Archive for the Words from a Scribe Category

In the Pale Moonlight

Posted in Transcripts, Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

onyxiaslair

The less said about Ironforge, the better.  Even if I wanted to discuss it, which I really don’t, now isn’t the time.

Deliana returned with me from the Eastern Kingdoms, and we met Ji briefly in Ratchet.  He had good news (relatively speaking, at least) from the errand I’d sent him on, even though it had ended up running him from Desolace to Feralas then all the way back up to Stonetalon.  After we all exchanged notes, I sent Ji back home to Orgrimmar.  He resisted at first; he wanted to come with us for this next step.  But he was already deeper in this mess than I’d wanted him to get, and besides, this was my fight, not his.

Liana and I arranged windrider passage from Ratchet down to Mudsprocket.  From there, it was a fairly short ride over to the Wyrmbog, and the cave that used to be the lair of Onyxia.

We entered the cave.  We didn’t venture far, just deep enough to find a corner where every point of entry was visible.  Onyxia’s been dead for years, of course, but that didn’t stop it from being unnerving to go in there.  I’m sure it would have been unsettling in any case, but considering the rumors Theldren had brought back about Nefarian’s old forces being restless again, I found myself still half-expecting a black dragon to come jumping out of the shadows at any moment.  After all, Nefarian and Onyxia had both come back from the dead once already.  Not that I’m one to talk; I’ve died a couple times myself.  Spirits willing, I’d like the last time to stay the last for a good long while.

Eventually, we heard footsteps, and saw the light of a torch approaching from the same direction we’d come.  The footsteps slowly drew nearer, until a single tauren stepped into view.  Between his dark fur and the shadows that shifted around him in the dim cave, he probably seemed a lot larger than he really was.

 

TAUREN:  You are Mokvar?

Mokvar nods.

MOKVAR:  Are you alone?

The tauren tilts his head and cocks an eyebrow.

You know what I mean.

TAUREN:  We honor the terms of the meeting, of course.

MOKVAR:  <faint grin>  So in other words, the rest of your friends are waiting right outside the cave.

DELIANA:  Do you want me to check outside and see—

TAUREN:  If we’d wished to harm you, little one, you would already know it.

MOKVAR:  There’s no need, Liana.  He has a point – if we’re screwed at this point, we’re screwed no matter what.

The tauren looks back and forth between Mokvar and Deliana, then back up the passageway through which he’d entered.  He lifts a horn to his mouth and sounds a low blare.  Deliana continues to watch him closely; the tauren returns her gaze bemusedly.

TAUREN:  You’re going to make me think you don’t trust us, little one.

DELIANA:  You might say you have something of a reputation.

TAUREN:  <nods toward Mokvar>  So do the orcs.  That doesn’t seem to have affected you.

DELIANA:  <shrugs>  I like green.

The tauren chuckles.  From the passageway, footsteps become audible again and grow progressively closer.  After a moment, Magatha Grimtotem enters the chamber and scans the scene.

MAGATHA:  Ah, Mokvar.  It’s been too long.

MOKVAR:  Magatha.  I’m surprised you remember me, to tell the truth.

MAGATHA:  I never forget a face.  <looks to Deliana>  This one is new, though.

MOKVAR:  Yes, she is.

Magatha smirks.

MAGATHA:  You’re not going to introduce us, Mokvar?  How rude of you.

MOKVAR:  On top of everything else, Magatha, do we really need to maintain the pretense that we’re friends now, too?

MAGATHA:  I’m merely trying to be cordial.  <to Deliana>  Is he always this prickly?

DELIANA:  No.  You must have that effect on people.  <looks to Mokvar, then back to Magatha>  But, if it makes you feel any better… Deliana Hawthorne.

MAGATHA:  The pleasure is mine.

DELIANA:  It would have to be.

MAGATHA:  I’m beginning to see why you two get along.

Magatha looks around the cavern.

This is an interesting choice of venues, Mokvar.  Something of a step down from your usual accommodations, isn’t it?

MOKVAR:  A change of scenery now and then can be a good thing.  For instance, last I heard, you were on the run even from your own tribe.

MAGATHA:  You’ll find the Grimtotem tend not to hold grudges long against their own kind.  And I can be very persuasive.

MOKVAR:  Just as well.  It made it a little easier for Ji to get my message to you.

MAGATHA:  I must say I was intrigued.  I’m not unaccustomed to being the object of some…pursuit…but usually only from your Warchief’s usual lot of knuckle-dragging lackeys.  Your furry friend, however…

MOKVAR:  Not your typical Orgrimmar grunt, I know.

MAGATHA:  Yes, he had a polysyllabic vocabulary.  And spent a not-inconsiderable time musing over whether we had anything extra to eat.

MOKVAR:  That’s Ji, yeah.

MAGATHA:  Regardless, I’m quite curious as to why you would seek me out, given the company you usually keep.  Then again… <looks to Deliana> …I doubt your current companion would be well received in Orgrimmar herself.

DELIANA:  Maybe he’s trying to make me look better by bringing in one of the only people who would be less welcome.

MAGATHA:  <chuckles>  As plausible a theory as any.  <looks back to Mokvar>  But not the right one, I suspect.

MOKVAR:  I have some business that’s going to require me to travel to the Firelands.  Trouble is, I’m still relatively inexperienced as a shaman, and my ability to influence the elements isn’t nearly strong enough to keep me safe there.  You, on the other hand…well, whatever else I might think of you, there’s no disputing you’re a powerful shaman.

MAGATHA:  You flatter me.

MOKVAR:  Take it with a grain of salt.  It’s one strength offsetting I don’t know how many despicable things about you.

DELIANA:  I bet she’d also go great with fries.

MAGATHA:  If we’re going to be racist, I’m sure you would be quite adept at climbing trees and picking bananas.  <sneers>  Especially green ones.

MOKVAR:  The point is, I think you might know a trick or two that could help keep me alive when I go.  That’s why I wanted to meet with you.

MAGATHA:  And why turn to me, Mokvar?  There’s certainly no shortage of shaman in Orgrimmar you could have turned to.

MOKVAR:  I’d prefer to keep this trip to the Firelands off the record.

MAGATHA:  The Cenarion druids at Mouth Hyjal?  Thrall and his Earthen Ring?

MOKVARVery off the record.

MAGATHA:  It must be quite the scandal you’re sitting on if you’d rather turn to me than confide in your supposed friends.

MOKVAR:  I have my reasons.

MAGATHA:  And those reasons would be…?

MOKVAR:  Mine.

Magatha grins.

MAGATHA:  Cairne would have liked you.

MOKVAR:  Then it’s a shame he was murdered by a traitor before he got the chance to know me.

MAGATHA:  You shouldn’t talk about your Warchief like that.

DELIANA:  As much as I’m enjoying going back and forth with this…

MAGATHA:  Indeed, let’s cut to the chase.  You need my help, Mokvar, so now for the real question: Why should I give it to you?

MOKVAR:  We both know you don’t harbor any ill will for me, Magatha.  I may work for Garrosh, but your quarrel is with him, not me.  He’s the one you hate.

MAGATHA:  True enough.  But that’s merely why it wouldn’t be worth it to me to go out of my way to hurt you, Mokvar, not why it would be worth helping you.

MOKVAR:  You’re focusing on the wrong part.  Think about this, Magatha.  I work for Garrosh.  I’m there in Grommash Hold every day.  Do you not think that makes me someone who would be…useful to have indebted to you?

MAGATHA:  Surely you’re not naïve enough to assume I don’t already have my informants.

MOKVAR:  Are they in Garrosh’s inner circle?  Do they attend every meeting with him?  Keep a written record, literally, of nearly everything he says and does?

MAGATHA:  <smiles thoughtfully>  Interesting…

MOKVAR:  I thought you might think so.

MAGATHA:  I think I may have an item or two that might help augment your abilities sufficiently for what you have in mind.  Nothing worldshattering, mind you…

MOKVAR:  That’s fine.  I’ve already lived through too many shattered worlds as it is.

MAGATHA:  We can meet again here for the exchange.  Tomorrow at this time?

DELIANA:  How do we know you won’t just be setting a trap?

MAGATHA:  How did you know I wasn’t setting one tonight?  There are two of you – three if you count your bouncing bear friend.  I could bring dozens with a word.  But Mokvar was right about one thing – I have nothing to gain from harming him.  And whatever else you might think of me, I’m not in the habit of doing harm when there’s no benefit to myself or my tribe.

MOKVAR:  Tomorrow night, then.

MAGATHA:  Tomorrow night.

Magatha gestures to the other Grimtotem, and they make their way back up the passage.

DELIANA:  Are you sure about this?

MOKVAR:  Not even remotely.  I may spend the next year washing my hands.

Mokvar peers up the dark passageway for several moments.

I think we’re clear.

Mokvar and Deliana start to walk up toward the cave exit.  As the passage narrows, a low whooshing sound is heard.  Deliana hesitates a moment while glancing around.

DELIANA:  <whispering>  Did you hear that?

Mokvar nods.

<whispering>  There’s someone stealthed in here.

MOKVAR:  <whispering>  It’s Garona.  She came in not far behind us when we arrived.

DELIANA:  <whispering>  You knew she was following us?

MOKVAR:  <whispering>  I was counting on it.

 

 

We’re staying in Mudsprocket until we go back to Onyxia’s lair tomorrow night.  With any luck, things will go off without a hitch there, and Magatha will have something useful for me.  Then that much will be over and done with.

Then comes the hard part.

 

 

Mokvar

Desperate Times

Posted in Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , , , on February 6, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

orgrimmar11

Neeru Fireblade may very well have been right about the Council of the Black Harvest not being willing to talk to me, but for now that’s going to need to be a “cross that bridge when I come to it” concern.  For now, the much bigger problem is going to be finding them.  My best in is probably going to be Ritssyn, given his Orgrimmar ties, but he’s still far from a sure thing, and even that’s assuming I can track him down.  He was supposedly on his way to the Firelands, but that’s not exactly a place to go take a casual stroll alone without really knowing what you’re getting into, especially if you’re like me and your command of the elements leaves a lot to be desired in the first place.

So, I’m going to need to take the indirect approach to this.  I have Ji out helping me with part of it; this morning he left to do some investigating for me in Desolace.  Meanwhile, I just came from a private meeting with Eitrigg.  At least I think it was private.  I didn’t notice any stealthy whooshy sounds while I was there, but who knows?

I gathered from Eitrigg that Garrosh isn’t exactly thrilled with what he’s been hearing about me – no shock there – but he hasn’t sent along any specific orders where I’m concerned yet.  Considering that he’s known me for several years now, Eitrigg’s willing to give me the benefit of the doubt for the time being, although even he expressed concern about whether I’m sure I know what I’m doing.  The truth of the matter is, the last thing in the world that I am right now is sure, but circumstances aren’t affording me a luxury of options.

Still, without showing too much of my hand, I managed to persuade him to let me borrow one of the sets of diplomatic tabards and banners that we issues to the emissaries we send various places.  While I have those colors displayed – and remain visibly unarmed – I’ll be allowed free passage into nearly any territory, including within Alliance borders.

I’m about to take a trip to Ironforge.

Right now, I can’t really go into more detail than that.  Ultimately, if things work out the way I hope they will, you’ll understand why.  Still, I know I’m taking a considerable risk here, but it’s a necessary one.  If I don’t have this all resolved and accounted for by the time Garrosh gets back from Pandaria, he’s more likely to have my head on a platter than anything else; and if these spectral assassins keep coming after me, I’m just as dead.  Even with Garona watching over me – which I’m sure she won’t keep doing forever – it’s just a matter of time before the assassins start coming often enough and in great enough numbers that they’ll finish me off before anyone can do anything about it.

I’ll be leaving soon to meet Deliana in Ratchet, and from there on to the Eastern Kingdoms.  It’s probably going to be a few days at the very least before I have the chance up write anything here.  If you have any extra fingers, cross them.

 

Mokvar

Demon’s Bargain

Posted in Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 28, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

cleft

After the dead end in Winterspring, I mentioned that I still had one more possible stone to turn over.  It’s not one I particularly wanted to turn over, considering who I’d be finding under it, but at this point I don’t really have the luxury of wasting time and hoping something else falls into my lap.  So yesterday, I took a walk down to the Cleft of Shadow to have a talk with Neeru Fireblade.

I had known Neeru a little when I had first started training as a warlock, but since moving to Orgrimmar and changing to shamanism, I hadn’t had contact with him beyond occasionally passing on the street.  I’d always avoided the Cleft of Shadow; after Thrall gave me sanctuary in Orgrimmar, the last thing I wanted was to be caught anywhere near the fel magic of the warlocks.  Now, after years of avoiding the place, I couldn’t help but feel a little uneasy just from purple light that illuminated the cavern as I made my way down.

 

Neeru Fireblade channels a spell while Mokvar approaches.

MOKVAR:  Neeru.

NEERU:  <looking at Mokvar over his shoulder>  Mokvar.  Just a moment.

Neeru finishes channeling.  Small flames burst from a large windroc carcass that sits on a nearby table, then flicker out after a moment.  Neeru turns to Mokvar and points to the sizzling fowl with a smirk.

Undercooked.

MOKVAR:  What do you do if it needs salt?

NEERU:  Count myself lucky that I didn’t make a larger mess of the preparation than that.  I’m hardly a chef.

Neeru sits down at the table.

I hope you don’t mind if I go ahead with dinner.

He gestures to a second chair across from him; Mokvar sits.

It’s been a long time, Mokvar.  In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you venture down this way.  What brings you to the land invocations and mediocre cuisine?

MOKVAR:  I’m looking for information, and I think you may be on the short list of people who might have it.

NEERU:  <gnawing on a leg from the roasted windroc>  I’m hardly a person in the know these days, but ask away.

MOKVAR:  The Nether Prism.

Neeru pulls the drumstick away from his face slowly and looks up.

NEERUWell now.  What have you gotten yourself into, Mokvar?

MOKVAR:  More a matter of what I’m trying to get myself out of.

NEERU:  All the more interesting, then.  I haven’t heard talk of that particular bauble in an age.

MOKVAR:  I wish I could say the same.

NEERU:  <eyes Mokvar closely>  The last I heard of the Prism, it was in the hands – or claws, I suppose – of that drakonid Valthalak.

MOKVAR:  That was years ago.  After that, it made its was to an imp named Vi’el, in Darkwhisper Gorge.

NEERU:  If you’re interested in the Prism, why don’t you go seek out the imp, then?

MOKVAR:  I did.  He’s dead.  What became of the Prism from that point is anyone’s guess.

NEERU:  Really now.  And how did you happen to know about this imp in the first place?

MOKVAR:  Let’s just say it took a roundabout path getting from Blackrock Spire to the imp.

Neeru leans back in his seat and folds his arms.

NEERU:  You?  You mean to tell me, Mokvar, that a relic as potent as the Nether Prism managed to change hands from Gul’dan all the way down to the likes of you?

MOKVAR:  When you’re starting with Gul’dan, I don’t know if “down” is the right word.

NEERU:  <chuckling and picking up the windroc leg again>  Well well, Mokvar…you say you came to me for information, but it seems I’m learning a fair bit more from you.

MOKVAR:  I think you know more than you let on.

Mokvar leans forward and drums his fingers on the table.

Then again, so do I.

Mokvar glances around at the other warlocks practicing invocations.

How many of them will it take?

NEERU:  <mouth half full of windroc meat>  Take?  For what?

Mokvar leans closer to the table.

MOKVAR:  To channel your targeting beacon for the demons.

Neeru drops the windroc leg on his plate and looks up.

How many warlocks?  How many of your collagues…in the Burning Blade?

NEERU:  The Burning Blade died with the last vestiges of the old Horde.  Anyone will tell you I cut my ties with them when I pledged my loyalties to Thrall.

MOKVAR:  <nods>  Of course.

Neeru starts to reach for his food again.

Are you waiting for a signal from any agent of the Legion, or are you on hold for Malchezaar specifically?  You might be waiting a while if it’s the second one.

NEERU:  I don’t know where you’re getting these fairy tales, Mokvar, but—

MOKVAR:  You know, it’s a funny thing.  Grom Hellscream died slaying Mannoroth and freeing our people.  Now his son walks around wearing the demon’s tusks, and sits on a throne carved out of its skull.  It would be a shame if the Warchief got the notion that someone in Orgrimmar was still cooking up something with the Legion.

NEERU:  <waving toward Ragefire Chasm>  If you really think Garrosh is above cutting ethical corners for the sake of—

MOKVAR:  If you’d like to roll the dice on how Garrosh would react, be my guest.  It’s not my neck at stake.

Neeru stares down at his food.

NEERU:  I wasn’t lying when I said I don’t know what’s become of the Nether Prism.

MOKVAR:  But?

NEERU:  But if I were to hazard a guess as to where it might have gone…after the imp…  <glances around furtively>  There have been…rumblings among the warlocks since the fall of Deathwing.  It started when the human Kanrethad reconvened his circle of fel masters, the same ones who had worked to expand the powers of the warlocks before the Cataclysm.

MOKVAR:  I’d heard about that much – the Council of the Black Harvest, isn’t it?

NEERU:  <nods>  Our own Ritssyn from here in Orgrimmar was among them.

MOKVAR:  What are they doing?

NEERU:  Running around on fool’s errands all over the world – and beyond – to seek out even greater sources of power for themselves.  That Kanrethad thinks he can build a coven of the mightiest warlocks in existence and position himself at its head.

MOKVAR:  You don’t think they’ll be able to do it?

NEERU:  I think that when you set out with a plan of “Let’s go make ourselves more powerful than anyone ever,” you find either disaster or a far heftier price than you’d counted on.

Mokvar nods.

Nevertheless.  If the Black Harvest are trying to consolidate their power, I’d hazard a guess that the Nether Prism would be just the sort of item that would interest them.

MOKVAR:  Do you know what’s become of Ritssyn?

NEERU:  I believe he and one of the others made their way off to the Firelands.  For all the good that will do you.

MOKVAR:  What’s that supposed to mean?

NEERU:  Mokvar, don’t you be a fool too.  You can’t seriously expect that the Black Harvest would talk to you.

MOKVAR:  I think I’ve already shown I can be pretty persuasive.

NEERU:  <chuckles>  Mokvar, don’t be naïve.  You’re hardly one of the movers and shakers of the world, I’ll grant, but surely you can’t believe that you’re not noticed.  Standing for all those years in Thrall’s council room.  Attending advisors’ meetings with the leaders of the Horde.  Hellscream’s personal scribe.  Never mind the fact that they’ll know you were a warlock yourself once before you decided you didn’t want to dirty your hands with the fel arts any longer.  Do you really think they’ll be willing to tell you anything?

MOKVAR:  I guess I’ll have to figure out a way to be very persuasive.

NEERU:  Assuming you can ever find them.

MOKVAR:  We’ll see.  <getting up>  Anyway, I suppose I got what I came for, or as close to it as I’m going to.  Enjoy your dinner, Neeru.

Mokvar turns to walk away.

NEERU:  Mokvar.

Mokvar stops and looks back.

How did you know?

MOKVAR:  How did I know what?

NEERU:  Don’t play games with me.  You know perfectly well what I’m talking about.

Mokvar grins.

MOKVAR:  Let’s just say I get around.

 

I left Neeru and made my way out of the Cleft of Shadow, mostly preoccupied with how I was going to track down the Council of the Black Harvest.  I was so caught up in my thoughts that I didn’t notice the light go dimmer than it should have as I went up the last bend of the cavern.  That’s when two spectral assassins appeared out of nowhere and attacked me.

I fought them off as best I could for a minute, but my shocks and chain lightnings aren’t nearly as potent as a shaman who’s been training at it his whole life.  They were quickly gaining the upper hand when Garona unstealthed behind them and had at both of them with a flurry of blades that was faster than my eyes could follow.  It bears noting, by the way: Garona’s no joke in combat.  I hadn’t really noticed before.  Those spectral assassins dropped fast.  While she resheathed her weapons, I tried to come up with something to say without much success.

 

MOKVAR:  Garona…I…

GARONA:  Garrosh knows what you’re doing.  I hope you do, too.

MOKVAR:  Then why…?

GARONA:  Before he left for Pandaria, he asked me to look out for you.  Until he tells me otherwise, that’s what I’m going to do.

MOKVAR:  Well…thanks…

GARONA:  Don’t.  You know that if he tells me kill you, I’ll have to.

Mokvar nods and starts to turn to go.

Don’t give him a reason to.

Garona stealths.

 

I think it’s safe to assume that pretty soon Garrosh will be getting a letter informing him that I went to see Neeru Fireblade.  I don’t figure that’s going to do a whole lot to improve his mood any.  Still, he’s having Garona go on protecting me, for now at least.  And with these two assassins down, chances are I’ve got a couple days before I have to worry about the next wave coming for me.

Still, I don’t have the luxury of a lot of time.  I have a new lead to follow, and it needs to lead somewhere quickly.

 

Mokvar

 

 

[Header image provided by Khizzara from Blog of the Treant, used here with permission and many thanks.]

Moving on to Plan B

Posted in Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , on January 25, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

org9

This package arrived for me a few days ago through Grommash Hold – I guess as a guest blogger these days I’m in the mailbag business myself.

 

This package is addressed to:

Mokvar
c/o Garrosh Hellscream, Warchief
Grommash Hold, Orgrimmar
Kalimdor, Azeroth

It arrives looking quite a bit the worse for wear.  Its sides are battered and one corner has been entirely crushed in.  The brown paper wrapping has been dirtied and torn but the numerous postmarks stamped on it are still legible.  Although it seems to have originated in Orgrimmar it appears to have been mysteriously routed through Ratchet, Booty Bay, Grom’gol Base Camp, Brill and finally back to Orgrimmar.

Inside the box is a large variety of random items in various states of disrepair: A partial stack of 14 Ankhs; a rabbit’s foot with several patches of fur missing; a small glass vial labeled “MOJO” in carefully penned block letters; a rather larger glass bottle labeled “TROLL SWEAT” in the same handwriting; a well-loved toy teddy bear; partial stacks of mageweave, frostweave and windwool bandages; 3 minor health potions and a large bag of crumbs which might be the remains of several dozen chocolate cookies.

At the very bottom of the box is a scrap of parchment which reads:

Mokvar,

How you doin’, mon?  I hear you been injured somewhat and even killed!  Good t’ing it didn’t take dis time.  We shaman gotta stick together, so here are some t’ings to help you feel better soon.

Take care and watch yer back, mon.

–Kaeliss, Valley of the Spirits, Orgrimmar

Thanks, Kaeliss.  I appreciate the gesture.  Somehow I get the feeling that I might need all that stuff in the days ahead.  (Although, what’s up with the troll sweat?  I’ve never really understood why you guys bottle that stuff.)

So, speaking of which…and speaking of the mail… There’s good news and there’s bad news.

The good news is that since I, you know, read this blog, I know now that Garrosh has had Garona shadowing me and knows I’ve been meeting with Deliana.  (At least he meant well, I suppose.)

The bad news is that Garrosh knows I’ve been meeting with Deliana.  And that I’ve been up to something in Winterspring.  And apparently sneaking around.  And spirits only know how many dots he’s been connecting in his head based on what Garona told him.

So…there goes my plan to bring this whole story to Garrosh.

I suppose I still could.  Even considering that he’s suspicious now, predisposed to assume the worst, and probably irritable even by Garrosh standards, I suppose I could still try to go to him with this.  I could lay out the whole story, and explain why I’ve been keeping these things hidden, and why I’ve been working with a human whose last mailing address was in Ironforge.  And I could detail all of this to Garrosh and hope he’ll listen with an open mind and be reasonable and even-handed in his response.

So, yeah, see?  There goes my plan to bring this whole story to Garrosh.

At least not yet.  At this point, sooner or later I’m going to have to answer to Garrosh, and when I do, the only chance I’m going to have is if have some definite, final answers to all of this – as in, problem solved, spectral assassins dealt with, Deliana long gone from Horde territory, all loose ends tied up.  I can’t leave any room for any kind of “What about X?” “Yeah, uh, still working on that” to happen.

And I have to do all this before Garrosh gets back from Pandaria.

And I also have to do this while I know I’m being watched.  Can I mention how unnerving that is, by the way?

(Hi, Garona, if you happen to be stealthed in the room right now and looking over my shoulder while I’m typing this.)

(Also, please look away for a minute while I close a few browser tabs.  Thanks.)

 

Mokvar

 

 

[Header image (and reader mail!) provided by Khizzara from Blog of the Treant, used here with permission and many thanks.]

Demonology Anonymous

Posted in Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 7, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

blackrock2

Now for the hard part.

I left out a few details last time about my past with the Veiled Blade, and everything that’s been going on recently.

I said before that when we killed Lord Valthalak, we took his spellbook along with the pieces of an amulet that ended up bringing the spectral assassins down on us.  But there was one more part of the spoils: a demon relic called the Nether Prism, a crystal that could be used, among other things, to focus fel energies and dominate the will of demons.  I was a warlock back in those days, and I arranged to have the prism included as part of our deal with Malkorok.  I wanted to see how much the Prism could be used to augment my powers.

I thought I could handle it.  I thought wrong.

The Prism magnified the power of my spells for sure, and for brief windows of time I could use it to control powerful demons.  At least more powerful than the dime-a-dozen ones that your garden variety warlocks can summon.  In more powerful hands than mine, I suppose it could have been used on even greater ones.  But if there’s one thing I learned, it was that I was nowhere near warlock enough to master the energies that flowed through that crystal and keep them under control.

It became pretty clear to me that I couldn’t afford to keep toying around with the Prism.  The problem was, though, that it wasn’t going to be as simple as sticking it in the back of the sock drawer and forgetting about it.  The Nether Prism radiated fel energies.  Demons were drawn to it.  And using its magic to deal with the demons when they turned up would just make it radiate more.

As if life wasn’t already too complicated, it was at this point that I learned Valthalak’s spectral assassins were making short work of the rest of the Veiled Blade.  I couldn’t keep taking my chances running around from place to place alone.  So I turned to Thrall.  He offered me sanctuary in Orgrimmar; all he asked was that I be on hand to aid the Warchief when needed.  I only ever told him the barest details about my past.  I never said a word about the Nether Prism.  Thrall was only barely willing to tolerate the presence of warlocks in Orgrimmar at all, given the orcs’ history; I couldn’t imagine he would have been willing to take me in if he’d known the whole story.  It’s hardly a coincidence that that was when I abandoned demonology altogether and took up shamanism.  I wasn’t about the bring dishonor upon the man who’d given me a safe haven, or overstay my welcome.

So, the Nether Prism had to go.  In the last days before I moved to Orgrimmar, I traveled to Darkwhisper Gorge in Winterspring.  Hidden away in a cave there was an imp named Vi’el, a collector of relics and exotic items.  I passed the Prism off onto him and hoped he wouldn’t realize what he had on his hands.  I know looking back that it probably wasn’t the wisest move in the world, but at that point I just wanted the blasted thing off my hands.  So I left it with Vi’el, and went on to Orgrimmar to begin my new life.  And started working out ways to deal with the spectral assassins before they came knocking on my door.

For a while, it worked.  I thought that chapter was done.  But as often ends up being the case around here, life still had one more surprise epilogue waiting.

 

deliana 

As soon as the spectral assassins attacked me in the Drag, I knew what they were and where they were from.  Even with Ji fighting by my side, they were able to wear me down fairly quickly; Ji kept fending them off as best he could while I watched for an opening to pop back up.  That was the point when we had one more surprise guest, this time a face from the past that was actually welcome: Deliana.  She’d stealthed her way into Orgrimmar to come looking for me, and after she helped Ji and I fight off the assassins, she snuck back with us to my house to compare notes.

The notes weren’t good.  Something had stirred Valthalak’s spirit; I remember when he’d been laid to rest the first last time, the adventurers I’d sent mentioned him saying something about things being settled “for now,” but I didn’t really give it much thought at the time.  Now, though, he was awake again and sending out his assassins.  Only this time, it wasn’t over the amulet; it was over the Nether Prism.

From Deliana’s perspective, this all started with Theldren turned up in Ironforge, seeking protection from Moira Thaurissan.  Something had brought the last scattered remains of Nefarian’s old minions out of hiding and sent them scrambling after anything demon-related they could find.  Deliana overheard Theldren repeating that “something’s coming,” whatever that means.  We don’t know most of the why’s and wherefores; all we do know is that whatever’s behind it has stirred Valthalak enough to make him want his old trinket back.

I wasn’t going to go to Garrosh with any of this.  I didn’t think he would have received the last bit about my past with the demons well in the best of circumstances, much less now that we’d been through that ordeal with the Burning Legion in the other timeline.  Not to mention the minor detail that I was fraternizing with a human in Deliana.  We decided that we had to keep her involvement in all of this a secret; Ji, being maybe the one person who was truly neutral to all of this, came into our confidence.

It became pretty clear pretty quickly that it wasn’t going to be possible for Deliana to stay hidden in Orgrimmar, especially after Garrosh stepped up security for me after the attack.  (At least he meant well.)  Deliana even had a run-in with Malkorok at one point when he was coming to talk to me and happened to catch her sneaking her way to my house.  She was only able to get away because Ji happened along and was able to blindside Malkorok with a Quaking Palm that stunned him.  We got Deliana out of Orgrimmar and she went into hiding in Azshara, with Ji stepping up to ferry messages back and forth between us.

Which brings us to Winterspring.  The trip to Timbermaw Hold was basically just a cover for us to meet up with Deliana in Everlook, and from there…Darkwhisper Gorge, to find Vi’el.  After the Cataclysm, most of the demons had abandoned the gorge for the underground caves, and the Twilight’s Hammer had moved in.  Now the cultists were gone and the demons were back in force – and gone crazy, fighting among themselves.  Even back in the day, there weren’t this many of them.  We could barely turn around without being jumped by another felguard or pack of felhounds.

We found Vi’el at his cave – dead.  The cave had been ransacked; half of the belongings that remained had been burned, singed with green flames.  We turned the place upside down, but it became apparent fairly quickly that there wasn’t anything to be found.

I’m not sure where we go from here.  The spectral assassins are still coming, Krog already having intercepted one just the other day.  Vi’el was the only lead we had back to the Nether Prism, which I have to figure is our only means of getting the situation under control.  Short of dying.  Again.  Deliana has gone back into hiding in Azshara while we come up with a new plan.  I think I might have one more possible stone to turn over, but it may reach the point – in fact, I suspect it will soon – when I need to give up the secrecy and bring all this to Garrosh.  Hopefully he’ll understand.

I should maybe go see about making some lemon squares.

 

Mokvar

Confessions of a Mercenary

Posted in Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , , , on January 5, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

blackrock1

Since Ji and I got back from Winterspring, I’ve had a lot on my mind.  Everyone could tell we’d been injured – nothing major, but enough to catch people’s attention, especially considering how concerned everyone has been about me the last few weeks.  I hadn’t really planned to talk to anyone about what happened while we were up there.  I still prefer not to.  But after Krog had another run-in with an attacker the other day, people are going to keep asking more and more questions.  So I think it’s time for me to start filling in some blanks.

The blanks start long before Winterspring.

Years ago, before I’d come to Orgrimmar, I was part of a mercenary group called the Veiled Blade.  On one of our jobs, we had been hired to acquire the spellbook of a dragonkin in Blackrock Spire named Lord Valthalak, one of Nefarian’s lieutenants in those days.  As often happens with these kinds of things, that involved killing him.  Mostly, anyway.  Trouble is, though, between Nefarian’s forces and his alliance at the time with Rend Blackhand’s Blackrock orcs, getting to Valthalak and killing him wasn’t going to be an easy task.

That’s where we cut a deal.  As it turns out, not all the Blackrock orcs where exactly thrilled with Rend putting them in Nefarian’s service…and, long story short, we managed to come to an arrangement with Rend’s head of security – an orc named Malkorok.  He would deliberately leave prearranged gaps in the guard patrols leading to Valthalak.  We would slip in, kill him, collect what we came for, and get out.  We get in and out with a minimum of fuss.  Malkorok gets a pocket full of gold and the satisfaction of knowing the dragons had been weakened, for whenever Rend finally turned on them like Malkorok assumed he eventually would.

That was the plan.  And it mostly worked.  We went in, we killed Valthalak, we got the spellbook.  But we also collected an enchanted amulet from him, and after no small amount of infighting, we divided it into pieces and split it among some members of the group.  Don’t ask me what the appeal would be of getting a piece of an amulet; I wasn’t one of the ones fighting over it.  And the ones who did…  Well, Valthalak wasn’t quite as dead as we’d assumed.  His spirit lived on, and it sent spectral assassins after those of us who’d been involved in stealing the amulet.  Again, I’m not sure why the big to-do about the amulet; in his shoes, I probably would have been angrier at us for killing him than for taking his favorite piece of jewelry.  Maybe it’s a dragon thing.

One by one, the members of the Veiled Blade started to be picked off by the spectral assassins.  Soon enough, there were only three of us left: me, a dwarf named Theldren, and a human named Deliana.  We all went into hiding – me in Orgrimmar, Theldren in Blackrock Depths, Deliana in Ironforge.  Separately, and quietly, Deliana and I started to recruit Horde and Alliance adventurers to gather the pieces of the amulet and put Valthalak’s spirit to rest.  It took some time, but it worked.  For a while.

That changed a couple weeks ago when I was walking through the Drag with Ji, and a new batch of spectral assassins came out of nowhere and killed me.

From the look of things on the blog after Garrosh reported the attack, some people were pretty quick to put two and two together and figure that Malkorok had been behind it.  Truth be told, I was only too happy to let him take the blame.  And for those of you who’ve wondered, now you can see a little better why he and I have bad blood between us.  Now maybe you have a notion of why I don’t trust him.  I know he can be bought.  Because I was one of the ones who bought him.

As for why I wouldn’t have told anyone any of this until now…well, that’s where things start to get complicated.  TL;DR alert in advance: This may be a long story.

 

Mokvar

Guest Post: Furtive Father Winter

Posted in General, Words from a Scribe with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 26, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

orgwreath

[Special guest post today, as part of Blog Azeroth's Furtive Father Winter gift exchange.  Today's post was provided by Akabeko of Red Cow Rise -- many thanks!  I'll be back with a final note from Mokvar after Akabeko's gem.  So now, without further ado...]

———

(On the Feast of Winter Veil, a grunt brings a brightly-wrapped box to the Warchief’s quarters. Inside are several letters, cards, and small gifts. A simple note is left on top of the whole festive affair.)

“Hey, Warchief. Do not open until Winter Veil! I rounded up all the gifts that arrived for you and put them together for easy transport on your trip. Happy Holidays. –Mokvar.”

On the back of the note, a card for one-month’s worth of Earth Online game time has been attached, with a note saying, “For when you find a stable wifi connection in Pandaria!”

The first card is printed on very thick, expensive paper and depicts the ruins of Lordaeron blanketed in snow. Somehow, this makes them look even bleaker and more terrifying, rather than peaceful. Inside, the card reads, “A very merry Feast of Winter Veil to my favorite Warchief. I wish you success in your siege of Pandaria and a Happy New Year.” It’s signed with an elaborate, flowing, nearly illegible “Sylvanas Windrunner.” The small package is wrapped in black paper and contains a miniature model of a plague thrower.

The next card is written in strong letters. The outside shows Greatfather Winter astride a comically large horse. Inside, it is in Common rather than Orcish. “Warchief Hellscream, I wish you an illustrious Winter Veil and a bright New Year. May fortune favor you in whichever endeavors you choose to undertake. May you be showered with the brightest of blessings and-“ (here, the handwriting appears to have been cut off, and finishes reluctantly) “-happy holidays from Tirion Fordring.” Below this, a different hand has written “and Eitrigg.”

Next is a postcard. One side has a standard greeting: “Happy Holidays!” in gold script. The back says, “…from Anger Management!” It has been signed by those who have attended sessions with the Warchief. Mylune has drawn tiny pawprints around her name.

On the next envelope, Mokvar has added a sticky note that says, “There wasn’t a return address on this one, so I’m not sure who it’s from! Maybe you’ll figure it out from the handwriting?” Inside is a card depicting the Silvermoon coat of arms. The note simply reads, “Merry Feast of Winter Veil from LOR’THEMAR THERON, REGENT LORD OF QUEL’THALAS.” There is also a small parchment with a sketch of his noble visage, just in case.

Below this is a handmade card from Garona. In fairly passable calligraphy, she has written “Happy Holidays, honorable Warchief.” There are faint smudges where the words “Let’s have dinner” have been erased. There is also a package wrapped in shiny red paper which contains a pair of soft wool fingerless gloves. Who knew Garona was so good with crafts?

The next card is smudged and crinkled. An unsteady hand has written “Merry Happy Winter Veil.” Below this are two messy signatures that might say “Dontrag” and “Utvoch.” It may have been written in crayon.

The final card bears the Alliance crest. The inside reads,

“Happy Holidays
From a superior king
Oh – FUCK YOU GARROSH”

———

Postscript from Mokvar:

I didn’t mention any of this when I originally delivered it to Garrosh a few days ago, just becuase…well…after he saw that last one, it seemed like a good idea to wait a little while till after he’d left town before anyone brought it up again.  When I was assembling the package, I remember giving Ben-Lin Cloudstider, the anger management counselor, a peek at the card from Varian there…and her replying, “I see.  I will clear my calendar for the next few weeks, then.”

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