The heartbeat of a mouse: that is what the ticking of the clock seemed to be. Purposeful, fleeting, and nervous to get to the next second. Each tick was a triumph over the cat’s paw, each tock a trap dodged. Time skittered into mouseholes. The shaman, however, did not avert the snare of the blankets. The cold late winter rain lie on the doorstep. Yesterday it has been deceptively mild and sunny, and she thought she had eons of time for a walk. The day was dead, buried with an assault of stars, and she said, “I can go tomorrow.” Here was tomorrow, half gone, and weighted with regret. Her sadness permeated the walls of the cottage. The dwarf knew there was only one thing to do: go to Dalaran and buy the lass a large, gooey, pudding-filled, real butter cream chocolate cake. Guarf left by gryphon, and returned with the boon; it was the size of a baby bear and twice as sweet. The girl pretended to be asleep, but was only fooling herself.
There is that juncture in a heartbeat where the soul can go left and cry, or right and laugh, and it’s paralyzing. She heard the thud of dry firewood, matches striking, and the wood fireplace awakening. He called to her from the living room. (Gods, his patience was worn down by that one’s moodiness…!) In the long late afternoon darkness, an evening of thick lead grey, the fire burned, and in the center of the room, on the small painted table, a cake, with her name on it. In terror, the dwarf saw her lower lip quiver, and the eyes well up (Draenei tears are the only known nightmare for Dwarfs), and he stuttered, “No, no, no, lassie, no! You will not be crying over this cake! I like my chocolate chocolaty, not salty!” The admonitions stopped with her warm hug.