This is a story that has been explained a few times to those who have asked after they have seen Deadwind Pass, and the great tower of Karazhan that stands alone within it.
However, it is always welcome to tell the tale again for those who have not heard it yet. A dark tale. A grim tale. The story of a place of horrors.
Karazhan, within the Deadwind Pass, was not as it is today… even four years ago. A dark and evil presence has come to Karazhan and the Deadwind Pass, a presence that has cursed the very land, and brought the dead to life without aid of any Plagues. The only living things within the Pass are the giant carrion birds, like great shadows on the sky, and a very hardy tribe of Ogres that have no fear of even the Dead that walk in Karazhan. The Ogres, perhaps, even pay homage to whatever rules the Tower.
Karazhan rests at a nexus of ley energies that give the site of the tower incredible power. Magical power is augmented at this site, and that is why it was chosen by the last of the Guardians of Tirisfal to be his home. Or did Karazhan chose Medivh? It is hard to tell, with the strange energies that exist at that place.
Karazhan, for many years, has a power all its own. It could show those within it visions of the Future… or the Past… and of things that might or might not be. Prophecy was Karazhan’s power, and Medivh liked the power this afforded his studies.
Even then, however, Medivh was possessed. His mother, Aegwyn, was the one who fought and slew the body of the Dark Titan himself. No other mortal could ever have done this, and it is hard to imagine how Aegwyn even accomplished this feat… for Sargeras’ power was beyond measure in his full form. However, though his body died, it is much harder then that to kill a Titan.
The Dark Titan’s spirit enter Aegwyn, and into her very womb did he go. He waited there for the child that would eventually be conceived, and took possession of the boy. Medivh’s life up to his death was a constant struggle between himself and Sargeras.
Sargeras, the Dark Titan, overcame him time and time again.
Sargeras tried to make Medivh kill his own mother, but the will within Medivh refused, and he instead banished her to somewhere… no one knows. Perhaps far, far from this world entire. Wherever she went, she lives on… likely mourning for the son she lost.
It was by Sargeras’ command that Medivh created the Dark Portal and brought the Orcs forth onto Azeroth. To break the cycle and set himself free… this was the goal of both Medivh and Sargeras.
However, the Sword of Auduin Lothar found its mark in the heart of Medivh. This tale is told in much further detail in book, The Last Guardian.
Karazhan, as it stands now, is not as it was. When Medivh returned from Death as the Prophet, he absorbed from Karazhan all the powers of Prophecy that it once had. The tower was rendered inert, its prophetic might removed. He abandoned Karazhan then, having no further use for it.
However, someone else took over in his stead.
Karazhan remains a site of great and terrible power. A nexus of Ley Energies rivaled only by the now destroyed Sunwell. It is a place where Magic itself can come alive. The power of Prophecy is gone… but who knows what could fill the void the power left in its wake.
Many rumors persist about what has cursed the land, what killed and animated the townsfolk in the ruins of the village at Karazhan’s feet. It could have been a dark and powerful Lich in service to the Lich King… or it could be a sect of Dreadlords that escaped the culling after the second invasion of the Legion.
Or, like Medivh, Sargeras could also still be alive.
His soul, persistent as always, could have returned to the site of his years of plotting and experimentation. Sargeras could easily, even in Spirit, corrupt the land and take possession of Karazhan. He is a TITAN, as near to a GOD as anything that currently walks the world. His body, sans his eye, may be entombed in the islands off the coast of Kalimdor… but his Spirit might still linger, and be doing terrible things within the now empty halls of Karazhan.
It could be that by removing the power of Prophecy from Karazhan, Medivh opened the door for Sargeras to gain full control of the power of Karazhan that remained. Why did Medivh not foresee this?
Perhaps he did. Perhaps he tried to go to Karazhan to stop this after Archimonde’s destruction. Perhaps Medivh is locked up in his former home, held by the being that possessed him for so many years.
Or perhaps Medivh’s time on this earth ended when Archimonde died… and he could to nothing but pass on, though Sargeras remained.
Many dark stories flow from Karazhan of terrible events and dark creatures. Dark Riders have been seen as far as Duskwood, and an artifact known as the Scythe of Elune was claimed by them and taken back to the tower. The artifact possesses the power to summon the Worgen to this world… and if you have studied anything about the Worgen, you know they to be perfect allies for Sargeras. This artifact has also maintained the unnatural darkness over Duskwood for many, many months… if Sargeras possesses this item… there is no telling what harm he might do with it.
There is a new theory that has come to light. A theory that has caught many ears and hearts, and filled minds with horror and fear. If it is not the Ghost of Sargeras within Karazhan, then it could be this being that all members of the Alliance learned to fear during the second war. A being that was one of the original Orcish Death Knights under the service of Gul’dan. A being that was a Warlock and Necromancer of TERRIBLE power.
His name was Teron Gorefiend.
Rumors of a pale horse riding from the Dark Portal spread across the land. Rumors that upon that horse was a shrouded rider, and that horse was as dead as stone. And, even the Demons quailed at its passage.
Within that shroud was a being that commanded the Orcish Death Knights during the Second War… within that shroud is a being who very well COULD awaken the dead from their long slumber.
A mind of cunning and magic as keen as Medivh’s is in that shrouded cowl. He knew of Karazhan and Medivh. He was likely one of Gul’dan’s party who met with Medivh to seal the deal and help in opening the Dark Portal. His knowledge of the undead would rival the Lich King’s.
He also bears no love for Ner’zhul, wanting his own dominion and his own glory. And his origins do not originate from the Plague that made Undead in the rest of the world. The Lich King holds no sway over him or anything made by him… undead or otherwise.
He was never accounted for by the forces that raided Draenor. No record of his death or destruction was ever found. It is very possible he could have survived the sundering of Draenor.
Teron Gorefiend could have rode into the abandoned Karazhan… and taken over when Medivh left off.
Think of him sitting upon his skeletal horse, and in his hand the Scythe of Elune, and around him legions of howling Worgen.
Such is the stuff of Nightmare.
Other then these theories, Karazhan remains a mystery still. All attempts to enter it have failed. The dead bar the way with power as great as the strongest of Adventurers.
When Karazhan does open… be it Scourge or Demon, Teron Gorefiend or Sargeras himself within it… one thing is for certain…
No one will be safe from what lies inside the Cursed Tower of the Magus Medivh, Karazhan.
Level 60 Troll Shaman
Guild: Lordaeron Intelligence
Realm: Argent Dawn
1. Windstones, Elementals, and Epics
Here’s a guide to some stuff in Silithus that you may or may not know about.
There are 3 twilight hammer camps in Silithus each with Lesser, normal, and Greater Windstones in them. They display a ‘use’ icon when you mouse over them, however if you activate one unprepared, it will zap you with lightning. And yes, it will kill you if you are dumb and try it enough times. :p
Each of the stones will summon an Abyssal Elemental. What they drop depends on which one you summon. All of the stones require, at minimum, the Twilight Trappings Set. This is a 3 piece cloth armor set with a head, shoulder, and chest piece. They have no stats, and the set bonus only allows you to interact with Windstones. They have about a 1/5 drop rate off the twilight cultists, don’t bother buying them off the AH unless you’re really lazy, you can farm a full set in about 15 minutes.
Important Note Using the Twilight Set, Medallion of Station, or the Ring of Lordship to activate any of the windstones will consume the 3 armor pieces, medallion, and or ring! If you fail to kill the elemental and he despawns, you will NOT get the pieces back, broken or otherwise. So don’t do it unless you are prepared to take down whichever boss you are summoning.
Objects of Beckoning
If you complete the quest to collect 10 Encrypted Twilight Texts, and turn them in to the NPC in the cave, INSTEAD of turning them in to the NPC in town, you will recieve a letter in the mail a few hours later.
In the mail you get a bag, the bag can contain various crafting schematics, as well as some scrolls that will allow you to create beckoning objects.
Crests of Beckoning are used on Lesser Windstones.
Signets of Beckoning are used on normal Windstones.
Scepters of Beckoning are used on Greater Windstones.
Each of they Scrolls require various regents, ranging from 1-20 elemental air/earth/fire, herbalism plants, truesilver rods, and Dark Runes.
The purpose of the Objects of Beckoning are to enable you to summon a specific type of elemental from the stones. For the Lesser stones this is kind of pointless, the Templars loot tables are mostly the same between all 4 types. For the Dukes and higher, this can be useful, as each drops a different object. It takes quite a bit of time to aquire the materials to summon a Duke or a Lord, so this may be worthwhile.
The Lesser stones summon a Templar, a 60 elite that can be taken down easily by a group of 2-3. The only thing required here is the Twilight Set. Be sure to bring a healer of some sort, they hit for ~700. There are 4 possible Templars that can be summoned, which one is summoned is random. Each will drop an Abyssal Crest, and there’s a good chance that it will drop a random BoE green item. They can drop blues, but the chance to do so is only slightly higher than any other random NPC.
Azure Templar – Water
Crimson Templar – Fire
Earthern Templar – Earth
Hoary Templar – Air
The “normal” windstones (they just say “Wind Stone”, no Lesser or Greater) require a Twilight Set, plus a Medallion of Station. The medallion is a neckpiece, which is aquired by bringing 3 Abyssal Crests to the NPC near the mailbox along with a Large Brilliant Shard. This quest is repeatable, however it requires Friendly reputation before it becomes available. All you need are 3 Crests and the shard to get another one.
Wearing the Set and the Medallion allows you to activate the Windstone, which will summon a Duke. These are level 62 elites, and can be taken by a group of 5 if everyone knows what they’re doing. If you’re doing this with a pickup group, grab 8 or more. Each has different attacks, none are particularly difficult, although the Air elemental does use a hurricane like attack that does 400 per tick.
Each of them will drop a different BoP blue item, most of which are very nice. They will also drop a blue item called an Abyssal Signet, which you can turn in for some faction and a nice bag of random stuff.
Duke of Cynders – Fire
Duke of Fathoms – Water
Duke of Shards – Earth
Duke of Zephyrs – Air
To summon a Royal Lord, you need the Twilight Set, the Medallion of Station, plus a Ring of Lordship. The ring can be aquired via quest, same as the Medallion, however it requires Revered reputation with the CC. It takes three(3) Abyssal Signets to create a Ring. This quest is also repeatable.
The ring also drops off a rare spawn that can spawn at any of the 3 twilight camps, and wanders around the camp. If he’s not at one camp, check a different one. Even though he’s classified rare, reports have his spawn time at less than 15 minutes, although he can spawn at any one of the 3 camps.
Activating the Greater Windstone will summon a ?? (raid boss) elite that requires anywhere from 30-40 people to defeat. There are four different ones and each one drops a different epic. It is not a 100% chance to drop an epic, but it’s pretty high, somewhere around 70%. If not an epic, then you’ll get a blue.
They also drop Abyssal Scepters
These can be turned in for rep with the Cenarion Circle, same as the crests and rings. However it’s plausible that these can be used to summon a still more powerful entity, however this is still speculation, nobody has discovered any quest or object that would lend credit to this theory. It’s also possible that they could be used in the next patch to help open the gates of Ahn’Quiraj
High Marshal Whirlaxis (Air)
Prince Skaldrenox (Fire)
Elemental Focus Band
Baron Kazum (Earth)—Thottbot has no info here
Thanks to Lauran and Fates Requium, here’s a video of some fights with the Royals.
Level 60 Night Elf Druid
After Gul’dan replaced Ner’Zhul—his mentor—as the new servant of the Burning Legion, Gul’dan convinced many of the orcish tribes to embrace the warlock bloodlust. The Burning Legion requested a purification of their land. The bloodlust granted great muscular might and an inner-rage for killing and destroying anything in their path.
During the orcish rampage of Draenor, many Draenei were killed, while others were dishonored by the brutal orcish soldiers, and Garona was the product of one such coupling. At the end of the war, Garona and those like her were all that remained of the Draenei. A small number of Draenei survived the onslaught, using a recessive cloaking ability—which saved them from extinction. Having travelled well in all of Draenor, Garona was well-versed in the culture of both the Draenei and Orcs, making her an invaluable asset to the Shadow Council, and she was inducted into the warlock-controlled Stormreaver Clan. She quickly became the Chief Interpreter of the Shadow Council, and Gul’dan’s personal spy and assassin. Due to her mixed blood, however, she was eternally an outcast, and had to rely upon her wits to keep her alive in the harsh world. Upon arriving in Azeroth, Garona’s experience lent a great deal to her insight with their newest foe – the humans.
She was part of a war party which attacked Medivh, and the Magus killed all of them, except her. Garona was sent back to Gul’dan with a message for him, and the warlock returned her to Medivh, to act as a spy on the orc’s behalf.
She acted as an emissary of the Horde to him, and assisted the mage in understanding the orcs. It was in Karazhan that she met Khadgar, Medivh’s apprentice sent to spy on him from Dalaran by the Kirin Tor. Khadgar was, at first, furious at her presence, but the Magus demanded Khadgar’s respect. Over time, a begrudging trust was forged between the two. Garona and Khadgar continually rebuked the other’s race, and defended their own from assault. They learned from each other, and soon began to suspect that Medivh was keeping secrets from both of them.
Together, they eventually discovered that Medivh was, in fact, the man who had brought the orcs into Azeroth, and uncovered his plans of murder and deceit, and that he was truly Sargeras, the fallen Titan.
They fled to Stormwind, where Garona met Llane and Lothar, who accepted her despite her orcish heritage. They then gathered a small war party and raided Karazhan. After searching about the tower, they found Medivh, who unleashed all the powers of Tirisfal and Sargeras combined against them. When Garona tried to attack him, he sent a numbing psionic blast into her mind. In the ensuing battle, she disappeared as Medivh was killed.
In the months that followed, Garona became a trusted confidante to King Llane. She reported to him the inner workings of the Horde and how he could use it to his advantage. But, she was still ultimately working for the Stormreaver, and was sent on a mission to kill Llane. With a heavy heart, she carved out his. But Gul’dan was in a coma after Medivh’s death.
Immediately, Doomhammer used the situation to his advantage, killing Blackhand. His spies found Garona, and tortured her, almost to death, until she finally revealed the secret location of the Shadow Council. The Council was destroyed, and the Warlocks slain.
Garona’s fate hereafter is uncertain. She is pressumed dead.
NOTE: However, Garona was seen in Ravenhold Manor, the guild of assassins, during World of Warcraft closed beta with the title of Grand Master of the Assassin’s Guild—which suggests that Garona survived Doomhammer’s wrath. The NPC was removed later on. She is possibly reserved for a special storyline in a future content patch.
The Draenei are one of the three primary races native to Draenor (the others being the Orcs and the Ogres). The Draenei once populated the planet heavily, but were slaughtered by the Orcs shortly after their corruption by the Warlock Gul’dan. The Draenei were formerly very human-looking, with greenish skin. After the Dark Portal was destroyed, Draenor collapsed onto itself. What remains of Draenor are floating chunks of the planet’s debris and asteroids floating in the Twisting Nether. This zone of floating asteroids in space is known as Outland. The irradiation of the collapsing energies of the Dark Portal seem to have mutated the Draenei that survived. Their almost human-like features forever changed.
They were thought to be extinct, but Illidan and his forces discovered and liberated one of the last surviving Draenei villages. They are known for being great spies and assassins as their warriors can Shadowmeld at all times of day, even while moving. They are currently ruled by Akama, the Elder Sage, and are allied with Illidan’s Naga and Blood Elves. The Draenei are consumed by an unquenchable bloodlust whenever they know Orcs are near.
A few Draenei were led through the portal by a few unknown leaders with the hopes of finding a new life, and have settled in The Swamp of Sorrows. Unfortunately, most of them were driven mad due to homesickness, and attack all on sight. There are a few, led by Magtoor, that remember their noble roots and survive on in the swamp seperate of their mad brothers. The mad Draenei are called “The Lost Ones” in memory of their old homeworld.
After you kill one of the four corrupted Green dragons, you loot an object shrouded in nightmare named Malfurion’s Signet Ring. A quest starts to go to the Moonglades. You bring your finding to Remulos—son of Cenarius—at the Moonglades and suddenly, Malfurion’s dream form appears before Remulos.
Keeper Remulos: “Malfurion!”
Malfurion: “Remulos, old friend. It is good to see you once more. I knew that the message would find its way to you – one way or another.”
Keeper Remulos: “It was shrouded in nightmares, Malfurion. What is happening in the Dream? What could cause such atrocities?”
Malfurion: “I fear for the worst, old friend. WIthin th Dream we fight a new foe, a born of an ancient evil. Ysera’s noble brood has fallen victim to the old whisperings. It seems as if the Nightmare has broken through the realm and seeks a new host on Azeroth.”
Keeper Remulos: “I sensed as much, Malfurion. Dark days loom ahead.”
Malfurion: “Aye, Remulos. Prepare the mortal races.”
Keeper Remulos: “You have been gone too long, Malfurion. Peace between the children of Azeroth is tenuous at best. What of my father? Of your brother? Have you any news?”
Malfurion: “Cenarius fights at my side. Illidan sits atop his throne in the Outland – brooding. I am afraid that the loss to Arthas proved to be his breaking point. Madness has embraced him, Remulos. He replays the events in his mind a thousand times per day, but in his mind, he is the victor and Arthas is utterly defeated. He is too far gone, old friend. I fear that the time may soon come that our bond is tested and it will not be as it was at the Well in Zin-Azshari.”
Keeper Remulos: “Remulos, I am being drawn back … Tyrande … send her my love … Tell her I am safe. Tell her … Tell her I will return … Farewell …”
Keeper Remulos: “Farewell, old friend … Farewell … Let us return to the grove, mortal.”
Quest: Eranikus, Tyrant of the Dream
Travel to the continent of Teldrassil and find Malfurion’s agent somewhere outside the walls of Darnassus.
Malfurion: “This is a journey of redemption, hero. Would it be that I was slain today, I would have died for a just and righteous cause. You must recover the green scepter shard. You must cleanse Eranikus of the taint placed upon him by the Old Gods.
Travel to Darnassus. Just outside the city walls you will find one of my agents. This agent will set things in motion for us and inform Tyrande of our plans without alerting Staghelm.
A fall from grace a thousand years in the making…”
Geologist Laksbane: “It is history … A history of Silithus … of Ahn’Quiraj … of Titans and Old Gods … I read from the prophecy of C’Thun as written by the Qiraji Prophet Skerran. A prophecy that portends a cataclysm …
In the time before time, when the world was still in its infancy, a battle between a Titan and a being of unimaginable evil and power raged on this very soil. The prophecy is unclear about whether or not the Titan was vanquished in this battle but it illustrates that a Titan fell. An Old God had also fallen – or so it was thought.
The land of eternal starlight, Kalimdor, was a nurturing mother to all of its creatures. The magic of the Well of Eternity permeated the land and empowered the multitude of flora and fauna that would make the world their home. From this magical ether were born the silithid. It was through the silithid that the brooding Old god would reach and attempt to sunder the world that it once held in its unmerciful grasp.
The Old god would create avatars from the silithid in its own image. These avatars were to be known as Qiraji. Sentient and with purpose, the Qiraji would name their creator: C’thun was born … For many thousands of years the Qiraji worked feverishly to build a force capable of laying waste to the world that would betray their god. The great fortress city of Ahn’Qiraj was created to house their growing armies and prepare for the coming of C’Thun. This can’t be right. An Old god could never be allowed to enter this world. The results would be … Oh dear!
There is more. The moment that C’Thun had so patiently waited for had finally arrived. His children had spent thousands of years building an army capable of exacting revenge upon the whole of Kalimdor and now the prize was within their grasp.
The Titans had long since vacated this world. Only the night elves that once inhabited this area were here to defend. Oh my! The next passage is fascinating! A mighty Qiraji known as General Rajaxx would command the initial incursion into Silithus. Only one would stand in his way: A night elf known as Staghelm. They refer to him as Khar’sis or “hand of the earth” in the native Qiraji tongue.
Staghelm and his armies were clearly overwhelmed as the endless flow of Rajaxx’s troops poured into Silithus. It would seem as if Staghelm, however, was more than just a nuisance to the Qiraji. Under Staghelm, the whole of the night elf armies had come together to defend Kalimdor, greatly slowing the Qiraji forces.
Unfortunately, the night elf defense was untenable and Rajaxx knew that they could not hold out much longer. Their tenacity, however, was causing great frustration to Rajaxx and causing even more frustration to his king. Wait, kings? Incredible…
Vek’nilash and Vek’lor, known as the Twin Emperors of Ahn’Qiraj, watched the war from the sanctuary of their temple. The clever brothers devised a plan to demoralize and divide Staghelm’s forces. Valstann Staghelm served as the right hand of Fandral. A proud and noble warrior, his dedication and adoration for his father unyielding … and the Twin Emperors sensed this as weakness. A weakness that could be exploited.
The Qiraji forces were commanded to fall back and hide the bulk of their numbers beneath the sands of the desert. A small attack was ordered upon Southwind Village while the front lines of Staghelm’s army were kept occupied.
Valstann, eager to please his father, convinced Fandral to allow him to take a small batallion to the defense of Southwind. Surely with the tide of battle turning their way, no harm could come to his beloved child. The trap was missed. Valstann was captured by the hiding Qiraji and Southwind Village obliterated. Rajaxx himself would take the captive Valstann to the front lines of the battle where – in front of Staghelm and the night elf forces – he would brutally execute the young night elf. The war continued but the will of the great leader was sapped. The whole of Silithus was soon engulfed by the silithid and their Qiraji hosts.
Poor man, this explains so much. The night elf army was pushed back through Un’Goro, to the borders of the Tanaris desert. something in Un’Goro prevented the Qiraji from being able to take the land. I do not quite understand this word but I believe it to mean ‘God Lands’. It is stated that they could not ‘take the God Lands’.
Fascinating, this coincides with theories of Un’Goro being the home of the Titans when they inhabited Kalimdor. Perhaps Aman’Thul himself watched over ‘The God Lands’. Hrm, curious … This ends abruptly. In Tanaris the Qiraji document facing a bronze dragon. There is much missing from this … More information must be found! Surely they are planning to invade Kalimdor once more!”
(( Baristolth of the Shifting Sands shifts uncomfortably. ))
Baristolth of the Shifting Sands: “When the time is right, my lady. All will be clear when the time is right. The master stirs even now. Look to the skies for the Brood of Nozdormu have returned.
The Undead’s beginnings upon Azeroth do not truly begin with the corruption of Prince Arthas-it began long before that event. The events that brought downfall of Lordaeron were long set in motion before that point; it began with the coming of the orcish clans and the burning legion.
The orcs of Draenor (the world which they originally came from) were noble and shamanistic. They were powerful warriors, strong of body and will. It was for these reasons that the Burning Legion sought them out. Kil’jaeden, a demon of great power among the Legion, wished to enslave the orcish clans and use them as his army against the worlds the Burning Legion had yet to conquer.
Kil’jaeden came to the leader of the clans, a powerful shaman named Ner’zhul. He promised Ner’zhul untold mystical power and knowledge if he made a pact with the demon that would enslave the clans to the Burning Legion. This pact sealed not only their fate but that of their world forever.
As time passed, Ner’zhul realized the fate of the clans at the hands of the Burning Legion, and the orc shaman began to defy Kil’jaeden. The demon, angered by Ner’zhul, turned to the shaman’s own apprentice, Gul’dan, who was far more corruptible than Ner’zhul.
It was Gul’dan who was responsible for the decline of shamanism throughout the clans. The promise of power and control over one’s enemies made his offers even more tempting. With Kil’jaeden’s help, Gul’dan began his manipulation of the clans. The orcs, once noble, became corrupt, mindless savages. With the introduction of demon blood into their bodies, the orcs were even more ruthless and barbaric.
Even though Kil’jaeden had corrupted Gul’dan after his failure with Ner’zhul, Kil’jaeden hated the shaman and vowed to enforce their original pact. Kil’jaeden captured Ner’zhul and began an incredibly slow physical torture on the shaman. While Ner’zhul begged for death, Kil’jaeden reminded Ner’zhul that their original pact was still binding. Kil’jaeden killed the orc but only physically. Kil’jaeden held the orc shaman’s spirt fast before it could find its way to the Twisting Nether.
Kil’jaeden placed Ner’zhul’s spirit within a block of ice gathered from the Twisting Nether. While it was trapped within the ice, he infused into it even more power. The loss of his body and the introduction of such incredible power was the defining line in Ner’zhul’s transformation.
Kil’jaeden hurled the block of ice through dimensions back to Azeroth, where it landed in the continent of Northrend, introducing this great evil to our world. Ner’zhul was gone forever; in his place was a throne of ice and hatred. The once respected shaman leader had become the incredibly powerful Lich King.
Because Kil’jaeden did not trust the Lich King, he sent his dread lords to watch over the spirit and ensure that the Lich King followed his orders. The vampiric servants came to Azeroth willingly, drawn to the destruction and power of the Lich King and the potential genocide of a planet’s entire race.
Over a decade passed. During this time, the Lich King used his vast powers to gain control over the minds of the creatures of Northrend, whom he commanded to erect a great citadel over his frozen throne. Now that all of Northrend was under his domination, the Lich King knew he needed to begin his inflitration of Lordaeron. Trapped within the ice, the former orc shaman began seeking more minds to manipulate and control. His call reached out across the continents.
The Lich King’s summons did not go unnoticed. Especially by a small handful of powerful individuals. Among them was the Archmage Kel’Thuzad, who was a powerful member of the ruling body of Dalaran, the Kirin Tor. His pursuit of all types of magic violated the Kirin Tor’s policies against learning dark magics. Kel’Thuzad abandoned the Kirin Tor, and all his ties to conventional thought and vowed to learn as much as he could from the Lich King.
A pact was struck between the two. Kel’Thuzad would receive immortality and immense power in return for servitude to the Lich King. Kel’Thuzad’s first task was to use his wealth and influence in Lordaeron to found the Cult of the Damned. The Cult promised equality and eternal life to all its members as long as they swore an oath to Ner’zhul the God of the Cult of the Damned.
Ner’zhul then created artifacts that were designed to spread the plague among the human civilizations of Lordaeron. He gave them to Kel’Thuzad, and ordered the wizard to spread them across the land. His Cult followers were to protect the artifacts at all costs.
Once in place, the plague began to seep into the land and affect its ignorant citizens. As Kel’Thuzad watched, the Lich King’s army grew quickly and he soon gained control over large portions of the land. This army became known as the Scourge, for its sole purpoes was to scour humanity from all of Azeroth.
—Book found at Scarlet Monastery
Return to the WoW In-Game Books Section
Ten thousand years before the orcs and humans clashed in their First War, the world of Azeroth cradled ony one massive continent surrounded by the infinite, raging seas. That land mass, known as Kalimdor, was home to a number of disparate races and creatures, all vying for survival amongst the savage elements of the waking world. At the dark continent’s center was a mysterious lake of incandscent energies.
The lake, which would later be called the Well of Eternity, was the true heart of the world’s magic and natural power. Drawing its energies from the infinite Great Dark Beyond the world, the Well acted as a mystical fount, sending its potent energies out across the world to nourish life in all its wondrous forms.
In time, a primitive tribe of nocturnal humanoids cautiously made their way to the edges of the mesmerizing enchanted lake. The feral nomadic humanoids drawn by the Well’s strange energies, built crude homes upon its tranquil shores. Over time, the Well’s cosmic power affected the strange tribe, making them strong, wise and virtually immortal. The tribe adopted the name Kaldorei, which meant – children of the stars – in their native tongue. To celebrate their budding society, they constructed great structures and temples around the lake’s periphery.
The Kaldorei, or NIght elves as they would later be known, worshipped the moon goddess Elune, and believed that she slept within the Well’s shimmering depths during the daylight hours. The early Night elf priests and seers studied the Well with an insatiable curiosity, driven to plumb its untold secrets and power. As their society grew, the night elves explored the breadth of Kalimdor and encountered its myriad denizens.
The only creatures that gave them pause were the ancient and powerful dragons. Though the great serpentine beasts were often reclusive, they did much to safeguard the known lands from potential threats. The night elves believed that the dragons held themselves to be the protectors of the world, and that they and their secrets were best left alone.
In time, the night elves’ curiosity led them to meet and befriend a number of powerful entities, not the least of which was Cenarius, a mighty demi-god of the primordial forestlands. The great-hearted Cenarius grew fond of the inquisitive night elves and spent a great deal of time teaching them about the natural world. The tranquil Kaldorei developed a strong empathy for the living forests of Kalimdor and reveled in the harmonious balance of nature.
Yet as the seemingly endless ages passed, the night elves’ civilization expaned both territorially and culturally. Their temples, roads, and dwelling places stretched across the breadth of the dark continent. Azshara, the night elves’ beautiful and gifted queen, built an immense, wondrous palace on the Well’s shore that housed her favored servitors within its bejeweled halls.
Her servitors, whom she called the Quel’dorei or High-borne, doted on her every command and believed themselves to be greater than the rest of their lower-caste breathren. Though Queen Azshara was loved equally by all of her people, the High-borne were secretly hated by the jealous masses.
Sharing the priests’ curiosity towards the Well of Eternity, Azshara ordered the educated high-borne to plumb its secrets and reveal its true purpose in the world.
The high-borne buried themselves in their work and studied the well ceaselessly. In time they developed the ability to manipulate and control the well’s cosmic energies. As their reckless experiments progressed, the highborne found that they could use their newfound powers to either create or destroy at their leisure. The hapless highborne had stumbled upon primitive magic and were now resolved to devote themselves to its mastery.
Although they agreed that magic was inherently dangerous if handled irresponsibly, Azshhara and her highborne began to practive their spellcraft with reckles abandon. Cenarius and many of hte wizened night elf scholars warned that only calamity would result from toying with the clearly volatile arts of magic. But, Azshara and her followers stubbornly continued to expand their burgeoning powers.
As their powers grew, a distinct change came over Azshara and the highborne. The haughty, aloof upper class became incresingly callous and cruel towards their fellow night elves. A dark, brooding pall veiled Azshara’s once entrancing beauty. She began to withdraw from her loving subjects and refused to interact with any but her trusted Highborne priests.
A young, brazen scholar named Furion Stormrage, who had spent much of his time studying the Well’s effects, began to suspect that a terrible power was corrupting the highborne and his beloved Queen. Though he could not conceive the evil that was to come, he knew that th enight elves’ lives would soon be changed forever.
With the absence of trolls in the northlands, the elves of Quel’Thalas bent their efforts towards rebuilding their glorious homeland. The victorious armies of Arathor returned home to southlands of Strom.
The human society of Arathor grew and prospered, yet Thoradin, fearful that his kingdom would splinter apart if it overextended itself, maintained that Strom was the center of the Arathorian Empire. After many peaceful years of growth and commerce, mighty Thoradin died of old age, leaving Arathor’s younger generation free to expand the empire beyond the lands of Strom.
The original hundred magi, who were tutored in the ways of magic by the elves, expanded their powers and studied the mystic disciplines of spell-weaving in much greater detail. These magi, initially chosen for their strong wills and noble spirits, had always practiced their magic with care and responsibility: however, they passed their secrets and powers onto a newer generation that had no concept of the rigors of war or the necessity for self-restrain.
These younger magicians began to practice magic for personal gain rather than out of any responsibility towards their fellows. As the empire grew and expanded into new lands, the young magicians also spread out into the southlands. Wielding their mystical powers, the magicians protected their breathren from the wild creatures of the land and made it possible for new city-states to be constructed in the wilderness. Yet, as their powers grew, the magicians became ever more conceited and isolated from the rest of society.
The second Arathorian city-state of Dalaran was founded in the lands north of Strom. Many fledgling wizards left the restraining confines of Strom behind and traveled to Dalaran, where they hoped to use their new powers with greater freedom. These magicians used their skills to build up the enchanted spires of Dalaran and reveled in the pursuit of their studies.
The citizens of Dalaran tolerated the magicians’ endevours and built up a bustling economy under the protection of their magic-using defenders. Yet, as more and more magicians practiced their arts, the fabric of reality around Dalaran began to weaken and tear.
The sinister agents of the Burning Legion, who had been banished when the Well of Eternity collapsed, were lured back into the world by the heedless spellcasting of the magicians of Dalaran. Though these relatively weak demons did not appear in force, they did sew considerable confusion and chaos within the streets of Dalaran.
Most of these demonic encounters were isolated events and the ruling Magocrats did what they could to keep such events hidden from the public. The most powerful magicians were sent to capture the elusive demons, but they often found themselves hopelessly outmatched by the lone agents of the might Legion.
After a few months the superstitious peasantry began to suspect that their sorcerous rulers were hiding something terrible from them. Rumors of revolution began to sweep through the streets of Dalaran as the paranoid citizenry questioned the motives and practices of the magician tey had once admired. The Magocrats fearing that the peasants would revolt and that Strom would take action against them, turned to the only group they felt would understand their particular problem: The High Elves.
Upon hearing the Magocrats’ news of demonic activity in Dalaran, the elves quickly dispatched their mightiest wizards to the human lands. The elven wizards studied the energy currents in Dalaran and made detailed reports of all demonic activity that they beheld. They concluded that although there were only a few demons loose in the world, the Legion itself would remain a dire threat so long as humans continued to wield the forces of magic.
The Council of Silvermoon, which ruled over the elves of Quel’Thalas, entered into a secret pact with the Magocrat Lords of Dalaran. The elves told the Magocrats about the history of Ancient Kalimdor and of the Burning Legion. A history which still threatened the world. They informed the humans that so long as they used magic, they would need to protect their citizenry from the malicious agents of the Legion.
The Magocrats proposed the notion of empowering a single mortal champion who would utilize their powers in order to fight a never-ending secret war against the Legion. It was stressed that the majority of mankind could never know about the Guardians or the threat of the Legion for fear that they would riot in fear and paranoia. The elves agreed to the proposal and foundeda secret society that would watch over the selection of the Guardian and help to stem the rise of chaos in the world.
The society held its secret meetings in the shadowed Tirisfal Glades, where the high elves had first settled in Lordaeron. Thus, they named the secret sect the Guardians of Tirisfal. The mortal champions who were chosen to be Guardians were imbued with incredible powers of both Elven and Human magic. Though there would only ever be one Guardian at a time, they held such vast power that they could single-handedly fight back the Legion’s agents wherever they were found in the world.
The Guardian power was so great that only the Council of Tirisfal was allowed to choose potential successors to the mantle of Guardianship. Whenever a guardian grew too old, or wearied of the secret war against chaos, the Council chose a new champion, and under controlled conditions, formally channeled the Guardian power into its new agent.
As the generations passed, Guardians defended the masses of humanity from the invisible threat of the Burning Legion throughout the lands of Arathor and Quel’Thalas. Arathor grew and prospered while the use of magic spread throughout the empire. Meanwhile, the Guardians kept careful watch for signs of demonic activity.
The Chief Warden of the internment camps, Aedelas Blackmoore, watched over the captive orcs from his prison-stronghold, Durnholde Keep. One orc in particular had always held his interest: the orphaned infant he had found nearly 18 years before Blackmoore had raised the young male as a favored slave and named him Thrall. Blackmoore taught the orc about tactics, philosophy, and combat. Thrall was even trained as a gladiator. All the while the corrupt warden sought to mold the orc into a weapon.
Despite harsh upbringing, young Thrall grew into a strong, quick-witted orc, and he knew in his heart that a slave’s life was not for him. As he grew to maturity, he learned about his people, the orcs, whom he had never met: after their defeat, most of them had been placed in internment camps. Rumor had it that Doomhammer, the orc leader, had escaped from Lordaeron and gone into hiding. Only one rogue clan still operated in secret, trying to evade teh watchful eyes of the Alliance.
The resourceful yet inexperienced Thrall decided to escape from Blackmoore’s fortress and set off to find others of his kind. During his journeys Thrall visited the internment camps and found his once-mighty race to be strangely cowed and lethargic. Having not found the proud warriors he hoped to discover, Thrall set out to find the last undefeated orc chieftain, Grom Hellscream.
Constantly hunted by the humans, Hellscream nevertheless held onto the Horde’s unquenchable will to fight aided only by his own devoted Warsong Clan. Hellscream continued to wage an underground war against the oppression of his beleaguered people. Unfortunately, Hellscream could never find a way to rouse the captured orcs from their stupor. The impressionable Thrall, inspired by Hellscream’s idealism, developed a strong empathy for the Horde and its warrior traditions.
Seeking the truth of his own origins, Thrall traveled north to find the legendary Frostwolf Clan. Thrall learned that Gul’dan had exiled the Frostwolves during the early days of the First War. He also discovered that he was the son and heir of the orc hero Durotan, the true chieftain of the Frostwolves who had been murdered in the wilds nearly twenty years before.
Under the tutlelage of the venerable shaman Drek’Thar, Thrall studied his people’s ancient shamanistic culture which had been forgotten under Gul’dan’s evil rule. Over time, Thrall became a powerful shaman and took his rightful place as chieftain of the exiled Frostwolves. Empowered by the elements themselves and driven to find his destiny, Thrall set off to free the captive clans an dheal his race of demonic corruption.
During his travels, Thrall found the aged warchief Orgrim Doomhamer, who had been living as a hermit for many years. Doomhammer, who had been a close friend of Thrall’s father, decided to follow the young, visionary orc and help him free the captive clans. Supported by many of the veteran chieftains, Thrall ultimately succeeded in revitalizing the HOrde and giving his people a new spiritual identity.
To symbolize his people’s rebirth, Thrall returned to Blackmoore’s fortress of Durnholde and put a decisive end to his former master’s plans by laying siege to the internment camps. This victory was not without its price: during the liberation of one camp, Doomhammer fell in battle.
Thrall took up Doomhammer’s legendary warhammer and donned his black plate-armor to become the new Warchief of the Horde. During the following months, Thrall’s small but volatile Horde laid waste to the internment camps and stymied the Alliance’s best efforts to counter his clever strategies. Encouraged by his best friend and mentor, Grom Hellscream, Thrall worked to ensure that his people would never be slaves again.
The few night elves that survived the horrific explosion rallied together on crudely made rafts and slowly made their way to the only landmass in sight. Somehow, by the grace of Elune, Malfurion, Tyrande and Cenarius had survived the Great Sundering. The weary heroes agreed to lead their fellow survivors and establish a new home for their people.
As they journeyed in silence, they surveyed the wreckage of their world and realized that their passions had wrought the destruction all around them. Though Sargeras and his Legion had been ripped from the world by the Well’s destruction, Malfurion and his companions were left to ponder the terrible cost of victory.
There were many Highborne who did survive the cataclysm unscathed. They made their way to the shores of the new land along with the other night elves. Though Malfurion mistrusted the HIghborne’s motivations, he was satisfied that they could cause no real mischief without the Well’s energies.
As the weary mass of night elves landed upon the shores of the new land, they found that the holy mountain, Hyjal, had survived the catastrophe. Seeking to establish a new home for themselves, Malfurion and the night elves climbed the slopes of Hyjal and reached its windswept summit. As they descended into the wooded bowl, nestled between the mountain’s enormous peaks, they found a small, tranquil lake. To their horror, they found that the lake’s waters had been fouled by magic.
Illidan, having survived the Sundering as well, had reached Hyjal summit long before Malfurion and the night elves. In his mad bid to maintain the flows of magic in the world, Illidan had poured his vials, which contained the precious waters from the Well of Eternity, into the Mountain lake.
The well’s potent energies quickly ignited and coalesced into a new Well of Eternity. The exultant Illidan, believing that the new Well was a gift to future generations, was shocked when Malfurion hunted him down. Malfurion explained to his brother that magic was innately chaotic and that its use would inevitably lead to widespread corruption and strife. Still, Illidan refused to relinquish his magical powers.
Knowing full well where Illidan’s ruthless schemes would eventually lead, Malfurion decided to deal with his power-crazed brother once and for all. With Cenarius’ help, Malfurion sealed Illidan within a vast underground Barrow-prison. Where he would remain chained and powerless until the end of time. To ensure his brother’s containment, Malfurion empowered the young warden, Maiev Shadowsong, to be Illidan’s personal jailor.
Concerned that destroying the new Well might bring about an even greater catastrophe, the night elves resolved to leave it be. However, Malfurion declared that they would never practice the arts of magic again. Under Cenarius’ watchful eye, they began to study the ancient arts of druidism that would enable them to heal the ravaged earth and re-grow their beloved forests at the base of Mount Hyjal.