The shadowy figure leaned forward, reaching out slowly as Dueg warily watched his hand approach. “You can make this easier on yourself,” came the rasping voice, “simply tell us the location of your… friend, and nothing else will come of this meeting.”
Dueg’s eyes focused on the shadowy hand held in front of him like a snake readying to strike, “You will find me not so willing to be a pawn in your scheme, fallen one. The Sin’dorei have more willpower than you can imagine.”
A gentle whisper emanated from the dark priest, “Shadow’s pain.”
Dueg gasped suddenly as the sensation of needles dragging through his skin erupted all over his body. He convulsed and gnashed his teeth as the sensation intensified, feeling the shadows bleeding off from the dark priest to rip and pull at him as though to tear him asunder. Flashes of light swam across his vision and he felt blood seep into his mouth from where he had bit deep into his cheek. His breathing came in ragged bursts and his punctured lung felt as though it would rip from his chest. Finally, after a few moments the pain began to seep from him and he spat blood upon the dirt floor.
“A… t-trifle… of a… s-sensation,” Dueg whispered as he clutched at his burning chest.
“Yes,” came the shadowy figure’s response, “the shadow’s kiss is nary a tickle. Now tell me, where is the Forsaken Oracle?”
“Y-you’ll… find it…” the interrogator leaned forward, “a… few i-inches… into your… rect-”
The shadow priest scowled and reached out, placing his hand on Dueg’s chest, “PAIN!”
Dueg blacked out. When he came to again, he could feel the light’s power working it’s way through his body, gently healing his wounds and renewing his battered frame. Tears of joy at once more feeling the light within him came unbidden to his eyes as he looked over in time to see the priest once more coating himself in shadows and drawing energy from the darker powers. Dueg slowly sat back up, trying once more to anchor his soul to the light’s power and finding himself painfully bereft of it’s beneficent powers.
“Your sharp tongue is not appreciated,” came the gravelly whisper once more, “You only serve to slow the process.”
“You will not break me through simple pain, Alliance fool. I have worked to steel myself against such crude methods for longer than you’ve been alive.”
“So it seems. Fortunately, however, there are other methods at my disposal to get that which I desire. The shadows are quite versatile. But first, I shall loosen your mind.” The inky mass that was the priest suddenly seemed to grow even darker as the various shadows within the tent began to seep into him, creating a nimbus of dark powers. “Shadow’s curse, heed my call and enlighten this fool to your dark powers!”
Dueg reeled as a blast of pure, darkened energy ripped into his mind. The world around him grew blurred as his addled brain tried to make sense of what had happened. Where was he? Why was he sitting in this small tent? He tried to clear his thoughts, perhaps to meditate when suddenly he heard a voice come from the gathering darkness at the other end of the tiny prison. “Blessed darkness, grant me access to the mind of my foe with your fel energies!”
Dueg grasped at his head as suddenly he felt a tendril of pure power try to worm it’s way through his skull and into his brain. His already weakened mind attempted to place a barrier up, but the insistent darkness easily shattered that as it grasped for control over him. Slowly Dueg lowered his hands and looked up as the shadow plucked his willpower from him and placed it firmly in the hands of the shadow priest. Somewhere in a forgotten recess of his mind, Dueg felt himself railing against the intrusion and trying to break free from a darkened tome of shadows to no avail.
The other priest smiled, though Dueg could see the awesome strain he was under to hold his control over his mind and body. Slowly and with much care, the shadow priest placed a map of the region and a small charcoal nub in front of him, indicating that he should begin to draw. Trying with all his powers to resist, Dueg still felt his arm slowly lift as though made of lead and reach forward, picking up the nub and beginning to map out their intended path into the Grizzly Hills where their prize was supposedly situated. Desperately he tried to make his arm veer off or to indicate a false destination, but in the back of his mind he watched in consternation as the path was revealed until finally his fingers drew a small X on their final destination. The sensation of failure once more flowed over Dueg as the dark priest released him once more and reached for the map.
Thinking quickly, Dueg suddenly shot forward as his triumphant interrogator picked up the map, and punched him solidly on the chin. Falling back on top of him, he began to grapple for the map, hoping to ruin it before it could be put to use. Yelling out for help, the dark priest reached out and grabbed a handful of dirt, throwing it into Dueg’s eyes and blinding him, rolling him over and placing an elbow to his neck, stealing his breath.
“Killed while trying to escape, so sad,” the priest gloated as he pressed down, seeking to smother Dueg, “hopefully the Horde won’t miss one more idiot in their ranks!”
Swirls of light began to dance through Dueg’s vision as he tried to punch or throw off his attacker, his attempts becoming more and more feeble with every passing moment as the lack of oxygen mixed with the events of the last few days, taking it’s toll on him. The hot breath of the shadow priest whirled against his cheek as he dipped down to stare into Dueg’s eyes, “I wonder if your eyes will glow a different color at the moment of death. Let’s find out together.”
“That’s enough, Finegal.”
The priest looked up to see Ignat standing at the tent flap once more, the gnome’s stern face taking in the whole scene, “We are not murderers. Release the prisoner. Now.”
Dueg felt the pressure on his throat lift as he gasped and choked, trying to draw in oxygen through his bruised windpipe. The shadow priest suddenly struck out, landing a solid punch to Dueg’s cheek and stooping to exit the tent as the gnome stepped aside. The flap closed and once more Dueg was alone. He slowly crawled to the far end of the tent and curled into a ball, almost wishing the shadow priest had killed him and sent him back to the Between. Once more he had failed and now the Alliance would triumph over the Horde for it. Dueg felt his soul begin to sink into despair.
That was when the explosion rocked the camp.