Leaning on the Action

Icecrown Citadel was beautiful. It was massive, looming over everywhere that could see it like a massive, brooding leviathan. Enormous saronite structures carved unforgiving paths through the already hostile environment. Everything, absolutely everything, was covered in spikes.

It was positively orcish in structure.

Garrosh Hellscream smiled. It was beautiful. Warsong Hold was naught but a shadow compared to such glorious architecture.

Such a pity he’d have to destroy about half of it to win the war.

He returned his attention to the battlefield display his attendant mages were projecting for him. Most generals opted to simply use old fashioned maps and physical displays; wasting a mage’s mana on something so mundane as a highly interactive battle map was usually frowned upon. Garrosh, however, had the full might of the entire Warsong clan at his back. He could afford some luxuries.

The area around Icecrown Citadel was an absolute mess.

Alliance forces scattered in the north and east, cut in half by a massive wedge of vrykul and various scourge elites. Argent Crusade forces had already taken the entrance to the Citadel, but they were surrounded on every side by the mightiest scourge forces around. They were effectively trapped, with most of the Ebon Blade armies trapped right along with them.

Which left the Horde.

Garrosh had yet to commit to a serious action. Infiltration teams and bombing runs harassed various vrykul and scourge formations. Every now and then a bomber team would get lucky, spotting an exposed caster nest.

Casters were exceptionally dangerous on massive battlefields such as this, where a hundred troops versus a single mage was an easy victory for the mage. Wiping out a few dozen casters at once with a few hundred pounds of bombs and napalm was the greatest achievement a bomber sortie could strive for.

Enough waiting around. The Alliance had allowed themselves to become divided, Fordring and his crusaders were trapped like the zealots they were. Time for the Horde to save the day.

“Open a channel to my Warlords, mage.” Garrosh said.

The blood elf mage simply nodded imperceptibly. “Go.” he said.

“Warriors of Warsong, we stand here on the cusp of victory. We have fought many battles against the rotting legions. Today we end it. The plan is simple. We attack the wedge and drive straight to the Citadel. Anything that dares to obstruct our path will be summarily annihilated.” Garrosh gestured at the map, conveying his instructions to the troll mage. The second mage would transmit this data to the warlord’s attending mages. Every warlord in the army was seeing Garrosh’s battle map.

“Do not actively engage the Alliance,” Garrosh continued, “Defend yourselves if they engage, nothing more. Putting down dogs is not on our list of priorities. That is all. Lok’tar Ogar! Break the connection.”

The blood elf mage nodded once more.

Garrosh looked towards the Lich King’s final fortress. They would tell stories about his victory today. He found the thought somewhat saddening. True stories of the Horde were those of Broxxigar or his father, that of the few and the bold standing victorious over those infinitely more powerful.

This was not going to be a Horde victory worthy of legend. The Scourge would pose no opposition to the Warsong clan.

“General Vrosh! Is my siege engine ready?” This was a mere formality. General Vrosh was technically the commander of this siege engine, but of course the rank of Overlord superseded everything, with the exception of Warchief.

General Vrosh saluted. “It is at your command, Overlord.”

“Excellent.” Garrosh chuckled briefly. “Give the order. Let’s move.”

General Vrosh saluted once more, then fired a red flare into the air.

The siege engines roared to life.

The Warsong clan had effectively been in charge of the Horde’s operation in Northrend since the Wrathgate. All the might, manpower, and funding of the entire Horde stood behind Warsong in their final push against Icecrown Citadel. With multiple stable shipping lanes, any hardware the army needed could arrive easily and uncontested.

In practical terms, this meant Garrosh Hellscream stood on the mightiest siege engine the Horde had ever produced. The massive machine featured three of the siege cannons the siege engines were known for, with nine smaller cannons for close range fighting. To say nothing of the battering ram.

The center piece, of course, was the Wolf’s Head, a gargantuan artillery piece nearly four times the size of the regular siege cannons. The goblins had been rather pleased when they’d been able to fit such a gun on a mobile ground unit.

The term “massive” could be used to describe every component of the thing.

All of this was nothing to the force that stood at Garrosh’s back. The engines of over one thousand siege engines and demolishers roared their defiance. The noise was deafening.

His siege engine began to move forward, the army moving with him. Nothing existed that could stand before them. Garrosh hoped something would try to nonetheless.

The participants of the battle heard them before they saw them. The unrelenting wall of the Warsong clan ground ever forward. The Alliance pulled back as far as they could, giving Garrosh’s force ample access to the Vrykul.

The Wolf’s Head spoke, an incredible roar that temporarily blocked out the sound of the engines. An artillery shell larger than an orc ripped through the sky, then the ground, leaving nothing but destruction in its wake. The Vrykul faltered, if only temporarily.

Garrosh could see it. He could smell it. The Lich King’s chosen warriors. Afraid.

“We stop for nothing, General!” Garrosh had to raise his voice to battle cry levels simply to be heard. “If anything gets in our path, we drive over it!”

General Vrosh saluted, then firing off a second red flare.

The legions of the scourge threw themselves at Garrosh’s force. Ghouls, abominations, death knights on foot and massive dread steeds, gargoyles, legions of casters, their own massive engines of war. Everything was obliterated.

Ghouls simply vanished under hails of gunfire. Abominations burst and ruptured, leaving nothing but blackened flesh in their wake.

The Wolf’s Head could only fire once every ten seconds. Overheating was a very serious issue with weapons of this size, ordinarily one shot every thirty to forty seconds would be the limit of operational capacity. Garrosh, however, had assigned two cryomancers to keeping the massive gun cold. Thus the only real limit to its firing speed was the reloading process.

Every ten seconds the Wolf’s Head fired. Every ten seconds a gaping hole was torn in the scourge forces. Every ten seconds Icecrown Citadel drew closer.

Garrosh sighed. There was no challenge in this. He could not even hear the the crunch of bones as his siege engine drove over things. The noise of the other engines and various cannon fire drowned that particular sound out completely.

The vrykul wedge was broken in minutes. The Alliance was regrouping, intelligently deciding to leave Garrosh’s group alone. Nothing but an endless sea of scourge blocking the path to the Citadel.

Cannons roared all around him. Scourge infantry was made one with the soil by the treads of the siege engines. Artillery shells, magically imbued flaming boulders and fireballs soared through the sky, hammering the Lich King’s armies.

There would be grim fighting. Some engines would be lost, lives of the Horde would be given. None of it mattered. A hundred siege engines could have ripped the scourge armies apart. Ten times that number turned the word “battle” into a mockery. Time to shake things up a little.

“General!” Garrosh pointed to a group of the hundred foot tall skeletons the scourge was so fond of using. “Drive me close to those! I wish to hit them with my axe!”

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4 Responses to Leaning on the Action

  1. Eradicator says:

    I recognize that last remark.

    • Euripedes says:

      Yep. Pretty much as soon as I came up with the general concept of this little fic, I knew I had to work that in somewhere. The entire idea of it is absolutely perfect for Garrosh’s character.

  2. Averodas says:

    Awesome!

    I like Garrosh a lot more after reading this 🙂

    • Euripedes says:

      Garrosh has a lot of potential as a character. I dunno how Blizzard’s going to handle him, he seems to be shaping up alright in Cataclysm. Then again, the guy apparently actually listened to Saurfang and took his lessons to heart.
      There’s hope for Garrosh yet!

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