An Unspoken Farewell

"He has. . . a fish. . . in his head. How absurd. . . is that? Say it."

Smo listened, as he usually did listen to Dhazver, the Gazer Lord. Not until immediately afterward did he realize the absurdity of making a statement like that, while he himself had a gazer in his own skull.

"Har har har," Dhazver chuckled.

"DUM DHAZVER!!" Smo shouted. "Ash ub deez muunz me guin clomp lat!!"

"No. . . you won't," Dhazver thought back. "You. . . need me. Without me. . . you would be. . . as crazy. . . as a humie. . . without tribute."

"Mebbi it wud be bettur ib me wuz krayzee," Smo thought. "Ebur sinze lat wuz in mi hed, me been reeli growchi, agh ebun Grobba am afrayd ub me. Agh nuw dat mi leg am made owt ub rokz, me neeb Grobba muur den ebur."

"Skah, Smo," Dhazver projected. "Go talk. . . to Grobba. He's. . . your friend. . . he'll. . . forgive you."

Smo thought of the last time he saw Grobba. Grobba had just been knocked out when Smo tried to lead humies to the fort. He went to Grobba's desert home and immediately found his friend. "Letz gu, Grobba," he said. Grobba squawked angrily. "Kum un, Grobba, uz hab tu gu," he said. Grobba squawked again. After the resulting shouting/squawking match, Grobba ran off in anger. Smo returned to the fort without his friend.

He flipped through the pages of his rock book and found the one he used to pick up Grobba. He began to cast a gate, but the gate wouldn't open. Smo thought this was strange, but he decided to run in, and opened a hole into Vesper graveyard.

Smo knew something was wrong the instant he finished his passage through the caves. He wasn't sure what it was, but the entire land had an ominous feel to it. This feeling was fed by the lack fo wildlife in the land, but Smo was on a mission and didn't have time to deal with anything else.

He eventually had to deal with it when he passed by the town of Papua and arrived in the desert. Again, nothing was there. "GROBBA!" he called out, but no answer. "GROBBA!!!" he yelled louder, and the next thing he knew, he was mojo krimped!

"What is a lone orc doing in the land of Barracoon the Piper?" a high-pitched voice squeaked behind him.

"Rat mage. . . " Dhazver projected.

"Wer. . . am. . . Grobba!" Smo demanded.

"Grobba? Who or what is this Grobba?" the ratman replied.

"Grobba. . . am. . . shiggun. . . Grobba. . . am. . . FWEND!" the mojoka struggled to say.

"Shiggun. . . ah, chicken! Yes, those desert chickens made some tasty food. But if you're seeking one, you're out of luck. The only creatures here are the servants of Barracoon the Piper, servant of the almighty Harrower. . . well, the only living creatures, anyway." And with that, the ratman began to laugh.

Smo was filled with rage. Grobba, his friend, was gone. It couldn't be. . . not his friend Grobba. He had to have escaped. . .

The mojo krimp weakened.

"Vas Ort Flam, Corp Por!!"

Smo'dis whirled on the rat mage and unleashed a terrible spell combo which dropped it swiftly. Just afterwards, he felt a lig pierce his shoulder. He cried out in pain, as he turned his head to see three ratman archers advancing over a sand dune. Looking back in front of him, he noticed a pair of ratman mages, and his lateral vision picked up a pair of silver serpents, one on each side. . .

Smo'dis sat in the Wargod's chamber and sulked. He knew that the Wargod wouldn't bother to see him, just as he no longer bothered to lecture the mojoka on all his faults and shortcomings. But for the first time in his life, Smo wished he could talk to the Wargod, to ask him about the status and whereabouts of Grobba. And when Smo returned to the uzg, he felt an overwhelming sense of emptiness.