Archive for general grebo

Same as it ever was

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 20, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

I was groggy when I woke up, and even after I opened my eyes, it took a few minutes for my head to stop spinning.  Finally my vision cleared up and I found myself sitting in a chair, sprawled forward over a table.  There were papers under my face, and a few of them stuck to it courtesy of a small puddle of drool.

I straightened up in the chair, plucked the clingy pages from my cheek, and looked around the room.  It was the admiral’s quarters in Northwatch Hold, the room I’ve been using the last few days of our stay here.  The drool-smeared papers in my hand, and others spread around the table, were covered with maps of Theramore, lists of troop assignments, armament logistics, the crew manifesto of a goblin air galleon.

I ran my hands over the table to make sure it was really there.  And then my uneasy brain went looking for hallucination in the next most likely place.

Had I imagined it?  The other world, the demons, the Scourge, the fall of Orgrimmar…everything…could it have just been a dream?  It seemed so real, the memories were so vivid…but…

I stood up, gathered more of the papers from the table, and started paging through them — not even reading anything on them, really, just wanting something I could feel in my hands.  As I held the documents over the tabletop and looked at all the words without ever reading any of them, my arm brushed another paper, this one creased and folded, jutting out of my belt.

The military documents spilled around the floor as I grabbed the folded paper and rushed to unfold it.  It was worn and stained with what looked like blood, just a torn-off scrap, not even half a page.  Scrawled across it was the familiar handwriting of the Master Apothecary of Sylvanas’ Royal Society.  Or the man who would become him.

They’re going to turn against you.  Don’t let them.

He really, REALLY never listened.  It’s like some weird matter of principle with him.  I don’t even know if he was really trying to help, offering some begrudging, misguided gesture in parting…or if this was his way of giving me one last middle finger for the things I’d forced him to do.  I don’t know if I could hold either against him.

But that sealed it.  It all happened.  Except that it didn’t, now.

It worked.  We did it.  We saved the world.  It all happened, just the way I remembered it, just the way it was supposed to.

I walked over to the tower window.  I needed some air to clear my head.  I leaned out and looked across the Barrens.  I could see Horde banners below, and a squad of Kor’kron wyvern riders circling past as they patrolled the area.  And as I looked off into the distance, staring at the horizon more than anything, I started to make out wisps of smoke, faint black tendrils reaching up to the sky from old, spiteful fires that refused to go out completely, even after all this time.

Taurajo.

I turned from the window and stepped back into the room.

And then I grabbed one of the chairs arranged around the table and threw it against the wall.  The chair broke into pieces.  I ran over and grabbed them up, one after another, breaking them into smaller pieces and smashing them against the wall again.  And then a second chair.  And a third.  Screaming with each one — AT each one.

I threw them around the room until the chairs were pieces and the pieces were splinters, smashing them against the walls and the floor and each other as if by breaking them enough I could force back the thoughts I couldn’t help thinking.

I ran across the room to a bookcase that stood against one wall and sent it toppling.  Books spilled around the floor.  I lunged down, hunched over, grabbed them by the fistful and hurled them against the walls.  Watched them clatter back to the floor.  It didn’t help.  I grabbed up more of them, pulling them open, ripping them apart at the spines, flinging loose pages around until they fluttered uselessly down around me.

Fluttered like shimmering white wings.

I pounced back on the broken bookcase, yanked out one shelf, flung it across the room.  It clattered to the floor.  It didn’t break.  I wrenched out a second shelf and threw it against the door, leaving a deep gash in the wood.  That one didn’t break, either.  Somehow that only made me angrier, sent me into a rage at its stubbornness, its stupid defiance, refusing to snap.  How DARE it — how dare ANYTHING — and I ran to the door, grabbed up the fallen shelf, and beat it against the wall until it splintered.

It didn’t help.  It wasn’t enough.

The door to the room opened and Malkorok leaned in.  I only heard bits and pieces of whatever he said — something about the noise, and my yelling, and if I was all right.  I spun on him, struck him across the face, then threw him back out of the room and down the stairs before slamming the door, rattling it on its hinges.

Today is not the day to ask me if I’m all right.

I grabbed one of the broken chair pieces and jammed the door shut.  I wasn’t in any mood for interruptions, least of all from the likes of him.

The admiral’s bed — flung over, frame snapped, mattress torn open.  Feathers floating through the air and scattering around the room.  The nightstand next to the bed — lifted over my head and slammed down onto the floor, shattered awkwardly into pieces.  Its single drawer split off awkwardly and spilled letters and trinkets across the floor.  Part of it splintered off as I swung the nightstand down onto the floor and stabbed into my forearm.  I barely felt it.  I didn’t even notice until a spattering of blood started to dribble onto the letters and papers strewn around the floor.

It still wasn’t enough.  It might never be enough.

Go be a hero, he told me.  Go save the world.  I did.  We won.  And all I had to do was kill him.  All I had to do was burn Taurajo.  All I had to do was become the final secret conspirator against our people in time of war, once upon a time.  All I had to do was save traitors, destroy families, forsake all honor in the face of a battle too dire to be won by any other means.

I don’t know how long I can stand to live in this world if these are the choices I have to make to save it.

I was racing around the room in circles, kicking at anything in reach, clawing pictures down off the walls.  Only really half seeing what was around me, just grabbing anything I could, then throwing it or stomping it underfoot or breaking it over one knee.  At some point I found myself spinning in place, roaring madly at nothing, and then threw myself at the table, beating it with both fists, pounding over and over until the wood buckled and the beams split and it all came crashing down and still there I was among the pieces on the floor.

I pulled myself up and looked around the ruins of the room, choking down air in gasps.

This room isn’t big enough.  It isn’t big enough.  Nothing in it is big enough.

I need something bigger.

We march tomorrow.  Theramore burns.

 

 

[Wrathgate (wide shot) image provided by Angelya from Revive and RejuvenateProfessor Putricide, Putress, and Cairne Bloodhoof (living) images provided by Rioriel from Postcards From Azeroth; click the links in this sentence to see the souped-up Postcard versions!  All images used here with permission and many thanks.]

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What goes around

Posted in General, Transcripts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

It’s been four days since the Razing of Northwatch Hold.  We’ve been camped here at the base without a sign of Alliance retaliation.  I’ve been mulling over a few possibilities that are still in play for the next step, and giving our troops time to rest and build up their anticipation for the next battle.  Apparently, though, the down time has just given some of the higher-ups time to stir up trouble for themselves.  You know what they say about idle hands.

Malkorok came to me claiming that a batch of the other leaders were planning to gather to talk mutiny.  I didn’t put much stock in it at first.  It’s no secret that Vol’jin and Baine aren’t crazy about my plan, but in the end, they’re loyal to the Horde.  Malkorok is dedicated to his job, and good at it, but sometimes I think he gets a little overzealous looking for conspiracies and enemies behind every shadow.  Maybe it just comes from all that time in the Blackrock clan under Rend.  Anyway, this sounded like one of those overzealous times.

At least that’s what I thought.

Today, Zixx Grindgear – one of the goblin zeppelin captains – came to see me.  Malkorok wasn’t going to let him in originally, but the little guy managed to convince him he had some news I needed to hear.  When Malkorok brought him to see me, Grindgear claimed that Hamuul Runetotem had asked him to attend a meeting with Baine and others to discuss their…“concerns” about the mission.  At this point, it was too much to brush off, so I told Grindgear to go ahead and attend the meeting.  Malkorok and I wouldn’t be far behind him.

When we left to check up on this meeting – along with a detachment of Kor’kron I was hoping I wouldn’t need – I decided to bring Mokvar along as well, to keep a record or whatever we found.

What we found made my blood boil.

 

Garrosh, Malkorok, and Mokvar approach the tree where several Horde figures have gathered around a campfire: Baine Bloodhoof, Vol’jin, Hamuul Runetotem, Frandis Farley, Kelantir Bloodblade, Captain Zixx Grindgear, first mate Blar Xyzzik, Margolag.  Garrosh et al listen from the nearby bushes as the meeting carries on.

BAINE:  …our purpose here tonight is not to lead an insurrection, but to discuss what he has done up until this point and the wisdom – or lack thereof – of his choices.

FRANDIS:  I serve the Horde.  But it seems the Horde does not serve me, or my lady.  We were once human; I myself once lived in the very city of Stormwind, which is certain to come beating down on us at any moment.  The Alliance is surely aware of what has happened by now, and I think Lady Jaina too wise a leader not to know that Theramore could be next in line to fall.  Yet knowing all this, Lady Sylvanas agreed to send aid to the endeavor.  But to what end?  We are gathered!  The Horde has food, supplies, and for those of you whose blood still flows in your veins, I know that blood burns hot for battle.  Why is he waiting?  Each day that passes, his troops become more uncertain.  This is not wisdom.  This is simply…irresponsibility.

KELANTIR:  I agree with Captain Farley.  His lands and ours are vulnerable if the humans decide to retaliate there instead of sending ships to Theramore.  The swifter the strike, the swifter the reward.  I cannot comprehend why Garrosh delays.  More time serves our enemies and harms us.

BLAR:  I don’t know why he did this in the first place.  Trade Prince Gallywix might see coffers overflowing with gold, but all I see are goblins being used as cannon fodder for no real profit.

VOL’JIN:  You all know da trolls be a proud an’ ancient people.  We joined da Horde because Sen’jin had a vision dat T’rall would help us.  Lead us to safety.  An’ he did.  He was a good leader.  Now T’rall be gone, and Garrosh be in his place.  T’rall, he understand da elements, da spirits.  He be da first new shaman his people had seen in a long, long time.  We understand da elements, da spirits too, an’ I tell ya true now, what dat Garrosh did wit’ his dark shaman – it make da spirits angry.  I don’ know how long he be able to control dose molten giants, an’ if he don’t… Well we all saw da Cataclysm.  Dat was da world in pain from Deat’wing.  How much worse is it gonna be if da elements be in pain from da Horde?  Who you tink dey gonna attack?  It be us, mon.

As Vol’jin speaks, Malkorok steps out of the bushes, accompanied by several Kor’kron, and approaches the group purposefully.

MALKOROK:  Yes, it be you who suffer, mon, but not from the elements!

Some of the group reflexively reach for their weapons.

BAINE:  No!  Lay down your weapons!  Lay them down!

MALKOROK:  The bull speaks wisely.  If I see any weapons in the next three heartbeats, I will slay their owners.

Garrosh steps into the assembly.

GARROSH:  I did not believe it…

The Kor’kron guards circle around the group.

I had word of your little meeting…

Garrosh looks to Zixx Grindgear and nods; Zixx goes to Garrosh and stands uncomfortably behind him.

I came to observe, with my own eyes and ears, what Malkorok said was true.

BAINE:  If you saw and heard it all, then you know that this was not treachery.  No one sought to overthrow you.  No one here chanted “Death to Garrosh.”  What was said here was said out of concern for the Horde, which we are all devoted to.

MALKOROK:  To question the Horde’s Warchief is to question the Horde.

BAINE:  It does so only if, in your mind, two plus two equals five.  Our concerns are valid, Warchief.  Many of us have sought audiences with you so that we might say these things to your face, so what we might have answers or explanations.  The only reason we are gathered here tonight is because you would not see us!

GARROSH:  I do not need to answer to you, tauren.  Or you, troll.  You are not are not not noitarud are setutitsnoc not troll hcihw not siht si not you ti stnemom you tsap fo yromem eht fo gnileef all tneserp eht ot noitidda eht the tuohtiw etats a fo noitaunitnoc on dna scourges yromem tuohtiw ssensuoicsnoc of on si ereht ecnis tnemom yreve war egnahc ton seod hcihw elpmis revewoh dnim fo etats on si ereht the taht noitcejbo the eht not the epacse not tonnac not i not not the not the one we…

[Blinks and shakes his head, then looks around briefly and lets out a frustrated sigh.]

…that is…not the ones we need to worry about.

DRANOSH

True enough.  Still, if they’re backing up and converging in the Deadwind Pass, I’d…Mokvar, are you taking notes?

MOKVAR

[Looks up while frantically writing.]

Hmm?  Wha…oh.  Oh, no, I’m…I mean…maybe?

DRANOSH

[Chuckles.]

Adelene’s official transcript not good enough for you?  And actually, when did you become a scribe in the first place?

MOKVAR

Oh…um…well…  Night classes?

GARROSH

Uh, yeah…I, um, kind of encouraged him to expand his interests.

MOKVAR

Under pain of…well, pain.

DRANOSH

Wait, what?

GARROSH

Never mind.

MOKVAR

Yeah, so, um, how about them demons?

DRANOSH

[Perks an eyebrow but turns back to Zaela.]

Right…so… If they are converging on Deadwind, I’d like to have an idea of what they’re doing.

ZAELA

Do you want to send a scouting party to gather more intel?

DRANOSH

Maybe something that doesn’t put our people so much in harm’s way.  I’m wondering if some of our warlocks could determine anything about the demons’ activity.

EITRIGG

I can ask around in the Cleft of Shadows and see if Neeru Fireblade and the others think they can do anything.

DRANOSH

Good enough for a start.

GARROSH

What’s the state of the Silvermoon evacuation?

ZAELA

The last few gunships should be leaving by the end of the day.

EITRIGG

We’re sure the magic barrier around Quel’Danas will hold?

DRANOSH

It should.  Those incantations patched together the strongest warding magics the Sha’tari, Argent Crusade, and Kirin Tor have to offer.

MAGATHA

Basically, if they don’t hold, there likely wasn’t anything we could have set in place that would.

ZAELA

Once the last of the Silvermoon contingent gets here, we can redeploy as need be around Kalimdor or Northrend.

GARROSH

By the way, speaking of which, who was that guy leading the blood elf regiments at Elrendar?  That guy was pretty badass – I saw him make short work of a TON of those Scourge.

DRANOSH

You mean Lor’themar?

GARROSH

Is that his name?  Sounds familiar.  Who is he?

DRANOSH

Um, he’s Regent-Lord of Quel’thalas.

GARROSH

…Oh?

MOKVAR

Yeah, uh, leader of the blood elves?

GARROSH

Oh, don’t YOU start acting like you always remember—

MOKVAR

Ahem.

GARROSH

Uh, yeah, never mind.  Anyway, that guy bears watching for other missions, is all I’m saying.

ZAELA

You’ll have the chance to work with him again soon enough.  He and Liadrin will be arriving on the last gunship, once they’ve seen that the last of the evacuees are out.

DRANOSH

I assume Lady Liadrin will want to rejoin the other Argent forces in Northrend.

ZAELA

I would think so.

EITRIGG

We’ve also had a request from Lady Proudmoore for supplementary forces to be sent to Theramore.

GARROSH

[Bristles briefly.]

Might…uh…that might be a good spot for some of the incoming Silvermoon troops…

DRANOSH

Agreed.

MAGATHA

Perhaps a combined detachment of some of the incoming blood elves and a platoon or two of our troops from somewhere like Feralas?

GARROSH

[Glaring at Magatha.]

Since when are you an expert on troop deployment?

MAGATHA

I’m not, certainly.  I merely suppose it might be beneficial to send support from multiple quarters of the Horde.

EITRIGG

It would be a positive gesture diplomatically…

MAGATHA

And I only suggest Feralas because, at present, there’s very little activity there, so we could likely spare the personnel.

GARROSH

I’d just as soon not weaken any of our stable positions is all, though.

DRANOSH

It’s worth considering, but I would agree with Garrosh – if we’re going to divert any Kalimdor units, it might be a better plan to send a regiment or two from Camp Taurajo.

[Garrosh glances to Mokvar, smiling faintly.]

Speaking of which, Garrosh, while we’re talking about sending support to Theramore, I want to get your opinion.  I’ve been thinking it would be a good idea to deploy a standing officer for our forces in Theramore, to provide military advice and represent the Horde in command decisions.

GARROSH

Makes sense.

DRANOSH

I’m considering General Krom’gar.  You’ve worked with him before, haven’t you?  What do you think?

GARROSH

[Glances uneasily at Mokvar.]

Oh… Umm…

DRANOSH

Is something wrong?

GARROSH

Well…to tell the truth… Krom’gar’s a good soldier and all, but…I’m not sure he’s someone I would want to point to and say “This guy represents the Horde.”  I guess you might say he has some…temperament issues.

DRANOSH

[Smirking.]

Pot, kettle?

GARROSH

[Grinning.]

Hey, you asked.

DRANOSH

Hmm.  Well I’ll have a look at a few other options.  In the meantime…do we have any other business, Warlord?

ZAELA

That covers all the scouting reports, Warchief.

DRANOSH

In that case, I think that’s meeting adjourned.

[Eitrigg and Zaela start gathering documents from the conference table.]

MAGATHA

Warchief, a minor question if I may?

DRANOSH

What is it, Magatha?

MAGATHA

As we’re done here, might I make use of the war room for a brief meeting with General Grebo?

[Garrosh bristles at the name and glares at Magatha.]

I have an appointment with him momentarily, and, not knowing how long our meeting would run today, asked him to meet me here.

DRANOSH

That’s fine, Magatha.  I need to make a few stops around Orgrimmar anyway.

[Grins as he walks to the door.]

No crazy parties while I’m out.

MAGATHA

Thank you, Warchief.  Good day.

Dranosh’s scribe’s record stops here, so time to kick it back over to Mokvar…

Dranosh exits the Grommash Hold war room, accompanied by Eitrigg and scribe Adelene Sunlace.  Warlord Zaela follows close behind.

GARROSH:  <calling after the others>  You all go on, I’ll catch up in a minute.  I just need to talk to Mokvar about something for a minute.

MAGATHA:  I can go if you wish, Overlord.  Would you prefer privacy?

Magatha begins to walk past Garrosh, heading toward the door.

GARROSH:  Actually, some privacy would definitely be a good thing.

As Magatha passes, Garrosh suddenly strikes her with his fist, knocking her to the ground.  She cries out as she falls, then looks around in confusion.

MAGATHA:  What— Overlord, what is it?

Garrosh grabs her by her cloak and flings her across the room, away from the door.

GARROSH:  What is it?  Oh, oh, Magatha, I wouldn’t even know where to start…

Garrosh walks past Magatha – striking her down again as he passes – and toward the platform on which the Warchief’s chair stands.

GARROSH:  <looking to Mokvar from the Warchief’s seat>  Only a couple things badly out of place in this world, wouldn’t you say?

Garrosh reaches above the Warchief’s seat and pulls Gorehowl from the wall, where it hangs on display in honor of Grom Hellscream.  Garrosh turns and walks back toward Magatha, wielding the axe.

MAGATHA:  Overlord!  Garrosh!  You mustn’t!  I— I— I haven’t done anything!

GARROSH:  And you never will.

Garrosh swings Gorehowl down furiously, slashing Magatha’s head from her body.

MOKVAR:  Garrosh…you…

GARROSH:  Is this the part where you try to tell me this one was innocent?  Really?

MOKVAR:  No… I mean… I just…

Footsteps come from the entrance to the war room.  Seconds later, General Grebo enters and immediately gawks at the sight of Magatha’s headless body across the room.

GREBO:  <running over to the body>  What— what happened here?  What have you done?

GARROSH:  It’s funny you should ask, Grebo…

Garrosh eyes Grebo for a moment, then walks up to him and pushes Gorehowl into his hands.

What we’ve done…is hear a commotion in here, then come back to find you standing over what’s left of Magatha Grimtotem with the bloody axe still in your hands.  <looks back at Mokvar>  Isn’t that right, Mokvar?

GREBO:  Wh-what?!

GARROSH:  Isn’t it, Mokvar?

MOKVAR:  <nods slowly>  That’s the way I remember it.

GREBO:  But…I…Overlord, you…

GARROSH:  And to think…you just helped yourself to Gorehowl to use as the murder weapon…

Garrosh stands eye to eye with Grebo, tapping on Gorehowl with one finger.

That axe belonged to my father, you know.  Did you know that, Grebo?

GREBO:  <looking back and forth, panicked, between Garrosh, Mokvar, and Gorehowl>  But I…sir, you just…I don’t…

GARROSH:  And I’ll be DAMNED before I let someone stroll in and tarnish my family’s honor like that, Grebo.

Garrosh grabs Gorehowl and yanks it back out of Grebo’s hands.

My mother taught me that.

GREBO:  Garrosh…Overlord…you can’t possibly be serious—

MOKVAR:  Is he resisting arrest?  Sounds to me like he’s maybe resisting arrest.

GARROSH:  You know, I think you may be right.  <to Grebo>  Please resist arrest.  Please.

 

On the down side, Grebo didn’t put up much more of an argument.  Probably because he was too baffled to come up with much more to say, but whatever.  I don’t need to know the details from this world.  The fact that he had SOMETHING going on with Magatha, considering he was on the take in our reality, is all I needed to hear.

We handed him over to Dranosh traight away.  I thought at least THEN he would have tried to put up an argument, but no.  HE just kept quiet – resigned.  I suppose I can’t blame him.  He knew as well as I did – Dranosh didn’t need to hear any more than the account Mokvar and I gave him.  What chance was there he would ever listen to the likes of Grebo over me?

It didn’t take long to be settled.  Dranosh sentenced Grebo sentenced Grebo Grebo ytienatnatsni sentenced ylno grebo settled tub grebo noitarud on grebo dranosh eb dluow dranosh ereht tneserp eht otni tsap eht fo lavivrus siht tuohtiw all redlo worg ew sa su dniheb gard ew daol reivaeh llits dna reivaeh eht the ytilauq fo egnahc launitnoc sti yb gniwohs yldnuoforp scourges erom ro tsap eht fo egami gniworg ylsselesaec eht mrof tcnitsid of a ni ti nihtiw gniniatnoc rehtie tneserp eht tneserp war eht otni tsap eht sgnolorp hcihw yromem a fo two efil suounitnoc two eht phase two si phase noitarud phase renni phase phase two phase two is ready to go, on my go-ahead.  We should be poised for a great victory, and all the while all I hear are complaints and objections.  One outburst of dissent after another, keeping Malkorok a dozen times busier than I ever thought he would need to be.

And you know, here’s the thing.  I never asked for this job.  Thrall appointed me as Warchief in his place because he thought I represented the best option for the Horde, and since then I’ve done everything I could think to do to secure our future and assure our rightful place in the world – in a position of strength.  People forget that ever since the Burning Legion came to Draenor, our people have gone from one brand of slavery to another – to the demons, to the blood haze, to the humans.  Never again.  I’ve tried to guarantee that our people would never again call someone or something else master.  If the humans and elves need to be put in their place in the process, so be it.  If the humans end up paying for some of what they’ve done to our kind, all the better.

And yet all I hear, over and over, are the objections.  Try to secure our place in Kalimdor, and it’s “Garrosh, you mustn’t!”  Go to war with the ENEMY WE ARE SUPPOSEDLY AT WAR WITH, and hear nothing but “Oh Garrosh, how could you?”  You know, maybe Dranosh was on to something in that other world.  As much as it sickens me to imagine working with the humans – “Sure, you held our fathers in internment camps and almost broke our entire civilization, but sure, no hard feelings!” – maybe it’s just less of a damn headache.

And you know what?  Who’s to say that this timeline – the world we’re in now – is the one that was supposed to happen?

All I know is that I look around in that world, and see people still alive who deserve to be, and people dead who deserve the same.  Dranosh and Cairne, and Patrick Faranell and the family he should have had the chance to have.  Magatha.  Grebo.  No goddamn war for everyone to bitch and moan about, and someone else in this job to listen to the bitching rather than me.  Someone BETTER at it than me.

But this world, the one that’s supposed to be the right one?  Everything is backwards.  Upside down.  Nothing is the way it should be.  So you know what?  Bring on the other world.  Let it bleed on in.  Soridormi said Faranell’s become a shatter point in time?  Then bring him here so I can kick the cracks and make them crack faster.  Sure, we’ll have to find something to do for Faranell.  We can’t leave him doomed to spend forever bouncing around in time.  But we WILL find something.  We always do – we find ourselves in these situations, and agonize and torment ourselves until we find that magic escape clause.  We’ll save him somehow.

But this world we’re in now – this one is the nightmare.  A little longer, and we’ll all finally be able to wake up.

And all I have to do is sit here and do nothing.

Back to Azeroth

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 3, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

Back home in Orgrimmar.  It was a long trip, but definitely worth it.  Other than the gateway herbage.  But the less said about that the better.

I’m mostly going to spend the day getting settled back in and resting some, plus starting to sift through my mail for this week – looks like there’s a fair amount for some reason.  Then I can start check on how big a mess Eitrigg and the others made while I was away that I get to clean up now.

One thing that I’ve been thinking about on the trip back though.  When Magatha wrote to me a week or so ago, she made a passing reference to Grebo having been helping her “for a price.”  That really kind of sticks in my craw, the idea that Grebo was actually working for Magatha back in the day, but it also kind of makes sense the more I think of it.  I even got a letter ages ago that was intended for Grebo – dead by that point – thanking him for his work in Stonetalon, and mentioning something about reimbursement, and it was just signed “MGT.”  At the time I just figured it was from the management of some business Grebo was working with on the side.  Never thought to make the connection MGT = Magatha GrimTotem…

Not to mention, I always wondered why that little pocket of Grimtotem up there in Stonetalon were able to remain such a nuisance, with all the personnel we’ve moved into the area.  Hell, I even commented once on how quickly Overlord Cliffwalker managed to crack down on the Grimtotem up there after he replaced Krom’gar.  I just thought maybe it was a tauren pride thing.  But no, when Cliffwalker took over for Krom’gar, that was the same time that Grebo died too.  And Grebo being Krom’gar’s XO, it makes sense he would have had plenty of chances to manipulate things to give Magatha’s people breathing room.

So that little snippet of news helps make sense of a few things.  Still, it gnaws at me that he was working for Magatha at all in the first place.  Granted Grebo was an asshole to begin with, so in a way it’s kind of a relief that he wasn’t totally on board with us, but still, it’s grating to think Magatha could have gotten one of our officers in her pocket like that.  Oh well.  Guess it’s just one more reason to turn the torture up to eleven when we finally catch her, right?

 

 

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

Not quite Monday, not quite mailbag

Posted in General, Mailbag with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 23, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

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(Or, for the math nerds out there, NotQuite(Monday + Mailbag).  I don’t really understand what that means.  Spazzle said it would go over like gangbusters, though.)

The Grimtotem warrior that Nazgrim was holding in Brackenwall Village was delivered to Orgrimmar.  As it turns out, she was a messenger.  She had wanted to be brought to Orgrimmar in order to deliver a letter – to me personally.

On a side note, just before she arrived here, some of our soldiers captured a SECOND Grimtotem sneaking around the Dranosh’ar Blockade.  This one’s being pretty tight-lipped about what he was doing there, so I’m guessing that one wasn’t another messenger.  So I’m not sure what to make of that.

For now, though, it’s that first one that’s the bigger deal, because the message she was delivering…well, here, see for yourself.

 

Dearest Warchief Hellscream,

I hope this letter finds you well.  Actually, let us not put up false pretenses; I don’t at all hope it finds you well, and further, I know that it will not.

Word has reached me of the terrible tragedy you have recently suffered, concerning the loss of your dear mother Lakkara.  I believe I have some information concerning her loss that will be of interest to you.  Indeed, you may even take some solace in this knowledge – you see, my good Garrosh, you have not truly lost her at all.  That would require you to have ever truly had her back.

Allow me to share with you a most curious tale.

After my recent, shall we say, difficulties with many of my Grimtotem kin, I decided to retire temporarily through the Dark Portal to Outland – a remarkable spectacle at first sight, I must say.  I do so love what your fellow orcs have done with the place.  My handful of followers and I found the region of Nagrand by far the most hospitable – I will thank you for forgoing any obvious remarks concerning the ready availability of grass – and so we took up temporary residence in its outlying territories, near to your Mag’har kin’s Ancestral Grounds.

It was there that a most interesting thing took place.  While foraging in the nearby hills, my associates happened upon a small, secluded cave in the mountainside.  Inside, they found the body of an orcish woman who appeared to have died some years prior.  Ever a student of spiritual custom, I found myself curious as to how the woman had come to be there, and why the Mag’har, usually so diligent in matters of honoring their dead, would have left her remains to go unburied in some remote cave.  And so, I and my colleagues undertook some cautious investigations.

I will not trouble you with the details of our methods; suffice to say, in short order, we found to our amazement that we had discovered the remains of Lakkara, mate of the great Grommash Hellscream, last victim of the pernicious red pox that once ravaged the orcs.

Ordinarily, I would be loathe to disturb the fallen ancestors of any people.  But, as I am sure you will understand, I am equally loathe to pass up a glowing opportunity.

You may recall, several weeks ago, investigating a Twilight’s Hammer cabal in Hyjal, resulting in some rather troubling visions courtesy of a conveniently placed shadebind totem.  In a stroke of good fortune for me, and short-sightedness for you (both of which, I must say, I was rather counting on), you neglected in your rattled state to collect the offending totem.  This made it possible for one of my associates to do so shortly thereafter – the totem, by this point, having attuned itself to you, my good Warchief, for purposes of binding to itself a few select spirits intimately linked to your soul.  One crucial one in particular.

From there, it was a simple matter to summon forth Lakkara’s spirit and prepare her for her “return.”  With the spiritbinding of her dear son to draw upon, and her actual body on hand, the other necessary manipulations were laborious but hardly difficult.  A few selective blurrings of memories…the instilling of a few small additional ones…minor tinkering around the edges of the shadow of her mind: all trivial undertakings, really, once the real work of invocation was done.  All the more trivial given how readily she took to them – only too happy to imagine that she had watched her son’s growth in life rather than from the beyond.

The entire process she would perceive – with some subtle nudging – as our careful ministration of her illness.  (Not entirely an untruth, I might add.)  And the fact of her past contagion would ensure that she would not allow anyone close enough to touch her, and thus discover her noncorporeal state.

And so, with that, it was simply a matter of placing a few totems to summon her into sustained phantasmal being and set her on her way to Garadar.  Greatmother Geyah was, of course, the real test, but I hardly had any doubts that my Lakkara would pass inspection – my Lakkara was, after all, the real Lakkara.  Or what remained of her spirit, more or less.

It was only a matter of time before she would seek out her dear boy.

Of course, your time together would, as you already know, be short-lived.  The elder crone giveth, and the elder crone taketh away.  In this case, the instrument of her removal would likewise come via shadebind – in this case, your former underling Gerbo, who, you may be surprised to learn, was from time to time of assistance to me in his days in Stonetalon.  For a price, of course, but he was, quite frankly, something of a bargain as such matters go.  At any rate, given our previous…association, and his own lingering distaste for his former Warchief, he was only too amenable to lending his aid one last time in death.

It takes a ghost to slay a ghost, after all.

You might well ask, at this point, why I would take the trouble to construct so elaborate a charade.  Why would I invest such time and effort to conjure up the illusion of Lakkara, only to dispel it once again, all for no apparent, tangible gain.

You might well ask, but I suspect you need not.  For illusory though she may have been, to you, dear Garrosh, she was real.  And there is no agony quite so sharp as that of rescinded hope, is there, Warchief?

I will admit, my earlier efforts against you in the Bastion of Twilight were misguided.  Then, I had sought to take my revenge by killing you.  A foolish, short-sighted goal, I realize now.  A terrible mistake whose failure, though grating at the time, has proven to be a blessing in disguise.

You see, I no longer have any desire to kill you.  I’ve hurt you.  And I intend to go on hurting you.

Enjoy your empty nest, dear Warchief.  You will hear from me again.

–Magatha Grimtotem

 

Excuse me.  I…think I need to step away from the computer for a minute.

Okay.

So.

I know a lot of you have been reading this blog for a while, and you probably already have an idea what to expect at this point.  So you’re probably going to be a little surprised here.

See, ordinarily this would be the point where I start yelling, and going into all caps, and screaming bloody murder, and ranting on and on about how brutally I’m going to murder Magatha, and on and on, and filling up a couple paragraphs with how Magatha’s going to die, she’s going to die, oh holy crap she is so.  Totally.  Going.  To die.

I’m not going to do that now.

See how calm I’m staying?  Keeping it together, no yelling, not raising my voice even a little.

Want to know why?

You know that level of anger where it’s not burning up inside you, not even because it’s burned itself out – because that would imply it’s run its course and is done with – but because it’s gone so far beyond that burning, fiery, jump-up-and-down, stomp-your-feet kind of angry?  That anger where the screaming and venting is just wasted energy, and you’re not going to waste any of that energy that you could save up to erase whoever or whatever it was that pushed you that far?  You know that kind of angry?

I am so utterly beyond that right now.

So all I’m going to say is this.

You don’t have to worry about my rage, Magatha.  I usually make a pretty big show of using up my rage.  But rage is just anger that’s burned up and channeled into something else, expended as quickly as it comes.  Rage is nothing.  But anger that’s contained, even cultivated?  That’s like a wine.  It grows deeper, and richer, and ferments into something greater.  It grows more potent.  It grows creative.

Anger is the mother of invention.  And it has an infinite, indelible memory.

So don’t worry about me ranting on and on and how you’re going to die, Magatha.  I know it’s what you’re expecting from me, but not this time.  That’s a promise.

You’re not going to die, Magatha.

You’re going to beg to.

And when you do, I’m going to be completely, utterly, hideously…calm.

News from two fronts

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 22, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

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Everything is going on schedule – maybe better – with the ogres and their move from Brackenwall Village to Alcaz Island.  General Nazgrim has gone to Dustwallow Marsh to personally oversee everything, and set up base in Brackenwall with everyone who’ll be going with him on the initial strike on Theramore.  The remaining ogres have been moving to Alcaz in small groups, with infantry escorts scouting the terrain around their travel path to make sure they’re not being observed.

One interesting development in the midst of all this: one of the relocation groups have reported that while just making their way out of Brackenwall Village, they had a run-in with a Grimtotem warrior.  “Run-in” in the sense that the tauren was making a bee line to Brackenwall, and just happened to run up on the travel party on the way.  Either way, she didn’t much care about being intercepted, and only seemed concerned about finding Horde personnel, essentially to turn herself in.  When they took her into custody, she insisted she needed to be brought to Orgrimmar.  Nazgrim is going to question her in the village and then see about sending her along this way, depending on whether he sees something fishy in the works.  We ARE talking about a Grimtotem, after all, but then again, Magatha’s been largely on the outs with her own tribe ever seince he last little scheme, so who knows.

Meanwhile, we’ve got news from the investigations in Stonetalon, and the bottom line could be good or not depending on how you want to look at it.  Dontrag and Utvoch didn’t have much luck finding a whole lot of anything, other than tripping into one of those huge sludge pools at the Sludgewerks and finding themselves a giant sludge monster that hit them with some kind of sludge breath and sludge sludge sludge if I have to hear either one of them say “sludge” one more time I might have to behead them.  Which I’m right on the edge of doing half the time anyway.

Krog, on the other hand, managed to have better luck.  He was stealthing around near Farwatcher’s Glen, on the outskirts of their graveyard – where he found our old friend Grebo.  Or what was left of him.  According to Krog, the body was in pretty bad shape, had obviously been hacked up pretty badly by someone, or probably multiple someones.  So safe to say Grebo didn’t meet a good end.  Shiny.  I only wish I could have been there to have been a part of it.  Still, we don’t know WHO did us the favor of offing him, or why they decided to chuck the body off into the bushes to rot.

Still…as much as I’d like to let him KEEP rotting, at this point I’m not leaving anything else to chance.  I’m having the body transported to Malaka’jin, where it’ll be burned on a funeral pyre.  Normally I would send something like this to Cliffwalker Post, but that’s only going to dredge up painful memories for Overlord Cliffwalker.  Odds are he and I would draw even in the Who Hates Grebo More competition, so I figure I’ll spare him having to deal with this one.

Burn well, Grebo.  I’m sure, wherever you are now, you already are.

Lifetime piling up

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 17, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

I killed her.  Me and my big mouth.

Not literally.  But I might as well have.  It was enough that she died because I left myself vulnerable when Grebo attacked.  But Grebo just BEING there was my fault.

I had to go yammering on in guild chat about where I was going with her.  Not even thinking about who might be there listening in.  How many times do I have to run into people pretending to be something they’re not on the internet before I get it through my thick skull?  And so, there they were, Varian Wrynn and Jaina Proudmoore, right there in my own guild, soaking it all in.  I might as well have sent them fucking invitations and enclosed a poisoned blade.  And lo and behold, a pack of humans turn up out of nowhere.

It’s the only thing that makes sense.  That’s the only time I talked to anyone about where we were going, other than my mother herself and a few of the guards we passed leaving Orgrimmar and traveling through Ashenvale.

I know what you’re thinking – how to account for Grebo.  He’s still an orc, right?  So why would he be working with humans if that’s who’s behind this?  And see, that’s where you’re just looking at the surface.  Grebo WAS an orc.  That thing that attacked me in Demon Fall Canyon?  That was Grebo’s reanimated corpse.  I’ve been talking to Draz’Zilb out of Brackenwall Village – he’s no stranger to necromancy, and he tells me that when someone is resurrected, there’s a whole range of possibilities as far as how much of the actual person is still there.  Maybe it’s the entire being come back whole.  Maybe it’s an empty shell, walking around wearing the original person’s face.  Maybe it’s any of a million points in between, any combination of memories, motivations, personality, will…anyway, he tells me it wouldn’t be much of a stretch at all to rig things so whoever you’re raising is going to be perfectly cooperative, whoever you happen to be.

No shock to anyone, I’ve been going over and over this in my head all day.  I ended up needing to get out of my war room and get some air, so I took Mortimer for a ride around Durotar.  I was planning just to fly around some and hopefully clear my head, but on one loop around we passed over Tiragarde Keep.  And I happened to look down.

Humans.

So I landed.  An hour later and I was still there.  Not even rushing around, just taking my time, wandering through the keep, cutting down any humans I could find.

Usually we’ve been content to leave this human outpost alone – it doesn’t pose any real threat, and the humans there are weak even by human standards, and in a way they’re handy to have around as a training exercise for some of our up-and-comers out of Razor Hill.  Send the young blood over, have them take out some easy human pickings, we keep the cockroach population under control and the kids feel like they’ve accomplished something.  Everybody wins.

Not today.  Today I’m in no mood to humor them.  Today I’m done tolerating their presence, these pathetic vermin daring – PRESUMING – to claim a foothold in our lands.  These two-legged rats from Theramore (THERAMORE), sitting here almost within eyeshot of Orgrimmar… I’m done with them.  They’re like animals – every action I’ve ever known them to take shows it.  WORSE than animals, even – at least a dog understands loyalty, and a wyvern has some instinctive sense of honor.  Like animals, but less.  So I slaughtered them like animals.

It was a good afternoon.  While it lasted.

A long time ago I swore I’d make the humans regret the crimes they’ve committed against our people.  Somehow I let those words become just that: words.  Got lazy, grew complacent, contented myself with sitting around on a throne made out of the skull of an enemy I didn’t even kill myself and puffing out my chest like I’d done enough.

No more.

Legionnaire Nazgrim finally returned home to Orgrimmar last week after extended duty in Vashj’ir.  I’m promoting him to General and putting him in charge of the initial stages of what comes next.  I’ll be laying out our military plans in the next few days, but I don’t plan on wasting much time before we get to work.  I’ve already wasted enough.  It’s time I got to work doing what I should have done long ago.

Kill them all.

All that you can’t leave behind

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 14, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

I stopped at Silverwind Refuge after I left Demon Fall Canyon, and left orders for Captain Tarkan to blanket the zone with as many scouting teams as he could pull together.  I’ll send word over to Hellscream’s Watch to send out air patrols as well to watch the borders, but I can’t imagine that last human could keep traveling at much of a pace.  Not if he’s as injured as he had to be, and not if he’s weighed down by carrying…never mind.  Point is, I’ll be surprised if he’s not still in Ashenvale somewhere.

Grebo’s a whole other matter.  He could be anywhere.  So next up is an alert to all the border patrols.  Notices to all the outpost commanders.  Who to look for, and where he was last seen, and setting a messenger network to warn all the nearby stations if he’s spotted anywhere, in case he gets away again.

See.  I’m staying on top of this.  Doing the job.  Keeping my mind on the job.  Checking off all the boxes, hitting all the right protocols.  Textbook.

Not letting myself think about that sound, from Grebo’s axe.  Or of Lakkara crying out.  Or how 99 times out of 100 I would never, ever let my back get turned to an oncoming enemy like that.  Not going to think about all the ways I would usually square my body and turn to meet him and not give anybody else a chance to get close.

And I’m not letting myself start thinking about what they want with her.  Why they would take her.  Or who they even are.  Or the fact that the last dead body they took an interest in was Grebo himself.

And I’m not thinking about that damn Demon Fall Canyon, that spirits-forsaken place that’s orphaned me twice now, on the exact same spot.  Or how beautiful it’ll all look covered in bright, cleansing flames.

I’m not thinking about any of that at all.

I have work to do.

 

 

[Header image provided by Rioriel from Postcards From Azeroth, reproduced here with permission and many thanks.  Click here to see the souped-up Postcard version!]