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Warcraft Short Story – Creeper of the Soul

 

Other short stories starring Isratael

  • Warcraft Short Story – A letter of a pilgrim – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – A brother’s Call to Arms – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – Judgement Day – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – Stranded on a river of leaves – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – The Staff of the Virtuous Pilgrim – Link

 

 

Creeper of the Soul

The perfect house. Adorned in beauty, inviting for the individual. The dream, lounging for thousands of years upon the soul of a once meek Draenei.
She saw, materialized in her sub-conscious. A vivid and convincing room, with those that she desired the most. Such warmth and harmony, never had this been so clear! In Shadowmoon Valley, a modest house where vines and wooden fences protected a magnificent back yard from the preying beast and critters that desired to feast upon others’ allure. Purple light coming from perfectly cut enchanted Taladite crystals that levitated on top of ivory pillars.
On the main hall, the one that presented such yard behind transparent glimmering layers of cloth embroidered in gem chips that reached the ground like tail quill feathers of a peacock; a wooden dining table with silver lining white cloth. The cherry on top, a table chandelier that held candles for those extra cold nights. A floral scent that traveled alongside the brown wooden walls that made a defining contrast with the stellar white stone floor. A bookcase, containing an impressive collection of tales and spell books of old! On one of the walls, a Crystalline fireplace that did not drew the attention away from a smaller sample of a white clefthoof’s pelt resting on the floor. Lastly, a wide yet thin wooden drawer that held the silver cutlery and other necessary utensils for a delightful meal; a rich variety of fruits on a colorful bowl that rested on top of such furniture.

But what made the house desirable was not the beauty in the eyes of the beholder, but the youthful warmth of those that were but no longer could. The Pilgrim’s parents, sharing the wisdom of the Prophet with the children that never came to be. The passionate dialogue from a red-blooded lover of reason, talking to the willful sibling. Other familiar faces came and went, hospitality in the house of the fabled Enchantress, Isratael.
.. Yet, it wasn’t a dream.

The wind blew harshly against the neck, cloth wrapping around it delicately. It was too late! With a snap, she felt on the ground painfully.
A flash, she hadn’t died, where were the others? Something was wrong and she called for her warmth. The long breathtaking wait between each clop from the hooves that never came, a crystal shard pierced through the heart.
A flash, she hadn’t died, her father was there now. She pleaded, the house was haunted! He widened his eyes in disbelief, now victim of the fire that grew right underneath his hooves. She couldn’t save him.
A flash, her father wasn’t there, did he perish? She ran outside the house and found herself in the backyard. There was someone there, a friendly orc that attended the flowers with much pleasure. Her tusks pointing upwards, curling a smile that she wasn’t aware. Was she aware of what was happening at all? The vines came to life, wrapping the Draenei when she least expected. Gasping for air, her last breath gave birth to another flash.
Again inside the main hall, the orc wasn’t there. The children that never came to be were screaming, falling one by one from the enchanted army of cutlery. The bowl of fruit was her shield of righteous. She survived, at what cost?
Flash, she was alone with her new acquaintance, paranoia. Paranoia became her greatest ally, her senses enhanced. For a time nothing came, until it did and she felt.
Flash, the corpse of her mother on top of the pelt.
Flash, she died with her brother.
Flash, the orc was there once again, but so was death.
Flash, blood. Flash, a survivor to tell. Flash, a tale of decay.

The nightmare of a house that never came to be. There was no way to wake up from such a dread, a prison of the past and long-lived yearnings. A constant reminder that, no matter how much one believes they will reach a state of ecstasy, life is anything but merciful. It will chortle in your misery. A chortle that felt real.

Laughter came from the tunnel of light that wittingly came. She stretched her arm to reach it. And from light came darkness, from darkness a blur and a voice that became clear.

 

 

Argus

 

She was in Argus for quite some time, such became obvious to Isratael once again. She had fallen victim to the whispers that surrounded the Seat of Triumvirate, Mac’aree; on yet another mission with a group of Draenei Nomads that she had grown acquainted with.
A verbal contract she had made once again but, unlike the one made with mercenaries and traders, it was one with the only desire to find her own brother. Nomads who constantly enforced her the same mindset she had grown to abhor. Trapped in a past, never releasing the grip from something that was long gone. Echoes, demons and spirits of the past; a reminder of a former home that no longer was but a burning fel rock. She detested Argus with a passion the moment she stepped on Mac’aree, even though it did not share the same cursed landscape from the world bellow. A floating rock, a lost piece of a puzzle that once made Argus the home planet of the Draenei more than twenty five thousand years ago. Isratael was born long after the lost, she had no attachment to such adulterated planet. It was only a planet that she had heard from her parents and much older acquaintances of the past.

However, she was a victim once again at that point in time. The whispers had reached to her, everything became hazy. She had just awakened from a deep slumber, or perhaps from a mind controlling spell. Shadows talked, yet she could not listen. It was still dark, but she was awake at last. Her mind was clearing up and she had begun to feel cold and a hunger she hadn’t felt in a long time. She tried to move, but her body was not her slave yet. It did not move under her command, not even a finger could be raised. Her head was not her own either, but she felt her skin touching upon a rugged surface. It hurt her, but she could not yell or whimper. A chill came from her spine for creeping dark tendrils traveled from her back and reached for her frown. These tendrils had her under control, under their command.

 

A chuckle came from afar, making the shadows flee. Her mind became clearer, her gaze limpid, and she could finally realize that she was inside a dim scavenged Draenei house. And the shadows were Krokul melded in Void. She tried to move once again, to speak.. to no avail. Yet her senses allowed her to realize that she had been stripped from her cloth, bearing her undergarments. Dirt and bruises covered her dark violet skin. The dark tendrils that preyed on her spine and skull were exactly what she had seen and understood, the body that sat on the floor and leaned against the wall was not her own to order, but to only feel. Fortunately for her, the master had no desire for their new puppet.

A fine subject.” said the voice that came closer, forming a shadow on the entrance. Tall yet slender, sharp shoulders and male on first sight. It was the voice that mocked in her dreams, yet the one that also brought her conscious back. Isratael’s own emotions felt distant however, despise the predicament she was experiencing. Such is the Void. Yet her eyes turned, not under her desire to do so. They looked at herself, at her own flesh.
The shadow came closer, growing bigger. When approaching the door frame, her body raised from the ground immediately. Her movements were rigid and reckless for her own well being, for she felt her bones cracking. Yet her body stood, slightly hunched. Her dark purple hair, though not long, waved in front of her gaze, greased. How long had she been in such a state of affairs?
The shadow.. was of an unknown Ethereal “Good, I can feel your presence. Your mind hasn’t been consumed.

He clasped his hands, or what appeared to be hands. The wrappings gave much to desire after all. He continued to speak to her with a tone that no longer mocked, but one of a diplomat “Your conscious mind is still alive. Appreciate that, Draenei. I have no desire to see a creature like you suffer..” he paused, only to wave a hand in front of a frown that was not her own.
From that wave, the tendrils that crawled on her back vanished to nothingness. And from that nothingness came a familiar vessel that was now hers to order and to feel. Suddenly finding herself being in control of her own self, she collapsed on the ground fully conscious. The pain that she felt on her body, it made her scream as loud as she could. The agony that she felt from the hunger, the bruises and pain from a former slave owner who carelessly treated her mortal vessel quite savagely. And from the pain, tears. The Ethereal waited patiently, giving a much more needed moment for the Enchantress to recover from the shock.

 

A moment had finally passed, raising herself quite pitifully. She clumsily stumbled closer to a wall, resting both palms on it. She had grown accustomed to her own body once again, yet there were questions unanswered. She turned to face the Ethereal, her back relying on the crumbling wall behind her. “I do apologize for your attire, Draenei. Your.. tattered drapes held impressive properties that were necessary for this transaction.” finally spoke the Ethereal once again, his hands behind his back with a rather straight posture.
.. W-Where am I? Who are you and.. why.. should I trust you?” mustered Isratael behind a harsh breathing pattern and vulnerable silhouette.
You haven’t left Mac’aree. I am your savior and you may feel free to not trust me.
I.. don’t trust your kind.
You don’t have a choice, regardless. Listen to my proposal or I shall send you back to the Void.

Threatened, the Draenei muttered a few words of wisdom. Yet, to her own dismay, the Ethereal raised a single finger that pointed close to where a humanoid would usually have their lips bloom. She had been silenced, which surprised her. “I wouldn’t do that again if I were you, fleshling. Remain civil and I shall provide with your belongings.” retorted the Ethereal, lowering his finger slowly. She felt her voice cords belonging to her once again, gasping.
Now that you are aware of your plight; I choose you out of those acquaintances of yours because I found that you were the most promising of subjects.” he continued with his negotiation.
T-the weakest, you mean..” lamented the Draenei.
There were others with weaker connection to the Light, fleshling. No, I choose you because you have something that I desire. And you desire something as well.
Walking closer to the Ethereal, she kept a much more reliable stance. One of her hands wandered behind her back in search for any tendril, growing some paranoia over the Void. But no, that Ethereal was aware of something already. Of her true goal on Argus or perhaps the dream she had.
Ytaaru.. is it?” he suggested, to incite more than a mere reaction. Which obviously she did, a trembling hand reached for her own mouth to cover her shock to hear such a name from an Ethereal. A clop back, she almost felt. A faint humorous snicker from the Ethereal, in jest “The things one can learn from another’s nightmares. I could hear your voice from afar, Draenei. You seek a familiar face, yet I do not know who and where this Ytaaru is.

 

Silence settled between the two oddities. The Pilgrim was growing restless from the mystery surrounding her torturer. A frustrated sigh from the Draenei herself broke the abnormality “Be quick, Ethereal. I starve. I.. know your people are oblivious to such realities but know that I may collapse soon if I do not eat..

Very well, fleshling. I’m aware of the nature of a certain mana crystal that you had. That crystal comes from this planet. I wish to know where. I’m sure that you are also aware the implications of not providing me with such information.
I.. should had guessed. You desire something that isn’t yours already. If I do, you’ll set me free?
I’ll do more than just that. I’ll provide what remains of your inventory. Including that particular unflattering staff.

The pilgrim blinked, turning her attention at her own physique. A reminder of the price she would had to pay for not complying with the demands of the Ethereal. If she were to accept the proposal however, she would be betraying the Nomads and, of consequence, her people. Her stare once again settled on the mystical appearance of the Ethereal that hid himself on poorly enchanted wrappings and uninspiring dark yet sharp shoulder pads made of cloth. Yet, in her hunger, she felt certain repulsion for those that abandoned her that day. She began to remember that, during the conflict, she had fallen behind while the other Draenei walked without much of a glance to her struggle. She had but one question to the Ethereal that awaited nothing but the answer he desired from her “How long has it been since the day you have manipulated me?
To which he answered “Nearly two weeks. No one came searching for you, Draenei.
Then I’ll accept your proposal. They must surely believe that I’m one with the Light by now..” she lamented, turning her gaze away from the dealer. She knew the consequences of her decision, yet it was one for her own survival and made ever so lightly given the blindness of her own hunger.
It is settled, Draenei. Surely, a mutually beneficial transaction. Just as I foresaw.

 

The Pilgrim began to provide the information to the mysterious Ethereal. In return, the Ethereal ordered two Voidscarred Krokuls to bring the Draenei her own values, to which they done so. Unlike what her oppressor had lead her to believe, her garments were mostly intact. The Staff of the Virtuous Pilgrim was once again hers to wield. The Ethereal was made aware where she had gained a particular mana crystal. He did not require more than the information provided. It belonged to an Autarch of her kind, from a lineage of magi that she knew so little to begin with. A Draenei that has lived four times over the age and wisdom of this Arcanist. Ancient vaults that held secrets and power, perhaps even subtle traps and curses. He did not fear the challenge itself, for he had allowed the Void to have control over his judgement.

The Enchantress was permitted to walk away from the crumbling ruins, to which she did without much more of a whimper to the few Ethereal she saw on her path back to the Vindicaar. Her mind, though freed from the influences of the Void, it was not fully sane. She only desired a meal, aloof clops on the ground and supported by her staff along the excruciating walk. She could not bear to fully grasp what she had done that day.

On the Vindicaar, the Lightforged were quick to attend to her wounds. There was no sign of any Nomad of Tureem. Long breaths, she closed her eyes and rested for a few days. She had enough time to contemplate about the consequences over and over. Yet no one knew what she had done, a secret that she kept hidden from those around her. On that moment, her only desire was to face her own brother. Perhaps he was on the region known as Antoran Wastes, or so she believed given that was the location the Vindicaar was brought to during her recovery.
Ytaaru…

Pages:

Warcraft Short Story – The Staff of the Virtuous Pilgrim

 

Other short stories starring Isratael

  • Warcraft Short Story – A letter of a pilgrim – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – A brother’s Call to Arms – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – Judgement Day – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – Stranded on a river of leaves – Link

 

 

Dun Morogh

A darkened cloud, carried by the wind. To purify the soul, it must weep and not be forgotten in the skies. Never ignored. The tears, toxic, causing a temporary illness. Yet a river is seen, it must be fed and be given a flow without drying. Without it, all that is natural perishes with time. But so is the cycle of life that brings a storm on the horizon and tears apart what is close to us. Life is but a cycle of destruction and light that teaches us half truths. Not because it hides, but because life is the greatest poet. Like children of the night, embracing the dim nature of the womb. Laughter is what we seek at the end.
But all need to be born. Again and again. Can mortals truly reach the promise land? Ignorance is bliss, life will tear you apart. Wake up, forge your heart before darkness consumes you.

Life begins anew in familiar lands. The womb of a matriarch from Khaz Modan, Kharanos. It has been a year since the demonic invasion had begun. Though the united force of the Dwarven clans and individuals has made this specific town safe from harm; sorrow still lingers in the eyes of the beholder. The enthusiasm from the Gnomes, a race that has endured martyrs from their betrayer, truly the candles in bleakness.
The hum of metal, cling. The strength of a hammer, clack. A clattering hymn of rebirth to one of the most well known towns in Dun Morogh. Heavily guarded, even the mountain kings have to step down from their hills to inspire their people and make sure darkness doesn’t slither.

Again, Summer resides. The snowy mountains, resisting the heat for most part. Corn snow, wet at times, snow squalls aren’t uncommon. Still, it allows the meek to wander without too much concern of freezing to death or sickly. A Draenei pilgrim, by the name of Isratael, finds herself in this town afresh. She knew what to expect, relieved to see the outcome of the local labor. A few familiar faces, reminding her of a choice she had made. One that has cost her dearly. A pain that she felt within her heart, part of her regretted her choice. Yet the face of a few of the locals that recognized her. Those who used to carry bandages, scars. They now smiled, their eyes could not hide! The cheeks, hid underneath layers of musk that tell a tale. A stoutly appearance, protected by long braided beards. There was something charming and endearing when witnessing a Dwarven male genuinely smile. “Was this the right decision”, the Draenei thought to herself through mutters.

After leaving a golden vale of sorrow, to experience the death of an outcast by the hands of their enemies; she couldn’t help but feel sympathy for the lone Mogu. Truly, blind hatred. She expected much more from the Pandaren, after being in their continent for a while. The tales and their philosophy, hospitality, their cuisine! If there is someone on Azeroth that one could trust to make the wisest of choices, it must be a Pandaren. Yet what the Draenei saw was hypocrisy. It betrayed her, tricked her. Toyed with her weakened soul. Her hope, to abandon her previous life and to be reborn anew, to walk a new path along the people of Azeroth. Her family was shattered, most pieces were broken while others were left to wander.
Is such faint desire truly fiction from the mind of a troubled wayfarer? Was it fate, to be a shadow of a former vessel that didn’t beat so violently within the embrace of an ivory palace? Pause, the beat skipped, what is this feeling? It is empty, yet also everything that one feels. Pouring in so vapidly. No, not vapid. It’s intense! Is it too late for the Draenei to scream? To beg? Her mouth hastened, yet it was too late. A weak sigh was all that was transpired from yet another moment of despair. The culmination of a being that has lived for over ten millennia. The same sound one hears from the whispers coming from the most ancient of fauna, a sough.

 

 

The Staff of the Virtuous Pilgrim

 

The Hammerstone family.

Again Isratael had decided to visit them. Haze shrouds the path of faith, lacking direction. In haze, Isratael could only think of an elderly matriarch, Jagda Hammerstone. A Jewelcrafter that she had met, in a family of diggers and a few metalsmiths. After the bulk of the Legion’s army upon this world, the family took the opportunity to enlarge their foundry in the extremity of the town. Their family name was known for their explorer, Galthorm Hammerstone, not for their prospectors and crafters. They had to compete with more prevalent names in their society.

 

After trudging on top of the recently built stone paths that connected the town with prosperity in mind, her hoof had clopped on the foundry. A familiar sound to some of the family members, turning their heads to see the Draenei that had saved them. As she expected, much like the very few commoners that recognized her, their grin lighten up more than the flames that rested on the furnace. It is as if a hero was walking among them. She could not bare to look at them in the eyes, forcing a smile that was buried in the shade cast by her lilac embroidered silky cowl. A gift from another friend of hers, a fabled Pandaren Jewelcrafter from the Greenstone Village, Jade Forest.

Brought to the matriarch, blissfully preparing a feast for her loved ones, with the aid of her grandchildren on the comfort of their own house; the family allowed a moment’s rest from the two. Of course, as tradition demanded, Jagda had brought the pilgrim to the silence that only the death could bring. It was still an afternoon, never completely in solitude. The sun provided enough warmth to make the Draenei finally unveil her hair. She had allowed it to grow, though it yet had to reach her shoulders. It no longer carried the fragrance that was familiar to those that knew her a few years back. Rather, it was sweeter. A contrast to an expression that carried melancholy. If anything, it burden the matriarch to see such a noble creature to be saddened.

Lass..?” the dwarf questioned. She was not expecting to see her friend and champion mourn after what happened. Little did the Dwarven widow knew about the death of Isratael’s father. A planned omission from the Arcanist that did not desire to tell of her sacrifice when she had reluctantly decided to stay in Kharanos. It wasn’t that day either that the Draenei would decide to tell this Dwarven friend about it. Instead, the pain within was finally released after another skip from a dying beat. Though the graveyard did not contain a single tombstone of her fallen loved ones, she felt on her knees and wept. Toxic tear drops in the soft snow, an illness that was contagious even to the Dwarf. The elderly kept her close, no words needed to be told, not this time.

 

Once the canals began to dry, Jadga held the silky cloth in her hands. Soft, delicate and of fine quality. She shared her opinion on it, trying to cheer the pilgrim. It matched her silver garments and purple cloth. A proper armor for a lone traveler, adorned with enchanted azure shards and gems that produced their own melody, an Arcanic aura that gave them a peculiar reflection of reality itself. Yet not even such flattery cheered this Draenei. The darkness started to creep on the Dwarven’s heart, but she resisted. She spoke, afflicted “Isratael.. it pains me t’see ya’ like this! Is this how ancient legends feel when they have lived lon’enough an’ have suffered from fate?

Are you asking if.. if it is a curse to live long just as I have?” the Draenei finally spoke. Her speech slow, weightless. Almost carried by the wind and lost to the ages.

The dwarf knew what those words meant. A Dwarf would never live long enough to experience the wisdom and a wide range of shortcomings throughout life like a Draenei would. Not even an elf could. How many generations of Dwarves has Isratael outlived for? Perhaps most Draenei are older than the entire legacy of the Dwarves as a race! A Dwarf could never fully understand a Draenei. “I.. am because I don’know..” her voice trembled, realizing she was facing an ancient creature that knew much more about life itself than her entire race.

“I ask the same question now and then.. and not even I know. I do not know if I should envy you or..” she paused. She knew that her trail of thoughts would lead to unnecessary drivel.

“Then why have ya’came here? Why are ya’not with yer’ people, pilgrim? We’re more mortal than ya’..” the Dwarf argued, perhaps in desperation in face of a deep desire to assist her friend. The sturdiness of her kind being heavily rooted within her wrinkling facade. Hiding a much more dire truth, a truth that she found to be guilty of as well. Quickly she took a step back and apologized for her outburst.

Yet a truth that Isratael was familiar with. One that was too late to avoid and to reach out with her own voice “To mourn..

 

 

The sky had turned orange, a few shades from the Dark Beyond covering a clear sky. Fully exposed was still Argus, a reminder of the demonic influence of the Burning Legion upon Azeroth. Both widows talked to one another, the venom already tainting the graves of those who are no longer among them. If the dead could hear and speak, the secrets they would tell of every orphan that had bled their soul! Yet the dead, like silent escorts to one’s sentiment, can no longer be adulterated.

 

Both returned to the matriarch’s house, surrounded by the blissful warmth of one’s crib. Deep down, the Draenei felt envy on that moment, for this is what the Draenei truly desired for herself and the warmth that she dearly missed. Another crack on her vessel, a silent one at that. Still, she could not help but set aside her bitterness for now and delight herself in the company of those who only wished to please her. Isn’t that all that matters?

However, when the meal had been prepared and joyfully feasted upon, Isratael was later met with a proposal from one of the crafters of the family. Some of the members of this family wanted to offer the Draenei a gift, an artifact to be crafted by Dwarven hands. After all, the Hammerstone family had a foundry and a tale to tell for countless of generations to come.

The tale of the Virtuous Pilgrim. A tavern tale that was brewing within town, of one of the many saviors of Kharanos:

It tells of a powerful Archmage that traveled the Great Dark Beyond, that predicted the arrival of the Legion which craved to enslave Azeroth and spread darkness upon the mountains of Khaz Modan. That three powerful fel twisted six horned rams were to take over the three thrones. That among the heroes of Kharanos, a Pilgrim, as docile and innocent as a sheep, stood against the demonic rams and their army of wolves. Despise the appearance, the pilgrim sheep stared directly to the soulless, adorned in blue velvet to signify their alignment with the Alliance. The wisdom that the sheep carried made the wolves eat the very snow that their own paws carried. Truly, the determination of a wizard from the Dark Beyond.

Isratael, despise the looming darkened tar that had yet to be purified from all the muck accounted from ten thousand years of pleasures taken away; couldn’t help but find some amusement in the method used to describe the events that took place one year ago. For the Hammerstone family, it meant their life, which Isratael agreed to accept the reward from it.

 

On the following days, a peculiar staff was crafted. Carrying the head of a sheep, bathed in gold. Gems adorned the stone wool, giving a feeling of royalty. And from the spoils of Pandaria, brought from the travels in Pandaria, two serpent eyes symbolized the wisdom that the Pilgrim Sheep carried in their vision. Blue cloth formed a bound between a wizard and the Alliance. Enchanted, to serve as a focus to one’s evocation of the Arcane. And from a staff, new golden attires were forged and blue cloth was sewed by the hands of a tailor among the family. The silk that the Draenei carried was painted in dark and blue shades, embroidered details preserved yet turned into gold.

And thus the artifact known as the Staff of the Virtuous Pilgrim came to exist, to be held by one of the Saviors of Kharanos, the Lost Sheep from the Dark Beyond.

 

Eager to be reunited with her brother, to explain what she had given in exchange for the life of their father, Isratael was determined to find him and Mesoora. To finally drain the impurity of her heart on one last family reunion and to forge a new life on Azeroth. Never to look back in grief. For Azeroth itself, as a whole, was her Valley of Eternal Blossoms. To Argus she went. But the question remains, is Azeroth really the promise land she desires? Or did the light provided to her spoke in half truths?

Pages:

Warcraft Short Story – Stranded on a river of leaves

 

Other short stories starring Isratael

  • Warcraft Short Story – A letter of a pilgrim – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – A brother’s Call to Arms – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – Judgement Day – Link

 

 

Valley of Eternal Blossoms

In the heart of Pandaria, the Valley of Eternal Blossoms is the center of both Mogu and Pandaren culture.
Sealed for millennia, it has reopened its doors to outsiders. Ancient relics and myths of old are found in the ruins of former vaults and golden palace. Mogu Emperors ruled the land of Pandaria while living a luxurious life in the land that was once home of the Jinyu. After the Mogu were driven out, this vale was sealed by the August Celestials and protected by a few chosen Pandaren under the banner of the Golden Lotus.
The rivers that flow in Pandaria originate from its sacred pools. A golden land where the Titans themselves created and experimented with life on Azeroth, much like Un’Goro Crater in Kalimdor and Sholazar Basin in Northrend. Pure, crystal clear, these waters are able to heal and cleanse certain wounds that not even the Light is capable of. A power that has resulted on the demise of this once beautiful landscape by the hands of a tyrant warchief.
Once an eternal blossoming land, a land of sorrow. Yet there is hope, now that the land has been cleansed from the Sha. A vale being rebuilt and healed, blessed by the last emperor of Pandaria.

Isratael, a Draenei pilgrim, was informed of a possible contract. In Dawn’s Blossom, an innkeeper informed her of a human who required her services. Perhaps one that learned of her trading skills. One that was aware that it was her that was involved with the infusion of Arcane into the weapons and ammo that belonged to the warriors of a group known as the Fallen Leaf, which were used to confront a local dispute between the Pandaren and a fractured shadow of what was once a mighty Mogu army.

With the aid of a Jinyu, Isratael was brought to the Valley of Eternal Blossoms. A new bound was celebrated between herself and a group of traders and mercenaries. Yet the shadow cast by Argus made the encounter with the Silver Serpents ever more excruciating than it should.

 

 

Stranded on a river of leaves

 

A landscape that still held scars from a devastating event, the golden landscape yet to fully bloom. The eternal presence of a bigger treat than a mere race war between two kinds of rulers, such was the apathy in general ever embraced by a few that were hired to investigate an already crumbling force of animated stone brutes.
The Pandaren obviously fear their former Slave Masters. The tale of their soul bending shadow magic raising certain curiosity, perhaps providing some distraction from her inner turmoils. Yet one cannot forget the past, nor the dread of one’s single living family member championing a greater legion. Despise being shunned by a single Draenei platoon, it was not Isratael’s desire to suffer yet another personal loss in her life.

 

Amidst a group of mercenaries, she was asked to get involved once again on yet another skirmish against a group of Mogu. Given her verbal contract with the Silver Serpents, they and the Fallen Leaf ventured to the Guo-Lai Halls.
For the Draenei, this task was accepted without any form of grace or true motivation. Coins were never a source of happiness for her, for she still holds a generous amount after centuries of serving as an Evoker in the Genedar. On Draenor, she aided the Artificers as an assistant. Though not an engineer, her Arcane knowledge provided some necessary and quite rewarding experiences. It was with them that she had also perfected her enchantments. With them, she found warmth. A warmth that she dearly misses to this day.

 

Within the Halls, after crossing a series of lethal traps, Isratael marveled the embroidered golden walls on which dust has hardly taken away the magnificence of the architects behind their creation. But her enthusiasm, which had subsided her jaded stare, quickly turned into a louring gasp. Japed by fate once again, a lone demon freely stumbled upon the group while it was assaulting the source of the local Mogu’s desire to protect. Truly a test for Isratael’s patience, which she had failed.

Pointing her staff at the imp, ready to bring the creature back to whatever Imp Mother it crawled out of, she was not in the mood for mercy towards a foul stench without a known master. With no summoner in sight to keep the demon contained and chained to mortals’ desires, with Argus quite near Azeroth, during such a crisis of universal scale with a full threatening demonic invasion. The Draenei was not taking any risks. However, it was one of the Pandaren that averted the demise. The leader of the Fallen Leaf nonetheless! Perplexed by the way the warrior shown some mercy to the lone demon, Isratael had no choice but to recognize that the demon did belonged to someone within their group that wasn’t present. As such, it was of her peers’ interest if the demon was not to be slain.

Of course, hypocrisy is no stranger to even the most serene of races.

 

Once the group was to return to a local village, after a successful campaign, on their way to the outside ruins; a hymn echoed in the walls like a smoothing balm on one’s soul. It taunted the fiend with a melody that it could not endure. A prayer that healed, coming from a Mogu that stood tall in front of the exit. A challenge to one’s preconception that these warmongering brutes dwell with shadow magic, to bend spirits for their own twisted creations.

No, this Mogu chanted and invoked the Light into the Halls. Was it an enemy if it was recovering their wounds? A Human cursed to become a Worgen, provoked by the Scythe of Elune, asked the same question. But instead of clinging to his humanity, he allowed himself to be blinded by his loyalty to his own leader. Against the Draenei’s pled, the Worgen silenced the chanter. And thus the Light ceased to come from an unexpected source.

Surrounded by mercenaries who were wounded and broken, none questioned the action that the cursed human took. No one questioned their leader, who had shown mercy to a foul lonesome demon. Yet, without a thought, without much of a charade to understand the last Mogu that stood and did not fought back.. no compassion was given for the fallen defiant of its own kind. No other.. than the Draenei who stood behind, after scowling the humanoid mercenary worg that felt little remorse for what he had done. Still, with hope that the Mogu could still be saved, the Draenei placed her hand on the mortal wound to bring it back to life. Using the gift bestowed to her people by the Naaru, it was already too late. Even thought the Light reached the wound and closed it, the soul had already departed from the Mogu’s rough body.

 

Mercy for the foul demons, that have enslaved thousands of worlds across the Dark Beyond. Merciless for an insignificant race of brute conquerors that only reside on a single continent on a much wider planet. The priority of a mercenary, where the coin lies. Abstracting one’s consciousness, an individual’s morals are those of a soldier that follows the voice of a dictator. A dictator believes in their own set of morals and laws, the others are expected to follow without questioning. For a mercenary, questioning means to lose a meal or two. To provide less for themselves and maybe for their own family. Selfish in nature, they would bring an end to an innocent’s future if they were paid enough to do so.

A mercenary cannot be trusted. Leaves that float in the air, drifted by the unpredictable wind and falling on the streams of eternal golden bliss that never come to an end; the water cycle on which the river is the journey and the deep blue ocean is the finale that is easily forgotten. The question remains, is Isratael a Lotus in this metaphor?

 

 

The actions that took place within the Guo-Lai Halls were not easily dismissed. This was, after all, one of the first opportunities to cooperate with two distinct groups of traders and mercenaries. The hypocrisy was too much to handle, as much as the unwillingness of her peers to question these events. Reminded by the tales and sorrow that her most memorable acquaintance expressed to her in the Jade Forest, of those who enslaved her people, her actions were based on generosity at first. But after being formally shunned by Mesoora a few weeks beforehand, her goodwill was fading. The looming feeling of loneliness and detachment from those around her, perhaps fogged by the apparent need to accept any group that took interest in her.
Yet, when it was the opportunity for this new group of acquaintances, that she very much desired to be part of in hope that she would had a new lot to call family; to listen to her plead.. they did not listen.

A selfish myopic group. One that she, after a week of isolation within the inn of Mystfall Village, had come to the conclusion that they were not worthy.

 

Her pilgrimage continues.
However, not without leaving a note to the innkeeper of the Mystfall Village, resembling the same level of professionalism on which was used by the Silver Serpent to contact her. With it, she also trusted the innkeeper with two pairs of beautifully crafted cherry-tree wooden chopsticks, that held a familiar large perfectly cut yellow Topaz gem on one of the tips of each stick. Lastly, two black leather bracelets which contain a grey Hematite each.

 

Trusting that the note will be delivered to her former employers, together with the items, it reads:

 

There is a valley where dreamers sleep,

Where flowers bloom and willows weep,

Where loamy earth springs life anew,

And waters sparkle, clear and blue,

Where every hearth brings peaceful ease,

And beauty sings on every breeze.

 

Here the Sacred Pools spring pure

Here, seek any who desire cure

Holy, nature, powers divine,

Turn death to life, death to life.

 

Signed,

Isratael

Pages:

Warcraft Short Story – Judgement Day

 

Other short stories starring Isratael

  • Warcraft Short Story – A letter of a pilgrim – Link
  • Warcraft Short Story – A brother’s Call to Arms – Link

 

 

Azure’s Hope Garrison

Somewhere near Azure Watch, in the Azuremist Isles, a Garrison had been built in a former town made for the refugee’s of the Shattering.

The Human made stone walls, held with the lumber from the wildest and unexplored areas of the isles. A certain chemistry between the might of the Alliance and the kindness and protection of the Draenei. A strong bound between those who made the isles their home and the ancient alien race. These few humans, orphans and widows of the Eastern Kingdom, did not return to their homeland. Without a family, they have rooted themselves in their improvised town within the isles. And during the invasion of the Legion upon this world, this small garrison was built by humans to preserve themselves and aid the Draenei in these troublesome times.

The tales of a vessel, a Draenei ship, have been echoed across the isles. The Vindicaar, an instrument of retribution that will provide a path to the destruction of the Burning Legion within Argus itself. Now that Argus has been brought closer to Azeroth than ever, the Draenei and some members of the Alliance are preparing themselves for one last sacrifice for the greater good!

 

Soon, it shall be Azeroth, with their prophetic Army of the Light, who will invade the demonic home planet. For the Draenei, this is more than the destruction of these devils. Argus was, after all, their former home. Most of the Eredar became known as Man’ari, once they sold their own race to the Burning Legion. The Eredar, who did not fall for the whispers of the Dark Titan became known as the Draenei.

Isratael, a traveling Draenei Enchantress and Jewelcrafter, which her pilgrimage had brought her to Pandaria and the Jade Forest; saw Argus being brought closer to Azeroth.

Without knowing what that green fel riddled monstrosity in the skies was, for she was not born in Argus; she could only deduce that it was a planet or illusion created or conquered by the Legion. Fear came to her, knowing that war had just begun and that this current demonic wave was not going to be tamed, despise the number of fiends being contained mostly within the Broken Isles.

Even so, given that emotion controlled her voice and actions, she was the one that contacted her brother this time. With haste, her brother answered the call and brought her to a familiar town. This is where she lived briefly before she began her pilgrimage, aiding the Human refugees. With the assistance of a much more powerful and talented mage, Isratael crossed the portal and arrived to Azure’s Hope.

 

 

Judgement Day

 

Upon arrival, on the other side of the Portal, Isratael was able to travel between continents and opposite hemisphere in a mere step. Once surrounded by Jade and tall trees, within a Pandaren town known as Dawn Blossom; where most of the people were confused, weeping and questioning their sanity upon the discovery of a green flaming celestial body.. now she was within a Human made barracks. A wide room, perhaps too empty. On the wooden walls, shields and weapons adorned the war room.

 

She gazed around her, trying to understand where she was. Soon, she felt a gentle touch upon her shoulderpad. A familiar Draenei, much taller than her and perhaps just as tall as her own brother. Her skin light, a contrast to Isratael’s own dark purple skin. Her hair long, a talented Illusionist that radiated beauty and subtly. Her name was Mesoora, a Draenei that has lived for nearly twenty millennia. An example to many aspiring magicians. A motherly figure to the abandoned orphans, one that grew to love Isratael’s brother and has a soft spot for Isratael herself.

“Good evening, Isratael. It has been a while.” spoke Messora, kindly gesturing Isratael to turn and face her. Unsure if Isratael wanted to be hugged or kissed, she merely smiled in grace. The grand Illusionist appeared calm, despise the celestial body looming in the sky and bringing dread to Azeroth. Perhaps that is what an Illusionist is, someone that knows how to hide, to conceal and to be courteous. That stroke a nerve, Isratael was always skeptical of her brother’s new lover.

“Greetings.. Mesoora.” stared Isratael, her expression still reflecting her confusion and now an envious seed on her heart that bloomed a cynical eye. “Where’s Ytaaru. He.. spoke to me. He answered my call.”

 

Mesoora blinked, a sigh escaped through her turquoise lips. From within her silver embroidered long sleeve, she revealed the very same enchanted aquamarine crystal that Isratael had left behind a few years ago to her family. “I apologize for the deception..”

“Where is he, Mesoora? We haven’t talked since..”

“You never answered his call to arms.” bluntly interrupted Mesoora. She tilted her head upwards, exposing some self perceiving superiority over Isratael. Perhaps, from this Illusionist’s perspective, she was Isratael’s mother. She felt in a position that she could discipline her daughter. Unfortunately for Mesoora, Isratael did not felt such bound. Instead, Mesoora appeared pretentious at best. Snob at worst.

But such emotions were overshadowed by the fact that the Illusionist was right. Isratael never answered the call to arms, given to her when she was in Kharanos, Dun Morogh.

 

On the day that the Legion began their invasion upon Azeroth, Isratael declined her brother’s call to protect their own father in the Azuremyst Isle. A continent away, Isratael remained with the dwarves. To protect Jagda Hammerstone’s family. A gesture to a new friend, to a new bound that meant so much for Isratael. A figure she could learn from, a dwarf widow who adored her family. One that still lives.. unlike Isratael’s father which died two days after the call by the fangs of a felhound.

A funeral Isratael was prohibited to attend, a farewell that was never given to the Draenei that stood next to her when she had lost her own husband. Another crack on her vase, slowly turning into stone. Like venom, dulling the senses and paralyzing our emotions until there is nothing left but a husk of someone which was once kind and filled with life.

Isratael stood silent, blaming herself for choosing to protect the Dwarves rather than her own family. Her tired gaze lowering, not even a murmur came from her side.

 

To break this silence, Mesoora lowered herself to Isratael’s height. A kiss on her forehead, perhaps a sympathetic one. Her fingertips massaged Isratael’s cheek, expecting a tear to roll.  A tear that never arrived. The Illusionist felt intimidated by such, narrowing her vision “Why didn’t you came? Why do you believe that, now with Argus standing in front of Azeroth, to be the opportunity to repair a broken bridge?”

“A-Argus?!” Isratael shouted, surprised by such revelation. She took a few steps back, away from Mesoora’s grasp and embrace. Her hand resting upon her chest, shocked. “How?!”

“I.. don’t know. And it is none of your business! You have abandoned your kind, your family. You.. have grown cold.” Mesoora expressed, perhaps with more sadness carried in her tone than what she had expected. The fact that Isratael did not break into tears just a few moments ago still loomed her judgement. “You.. have no family here. I am all that Ytaaru has.”

Isratael was unable to contain her emotions any longer, feeling the pressure from the judge, from a Draenei that only met her three times in her entire life. “W-Who are you to judge me? You only have been with my brother for nearly two years. Your opinions are worthless compared to the millennia that I’ve spent with him! Where is Ytaaru?!”

 

In anger, the otherwise noble Illusionist throw the enchanted aquamarine crystal to the floor, crushing it to shards with her bare hoof. A sudden swift of mood that surprised even the doubting sister of the vindicator. “Begone! You have made us suffer long enough.. I’ll not allow you to wither the light within Ytaaru with your constant doubts and fears! I wanted to see some humility..”

Under Isratael’s hooves, unknown to her given the volatile nature of Mesoora, the Illusionist was preparing a telemancy spell. She continued to howl, to shame the younger mage “You do not belong in our army. Nothing but a wretched, preying on other people’s emotions and good intentions.. and when you no longer need them, you no longer care.”

 

The enchantress could not speak, for she did not knew what to say. Her eyes were widened, now the tears could be seen. Isratael understood that Mesoora was genuine in her words, vulnerable to the criticism of her own character. Deep down, Isratael doubted herself and began to consider Mesoora’s words. Perhaps.. the illusionist was right. Perhaps Isratael has always been the demon that haunted their family for quite some time. Responsible for the death of her own husband, her father. Maybe the death of her own mother.

Maybe Isratael needed to stay away from Ytaaru. But before Isratael could bring her thoughts to sound, Mesoora already had activated the spell that brought Isratael to the center of the Jade Forest.

“I’m..” Isratael paused, realizing quickly that she was no longer in front of Mesoora.

 

 

Though the Draenei tried to reach for her own aquamarine crystal, the rune bound to the gift to her family had disappeared.  She had lost contact with her family that day, abandoned in Pandaria like an orphan. A widow. An outcast. Broken.. yet the light remained in her.

A pilgrim, alone in a foreign land. Aimlessly, a daring sign in the skies to remind her what she had learned. Yet, the example of the elderly dwarf gave her comfort. Could it be that her place was among those from this world rather than her own kind? Did she still had a family?

 

For some reason, those questions slowly began to no longer matter.

Ytaaru will have the family that he deserves, with Mesoora.. or so Isratael started to believe while she tried to find Dawn’s Blossom once again. And from there, her pilgrimage continued, leading her to a vale that had lost its glory. A new tale being brewed among traders and mercenaries.

Pages:

Warcraft Short Story – A brother’s Call to Arms

 

Other short stories starring Isratael

  • Warcraft Short Story – A letter of a pilgrim – Link

 

 

Dun Morogh

The mountainous snowy peaks of Dun Morogh, known for the Khaz Mountains. The center of Dwarven and Gnomish culture and ingenuity. Ironforge and Gnomeregan are the capitals that have hosted thousands of explorers, thinkers and skilled crafters from the Alliance. Most inventions are brought to live in this region, built from the very same minerals that are dug deep from the quarries within the mountains.

Both the Bronzebeard Dwarves and Gnomes have been allies with one another for centuries. Now with the Dwarven clans united; the region is only threatened by the Troggs and Wendigo buried deep underground, the Frostmane Trolls that wish to control the elements and wild life with their voodoo and, lastly, Thermaplugg and his army of leper gnomes that currently reside in Gnomeregan.

With the recent invasion of the Burning Legion upon Azeroth, this region has been one of the most affected by the demonic crusade, excluding the Broken Isles. Though most has been dealt with, this story is a reminder of the events that have unraveled during the peak of this tainted avalanche of death.

Isratael, a traveling Draenei Enchantress and Jewelcrafter, who had been on her pilgrimage for more than two years at the time; was in the Dwarven town of Kharanos. The search for rare minerals and gems lead her to this town. Though her goal was to trade in Ironforge, she had heard of a fabled Dwarven miner and archaeologist that was visiting his homeland. His knowledge of this world was vast and, perhaps, he could provide her with some knowledge.

 

 

A brother’s Call to Arms

 

Galthorm Hammerstone, member of the Explorer’s League. A fine middle aged archaeologist from the town of Kharanos, from a humble miner family background. His curriculum vast, gaining some notoriety in his excavations in Uldaman and, more importantly, Ulduar! In recent years however, he has been digging for artifacts with his guild once again in the Badlands. Denied with the opportunity to venture into a savage unknown land on another parallel timeline given his age, his life became more stable and tame.

In these last few weeks, word has spread that his latest expedition was over and, once again, he returned to his hometown to share the tales and discoveries he had made about the ruins underneath the earth. With a ram packed with gifts and prospected minerals, he was ready to sell the leftovers of his excavation as well to those that desired. Isratael was one of them.

 

The archaeologist had made himself comfortable in his family’s house. With his vast number of cousins and uncles, he did not lacked company! However, at certain days, he was open for business in his family’s foundry. Given Galthorm’s fame, his family has been able to afford having their own modest forge and to craft their own metals out of the ore. In fact, one of Galthorm’s aunts was a Jewelcrafter, who worked alongside other Metalsmiths. Her name was Jagda Hammerstone. This was the dwarf that Isratael approached.

Jagda gladly accepted Isratael’s plead, entertainment by the thought that she would be spending time with someone that is from a race that is much more ancient than her own. In return Jagda only asked to be rewarded by the tales and knowledge that were unique to a Draenei. Of the worlds she had seen, visited. Her own techniques, as a jewelcrafter.

And so Isratael stayed, for nearly two weeks. Working alongside an elderly dwarf, creating rings and necklaces from precious and semi-precious stones. The two formed a bond rather quickly, sharing the grief of losing their spouse. In fact, Jagda’s spouse was an Earthen Ring Shaman, a Wildhammer Dwarf. Given her spouse’s connection with the Earthen Elements and her own Hammerstone lineage, she had decided to become a Jewelcrafter. In memory of her past relationship with a sturdy fool who had given his life to protect the World Pillar, in Deepholm.

 

 

In one of those cold evenings, after a day’s work, Jagda invited Isratael for a brief walk. The elderly widow still had strength in her legs, creating an healthy habit of walking around town during the night in order to not fall ill and inactive. Most of the populace was still awake, despise the cold. After all, it was still summer and the locals are used to much harsher temperatures that are brought in during winter.

Wearing a wolf’s fur-lined leather coat, Isratael accompanied the dwarf. They walked together to a more secluded area of the town, the outskirts. And in the outskirts, Isratael found herself in a small graveyard. This was not the first time Isratael was invited to visit this particular graveyard.

I had lost hope.” said the elderly Dwarf with her comforting Dwarven accent, gazing at the tombstone that paid homage to the death of her spouse. Though she looked older than the Draenei next to her, it was Isratael who had lived for a few millennia… compared to the nearly two hundred from the dwarf. “But I’ve survived, haven’t I? I never would have guessed that, at this age, I coul’ find an’ befriend a foreign like ye’.

We are survivors, Jagda..” muttered the Draenei with a shiver, the shadows and chill of the night reaching to her knees. Like a spirit, the cold trespassed the holy grounds of one’s undergarments. In Isratael’s mind, she wondered how the Dwarves managed to survive on these mountains for all these years. Her coat was within her grasp, wrapping her dark purple skin tightly.

.. Yet ya’fear the dead?” Jagda questioned, adjusting Isratael’s coat from behind. Unlike the Draenei; most Dwarves, including Jagda, were wearing their summer short sleeved clothing and leather.

I do not. But I do fear a broken heart. There is so much that one can take before their heart turns to stone!” whimpered Isratael, deciding to turn her gaze at the moist soil underneath her hooves. “A heart that has turned into stone cannot allow the Light to penetrate its core.

“My, aren’t ya’ a scholar? Isn’t ya’ kind gifted? What’s this talk abou’ losing ya’ faith?”

 

The gift of the Naaru, a gift to the Draenei from a race of angelic beings made of pure Light. A gift that allows the Draenei to never forget about their past as people, as uncorrupted Eredar exiles who did not fall for the diabolical temptations of the Burning Legion. The Draenei have every reason to be proud of their gift, to be part of the prophetic vision of an army that will stand against the fel corrupted, the Army of the Light.

Isratael, despise the memories that torment her, is aware of this. “You’re right.. Jagda. And what faith do you have?

I have faith that my family will live, that’ll learn from my mistakes. That they’ll take care of me the same way I do to them. That everyday I get up t’prepare our dinin’ table, with their favorite brew.. that they’ll learn what love truly means. So that they, too, can find someone that loves them jus’as much as me!” answered Jagda. Though there was uncertainty in her words, with certain hesitation.. she was able to bring her answer to a rather satisfying conclusion that brought a faint resemblance of a smile on her dry lips.

The words chosen by the elder brought a grin to Isratael’s face. Despise the shrouding mists of doubt clouding her thoughts, to the point of making her indevout; her love for her father still shined brightly. But so did the dread of losing yet another family member “You remind me of my father.. I aspire to be like you one day. Able to move on, bring hope to others.

Ya’ can never move on from such a burden, lass.. but ya’ can teach others how to survive and not’ta be swallowed with grief.

 

Grief.

As the evening turned into darkness and most of the Dwarves walked to their own houses, so did Isratael followed the Dwarven matriarch. This was not the first time Isratael heard these words. The speech and life lessons from the experienced. The voices from those who had suffered, they too have lost and continue to wither with the passage of time. Life is like an orchestra that has a climax, accompanied by the lyrics of a poet who is constantly improvising yet ends up repeating the same chorus over and over when in doubt. And we, the audience, desire to yield the baton and make the orchestra our own. Yet, like fools who never learn from history, we keep falling for the inevitable pits made by our own worst fears, like a self fulfilling prophecy. And thus the chorus repeats and the audience griefs.

Is it us who truly hold the baton? Or is it our nature that compromises our destiny?

 

 

It was during that night that Isratael had received a dire message from her brother, while she slept on the floor on top of a white furred bear rug and surrounded by a few small cushions. Her staff, enchanted and containing a complex set of elaborate arcanic runes that held a perfectly designed Aquamarine crystal, beamed with an aura that only she could recognize. Her family was trying to contact her.

Given that she was asleep, she took her time to take hold of the crystal from her staff. Activating the runes, a voice could be heard from within. It was her brother, Ytaaru.

 

Ytaaru is much older than her. Before her, Ytaaru had other siblings which, from Isratael’s perspective, were half-siblings from their mother’s side. Ytaaru was her only brother and her relationship with her half-siblings has always been scarce. Some of them had long died while others remained. As far as Isratael was concerned, she is aware that there’s at least two of them that decided to abandon the Light and choke themselves with the tainted blood of the Legion’s corruption.

He is a zealot, a fearful paladin. A vindicator, member of the Hand of Argus. His intimidating silhouette makes him a wall and a blazing protector of the Light. Truly a judge that delivers retribution to those who fail to prove their alignment with the vision of the Prophet. Goal driven, his faith is strong and he’ll stop at nothing to fulfill the prophecy that’ll save countless of worlds and realms from the twisted claws of fiends.

 

The voice from within the crystal spoke with authority:

Isratael, it’s Ytaaru, your brother. I’m sending this message to you, hoping that you’ll heed my call…

… the legion, they have invaded this world! They have already arrived to the isles. Remember your people, our people, the vision.

Do not abandon us, Isratael. Forget your pilgrimage and join us! In the light, we are one.. always remember that.

Protect our father. Do not fail the Prophet, do not fail me!

I can ask one of our mages to create a portal for you to come, since you cannot. Tell me where you are, I’ll make sure they’ll do so!

… I’m counting on you… sister!

 

Shocked by the news, Isratael gently placed the crystal on the rug with a trembling hand. Clenching one of the smaller pillows, tears prudently erupted on the room she was in by herself. Using the very same cheap pillow to weep, her worst fears came to reality. She wasn’t ready to face death, yet another war. Perhaps another great lost?

Many questions came to mind while she suffered. If the Burning Legion started to invade Azeroth once again, would this mean that the demons were to invade Dun Morogh? If so, should she stay and aid the Dwarves? What of her father? Why would the demons invade this world now? If she warned the Dwarves of Kharanos, would they believe and prepare themselves for the invasion? Would this town be spared? Was she to die in this town herself among the Dwarves? What of Exodar, her people?

 

Doubt shrouded her judgement and she could not think of an answer to her questions. Grasping her staff, placing the crystal on its rightful place, she walked outside the Hammerstone’s house without making a noise. The night sky was clear and there was yet to be a sign of a demonic invasion. Without a coat, she shivered yet she was blinded by her emotions. She needed some time to think, to consider. To ponder. Would her people, her family.. forgive her if she were to stay and protect the Hammerstone family? Would her family be dead once the invasion was over?

The snow on her hooves, on her knees, wet, ever melting for the lack of a storm for nearly a week. Her palms keeping her balance, the lack of energy. The lack of will and the most important question lingering in the air “Why me?

 

A Call to Arms, yet to be answered.

 

 

Pages:

Warcraft Short Story – A letter of a pilgrim

 

 

Azuremyst Isle

For centuries, the Azuremyst Isles remained mostly free from the influence of sapient settlers. The indigenous natives were left to their own devices and wars among themselves. Ruins of ancient civilizations, such as the Night Elves, can be seen on certain areas. Abandoned for millennia, for the fauna to grow and for the barbarians to pillage and defile these lands without any form of punishment.

The Night Elves abandoned these isles for thousands of years, in favor of the land closer to the continent of Kalimdor. Though very few families remained to live in solitude; Furbolgs, Murlocs and Owlbeasts were the only creatures that formed tribes that had a significant presence. That changed, when one of the most ancient sapient races arrived to Azeroth from the Great Dark Beyond. Crashing, their dimensional ship became their capital city. Exodar is the name of this ship, once part of a greater structure known as the Tempest Keep.

With the arrival of such powerful and intelligent race, the Draenei made the Azuremyst Isles their home. Joining the Alliance, they have used their knowledge of the Burning Legion to the advantage of their allies and for the safety and survival of the entire universe. Devoted followers of the Light, like shining almost immortal knights that have lived for thousands of years; their technology and unmatched knowledge of all things magical has left a message to all of those that stand in their way and the way of their Prophet: They are part of the Army of the Light.

The Draenei are survivors that have gained the favor of the Naaru, escaping the grasp of the demonic Burning Legion time and time again. Unlike the other Eredar, they have avoided the temptations and whispers from Sargeras and his minions.

 

This is the story of the Draenei, that now reside in the Azuremyst Isle. In an alien world, they have adjusted to their new environment. It hasn’t been the first time they had to travel to unknown lands. It has been more than six years since they came to Azeroth.

Isratael is one of the few Draenei that have made this far. An Arcanist mage, specialized Enchanter, who has recently taken interest in Jewelcrafting. A pilgrim, who has decided to finally broaden her horizon and learn more about this new planet and their inhabitants.

Before her pilgrimage, two years ago, she wrote a long letter addressed to her family. Placing it on her table, on one of the few settlements near Azure Watch that was specifically built to make home for the refugees of the Cataclysm. She had a cottage of her own, next to her brother’s.

Her father used to visit her once a week and she expected him to be the first one to read. This is the letter that she wrote…

 

 

A letter of a pilgrim

 

Father,

I am writing this letter to you and to our beloved ones. I am sure that you must be filled with hope now that I have finally decided to leave this cottage. However, there is no point in asking those around you about my whereabouts. I left early, before those feathered critters of this land could wake up a few of the humans that have made these islands as their new home as well. I’m sure that my dear brother Ytaaru will not even notice that I’ve left..

 

Thank you, father. For visiting me as much as you did! I am sure your heart still hasn’t recovered from the lost. Which is why you, more than anyone from our family, understand the pain of losing our “other half”. I.. didn’t want to face this new world, I didn’t want to embark on a new war. I’ve avoided it, missing the warmth of my husband’s embrace. His blood was warm and filled with hope! He made me feel loved, safe and ready to aid our armies. Without him, I felt as if the Light had abandoned me as well..

You have grown stronger since the day that we’ve lost mother in Gorgrond. I still cannot look at the Rangari without thinking of her! I am sure that you too; even more than I, since I have seen the way that you clench your fist subtly and briefly when you see one of them. But you always have been stubborn, I know since I am too. You decided to still serve them, to craft and repair their weapons and armor!

This, however, is the difference between you and I. You are not only stubborn, but you can look at a clefthoof in the eyes and face it head on, even if your tears are rolling from the pain within. I am not like that, and you know it too. I am stubborn, but I hide. Which is why Ytaaru has given up on me..

 

Ytaaru has always been special, hasn’t he? He probably never enjoyed the fact that you have spent more time with me than himself. He has been spoiled by his peers, a powerful vindicator. The Light is strong in him, his faith unbreakable. He has always been more stubborn than the both of us and he probably thinks that our tears are distracting him from his devotion. Maybe.. that is why sometimes I feel as if the Light as forsaken me. Maybe I look at him as if he’s a Naaru and I was the demon that carries the shards of the past.

He tried to aid me, I know of that. He gave me this human cottage, next to his, to force me away from Exodar and from the memories of the past. The opportunity to aid our new allies who have suffered too, who have also lost their loved ones from the claws of the one that they used to call The Destroyer. Though this dragon has been defeated, the scars are still burning in the flesh of these people.

I appreciate his attempt.. I have learned more about this world by speaking to these humans. But it did not healed me from the wound in my frail heart, Ytaaru knows that and, for that reason, has given up on me.

However, you have not. Once a week, you visit me all the way from Exodar. I have seen that they have rebuilt most of it..

 

I too need to be rebuilt anew. And you, father, have always been wise! While my brother wanted me to know I wasn’t the only one suffering the lost of a beloved and to have more faith in the Light, you wanted to grasp the shards of my past and shape my fragments into a beautiful enchanted crystal. I’m not that naive, I’ve noticed your intentions when you decided to offer me a Jeweler’s Kit. As if a hobby was going to distract me away from my thoughts.

No, father. What has given me hope was not the kit, or the refugees. It was your determination, your good intentions driven by the love you have for your children. Witnessing Exodar being rebuilt, it made me feel that it is time for me to live my life once again. That there is still time to learn, to dream and to meet new people!

 

I have decided to go on a pilgrimage. To take this Jeweler’s Kit, the one you offered me. To perfect this new skill. To form new memories, a new hope. I have heard that the races of this world are survivors as well, that they have suffered from too many wars! I want to meet them, regardless of the colors that they wear. I am sure that you understand.

Worry not, father, I have left you an enchanted aquamarine crystal bellow my pillow. Take it, it is connected to the staff that I have made together with you on your forge! Hold it firmly, press the edges gently with your thumb and pinky. A rune will be revealed and you’ll have to touch it quickly before it vanishes. Once you do, it will be bound to you. Use it whenever you feel the need to talk to me.

This is not a farewell. I will never abandon my family.. you are not alone! Whatever happens, know that you are loved, the same way that I know that you’ll always love your children.

 

Signed,

Isratael

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