It had been a cold day on just another battlefield in the lands of Krynn. There wasn't much left of the fallen - ally or enemy, that last pass from Verminaard and Hades flights of Dragons had turned the plain into a flaming slaughter house. Dam Reds! Blood thirsty bastards all of ‘em, they never care too much if their own allies are between them and the Niggets when they let rip.
Reflecting back how the Recruitment Officer had found him in Kalad and promised him a life of bloodshed and glory. Standing there in the shadow of the Dragons’ wings with his flesh scorched and the waves of Dragonfear causing the latest recruits to go weak at the knees or soil themselves. He curled his lip in a rueful smile and realised the old veteran had told him true, his years in the Blue Dragonarmy had been well soaked with blood.
From the very start his enemies were familiar enough, more bastard knights with their shiny armour and hatred of his race, just Thanarians with a new name. The Recruitment Officer had told him how they were trying to exterminate all the goblins from Krynn and afterwards they would move on to new lands. How the Niggets also had allies in the planned genocide, Stuntie Neidars, greedy dwarves who seethed with unrivalled race hatred towards all goblins. At the time Tarax couldn’t care less about that shit, that blue uniformed strutting goblin called Jenya could teach him to be a better killer. He had just witnessed Jenya cut six elite guards to ribbons with his long swords. That bloody massacre and seeing the previous deadly seeming Elite guards so out matched convinced him quicker than any fancy words.
His new Army life had been a struggle as a recruit, surprisingly the language came easily enough, although his Draco always had a savage accent. But this was a different type of fighting to what he was used to. His pack was now thousands strong, with Dragons among them and him as the lowliest grunt. He hadn’t counted on even humans being on the same side, or the odd half-elven weaklings, never mind the Dragons! How could he kill a Dragon to move up in the pack? At first it seemed everyone looked down on the goblins, but it wasn’t the goblins it was anyone of a lower rank. This maybe made it easier to accept different races into his pack, they each had their strengths, but all were eager killers.
Recruits were little more than the arrow fodder for the field, spent without remorse, why not, there were always more to be found. The goblin officers ordered their share of his comrades to painful deaths same as the others. Yet he had managed to step over the bodies of the fallen and took his share of the arrows without showing pain or weakness. He did not even have to kill any of his fellow recruits who were potential rivals; the Officers did that quickly enough. The closest he came to an early end to an unremarkable career was when he was knocked senseless by the backwash and terror emanating from a low flying dragon chasing down its prey. Regaining consciousness he found the day a Victory and the flights of Dragons now on the ground feasting on fallen. Big Reds and the Smaller Blue Dragons fighting amongst themselves for the choice morsels, still off to own side but moving his way. Even at distance he was paralyzed to the spot with the uncontrollable fear. After a seeming eternity by an effort of sheerest will he did master his limbs and crawl from that charnel pit before being devoured. Dragons and recruits didn’t mix well…
It surely was a bloody trek up from the bottom rung, but eventually he was promoted to Soldier. A matter of course more than for any earned merit, being alive after a cycle was enough of an achievement. This was what was referred to in Sanction as a “Blood Moon” one cycle which to recruits can seem longer than all their seasons combined. Soldier was no little way from the top of this new food chain but at least he would no longer have to muck out the Dragon pens!! Dragon’s unexpectedly arriving back to the pens rarely distinguished between recruits and other food. There were no few scraps of uniforms among the partially digested bones littering those pens.
Soldering was straight forward, the Officers and High Officers such as Jenya, Drakon, Bildor, Ares, Zar, Quaid, Zagar, Gector and General Hisssss kept orders simple, kill. He did this with much relish, now a masterful Swordsman and Blademaster killing was more natural than ever. The tasks of patrolling and protecting of areas under Dragon Army control awakened something wicked and hungry inside him. He relished the thrill of the battle, the slaying of nameless opponents. He as yet knew little caution, evident when he encountered two Rangers fighting the patrol in Flotsam. He knew well the tales of devious brigands such as these who love anything but a fair fight. He warned them off, more than dirty fighting cowards like those deserved and but they scoffed at him in response. Their bravado lasted up till the point when he winded his Warhorn, deafening their jibes then he alone attacked these two larger foes! The day could easily have been a loss for Tarax but almost immediately the two brave rebels turned tail and ran. Obvious from the stench of their fear they had fled in panic expecting his blaring horn to attract the attention of Dragons. Tarax could by now well see the benefits of having such terrifying creatures in his pack. With each new conflict he reported the efforts to his Commanders and gained praise, which led to him becoming less and less merciful and punishing ever smaller offences with brutal severity.
His appetite for slaughter grew and soon became an insidious companion. After a long and boring time stationed in Flotsam he started passed the days drinking and bullying the visitors, the main aim being to pick fights. He probably shouldn’t smoke and drink on duty, but who was stopping him, the Officer in command of Flotsam certainly didn’t care. The visitors were not much sport most shied away from him, so he got burly and cornered one. Pay dirt, a tale of another visitor who had attacked the town. At last some real action, he found the alleged criminal standing over the corpse of Kernan, no crime in itself since Kernan was a pathetic traitor with the General’s price on his head. The idiot who had given him the tip off should have to pay for wasting his time.
Annoyed and impatient he introduced himself and questioned the stranger in a short tempered fashion. The visiting fool, a mercenary by the look of it, did not respond which raised his ire further; almost of their own will his hands starting to inch towards the hilts of his blades. He could hear their imagined thirst for life blood a whispering voice in his head, that was good smoke he had taken from the Kender earlier. All the more annoyingly the stranger had an ice cool temperament or perhaps was an imbecile as they stood there unmoving and silent. He curled his lips in a cruel smile then spat, “You have five minutes to get out of Flotsam stranger, if you value your hide be gone before I return.” Returning three minutes later swords drawn, Tarax wasted no time in words with the stranger. He had to chase him a little when he started wimpying around, good tanks those mercs. But in the end it was child’s play disembowelling then beheading the fool. This cold blooded murder of another sentient being raised no emotion in Tarax, he knew he should feel something but found himself laughing heartlessly as the light went out of his victim’s dead eyes.
He rotated back to Sanction on leave and waking up next the next day in the Brothel his head thick with the retreating booze and drugs he looked down and the dried blood crusted on his hands and his conscience railed against the monster he had finally let rage out of control. Checking his mail the sour feeling in his gut worsened, the victim had found their voice and were extremely upset, dropping all pretences of character and raging on a personal level. Tarax felt a new emotion, it was shame, not a plesant feeling, he knew he had diminished himself by his actions. Glory was never of much interest to him as it was something Niggets craved. To rise in the pack you need to be strong, vicious and cunning but not rabid. Wolves in the pack that go rabid had to be killed lest it spread.
For the first time he found himself unsure about killing, also without realising it he was starting to loose some of his cold cunning, getting too used to being pointed towards an enemy and let loose. It was a bad time to have a crisis of confidence, during a war! Relations between Calains and the Blue Army had broken down, treaties were violated and blood spilled. The days combat had moved to Middle Earth, and area he did not know well. The teams had been sighted and conflict was imminent. Tarax in his first war eager and fearless to the point of insanity broke formation and went to challenge the enemy. He had foolishly expected Brate to meet him in single combat, the two of them being of a size. Brate and he had fought earlier but the enemy was now in a team of several Niggets Cromm and others and Calians Brate, Tristram and others besides. He should have paid heed to what all know, Calians are just another form of evil Nigget only these cowards will always hide behind others. Single combat was not honoured as the coward Brate moved to hide behind the Nigget Zin. The knights had not entered into that particular war to that point, but they cared not for honour or treaties that day. As the waves of their special attacks rained down on him Tarax fled blindly and got lost. His reactions slowed an unsuprisingly to all but he Tarax was cut down, his first death at the hands of an enemy. Stunned by his own mortality Tarax was reborn only to be killed immediately again by the same team of brave defenders of the ‘light’.
Something inside him died that day and wasn’t reborn in the new body. The hot rage was slaked but in its place was a born a cold, cold hatred. This was the forging of a soul as detached and clinical as it was murderous, suddenly he felt more akin with the Dragons of the Armies than the other grunts. This lesson from the corrupt forces of the ‘light’ would serve him better than any other lesson he had learned to date. The knighthood punished Zin with loss of prestige for breaking treaties and his teams shameful actions, a pathetic gesture. Tarax made no complaint to the immortals, revenge is best kept in the mortal realm. Never again since that awakening has Tarax fallen in battle.
Cold hearted and murderous Tarax recovered and slew the notable Calian Felagund the nimble and his mercenary Baghil in revenge. The war with Calia was settled and new peace treaties signed. He then undertook a mission of his own design where he breached the Keep at Vingaard and moved to assassinate Gunthar, only to find the coward divinely protected. The immortals defended their choice to protect the weakling and how the Armies mocked and jeered at the Niggets hiding in their keep.
His deaths and foolish behaviour had been a blot on his record, but the way he handled himself afterwards redeemed him and promotion to Officer came quickly after the High Command took note of the bold deeds being carried out by this Soldier with the cold eyes. The “Choosing” is the ritual where the Officer and Dragon form a partnership. However it is the Dragon who chooses which Officer they deem worthy of serving with, young dragons picking from the new Officers. Tarax was first chosen by a Dragon of an equally savage nature, the one the handlers had come to know as “Wrath”. On enquiring why the Dragon curled his lip in a sneer and told Tarax the fools thought it impressive he had fought off several larger Reds and Greens who dared challenge his food. The two of them were going to be well suited… For the inaugural flight Wrath took Tarax and perched on the walls of the Vingaard Keep and the two of them cackled maniacally as the Dragon’s Bolts of Lightning rained electrifying death down on the hapless Squires manning the gate. The charged atmosphere and stench of charred flesh as sweet nectar on his tongue.
With a Dragon by his side guiding him and advising on tactics his career went from strength to strength. He had a stronger bond than most with his Dragons, many Officers command loudly from the saddle, Tarax was rarely heard to talk to his aloud at all. Rather the two of them seemed to work in unison without need of talk, “Dragon Touched” Recruits whispered of him in Sanction. He and his ever present Dragon companions went on to be named many titles by allies and enemies the Governor of Flotsam, Recruitment Officer, Vindictive Talon of Takhisis, the Butcher of Kendermore. So many its hard to keep track of them all, more fights, kills of enemies, promotions and honours followed and he rose into Kitiara’s High Command.
Tarax was shaken out of his reverie by the approach of a human riding a horse that was heavily lathered, the human saluted and presented himself for orders.
“General Tarax, High Officer Bildor reporting Sir! The High Inquisitor of the Priesthood Lord Zagar has scried and that stuntie Logg and other enemies are in the Solace Area it looks like this offensive had two fronts. High Officer Homestar is moving now to cut off any possible retreat.”
“Thank you for your report High Officer. Rally the forces, leave the wounded for dead. With Homestar as the anvil we will be the hammer of their doom. No rest for the Wicked Enh?”
“As you say General, as you say.. MuHaHaHa”
After his Generalship of the Army came to an end and Tarax left the Blue Army. Going on be the Lord of the Templar Knights of Takhisis. Still a goblin he had major disagreements with Dragon High Lady Kitiara and Skie who wasted forces and gifted equipment to the Knights by only attacking the Keep at random and never warning her forces so they could assist.