The World of Warcraft: Paragons digital book is now available. It contains a collection of Leader Short Stories and Short Stories seen on the official World of Warcraft website.

genn-greymane-thumbGenn Greymane
Lord of His Pack
by James Waugh
tyrande-whisperwind-thumbTyrande & Malfurion
Seeds of Faith
by Valerie Watrous
garrosh-hellscream-thumbGarrosh Hellscream
Heart of War
by Sarah Pine
baine-bloodhoof-thumbBaine Bloodhoof
As Our Fathers Before Us
by Steven Nix
the-council-of-three-hammers-thumbThe Council of Three Hammers
Fire and Iron
by Matt Burns
varian-wrynn-thumbVarian Wrynn
Blood of Our Fathers
by E. Daniel Arey
Trade Secrets of a Trade Prince
by Gavin Jurgens-Fyhrie
sylvanas-windrunner-thumbSylvanas Windrunner
Edge of Night
by Dave Kosak
gelbin-mekkatorque-thumbGelbin Mekkatorque
Cut Short
by Cameron Dayton
Prophet’s Lesson
by Marc Hutcheson
The Judgment
by Brian Kindregan
lorthemar-theron-thumbLor'themar Theron
In the Shadow of the Sun
by Sarah Pine

World of Warcraft: Paragons also contains the three Short Stories: War of the Shifting Sands, Road to Damnation, Charge of the Aspects and Unbroken.

However, when you order World of Warcraft: Paragons you are also accessing a brand-new short story never published before. That makes it a bonus in addition to the digital backup of previous short stories.

Within you can find Blood of the Highborne by Micky Neilson (Blizzard Publishing Lead).

Blood of the Highborne

world-of-warcraft-paragons-front-coverThroughout the four chapters, we can see different time-frames. The story starts with Liadrin, Dar’Khan, Farstrider Lieutenant Lor’themar Theron, and Galell recovering consciousness. They are prisoners of Zul’jin. This story takes place a bit over a decade before the events of Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos.

The second chapter, jumps a bit ahead to the promotion of Lor’Themar Theron to Ranger Lord of the Farstriders, and Halduron and Liadrin capture Zul’jin. For continuity’s sake, the reader witness briefly something we have seen in the The gods of Zul’Aman cutscene which shows a glimpse of Zul’jin’s capture.

The relationship between these four characters is fleshed out a bit as time passes. The reasons for Dar’Khan to eventually betray his people. There is some lore about how the Runestones and other crystals worked to contain a magical shield around Quel’Thalas. Curiously even the name of those mooncrystals — which the player actually gathered in Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos during the Undead campaign.

The reader learns where Lor’themar and Liadrin were at during the Scourge invasion to Quel’Thalas, and how they bravely fought.

Arthas the Death Knight commands the high elves to let him reach the Sunwell and offers them a place in his ranks. The chapter focus a lot on the Fall of Quel’Thalas, Arthas and Dar’Khan. Lot of details there come from Warcraft: The Sunwell Trilogy by Richard A. Knaak, but the scene is further fleshed out in Blood of the Highborne.

Shortly after the Sunwell was defiled by Arthas, Kael’thas heard of this and traveled from Dalaran to scout the remnants of his kingdom. This is a scene I don’t recall reading before.

Lor’themar seems to have feelings for Liadrin, a theme which hasn’t been fully explored in World of Warcraft, to my knowledge. It would be nice to see if that evolves in-game or elsewhere in the future.

Borel (aka Krasus) makes a cameo after Kael’thas destroyed the defiled Sunwell, but just briefly.

The final chapter focus on the foundation of the Blood Knights, the paladin order. How it came to be. The beginnings. That’s what Blood of the Highborne is about. The Dawn of the Blood Knights.

Absolutely awesome to read this short story. I really hope to see more of these come. There are many areas in the entire Warcraft timeline that might benefit from such treatment fleshing out the characters and the events.

I would also like to see the mangas released as digital books. Right now, for those who enjoy Blood of the Highborne, and haven’t read The Sunwell Trilogy — they could learn more about Dar’Khan, Anveena and Kalec within, but sadly it’s no longer on sale in Amazon.

Order World of Warcraft: Paragons and add it to your digital collection. If you are deep into lore, this piece by Micky Neilson is going to really sate your crave for Warcraft lore. Will there be a sequel? Are elements been slowly introduced into the canon as a primer for something cooking up for the future? Who knows. We’ll just have to wait and find out.

After reading the short story, send your praises, and questions to @MickyNeilson via Twitter.