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The Heart of the Nexus

Chapter Text

“Why are you doing this?” Garrosh asked, his voice tired and gruff from the last battle withheld in the Cursed Hollow. The orc leaned forward on his elbows, causing the gash down his back to stretch and rip, bleeding forth from the sinew and muscle bunched together. The Butcher had gotten a good hit on him, but it was not a clean cut.

Anduin had been present in the group, the only healer amongst them. Li Li couldn’t come, unfortunately. He grimaced, and focused healing on the center of the gash, deciding the rest continuing down his left arm could wait until after. He sat down on the log, and pressed close to the wound with his now bare hand. He could feel it closing under his grasp of the Light. Garrosh didn’t complain any further, but Anduin found himself growing somber.

Garrosh had tried to kill him, before, in a cruel and painful way. Destroying a heavy bell made of solid stone, crumbling upon the prince like it was a fragile block of sand. It left him paralyzed for weeks, and his state of mind didn’t recover fully after. The gentle breezes and distinct scents kept him sane in his trappings inside the Tavern of the Mists, occasional visits to Mason’s Folly, where he could see for miles and simply breathe.

“I did not ask for your help,”

You did during the trial… what could count for help, I suppose . Anduin fixed him with a pointed, yet sad look, and ran a hand down his thick forearm gently, mending the broken bones found there. Garrosh’s hand flexed, as if he was going to pull away violently, but let his arm relax in Anduin’s hold. He grimaced again, and traced his palm, the bone inside was shattered. How could he stand this much pain? It left a sour taste in his mouth.

He didn’t know why he was healing Garrosh, he didn’t ask for it, nor did it look like he wanted it. And he didn’t know why he was being so gentle, why wasn’t he just getting the job done and leaving? Anduin sighed and placed his hand over the next series of gashes down his arm, one spanning toward his wide chest. He took a gander at the deep tattoos, and the webbed scars the Sha had left on him after Pandaria. His expression grew somber again, and his brows furrowed. Garrosh refused to look at him. He pursed his lips, and dipped his head to avoid any eye contact that could have been attempted.

He could feel the scratched muscles tensing under his ministrations, discomfort or uneasiness, possibly both. Garrosh was uncomfortable, but Anduin was determined to get through him. If he could just tend to him a little longer. He lifted his gaze slightly, and found Garrosh staring down at him, his golden eyes less intense with almost a soft edge to them. He looked away immediately, fist clenching once the bone was healed and strong again. He huffed through his nose, the ring underneath it swaying in his embarrassment. Anduin almost found the courage to smile, but it came out sorrowful.

His arm flexed again, and pulled at Anduin’s hold, which he kept strong and steady.

“I did not ask for help .” He said again, voice low, gruff, and painful. Anduin squinted, slipping his fingers into the palm of his hand under his closed knuckles, trying to relax his fist to open. He traced the scars and the tattoos, wondering many things. He held Garrosh’s giant hand in his, and looked up at him finally.

“No,” Anduin tilted his head, “you did not.”