Chapter 9 – Double Jeopardy

The sun began to set across Tanaris and fingers of shadow began to fall from the imposing, barren mountains that sat near the town. Frizz nodded to Raspootin, "Now 'locky! Get that door open." Ras hesitated then began to direct his minion, a void walker towards the gate. Warlocks typically had an attendant from the demonic realm to aid them in their quests. This one was a huge dark blue shadow with pale glowing eyes swimming in its smoky form. Void walkers looked ethereal, almost harmless but they were far from it. Being creatures of shadow and void, they could summon up tremendous strength, especially where shadows are found, and threaten the most seasoned of warriors. It moved across the rocky ground silently curling up into the gate hinge pouring wherever there was room. Slowly it began to puff out with a soft clinkety-clank as it quietly groaned.

Frizz sat gnawing a toothpick nervously eyeing the wall looking for any sign of guards that could ruin this operation. The jawed gate opened wider and wider until finally the void walker straddled inside it like a giant curtain. "Glint, send em in", Frizz whispered and stiffened as he saw a goblin looking about on the wall. Frizz raised his rifle almost unconsciously and gently held his breath. A soft pop preceded the concussion shot that struck the guard, stunning him. He fell, flipping backwards, down the steps out of sight.

"Glint! Get them moving - MOVE IT!", he said running past one of the prisoners at the back and shoving me with him. "Ok. OK! You're next. Let's go!" As we scurried along the inside walls like mice, Frizz pushed me along with his rifle and pushed me toward the sandy steps down towards the Auction House doors. The Auction House of Gadgetzan not only was a place of commerce but held a large pawn shop of valuables 'acquired' by the Steamwheedle cartel. Price was no object and neither was the clientele, Alliance, Horde, or other. Their unofficial motto was, "if it has gold, it can be sold!" And protecting the doorway were two huge thick mithril jaws closed tight. The center was was engraved with a cartel's crest and the words "KEEP OUT" underneath. Frizz quickly sized it up and looked at me, "Get your minion and no funny stuff or you'll have a third nostril."

I summoned my voidwalker who appeared out of the shadows in the stairwell. It's eyes glowing faintly but with an anger, "What now?", it yawned menacingly. I pointed to the locked mithril vault. The minion looked at them and then back at me with an annoyed, raspy sigh. It seeped in between the jaws but with more difficulty; these gates were built with much better tolerance than the city ones. As it slowly ratcheted the door open, Frizz looked even more nervous than I had seen him; he was sweating. His eyes were darting about as if expecting something or someone to jump out of the shadows. Suddenly, his eye focussed on the hinge holding the doors together. The vault was almost completely open when he dropped his rifle and bolted towards the door. A second later something clinked and a surge of electricity crackled. Two huge spheres of metal behind the door discharged an enormous bolt of lightning striking the mithril and the voidwalker. The voidwalker shreiked and began to fade overcome by the defenses as Frizz stood up between the two doors - falling together. I thought for sure he was about to become the door's meal when he twirled, stepped back, and thrust out a metal staff that jacked the door open just enough for a person to go through.

As Frizz looked at me, he looked over my shoulder as his jaw dropped. I turned and Ras stood, nervously holding Frizz's rifle, "D-don't move or I'll blast you". Frizz almost began to laugh, "I'm surprised you even know which end to use 'locky." and his expression become stern, "now put that down before someone gets themselves killed deadlike." Frizz whistled cooly, "Well this is an unexpected streak of courage. Alright." he said, putting his hands at his sides and looking at the ground almost sad, "you've got the gun, what'd you want to do? And think about this carefully because Sheyla doesn't like to wait too long for her dinner." Frizz looked up slightly from below his hat now wearing a confident smirk. "Whose Sheyla?", I asked before I could shut myself up. A low growl from the shadows explained everything - Sheyla was Frizz's Nightsaber.

Ras froze seeing her jeweled eyes and faint trace of her 6 inch fangs in the folds of darkness. "That's actually the first smart thing you've done today 'locky. Now I wouldn't move unless you want to feed her early. 'cuz I'm betting, and I am a betting goblin, that she'll finish you before you can get a second shot. And believe me, you'll need it with her. Now let's put the rifle down nice and civilized. And just to show you what kind of goblin I am, I'm willing to forget this whole mess; but this offer, and you, will expire in about ten seconds."

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