The girl howled, clutching at the marsh grass in despair as her compatriots stopped in their traps, agape at the bright scream of arcane power that hit each and every one of the elven guard with a powerful electric mana high.
The city of Theramore was gone, forever shattered and reduced to the annals of history in one command, the devastative might of the Horde unleashed on the most pacifist of cities in Azeroth. With it, every moral the Sin’dorei sought to uphold broken like a child’s unmeant promise. Every chance of peace with their Quel’dorei cousins – once brothers and sisters – now reduced to nothing like the bodies within the city, now drifting as ashes of war upon the wind.
The bright pulsar blinded their minds as much as it did their eyes, and half the forces of Quel’thalas dropped to their knees as one, the enormity of what they had done pushing them into the mud. For some, it would be a crime, a reliving of their heinous action against innocents in the Outland campaign under the words of the Blood King, Kael’Thas. For others it was a tremendous indication of elven magical superiority. For others, it was the end of all they knew.
For her, it was. Barely of age, she had lost her greatest friend – and more.
‘SITHRIAL!’ She screamed again, tearing at her hair in mindless grief. The mana surging around in the air, whipping at Dustwallow Marsh with intense arcane gales, made her feel sick. It tasted like blood. The blood of everyone in there – every civilian, every soldier, every deterrent and innocent. She had signed onto war unwillingly and been thrust into the blame for genocide.
How could my people do this?
The bonds of war and friendship and love shattered all around her in reaction, elves disagreeing with their commanders, screaming in pain and betrayal, branding each other criminals and traitors, running and crying and fighting and laughing as though the bomb had hit Silvermoon instead. Terror and confusion abounded as the angry sought blame from the vindicated, who revelled in the carnage and destruction of the Alliance’s main port on the whole continent.
There was no Theramore left. Orgrimmar – Garrosh – had felled it with one bloody week-long campaign.
What was there now?
Grief, and torment.
“Look at it!” Her commander, Sorlain, wrenched her from her feet and fixed her gaze upon the rubble. “Gaze upon the might of the Sin’dorei, Dawndancer, as the others do.”
Whispers turned into roars as those who had suffered in Outland heard, discovered – their own forces had made this mana bomb, turned petty feeling to war to bloodbath to revenge to utter genocide. Suddenly all the forces turned upon themselves in violent battle, and she was dropped into the ground, sobbing, still staring at the face of that which was gone.
The tower where the bomb had hit was gone, a massive crater in its place. It was as though Proudmoore Tower had never existed. Thousands had taken hope and peace from its standing, a symbol of Jaina’s devotion to peace, at the cost of so much to herself – her love, Arthas; her father, Admiral Daelin – now, war had taken her too.
Beyond the scarred earth the wood of the houses, the inn, the blacksmith and the inner buildings was gone. Utterly incinerated. Twisted metal remnants of the weaponry there hissed, turning to ash second by second. Even the grand outer walls, great chalky limestone walls carved from the bay itself and gilded with marble, toppled from the impact, splashing and fizzing in the boiling waters.
Within seconds, minutes, even the ruins were gone – the dock burned and the boats disintegrated, the intense magic hastening their decay until but a layer of glistening arcane powder was left.
It blew away. And Theramore was forever gone – merely a blackened island in the middle of an empty cove.
The magic remained. She could feel it with every pore of her body, like all her kind could, its intense ebb and flow rebounding all over the place. The earth shook with it, the intense explosion having shattered all the ley-lines in the entire marsh. Soon, arcane radiation would set in, and the marsh too would change forever, like Crystalsong Forest – magic infusing every inch of the soil, every leaf, flower, every minute particle, the animals, the sky, the water, even the beings themselves who lived here. The marsh as it had stood before would be irrecoverable, stuck by magic like Crystalsong and the Netherstorm.
At some point in the ensuing chaos, the orcs turned up, roaring with glee, and separated the desperate elves from their sneering brethren. The girl did not pay attention, staring in the direction of nothingness long after she was picked up in her dim, limp shock and carried back north, to Dustwallow.