The Shattering ((How do you react??))

(Locked)

100 Undead Warlock
14675
((Greetings all. Prior to the patch coming up i was wondering one thing. How would Valcrie react to the world becoming vastly different and how would she
experience it. I then also thought it would be great to share what i came up with and see how your character would react as well.))

It had been nearly 3 months since the demon was destroyed and Valcrie was finally fully recovered. When she arrived back in Azeroth the world was not the same as she had left it. The world has been torn asunder. Nothing seemed the same the world that she left behind was no longer here. It was confusing trying to navigate through the broken world. She had finally made it to Razor Hill when she stopped a guard and asked. "Orc, you must tell me what has happened here. I have been gone for sometime so I have no idea." The guard looked at the warlock and said. "A dragon is what happened." With that the guard moved away from Valcrie. Valcrie did not quite understand as she shook her head and continued on toward Orgrimmar . When she finally saw the city it was under mass construction. The city looked like it was being reinforced with metal from Icecrown. She continued on as she entered the city she once knew.

Like the rest of the world Orgrimmar was no longer the same. She was in awe of the changes when she was approached by a Blood Elf Death Knight. Valcrie recognized the Blood Elf as Moirai her once faithful servant. Valcrie spoke to the Death Knight, "Moirai what has happened here?" The Death Knight stopped walking and spoke. " The world as you know it no longer exists. Deathwing, the deranged Aspect of the Earth has returned. We will soon be launching assaults on Mount Hyjal and Vashj'ir. If I were you I would get ready." And with that, the Death Knight walked away.

Valcrie just stood there with her jaw open. The world had been torn asunder while she had recovered. She didn't quite understand anything but something insider of her erupted. It was like a burning fire that she had known only once. She felt enraged, this Deathwing had destroyed the world that she knew and loved and he was going to pay. When the time came to step foot into Mount Hyjal she would be ready.
83 Draenei Paladin
2040
Cersei leaned against the railing, and watched the dock slide away from the boat as the sun crested the horizon, Auberdine wrapped in an orange and purple glow reflecting the sunrise. The sea was calm this morning, lapping waves coaxed up by a lazy wind. It would be a long sail to Stormwind, but the draenei was glad to be returning home to Darkshire. Calm seas or stormy, anything was better than flying with that insane gnome.

A rumble of distant thunder brought her head around to the skyline; suprised sailors turned to look quizzically for any sign of a storm. Just another quake, I suppose, she thought dismissively. No thunderheads broke the even line where sea met sky. Then...

A boil of dark clouds rose out over the water, a flare of orange lighting them abruptly from within. A low mutter spread through the passengers and sailors, the captain motioned to the crew to ship the sails and return to the docks. The scant population of the ship crowded to the railings to watch the spectacle. The breeze whipped up briefly, pushing the ship awkwardly further away from the docks as the hands scrambled, then it died as abruptly as it started.

There was a dark shape in the clouds. They rolled upward and outward, obscuring the sliver of sun and replacing it with an angry orange glow. A roar echoed out from them and a huge black shape burst toward them impossibly fast. The form blurred, a shimmer of hot air raising as a wall in front of it.

The wave hit.

Crew and passengers alike were flung bodily back from the railing, the ship itself shoved forward, nearly prow first, down into the water like a child's toy. Decks and bulwarks bulged inward and flooded instantly. Sails caught, ripped, pulled and splintered the masts, ripping them from the deck and clean off of the ship in the single violent gust. Many of those that were not thrown clear overboard by the abrupt force lay scattered and injured across the decks, thrown up against the capstan, through the windows of the cabins, tangled in what was left of the rigging ladders.

The ringing in her ears was deafening. Above the ringing there was a thunderous sound and a rush of heat that put the first to shame. She could smell smoke and fire, and when she finally managed to lift her head and open her eyes, she couldn't understand what she was seeing. The deck seemed to roll upward with her to meet the scorched sky, it felt like she was falling, and then she was flailing in the water as the wood vanished beneath her, threatening to pull her down with it.

A few moments later she broke the surface, barely aware of what she was doing beyond finding a piece of wreckage to cling to that wasn't on fire. Her right arm wouldn't grip the plank properly, in a painful haze she saw a white glint of bone and looked away, sickened, closing her eyes and wrapping her left arm firmly around the flotsam, unable to do more than float, and pray.
100 Tauren Shaman
12990
Masharan was on the main deck of the Thunder Bluff to Orgrimmar Zeppellin, leaning against the guardrail to the side, gazing intently at the iconic Barrens sunrise. Several Blood Elf tourists gasped and rushed to the guardrail, babbling nonsensitically in Thalassian, and tried to push him out of the way to see this spectacle. Chuckling slightly at their efforts, the shaman backed away from the rail, letting the elves have the view, tilting his head in marvel as they all pulled out Goblin cameras (their "free" gift for taking Barrens Air Cruises) and rampantly started taking photos. "Blasted elves, so self absorbed, so impatient. This ride is slow enough already" Masharan muttered to himself, grumbling slightly as he made his way to the bow of the vessel.

He looked back over his shoulder. They were already halfway there, The cliffs and mountains protecting the sanctity of Mulgore were quite a distance aways. Knowing this made the tauren grin slightly, he disliked taking this route to Orgrimmar. But it was the only option that didn't involve going on foot, as Tal the wind rider was busy rounding up his Wyverns, scared away from the recent elemental attack. His kodo would not like trekking the Barrens and Durotar terrain gorged from grazing on the lush grasses around Bloodhoof. "May as well enjoy the view while I'm here" He thought to himself, as he gazed down at the barrens landscape travelling beneath him.

As he continued to look around. Something in the barrens wind caught the shaman's attention. The elements of the earth were SCREAMING in such twisted pain that he did not know was possible. Looking around, he saw clouds of dust in the air and could only hear the sounds of crumbling earth and the sounds of fiery eruptions. A nearby watch tower collapsed as the ground below is crumbled beneath it, the resulting plume of flame incinerated the Grunts climbing out of the wrecked tower. The Elf tourists screamed at the sight. The shaman heard many screams in the southern winds. Carefully following its source, the shaman adjusted his far sight further and further south, observing the resulting destruction of this otherwise unexplained disaster. "So this is what the earth spirits were trying to warn us about" he thought to himself. He was OVERJOYED he did not risk the trip on foot.

He saw only destruction the further he gazed south. Kolkar running around in panic, the Oasis waters churning, Quilboars squealing, a huge fiery chasm was opening up in the Southern Barrens. Not what he was looking for, but it added to the reality of this disaster. He finally found the source of the commotion. Taurajo was under attack from what appeared to be Theramore soldiers "The pinkskins must be out of their minds" Masharan thought to himself, chuckling slightly...until he saw dust clouds and heard plate thumping and the turning of wheels. He focused onto the source only to see alliance military flooding out of the Dustwallow pass. "Why would they attack Taurajo?". The shaman stopped his gaze on the battle and thought to himself.

A goblin from below the decks scurried up towards the ship's captain. " 'Ey Capp'n, We seem ta 'ave lost all contact wit' our buds near Orgrimmar! Tried all frequencies an' everytin'!" "Very well skipper, message our post in Thunder Bluff about this issue. Keep hailing Org One in hopes of reaching somebody!" He said valiantly. "Grobber better not have dropped that radio again." he muttered under his breath. Masharan walked up to the radio goblin trying to make his way back down, picking him up to stop him. " 'EY LEMME DOWN YA LUMMUCKS!" he yelled.

"I'm sorry but there is another matter that also needs to be addressed to Thunder Bluff. An INCREDIBLY important matter." Masharan's face almost touching the goblin's elongated nostril, a serious and intimidating look on his face. The Goblin nodded pathetically. "Good. You may get a promotion for relaying this information. Inform the Elders of Thunder Bluff that a sizeable alliance force is moving to wipe Taurajo off the map. Thunder Bluff may be next on their hit list. They are being slowed down by Taurajo's finest warriors but they will not last against this force if we do not move quickly." The tauren set the Goblin down. "Now rush to your radio to relay this. ...And if you do not credit me for finding this information for you, expect a MUCH shorter life. And do not try anything, As I WILL be watching."
90 Undead Mage
16895
Azcadel was sulking. She knew she had no one to blame but herself, and yet here she was pouting like a child. She bit into the cactus apple she was eating and stared sullenly ahead. Her black dragon whelpling fluttered angrily around her head until she broke a piece of the fruit off and fed it to her. Satisfied with its bounty it settled on her lap and stared up at her while it ate.

"I know. I know I should have expected it, but I didn't expect her to be so *angry*." Az rubbed her arm gingerly where her Mistress had grabbed her and dragged her through the Undercity vaults. "What do you mean what am I going to do now? Yes... normally I'd kill someone who made me angry like that but... I swore fealty to her and the Cult and, yes it really was my fault."

The fruit was gone now so Az dipped her hands in the water and dried them no some spare cloth she had in her bag. In the distance she could see the zeppelin towers that the goblins ran standing against the city of Orgrimmar. She would eventually have to return to Northrend to complete the task that her Mistress had assigned her, but that could easily be accomplished magically and for now the sandy beaches in Durotar were helping to soothe her anger.

Az closed her eyes and felt the warm air on her face. Her whelpling fidgeted in her lap before taking flight just above her. The air was quickly growing warmer. Az stood up. A large shadow flew overhead and it felt as if the air around her had caught fire. Instinctively Az conjured a ward against the elements and slipped into the ethereal plane where she was invisible to anyone on Azeroth's physical plane, but the heat of the air soon penetrated her defenses and she was forced back into the physical plane in order to concentrate her powers on protecting her from the heat and flames that were now appearing.

A small goblin ran toward her, screaming as the zeppelin towers burst into flame, but it died long before it reached the safety of the water. Without giving it another moment's notice Az turned and ran. She wasn't paying attention to where she was going and she soon felt the earth tremble and the ground below her give way. She fell roughly into the clefts of Thunder Ridge. Her entire body ached as she brushed the rock and dirt off her robes, but the air down here was thankfully cooler.

Her whelpling fluttered nervously around her, warning her to not relax, but she brushed it aside.

"We are safe from the heat, little one. We just have to wait and then we'll go back and see what happened."

As she spoke a giant shadow covered the cleft where she was hiding; a huge figure flew overhead blocking the sun from view. Seconds later the earth trembled again and water began to flow up from the ground. Az began to run toward the entrance of the cliffs but screamed as a giant wave of water crashed through the area. She was thrown into the rock walls as the water poured around her. The force of the water pinned her against the wall and it wasn't long before she lost consciousness.

It was night before Az finally awoke. Her leg was pinned under a large rock, and as she moved it off she knew that she would feel sore for weeks. The plague had removed her need for air, of which she was thankful, so she took the time to orient herself on her location. All around her floated the bodies of the thunder lizards who had lived in the ravine. It was then that she saw the body of her whelpling, on the ground near where she had been trapped. The light was gone from its eyes and it lay lifeless. She picked it up slowly, glad for the water surrounding her and carrying the tears from her eyes. She swam to the surface and dug a quick, makeshift grave for her companion, marking it magically so she would be able to find it later. The anger she had fought to control from before resurfaced, now directed now at whatever had caused this to happen, and magic emanated from her body. Without another word the mage disappeared, teleporting to the Undercity to find the rest of the Cult and get some answers.
The construction began almost immediately.

While elementals rampaged on the streets outside, renovation crews went to work in the buildings. Walls rose in some rooms, were knocked down in others... and the rain grew steadily heavier, drowning even the sound of the chaos outside. When calls for evacuation sounded over the city, the crews ignored it, knowing they were protected by extra guards at the door.

Pacing restlessly around drop cloths and piles of stone, Lady Seelund worried at her lower lip. She fought the urge to look over shoulders and ask questions -- people work faster when they’re not interrupted or micro-managed. And she wanted them to work _fast_. They needed to be ready to start on the new fountain and the new entries to these buildings as soon as the elemental threat began to abate -- between waves if necessary. When the mist cleared, there’d be a new and vital trade square ready for the city to use, a place where the dispossessed could look for help and find it, order standing over the chaos in the rest of the city...

If the Company made a few gold pieces in the process, well, there was no harm in that, now was there?

She stalked back to her office, the softened leather soles of her boots silent against the stone. “Every misfortune is an opportunity,” her father always said. The trick was in knowing the opportunity when it was staring you in the face, and in grappling it the ground for your own profit.

Blueprints labelled “Seelund Square” covered every flat surface in the small top-floor room. Her desk was buried in layers of plans. Turning the guild’s trading floor into a bank had been a stroke of genius that she wished she could take credit for. It had been one of the guards who watched the building -- he asked for an advance so he could send his family away from the city. Many of her employees had done so, but this one observed that with all the property damage, the Stormwind bank would never be able to give out enough loans to rebuild the whole city... and he was right. Seelund’s coffers, however, could absorb a great deal of the rebuilding, and without demeaning people by offering them charity.

She grinned suddenly. She heard Aeldon’s voice in her head. “D-mn capitalist,” he would say if she tried to use that line on him.

“Fine,” she answered back to herself, “I admit it. There’s a h--l of a lot of profit in banking. And now’s the time to get into it. Supply and demand. I have an overabundance of supply. There’s gonna be plenty of demand...”

The floor bucked under her feet. Another earthquake. She heard one of the construction crew cursing as the shaking grew worse. The watery dimness filtering in through the thick windows faded.

A grating sound, a roar, split the air, silencing the other sounds with its volume.

“What the...” she sprinted to the window.

The extra thickness of the glass that had kept it from shattering during the earthquakes worked against her now. Everything was distorted -- the sky was dark and there was something large and even darker against it... Gouts of bright red -- fire she guessed -- sprouted from the form.

It dived toward the city. Something somewhere to the west exploded. A column of fire shot up over what could only be the Park. It looked like the fire must have reached the Golden Apple’s warehouse and its barrels and barrels of booze. What else could have burned so fiercely in that green district?

No time to get everyone out of the city.

She spun on her toes and ran. “Everyone to the vaults! You! Make sure all the construction crew are in the vaults! Now!” The vaults were dwarvish. Even a dragon would have a hard time getting to them in there. They might be able to lie in wait undetected.

She slid down the stairs and skidded to a stop before the doors. Could she get everyone from the other buildings and all the guards from outside in time?
85 Draenei Shaman
5410
She hadn’t slept last night. The elementals were growing stronger and their attacks more frequent. After she closed the tavern for the night, she’d had to fight her way back to the Dwarven District. There were more elementals in the square outside the guild hall. The Company needed every bit of protection they could get. So she set up on the porch of one of the buildings, tending to the wounded.

It disturbed her that she could not communicate with these elementals in any way. They were crazed, beyond control. Having to destroy them pained her in a way the humans around her would never understand.

She pushed rain-drenched hair back from her face, untangling it from a horn. Someone passed her a canteen of sweet liquid and she drank without trying to figure out what it might be. Odd, she considered, how living with humans and dwarves makes your life as frantic as theirs. No wonder they lived such short lives. They burned out all their energy in constant activity.

She leaned back against a pillar, trying to regain some of her strength before the next wave. The sleepless vigil and undending fight was draining her. She closed her eyes. Just a moment of rest...

A screech like a thousand volcanoes erupting shattered her momentary peace. Darkness blanketed the city, except for the eyes of the creature hovering above. She had never seen a dragon so large. This, this was more like a dragon from the stories they told in her bar. She’d been somewhat disappointed the first time she had to kill a dragon and discovered it was just another animal... this was not an animal. She suddenly understood what humans were afraid of when they spoke of “dragons.”

Heavily, she gathered her shield and dagger, standing to prepare for the fight. It was unlikely that there were enough of them to beat back such a terror but she’d sworn after they retook Stromgarde she’d never be forced out of her home again...

The dragon dove for something out of view -- the Park district most likely. Something exploded that she couldn’t see and she suddenly remembered what Stout and Stone had said about her mailbox having a “fuse” and “goblin rocket fuel”. The human standing next to her jumped, startled, when she started laughing.

The laughter died on her lips as a jet of flame shot into the air. There was only one thing in the Park that would burn that hot -- the Apple’s stock. “It’s happening again” she murmured to herself. “How can it be happening again?”

The door behind her swung wide “You! Go to the building and bring everyone back. You! That building there. You! Get these wounded into the vaults.” Lady Seelund’s voice cut through the thick disbelief of everyone watching. “Now!”

The jet of flame wound its way higher into the air and then, suddenly disappeared. The earth cried out under Aurhia, and she knew, even without hearing the sliding and cracking, that something terrible had happened. Tears threatened to blind her as she watched the dragon rear up.

“I said, you!” A hand landed roughly on her arm. “Rumbleshot! Pull it together. Get these people into the vaults. Now.” The much shorter human spun Aurhia around and stepped close, her voice softening. “I know you’re looking for Stone. I don’t know where Aeldon and Jacobii are either. We can grieve for them later if they haven’t found a place to hide. Right now, I need you to get your patients into the vaults. It’s the only place we might be safe.”

“I won’t run.” Aurhia said firmly.

“Well they,” Aydrien pointed down at the wounded, “_can’t_ run. You making that choice for them too? They need you more than you need to satisfy your wounded pride. Now snap to it, before we’re all cinders.”

Aurhia looked away but nodded.

With a last glare of hatred toward the beast, she started getting everyone inside.
85 Blood Elf Hunter
5745
Virendis yawns and walks towards the nearest window in Rellen'thas manor and lazily looks at the fiery orange blazing sky.

"Eff." He mumbled as he looked down to the streets.

"You boy! What day is it and the time, what time?"

The commoner boy looked up at the noble shouting at him and responded kindly out of fear.

"Tis the cataclysm day sir and it's 6 am."

"Bah!" Virendis responded before tossing the boy a few gold coins and returned back to bed.

"Too early for any cataclysms, I'll check back at noon."
Edited by Virendis on 11/23/2010 12:26 PM PST
85 Night Elf Rogue
11645
It had truly begun.

Melinrae had been at the docks of Stormwind, waiting on the boat to Auberdine so that she could return to Ashenvale, the lands she knew so well. A brief visit, one she only was able to do every so often...her duties to the Dusk kept her busy, to be sure, and the Horde generally took whatever free time she had left. A quake hit, and her balance shifted subtly, almost to the point where she wasn't even realizing she did it. She shakes her head slightly. "Damned quakes..." But this one was different. As it subsided, it shook anew with fury, lashing the docks with the waves from a troubled sea.

She tipped to the side, then back to the front, until finally she came to a three point stance. The wind and the waves slammed into the area, sending crates, horses, people flying. Biting back a curse, she drew her dagger and slammed it hilt deep into the ground. Not much, but at least a point she could hold onto. She peered through the slits of her visor...what could be causing this?

An angry orange burst of flame erupted from the distance...ash and smoke filled the sky, rapidly expanding to blot out the sun, to turn the clouds to ashen gray. She slowly raised the visor, looking out with shock at the surrounding scape...

Fire scorched the sky.

Her gaze quickly returns to the darkened horizon, and what she saw next nearly caused the battle hardened rogue to drop her weapon. "Elune have mercy...Malagorne watch our paths..." She'd seen something like this only twice before. Once, the Dragon Queen, Alexstrasza. At the Wrath Gate. The second...Malygos, the mad aspect of Magic. The size and sheer power that radiated off of the creature was immense. "Neltharion..." No. She shook her head slightly. Neltharion, the dragon aspect of earth, was no more. Her eyes narrowed, her teeth grit, and she spoke the name again. "...Deathwing"

As if he had heard her cry, he dove for the docks, maw burning with fire and hatred. His eyes focused upon this place, upon this bastion of humanity, and razed it with his fire. She saw it only in time and drew her cloak around her, one seeming to be of living shadows. Even then, with the protection of the shadows around her, she still felt the heat...it burned. Her leather cracked, her visor burned, her clothes blackened from the power. As she drops her cloak, stone and mortar stood...and little else. She looked around...the guards, burned to bone, and their armor molten slag heaps. The vendors, little more than ash. The docks themselves, and the ships within...destroyed.

The park exploded, a plume shot high in the sky. She glances towards it, seeing him pass...and knowing it would not be the same again. "...So be it" She begun walking up the docks, her feet crunching in what remained of everything around her. "To war...once more"

85 Night Elf Rogue
11645
((I'll write one for Usagi later))

Edited by Melinrae on 11/23/2010 1:30 PM PST
90 Pandaren Rogue
4025
You knew this was coming.

Well, maybe not this, but something like it.

Thrall wouldn't have let one as crude as Hellscream lead the Horde in Orgrimmar if something significant weren't about to happy.


But this? Maybe this was more than she had expected.

The past five nights she'd spent in the Plaguelands had seemed a respite after fighting off so many waves of Elementals in Orgrimmar, dueling the undead foes she had become so familiar with. Now - gone. The Lich King defeated. Here? A land dead and gone suddenly rejuvenated. But she'd already heard the other rumors as well.

Lands destroyed. Or changed utterly. And rumors of a dragon unlike any the world knew. She'd seen dragon kind in Northland, but - by all accounts - nothing quite so literally earthshattering as this.

Still, Articulate thought, yawning after yet another night of total unrest, you've got to be realistic about these sorts of things.

She was just a rogue. She rode great events much like a cork on the waves. Storm however it might, her state - her purpose - did not change. The Alliance, as they fancied themselves, were still out there. The Horde, hardly more welcoming to her ... profession ... would nevertheless need hers and her compatriots services as much as ever.

She idly flipped a dagger between her fingers as she smiled. The bloody work awaited.
85 Dwarf Hunter
6965
“I’ve crossed deserts, mountains, an’ tundra!” Stone yelled up at the sky “Ye think a lil’ rain storm’s gonna phase me?!” The sky responded with a great crackle of lightning, and the earth heaved in response, tossing the dwarf forward several feet into the muddy grass of the Stormwind Park. Much as he hated to admit it, just getting from Aydrien’s worksite in the Dwarven District to the doorstep of the Golden Apple had taken more out of the old hunter than weeks of trekking through Kalimdor. Standing upright was impossible between the earthquakes and gale winds, so he’d elected to run along crouched far forward, using Grog as something of a makeshift windbreak.

The Golden Apple’s sign was on the porch when he arrived, an early victim of this night’s wind blasts. Stone grunted and let it be; he’d already reattached the sign six times since the elemental invasions began, and trying to shimmy up the doorframe in this weather was ridiculous. Hopefully there’d be a break tomorrow. Stepping inside, he could see water pooling in the drinking room. A large hole had broken open in the roof; no doubt the druids would be complaining tomorrow about their precious moonwell being filled with wood shingles. How they could tell the difference between their pool and the muddy pond now filling the Park was anyone’s guess.

“Come on Groggie, we’d best git what we came for an’ go back. Aurhia’d ‘ave my hide if she knew I’d come all the way o’er ‘ere just fer this.” He smiled, mussed the fur on Grog’s head, and strode into the bar. Dodging the cascade of rain, Stone strode to the bar, unhooked the latches on the drawers, and began removing a few carefully sealed bottles of water, all labeled “Do NOT Drink” in thick letters. The carefully packed crate of Nagrand herbs was soaked, probably unsalvageable.

“So much fer the Nagrand Pale Ale…” Stone sighed. He’d been planning to brew a special ale for the bar, something with keynotes to remind Aurhia of home…she’d been so tired recently, with the constant elemental attacks, and the increasingly dark dreams which haunted her slumber. “Well, at least a sip o’ filtered water from Draenor might be welcome.” He smiled hopefully, packing the bottles carefully into his backpack.

Rising to his feet, he glanced around the waterlogged bar. “Come on boy let’s…..”

A terrible shriek filled the air above Stormwind, drowning out the incessant rain. Stone instinctively looked up through the hole in the roof, watching the black, fiery form shoot past as it rattled the roof beams and caused the earth to quake again. Stone’s hand went instinctively to his gun, but as the dragon passed overhead he snickered to himself at the pointlessness of firing lead shots into such a monster. Cold sweat followed next; he heard the dragon circling overhead.

Grog went first, tearing his great claws into the floorboards of the taverns as he bolted towards the basement. Stone unthinkingly followed, knowing the stone foundations would do little to protect them if the creature attacked the Park. At least down amongst the barrels of ale and cases of drinks he might die a happy dwarf. Grog, for his part, ignored the drinks and went straight towards an oily tarp in the back of the cellar, tearing it down with his fangs to reveal….

….the Direbrew tunneling machine.

“Ye thrice blessed beastie!” Stone tore at the tunneler’s door, throwing off the lock and catapulting into the driver’s seat. Grog tackled him trying to get inside, and for a moment arms, legs, and paws flailed about, each seeking the controls. Stone pummeled the wolf back into the storage compartment, slammed the door shut, and fired up the engine.

“GO YA BLASTED THIN”!” The drill groaned into action, tearing into the earth and plunging the cockpit into darkness. Warning lights immediately flashed on the console as the drill plunged forward without proper heading or care; Stone slammed his foot into the accelerator, knowing only to put as much distance as he could behind him and the Park.

An eerie light began suddenly to fill the tunnel while Stonemug kicked, punched, and tore at the controls to go faster. The earth around the machine was getting hotter, turning deep red almost as fast as the machine was burrowing. The steam pressure gauge jumped wildly up into the red, and for a moment Stone was certain it would blow, packing him and Grog into a tiny scolding bullet somewhere deep in the earth. Despite the fiery cataclysm behind him, the machine managed to continue, bursting through the ground at reckless speed, deeper and deeper into the crust.
80 Human Rogue
4425
It was a day like any other. The rain had stopped, and the earth seemed to stop shaking for the time being. Jacobii needed to get back to the Abbey before it got dark, and this opening was the best time to try. Aydrien would be working for most of the rest of the day, so I decided go and spend some time with him.

"Aeldon?"

I turned my head, "Yes Jacobii?"

"When do you think I'll be finished with training? I've been at it for two years already, I'm ready to fight."

I chuckled, "Oh I am sure you are, Jacobii. But dont be so quick to run off to war. War may come to you, but you should never go to it."

He sighed. I know he wanted to go and test himself, to prove himself. To gain vengeance for his parents. I wrapped my arm around his shoulders, and roused him.

"Dont worry son, you're stronger than I was at your age, and smarter. Much smarter. When your training is finished I know you'll be a great Paladin. Until then..."

"Mind my studies, listen to my teachers. I know father, I know."

I chuckled, ruffling his hair. He responded by knocking me in the shoulder. He made a mad dash down the road, laughing the whole way. I stayed back, laughing with him.

"Ya, he'll fill that Paladin armor well someday...." I thought to myself.

As Jacobii was still looking back towards me, we both heard a noise. I terrible roar, that shook the very ground, and wrenched with our souls. The trees swayed and the air itself seemed to tense as it passed.

"What the hell was that," Jacobii asked, running back towards me.

"I dont know. It sounded almost like....a dragon?"

The earth began to quake again, and the sound of the roar filled the air. It grew louder and louder. The beating of great wings could be heard, and a great orange glow filled the sky over the city. Jacobii and I ran back the way we came, for whatever reasons I still dont know, up the road and to the Gates of Stormwind. Once there, our bodies froze in place.

Before us, upon the towers on the opposite side of the Valley, stood a great black Dragon. Its wings filled the sky, and the flames and smoke that poured from its body choked the air. I had only seen two other Dragons of that size. Malygos and Alexstraza.

"What....what is that father?"

I was afraid, the first time in a long while. I was afraid. It looked in our direction. The guards at the gate held up their shields, but it didn't seem to notice them, or us. We were just insects to him.

"Father," he asked again.

"Its....its Deathwing, Jacobii. The fallen Aspect of Death. It has to be."

The great dragon reared it head and sent out another terrible roar. Our very bones quaked in fear, and the guards near the gates fled, as any sensible person would have done. It turned its head and shot a jet of flame into the city. As Jacobii stood guard, withdrawing his training weapons, the realization came upon me.

"Aydrien..."

She was still somewhere in the city.

"AYDRIEN" I cried, throwing aside caution, sense, and any amount of sanity that remained, and rushed as fast as I could into the city and under the great Aspect.

Jacobii was close behind, and Deathwing's attention seemed to be turned towards the city. The air was hot, stifling. The light of the sun had vanished. It was hard to breathe, and almost impossible to see. My eyes itched from the smoke and ash. But no matter what, I had to get into the city. I had to find Aydrien.

I had to.
90 Tauren Hunter
9620
With word spreading of the fall of the Lich King...a small sense of relief had passed through the Horde. The Lich King was gone, they could take a breath and start rebuilding the lives that had been...interrupted by the threat that the Scourge had imposed. Granted, there were still masses of rampaging undead but the expectation that they would be nothing like what they were. And so slowly, a trickle here and there, some Horde headed home to spouses and children not seen for many seasons to let them know in the flesh that they still lived.

Istas herself had fought in the great Citadel, against the Scourge and great Valkyr and had heard distant cries for help - though she herself never faced the Lich King personally. For that she was actually glad, having respect for the honor of the Order (though she often wondered at the lust of many for "holy vengeance")...she didn't want to see what became of a Holy warrior fallen so deep into Darkness. As a graying old cow she was one of the first to be relieved of her duties...which got the Blood Guard a sour look. He had the audacity to chuckle at her, mention something about her long years of service - and go home to Mulgore.

...the small circle of burned out huts on the edge of the valley was as she'd left it, save perhaps some more grass creeping into the place as the Earthmother sought to reclaim it from the ravages of blood and fire that had left a scar on Her skin years before. The old cow set up her tent in this spot, muttering at the letter from Rebeccow in her pack - no matter, there were those that would know to find her here if they wanted. Slowly she started to rebuild the central firepit and one of the hovels - it wasn't perfect, but her leatherworking skills served even her arthritic fingers well enough. It would never be the home that it once was, as the burial mount on the hill nearby would attest, but it would suffice for an elderly cows' last seasons. She could hunt kodo at her liesure and maybe tell youngsters of nearby Bloodhoof Village and Thunder Bluff of all the things she'd seen in her many seasons. Elementals? They would go as they came, she thought, once the balance was restored - the Earthmother wouldn't allow her world to suffer as these Doomsayers cried after so recently escaping from the Scourge threat.

So the deep howl of warning that awakened her one night was most unexpected. Angeni, his white coat turning dull gray in the muzzle from age, nevertheless still had a voice that echoed for miles. In the distance she could see torchlights going on in Bloodhoof - no doubt they heard him too. But there was nothing - the stars shone brightly, a gentle wind whispered through the grass.

"What is it?" She asked the old wolf in Taurahe. When he entirely ignored her question to let forth another long, loud howl - her mane started to stick up. Something was Very wrong, and he was going to tell everything within reach of his voice of it.

Then she heard something too. A distant roar...a whoosh of displaced air....and then what? A...dragon, armored and trailing wisps of flame shot over the valley toward Thunder Bluff faster than anything she'd ever seen, with a wingspan that dwarfed the drakes she'd seen in service in Northrend. Small rocks tumbled down the hillsides - and the passing of the dragon didn't end the rumbling of the earth, a tremor beneath her hooves and explosions in the distance continued after it's passing.

Calling her Talbuk she hauled her popping joints to sit astride it and rushed to Thunder Bluff to find out....what now?
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