- - by Bronil
The Road HomeEdit
Bronil walked along the road from Darnassus to Dolanaar. Beside him, as always, was Kodrak; a loyal bear, and best friend. Kodrak ambled along, pausing at times to sniff the air around him. Bronil had always felt relatively secure in Teldrassil, but with Kodrak at his side, he could walk into the deepest pits of the Nether without the slightest fear. As the two walked through Dolanaar, they eventually came upon a small house; a familiar house. Bronil would have knocked, but the door to the house was wide open, as usual. There were virtually no thieves in Dolanaar, or anywhere in Teldrassil for that matter; even if there were, the house had very little in terms of monetary value. Besides, Celesst enjoyed the climate of Teldrassil, and welcomed it into her home. The house was Bronils home too, in a way, yet he spent very little time here. The time that he did spend, was treasured deeply.
Bronil! Celesst exclaimed from inside the house. Kodrak had entered first, and that was what had announced Bronils arrival. Aside from the fact no thistle bears inhabited Teldrassil, this bear was very well known to Celesst from Bronils previous visits.
It is good to see you, sister. He replied, and smiled warmly. After hugging Kodrak, Celesst hugged her brother tightly. Bronil understood that hug, for his sister missed him dearly during his long trips in Azeroth. In truth, he would love to spend much more time here with his only living family, but he had a call to answer, and a very big promise to keep.
Looks like I have a lot more cooking to do. Tyron announced, though the comment was for Kodrak, who seemed to be incapable of achieving a full stomach. Tyron was Celessts fiancé, or rather, husband as Bronil had learned on his last visit, which was just in time for the wedding. Youve grown since last time; what has Bronil been feeding you I wonder.
Youd be surprised, Bronil said with a grin. The bear was hardly a picky eater, and his appetite had extended to Bronils boot on one occasion.
Will you be staying long, Bronil? Tyron asked. Celesst shot a hopeful look to her brother.
I plan to stay for at least a few days. Then I must leave for Azshara; apparently there is a furbolg that the Elders would have me speak with.
Then Ill be sure to put some food in that belly of yours for the long trip! You know, you really should take more after Kodrak. Its not good to eat as little as you do.
Bronil chuckled softly, Ill be sure to do that, Tyron. Tyron was fast becoming an expert in preparing food, and it was held by more than a few that he would soon prepare the meals for festivals held in Darnassus, perhaps even in the Temple of the Moon. He had even begun teaching Bronil the finer aspects of cooking, though with some difficulty. Bronil was a quick learner at hunting and swordplay, but cooking was different; much different.
And I have something to show you, Bronil. Celesst interjected. Before even telling him what it was, she grabbed her brothers arm and led him off to another room.
Knowing where the food was, Kodrak followed Tyron into the kitchen.
It was good indeed to be home once more.
(( More to come later. Didn't want to make it too long of a read. ))
A Forgotten JournalEdit
Ducking slightly so the hilt of his sword wouldn't catch on the door frame, Bronil followed his sister's lead into the room; it was her bedroom, though some pieces of furniture had been rearranged. Reaching into one of the drawers next to the bed, Celesst pulled out a leatherbound book.
"Do you remember this?" Celesst inquired, giving the book to her brother. Bronil searched his memory, but could find nothing that would name the book. The leather of the book seemed vaguely familiar, but nothing else about the book stood out. Flipping through pages in the middle of the book, blank pages, he shook his head slowly. "Not those pages," his sister chided, "read the first page." Turning to the first page, not a blank page, Bronil recognized the book as the first page was filled with his handwriting.
19 January, 2005
My birthday. Today I am 180 years old. Yet, there is no celebration for me on this day. A short distance north of Dolanaar lies a cave in what has come to be known as Fel Rock. In this cave dwells a demon of significant power, who has amassed a small army of lesser demons. This demon goes by the name of Lord Menelas, and his intentions are beyond a doubt malicious in nature. . . and that is why I have been sent to hunt him by Tallonkai Swiftroot. However, I hunt this demon out of more than obligation to the Elders. I hunt Menelas because I know intuitively it is what must be done for the peace and safety of Teldrassil. More than that, I hunt out of both anger and fear. My anger towards demons will continue to burn for so long as their ilk plagues this world. They have destroyed much of the earth, and all of my family, save one. . . and that one is the cause of my fear. I fear that the destruction Menelas plans to bring will reach Celesst, and many other Kaldorei. By Elune I swear I will never let it come to that. Never. My birthday shall be the last day Menelas draws breath into his wretched body.
". . . . my journal." Bronil said at length, after the nostalgia of the first entry had hit him. Two years before that first entry, Bronil had journeyed to Shadowglen, where he began his training as Hunter. As always, Celesst did not want him to leave, but the call of the Hunt, of the untamed wilds, called strongly to Bronil, and he could not ignore it. The one responsible for his training, Ayanna Everstride, had recommended that he keep a journal, and read over it frequently, to help him better understand both himself, and Hunter's path.
"You left it behind on the day Arch Druid Staghelm sent you to Auberdine, and you never came back for it."
"I had forgotten. . ." The words were true, but Bronil couldn't believe them. The journal was important for many reasons, and for him to have forgotten it all this time. . . was beyond absent-minded.
"Well, now that you remember, I want you take it with you to Azshara and anywhere else you go. With Tyron around, the house doesn't seem so empty anymore, but I still think about you everyday you're gone on your long trips."
"I know, Celesst." He admitted with a sigh. He did not like doing this to his younger sister, but promises were promises, and in truth it would be for the better in the end.
"Write in it for me. Please? I can't be there with you when you go away, but I would like to know what it would be like to be beside you."
"I will. When I return from my next trip, I promise not to leave again until you have read all the entries to your heart's content." and he meant every word.
"Thank you." Celesst replied with a smile
Bronil placed an arm around his sister's shoulders "Let's go see how Tyron's holding out against Kodrak."
(( Again, tried to keep it short. Oh and if anyone knows what system of calendarkeeping Night Elves use, I'd love to know. I couldn't find anything on it, so I had to use the Gregorian system by default. ))
Ogtinc and the EldersEdit
At an abandoned campsite, Bronil sat up against Kodrak, whose slow breathing indicated the bear was sleeping. The night had finally come to Azshara. Aside from the moonlight, only the campfire provided light. Reaching into his traveling pack, Bronil grabbed his journal, ink, and quill. Using his leg as a table, he began to write.
Azshara is a quiet place, dangerously quiet. Naga tracks are everywhere; not surprising when you consider who this land is named after. I would like to think that not all naga are malevolent, but I have seen nothing to support such a notion. After my business with the furbolg Ogtinc is finished, I will investigate the naga presence.
Speaking of which, I find that I do not like Ogtinc. Fortunately, he has escaped the corruption that plagues most of his race. Still, there is something about him I disagree with. He has asked that I hunt a courser and retrieve the horns. This, he claims, will impart strength and confidence in me. I see no strength or confidence in killing a creature just for its horns. A true hunter does not kill for power. He kills only to survive, and kills only just enough to survive. When the kill is made, nothing of the animal goes to waste, and he offers thanks to the spirit of the animal. Anything more is gluttonous. Then again, I am very young, and lack the thousands of years of wisdom possessed by the Elders. The Elders have asked that I speak with Ogtinc and do as he asks. Thus, I will trust in the wisdom of the Elders for they have yet to guide me down a path that was not beneficial in the end.
Sleep well, dear sister.
With that, Bronil placed his materials back in his traveling sack, and put out the campfire. Eventually his breathing matched Kodrak's, and he fell into restful sleep.
I was wrong to trust the Elders.
Ogtinc was not content with the courser antlers. He wanted me to hunt wavethrashers on the coast, and so I did, still believing that the wisdom of the Elders saw something in this task that I could not. I do not feel stronger from these deeds. To the contrary, I feel. . . vile. As though I have become something horrible. I can only pray that Elune will forgive me for murdering innocent children of nature.
Now Ogtinc asks a final task of me, to slay a green drake, Morphaz, in the Swamp of Sorrows. The creatures of the green dragonflight are noble, and serve as guardians of nature. At first I vowed not to commit to such a horrible task. Yet, Ogtinc claims Morphaz has made many enemies. Has the green dragonflight become corrupt? I pray that is not so, but something tells me that Morphaz has fallen from his flight.
I see now why I was told to slay coursers and wavethrashers. Ogtinc felt that by hunting these creatures, I would become stronger; and thus more able to confront Morphaz. Ogtinc does not know true strength. It does not come from killing mighty foes. No, true strength lies in following the path that we know in our hearts to be right and just. When the time comes, I will face Morphaz, and draw upon strength from within, the same strength I have always and will always draw upon.
Morphaz is dead. The battle was long, and bloody. Of the five of us that ventured into the Sunken Temple, Morphaz disposed of two. The druid and the fighter next to him fought bravely to the end. Their loss was felt deeply by the three of us who remained behind. Another fighter, Kodrak, and my arrows were all that stood between Morphaz and the priest. Striking from the shadows, the fighter moved incredibly fast, and with the grace I have seen only from the finest swordsmen. She worked in conjunction with Kodrak perfectly. When she could not handle Morphaz's onslaught, Kodrak reminded the fallen dragon of his presence, giving the fighter time to recover her wounds with help from the priest, who was beginning to tire from the near constant healing.
In the end, Morphaz fell, and the priest returned the spirits of our fallen back to their bodies. Only by working as one were we able to live to tell our tales. I have slain many formiddable creatures. My aim and swordsmanship are almost completely mastered. Yet I am but a tiny light among a sea of lights. No one person is strong enough to conquer everything by themselves. The battle with Morphaz has reiterated the lesson Jocaste taught me so long ago. And yet, I feel this is only the beginning. Morphaz fell from his noble flight, and he was not the only green dragon found in that temple.
How many more have fallen?
(( Edit: I doubt those from the group I was with this past weekend read these forums, much less this thread, but just the same, I want to give a shout-out to them. Great group guys! ))
A Request From StaghelmEdit
It is time for me to return to the Un'Goro Crater. Arch Druid Staghelm, and the rest of the Cenarion Circle it seems, is very interested in collecting a plant known as 'Morrowgrain' which apparently only grows with the help of Un'Goro soil. After he gave me the task, he said, "Do not think this task of gathering to be beneath you. Though it may seem small, you are aiding the Cenarion Circle, and I hope you are at least wise enough to see the value in that." Beneath me? How could any Kaldorei view this task as beneath them? Though I must admit, I am surprised that there is no one in the Cenarion Circle already working on this task. Now that I am here in Un'Goro, I understand fully why I was sent.
Un'Goro is a beautiful place, Celesst, filled with things I have never before seen anywhere else. I would like for you to see it sometime. . . provided you were escorted by a squad of highly trained Sentinnels. Many refer to Un'Goro's beauty as a "savage beauty". Though this place is indeed wonderous, it also very dangerous. Many of the creatures here are the fiercest I have ever encountered, and it has taken all of my training as a Hunter to be able to survive in this land. Gathering Morrowgrain is no menial task, not here where one walks amongst so many predators.
The Arch Druid was wise to send me, and not just anyone who passed by him. Rest assured I will collect the Morrowgrain, and return to Darnassus in one piece. Arch Druid Staghelm would not have sent me unless he felt certain I would return with the Morrowgrain.
"The Cenarion Circle thanks you, Bronil. Should you find yourself in Un'Goro again, be sure to cultivate some more samples, as the Circle could always use more Morrowgrain."
"I will." Bronil bowed respectfully, and began making his way out of the Cenarion Enclave.
As he left the the tree that Staghelm resided in, a voice called out from high up, and to the left, "Nightwind!"
Immediately Bronil knew who the voice belonged to. His teacher, Jocaste, was the only one who addressed him by his family name; she claimed that she liked it better than 'Bronil'. Though a strict teacher by any means, Bronil admired and respected her. Turning in her direction, Bronil started the walk up to the one who had taught him nearly everything he knew about the Hunter's Path.
"Yes, Jocaste?" Bronil replied when he reached the level of the tree that she taught in.
"I have something for you. Wait here while I retrieve it."
As Jocaste walked off, Bronil looked to the east, towards Dolanaar. He visited Darnassus more than he did his own sister. Always he struggled with the desire to go to her; and as always, he forced the thought out of his head, and reminded himself of all the things still left undone.
Jocaste returned with something long and triangular, wrapped in cloth. Unwrapping the cloth, she revealed a large sword in its scabbard. The hilt was a dark blue with a bright gem on the end. The guard was in a 'W' shape, and bore a skull. Regardless of how well crafted the blade may be, Bronil did not trust the sword.
Sensing her pupil's caution, Jocaste explained "It only looks evil. Ironically, the blade is designed to destroy demons. The one who forged it apparently thought it fitting to give it a fearsome look."
Bronil's opinion of the sword changed slightly at the mention of demons. He hunted demons relentlessly, and such a sword would come in handy. However, the design of the guard told him there was something else about the sword. Again, Jocaste seemingly sensed his thoughts.
"Though adept at slaying demons, this blade must be wielded with great care. It is not like any other sword. It has a hunger for demons. Many that have sought to use it in the past became consumed by the sword's hunger. In slaying demons, they had become demons themselves, continuously hunting down demons as if hunting for food. The blade has since been entrusted to me for safekeeping, to see to it that no one else becomes infected by it."
"I am not sure --" Bronil began voicing his doubts, but Jocaste resumed speaking again.
"I know, Nightwind. You too share a hunger for demons. It is good that you consider not touching the sword, fearing that it will only increase a hunger you already possess. . . . and that is why I trust this blade to you, Bronil Nightwind. This is the next step in your training. To master the Demonslayer, you must master yourself. However, by no means do I intend to force this upon you. The decision to wield the blade or not, is entirely yours."
After a long pause, Bronil looked his teacher directly in the eyes.
Becoming a DemonEdit
To fight a demon, and not become one. Am I capable of such? I would like to think that I would never succumb to being no different than the demons I hunt; that I am. . . immune to that transformation.
I am not.
There was a time, when I would walk the streets of Stormwind, and see demons walking the streets as though they were citizens, following their warlock masters. I was overcome with the desire to kill; to kill not only the demons, but their masters as well. How could any rational person wish to consort with such vile creatures?! Yet I held my blades in their sheathes, and kept my arrows in my quiver. Kodrak sensed my restraint, and followed my lead.
Would it have been better if I had not restrained myself? Would the world have become a slightly better place to live in if I had spilled human blood in the middle of Stormwind that day? For the longest time, I had no answer to these questions. What I do know is that everyone walks their own path in life. There are no maps, so we do not know where our paths will take us in the end, only where they lead. For us to arrive at some universal truth, each of us must walk our paths of our own free will. A path is a series of choices. To force choices upon someone is to deprive them of much. Had I slain a warlock in Stormwind that day, I would have ended their path. They could no longer choose whether to continue their dark path, or to abandon it. I would have chosen for them.
However, I have not always restrained myself. In Feralas I saw ogres defiling the forest with fel magic, and without a care of the destruction they would bring. Restraint never even entered my mind. On that day, I did spill blood. By nightfall, not one ogre was left standing. They praised my exploits when I returned to Feathermoon Stronghold.
They were not there.
Action needed to be taken against the ogres; that much is certain. They were clearly threatening the land around them, and would continue to do so unless they were stopped. When I conferonted the ogres, I did not kill out of a duty, or a higher sense of purpose. I killed because I enjoyed it. With each kill I felt driven to kill more; I could not kill enough.
To fight demons, and not become one. . . . it is a difficult thing. I can only pray that Elune will help light my path.
Journey to the Eastern KingdomsEdit
I have not been able to write for sometime. As I travel the lands of Azeroth, I see the corruption of the Burning Legion everywhere. Places once full of life are now merely hollow shells, a cruel joke in mockery of past times. By working with the Emerald Circle, I have been able to deal a significant blow to the workings of the Shadow Council in Felwood. I would like to stay and continue my efforts, but I must be off to the Eastern Kingdoms. The sword that Jocaste gave me glows fiercely in Felwood. Every waking moment I feel its hunger, it's . . . hatred. If I do not distance myself from Felwood, I fear the sword's hunger may take me.
So, I journey now to the Eastern Kingdoms. Word sends that the Alliance is in dire need of assisstance in a place called the Western Plaguelands. Though I do not consider myself a full member of the Alliance, I cannot in good conscience ignore a call for help. With luck, I will arrive in a day or two.
I know, Celesst. You want me to turn around back to Dolanaar. As you read these passages, I'm sure you are filled with worry. Worry not, sister. I would not write these passages if I thought I would not be alive to give them to you the next time I come back home. Take care, Celesst. Try not to glare at me too hard after you read this.
Your brother with love,
The Plague and the ScourgeEdit
What we kaldorei have in Felwood is much like what the humans have in the Western Plaguelands. This land reaks of the stench of death and decay. The very air I breathe seems to want to take my soul. Shadow seems to sense it as well.
Oh yes, I have not told you about Shadow, have I? Shadow is a panther I encountered on a hunting trip to the Swamp of Sorrows. Something had injured his foreleg, and I did what I could to help. After that, the panther just started following me. I named him Shadow because that is what he reminds me of. As I travel the lands, he suddenly shows up from time to time to travel with me, and then just as suddenly vanishes. Kodrak seems to trust him, and I have never known Kodrak's instincts to be wrong.
So together, Shadow and I have been doing what we can to aid the Argent Dawn in their battle against the Scourge. It pains me to strike down these undead monsters, knowing that they are innocent, and did not chose their fates; who would? Yet, until a cure can be found for the plague, death will be the only release I can give them. A pity. I would like to know what the Western Plaguelands were called before the Scourge came.
Events are looking up in the Plaguelands. I have infiltrated the four cauldrons used to spread the dreaded Plague, and met with success. Soon, we will be able to turn the Scourge's cauldrons against them. Unfortunately, I have come to an impass. My final task to assault Scholomance, a bastion of Scourge might on the island of Caer Darrow. To gain access to Scholomance, a very unique key is needed. An alchemist by the name of Arbington and I have worked on forging that key. The last step to forge the key involves obtaining the signet of Araj the Summoner. This undead wizard is now lord of the fallen city of Andorhal, and will not give up his signet willingly. I have seen him. He is never alone, and constantly surrounded by formiddable guards. Living out in the wilds teaches you how to gauge your prey, and I can tell that I am no match for Araj. I will need to become stronger, and enlist the aid of others.
To do this, I must return to Felwood and master Demonslayer. Only then will I be able to face Araj. The sword is at its strongest in Felwood, and its hunger is overwhelming. However, I can no longer seek to hide from it. I must face it, conquer my fears, and conquer Demonslayer. Jocaste gave me this blade so that I may master it, so that its hunger will no longer claim any more victims. For the good of Azeroth, I swear I will master it!
The Shadow Council's grip on Felwood has been diminished significantly. In working with The Emerald Circle, Kodrak and I managed to successfully assault Shadow Hold. The evil in that place was stronger than anywhere else in Felwood; Demonslayer burned bright with hunger, and I shared the blade's sentiments. I tried to deny it, but could not, I wanted to kill everything in that cursed cavern. The acts that the Shadow Council committed were unspeakable, and I cannot understand why anyone would seek to bring such evil about. However, I believe accepting my hatred of demons was the right course of action. Others who have wielded Demonslayer before me thought they were above the blade so much that they blinded themselves to the dangerous truth: they share something with Demonslayer. Because they could not see the danger, they were taken by the sword. I see the danger, I see my desire to kill demons, and I see something else. I see that Demonslayer's hunger is not driven by the desire to do what is right. The blade does not care if justice is served, it cares only for the blood of demons. *That* is where the similarity between Demonslayer and myself ends. Although it is true I have deep hatred towards demons, I do not hunt demons out of bloodlust. I hunt them for the good of all life on Azeroth. For so long as demons exist, they will never turn from their desire to see worlds burn before them.
So long as I draw breath, Azeroth will not burn. Wherever the Burning Legion strikes, I will be there to take their blows and drive them back to the Nether. I have loosened the Shadow Council's grip on Felwood greatly, but I have not destroyed it. Fel'dan and his minions are dead, but there will be struggle within the Council to replace him. When that replacement shows himself, I will be there.
Until that time, I leave Felwood in the hands of the Emerald Circle. A Paladin by the name of Trey Lightforge fell in the struggle against the Shadow Council, and I would like to honor his memory. To that end, I plan to visit Stormwind's Cathedral of Light to pay my respects. Rest assured Master Lightforge, your efforts were not in vain.
Sitting up against a tree in the Stormwind Park, Bronil took out a blank sheet of paper and began writing. Next to him, as always, was Kodrak who had dedcided to use this short break to rest. Normally Bronil would be writing in his journal, but this particular entry was something he would not want his sister to read.
It is a profound concept that has recently been brought to my thoughts in light of the passing of Trey Lightforge. Ever since paying my respects at the altar in the Cathedral of Light, I have been dwelling on this concept unceasingly. No matter how much I contemplate it, I cannot remove it from my mind.
When the Warsong Orcs came to Ashenvale, and murdered all of my family save for Celesst and myself, I felt broken. I could see that Celesst also felt broken as well; she was constantly in tears, too young to have witnessed death on such a large scale. I saw something else in my sister as well. . . she was looking to me for support. Before joining battle with Cenarius, Siang asked me to take care of Celesst; those were the last words I ever heard from him. So I did all I could for my sister, to help her carry on despite our losses. Ironically enough, I looked to her for support as well.
The loss of my family pained me greatly, but I thanked Elune everyday that Celesst had been spared. She was the one thing in this world I could hold on to, and she still is. If she were to be killed by someone, I know I would go mad. Very likely my sister feels the same way towards me. Thankfully, she has Tyron for support as well, but I know news of my death would sadden her greatly.
That is why I must keep this entry from her eyes, for I have met death more than once on my journey. Each time I was slain, there was a winged woman there to greet me in the realm of spirits. Each time she said the same words, telling me that it was not yet time for me to die. Thus I was restored to life, time and again. The more I travelled, the more I wondered why I kept coming back to life. The only answer I can think of is that some higher power wishes to see me continue living. Perhaps it is Elune Herself, keeping me alive until I have accomplished some task that I was destined to perform.
Yes, that must be it. Else why was the death of Trey Lightforge final, and mine not?
I would like to mention that I do not take my seeming "immortality" for granted. I continue to exercise caution in all my actions. The next time I am slain could be my last, that woman might not be there to greet me, or might have different words for me. No, I am by no means immortal.
Speaking of immortality, that brings me to the battle of Mount Hyjal, where the immortality we kaldorei possessed was sacrificed in order to put an end to Archimonde. I had always thought of our immortality as a gift, in order for us to better protect nature and her children. A gift I would gladly sacrifice in order to preserve nature and the lives of innocents, especially from the likes of Archimonde. I believe Malfurion's decision was the right course of action. Yet, that belief of mine is not unanimous. There are many kaldorei who seek to regain our lost immortality, and perhaps a few who may even curse Malfurion's name. Thus, Teldrassil.
Strange that our immortality should be taken, and yet I continue living as though I were immortal. Yet, if that is my fate, so be it. I will not squander it. I will use it in my battles against the Burning Legion, and I will use it to keep my promise to Siang. Elune grant that I will see you again when the time is right brother, father, and mother.
To and From HomeEdit
Once again, I venture away from Teldrassil, and towards the rest of the world. Towards battle. I find there is a stark contrast of emotions within me as I travel the lands. On one hand, I sincerely wish to remain on Teldrassil among my family and friends. Yet on the other hand, I cannot deny that it is refreshing to travel, and encounter all kinds of beings and creatures not found in my secluded home. Inevitably, there is also battle. Ever since the day I took my first leave of Teldrassil I have had a seemingly endless stream of adversaries. From the demons in Darkshore, to the Scourge in the Eastern Plaguelands, I feel as though I have encountered every enemy this world can possibly throw at me.
Truly, I enjoyed staying with Celesst and Tyron over the celebration of Winter Veil, who were both happy to see that Kodrak and I had returned in one piece. Kodrak was certainly happy to be treated to Tyron's fine cooking, as opposed to my "heat it and eat it" cooking as Tyron calls it. Indeed, Tyron was determined to refine my ability in preparing food, or lack thereof. He also took the time to get in his jokes about my cooking. Jokes which, ironically, I find as amusing as he does. Besides, the tide was turned when I started teaching Tyron to use a bow, and made some jokes of my own. Though I must admit, I find Tyron is better at making jokes than I am.
As promised, I did not take my leave until Celesst had read the entries in my journal to her heart's content. Looking back on that promise, I came to the realization that she might try to use that promise to her advantage, in an effort to prolong my stay on Teldrassil (certainly she does not like to see me go anymore than I like leaving her behind). While it is true that she did read my entries many times over (she carried my journal wherever she went it seemed), part of her was. . . eager. . . to hand it back to me. I soon found out why. Although she does not like to see me leave, she knows that when I resume my travels, I will also resume writing my entries. Strange that she should want to see more entries, as most of them speak of all the dangers I encounter on my travels. It seems at first that reading such entries would only increase the worries that she already has whenever I take these long absences from Teldrassil. Apparently, my sister finds the world outside of Teldrassil as fascinating as I do, and these entries are her window to that world; focused on one whom she cares deeply for.
So here I am again, roaming the world, and battling those who seek to bring harm to it. For the time being, I am on the boat that sails from Auberdine to Menethil Harbor where I will venture onwards to Ironforge. There is a dwarf at Light's Hope Chapel who needs some supplies, and I have agreed to obtain these supplies for him, whilst he works on some task the Argent Dawn has set before him. When that is done, I will head to Moonglade. There is a land called Silithus that the Cenarion Circle would like to speak to me about.
A Land Called SilithusEdit
My previous entry is not entirely correct. I do not ride to battle; I ride to war.
Since entering this arid, sandy land called Silithus, I have not had a chance to write until now. In truth, so much has happened that I do not know where to begin. As you have no doubt heard by now, dear sister, the Alliance and Horde once again unite against a common enemy, and are collecting supplies for an upcoming war. How sad it is that severe destruction must be threatened for the Alliance and Horde to see that they cannot allow the past to endanger the present and future. Yet, I am thankful that for now at least, I do not have an enemy in the majority of the Horde.
The enemy that has caused this union are the silithid. They are best described as very large and very dangerous insects. Insects however, are natural. These silithid on the other hand. . . I cannot even track them. I cannot yet determine if they leave no tracks whatsoever, or if they leave tracks that I'm not seeing. Added to the fact that the silithid are bent on destroying all life (their hatred is almost palpable whenever I face them in combat), I am led to believe that they have been brought to this world by some outside force powerful in magic. Wizards perhaps? Or dare I think it, a god or gods? Whatever their source, it is clear that they must be stopped.
When I first set foot on this arid landscape, I could feel there was something under the shifting sands. Something very old and powerful. Something malign. As I explored more and more of Silithus, I came upon a great wall in the south whose entry has been sealed with the power of nature. All of my instincts tell me that the force I have been feeling lies behind that sealed gate. A quick trip to Ironforge revealed that the Alliance and Horde seek to open that gate.
Whilst the honorable warriors of the races of Azeroth work to open the gate, I will be preparing myself for the trials that lie ahead. The silithid are the greatest enemy I have encountered thus far, and that includes the various demons I have slain. I will protect myself with the leatherworking father has taught me, and forge the very best armor that I can.
Pray for me, Celesst.
The Moonwood RangersEdit
It is good to be away from my task of defending Azeroth. I do not mean to belittle the act of fending off those with evil intent, or helping those in need; far from it. What I mean is that it feels good to have the weight of my task temporarily lifted off of my shoulders. I fully intend to see Azeroth safe from harm for so long as I draw breath, and the Silithid have not seen the last of me. Yet, on my recent undertaking of advancing my skill with working leather, I find that there is no stress involved. There is a constant feeling of danger and urgency I feel when fighting off villains, or saving someone who was caputred by them. However, this feeling is not with me now as I roam the lands, continuing my endeavor to make the best armor I possibly can. It almost like a vacation of sorts.
During my recent travels I encountered Mistress Drahliana. To my embarassment, I cannot recall her surname (I am certain I knew it at one time), and will have to ask it of her next time we meet. Drahliana leads a group known as the Moonwood Rangers, of whom I have often heard about. The goals of the group, as I understand it, are close to that of my own. After conversing with her in Ironforge, I was eventually welcomed into the Rangers. A year ago, I thought I could take on the burden of defending the lands by myself, despite Jocaste's teachings that held to the contrary. But to place such a burden on myself is not only unrealistic, but foolish.
I now laugh at the prospect that it took a year's worth of travelling to make me come to accept what Jocaste had told me from the start, "A Hunter is never alone."
Peace and HypocrisyEdit
Am I a hypocrite?
This question has appeared in every corner of my mind as of late. Many months ago, I met Mistress Lorial Dalane who was gathering a group of people dedicated to forging lasting peace with the Horde. Up until I met her, I was indifferent towards the Horde. But then she asked me the following questions:
Are you willing to walk the path to peace so that our children won't have to fight like we do now? Are you willing to take the first true steps towards peace and self enlightenment? Then this is the Guild for you. Together we will look the world straight in the face and watch as the sun raises over a new Azeroth that we had a hand in building.
Will you take the first steps, Bronil?
These questions struck me profoundly, and made me realize that I did not want Celesst, Tyron, and their future children to have to fight the Horde. So I joined Mistress Dalane's group "The Tranquil Dawn", taking those first steps.
. . . and yet, even as I write this entry, my arm aches with the pain of a spear I recieved yesterday in Warsong Gulch. With one arm I ask for peace, and with the other I slay members of the Horde. Is that not the way of a hypocrite? Yet, how can I ignore the plight of my fellow kaldorei? How can I ignore the devastation that the Warsong Orcs bring to the forest? How can I ignore that the Warsong Orcs slaughtered my mother, father, and older brother? Although they did so under demonic influence, that does not help to dull the pain of my loss at all.
The answer is I cannot ignore any of these things. I hate the Burning Legion for setting foot in this world, and hate that it was my own kin who first brought them here. I hate the Warsong Orcs for succumbing to those demonic energies. I hate myself for not being strong enough to resist the call of battle; for not being strong enough to save my family and village.
But my hatred will do nothing to change the events of the past. All I can do now is carry on, and follow the path I have set out on since leaving Teldrassil. That path has lead me to my current struggle, and I can only but trust it will see me through it.
I want peace with Horde, and I also want to aid my kin in their plight. Can both desires be satisfied? I cannot enter peace talks with the Warsong Orcs, for they would slay any Alliance on sight, especially a kaldorei. Is battle the only option left, then? Can peace at the cost of life really be defined as true peace?
I know not, and perhaps I am a hypocrite. Or perhaps I have strayed from my path, and am merely lost.
Elune send that I find my way back. . .
Master Sergeant NightwindEdit
I have come to the realization that I am not a hypocrite.
A hypocrite does not practice what they profess. I profess many things (and practice them all) but pacifism is not one of them, nor do I believe it was what Mistress Dalane professed before the Tranquil Dawn disbanded. From the standpoint of a pacifist, the best solution to confrontation is to offer no resistance whatsoever; even self-defense is prohibited. I cannot follow such a philosophy. While I do not seek to end all conflict with blade or arrow (quite the contrary actually), there are situations where you either kill your enemy, or he kills you. What would the world be like if the Horde and Alliance used the pacifist approach when the Burning Legion attacked Nordrassil?
Thus, I now fight the Horde with a clear conscience.
I still believe in Mistress Dalane's words whole-heartedly, and will continue to do what little I can in order to achieve peace. However, I will not hesitate to fight the Horde when it is necessary. Warsong Gulch is one such example. Another is what has been called the Arathi Basin. To the Alliance, the battles that take place in the basin serve to keep control of valuable resources. Yet, that is not why I fight there. I fight in the basin to help the League of Arathor reclaim their old home from the Forsaken Defilers, whose intentions are nothing but malign.
Some might say that my reasons are nothing but convienent excuses to fight whomever I wish, and escape all guilt by using some contrived moral justification. The very thought of that infuriates me. As a Hunter, I respect all life. The decision to kill should never be taken lightly, and I do not take it as so. If my objective was to fight the Horde under the guise of moral motives, then I would fight in Alterac Valley, and claim that I do so to protect the dwarves, our stout allies of the mountains. But I do not. I refrain from the fighting in Alterac Valley. The Stormpike Dwarves have every right to explore the land, and I do not wish ill upon any of them, but they should not remain in the valley. The Frostwolf Orcs have a right to live there, and although I wish that they could find a peaceful solution with the Stormpikes, no one should force the orcs into coexistence. The dwarves came to the valley to explore and unearth ancient relics, but instead they have only found blood and death. Are long-lost trinkets so valuable as to warrant the loss of so many lives?
Although my actions are just, and my conscience clear, I cannot help but wonder about these three new battlefields. For my efforts, the Alliance has named me a Master Sergeant, and offered me fine armor, with the promise of more rewards and titles as I continue to fight. Why? Is it not the equivalent of hiring sellswords? Are these skirmishes a prelude to something much larger in scale?
Only time will tell I suppose. Hopefully the answers do not come too late.
My quest is beginning to draw to a close. I am very close to mastering the art of working with dragonscales. Soon, I will have crafted the armor I have sought for some time, the Black Dragonscale armor. The Black Flight is a malicious Flight indeed, but it is also powerful. Some of that power is captured in the armor made from their scales. Again, I am saddened to see dragons in such a wicked state -- what good they might accomplish if they could only see the path of righteousness! -- but if they seek to cause such harm, then I will stop them. Wicked though they are, I am comforted by the fact that the scales I have taken from their dead bodies will be used to bring good.
I have crafted the chestpiece already, and plan to craft the shoulders very soon. Unfortunately, I have not yet been able to attain the pattern for crafting the leggings and boots. To make matters worse, it is rumored that the Scarab Gate will be opened within a week's time, thus unleashing the Silithid that lay behind it. The very reason I sought to make the Black Dragon armor is fast approaching, and I have only half of it completed.
Perhaps half will have to do. . .
Sometimes I wonder if the world is destined to go mad. As you have probably heard by now Celesst, Cairne, arguably the most wise and peaceful of the Horde's leaders, was killed a few days ago. Right when the time is near for Alliance and Horde to unite in battle against the Silithid, this tragedy strikes. I am certain that there are many Horde that would love nothing more than to take my head off in retribution, regardless of whether or not I was one of the attackers at Thunderbluff that day. Elune willing, there are members of the Horde who are trying their best to calm their vengeful bretheren. I pray that Cairne himself is one of those trying to make the Horde see reason (I am certain that the shamanistic powers of the Horde have been used to revive him). They have every right to hate the Alliance for what happened to Cairne, and their desire for vengeance is natural.
But where will it lead? They will charge into Alliance lands, killing as they go, depriving parents of their children, and children of their parents. They will breed more hatred, and that hatred will bring more death. When will it end? When we've all killed each other in some damn war that no one wanted in the first place? How many will have to die until we realize that are more dangerous forces at work? Forces that make no distinction between Horde and Alliance. Or will we never see? Will the Horde crush the Alliance in Cairne's name only to come back and find their homes destroyed by the Silithid, or The Burning Legion? Will the Alliance turn back the Horde, only to find the Black Dragonflight ready to enslave all of Stormwind?
I recently attended a mass at the Cathedral of Light in Stormwind to prayed to Elune that the world sees what I see. For some reason, I find it easier to pray to in Cathedral of Light than the Temple of the Moon. While some priests of Elune may find that blasphemous, I feel that Elune can hear me just fine wherever I am.
And now, I find myself at a crossroads. On one hand, I want to race back to Darnassus and defend my home from the wrath of the Horde. On the other, I want to be at the Scarab Wall standing next to Kodrak, ready to face whatever horrors come out of that gate. Sadly, I cannot be two places at once, and yet, I must defend both against the Silithid and the Horde.
Why, Elune, is it never easy?
End of The Forgotten Journal of Bronil Nightwind Book 1