Bloodied Heart: Thunder’s Soul

It was near-enough imperceptible. A tiny change, a dot in the corner of her vision – but she felt it.

Sha.

They had quickly moved away from the Monastery and back to Dawn’s Blossom, before heading north to Honeydew Village. The local nature sprites had pestered them on the way, but that all paled in comparison to Thunder Hold.

Thunder Hold.

It was meant to be a simple military exercise, but now even the name sickened her. The place had been coated in the oily mist of Sha energy. Only a few Alliance had been left, with barely any military value to the Convocation.

But they had routed them anyway.

She’d tried to secure the Quel’dorei there, hopeful that she’d be able to stop them killing her – but they may as well have done. They’d caught her just moments before she turned into a Sha, and weakened her to the point of death, draining her of mana and keeping her chained without food.

Even sneaking her mana gems in the guise of pebbles had not been enough to do a thing. They had gone to the brink of torture – but sometimes verbal assault is but enough.

She was no more than a few years younger than Keliera. And she had barely been able to stand the inquiry. Afterwards she had simply wandered into the forest and cried as the screams of the girl echoed into the night as they gradually wiped her mind, turning her into the perfect Sin’dorei soldier.

It was disgusting. And it had opened the door for the slow drip, drip, drip of Sha whispers to turn into a trickle. A now-endless tiny voice in her head, speaking at every action, responding to every order.

Bloodied Heart: To Pandaria

The month passed like a blur, a list of conflicts, a series of red dots on a map, until she was flung onto a boat and sent forth to the mysterious land of Pandaria.

She had only just begun to exit the haze of grief. She had barely seen any pandaren, barely paid attention to discussion of them.

The Sunchaser had dropped them off in a little fishing village. The fishermen had never seen such an elaborate vessel, but she stared at the ground as they disembarked and arrayed awaiting their ambassador, Kal’es. A fairly hostile crowd had begun to form before she ran up and ushered them out, along the road to Dawn’s Blossom.

Rather predictably, nothing exciting happened along the entire passage. Pandaria was a peaceful land, so she’d been told, and she was content to speak little and do less until they reached the ornate marble capitol of the Jade Forest.

The importance of the land began slowly to get through to her in the following days, when they moved to the Tian Monastery.

Within only the space of an hour of entering the sacred grounds, the Sha overtook Sorlain, Khairan, and left Edanna unconscious.

The Sha broke through her haze. Even in the far reaches of the Monastery they began to whisper.

Why do you remain?

Sorlain was defeated in single combat by an unarmed monk, and was barely held down.

They are not your friends. They sentenced your loved ones to death.

Khairan gave into his rage and leapt at Edanna.

Why do you trust them? Why do you follow them, believe them?

Edanna toppled head first down a staircase.

What do they have to give you, after you have given all you had?

She shook the thoughts off. There were too many dead РRael, Varenus, Allayah, Sithrial Рtoo many dead to let her stop now. She fought for something, brief and hazy as the concept was. Giving in would not help. But keeping it in was her only way to not break down now.

Bloodied Heart: Theramore’s End

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.