Sunday, February 23, 2014

A short World Of Warcraft story I wrote just after Mists Of Pandaria was released.

Of all the safe houses and Sanctuaries around the world, Noel Darling, Paladin of the Silver Hand, has never felt more safe or at home than in his quarters in Dalaran. It's unusual for a non-mage to take a liking to the Magi capital of Azeroth, but despite his dedication to the light, Noel always admired the arcane arts and those that practise them. He had only recently acquired his current living area, after winning it in a duel against a rather unusual Worgen Mage. It wasn't much but it was all the adventurer needed; a medium sized room, with a section curtained off for a bed, and two smaller rooms either side for a kitchen and a bathroom.
Noel sat underneath a window, at a rather large table, which had obviously taken a beating from some alchemical experimentation the Worgen had be developing. In one hand he held a cloth, with which he was polishing his chest-piece with, and in the other hand, a freshly brewed cup of honey-mint tea.  He sipped at the tea and took a moment to look down at his protective attire. It was the most mismatched armour set worn by anyone in the history of Azeroth. Every piece was a gift from someone, who had hired Noel to help them with some menial task, varying from the retrieval of some lost or yearned for item, helping clear out any unwanted pests, to actually aiding in the war efforts that have ravaged all adventures for the last several years. Each piece told a different tale, except for his goggles, which he created himself through his exceptional engineering skills. His armour may look impressive, but compared with most it was as useful as a potato sack. Where Noel was a terrific adventurer, he mainly left the fighting to more experienced adventures. He would help as much as he could up to the main fight, but would often fall short at the final confrontation. He wished he could have been there when Ragnaros was first banished, or when Illidan had been slain, or to have witnessed the final seconds of Arthas' life before he was laid to rest, and just recently he was absent from the fall of the Earth Dragon Aspect, Deathwing's, reign of terror.

Bringing him out of his trance was a knock on the door. Setting everything down on the table, he got up and walked over to it. Although Dalaran was a Sanctuary, there were still Horde members who would like to see the end of Noel. He had one hand on the door handle, the other, inches from the hilt of his mace, leaning against the wall. He slowly opened the door and peered into the hallway. Standing there was Noel's best friend, Drackmore, a Draenei Hunter.

"What are you doing right now?", she said asked, with a sense of urgency in her voice.

"Well I was enjoying a nice cup of tea, but I'm assuming you're here with something more dangerous to do?", Noel replied as he made his way back to sit at the table.

"No time for tea, Doctor Darling, we've been summoned by King Varian."

Now most adventurers would have been honoured to be personally summoned by the king of Stormwind and leader of the Alliance, but not Noel.

"What does he want now? We already vanquished the Twilight Cult, we exorcised the Scourge and fought for him in that Tournament we had in Icecrown. What could he possibly want now?"

Drackmore hesitated, before turning around and closing the door.

"Close the window, I don't trust that Horde spies aren't listening in to us."

She took a few steps into the room, her hooves clopping on the wooden floor, as Noel closed the window.

"Prince Anduin was on a ship bound for Booty Bay, and we received word that the fleet he was with has been attacked by the Horde. The King is gathering everyone and anyone to board the Stormcaller and fly out to find him. There are reports to suggest wreckage on an uncharted island."

Noel set down his tea and stared into the cup. He had known the young Prince since he was a young frightened boy, ruling the kingdom in his father's absence. Since Varian had returned, he had grown from a young frightened boy, into a mature young man. He and Noel were even key in securing the discovery of the Twilight Hammer's corruption in Stormwind. To now be told that his young friend was lost at sea because of the Horde gave Noel but one simple response.

"We'll set off as soon as I am packed."

Preparing for adventures in uncharted territory, he knew he had to pack only the essentials. He had his armour, which he promptly put on. Sure it wasn't as impressive as the matching collection Drackmore was wearing, which she recieved as reward for her involvement in the slaying of Deathwing, but her's had seen a lot more action than Noel's. There there were still dints in her armour and still some dried blood stains. Noel emptied his pack, leaving only a snack, a drink, his trusty Gnomish Army Knife and hearthstone.

"Let's do this"

They left Noel's small apartment and made their way to the Alliance Embassy in Dalaran, where the magi had erected a portal directly to Stormwind. Drackmore went first, beaming herself across to a whole different continent. Noel took one last look around, glancing at a Night Elf and Human talking in the corner, before smiling and taking the first step on his new adventure.