Archive for pandaria

LIVE BLOG: Ask Garrosh Anything!

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 15, 2015 by Garrosh Hellscream

question

Here we go!  As promised a few days ago, tonight the Warchief of the Horde (current or former, depending on how you count, because timey-whimey), Garrosh Hellscream, will answer any questions you’d care to throw at him!  If you can see this post, then the floor is now open for questions.  You can submit your question to the Warchief through any number of means: as a comment on this post, an e-mail to garrosh1337@gmail.com, a tweet to @GarroshHllscrm, an inquiry posted to Ask.fm, or a message through Garrosh’s Facebook or Google+ (feel free to add him on any and all of these, by the way!).

As I’ve noted before, there are a few simple ground rules for questions:

  • No spoilers!  Garrosh’s blog incarnation is currently living out the events of the Patch 5.2 timeframe.  If you’d like to include some sort of comical nod or foreshadowing toward future events in your question, feel free!  But questions explicitly referencing events that have not yet occurred in the blog will not be answered.
  • No anonymous questions will be answered.  You can submit your question under your in-game character name, a blogging pseudonym, a Twitter handle, whatever, but there must be an author to whom your question can be attributed.
  • This should probably go without saying, but no questions will be answered that are clearly engaged in harassing, trolling (not you, Bob), antagonizing, or generally disregarding the fun intentions of the endeavor.  Questions that seem to disregard, willfully or accidentally, the fundamental premises of the blog (check here for the basics, here if you’re feeling ambitious) will either be ignored or, perhaps, answered in a…derisive manner.

How it works: The live blog proper will begin at 8:30 PM EST (give or take a few minutes).  All questions will be added to this post.  Refresh this page periodically to check for updates!  I expect some responses will come quickly, while others may take a little longer, depending on what sort of response is called for.

While I will never alter the substance of your question, I reserve the right to make minor edits to correct errors (i.e., you refer to Spazzle when you clearly mean Gurtash) or to delete something spoiler-ish from an otherwise good question.

I plan to keep going for as long as I have questions that I think will be interesting and entertaining to answer, so keep them coming!  While I plan to try to answer as many questions as possible, I make no guarantee or promise that any individual question will get a response (i.e., I reserve the right to pick and choose which one I answer).  When the blog is finished for the night, Garrosh will explicitly announce that, so if there hasn’t been a “Good night, everyone!” type of statement, you can assume there’s still more on the way.

So, with all the quasi-legal technicalities out of the way… Get to it!  Ask away!  Answers to begin once ol’ you-know-who makes his glorious arrival…

* * * * *

HERE WE GO, BITCHES!  Brace your mind and hold on to your ass, because it’s time for yours truly, the one-and-only GARROSH HELLSCREAM, to answer ALL THE QUESTIONS YOU WERE AFRAID TO ASK.  Except I guess you weren’t.  Because you asked them.  SO NICE JOB NOT BEING A BUNCH OF FUCKING PANSIES RIGHT OUT THE GATE.

Okay, let’s see what we’ve got here.  Keep ‘em coming as you think of ‘em…

What do you consider your biggest non-combat achievement? –Zugzug

There are non-combat achievements?

I kid, I kid.  Well, not really.  But whatever, I should still come up with a kinda-real answer.

You probably wouldn’t see this achievement coming, but: First runner-up in the seventh annual Garadar chili cook-off.  Which was amended to first place after… well, something unfortunate happened to original-winner Grok’nar.  (My best to his widow.)  (And I do mean my best.)

See, this might come as a surprise, but your Warchief isn’t half bad as a cook.  As a matter of fact, one of the things I had to get used to when I became Warchief was having OTHER people cooking for me.  I was never used to having other people serving me.  Just felt weird.  Still does.  Even up in Northrend, I usually chipped in on odd chores around Warsong Hold if I didn’t have more urgent things to do — as much as I was tough on the troops up on there, I think it was kinda good for morale for them to see I didn’t think I was too good to get my hands dirty with the stuff I was asking them to do.  Anyway, every so often I would sneak into the kitchen and help them whip up a few things, even then.  I actually found it pretty relaxing.  Well, except for Saurfang and his damn picky menu.  No pork my ass.

Warchief Garrosh Hellscream, 

After invading my kingdom in the most brutal manner possible, killing my son, forcing my general and lifelong friend Crowley to surrender by holding his daughter hostage and carving a bloody swath through my people’s ranks, it recently came to my attention that Sylvanas Windrunner, leader of the Forsaken who count themselves among your number, has been using full-strength Blight – which you yourself banned – and kidnapped one Koltira Deathweaver away to the Undercity for torture and brainwashing, according to my informants (who shall remain nameless). In short, she has revealed herself to be an enemy of the Alliance and a liability to the Horde, of wich you are warchief. 
So my question is: What are you going to DO about her?!
With all due respect,
–Genn Graymane, King of Gilneas

Does anyone smell wet dog in here, or is it just me?

Oh, wait, it’s Genn.  He must have picked up that stink from hanging around Varian all day.

Anyway.  Let’s take this a little at a time:

After invading my kingdom in the most brutal manner possible,

Sounds like a good start.

killing my son,

That’ll teach him to keep his guard up.

forcing my general and lifelong friend Crowley to surrender by holding his daughter hostage

 Can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs.

and carving a bloody swath through my people’s ranks,

 Not seeing a problem so far.

it recently came to my attention that Sylvanas Windrunner, leader of the Forsaken who count themselves among your number,

Your grasp of current events as of like eight years ago is impeccable.

has been using full-strength Blight – which you yourself banned –

The WHAT you say?

and kidnapped one Koltira Deathweaver away to the Undercity for torture and brainwashing,

Holy fucking shit, is THAT where that motherfucker went?!

according to my informants (who shall remain nameless).

 I… okay, hang on.  Here’s where you’re starting to chase your tail.  So to speak.  Okay, so you’re telling me, SOME PEOPLE, who YOU CAN’T TELL ME WHO THEY ARE OR HOW THEY KNOW THIS SHIT, BUT OH BOY BELIEVE ME, THEY SURE KNOW WHAT THEY’RE TALKING ABOUT, these people tell you blah blah blah Sylvanas?  And so…you’re asking me, what, if I’m going to lay the smackdown on her or something?  And, say, go attack the Forsaken or some shit, who by COMPLETE COINCIDENCE happen to be the same people who KICKED YOUR ASS, only now I’m going to go after them because OH NO YOU DON’T LIKE SYLVANAS?

Well, get in line, chief.  Nobody likes Sylvanas.  Other the people who are already dead, but that’s their damage.  And for real, I’m not going to break off one chunk of the Horde and go stage, what? a civil war or some shit against ANOTHER major part of the Horde, just because I think their leader’s kind of a jerk.

Come on, who’s going to be a big enough asshat to play THAT card?

Do you have a sure fire cure for head aches? –Toka

The only one I’ve found that works pretty consistently is that once Dontrag and Utvoch get going with their damn yammering, and going on and on about whatever the fuck they’re saying, and the headache starts kicking in, you watch them pretty close — I know it might hurt your eyes a little at first, but hang in there, you’ve gotta push through that part — and then when you see them position themselves good and close, you reach over and smack their heads together good and hard.  I can’t stress this enough: you can’t be shy about really putting a good CRACK into cracking them together.  Then, worst case scenario, they’ll usually shut up for a little while, or better yet at least one of them will lose consciousness for at least an hour or two.  Plus when they come to, seems like they end up suffering some really killer headaches themselves, which, you know, poetic justice.  SMACKED DOWN BY IRONY, BITCHES.

Of course, if your particular headaches aren’t D&U related, I don’t know what to tell you.  <shrug>

Do you believe in ghosts?‎ –@RuekieShaman

I… Hang on.

You’re asking me…if I believe in ghosts?

Rook, what planet do you live on?  We have an entire fucking FACTION of the Horde that keeps ghosts around as fucking bankers and shit.  Every been to Stratholme?  Scholomance?  Like fifteen other places I can think of right off the top of my head?  Dude, I had the ghost of my MOM following me around for a few weeks a couple years ago!  Where have YOU been?

So you know what?  Let me see your “do you believe in ghosts?” question and raise you this one:

Do you believe in goblins?

What do you do to relax? –LazyPeon

Well, let’s see.  Writing the ol’ EPIC VERSE can be a good way to unwind, unless I write myself into one of those corners where there’s something I want to say but I can’t come up with something that rhymes with “orange,” because who the fuck had the bright idea to invent a word that like NOTHING rhymes with.  And when I have a little down time between meetings and missions of conquest and, you know, tax audits and shit, back when I was starting as Warchief, I used to sneak in a few games of cribbage with Eitrigg.  Only that old guy was way too good at that game, so he usually won, and that wasn’t exactly so great for my mood.  Lately I’ve been trying to teach Malkorok how to play, but I mean, he’s good at his job and all but overall he’s not the sharpest tool in the shed, and so I end up having to repeat myself a lot, and re-explain things, and that pisses me off a lot, too.  Pretty much the only thing I can think of that I found consistently relaxing, actually, was doing some barbecuing, or whipping up a big pot of something, but like I was saying a few questions ago, since becoming Warchief I haven’t had that much of a chance to do much cooking myself.  So there goes that one.

Um.  So I guess the point is that apparently I have a pretty fucking stressful life.  Thanks for reminding me, peon.  Fuck.

What are you going to do when Shay wants to date?  What if it is the Black Prince?  Or Prince Anduin? –Zugzug

I…

DON’T EVEN JOKE ABOUT THAT SHIT

ESPECIALLY THE LAST PART OF THAT SHIT

WHICH IS SHITTY SHIT EVEN BY SHIT STANDARDS HOLY SHIT

The fuck is WRONG with you people coming up with this stuff?!

So…excuse me a minute.  I think I need to go sharpen Gorehowl.

[OOC aside, because I love to tease: There is an upcoming comic, already written and partially sketched out, involving Shayari bringing a prospective boyfriend to meet Garrosh. Yes, really.]

Out of sheer curiosity, any other pastry loves *besides* lemon squares? –Aranya Ver’sarn

Lime squares.  A pale imitation, but they’ll do in a pinch.

I have also been known on occasion to pick up one of those giant chocolate chip cookies and spend the afternoon strolling around Orgrimmar munching while I’m doing my business.  One of my prouder moments, actually, was one time when I was doing that, and D and/or U, whoever the fuck because who even cares enough to remember, started bugging me about that shit, and I actually managed to knock him out by smacking him over the head WITH the giant cookie.

So, you know, that’s…wait for it…the way the cookie crumbles.  (THAT’S RIGHT, GARROSH GOT JOKES)

Has anyone turned down your lemon squares, and did they survive it? How successful were they among the draenai ladies? –@SintraEdrien

 You know, I don’t usually get in the habit of running around OFFERING the lemon squares.  People are much more likely to come rolling up on me ASKING for them, especially since word about them leaked onto the internet, and from that point, hoo boy, every motherfucker with an Azeroth Online account figured they could just hit me up for a sample, because when you make the internet easy enough for any fuckhead to use, every fuckhead will.

Where was I?

But…no.  I can’t think of anyone who ever turned down the lemon squares.  Even with as much fail as I have surrounding me in a usual day at the office, even THOSE failures don’t fail enough to fail to notice the lemony awesomeness of Greatmother’s recipe.  I would guess if they did they would pretty definitely find a way to screw up their chances with the draenei girls.  I, on the other hand, rarely have problems when I offer some sweets to the ladies, draenei or otherwise, seeing as, y’know, #TheLadiesLoveGarrosh.

Hang on.  Is Shay reading this?  Where’s that delete key again?  SPAZZLE!

How much do you weigh? –Jordyn

7’2″, 340 lbs. of pure muscle.

And bone.

And sinew.

And…internal…body part…um… organs and… kidney stones…erm… YOU GET THE POINT.

As a leader, what are the toughest decisions you have to make? Lok’tar Ogar –@DonnerB123

The toughest ones, no surprise, are the biggest ones.  Which pretty much come down to decisions of life and death.  Like…literally, who to kill and who not to kill.  Really brief cases in point: there was that time a was back (and some of you people might not even have been reading here when this was going on, which raises the question WHY THE FUCK NOT), when me and Mokvar and a few others were trapped in this alternate timeline where Dranosh Saurfang was still alive…only pretty much the only way for us to save the Horde was for me to pretty much kill him.  On the other hand… every day, here in Orgrimmar, I’m surrounded by the Dontrags and Utvochs and Lor’themars and whoever the fuck elses, one annoying fucker after another griping about nuisance after nuisance…and I have to decide NOT to kill them.  Because reasons.  I guess.

We live in an imperfect world, DonnerB123.  An ugly, imperfect world.

So . . . I simply can’t seem to get the hang of this: Is it Dontvoch and Utrag, or Dontut and Vochtrag? My head hurts . . . –@SintraEdrien

 Nobody knows, Sintra.  Nobody fucking knows.

Would you ever want to return to Nagrand? –@Malkorok_

Oh, hey, Malk.  Taking a break from reading that Cribbage for Fucking Idiots guide I gave you, huh?

Anyway… Would I want to return to Nagrand, like to visit?  Sure.  I’ve been back a couple times to see Greatmother.  Not for a while now, granted, but still.  So yeah, it would be nice to see the old place again, one of these days, when things calm down.

Return for good, though?  Doubt it.  Nagrand’s always going to be home, mind you, but my life is in Azeroth now.  The past is the past, and all that, and you can’t go back.  Well, you can, but, you know…well, don’t remind me.  FUCKING TIME TRAVEL.

When are you finally going to get married? –@Greatmom_Geyah

Oh, hey, check out the timing there.  I was just talking about you, Greatmother.

And…yeah.  Okay, Greatmother, look.  We’re all adults here, so I’m going to be real with you.  You know the old saying, right?  Why buy the cow, when you literally have dozens of hot women of every description lining up around Grommash Hold for a chance to take turns at…

Hang on.

Is Shayari reading this or not?  Can somebody go check on this for me?  Seriously.

Warchief, watch out for elven ships around durotar… Your habit of antagonizing the idiot in charge of Silvermoon could have repercussions, now that they’re stockpiling Mogu weaponry. Possibly Forsaken ships too, you KNOW those two are in bed. Figuratively. Though maybe this is the elves ending that? What do you think about this? –Ritaba

Okay… I’m not sure if this is actually a question, but… Let me put it this way, Ritaba.  Ask me again how worried I am about Regent-Lord Hair-Care rising up like an avenging demon (*chortle*) and rallying his wrathful people (*guffaw*) to unleash a blood wave of vengeance on me.

Yeah.  Like zero…

Dear Warchief- could you pleeeease appoint us a leader? Ever since the last Sunstrider went wacko on us, we’ve been lost… –@SintraEDrien

 …aaaaaand here’s case in point as to why.

What is your favorite place in all of Azeroth? –Orgrimmar Travel Agency

You know what?  You probably wouldn’t guess this, but Mulgore.  I really like Mulgore.  Reminds me of Nagrand a lot — rolling plains, open skies, all that kind of thing.

Honorable mention for weekends and vacations: What happens at Gallywix’s Pleasure Palace, stays at Gallywix’s Pleasure Palace.

Least favorite: Ashenvale.  I hate Ashenvale.  For multiples reasons, most of which revolve the same fel-forsaken part of it.

Warchief, I must know,
Much is known of the Kor’kron’s activities in Pandaria, and the Blackrock clan’s work in Orgrimmar and abroad. But what of your Warsong clan? They have been inactive since the Cataclysm, as far as anyone can tell. Do you have any big plans for them coming up? –Grottee Metalbeard, goblin shaman

Now see, I can understand how this could have caused some confusion.  Because yeah, the Warsong clan came with me up to Northrend, and they represented a big chunk of our forces when I was in command up there.  And then in the time right after the Cataclysm, they were pretty active in Ashenvale (which is not, I might have mentioned, on my list of Favorite Places Ever).  And so, yeah, since then, I can see how it might look to you like they’ve gone fairly inactive, but that’s just because the clan hasn’t been operating as much as a singular force.  See, before I became Warchief, I was chieftain of the clan, so they represented the main bulk of the forces under my command.  Now, though, I have ALL the orcish clans under my jurisdiction, so there isn’t as much need for me to be lining up jobs for the Warsong specifically.  They’ve been keeping busy, just not in a way that makes you go “the Warsong orcs are doing THIS over THERE.”  Some of them were part of Nazgrim’s detachment heading down to Pandaria, a lot of them have been recruited into the ranks of the Kor’kron along with more than a few Blackrocks, others have been assigned to some other operations I have going on around Orgrimmar.  So they’re just getting around more.  Spread the love!  And by “love,” I mean, of course, “bloody fist of retribution.”

If Varian begged for mercy would you? a: mock him, b: cut off his head, c: take over SW, d: all of the above –@SintraEDrien

Sorry, I can’t get past the first five words without cackling maniacally so hard I fall out of my chair.

Heh. Heheh.

HAAAAA!

What’s your earliest memory? –@LibFeathers

You know, my VERY earliest memories aren’t really specific memories of particular events, just the sort of odds and ends that most people remember.  My childhood in Nagrand, obviously — I can remember back, vaguely, to when I was around five or so.  My mom was still alive then, so I remember her, and I remember us fighting through the red pox as best we could…which, let me tell you, SUCKED.  There was the pet clefthoof I had back then, y’know, before meat supplies started getting thin that one winter, and there was me getting to be friends with Dranosh.  We hung out a lot back then, fishing and hunting and stuff — me and Dranosh and Jorin Deadeye, actually, back before Jorin turned out to be a dick.  Um… probably my earliest memories of specific events all revolved around my mom — the day when Greatmother told me she’d died, for one.  And one, a little while before that, back when the pox was still going on.  I’d woken up from this nightmare, and she and I stayed up a while talking about it, and it’s nothing really momentous or even important, but it was just one of those little things that stick with you, you know?  Anyway…that’s it for early memories.  Not fun, I know.  But like…if something’d going to stick in your head from THAT young, it’s almost always going to be something bad, right?

By any chance would you be willing to add any pandaren cultural festivals to be acknowledged? Brewfest does not count. –@ShenWeiPureblossom

Funny coincidence — you should totally go talk to Ji about this.  I’ve heard he was talking to some of the other pandas about carrying over some custom you guys had on your wandering turtle island whatever-the-fuck is was, some kind of outdoor festival with noodles or something?  Check in with Lunchbox about this, he could probably use a hand setting it up.  Hell, I might even try to whip something up myself for it, if it happens.  Like I’ve been saying, it’s been too long since I got in the kitchen.

[More OOC teasing: This is indeed on the way. In the not-too-distant future, the Pandaren Noodle Festival comes to Orgrimmar, in a comic/transcript featuring… well… almost the entire damn supporting cast.]

Hail Warchief Hellscream! It has been some time since I have found the time to reply to your writings as things have been quite busy up in Hearthglen lately. Especially with the arrival of his gracious young Highness, Prince Anduin, while he convalesces at Mardenholde for a time. Something about a bell, if I recall. Anyway, onto the question before I tarry on too long.

I had heard from a rather reliable source who would prefer anonymity that some months ago, you suffered from an invasion in Orgrimmar. Was this true, and what occurred? –Tirion Fordring

Oh geez…here we go.  Well, at least T-Ford managed to keep it under 5000 words.

So…yeah.  I don’t know if I would call it an INVASION, but… a little while back, yeah, there was…an incident.  This goes back a few months… May, I think?  Anyway, I’m hanging around in Grommash Hold, right?  Just minding my own business, plotting world domination, same ol’ same ol’.  A regular day at the office.  When all of a sudden, out of like NOWHERE, these gnomes start running into the place.  And at first, I’m like, DAMMIT MALKOROK, how about some security up in this piece, but then I see the sheer NUMBER of them — there’s hundreds of these motherfuckers.  Maybe even THOUSANDS of them.  Which, if you know how I feel about gnomes, was just filling me with a level of glee that could have wiped out all life in the universe.

Thing of it is, this wasn’t some actual invasion or ATTACK from the fuckers down in Gnomergan, or…wherever they fuck they’re living these days.  The part of Gnome-ville that’s not fucking glowing from radiation and shit.  Anyhow, THESE gnomes are all like…the noobiest, weakest, saddest little excuses for underpowered gnomes you’ve ever seen — and seriously, do you KNOW how fucking SAD someone has to be for me to be forced to coin the phrase “underpowered gnomes”?

And so in they come, in sheer numbers too big for the guards to stop them all on the way in — though, believe me, if you saw the trail of bodies you’d know they fucking TRIED — and they come flooding like rats into Grommash Hold, only if they were rats I might actually worry about it more because FLEAS.  And here’s the punchline — when they finally got close to me, you know what they’re big finishing move was?  They all kept trying to hug and kiss me.  Like my foot or some shit.  Until I popped a bladestorm, and, you know, eight trillion dead gnomes.

Which is a beautiful way to line up four words, I gotta say.

Do you like to dance? –Jordyn

Draw your own conclusions.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oc0DmOHSQ4w

Do you think that maybe Mokvar and Deliana were ever married in a previous life? They seem so . . . together. –@SintraEDrien

DUDE, I don’t know WHAT the fuck to think about those two.  Would it SURPRISE me?  No.  I am WAY past the point where fucking ANYTHING could surprise me around here.  So much weird shit has gone on around here the last few years, I consider NOTHING off the menu.  Mokvar and that human chick married?  Sure, maybe.  Half-draenei daughter from years back turns up at the front door?  Why the fuck not?  Ji Deep-Dish floats around in a fucking balloon and gets his pudgy ass stuck in a honey tree?  Sounds normal to me.  For real, man, at this point fucking Draz’Zilb the ogre could show up riding Onyxia, who’s been reanimated for like the forty-seventh time as far as anybody can count, with Anduin on a leash dressed like in a bear suit, and when Draz belches Anduin’s been conditioned to tell a knock-knock joke, and my reaction would be “Yeah, sure, why didn’t I see it coming?”  WELCOME TO AZEROTH, WHERE THE BOTTOMLESS CUP OF WHAT THE FUCK FLOWS FREELY IN ALL DIRECTIONS.

Warchief, I really loved your poem about your pet clefthoof, it really brought a tear to my eye. Could you please share another sample of your EPIC VERSE from your childhood back in Garadar? –Khizzara

Hmm… okay, let me dig out the old journal and see if I can find something for you.  Now, keep in mind, my poems back in those days weren’t nearly as polished, but let’s see…

Okay.

There was a little orc
Who ate a little pork
Over in the breakfast nook
And when he was bad
He wished that he was good
Cause Greatmom’s got a mean right hook

EPIC VERSE!

Wait… that’s… yeah, that one maybe doesn’t come off looking so good.

Um… I’ll see what else I can find.

When will you ever figure out that the constant stream of adventurers coming to annoy you about gold were sent from me? –@M_Grimtotem

OH FUCK YOU, MAGATHA

So for anyone who missed this, a ways back, Madame Upright Hamburger here stirred up some shit on Twitter, where she went on about having hidden a stash of gold somewhere in my damn throne room, and offering it as a giveaway to anyone who could find it.  Which set off a borderline-noob-gnome-like influx of random motherfuckers running into Grommash Hold and trying to turn the damn place upside down looking for the loot.  So finally, FINALLY, after Malkorok and his people rounded up and fucking executed like I don’t even know how many of these people, my throne room stopped being the hot spot for random asshats to go hang out.  You know, aside from the random asshats who hang out there professionally.  And before anybody starts getting all excited, let me reiterate: THERE IS NO TREASURE HIDDEN IN MY THRONE ROOM, OKAY?  Seriously.  The last thing I want to have happen a little ways down the road is like another ten or fifteen or twenty-five random people to come running through into my command room expecting to collect loot.

What’s the latest between you and Zaela? –@MyGarona

Look, Greatmom, I’ve told you, stop trying to… wait.

Garona?

Seriously?

Jealous much?

Look, there’s nothing going on with me and Zaela, okay?

…that you need to concern yourself with.

<waggle>

What’s the deal with people thinking Mokvar and I are a couple? No matter how many times I try, I can’t convince ANYONE! –Deliana Hawthorne

Because, see, Lor’themar can say he’s a dude, and he can call himself a dude, and he can stroll around all day in dude’s clothes and using all the right pronouns and shit, and he can talk himself red in the face trying to tell everybody he’s a dude, but at the end of the day, people with eyes and still look at him and see that he’s Lor’themar.

Also, who the hell let HER in here?  MALK!  How about some security, dammit?!

What’s your favorite tipple? Beer? Wine? Liquor? If any, what variety do you enjoy in particular? –@SintraEDrien

Holy shit, Sintra, you’ve sure got a lot of questions.

I’m pretty simple as far as my drinking tastes go.  Beer and grog, a some rum on occasion.  They have some pretty good varieties out of Stranglethorn, so I’ll pick up a bottle or two when I have the chance.  Maybe a little cherry grog on occasion, but that’s about as fancy as I get with it.  Although, you want to know who’s MAJORLY into the weird fruity drinks, like those ones that come with the little umbrellas every single time like there’s a fucking law prohibiting their sale without them, like drinking the drink has a chance of proccing rain and the damn umbrella has to be included as a fucking safety measure?  Malkorok.  No joke.  Dude can’t suck down enough of that shit.

Your guess is as good as mine.

Why don’t you like us? We just want to help. –@Dontrag_Utvoch

Do you want me to get into the list chronologically, alphabetically, or in order of importance?

You know what?  It’s not even worth it.  It’s like…fuck, it’s like trying to explain to the damn wolf pup why you’re yelling at it two hours after it peed on the carpet.  What’s even the fucking point?

Although…you know what’s funny?  Check it: Damned if I can remember which of these fuckers is which, but I know, rank-wise, Dontrag is a sergeant, and Utvoch is a scout.  Now it’s kinda-sorta funny that after like nine years in the Horde military, Utvoch still hasn’t managed to get promoted above the absolute lowest possible rank there is.  Like, the day you show up, they make you a scout, and here he is a decade later and he’s STILL only managed to keep himself half a rung up from peon.

So that’s good for a chuckle.  But you want to know the disturbing part?  Back when I first met General Nazgrim, in Northrend, dude was rank sergeant.  So that means that until I took over and started doing promotions and reassignments, fucking DONTRAG AND NAZGRIM WERE THE SAME DAMN RANK.

On the other hand, I suppose we don’t know for sure that Dontrag COULDN’T steer a ship in a straight line without crashing it, so…

Anyhow.  Okay, one more, so let’s see what we’ve got to wrap up.

When are we going to hear the rest of @Mokvar_Scribe‘s tale? The people want answers! –Deliana Hawthorne

Wait, her again?  DAMMIT MALKOROK, GET ON THIS!

But, okay, to answer your question:

Starting…NOW.*

That’s it for questions for tonight.  Thanks to all of my LOYAL READERS AND MINIONS for contributing, and to all of my enemies who came by, FUCK YOU ALL BUT THANKS FOR THE PAGEVIEWS, NOW HIT RFRESH A FEW MORE TIMES THEN CROAK.

I’m out, people.  More soon.

* * * * *

*VERY soon, in fact — as an added perk for those of you who’ve stayed this late into the going, well…count to ten, click back to the main page, and rejoin the ongoing tale of Mokvar, Garrosh, and more!

Meanwhile, for those of you coming late to the party, don’t worry, you haven’t missed your chance to pose your questions to the Warchief — there’s always his monthly mailbag!  Next edition coming March 2!  Feel free to e-mail, or use the handy-dandy form below:

30 Days of Character Development #8: Ruekie

Posted in 30 Days of Character Development with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 4, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

[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!]

 

Name:  Rue’kara (“Ruekie”)ruekie_profile1

Occupation:  Horde military trainee

Race:  Orc

Class:  Shaman (elemental)

Age:  15

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.)

First appearance:  “Dead Peons Society” (first appearance of the DPS as a group), “Underground farmer’s market” (first named appearance)

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, ruekie_profile4fellow 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, ruekie_profile3they 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.

ruekie_profile2Is there an animal you equate to yourself?

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.

ruekie_garonaAre you superstitious?

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!

 

Previous Profiles:

  1. Spazzle Fizzletrinket
  2. Ben-Lin Cloudstrider
  3. Dontrag and Utvoch
  4. Taktani
  5. Korrina
  6. Mylune
  7. Mokvar

 

On the last night before the patch, trainees Giska, Korrina, Kulkesh, and Ruekie pay a final visit to their mentor. (Presumably, Gurtash was stuck taking the picture.)

On the last night before the patch, trainees Giska, Korrina, Ruekie, and Kulkesh pay a final visit to their mentor.
(Presumably, Gurtash was stuck taking the picture.)

30 Days of Character Development #5: Korrina

Posted in 30 Days of Character Development with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

[Each week, 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.]

 

korrina_profile1Name:  Korrina

Occupation:  Horde military trainee, apprentice blacksmith, part-time ore miner

Race:  Orc

Class:  Warrior (arms)

Age:  15

Group affiliations:  Horde (member), Dead Peons Society (a.k.a. “DPS,” member and resident badass)

Known relativesThura (mother), Broxigar (great-uncle, deceased), Varok Saurfang (great-uncle), Dranosh Saurfang (second cousin, deceased)

First appearance:  “Being a role model is a full-time job” (first mention of trainee group), “Dead Peons Society” (first mention of DPS by name), “Buried treasure” (first full, named appearance)

Key posts and plot points:

  • Garrosh first took on a group of high-aptitude trainees in “Being a role model is a full-time job,” and the group adopted its name in the eponymous “Dead Peons Society” after an…unfortunate incident involving a lazy and excessively fragile peon.  Korrina was part of the group from the beginning, but was not named specifically until the Krasarang Underground arc.
  • Along with many of her fellow DPS trainees, Korrina accompanied the Warchief to Pandaria and continued her training there, in part under the guidance of Mag’har blademasters Krimpatul, Burzum, and Ishi.
  • Korrina and the other trainees joined Krimpatul on an ill-fated mission to secure the Temple of the Red Crane for the Horde, beginning in “Departures.”  In “Fear leads to anger,” Garrosh learned of an Alliance victory at the temple that appeared to claim the lives of the trainees; unknown to the Warchief, Krimpatul led the trainees into hiding in a nearby system of caves, as detailed in “Reports of my demise” parts 1 and 2.
  • C13_3-2At the urging of Elder Cloudfall, Garrosh traveled to the temple grounds to investigate the trainees’ disappearance.  There, after accidentally falling into the underground caverns, he found Korrina and the rest of the DPS, in “Buried treasure.”  This post marked Korrina’s first formal appearance in the blog and the first time she’s referenced by name.  Garrosh and the trainees eventually made their escape from the caves, though not before Korrina demonstrated her badassery on some unsuspecting saurok.  (And she would have put the hurt on Varian, too, if it hadn’t been for those meddling kids Gurtash and Ruekie…)
  • For those keeping score at home, DPS members who have been named thus far are Korrina, Gurtash, Ruekie, Giska, and Kulkesh (our main players in the Krasarang story); Ruekie’s twin sister Tuekie; and Lok’osh, who was killed in the saurok cave.
  • Korrina is based on the baby arms warrior of long-time WCB co-conspirator Khizzara, author of Blog of the Treant.  Many thanks to Khizzara for letting me steal her character, and for her many contributions to her character – including a large portion of the in-character responses that follow!

In his/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?

Well, I don’t know who my dad is.  My mom never talks about him.  I think he was killed in honorable combat like a true orc hero, but his death made mom sad so she doesn’t say much.  She doesn’t talk about my greatparents either.  They probably died in the 2nd or 3rd war?  I’m not sure… I should ask but sooooo awkward!

My mom is pretty cool though.  Good in a fight.  She’s not as famous as some of my relatives, though…

Mom was a pretty good mom, I guess.  She had to go off and fight and stuff when I was small, something about how her axe was super special, and she had to go chop down an important tree or something.

…Okay, I know that sounds lame, but it was harder than it sounds, okay?

Anyway, since my dad is dead, I had to stay in the orphanage while she was gone to war.  That happens to everyone, though, so whatev.  She’s back now but I’M off at war.  I write to her, though, so she won’t worry too much.

C10_2-2What are your most prominent physical features?

My totes awesome purple mohawk!!! And my bulging biceps LOL

Name one scar you have, and tell us where it came from.  If you don’t have any, is there a reason?

Only ONE!!??  I’m a WARRIOR, I’m MADE of scars!  Okay, hmm… Well, most are just nicks and cuts and things, but once, when I was pretty little, I was playing on top of the old bank in Orgrimmar, the one before Warchief Garrosh rebuilt things, and I slipped and fell and landed on the cactus in front of the door!  So all these cactus needles went through my left arm and leg and had to be removed, so I have all these evenly spaced circular scars there.  It looks pretty cool, actually.

How vain are you?  Do you find yourself attractive?

Um… I guess I’m pretty average looking??  I never thought about it much.  Looks aren’t important when you’re usually covered in dirt, sweat, and blood, anyway.

Describe your happiest memory.

This is maybe stupid, but once while mom was away my uncle Varok came to visit me at the Org orphanage — well, I guess he was visiting Warchief Thrall, but he spent a whole day with me.  He showed me some cool fighting moves and bought me ice cream and a little teddy bear (which I still have, shh!) and let me stay up real late while he told me stories.  It was a pretty chilly night (it gets cold in the desert after dark), but I didn’t want him to send me to bed, and orcs are tough, so I didn’t complain.  And it was a really clear night, so he pointed out all the major constellations in the night sky, and we watched the Blue Child come up.

What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?  Color?  Song?  Flower?

Strawberry.  Deep purple (like my hair!).  Power of the Horde by the ETC!  Twilight jasmine is pretty, and purple too!

Who do you trust?

I trust my fellow DPS with my life.  And my captain/Warchief Garrosh.  Never go into battle with people you don’t trust.

I also trust my axe, Lizardbane.  (I named it that because it’s great for killing saurok!)

Can you define a turning point in your life?  Multiples are acceptable.

– When my mom went to war and I had to live at the orphanage

– When I started warrior training

– When I went with the DPS to Pandaria

How are you with technology?  Super savvy, or way behind the times?  Letters or e-mail?

I’m not a goblin or a nerd, but yeah, I grew up with computers, so I know some tech stuff.  Letters or email?  LOL it’s not like I’m old and in my 20s or something.  I just text or whatev.  Unless it needs to be more official, and then it depends on how urgent the message is.  Birthday card for Uncle Varok?  Snail mail.  Homework?  E-mail.  And if I really need to send a message, I find that AXE to the FACE works pretty well.

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?

I sleep on my side with my hand on Lizardbane.  Usually I wrap the blanket all around myself kinda like a cocoon.  I don’t need a blanket though.  A warrior can sleep anywhere, anytime!

C14_2-2How do you react to temperature changes such as extreme heat and cold?

I endure them without complaint.

Are you an early morning bird or a night owl?

Night owl.  Do NOT talk to me before 10 am unless you want an AXE to the FACE.

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 love my Uncle Varok, but I don’t get to see him much.  He’s stationed in Northrend.  This is going to sound dumb, but I want to be as awesome as he is someday.

My cousin Dranosh was a cool guy, but he was way older than me, so I didn’t know him much.  I was sad when he died, though.

I didn’t really meet my uncle Brox.

I guess I’m mostly on my own, but it’s okay because the DPS is like family.

What does you desk/workspace look like?  Are you neat or messy?

I keep my weapons and gear neat and tidy because well-maintained gear is gear that keeps you alive!  Otherwise… well, just… don’t look in my bags, okay?

Do you have any irrational fears?

I fear failing to protect my friends, but that seems pretty rational to me.  I’m also kinda scared of falling off buildings and landing on cactus.  Cactuses.  Cactusi?

C14_2-3What would your cutie mark be?

Your skull with my axe through it for asking something so stupid.

If you could time travel, where would you go?

Knowing the Bronze Dragonflight, it’s probably a matter of WHEN, not IF.  And I doubt I’ll have much choice in the matter of where.  But I guess I’d like to see Draenor… the old Draenor, before it shattered.  When the orc clans were still brown and strong.

What might your ideal romantic partner be?

I’ve never thought about it.  I guess… strong, confident, skilled in combat, smart (no peons please!), tough, loyal, honorable… a real ORC man, you know?

But I dunno, seems like a bad idea to fall in love.  Everyone dies young, so you either lose them, or they lose you, and your kids grow up in the orphanage.

Describe your hands.  Are they small, long, calloused, smooth, stubby?

Why?  That’s kinda creepy.  Do you have some hand fetish or something?

They’re strong and wield a big axe.  Think about that when you ask questions.

What’s your favorite comfort food, favorite vice, favorite outfit, favorite hot drink, favorite time of year, and favorite holiday?

Pulled pork.  Um, what?  I don’t think I have any of those.  My armor.  Hot cocoa!  Autumn.  Brewfest.  Um!  I mean!  WINTER VEIL.  Yes.  Winter Veil.  >.>

How do you smell?  Do you wear perfume or cologne?

Strong hands.  Big axe.  Remember?  Get away from me, you creeper!

Besides, I’m standing right in front of you.  What are you going to ask next, what I’m wearing?  When I’m standing right in front of you?

But come on, I’m a warrior!  I wear plate armor and do vigorous physical activity all day.  I don’t smell of roses.  Idiot.

 

Previous Profiles:

  1. Spazzle Fizzletrinket
  2. Ben-Lin Cloudstrider
  3. Dontrag and Utvoch
  4. Taktani

* * * * *

[A few reminders and announcements!  First and foremost, last call for the Transmogs for Shayari contest – today is the last day to send your entries to garrosh1337@gmail.com.  I’ve already gotten many great outfits, and will be looking forward to seeing a few more before the day is out.

Along those lines, I’m planning to put together a pretty big post next weekend, showing off the wide range of looks that folks have offered for everyone’s favorite half-draenei girl.  (Sorry, Garona.  Don’t come after me.)  In order to give myself room to put that post together, without derailing the blog’s main continuity too much, I’m also going to skip next week’s 30 Days profile.  I’ll have a new profile haphazardly slapped together the following week (or weekend, most likely).  Any requests, as far as whom?

And speaking of next weekend, just a reminder that we’ll be having our next installment of the SoO meta raid.  As always, all are welcome; as always, feel free to add Averry#1116 on RealID to reach me to come join the fun.

And finally, one more item to look forward to next week: It’s mailbag time!  The Warchief is already busy sorting through his mail, but he can always use more.  Use the e-mail address above or the handy form below to submit your thoughts and questions before it’s too late!]

 

30 Days of Character Development #4: Taktani

Posted in 30 Days of Character Development with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 23, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

[Each week, 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!]

 

taktani_profile1Name:  Taktani

Occupation:  Part-time scribe, full-time general annoyance

Race:  Tauren

Class:  Druid (feral)

Age:  21

Group affiliations:  Horde (member), Cenarion Circle (member, though they don’t usually like to admit it)

Known relatives:  None admitted to

Earth Online notes:  Would you let her on EO?  Seriously?  She’s heard of Earth Online, and watched over Dontrag and Utvoch’s shoulders while they’ve played, but so far everyone has managed to keep her from playing it herself.  Mercifully.

First appearance:  “Monday mailbag” (first mailbag letter), “Ut’s on first, Tak’s on second” (first full comic appearance)

taktani-taurenKey posts and plot points:

  • Taktani first wrote in to Garrosh’s mailbag, in her own inimitable fashion, after encountering Utvoch in Mulgore.  She continued to write several more times, prompting Garrosh to draw on an invention by Spazzle, the TranslationMaster2000, to try to make sense of her…unique writing style.
  • After Mokvar was attacked and incapacitated, Taktani wrote to Garrosh to offer her services as a substitute scribe.  The Warchief…politely declined.  She caught up with Garrosh in Pandaria in “Ut’s on first, Tak’s on second,” eventually winning a begrudging appointment to scribe duty.  As you can imagine, she was quite thoroughly excited.  Since then, she’s been called upon to provide transcripts of some of Garrosh’s conversations, though Garrosh has needed to maintain a certain measure of diligence to prevent her from indulging too heavily in artistic license.
  • Early on, Tak befriended Dontrag and Utvoch (or, as she calls them, “Mr. D and Mr. U”), who generally try (with limited success, not unlike everything else they try to do) to watch out for her.  She appears to get along better with Utvoch than Dontrag, but it’s hard to tell for sure, since…really…is there anyone she doesn’t like?
  • Hold that thought.  She doesn’t like Malkorok very much.  Because even Taktani’s generosity of spirit has its limits.
  • Upon first arriving in Pandaria, Taktani met the hozen flight master Tak-Tak, whose name puzzled her considerably (and perhaps set off the closest thing Tak could experience to a crisis of identity).  Since then, Tak appears to be suffering from ongoing confusion about how names work in Pandaria, as evidenced by her recurring impulse to repeat people’s names (i.e., Mr. Warchief-chief).
  • In one mailbag letter, Tak noted that her birthday was “yesterday.”  The mailbag was posted on November 5; depending on how long prior to the mailbag she sent the letter, that would place her birthday sometime in late October to early November.
  • Taktani is based on the kitty druid of longtime reader and commenter Inuki.  Many thanks for letting me use and elaborate on the comedic gold mine that is Tak’s boundless innocence, and for all your ongoing contributions to her presence in the blog (see below for more of them!).

toomuchtakIn 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?

I played outside lots and lots!  My parents didn’t like when I brought my toys home though.  They yelled about mud and stains and other stuff like that.  I haven’t seen them in a while.

taktaktakName one scar you have, and tell us where it came from.  If you don’t have any, is there a reason?

I have a little scar right here on my face.  Do you see it, Mr. Interview Person?  See?  Right there!  I scratched myself with my claws the first time I turned into a cat!  I forgot I had claws!  It’s right there, under my eye!

How vain are you?  Do you find yourself attractive?

Yes?  No?  Maybe?  I don’t know.  Everyone looks all nervous when they see me.  Does that mean I’m pretty?

Describe your happiest memory.

I got to meet Mr. Warchief Sir!  It was a great day!  He let me pounce on him!  Then he made me his scribe!  Or maybe he made me his scribe, and then I pounced on him.  I forget.  It was something like that, though!  Mr. D and Mr. U and Mr. Monkey and lots of other people were there!  Yay!

Is there one event or happening you would like to erase from your past?  Why?

No?  Why would I?  Nothing bad happens to me!

[Fate protects fools, little children, and ships named Enterprise.]

What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?  Color?  Song?  Flower?

ALL THE ICE CREAM!!  Purple.  No, blue.  No… ooh butterfly!

Who do you trust?

<blink>

<blink>

Everyone?  Is there a reason I shouldn’t?

Can you define a turning point in your life?  Multiples are acceptable.

The day Mr. Warchief Sir asked me to be his scribe!  And the day I left home.

yayHow are you with technology?  Super savvy, or way behind the times?  Letters or e-mail?

Technology?  You mean like the keyboard Mr. D is yelling about?  It’s shiny!

How do you react to temperature changes such as extreme heat and cold?

I have fur!  I jump in the water if I’m hot and I don’t get cold.  Splash!  OOH and I can turn into a fish too.  Or is it a seal?  Or maybe a… I’m not sure.  A swimmy thing!

Are you an early morning bird or a night owl?

I’m a bird, but not an owl.  Does that make me an early morning bird?

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?

comfyperch

Not really?  I like Mr. D and Mr. U, and Mr. Warchief Sir!

What does you desk/workspace look like?  Are you neat or messy?

<looks around the desk, covered with inkstained pawprints EVERYWHERE>

Um… I think it looks okay.  It doesn’t look messy to you, does it?

Are you a good cook?  What’s your favorite recipe?

Does cheese count even if I don’t cook it?  Do you want some cheese, Mr. Interview Person?  I can go get you some!  That’s almost like cooking it for you, right?

What’s your preferred means of travel?

Paws and wings!

Do you have any irrational fears?

I don’t like being alone.

What would your cutie mark be?

It’s a dot and a moon on my shoulder!  Yay!

Are you superstitious?

I’m super!  Aren’t I?

What’s your favorite comfort food, favorite vice, favorite outfit, favorite hot drink, favorite time of year, and favorite holiday?

Cheese!  What’s a vice?  Fur!  Chocolate!  Spring!  PRESENTS!

How do you smell?  Do you wear perfume or cologne?

I smell like a bird!  Or a cat!  Or a bear!  Or a Tauren!  Sometimes people tell me I smell like the wrong thing.  I think they’re silly!

 

[A reminder!  Get your Transmogs For Shay submissions in by Saturday, March 1!]

30 Days of Character Development #3: D&U

Posted in 30 Days of Character Development with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 12, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

[Each week, a post will profile one of the blog’s many supporting players.  (See the first profile for more details.)  Since I didn’t get around to posting a profile last week, this time around I’m making up for it with a double of sorts.  Feel free to chime in with recommendations for other characters you’d like to see more about!]

 

d-and-u_profileNamesDontrag and Utvoch

Occupation:  Horde infantry soldiers (ranks: Dontrag—Sergeant; Utvoch—Scout)

AgeDontrag—31; Utvoch—29

Race:  Orc

Class:  Warrior

Group affiliations:  Horde (members), Overlord Krom’gar’s army (former members)

Known relativesDontrag—Adrasa (sister), Ug’thok (nephew); Utvoch—Krila (aunt)

Earth Online notes:  D&U play EO with mains GilbertRose (Dontrag) and SteveKravitz (Utvoch), and are members of Garrosh’s guild <Warchief>.  Utvoch briefly changed his character’s name to “Dranosh,” but was roundly criticized for the name choice, because really.  He reversed the name change shortly thereafter.  Also, guildmate Sylvanas Windrunner appears to take particular amusement in baiting the duo into arguments about which of them is which.

First appearance:  “Visiting Zoram’gar” (first mention), “Underneath the bunker” (first full transcript appearance)

Key posts and plot points:

  • An unsuspecting Garrosh first encountered Dontrag and Utvoch at Silverwind Refuge in “Visiting Zoram’gar” and dispatched them to join Overlord Krom’gar’s forces in Stonetalon.  He would later encounter them during his investigation of Krom’gar’s operations in “Underneath the bunker” – featuring D&U in supporting roles in Mokvar’s first transcript.
    (D&U can be found in-game both at Silverwind Refuge and in the Deep Reaches beneath Krom’gar’s fortress.  In the latter instance, they’re joined by goblin questgiver Blastgineer Igore; blog readers may take a certain amusement in Igore’s quest-text commentary on our cerebrally challenged friends.)
  • After Krom’gar’s “dismissal,” D&U remained stationed in Stonetalon, under the command of newly appointed Overlord Cliffwalker.  They were frequently recalled to Orgrimmar and other locations for various missions, but remained officially assigned to Cliffwalker in Stonetalon prior to their dispatch to Pandaria.
  • Evidently, according to a letter from D&U in one mailbag, Utvoch has (or had) enrolled in some extension courses, including diplomatic writing.  Academic records from the undertaking have not been released.  At one point, Utvoch convinced Dontrag to take a class with him, but the pair failed the course when they were caught handing in the same paper.  To the same instructor.  Yes, really.
  • Utvoch – sans Dontrag – traveled to old Hillsbrad, ten years in the past, with Garrosh, Mokvar, Liadrin, and Faranell during the Anti-Plague of Southshore storyline.  Like the other members of the group, Utvoch later found himself trapped between two fluctuating timelines; Garrosh and Mokvar noted, with no small degree of amusement, that this situation likely led to many confusing discussions between Utvoch and Dontrag.
  • Utvoch met and befriended Taktani in Mulgore just before she started writing in to Garrosh’s mailbag; Dontrag would meet her as well not long after.  Since Taktani’s arrival in Pandaria, Garrosh has charged D&U with keeping an eye on Tak and generally helping her navigate the complexities of the adult world, a job that Utvoch appears to have taken to somewhat more enthusiastically than Dontrag has.
  • Many people, Garrosh prime among them, frequently lose track of who is Dontrag and who is Utvoch – which is actually rather peculiar, given that they don’t really look very much alike.  Sylvanas, in guild chat, seems to understand which of them is which, but deliberately baits them into arguments on the subject anyway.
  • Regular readers will be well aware of Garrosh’s habit of giving people (often dismissive) nicknames.  Dontrag and Utvoch are among his most frequent targets; some of his favorites for them include the Dumbass Duo, Ketchup and Mustard, and the Wonder Twins.

In their own words:

dontragutvoch

Describe your relationship with your mother or your father or both.  Was it good?  Bad?  Were you spoiled rotten, ignored?  Do you still get along now, or no?

I didn’t know my father.  I think he was killed in the attack on Shattrath.  I got along pretty well with my mother, though.  She always used to tell me how I could be anything I wanted to be and accomplish anything I set my mind to.  Then I started working with the trainers and she had her first parent conference.  After that she mostly saved the thing about being whatever you want for my sister.  –Dontrag

I don’t really remember my parents.  They both died in the first war after the Dark Portal opened.  My aunt ended up raising me until I was old enough to fend for myself.  –Utvoch

How vain are you?  Do you find yourself attractive?

I guess I was a little vain for a while, during that year in the Barrens when I was trying to get away with the comb-over.  I started losing my hair early and it took a while for me to accept that I wasn’t fooling anyone.  –Dontrag

I don’t think I’m bad looking or anything, but I don’t really think I’m anything special.  Luckily I spend most of my time hanging out with this guy, so I figure I must end up looking like at least a 7.  –Utvoch

What are your most prominent physical features?

My thick, full head of hair.  –Utvoch

Screw you, Ut.  –Dontrag

Name one scar you have, and tell us where it came from.  If you don’t have any, is there a reason?

Well, I’ve got this one scar on my forehead, on the right side.  I was trying to explain which of us was which that time in Karazhan, and, um…well, the Warchief kind of got impatient and backhanded me. –Dontrag

C7_4-2

I’ve got one across my left cheek.  It’s just above the line of my beard, so I don’t think you would really notice it unless you were looking for it.  I got it when I got those people killed by that yeti in Hillsbrad because I accidentally went out of my way to kill a giant moth, and the Warchief got really mad and belted me.  Although the worst part was how he yelled.  He got that tone that he gets.  –Utvoch

Oh, yeah, I’ve got one on my face, too, right under my left eye, from that time the Warchief—  Wait a minute, when you said to name them, did you mean you wanted us to name them name them?  In that case, I think I’ll call the one under my eye Al.  –Dontrag

I think I’ll name mine Dranosh.  It means “Heart of Draenor” in orcish.  –Utvoch

Everybody knows that, you idiot.  And it’s still not cool to use that name.  Anyway, for the one on my forehead, maybe I’ll name that one The Reminder.  –Dontrag

I don’t get it.  But I love the idea of a name that’s “The” something.  I have to remember that if I ever have kids.  –Utvoch

What does your desk/workspace look like?  Are you neat or messy?

Depends on which of us used it last.  I try to keep our desk sort of organized back at the barracks.  Donty’s a slob, though.  I always end up having to pick up after him.  It’s like having a second job half the time.  –Utvoch

Depends on which of us used it last.  It’s not so much that I’m messy, really – it’s more me being lazy.  I don’t care enough to put in the extra effort to put everything in order.  And I mean, I would if I had to, but I figured out a long time ago that Ut’s compulsive enough that if I just leave it alone, he’ll do it eventually himself.  So, like, it’s not so much that I’m messy as I delegate well.  –Dontrag

Do you have any irrational fears?

Other than the Warchief getting a little madder than usual one day and stabbing me?  Fire makes me antsy.  I always get nervous around fire mages.  Or mages casting fireballs in general.  I always get this weird creepy feeling like I’m about to get torched–Dontrag

Owls freak me out.  Not even, like, giant ones, either.  Although those are even freakier.  Just plain old regular owls.  The way they stare at you, and plus, when they go “who!”, I always feel like they’re mocking me and Donty.  –Utvoch

If you could time travel, where would you go?

Probably old Hillsbrad, since I didn’t get to go last time, just to see what the big deal was.  –Dontrag

Maybe back to that time we went back to old Hillsbrad, and let Donty go instead?  That whole thing was really confusing, and I think the Warchief got even madder with me than usual, and plus there was that whole thing with the end of the world, which wasn’t a whole lot of fun.  –Utvoch

What might your ideal romantic partner be?

I won’t lie.  I’ve always had a thing for tauren women.  Can’t resist them.  (It’s the hooves.)  –Utvoch

You are a sick, sick orc, Ut.  –Dontrag

30 Days of Character Development #2: Ben-Lin

Posted in 30 Days of Character Development with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 19, 2014 by Garrosh Hellscream

[Each week, 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.]

 

benlin_profileName:  Ben-Lin Cloudstrider

Occupation:  Counselor, specializing in meditation and stress/anger management

Age:  57

Race:  Pandaren

Class:  Monk (retired)

Group affiliations:  Horde (member), Huojin Pandaren (member), Shang Xi’s Academy (former student)

Known relatives:  Ting Cloudstrider (daughter), Dewei Cloudstrider (son), Kenji Cloudstrider (husband, deceased)

First appearance:  “Anger management

Key posts and plot points:

  • Ben-Lin met Garrosh – along with many other blog notables – while conducting an anger management seminar in the fittingly titled “Anger management.”  The session proved…less than productive.  Since then, she has continued to meet with Garrosh in an attempt to teach him to better control his temper.  (Admittedly, visible results have been questionable at best, but let’s be fair – she had the deck stacked pretty heavily against her.)
  • Traveled with the Horde expedition to Pandaria and accompanied Garrosh on his first trip to Tian Monastery (“I think I can remember your name”, “Shock the monkey”, “Getting around with the Shado-pan”, and “The geometry of shadows”), where the Warchief first encountered Elder Couldfall.  She also joined Garrosh on a follow-up journey to Tian to recruit Elder Cloudfall’s aid in “Moments of transition.”
  • Worth noting is that Ben-Lin appears to be one of the only people capable of making Garrosh stop and listen with any regularity (such as “ordering” him back to bed while he was sick with the Pandaren flu in “A sniffly Warchief is a cranky Warchief”).  Evidently, the Warchief has trouble holding his ground with greatmotherly women.
  • A few behind-the-scenes notes for those who might be interested: Ben-Lin is a veritable walking bundle of science-fiction referentiality.  The name “Ben-Lin” is a deliberate nod toward another even-tempered mentor figure – and, in fact, the name was largely chosen specifically to set up this joke:
    ben_panelHer last name, “Cloudstrider,” was likewise meant to parallel “Skywalker.”  (Also worth noting – the names of the two pandaren who have become mentors of sorts for Garrosh: Cloudstrider and Cloudfall.)  And, lest the Babylon-5 fans among you feel neglected (I know you’re out there!) – Ben-Lin’s outfit and, to a lesser extent, speech patterns were designed to be reminiscent of the B5 character Delenn.

In her own words:

What is your most prominent physical feature?

I have been told that my eyes are fairly distinctive.  They are violet, which is highly uncommon among pandaren, and held by many among our people to be a sign of inner balance.  This was pointed out to me many times as a small child, though my parents would likely have held me as a counterexample at the time.

Describe your happiest memory.

Ironically, the passing of my husband Kenzi.  This is not to say that I wished his death, or that I do not miss him dearly.  He was some years older than me, and had been in poor health in his final months.  The night he died – he knew the end was close – we sat and reflected on our life together.  There was no sadness or regret.  Each memory served only to remind us how much more this life had given us than we could ever fairly have asked.  He held my paw, and thanked me for making him young, then passed away peacefully.  I did not feel grief.  I felt – and continue to feel – grateful.

Is there one event or happening you would like to erase from your past?  Why?

No.  I believe that every step of our journey is a part of what makes us who we are.  I have had misfortunes and hurts, as do we all, but they have all left remainder that has helped to shape me.  Without any one of them, I do not know who I would have become.

C3_4-5Can you define a turning point in your life?  Multiples are acceptable.

There are two: my coming to Shang Xi’s Academy, and my departure from the Wandering Isle to begin a new life among the Horde.  Each marked the beginning of a new adventure.  The first began in my youth and opened a world to me of learning, friendship, love, enlightenment – all of which are, of course, different words seeking vainly to express the same thing.  I look forward to discovering where the second will take me.

How are you with technology?  Super savvy, or way behind the times?  Letters or e-mail?

I am almost comically inept with most machinery.  Much of it is new to me; having lived almost my entire life on the Wandering Isle, I was not in a position to keep up with the latest inventions.  This is likely for the best.  Given my poor skill level, exposure to the latest technologies would only have provided me with new and better ways to embarrass myself.  Letters, most certainly.  I do not have the e-mail.  To this day, I know the internet only by reputation.  (That reputation does not, by and large, inspire me to investigate further.)

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?

My bed tends to be relatively tidy, and I make it each morning after rising.  I sleep on my back; I am a very deep sleeper, and usually do not stir very much during the night.

Are you an early morning bird or a night owl?

An early morning bird.  I wake each morning just before dawn.  Wherever I live, I always take care to have a window that faces east, so that I may watch the sun rise.

Are you a good cook?  What is your favorite recipe?

I cannot say that I am an expert cook, but I am told that my wildfowl ginseng soup is quite good.  I wish I could have inherited my father’s skill with the steamer; I often miss his steamed crab surprise.  I have tried many times to recreate it.  The result often tries even my discipline over my temper.

C4_2-1What’s your preferred means of travel?

I prefer to travel by foot when possible.  If not, I am adequately proficient in the use of Pandaren kites.  I prefer not to employ animal mounts, as I suspect they have destinations of their own that they would prefer over mine.

Do you have any irrational fears?

Is there any other kind?

What might your ideal romantic partner be?

My years of study and meditation tell me that it is unwise to cling to some imagined ideal; such perfect fantasies serve only to impoverish our appreciation of the reality before us, beautiful often precisely for its flaws.

My heart, however, tells me: Kenji.  Again, I am grateful.

Are you superstitious?

I am a mother of three.  Hardly can one say that, without having spent many hours with crossed fingers.

How do you smell?  Do you wear perfume or cologne?

Though my sense of smell, I would venture, is unremarkable, I do have a sensitive nose, which most perfumes tend to irritate.  My one compensation is that I often let snow lilies soak in the water before washing my fur.

 

[OOC note: Running a little behind on posts after a bit of a trying week.  Luckily, there’s a lot in the pipeline, so we should have some relatively rapid-fire posting this week, including, yes, the follow-up to that last little freakout-inspiring nugget.  Also stay tuned for news and announcements concerning the return of the Friends-of-WCB meta raid!]

Monday mailbag

Posted in Mailbag with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2013 by Garrosh Hellscream

mailbag29

Okay, people, it’s been WAY too long since I’ve dipped into the ol’ mailbag, and I have a HUGE backlog of letters, so let’s get right to it, shall we?

 

Hail Warchief!

The Feast of Winter Veil is approaching, and it made me think. What do you hope to get from Greatfather Winter this year? Do you have any special family traditions? I look forward to seeing Orgrimmar all decorated for the festivities.
Happy Holidays!

–Lorewalker Shara

PS you may want to avoid using tinsel to decorate around Mortimer, unless you like festive poop! Might be a good idea to keep Taktani away from it too, thinking about it.

Hey, Shara, thanks for writing.  Hopefully Orgrimmar is looking all Winter Veily these days.  I’ll be back for a check-in soon, but I’m probably only going to make it back to town JUST in time to catch the end of the festivities.  As for my wish list… I remember addressing this point a couple years ago, and most of the stuff on that list still stands – especially Varian and Magatha’s heads on pikes – but there are a few more things I can think of that I might add to the list for this year.

  • An actual explanation that makes sense for what the hell was going on with Mokvar while I was away.
  • A wireless network here in Pandaria that’s actually reliable, so I can log onto Earth Online without it being a fucking comedy show.
  • An on-site goblin tech guy who can maintain that network without the whole thing going kablooey and spitting out two burnt pieces of toast every time there’s a breeze, because let me tell you, Grizzle Gearslip ain’t happening.

Come to think of it, so far all of these could pretty much be covered if I could get a bunch more Spazzles.  Because really, as much as I clown on the guy, he actually knows what he’s doing and gets shit done, and unlike half these other jokers, I don’t have to worry about him running around behind my back doing spirits-know-what.  So, other additions to the list:

  • A scribe that doesn’t have traitorous tendencies, a busted-up writing hand, or the disposition of a six-year-old on a sugar high from eating all the Hallow’s End candy EVER.
  • The secret to controlling the sha.
  • A First War commemorative chess set.  This is the normal-sized, less creepy version of the chess set Medivh had over in Karazhan.  It’s been rumored to be in the works for years, and I’ve finally started to see them showing up on ebAH.  Yes, I play chess.  Don’t act all surprised, for fuck’s sake.
  • Varian’s head on a pike.  Did I mention this one?

As far as having family traditions for Winter Veil…not really.  I mean, keep in mind, Winter Veil is a pretty recent thing for us Mag’har.  We didn’t have Winter Veil back in Nagrand, so we only started picking it up at all after Thrall came out to Garadar a few years ago.  Greatmother Geyah really has taken a liking to it, but that’s about it.  Plus, not to get maudlin and shit, but it’s kind of hard to have family traditions when you don’t really have a family.  I mean, I never knew my dad, and my mom died when I was young.  I’m an only child.  As far as I know.  Assuming Grom wasn’t a bigger pimp than anybody’s given him credit for.  Anyhow, point being, Greatmother is pretty much the only family I’ve got nowadays, and even SHE’s not a blood relation – she’s just the one that raised me after Lakkara died.  So, yeah.  AREN’T YOU HAPPY YOU BROUGHT THAT UP?  BET YOU FEEL PROUD.

 

Greetings Warchief!

I am in desperate need of your assistance. I approached Regent Lord Lor’themar with my issue but he said that it was beyond his scope and directed me to contact you.

I recently inherited a house and it is in terrible need of redecoration. You have done a great deal of renovation recently and I was wondering if you could give me some tips to make my house look amazing. Attached is a picture of the house.

WoWScrnShot_112313_213143

Thanks,

–Tegwin

Grats on the new house, Tegwin.  Not so grats on the place looking like such a shithole.  Because, yeah, that place needs some work.  I mean, seriously…the wispy, billowy day-glow curtains?  A bearskin rug with the bear head still attached?  Strewn out there like you’re getting ready to do a photo shoot you already know you’re going to regret in five years?  And… Is…is that a hookah?  Just sitting there, right out in the open, in the living room?  What are you, one semester removed from college and stuck with a slacker troll roommate who keeps swearing he’ll have his half of the rent this month, and this time he means it, mon, only you know perfectly well that’s not happening because felweed’s a hell of a drug?

So, okay, a few things.  You have to lose the pastels, first of all.  I know that probably goes against every last one of your blood elf sensibilities, but trust me on this.  You want strong, commanding colors – the kind that will make people think “Holy fuck, some serious shit goes on in this place” when they walk in.  Lots of reds and grays.  Err on the side of darker.  Go too dark with the red and you get a bloody crimson, which is still pretty badass.  Go too light and you get pink.  See where I’m going with this?

Mount some weapons on the walls.  If you haven’t cleaned them lately and they’ve got some bloodstains, all the better.  It adds to the color scheme I’m talking about, plus it conveys a message of “This person is not to be fucked with.”  Spikes.  You can never have too many spikes.  Or skulls.  Get some skulls in there.  If you can carve up the body of one of your enemies and, say, make their skull into a chair for yourself, awesome.  Or maybe turn their bones into an end table.  A hat rack will do in a pinch.  If you haven’t killed any notable enemies lately, but you’ve got an infamous foe that you really only know by reputation but somebody in your family killed, and you have THEIR remains somewhere handy, that’s just as good, because that fucker was brought down by your bloodline (AGAIN NOTICE THE BLOOD MOTIF) and you totally deserve to share credit for the accomplishment.

This is all for your living room, of course, and I know my tastes can be a little hardcore.  I figured you might want to take it down a notch or two for your bedroom, so I went to Garona to get a woman’s opinion.  Didn’t get very far, though.  I told her I had a question about the bedroom and tried to ask her if she matches her rugs and curtains, or words to that effect, but she just got all pissy for some reason.  So, not much help there.  I seriously don’t know what’s up with her sometimes.

Speaking of which…

 

Dear Warchief,

I’m writing this letter to you in secret and I hope it gets to you and I’m not killed in the process.  *looks around*

It’s about Garona Halforcen.  Sir, she scares the everliving shi—uh—crap out of me.  *looks around again*

I happened upon some history stuff about her and now I’m all confused.  She was there when the first invasion from the Dark Portal, then she had a kid with an old man, and she is half-orc, half-dradne dranin demon *looks up spelling* DRAENAI.  (She looks like an orc.  Smells like one too.  I don’t see it.)

Now I’m all confused and sitting in a dark tunnel with a lot of thinking time had me thinking about her again.

What I want to know…*looks around*

How old is she?  She’s got to be like….ANCIENT.  *hides paper, looks around*

She doesn’t make sense and I don’t want to ask her.  She’s scary.

–Ruekie, Shaman In Training

PS:  There’s a lot of talk lately with the orc kids about the Red Pox, and if there is something scarier than Garona it’s that. I heard you had it once. Did it hurt? Can you get it again? Can we get it? Can an outbreak happen again? Too many questions and we are getting freaked out. Like FREAKED out. Really.

Okay, first of all… Um, Ruekie, you realize we were JUST in those caves all alone and out of earshot of Garona, right?  Not sure why you didn’t just ask your questions THEN, but whatever.  Kids.

First, the Red Pox?  No, seriously, you don’t want to get into the Red Pox, that was just a bad scene all around.  I don’t know why you kids would be talking about it now, but really, just let that shit die.  Nobody needs to be digging up THOSE memories for anybody.

Okay, now that that’s settled, on to your main point.  Yeah, I’ll grant you the scary thing with Garona.  Scariest bitch I know who hasn’t come back from the dead.  Although it’s probably a sad statement about my life that the list of people I know who HAVE come back from dead is a lot longer than you would figure.  Because – I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before – NOBODY STAYS FUCKING DEAD ANYMORE.

Anyway, here’s the deal with Garona.  Yeah, she’s half orc, half draenei.  Back in the day, Gul’dan bred an orc and a draenei to create a personal assassin – enter Garona.  Yeah, she looks mostly orcish, but I guess these racial mixes are kind of a crap shoot as far as which race’s physical traits you get.

Anyhow, to tell you the truth, I’m not sure exactly when Gul’dan actually orchestrated her birth.  I know it was definitely before the Dark Portal opened, and that was about 30 years ago, but before that, there was a window of about 20 years when Gul’dan was up to some Really Bad Shit, so the breeding experiment could have happened anywhere in there.  Let’s shave off the first couple years to give Gul’dan time to come up with this idea and for Garona to be brought to term.  That would mean that Garona would have to be anywhere from, say, 32 (She’s not.  Seriously.  I’m 35.  There’s no damn way she’s younger than me.) to around 48 or so.  Anywhere in between, your guess is as good as mine.

Hang on, though – this gets more complicated when you add the fact that Gul’dan had Garona aged magically so that she could get right to work, no childhood needed.  Swell guy, huh?  Anyway, the age of adulthood among orcs varies a little from clan to clan, usually somewhere from 13 to 15.  (Yeah, I know, kid, can you believe it?  Technically you’re an adult.  Hard to imagine you’re a grown-up, huh?  Well, let me clue you in on a little secret: That thought won’t stop seeming weird for another 20 years.)  So that would mean, however old Garona is according to the calendar, she really has the body of a woman 13-some-odd years older.  So now we’re looking at a physical age putting her somewhere between 45 and, like, 60-something.  Which is kind of a big deal when you consider that 70 is about as old as you could reasonably hope to live as an orc, even if you do a perfect job taking care of yourself.

Oh, but hang on, we’re not done yet.  It’s about to get more complicated.  (Don’t look at me – I didn’t make this shit up.)  Because, see, since Garona has that draenei half, her aging is even more fucked up.  Draenei live for…like…forever.  I mean seriously, I think the average draenei lifespan is something like “infinity minus twelve.”  So you mix THOSE genes in with our good, wholesome “70 if you’re super lucky” orcish genes, and…well… You’ve got a woman who’s technically, like, 40, only with the body of a 53-year-old, only not really because 53 doesn’t mean anywhere near the same thing to the draenei part of her, so…um… Who the fuck knows?

She’s old, okay?  Only she’s kind of not.  Only she is.  Whatever – you go figure it out.  Meanwhile I’m going to go check around the room and make sure there aren’t any whooshing sounds coming from the corners.

 

The following is written in elegant, but slightly shaky, cursive script on pale peach-colored parchment paper

My dear little Roshy,

How are you doing? I have missed you. It’s beautiful here in Nagrand – we’re having the most glorious late-fall weather.  I hope all is well in Orgrimmar.

Why didn’t you tell me you have a girlfriend?  Sounds serious too… She has been sending me letters telling me about how deeply in love you both are, and has included many pictures of you with little hearts and flowers drawn on them.  She says you’re getting married in the spring?  Why didn’t you mention it?  You would think you’d keep your own family informed, dear.  We’ll have to have a little chat the next time you visit.  You are coming home for Winter Veil, are you not?

Also, you should take some pictures of the two of you together.  And perhaps find a new photo studio.  These look like they were printed on magazine paper instead of proper photo paper.  I can’t properly frame them for display, especially not with the lipstick kisses smeared all over them.

All my love,

–Greatmother Geyah.

Hold on, hold on, what… how the… it… GODDAMMIT, SOMEBODY IS FALSIFYING RECORDS OF THEIR WARCHIEF, and…and…  Oh fucking hell, now I’m going to have to go out there and explain Photoshop to her.  It was bad enough when I had the bright idea to try to show her the internet.  Nothing in my e-mail for two months but forwarded pictures of wyverns asking for cheeseburgers.  And WHO is this woman who’s…ugh.  You know what?  I don’t even think I want to know.  Even though I can probably think of a couple likely suspects.

Now I’m just imagining somewhere in Orgrimmar there’s a dim, candle-lit room with walls covered by pictures of me, and…no, no, don’t even go any further with that, Garrosh.  That way madless lies.

And now on top of everything, I have to squeeze in a trip to Nagrand before Winter Veil totally runs out on me, or I’m never going to hear the end of it.  Ugh.  Maybe I’ll bring Gurtash, and see if I can maybe distract her a little with the cute kid factor.  Or Ruekie?  I bet she’d like Ruekie.  Plus Rook might want someplace to hide anyway, what with her probably having Garona out for her head as soon as this post goes live.

 

Very good to hear you have escaped the Saurok caves unharmed. The Horde would be in a very dire position if we were to lose our leader.

I do have one question. Have you ever thought of asking a mage if they could manage to conjure lemon squares? I have no complaints, but the same old sticky buns are a bit tiring after some time (not to mention they turn stale and hard as a rock after some time sitting in a bag). Perhaps you should collaborate with my wife? I am sure she would be very good to collaborate with, or maybe another mage closer to your location.

Regards,

–Shen-Wei Pureblossom

Thanks for writing, Shen-Wei.  You know, I HAVE thought of this lemon squares angle before, but here’s the thing.  First off, there was a point around this time last year that I really thought Gija down in the Cleft of Shadow was on to something, but the problem is, lemon squares don’t really lend themselves to conjuring, apparently.  I mean, you can abracadabra up some pastries that are sorta, KINDA in the same ballpark as lemon squares, but you can tell they’re not the real thing.  It’s like the drop-off from real leather to that fake shit that the damn DEHTA hippies try to pass off and think they’re fooling anybody.  And once you’re used to eating the real thing, I mean, come on.  It would be like going from having me as Warchief to, I don’t even know, a fucking TROLL or something.

Second of all, having spent my whole life eating those lemon squares, let me tell you, we don’t need mages recreating Greatmother’s recipe, because IT’S ALREADY MAGICAL.  (See?  See how I’m already working on smoothing things over with her?  For real, I’m so fucking diplomatic you could just shit a brick.)

Also, even setting all that aside… Nothing personal, but I don’t take anybody up on any suggestions that include the phrase “perhaps you should collaborate with my wife” ever since the Incident That Shall Not Be Discussed over at Tharl Stonebleeder’s house.  Now stop making me think about things that cannot be unthought.  MOVING ON.

 

Hail Warchief.

Rumors are flying that there is a red pox outbreak. Is this anything like the scourge?

–Kelytas, Blood Elf Paladin, Borean Tundra

Wait, again with the Red Pox?  No!  We’re not going to talk about the Red Pox.  Why the fuck is everybody so curious about the Red Pox all of a sudden?

 

I really enjoyed that Photo-Op you had with King Varian a while ago.  I couldn’t help but notice that King Varian had a wonderful tousled-Anime-pigtail thing going on that was at the same time sexy but tough, and you…well, you just look cranky.

I checked in with the Couturier Barbershop in downtown Orgrimmar and was quite frankly shocked at the dismal array of hairstyles available.  An up-swept Mohawk with a scarf?  Are you kidding me?

I know you might have a couple of things on your plate right now but seriously, you really need to look into this before the entire Horde start looking like extras from Naxxramas.

Maybe you could contact King Varian, find out who does his hair and we could have a Stylist Exchange with one of our Barbers so they could learn some new hair techniques and bring back the Glory of the Horde.

I also noticed that our Tailors are in desperate need of new patterns.  Malevolent-style silk pantaloons?  Really?  That is so last-season…

–A Concerned Fashionista Blood Elf

Lor’themar, is that you?

Yeah, let me get right on that.  I’ll send a special diplomatic courier right over to Stormwind with a note that says, “Who does your hair??”  Yeah, that would go over great, I’m sure.

Hmm.  Actually, come to think of it, a message like that would probably seem SO weird to Varian that it might fuck with his head a little.  Like, I can totally imagine him reading that and thinking, “Garrosh wouldn’t give a shit about my hair…WHAT IS HE UP TO?”  And then he gets all paranoid and shit.  And meanwhile I’m just sitting back and not doing anything, and the longer this goes on the more paranoid he gets – ESPECIALLY when it’s time for him to go to the barber, because, hey, THIS IS WHAT GARROSH WAS ASKING ABOUT.  And maybe he gets so messed up and suspicious that he stops going to the barber altogether, and his hair grows and grows, and finally he’s just got this total mess of a rat’s nest on his head, until maybe he eventually can’t stand it anymore and shaves it all off and ends up bald.  Same as me.

There you have it, ACFBE.  Problem solved.  Garrosh comes out ahead of the curve yet again.  Boom.

 

Hail, Warchief!

I’m studying Orcish History at school and need to write an essay. I thought I’d write about the Red Pox and it’s impact, and I thought it would be neat if I could quote you on the subject, if you don’t mind.

I know it was a terrible illness, but there aren’t any first-hand records that I’ve been able to find. What was it like to live with the Red Pox? Do you remember much from those years? Did you notice any major differences between Orcish society as a whole and the way Orcs lived in Garadar? Pretty much anything you can remember would be great.

Thanks!

–Anonymous Scholar, Orgrimmar

Okay, so at least NOW I have some idea of why everybody’s got the Red Pox on the brain this week.  So okay, fine, just this once I’ll talk about it, seeing as I’m probably one of the only Red Pox survivors a lot of these kids will have the chance to meet.

It sucked.

What, you wanted more?  FINE.

I’m not going to waste time going over the symptoms, because there must already be records of that, and I’m pretty sure neither one of us wants to spend our lunch break reviewing my childhood vomiting habits.  But yeah, I had it as a kid, and even setting aside the physical suffering of it all, I can’t stress enough how much of an effect it had on the culture of Garadar.  I mean, you asked if there were any major differences between Garadar society and orcish society as a whole?  Fuck, what WASN’T different?  The Red Pox hung over our whole culture.  It touched everything.  We had whole generations who were born and died – prematurely, granted – under the bane of that thing.  That was the worst part of it, really – the sense of resignation it left us with.  It was like, for a lot of us, there was this sense that the Red Pox came for our grandparents, and then it came for our parents, and now it’s going to come for us.

Over the years, our shaman kept working to find a cure, and every so often there would be a glimmer of hope that maybe they had something.  But then there would always be some disaster that would undo it.  After a while that became part of the gloom and doom of it – the shaman would come up with a new possibility, and you never quite stopped hoping, but deep down you were thinking, “Okay, let’s see what fucks it up THIS time.”  Even when they finally did find a cure, and the suffering could finally end, a lot of us couldn’t even quite believe it was really happening.

Adding to all this, by the way, was the fact that over in Telaar, the draenei had their own parallel illness going on for a while.  It was called the lank distemper – or the “Lanks,” as a lot of folks ended up calling it.  Basically an infection that caused severe dehydration and loss of appetite, so the afflicted would wither down to these scrawny shadows of their former selves.  Sometimes the two diseases would flare up as if they had a contest going to see which one could kill more victims.  Which made for some miserable times for everybody involved.  Believe me, for anyone who was living through it, you do NOT want to get them started on the whole Lanks / Red Pox rivalry.

Is that enough?  Are you happy yet?  Or do I need to relive the time the conjured healing sphere rolled between Bullrok’s legs and into the lake, too?

 

Dear Garrosh;

Winter Veil is here! Time for a great orc cheer! Lok’tar!

I am so looking forward to making cookies and milk for Greatfather Winter this year with my new cooking skills I learned from Pilgrim’s Bounty holiday. I may even add some lemon squares to add some extra favor. I’m really hoping this year he’ll give me a ferocious armored bloodwing with exotic leather saddle for riding. That would be so cool! (Sigh, I’ll probably end up with another copper racer though.)

What are you hoping for Winter Veil this year, Mr. Garrosh sir?

Varian on a spire tree?

Blood and thunder!

–Ruekie, Shaman-Still-in-Training

PS: Greatfather Winter looks awful familiar, but I can’t quite figure it out. Kinda like Mr. Saurfang, but that would be impossible…I think. (Nothing is impossible with Mr. Saurfang.)

PPS: Winter Veil holiday is a great time for eating. Try no to eat too many lemon squares, though, sir. It doesn’t take much to make your muscles look like marshmallows.  D: 

Bye!

Wait, Ruekie AGAIN?  When the hell is she writing all these letters?  Fuck, maybe I should hire HER as a scribe, if this is how fast she can crank out pages.  Anyway.

So also, before we get into anything else…hang on, you want a BLOODWING for Winter Veil?  A frigging BAT?  All of a sudden, a WYVERN isn’t good enough for little miss tornado-pants?  You’ve seen Mortimer in action, up close and personal, and you’ve decided, “Nah, let’s give the universe a sporting chance – keep the wings, take away all the parts that really make the wyvern badass, and replace them with a giant blind rat”?  Are you KIDDING me?

I already answered the part about what I want for Winter Veil a few letters up, so no need to get into that again.  And I’m not going to dignify the lemon squares thing with a response.  But I have to comment on that thing you said about Greatfather Winter.  You know, one thing that people always say about Greatfather Winter is that there’s no way the guy could possibly fly all around the world and deliver presents to everyone in just one night.  Well, I think you might have found the one gaping hole in that theory.  So, next time you find yourself in an argument with some skeptic who doesn’t want to believe in Greatfather Winter, just unload this one on them:

“I’m telling you, there isn’t enough time for Greatfather Winter to do all that!  It isn’t physically possible!”

“What if Greatfather Winter is really Saurfang?”

“Oh… Um… Well then.”

 

Yo Mon!

I hear you had de red pox, mon. On dat game Earth Online dey has a disees call chicken pox. Es dat de same? (What do chickens haf to do wit dat?)

Dey say in dat game, once you hav it, you cannot get et again. Yah, mon, you are now invisible to dat disees, like de lich king’s horse.  Dat is good news!

Cheers, mon!

–Bobbette, Out der somewhere

Okay.

So.

I am beginning to get the very distinct impression that I may be getting trolled.

 

Hey mon!

What’s dis I be hearin’ about da Red Pox breakin’ out again?  It be all anybody be talkin’ ’bout dese days!  If you get it, does dat mean ya turns red?  I remember seein’ some red orcs back in Hellfire Peninsula, mon, was dey havin’ da Red Pox?  Dey go from green ta red?  Don’t get me wrong, mon, I don’t want nobody gettin’ sick, but if dere be anudda outbreak, look on da bright side – all dat red an’ green togetha be lookin’ nice an’ festive for Winter Veil!

–Bob, Shado-pan Monastery

I hate you.  I really, truly hate you.

 

Excuse me, Warchief, I write to you from Dustwallow marsh, I came here to see if I could find test subjects for a new flamethrower, and found something much more interesting, there is this mysterious woman on the road to the ruined theramore (hah!) and she seems to be able to send me back in time to look at theramore and the swamp before theramore was destroyed, I went to sleep at mudsprocket and woke up in present day. She seems upset that I was killing humans as soon as I was there, and refuses to send me again.

–Ritaba, Mudsprocket 

Wait, wait, hang on.  Let me get this straight.  You’re telling me that there’s someone hanging around Dustwallow Marsh sending people back in time to Theramore before we blew it up?  As in, making it possible to totally sidestep our whole victory and interact with the place like it was before?  That… fucking hell, THAT DEFEATS THE WHOLE POINT OF US BLOWING IT UP IF YOU CAN FUCKING DO THAT!

You know, this has the Bronze Dragonflight written all over it — or at least it WOULD, if it weren’t for the fact that this is PRECISELY THE SAME KIND OF SHIT they they’ve been recruiting people to PREVENT for years now, and by the way didn’t I just march through like 50 miles of steaming shit over their whole “integrity of the past” deal last year?!  But hey, apparently it’s NO BIG DEAL when you’re talking about Theramore, right?  SURE!  WHY NOT?  Hey, how about I zip on back to the past and start fucking with shit too, because I GUESS THAT’S ON THE MENU NOW, RIGHT?

Fucking dragons.  FUCKING TIME TRAVEL!

UGH!

 

I have been reading the history of Pandaria, and discovered something no one has bothered to take note of, seven burdens of Shaohao, the story of how the last emperor of Pandaria defeated the six sha and locked them away in a poor fashion (He couldn’t have kept them from causing havok any time someone gets cranky?), and there are older writings indicating a beast with seven heads, perhaps there is a seventh sha never recorded, it could be the key to controlling them.

–Yinsun, Vale of Eternal Blossoms

Now see, THIS is an example of some research that might actually be useful.  You might be on to something there, Yinsun.  It DOES seem kind of fishy that we have this story about Shaohao and his seven burdens, and this seven-headed thingamabob, and then we only have six sha that we know about.  It’s definitely worth considering whether we’ve got one more sha on the loose that nobody’s thought of.  (Hell, I was even bouncing ideas about this around with some people on Twitter a little while ago.)

For anybody keeping score at home, we might as well start with the basics.  Right now, we’ve got six sha accounted for: the Sha of Doubt, the Sha of Anger, the Sha of Despair, the Sha of Violence, the Sha of Hatred, and the Sha of Fear.

So, okay, let’s suppose there’s one more out there.  Since the sha we know about all seem to be named for pretty major negative emotions or vices…hmm…let’s see, what do we have left for major negatives?

There could be a Sha of Greed, I suppose.  Although…I mean, we have goblins with us, and I have to figure if there were a Sha of Greed, people like Grizzle Gearslip would be setting the fucker off left and right.  The Sha of Jealousy, maybe?  Makes sense on paper, but again, you’d figure we’d be having outbreaks all over the place, seeing as we’ve got a base full of people who’ve been watching me stroll around day after day.  And you KNOW the peeps get jelly when they feast their eyes to the pure awesome that is yours truly, amirite?

So we’re kind of running out of major vices to pair up with the missing sha.  What else is there?  Free-associate, Garrosh… hmm… the Sha of Gluttony?  The Sha of Sloth?  The Sha of Anteater?

Hang on…I think that line of thought took a wrong turn on me somehow.

Maybe we’re going about this wrong.  Time to think outside the box a little.  For all we know, this last sha could be kind of a niche sha, something more specific and less…well…grandiose.  Which might explain why this one might have been able to fly under the radar all this time.  So, let’s see, what else could be out there as the sneakier, subtler bane of our existence…

  • The Sha of Social Awkwardness
  • The Sha of Small Talk
  • The Sha of Poor Table Manners
  • The Sha of Bad Penmanship
  • The Sha of Bad Spelling
  • The Sha of Typos (possibly related to above)
  • The Sha of Not Picking Up After Your Wyvern
  • The Sha of Repetition
  • The Sha of Redundancy
  • The Sha of Telegraphing Bad Jokes
  • The Sha of Walking Really Slowly in Front of People at the Mall
  • The Sha of Paper Towels with Inexplicably Strong Perforation So You Try to Snap Off One Square and End Up Yanking Out Half the Roll
  • The Sha of Telling the Same Story Over and Over and Over Again Even Though Yes I Already Know How You Met Eitrigg Okay Tirion

Okay, you know what?  This is going nowhere fast.

Wait, wait, hang on a second… I could swear I HAVE seen another sha somewhere.

shaofhappiness

HOLY FUCKING HELL THAT’S IT!  THE SHA OF HAPPINESS!  Come to think of it, I even remember seeing this fucker on Twitter!  Fuckin’ A, I KNEW all those annoyingly happy assholes like Mylune were up to no good!  IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW.

 

Okay, that’s going to do it for this time, but keep those letters coming.  You guys really stepped up to the plate with this batch of letters, so you know what that means — THE BAR HAS BEEN RAISED.  So keep it going, and I’ll try to be back with more wise words soon.  Handy form included:

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