30 Days of Character Development: Day 3

The Prompt
Name one scar your character has, and tell us where it came from. If they don’t have any, is there a reason?

With the number of adventures Toriah’s had since she left the borders of Quel’thalas, the blood elf ranger has received a number of cuts, bruises, and a few life-threatening blows. Her favorite one to talk about, however, is the long, thin scar along the left side of her torso where an undead party-goer nearly opened her up and ended her life.

The story takes us back to the halls of Karazhan, the infamous castle of Medivh, full of haunts, horrors, dimensional rifts, and other surprises. Toriah had been training hard with fellow adventurers Smorcus and Bremmer on a specific kite-and-trap technique. She was used to pulling such ruses in Eversong Woods, where she had a lot of room to run and evade her enemy. Where Tori and her team were headed, however, room was sparse and she had to take care not to let others get hit.

Perhaps, the most difficult part of the technique was convincing Toriah’s faithful pet Orion to stay still until she gave the command to attack.

After a month of drills and practice, a small faction of magi called the Violet Eye finally commissioned the raiding party and allowed them into Karazhan. Toriah forced herself to remain calm as she stood at the edge of the ruined banquet hall, her eyes focused on the specter of what used to be a burly human male. Lord Robin Daris, former nobleman of Darkshire, she recalled. It was a small detail but Toriah always wanted to know her quarry.

No one should die— or, in Daris’ case, die again— at the hands of the ignorant. Perhaps this time, he’ll finally find peace and move on to whatever afterlife awaited him.

“Now, stay, Orion,” Toriah said, kneeling to look her big cat in the eyes. “You are not to move a single claw until I give the word.”

The lean, muscular creature lowered its head and grumbled, ears flat. “I heard that,” Toriah said.

At Smorcus’ signal, the hunter set a trap at her feet that instantly covered the flagstones around it with rime. Toriah fitted a barbed arrow to her bow and aimed it at Daris’ shoulder. The special tip was designed to inflict stinging, annoying pain with little actual damage; as a result, the target would be moved to rage and anger at the assailant. All according to plan.

Smorcus dashed into Moroes, Castellan of Karazhan, with an orcish battle cry. Before Daris could move toward the orc or shaman keeping the orc alive, a missile flew in from nowhere and tore at his spectral flesh. He looked around and quickly found the slender elf with a longbow in her hands, swiftly reloading. Daris drew his double-headed axe and charged at Toriah. In a flash, she was gone, vaulting backwards away from where she was standing. And Daris suddenly found himself frozen in place, caught by the trap she’d left behind her.

Toriah’s mind sang with joy. Perfect execution! she thought to herself. She leap-frogged over the block of ice encasing the undead noble, rapidly firing arrow after arrow into Moroes and ordered Orion to close in on the decrepit butler. She knew the trap wouldn’t hold Daris forever. While training, she’d devised a little rhyme that ended just as the trap’s effects wore off on its target.

As she sang the last verse, she laid another trap at her feet and returned her attention to Daris. Once he broke free, Toriah ensured she had the man’s ire and ensnared him again. If the undead still had feelings, she imagined Daris was feeling pretty frustrated and stupid right now.

The melee continued in this way for some time, and Toriah became more confident in her skills with each successful execution of the technique. Caught up in the heat of battle, knowing Moroes was nearly defeated, Toriah simply forgot about Daris. It wasn’t until she caught the sound of the man’s ghostly cry that she realized her mistake.

Daris closed the distance swiftly. Toriah dodged his first swing but tripped over an upended table, sending her sprawling onto the floor. In the span of a second, she watched the axe’s blade come down on her, the light glinting off the double heads with otherworldly light.

Then a brazen flash shot through the shadows and barreled into Daris.

The axe still came down, catching Toriah along the left side of her torso from breastbone to hip— but with less force than the undead warrior had intended. With a pained grunt, she regained her feet and found Orion menacing Daris with a flurry of claws and fangs. By this point, the rest of the raiding party had joined the big cat in bringing the nobleman down. Moroes was dead; the team had emerged victorious.

Orion looked exceedingly smug, even for a cat, as he sat by his mistress while the shaman and priest worked on Toriah’s wound. The axe had managed to bite through the layers of leather and mail. If her pet had not intervened, the blow surely would have ended her life. She felt her strength return as the nature and holy magics knit her flesh back together and repaired the damage.

When they were done, they looked at her apologetically and said, “We did all we could but the scar is going to to stay. The wound was pretty severe.”

“That’s alright,” she said with a grim smile, picking up her damaged armor. She looked down and felt the thin scar under her bloodied shirt. “This will be a good reminder.”

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About Toriah the Mom

Mom, quasi-librarian, gamer, writer
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2 Responses to 30 Days of Character Development: Day 3

  1. If you’re going to carry a scar I can’t think of a better place to get it than Kara. I could think fondly of a scar I got there. I think I’m going to know Tori as well as I do Cat after the thirty days!

    • I love being able to think of Tori in such dynamic ways. When I first looked at this prompt, I was like, “Uh… scars? Like… mental ones or physical ones?”

      Just nothing something I really thought about until now.

      Not only was I able to talk about a fun story, but it also shows some of Toriah’s flaws— the overconfidence and carelessness that nearly cost her life if not for her cat.

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