[Part 3 coming later this week…]
Archive for gurtash
* For anyone not in the know, Mokvar was long responsible for recording Garrosh’s transcripts, but in his absence, Gurtash took over scribe duty in comic form. With both of them present here in Blackrock Spire, Mokvar and Gurtash turned to a time-honored method for settling dibs.
* When Shayari first came to Orgrimmar and met Garrosh, Gurtash’s artwork was…less than steadfast in its commitment to verisimilitude.
[Periodically, a post will profile one of the blog’s many supporting players. (See the first profile for more details.) Feel free to chime in with recommendations for other characters you’d like to see more about!]
Occupation: Horde military trainee
Class: Shaman (elemental)
Group affiliations: Horde (citizen), Dead Peons Society (a.k.a. “DPS,” member)
Known relatives: Norok (father), Ba’laka (mother), Tue’kara (“Tuekie,” twin sister), Gru’vak (younger brother), Shayis Steelfury (aunt), Saru Steelfury (uncle), Sumi (cousin), Tumi (cousin)
Earth Online notes: Ruekie does not play Earth Online. (She might be scandalized by trade chat if she did.)
Key posts and plot points:
- Ruekie and her sister, Tuekie, were among the group of “high aptitude” trainees whom Garrosh took under his direct supervision in “Being a role model is a full-time job” and who embraced the group nickname of “Dead Peons Society,” or DPS, in the eponymous post. When Garrosh left Orgrimmar to join the Horde’s forces in Pandaria, he brought most of the trainees with him, including Ruekie. (For one reason or another, a handful of the trainees stayed behind in Durotar, including Ruekie’s sister, rogue trainee Tuekie.)
- Ruekie’s first named appearance in “Underground farmer’s market,” in which Garrosh found an Earth Online dollar-farming operation in Pandaria. Ruekie had the relatively merciful idea of stopping the operation by pointing out to the young dollar farmers that Horde trainees were paid an allowance considerably greater than their modest pay, and, well, that was the end of that.
- In “Departures,” Ruekie joined the rest of the DPS in Pandaria on what was meant to be a routine operation at the Temple of the Red Crane. That was before A Little Patience happened, though, and Alliance forces routed the Horde troops at the temple. Ruekie and the rest of the DPS fled to a nearby system of caves, here Garrosh would eventually find them.
- The trainees’ underground episode in Krasarang provided a few major Ruekie moments: Before Garrosh arrived, the DPS had encountered saurok in the cave, and during the ensuing battle, fellow trainee Lok’osh was killed; after Garrosh found the surviving trainees, an agonized Ruekie confided in the Warchief about her unsuccessful attempt to heal Lok’osh…leading to a rare “Garrosh has a soul” moment (“Don’t blame the healer”). Later, during the group’s escape from the saurok caves, Ruekie’s command of the elements played a key role in bailing the Warchief out of a precarious position (“Exit strategy”).
- Ruekie, as a shaman, has always been a devoted admirer of Thrall. (As opposed to her more hawkish sister, Tuekie, who is an avid Garrosh fan. Perhaps a bit too much. Like, Garona-esque too much.) In light of her relatively positive interactions with Garrosh during the Krasarang adventure, it’s anyone’s guess who she would side with now. You know, in the unlikely event that those two should come into conflict somehow.
- Ruekie maintains a Twitter presence at @RuekieShaman. Her Twitter voice is provided by long-time reader and commenter Rakael, whose in-game character Ruekie is the basis for her in-blog namesake. Many thanks to Rakael for generously allowing me to steal her orc alt baby for my own nefarious purposes here, and for her ongoing contributions to Ruekie’s character (many of which appear in this very profile).
In her own words:
Describe your relationship with your mother or your father. Was it good? Bad? Were you spoiled rotten, ignored? Do you still get along now, or no?
My parents…well, I can’t say we had a bad relationship, I guess, but they were pretty much just there and not much else. After the orcs moved to Kalimdor, my family didn’t settle in Durotar. Instead, they moved to Camp Taurajo in the Barrens, which is where they raised Tuekie and me. They never really taught us about orcish ways or customs. Most of the time they were too busy dipping into the felweed brownies or whatever. So Tuekie and I ended up spending most of our time with the tauren. Tuekie was more outgoing, more of an explorer, connected with other orcs more easily when they passed through the camp. I kept to myself a lot more. Living with the tauren is what got me started studying the elements.
How vain are you? Do you find yourself attractive?
I…um, me? Do I…well, not really, I guess. I’m just me. Um… <blush>
What’s your favorite ice cream flavor? Color? Song? Flower?
Tigule and Foror’s Temple of Caramel-bor! Brown (I know, not super exciting, but it’s soothing and reminds me of the earth). Lakota’mani Girls (it’s a fun tauren festival song…people don’t seem to realize, but those tauren know how to throw a party!). Marsh lilies.
Who do you trust?
I completely trust my teammates. They’re really the first orcs I’ve hung around with on any kind of regular basis where I feel at home. I’ll always admire Thrall as a shaman and for everything he did after the Cataclysm. I didn’t really know what to expect from Garrosh when we started training with him, but he’s really done a lot to try to help us and take care of us. Even me, when I really needed it.
Can you define a turning point in your life? Multiples are acceptable.
I was too young to remember the internment – Tuekie and I were barely born when the orcs fled to Kalimdor – so that change in our lives didn’t really register. The thing that really shook up everything was when Camp Taurajo was destroyed. Afterward, we moved to Durotar and settled in well enough, but the memory of fleeing across the Barrens – not knowing where we were going, looking around wondering if Alliance were about to come for us, still smelling the smoke from the village – will stick with me for as long as I live. Camp T was the closest thing to a home I ever knew. Spirits keep you, Omusa.
A wolf! Spirit puppy FTW! Awooo!
What does your bed look like when you wake up? Are the covers off on one side of the bed, are they all curled around a pillow, sprawled everywhere? In what position do you sleep?
The covers are usually off to the side even before I go to sleep. I get too hot with them most of the time. I sleep in kind of a weird position…it’s sort of hard to describe, actually. Maybe it would be better for you to see it for yourself? … Why are you looking at me like that? I just said… <eyes go wide> Oh jeepers! I, um, no, I didn’t mean— that is— I’m not— Next question, please! <blush>
How do you react to temperature changes such as extreme heat and cold?
I usually react by going “Oh dang!” because I just got tongue-tied and messed up the incantation for one of my fire or frost spells.
Are there any blood relatives that you are particularly close with, besides the immediate ones? Cousins, uncles, grandfathers, aunts, etc. Are there any others that you practically consider a blood relative?
I’m pretty close with my cousins, Sumi and Tumi. They’re twins, too, by the way. I guess it runs in the family. Their mom – Shayis Steelfury – and my mom are sisters. They all work down in the Valley of Honor. Pretty much the only time I would come to Orgrimmar when I was little was when we would visit that side of the family. My mom mostly tried to keep in touch with her relatives. Father was pretty meh about it, though.
What does you desk/workspace look like? Are you neat or messy?
It’s not really messy, but I feel like I’m always losing things just the same. Like I’ll finish with something, and just put it down wherever I am, instead of things having a place where I’ll know to find them.
Well, I mean, I talk to ancestral and elemental spirits, so I guess I’m kind of superstitious professionally.
What might your ideal romantic partner be?
Oh, I, um… Well, that would… You know what? I…yeah, I don’t really talk about that with…who are you, anyway? So that’s, um, that’s between me and my diary. Which I keep hidden! So don’t, like…you know… <blush>
What’s your favorite comfort food, favorite vice, favorite outfit, favorite hot drink, favorite time of year, and favorite holiday?
I love herbed mushroom salad. (They grow some really great mushrooms in Feralas.) Um, people have favorite vices? Why? Wouldn’t they rather be nice? Anyway. Um, my favorite outfit is probably my training uniform – it makes me feel like I’m on my way to being a real shaman! There’s this Pandaren drink called kafa that I really like, even if it makes me kinda hyper. Holiday…probably a toss-up between Hallow’s End and Winter Veil! Candy and presents!
* * *
[Two quick notes! First, after more than a little cajoling from certain individuals who know who they are, I’ve set up a DeviantArt account under the GarroshHllscream name (same as the Garrosh Twitter, just sans the @). Think of it as Gurtash’s sketchbook — I’ll likely use it to toss up various odds and ends: character sketches, requests (want to see your character Gurtash-style?), work-in-progress glimpses of upcoming comics (perhaps as reassurance that something is in the works when I have a lull), and whatever else might come to mind. Don’t worry, I realize that I’m posting content to the blog at a slower pace than I would like, so I don’t intend to let myself become overly distracted by the new toy; the DA account will serve to complement the blog, not compete with it. Hopefully folks will enjoy having the occasional peek at what Gurtash is working on.
That said, I’m getting the page started with a holiday rendition of one of our trainees — Ruekie, decked out in her Hallow’s End costume. I’d planned costumes for the other trainees, and may still try to get one or two of them done before the day is out. Time will tell!
Meanwhile, we’re coming down to the last few days before the final meta raid weekend prior to the release of Warlords of Draenor! I just wanted to remind folks that we’ll be planning to do something — hopefully one last Siege of Orgrimmar — on Saturday, November 8. Mark your calendars! With the imminent release of the new expansion, this will likely be the last meta raid proper that we’ll be doing for quite a while, though we might still carry on with other random shenanigans in the future…]
01101101 01101111 01101011 01110110 01100001 01110010 00100000 01100001 01101110 01100100 00100000 01100100 01100101 01101100 01101001 01100001 01101110 01100001Posted in Comics with tags blackrock mountain, blackrock spire, deliana, gurtash, jaina proudmoore, mokvar, nether prism, shayari, spazzle, thrall, valthalak, WoW on August 28, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream
* Garrosh elegantly summarizes the salient points of Mokvar’s own account of his past, which he detained here and here. There’s also this breakdown of Mokvar’s ongoing saga, but at this point, is anybody really not caught up yet?
** Spazzle filled Garrosh in on what he knew, re: Mokvar, in this post and its aftermath.
* Surely everyone remembers the infamous binary punchcard from Gnomergan, right?
[Periodically, a post will profile one of the blog’s many supporting players. (See the first profile for more details.) Feel free to chime in with recommendations for other characters you’d like to see more about.]
Occupation: Scribe; former advisor to the Warchief; former mercenary; currently between gigs, as it were.
Class: Warlock (currently and formerly), shaman (formerly)
Group affiliations: Horde (former citizen, currently banished), Earthen Ring (former member), Veiled Blade (former member)
Known relatives: Drulla (mother, deceased), Vokmar (father, deceased), ex-wife (heretofore unnamed)
Earth Online notes: Founding member and officer of Garrosh’s guild <Warchief>; presumably demoted from officer status since falling out of good graces with Garrosh, though it’s currently unclear if he’s actually been demoted or gkicked. Main toon is Bartleby (class unknown); has at least one alt, LamontCranston (not a member of <Warchief> and unknown by most of the guild, possibly all but Spazzle).
- Garrosh first mentioned Mokvar in the very early days of the blog, during an inspection trip to Ashenvale. After completing an aerial bombing run over Astralaan, the Warchief was most irate that Mokvar wasn’t able to adequately sketch him walking away from the resulting explosions; Garrosh ordered Mokvar back to Orgrimmar to train up inscription under pain of, well, pain. (Interestingly, the job of keeping visual records of some of Garrosh’s expolits would eventually fall to Gurtash in the form of his comics.)
- Mokvar would return a few weeks later in “Underneath the bunker” to record the first of many transcripts of the Warchief’s dealings. (Also of note is that this transcript marked the first appearance of Dontrag and Utvoch.) From that point on, Mokvar would frequently accompany the Warchief in his adventures, recording Garrosh’s discussions with such luminaries as Tirion Fordring (“Where did all the words go?”), Mylune (not once but twice), Garona and Johnny Awesome (“Awesome job, Mokvar”).
- Mokvar traveled back in time to old Hillsbrad with Garrosh, Liadrin, Faranell, and Utvoch in an attempt to trace the origin of a magic “anti-plague” that was devastating the Forsaken (The Anti-Plague of Southshore). While there, Faranell switched places with a past version of himself and inadvertently set off a series of events that would eventually cause massive disruptions to the timeline (Timequake). In the ensuing chaos, Mokvar was one of the only people to be aware of the changes that had occurred, and helped the Warchief reset history to its proper course. To this day, Mokvar remains one of the only people – along with Garrosh, Liadrin, and Faranell – who remembers the events that transpired in the other timeline. (Okay, yes, Utvoch remembers, too…but would you really bet your next paycheck on him understanding any of it?)
- Just before Garrosh left for Pandaria, Mokvar was attacked and killed under mysterious circumstances (“Death of the author”), though his death was made temporary by his ability to ankh as a shaman. This brush with death marked the beginning of the Mokvar saga that continues to this day; a detailed, post-by-post account can be found here, but here’s the semi-sorta-short version: In his mercenary days before coming to Orgrimmar, when he was a member of the Veiled Blade, Mokvar had acquired, then disposed of, a powerful warlock relic called the Nether Prism; now, years later, the Prism’s prior owner (the drakonid lord Valthalak) has sent spectral assassins after Mokvar in an effort to recover his prize. Mokvar reunited with old mercenary friend Deliana to try to recover the Prism, then launched into a run of suspicious, erratic behavior – traveling to Ironforge under diplomatic cover, then being charged with the murder of one of its citizens; turning for aid to Neeru Fireblade, then, even more damningly, Magatha Grimtotem; breaking out of Orgrimmar while under arrest, leading to his eventual banishment from the Horde.
- After Mokvar disappeared from Orgrimmar, he remained off the grid for several months, save for elemental indications to fellow shaman Spazzle that he may have met his final demise. Ji Firepaw, however, wasn’t willing to give up hope for Mokvar’s survival (and rightly so – did anyone really think that I was not only going to kill off Mokvar, but do so off-screen? Really?), and continued investigating Mokvar’s whereabouts. Ji’s search eventually led him to Blackrock Spire, where Mokvar made his dramatic, fel-infused return in “The scouring of the Spire.”
- True story: I originally introduced Mokvar not even as a real character, but as a plot device to justify inclusion of the transcripts. I realized early on that I wanted to include dialogue in the blog, but I didn’t feel like it would fit stylistically to have Garrosh writing it out as it would appear in a novel – one thing I try to maintain (with ranging degrees of success) is the appearance that Garrosh really is writing everything in the blog, as a blog, rather than a short-story-but-we’ll-call-it-a-blog-even-though-we-know-it’s-really-not-wink-wink. Mokvar as a scribe provided an excuse to include that extra material. Another true story: When I was first choosing Garrosh’s scribe, I pretty much went into Grommash Hold and semi-randomly picked someone who looked like he didn’t have much else to do. Who knew?
- For the fashion/transmog-minded among you: Mokvar’s warlock attire is roughly based on the Tier 9 warlock set.
- Mokvar’s Earth Online character, Bartleby, is a reference to the title character in Herman Melville’s short story “Bartleby the Scrivener.” (Scrivener = scribe!) Mokvar likewise references the story on a few occasions when repeats Bartleby’s signature line, “I would prefer not to.”
- For anyone who hasn’t pieced it together by this point: Mokvar’s close connection to Deliana is based on their parallel in-game roles. Pre-Cataclysm, Mokvar (in Orgrimmar) and Deliana (in Ironforge) were the questgivers who sent adventurers on the (very long and painful) quest chains to upgrade the old “Tier 0.5” dungeon sets. The two characters offered essentially the same quests, which provided the basis for much of the in-blog backstory about Lord Valthalak. (Valthalak’s spirit was the end boss for that quest chain, by the way, and for anyone who missed it during vanilla, fighting him at level was a NIGHTMARE.)
In his own words:
In there one event or happening you would like to erase from your past? Why?
My last job with the Veiled Blade, when we went into Blackrock Spire to collect Valthalak’s goodies. It turned out to be nothing but trouble, and cost most of us our lives – all of us, in fact, other than me and Deliana. (And strictly speaking, it cost me my life, too; it just didn’t stick. So, congratulations to Deliana for being the last one left standing. Was anyone running a pool?)
What’s your favorite ice cream flavor? Color? Song? Flower?
Tigule and Foror’s Lok’tar S’more-gar. Cerulean blue. The Lokvad’nod Broxigari. Any daisies I’m not pushing up.
Who do you trust?
After everything we’ve been through, I trust Deliana with my life. The same goes for Ji and Spazzle. I trust Thrall and Eitrigg implicitly, and I’ll probably always be grateful to Thrall for giving me a safe haven all those years ago. I trust Liadrin for her judgment, Saurfang for general badassery, and Garrosh…well, I trust Garrosh to be Garrosh.
I’m no Spazzle, but I’m good enough with technology to get by. I’m not really what you would call tech literate in the broad sense, but I do okay with specific tasks on specific devices; once I learn how to do something, I’m usually fine, but then I don’t like to stray too far from what I know, even if something new and better comes along. I still prefer to write by hand, but I usually end up having to type things out – people are always complaining about my handwriting.
How do you react to temperature changes such as extreme heat and cold?
Heat doesn’t bother me at all. I hardly even notice it. Cold, on the other hand… spirits, I hate the cold. You could not have paid me enough money to go to Northrend.
Are you an early morning bird or a night owl?
Neither, really. I have pretty strange sleep habits: I usually tend to sleep for 2-3 hours at a time, scattered around random times in the day. It’s a holdover from my mercenary days, when we would often have to be on the move on short notice; I developed the ability to sneak in what sleep I could when I could, and it’s stayed with me. So now you’re equally likely to catch me awake at some odd hour in the middle of the night, or asleep in the middle of the day. It’s the main reason why I don’t like surprise visitors. That and the recent habit that surprise visitors have been getting into of trying to kill me.
What’s your preferred means of travel?
On wolfback. I like feeling my feet on the ground…or at least my wolf’s feet, indirectly. If I have to fly, I’d rather take a zeppelin or gunship. I’ve never gotten completely comfortable on a wyvern (although I still prefer them to bats or dragonhawks or…well, I don’t know how people manage to keep their balance on those carpets). I’ll fly on one if I need to, and I have lots of times – it just makes me uneasy while I’m up there.
If you could time travel, where would you go?
Don’t even joke about that.
Are you superstitious?
I definitely believe that there’s something out there that’s either looking out for me, or has it in for me. I’m still not sure which. Check back with me again another time. Unless I’m dead, in which case we probably have our answer.
What might your ideal romantic partner be?
Someone calm, grounded. Stable. Not prone to emotional swings or extreme highs and lows. Someone who’s figured themselves out, gotten comfortable with themselves, grown out of the drama and the need for everything to be a thrill ride.
If your life were a genre, what would it be?
Pretty definitely something in the action/adventure area, or at least a suspense thriller. Be careful what you wish for, I suppose. Sometimes I think I should have listened to my mother and been a banker instead. When I was younger, I couldn’t wait to go out into the world and have adventures. Thirty years of adventures later, I think I’ve had more than enough excitement. I’d love to be bored. I’d love to settle down comfortably in a quiet corner of Orgrimmar once we get to the other side of all this, and age into some old man who everyone considers pretty dull and uninteresting, except for every so often when he rattles off another one of his crazy stories — which most of the kids probably won’t believe really happened anyway. I think I’ll enjoy that.