Player Character, Half-orc Barbarian
A musty loincloth clings tight to Thraz’s body. The freeze on the cloth keeps it still in the wind that whips snow into a frenzy. Daggers of ice are hurled through the air, assaulting the burlap sack over the boys head. Through the weaves of cloth he can just make out the massive form that could only be filled by his father. “Make me proud son,” are the only words the chief says as he lifts the boy onto the bare back of the waiting destrier. Thraz has only a moment to lay flat against the horses back and braid his fingers into the massive mane. For a second he feels the warmth of the horse against his chest. He feels the muscles of the horse tense and explode as a massive slap spurs it to action.
Thraz keeps his head low as the hooves thunder on. For hours the horse charges, cutting though the night as if trying to catch up to the sun. The muscled shoulders of the beast shake Thraz and his own begin to grow sore. Still, the horse charges. The sweat and heat against his chest was as uncomfortable as the piercing cold eating at the skin on his back. Several times his mind drifted back to the conversation he had overheard between his father and Gnarth.
“He’s a scrawny pup, surly you can see that Durotan?” said Gnarth.
“He’ll grow, None of my spawn have ever been followers of Luthic and his half-blood won’t make him and different,” Durotan spat, fire burning in his one good eye. Thraz couldn’t help but shutter as he watched the conversation through a slit in the wall.
“He’s already eight, when will this growth spurt come?” Gnarth asked
“He’ll grow,” Durotan repeated, “his human half will catch up.”
Gnarth let out a sigh, sometimes he thought being a right hand to the chief would be a lot easier if the chief wasn’t willing to lose a hand to get his way, “Fine, but if you are going to let him proceed with the Moshar Ta-hum, it would not be wise to make it easy. Leniency will only make you look weak.”
Durotan grunted in agreement, “Pull my horse from the stable then, he rides tonight.”
A sharp ray of sunlight wakes Thraz as it pierces the bag and his eyelids. He pulls the bag from his head and a thin sheet of snow slides off his back as he sits up on the steaming mount. Dazzling white swims through his eyes, the black silhouette of the destrier is all he can make out. After a moment the blurred image of the horse becomes sharp, but around him Thraz sees nothing but white. At some distance, the snow below foot melds into the grey sky above rendering the world around him a colorless void.
Sore from the effort to hold on, Thraz climbs down from the horse. His bare feet slide through the first 2 feet of snow as if it weren’t even there as he lowers his weight onto his legs. Resistance finally meets his feet in the form of a layer of jagged icy frost. its feels like a bed of broken glass is the foundation for the benign fluffy snow that he now stands waist deep in. With all his strength, Thraz slaps the hind of the animal and immediately reels from the daggers of pain now shooting through his numb hand. The horse rears, turns on the spot and charges off into the void. Somewhere in the back of his frostbit mind Thraz hears his fathers voice, “Come son, now it is time to become a man.”