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Crossover (Part 2) – A World Crafted by War

The three intrepid heroes of Paragon City take in their surroundings and slowly start piecing together the events that have led to their current situation.
“So let’s recap here for a sec,” states Uber Woman, the beautiful leader of the team. “We were following a lead I received from one of my contacts. Crey illegally obtained supposed Rikti technology for teleportation which led to that lab.”
“Yep, that led us to the crystal the lab researchers were studying. After a fierce battle with a couple of those Paragon Protectors, the crystal seemed to have some sort of energy build up,” adds NewBeee, the stocky short energy blaster of the group. “Wait the energy blast from the crystal must have transported us out of the lab. But where did it send us Uber? All I can see is a huge cave,” concludes NewBeee.
“Where did Surge wonder off to?” ponders Uber Woman. A call comes from the back of the cave. “Hey, I’ve found a partially hidden tunnel,” shouts out the electrical blaster. Uber Woman activates her energy aura to help light the area as the two heroes catch an electrical flash coming from a far corner of the cave. The blasters gather to enter the tunnel.

The team progresses down the tunnel each using their auras in turn to light the way.
“So Surge caught that interview of yours on Hypertypes,” says NewBeee breaking the silence the group has fallen into.
“Oh man I hope I didn’t sound like a pompous ass during that.” “Hey you did good, the pr always helps us heroes out.” “Yeah I just needed to put that mish into some perspective, my first failure and a man died.” The heroes decide to take a small break from their seemingly endless trek.
“So Surge how’d you meet Uber Woman?” enquires NewBeee. “Rosar introduced us. Rosar and I were teamed up with a couple other heroes over in Founder’s Falls. Rosar knows Uber and invited her to join us putting the smack down on some Crey. Been friends ever since,” tells Surge Pack
“That was fun, so how about you too,” shoots back the team leader. “You know Beee I honestly don’t remember how we met. If I remember right Meta-Legion was just starting up and we both joined together,” says the stocky blaster wiping dust off his costume as the heroes resume their search for an exit. Through twists and turns and a few dead ends the group of heroes finally spots a sliver of light ahead of them.
“I hope that’s the exit I felt like we’ve been wondering around a Council base with all the dead ends and stuff,” jokes Surge Pack.
“So Surge, must have been pretty cool sidekicking with the Wind City Warrior.” “I wouldn’t be the hero that I am with out his help Beee.” “How did you get your powers Surge?” asks the female blaster. “Was born with them.” Surge Pack proceeds to reiterate the tale of stress and fear caused with dealing with a schoolyard bully and shocking the punk into unconsciousness as his electrical powers manifested. “I know, a real gripping story. How about you Uber Woman.”
As the group nears the cave opening the statuesque blaster summarizes her origin. Uber Woman tell how in her past she was a research scientist fro a top secret facility specializing in rare minerals and gems. She was assigned to investigate a control panel fro a crashed spacecraft of extraterrestrial origin. Uber determined that the alien symbols labeled the device a Kandorian Bio Enhancer unit. Further examination exposed the crystalline power source. When the lady scientist started her research of the gemstone, she exposed it to concentrated sunlight that caused the crystal to overload and explode.
“The crystals penetrated my skin. I soon discovered that the shards unlocked my unique genetic potential granting me my powers.”
“That answers my question why you’re classified as a mutant and not a science blaster,” states Surge Pack. The team finally exits the cave network into a forest area with rolling hills breaking up the tree line.
“Well at least we’re out of the caves,” conveys NewBeee.

At the Crey lab Earth Quaker and Sunshine have just finished their debriefing by a Longbow agent on what took place at the facility.
“We will be in contact with the two of you if we need any more information after our investigation.” “Sure thing agent Tensil,” murmurs Sunshine. The Longbow Agency responded to the scene when the agency picked up a massive transient transport energy signature coming from the lab area. Earth Quaker is trying to keep a sharp ear tuned to the agents investigating the lab while consoling Sunshine on the loss of their partners.
“Hmm, that’s interesting.”
“What’s that Quaker?”
“That  agent stated that some form of transport took place, a huge burst of energy.”
“So that might mean that Uber and the boys were caught in the beam and transported out.” “That would explain no evidence of the three ever being in the room.” The giant tanker reaches into a compartment on his bandolier and pulls out a memory stick and a crystal shard.
“Sunny, let’s go to my group’s headquarters, I want to check out the info on this stick that NewBeee copied for me. I think we might be able to find where our missing blasters are.” The Earthly tanker quickly stashes the data and gemstone and ushers Sunshine out of the Crey facility.

“It sure is pretty looking, even though I don’t recognize anything,” claims Uber Woman surveying the area.
“The sun looks to be rising by the color of the sky, so that at least gives us East,” states NewBeee.
“I’m going to take a quick fly-by and see if I can spot anything familiar,” informs the electrical blaster. The raven-haired heroine signals Surge Pack to wait and listens intently. The other two blasters fall silent with quizzical looks on their faces when in the distance the faint sound of metal hitting stone could be heard clinking. Uber Woman pinpoints the sound and leads the team in that direction. The heroes pass through a spot heavy with trees and come to the base of a steep hill. A quarter of the way up the hill the group spot a small muscular human form swinging a pick axe into a huge outcropping of stone. Each blow sends dust and rubble scattering all around the diminutive figure.
“Oh a vein of copper and gold! It is truly my lucky day!” the team hears coming fro the short stocky individual.
 “Hey Beee that guy makes you look tall,” jokes Surge Pack.
“At least he speaks English,” observes Uber Woman. The blasters return their attention to where the man was standing only to find the small being standing directly in front of them aiming a very large barreled gun at them.
“Take it easy man, we’re not looking for any trouble,” announces Surge Pack while raising his hands in a show of nonaggression.
“I’m no man, I’m a dwarf. What kind of Horde members are you. Dressed so strangely?” “We’re not any Horde, we um… are travelers from Paragon,” informs the lady leader.
“Circus folk then from one on the small costal islands I take it. Long way from home, my name is Afkhunter,” states the dwarf as he slowly lowers his weapon. Introductions are made all around and the group slowly exchange information. The heroes come to find out that they are in the land of Kalimdor, an area of Azeroth that is populated by malevolent races collectively identified as the Horde. Uber Woman conveys to the party’s new ally that they are indeed travelers from a distant land and are lost.
Afkhunter explains that he was out scouting when he came across some rare metals that he needs. “We can help you with that,” replies NewBeee. The stocky hero lets loose an energy blast that reduces the huge stone to rubble. The dwarf is amazed at this feat and even more surprised that the beings seem to possess great power.
“Well you are more than welcome to join my party on our quest. Maybe Origidance will know of some mystical artifact that can help you return home.  Plus you can’t be that bad, with a dwarf on your team, even though he has now grand beard to brag about,” comments Afkhunter as he begins to collect the copper and gold from the blasted rock.
“Hey, I’m not a dwarf!” exclaims NewBeee. The group heads off after the diminutive engineer as he leads the displaced heroes to his campsite.

Soon the travelers enter a small wooded valley and find a fire with the dwarf’s companions cooking up the evening meal. Around the fire doing various chores are two normal looking humans and one exotic looking man. Afkhunter introduces the heroes to his party.
“This is Axing and Brute of Power, two of the best human warriors I have yet to work with. The Night Elf over there is Origidance, he is a fairly competent Druid who may be able to help you in finding a way home.”
The heroes are invited to eat with the party and stories of adventures are shared.
“Man this is exactly how I imagined what it would look like when I played Dungeons and Dragons when I was a kid. All the leather and chain mail armor, the swords and axes. Even the robes of the Druid. This is so cool!” comments Surge Pack to NewBeee.
Uber Woman has caught the attention of the Night Elf and has shared with him the story that has led the team to its currant predicament.
“So the fates must have brought our two parties together. Our quest is to retrieve a large gemstone captured by the Tauren that is very similar to the one you have described,” says Origidance at the completion of the wayward heroes’ tale.
“Aye, the Tauren attacked a convoy that was moving the stone from the Blackrock Spire to the Searlet Monastery,” Informs the dwarf.
“Not sure why they would do this, they normally avoid contact with the East,” adds Axing.
The party makes accommodations for the heroes of Paragon to sleep, even tenting off a small private area for Uber Woman.

In the morning the hero team is escorted by Origidance to a small stream so that they can wash up and prepare for the day. Extra water sacks are filled and a breakfast of toasted bread and preserves are shared.
“I noticed one of your party is missing,” observes NewBeee.
“Axing is scouting ahead to try to pick up the trail of the Tauren,” replies Brute as he finishes polishing his sword.
“We normally send Afkhunter our but his hunter skills seem to be to locate gold more than the Horde guilds,” quips the Night Elf.
“I heard that elf. It’s not my fault this area is rich in precious metals and those Horde dimwits can’t seem to find and use them,” counters the dwarf.
Axing returns out of breath and informs the group that the trail of the Horde party that they are pursuing is fairly fresh.
“We can catch them in no time,” states Uber Woman.
“How, the trail puts them almost a full day’s travel ahead of us,” says the human warrior.
“Simple, we fly,” states Surge Pack nonchalantly as he lifts off the ground.
After a quick transformation into a cat, Origidance lightly jumps onto the shoulders of Uber Woman as she scoops up Axing from under his arms and takes flight. Surge Pack and NewBeee follow suit and take off after their leader with Brute and Afkhunter respectively.
“You Paragonians are full of surprises! Never in my life did I think I could soar with the hawks,” exclaims Brute, fully enjoying the fresh air blowing across his face.
“Speak for yourself human, we dwarfs like to keep our feet on the ground as nature intended!” grumbles Afkhunter who is as rigid as a stone statue. The airborne party clears the tree line and spot a large group in the distance heading down a trail through a plains area. After making landfall the heroine and warrior quickly come up with a plan on how to stop the band of thieves.

Flying low to the ground the heroes are able to slip around the Horde party and set up an ambush between to hills overlooking the trail. The troop of Horde beings makes their way down the path between the hills and the waiting hero team. Surge Pack pears around his cover to get a look at his enemy.
“What are those?”
“Those my colorful friend are the Tauren,” replies Origidance. The Tauren are a tribal race of humanoid bovine.
“They look like the Minotaur of Greek myth,” follows up the electrical blaster.
The party of Tauren comes in many shades of brown and blacks, horns of different lengths, shapes and styles but all were loin cloths and shawls similar to Native Americans. One however is completely shrouded in a dark red robe completely hiding its appearance. The group of Horde party numbers ten with the middle two carrying a two foot long green crystal on a stretcher. Brute and Axing jump in front of the Bull men and block the path.
“We wish for no battle. We just want the gem returned to us!” yells Axing. The lead Tauren raises his battle club and lets out a deep throated roar. Brute draws his sword as the Tauren prepare to charge. Afkhunter pops out of hiding and pulls his Blunderbuss weapon and fires. The explosive charge lands in the center of the Horde party that is scattered by the blast. As the beast men regain their hoven feet, the heroes spring into battle.
Axing uses the flat side of his axe to block a blow from the battle club of the attacking bull man. NewBeee comes in low and takes out the legs of the attacking Tauren.
Uber Woman cuts loose with an energy beam knocking the two bull men carrying the gemstone off their feet and sailing into the hillside. Origidance has transformed into a tiger and has engaged another Tauren that was leveling a spear at the heroine.
Afkhunter charged into battle only to end up being held up off the ground by his shirt collar by the huge Tauren. The Horde member pulled back and is ready to plant his meaty fist into the dwarf’s face when suddenly the Tauren lets out a howl and goes rigid, dropping the stocky engineer. Surge Pack steps from behind the convulsing bull man.
“That’s got to be a shock to his system, you okay little guy?” “I’m fine and I’m not little, I’m the tallest out of my family!” grumbles the dwarf.

The battle is fast and furious but heroes are gaining ground.
“The Tauren don’t seem to be putting up much of a fight. It’s almost like they want to lose,” observes Brute as he smashes the hilt of his sword into the temple of the bull man he is fighting.  Through the chaos of the fighting NewBeee and Surge Pack spot the hooded figure sneaking away. The stocky blaster lets loose with an energy emission knocking the escaping figure back. At the same time the electrical hero surrounds the being in a sphere of static energy. The hood has fallen off on the twitching form to reveal a surprising but familiar face to the heroes of Paragon City.
“A Circle of Thorns Behemoth, what’s that doing here?” exclaims Surge Pack excitedly. As the electrical field dissipates, Surge Pack releases a lightning bolt finishing off the Circle of Thorns monster. The party of heroes surround the battered war party of the Tauren for the final assault when suddenly a loud thunder clap comes from a top one of the hills. Everyone turns to see a silhouette of a Tauren with his arms outstretched. A loud roar comes from the figure.
“Everyone stand down, the fight is over,” says Uber Woman.
“Stand down! We have them,” cries Brute.
“They are succeeding the battle,” replies the beautiful hero leader.
“How do you know this?” asks the Night Elf.
“He said so,” counters Uber Woman pointing at the Tauren coming down the hill.

The bull man approaches the party of heroes with his arms spread in a peace offering. The heroes of Azeroth here a stream of grunts and growls from the beast man while the heroes of the city hear something completely different. Uber Woman and NewBeee convey that the Tauren’s name is Haj, Shaman to the NortWood tribe. The same tribe that the war party comes from.
“You understand him?” questions Afkhunter
“Sure, don’t you?” counters Surge Pack.
“All we hear is a bunch of grunting and growling,” replies the stocky dwarf tilting his head to one side, similar to a dog that has heard a strange noise.
The raven-haired heroine tries her best as interpreter and relates Haj’s story. The group comes to find out that the NortWood tribe was visited by two Behemoths and were forced into stealing the gemstone. As the tribe was held hostage, a band of warriors were put together to obtain the stone.
“Haj says the tribe was able to vanquish the Behemoth at their settlement when a hunting party returned and was on his way to deal with this one and stop the stone from falling into its hands.”
“Uber with the Behemoths here and not sounding like they come from here, wonder if that crystal is our ticket home?”
“Could be.” Uber works hard in communicating that their group wishes no harm to the Tauren and just want the stone. Haj eagerly agrees in exchange for the Circle of Thorns monster that lies unconscious. The Horde warriors slowly form up as Haj casts a spell causing the Behemoth to bust into a ball of flame that quickly burns into nothingness.

The two parties that were once adversaries part on civil terms as each head towards their respective homes. As night descends the weary heroes set up camp. Origidance spends a great deal of time pouring over a book of ancient mystical text, and then faces the team with a grim look.
“I have studied the text of my people and I’m sorry to say that I don not know how to send you home.”
“What do you mean, we went through all this for nothing!” blurts out Surge Pack.
“The M’Kure Gemstone is capable of transcending planes of existence. We just lack a way to access the power.” “That’s just great! So we might be stranded her for the rest of our lives.”
“Take it easy Surge, if the Circle can get here, I’m sure we’ll find a way back,” comments Uber Woman, trying to calm her friend. Surge Pack’s frustration peaks and he punches the crystal with an electrically charged fist.
“Oh great here we go again. What’s with you and shocking crystals anyway Surge,” jibes NewBeee watching the sudden glow coming from the M’Kure Gem.
The energy flares from the crystal, blinding the party. As the sight comes back to the band of heroes, the group realizes that they are short three companions.
“The Paragonians are gone,” says Brute scanning the camp in wonder.
“I wonder what type of magic allowed them to activate the Gem?” ponders the Druid, probing the now dim and lifeless crystal.


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