She stood, shoulder to shoulder with others wearing her armor, and she was proud.  It was an odd feeling, being proud – it was one she had very little experience with, so she chose to savor it.  To cherish it, and keep it close, to glory in it for the moment.  She was proud of them.  All of them.

She watched, as the Templars pushed past the Army of the Light and into the bowels of Antorus.  She loved all of them,  and she marveled that the love came so easily now, that it was just so… easy.  That caring had become a simple thing.  She giggled, in fact, hollow beneath her helm – and got an odd look from the Blademaster next to her.

“…. really?”  He asked.

“Of course.”  She flashed him a grin she knew he could not see, and actually bounced there – “I am proud of them.  And did you see how serious Kanta was being?  He will serious them into running away.”  Her draenic came easily – as did the mock-serious kanta-face.  Grr.

“Somehow, I doubt that demons will be put off by an angry night elf.”

“No.  Serious night-elf.  Serious face.  It is very intimidating.”  

Then, there was no more time for talking – the Demons, ordered as they were to defend Antorus came upon them in waves, crashing against the bulwark that the Army represented, blunting the counterattack, buying time.  She and the blademaster stood together, holding the center as they should; amidst a storm of magic, felfire, and impossible numbers, his light shone, and her storm glittered – refracting the gold into a whirling maelstrom of cold and flying shards of ice.  

One by one, the Army fell.  How could it not?  The numbers were always against them, and they were not meant to win, only to hold.  So they held.  

She felt no exhaustion – but she felt -his- tiredness, saw the blades’ song falter.  Along the line, she saw each of the Draenei and the humans with them slowing, growing more desperate.  

And she remembered Seella.  And she sang.

As hollow as her voice was, she did not require air to fuel her attacks, nor did exertion mar her pitch.  The hymn to the light was an old one, at the dim edges of her memory, one that Seella and she had sung on their own, that she had relearned in a quiet, tiny room in the upper reaches of Dalaran.  And now?  Now she sang it full-throat, letting it ring out above the din of battle – dragged down as it was by its emptiness, and its echo.

And the Draenei?  They sang with her – and while she offered no light of her own, theirs grew stronger.  She felt it batter at her armor, push at her, and was grateful for the shield the lightforged metal provided her – and she sang all the more.  

And the line held.  For how long, it was uncertain, but for now?  For now, it held – a hymn to the light raised in chorus against the onrushing felfire and shrieks of demons.  

Author Aunne
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