"Smo, uz shud blah."
Smo'dis's heart was a jumble of emotion when he heard her say those words. He had a crush on Glekun for some time now. Though he had the power of a rampaging elephant in his lusk swing, he had all the tact of one too, and after a few moons of madly leaping on attacking shardies, scraping the bottom of his backpack for presents, and preaching the beauty of the mojo-caster to anyone and everyone within earshot, she had finally figured it out. And judging from the tone of her voice, that was a bad thing.
"Lat am bubhosh," she continued, "Agh lat am guud Surjin." Smo'dis would have shouted "HOOWAH" if he wasn't dreading what he expected to hear. And then it came.
"Bud me am preezt, agh me am promuzd tu da Giitzkreig. Surri, Smo."
Smo's heart stopped. He didn't just hear that. He couldn't have just heard that. He pinched himself, half expecting to wake up from a horrible nightmare. But he was still there, and so was Glekun, and now his arm hurt too.
"NUB! GAH! Dat am juzt obstikul!" The poor lovesick orc really wanted to believe that Glekun's entire purpose in life was just that; an obstacle that kept her away from him, an obstacle that they could overcome. But deep down, he knew that wasn't true.
"Me beddur sit duwn," me mumbled as he pulled a stool out of his pack.
Smo'dis couldn't sleep that night. He stayed up late clomping humies with Pigulg, Klapdud, and Zorc. And after that, he could only lie in bed, staring at the wooden ceiling of the Surjin hut and reliving the moment over and over.
He didn't know if he was sick, and worse yet, he didn't care. He lost his appetite for food and cider, he couldn't fall asleep, and even clomping humies seemed less exciting to him than before. Everything in the uzg just seemed duller.
After thinking about it for a while, he recalled the moment in the conversation when he sniffed a [DED]. He instinctively reached for his lusk, but Glekun continued to speak to him as if nothing happened, and in his haste to look good to Glekun (even after his rejection, as he was still telling himself that it was just an obstacle) he stopped himself, dropping the lusk. He never found that lusk again.
At this moment, he realized what the problem was. The problem wasn't him, or her; the problem was that he was trying to change himself for love, when he should have tried changing love for himself. Glekun just wasn't right for him. He needed a fe-ork more like himself. A fe-ork that preferred a mad clomp to a long talk; a fe-ork that could be mean at times, but still lovable; a fe-ork that didn't take a vow of chastity. A fe-ork like. . .
A smile slowly spread across Smo's face as he sat up and glanced around the Surjin hut. He raced to the chests and pulled out a scribe's pen and a blank scroll. After scribbling a few words on it, he tiptoed back into bed, held his new lusk closer to him than usual, and fell into a long, relaxing slumber.
The first orc to open that scroll would see the six words Smo'dis wrote on it:
"Da kur fur lub-siknizz am. . . LUB!"