We’re not there yet, but things are starting to come together.
I met up with Garona in Silithus at the Scarab Gate. Based on the information we’d gotten from Skarr, the phylactery of Cho’gall is in Silithus (And by the way, did I mention I’m getting sick sick SICK of all the running around I’ve been stuck doing for this operation? Would it have killed them to set this all up within a few blocks?), and the final destination is going to be C’thun’s chamber in Ahn’Qiraj – but since we didn’t know whether it was already there, or going straight there, or somewhere else in transit, we decided to hit the end point first and see if we could work backwards if necessary. So we met outside the ruins and made our way into the old temple.
It’s been years since Horde adventurers fought their way through that place and cleared out the Qiraji that held the area, but it’s still creepy as hell in there. The walls look like they might as well be alive, twitchy and slimy, and even knowing the Qiraji are gone, you still can’t help feeling like at any second some giant bug monster could jump out of the dirt at you. You end up walking through the place with the weirdest uneasy feeling, like you’re constantly tricking yourself into thinking you just saw something out of the corner of your eye.
We ran into a small pack of Twilight guards as we got fairly deep into the temple, and I probably don’t need to tell you how that went for them. (Heh.) We finally reached C’thun’s chamber in the heart of the temple, where we found a pair of Twilight cultists unpacking several crates of random conjuring doohickies and reagents, arranging them around the room… And by the way, as if the place didn’t already have enough creepy factor going for it, some of C’thun’s remains were still there. Dead for years and it’s still there, looking fresh enough that you’d half expect it to wake up. Maybe those Old Gods have something about them that prevents them from decomposing the way the rest of us do when we die. Curse of flesh, right? End to end, I’m pretty sure this stop is going to do wonders for my dreams come nighttime…
Anyhow… the cultists weren’t much more of an issue than the guards were, other than the fact that these guys needed to be taken alive, what with them probably knowing the most about what was going on. Still, it didn’t take too much doing to subdue them, and then Garona and I dragged them off into separate rooms to question them separately. No comment on how much beating either of them ended up taking. Just take my word that they’re both still alive. Mostly. Can’t go killing THESE cultists just yet, at least till we’re sure we don’t need any more info from them. Anyway, point is, we were able to get some information from them.
The phylactery isn’t in the temple now, but is being moved around the zone to prevent it from staying in one place for too long. There’s a Twilight agent going around with an entourage from camp to camp while the cultists here get everything ready for the ritual. Once they’re ready, they’re supposed to send up a signal, and the courier will know to make the final delivery.
I’m FAIRLY sure I can persuade them to fill us in on how they’re supposed to give the signal. (Heh.) Which means that (a) there’s no signal going out until we let it happen, and (b) we can control when it DOES go out. Which means, now we’re in business.
So here’s the plan.
Garona’s going to stay in Ahn’Qiraj while I head back to Orgrimmar and arrange for a Kor’kron stealth team to head down to Silithus quietly. We’ll move them into the temple, set up shop, and then once we have the place secured and have all the back exits and trap doors covered, we’ll give the signal for the Twilight courier to bring home the phylactery. After all, if it’s on the move all over the zone, why spend our time chasing it all over the place, when we can just have it hand delivered, right?
On my way out of Silithus I stopped at Cenarion Hold and talked to Commander Mar’alith. As a matter of fact, when we were first heading to Silithus, I kind of figured Cenarion support might be handy before all was said and done, so…spirits help me…I sent a letter to ol’ Lather-on-us in Northrend. I figured since he’s wanting to make nice with me now that he thinks I’m cutting back on the veal (HAH!), he might be able to put in a good word for us with his Cenarion friends. Pretty much just told him we’re working on an operation against the Twilight’s Hammer, who want to destroy the world, and if they do, it might be bad for the animals. That perked him up right quick.
So Ma’alith knew I’d probably be coming, and he’s agreed to help with the operation by stepping up the Cenarion patrols of the zone to make sure no cultists leave Silithus without us knowing. Meanwhile I’m having an entire battalion posted in the passageway between Silithus and Un’goro Crater, and putting the Kor’kron Air Guard on constant patrol around the zone. Between us and the Cenarions, nobody, but nobody, is getting out of Silithus without our say-so. Which means the phylactery is sealed up in Silithus, not going anywhere, until we get our people in position to spring the trap.
And speaking of which, on my way up to Durotar, I’m making a stop at Brackenwall Village to talk with Krog and the others.
Hold on tight, kids. I have an idea.