In the Blood is a StarCraft II web story written by Matt Burns, designed to tie-in with Heart of the Swarm. It focuses on the larva unit. The story was later collected in StarCraft II: War Stories, and relates to the narrative of Project Blackstone.
When his cold-blooded master Ivan steals a trio of zerg larvae to sell for a handsome sum of money, the street urchin Vik must struggle against both his oppressor and his own cowardice and seize his chance to leave the slums of Deadman's Port behind.
Vik, a "port grub", left the system runner he used as a home to report to Ivan's chop shop. He had dreams of leaving Dead Man's Rock. Vik met up with his friend Serj, who had similar dreams. However, they'd never been able to save money to leave.
At the shop, the grubs and mercenaries looked at Ivan's newest property, three zerg larvae in a neosteel "cold" case. They had shot at the smuggler carrying the zerg, damaging the case, and now worried they couldn't find a buyer. Hutchins, one of the mercenaries, suggested attacking the larvae when Ivan arrived with his shale dog. Ivan didn't appreciate the merchandise being damaged, and ordered his dog to attack Hutchins. Then Ivan shot Hutchins dead.
Ivan had a buyer, a scientist named Branamoor. He knew Branamoor had connections to a government, but wasn't sure whether he was Umojan or Dominion. Branamoor wanted the larvae alive badly and was sending one of his assistants to pick them up in four days. In the meantime the larvae were to be locked up in a dog cage.
Serj and Vik researched larvae, watching videos of them transforming into more dangerous zerg breeds. Some of the mercenaries went in and harassed them, but Ivan broke it up. However, he didn't like Serj's attitude, nor did he appreciate Vik standing up for him. He hit Vik and left. Serj said he was tired of the lack of respect he got from the mercenaries and Ivan.
The two grubs were having trouble with the larvae. They wouldn't eat, and repairing the case was taking too long. One of them died. Vik suggested tricking Ivan into thinking all three were alive, but Serj suggested stealing them instead. Vik tricked Ivan into thinking all three were alive when Ivan barged in on them. Afterward Vik refused to support Serj's theft idea, and the two ended their friendship.
That night, Serj tried to steal the larvae but was caught. Ivan beat him to death with his needler and his body fed to the shale dogs. Ivan forced Vik to clean up the mess as punishment for not telling Ivan about the theft ahead of time.
Vik plotted revenge, and the rest found his handiwork. The dead larva, glued into a curled-up shape, was found only half and hour before the buyer was set to arrive. The grenades that Vik had hidden in it went off. Vik cut off the power in the chop shop and watched as the other traps went off and the mercenaries started wildly shooting. Then Vik released the shale hounds and escaped with the live larvae during the confusion. However, Ivan had escaped too.
Ivan tried to run Vik over in his vehicle. Vik and one of the larvae were injured, and the other one killed. Vik used the last remaining larva as a shield. Ivan advanced on Vik, and Vik noticed that Ivan had been injured in the previous firefight. Vik used the larva, with its hard spiky carapace, as a bludgeon to kill Ivan and repeatedly struck until the body was a bloody smear of roadkill. A number of grubs watched the battle, and one attempted to grab Ivan's needler, but Vik kicked him back. Vik then announced that Ivan's shop was "open for business" or in other words, that anything inside was up to be claimed, but first he wanted to sell the larva.
Vik found the buyer and his mercs but changed his mind. He pondered how humans hid their true nature, something the zerg did not do. Without any available care, the larva died and Vik stayed with it until its end. Vik then sold Ivan's transport to smugglers for a "ticket" out, leaving everything behind but a reminder of Serj.
- Dr. Helek Branamoor (mentioned)
- Burns, Matt. "In the Blood." (January 22, 2013). Blizzard Entertainment. In the Blood Accessed 2013-02-21.