28 December 2013

A Winter Veil Warble

In a fit of creativity I decided to try my hand at something different - namely, fanfic written not about original characters but rather well-known names in the Wowverse. My references for this piece can be found at Gallywix's character piece and the original A Christmas Carol. It is very long, though not as long as the original, so I've hidden most of it behind a cut.


Through a series of unfortunate events, all of them accidental and decidedly unorchestrated by any conniving individual, former Trade Prince Maldy was dead. He had been dead for some time now, having met his regretable and completely unintentional demise shortly after being banished from Kezan. Trade Prince Gallywix knew this to be fact; he had the documents confirming, that is, announcing the sad news. He had the unmarked boxes, each packed with explosives, from Maldy's daughter; one for every year that had passed since Maldy's death. And most obviously, most importantly, Gallywix had the title of Trade Prince, the very same one he had worked from Maldy's incompetent fingers.

It was the eve of the Feast of Winter Veil, and Gallywix was in his typical place for any evening - that is to say, he was in his office, at his desk, poring over profit reports while his Number One, Mida Silvertongue, worked diligently beside him. The door opened, which was unusual because Gallywix had specifically given his guards authorization to shoot any interruptions, and besides, all of his booby traps were on hair triggers. If someone had made it past all that, it had to be...

"Happy Winter Veil, son! I got what you need!" Luzik Gallywix waltzed into the office, deftly side-stepping the obvious snake pit and two better-concealed spike traps. He was carrying what appeared to be a brightly-wrapped present. It ticked conspicuously.

"Bah!" said Gallywix. "Ripoff!"

"Winter Veil a ripoff, my boy?" said Luzik. "When I went through the trouble of inventing this just for you? I don't understand why you won't include it in your product line!"

"And I don't understand why you are wasting my valuable time with this. I told you that R&D declared explosive pool ponies unprofitable weeks ago. It would be a ripoff for me to produce your invention. And not the good kind! The kind that rips me off!" He looked at Mida for backup, but she studiously kept her eyes on her work.

"Come now, sonny, don't get mad."

"What else can I be when I'm surrounded by idiots?" Gallywix did not notice his companion's eyes flick towards him. "Happy Winter Veil! What good is it? What's the Feast but a time to throw gold away on gifts and food, to stuff yourself so senseless that you can't balance your own books, to go chasing across Azeroth after some reindeer when you could be drumming up new trade agreements? If I had my way, every moron who goes around saying 'Happy Winter Veil' would have their pockets turned out and their lives indentured to my mines." He glared at his father. "You spend Winter Veil pissing coin away, and I'll spend it making sales."

"Sales of everything but my invention!" Luzik shot back. "What is Winter Veil if not a time for impulse buys? People are so excited about food and fun that they can be more easily talked into purchases they are unsure about!"

Gallywix noticed Mida watching Luzik thoughtfully and frowned at her. "Oh no, don't let this guy give you any ideas. We are not marketing the exploding pool pony. And you," he rounded on Luzik. "I want you out of here before I call security. The ones with battle boars."

"At least come over and have a look at the blueprints!" Luzik protested, backing towards the door.

"As if I could spare the time," Gallywix snarled. "Time is money."

"I could develop something more marketable!"

"Time is money!"

"At least accept this as a Winter Veil gift from a father to his son?" Luzik held out the package, which no doubt also contained documents on construction, pricing, and billing.

"Time is money!" Gallywix concluded, slamming the office door in his father's pleading face. He stalked to the window, where Azshara, serene and chill under a faint layer of frost, stretched out before his stone visage. Behind him, he heard the clock chime and Mida begin to collect her things. He paid her until five, and she was finished working when the clock ticked over.

He turned towards her. "I suppose you'll want all day tomorrow."

She shrugged on her coat, a gaudy, leathery tribute to fashion. "Yeah. It's in my contract, after all."

Gallywix snorted. "So it is, although I don't know why I agreed to a full day's wages and no work out of it."

"Because I'm the best, and I'm worth every penny," Mida replied airily, letting herself out.

Damn her for being right. "Be early the next day!" he shouted after her.

24 December 2013

#FFW A GIF(t) from Kamalia!

I may have mentioned that I had managed to forget who my FFW was by routinely sending out the emails and not paying too much attention. WELL. That certainly made this INCREDIBLE gift all the more exciting! I've always known that Kamalia was a very talented artist, but this is above and beyond...!! Thank you SO MUCH to Kamalia, who actually MADE A GIF.

My Dear Akabeko,

I was so delighted when I saw that I'd drawn you! At first, I thought I'd make you a post of animated gifs. But I chickened out of trawling the internets for suitable images, and I wasn't quite sure what I wanted the "storyline" of the post to be, anyway. So I decided to make you an animated "front cover" picture for your stories about Akabeko and Weipon. I'm sure you know this already, but be sure to open the file with a web browser to see it run. I hope that you will hear a certain little electronic tune in your head as you watch the gif play. I've also included some still shots of the eight poses used in the animation.

Happy Winter Veil and Merry Christmas!
 :D Kamalia


I can't decide what I like best about this. Is it Aka's cute little face? The fact that Wei helpfully jumps to get that last coin? The little fluffy cloud or the delightfully pixelated text? Or maybe it's the incredible detail in their respective outfits... At any rate, I am ready to use this ALWAYS AND FOREVER for the fic!!!

22 December 2013


Hey guys! The FFW emails have gone out, so I hope everyone is working hard on their blog post gifts for their recipients :) I am making this the masterpost, and I'll continue to re-advertise it as gift posts begin to trickle in!

My winter holiday is fast approaching (going to Florida on Xmas Eve OH YEAH *pelvic thrusts aggressively*), so I'm trying to plan out my end of the year posting schedule and goals  for the coming year.

Of course, I'll be working on my own FFW gift, and hopefully posting a very nice one! (You'll love this...immediately after sending all the emails I forgot who ended up getting me in the draw, so it will be a surprise EVEN TO ME.) I hope you won't mind me reposting a holiday parody fic I wrote in a previous year because, not to peel own banana, but I'm really proud of it and it still makes me giggle.

I have a LW post percolating in my creative coffee maker, and there will OF COURSE be more of the current story that Dah and I are working on. Alas, the next few chapters are all on me, so the delay is entirely my fault. In addition to that, I'm hoping to pull out one or two extremely old pieces of fiction that I wrote when first fleshing out the personalities for my various toons. Of course, the blog will not become entirely fiction (although it seems to have skewed that way), as I will also be posting the usual rants, screenshots, and wacky experiences. Fear not, though, as I recently caught up on my personal blog posting schedule, which means good things for the future! It can be done!

In non-WoW gaming news, I recently got myself a 3DS and tried to play the first Animal Crossing game. What followed was a series of increasingly troubling interactions with my questionable benefactor (Nook's Cranny who came up with that), hilariously infuriating searches for neighbors waiting for packages but had decided to wander off into the trees, and the extremely upsetting realization that when a honeycomb falls out of a tree YOU SHOULD NOT TRY TO LOOT IT.

After filling my tiny house with the usual clutter (mostly seashells and flowers stolen from neighbors' yards) I moved on to Pokemon X, where I was DELIGHTED to learn that after choosing name you can choose a NICKNAME which is the best thing that has ever happened. Let's exchange friend codes *_*

07 December 2013

#FFW reminder and excitement!

Hi guys! Slow posting because I still don't have internet at my new apartment and I don't like working on blog posts at...WORK! WHERE I WORK NOW BECAUSE I HAVE A JOB! ME, A JOB! AAAHHH!

By which I mean, stay tuned! You have a little over a week left to sign up for Furtive Father Winter 2013, and I know you want to, because look at this all-star cast of participants!
Escapist Scrawl
Sugar & Blood
Lib Feathers Fanfiction
Frost and Claws
The Daily Frostwolf
Admiring Azeroth
The Harpy's Nest
Plenty of Paladins
Kamalia et Alia
Sheep the Diamond
The Crimson Hammer
Red Cow Rise
*If you've messaged me as of Dec 10 and are not on this list, please message me again!

And if that's not enough winter madness for you, it's not too late to join in Matty's Solstice Advent Blog challenge! Do it for me! Do it for the haiku!

01 December 2013

#FFW Furtive Father Winter 2013!

(Father) Winter is coming! It's time to cozy up near the fireplace (or get your sunbathing on, as the case may be) and await the yearly coming of Greatfather Winter.

The time has come for the 5th annual Blog Azeroth Furtive Father Winter blogger gift exchange! Bloggers are encouraged to sign up, create a post for their randomly-assigned gift recipient, and publish the gift they receive from their furtive Father Winter! You don't need to be a BA member (although I highly recommend it), but you do need a place to publish gifts.

The process is simple:

1. Between now and December 15th, email me using my comment form or reply to this post. I need your name, email address, and blog URL.
2. On December 16th, I will pair up participants and email everyone with the name, email address, and blog URL of their gift recipient.
3. Gift givers should then learn about their recipient and create a gift post using prose, poetry, music, graphic art, screenshots, or anything else that inspires them. There is no quantity requirement; just make sure it's something you might like to receive as a present!
4. Between December 20th and 31st, please deliver your gift, and publish what you receive on your blog. Be sure to credit the gift-giver so we can appreciate all the creativity!

Last year there was an amazing turnout. My only word of caution is, if you aren't sure you'll have time to create a present, please think hard before signing up! We don't want anyone going away without a post.

Feel free to grab this year's graphic and advertise for this on your blog or twitter. The more the merrier!

This year's participants! The Furtive Father Winters will be revealed as the gifts are received and posted.
Escapist Scrawl from The Daily Frostwolf!
Sugar & Blood from Escapist Scrawl!
Lib Feathers Fanfiction from Admiring Azeroth!
Frost and Claws from Sugar and Blood!
The Daily Frostwolf from The Crimson Hammer!
Admiring Azeroth from red cow rise!
The Harpy's Nest from Frost and Claws!
Plenty of Paladins from Sheep the Diamond!
Kamalia et Alia from The Harpy's Nest!
Sheep the Diamond from Plenty of Paladins!
The Crimson Hammer from Lib Feathers Fanfiction!
red cow rise from Kamalia et Alia!

27 November 2013

#IntPiPoMo gratuitous personal pictures

41 Bridge troll says GIMME YOUR SOOUUUULLLL
42 Beautiful Chihuly glass
43 The Space Needle as seen through more glass
44 Japanese garden
46 at Pike Place Market
47 Sunset at the dog park
48 More sunset at the dog park
49 Are you sensing a theme?

23 November 2013

#IntPiPoMo in the Exodar

35 Gurl look at that body
37 How have I never noticed this in the Exodar?
38 I wish more people were excited about the Exodar. It's a really cool idea for a major city.
39 When I get sick I like to start new characters. More importantly, look at my little tree friend raining leaves from his armpits!
40 Ahh, peace and quiet. *sneezes*

21 November 2013

#IntPiPoMo im in ur silver enclave

20 I didn't pay much attention so I don't actually remember your name or significance but could you please step out of the shot?
21 Well golly this sure is nice
22 My goodness look at these majestic statues
23 How festive! This looks like something related to PvP
24 This looks like a gun that a Dalaran mage would appreciate
25 Look at this well-polished and very fancy shield
26 I know we've been over this but I kind of have a thing for the Dalaran stained glass
27 Mmm...Drink it in
28 *muffled screaming*
29 A little slice of the lovely forest in the middle of the lovely city
30 WHAT A VIEW YOU GUYS I hope you Allies appreciate what you have =_=
31 Hello yes I would like to order one million beers please
32 Even the ceilings are painted...y'all fancy humans
33 The tapestry is glittering THIS IS NOT A DRILL

19 November 2013

The Purging of the Sha

Previously: The Masks

Wei grinned at Hadakha, feeling lighter. "Ken-Ken told me that you went to the...the Red Bird Temple," she told him, awkwardly translating into Orcish. "When are the monks coming?"

Hadakha's face pulled into a deep scowl, and Weipon was so shocked at the fluent Pandaren that came out of his mouth that she almost missed the actual words. "There will be no help from the temple."

"Senpai!" Ken-Ken joined in. He rushed to the tauren's side. "No help from temple? Why not? Monks can't be that busy, only burning incense and praying every day."

The druid shook his head sharply, cutting off any further questions. "No one is coming to help." He took in the sight of Weipon and Ken-Ken, covered in gore, and Mei as she tidied up after them. "It seems you have begun without me. Let's finish this."

Rather than split up, they decided to take on the sha together, decreasing the amount of time it took to defeat them and saving them from having to spend more time in contact with the vile creatures. It also allowed Mei to follow them, ushering disoriented, weakened pandaren safely into their homes to rest.

They returned to the place where Weipon had gotten the medicine for Akabeko. The healer inside had moved from her perch behind the counter to an upholstered chair by one of the windows. Weipon brought a mask to her, moving slowly and deliberately with it, but the woman didn't take her gaze from the gray morning light outside.

The mask worked immediately on her, and Hadakha drew the newly formed sha to him with a flash of moonfire, waiting to shift into his feline form until they were free of the cramped space. The pandaren slumped against the chair, looking deathly still, and Weipon motioned for Mei to hurry even as she chased the sha outside. As the trio toppled the monster, Mei rushed to the door, giving Weipon a tortured look.

"She's barely there," she cried. "I can hardly feel a pulse, and her breathing is weak!"

Hadakha quickly shifted back into his tauren shape and strode into the building, incandescent leaves already coalescing around his hands. He gestured once, twice, then nodded in satisfaction, leaving Mei to stand gaping at the rapidly recovering pandaren.

The finally reached Mei's home, and finally some impatience showed through her cooperative veneer. "He's just in his room, laying around," she said, directing them to where Yi-mo was sprawled, lamenting his existence. Without asking, Mei grabbed a mask and held it to her nephew's face, whispering words of comfort.

Yi-mo cried out, batting ineffectually at Mei's hands, but the mask was already taking effect. The sha slipped from him, more wily and energetic than the others had been, and darted deeper into the house. Weipon leaped after it, accidentally upending a decorative lamp in her haste. She landed firmly on top of the sha, feet sliding wetly across its writhing flesh, and began to punch down. When it had stopped moving, she grabbed fistfuls of its oozing, greasy mass and hauled it matter-of-factly outside, where she threw it on the ground in the street. Ken-Ken immediately set upon the stunned sha, followed by Hadakha roaring and charging into the fray.

"What is that...?" 

Weipon turned and was shocked to see Yi-mo standing in the doorway with Mei, staring in horror down at the gore left behind by the defeated sha. He looked completely different, now that he was back to himself. 

Mei answered for them. "It's the same thing that's taken hold of the rest of the village. It made everyone want to lay around and wait for death. Even you tried to..." She stopped and shook her head.

Yi-mo frowned. "I don't remember much of what happened. How long was I under its control for?"

Mei continued to explain, but Hadakha turned to Ken-Ken and Weipon and spoke quietly. "Those sha are draining my strength every time we fight one. I'm guessing it's the same for you two as well, eh?"

Weipon nodded in agreement. They had been fighting for hours, and she was not only physically tired, but also mentally drained from the effects of the energy-sucking sha. She was all too eager to to take a break and wait for her good humor to return. “Let's take some time to get our strength back. Why don't we split up and check the town for any other sha-influenced pandaren we might have missed? We can meet back at the inn, get something to eat, and then take care of whoever is left."

Both of her companions nodded wearily. They left Mei to take care of Yi-mo and split up. Weipon had grabbed one of the mask bags, not wanting any of the remaining pandaren to find it and use it without any of them around to help. She could feel the few remaining masks bumping against her hip as she walked. Considering how few were left, she didn't imagine that there were many afflicted pandaren still waiting for their help. 

There was, however, one other person Weipon knew they would have to test a mask on. Her heart sank and her footsteps dragged as she weaved her way down the streets of the village, looking for possible sha-controlled pandaren on her way to the inn. Finally, having seen no neglected pandaren on her way, she found herself in the doorway of the inn. Barely glancing at the innkeeper, she trudged up the stairs to her room, hand hesitating on the doorknob. 

Once she opened the door, Weipon was assaulted by the stench of rot. She recoiled, gagging, and looked down as Fu darted out of the room, only to hover near the doorway, barking frantically. Weipon quickly shut the door, and Fu began to scratch at it from the outside.

Hands shaking, Weipon backed away, retreating down the hall and standing near a window to soak in the weak light. She couldn't seem to catch her breath. There was definitely something wrong with Akabeko, and she was completely terrified of finding out what. She should have done something, anything, before it could get to this point. She had only come here because Akabeko was guiding her, and now she might be alone. Weipon felt disoriented, disconnected from herself. She sat down heavily, knocking the masks against the wall. Fu crept towards her, staying just out of reach. 

She pulled the bag of masks into her lap, gaze unfocused. Her hands moved of their own accord, pulling out one of them and dreamily raising it to her face. What if...

The smooth wood brushed against her fur, tickling her cheeks. She inhaled, smelling the glue and charcoal that had gone into constructing the mask, but felt no sudden pull, no desire to press the mask against her face until it sucked out the unnatural despair that might be plaguing her.

Abruptly, Weipon let the mask fall into her lap. "That's a relief," she whispered. Fu was suddenly beside her, rubbing his face against her legs until she began to pet him comfortingly. "I guess that means I can deal with this on my own," she told him, earning the first tail wag she had seen in days.

"What are you doing?" Hadakha had come up the stairs and was looking at Weipon with concern. He rushed to her side, taking the mask from her hands. "Weipon? What did you do?"

"I...I tried on one of the masks," she answered honestly, climbing shakily to her feet. Hadakha steadied her, peering into her face inquisitively. "Nothing happened," she clarified.

"You find any more sad pandas, Weipon?" Ken-Ken asked, joining them in the hallway. "Ken-Ken find one sleeping outside in bushes, but Senpai helped take care of him."

"I didn't see anyone else...on the way here, anyway."

Hadakha looked sharply at her. "What do you mean by that?"

Weipon sighed. "I think Akabeko is also afflicted by a sha. The way she's been behaving...if it's not a sha, then I don't have any idea how to help her."

She brought them to her room and pushed open the door. Hadakha wrinkled his nose and immediately instructed Ken-Ken to go downstairs and warn the innkeeper. Fu danced around in agitation, staying barely clear of being underfoot. Hadakha looked at Weipon, noticing her hesitation, and held out his hand.

"Would you like me to do it?” He asked gently. Weipon silently handed him a mask, stepping back in preparation of dragging the sha outside and into the street.

Hadakha stepped over to where Akabeko was laying, completely still, and pressed the mask to her face.

She let out a sound somewhere between a scream and a sob, jerking away from Hadakha, but the mask had already affixed itself to her and was gushing black smoke. For the first time, Hadakha seemed surprised, and stepped away from the bed, hands unconsciously curling into claws. Smoke continued to pour from the mask, filling the room and forcing Hadakha to retreat into the hallway with Weipon. Finally, it began to coalesce, white-hot eyes winking into existence above even the tauren's head.

The sha was so large that it completely filled the room. Hadakha blasted it with a flash of moonfire to get its attention, then followed Weipon down the stairs. She moved quickly, looking over her shoulder in order to watch the sha ooze its ungainly body out through the tiny door. Its shadow flesh stretched and squeezed itself through the doorway, looking briefly rectangular before it reformed into its typical shape. Sure that they had its full attention, Weipon turned and ran, leading the sha through the common room and out of the inn's door. She ignored the innkeeper's shout of surprise as the sha oozed its way through the inn, leaving behind a foul-smelling trail of slime.

Just as Weipon was reaching the base of the stairs leading to the inn, the sha lashed out, catching her leg and dropping her to her knees. Even with that small touch, she felt an overwhelming grief, and tears sprang unbidden to her eyes. Gasping, she regained her footing and ran to join Ken-Ken, who was watching this extremely large sha with apprehension.

Acting quickly Hadakha pinned it in place with grasping thorns, summoned from the ground, and Weipon flicked a bolt of lightning at it, hoping to shock it. Ken-Ken darted in below its questing arms to attack from the rear. With Hadakha's providing cover with bolts of energy, Weipon faced the sha head-on, pummeling at its putrid flesh and trying to ignore the all-consuming sadness it forced upon her.

Distantly, Weipon could hear Ken-Ken openly sobbing.

"Why sha gotta make Ken-Ken so sad? Now we all outta funny hozen masks; how Ken-Ken gonna laugh again?"

Weipon choked out a laugh, feeling an almost hysterical grin spread across her face even as her eyes streamed with tears. She felt the featherlight, warm touch of Hadakha's healing magic repairing a wound she hadn't even noticed, knitting the flesh on her arm back together neatly. Her legs felt unsteady, almost unable to hold her under the weight of the despair.

There was the sudden pop of splitting wood, and then Weipon found herself joined by three strange treelike creatures. They tore into the sha, grunting aggressively even as the sha's corrosive flesh burned and warped their seeking fists. 

"Get out of there!" Hadakha called, and Weipon was only too happy to obey. She stumbled away, trying to shake off the sha's effects, and resorted to kicking balls of energy at the shrieking creature. Ken-Ken, having no other ranged attacks, was throwing nearby rocks.

Hadakha's minions were consumed by the sha one by one, but at long last, it gave its dying shriek and burbled into the ground, creating a steaming, bubbling puddle that all were hesitant to step in until it subsided. They paused, catching their breath, until Weipon struggled to her feet and limped purposefully towards the inn. 

"We have to see what happened to Akabeko."

16 November 2013

#IntPiPoMo Dominance Offensive quest conclusion

13 Oh hey guys cool party you got going on this doesn't look ominous at all 
14 Hey there, guy! This tauren sure is glad to see you!
17 Good job little guy! You're gonna be a great leader. 
18 ...did you just
19 ANDUIN?!?!?!?!

13 November 2013

#IntPiPoMo Dominance Offensive quests

7 First up, sneaking into Darnassafrass to steal back the Divine Bell
8 Heeeeeey night elves
9 Then it was off to Dalaran, where I got only bad news
10 Time for a big battle...I was hoping Jaina would show up at some point, though
11 I probably should have been more concerned when I was asked to jump off the side of Dalaran, but...eh
12 Hnnnggg This guy is really growing on me. Did you see he flipped a BENCH?!