placed his hand on the bed and slowly wiggled his fingers up against her skin and over to her abdomen.
"Harvon," Selmyn said.
"But you said we should enjoy the present!"
She slapped him again. He didn't grope her for the rest of the night.
Both of them kept looking outside of the chamber, waiting to see when the new guest would arrive. They snorted and looked at their axes from time to time, gradually growing bored as time went on. Harvon coughed while the orc standing beside him wiggled his nose and scratched at his scruffy short beard. Harvon turned to his left as he looked at the long, elliptical table in the center of the building that had eight other well-dressed orcs wearing long cloaks and robes, while a few others wore armor with various medals and trinkets pinned to their attire. Harvon grunted as he looked down at his brownish-red armor covering him from his chest all the way down to his legs, and then looked down at the bottoms of his brown boots before grumbling.
"When's he getting here?" Harvon's companion whined.
Harvon shrugged. "Dunno. Maybe if you whine about it loud enough, he'll hear you."
Harvon's friend exhaled noisily and slouched. "THIS IS SO—"
The door to the chamber opened up with a low rumble and a series of creaks. Harvon's friend straightened up and held his axe with both hands.
"Shit, that was fast," he murmured.
Harvon and his associate both looked at the mighty dark orange-skinned orc as he entered the chamber. Both of them were equally surprised and apprehensive about the size of the orc who just came inside. He seemed to be no less than seven feet tall and was the bulkiest orc in the room. Harvon noticed he was wearing pauldrons, greaves, and gauntlets that were all dark red in color and had spikes spread around them. His metal boots clomped against the floor with each step he took, the noise reverberating within the spacious chamber. As the orc got closer, Harvon noticed that he had a few black tattoos on his bare chest, and that the beast wore a pair of dark brown trousers but was walking without a shirt on. Harvon looked at his associate and frowned when he noticed that he was grinning with delight.
"Keep your cock in your pants, Shurrmvin," Harvon growled.
"Real thick orc he is. And he didn't bother wearing a tunic or shirt," Shurrmvin whispered.
"Lotta orcs don't wear shirts; stop drooling."
Harvon and Shurrmvin stopped talking and stood straight again once the burly orc came up to them. He stopped walking for a moment and flicked his eyes at them. Both of them looked up at the orc as he scowled, showing off several of his sharp teeth, his pointed ears twitching a bit.
"Harvon Mullok," the orc growled, his deep voice nearly rattling Harvon's bones.
"You've heard of me?"
The giant orc smirked. "Course I have. The king won't stop bragging about how brave of a warrior you are. And I see you've become a member of his personal guard…hmph."
Shurrmvin coughed, as if he was expecting the large orc to notice him too. Eventually he did, and the large orc blinked as he began to talk to Harvon's friend.
"Shurrmvin Colmz. Hmph. Heard a lotta stories about you too. About how you enjoy 'cock jousting,' amongst other things."
The burly orc exhaled and chuckled. "But I don't judge. Feel free to brandish your shaft around as much as you'd like."
Shurrmvin wiggled his nose and awkwardly scratched the back of his head. "Ehhh…sure, sure. No problem."
The giant orc turned and resumed walking into the chamber, where he took his seat along with the other council members. Harvon kept staring at the burly beast and tightened his jaw.
"Never saw him before…I'm sure he's the answer. All these doubts I've been having lately; perhaps he'll save us from what the future will bring. Heh, I'm sure all you care about is what his cock looks like though, right?"
Shurrmvin shrugged and grumbled. "Well, his breath stinks, so that's a bit of a distraction."
"Awww, were you hoping that he'd give you a big ol' kiss?"
Shurrmvin punched Harvon in his right shoulder roughly. Harvon chuckled as he punched Shurrmvin back, and the two orcs laughed amongst each other. After both of them stopped laughing, they slowly sidled their way closer to the council meeting so they could listen to the conversation.
"…about your last endeavors. So tell me, Chorn Torgash, what assurances do we have that you'll truly aide us, and won't spend all of your time eating our food and fucking our women while the rest of our soldiers die for our kingdom?"
Chorn Torgash leaned against the table, his armor scraping along the wood as he grinned. "Who cares what clan we come from, where we were born, whose seed created us? We are all orcs here, and all of us know that soon enough, the other races are going to band together and annihilate us all."
"You have no proof of this," said another council member.
Torgash flicked his eyes at the robed orc before he continued. "I know how humans are. I know how all races feel about us orcs…I know that some races wish for all of us to be extinct. We can't let that happen."
Torgash exhaled as he leaned back in his chair and grinned at the council members. "I am here to save our people. That is all you need to know."
He still couldn't understand it. Everything was perfect. Everything was going so well in the kingdom. But then Harvon noticed something was wrong. He saw how the council allowed slavery in the kingdom. He saw how the army was executing more prisoners. Sometimes members of the council would disappear, or turn up dead, and then they'd be replaced within days. He should've known earlier that bringing Torgash into Kosslivo was a horrible mistake. And now here he was, laying on the floor, wounded and unarmed, his face bruised. Harvon moaned as he tried to drag his body forward within the council chamber. Blood was splattered everywhere, and the king and queen's bodies were just a few yards away from him.
"Shurrm…Shurrmvin?" Harvon called out, his voice hoarse.
To his right, Shurrmvin mumbled and gradually opened his eyes, his face covered in scars and blood pouring from his mouth. As the two orcs tried to get up, they heard heavy boots clomping on the floor behind them. The duo could tell from the slightly metallic echoes that it had to be Torgash, and it was. As Harvon and Shurrmvin tried to stand back up, another series of footsteps sounded behind them. Harvon turned around and had enough time to see several other orcs who were loyal to Torgash's new rule stomp over towards him, Shurrmvin, and the rest of the warriors still alive. Before any of them could reach for their weapons, the loyalists hauled the wounded orcs to their knees and put a knife against their throats. Meanwhile, Torgash and a few other loyalists holding leaking sacks all stepped in front of the wounded orcs. Torgash grinned wickedly as he stared directly at Harvon. Then he opened up the sack and emptied its contents, listening as they clattered and rolled on the floor. It took Harvon only half a second to recognize the faces of his wife, daughter, and two sons. Judging from the various lacerations, it looked like they had been tortured before they were decapitated.
Harvon wailed in agony, in anger, in frustration. He started to move forward, only to have the knife cut through his skin. Instinctively, he drew himself backwards, whimpering and roaring at Torgash as the burly orc kept grinning. When he looked around at the other orcs on their knees, he saw them wailing or getting teary-eyed too, and for a good reason. All the Torgash loyalists holding sacks emptied their contents too, revealing the same series of severed heads. The only orc who wasn't looking at a severed head was Shurrmvin. Instead, Torgash dug into his pocket and pulled out a soggy, squishy chunk of meat and threw it against Shurrmvin's face. Shurrmvin grunted before he looked at the meat once it plopped on the floor. It was an orc's severed penis and testicles.
"I figured, given your 'preference,' it was only fair to make your punishment special," Torgash growled.
Shurrmvin bellowed, just like the others, but he couldn't do anything with the knife against his throat. So he sobbed painfully, knowing full well that somewhere in the kingdom was his lover's mutilated corpse. All the orcs snarled and foamed at the mouth, their eyes watering as they struggled to break free from the knives.
"YOU KILLED MY BOY! YOU KILLED MY SON YOU MOTHERFUCKER!" one orc hollered.
He didn't care anymore; he wanted vengeance. So he snarled as he thrust his body forward. The knife cut through his flesh and drew blood. Before the orc could even stand up, ounces of blood began to spew from his wound, and the orc began to feel tired. He moved a few inches forward before falling face first in a pool of his blood. The surviving orcs looked at the dead beast and calmed down. There was no way out of this. Torgash sighed heavily as he turned around and looked at the black throne that was jagged and uncomfortable. He smirked as he walked towards it, turned around, and sat down. Looking down at the hostages, Torgash wiggled his nose and huffed.
"You know, I really don't want there to be any hard feelings between us. This is merely a lesson…a step in the right direction."
"You took over our kingdom! You killed the king and queen! YOU BUTCHERED OUR FAMILIES, YOU SICK FUCK!" roared a grieving orc.
Torgash shrugged. "Of course. I had to." Torgash cleared his throat. "This…this 'kingdom'? This…cesspool full of cotton and pacifism? No wars, no conflicts, you orcs sleep on beds, you expect your children to do what they want once they grow up, you have no slaves to spread your seed around. Hmph…I'm doing you all a favor."
Torgash exhaled as he leaned forward. "I love history. It gives us so much knowledge about our people, about other races, about past wars and species, about our culture…it makes me realize just how 'advanced' we are now. But are we really advanced? I mean, sure, our ancestors couldn't read or write, most of them barely communicated, and most of them were too stupid to know how to shit properly. But they were strong and fierce. They took what they wanted, when they wanted. They killed and slaughtered anyone in their path, at all times. They fucked and they fucked and they fucked…and our race began to thrive all across the world."
The new king scoffed and shook his head. "So how the fuck did we devolve into a clan of beasts who only attack when provoked? What is this term called 'negotiations' and this word called 'peace'? Our people haven't evolved at all…we've become weak! And all the other races know it! They've spent years—decades plotting! And soon enough, they're gonna strike us when we're at our weakest and render our race extinct!"
Torgash shook his head and grinned widely. "I'm here to ensure that'll never happen."
"By staging a coup and massacring our families?! You murdered your own kind just to gain power!" Harvon exclaimed.
"I murdered my own kind to secure power. Your king and queen would've led to this kingdom's downfall. But with me in charge, all of you will understand what true power is, and so will the rest of the world."
"But why kill our loved ones?" Shurrmvin asked. "What purpose did you have in castrating my lover or cutting off my friends' families' heads?!"
"Your loved ones were distractions, nothing more. They were holding you back. Now that they are all dead, nothing will stop any of you from unleashing your fury, from showing the world just how fierce you are."
"Why not just fuckin' kill us too?" Harvon questioned.
"Because I am merciful," Torgash lied. "Because I see potential in all of you. Because I'm offering you all redemption. Serve under me, and together we can make our people strong again. Or you can refuse, and I'll just sever your heads and hang them outside my castle walls."
Torgash shrugged again. "Either option works for me."
Harvon closed his eyes, hot breath exploding from his mouth. When he opened them back up, he looked at the other orcs and could see that all of them had lost hope. Even Shurrmvin could say nothing, and he whined as he looked at the copulatory organs resting on the floor. When Harvon looked back up at Torgash, he saw the orc grinning again. Everyone in the chamber knew what option they would choose.
And they all knew they were condemning themselves to Hell for it.
Harvon sat on the ground, his face covered in sweat, dirt, and ash. He blinked and looked around the area, still feeling the heat from the fire he and the other orcs set. But the flames had been extinguished, and now nothing remained but ruins. Harvon couldn't tell what was soil and what was ash; both compounds seemed to mix together so easily. The aging orc looked down at his brownish-red armor, tightening his jaw as he saw the smudges of soot staining the metal and getting between the cracks. His boots were covered in mud and dried blood, and his brown pants were so damp with sweat they were nearly clinging to his skin. The green orc growled as he looked to his left, where he saw charred remains of what appeared to be humans. Their bodies were still emitting smoke, like fried meat that had been cut into. Up ahead were various bundles of sticks, stones, straw, metal, and other building materials now crumbled up into a heap. Just a few hours ago, these heaps used to be large huts or houses that humans lived in, but now it was all worthless. When he looked to his right, he could see that some of his orc brethren were lazily sleeping on the ground, some of them snoring or drooling, not caring that they were still clad in their heavy, sweaty armor.
As Harvon continued to survey the scene, he heard twigs snapping behind him followed by an orc grunting. Harvon looked over his shoulder and saw a younger, thinner orc wandering towards him, wearing similar armor. But unlike Harvon, his face was scarred all over and some of his teeth were missing.
"Report," the orc demanded.
Harvon grumbled. "Victory. All the humans are slain."
"Fifteen. Chof'gak was struck with poisonous arrows. Doubt he'll make it back home before perishing."
The younger orc exhaled as he licked his jagged teeth and grinned. "Good. Another flawless triumph for the great King!"
Harvon nodded and exhaled. "Sure."
As Harvon kept looking around the area, he heard the young orc sighing gently. For a moment, Harvon didn't notice, until he widened his nostrils. Harvon turned and looked at the young orc's crotch. And then he scowled as he looked up at the orc's content grin.
"The fuck you doin'?"
It was impossible to ignore now. The smell was making Harvon's nose curl, and his ears twitched as he listened to the fluids trickling. Morklox chuckled.
"Been holdin' this shit in since the battle started! Phew…damn that feels good."
"There's a tree right there. You couldn't pull your trousers down to piss on it?"
"Tch! And make myself a target? 'Sides, Torgash ain't dumb as he looks when it comes to his policy with warriors and guards. I sure as shit ain't getting killed cause I was taking a piss away from the battlefield and needed 'privacy.'"
"So your solution is to act like a toddler and to piss yourself." Harvon sucked on his teeth. "Makes perfect sense."
Morklox sensed Harvon's hostility and blinked. "What's your problem, Harvon? Ever since Harvon set these new policies in motion, you've gone out of your way to protest against 'em."
"My problem is I'm talkin' to an orc who stinks of piss," Harvon snarled, his voice rising.
Harvon and Morklox scowled at each other. After the brief stare down, Morklox scoffed and shook his head as he began to walk away.
"Fuck you, Harv."
Harvon watched as Morklox headed out into the woods to regroup with the rest of the soldiers. Meanwhile, Harvon stood up and walked away, wandering off into what used to be a field of trees. But now many of the trees had burned down or were toppled over, blending in with the smoking corpses littered across the soil. The orc sat down again, taking a deep breath as he tried not to think about the past again, about his new ruler, about the state of Kosslivo. He set his axe down beside a burnt log and stretched out his legs. Part of him was hoping he could go to sleep right now. Another part of him was praying for some traitorous orc to sneak behind him and slit his throat, just so he didn't have to go back home. Instead, Harvon heard more heavy boots stomping on the hot soil, and he turned and spotted a familiar face. He wasn't as recognizable now, in large part because of his portly stomach and his graying beard, but Harvon couldn't forget the orc's smug smirk whenever they greeted each other.
"'Notha' human settlement destroyed. I'm sure it won't be long until we render these creatures extinct," the orc said.
Harvon blinked. "Shurrmvin, are you trying to sound like King Torgash?"
Shurrmvin grinned. "I was close, wasn't I?"
Harvon smiled slightly, but he couldn't muster enough energy to laugh. Shurrmvin grunted as he sat down in front of the black log beside Harvon, setting his axe down as he relaxed as well. Both of them gazed up ahead at the dead bodies, seemingly unfazed by any of it.
"You know, it doesn't bother me much now. I just look at 'em, imagine a buncha fat sows that were overcooked. …Kinda tempted to bite into 'em, y'know."
"Doesn't it bother you that this doesn't bother you?"
Shurrmvin shrugged. "What can we do? We're just soldiers now. All we do is obey orders."
"Really?" Harvon leaned over and sniffed Shurrmvin's pants. "Funny. You don't smell like piss."
"Hey. Soldiers should have dignity. I stopped pissing and shitting myself once I learned how to walk."
Harvon exhaled as he reached up and scratched his bald head slowly. "Yes…dignity. Hmph. And yes, all soldiers should follow orders. And then the next generation will follow orders. And the next. And the next. And soon enough, the world will be full of orcs and half-orcs following orders. Orders that result in this," Harvon said, spreading his arms to show off the wanton destruction.
"Oh, aye. It'll be our greatest achievement."
"No. Just…just bodies on top of more bodies on top of more bodies. The whole world will be smothered with blood and decay, and our king will call that a victory."
Shurrmvin shrugged. "If there's no one to oppose you, wouldn't that technically be a victory?"
Harvon stopped talking. He looked to his left at the ground and was surprised by something he hadn't noticed before. He thought it was some kind of trinket or treasure that one of the humans dropped. But when the orc leaned down and examined the item, his eyes widened. He couldn't help but reach down as he poked at the item a few times, which made Shurrmvin raise an eyebrow.
"Shurrm…I found something."
The chubby orc exhaled. "What, someone's skull buried in the dirt?"
Shurrmvin moved closer to Harvon and looked down at the same object that Harvon was looking at as well. He scratched above his eyebrow and grumbled.
"S'a snowdrop," Shurrmvin concluded.
"Yes…yes, it is," Harvon replied.
"The fuck's it doin' out here? How is it even growing? The soil's probably tainted with all this blood and human flesh!"
Harvon didn't care. He smiled widely as he reached over and ran his finger against the drooping bell-shaped flower, caressing the white petals gently, still baffled at how such a fragile flower was able to withstand all the violence that ensued just a few hours ago. Shurrmvin looked at Harvon and shook his head.
"Whatever. It's just a flower. C'mon, the rest of the troops will be heading back soon."
"I'll join you soon. Go on ahead."
Shurrmvin grunted as he got to his feet and picked up his axe. Then he stomped through the soil and past all the corpses, leaving Harvon alone with the flower. The bald-headed green orc knew it should've been nothing. It was just a flower; Harvon had seen dozens of them before. But the fact that it was growing in such an abysmal location, and seemingly blooming, seemed to change Harvon's attitude about Kosslivo, about his people.
As Harvon chuckled, he suddenly wasn't so depressed about what the future would hold.