She slices! She dices! She also makes kindling of vaguely anthropomorphic trees!
Not too far into the mission, Helvetica quickly found herself wading through cords of firewood as every tree-like creature in the area came for her blood. Between the snapping of boughs, limbs, twigs—and the shocked and startled expressions on the treant’s faces as she cleaved them in twain—she let all of her frustration out on the woody nuisances.
Of course, she had also carefully made certain no other players were camping them before she waded into the fray. She really didn’t want to deal with arrows-from-nowhere thudding into her kills.
“Yeah, run you malicious dendrite!” She didn’t know exactly what dendrite meant, but it seemed appropriate to scream at the Feral Tender’s back. It had taken one look at the pile of firewood corpses that had once been its brethren and fled in the other direction.
The Burning Crystal shard hovered nearby watching her every move.
“Do you actually do anything?” she asked it.
The shard glared.
Getting the scroll and the scrying orb were a piece of cake after Helvetica’s singled-handed, bastard-sworded Forest Massacre at Sunstrider Isle. Those items tucked safely into her new bag, she surveyed the scene. It reminded her rather directly of public service announcements of the dangers of clear cutting: a field of green, dotted with forlorn stumps jutting up like leg stubble.
Here and there a stump glittered with sparkling motes of light.
Curious, she sheathed her blade and trundled over to one of them. When she approached she noticed that the sparkles were coming off of stuff lying around the stump. In this case, it was a pair of pants hanging from some of the shattered remains of the canopy of the small tree.
In this fashion she gathered up some pants, a cape, gloves, and a new pair of earrings.
“So killing is a lot like shopping!” she said cheerfully. “Who knew? And they’re also all in my size.”
While normally she would have been self conscious about changing in public she started putting them on anyway. After re-outfitting with her new ensemble she spent a moment looking herself over. The treant’s taste in clothing appeared somewhat drab, browns and greens seemed to be in fashion.
Plucking at the tough material of her new pants, Helvetica wondered aloud, “Why do they have this stuff anyway?”
* * *
“So, how do I look?” asked the Feral Tender. It stood straight and tall, boughs arched out in a strongman pose. The chain mail shirt with a red doublet hanging between his branches twinkled in the mussy light of the island.
“I don’t know,” said a nearby mana wyrm sporting a green beret. “You might need to dye your foliage orange to go with the red.”
The treant turned to the Springpaw Lynx at its right and spun slowly to show the outfit off.
“I don’t know if I’m fit to comment. I am only a cat,” the lynx said—of course, it was wearing a green and grey shirt with gold trimming.
“I rather like it,” said the other Tender. It wore a purple robe, through which its various branches poked holes in the fabric and created a strange, amorphous bulk to its frame. The effect gave it a kind of round, tent-with-too-many-stakes effect, but the others weren’t going to tell her that she looked stupid. Since she was proud of her purple robes and would run away in tears if they mentioned it.
“Thank you,” the Feral Tender said. “At least someone appreciates my fashion sense.”
The glitter of the chain mail caught Helvetica’s eye from several hundred yards away. Checking her equipment, she realized that she didn’t have a shirt yet and that one looked alright to her. So she headed directly for them.
“Maybe we can all go shopping later,” the Feral Tender said. “I know of a great place down near the Ghostlands where a buddy of mine can get us some really stylish gear.”
“I second that,” said the lynx.
“Sure, I’ll come,” the mana wyrm added.
Being that blood elves don’t understand Tender, Springpaw Lynx, or Mana Wyrm speak, she missed out on the conversation entirely and instead rudely crashed their water cooler gathering with a vengeance.
Unaccustomed to stealth, she rounded the corner with her sword brandished high and leapt directly for the Feral Tender wearing the stylish chain mail shirt. “Momma needs a new pair of boots!”
Slash! Slice! Smrunch!
After the wyrm dust settled and the various bits of leaves had fluttered to the ground, the young paladin walked away from the devastated group wearing a new, shiny chain shirt.
The author Helvetica writes the Helvetica Venture and Hellvetica Chronicles for Vox Ex Machina and proudly supports the works of Kyt Dotson, whose writing includes Mill Avenue Vexations (a gothic webserial featuring cab driver Vex Harrow), Black Hat Magick, and Helljammer and invites you to check out the novel, The Specter in the Spectacles by Kyt Dotson.