[Story] Thorns – The Plan

I would write this in a letter, but Rose would flip her lid if she knew I was planning to let Nash go into Silvermoon alone. So I’m not, at least not until after he makes it out safely. Which he will. I hope.

Getting into the old school should prove less difficult. From what I’ve read, it’s been boarded up for years, but it’s old and in disrepair, there’s got to be one window or spot in the roof that’s loose enough to let us get through. From what I also read, it was a school for dark magic including necromancy, so we need to be prepared for what might still be inside. I don’t know if re-animated things can still hang around without their creators, but it’s definitely likely. Neither Nash or I are too excited about having to deal with that, but at least they’re fairly easy — knock the skull off and they’ll usually leave you alone. They’re just nasty, and they usually have bits of flesh and stuff still stuck to them, yuck. I guess the necromancers weren’t too concerned with cleaning their skeletons before using them. It makes me wonder why they’d have a book about time magic in there in the first place. The place has no doubt been picked over, and is quite large, so it could take us some time to locate. We’ll have to bring some food with. The place we’re staying cooks the same thing every night, some kind of brown mystery stew. I guess we can’t afford to be too picky, it’s not like there’s much else to eat around here, even if I knew how to hunt. The only living things I’ve seen outside of the town are bats and gigantic worms, neither of which really sound appetizing. Anyway, we’ll both keep our eyes open for any other books of interest. I know people in the city will pay a lot for them, especially if they’re rare or — even better — illegal. Already got some contacts in mind for who might be interested.

The second one is going to be even more difficult, because it’s in Silvermoon. I’d thought about making some fake tusks and pretending to be a troll when we went, but Nash didn’t seem to think that would work. Honestly, I doubt any blood elf is going to look too closely at a troll there. I explained that part of the reason he can hide so well in Stormwind is that nobody’s looking for a blood elf there. Hiding in plain sight, like they say. Then he was talking about hiring somone to go look for us. I don’t like that idea too much either, first of all it’s an expense that will take away from our total, but more importantly it opens the situation up to more danger. Unless it’s someone we know and can trust, it’s a risk I’m really not wanting to take. Nash is wanted in Silvermoon (I didn’t ask why) but he does know the city well and could get to the library quickly. Plus, I can’t even speak Orcish, not to mention Troll,  so I wouldn’t make a very convincing troll. I hope he’ll at least change his hair, I think he is planning to. We’ll camp closer to the gates and if he’s not back by sundown, I will have to think of a plan B. I hope there isn’t a plan B. Rose would skin me alive if she knew I was letting him go alone. I don’t like it either, but I don’t see a better way right now. We still have time to think of something.

I wonder how they’re doing in Outland. Rose says it’s a lot like she imagines the forests in Ashenvale to be, from the books she’s read. I don’t know if that’s true. If it is, it would feel strange going there. From her last letter though, it doesn’t sound as if she wants to relocate the shop yet, which is good. I don’t want to have to wear one of those stupid striped shirts.


[Story] The Letter from Dalaran

“Im?” Aeramin knocked on the bathroom door again. “Everything okay in there?”

Imralion looked over at the door. It was still latched, but he didn’t know if Aeramin had some other way to open it from the outside. “Yeah,” he called back. “Everything’s fine, I just — I’ll be another minute.”

He could hear Aeramin hesitating. “Okay,” he said at last, but he didn’t sound very convinced. It had been Im’s turn to get an unpleasant letter this time. It was from the human in Dalaran, the envelope stuffed thick with several pages so he’d known right away that there had to be something there. He tried to will his hands to stop shaking as he broke the seal and began to read.

The human explained that there was a large quantity of records that had been destroyed when Silvermoon came under siege by the Scourge, which of course Imralion had already known. Except in this case, the human believed these ones might have been lost intentionally. The record of their arrival at the Matron’s house was well documented, their mother having left them and filled out the required paperwork. But the human was certain that she had used a false name, as there were no records of a Liara Sunsorrow anywhere before or since. Imralion already knew that much. Comparing records around that time, however, the human found a sizeable amount of money paid to one Liara Starsinger, just a few months beforehand, for “services rendered”. It was intended to appear as a paycheck, except that she had no record of working for this household, nor received any other payments. It looked, the human wrote, like a pay-off. The household in question was one of a well-connected noble, Taranis Dawnforge, and he was married at the time. While it wasn’t solid proof, it was easy enough to put the pieces together: their mother had been bought into keeping their existence quiet. What’s more, he wrote, Master Dawnforge himself had perished in the Scourge attacks, and had no legitimate heirs on record. So barring any other siblings who he’d paid to cover up, Imralion and Linarelle had a claim to his estate — though it might be difficult to prove. More research would be required, the human wrote. As for Liara, she had disappeared too, but it was likely that she had changed her name and moved elsewhere. There was no record of her death or any marriages or other civil matters. If she lived, it would be next to impossible to find her.

It was worse than Imralion he had expected. Not only had their father not wanted them, he’d paid their mother to keep quiet in order to avoid a scandal. Worse than that, he wasn’t even alive so Im couldn’t ask him about it. Sunsorrow wasn’t even their actual surname, it was just one she’d picked to write on the papers. Then there was the matter of the estate. Sure, some gold would be nice, maybe it would even be justice for their father turning his back on them. But part of him wanted to just forget about it.

He folded the letter up and put it back into the envelope. It didn’t really fit anymore. He would have to tell Lin about it, too.

[OOC/Screenshots] Patch 6.1

I was fortunate to get a SELFIE camera on Orny on the first day. Sath has one now, too, which should make getting the Field Photographer achievement a bit easier. It’s account-wide, so he can take care of the Horde ones for me! I am not sure if Orny really understands the concept.

I AM smiling.

I AM smiling.

Once I finish that, I’d like to get some jukebox tunes, and try for the new raid pets. I just wish the songs were an account-wide collection, so my alts could change their music without having to hunt them all down too. It’s not a big thing I guess, but it would be nice. There are some songs that I’m quite fond of, like the Karazhan opera theme, that I’m interested in getting.

Evidently you can take selfies in orca form.

Evidently you can take selfies in orca form.

The other big change is the heirloom tab, which is really awesome for me, as someone with tons of alts. I used to have to keep a spreadsheet of who had which heirlooms on which servers and which account. I had to kind of commit to leveling one alt because it was a hassle to mail them all back and forth. I don’t have to anymore, which is great! It’s given me new motivation to level some of my lowbies, which is great because I really do enjoy leveling. (Up until Pandaria, anyway.)

My raid team is chugging along pretty well. Now that our roster is a bit more stable, we’re killing things quickly and making good progress. We are 7/7 normal Highmaul and 5/7 Heroic. We have 3 bosses down in BRF normal as well. So we’re not breaking any world records, but it’s fun and I enjoy raiding with them.

I am still hoping for some dailies in a future patch, ones for the various Draenor reps. And flying, of course.

[Story] The Ghostclaw – Practice

Vellira crunched across the frozen mud to pull her daggers out from the target. All four were well within the center red circle, yet she knew that wouldn’t be good enough for Grumpyfoot. It had to be a bow, he said. Why? Just because. Yet she’d been watching Kavia with her crossbow, a strange, goblin-looking contraption with levers and gears that frankly looked like a toy. But it shot straight and true, and buried the bolts within the hay of the targets. Vellira thought she could use one of those, they were quiet and easily hidden — like she was. As an added perk, Grumpyfoot disapproved of them, too. At least she wouldn’t be the only one he yelled at anymore. Ty was interested in learning to use one, too.

Their recent trip to the Faire had been fun. They’d bought fried frogs and wings, and sat on the benches eating them while they listened to the musicians and watched the fighting pit. Supposedly, there were to be matches every so often, but none happened while they were there that evening. Maybe there weren’t any scheduled — or they couldn’t find enough people willing to fight. They’d had something similar with the crew, anytime they pulled into a rough port there would inevitably be a sparring ring. They’d do it for money, but more than that, Vellira thought they wanted bragging rights until the next match. The captain would never allow her to fight, though Vellira was certain that she could have easily beat several of them. Maybe that’s why, to avoid them being too embarrassed that she’d beaten them. She had to smile a little at the thought. What would they think of her now? She was hardly recognizable as the same girl anymore, all bundled in her warm leather and cloak. Taking orders from a new captain, being shouted at because she wasn’t holding a bow correctly. It’s true, she never would have stood for it before. It wasn’t that their new captain was unfair though, she saw that he listened if anyone had a problem, and he had done a lot to help Gramps. It was more than she’d expected to find here. And perhaps that’s why she didn’t raise any fuss, that and she hadn’t really any other alternatives. She could find a new ship, but she’d heard stories of how women were sometimes treated on those. Her old captain would never have allowed anything like that to happen, and the crew mostly saw her as a younger sister, anyway. That wouldn’t be the case if she sought a new crew. Nor would it be the same, perched atop the masts of a different ship, with a different crew, watching the same seas. It would feel wrong, somehow. Here was good, it had been good for a while and she expected it would stay good. More rangers were arriving, and eventually she would be considered a senior ranger. If she could manage to get on Grumpyfoot’s good side, that is.

The gnoll’s fortune from the Faire still nagged at her. While she didn’t really believe it could tell the future, it was more something for fun, the little slip of paper had startled her. “You will find happiness with a new love”, it had read. Vellira wasn’t sure how to interpret that. She was already with Ty, but she wasn’t sure if that was love. She liked spending time with him, he was sweet and funny and he liked her ears. He had even made her a card covered with mounds of glitter for the goblin holiday. But was that love? Vellira wasn’t sure. But maybe the fortune wasn’t talking about a person at all, maybe it meant that being a ranger was her new love. She looked down at the daggers, their steel catching the harsh winter light. She used to coat them with poison, though she hadn’t here for some time. She didn’t figure that undead things would notice poison anyway, and on top of that, it was difficult to find some of the components. Was this where she was supposed to be now? The other girls didn’t understand; both Kavia and Lin had always wanted to be rangers, they didn’t know anything else. If she asked them, they’d say of course she was meant to be as well. Maybe Ty would know, he’d lived in the city before, and had started with the rangers not long before she had. She’d have to ask him the next time they had the chance to talk.

[Story] Fairsong Academy – Terellion’s Journal

The trip was really great! Hethurin did a good job picking a place, it was the fanciest you can imagine! They had a tub pool that was shaped like a heart, and all kinds of things you could do like massages and getting your nails fixed up. I’ve never had my nails fixed up, usually they get kind of scruffy while I work but it was nice anyway. I wonder if anyone will notice when we get back! Probably not, because we would only be gone for a few seconds! The food there was really good too, and you could just order it from a paper and they would bring it up to your room. I wish we could go there all the time, but Hethurin says he’d rather take shorter trips in the future. I guess that it messes things up less that way, or something. I admit that I’d like to be able to go on long trips all the time, it must be kind of expensive, and I don’t want any time to get messed up. I’m just happy that he’s bringing me along with him at all, and we get some time alone to talk.

He’s still acting a little strange, like last night Mae let me hold Zaeris for a little while. I think I was only able to convince her because I’ve had experience with babies and we were friends before. That, and I think she wanted to be able to finally get a bath, she hasn’t really been able to since he’s been born. So I had him downstairs in the dining room and Hethurin is still being weird, it’s like he suddenly doesn’t like babies anymore. Or maybe he just doesn’t think Zaeris is cute, I guess that might be it, but I think he’s adorable! Even Des said how cute his little toes are. He’ll have reddish hair, sort of like Hethurin’s, too. I bet we could find one like that, though sometimes babies’ hair can change color as they get older.

Besides that, I was trying to start planning for the spring ball. It’s still a ways off, but not that far. It’s always good to plan in advance, especially if there’s a lot of things that need to be done. We won’t need too much for decorations, probably just some ribbons, because there will be flowers outside. Although we should get a tent in case it rains, which is pretty likely here in the spring. I asked Hethurin what he wanted for the cake and he didn’t even seem to care at all! That’s not like him. I wonder if he doesn’t want to have one, and is just making me plan it all again. I came up with the idea of a cake shaped like a bunny, but he said there had to be books because we’re at a school. So the bunny could be sitting on books. I think that’s a bit weird, but if that’s what he wants, I can do it. But I came up with another idea, a dragonhawk on a nest, and the nest could be filled with colored eggs. Hethurin liked that idea more, so we can do that. I think we should hide eggs in the garden for people to find, too. We could even put some with prizes inside of them, I bet everyone would like that. The babies could hunt for the eggs! They’d probably be too little, but it would be cute anyway. Everyone wants Tik to make the fish rolls again, Hethurin was kind of upset when I told him that Xarola ate them. I think she’s not really allergic, but she just doesn’t like fish. I don’t think it’s that big of a deal, but he was kind of mad. Honestly I doubt Tik is that upset either, but I’m not going to bring it up to him, I don’t want to get anyone in trouble. Oh, and we’re going to have the enchanted instruments again, Hethurin is going to look for some new sheet music for them. He suggested that we write “babysitting provided” on the invitations so the parents will come, and we can help watch the babies. I don’t think it’s really necessary but it’s not a bad idea, I guess. They can take a break and dance together while we look after them, I don’t mind at all, and I’m sure Des doesn’t either.

Magister Firewind is going to start having his lessons outside. He thinks the students will worry less about setting things on fire out there, because sand and rocks don’t catch on fire. Also, the water is right there. Hopefully it works! He’ll have to wait a little while though, because right now it’s still a bit cold and icy. But hopefully spring will be here before too long.

[Story] The Ghostclaw – Linarelle’s Journal

I guess Nessna was right after all, Sunashe can be romantic if he wants to be. Of course it helped that we got to stay at a really nice place, with really nice food. It was just as good as one of the fancy places in the city, but there was no one else there — well they were, but not in the area we were eating. Some of the students were there, of course. If I had known there would be amazing food at the school I might have become a mage after all! Tik made these little roasted birds, they tasted like chicken but they were smaller so I imagine they were a forest bird of some sort. They had herbs and seasoning inside, and the outside was crisp and roasted. There were also vegetables and fresh bread to go with it. And some really nice wine from the city, I think I’ve had it there at the school before but I’m not sure. I’d like to find out what kind it was so I could buy it, but it’s probably really expensive!

Then our room! I’ve stayed at the school before and the rooms are generally nice, but this one was extra fancy. The bed had lots of pillows and thick fuzzy blankets, and there was a fireplace. I guess Sunashe had already been up there, because there were flower petals and candles and little chocolates in a bowl. The bathroom had a tub with all sorts of soaps and oils and things. It was so nice, I wonder if the other guys gave him ideas for that! It doesn’t matter though, I loved it. I think he did too. He got me earrings, really expensive ones too. I am a bit worried that he’s spending so much on me, I mean we make a decent amount but he shouldn’t be spending it all! The next time we go somewhere, I’ll offer to pay for it! The earrings are gold with rubies in them, I like them because they don’t dangle down, so I can wear them while I’m on patrol. I’m sure he thought about that! I’ve never got anything like that before — not counting Keyalenn, because that doesn’t really count. I mean from someone I was actually with. I thought I might cry, I don’t think he noticed because he was helping me put them on. If he did, he was polite enough not to say anything.

I told him that I love him. I don’t know if he noticed because he didn’t really say anything but I thought I should. I’ve been thinking about it for a while now and trying it out in my head and I feel it’s right. I’m still really worried that something will go wrong, but I don’t know if that ever really goes away. I should talk to Im, except he’s probably not the best person to ask right now. I haven’t heard anything about what’s happening there, although he did say he expects a letter from the person in Dalaran very soon. I’m very interested to read that letter.

[Story] Fairsong Academy – Maerista’s Journal

I’ve finally found a few minutes to write while Zaeris is asleep. I expected to be tired, but not this tired! Luckily he’s fairly regular about how often he needs to eat, so I know I have a few hours until he wakes up again. Gael always offers to help but right now I’m the only one who can feed him! I did make him wash diapers though. We’re staying at the school for the next few days, because Gael thinks I can’t take a portal home yet. I can’t really complain, it’s comfortable and everyone brings me anything I need, even Des. She brought me juice and bread the first night, then Tik started bringing giant trays of food. I’m a little embarrassed to say that I ate almost all of it. Being a mother makes you hungry! I didn’t know that either.

Esladra has come to check on me a couple of times already. Apparently Lani had her baby just a day before mine, so she definitely is keeping busy! Lani had a girl, I can’t wait to see her. I bet she’s so cute (but not as cute as mine). With all of the babies in the area, we were saying that maybe Esladra should stay and work at the building in town. They’d probably need to add on another room or something, but it should be possible, right? Those poor builders are never going to get a break! In a month or so they’ll have to start working again, I know the rangers are making some new cabins on the property. I’m looking forward to having Zaeris grow up out here in the woods, I think it’s much better than the city. He’ll be able to play outdoors and learn how to do ranger things, rather than just stay inside and study all day. Of course he can study too, hopefully here at the school! It’s a good thing that Magister Fairsong planned ahead and got a teacher for general classes! They’ll all be in the same class together when they are older.

Of course Mother and Father want to come see Zaeris, I’m not so sure about that yet. I need to talk to Gael. I think maybe it would be better for them to see him somewhere besides our house, but he’ll have to be a bit older for that. Maybe I’m being stubborn but I’m still a bit angry about how they treated Gael. Like now that we have a baby they’re suddenly being nice again but I know it’s just because they want to see Zaeris. Maybe they’ll start to like Gael again. I guess I could at least let them buy things for him! He has so much already but the little clothes they make for babies are so cute. Gael was talking about getting him a little toy farm set too. He’d have to be a bit older for that, he’s not even interested in toys yet. All he likes to do is eat and sleep.