The winds howled as it traveled across the vast ocean. The ocean cried along with it, crashing onto the land that the tauren could see all too clearly. And the land responded to the ocean with the rumbling of what sounded like an avalanche, but no, it was the marching of demons upon it. Even the unnatural green flame that danced along the armor and in the eyes of the demons took part in the elemental mourning, flickering in the wind as it tried to extinguish itself but failed miserably.
The tauren stood on the deck of a large ship. Purple paint chipped off the wood that had been eaten by age and war. The hull groaned under the weight of the men on top and from the pressure of the waves. How the ship still sailed was beyond him, yet he knew that it wasn't the time or place to worry about that. He wasn't sure how, but something told him that the leaking vessel was the least of his problems.
But if the ship isn't supposed to the problem, then what is?
What was that?
Who was that? Where was he exactly?
A crowd of soldiers cheered at what the orc in front of them had just said. What it was, he couldn't say.
That he heard, but wasn't that a battle cry?
The soldiers began to run. The first few ran around the tauren, but even a large one like he couldn't compete with dozens, if not hundreds, of eager feet. He was pushed down, stomped on the soldier's feet and the bottoms of large weapons.
"Stop! Please!" He cried out.
Yet the pounding of footwear and weaponry continued.
"Please!" He pleaded once more. "I'm begging you!"
The crowd of soldiers suddenly stopped.
"Thank y-" The tauren began to say as he looked up. He would have finished his thought had the face he was looking at had been a comrade or soldier, not one of purple scales and fel.
The face of the demon smirked as he rose his weapon, a long polearm with a blade nearly twice as long as the base. His hand began to go down in slow motion. The point of the blade faced the tauren's face, right in between his eyes. The tauren closed his eyes as he awaited the entry of the polearm into his skull, or at least he tried. His eyes won't close, instead opting to witness its body's own demise.
The tauren opened his opens to see nothing beyond the darkness. He lifted his upper body off of the ground, trying to get his eyes to adjust to the light. His breaths were uneven and heavy as he recalled his dream. No, it was a nightmare. Yes, a terrible nightmare, that's all.
A cool breeze flew across his warm back, taking the warmth of his slumber and leaving a chill along his spine. Part of him wanted to return to his warm mat, curled up by his mate as he rested for the next day. Yet the other part adamantly refused. He couldn't go back to bed, not now. He had to make sure that it was alright, that they were all okay.
He glanced around the tent, trying to make out the outlines of people there. His eyes started to make out such figures, the first being by his side on the mat. The tauren could see the figure's length extend across the mat, curling towards the center with its arms wrapped around something. A light lump of what he assumed to be her mane sprawled out in any directions like the roots of a tree might. Eyes closed, mouth agap slightly, the figure seemed at peace. Her breaths were deep and even, calm to the tauren's anxiety.
He looked closer to where her arms held something close to her chest, or rather someone. The figure was much smaller, but his darker fur helped him stand out from the other's lighter coat. His arms extended to the tauren's side as his oddly peaceful face was turned towards the tauren's own.
The tauren sighed with relief. It was alright, they were all here. They were safe and sound here with him. He was going nowhere.
Yet he couldn't get himself to go back to sleep. His mind kept replaying the dream, over and over again. He knew it was only a nightmare, a simple nightmare from a hard day of work. Yes, that had to be it.
The tauren sat there trying to piece together what had happened to make him so worried. It wasn't like him, to worry like this. That was her job, not his. He recalled the previous day, searching for a time, a place, something; that would have caused such a horrible nightmare. Like this he remained for what seemed like an eternity until-
Aha! He must have exhausted himself during his duty hours, when one of the other Braves told him that story.
Oh, he knew that story well! It had begun with the Braves of Thunderbluff as they guarded the city on the rises. They had been swapping all sorts of tales before, telling each other of previous experiences and legends from their tribes. It had been quite pleasant, up until the oldest of them had been pulled away by a rather stern looking orc.
This elder, who had decided to continue his service towards Thunderbluff despite his venerable age and suffering health, he had been a good friend of theirs. He would speak of times long before any of their births, of the elements and wars, and of chaos and joy. This tauren was an old but delightful man most days, but he hadn't been yesterday.
He had simply walked out of the conversation, without so much as a "Farewell" from the elder. The others hadn't noticed, but the tauren had. He had always been a curious one, much to the displeasure of his mother, his elders, and now his mate. Yet he had retained this uncanny ability to find trouble, so he followed the elder as he made his way out with the orc at his side.
They eventually stopped near the edge of the center rise, looking around as to ensure no one else heard. Such a pity the elder hadn't seen the tauren staring from behind a ceremonial totem pole.
It was difficult to tell whether it was simply gossip or not with how fantastical it seemed. The elder greeted the orc, who had introduced himself as a visiting commander. When the elder asked the commander about his reason to visit the Shu'halo capital, the commander explained that he had arrived to speak with the chieftain about an upcoming war.
Curious, the elder pressed further for answers. The commander was hesitant at first, but knew the old bull's ranking within the Braves and agreed to share with him. See, there had been rumours of a invasions from the Burning Legion itself.
The commander paused to let the elder laugh, for he was sure that would be his response. Yet the elder simply stared at him as he awaited answers.
The orc sighed but continued on. Elders, seers, shamans, priests, and many others in tune with the world of spirits had been speaking about visions of green flames and demonic scales for weeks before, yet the others had casted doubt on such stories. Yet it seemed to have been proved true as of late, with demonic hordes landing along the Broken Isles and reinforcements being seen as they traveled towards the planet.
The commander asked for the aid of the Braves and their chieftain. The elder nodded, stating that he would do what he could for the orc.
The orc simply nodded and walked away to the zeppelin platform. The elder walked back to the other Braves, mixing back into the circle of dutiful Braves. He had followed the elder's lead, regrouping with his fellow Braves as they went back to work guarding the city.
It was suppose to be nothing. The tauren had gone about his day as normal, coming home to his mate and son and enjoying good company before heading off to sleep.
Yet here he was, wide awake before dusk from nightmares of demons.
It was then that the tauren made his decision, looking over the sleeping figures of his mate and child. He would go fight these demons, once and for all.
Author's Note-Alright then. This is going to be a two-shot, with the second part published as soon as I can. Review or PM me with constructive criticism. Thank you for reading and have a good day!