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Alone on the Road

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There was always a strange greenish glow around the dungeon. Anduin didn’t want to think about where it came from, it was just one of those things that was better left as a mystery he told himself. How long had he been here? It was impossible to tell, there was no window, no way to measure the passing of time. Just the old stone walls, cracking and lined with moss and other questionable substances.

 

Drip. Drip. Drip.

 

There was that leak as well. Anduin could hear it, but he couldn’t see it. Always dripping throughout the day. Sometimes when he tried to sleep, his mind would unhelpfully conjure up gruesome images of blood draining from corpses. Knowing Sylvanas it wasn’t entirely impossible.

 

Nathanos had yet to make his visit for the day. Not that it was likely given the way he had stormed out of here yesterday, or had it really only been hours? It was infuriating, not having any way to ground himself. Sure he had done his best to stay positive, but he was only human. The longer he stared at the walls, the more tempted he was to do something foolish.

 

Sure he could summon the light, blast his way out of here. But there was no knowing how many soldiers she had in the Under city. It would ultimately be his death, another Wrynn burning out in a final blaze of glory. His heart aches even thinking of his father. Closing his eyes he tries to recall him, something to cling to that isn’t twisted and cold. 

 

All it serves is to remind him of what he’s lost. Angry he wipes at his eyes. He was a man now, not a boy . Crying would not change anything. No one here would share his sentiment. After all crying had not changed the forsaken’s fates. 

 

Perhaps he had spoken out of turn. But Nathanos had prodded at him, trying to find his weakness. Reminding him of his failures. Garrosh, his father, the Gathering. He kept stumbling and falling flat on his face. Nathanos was right, trying to see good was a fool's errand. There was nothing good in Sylvanas. He can’t stop the unkind thoughts.

 

She was cruel, irredeemable, power hungry. He had realized his mistake the moment he stepped into that throne room and locked eyes with her. She had foreseen his weakness, his desperate hope that she would be reasoned with and lured him in like a fish on a line. He should have listened to Genn.

 

Genn.

 

How was the worgen king fairing? He had a tendency to be prone to anger and letting it cloud his judgement. Anduin could only pray that Genn would stay level-headed or that the others were keeping him in line. The thought of bringing someone else down to his level left him nauseous. 

 

Suddenly it’s too quiet. He hates the silence, hates being left alone with his thoughts. With bitter-sweet memories. A small part of him whispers; at least you can follow in your father’s footsteps. Die alone and without friends. It’s an oddly comforting thing. A way to feel close to a man long since dead.

Where was Nathanos? It surprised Anduin how much he had actually come to look forward to the Ranger Lord’s visits. If anything it was a break from the chilling silence. The crushing wave of loneliness that loomed over him. Had his own naivety driven yet another person away from him?

 

Wrathion flashes in his mind. His first true friend, someone close to his own age. Yet he had even managed to chase the Black Prince away with his wishes for peace. Maybe Garrosh had been right. Maybe Azeroth would have been a better place without him in it. It was pointless dwelling on such dark thoughts now. He couldn’t exactly go back and change anything. 

 

He lets his head fall back with a thunk, as it hits the cold unforgiving stone of his cell. The straw of his tattered mattress scratches through his breeches. It’s uncomfortable, but it’s better than the damp, hard floor. He hadn’t even seen a rat, which didn’t exactly bode well.

 

What was she going to do with him? Anduin decides to play the game in his head. Thinking up every horrific scenario, trying to think of all the ways she could torture not just him, but everyone else. He can’t help but scoff, she clearly thought him more important and irreplaceable than he was. Wasn’t he living proof that anyone can be replaced? Isn’t that what he had done to his father?

 

One thing he was certain of, was that he wouldn’t stay dead. That truly frightened him. Maybe he should just try and fight his way out. He could at least die on his own terms and maybe Nathanos would set those hounds he’s always threatening him with, on him. It would be hard to raise him if he was half-eaten.

 

Anduin laughs at that. Picturing the Warchief’s face, when she tried to resurrect him- or bits of him. Maybe he is losing his mind down here.

 

There’s the sound of boots clacking on the stone cobbles. Finally. Nathanos had come, he would probably sneer and berate him. But right now anything was better than being alone, and he had a sneaking suspicion that the Forsaken man actually did enjoy his company. Why else bother to engage him in conversation at all? It wasn’t like he had secrets to tell that would be of use. 

 

The sound of steps gets closer, he turns his head ready to greet his reluctant jailer only to feel disappointment. It’s one of the Dark Rangers. She doesn’t even look at him as she saunters in, dumping his rations on the rickety table and leaving as quickly as she came.

 

He had done it again. Nathanos would not be back. Would not debate with him, or speak with him. He was truly going to be alone.

 

Suddenly his throat feels dry, and he can’t stand the thought of food. His stomach churns, his mind whirls.

 

Alone. Alone. Alone.

 

How he hates being on his own. All the doubt hitting him at once. The realization he would never go home. Never see Genn, Mia, Shaw, Jaina, Velen, Valeera or anyone else ever again.

 

He curls into a ball, trying to be as small as possible. Little Lion she called him, he sniffs. Lions were brave and fierce- he was neither. Nothing but a scared child terrified of being left on his own. Maybe if he sleeps it will all go away and be some horrid dream.

 

But as he closes his eyes. The rank stench of damp and decay and the constant; drip, drip,drip , remind him- this is reality.