The Forged One

Horns gritted his teeth slightly as the Death Knight approached. Horns had not even been aware of the knight beforehand, not aware of his true being anyway. Any player who's played for longer than a month or two would recognize a Death Knight, and here was one walking among players like an old friend, curious indeed. The others of the group quickly moved to try to diffuse the situation, and it seemed obvious this Death Knight was historically prone to slaying those he viewed as enemies breathlessly. Horns couldn't help but wonder the true character of this being, or the full extent of it. Just how sentient had the AI become, now?

Horns didn't take his pupil-less eyes off the Knight but listened intently to what the shorter human had to say. His mouth was slightly agape as it seemed he struggled somewhat to keep up with what the player was going on about, but once he got around to the point, things became clear. No one here really wanted to draw blood. Not even the Death Knight, it seemed, he appeared a lot less bloodthirsty and much more annoyed at Horn's appearance. In truth, Horns knew this was no mere game mob, he was a warrior, or at least he was entirely convinced he was and likely had the artificial experience to prove it, either way, the fact that he was an experienced fighter was clear. Horns wasn't sure he could win such a fight. The Death Knight seemed to think the inverse, as he appeared to be completely certain he could slay this Tor and be home in time for a hearty dinner meal. That perturbed Horns somewhat, not that he wouldn't fight such a foe, but simply that there was nothing he could do to tip the scales in his favor. It was a gamble for his life and the dice were loaded.

"You hold your convictions firmly, as do I. If the game has truly made AI such as yourself sentient, then I suspect your heart isn't as cold as you'd like it to be. I never had any intentions of trying to kill any-"

Horns was cut off suddenly when a cry sounded behind him. It was a familiar one to the Fellowship, but as Horns was no samurai, he didn't recognize the call as the name of an attack skill.

ISSEN!

Horns spun around, seeing three gnolls recoil before collapsing to the ground. I whipped my blade of heroes, sending the beast blood on it into the air in a spray, before returning it to its sheath.

"Who are you? New recruit?" I asked curiously, looking up at the towering orc. He seemed to possess an intelligence beyond that of a warmongering mob, his more modern style of dress only confirmed that.

"I am Horns. I'd wager as much."

"Well, I'm Invicta, and I guess welcome to the Fellowship. We've lost a few people, but there are more to be found to make up for-wait a minute..."

I looked past the Orc and spotted a black armor clad knight, and familiarity coursed through me.

"Well, look what hell spit out," I said warmly, remembering the Dark Knight's feats, before realizing that I had almost entirely forgotten about his existence. But just as that came back to me, many other things did as well, past lives and stuff of that nature. With that similarity, I was compelled to shake the man's hand for his return, extending my arm and offering a hearty shake. I had felt like something was missing, some piece of us that had just faded away, it felt like it was back now.

"So were you dead, Vader? Like, more dead than usual? Or did you just spawn somewhere far or something after the reset?"

Horns observed silently at the other's warmness towards this living game mob, and folded his arms in response. He was not confused or perturbed, no, obviously these people had stories to tell. Looking on at them, Horns felt that perhaps they were more to each other than just a group of travelers. He wasn't sure how he felt about that thought.

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