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Archive for the ‘Kaelinda’ Category

Three weeks later, I continue to have an incredibly difficult time disciplining myself to focus on schoolwork rather than noodling around in WoW.

I spent about a week and a half doggedly queuing for Kul Tiras dungeons until I got the robe and belt of both the green (Normal) and blue (Heroic) versions of the Kul Tiras cloth dungeon set.

I took Kinevra back to the Broken Isles to finish her Order Hall Campaign and earn the Archmage title.

I took Kaelinda back to Nazjatar and completed the Nazjatar Campaign mostly for RP reasons.

I took Kaelinda back to the Broken Isles and completed the Legionfall Campaign so that she could then get the Mage Class Mount — the Archmage’s Prismatic Disc is the only one of the Class Mounts that I’ve been really and truly envious of when I’ve seen other people riding it around.

Inspired by Gnomecore, I toyed with the notion of pushing Kaelinda through the Balance of Power questline. She already has the necessary Azsuna and Suramar quest progression and Azsuna, Stormheim, and Suramar reputation. I’m mildly interested in the Balance of Power appearance for Aluneth, but I don’t much care for the Balance of Power apperances for Felo’melorn or Ebonchill. So maybe I’ll come back to that sometime in Shadowlands.

While hanging out in the Hall of the Guardian, I saw a couple of other Mages wearing the cosmetic reward set for beating Deaths of Chromie and thought, O, I should go give that a try — and then I thought, nah, I don’t have that kind of time right now. That’s another thing that maybe I’ll come back to sometime in Shadowlands.

I’ve more or less given up on the idea of gathering any more stuff out of BfA LFR; I can’t afford to spend naptime or my nighttime hours idling in a 1-2 hour DPS LFR queue.

What I would still like to accomplish before the Shadowlands pre-patch arrives is A) get Kaelyla leveled and geared and ready to go and B) do some more Horrific Visions with Kerisa and get the second upgraded appearance for the Shroud of Resolve.

But for the next two or three weeks, I’ve really got to be disciplined and do schoolwork.

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Alas, it was wishful thinking that misread the notes about the Echoes of Ny’alotha update to mean that if one character on an account got a rank 1 Shroud of Resolve, all characters would then be able to resume collecting Echoes of Ny’alotha.

Kinevra, Kaelinda, Kalaneia, and Kerisa have now completed “Beginning the Descent” and obtained their rank 1 Shrouds of Resolve. Kinevra has all of her rank 3 Essences; the others can now continue to gather Echoes of Ny’alotha to get the one or two Essences they still need. At some point, I’ll need to run each of them through the rest of the 8.3 questline, so they can cleanse Corrupted items and to decide which of them will take on the task of running Horrific Visions to get the rank 5 appearance for the Shroud of Resolve.

Some other things I still want to do before the Shadowlands pre-launch events begin —
* 7.1 Alliance War Campaign
* Pride of Kul Tiras questline
* recruit Kul Tirans
* Heritage of the Sin’dorei questline
* go back to Broken Isles with Kinevra to finish Order Hall campaign & get Archmage title

~*~*~

Kamalia hadn’t quite finished getting the Mechagon stuff she needed to buy the rank 3 Purification Protocol when the Echoes of Ny’alotha changes came out a couple of weeks ago. She’s now finished that, so bye-bye Mechagon — for good this time!

Kamalia and Karaelia are now retired, more-or-less. Kam will still go out to do Emissaries when the reward is 2K gold, and she’ll send her minions on money missions, but that’s all. I haven’t gotten the Shroud of Resolve with either of them, and I’m not sure if I will.

~*~*~

I’ve been ticking off Mogging goals, too —
* Kinevra & Kaelinda got all that I wanted out of Eternal Palace LFR
* between them, the three cloth wearers collected the Normal Zuldazar cloth dungeon set
* Kerisa got the partial recolor of the Kul Tiras leather dungeon set that comes from reputations and Heroic Mechagon
* Kinevra farmed enough more Seafarers Doubloons to get the other two colors of the Tricorne Hat

Here’s the Mogging stuff I still want to do:
* clothies run Heroic Kul Tiras dungeons to collect that armor set
* clothies LFR Uldir to collect that set
* LFR first and second wings of Dazar’alor to get Phoenixfire Staff and crown from Opulence
* Kinevra farm Darkshore Warfront when it’s up to finish collecting Moonpriest set (just robes & gloves to go!) and get the Sentinel’s Branch staff

~*~*~

And then, of course, I’ll want to level Void Elf Mage, Highmountain Tauren Druid, and Kul Tiran Mage to 120 to get their Heritage Armors. Kaelyla (Void Elf) will also need to get her rank 1 Shroud of Resolve and rank 3 Essences so that she’ll be ready to go to Shadowlands, too; the others may or may not, depending on how much of the rest of my to-do list is still unfinished when they get to level 120.

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My college’s Spring Break is officially next week. Classes were cancelled this week, and I should have spent the time practicing with screencasting and web-conferencing software to get ready for taking my courses online after Spring Break. Spring Fever hit me hard in the middle of the week, though, and I spent an afternoon playing Kinevra through chapters 4 – 6 of the 8.0 Alliance War Campaign and doing the Tyrande’s Vengeance questline instead of working. While doing those things, I was sitting in LFR queue for the second wing of Dazar’alor — trying for the crown, of course. Since she reached level 120 a few weeks ago, Kinevra has also achieved Friendly with both Mechagon and Nazjatar to get the Rank 1 versions of those Essences. Kinevra’s ilevel and Heart level have both surpassed Kamalia’s.

Now with Blizzard implementing double XP gain for the next month, I’m sorely tempted to finish leveling Kerisa, Kaelinda, and Karaelia to 120 instead of doing schoolwork…

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Now that we know what 9.0 will be, it’s time to think about my priorities for the remaining duration of Battle for Azeroth.

1) Kinevra needs to get to 120 and do the Alliance War Campaign while there will still be enough folks in BfA LFR for there to be reasonable queue times. This is a primary goal partly for seeing the Alliance side of the story and partly for being able to recruit the Kul Tirans and roll a gorgeous curvy ringlet-haired Kul Tiran Mage.

2) Kaelinda needs to get to 120 and get the Sin’dorei Heritage Armor.

3) Kerisa needs to get to 120 so that she can wear all of the Island Expeditions stuff I’ve collected off of the AH for her and to be in position to potentially be my first Horde character to level in 9.0 (because Balance Druids, with their self-heals, are more robust than Mages).

4) After reaching 120 and kitting themselves up in Benthic gear (they all already have full sets of tokens awaiting them), Kinevra, Kaelinda, and Kerisa need to go smack the Jadefire Masters and Opulence around until they cough up the Phoenixfire Staff and the crown, respectively. A lesser degree of LFR priority is collecting the Uldir and Eternal Palace LFR cloth sets.

5) Kamalia needs to get her Heart of Azeroth to level 70 (currently at 65) so she can see all of the dragon stories currently available, and then to whatever level is required for the additional bit(s) of dragon story that will be in 8.3.

6) Kinevra would like to collect the Darkshore Warfront set. Kerithian may not need to get to 120 if the Night Warrior customization option unlocks for her when Kinevra does the Darkshore Warfront introduction questline.

7) Void Elf, Highmountain Tauren, Kul Tiran, Vulpera, and maaaaybe Nightborne alts will eventually want to be leveled for their Heritage Armors, but this will remain a low priority, long game project. Between limited space remaining on my account and alt fatigue, I’ve decided that I will only create additional Allied Races characters if I like the Heritage Armor of that race well enough to want to level from scratch to get it.

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The story concept of Shadowlands isn’t hooking me any more than the story concepts of Warlords of Draenor or Battle for Azeroth originally appealed to me. Warlords had some great characters & character moments (I love Draka in Warlords!), though, and the Alliance-side leveling story story, being unified by the meteoric trajectory of Yrel, felt more cohesive than the Horde-side leveling story. I’ve also found myself much more engaged by the stories of Battle for Azeroth than I initially expected to be. So I am tentatively optimistic that Shadowlands will also have characters, moments, and locations that I will discover that I like very much indeed.

With four different endgame campaign stories to play in Shadowlands, I’ll want to have at least four characters at level 120 by the end of Battle for Azeroth. Three of those four characters will be Kaylynda, Kaelinda, and Kerisa; who the fourth will be, I’m not sure yet. Kerisa will of course Covenant with the Night Fae of Ardenweald. Kaylynda will probably choose the Kyrian of Bastion. Kaelinda is the most likely candidate to choose the Venthyr of Revendreth because the concept art for that faction suggests that their gear will coordinate nicely with the Sin’dorei Heritage Armor for Mogging mix-and-match and also because Kaelinda would like another chance to poke Kael’thas in the eye. That leaves the Necrolords of Maldraxxus… If I want to send a clothie there, the most logical choice from an RP-standpoint would be my Warlock, Kalaneia. The Vulpera Mage that I’ll be creating as soon as Patch 8.3 goes live could also be a good alt to team up with the Necrolords — the Vulpera have that scrappy fight-for-survival attitude and, thinking of Nisha and her maps and battle plans, could work with the “spy” angle of the Necrolords.

Kamalia will be retiring for Shadowlands. During Legion and again in Battle for Azeroth, I was more interested in doing end-game activities — specifically LFR for Transmogrification shinies — with my cloth-wearing Mages and leather-wearing Druid than with my mail-wearing Shaman. Because Kamalia had leveled first, however, she had a huge lead on story and reputation progress toward the Pathfinder achievements, so I felt like it would be better to keep going on those things with her than to play catch-up with another character. In Shadowlands, I want to have the character(s) who I’ll actually want to do end-game activities with be the first one(s) to level.


In-character, Kamalia finally met her match in Haitou Rivermane (one of Jale Rivermane’s sons) and will be getting married and settling down to attempt to give her parents some grandcalves before she gets any older. Kerisa, meanwhile, spent the latter part of Legion and the first year of Battle for Azeroth being pregnant with her second child, then nursing the infant. She weaned her son, allowing her to return to active service with the Cenarion Circle, just in time for her to help with repelling the Void assaults on Nordrassil and the Emerald Dream.

I’m most likely going to purchase the Heroic Edition because of the special armor set — and the level 120 boost will go to Karaelia so that I can have a character of each of the four armor classes prepared to move into Shadowlands. However, I will most likely not level Kamalia and Karaelia in Shadowlands until the end-of-expansion lull.

I am relieved that there isn’t a new Class. That would be another alt that I’d definitely want to play, but considering that I haven’t even got a second character to 120 in Battle for Azeroth yet, when would I find the time and energy for it?

I’m excited for more character customization options! Kjerstin will be getting herself some Wildhammer tattoos. I wonder what new customization options Tauren and Blood Elves will get?

I’ll probably roll up a Pandaren (or maybe a Void Elf) Death Knight to check out the Bolvar Needs More Minions starting zone, but that character won’t be a permanent addition to my roster. I’ll need another temporary toon to explore the new 1-10 tutorial zone, as well.

I’ll continue to work on leveling my Allied Races characters (Highmountain Tauren Druid, Void Elf Mage, Kul Tiran Mage, Vulpera Mage) for their Heritage Armor. The level squish and ability to level from 10 – 50 in any previous expansion’s content (Wowhead, Blizzard Watch) will help a lot with that, I hope!

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Way back in 2011, Millya of Manalicious* was doing 5-minute sketch portraits (batch 1, batch 2) for her friends, and I requested a portrait of Kaelinda**, thinking that I might use it for digital coloring practice…

Eight and a half years later, I’ve finally gotten around to doing that.

drawing by Stacey Landry; colors by me

~*~*~

* I miss Manalicious and still regret that I didn’t ever commission a watercolor portrait of one of my characters, even though I wouldn’t actually be going to BlizzCon…

** because I’d already gotten a Millya portrait of Kamalia, which has been my Gravatar ever since

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Why do birds suddenly appear
Every time you are near?
Just like me, they long to be
Close to you.

— Burt Bacharach & Hal David, sung by The Carpenters

I was sitting in a long meeting earlier this afternoon and this wandered out of my pen and onto my notebook page. Apparently Kaelinda’s relationship with her Special Friend back in Silvermoon City is at the stage of mutual longing, yet mutual trepidation about actually expressing the feeling.

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The morning sun filtering through the curtains of the suite of rooms which she’d been given in the Hall of the Guardian awakened Kaelinda from a jumbled dream of Silvermoon before Arthas, Silvermoon after Arthas, the Dawnstrider estate in Eversong Woods, and a certain someone* waiting for her to come home again. Sighing, she slid out of bed, tidying the bedclothes with an unvocalized handflick cantrip that she had been doing for so much of her life that she did it now without even consciously thinking about it. After bathing, dressing, and eating a simple breakfast of fruit, nuts, and quark** that she kept stored in her rooms, she went downstairs to the morning meeting of the Council of Tirisgarde.

Kaelinda was not entirely comfortable with her role as the First Conjurer of the renewed Order of Tirisgarde. It had only been a few short years ago that the Magisters of Silvermoon had granted her the rank of Magistrix, after all, and she hadn’t yet taken on even one apprentice. Until the Council was able to determine the cause of and cure for Meryl Felstorm’s debilitating illness, however, she would have to take his place.

First, the Council received the daily petition from an Emissary from one of the peoples of the Broken Isles. Next, Archmage Melis reviewed the notices she’d received in the past day about errands that required the skills of the other Archmages of the Council. They usually ended up assigning those errands to Kalec, Ravandwyr, Esara, or Millhouse, while Kaelinda requested that Archmage Modera accompany her. Then the Council discussed with Grand Conjurer Mimic the training progress and needs of the Apprentices and Invokers. There were potential improvements to the Hall to be considered with Chronicler Elrianne, armor and talismans to be requisitioned with Minuette, and the Focusing Crystal to be charged by Conjurer Awlyn and her staff. When all of these tasks were done, Kaelinda met with Modera to review the notices about various errands or opportunities throughout the Broken Isles. They selected which errands they would do to fulfil the petition of the Emissary, then decided if they wanted to do any of the other errands, as well. The business of the Council frequently took up most of the morning.

Sometimes, Kaelinda went back to her rooms to take lunch by herself. Sometimes, she went to the Purple Parlor with other Mages from the Hall of the Guardian. Sometimes, she went to the Ledgerdemain Lounge with her Sin’dorei relatives. Occasionally, she went to the Filthy Animal with her Tauren friends. Despite the revolting name and the outrageous rumors about Chef Lon’gomba and Gnomes, the food there was really quite decent — provided you ordered something off of the establishment’s traditional menu. There were two new sections on the menu since Dalaran had moved to the Broken Isles: Pandarian cuisine and Broken Isles delicacies. Actually, the Pandarian cuisine was also decent, but anyone who dared to order something from the Broken Isles menu frequently got a badly burned mess.

After lunch, Kaelinda usually did one of two things. Either she and Edirah delved into the the vast library in the center of the Hall of the Guardian, hunting down more information about Felo’melorn, Aluneth, Ebonchill, and the Mages who’d wielded them, or she worked on sewing projects*** in her rooms. Today, she decided to embroider another section of the elaborate decorations on the Imbued Silkweave Robe she was making.

In the late afternoon or early evening, Kaelinda and Modera set out to fulfil the Emissary’s petition. When that task was completed, Kaelinda visited Shal’Aran and distributed Ancient Mana crystals to First Arcanist Thalyssra, Arcanist Valtrois, and Chief Telemancer Occuleth. Although she now understood, as she had not realized when she first met Runas the Shamed and the exiled Leyweaver, Lyndras, that the dependence of the Nightfallen on condensed forms of mana was because it was literally food to them — not quite the same thing as the subtle addiction of the Quel’dorei to the flow of mana from the Sunwell — chasing after Ancient Mana deposits while she was in Suramar still made her feel vaguely like she had become a mana-addict again by proxy. If she had the time and physical energy, she would ask Thalyssra what else she could do that day to help the Nightfallen. If not, she would retire to the Hall of the Guardian and spend the rest of the evening studying magic and practicing her spellwork+. It wouldn’t do, after all, to be outperformed by one of the other members of the Order of Tirisgarde the next time that Mimic requested that she participate in an exhibition duel for the benefit of the Apprentices…

~*~*~

* Until just recently, I wasn’t certain what Kaelinda’s romantic status was. She’s begun hinting to me that she’s got a special male friend who lives in Silvermoon City, though where that relationship falls on the scale of “outwardly platonic, but desperately wishing for more” to “married with children”, she hasn’t told me yet (I suspect that it’s more toward the UST end).

** A cultured, thickened and strained, slightly sweetened dairy product intermediate in texture between yogurt and cream cheese; a regional specialty of Eversong Woods.

*** I have more or less always imagined that the 5 – 10 seconds it takes to craft an item in-game only represents putting the final, finishing touches on it. All the real work of the crafting — the preparation of materials, the shaping and assembly of pieces, the meticulous labor of fine detail work — is something that the character occupies herself with when she’s not busy questing — that is to say, when I’m offline.

+ Although I, the player, almost never spend time with the training dummies, I imagine that my characters do practice their skills and train themselves in new techniques regularly. One can’t stay skilled enough to remain capable of being the leader second-in-command of one’s Class Order if one rests on one’s laurels, after all.

~*~*~

This story was brought to you by the challenge of the fortnight from Z & Cinder:

We want to read about a day in the life of your toon. This one is an opportunity to get as creative as you like. You can simply write about what you get up to in WoW each day. Or maybe you would write it like a diary entry from the point of view of your character, telling the story of their day to day life, going in to battle, fighting the Legion… it’s up to you!

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Kaelinda dinged 109 doing profession quests at the Darkmoon Faire last Sunday. I didn’t feel like she’d really done very much Legion stuff yet, so where did all that XP come from?

Hmm… she did all of Val’sharah. She did the first chapter in Azsuna and the first two chapters in Stormheim. She did her Mage order hall stuff at level 103 and got all of her Artifacts. She did the Exodar scenario. She did the Tailoring questline up until she got the first quest to go into a dungeon. She picked some flowers — aethril, dreamleaf, fjarnskaggl — and did the first quests for those herbs. And oh yeah, she did a couple of the bonus objective areas in Azsuna while working on the Tailoring and Mage questchains. So I guess that’s quite a bit of Broken Isles stuff, after all. But did she really get almost all of the rest of that XP from doing the Thunder Bluff and Old Dalaran fising dailies until she got the Jeweled Fishing Pole?!

Seeing that Kaelinda was so close to level 110, on Thursday night I decided to go questing with her instead of starting the Legionfall campaign with Kamalia or taking someone to the Thousand Boat Bash. She started by going to Azurewing Repose to help the blue dragons.

At Azurewing Repose, Kaelinda was nearly overcome by the raw, unfiltered mana radiating from the fully exposed ley line.

It had been challenging to break free of the addiction to the flow of mana from the Sunwell, that addiction that she hadn’t even known that she had until the Sunwell was destroyed… She had managed it eventually, sooner even than many Sin’dorei, despite — or perhaps because of — being a Mage and interacting with and shaping mana more frequently and intimately than those with other careers. Once, some years ago, she had gone to the Exodar in Human disguise; she had rapidly fallen into a daze from the haze of mana in the atmosphere there. She had thought, at the time, that she had mastered the addiction, and she had been somewhat ashamed of herself for succumbing so easily. This… this was a hundredfold… maybe a thousandfold more potent and difficult to resist. She struggled to stay focused and clear-headed. It would have been so blissful to just lie down in those shimmering pools, resting her head on the shore, like soaking in a nice hot bath, and dream for awhile.

It didn’t help that Aluneth kept greedily siphoning up the energy.

She had a great deal of empathy for Runas, because he reminded her of those first terrible weeks after the destruction of the Sunwell.

He also frightened her, because he reminded her of what she could have become if she hadn’t been able to begin recovering from the addiction as soon and as well as she did. She was both fascinated and horrified by her introduction to the Nightborne elves at Zarkhenar.

Completing the Azurewing Repose storyline got her over halfway from 109 to 110. That was also a good stopping point, so I continued on Friday.

After she had helped them defeat the Nightborne attack, the dragons sent Kaelinda to meet a ghostly Prince of the ancient Highborne elves, saying that he would be able to help her obtain the Tidestone of Golganneth. Kaelinda had spent many years studying what was known of the Highborne, so she was keenly interested — excited, to tell the truth — to learn about them more directly.

Kaelinda wondered what the rest of the Starlance family’s story was. Where had the children been, that they were not in Nar’thalas when Azshara cursed the city? What careers had Kallistia and Olothil pursued before they decided to become Mages? Or had they been Mages all along, hiding in Eldre’thalas? How had they remained so juvenile youthful over ten thousand years?

Nar’thalas Academy… I loved this place the first time I came through, with Kamalia, and I loved it just as much the second time through. I’ll have to get Kaelinda the Key to its past the next time that Archaeology quest comes up.

Kaelinda continued on and finished the zone after she dinged. The abrupt change of heart of the denizens of Nar’thalas toward their Prince stymied Kaelinda somewhat. For ten thousand years, Farondis’ subjects had hated him for what his defiance of Queen Azshara had cost them. Yet when Azshara confronted Farondis and dangled before him the hope of releasing his people from their curse, he defied her again… and now they suddenly respected him again?

It didn’t seem to make any sense. Could it have been because the revelation that Azshara was behind the Naga made them realize that Farondis cared for them and Azshara did not? And they’d rather be ghosts with a Prince who cared than properly alive (or dead?) with a Queen who didn’t? Or had they entirely misunderstood what Farondis had done and why — for ten thousand years? She would have to spend more time with the Court of Farondis, learning their personalities, history, and culture, to understand this thing.

Of course, Kaelinda was showered with things to do as soon as she returned to Dalaran and her Order Hall. Do World Quests! Go to Suramar! Take the Tear of Elune to Light’s Heart! Continue the Mage campaign! Go to the Broken Shore! I was surprised that she got pushed the Legionfall opening quest — I thought that she would have to complete the 7.0 Order Hall campaign first. She also needs to run the Eye of Azshara dungeon both to get the Tidestone and for her Tailoring quest. Because it was World Quests bonus week, I did World Quests — all the Emissaries that came up, plus a few extras to get to twenty. I had Kamalia send to Kaelinda the Artifact Knowledge catch-up thingy to get her to AK 20; then she spent most of the Order Resources she acquired from WQing to get to AK 25. She very quickly accumulated enough Artifact Power to fill up Aluneth from a handful of traits up to 20-some-odd. I think this AK/AP catch-up mechanism for alts works quite nicely!

So now I will be asking myself each evening: Suramar with Kaelinda, or Legionfall with Kamalia? Or be lazy and just do Emissary World Quests? 😛

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Kaelinda accompanied Karaelia to the Isle of Quel’Danas. “I should very much like to see this prismatic blade fully restored,” she explained, “and it might help your case with Ranger General Brightwing if a Sin’dorei on pilgrimage is with you. It has been some time since I last visited the Sunwell, since its renewal.”

As they approached the entrance to the Sunwell complex, a warden warned them, “Only those who have the Ranger General’s approval may enter the Sunwell Plateau.”

Kaelinda sighed. “This is the most sacred place known to the Sin’dorei, but it had been long enough since we regained control of the Sunwell that the guard had been relaxed and it had become much easier for pilgrims to gain entrance. Then Garrosh happened, and the guard here got more stringent again to protect against him trying to use the Sunwell for nasty purposes. Did you know that Regent-Lord Theron was thinking about opening talks with Stormwind for the Sin’dorei to rejoin the Alliance? Then there was that terrible incident with the Divine Bell in Darnassus, and the Purge of Dalaran, and now the guard here is tighter than it has ever been except for right after we reclaimed this place.”

Ranger General Brightwing scowled at them. “You would raise the hopes of our people with tales of Quel’Delar? Without proof of the truth of your claims, I see no reason to take you at your word.”

Karaelia unbuckled the scabbarded sword and handed it to him. He examined the hilt, and his demeanor changed.

“Oh, so you are the one with whom Myralion Sunblaze has been working. Well, then. And Magistrix Dawnstrider, I apologize, I did not recognize you at first. Still, I must verify that you are not trying to hoax our people with a cunningly crafted replica.”

“These have been trying times, of late,” Kaelinda acknowledged.

“I know of a way that we can test this sword,” said the Ranger General. “If you know the blade’s history –” he paused, looking at them in a significant sort of way, and they both nodded. Satisfied, he continued, “then you will recall that it was last wielded by Thalorien Dawnseeker in the defense of the Sunwell against the Scourge. He fell in what is now the Dead Scar, buying time for his regiment to make their own preparations. You will find his remains at the southern end of the Dead Scar on this isle. Visit them, and if his spirit gives you its blessing, I will allow you to enter the Sunwell with this blade.”

~*~*~

Karaelia looked out over the blackened, bone-carpeted Dead Scar and wondered how she would find one man’s remains among the debris. Perhaps the sword would give her an indication of when she had found its former master?

She was glad for Kaelinda’s company. The mage quickly prepared a small seeking spell that would search for armor items bearing the sigils of the Dawnseeker family. She sent it out across the Dead Scar, where it zipped back and forth, hovering here and there for a moment or two. At last it hovered in the same spot for several seconds, then exploded in a spray of firework-like sparks.

As Karaelia and Kaelinda approached the spot, both the sword and the armor-clad skeleton lying there began to glow. A ghostly regiment of high elves appeared. Their commander addressed them.

“We must defend the Sunwell from the enemy at all costs. I am ordering you to withdraw to the Sunwell proper to help prepare the defenses. I will make my stand here and buy you as much time as I am able. Use it well and make our prince proud. It has been a great honor to fight beside you in defense of our land and people.”

The ghostly regiment turned and walked northward toward the Sunwell. The commander faced southward, readying himself — and then he noticed Karaelia and Kaelinda.

“You! Strangers!” he said, “You are not my soldiers. Will you stay and stand with me to face the enemy?” When they nodded, he faced southward again and shouted, “Listen well, Scourge defilers! None of you will reach the Sunwell so long as I stand!”

A death knight on a deathcharger approached, proclaiming, “You will fall as your lands and city have before you. My lord will win a great victory here, and none will remember your name!”

Waves of Scourge assaulted the high elf commander, but with Karaelia and Kaelinda’s assistance, they were all destroyed. The ghost turned to them. “I… I wasn’t meant to survive this attack. Why has this happened? Why have you come here?”

His gaze fell upon the hilt of Quel’Delar. “It’s the sword!” he exclaimed, “Quel’Delar! You possess it!”

Astonishment filling his voice, he continued, “I don’t know how, but the blade has chosen you to be its new wielder. Take it with my blessing, and wield it against the Scourge as I once did.” He knelt before Karaelia, then vanished. The glow surrounding the sword and the armored skeleton rapidly faded away.

~*~*~

“You truly do carry Quel’Delar,” said Ranger General Brightwing, when they related to him what had occurred in the Dead Scar. “This is a great day for all of Quel’Thalas and the Sin’dorei. You have my leave to enter the Sunwell and finish the sword’s restoration. The children of Silvermoon have dreamt of this day for years.”

A warden escorted them into the Sunwell Plateau complex, leading them on a separate path from the one the rest of the pilgrims were taking. They soon reached the Sunwell itself.

At the edge of the Sunwell, a group of pilgrims was listening to Lady Liadrin. Karaelia and Kaelinda sat down to listen, too. The pilgrims nearest to them scooted away, instinctively shying from the evil radiated by the saronite in the blade of Quel’Delar.

“My brothers and sisters,” the Blood Knight Matriarch said, “words cannot describe what I felt upon seeing the Sunwell rekindled. In that moment, the Light revealed to me the truth of the terrible things I had done. Our people had walked a dark path, and mine was among the darkest of all.

It is a strength that we Sin’dorei all share. It is a strength we will need to free ourselves of the addiction ravaging our people. It will be the most difficult battle we have ever faced, but our resolve and the power of the Sunwell will sustain us until we have been restored to our greatness.”

The group of pilgrims applauded, then dispersed. Lady Liadrin withdrew from the edge of the Sunwell, following her own challenge to resist renewed addiction, and sat down on a bench. She closed her eyes and appeared to be meditating.

Karaelia knelt at the edge of the Sunwell and carefully immersed Quel’Delar in it. A shower of light burst forth, sparkling and crackling. A gasp, followed by the “ooh” and “ahh” of a crowd at a Midsummer Fire Festival fireworks show, arose from the pilgrims. The blade began to shine with a pure, clean radiance. It almost seemed to be singing with joy.

As Karaelia reached for the hilt, she could no longer feel the sticky sensation of saronite’s evil pulling on her soul. At the same time, the hilt seemed to be pushing her away with little arcs and pulses of light. Karaelia looked around, saw Lady Liadrin, and understood.

Thalorien Dawnseeker had told her that Quel’Delar chose its own wielders. It had chosen her to bring it here, but now that it was restored and purified, it was not hers to continue to bear.

She knelt before Lady Liadrin. “My Lady,” she began, unsure of quite how to say what she meant.

“Yes, young one?” Lady Liadrin opened her eyes, and Karaelia watched her expression change to awe as she looked over Karaelia’s head and saw Quel’Delar glowing in the Sunwell.

“My Lady Liadrin,” Karaelia began again, and now she knew what she should say, “here is Quel’Delar, the prismatic blade gifted by the dragonflights to your people so long ago and lost in the Scourge attack on the Sunwell. I know not why it chose me and my family and friends to recover it, but now that it is restored, there is only one person who has the right to wield it: you. You, the champion of the Light for the Sin’dorei.”

Lady Liadrin rose to her feet, placing a slightly shaking hand on Karaelia’s shoulder. “Am I truly laying my eyes on the weapon of Thalorien Dawnseeker?” she said, in a slightly breathless voice. “This is a wondrous day for all Sin’dorei. Our people, sin’dorei and quel’dorei alike, have dreamt of this for years. Quel’Delar rises again, as the Sin’dorei rise again and again from the ashes of defeat and betrayal!” Liadrin’s voice strengthened as she spoke, and now as she proclaimed these triumphant words, she stepped past Karaelia to the edge of the Sunwell, reached out, and Quel’Delar leapt into her hand. Liadrin held the prismatic blade high above her head, and the cheering of the elves echoed off of the faraway ceiling of the room.

Lady Liadrin lowered Quel’Delar. Wordlessly, Karaelia handed her its scabbard. As she sheathed the blade and buckled it to her side, Liadrin turned to look at Karaelia directly. “Thank you, Tauren — no, I know you, I have seen you working with my Knights. Karaelia. Thank you, Karaelia, for doing this great service for my people. You have done us, and yourself, a great honor. Light — or how do your people say it? An’she? An’she be with you.”

~*~*~

“So,” said Keija, when Karaelia returned to the farmhouse at Halfhill, “where is that sword we made from that battered old hilt that Kam gave you? I thought you went to the Sunwell to cleanse the taint of saronite from it. What happened? Did you drop it all the way in and lose it at the bottom, or something?”

“No,” Karaelia replied quietly, shaking her head. “I didn’t lose it. I gave it to Lady Liadrin. That sword… it choses its own masters, and once I took it there, and cleansed it, my part in its story was done. It was never really meant for me.”

Around the common room of the house, her sisters’ heads nodded. Kamalia looked up from her leatherworking and smiled at Karaelia. “I knew there was a reason why I felt like I ought to give that hilt to you. Well done, little sister, well done.”

~*~*~

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