A Rouge Goodbye

The story of Haileaus’ leaving the Legion, written by Haileaus.  The story was originally posted here.

Gyroscope swam down to the bottom of the lake.  Even though he was using his GYROBLUB (Gyroscope’s Bubble and Living Underwater Box) he held his breath.  The body hit right in the middle of the lake and would have sunk straight down.  There he is!   Gyroscope swam towards the mass of bones and cloth.  He was looking up, almost right at him, with his back just touching the ground.  Gyroscope didn’t bother trying to repress a shudder.  Gyro waved his hand in front of the face.  No response.  He tapped the shoulder.  No response.  Finally he pulled off the hood.  The head seemed close to coming off with the hood.  Gyroscope stared through the empty eye sockets for a full minute, taking his time to grasp the truth.  He’s deadI…did it…I killed Haileaus!

Gyroscope resurfaced.  He stared blankly at Rfeann.  “Hail’s dead.  It seems parts of his body detached upon impact, though I managed to find most of it.”  Gyroscope pulled the hood from his bag, “Here –  It wouldn’t fit me.”

10 HOURS EARLIER

Haileaus hated meetings, much less setting them up.  If it were up to him, he’d just lead everything by himself.  But then that wasn’t how the Legion worked, and it was not in his best interest to change things.  “While they’re gone I say we discuss some changes to our security and meeting locations.  The Legion will want answers quickly and it’s up to us to provide them.”

They both nodded.

Haileaus sat down on the ground.  “Alright, so we have Gyroscope and Weran.  Let’s send word to Sheevah and Rfeann.  Also Pajamas should come over with some security.  We’ll meet in the master bedroom in 17 minutes regardless.”

16 MINUTES LATER

Haileaus walked into the bedroom.  Gyroscope, Weran, and Rfeann were waiting for him, sitting on the bed which was against the left wall.  The glass wall directly ahead faced south.  It was midday, and with the curtains pulled back anyone entering the room would be met with a blast of sunlight.  Against the wall to the right was a wardrobe which held pocket-dimension Heartcrusher created to hold zombies which would tear anything with a soul to pieces, spreading out until they fell apart.  Haileaus found himself wondering whether the people in the room with fully functioning noses could smell the ghouls.

“Alright, let’s get this over with.  I guess Sheevah and Pajamas aren’t coming.  I suppose I should explain what happened after the ambush to Rfeann since he so selflessly decided to lead the retreat.”

“Damnit Hail, you know I’m no good at open combat!  I saw you, Gyro, Weran, Heartcrusher, Verelyse, and Caera staying and decided th—Sorry.”

Haileaus sighed.  “Anyway, the group was cultists from some sort of shadow dimension Heartcrusher had dealings with.  We…dealt with the intruders here, but Heart, Vere, and Caera are going to pay them a visit to finish sorting things out.  We don’t know when or if they will return.  Questions?”

Weran spoke up, “Yeah, why are we here?”

“Because we are on the third floor in a room overlooking a lake, making it hard to infiltrate the room from the window, and the only door faces said window, which means enemies will be momentarily dazzled by the sun as they enter.”  And because nobody else knows about the ghouls, Haileaus added silently.

“Hail…he means why are we having a meeting.”  Gyroscope offered condescendingly.

“Oh.  Well because we have to keep things under control and assure the members of the Rouge Legion that everything is taken care of.”  Weran raised his hand.  “No Weran, stay.  Mark your territory here if you need to.”

Weran scowled, “Actually I just wanted to point out that I can hear two people coming down the hall.”

“Oh.”

The door slammed open.  Through it staggered a Blood Elf.  Blood flowed freely from a wound in her right leg.  More concerning, the left side of her head had been slashed.  Deeply.  Her red hair was matted with blood, and one of her ears had come clean off.  It was Pajamas.

“Inckkggg!” she said, as a dagger sprouted from her chest.  Haileaus and his companions leapt up to kill the intruder, but as Pajamas fell, the assassin was revealed.  A female goblin, wearing old Alliance Legionnaire’s armor.  For the first time in 98.7 years, Haileaus balked.  Needless to say the other’s did too.

Unfortunately, Sheevah did not balk, but instead threw three knives soaked in Gyroscope’s Fast-Acting Paralytic Poison (GYROFAPP).  One hit Rfeann, who quickly became useless.  The other two hit Weran, who just as quickly got pissed and began attacking the bedside table.  Haileaus proceeded to attack Sheevah, while Gyroscope studied the effect of two doses of GYROFAPP on a Worgan.  He had expected two doses would induce unconsciousness before the “Worgan confusion” side-effect could be seen.  Soon enough Weran hit the floor drooling over his conquest, and Gyroscope got up.  Time to finish this.  Gyroscope lunged for the pair.

Haileaus saw it coming a mile away.  He threw down some flash powder and grabbed two talismans from one of his pockets.  He threw them at his unconscious comrades and they were teleported to Heartcrusher’s upstairs lab.  Hail noted with satisfaction that Gyro and Sheevah were still looking for him.

They found him.  Hail fought well, but with two highly skilled opponents he couldn’t play offense.  Finally he saw an opening.  The force of Haileaus’s kick sent Gryo flying across the room.  Sheevah, visibly tired, managed to disengage, just in time to get out of the way of Gyro’s grenade.  Just before Haileaus broke through the glass, he threw one last special throwing knife.  It sunk into the wardrobe and exploded.  Haileaus fell into the lake listening to the music of screaming zombies.

ONE WEEK LATER

In the abandoned sunken slaughterhouse in Quel’thalas, two orbs shattered.  Underneath the lake, darkness bloomed in Haileaus’s eyes.  He stayed under for a day, letting his body recover and he searching for his hood.  He left the water knowing what he had to do:  Find my hood.  Kill whoever took it.  Find out what happened to Gyro and Sheevah.

Hail decided to start by sneaking into the Rouge Legion’s secondary headquarters.  Usually entering the building undetected would be nearly impossible, but Haileaus could teleport there through Heartcrusher’s closet.  A short walk and an uncomfortable dimensional squish later and Hail was consuming the ichor of some helpful ghouls.  After he had his fill, he went to the meeting room, attached himself to the ceiling (being undead comes in handy for such things) and waited for the next meeting.

Fortunately, that only took 9 days.  After being dead or worse for over two weeks, Haileaus could confidently say it was the most interesting meeting he’d been to that didn’t include murder.  More importantly, it was the first proper meeting since he died, so Hail was able to get a great deal of information.  Caera, Heartcrusher, and Verelyse were still gone.  Gyroscope was at the meeting.  Sheevah had gone missing, the last person to see her was Gyro.  The other base was overridden by ghouls.  Haileaus and Pajamas were the only casualties.  Most importantly, Haileaus learned that Rfeann had his hood!  He even showed it as proof, saying that Gyro had pulled it from the lake Hail fell in.

When the meeting was over Haileaus stalked his prey.  He decided that since Gyro had taken it from the water, he wouldn’t kill Rfeann, but he had to recover his hood ASAP – a classy hat is good for a lot of things, but revenge isn’t one of them.  WHAP!  Haileaus knocked Rfeann out cold, grabbed his hood, took one long look at Rfeann’s hat, and left.

In truth, Haileaus had always distrusted Gyroscope a lot more than he distrusted most people.  As such, he knew where Gyro was likely to be.  Just a quick little murder, I’ll wait for Gyro to enter, sneak up on him, and kill him before he knows.  Haileaus liked silent assassination.  There was a charm to it.  Nay, a beauty to it.  As he was contemplating this, he noticed a small figure approaching from the distance.  Could it be Gyro already?  It wasn’t.  It was a bruised, cut, and highly murderous Sheevah.  Huh, I wonder what she’s up to….

When Sheevah was about 10 feet from the building she threw four GYROBOOMs at the door.  She thought she heard a curse and saw a shadow move just before the blast, but Sheevah didn’t care.  She knew Gyroscope was inside, and that was all that mattered.  She kept walking, throwing vials containing a mixture of paralytic, confusing, and sleeping gas.  Even one vial would have been enough to incapacitate a tauren in a room that size.  As Sheevah walked through the door she took a deep breath.  She’d build up so much resistance that all she felt was a slight tingle.  It calmed her, sharpened her.  Spinning blades came rushing towards her, but Sheevah dodged them easily – that trap was more designed for larger races anyway.  She looked around, but there were no more traps.  Only Gyroscope lying on the floor.  She walked over and kicked him – No response.  She poked his eye – nothing.  She checked his pulse – slow, but steady.  Good.

Gyroscope work up tied to a chair in the corner of the room.  Sheevah was staring at him quizzically, holding a needle.

“Ah good, you’re awake.  If you feel a pain in your left arm it’s probably because I used a large dosage on you and you are getting a heart attack.”  Sheevah put the needle away.  “While you were out I decided to take a look around your lab.  I must say, I’ve always been curious about what goes into making your inventions.”  She walked over to Gyroscope and poured just enough acid onto his head to melt off his hair and give him a nice burn.  “I see you haven’t shared all of your inventions with the Legion.  Like this… ‘GYROCRUSH 3000’?  ‘Guaranteed to destroy even the most durable of trash’.  That’s a mighty strong claim, maybe we should test it out.”  Sheevah took a fancy-looking gadget from a workbench.  “What’s this?”

“No, you can’t…that’s almost done!”  At that Sheevah smiled sweetly.  “It’s my latest invention, the Gyroscope’s PhasEr Weapon!  Please, don’t destroy it, you can have it if you want, but don’t let my –”  Sheevah tossed it into the GYROCRUSH 3000.  Gyroscope watched in horror as it sailed through the air. The lid closed.  Flames leaked out and the smashing of metal could be heard.  “NO GYROPEW!!!!!”

“Hmm, a successful test, but that was pretty small.  Let’s try something bigger shall we.  What next…oh my, what do we have here?  Has someone been lonely?”  Sheevah picked up a metallic arm.

“The GYROscope’s FIne-Surgically-Tuned Experiment helpeR is for strictly professional use!”

“I s – GACK!”  As soon as she spoke the GYROFISTER activated and grabbed Sheevah’s throat.

“Of course, ‘professional’ can refer to any one of my professions.  It’s too bad you Goblins have such skinny necks, any other race would have their throat crushed instantly.  Oh well, I’ve always though suffocation would suit you.”

Sheevah stumbled over to Gyroscope, punched him in the face (leaving a chemical burn and inducing some extra dizziness).  She then grabbed a vial from her pocket and poured it on the hand, which promptly dissolved and released its grip.  Sheevah considered it for a moment before tossing it into the GYROCRUSH 3000.  Gyroscope let out a cry as the flames consumed it.

Sheevah had already picked her next target.  She picked up a model of an aircraft.  Painted on the side in white, read ‘SHADOW BLADE’.  The rest was black.  The wings each had blades on them – sharp ones.  Sheevah could tell Gyroscope put a lot of care into this.  When she picked it up, Gyroscope let out a feint whimper.  “Please, no, anything but that.  I’ll tell you anything, I’ll do anything, just…don’t destroy Shadow Blade.  Not again….”

It was time to get some answers.  Sheevah turned to Gyroscope.  “Oh I’ll destroy it all right, but when I do will depend on how well you answer some questions.  First, why did you turn against the Legion?”

Gyroscope sighed and looked up – not at Sheevah, but at Shadow Blade, as if it were his child, about to leave him forever.  “Because the Legion ruined me.  Before I joined, I had a cause.  A direction.  I fought for the Alliance, I created for the Alliance.  With Shadow Blade I had both the power to make a difference, and the freedom to go anywhere I wanted.  I was a champion.  And then…well then the Horde attacked, and I rushed to defend.  Shadow Blade and I cleaved through the enemy, but then she got hit.  She fell, and to survive I had to abandon her.  I managed to clear out the Horde around me, save for one Blood Elf.  Cloaked.  We fought, until finally she disengaged.  She told me this had been a test.  Haileaus was there too.  They told me about the Legion, and asked me to join.  They said the Legion transcends Horde and Alliance.  I looked around me at the fighting going on.  At Shadow Blade, smoldering.  The Alliance was winning, but I realized I didn’t care.  For me, the battle was lost the moment Shadow Blade went down.  I felt anger, not at the Horde for killing her, but at the Alliance for letting them.  I joined partially because I thought the Legion could open up new opportunities for me, and partially because I wanted the Alliance to realize just how much they needed me.

“At first I thought I’d done the right thing by joining.  Unlike the Alliance, the Legion never expected me to give, and never told me what to make.  It invigorated me.  I worked harder than ever before on my inventions and loved the reception they got.  A year after I joined I’d already asserted myself as a vital member of the Legion.  On the anniversary of Shadow Blade’s death, Haileaus approached me with a mission.  He said the Alliance was designing a weapon that had the potential to wipe out the Horde entirely.  Something about using Gnomish mind-control technology to induce madness.  He explained that the elimination of such an army would leave Azeroth open to attacks that neither faction alone could face.  He told me with my knowledge of the Alliance and engineering and my strength at infiltrating, I was the perfect – and only – person he could trust to complete the mission.  Of course I accepted it.

“It was only after I had completed the mission that I learned the mission was a test.  The base I destroyed was a subsection of Heartcrusher’s lab.  The guards and workers on-sight were under the illusion that they were guarding the King.  The engineers I’d assassinated in their beds, next to their loved ones, had no knowledge of the project.  Haileaus made me kill so many innocents just to see if I still had ties to the Alliance.  That’s when I turned against the Legion.  Because while they gave me their appreciation, they took from me so much more.  They made me someone who would blindly accept a mission.  Someone who would murder my former colleagues in cold blood.  Someone who would trust a monster.  The Legion is a bunch of selfish, greedy individuals, who are only together because it helps them accomplish their own goals better.  And I joined them, leaving my people dying on a battlefield.”

Sheevah yawned.  “Next question, and please try to keep the answer shorter, why me?  I assume could have mind-controlled any member of the Legion.  Why not Weran, or Backstabi or Snoz, or Relikar?  Or Haileaus himself?”

“It is harder to determine the effects of mind control on undead, since their essence does not necessarily reside in their brains.  As for the others, I decided I had done enough damage to the Alliance races.  I figured even if you couldn’t kill Hail yourself, you’d stay alive long enough for me to finish it.  And, if Hail killed you, then all the better – I’ve always hated you.”

“Was this the first time you tried to hurt us?”

“I brought the Hunters upon us and tried to kill Caera in a malfunction during that battle.  That was all.”

“Thanks.”  Sheevah put Shadow Blade on the ground pointing towards Gyroscope.  She then smiled, picked up a toolbox, and slammed it down on the model until it was indistinguishable.  Sheevah watched in satisfaction as Gyroscope sobbed.

“Father?”  The voice came from the doorway.  “Father I couldn’t leave you, what’s wrong?  Please don’t cry.”

A younger, more robotic version of Gyroscope walked through the door.

Terror gripped Gyroscope, though all he could say was “Lissa, I told you to run, you are in danger and I don’t want you seeing me like this.”

“Oh Gyro, you never told me you had a child!  Hey Lissa, I’m Sheevah.  Why don’t you come here and give your Auntie a hug?”  When Lissa didn’t move, Sheevah moved to grab him.  Lissa responded by screaming, grabbing Sheevah’s hair, and kicking violently.  They rolled around.  Lissa was, of course, stronger, but Sheevah had armor and had managed to get one of her daggers out.  Finally Sheevah managed to stab something critical and Lissa was reduced flailing about blindly.  Sheevah took out a vial of acid and held it over Lissa.

Drip.  Hiss.  Drip.  Hiss.  Drip.  GRAHH!  It seemed during the tussle Sheevah or Lissa had kicked one of Shadow Blade’s wings towards Gyroscope, who had managed to use it to escape – then as a throwing knife.

Sheevah dropped the vial, leapt at Gyroscope, and drew her daggers.  Gyro dove for his desk.  He grabbed his daggers and a device.  Then he disappeared.  Sheevah knew he was gone.  She screamed, swore, and began tearing apart the lab.  Then something smelly grabbed her arm, she felt an uncomfortable squish, and suddenly was in Heartcrusher’s lab, watching a fleeing Gyroscope.  She didn’t lunged at him, not even bothering to question what happened or who brought her there.

Haileaus watched Sheevah and Gyroscope fight.  He was glad Gyroscope had managed to get armed, because they the two were quite well matched.  Well, Gyroscope would of course win in a fair fight, but if one of Sheevah’s blades so much as scratched Gyroscope, Sheevah’s venom would end the fight.  Actually, it seemed Sheevah might not need her venom.  Gyroscope was steadily backing up.  Finally, he got desperate.  He dropped his dagger and threw a flash bomb, then ran towards a portal labeled, ‘FORBIDDEN!  DO NOT ENTER!  BACK AWAY!  BAD THINGS WILL HAPPEN TO YOU IF YOU GO THROUGH HERE!’ in 37 languages.  Gyroscope ran through.  Sheevah followed.  Haileaus watched, somewhat disappointed that he couldn’t see what would happen.  Oh well.  He’d as Heartcrusher later.

37 DAYS LATER

The next meeting Haileaus watched from afar.  Nobody in this space-time knew his was alive, and Hail liked it that way.  He saw old members – Rfeann, Aeriwen, Backstabi, and a few others step up and assert themselves.  Yet so many were missing.  Heartcrusher, Verelyse, and Caera were still missing.  Celinne, Cloaked, Kiwe, Twitch…so many others were either gone for good or had faded into the shadows.  Haileaus saw others he had not known well stepping up.   Relikar, Kain, Hassen…so many new names.

Haileaus sighed, turned, and walked out into the cool night air.

Gyroscope swam down to the bottom of the lake.  Even though he was using his GYROBLUB (Gyroscope’s Bubble and Living Underwater Box) he held his breath.  The body hit right in the middle of the lake and would have sunk straight down.  There he is!   Gyroscope swam towards the mass of bones and cloth.  He was looking up, almost right at him, with his back just touching the ground.  Gyroscope didn’t bother trying to repress a shudder.  Gyro waved his hand in front of the face.  No response.  He tapped the shoulder.  No response.  Finally he pulled off the hood.  The head seemed close to coming off with the hood.  Gyroscope stared through the empty eye sockets for a full minute, taking his time to grasp the truth.  He’s deadI…did it…I killed Haileaus!   Gyroscope resurfaced.  He stared blankly at Rfeann.  “Hail’s dead.  It seems parts of his body detached upon impact, though I managed to find most of it.”  Gyroscope pulled the hood from his bag, “Here –  It wouldn’t fit me.”     10 HOURS EARLIER   Haileaus hated meetings, much less setting them up.  If it were up to him, he’d just lead everything by himself.  But then that wasn’t how the Legion worked, and it was not in his best interest to change things.  “While they’re gone I say we discuss some changes to our security and meeting locations.  The Legion will want answers quickly and it’s up to us to provide them.”   They both nodded.   Haileaus sat down on the ground.  “Alright, so we have Gyroscope and Weran.  Let’s send word to Sheevah and Rfeann.  Also Pajamas should come over with some security.  We’ll meet in the master bedroom in 17 minutes regardless.”   16 MINUTES LATER   Haileaus walked into the bedroom.  Gyroscope, Weran, and Rfeann were waiting for him, sitting on the bed which was against the left wall.  The glass wall directly ahead faced south.  It was midday, and with the curtains pulled back anyone entering the room would be met with a blast of sunlight.  Against the wall to the right was a wardrobe which held pocket-dimension Heartcrusher created to hold zombies which would tear anything with a soul to pieces, spreading out until they fell apart.  Haileaus found himself wondering whether the people in the room with fully functioning noses could smell the ghouls.   “Alright, let’s get this over with.  I guess Sheevah and Pajamas aren’t coming.  I suppose I should explain what happened after the ambush to Rfeann since he so selflessly decided to lead the retreat.”   “Damnit Hail, you know I’m no good at open combat!  I saw you, Gyro, Weran, Heartcrusher, Verelyse, and Caera staying and decided th—Sorry.”   Haileaus sighed.  “Anyway, the group was cultists from some sort of shadow dimension Heartcrusher had dealings with.  We…dealt with the intruders here, but Heart, Vere, and Caera are going to pay them a visit to finish sorting things out.  We don’t know when or if they will return.  Questions?”   Weran spoke up, “Yeah, why are we here?”   “Because we are on the third floor in a room overlooking a lake, making it hard to infiltrate the room from the window, and the only door faces said window, which means enemies will be momentarily dazzled by the sun as they enter.”  And because nobody else knows about the ghouls, Haileaus added silently.   “Hail…he means why are we having a meeting.”  Gyroscope offered condescendingly.   “Oh.  Well because we have to keep things under control and assure the members of the Rouge Legion that everything is taken care of.”  Weran raised his hand.  “No Weran, stay.  Mark your territory here if you need to.”   Weran scowled, “Actually I just wanted to point out that I can hear two people coming down the hall.”   “Oh.”   The door slammed open.  Through it staggered a Blood Elf.  Blood flowed freely from a wound in her right leg.  More concerning, the left side of her head had been slashed.  Deeply.  Her red hair was matted with blood, and one of her ears had come clean off.  It was Pajamas.   “Inckkggg!” she said, as a dagger sprouted from her chest.  Haileaus and his companions leapt up to kill the intruder, but as Pajamas fell, the assassin was revealed.  A female goblin, wearing old Alliance Legionnaire’s armor.  For the first time in 98.7 years, Haileaus balked.  Needless to say the other’s did too.   Unfortunately, Sheevah did not balk, but instead threw three knives soaked in Gyroscope’s Fast-Acting Paralytic Poison (GYROFAPP).  One hit Rfeann, who quickly became useless.  The other two hit Weran, who just as quickly got pissed and began attacking the bedside table.  Haileaus proceeded to attack Sheevah, while Gyroscope studied the effect of two doses of GYROFAPP on a Worgan.  He had expected two doses would induce unconsciousness before the “Worgan confusion” side-effect could be seen.  Soon enough Weran hit the floor drooling over his conquest, and Gyroscope got up.  Time to finish this.  Gyroscope lunged for the pair.   Haileaus saw it coming a mile away.  He threw down some flash powder and grabbed two talismans from one of his pockets.  He threw them at his unconscious comrades and they were teleported to Heartcrusher’s upstairs lab.  Hail noted with satisfaction that Gyro and Sheevah were still looking for him. They found him.  Hail fought well, but with two highly skilled opponents he couldn’t play offense.  Finally he saw an opening.  The force of Haileaus’s kick sent Gryo flying across the room.  Sheevah, visibly tired, managed to disengage, just in time to get out of the way of Gyro’s grenade.  Just before Haileaus broke through the glass, he threw one last special throwing knife.  It sunk into the wardrobe and exploded.  Haileaus fell into the lake listening to the music of screaming zombies.       ONE WEEK LATER   In the abandoned sunken slaughterhouse in Quel’thalas, two orbs shattered.  Underneath the lake, darkness bloomed in Haileaus’s eyes.  He stayed under for a day, letting his body recover and he searching for his hood.  He left the water knowing what he had to do:  Find my hood.  Kill whoever took it.  Find out what happened to Gyro and Sheevah.   Hail decided to start by sneaking into the Rouge Legion’s secondary headquarters.  Usually entering the building undetected would be nearly impossible, but Haileaus could teleport there through Heartcrusher’s closet.  A short walk and an uncomfortable dimensional squish later and Hail was consuming the ichor of some helpful ghouls.  After he had his fill, he went to the meeting room, attached himself to the ceiling (being undead comes in handy for such things) and waited for the next meeting.   Fortunately, that only took 9 days.  After being dead or worse for over two weeks, Haileaus could confidently say it was the most interesting meeting he’d been to that didn’t include murder.  More importantly, it was the first proper meeting since he died, so Hail was able to get a great deal of information.  Caera, Heartcrusher, and Verelyse were still gone.  Gyroscope was at the meeting.  Sheevah had gone missing, the last person to see her was Gyro.  The other base was overridden by ghouls.  Haileaus and Pajamas were the only casualties.  Most importantly, Haileaus learned that Rfeann had his hood!  He even showed it as proof, saying that Gyro had pulled it from the lake Hail fell in.   When the meeting was over Haileaus stalked his prey.  He decided that since Gyro had taken it from the water, he wouldn’t kill Rfeann, but he had to recover his hood ASAP – a classy hat is good for a lot of things, but revenge isn’t one of them.  WHAP!  Haileaus knocked Rfeann out cold, grabbed his hood, took one long look at Rfeann’s hat, and left.   In truth, Haileaus had always distrusted Gyroscope a lot more than he distrusted most people.  As such, he knew where Gyro was likely to be.  Just a quick little murder, I’ll wait for Gyro to enter, sneak up on him, and kill him before he knows.  Haileaus liked silent assassination.  There was a charm to it.  Nay, a beauty to it.  As he was contemplating this, he noticed a small figure approaching from the distance.  Could it be Gyro already?  It wasn’t.  It was a bruised, cut, and highly murderous Sheevah.  Huh, I wonder what she’s up to….   When Sheevah was about 10 feet from the building she threw four GYROBOOMs at the door.  She thought she heard a curse and saw a shadow move just before the blast, but Sheevah didn’t care.  She knew Gyroscope was inside, and that was all that mattered.  She kept walking, throwing vials containing a mixture of paralytic, confusing, and sleeping gas.  Even one vial would have been enough to incapacitate a tauren in a room that size.  As Sheevah walked through the door she took a deep breath.  She’d build up so much resistance that all she felt was a slight tingle.  It calmed her, sharpened her.  Spinning blades came rushing towards her, but Sheevah dodged them easily – that trap was more designed for larger races anyway.  She looked around, but there were no more traps.  Only Gyroscope lying on the floor.  She walked over and kicked him – No response.  She poked his eye – nothing.  She checked his pulse – slow, but steady.  Good.   Gyroscope work up tied to a chair in the corner of the room.  Sheevah was staring at him quizzically, holding a needle.   “Ah good, you’re awake.  If you feel a pain in your left arm it’s probably because I used a large dosage on you and you are getting a heart attack.”  Sheevah put the needle away.  “While you were out I decided to take a look around your lab.  I must say, I’ve always been curious about what goes into making your inventions.”  She walked over to Gyroscope and poured just enough acid onto his head to melt off his hair and give him a nice burn.  “I see you haven’t shared all of your inventions with the Legion.  Like this… ‘GYROCRUSH 3000’?  ‘Guaranteed to destroy even the most durable of trash’.  That’s a mighty strong claim, maybe we should test it out.”  Sheevah took a fancy-looking gadget from a workbench.  “What’s this?”   “No, you can’t…that’s almost done!”  At that Sheevah smiled sweetly.  “It’s my latest invention, the Gyroscope’s PhasEr Weapon!  Please, don’t destroy it, you can have it if you want, but don’t let my –”  Sheevah tossed it into the GYROCRUSH 3000.  Gyroscope watched in horror as it sailed through the air. The lid closed.  Flames leaked out and the smashing of metal could be heard.  “NO GYROPEW!!!!!”   “Hmm, a successful test, but that was pretty small.  Let’s try something bigger shall we.  What next…oh my, what do we have here?  Has someone been lonely?”  Sheevah picked up a metallic arm.   “The GYROscope’s FIne-Surgically-Tuned Experiment helpeR is for strictly professional use!”   “I s – GACK!”  As soon as she spoke the GYROFISTER activated and grabbed Sheevah’s throat.   “Of course, ‘professional’ can refer to any one of my professions.  It’s too bad you Goblins have such skinny necks, any other race would have their throat crushed instantly.  Oh well, I’ve always though suffocation would suit you.”   Sheevah stumbled over to Gyroscope, punched him in the face (leaving a chemical burn and inducing some extra dizziness).  She then grabbed a vial from her pocket and poured it on the hand, which promptly dissolved and released its grip.  Sheevah considered it for a moment before tossing it into the GYROCRUSH 3000.  Gyroscope let out a cry as the flames consumed it.   Sheevah had already picked her next target.  She picked up a model of an aircraft.  Painted on the side in white, read ‘SHADOW BLADE’.  The rest was black.  The wings each had blades on them – sharp ones.  Sheevah could tell Gyroscope put a lot of care into this.  When she picked it up, Gyroscope let out a feint whimper.  “Please, no, anything but that.  I’ll tell you anything, I’ll do anything, just…don’t destroy Shadow Blade.  Not again….”   It was time to get some answers.  Sheevah turned to Gyroscope.  “Oh I’ll destroy it all right, but when I do will depend on how well you answer some questions.  First, why did you turn against the Legion?”   Gyroscope sighed and looked up – not at Sheevah, but at Shadow Blade, as if it were his child, about to leave him forever.  “Because the Legion ruined me.  Before I joined, I had a cause.  A direction.  I fought for the Alliance, I created for the Alliance.  With Shadow Blade I had both the power to make a difference, and the freedom to go anywhere I wanted.  I was a champion.  And then…well then the Horde attacked, and I rushed to defend.  Shadow Blade and I cleaved through the enemy, but then she got hit.  She fell, and to survive I had to abandon her.  I managed to clear out the Horde around me, save for one Blood Elf.  Cloaked.  We fought, until finally she disengaged.  She told me this had been a test.  Haileaus was there too.  They told me about the Legion, and asked me to join.  They said the Legion transcends Horde and Alliance.  I looked around me at the fighting going on.  At Shadow Blade, smoldering.  The Alliance was winning, but I realized I didn’t care.  For me, the battle was lost the moment Shadow Blade went down.  I felt anger, not at the Horde for killing her, but at the Alliance for letting them.  I joined partially because I thought the Legion could open up new opportunities for me, and partially because I wanted the Alliance to realize just how much they needed me.   “At first I thought I’d done the right thing by joining.  Unlike the Alliance, the Legion never expected me to give, and never told me what to make.  It invigorated me.  I worked harder than ever before on my inventions and loved the reception they got.  A year after I joined I’d already asserted myself as a vital member of the Legion.  On the anniversary of Shadow Blade’s death, Haileaus approached me with a mission.  He said the Alliance was designing a weapon that had the potential to wipe out the Horde entirely.  Something about using Gnomish mind-control technology to induce madness.  He explained that the elimination of such an army would leave Azeroth open to attacks that neither faction alone could face.  He told me with my knowledge of the Alliance and engineering and my strength at infiltrating, I was the perfect – and only – person he could trust to complete the mission.  Of course I accepted it.   “It was only after I had completed the mission that I learned the mission was a test.  The base I destroyed was a subsection of Heartcrusher’s lab.  The guards and workers on-sight were under the illusion that they were guarding the King.  The engineers I’d assassinated in their beds, next to their loved ones, had no knowledge of the project.  Haileaus made me kill so many innocents just to see if I still had ties to the Alliance.  That’s when I turned against the Legion.  Because while they gave me their appreciation, they took from me so much more.  They made me someone who would blindly accept a mission.  Someone who would murder my former colleagues in cold blood.  Someone who would trust a monster.  The Legion is a bunch of selfish, greedy individuals, who are only together because it helps them accomplish their own goals better.  And I joined them, leaving my people dying on a battlefield.”   Sheevah yawned.  “Next question, and please try to keep the answer shorter, why me?  I assume could have mind-controlled any member of the Legion.  Why not Weran, or Backstabi or Snoz, or Relikar?  Or Haileaus himself?”   “It is harder to determine the effects of mind control on undead, since their essence does not necessarily reside in their brains.  As for the others, I decided I had done enough damage to the Alliance races.  I figured even if you couldn’t kill Hail yourself, you’d stay alive long enough for me to finish it.  And, if Hail killed you, then all the better – I’ve always hated you.”   “Was this the first time you tried to hurt us?”   “I brought the Hunters upon us and tried to kill Caera in a malfunction during that battle.  That was all.”   “Thanks.”  Sheevah put Shadow Blade on the ground pointing towards Gyroscope.  She then smiled, picked up a toolbox, and slammed it down on the model until it was indistinguishable.  Sheevah watched in satisfaction as Gyroscope sobbed.   “Father?”  The voice came from the doorway.  “Father I couldn’t leave you, what’s wrong?  Please don’t cry.”   A younger, more robotic version of Gyroscope walked through the door.   Terror gripped Gyroscope, though all he could say was “Lissa, I told you to run, you are in danger and I don’t want you seeing me like this.”   “Oh Gyro, you never told me you had a child!  Hey Lissa, I’m Sheevah.  Why don’t you come here and give your Auntie a hug?”  When Lissa didn’t move, Sheevah moved to grab him.  Lissa responded by screaming, grabbing Sheevah’s hair, and kicking violently.  They rolled around.  Lissa was, of course, stronger, but Sheevah had armor and had managed to get one of her daggers out.  Finally Sheevah managed to stab something critical and Lissa was reduced flailing about blindly.  Sheevah took out a vial of acid and held it over Lissa.   Drip.  Hiss.  Drip.  Hiss.  Drip.  GRAHH!  It seemed during the tussle Sheevah or Lissa had kicked one of Shadow Blade’s wings towards Gyroscope, who had managed to use it to escape – then as a throwing knife.   Sheevah dropped the vial, leapt at Gyroscope, and drew her daggers.  Gyro dove for his desk.  He grabbed his daggers and a device.  Then he disappeared.  Sheevah knew he was gone.  She screamed, swore, and began tearing apart the lab.  Then something smelly grabbed her arm, she felt an uncomfortable squish, and suddenly was in Heartcrusher’s lab, watching a fleeing Gyroscope.  She didn’t lunged at him, not even bothering to question what happened or who brought her there.   Haileaus watched Sheevah and Gyroscope fight.  He was glad Gyroscope had managed to get armed, because they the two were quite well matched.  Well, Gyroscope would of course win in a fair fight, but if one of Sheevah’s blades so much as scratched Gyroscope, Sheevah’s venom would end the fight.  Actually, it seemed Sheevah might not need her venom.  Gyroscope was steadily backing up.  Finally, he got desperate.  He dropped his dagger and threw a flash bomb, then ran towards a portal labeled, ‘FORBIDDEN!  DO NOT ENTER!  BACK AWAY!  BAD THINGS WILL HAPPEN TO YOU IF YOU GO THROUGH HERE!’ in 37 languages.  Gyroscope ran through.  Sheevah followed.  Haileaus watched, somewhat disappointed that he couldn’t see what would happen.  Oh well.  He’d as Heartcrusher later.       37 DAYS LATER   The next meeting Haileaus watched from afar.  Nobody in this space-time knew his was alive, and Hail liked it that way.  He saw old members – Rfeann, Aeriwen, Backstabi, and a few others step up and assert themselves.  Yet so many were missing.  Heartcrusher, Verelyse, and Caera were still missing.  Celinne, Cloaked, Kiwe, Twitch…so many others were either gone for good or had faded into the shadows.  Haileaus saw others he had not known well stepping up.   Relikar, Kain, Hassen…so many new names.   Haileaus sighed, turned, and walked out into the cool night air.

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