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Though Kelilla had heard of the mass Gnome run from Gnomeregan to Booty Bay that had been occurring in mid-October for the past several years, she had never yet done it herself. The more she heard about it, though, the more interested she became in participating, so she spent the last year training for it. Finally, the day of the great race arrived…


I did the run twice: first with a new character created on Scarlet Crusade to join one of the official Running of the Gnomes guilds and be part of the “real thing” event, then again with Kelilla. To try to make my character stand out a bit, I gave her the “old” face and took her to the barbershop in Ironforge to get the “punky” haircut. I was rather delighted, however, to find someone else who had also chosen the “old” face!


I made this new Gnome a Priest because healing is the goal of the “real thing” event and because I thought the white and light blue robes of a Priest would look nice with the pink tabard and shirt.


Kelilla got into the spirit, too, dyeing her hair pink and changing her usual green SAFE uniform for a red equivalent.

This post is mostly screenshots, so click through the cut to (more…)

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When Argus first appeared in the skies on the 8th, Dalaran became an anxious place. Concerned Citizens clustered around the guards, asking for answers about what was happening. I ran through many of the shops, trying to find as many different quotes from the inhabitants of Dalaran as I could. A few days later, it occurred to me that I hadn’t gone into the First Aid shop yet. This is what I saw:

A few Dalaran Citizens were sitting near the back of the shop; when I clicked on them, they each had a debuff called “Inexplicable Feeling: Not feeling quite right”.

The next week, the 15th, the Concerned Citizens pestering the guards had been joined by Scared Citizens. Some of the Scared Citizens were fearfully running around the streets.

I made rounds of the city to see if the shopkeepers were saying any new and different things; they were. When I visited the First Aid shop, this is what I saw:

The previous week, I hadn’t noticed anything out of the ordinary as I approached the shop, but this week, there were ill-looking people gathering around the entrance:

This week, on the 22nd, some of the residents of Dalaran had become Terrified Citizens — some running around and others too frightened to do anything but cower in corners. I observed more new and different quotes from the shopkeepers; several of them talk about having a rush of customers or getting low on supplies.

The First Aid shop and the street around it had become even more crowded:

I stood around by the First Aid shop for quite a long time while I was writing up this post, and I saw the afflicted citizens say a variety of things:
“I… I don’t feel well.”
“Is it normal to see stars?”
“Please. You have to help us.”
“I feel it coming on again…”
“This has to end. I can’t take much more of this.”
“They say it’s all in your head, but this… this is different. I swear!”

What is going on here?

Even more curious, why haven’t I seen much of anything about this subplot of the pre-Patch 7.3 event on Wowhead yet? There’s a screenshot of the first few afflicted citizens sitting in the First Aid shop in the “Patch 7.3 Foreshadowing” post that Wowhead made on the 8th, but don’t think I’ve seen anything about the continuing developments and buildup of the Patch 7.3 foreshadowing in Dalaran since then. Maybe they just weren’t able to datamine anything about what this developing medical crisis is leading up to?

Or is this perhaps related to the Whispers of a Frightened World? I haven’t done that scenario yet because I haven’t been able to find the breadcrumb for it with either Kamalia or Kaelinda. Perhaps I’m not getting it because I haven’t been to the Broken Shore and done any of the Legionfall stuff yet?

I wonder what will happen in Dalaran next week when Patch 7.3 launches…?

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The burned-out husk of a world appeared suddenly in the sky. Though she didn’t know exactly how it had come to be there, the Underpowered Death Knight suspected that it had something to do with the activities of the Big Damn Heroes in the Broken Isles.

So she went to Dalaran.

Anxiety filled the floating city.

So did Draenei, conversing in excited tones.






So the ruined world was the Draenei homeworld, Argus, then? But how had it gotten to be looming over Azeroth?

And the Doomsayers were back, apparently feeling very Validated by this turn of events.

The first Doomsayer she talked to handed her a pamphlet. It was not the same as the pamphlets the Doomsayers had been handing out before the Legion Invasions began, a year ago. The Underpowered Death Knight decided to wait around and see how many different pamphlets she could collect, and compare the new pamphlets to to the ones she had collected last year.

A few were obvious sequels to the previous pamphlets.





The others did not correspond so well, but she matched them up as best she could.







She hoped that Archmage Khadgar and the Order Hall leaders knew what they were doing…

~*~*~

It was fun to discover this stuff for myself on Tuesday afternoon/evening, before Wowhead and Blizzard Watch made their posts about it. This is just a pre-patch event, but it feels more like a pre-expansion event!

~*~*~

I’ve now updated the image links in all of the Underpowered Death Knight posts and given them their own section on the Stories page.

Previously: Scenes from the Auction House dance party

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During the first year of this blog, I wrote a story about my Forsaken Mage, Kivrinne, defining for myself how I could play a Forsaken character that I was comfortable with when I was so generally un-comfortable with Forsaken culture as presented in the quests and zones centered on that race. Kivrinne is a bit of an eccentric, a bit of a rebel. She is an alchemist and an Apothecary, but unlike her colleagues, her main goal in (un)life is to find a true cure for the effects of the Plague.

When Cataclysm launched, I started playing through the updated Forsaken zones with Kivrinne, intending to write a story about her reactions to them as a follow-up to the previous story. By the time I finished Hillsbrad Foothills, however, I was so thorougly sickened by the New Forsaken that I couldn’t go on. I started the story, but didn’t get any farther than a few opening paragraphs that are now part of “Two Sisters, Two Curses”.

So I don’t really know much about what the Forsaken are up to in Arathi Highlands or the Hinterlands. I did play through Western and Eastern Plaguelands, however — with my Paladin, who wanted to do the Argent Crusade storylines there. Along the way, Karaelia encountered Argent Apothecary Judkins at the Plaguewood Tower. She knew right away that Kivrinne and Judkins needed to meet…

Although I only recently rediscovered these screenshots while looking through my screenshot library for other pictures in the process of updating image links, I think we may safely assume that for the past several years, Kivrinne has divided her time between her Undercity laboratory and Apothecary Judkins’ camp at Plaguewood Tower.

Even with a common life goal, there are many other aspects to a successful marriage, and so Kivrinne found her desired Relationship with Apothecary Judkins to be more challenging than she had initially naievely thought it would be.

Kivrinne’s apparent age has been a major obstacle. Although Kivrinne’s mind may now be reasonably mature, her body is stuck at the age she was when she Died to the Plague. When I originally wrote Kivrinne’s story, she was fifteen when she Died. Later, when I was trying to work out the timeline for her to be one of the youngest in a very large family whose eldest sibling had gone into Gilneas just before the closing of the Greymane Wall, I realized that she would have to be somewhat older. Starting an apprenticeship is an important part of Kivrinne’s story, however, so Kivrinne still needs to be quite young. I think that now I might retcon Kivrinne’s age at the beginning of her story to be eighteen or nineteen. Eighteen or nineteen is not quite as immature as fifteen, but it still would have given an ethical sort like Judkins — whose bodily age at time of Death is unknown, but probably well into adulthood — a pause to have this apparently very young girl pursuing him. He would have spent a certain amount of time rather strenuously trying to discourage her on the basis of the disparity in their bodily ages.

After that initial burst of infatuation wore off, Kivrinne was a bit surprised to realize that she had to figure out if she wanted to be friends with this fellow, let alone more. Fortunately, as she got to know him better, she did. Still, there have been quarrels, not infrequently about how best to approach that common life goal.

I’m not quite sure yet if Kivrinne’s relationship with Judkins would have actually progressed as far as marriage, though. Partly this is because I’m not quite sure what the general attitude of Forsaken culture is toward establishing new marriages (as opposed to maintaining old pre-Plague marriages). Partly this is because even though Judkins is a very minor NPC, I still hestitate to officially declare that my PC is RP-married to an actual in-game questgiver NPC.

Now, when am I going to find the time to level Kivrinne up into Northrend and get her to Friendly with the Argent Crusade so that I can make her an “Argent Apothecary Kivrinne” outfit…?

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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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This fortnight’s topic from Z & Cinder’s Blog Challenge is a perennial favorite of the altoholic:

Making a new character in WoW can be one of the most fun things to do; you get to pick a new appearance and maybe a new class and there’s the anticipation of going to see all the low leveling zones again.. but first you have to name your new toon.
How do you come up with character names?
Is there a particular naming convention you follow? Do you like your toon name to reflect on their class fantasy? Does their name set their personality for you? And most of all… do you ever get stuck just staring at that pick your name box???

My primary rule of naming my characters is that I name them as if they were real people.
Occasionally, I choose names that are deliberately punny, but the puns are relatively subtle.

My naming convention — all of my characters’ names begin with “K” and the names of characters who belong to the “one of each Class” set must also end with “a” — arose somewhat spontaneously. If I’m remembering the way things happened mostly correctly (and not as a tall tale), by coincidence, the names I chose for my first three or four characters all began with “K”, and it was after I noticed that I’d done that serendipitously that I decided to continue doing it deliberately.

I wrote about how I name my characters during the first year of this blog’s existence. The origins of most of my characters’ names are explained in that previous post, so I won’t go over them again in this one. The inspirations for those names came from the gamut of sources — and sometimes I did get stuck staring at the name box and hitting the “randomize” button until it generated something I thought I could change around a bit and live with.

A few of my characters’ names have shifted since they were originally created due to server transfers — Kjersti became Kjerstin, Karelia became Karaelia, Kiraleia the Blood Elf Paladin became Kyraleia the Dwarf Paladin.

When I changed the identity of my Human Mage to be an Alliance surrogate for my Blood Elf Mage (who sometimes wishes that she were still a High Elf), I gave her a new name that is essentially identical to my Blood Elf Mage’s name, just with a couple of the vowels shifted to “y”s: Kaelinda/Kaylynda.

I’ve created several new characters since I wrote that post nearly seven years ago, so I’ll tell you about how I came up with those characters’ names.

My Orc Shaman’s name was “Keshona”; when I created my Orc Mage and decided that the Mage was the Shaman’s mother, I named the mage “Kenosha”, a rearrangement of the consonants in the other name (and also a town in Wisconsin).

My Pandaren Mage is “Kaoling” because I wanted to name her “kaolin”, the word for the specific type of clay used to make Chinese porcelain, but that name was already taken.

I don’t remember exactly how I came up with “Khrissalys” for my Dwarf Mage, other than that I began with the “Kris” syllable and iterated the rest of the name until I was happy with the result, a combination of “Kris” and “Alice”. I like the way it sounds like “chrysalis”, too.

I renamed my Goblin Mage from “Kazuliza” to “Kermione” (a name I originally used for a Goblin Shaman) because I just couldn’t resist how perfect the portmanteau of “Kermit” and “Hermione” is for a Goblin Mage.

I still wanted to use “z” in a name, so then I ended up with “Kazithra”, a slightly sinister sounding name for a Grimtotem Shadow Priest. This character was originally a separate alt, but now exists as an alter-ego of my primary Priest.

At the same time that I created a secondary Tauren Priest alt, I also created a secondary Tauren Paladin alt. I named this character “Kishalla”; the “shall” syllable is inspired by the character Shallan in Brandon Sanderson’s Stormlight Archive. I later recycled the “Kishalla” name for, ironically, an Affliction/Demonology alter-ego for my Warlock.

Kamalia’s parents’ names, “Kehontah” and “Kawneiha”, come from playing with syllables and trying to come up with something that fit the Native American pastiche tone of Tauren culture.

My secondary Shaman, commonly known as “mini-Kam”, is formally “Kamalita” — literally “little Kamalia”.

The Underpowered Death Knight’s name started out as “Kaumalea”, which is deliberately, but obscurely, punny: “kau” is like “cow”, and “mal” is the Latin for “bad/evil”, thus, “bad cow”. Later, I changed the final syllable to “leia” because I wanted a Tauren with that ending syllable. When I draw the Underpowered Death Knight, I coil the long braids hairstyle that she uses in-game up into Princess Leia’s iconic cinnamon buns.

My Monk, Katewatha, got her name because I wanted to have a Tauren whose name shortened to “Kate” and because I wanted to use the letter “w” in another Tauren name. Searching for syllables that sounded okay together, the second half of her name ended up being the same as the name of BTH’s male Tauren Warrior who was my Druid’s leveling companion through level 80 (then BTH decided he didn’t enjoy Warriors and abandoned that alt).

My secondary Monk began her life as “Koralyra” (“coral” as a rearrangement of “carol”, plus “lyra”), a name I had previously invented for a short-lived Dwarf alt and liked enough to use again. Late in Warlords, I changed her name to “Kaobeka”, an anagram of “Akabeko” of Red Cow Rise. I’d actually already been using the name “Kaobeka” for a secondary Warrior alt, but I decided to delete that alt when the news of how specs would work in Legion came out. Besides, I thought that it was more fitting to name a Monk after Akabeko the Druid than a Warrior. When I recently decided to start using that secondary Warrior’s appearance as an alter-ego for Kregga, I retconned her name to “Kaobeqa” so as not to be an exact name-duplicate of Kaobeka the Monk (also, I wanted to use “q” in a name).

My most recent new character, the Demon Hunter, was originally going to reuse the “Koralyra” name. That didn’t quite feel right for her when I put it into the name box, though, so I shifted “lyra” to the “laira” that was the ending of my long-ago Blood Elf Death Knight’s name. Then it seemed better to shift “Kora” to “Kira”, the beginning of my long-ago Blood Elf Paladin’s name. “Kiralaira” felt much better for her both because it flows in a more Sin’dorei sort of way and because it recalls my two earlier characters.

Looking over the names I’ve chosen, they tend to reflect more on the racial identity of my characters than on their class identity. If I’m naming my characters as real people that makes sense — their racial identity has been part of them since they were born and their parents named them, whereas their class identity came to them later in their life.

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