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Started by Redangeldragnet
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Qa-Zirr by Justin Grill

Hello all,

Thanks for taking the time to check out my story.

Qa-Zirr’s eyes were forced open by a torrent of water pouring down on him from an above-deck and shaking him from his less-than-peaceful sleep. He looked up at the chains that held his claws above his head and cursed the predicament that had left him trapped in his unfortunate situation. Scanning the deck where his shackles trapped him, he saw that water was pooling in great quantities on the deck’s floor. Other Khajiit slaves were attempting to circumvent their bonds and move to a higher, dryer place, mostly to no avail. The ship was shaking and moaning. A rough storm perhaps?
Qa-Zirr was aboard the slave ship Blackrose, bound and hopeless deep within the belly of the vessel. Days had come and gone as the ship swept through the rough seas to the south of Tamriel on a course to its ultimate destination: the land of Morrowind. There, he would be sold as cheap labor to one of the Great Houses. Qa-Zirr had heard stories of Morrowind, but never dreamed that he would one day wash upon its shores, let alone as a slave. He shuddered at the prospect.
Water continued to pour into the deck, wetting and matting his fur. A low growl began in the base of his throat. Qa-Zirr shook his shackles violently against the wooden beam that held him for the thousandth time and was surprised to find that it bowed slightly. The wood had begun to rot. So many months at sea for such an old ship had finally started to take its toll. Qa-Zirr’s heart started beating for what seemed like the first time in forever. A pulsing energy deep within his core had shaken something loose and he began to struggle furiously against the wooden beam. Other Khajiit slaves were looking in his direction. The beam was cracking. For what seemed like hours, he fought and shook against the beam, breaking more and more wood with each sporadic movement. Finally, shards of wood sprayed the floor and the beam broke with a loud snap. Qa-Zirr was free.
The other Khajiit were terrified. Fearing that the slavers had heard the escape attempt, they quietly urged Qa-Zirr to remain motionless. Retribution would be swift and brutal for the entire deck if they found one of their slaves unshackled. Amid the roaring storm outside the ship, Qa-Zirr heard hurried footsteps pounding the deck above him. They were coming.
The trapdoor leading from the deck above was thrown open and two Imperial slavers stepped cautiously down the steps, searching for the source of the noise. A ragged voice sounded from the darkness: “Wait for it Khajiit. If they think you are still bound, then they won’t be expecting an attack.” Qa-Zirr remained still and lifted his sore wrists above his head as if they were still attached to the beam.
The two slavers appeared out of the blackness, carefully inspecting each Khajiit prisoner for signs of an escape attempt. The men meandered through the deck with malicious grins on their faces, enjoying the possibility of exacting a beating upon the slaves. As they walked past the Khajiit, they would kick furiously at them with their boots, and howls would erupt from the prisoners. Qa-Zirr was going to enjoy this, even if it meant facing death.
As the men drew near, Qa-Zirr steadied his nerves. The men stepped closer to him and looked the Khajiit up and down menacingly. “You wouldn't be up to anything now would you? We have had trouble with you before.” Within seconds, their eyes found the broken beam, and within seconds, Qa-Zirr was up and raking his claws across one of the slaver’s eyes. The Imperial screamed in agony and collapsed as the other slaver drew his sword. Qa-Zirr turned just in time to avoid a downward swing from the slaver’s blade and move away from the next. The Khajiit slaves roared in support. Qa-Zirr leaped towards the armed slaver and kicked a powerful leg, breaking the sword-arm of the man. The man screamed and was silenced by his deft claws as they tore the flesh from his throat. The ship erupted with cheers. Boot steps rang from the decks above. More would be on their way.
Qa-Zirr’s mind whirled at the thought of what to do next. Before he could start to think of his next course of action, he heard a gasp from behind him. Qa-Zirr turned, claws and fangs bared.
The slaver whose eye he had raked out was standing behind him, a blade to the neck of a Khajiit woman, and underneath the blood and bits of flesh, a smile on his lips. Qa-Zirr roared furiously out of frustration. He had been so close, but would rather give his own life than risk the life of this poor woman. Ready to submit to punishment, Qa-Zirr backed away.

Then all hell broke loose.

In what seemed like seconds, the ship began collapsing in on itself. A deafening sound shook the decks as fragments of wood began falling from the decks above. Water poured into the ship, and the ship bent under the pressure and tilted on its axis. Before Qa-Zirr could attempt to run, he was buried underneath the rushing sea, and trapped beneath a section of falling ship. Everything went black.

Qa-Zirr woke amid the sweet sound of waves crashing on the shore and the feeling of broken ribs in his abdomen. He opened his eyes and a million tiny dots swam in his vision. He had felt worse before, but not by much. His vision began to clear and he righted himself and sat up on the beach with a grunt of pain. Looking around, he saw the sea under a bright blue sky. He was on land, with no sight of the slavers or their cursed ship. Qa-Zirr assumed that the ship had collided with something and sunk to the bottom of the waters. Qa-Zirr mourned for the other slaves, wondering if his escape attempt had sealed their fate and if others had made it out of the wreckage before drowning them. Qa-Zirr looked at the water’s edge for bodies, but saw nothing. Then, from somewhere down the beach, Qa-Zirr heard shouting.
Qa-Zirr managed to stand and began to cautiously make his way towards the source of the shouting. As he grew closer, he saw wood fragments on the beach and near them, a man. Qa-Zirr watched from afar as the man stood and looked around. The man was one of the slavers, and in place of his right eye, there were jagged pieces of bloody flesh. Qa-Zirr couldn't help but smile at the situation. Dozens drowned at the bottom of the sea, and this man alive and half-blind and at the mercy of Qa-Zirr. The man looked terrified, and after a few minutes, the man stood and began to make his way into a gathering of trees leading towards the land. Qa-Zirr followed.
Night fell on the land and the slaver stopped moving to prepare a camp for the night. Gathering sticks and branches, the slaver began attempting to create a fire. The man was unsuccessful. With each passing moment, the slaver became more and more terrified, moaning and weeping at each sound coming from the darkness. Eventually, he broke and screamed at nothing “Where am I!?” A voice sounded from behind him in a joyful purr: “Elsweyr”, it responded.
This post was last modified: December 17th 2013, 02:23 PM by Redangeldragnet
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