The roar of a ferocious dragon rocked the Steppes far below where it flew. It was the dark of night where shadows flickered among the campfires, and it would be impossible to make out the darkened scales of a dragon’s underbelly. Only the sound of its roar made known its presence, the presence of a fearsome predator out hunting its prey. This was an adult dragon in all its might and glory, the equal of a Legendary class being. Even ten thousand foes could not be its match. Only a being of equal or greater power, of which there were ever so few, could hope to halt its flighted advance.
In one fell swoop, the dragon descended rapidly releasing a jet of intense bright flames which exploded throughout the camp below leaving the area in extreme flames and carnage. Despite making several passes, the sounds of agony and anguish of the dying it expected to hear never made its appearance. It soon realized that the camp below was abandoned, it only had the appearance of being inhabited but in fact was not.
A trap? But who could threaten me? The dragon contemplated inwardly.
A booming voice soon resounded through the area pridefully, “Ahahaha, so while I was in seclusion, you dragons thought you could run amuck in my domain? This will be a good opportunity for me to test my strength after consolidating my class and reaching its peak after such a long time!”
In the flashes of light from the dragon’s flames and the fire burning on the Steppes, one could see the grand momentum of a powerful being dashing towards where the dragon was in low flight. The figure leaped mightily, almost as if flying through the air, and brought a large hammer crashing down on the immense dragon’s frame. A awe inspiring battle soon took place between the two beings who were clearly evenly matched. That meant, the large shadowy opponent it was facing must have also been a Legendary class being.
“Who is it that dares attack me, a prince among dragons?” The dragon roared in the common tongue in anger.
It had been hurt by the shadowy figure and even though it had successfully fought it off in the brief encounter, the dragon had not clearly seen the features of its opponent.
“Hehe, do you not recognize me?” A mighty Orc walked into the light of the flames and became clearly visible.
This Orc was over eight feet tall and his muscles were as solid as steel. He was a monster of an Orc with sharp fangs protruding from his mouth and piercings all over his face and body. He carried a hammer that looked as if it weighed a few thousand pounds. The Orc wore only a leather vest and had strange markings which almost seemed carved right into the skin on both of his brawny arms. A prideful and majestic aura was being released from his body.
“Jark!? Since when were you a Legendary being?” Asked the dragon surprised at recognizing its opponent.
“For a long time now Irthanil, you dragons have long lives and the years pass quickly for you. The last time we met was over twenty years ago, it shouldn’t be a surprise that I have made progress since then. With the resources of my tribe, it shouldn’t be so difficult for you to understand! Now, let us finish!”
Without letting the dragon known as Irthanil respond, Jark charged at him once more. This time the battle became even more arduous as the two powerful Legendary beings clashed. It was only after some time that the rumbling sounds of battle died down ending with a booming crash as the mighty dragon collided against the earth.
“Hmph, I will let you go with this. Do not think we Orcs are playthings for your amusement. Leave now and don’t return.” Jark spoke with some strain in his voice.
It was clear he had also suffered some injuries from the exchange and was too tired to continue the battle. He left quietly, dragging his hammer which he could no longer hold properly across the dirt. It left a deep impression in the ground as it was dragged along.
Irthanil snorted in reply, “As if you would dare to take things further.”
Even though the two fought, they hadn’t fought to the death. The two were closely matched in strength and Irthanil was confident that Jark wouldn’t kill him. To do so would mean an enmity and personal vendetta between the Harkul and the dragons, for his father was the mighty Dragon King, a being on the level of a Demigod. Since it hadn’t gotten to that point yet, there was no need to fight to kill. Nonetheless, Irthanil was greatly weakened and his wing damaged and so he couldn’t fly for a short period of time. His VIT had also been mostly depleted and his strength wasn’t even a quarter of what it would normally be. The same could be said for Jark as well.
“Hmm, what could have happened here. Was this truly a trap? But for what purpose, it isn’t as if they would dare truly harm me for fear of the consequences.”
Irthanil had rushed to fly here as quickly as he could after receiving the report from his subordinate Dragonmen. The report had stated there would be a tribe of Orcs here that needed to be destroyed, but it seemed that things hadn’t gone the way he had hoped. Irthanil hadn’t been able to receive any other reports and did not know of the death of his lieutenant and ended up flying right into the ambush of the true Chief of the Harkul tribe. This would surely put a damper on their plans, but once he returned they would have to speed their plans up.
“They might not dare, but I would!” A voice filled with hatred and anger entered the Dragon’s ears.
This caught him by surprise. If it weren’t for the fact that he was so fatigued and had lost much of his strength, it would not normally be possible for a weaker being to sneak up on him without being found out. It didn’t help that the dragon had completely dropped his guard thinking no one would dare take things too far. A fight was one thing, but killing was another. What happened before was more of a warning and a show of strength. It never occurred to Irthanil that someone would seek his life, especially while on the Steppes. This would only bring a calamity down upon the heads of any who would dare step over that line. And not just the head of the one responsible, but on anyone even remotely connected. The Dragon King’s might when in a rage was truly like an apocalyptic event. Who could survive the wrath of a Demigod like existence? Well, other than another Demigod or at the least, a cadre of peak Legendary beings.
So this voice that suddenly appeared from out of nowhere and that was filled with wrath and scorn was entirely unexpected. Irthanil had only just lifted his head in the direction of the voice to see who would dare speak to him in such a way, when he saw a figure descending from above him with the glint of a mighty axe reflected from the still burning flames. The dragon could only stare in surprise, a sudden dread filling his heart as he stared into those cold, blood red eyes filled with anger and rage.
It was the last thing Irthanil would ever see.
“My master sends his regards.”
The frightening swing of the greataxe bore down. A once mighty dragon was slain just like that.
Grobak stood over the now dead dragon as the flames crackled, the only other sound except for his heavy breathing. He had poured everything into that strike, and had luckily succeeded. If not for the already greatly weakened state that Irthanil was in, he never would have been able to kill an adult dragon. Grobak’s class was already one specialized to the max in offensive ability, so it wasn’t a surprise that using all his strength, that he could end the life of this dragon who was already in such a weakened state.
“I never expected the battle between the Orc chief and the dragon to be so terrifying. When will I be able to reach such heights? Either way, now there will be no reconciliation with the Orcs and the dragons. They are all dancing to my master’s tune, and soon they will all walk to their doom. Tch, even after my words they still hoped to avoid this conflict, but now it is too late.”
Grobak smiled wickedly while returning his axe to its place on his back. He had been watching the battle between the two Legendary beings from a distant place and through the aid of his master’s ‘Astral Soul’ ability, he had hidden his body’s aura which stemmed from the potential in his soul. It was only until well after Grobak was sure that the Orc chief had left that he decided to approach where the dragon had fallen and was attempting to rest in recovery. He had successfully drew close to the dragon without making his presence known thanks to the aid of his master’s power, the aftereffects of the battle which distorted the auras in the area, and also due to the dragon’s own negligence.
No one would know or ever suspect that he was the one who had slain the dragon. The horde would finally have no choice but to assemble, and soon the Steppes would be drowned in rivers of blood.