Tag Archives: faranell

Kypari Zar: Prologue

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[While Shayari, Spazzle, and Mokvar have been busy keeping the blog active with their own activities, Garrosh has been occupied with the start of a fairly important undertaking of his own. As you might recall, when we last left the Warchief…

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For long-time readers (like really, really long-time!), this is a moment you’ve been anticipating for a while, but for newer arrivals to the blog, a quick recap might be in order. (I know, I know, I try to link back to relevant posts as much as possible, but at some point I should probably stop expecting people to just go back and read years’ worth of my nonsense…)

Not long before the events of Tides of War, Garrosh traveled to the Caverns of Time and, accompanied by Mokvar, Liadrin, Faranell, and (spirits help us) Utvoch, went on a mission that took him to Southshore some ten years in the past — the same time period we players visit during the Escape from Durnholde instance. The adventure in old Southshore had several pieces of fallout (more on that in a moment!), but the most immediately relevant one was the recovery of a shard from a dark crystal that the Knights of the Silver Hand had infused with the Light — a small piece of the same light crystal from which the Ashbringer would eventually be forged.

garroshadalliadrin1Garrosh entrusted the recovered crystal to Lady Liadrin, who rightly deduced that it was part of the remains of a dying naaru. Liadrin persuaded Garrosh to let her return the shard to A’dal in Shattrath; the Warchief accompanied her on the trip. While there, just before leaving, Garrosh received an ominous telepathic message from A’dal: “If you go to Kypari Zar, you will die.”

Garrosh didn’t know what to make of the message, but he soon found himself far too busy to worry about it. In the days leading up to the attack on Theramore, the Warchief discovered another unexpected consequence of his journey to old Hillsbrad: Faranell had accidentally altered the past, creating an alternate timeline that Garrosh found himself being pulled into. While in the other universe, Garrosh encountered the hozen Zhi-Zhi, who addressed him as “the One” and told him — vaguely and, let’s face it, unhelpfully — that he had a “destiny.” Any chance of learning more from Zhi-Zhi was seemingly lost, though, when that timeline’s version of the hozen was killed in the fall of Orgrimmar. (“The what?!” Well see, now I am going to force you to go back and read. Here.)

That all changed after Garrosh traveled to Tian Monastery, where he encountered this timeline’s version of Zhi-Zhi — who, like his alternate-universe counterpart, also recognized Garrosh as “the One.” Zhi-Zhi and Elder Cloudfall explained that they had both seen Garrosh in visions and that he did indeed have an important destiny. They declined to elaborate further, though, until Garrosh returned to the monastery seeking counsel and Elder Cloudfall offered to take the Warchief to a place where his questions might be answered…

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A string of interruptions prevented Garrosh from taking the elder up on his offer right away, though. And then he was back in Orgrimmar, and all of a sudden he was a father, and then that whole thing with Mokvar, so, you know, who has time for pandas?

Well, guess what — Garrosh has time for pandas, now that he’s made the time, dammit! And that’s where we last left him, flying across the Dread Wastes, chasing down destiny.

And so, on that note, here we go. The end begins tomorrow morning. Stay tuned.]

 

Monday GUEST mailbag: Shayari

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Hi again, everyone. It’s yours truly, Shayari, filling in for Pops for one of his mailbag thingies. I’m not sure how he talked me into doing this again, to be honest. I think he caught me while I was paying attention to something else, then got a “yeah, uh huh” from me before I realized what he was asking. To be fair, I got him for a couple shopping trips the same way. Before he got wise, anyway. Oh well.

So ol’ Garry wanted me to mind the fort letter-answering-wise, since apparently he’s going to be pretty busy in Pandaria, and I guess so many people write in for this that he didn’t feel like it could just wait. Which I totally don’t get. Do that many people actually read this thing? I can’t imagine it could be more than, like, a dozen. Two dozen tops.

But, hey, a promise is a promise, so here we go.

 

Dearest Shayari,

My goodness, it’s been rather a long time since I had the luxury of being able to converse with you! Certainly not without the eager interruptions of friends and family. Not that I can complain, of course. I love conversation! And if anything, I have Korrina to thank for letting me know that YOU were taking over the next mailbag. I’d completely forgotten to go through your dad’s last mailbag. All this travelling has left me too exhausted to even read! Then again, it’s often worth it when you visit all these fabulous ethnic places and meet all kinds of bizarre new people. I wonder if you’ve ever heard of this gnome called Brazie Getz? His entire marketing campaign is on Deathbringer’s Rise in Icecrown. He’s a weird, weird guy. Don’t ever talk to him.

Anywho, I think I’d better rush to the point. I’m still travelling, of course – matter of fact, the only place I haven’t been to visit yet is Pandaria, so that’s likely next on my list! – and I found myself growing more and more curious with regards to the mailboxes of Azeroth. That is, every time I dropped a letter into a mailbox, it simply vanished! And would you believe it or not, but half the time, the correspondent’s response would appear before me a mere five minutes later.

I’m only assuming that this is a rather common stretch of magic, but as I’m not a mage, I don’t know how it works. So I ask you, Shayari, do you know what school of magic is responsible for this faster-than-Light-itself speed of delivery of mail in these boxes?

Take care, and be well!

–Sarlinia-Grace Starstriker, Argent Crusade

Oh… uh, hey, Sarlin. Nice to… hear from you again. So… Korrina told you I was fielding letters for this mailbag? I’ll, uh… I’ll have to… thank her for that. Maybe thank her repeatedly. Over a span of several slow, torturous thankful days.

Or, well, I would, if I knew which one she was. She’s one of Pip’s friends, right? The ones who are always running around in the garish hand-me-down gear? She’s not the one that’s always putting her foot in her mouth, is she?

Either way… well… here you are. At least you toned it down a little this time around, though. Or… well, wait, you did tone it down, right? I’m not just missing a few pages? Because if I am, I mean, don’t feel like you need to correct that and send me a new copy or anything. You know, I’m already answering the letter now, so it’s not like there’s anything to gain at this point. Water under the bridge. That I should probably burn before it’s too late.

But, hey, speaking of sending things through the mail, that’s a question I can actually answer! You’re totally right, Sarlin — those mailboxes do use magic to make their insta-deliveries. Well, most of them do. There are still places that use old-timey mailboxes, where somebody has to go around and physically pick up the letters and stuff, but there are only a few of those left. So the magic they use for those things is arcane. The way it works — this is actually pretty weird but cool — is that all those mailboxes are sort of permanent mini-portals. You drop something in the mailbox, and poof! it goes through the portal and pops into the sorting room at the central post office. Which… well, I don’t exactly know where that is, or who runs it, although whoever it is they must have a massively fun life considering how they seem like they’re constantly on the job. But then they sort through the letters, or packages, or whatever, and send them back through another mini-portal, and double poof! they pop back out to whatever other mailbox you need to use to pick the delivery up. Pretty neat, huh?

I meant that last question rhetorically, by the way. No need to write back again, Sarlin. I mean, I figure you’re already busy enough doing whatever it is that you do. (Spirits help me, why am I talking about this like I’m going to be getting these again? Focus, Shay, focus!)

 

Dear Shayari,

Are you still taking mage lessons from our dear Mr Faranell? I am curious, what is he like as a teacher? Have you smoothed things over with him after, well, you know?

–Tandeleina, Silvermoon City

Well for one thing, let me tell you, you won’t win any points with Eddie by calling him “Mr. Faranell.” He likes that even less than he likes me calling him Eddie. I’ve seen it. One of those Kor’kron guys called him that and he got all pissy about it, “I didn’t spend a zillion years in mad scientist school or whatever so you could call me ‘mister,’ ” blah blah. Then he turned the Kor’kron guy into a sewer rat. Granted, it was just a polymorph variation. Fun fact, by the way: it turns out that being swallowed whole by a giant spider doesn’t break the polymorph. Who knew?

But yeah, I’m still working on my magic with Eddie. Pops had me stay in Orgrimmar while he’s in Pandaria so I can keep up with my apprenticeship. I’d like to see Pandaria at some point, though. I’ve heard it’s beautiful there. Pops promised I’ll get to see it eventually, so I guess we’ll see.

Anyhow, Eddie’s fine as a teacher, I guess. He’s definitely really smart. He’s just very… dry. I mean personality dry. It makes him hard to read sometimes. Like for instance, I’ll cast a spell, and he’ll say it went well, only because it’s him I’m never sure if I really did a good job or if I screwed it up and he’s being ironic. So, I don’t know, it’s been okay?

 

Dear Shayari,

Hello Shayari! My name is Clarise! I mean, my full name is Ceresella-Sareyn Sunbow but that’s like way long, and kind of a tongue twister, so I’ve shortened it to Clarise, although my sister thinks that’s a little common. Whatever. I think it’s totes adorbs. Anyways. HEY! I’m a mage apprentice too! Would you look at that, we have mutual interests! YAY! But you’re probably like waaaaay better at the kapowing than I am. I’m fourteen so I’m pretty amateur-ish at this whole pew-pew business. I can’t even polymorph properly yet! Like, I tried it once (on some idiot that was yammering on about how fire was the superior style of magic and arcane would rightfully bow at its feet one day and I just got so annoyed so POOF! Sheep he was) and it sort of lasted for about three hours. OOPS!

Anyway, so, I heard you study in the Undercity. I heard this really cool story from my sister once about there being somebody who does facials and haircuts there. Have you ever got one there? I bet they do AWESOME facials. I bet they use really frothy soap and stuff and warm water that almost feels like you’re being bathed in the physical form of perfection. Do the Forsaken have a nice sense of fashion? I like bright colours best. I specially like bright red and gold. Although leather’s pretty hip, too. Leather jackets with pink-dyed fur hoods? I would literally sell my little soul for one of those.

Coffee! Is there coffee in the Undercity!? Please tell me there’s coffee! There has to be! I would literally DIE in a place where there was no coffee. Can you imagine that? Can you imagine waking up for three hours of study in a boring room that’s way hot so it only makes you sleepier without a cup of coffee? I would just die. How many cups of coffee do you have a day? I don’t count but I think this is my twelfth. Now, that IS the physical form of perfection. In a cup!

Anyways, big fan! Can’t believe your dad responded to my first letter! MEGA FLAIL!

Ciao!

–Clarise Sunbow, Kirin Tor

So first of all, what the hell is a “ciao”? It had better not be some cool new expression that I’m behind the curve on, because you know how that goes. You start losing track of new and current expressions, then you start walking around wearing last season’s clothes, and then the next thing you know you’re thirty and it’s a quick downhill slide into sadness. Obviously, I can’t let that happen.

Oh, who am I kidding? We all know I’m not going to be out of the loop on anything cool. I am the loop on anything cool. This Clarise girl’s just talking the crazy talk.

So anyway, hi Clarise. You seem kind of weird, but you say you’re a fan of mine, so I guess you have that going for you. Wait, I have fans? Score! Eh, what am I saying? It figures I would have fans if Pops has been talking about me here on his blog. Wait, has he been talking about me here? What’s he been saying? Do I need to start working damage control?

So, um, yeah… hi, Clarise! It’s nice to hear from another mage, at least one who’s alive and not decomposing or anything. Or mordantly derisive toward everything in sight for no apparent reason. I haven’t had the chance to meet too many since the whole Jaina-schizo-Dalaran-be-gone thing. Used to hang out with nothing but mages, though. Not so much now. Seems like half the people I know are warriors. Or shamans. And I can hardly take three steps without tripping over a rogue. Which is weird considering you would think their whole deal is not being tripped over what with the sneaky. Anyway, Clarise, it’s nice to hear from another non-corpse magic user, and I’ll even let your whole arcane/fire thing slide, even though I’m a fire mage myself. You’ll come to your senses eventually. You’re right, though, polymorph is way cool.

The Undercity is… different. Not even… well, I was going to say not bad different, but… I mean, kind of yeah. I get the definite sense you’ve never actually been there. You’d probably find it, um, surprising. Probably not your cup of tea if you like bright colors. They don’t really have any. Well, other than the bright green glowing slime that’s… well… pretty much everywhere. So there’s that, at least. Otherwise, though, you’re pretty much looking at drab lifeless gray and drab lifeless purple and loads and loads of black. You wouldn’t think there could be different shades of black, right? Well you would be wrong! Don’t ask me how, but the Forsaken manage to have more shades of black than they have primary colors. Like you look around their stores and wonder “How much more black could there be?” and the answer is “None, none more black.” So I’m not sure the Undercity would really be your style.

And… I’m not even going to go near the thing about the facials. I’m pretty sure your sister was just trolling you. I mean, I suppose it’s possible that the Forsaken have salons there (would they need to get their hair cut, though? does your hair actually grow when you’re a dead person?), but I can’t imagine they’d be worried about cleansing pores nearly as much as necrosis and maggots. And if, you know, ew, I agree with you.

 

Hey, Shayari mon!

I got a question for ya! If da Lich King’s horse be Invincible, how come I be seein’ it, mon?

–Bob, Shado-pan Monastery

I don’t know, Bobby, I guess lack of sex causes enhanced eyesight? So, you know, keep up the good work with the total physical and personal unattractiveness — you’ll be rocking the full-on x-ray vision in no time!

 

 

Hey, Shay!

Here’s an #EpicVerse prompt for you.

“There was a Draenei named Shayari,”

Go, go, go!

–Valinora Lightshorn, Stormwind City

So… I’m really not sure what to make of this. I mean, I get that the “epic verse” thing is a reference to the weird poetry Pops likes to write, and how he can’t just call it “poetry” like a normal person, but has to play it up with the whole “epic verse!” thing. Which, by the way, he literally yells out loud when he finishes writing one. He’ll be sitting there working on something, and I’m not even paying attention to what he’s doing because whatever, and then all of a sudden he slams his quill down on the desk and yells “epic verse!” at like nine thousand decibels. Which is pretty startling, really. Also kind of weird, since he does it every time he thinks he’s finished. And he’ll go back and revise one line, and slam his quill down again, and yell “epic verse!” again… and then he’ll look back at it and change one word again and go through the whole slammy yelly thing again. He’s so weird, I can’t even.

So I get what the #EpicVerse part of your letter is talking about, but… I’m not sure what you’re looking for. Is this some kind of running thing in Pops’ blog? Actually, hang on, I’m going to check with greeny goblin nerd guy about this.

Hold tight!

Oh, okay. So the gob-geek guy, Spackle or whatever, says that apparently you have this ongoing thing in Pops’ mailbags, where you send him an opening line for one of his poems and then he writes the rest? Is that a thing? Does he do that? So wait, does that mean you’ve been partly responsible for all the yelling at his desk and the startling and stuff? It really scares my bird when he does that, I’ll have you know.

Only, see, here’s the thing. Garrosh is really the poet in the family. And boy, I bet there are tons of people who never thought they’d read that sentence, huh? But the point is that I’ve never been much of a writer, so maybe you should just stick to hitting Pops with these poetry requests, since I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be able to come up with anything all that good, mostly probably because the whole thing seems kind of weird.

Except I guess Pops will end up seeing this when he gets back from Pandaria (I mean he DOES read this stuff that me and Spackle and whoever else writes on here, right? and by the way, Pops, nice job outsourcing your own hobby, I mean could you be any more lazy? come on), and I guess if he sees me admitting I wouldn’t be good at doing something he thinks he’s good at, there’ll be no living with him. I mean have you seen him? There’s almost no living with him now. I don’t even want to think about how out of control his ego will be in a couple weeks if I go ahead and feed it. So okay, let me try this, but I’m not making any promises.

 

There was a Draenei named Shayari,
Actually half Kurenai, half Mag’hari,
Who lived in Nagrand where it’s starry,
And went on a wildlife safari,
While Pops is busy in Pandari

-a.

And maybe something about the Sha’tari,
And had calamari and Londo Mollari,

 

and okay I don’t think this is going anywhere. I’m just making up words at this point. Oh well. I tried.

 

Hello Shayari,

Do you play Earth Online? What class do you play? If you don’t play do you think you might give it a try some day?

–Greztah, Earthen Ring

So, okay, first of all, no. I keep getting asked this, so no, no, no. I’m not interested in getting into your weird virtual reality game. I don’t need my reality to be virtual. Reality reality is working out just fine for me.

And also, what is it with you guys and this game? It’s bad enough I had to find out Pops is a closet nerd with this game of his. But it seems like half the jokers around here play it, too. Fel, when I went to ask that Spackle guy about the poetry thing a minute ago, even he tried making a sales pitch on me, like for some kind of referral thing. I guess if he got me to sign up he could have gotten some kind of… I don’t even know what. A make-believe vehicle in the game that he would have to buy with real money otherwise? Is that something they make you do in this game? Fork over real money to buy make-believe things? Because if so…

Okay, people, let’s have some real talk here.

Because, look, speaking as someone who takes her shopping seriously… shopping with real money for imaginary stuff? That’s crazy talk. If I’m going to buy something, I’m for sure going to walk out of that store carrying something with actual physical substance to it. Otherwise, they’re not getting my money. Well, technically, they wouldn’t be getting my money, they’d be getting Pops’ money. But you get the idea.

The point is, are you people nuts?

 

So I guess that’s about as good a note as any to end on. Especially since that was the last letter. I’m not sure how much longer Garry is going to need before he’s back to doing this himself, but I think I might just pass it off to that Spackle guy if Pops needs things covered for a while more. Not that I don’t like hearing from everyone. Just that I have kind of a yearly weirdness quota, and just plain day-to-day life fills up that bar pretty quick as it is.

Bye!

 

[And so we’re back! As I announced before the break, our next mailbag will be Monday, September 5. I’m making one revision to the plan, though: rather than that installment being Garrosh’s return to mailbag duties, we’ve going to have one more guest mailbag — this time, from everyone’s favorite goblin tech guru, Spazzle! This is essentially me heading my bets — the Warchief is going to have a lot going on at Kypari Zar, which will involve a lot drawing that I’ll need to get done over several posts, so I wanted to make sure I’ll have time to get all that done without Garrosh seemingly having to stop in the middle of it to answer his mail. Plus, I’ve wanted to do a Spazzle mailbag for a while! (Who knows, maybe Mokvar will get one one day, too…) Garrosh will be back answering his accumulated mail for October’s mailbag (October 3, for those of you keeping score at home). As always, send your letters via email (link in the upper right sidebar) or using the form below.]

 

 

Monday mailbag

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You know, for once I’m glad I put off checking on the latest batch of mail. The way it ended up working out, I just had a bunch of it piled up waiting for attention. (NOT UNLIKE MY GROUPIES, but that’s a story for another day) just in time for the trip back to Pandaria. So, the long boat trip wound up giving me the damn time I needed to finally get around to reading your letters and working up some responses. So, let’s get right into it…

 

Warchief Garrosh,

I want to complain about your minions, the kind-of-Orc-twins whose names I didn’t care to remember.

I am a Draenei lady and am deeply worried about their fascination for hooves, or hooftishism as they called it. What if they’re starting a trend? It is annoying enough to deal with the butt fetishists, we don’t need people who will try to lick our hooves on top of that.

Please make sure that they don’t organize meetings to share their passion with their fellows. Think that your daughter too could, one day, be harassed by hooftishists.

Archenon poros,

–Celesti.

Okay, so first of all, Celesti, I’m glad you specified the “kind-of-Orc-twins” part, because if you’d left it at “I have complaints about you minions, whose names I didn’t care enough about to remember,” well, number one, that’d be way too broad to narrow down, and number two, guess what, “minions I don’t care enough about to remember their names” pretty much covers how I feel about a large chunk of my payroll, so, you know, there’s that.

So, yeah. Dontrag and Utvoch. Although… okay, this might be yet another example of the “shit I don’t care enough about to pay attention to” corollary, but I seem to remember hearing somewhere along the line that it’s only one of them who has the weird fascination with hooves. Don’t ask me which one, though. Or which one of them that one is.

But yeah. Those two. Or one of those two. Believe me, this complaint you’re registering is way, way down on the list of reasons why I find them damn annoying. It ranks, I’ll grant you that, but it doesn’t even crack the top five reasons I want to smack them in the head sometimes. And by “sometimes,” I mean three times daily, usually just after meals, with two optional time slots for further smacking in the event I’m having an aggravating day. That is, when I’m not tossing their asses overboard.

Speaking of priorities, actually… Not for nothing, but considering you’re a draenei, I would figure that your biggest complaint about a couple of Horde soldiers wouldn’t be the hoof fetish thing nearly as much as the trying-to-kill-you thing. Where the hell did you even run into those two, that the hoof thing even came up?

Wait. Are you telling me that you crossed paths with these jokers, and they got so preoccupied with their unwholesome hoof thing that they forgot about getting down to some wholesome BLOODSHED?

So yeah. Okay. I think that means it’s time for my 2:00 smacking. Except they’re still kind of preoccupied swimming frantically to keep up with the boat. Guess I’ll just have to above deck and throw stuff at them for the time being.

 

Yo, Warchief,

I’ve been kept up to date with Blackfuse’s time as engineer for the Horde.  I knew he’d be a big help as long as you could get him under control.  With any luck he’ll give you the big badda-boom hardware you need to blast the Alliance back.

Got a sitrep from the Isle of Giants, by the way.  Nazgrim’s got me working on finding some more Zandalari tomes that talk about how to tame and use Dinosaurs.  The good news is, I’ve found some, and the more intelligent beastmasters have been putting them to good use; the bad news is, they’re very hard to find, so most of our progress has been capturing and packaging baby raptors and Devilsaurs to send back to the Orgrimmar beast pens.  The big and mean ones already grown up have been a chore and a half to even talk to without getting munched, but slowly but surely we’re making progress

One last thing: I’ve heard Zandalari whispers of a really big, really mean Devilsaur who puts Oondasta to shame.  I think his name was Thok the Bloodthirsty or something like that.  Sounds like your kind of dinosaur, sir, if you catch my drift.  

Your man on the ground,

–Grottee Metalbeard, Goblin Shaman

Hey Grottee, glad to hear you made it back down to Pandaria without incident. WISH I COULD SAY THE SAME. HE SAID, WHILE TURNING AN ATTENTIVE EAR TOWARD A PORTHOLE TO LISTEN TO THE PLAINTIVE GROANS OF MORONS SWIMMING.

Glad to hear you guys are making progress with the dinos, and that Nazgrim hasn’t gotten any bright ideas about going off script again. Who knows, maybe that jackass red shirt Steve was the only member of Naz’s crew afflicted with that particular level of jackassery, so we’ll have smooth sailing from here on out. HE SAID, AS IF HE HASN’T BEEN WATCHING HIS STAFF OF MENTAL DEFECTIVES GIVE IT THE OL’ COMMUNITY COLLEGE TRY FOR A COUPLE YEARS NOW. Anyhow, as long as things are coming along. At this point I’m just glad we’re making any progress at all, even if it’s slow, considering the way things have been going, I could swear sometimes our fastest speed was reverse.

As for that Oondasta-trumping devilsaur, I think I remember you mentioning something about it once before. I’m pretty sure I included something about it in the notes I left for Nazgrim, but I guess when he decided to run with that cunning plan that led to ol’ shithead Steve’s untimely demise (maybe the one positive to come out of the whole damn affair), his people weren’t able to locate Thog or whatever, so he just went with the devilsaur that was easier to find.

Which raises a question. If this Thunk dino is as big and bad as you’re saying, Grottee, how the hell does it manage to be elusive? I mean, how the fuck does a DEVILSAUR pull off STEALTHY? Is there a goddamn sauropod ROGUE TRAINER down there teaching them to go WHOOSH WHOOSH MOSTLY TRANSPARENT? Do they, like, hold a piece of a shrub in front of themselves in their doofy little front claws with a fucking sign that says “Just a shrub, move along, citizen”? Hell, it’s not even like the Isle of Giants is a big place, from what they tell me — there couldn’t be THAT many places to hide. How the hell does this motherfucker manage to fucking ELUDE everyone?!

 

Hail, Warchief,

My apologies for the difficulties with Golmash last week.  I’m afraid his behaviour caught even me off-guard.  I was afraid that wolf would be the death of me, but instead it seems he was the death of one of your beastmasters.

At any rate, since his dramatic departure from my pens, I have been having strange and frightening dreams.  In them, I am standing at the entrance to my home on a dark night, when a horrifying sight appears before me – a ghostly orc, his face twisted and scarred, his eyes glowing with terrible power.  I hear him speaking to me in a ghastly, croaky voice, but I have no idea what he is saying.  His words sound like Orcish, but mean nothing to me.  The only thing that clearly comes across is that he is angry, as he grabs me by the shirt and shakes me while screaming in his unknown tongue.  

I have no idea what is causing these dreams or what they mean, but they are connected to Golmash somehow.  I just know it.  Whatever comes of this, Warchief, I only hope it happens quickly, for these dreams are stripping my nights of much-needed sleep.  

Your humble servant,

–Ogunaro Wolfrunner, Kennel Master

Hey Ogunaro. Good to hear from you. Even if you’re… you know… dealing with… well… this thing. And… well… um… you know what, O? I’m going to ask you to do me a favor here and just skip the next paragraph. I just remembered I, um, I need to insert some stuff that I meant to include in a previous letter and I, uh, I can’t just scroll up and insert while I’m typing this… um… well, because… because, oh come on, you know me and computers, right? I can’t even remember where the damn delete key is, and here I am on a boat without Spazzle around to fix this crap for me, oh woe is me, and ANYWAY that’s not even the point, the point is, see, that this extra stuff I need to insert has nothing to do with you but I really need to get it written down before I forget, because scatterbrained me, oops, you know how it goes, but I don’t want to bother you with it ’cause I know you already have enough on your plate what with, you know, the thing. So just do me a solid and skip that next paragraph so I don’t need to worry about you, and pick up again right AFTER that, right where it says “MELLIFLUOUS.” So there. Go to it. Skip starting… now.

Okay. So you guys, we need to talk. I didn’t want O listening in on this, because, you know, we — like the you and me “we,” not the Ogunaro and me “we,” and FUCK YOU PRONOUN AMBIGUITY — we have a history, and we’re cool and shit, but I don’t even know what dude’s deal is, you know? And you probably already know where I’m going with this, right? Because I’m starting to get that vibe that our buddy Ogunaro, I mean I like him all and I appreciate the work he does, but I’m starting to get the feeling like he’s one of THOSE guys. You know how I mean? Those guys where there’s ALWAYS fucking SOMETHING, like one goddamn thing after another and after a while you can’t even tell where the real crises are because EVERYTHING gets the ol’ emergency blinker cranked up to fucking eleven. Is it just me? It’s his whole goddamn family, too, near as I can tell. Well, the alive ones, anyway. But who can even say for sure on that one, either, because necromancy, motherfucker. Fingers crossed. So anyway, I just had to say something to you guys because we have a thing, but I’m for real not going to know what to do with this dude if this shit keeps up. Okay. That’s it. Don’t say anything to him. Sshh, here he comes.

MELLIFLUOUS. Which is a goddamn awesome word, by the way. Try it out sometime. And if you get a chance to have Nazgrim say it, you totally have to. He knows how to sell that shit, man. Anyway. Welcome back, O. See, wasn’t that a lot faster and easier and less insulting than having to wade through a bunch of other stuff that you definitely weren’t interested in? Hot damn, good thing I wrote it all down before I forgot, hell I don’t even remember what it was NOW. GOT IN THERE JUST IN THE NICK OF TIME, O. THAT WAS A FUCKING CLOSE ONE.

Anyhow, yeah, O, that’s some freaky shit in that dream. I can’t say I’m much of an expert in making sense of what dreams mean, though. Maybe there’s something to this dream with the ghostly visitor, maybe it’s got something to do with Golmash, maybe not. If it has something to do with the wolf, we’ll figure it out, especially now that we’ve got him secured and under close observation. If not… well, we’ll see. It might be worth getting some feedback from a shaman or two, just the same. And for the time being, just to make sure you can get a little sleep without going bonkers, maybe it’s a good idea to see if you can get something from an apothecary to help you sleep a little deeper. Just don’t take anything from an apothecary with a recently refurbished jaw who’s really sarcastic all the time, because trust me, there’s no telling what he might have slipped into that shit.

 

Dear Warchief,

I am researching the cultures of the Horde, especially naming customs. Most of the Forsaken kept the human names we were born with. A few decided to adopt new names but most of those were pretty grimdark and silly. The less said about them the better.

What naming customs do the Orcs have? Are family names passed through the father? the mother? Does you’re name mean something?

Curiously yours –

–Ickabod Pimlen, The Undercity.

Thanks for writing, Ickabod. Although, whew. “Ickabod Pimlen.” Not to be shitty to you right out the gate, Ickabod, but as long as there was already a thing going where some of the Forsaken picked a new name for themselves, I mean, maybe you should have looked into that. “Pimlen” was already not exactly a winner of a last name, but your parents really decided to top that off by naming you “Ickabod” to boot? Seriously? Yeesh, and people call ME a war criminal…

Anyway, now for your question, Ickabod. Naming customs aren’t consistent across the whole orcish race — like most of our customs and traditions naming varies with the individual clans. For instance, some clans, like the Frostwolves, rarely take on surnames. The Thunderlord clan usually does, on the other hand, and they pass those along generation to generation. Typically, but not always, patrilineally. (THAT’S RIGHT, PATRILINEALLY, MOTHERFUCKER, STOP LOOKING SURPRISED THAT I KNOW FUCKING WORDS.)

With some clans, though, last names are given in recognition of some sort of accomplishment. That’s how it works in the Warsong clan, for instance. My grandfather, Golmash (we’ve been hearing that name a lot lately, huh?), gained the name Hellscream for the battle cry he brought into a long string of victorious battles, and he passed that name on to Grommash, who passed it on to me.

Only, there’s a catch — see, in clans that use these names as a kind of honorific, there can only be one person at a time using it. So back when Golmash was alive, you wouldn’t talk about Golmash Hellscream AND Grom Hellscream. There can only be one Hellscream. That was Golmash, until he died. After that, his oldest child (in this case, his only child) could take on the name. I didn’t start using the full name until after I found out about Grom’s death — if you ran into me in Nagrand back in the day (and for your sake I hope you didn’t, because hoo boy was I an emo piece of work back then), I was just going by Garrosh.

Same thing for the Blackrock clan, by the way. Rend Blackhand was just plain ol’ Rend until daddy Blackhand (did dude ever actually have a NAME name, by the way?) bought it, just like Orgrim Doomhammer didn’t become Doomhammer until after his father Telkar died. Ditto for the Saurfangs, by the way, even though that one got a little muddier. See, while Dranosh was growing up with me in Nagrand, no one really knew what had become of Varok, but it was a pretty wide-held idea that he’d probably died. Dranosh wasn’t really sure what to believe, but he wanted to honor the family name… but he also wasn’t really sure if his old man had actually joined the ancestors. So he kind of half-wayed it and started calling himself “Saurfang the Younger.” After the family got reunited a few years back, we just kind of kept calling them both Saurfang in one way or another, just out of habit. Moot point now, I know. 

Oh and since you asked, my name means “warrior’s heart” in orcish. (I won’t offer to explain what “Dranosh” means, though, because fuck it, I’m pretty sure we’ve all been over that enough times already.)

So THERE. I bet that’s more about orcish names than you ever wanted to know. EXCEPT FOR ICKABOD, WHO ASKED ABOUT IT IN THE FIRST PLACE, SO IF YOU’RE GONNA COMPLAIN TO ANYBODY, DO IT WITH HIM, DAMMIT.

 

Hello again Warcheif!

I apologize for not finding the Command Board sooner, as you know I actually found it by accident. After talking with some friends I found out that they didn’t know about it either. Then I went to Orgrimar to see if I could find an Advertising Department. Unfortunately the guards that seem to know everything, except if something is on level one or two, did not know of this department.

Because of this I volunteer to be your Advertising Department. Here is the first line of merchandise that I came up with: Tabards. Most people wear them, especially those “adventurers” and we know that they will pay near anything if it looks cool. The other day I saw one buy a baby raptor for 100000 gold. Luckily there are less insane groups we can market to as well, shop keepers and flight masters will wear them as well as many military groups, Liadrin has all of us Blood Knights wear ours at all times.

But I can hear many people saying what will be on these tabards. Good thing I thought of that. So far I have ideas for three tabards all with the Warcheif’s Command Board on the back. First we have “Buy our shit, OR BE CRUSHED BENEATH IT!” with a picture of an orc buried under a ton of merchandise. Then there is “Fuck You Varian”, self explanitory. And finally EPIC VERSE with many of your epic verses all over the tabard.

Unfortunately I don’t have an artistic bone in my body and I haven’t found anyone that does so I can’t give you any visuals of the tabards. If you give me the go ahead on this I can get to work on new techniques by next month.

–Glen Bloodblade

Hey, Glen, glad to hear from you again. So, I’m going to excuse you for not following the blog until recently, even though we both know you already should have been following the blog before you found it accidentally. In fact, what the hell is this “accidentally” shit? You should have found it DELIBERATELY, as a result of PURPOSEFULLY SEARCHING for a blog you didn’t know existed. Because you could feel it in your bones, Glen. You could feel it in your bones.

Anyway, I’m going to let that slide. Just don’t do it again. Yes, I just told you not to not find the blog that you’re currently reading, again, which might sound like a weird thing to warn someone not to do, until you stop for a second to consider the crazy-ass world we live in, because FUCKING TIME TRAVEL. All I’m gonna tell you, Glen, is if you see any bronze dragons coming your way, or maybe a blood elf lady in a bikini dress, well, you just get ready to think fast is all I’m going to say.

Anyhow. You know, Glen, you might be on to something. After your last letter, I did some checking around, and the fact of the matter is that we don’t have a department in charge of publicity or advertising or whatever. Which I guess makes sense, since it turns out that the Kor’kron aren’t exactly in the habit of making public announcements about what they’re doing. At least not if they know what’s good for them.

Now, to tell you the truth, I hadn’t really given a lot of thought to advertising the blog. I mean, I always figured people would just find their way to the blog however people do shit like that on the internet. And I remember having a conversation with Faranell once about it maybe going viral. Although, looking back on it now, considering it WAS Faranell, I think I might have severely misunderstood what he was meant. I maybe shouldn’t think about that too much.

But back to your real point. You may be right — it might be a good idea to come up with ways to drive some more traffic to the blog. And here’s the thing — your tabard idea could actually be even more of a winner than you realize, because check it out, it opens the door not only for ADVERTISING, but also… MERCHANDISING. Tabards sound like a great way to start, and they’ll sure as hell get the word around, but who knows how much other stuff we could get into. Hell, even just with the tabards, if we produce a bunch of different versions, do you REALIZE how many compulsive collectors are out there who will go fucking NUTS trying to hunt down every last variation? Dude, I’ve seen it myself — people burning up hours of time and mountains of gold to try to land themselves, say, a scorpid pet that’s a SLIGHTLY different color than the seven scorpid pets they ALREADY FRIGGING HAVE. I can only imagine what some of them would do for the RARE CHASE VARIANT of the Garrosh blog tabard. Wait, did I say “rare”? FUCK THAT SHIT — EPIC!

So, yeah, HELL YEAH, run with this idea, Glen. You have some ideas, go for it, man. And hey, for that matter, I know you said you haven’t got any artistic skills, but AS IT HAPPENS, I may just have an in with some people who DO. Not just in-house, either, if you were thinking of Gurtash — WHO YOU WOULD BE RIGHT TO THINK. OF. — but even among the ranks of my LOYAL READERS AND MINIONS. I’ll bet you anything that there are people among the CLEARLY TALENTED AND DISCRIMINATING CROWD that reads the Warchief’s Command Board who would be ONLY TOO HAPPY to offer their own artsy-fartsy designs for WCB tabards. ESPECIALLY WHEN I ORDER THEM TO AND REMIND THEM THAT I HAVE A TECH GOBLIN HACKER WHO’S ABLE TO TRACE IP’S. WHICH I TOTALLY DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY ARE BUT HE DOES AND THAT’S WHAT COUNTS, OKAY?

 

And on that note, I think it’s time to wrap it up for this mailbag. Keep those letters coming as always. For next time, though, since I’m going to be pretty swamped with stuff in Pandaria, I managed to convince Shayari to hold down the fort again for the next mailbag. So, write in to her, or still write in to me for the next time I’m able to field your letters myself. Either way, write SOMETHING. Ideally MULTIPLE somethings. I WILL BE TAKING DOCUMENTARY ATTENDANCE, MOTHERFUCKERS.

More soon.

 

[PROGRAMMING NOTE: As you can tell from Garrosh’s announcement, the next mailbag will be a guest mailbag with Shayari. However, I also wanted to announce that I’ve decided to take a short break at the end of the month that will affect the upcoming mailbag schedule. As many of you will remember, the last few years I’ve taken a blogging break late in the summer due to a busy work schedule; this year, I’ve decided to move that hiatus up to earlier in the summer and use some of that time to get material in the pipeline.

So, blog hijinks will continue as usual through the end of May, then we’ll be off for a few weeks. Then, on July 11 (since the first Monday in July this year is a holiday, I figured there was no harm in pushing it back for one more week), we’ll be back with Shayari’s guest mailbag, and from there we’ll be off and running.

As always, thanks to everyone for reading, commenting, and contributing!]

 

 

Identity crisis

dontragutvoch4

So, I got a comment from Khizzara on that last mailbag that kind of got me thinking. See, she looked at the picture Sarlin sent with her letter about running into Dontrag and Utvoch in Ashenvale, and how it looks like they have their names floating over their heads, which they actually DON’T and it just looked that way because Sarlin did some kind of thingy-whatsy with the picture after the fact. Which is kind of a dumb thing not to recognize right off, especially from someone like Khizzara who’s supposed to be a mage and smart and stuff, but maybe her int buff isn’t working or some shit. Or maybe Spazzle just got the brains in the family. Whatever.

Anyhow, though, that comment got me thinking about how handy it would be if those two DID have their names hovering over their heads, because let’s face it, Khizzara DOES have a point about how nobody can tell the Wonder Twins apart. And granted, in my case, that’s at least partly due to me not really giving a shit, but still. It’ll save at least a couple headaches.

I figured I’d see about getting some actual return on my investment in all these mage lessons Shayari’s been getting from Faranell over in the Undercity, so I gave her a new project to work on: casting a glamor spell (she liked the sound of that a lot more before I spelled out what I meant) on Dontrag and Utvoch that actually WOULD make their names float over their heads. Turns out, that kind of a spell wasn’t even all that complicated to put together.

Hold your horses. You know what usually happens around here when something looks like smooth sailing.

So Shay tried her spell out yesterday, and at first everything seemed to be going fine. “Dontrag” hovering over Dontrag (I think), “Utvoch” hovering over Utvoch (I believe), and, so far as the spell was to be believed, 70% less confusion about which of those idiots was which, and a residual 30% reduction in how much I needed to smack them around. Which I know is a lot less than the 70%, but come on, they’re still dumb and annoying, right? NO JURY WOULD CONVICT ME.

So that seemed to be going fine. But then, after a little while, the spell started going haywire. As in, it kept putting the names over Dumb and Dumber’s heads, but it started switching them around — putting “Dontrag” over Utvoch and “Utvoch” over Dontrag. Now, mind you, I didn’t really notice this myself right away, largely because recognizing the problem would require me to care enough about which of them is which, and I mean, if I could just LOOK at those two and know who was D and who was U, I wouldn’t NEED the damn glamor in the first place, right? But at one point while Shay was tinkering with the spell, Taktani bounced by, and don’t ask me how but she always seems to be able to keep those two idiots straight. I don’t know, she’s a cat most of the time, so maybe her kitty-sense tingles or something. Point is, the names started switching around. Why, I don’t know. Maybe Shay forgot to cross some T’s and dot some I’s setting up the spell. Maybe the sheer AURA OF FAILURE that surrounds those two is so potent that it even makes magic break down after a while. Maybe they’re just so damn indistinguishable that even the UNIVERSE ITSELF gets confused eventually, magic or no. Don’t ask me, I just work here.

Thing is, that wasn’t even the worst of it. Because, see, obviously the glamor was visible to EVERYONE, right? So the Wonder Twins themselves could read each other’s arcane name tags, but then, when the spell started going wonky and mixing them up, THE IDIOTS THEMSELVES started getting all distressed and confused and thinking THEY had it wrong, and maybe they weren’t really who they thought they were. And this led to like an hour and a half of Dontrag worrying that he might actually be Utvoch, and Utvoch getting an ulcer thinking he’s been living a lie when he should have been Dontrag, until finally I had to bonk their damn heads together to shut them up because who needs to to listen to that shit.

So while they were out cold, I had Shay lift the damn spell. It’s just not fucking worth it if it’s not even going to work half the time, and just gives those two one more thing to yammer about. Hell, who the fuck would have guessed that one little would-be hocus-pocus convenience would result in a pair of blithering mental defectives having a full-on existential crisis?

So yeah. Back to the drawing board. Moving on.

More soon.

 

Monday mailbag

mail14

Another Monday, another batch of letters. Let’s see what my LOYAL READERS AND MINIONS have to say to their favorite Warchief…

 

Greetings, Garrosh!

I feel like it’s been quite some time since last we corresponded. As it happens, I have been travelling, and taking a quill to parchment didn’t really make the cut of amazing new things to do. Which I happen to have recorded on a piece of parchment that I believe I wrote up two weeks ago. Anywho. By the way, did Rue’kara get her writing supplies back?

Anyway, my travels took me and Anaria to Ashenvale, where I made a very brief stop at the Silverwind Outpost to gather some rations and fresh arrows. Don’t worry, Ana stayed outside. I think she was freaked out by all the Night Elf corpses. Which, by the way, I totally respect you fighting a war and all, but couldn’t you at least clean them up?

Anyway…what I really wanted to bring up with you was the fact that I may or may not have bumped into your orcish associates, Seargent Dontrag and Scout Utvoch. Photographic evidence below;

d-and-u-and-sarlin

My question may be perceived as rhetorical, but I am genuinely intrigued; where did they learn math? And also, when did math start becoming relevant in the days of the week? I think there was something about Brewfest math too but I’d zoned out at that point.

I really am sorry.

I hope your luck is treating you well.

–Sarlinia-Grace Starstriker, Argent Crusade

Well I’ll be damned, Sarlin, you were able to get in under the 250-word limit without even breaking a sweat. Will wonders ever cease.

So… yeah. You met those two. And… just to recap, for anyone who wasn’t paying attention, let me direct your attention to Sarlin in this picture…

d-and-u-and-sarlin

…and yeah, that’s pretty much the look I have on MY face when the Wonder Twins turn up, too.

By the way, it’s not Scout Utvoch anymore, just FYI. He’s Grunt Utvoch now, as of a couple days ago when he got a promotion. Was he still wearing his Scout insignia? Minor point, I know, but stay tuned, we’ll come back to it.

Good news is, Sarlin, I’ve got an easy answer for your question. Where did D&U learn math? They didn’t. Pro tip: any time a question begins “Where did D&U learn,” the answer is they didn’t. Every single time.

To be honest with you, though, I’m less concerned about D&U’s grasp of math (hang on — I think reality just shuddered a little at me stringing THOSE words together consecutively) than I am about their grasp of GEOGRAPHY. You say you ran into them at SILVERWIND REFUGE? Just… hanging out like they were ON DUTY or something?

Dude… they USED to be stationed out there, then I fucking reassigned them to Stonetalon… like TWO YEARS AGO. They served there under Krom’gar (and the less said about THAT motherfucker the better), then STAYED up that way when I put the region under Overlord Cliffwalker’s jurisdiction. And okay, then Cliffwalker pulled a fast one on me and shipped their asses down to Pandaria to get them out of his hair and back into mine. And for this past little while now, while I’ve been back in Orgrimmar, they’ve been in town here too, temporarily, pending the return trip south.

And the reason I’m even going into this much detail about it is so you can really appreciate the chain of travels, relocations, and reassignments that D&U have had SINCE the last time they were supposed to be in Silverwind Refuge.

And yet, there they were.

You know what? Fuck it. Good place for ’em. Let Captain Tarkan worry about what to do with ’em. Maybe they can go farm some Molten Front dailies, too, while they’re keeping busy in Three-Major-Villains-Ago Land. Maybe that’s just how slow their brains are, that they’re still getting caught up from like two years ago, and so every so often they have a collective brain fart and think they’re still supposed to be at the base where they USED to be stationed and HEY EUREKA maybe THAT’S why Utvoch was still going by “Scout,” because the goddamn hamster wheel in his brain is still spin spin spinning around trying to get caught up to TODAY, and sometimes the hamster falls over in the wheel and gets whipped around a few hundred times and in its dizzy confusion it has to take a wild guess at what year it is and sometimes it guesses wrong. So HEY, UTVOCH, in case you’re reading this, check it out, THE LICH KING IS DEAD NOW, CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT SHIT?

 

Dear Mr. Warchief,

Isn’t Rhonin dead? I live in Dalaran and I hear him say something, like, every five minutes or something? Something about raising our eyes to the skies and observing? Why am I still hearing this? Is Rhonin’s ghost haunting us forever with his endless speech?

–Clarise Sunbow

Okay, so, I think I’m kind of in a unique position to say, definitely, that yes, Rhonin is dead. No two ways about it, dude got himself deaded up right good. Still, Clarise, that IS one hell of a weird thing to be stuck listening to over and over all day (not to mention annoying as fuck), so I went ahead and did a little research for you. NO NEED TO THANK ME. Seeing as you’ve apparently got a dead guy turning up and doing the same shit over and over, I went ahead and consulted with my own resident dead guy with a history of doing the same shit over and over, Doc Faranell over in the Undercity. Well, that is, I TRIED consulting with him on this. He mostly just kind of stared at me forlornly. Not especially helpful, really. Come to think of it, maybe Faranell wouldn’t know as much about this as I was thinking. I mean, yeah, two dead guys, but “walking around playing poker on Fridays”-dead is a lot different from “blown up by a mana bomb”-dead.

Luckily, though, I WAS eventually able to drag a possible answer out of Faranell, but he did it drawing more from the part where he’s a mage than from the part where he’s a reanimated dead guy with a history of being trapped in infinitely repeating time loops. Which, of the two, is really kind of the more mundane part of Faranell’s deal, and come to think of it, what kind of crazy bizarro world are we stuck in where being a fucking WIZARD is the BORING thing about someone? But anyhow, Faranell blathered some stuff about what’s probably going on, a lot of which I don’t really remember too well because it involved a load of technical magic talk and also because I wasn’t paying attention too closely because, let’s be honest, I don’t really care that much. BUT I SAID I WAS GOING TO GET YOU AN ANSWER, DAMMIT.

We soldier on.

So the gist of it is that after Rhonin got his ass arcane-kablooeyed all across the swamp, something about his personal magic power got amped up by the mana bomb magic power and the Focusing Iris magic power and did a thing with the whole Dalaran magic-ground-zero power, and something about a place that was personally important to him, and some other shit Faranell said that who the fuck can follow and who even cares really, and the end result is there’s some kind of arcane echo of Rhonin that’s been projected into Dalaran that keeps replaying a moment of his life over and over again. Which kind of makes me glad the dude never swung by this neck of the woods for a visit, because I’ve got enough pains in the ass to deal with without having to listen to “CITIZENS OF ORGRIMMAR! LOOK TO THE SKY!” every five minutes.

 

Hail, Warchief,

Tomorrow I am going to the Valley of Trials to face my om’riggor. At my father’s insistence, I write to you to confirm I will be joining that trainee program of yours, though I fail to see what I’ll get out of it. For the record, my father told me I should become a hunter, but I am no hunter’s son. Perhaps the Thunderlord of old thought that was good enough for them, but my father keeps wolves and my mother was a warrior, so I will keep wolves and fight for Orgrimmar. I was surprised when he told me, though; all I was ever told about my ancestral clan was that they kept the last wolf pen on Draenor around the time of the reign of Ner’zhul.

If you and my father are truly so frightened I will get myself killed, let me make this vow: when I am seasoned enough to command my own warriors, I will find my mothers killers and make them pay. Until then, I will bide my time, study the Alliance’s tactics and strike when they least expect it. I would kill those beasts now if I could, but they will only grow older and grayer, while I will grow stronger and tougher, as the years pass, after all. It will make my task easier, I’m sure.

–Corkrok Wolfrunner

P.S. By the way, your shaman friend hasn’t helped matters any – that wretched green-eyed wolf is still at it, and my father still doesn’t know what’s causing his condition.

Oh Corkrok…

tiguleforor1

…all these flavors, and you just had to choose to be salty, didn’t you?

You know, I get the sense that you’ve got some weird read on me that’s making you think I’m AGAINST you going after the humans who killed your mother. Let’s clear this up — I get it, okay? The Alliance killed your mother — reason #87,403 to rid the world of them –and you want them dead. GOOD. Awesome. I’m all for it. I am 100% UTTERLY PRO DEAD HUMANS. Are we clear on this?

The only thing your father and I want to make sure of is that you’re fully prepared when the time comes for you to square off against them in battle. So guess what — that means WE ALL WANT THE SAME DAMN THING. So, to that end, I’m assigning you to Overlord Runthak’s trainee group. He’s one of our best warriors and no stranger to the Alliance tactics (pfft) that you seem so keen to study up on. You stick with him, and soon enough you’ll get your chance to have at the humans.

As for the “green-eyed wolf” — Golmash, if I remember right — I know it’s still a work in progress. I’ve been getting reports from Mokvar, who’s the “shaman friend” you mentioned… well, other than the fact that he’s really NOT a shaman, he just used to be, but then I guess I can’t really blame you for getting that mixed up because honestly, dude changes classes more often than ogres change underwear (i.e., more than once per lifetime). And, well, if we’re being totally real here, even the “friend” part is at least debatable. But still. Yeah. He’s been keeping me up to date on his research. We’ve got a couple possible leads, but it might not be a situation with a quick fix. More updates to follow on that one. Probably best to let your father and me and my, um, shaman warlock friend friend (?) oh fuck it whatever friend worry about this one for the time being. Stay tuned.

In the meantime, good luck with the om’riggor, and glad to see you finally coming to your senses about training. Well, sort of, at least. See above re: salty. But, you know, whatever gets the job done, right?

 

Dear Warchief,

What strength or other quality do you wish you/the Horde could assimilate or appropriate from the Alliance or other factions/enemies.

Undying loyalty,

–Sintra E’Drien

I mean, if we’re talking about one side APPROPRIATING things from the other, you maybe want to go talk to the ALLIANCE about where they got that awesome idea to set up a Brawler’s Guild. Just sayin’. I mean, not for nothing, but nothing pisses me off more than people ripping off my ideas (with the possible exceptions of Magatha and Johnny Awesome and gnomes and humans and murlocs and people who sit there on their big-ass mounts blocking the mailbox because FUCK those people). Seriously, what’s next? How many more of my ideas are going to get ripped off by assholes? Is somebody going to steal the genius idea to travel back to the past that I had forever ago? Or WAS it forever ago? WHO’S TO SAY, because FUCKING TIME TRAVEL.

As for qualities I’D like to copy from the Alliance… um… hmm. Kind of drawing a blank here, to tell you the truth. The night elves and draenei both have massive lifespans, so I guess that would be pretty cool. Although the blood elves live a damned long time, too, because elves, and I suppose the Forsaken are pretty much immortal as long as nobody KILLS them kills them, because, you know, they already died once and who wants to do that shit again? But that means we’ve already got the super-duper lifespans covered in-house… So… nope. I got nothin’.

So… hmm… maybe I can take a look at some of the other factions out there and see if they have anything going for them…

Timbermaw Hold — I don’t have some quality that I’d want to gain from them, exactly, but I DO find it kinda cool how, due to some tribal technicality, they recognize the Warchief of the Horde — whoever that happens to be — as an Archbishop. True story. I have the funny hat to prove it.

The Keepers of Time — Don’t even get me started. Also, not for nothing, but why do we actually have the Keepers of Time, AND the Scale of the Sands, AND the Brood of Nozdormu? Aren’t they all pretty much the same thing? Or is this some kind of freaky time travel thing where they literally ARE the same thing but from overlapping timelines and they need to use different names to make sure they don’t cross the streams because timey whimey and OMG FUCKING TIME TRAVEL. HEAD HURTS.

The Argent Crusade — I would love to have their apparent ability to be around Tirion all day and somehow not feel an overpowering urge to KILL EVERYTHING EVER.

The Sons of Hodir — Okay, you know what? This isn’t a trait that the whole faction has, and for that matter, it’s not even something I would want to pass on to the entire Horde. It’s purely something about that Thorim dude that I’d like to grab up for myself. The guy does an absolutely KILLER Baine Bloodhoof voice. Annoys the living FUCK out of Baine. Always has. Just being REMINDED of Thorim gets Baine all grumbly. Next time you’re in Thunder Bluff, in fact, roll up on Baine and just go “IN THE MOUNTAINS!” in the best Thorim voice you can manage. Even if it’s not that good. Maybe even ESPECIALLY if it’s not that good. Just try it. Anyway, I bet it would be a fucking BLAST if I could do the voice like ol’ MC Hammer does.

Tushui Pandaren — Okay, so here we go. I knew if I mulled it over for long enough, I’d be able to come up with SOMEBODY from within the Alliance that had something going for them. So, here you go, Sintra, here’s something from an Alliance sub-faction that I’d like to emulate myself — a picture’s worth a thousand words:

fyv1

Nuff said, motherfucker. Nuff said.

 

Dearest warchief,

I understand that some of my past conduct may have accidentally agitated you, but I am writing to assure you of my resolve to make amends and offer my ongoing service!

As one of your followers informed you in your last mailbag (See? I am even a regular blog reader and fan. Not disuaded by all the bounty hunters you have sent after me!), I recently risked great bodily harm to make up for past mistakes and eliminate Magatha Grimtotem on your behalf!

Unfortunately she managed to get away. I know I must have hurt her a lot though! Those Face Melters pack a wallop, and I can only imagine they must do even more damage to the target than the user. Otherwise I may have made a very poor investment.

But as you can see, my loyalty has not wavered! Even after all the time I have needed to spend in hiding. And so I write to you now in hopes that my efforts with the Grimtotem crone will return me to your good graces.

The blade of Johnny Awesome awaits your bidding warchief!

Lock-tar ogre,

–Johnny Awesome, Felwood

So, a few points here.

First, for anyone who doesn’t remember… ugh, now I actually have to relive this shit again… I ran into this Johnny Awesome guy a couple years ago while Garona and I were working a case, and he was all looking for missions to make himself useful, and so, you know, I went into questgiver mode and sent him off to Thousand Needles to find some busywork for himself or maybe hopefully get himself killed. IF ONLY. And so OF COURSE it would JUST SO HAPPEN that the Twilight nutjob cult was holding Magatha PRISONER in Thousand Needles, and she duped ol’ Johnny Asshole into HELPING her, and then she went prancing off on her merry way and don’t even get me STARTED on the whole shitstorm she stirred up from THERE.

So, second, yeah, this is THAT Johnny Awesome.

Which leads us to THIRD AND FOURTH, holy fucking shit do I fucking HATE that guy, YES I DO.

Oh, and, FIFTH, he didn’t exactly help his cause by somehow managing to fuck up “Lok’tar ogar” while writing to THE GODDAMN WARCHIEF looking for forgiveness.

But, on the topic of your request there, Johnny, let me put it this way:

SIXTH — Look at that, people, HE JUST TOLD YOU HE’S IN FELWOOD. THE BOUNTY’S NOW UP TO TWO MILLION GOLD — GET OUT THERE, GET HUNTING, AND BRING ME THE HEAD OF JOHNNY MOTHERFUCKING AWESOME!

 

That’s all for this time. Keep sending those letters. But not before you head up to Felwood and lay some decapitating on ol’ Sparkle-Pony-Boy.

More soon.

 

[The Warchief’s next mailbag will be Monday, May 2. Send your questions, comments, or other missives to Garrosh via or email through the link in the upper right sidebar, or, as always, using the handy-dandy form below:]

 

Horde Iron Chef (part 1)

orgrimmar25

So today was kind of a festive day in Orgrimmar. Ever since the pandas came to town, Ji’s been pestering me off and on to let him introduce some of his traditional panda customs. Which struck me as kind of funny, seeing as pretty much any tavern or eatery owner who’s found their stock of food suddenly, totally depleted within like twenty minutes of ol’ Stuffed-With-Fluff waddling in the door has already gotten pretty damn familiar with the only real panda custom I know about. Still, though, Ji keep insisting there were some traditional events in panda custom that he thought would carry over pretty well. I was still kind of on the fence, but then I guess Lunchbox got in Spazzle’s ear about it (not hard to do, really, because LOOK AT THOSE EARS, right?) (HAHA I crack myself up sometimes), and then Spazzle got Boss Mida from the Bilgewater goblins into the loop on it, and then the word “sponsorships” came up, and did I MENTION teenage daughters are fucking expensive?

By the way, if you haven’t gotten your insurance straightened out, you totally should look into it.

Stop looking at me like that, dammit. An orc’s gotta put food on the table. And… apparently… dozens of outfits in the closet. Ugh.

But yeah, NOW we were in business. Like literally.

So the particular tradition in question in this case was this thing called the Pandaren Noodle Festival. Now, anybody who’s been over to Pandaria is probably pretty aware that those pandas love them some noodles. Look over any panda menu and you’re going to find noodles all over the place. And so apparently, in a lot of their villages, once a year they have a big festival where everyone in town whips up their best noodle dishes, usually family recipes or whatever, and everybody samples everybody else’s and sort of spends the day hanging out with music and booze and whatever else. And then everybody puts on like eleven pounds but who the hell even notices because pandas.

Anyhow, though, it sounded like a fun enough time, and with all the crap that’s gone on lately, people could probably use a morale boost, so I let Ji and some of his buddies go ahead and plan a big ol’ outdoor festival down in the Valley of Honor. We cleared out some space and let them set up some tables and kiosks, and I hear tell Deep-Dish has managed to get folks from all over the place to sign on to come contribute some grub. I even got Zaela to send up a few kegs of special dwarven brew that her people collected from some Wildhammer dwarves who apparently stumbled across some sort of mishap where they were caught outside during a storm and were mysteriously chopped up with axes. So, you know, a little more variety for the booze.

It’s been going on for most of the day today, and I have to say it seems like a pretty good time so far. We’ve got people dropping by Orgrimmar from all over to join the party. I’m even going to try to swing by myself once I get one last thing finished up here…

 

Liadrin, with a young blood elf girl in tow, approaches Mokvar, who’s munching on a bowl of noodles at one of the kiosks.

LIADRIN: Hello, Mokvar. It’s been too long.

MOKVAR: Liadrin! It’s good to see you again.

LIADRIN: I’m glad you’re finally back home. Things are smoothed over with Garrosh?

MOKVAR: They’re…a work in progress. But I’m managing. You’re in town for the festival, I’m guessing?

LIADRIN: After a fashion. I’ve actually been visiting Orgrimmar fairly regularly to help with Shayari since she arrived. When my duties in Silvermoon allow, of course.

MOKVAR: Right, so… I mean… is she really… you know… Garrosh’s daughter?

LIADRIN: That’s what all of Dr. Faranell’s tests indicate. If she’s a fraud, she’s a spectacularly effective one.

MOKVAR: How is Edwin, anyway?

LIADRIN: He’s well, so far as one can tell with him. I believe he’s around here some– Ah! Here she comes.

Shayari enters.

Shayari! A pleasure to see you.

SHAYARI: Hey, Liadrin. Beardy.

MOKVAR: Mokvar.

SHAYARI: Whatever.

hordeironchef1

LIADRIN: Shay, I’d like to introduce you to someone. Both of you, actually. This is my daughter, Salandria.

MOKVAR: I didn’t know you had children, Liadrin.

LIADRIN: I adopted Salandria some years ago, in the late stages of the Outland campaign. Initially to begin her training as a paladin, though she’s…currently exploring other career options.

SALANDRIA: In other words, she’s letting me take a year off to work on my music.

LIADRIN: <sighs> We all need some time “find” ourselves, I suppose… I’ve changed classes twice myself over the years, so I’m hardly one to criticize.

MOKVAR: Yeah, right there with you.

LIADRIN: At any rate. Being as Salandria is a bit younger than the other paladin trainees, I thought it might be nice for her to have the chance to make some friends from within her peer group, or close to it. Salandria, this is Mokvar, and Shayari.

SHAYARI: <waving> Hey.

SALANDRIA: Hi.

SHAYARI: Oh, hey, cool guitar!

SALANDRIA: Thanks.

MOKVAR: Do you lug that thing around everywhere? It looks pretty heavy.

SALANDRIA: A little, but you never know when inspiration is going to strike!

LIADRIN: As our neighbors in Silvermoon have become painfully aware…

SALANDRIA: Yeah, yeah, I bet they wouldn’t complain if I was playing… like… I don’t know… the harp or something. I bet that placeholder regent guy plays one of those.

LIADRIN: You mean Regent-Lord Theron.

SHALANDRIA: Yeah, that guy.

SHAYARI: You’ll get along well with Pops if you keep taking shots at Whosy-Whatsy like that.

MOKVAR: Is Garrosh around here?

LIADRIN: I haven’t seen him so far.

SHAYARI: I think he said something about coming by.

MOKVAR: Well, if nothing else, he’s not really one to miss a party, so…

SALANDRIA: Oh, hey, sounds like I really would hit it off with ol’ Garry.

LIADRIN and MOKVAR: No.

SHAYARI: Really, seriously, don’t.

SALANDRIA: Huh?

Gurtash and Ruekie enter, holding noodle bowls, and approach the group.

MOKVAR: Do not call him that.

SHAYARI: For real.

GURTASH: Don’t call who what?

SHAYARI: Pops, “Garry.”

RUEKIE: Oh jeepers, no!

GURTASH: No no no no no, don’t do that!

SALANDRIA: Yeesh, why?

SHAYARI: He does not like it when people call him that. For some reason.

MOKVAR: He’s killed for less.

GURTASH: Like, literally.

SALANDRIA: Huh. Okay…

LIADRIN: And hello, Gurtash. I’m happy to see you’re up and well.

GURTASH: Thanks.

SALANDRIA: What happened to him?

SHAYARI: Pip got himself sliced up by a drakonid. Also, hey Pip.

SALANDRIA: Ouch!

GURTASH: Hey.

SHAYARI: I know, right?

GURTASH: She said, as if she was the one getting cut up…

SALANDRIA: Is that how you got your scar?

Gurtash shifts uneasily.

’Cause it looks kinda fresh.

GURTASH: Uh… yeah.

SHAYARI: You know, that could have gotten even more awkward if the answer had been no.

RUEKIE: It’s really not so bad, Gurtash…

GURTASH: Yeah, I guess.

SALANDRIA: It actually looks kinda badass, Pip.

GURTASH: That’s not my name!

SHAYARI: <snickering>

SALANDRIA: Oh. Um…

RUEKIE: He doesn’t like it when people call him that.

SALANDRIA: So it’s kind of like his “Garry”?

SHAYARI: Other than the fact that no on really takes it seriously in his case, sure.

GURTASH: My name is Gurtash.

SHAYARI: He really does get wound up about it when people call him Pip.

GURTASH: You’re the only one that does.

SHAYARI: Okay. When I call him Pip.

SALANDRIA: Why do you call him that, then?

SHAYARI: Because he gets really wound up about it? I just said! He’s a real pip about it. Oh hey, there we go again.

GURTASH: Anyway… I’m Gurtash.

SALANDRIA: Hi. Salandria.

LIADRIN: Gurtash is one of the Warchief’s military trainees. And this is… I’m sorry, I don’t think I’ve met your friend, Gurtash.

RUEKIE: My name’s Rue’kara. People call me Ruekie, though.

GURTASH: She’s another trainee like me.

LIADRIN: Ah, I see. I don’t think I’ve met any of Garrosh’s warrior proteges other than you, Gurtash.

GURTASH: Well, we’re not all warriors.

RUEKIE: I’m a shaman.

LIADRIN: Oh. I suppose I’d just assumed, since Garrosh is…well, rather emphatically a warrior himself.

GURTASH: A lot of us are, like– oh, hey, there they are over there — like Korrina and Kulkesh–

Gurtash waves to try to catch their attention across the festival grounds.

Nope. No go, they don’t see me. Anyhow, yeah, a lot of us are warriors, but there are a bunch like Ruekie who aren’t.

RUEKIE: Tuekie’s a rogue.

SHAYARI: Wait, who?

RUEKIE: Tuekie, my twin sister.

GURTASH: She’s a trainee, too.

RUEKIE: She just didn’t come with us to Pandaria, so she’s a little behind.

SHAYARI: Wait, your parents named her Tuekie?

RUEKIE: Well, Tue’kara.

SHAYARI: Right, but… after they named you Rue’kara?

RUEKIE: I think she was first by a couple minutes, actually.

SHAYARI: Okay, fine, concurrently, whatever. You’re missing the point.

RUEKIE: No, I get it. <shrugs> My parents are weird.

SALANDRIA: Right there with you.

LIADRIN: Salandria.

MOKVAR: It DOES seem pretty cruel to give twins names that rhyme.

RUEKIE: I know, I know…

SHAYARI: Sorry, Rue…

GURTASH: But yeah, there’s Tuekie, and Tov’osh. And Giska’s a monk, even.

RUEKIE: I think she’s– oh, yeah, there she is, helping the monk trainer set up.

SHAYARI: Her class trainer’s got her doing odd jobs setting up for a noodle festival?

GURTASH: Looks like it.

MOKVAR: I’m surprised Garrosh doesn’t do something like that with you kids.

GURTASH: <holding up sketch pad> Um, hello?

MOKVAR: Okay, point taken. But I mean, with ALL of you.

RUEKIE: Don’t give him ideas!

SALANDRIA: You mean he doesn’t? Huh, maybe I should look into being a warrior if the rock star thing doesn’t work out, what with the all the chores I was getting socked with as a pally-in-training…

LIADRIN: Don’t you get started about your apprenticeship duties again.

SALANDRIA: I’m just saying, I don’t really see what cleaning up after refugees had to do with perfecting my Crusader Strike!

LIADRIN: It was community service!

SALANDRIA: Suuuuuure…

SHAYARI: All I know is, Eddie’s got another thing coming if he starts trying to get me to do that kind of random crap for him.

SALANDRIA: Who’s Eddie?

SHAYARI: He’s my mage trainer. At least when he’s not preoccupied with making snarky comments about everything.

LIADRIN: Salandria, that’s the Dr. Faranell I’ve mentioned.

SALANDRIA: Oh, the dead guy? He’s that Eddie?

MOKVAR: Edwin.

SALANDRIA: Huh?

MOKVAR: He goes by Edwin. You probably don’t want to try calling him Eddie.

SHAYARI: Why? I always do.

LIADRIN: I’m sure “Dr. Faranell” will suffice.

SHAYARI: That’s so formal, though! I prefer Eddie.

SALANDRIA: Yeesh, you guys really like to call people things they don’t like, don’t you?

MOKVAR: You haven’t even met Garrosh yet…

GURTASH: Well, some of us do, yeah.

SHAYARI: Oh, it’ll grow on you, Pip.

MOKVAR: <to Liadrin> Are you sure you want to get her mixed up in all this?

LIADRIN: Completely sure? Hardly. But, better for her to have some contact with a few peers.

RUEKIE: There aren’t other blood elf kids in Silvermoon?

LIADRIN: There are, but… well, not all of them are necessarily the best influences.

MOKVAR: As opposed to the vast improvement you’re seeing here?

SHAYARI: Hey, we’re pretty damn cool, Beardy.

RUEKIE: Yeah!

GURTASH: Wait for it…

SHAYARI: At least the me part of the we.

RUEKIE: Hey!

GURTASH: Boom.

RUEKIE: Oh… Oh, hey, is that a guitar?

SALANDRIA: Yup!

RUEKIE: Do you play?

SHAYARI: No, she just carries it around to trick people.

RUEKIE: Are you good?

SALANDRIA: I’m getting there! That’s what I want to do. Someday I’m gonna open for the Elite Tauren Chieftains.

LIADRIN: Just so long as you keep your Tauren Chieftains ambitions limited to–

SALANDRIA: And marry Sig Nicious!

LIADRIN: Salandria…

SHAYARI: Okay, well, he is kinda cute.

RUEKIE: Which one is he?

MOKVAR: The kinda-cute one, I guess?

SALANDRIA: My future husband, that’s who!

LIADRIN: Salandria, even setting aside how unlikely it is that you would even meet him, you and I both know he’s much too old for you.

SALANDRIA: He is not!

LIADRIN: He’s in his 230s!

SALANDRIA: So? Didn’t you tell me once that you dated that ranger guy when you were younger?

LIADRIN: What about it?

SALANDRIA: So he was a lot older than you! How come that was okay?

LIADRIN: All right, granted, I was half his age. You, on the other hand, are the square root of his age.

SALANDRIA: Oh come on!

Garrosh enters, carrying a large pot and wearing a chef’s hat and apron. Malkorok, carrying another large pot (and looking none to happy about it) enters with him.

hordeironchef2

MOKVAR: Um…

SHAYARI: <shaking her head while facepalming> Oh, Light, just take me now…

LIADRIN: Um… hello, Warchief.

MOKVAR: I mean… do we not give you enough crap already?

GURTASH: Uhh…

GARROSH: Why the fuck are you people staring at me like I just sprouted a second head?

SHAYARI: <muttering> Maybe that one would have enough sense not to leave the house looking like that…

LIADRIN: It’s only that that’s a very… colorful outfit, sir.

MOKVAR: That’s one way to put it.

GARROSH: Hey, look, if I’m gonna cook, I might as well look the part, all right?

MOKVAR: And I mean… are those… are those murloc oven mitts?

GARROSH: THEY WERE A HOUSEWARMING GIFT FROM EITRIGG WHEN I MOVED TO ORGRIMMAR, OKAY?

SHAYARI: Oh Light, it just keeps getting worse…

LIADRIN: <squinting> And… am I not seeing your apron correctly, or is that lettering…?

GARROSH: Oh. Yeah. It was originally one of those aprons that say “Kiss the Chef.”

SHAYARI: <meekly> And it just keeps coming…

LIADRIN: And now…?

GARROSH: Well now I’ve gotten it doctored up around the “Chef” part. With a “War” in front and an I squeezed into the middle.

LIADRIN: I see…

MOKVAR: Wait, you actually sat down and sewed that onto the apron?

SHAYARI: Oh spirits, can’t we just let it go away…?

GARROSH: No, you jackass, I didn’t sit down and sew the damn apron. Who the fuck do you think you’re talking to? I hired some tailors to fix it up for me.

SHAYARI: Wait, wait, hang on. This is important. You went to tailors about this?

GARROSH: Yeah, why?

SHAYARI: As in, tailors who run clothing stores kind of tailors?

GARROSH: Yeah, WHY?

SHAYARI: Okay, listen to me very carefully. Where exactly did you go for this?

GARROSH: Why the fuck does it even matter?

SHAYARI: Because I need to know who’s been made aware of this mana bomb of shame.

GARROSH: Huh. Let me think. I don’t even remember the name of the place…

SHAYARI: <pressing eyes closed and crossing fingers> Please say the goblin slums, please say the goblin slums, please say…

GARROSH: It was some place in Silvermoon, though.

SHAYARI: Oh Light…

LIADRIN: Oh dear. Shay, I hate to say this, but I think I might have had an unwitting hand in this…

SHAYARI: What did you do?!

GARROSH: Why the hell are you acting like me getting an apron is the damn apocalypse or something?

SHAYARI: You stay out of this!

GARROSH: Stay out of– I AM “THIS”!

LIADRIN: I was speaking with Garrosh a while back, and he’d asked me to recommend a tailor, so I pointed him toward a place in the Bazaar.

SHAYARI: Oh spirits save me…

LIADRIN: I didn’t know what he was looking for a tailor for specifically.

SHAYARI: Do you realize what you’ve done?! You didn’t stop and think why he might want a tailor?

LIADRIN: Well, to be fair, look at him. The possibilities are endless.

SHAYARI: Oh Light… which place?

GARROSH: Some “trusted” place, I think.

LIADRIN: Keelan’s Trustworthy Tailoring.

SHAYARI: Oh no… No, no, no, no

GARROSH: They turned it around really quick, gotta say.

LIADRIN: They always do.

GARROSH: Dude did look at me kind of funny when he got the order, though.

SHAYARI: Well, there’s one store I can never show my face in again…

SALANDRIA: Uh, does he always walk around looking like this?

SHAYARI: Oh, yeah, sure, every day Azeroth rotates backwards and the skies turn orange.

SALANDRIA: I’m going to take that as a no.

MOKVAR: Good call.

GARROSH: Look, I don’t care what you people–

Garrosh looks at Mokvar.

Hey, hang on a minute.

He looks Mokvar over again.

So wait, did you go and change up on us AGAIN?

MOKVAR: What do you mean?

GARROSH: I mean, you were a shaman back before you ran off on your damn crazy train mission looking for your crystal doohicky, right?

MOKVAR: Right.

GARROSH: And then you came back and you’d become a warlock again.

RUEKIE: <aside> Ohh, is that what happened with him? Handy recap!

GURTASH: <aside> Ssshhh, I think it’s about to take one of those turns.

MOKVAR: Yeah…?

RUEKIE: <aside> How can you tell?

GURTASH: <aside> I’ve been tagging along for these conversations for a long time now…

GARROSH: Well, look at you. Are you back to being a shaman again now?

MOKVAR: <sighs> No, no…

GARROSH: Because if so, dude, you’ve got some SERIOUS problems with career indecision, let me tell you.

MOKVAR: No, I’m not a shaman again. I’m still a warlock.

GARROSH: So what’s up with the non-warlock-being getup?

MOKVAR: I’m just wearing my other suit! Not everyone has to wear the same thing every day.

SHAYARI: Oh thank Light I’m not the only one who realizes that. There might be hope for you yet, Beardy.

Liadrin leans to look into the pot Garrosh is carrying.

LIADRIN: I take it, sir, that you’ve decided to offer your own… contribution to the festival?

SALANDRIA: You know, that smells pretty good, whatever it is.

MOKVAR: It actually does…

GARROSH: Yeah, I figured what the hell, I might as well get in on it a little.

LIADRIN: Most commendable, sir. What is it, exactly?

GARROSH: I doctored up one of Greatmother’s old recipes and whipped up some spicy talbuk noodles.

LIADRIN: I must admit, sir, I didn’t realize that you cooked.

GARROSH: Garadar chili cook off champion, I’ll have you know.

MOKVAR: Weren’t you actually first runner up?

GARROSH: Not after Grok’nar had that unfortunate incident with the severe head trauma from several large rocks. Which I’m sure they’ll rule was natural causes if they ever find his body.

SHAYARI: I have to admit, he’s actually not a bad cook.

LIADRIN: I see you’re a man of many talents, sir.

GARROSH: You know, it’s funny, you’re not the first blood elf woman to tell me that.

SHAYARI: <cringing> You realize you’re just making my future therapy bills worse…

GARROSH: …this week.

SHAYARI: Welp, there’s two more months right there.

GARROSH: I guess I just need ol’ Lunchbox to get me set up at a station or something.

GURTASH: It looks like he’s getting some more setup done with Giska over there.

RUEKIE: I’ll try to watch for them, sir.

LIADRIN: In the meantime, Garrosh, allow me to introduce my daughter, Salandria. I’m sure, conversely, the Warchief needs no introduction.

GARROSH: Oh, yeah, I remember you mentioning her.

SALANDRIA: Hi, sir. Nice tats.

GARROSH: Huh. Thanks. Traditional Warsong markings.

SALANDRIA: They’re cool. <leaning and looking behind Garrosh> Soooooo, how far down do they go…?

LIADRIN: Salandria, don’t start!

SALANDRIA: I’m just asking!

LIADRIN: You know perfectly well.

SHAYARI: <squeezing eyes closed> Ohhh, spirits, please don’t let this become a thing.

GARROSH: Well, while we’re waiting on Pudge, some of you people might as well dig in for some of the talbuk-noodly goodness.

SALANDRIA: Bah, I still need to get a bowl.

MOKVAR: Here, I’ve got mine.

Mokvar passes a bowl over to Garrosh, who spoons out some noodles.

GARROSH: Yeah, here, try not to get any in your beard for once.

Garrosh holds the bowl out to Mokvar. Before Mokvar can take it, Deliana unstealths and grabs it from Garrosh’s hand.

DELIANA: Thanks! Smells good!

Deliana stealths again and vanishes.

GARROSH: Um.

Garrosh blinks, then turns back to Malkorok.

Seriously, dude, a little fucking SECURITY up in this bitch? Isn’t that kind of your whole fucking JOB?

MALKOROK: Ugh, apologies, Warchief. Although this does illustrate some issues we’ve been… ugh, regardless… <waving to nearby guards, then approaching them> Kor’kron!

GARROSH: Wait, actually…

Garrosh turns back to Mokvar.

How is it, exactly, that your little human friend is SNEAKING INTO ORGRIMMAR?

MOKVAR: Garrosh, you’ve met her. Do you really think I could make her stay away even if I wanted?

GARROSH: Yeah, well, if Malk manages to track her down, you better not hold your breath waiting for her to turn up again. Anyway, in the meantime, you can wait for your helping until she brings back your damn bowl. So… who else is up?

RUEKIE: I’d like to try some, sir!

GARROSH: Yeah, okay. Here.

Garrosh spoons a large portion of noodles into Ruekie’s bowl.

RUEKIE: Oh, wow, sir. You sure know how to give a girl a mouthful!

Everyone stares at Ruekie for a moment.

Oh gosh! I didn’t– I mean– I– I’m gonna stop talking now.

MOKVAR: At least you’ve got noodles.

Deliana unstealths and drops an empty bowl into Mokvar’s hands.

DELIANA: Here you go! Good stuff!

Deliana stealths again and vanishes.

GARROSH: <bellowing over at Malkorok> UH, MALK, ANYTIME YOU AND YOUR PEOPLE WANNA GET YOUR HEADS OUT OF YOUR ASSES WOULD BE TERRIFIC!

SALANDRIA: Is this what it’s usually like with you guys?

SHAYARI: You have no idea.

 

{As it turns out, the Pandaren Noodle Festival brought far more absurdity than I could hope to pack into one post, so our Orgrimmar block party will continue soon, with appearances from even more of our supporting cast. TO BE CONTINUED soon — stay tuned…}

 

A day in the life

orgrimmar5

So, the last few mailbags have gotten me thinking. I’ve been getting a bunch of questions about pretty regular day-to-day things in my life — nuts and bolts about what I do and why. Just another part of being a celebrity, I guess, and a pretty damn awesome one at that. Point is, with all the crazy crap that goes on around here, I think I might have gotten so busy keeping everyone updated on the BIG NEWSY stuff that I haven’t bothered talking about anything else. Which, you know, was kind of the POINT of writing the damn blog in the first place. You know. THOUGHTS AND MUSINGS AND SHIT.

Well, maybe not shit. Not literally. Because gross.

Point is, though, I’m going to try to be a little better about posting on the NON-BIG-GIANT-WORLD-ALTERING stuff that’s going on or that I have in mind or whatever. So, for those of you interested in more of an inside look at what it’s like to be me (short version: way better than it is to be you), here, have a peek into a sample of a day in the life of everyone’s favorite Warchief.

(That would be ME, you UNGRATEFUL SMARTASSES out there.)

 

8:09 AM – Woke up. Rolled out of bed. Pulled razor across my head. (I try to be diligent about shaving. Wouldn’t be a big deal if I only had some stubble on my FACE — the tattoos would make it hard to see anyway — but if it starts getting visible on top, you start seeing what a bad draw I got as far as middle-aged hairlines go. I’ll tell you, my mother’s side of the family must have had some fucking awful hair, because I sure as hell didn’t get mine from Grom.)

8:16 AM – Morning jog around Grommash Hold. Worked up good sweat but noticed several vendors conspicuously absent. Unable to amuse self by slapping them on the way by. Possibly vendors getting wise. Two years later. Never said they were sharpest tools. Disappointing nonetheless. Post-slap reactions always good for chuckle. Especially troll.

8:43 AM – Bacon. Also: more bacon.

8:51 AM – Kafa. Really not bad at all. Maybe should have listened to Ruekie about Starbulls earlier. Remember to check with her about other blends later. Potential application of haste buff stacking with Recklessness.

9:00 AM – Budget review meeting with Eitrigg. Gramps raised some concerns about an increase in the “Warchief discretionary spending” category. Don’t even get me started.

10:00 AM – Staff meeting with Malkorok, Overlord Runthak, and Overseer Elaglo. Updates on a number of projects, plus a few security oddities from Malk. Mokvar working with Xorenth today, so Taktani recording notes. Malkorok less than pleased. Can’t really blame him. Some sensitive topics, so not publishing transcript.

11:32 AM – On way out after meeting, had to suffer through, and minimize, small talk with Dontrag. Or Utvoch. Not sure. Apparently waiting for Tak after meeting. Luckily escaped when she came out.

11:36 AM – Note to self: Check on which one of D&U is which.

11:37 AM – Followup note to self: Don’t really give shit which is which. Disregard previous.

11:45 AM – Shayari gets back from morning of mage training with Faranell in Undercity. As per recommendation, Doc showed her Ice Block today. Apparently never bothered picking it up because she’s a fire mage. Dalaran, Shmalaran. Don’t know what those fuckers were teaching her.

Shay also delivered (another) invoice from Faranell for his jaw replacement. Can’t possibly really be that expensive. Also not crazy about Materials; “headhunting” and acquisition line item. Bad feeling about this.

12:20 PM – Lunch at Broken Tusk. Pretty good special, “Agamaggan’s pulled pork.” Needs bacon, though. Then again, what doesn’t?

12:36 PM – While eating, interrupted by Dontrag. Or Utvoch. Not sure. Not the one from earlier. Other one. Yammered on about something. Difficult to follow as I wasn’t listening. Can only assume that sounds of me eating sounded to him like “Tell me about your life.” Really crossed the line, though, when he started going on and on about wanting to set up a double date for him and the other one.* Thought of those two on dates led to prospect of them breeding. Lost appetite at that point and left. See, proves my point about bacon. Would have still been worth it in that case.

* Not with me. Double date for them and two someones (sometwos?) else. Not me. Even bacon couldn’t have salvaged that shit if so.

1:30 PM – Combat drills with trainees. Focus today on defensive maneuvers, parrying, mitigation skills. Overall decent performance. Korrina still a little reckless. Rook possibly a little too quick to hit “oh shit” buttons, but growing more adept at self-heals. Bodes well for group use, maybe occasional off-healing. Giska doing well with unarmed combat, blocking especially, skill less successful while using a weapon. Possibly check with Lunchbox on this. Tuekie, Zorekk coming along well, performance gap remains but growing less conspicuous. Mirembe and Tov’osh still on training maneuvers in Northrend.

3:00 PM – Extra melee practice with Gurtash. Trying to ease him back in but he’s still a little slow to pick things back up. Very hesitant. Hit accuracy seems uncompromised by injury, so that’s good. Kept to short session today. Don’t want to discourage him but combat skills need to take major step forward if he’s to perform honorably. And survive. More side sessions to follow.

4:00 PM – Hop onto Earth Online. Not going to bother logging guild chat — only getting on for a few minutes to check auctions and knock out a few dailies, then I’ll be logging off.

6:11 PM – Finally logged off of Earth Online. Man. Game really goes have a way of sucking you in and burning the day. Didn’t even really do anything especially fun. Didn’t even really do much of ANYTHING. Two hours gone anyway. How the hell does Genesis do it? Check on this — could have potential mind control / military applications. Make mental note for next meeting with Blackfuse and/or Draz’Zilb. And of course, Shay had to pop in and snarky comments about nerdy gaming. Again.

6:20 PM – Tried to take Shay to this new barbecue place over in the Drag for dinner. When we arrived, found Dontrag and Utvoch there.

Positive: Both there, so no need to worry about who’s who.

Negative: Both there.

Double negative: Don’t CARE who’s who, which cancels out positive above. (Math nerds: Yes, in this case double negative cancels the positive and not the negatives. Don’t get panties in a bunch. Also: HEAD HURTS.)

Triple negative: They were chatty.

6:22 PM – Got the fuck out of there and headed home. I’ll send for takeout, dammit. Fuck that noise. (Literal noise.)

6:27 PM – Passed by Kodohide Leatherworkers on way home. Had to drag Shay away to avoid shopping spree. She stuck head in doorway, entire staff greeted her by name. Fuck me.

7:21 PM – Shay tries to conjure lemon squares for dessert. Not something that usually promises much success but she decides she wants to try it anyway. Goes about as well as you might expect.

7:34 PM – Leave note for repair crew to come by tomorrow to take care of damage to kitchen. Not looking forward to bill. Also make mental note to talk to Faranell about the lemon square thing or failure thereof. What the hell am I paying for. Remember this next time he tries griping about the bill for his damn jaw.

 

30 Days of Character Development #9: Tirion Fordring

[Periodically — granted, that’s been a long period in this case — a post will profile one of the blog’s many supporting players. (See the first profile for more details.) Feel free to chime in with recommendations for other characters you’d like to see more about! I promise the next one will come along with much less delay than this one…]

 

Name: Tirion Rutherford Alouicious Wulfric Fordring IV

tirion_profile1Occupation: Supreme Commander of the Argent Crusade, Highlord of the Silver Hand, co-leader of the Ashen Verdict, lord of Mardenholde Keep, governor of Hearthglen

Race: Human

Class: Paladin

Age: 59

Group affiliations: Argent Crusade (leader), Knights of the Silver Hand (founding member and highlord), Ashen Verdict (co-leader), Hearthglen (former and current governor), Kingdom of Lordaeron (former citizen), Alliance of Lordaeron (former member)

Known relatives: Karandra Fordring (wife, deceased), Taelan Fordring (son, deceased), Devlin Fordring (father, deceased), Talya Fordring (mother, deceased), Lucius Fordring (uncle, deceased), Tirion Fordring III (grandfather, deceased) (Apparent survival tip: Don’t be related to Tirion Fordring.)

Earth Online notes: Tirion Fordring doesn’t play Earth Online, as far as anyone knows. (And you know it wouldn’t be even remotely difficult to pick him out if he ever turned up online…)

First appearance: “Monday mailbag” (first mention and anecdote), “Where did all the words go?” (first transcript appearance)

Key posts and plot points:

  • Tirion Fordring, obviously, is a major lore character whose backstory is long and voluminous (fittingly enough, eh?). We’ll only be touching on plot points here that are immediately relevant to his blog appearances; those interested in a broader look at Highlord Paragraph’s history should check out his entry on Wowpedia.
  • Tirion, as it turns out, had a hand in some of the…ahem…cranial oddities of Garrosh’s Cataclysm-era model. When asked by a mailbag reader about his unusually small head, Garrosh related that he accidentally squeezed his own head down to its smaller size while trying to cover his ears to block out Tirion’s endless droning in Icecrown Citadel.
  • Tirion’s first major appearance in the blog occurred early in the Anti-Plague of Southshore arc, in which he set Garrosh on the trail that would eventually lead him to old Southshore by relating the story of the mysterious crystal that the Knights of the Silver Hand used to forge the Ashbringer. (The blog version of the Ashbringer story, incidentally, blog-canonically confirms a longstanding fan theory: that the crystal from which the Ashbringer was forged was actually the remains of a dying Naaru.) He later gave the human incarnation of Edwin Faranell a home in Hearthglen (until everything started to go all wibbly whimey splodey).
  • In the subsequent Timequake storyline, Garrosh found himself drawn into an alternate timeline in which Tirion died in Icecrown Citadel and was raised as the first of the Lich King’s new Deathbringers. In this timeline, the Ashbringer had passed to Lady Liadrin, who had assumed leadership of the Argent Crusade after Tirion’s death.
  • Argent Confessor Paletress, as depicted in “Argent Gossip Girl,” suggests that to those who work with him closely on a daily basis, Tirion may be more temperamental, lewd, and alcohol-driven than his outer persona might suggest.
  • Tirion made a memorable appearance in Orgrimmar in “Anger Management,” in which, “sponsored” by Eitrigg, Tirion attended the anger management class conducted by Ben-Lin Cloudstrider. Evidently, Tirion gets rather angry when drunk. There was some indication that Eitrigg has been laboring with mixed success to steer his friend away from his worse inclinations. Poor Eitrigg.
  • Tirion’s appearances in the blog are often accompanied by cameos from Daria L’Rayne, one of his aides in Mardenholde Keep. As a coda to a number of these posts, the long-suffering Daria offers words of wisdom in the form of Daria’s Pro Tips for Dealing with Tirion. Pro tips enumerated thus far have been:
    • #8: Do not wear black mageweave leggings. Ever. Ever.
    • #11: If he asks you if you want to hear a story, say yes. He’s going to tell you either way, but if you say no, he’ll just take longer getting to it. Think of it as steering into the skid, only with the skid being a tedious barrage of words.
    • #14: Never make eye contact. Eye contact makes him assume you’re interested, and increases word output by 25%.
  • Let’s establish some bonus blog canon for the first time: Tirion shares a birthday with our very own Warchief. Specifically, December 17. (Backstory: While working on a timeline of blog and canonical lore events — which will be added to the When Is This? page as soon as I finish getting a table set up and formatted — I noticed that Garrosh mentioned being 34 years old in one post that, in the world of the blog, would have taken place in November, then later noted that he was 35 years old in a post that took place in February. This meant that Garrosh’s birthday would probably be either in December or January, and since my own birthday falls on December 17, I figured, what the hell, I’ll give Garrosh that birthdate too. Shortly thereafter, an Ask.fm question prompted me to do a little research on famous people who shared my birthday. One notable I discovered who was born on December 17 was actor Bernard Hill, who, in addition to playing Theoden in the Lord of the Rings movies (dock yourself 20 nerd points if you needed me to tell you that), is also the in-game voice actor for one Tirion Fordring. And from there…well, really, those last couple dots just connect themselves.)
  • Thanks to regular commenter (and unofficial blog historian) Shen Wei, Tirion Fordring has a presence on Twitter as @HighlordFordrin. Yes, you read that right. Tirion on Twitter. The 140-character-limit jokes practically write themselves.

tirionprofile1

In his own words:

Describe your relationship with your mother or your father. Was it good? Bad? Were you spoiled rotten, ignored? Do you still get along now, or no?

Greetings and good day, my friend! A pleasure to have your company this fine afternoon in Heathglen! Far too few visitors have graced these halls in recent days — not always so, I assure you! There was once a time — not long ago, in fact, but soon after I made my return from Northrend to take my place once again in Mardenholde Keep — when travelers would frequent Hearthglen, and these halls would sing with the raucous voices of fellowship! But strangely, my friend, most strangely, those voices have of late grown fewer and less frequent, as these past few years, for reasons unknown surely to any but the sagest seers, fewer and fewer visitors have found their way to these gates. Do not misunderstand me, of course, good pilgrim; a regular stream of adventurers still make their way here — often at the behest of my friend and colleague Nathaniel Dumah — drawn in equal measure from the peoples of the Alliance and Horde alike, offering their most-welcome aid to our noble efforts here. Nevertheless, their numbers grow few, and often transient, arriving in haste and departing just as swiftly, caught up, no doubt, in the rush and tumult to which youthful fervor is predisposed; and so our halls grow strangely quiet, our streets peculiarly empty of the visitors who once passed routinely within these walls. Surely not, however, for the lack of a warm welcome to be found here in Hearthglen, I assure you, my friend! To which you yourself, I hope, might attest! And even not, dear visitor, you may rest assured that I will endeavor personally to amend such failings before your time here as my guest has come to a close. A time, I can only hope, that will not run its course too quickly!

But now, I fear, I may have gone briefly astray of your original inquiry. But you will, I trust, forgive me my preamble, born as it was of the enthusiasm of a delighted host! Now then, to your question! What was our topic again, my friend?

Oh. Um… your relationship with your mother and father?

Ah yes! I recall it now! So you care to hear of the Fordring line that came before me! Quite the yarn to be spun, I can assure you, my friend, as the Fordrings, I will have you know, were present among the earliest of settlers to make their way north from the kingdom Arathor to lay the foundation of what would in time become Lordaeron. My kin arose from humble beginnings, as did many noble houses of their day, but thus began the story of a family line which, if you will forgive the brief immodesty of familial pride, may now lay claim to a legacy to rival those of some of the most celebrated houses on our time. Alas, my friend, it is a legacy that now nears its end, as — with the tragic passing of my beloved, departed son Taelan — I now stand as the last of the line of Fordrings. I do not ask your pity, though, good sir. All great stories must of necessity find their end — and I assure you I have every hope that my own chapter is yet far from its final pages! Regardless, I know you are not here to hear of endings, and no endings will you be forced upon you! Beginnings, then! The beginning of our tale, of the House of Fordring, a story — nay, a saga! — that now spans well past a thousand years! A thousand years, my friend! Can you fathom it? Such spans of time must tax the imagination of even the greatest of mortal minds, at least among we races who are so short-lived. Surely to the night elves — my esteemed aide Miss L’Rayne proudly among their number — this millennium-long expanse might seem as fleeting as a summer afternoon, and yet, to we more mortal beings? An endless expanse, long enough to encompass the rise and fall of empires and string together generations by the dozen. And so allow me to grace you, as per your inquiry, some small sampling of those generations: the line of Fordrings as they reach out across a thousand years! Again I ask you, my friend, can you imagine it? A thousand years of Fordring!

I think I’m beginning to understand what that would be like.

Hah! Indeed! Then yours is a keener intellect than mine, my friend! Often have I pondered the vastness of history, and equally often have I found my mind incommensurate to the task of grasping its enormity. But then, I labor under no delusions: I am an educated man, good fellow, but I do not presume to count myself among the great thinkers of our day. Perhaps history will count you among them, eh? Perhaps so! It would not surprise me in the least, noble scholar, for I see in you the quiet focus that oft accompanies great minds: you speak little, and think much! Is it not so? Indeed, I count myself fortunate to have found myself, by serendipity, in the company of many such minds.

And so, let us begin, let us not? The day grows short, and we have centuries of history to discuss! And so, to the beginning, and the mighty realm of Arathor!

Actually, this question was really just about your parents.

Ah! I see, I see — and here you prove me right, my friend! The focused mind of the scholar you do indeed possess, training with marksman-like precision upon the key object of your inquiry! It is a discipline of mind that serves you well in your studies, my friend; I myself would make a path through libraries and symposia that would surely prove more discursive. A credit to you! Yet if you would indulge an old man his musings, might I urge you in your pursuits to be wary of too great a focus, a narrowing of vision so intent as to cause all the world around you to fall away. My own dear uncle Lucius, I’ll have you know, fell victim to just such proclivities; he was a scholar in his own right, in his day, though he fell victim to misfortune ere he could complete such research as might be remembered. He, too, was ever focused on his studies: toiling night and day over tomes and scrolls; scrying into the records of the past in tireless search for hidden clues to unfathomable puzzles; never wavering, never relenting, until, at last, from too long reading and too short sleeping, my poor, dear uncle finally lost his grasp on reality, and spent his remaining days rambling through the world chasing bats and railing against windmills. His is, indeed, a tragic but fascinating tale in its own right, one which I suspect you may well find instructive. I recall all too well the final days of our interaction, when he lived near Andorhal, not far from this very place.

I’tirionprofile3m sure that’s fascinating and all, but… your parents.

Hah! Well played, good sir, well played! You catch an old man once again in his departures into memory. For such is the burden of so long life, is it not, my friend? The ease with which one may yield to the temptation of memory, to wander wistfully back to revisit a life well-lived. Ah, but I forget myself now, for I see your eyes yet glimmer with the brightness of youth, though I suspect I may yet catch as well the momentary, ephemeral shadow of hardship. Such is the burden for us all, is it not, my friend, all of us who have lived through the mounting troubles of our troubled age? Dark days, my noble scholar. Yet hope endures for a world we might yet build.

In any case, your question deserves an answer. Let me turn now, at last, to the crux.

Oh thank goodness.

My parents were modest in means but noble in mien. As I have alluded to, our family had been among the earliest of Arathi settlers to undertake the sojourn north into the land that would come be known as Lordaeron — ah, fear not, my friend; I see the shadow of vexation fall over your eyes, but I assure you no harm befell them during the trek, and while the details of their travels could spin into many a captivating a yarn in their own right, I must surely for not stay the course with the matter at hand. You shall not lure me into digression, my friend, so for now you must need content yourself with noting down points for subsequent inquiry! I commend you, though, for your obvious fascination — ah, your curiosity recommends you, good sir.

Now where was I? Oh yes! My parents were the most recent of tradesmen and craftsmen in the Fordring line — occasionally taking arms in defense of the kingdom, but, while serving with honor and distinction, never garnering acclaim for heroic deeds of particular note. Nevertheless, we were an honored family, respected, and while never affluent, my parents never wanted for the necessities, nor indeed some modest few of the pleasantries, of life. Just so, I cannot say I knew want as a child, though in retrospect I likewise cannot say I was showered with material things — the world, it seemed, furnished me with toys and diversions enough, without my needing to pester my parents to secure me others from the local shops. That, I suppose, was an austerity of nature instilled in me by my mother, Talya, who I recall would often remark on the misguided avarices that often plagued the ambitious: that the sense of one’s own happiness oft would rise from comparison between the measure of what one has, against what one wants; and that far too many of us err in thinking that the key to their contentment lies in maximizing the former, when in truth the key is minimizing the latter.

Clearly, of course, good fellow, I did not fully apprehend the wisdom of my mother’s words — hardly was I a deep thinker as a child. Indeed, one might yet argue, hardly am I one now! Hah! I see the look in your eyes, my friend, and know that I have beaten you to the jest! Hah again, I say! Well played again, sir!

Where was I?

Well, I think that pretty much covered–

Ah yes! My parents! And so, my dear, departed mother instilled in my a modesty of want that, I am sure, forestalled in me any sense of limitation in our means. My father, meanwhile, the late sir Delvin Fordring, took pains to teach me of duty and honor, and the kinship of all mortal souls. It was he who instilled in me an understanding of the fine line that separates even the most fortunate from the least, and the resulting shared duty that unites us all in turn. For we are all our brother’s keeper, are we not, my friend? And just so, under my father’s influence — aside perhaps from the earliest of youthful misjudgments, which, I assure you, Father was only too quick to correct, with no small degree of sternness — even before I had reached my teenage years, more than one would-be schoolyard bully had found his nose bloodied at my still-growing hands. I recall, indeed, on more occasion than one, returning home bearing on my own person the unmistakable marks of scuffle; to which Father’s only inquiry would be “Whose bruises would they have been, if not yours?”; to which — provided my truthful response: one smaller, one weaker, one set upon by an assailant against whom they could pose no defense — his only judgment would be “Then wear them well.” It would be the sense of duty and compassion instilled in me by both my parents in kind that would send me, soon enough, into service in the defense of Lordaeron. Would that they were still with us, to witness the world that yet we — I — strive to build in their memory, in their honor, a lasting tribute to their guidance.

So… Are you…finished?

My friend? Did I omit some salient detail you had hoped to glean from my youth? By all means, sir, if you feel some facet remains overlooked in my haste to expedite the tale–

No, no, that’s fine. I should probably get to the next question.

By all means! The night is young, and I am, of course, at your disposal, my friend, for however long I might be of aid to you!

Right… I kind of figured. Okay, so…next question:

Name one scar you have, and tell us where it came from. If you don’t have any, is there a reason?

I am a veteran of many battles of many wars, my friend — too many, indeed, for who but a fool or a monster would wish upon this world further bloodshed, when far too great a toll in lives has been paid, sacrificed upon the ill-begotten altar of all our foolish vanity? Who would seek such a thing? None, I tell you, good scholar — at least none that I should ever wish to find in my company. Not a problem we find here now between us, though, eh, my friend? None indeed! For I look into your eyes and know that we are two of a kind, bound in fellowship by our shared desire for the prosperity of our world, and the final attainment of that precious peace that has long — too long — eluded us.

Now, my friend, as to your question: scars, you ask! Scars indeed, good author, for after all the many days that I have spent awash in the conflicts of our age, many are the marks upon my person that I have taken with me as trophies, mementos of time spent amid the sober work of battle. I see that you, too, bear such trophies — you have seen a battle or two in your day as well, eh, my friend? A shame that fate has deemed it necessary, and yet an honor to know what such valiant souls as yourself yet walk among us.

tirionprofile2Okay. So we’ll put you down for “several scars but no particular stories”–

I beg to differ, good sir! No stories? No stories indeed! Ah, you have a fine sense of humor about you, and, rest assured, I appreciate your kind effort to spare an old man the need to delve into memories that, I suspect, you fear may be too painful to recount. Rest assured, though, my friend, after the horrors I have beheld in my day, a mere jaunt down the dusty halls of memory shall offer no such deterrent! A tale you requested, my good fellow, and so a tale you shall have!

Oh no…

Ah, it was a dark time, my friend. Dark indeed, and perilous, though I suspect I need not remind you — all too well do all remember the shadow that stretched its hand across two worlds, in the days of the Second War. When the demons’ poison coursed through the veins of the orcs — even those of my dear friend Eitrigg, as honorable a man as ever I might hope to know — whose acquaintance, perhaps, we share, my friend? but again I digress — yes, when the demons’ curse poisoned the orcish race and set them on their ill-fated rampage across their world and ours, when the Horde of old twice swept across Lordaeron, laying waste to all they met. We fought them, my friend; we nearly fell, on more occasions than one, as we struggled to hold them back, until finally we drove them back to their stronghold at Blackrock Mountain, and there, on the mountainside, we matched blades with our enemy one final time for the fate of our world.

I was there, my friend. I fought at Blackrock Spire, and saw such sights as I dare not repeat — indeed, such horrors as I might pray to wipe clean from my own aging recollection. For such are the horrors of war, are they not? The loss of life, the suffering uncountable, the nightmares forever seeded. The waste. Would that we might never see its like again, my friend; we speak at times of the glory of battle, but one need only sample its acrid taste once to understand such glimmer only exists in the imaginings of those not forced into war’s midst.

Right, so, war is bad.

Bad! Bad, you say, sir? Such understatement! I should hope a scholar of such obvious attainment should command words more fitting, for hardly does “bad” even suffice! And yet, sir — yet! — I would not wish words further from you, lest they should conjure more acutely recollection of such evils in their fullest form! For surely, all who partook in those dark days, those grisly hours of battle, spent many a year thereafter scarcely able to sleep soundly, for all the restless nights that dreadful dreams must have forced upon them. Even I, who was no stranger to battle even ere those times, was not immune to such things, and recall uneasily the weeks and months that followed, left alone to grapple with the haunting knowledge of what I had beheld.

Well, I don’t want to bring up bad memories for you, so–

The sky was angry that day, my friend! Angry and dark, overcast with portentous clouds, the air heavy with mist and dank with the stench of carnage.

Or not. Okay.

For hours — so many countless, unrelenting hours, my friend — we battled on the slopes of Blackrock Mountain, clawing our way, inch by inch, ever closer to the enemy’s stronghold. Do I say hours? They seemed as days, or weeks; nay, time itself lost near all meaning as the toil of battle weighed down upon us. And yet we did not tire, sir! Despite the wounds and blows, despite the ever-mounting aching of limbs taxed far beyond their limits, even still we pressed on, fought on, for we knew all too well what hung in the balance!

As the dark cloud gathered overhead, we marched upon Blackrock and fought our way past wave upon wave of enemy troops. There with us fought the great Alexandros Mograine, eventual bearer of the Ashbringer, the holy blade which even now I wield in his memory and honor — would that he were still with us, my friend, and not felled in the years that would follow by the vilest act of treachery. But that is a story for another day, sir — indeed, for another day, and you shall not sway me to digress from the tale at hand! Try though you might, you shall not delay me from the true object of my narrative!

Trust me, I won’t try.

As well you should not, my friend! For it is your very question that set me on this path, and you shall now lead me astray before I have forged on to a proper answer! I owe you no less, as my honored guest!

Now where was I? Oh yes!

While Alexandros rallied our troops to buttress our western flank, he briefly dropped his guard and left his back vulnerable to the attack of a charging ogre. Before the vile creature could land his blow, however, I interceded, blindsiding the ogre in turn and felling him with a piercing strike through the back of his neck. The ogre collapsed to the ground, and Alexandros and I exchanged words of camaraderie as he rode off to resume his efforts at the flank — but as he departed, and I called forth some few final words of encouragement, I found myself falling prey to the self-same error that nearly claimed the life of my friend. For I, as well, had failed to maintain proper vigilance, and a second ogre — perhaps a friend of the one whose life even still bled forth onto the field of battle — bore down upon me from behind. Surely, though, the Light was watching over me, as the ogre landed a blow that wounded but did not kill: his bulky club caught my back, just at the shoulder, with one spike digging deep into flesh. I managed to gather myself and engage my monstrous attacker, and with no small difficulty, smote his ruin upon the mountainside. Nevertheless, his blow had left its mark; my left shoulder carries a deep scar even to this day, and now and again, even to this day, I occasionally feel the lingering effect of the injury, as two fingers of that hand will sometimes lose sensation. A small price to pay, nevertheless, for the safety of our people, our homes — one that I would gladly pay again, with interest, should circumstance ever demand it.

Okay. Well, I think that covers everything…

Indeed, my friend? But surely there was more you wished to ask. Why, even now I see you still have several pages of your notes right there — questions, doubtless, for our continued interview. Hardly would I rush you through your efforts, or, worse still, force you to curtail the inquiries you’ve traveled so far to pursue! We shall have no such incivility here, good sir! I would never forgive myself such a misstep.

No, that’s really okay. Those notes are for something else.

Ah, I see — forever juggling projects, isn’t it just the way, my friend? The burdens of necessity, no doubt; I know myself that I can scarcely find the time to give my many varied tasks the time they’re due — oftentimes I’ve scarcely completed dictating my daily correspondence when it seems at though the whole of the day has begun to slip away. Ah, world enough and time!

Right. So… do you happen to know where Daria went? I think she said something about getting a drink at a tavern.

 

Previous Profiles:

  1. Spazzle Fizzletrinket
  2. Ben-Lin Cloudstrider
  3. Dontrag and Utvoch
  4. Taktani
  5. Korrina
  6. Mylune
  7. Mokvar
  8. Ruekie

 

daria_tavern1

Daria’s Pro Tip for Dealing with Tirion #3: Beer is your friend. It’s your very, very best friend.

 

 

Monday mailbag

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We’ve got a bunch of letters to get through this week, and I have a bunch of stuff I need to do today, so let’s get right down to it. And lo and behold, we get to kick things off with everybody’s… um… “favorite” new correspondent of mine…

 

Hail, Warchief!

Okay, consider this to be a sort of test. Of course, my initial shock of your new limitations to these letters was perhaps a little…irrational. It’s just that I have never been confronted with such a shock, not once in all my years! However many of them there are, that is. So allow me to extend my utmost apologies for my over-reaction. Brevity just isn’t a common art form where I live. To be frank, I’m almost strongly advised against it. After all, how do you think we manage to stall our enemies long enough for a little rogue to sneak behind them and twist a knife through their back?

Nonetheless, I have no doubts that this wasn’t a mere act of impatience or annoyance, but as a test against the foes who would inevitably call our bluff and have their OWN rogues sneaking up behind us while we’re speaking. For this, I thank you.

Perhaps you never knew, since I noticed you did not fight the Lich King during his final battle, but I think that the only reason we won was because Arthas was so intent on making us suffer, he just didn’t imagine Highlord Fordring’s faith in the Light to win out! There wasn’t much I could say, what with my being dead. Dark days.

Have any big , bad guys YOU’VE stood against attacked you after 250 words? Or you, them? I must read into this!

Remain faithful, dear Warchief.

–Sarlinia-Grace Starstriker, Argent Crusade.

Um. Actually, Sarlin, the reason I…

<rubs forehead>

You know what? Fuck it. Whatever.

Yeah, you caught me. It was all just a lesson I was trying to teach you, making you limit your letters to 250 words or less. Just a big ol’ lesson about… hmm. Let’s see. FOCUS! There we go. Focus and efficiency. See, sometimes, sure, you need to… um… you know, that thing like you said with the rogues and whatever the hell that was… and sometimes you need to be able to focus in on the task at hand and get shit done, like pronto. Like for instance…

Hang on.

<flipping through book>

I know it’s here somewhere.

<flipping more pages>

So by the way, while I’m looking for this — speaking of rogues, have you ever met Garona? Because now that I think of it, that could be pretty damn entertaining if– oh wait wait wait, here we go. Here.

<opens book flat on desk>

Now we’re in business.

So FOR INSTANCE, like say you had a city taken over by those Scourge that you and your Argent buddies worry so much about, and let’s say the city was being run by some dude calling himself a baron — which would be kinda lame seeing as he could pick any title he wanted but settled for something ordinary like “baron” — and he’s holding someone prisoner, somebody’s wife maybe, and in 45 minutes ol’ baron-boy is gonna execute Ysera.

<squints>

Wait.

<leans closer to book>

Make that Ysida. He’s gonna execute Ysida. Man, Mokvar’s handwriting is some kind of spirits-damned awful, I tell you. But yeah, Ysida, not Ysera. Although, wouldn’t it be way cooler if I was right the first time? Doesn’t that sound kind of awesome, if the guy was gonna try to kill this giant green dragon? Now see, THAT would have made him a legit badass bad guy with some street cred.

Anyway, though, point is, say you need to get to your head-honcho baddie, and you’ve got limited time to do it in, you can’t just sit there taking your sweet time talking everything in the place to death, right? No, you want to get in there, kick some ass, take some names, promptly forget the names because who the fuck cares WHO those losers are, they’re dead now so pfft, then get to baron dude and beat him down before he drops the axe.

I mean, at least, YOU want to do that. From what I can tell, Ysida was a human, so as far as I would be concerned, fuck ’er, let ol’ Baron lop her head off for all I care. Good riddance. BUT YOU GET MY POINT.

Meanwhile, since you bring up Tirion back in ICC, I just gotta say… leave it to T-Ford to be frozen in a giant block of ice… and STILL find a way to break into a damn speech. No wonder Arthas was finally like “Fuck this shit, just kill me already, yeesh.”

Moving on.

 

So I don’t ordinarily do this, but this next letter came in the form of an image, and since it’s kind of visual, I’m going to just reproduce it here:

letter1

Okay, so, this is kind of a weird question, but on the other hand, this is obviously just a thinly veiled excuse to spend a little extra time checking out my, ahem, skintone, and I don’t know if I can blame you for taking a good long look in the “artistic” interests of picking your color pallette, because ENJOY THE VIEW, LADIES.

But, now that you mention it, the fact that you’re all interested in Horde edition crayons makes me feel like we’ve got a potential opportunity on our hands, because MERCHANDISING, BITCHES. Hell, there might even be a market for Warchief’s Command Board goodies — I think Spazzle was toying around the idea of trying to make some WCB action figures or something. Although personally I think that was just his way of angling to be immortalized in plastic. Which is really kind of sad, to be honest. Anyway, though, I might have to look into taking advantage of this market, what with, you know, all of a sudden me having a lot more by way of expenses.

So since you brought up the subject, Quelita, here, straight from… um… well, Gurtash’s unattended art supplies, mostly, and some quick printouts, enjoy a possible sampling:

crayons1

Well, it’s a draft. Any thoughts on swag you guys might be interested in forking over your hard-earned gold for? It’ll be easier handing it over that way than at axepoint. I KID, I KID. Mostly.

 

Greetings, Warchief Hellscream,

After I recovered from reading your highly entertaining reaction to hearing about my potion, your ally Mogor persuaded me to send this sample of the potion. Although I was rather tempted to see you have another flip-out, I believe that’s the word for it, I decided instead that one good turn deserves another and agreed. I have only tested the effects of its standard strain on ogres, and two-headed ones at that, but at his discretion I modified it so that it can work pairs of heads on separate bodies which are very close in personality. It has been used on some ogre “duos”, you might call them, with fair success. I should warn you that it is still partially in the experimental stage, as I cannot account for the full effects of the potion and have never tried it on orcs. I should, but I don’t expect you would listen, and I can imagine you believe that knocking some sense into that bumbling pair of head-cases, Dontrag and Utvoch, is worth any price.  

Kind Regards,

–Draz’Zilb of the Stonemaul Clan

So first of all, you ever notice how people who are like… super creepy evil are always really polite, even when they’re BEING super creepy evil? Don’t know why that came to mind just now. But keep it in mind the next time you need an airtight response to some jackass who’s trying to say I’M evil, because FUCK THAT GUY, THAT’S WHY.

Anyway.

So, listen, Draz’Zilb… and good to hear from you, by the way, nice to see you’re still up and about and vaguely disturbing and everything… but so, I think I might have some bad news for you.

Short version is, I think you may need to give that potion another draft or two before it’s ready for prime time on non-ogre types.

Longer version is… I got your potion and gave it to Dontrag and Utvoch a little while ago. And it sure as hell kicked in quick on them… and apparently helped stop their two little pea-brains from being so disconnected. Which in THIS case, meant that each one of them all of a sudden had partial control over the other one’s LIMBS. So they spent like an hour and a half yanking each other around and each of them experimenting to see if they could make the other walk into a wall or flap his arms like wings or whatever.

Now, look, I can totally see how this potion effect could be handy for your typical two-headed ogres. I can see how having two brains — even if they’re bargain-basement brains — running one body can be confusing as hell, especially if the two heads don’t always agree on what the body should be doing. I get how doing something to firm up bodily control and coordination could be a good thing. And even trying it out here on the braintrust, it was kind of entertaining for the first 20 minutes or so. But after it got past an hour, it was just starting to get annoying, especially with how it didn’t seem to be getting old at all to THEM.

Oh, and don’t even get me started on that 45-minute period when they both thought “DON’T HIT YOURSELF” was the most hysterical thing in the world after 7000 repetitions.

And you know what, Drazzy? That wasn’t even the worst of it. Because your crazy potion really did do the trick, and put their two brains — or, I mean, the two HALVES of the ONE fucking brain that they split between them — in synch with each other… just not the way you were probably shooting for. Because, see, after a little while, apparently they started being able to hear each other’s thoughts, and communicate telepathically. And I know this because of the three or four dozen times when one of them replied out loud to something the other one was thinking… or when one of them said something out loud to the other one, only the other one didn’t say anything out loud in response, but the first one acted like he got an answer… or, get this, when the two of them spent spirits-know-how-long not realizing that the damn mind-reading thing didn’t apply to fucking EVERYONE, so that when I asked them something, they couldn’t just THINK it at me.

Speaking of which, by the way, there seems to be some evidence that the effects of the potion can be dispelled by a severe beating around the head area. Eventually.

So, back to the drawing board, I’m thinking. Keep up the good work, though. And by “good,” I mean “disturbingly yet usefully evil.”

 

Hello Warchief!

I was happy to see Gurtash is alive and recovering in your recent blog post. Give him my regards and well wishes.

I was curious about a book in the hands of the young shaman Ruekie. “Resto for Dummies” correct? Where can I find a copy? It looks like a book I would be interested in reading myself.  I am a rather new shaman myself and wondering if this is something I want to continue training in or return to my monkish roots. This book may help me decide if this is what I want to do.

Are there other books in the series that would be helpful?

Have you written any books yourself?

Books are wonderful! I enjoy seeing shelves full of them!

Sincerely,

–Misqueu Zephyrpaw, Wandering Isle

Hey, Misqueu, thanks for writing. So before somebody else notices this and decides to be an asshole — because you know someone will — let me point out: yes, this letter from Misqueu did come from the Wandering Isle. Now, when I first noticed that, I’ll admit I had kind of a WTF moment about it, seeing as, last I’d heard, all the pandas on the Wandering Isle had either come to Orgrimmar to join the Horde, or stayed behind to go on living in isolation on the island. Okay, there were also the batch of pandas who went to join the Alliance, but they don’t count because FUCK THEM that’s why. Although they DID get to punch Varian in the face as part of the deal, and, you know, as much as I hate the Alliance, I have to admit that’s a pretty sweet perk. I’d seriously be half tempted to try swinging by Stormwind wearing a panda costume just to see if I could cash in on it myself. Again.

But, after my initial what-the-fuckery, I did a little checking on the matter. Which, by the way, took way longer than I would have figured. My first thought was to ask Ji about it, only it turned out some place down by the Drag was having an all-you-can-eat buffet, and hoo boy, when ol’ Pudge heard “all you can eat,” he didn’t just hear a bargain offer, he heard a fucking CHALLENGE. So, he wasn’t available to field questions.

Luckily, I was able to catch Ben-Lin free. Or, well, I MADE her free. I guess she was technically in the middle of one of her counseling sessions with some shellshocked Wrathgate survivor. I’m not too clear on what his deal was, though, seeing as we didn’t have a whole lot of time to chit chat what with him crapping himself and running out when I busted in and yelled that his time was up. I thought Ben-Lin was gonna get all serious-facey about the interruption, too, but then she realized that now the dude was probably going to be on the hook for a bunch more billable hours down the road. So, win-win for everybody.

Anyhow, Ben cleared up the whole Wandering Isle thing for me. Turns out, even after the initial batch of pandas took off from the Wandering Isle, a bunch of Korga Strongmane’s people stayed behind for a while with the other pandas, and told them a bunch about the goings-on in the rest of the world. I guess even though they wanted to keep to themselves on the island, they were still curious about what else is out there, and so, after a while, what do you know, they managed to get themselves set up with the internet. Which, as we all know, is fucking spectacular when it comes to letting people sit back and observe life without having to get un-hermit-ified and actually becoming part of it.

Although, that also raises the minor question of, you know, HOW THE FUCK do you hook up stable internet access ON A GIANT FUCKING TURTLE? Grizzle Gearslip can’t keep my goddamn wireless connection stable in Domination Point, but someone was able to hook up THE SHELL OF A GIANT TURTLE with net access? For real?

Oh, wait, you know what? I’ll bet you anything there were goblins involved. Because, where there’s a will there’s a way, and where there’s the prospect of monthly internet access fees, there’s ALL KINDS of motherfucking will. Apparently it’s just when they happen to be on MY FUCKING PAYROLL that goblins STILL aren’t able to get technical things to fucking well work. GRIZZLE. Fucking hell.

Okay, so. Was there actually a question up there somewhere? OH THAT’S RIGHT. Books.

No, I haven’t written any books. Well, not unless you count all the thrilling adventures, thoughts, and musings I’ve written here on the blog. THAT should count as a book or two, right? I’m just writing it a little at a time. And…having other people transcribe the dialogue for me. And draw illustrations. IT’S CALLED DELEGATING, OKAY?

I’m not sure about the book you saw Ruekie reading, but it IS part of a series. What’s kind of sad is the fact that a lot of the books are bestsellers, and yet just from looking at the titles, you can tell that they’re STILL pretty badly needed. For instance:

 

  • Tanking for Dummies — Make sure you have the current edition, though, because they completely revise it from top to bottom every few months.
  • Getting Out of the Fire for Dummies — 600,000 copies sold. And yet.
  • Trolling for Dummies — Not sure if this one is about the jackassery you usually see in trade chat, or the ins and outs of life on the Echo Isles. Or how to tell the difference, come to think of it.
  • Earth Online Dollarmaking for Dummies — To be honest, I don’t know if this one is legit, or if it’s like one of those seminars you see advertised on late-night live streams that promise to let you in on some big moneymaking secret and then the secret ends up being to charge naive saps like you a fee to hear about some moneymaking secret. (I’ve never fallen for this, by the way. And there are no living witnesses who will say otherwise.)
  • Blogging for Dummies — Because not everyone is a fucking natural like yours truly.
  • Commanding a Ship Without Wrecking It for Dummies — Guess what Nazgrim is getting from me for Winter Veil every year for the rest of his life?
  • Timewalking for Dummies — I haven’t read a page of this book and if anyone brings a copy near me I swear to fuck I will beat them to death with it. Because fuck time travel.

 

I’m sure there are others, but those are the ones I can think of offhand. I might have to think about putting one of my own together, though. Something to share some of my own unique brand of wisdom, insight, and dead sexy kickassery. Hmm. Stay tuned.

But hey, if you’re a fan of books, Misqueu, I’ll tell you who you should have a sit-down with — Faranell down in the Undercity. I hear tell he’s pretty much read all of them. He can probably recite half of them back to you. Really saves space as far as the shelving goes, I figure. You should swing by and ask him about it, actually. He’s in the Apothecarium. Just go to the Undercity and…like… follow the smell. You can’t miss it. I’m sure he’d be glad to talk about… hmm. Actually, knowing Edwin, he probably WOULDN’T be too thrilled to…eh, you know what? Fuck it. Go drop by anyway. What the hell. It should be good for a laugh or two.

Now if you’ll excuse me, this is all reminding me of a couple things I need to go do, so I’m going to wrap this up and try to get back to the mail ASAP (fuck knows I still have enough of it building up…)

More soon.

 

[BONUS mailbag — the Warchief will be responding to his voluminous mail a second time this month! Garrosh’s next mailbag will be Monday, December 21. As always, send your thoughts to the Warchief using the email link in the right sidebar, or using the form below!]

 

Monday mailbag

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Okay, time to dip into the ol’ mailbag. You all know how this works, so here we go…

 

Dear Warchief,

Thank you so much for your generous response. Lyssa was so happy that she got a little frisky, which always makes me happy, you know what I mean. 😉 (She is a cat most of the time, after all.) I sympathize with your frustrations due to expenditures- having been a mother myself once (back when I was still “alive”, though not anymore, may the Goddess curse that human Arthas), I know all about the kinds of bills teens can ring up. (You really do need huge heaping mounds of gold. Like, a dragon’s hoard worth.)

In appreciation, please find enclosed your very own PMS device. It is soft and fluffy and purrs very convincingly, and it may prove a distraction for Shayari as well, if she likes kittens. (Especially if it is wearing a bow or ribbons.)

PMS? That stands for Personal Mylune Survival device. Why? What did you think it meant?

In any event, having been told that the idiot human Varian sometimes reads these letters and your responses, I have a message for him.

Varian- Fuck you! You are a moron- when a ten-thousand year old-plus matriarch (that means ruler) of an entire race of people (two, if you count my ancestors) nods and asks you to tell her what to do, she is NOT SERIOUS, she is MOCKING YOU. Do you really think that you have seen more combat, acquired more experience, discovered more tactics, and learned more strategy than her in all her years? She even only tolerates Malfurion (on the rare occasions when he stops napping) because his furry bear feet keep her toes warm- she has plenty of other options in a nation where the men usually and regularly go into comas for centuries.

From TWO Elven nations: FUCK YOU, VARIAN! (Also, I think Mylune would be a perfect wife for you. Or maybe Magatha.)

(Apologies to you, Dear Warchief, I’ll try to keep it shorter next time, if there is one)

–Sintra E’Drien (and her mate Lyssa Nightblossom)

ps. Thalassian Brandy tastes very good. 😉

Hey again, Sintra. Okay, so you know what? There were a bunch of things in this letter that I was going to respond to, but they all kind of got lost in this big blur of FUCK YOU, VARIAN. Especially the part about Tyrande Who’s-Her-Whisper actually mocking ol’ King Ponytail when he thinks he’s being all badass and shit. And the part about him being a moron. And the part about him getting paired off with Mylune. Mind you, if miracles of entertainment happened and Varian DID get himself hitched to Mylune, we’d have to make sure that nobody hooked him up with one of those PMS devices, because we can’t rob ourselves of the hilarity by letting Varian distract her with something small and furry. Plus, trust me, I’ve met Varian — dude has enough PMS all by himself, without anybody sending him the anti-Mylune device.

Although, this does occur to me, there might be a market in developing a line of anti-whoever gear. Like the Mylune one is a no-brainer — make something small and furry that makes cutesy purring noises, then when you see Mylune, toss it one direction and get your ass moving in another. Golden. But you could totally market a bunch of these. Like you could build an anti-Tirion device that’s like a mannequin with a face that looks all interested, that plays a recording of someone going “Tell me more! I want to hear all about it!” Or you could do an anti-Velen device that’s just a big sign that says “Burning Legion invading — planetary exit this way!” Or you could do an anti-Magatha device that basically consists of Gorehowl chopping her into little tiny pieces because fuck her.

Obviously, I’m just spitballing here.

Oh, and also: agreed on the Thalassian Brandy.

 

Greetings, Warchief, and Light’s blessing to you!

As that last letter caused quite a stir, what with a possible war on my hands, as well as having to use an ink substitute (it’s scorpion poison, so don’t lick it!) I’m afraid that I cannot convey quite as much information onto you as I would like. But, as literal a lady as I may be, I have picked up the hints and I have no doubt that this is exceptionally great news to you! Nonetheless, I still have time to explain the situation before I begin.

I have my ways and means regarding paper, the first being the nearby logging camp. Did you know that place was infested with spiders quite a bit, recently? Now, I am a woman of few fears, and I am hesitant to say that spiders are among those few fears. They just have too many legs. The natives of Azeroth have proven that only two is necessary! Not to mention they have no real function other than devour more threatening prey, but even so, that’s disgusting and they are as good as abberations to me. Nonetheless, the spiders have been vanquished and our lumber is safe again! Not that it never was, of course. I simply no longer fear strolling down and requesting more wood for paper! Since the Kal’dorei have no authorities over the wood in the Western Plaguelands, I think I shouldn’t have to worry too much about a war. As a precaution, I asked both my lovely Anaria Moonseeker and Miss L’Rayne why the forests were so sacred to them. They both laughed and I never really got my answer. Of course, we were all after a few cups at the time, so I might try approaching them again when we’re sober. Nothing against my fellow Crusader or my sweet lady, not to mention the woman who raised me, but Night Elves are a peculiar people. Mind you, if they started ravaging Eversong Woods, I’d be miffed. I also am aware that this may draw the Night Elves’ attention back to yourself, but I’m sure you have the means to deal with it. After all, there are several Horde leaders but only one Warchief!

As for the scorpion poison, well, there are ways of compressing that to make it more visible on paper. It’s the same colour as the ink that I used before, thanks to a solution Anaria prepared, but it can still be toxic if you were to eat it. Since I’ve used it quite finely, you may simply experience some disorientation or sickness, but I don’t see that that being a problem, unless you eat paper. I just thought I’d let you in on that, in case you DID eat paper. Who am I to judge the Warchief’s culinary preferences? This piece of paper would be better off being tucked away and not eaten. I still have a fine stock of that scorpion poison, so now it’s only a matter of keeping the lumber mill going! I thought that this would be sufficient as a substitute for the ink that is slowly becoming less obtainable. I hope that the lovely young shaman Rue’kara can get her stationaries back soon! How unfortunate that her own letters are limited to such a pulp. She probably has so much to say, poor child. Anyhow! That’s that, and all problems solved!

It would seem a certain metal-beared goblin had quite a bit to say regarding my letters to you, sir. I, for one, am irate, but the ways of the Light have taught me that anger and resentment will only lead to a manifestation of regret and ever-building hatred, so I will bury the hatchet for now and try not to reference said goblin while the Light grants me the strength to repress such hatred. While this anger is still surging mightily, I have to agree on one point that he made; I haven’t really been of much help, have I?

Well, even though I was not present, I know of your visits to Hearthglen through the town chatter, even though I was oblivious of the events that were taking place. See, I was travelling at the time, which I tend to do every few months or so, and when I came back, I did notice a sort of difference. A kind of hush, as though I’d just arrived after a tragic event had taken place. I felt inclined to ask the Highlord, and I did, but even he was at a loss for words, and that is truly saying something. I mean, really. Time travel is…something I am somewhat familiar with. That being said, I know of a bronze dragon, although the identity is to be kept secret for her sake. I haven’t actually travelled backwards through time, nor forwards, but I visited the Caverns of Time, and I saw some of the rifts here and there pulling and tugging, as though the place felt a turn when I entered it. Somehow, I feel slightly connected to it. It’s a sensation that I cannot describe well, but there’s a familiarity about it that I am trying to make sense of, as though I’d been there before. Maybe an alternate me? Wow, I wonder what she does for a living. My bronze friend gave me a little information on how time works, and how she’s travelled on it previously, but as you may have learned, bronze dragons are as cryptic as any old soothsayer or rambling prophet, (which is extremely annoying since they might actually have ANSWERS for us, whereas prophets just ramble on and on and on…) and since I can’t get any answers from her regarding that particular feeling, I have dropped the matter entirely and haven’t been there since. Still, I’ve never stopped wondering…

While this is irrelevant to what you and this doctor Faranell you mentioned had to experience, I simply want to extend a warning, given everything I have learned thus far through my readings of history. The Old Gods corrupted one Aspect, Deathwing, but he was not the only one that was used to their advantage. The Old Gods want nothing more than to see our world in endless agony, and so they invaded Nozdormu’s realm and succeeded in opening a rift in time, so that they could alter the events of the War of the Ancients and give the dark lord, Sargeras, a fresh attempt to enter the world. If not for the efforts of Malfurion Stormrage, these cursed entities would have succeeded, and Azeroth would have been lost to madness. The Bronze Dragonflight are a mighty race, sir, but we all have our weaknesses, even Nozdormu himself. Had he suspected such a travesty, he surely would have prevented it.

We know that there are multiple timelines out there, and we know that, without the assistance of the Bronze Dragonflight, the events of the entwined timeways wouldn’t have been resolved. Be wary, good sir. You must place your trust in those you know can be trusted, and no-one else. If the Bronze Dragonflight fell to the same corruption as Neltharion, our world would be undone as you know it. After all, Algalon had already decided that it wasn’t worth saving. Let us prove him wrong. Let us protect Azeroth as best we can.

With regards to being of any use to you, I’d merely have you know that I do not plan on leaving Hearthglen for quite some time, so should you decide to make a visit in the meantime, know that I shall stand at your service and grant you the hospitality which you seek. It’s the least I can do. Thank you for your time.

P.S Did you really get a Zandaliri troll to perform a lapdance for you? How much did it cost?

Go in peace, good sir.

–Sarlinia-Grace Starstriker, Argent Crusade

Hoo boy. Here we go.

Hello again, Sarlin. Nice to…hear from you. Again.

As that last letter caused quite a stir,

As in, people stirring up poisonous drinks to kill themselves with.

what with a possible war on my hands,

Well, you know, the many, many trees you’ve wiped out to make paper were only going to take so much.

as well as having to use an ink substitute (it’s scorpion poison, so don’t lick it!)

I really wonder what you think I do with my time that you felt this warning was necessary.

I’m afraid that I cannot convey quite as much information onto you as I would like.

Oh thank the spirits. Maybe we’ll manage to be in and out of here in less than a month.

Nonetheless, I still have time to explain the situation before I begin.

Well, so much for that idea. Here we go, kids. Grab a drink, and maybe a snack, and maybe the next two or three days’ meals, and strap in.

Did you know that place was infested with spiders quite a bit, recently? Now, I am a woman of few fears, and I am hesitant to say that spiders are among those few fears. They just have too many legs. The natives of Azeroth have proven that only two is necessary!

Dude, I fucking hate spiders. They’re all gross and crawly and, like you said, they have way more legs than any self-respecting person should ever have, and let’s not even get started on the eyes. I fucking hate things with creepy extra eyes. Plus there was that time up in Stonetalon when the head troll dude in Malaka’jin told me there was some Queen Silith who wanted to meet with me, only GUESS WHAT, turns out she was this GIANT FUCKING SPIDER. LONG LIVE THE FUCKING QUEEN. Except for the part where I killed her.

As a precaution, I asked both my lovely Anaria Moonseeker and Miss L’Rayne why the forests were so sacred to them. They both laughed and I never really got my answer.

It’s the glitter. Night elves love them some glitter, and the trees in their forests leak the stuff like sap. Someday I want to find out just what the fuck is the deal with that, like what kind of trees ooze fucking GLITTER out of their bark, and why they only seem to grow around nigh elves.

I mean, I’m pretty sure Thalassian Brandy would like to know. She could have a personal supply of the stuff right there on hand.

As for the scorpion poison, well, there are ways of compressing that to make it more visible on paper. It’s the same colour as the ink that I used before, thanks to a solution Anaria prepared, but it can still be toxic if you were to eat it. Since I’ve used it quite finely, you may simply experience some disorientation or sickness, but I don’t see that that being a problem, unless you eat paper.

Wait… disorientation? You mean to say you can be HIGH on this shit? No wonder there are always so many trolls always hanging around the inscription place in the Drag.

I hope that the lovely young shaman Rue’kara can get her stationaries back soon! How unfortunate that her own letters are limited to such a pulp. She probably has so much to say, poor child.

Yeah, you know what? I think you’ve got the “so much to say” pretty well covered. Let’s not drag Ruekie into this.

It would seem a certain metal-beared goblin had quite a bit to say

Hi, pot. This is Sarlin. You’re black.

I, for one, am irate, but the ways of the Light have taught me that anger and resentment will only lead to a manifestation of regret and ever-building hatred,

The next time you two chat, could you ask the Light what the fuck it’s talking about?

I have to agree on one point that he made; I haven’t really been of much help, have I?

Oh geez, why do I get the feeling she’s about to start Dontragging? Like, even more?

I was travelling at the time, which I tend to do every few months or so, and when I came back, I did notice a sort of difference. A kind of hush, as though I’d just arrived after a tragic event had taken place. I felt inclined to ask the Highlord, and I did, but even he was at a loss for words, and that is truly saying something. I mean, really.

STOP THE FUCKING PRESSES, SHOCKING NEWS WITH AN IRONIC LOOK-WHO’S-TALKING CHASER

I haven’t actually travelled backwards through time, nor forwards, but I visited the Caverns of Time, and I saw some of the rifts here and there pulling and tugging, as though the place felt a turn when I entered it. Somehow, I feel slightly connected to it. It’s a sensation that I cannot describe well, but there’s a familiarity about it that I am trying to make sense of, as though I’d been there before. Maybe an alternate me? Wow, I wonder what she does for a living.

I’ll bet you anything she’s not a mime.

We know that there are multiple timelines out there, and we know that, without the assistance of the Bronze Dragonflight, the events of the entwined timeways wouldn’t have been resolved. Be wary, good sir.

Dude, are you seriously giving ME a speech on not getting mixed up in timeline fuck-uppery? Hey, I’ve got an idea, how about I get Faranell in here and you can give him a whole speech about making sure he doesn’t get himself unstuck in time for like a zillion years. Earth Online says hello:

wonka

With regards to being of any use to you, I’d merely have you know that I do not plan on leaving Hearthglen for quite some time,

Well at least I know where not to go for the next month or two.

Thank you for your time.

Well you fucking well burned up enough of it.

Speaking of which. When you write back — BECAUSE I KNOW YOU WILL — you are officially getting the modified Twitter treatment. Are you reading carefully? Go grab some of your not-for-snack-time paper and scorpion ink, and write this down: YOU ARE OFFICIALLY ON A 250-WORD LIMIT FOR ALL FUTURE LETTERS. Or, what the hell, if you want to go OVER 250 words, whatever, knock yourself out, but I am going to STOP READING at word #250. Are we clear on this? Are we good? Okay? Good.

Fucking hell. I don’t get paid enough for this job. I really don’t.

 

Most Honored Warchief,

Greetings once again Warchief Hellscream. I come bearing ill tidings from Towlong Steppes. I was out leading some of your Horde adventurers through and giving them a Lay of the land while on the way for clean up duty on the Isle of Thunder. Along the way, we passed by a giant eel, G’nathus. The undead warrior and orc shaman decided that it might be a bit of fun to go and test themselves against such a creature. I agreed, if only to keep them alive against such a beast. At first, it seemed to go very well. The warrior took electrocution like nothing I had ever seen before! Then a squid came from nowhere and decided to see if my totems were filled with beer (they’re keg-shaped, you see)! That sadly broke all my concentration and we were forced to flee, but not without some injuries. The poor shaman was smacked around, almost worse than the warrior! Thank the Celestials for ahnks, by the way!

Before this old man babbles for too much longer, I must regretfully inform you that the Shado-Pan has decided to bill the Horde for the loss of precious reagents and my totems. Not that I require the financial compensation, but Lord Zhu insists! Really! He started going on about the outsiders bringing ruin to our land again. It is a very…tiring speech.

Regretfully yours,

–Shen Wei Pureblossom

You do not get to talk about “tiring speeches” immediately after Sarlin’s letter.

That said… Hang on, you mean I’m getting stuck with ANOTHER bill? Is this how things work for that panda-Tirion Zhu guy? Something happens that you don’t like, so you ring up an itemized list to send along to whoever you can? Not to mention, I just finished LOOKING OVER the aforementioned itemized list, and are you fucking KIDDING me? What are your totems fucking MADE of, diamonds?! I thought they were listing the price in coppers when I saw that shit. What the fuck is the exchange rate down there? Does 500 gold mean something different to you people than it does up here? Did you fucking switch to the metric system or some shit? WTF?!

And let’s not even get STARTED on the reagents! I’m going over this list, and there is LITERALLY nothing on here that I can’t walk over to the Valley of Wisdom and buy for pocket change. DON’T BELIEVE ME, COME ON BY. DISCOUNT ANKHS ON ME.

Actually.

Hang on.

It just occurred to me — if this invoice of yours even REMOTELY resembles the actual prices of reagents down there in Pandaria, and it’s not just Zhu’s-his-face gouging me with like an 8000% markup, this might be an opportunity to put a dent in the ol’ Shayari-induced cash flow problem. Because if I can buy this shit HERE for like 20 silver a pop, then bring it on down to Pandaria and sell it to you pandas for a hundred times that, and STILL be way below Scarf Boy’s asking price… Hmm…

Spirits help me, I’m starting to think like a goblin. CONGRATULATIONS, UNIVERSE, YOU WIN AGAIN.

Meanwhile… you mean to say, you were going about your business, and a fucking SQUID came swimming over just to try to dip into your keg totems? What kind of a fucking dumbass squid is that? Is it some kind of Dontrag squid? Because that seems like something he would do. Or Utvoch. Whichever one of them it is. Maybe the other one was the eel or something. Eelvoch, maybe. Ellvoch and Dontrag-the-Squid. Why the fuck not. Seems to match up brainpower-wise.

 

Hey, Garry.

I’m Valinora. Don’t ask any questions. I’m here for one thing and one thing only; EPIC VERSE.

I had a scroll through the mailbags and I saw a little introduction suggested by one of your readers. Hope you don’t mind if I do the same. By the way, you OWNED Varian. I dare you to go up against Thrall next time. Hate that guy. He didn’t steal anybody’s bacon, he stole all their pigs, forced them to make the bacon and then claimed to have made it himself. Ugh.

Anyway. A topic that I’m sure you’ll have no hesitation with, given your…knowledge of felweed.

“By now, he had one joint too many,”

Go!

–Valinora “Lightshorn”, Stormwind City.

Oh, hey, check it — somebody who gets right to the point. It’s like you’re the anti-Sarlin or something. First off, though:

notgarry2

Now granted, you didn’t exactly endear yourself to me with the Garry thing (and I mean, seriously, people, isn’t it getting old at this point? Even the basic campfire joke fizzled out faster than this) (Get it? Campfire? Fizzled out? BA DUM BUM), and plus there’s the small matter that you appear to be HUMAN. On the other hand, you DID get to the point of your letter before wiping out enough trees to render hundreds of poor disadvantaged night elf strippers glitterless, and then you topped that off by having the good sense to know a good ol’ EPIC VERSE thrashing of King Vajayjay when you see it. Additional kudos for getting a good jab in at Thrall, because man oh man has HE been on a one-way trip to Insufferable City. Dude might as well take his vainglorious ass over to the vaingloryhole and fucking blow himself there, at the rate he’s going.

Anyway, you got to the point, you delivered a good burn on EACH side of the faction divide, and what the hell, I’m not one to pass up a chance to lay down a little EPIC VERSE. So here we go. YOU ASK, GARROSH DELIVERS.

By now, he had one joint too many.
(Point of fact, he’d gone over by twenty.)
Came down with giggle fits,
Would have lost all his wits,
If to start with he’d even had any.

In his stupor he thought he’d go swimming,
With a head that with felweed was brimming;
So he and his buddy —
Whose mind, too, was muddy —
Jumped in while their dimwits were dimming.

So in their felweed-fueled delusion,
They swam off to sea in seclusion;
They went round and round,
And when they were found,
They managed to cause more confusion:

I don’t know how much felweed they did,
But one moron thought he was a squid,
While his buddy, with zeal,
Thought that he was an eel,
While around in the waters they slid.

So when they encountered bystanders,
They thought that they’d caught a gander
Of a beer-party kegger,
So up like a beggar,
The stupid squid chose to meander.

He made a big mess seeking brew,
Now I’m stuck with the bill for those two.
I’m pissed off, but whatever —
You know you can’t ever
Spell “dumbass” without D and U.

You asked for some rhymes, so I wrote ’em,
About morons who smashed up some totems.
They’re going to need hearses —
At least some good nurses,
’Cause they’re gonna get stabbed in their scrotums.

EPIC VERSE!

 

Okay, that’s going to do it for this time. As always, keep those letters coming!

 

[Next mailbag December 7! E-mail the Warchief using the link at the top of the right sidebar, or use the handy form below:]