Tathog's Lair, The PrologueEdit
In search of Shralah, the unique Four-Jeweled Cat Figurine, I traveled to Felwood, starting the walk from Astranaar in Ashenvale, and after a few days' walk, I came to a small camp of explorers, who called themselves "Unfound Glory". Although they were fueled by hope of glory, fame and treasures, I found them a rather friendly group.
They told me they were searching for Shralah as well, and that they heard it was taken from the family that had it made by a Druid of the Fang, and that he was slain in Felwood by Satyrs, who are now residing in a cave west of here. There were two particularly interesting people in that camp. They seemed to have joined the group for other reasons than fame and glory.
Shorea Gracedoe was a novice Moon Priestess, led by her wish for adventures, and seeing the world firsthand. Completely ignoring her tutors' warnings, she left with the group when they stopped in Astranaar. She seemed eager to learn, and her enthusiasm was noticed very quickly.
The other person of interest was Rus Goodwing, a villager from Elwynn Forest, who planned on spending his life in his home house, alongside his father, hunting in the nearby woods for food, and going to the nearby village occasionally for other supplies. He met the group when they once placed a stand at the Darkmoon Faire, and was so interested that he went with them.
The group offered me to sleep through the night in their camp. After some time of pondering the situation, I decided to accept their offer, and stay the night. When even those rays of sun that came through the thick forest treetops disappeared, we placed a campfire in the middle of the camp to sit down, eat good food, and share stories of our travels.
Mrilg, a typical dwarven female, freelancer by trade, told us of her travels in the Eastern Kingdoms, or Azeroth, as she called the continent. She said her travels took her to some of the highest mountains, and told us of all the travels she made with her friend, who died in a climbing accident, at the time between the Second and the Third war.
After several hours spent by the fire, we decided to get some sleep, as we all planned to wake up at daybreak. Only as I went to sleep, I noticed that I didn't feel the corruption of the land until that time, when I was alone. I have forgotten completely that I was in Felwood, until that moment.
The Next MorningEdit
I woke up early. Everybody else was still asleep. I sensed some water nearby, and decided to walk there, to see it's condition, and try to help as best as I could. Whenever I walked through Felwood, I tried to pull back my gift, that, in situations like this, turned into a curse. The nature's agony around me was causing a melancholic feeling inside my soul, but what was truly depressing were those living beings that accepted the corruption, and were fully turned into demonic creatures and plants, no longer a part of nature.
When I came to the slow, filthy river, I saw Shorea, kneeling at the sickened stream, occasionally dipping in her finger and twirling it. I walked closer, and said hello. She turned and blushed a bit. "Oh, I didn't realize someone would be awake this early." I nodded slowly, then spoke. "Likewise, priestess." She blushed even more and said: "Oh, don't call me that, I'm not really a priestess, I only started studying the first few years when I decided to leave with the Unfound Glory." I nodded again, and smiled.
Then, I slowly walked towards the stream. "It is in a very bad shape, isn't it?", she asked. I frowned and nodded. The forests around that location seemed beyond help, but if someone was to get enough purifying agents, and cleanse the river, probably a lot of land would be purified as well.
But this was not in my power, so I stopped dwelling on such dreams, and returned to reality. "You care about these lands, don't you?" The ex priestess to-be nodded, and smiled. I continued speaking, smiling more than before. "You're not like most of these... Glory seekers." She half-nodded, then spoke: "Can I ask you something?" "Sure." "Could I go with you to find Shralah?"
I thought for a moment, then said: "What will your leader say? Yesterday he told me that he is very protective about you. You are still a child in Night Elf standards, aren't you?" The girl blushed and nodded. "But I want to go with you. I want you to teach me things you know" I looked in her eyes for a moment. "Very well. I will ask your leader if you can come." The girl's face brightened. "But I can make no promises."
We came back to the campsite after some time, thinking of good arguments why Shorea should come with me as we walked.
The leader of the Unfound Glory was awake now, checking some supplies the group has brought with them. I politely asked if she could go with me, but all he said was that he'd think about it. I told them I have to go soon, so he promised to make the decision quickly.
As I was packing my belongings, Rus Goodwing came to spoeak with me. "You're thinking of taking Shorea with you, right?" "Yes, she seems very eager to come with me." "Well, I was wondering if you could take me with you as well. The Unfound Glory is not for me, they're not like I thought they would be." Taking him would mean having two people on my tail, which would make me some kind of leader, and I am no such thing. As if he would be reading my mind, he said: "I promise I won't be any trouble. I can take care of myself." "Fine, then." He stood still for a moment. "So.. that means I can come?" I nodded. He blinked, then smiled. "Why, thank you, let me just pack my belongings, then." And with that, he went running towards his tent.
Later that day, when the sun was strongest and it's rays protruded through the treetops like swords, the leader of Unfound Glory came to have a word with me.
After some time of conversation, we came to an agreement. Shorea could come with me, if Rus and I would be keeping an eye on her all along the way. Rus was allowed to come a she was not really a member of the Unfound Glory, more like a companion who tagged along.
I decided to inform Shorea myself, so I sought her out and told her the good news. An hour later, we were walking towards the west, in search of the cave where the Satyrs were hiding Shralah...
To be continued...