Prada was still nowhere to be found, Cob and Vi had been called away on personal tasks. Cordagan, Kaide and I haunted the guild hall, not sure what to do with ourselves. Cordagan had taken up enchanting along with his tailoring, and Kaide decided to try working the skins she’d found, instead of selling the leather. I took up the scribe’s art.
It was quiet for some weeks. We listened to the stories the older guild members told, we drank, we plied our new trades. We were waiting for something, but even now I don’t know what it was we were waiting for.
I think Shoryl noticed our plight. While the three of us were hanging around as was our new tendency, Shoryl arrived with a young dwarf. Not being the type of leader who hangs back and lets things happen, she walked right up to us with this dwarf. “My friends, ” she said, “I beleive we have another companion for you, to hopefully get you back to honing your skills as heroes! I’d like you to meet Rosedove.”
We raised our mugs, and I noticed Sonaira setting a fourth mug at our table, then the two humans disappeared, leaving us with our somewhat reserved new friend. “Have a seat,” I said, trying to break the ice a little. “I’m Sruith, and this is Cordagan, we’re both skilled in combat magics. He in the arcane, I in shadow. Kaide, here, is a shaman, and a fine healer.”
Rosedove smiled as she slid into her seat, “I’m just a warrior, I…”
“Just what we need!” Kaide smiled.
“I’ve really only ever killed beasts, a few Dark Iron…” Rosedove protested.
“That’s all right, ” Cordagan chimed in, “We all started there, but we’ve been on some wonderful adventures since then, and Kaide has kept us alive through it all!” And then we beset her with the stories of the Deadmines, Wailing Caverns, and even traveling into the heart of Orgrimar.
By the end of the story of Ragefire Chasm, we had her hooked. She still didn’t think she would be much help, but we promised that so long as she could keep the creatures from hitting me and Cordagan too much, we’d take care of the rest.
“Now we just need to find something to do!” I said.
“But where should we look?” Rosedove asked.
“Let’s start with our trainers. They’re usually quite helpful. And if that doesn’t work, maybe we’ll run across someone else who needs something.” Cordagan suggested.
So we all went to seek out our trainers. As I arrived in the Mystic Ward, I was greeted by High Priest Rohan. The High Priest of Ironforge! “Ah, Sruith, there you are!” he said, “I was worried that you might not come by today, and so I sent a messenger to the guild. High Priestess Laurena sent word from the Stormwind Cathedral that she wants to see you.”
While I had set out to make a name for myself and my guild, I certainly didn’t anticipate it starting to happen so soon. Someone I’d never met, my own High Priest’s compatriot in Stormwind City, had called for me. I couldn’t ignore this summons, but what of the others? As if reading my mind, Rohan said, “Tell your friends you must go, but don’t be afraid. I would not expect that the High Priestess will not allow you to travel wherever you must with them.”
So I turned to head back to the guild hall, and saw that Cordagan was talking quietly with one of the mage trainers. As he turned away, I saw it in his eye, he’d been given some sort of message. We left the Mystic Ward together, and I learned that he, too, was being sent to Stormwind. I began to wonder if Shoryl was somehow behind this, as she was quite renown in her home city.
When we arrived in the guild hall, Kaide and Rosedove were waiting for us. “We’re to go to Stormwind.” Kaide said by way of greeting, “Both of us.”
Cordagan laughed aloud, “As are we! To Stormwind, then. I doubt this is some fool errand, I saw that it was High Priest Rohan who told Sruith. And it was Magister Sparkfizzle who told me. Neither have the time for such a joke.” We all laughed at that, it was true, each of us had been sent by the leader of our local trainers.
A trip to the Deeprun Tram took us into the glorious city of Stormwind. None of us had ever been there before, and so we were all busy looking around as soon as we got out of the tram tunnel. The tram station is located inside what is referred to as the Dwarven District of Stormwind, though you wouldn’t be able to tell unless you noticed that all of the shops and inns are run by Dwarves! There’s so many people of every race in the Alliance buying, selling, and trading their wares that it can be hard to see 10 feet in front of you.
And the heroes! I saw several priests, and several of them looked as if they’d been made of Shadow themselves. Someday, I would master the arts so well! But first, we had tasks to complete. I tried to ask a passing hero where the Cathedral was, but he leapt onto a dragon and flew away. A tamed dragon! So I settled for asking a guard, who was quite polite in answering. We weren’t far away at all.
Much to my surprise, Cordagan had to go to a place called the Mage District, and the others were sent to other locations. We decided that we would get our errands completed and meet at the inn just outside the tram. After all, it was a dwarven tavern, so the ale would be good.
I followed the directions I’d been given by the guard carefully, but at the same time marvelled at the close together buildings and open air. And the canals! They were fascinating. The architecture was nowhere near as grand as that of the dwarves, but… then I turned into the Cathedral District, and saw the Stormwind Cathedral. It was made of pure white stone, and had blue and gold glass windows. It fair emanated the Light! I strode up the steps of the Cathedral in awe. This was such a beautiful building. As I walked into the main hall, I was less awestruck, but on reflection, the simplicity of the chamber is a testament to the sacrifices of the heroes of the light.
I was greeted by a man in simple robes, and in turn I asked him how I would go about gaining an audience with High Priestess Laurena. I showed him the message I’d been given. He smiled at me, and turned toward the dais at the other end of the hall, “She’s right up there, and I see she’s not speaking with anyone. You can just go on up.” he told me.
I stayed my hand from pinching myself by force of will alone, and strode with as much confidence as I could muster up to the foot of the dais. As I neared, the High Priestess smiled at me, “Sruith?” she asked. I nodded, unable to find my voice. She beckoned me up next to her. “I’ve a particular task that I think you and your friends might be well suited for.” she said.
“You do?” I asked, perhaps a bit incredulously.
“I do. I’ve spoken with some of the other trainers in Stormwind, and we all think that the four of you are well suited to this particular task. Come with me, and I will fill you in on the details.” I walked with her out the the Stormwind Cemetary, and I learned that a magical staff could be made from items found in a place now known as Shadowfang Keep. She told me the story of Arugal, and of the Worgen. And then she told me that Genn Greymane was in Stormwind Keep, and had intimated to her that there were now Forsaken in this place. He’d sent a small force there to try to deal with the problem but they had been unsuccessful in doing so. “I believe a young night elf will be joining the four of you in your task. A Druid, if I recall.”
It was the Shaman trainer who provided us with our means of getting to the Keep, so that we could arrive without days of travel north across nearly a third of the Eastern Kingdoms.
Let me introduce myself. My name is Sruith. My older sister, Breige, is a member in good standing of a guild called Higher Authority. Breige provided me with an introduction letter, since she’s currently retired and living in Shattrath city. She says it’s become much more peaceful there, and she enjoys jaunts out to Nagrand to exercise her pets.
I met with Sonaira, who is the second in command of Higher Authority, and she invited me to join the guild. She also told me that there had been several new recruits, surprisingly all dwarves, and all of about the same age. She suggested that Shoryl – the human paladin that started the guild – might appreciate it if the six of us could work on scouring the hidden dens of trouble around Azeroth. I agreed to at least meet these other dwarves.
The first that I met was Kaide. I’d actually seen her around when I was just getting started, though we didn’t talk much then. She told me that she had aspired to be a healer, and had been a little frustrated with the expectation that she go out and kill trolls, boars and troggs for the Council. I don’t think either of us was particularly sad about having to arrest the Dark Iron Emissary, though.
We had a pint or three before Prada arrived. Prada’s given name is Iwearprada, but we all agreed, over our fourth pint, that Prada was a much more sophisticated nickname. Prada is a paladin, so I’m sure she’ll fit right in with the guild, as there seem to be a lot of them hanging around. Prada mentioned that she’s protective of her friends, but doesn’t think she’d make a very good healer. I suggested that she could lead this merry band – for the three of us were indeed quite merry, having had another round.
Shortly after, Cordagan arrived at the inn. I eyed him carefully, for he was wearing the same type of robes I had acquired. But watching him move, he was no priest – and certainly not as well versed in the darker side of the Light as I am, however meager my talent might actually be. He pulled a chair up among us and ordered another round for the table. It turned out he was a mage, and though he didn’t tell us much about himself, he was quite relaxed even before he got to his second drink, which counted as my seventh.
Another round or two later, and another dwarf wandered in wearing the guild’s tabard. Since he looked to be about the right age, I hailed him. Sure enough, it was Violetviper. We immediately took to calling him Vi or Violet. He didn’t seem as friendly as the others at first, but a drink or two in him and he was muttering away, sometimes to himself, sometimes to all of us. Vi left after a little while, though, and Crimsoncobra, Vi’s brother, arrived. The two were like twins, though Cob was a rogue where his brother had taken the more direct path of the warrior.
And so, we had a great deal of ale, and a group willing to go forth together. For some reason, Vi and Cob never did show up anywhere together, but such can be the way of brothers. We decided that we would let the Light be our guide as to where we would go, and resolved to meet in two weeks’ time. I decided to take that time to rest well in Ironforge, and maybe get in the good graces of the gnomes, since I’m not all that keen on Moira Bronzebeard’s ‘politics’.