Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Screencap: Wyndistorm and Redthirteen

This is my Blood Elf Hunter, Wyndistorm, and her cat Redthirteen. I play Wyndi on Horde Monday on Blackwater Raiders RP realm. I love Final Fantasy 7, and the character Red XIII was the inspiration for my cats name. My Red is a tad bit dumber than that RedXIII though. Don't tell him that though.

Last Week of Karazhan

We ran Karazhan tonight. This is our last week regularly inside Karazhan, before we move on to Zul'Aman. I am of mixed feelings about this. Karazhan was really huge, and awesome. It was hard at first, but got much easier as time went on. The few times we have done ZA have been dismal failures, but this time we are better geared, and ready to go.

Our DPS felt a bit slow tonight. We only got through Curator, and didn't get Nightbane down this week. A noob mistake cost us the first shot before it even got started, then the second try was stopped in the %60's when I kept getting feared. I have yet to successfully tank him, but I think once I get my stamina up, things will be better. I have 71 badges now, so 29 to my new tanking chest off the Shattered Sun Badge vendor.

I am expecting to have a rough go for the first couple weeks. I think we can get the bear boss down, without much of a problem. I am working on learning the strategies for the fight, I just hope I lead well. Not used to it.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Horde Monday!

Logged on tonight, and didn't get a spot in an instance group, so I leveled the Huntard to 32. Gonna hit a couple more levels so I can get a spot next time.

I would write more, but I need sleep. Gnight.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

PVP Night

We went 3-7 on the week. We seemed to run into quite a few skillful players too. Wonder what is bringing them into the 13-1400 bracket.

We also added Rhianne tonight to the team. Glad to have her join.

WIDT: NE Rogue

What I Did Today

I ran with Adormra today, my Night Elf Rogue on Scarlet Crusade. I was about 2/3 through 41, so I ran through some quests in Arathi Highlands, and turned in some quests I had finished yesterday. That got me up to 42, and I went to Ironforge for training and to check the Auction House. I didn't find anything of note, but bought some Heavy Leather to train up my Leatherworking some more. I have been rushing through levels, its hard to stay on level with tradeskills. I have already got 100+ Thick Leather, and I haven't even broke 200 skill points yet. Makes me wonder if Blizzard will ever rework the Tradeskills to adapt to the quicker leveling?

I do enjoy the rogue. Stealth is one of the coolest abilities in the game in my opinion. Being able to sneak up behind your opponent, and pwn them before they can even get a shot off is brilliant in my book. I like also that the Rogue has two sets of bars, one for in stealth and the other for out of stealth. This makes for a lot less clutter on your hot bars, and you can have more non-skill buttons there.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Funny Hunters

I was on the dock in Theramore, and saw a hunter named Jargon. His pet was Rhetoric. Someone asked what his other pet was, he said Propaganda. If he were to have another pet, it would be named Dogma, although he wasn't sure if it was going to be a wolf. :)

Friday, April 25, 2008

News: 2.4.2 Patch Notes are up


The 2.4.2 Patch notes have been released. Here are some comments on individual items on the list:

Scare Beast (Hunter): The range on this spell has been increased to 30 yards and it is now instant cast.

This is going to make fighting Druids and Hunters in arena much more fun. I am really looking forward to this buff. They have been buffing Hunter's an awful lot recently.

Seal of the Crusader (Paladin): This ability now increases the damage dealt by Crusader Strike by 40%.
Crusader Strike (Paladin, Retribution) will now properly receive a damage increase from Seal of The Crusader.

Our most consistent #1 dpser is a Retribution Paladin (Hi, Aeth!). This buff, and bug fix should increase his dps even more. I like the fact that RetPallies are being given alot of attention in the last two patches. It shows that Blizzard wants to give Paladins a solid dps ability, which was lacking before.

All 23-hour profession cooldowns are now 20-hour cooldowns.
All 4-day cooldowns are now 3 days, 20 hours.

Yay! When they lowered the 24-hour to 23-hour, we all went "wtf?" This should have been what they did originally. I understand that they don't want people to transmute all the time, but 24 hours is alot of time. 4 days is too much as well, and 3 days, 20 hours is not much better. 2 days is more fair in my opinion, but this is a good step forward.

Removed the cooldown from Void Shatter.

The cooldown on Void Shatter, was stupid from the start. None of the other Enchanting crystal breakers had them. I can see how Blizzard may have wanted to not have a flood early on, but once this is added I am going to break 40+ Void Crystals. How is it not going to flood the market?

There are a number of other changes, but these are the most important to me. Did you find something in the patch notes that you liked or didn't like? Share it in the comments.

Podcast: Instance #103 - Transplant My Dungeon

Scott Johnson and Randy Deluxe were joined this week by Curt Shilling, in an extra long episode. Curt is one of those few great guys who actually loves gaming. I know he is a future Hall of Famer, but hearing him talk about his groups and toons sounds just like me!

There was some interesting news on Naxx being updated for Wrath of the Lich King, and Tier 3 sets being removed (but the art added again as Tier 7 perhaps?). They said it would be a 25-man, but I think that is incorrect, as I seem to recall a blue post saying it would be 10-man. Like Karazhan perhaps, but for sub-80's. Looking forward to seeing Naxx.

You can listen to the show by downloading the MP3 file here.

Heroic Botanica

Had to work late tonight, so wasn't able to be on till late. We ran the heroic daily, Botanica. We had very few problems, mostly bad pulls, and we one-shotted all the bosses. I am really getting into tanking. Its quite fun.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Real Life Meet

I met up with Rhianne tonight, and the other members of the local group that plays on Scarlet Crusade, and Blackwater Raiders. I showed off my Figureprint, and Rhi took some really nice pictures of it. I will post them when she hooks me up. My wife and I didn't stay long, as we had just gotten off work. Its nice to put faces to toons.

When I got home, I worked on some SSO rep with Dorabel. Then logged onto my rogue for a while, and got him to 39. I can't wait for my mount.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


This was my 50th run into Karazhan tonight. We tore through the place. Killed through Shade, getting Nightbane and Illhoof along the way. It was a good night for all.

Two more weeks till ZA. I am pumped, but I need to work on gear. New helm and chest piece is top of my list.

It was good to have Drask out with us tonight. I don't get to run enough with him, since he left for Amicitia.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Horde Monday!

Its Horde Monday! Even though I have been leveling, today is the actually day when everyone meets. I am 29 now, with hopes of being 30 inside the hour. Perhaps I might get into a run tonight.

WIDT: More BE Huntard Leveling

I ground out a few more levels and hit 28 tonight on Wyndistorm. I am going to stop at 30, as there seems to be a set group forming up for Monday nights. Will be nice to level up with a group.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Huntard Moving Up

I worked for a couple hours on my Blood Elf Hunter, and got her up to level 26. I am quite proud of myself, as I have really cranked out the levels so I can catch up to the others.

I decided to take one of the red cats that are in the BE starting area as my first pet. Named him Redthirteen, the cat from Final Fantasy 7. I am going Beast Mastery right now, and it is working very well for me.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

What I Play

I have a number of characters that I play, most being on the Role Play (RP) server, Scarlet Crusade. I have:

70 Dwarf Protection Paladin
70 Dwarf Beastmaster Hunter
70 Draneai Frost Mage
42 Human Warlock
38 Night Elf Rogue
16 Human Warrior

On Blackwater Raiders, another RP server that I play horde I have:

24 Blood Elf Hunter

I have also played some on PVP servers, but I do not enjoy that style of play. I much prefer PVE, and since I am very casual I wanted to have the best mix of players. So RP servers it is. :)

Podcast: The Instance Curt Shilling Interview

In The Instance, episode 102, Randy and Scott interview Boston Red Sox ace, Curt Shilling. Curt is a hardcore WoW player, and owner of 3 level 70's.... like me. :) Hope you will listen as it is quite good.

WIDT: Sunken Temple, Heroic Arcatraz, and BE Huntard

I finished so late last night, that I was nearly falling asleep at my keyboard, so I waited till I could actually write to talk about what I did today (err... yesterday).

Rhianne (70 Night Elf Druid [Restoration]), and myself on Asher took guildies Dianthys (55 Human Mage) and Cryptsmasher (56 Dranaei Warrior, whos main is Keepers officer Alphaquasar) through Sunken Temple. Both of them got some good loot, and finished off some quests. I am not a big fan of ST, and I am looking forward to the two of them getting into Scholomance and Stratholm, both of which I love.

After finishing there, we headed off to Heroic daily Arcatraz. I was tanking, and Rhianne healed. We also had Trinkit (70 Gnome Mage [Fire]), Alphaquasar (70 Human Warlock) and Dredgore (70 Human Warlock, who's main is Claden). We bounced off Zereketh a couple of times, then decided to skip him as he is the hardest to do on Heroic. We finished the instance after dying alot, but that is a heroic I suppose. I had a 45g repair bill, ugh. It was worth it though, as Rhianne got a cool healing gem. We sharded up everything else.

After that, I logged over to my Blood Elf Hunter, and ground out two more levels, to 23. I expect next week I will be up to the upper 20's and hopefully can join the group.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Link: GM Duels Player on live realm

BRD Run, Part 2

Sadly, we were short for Kara tonight. I am glad we are moving on to ZA next month.

Instead a group of us hit up Magisters Terrace. I went on Dorabel (70 Dwarf Hunter), along with Aeth (70 Human Paladin [Protection]), Rhianne (70 Night Elf Druid [Restoration]), new guild member Unorna (70 Human Warlock) and Jae (70 Gnome Mage [Fire]). We did fine, until we wiped on Vexallus. Took out the Priestess group, which was sans Shaman, in one shot. We successfully pulled the last big group.

We engaged Kael'thas , and almost immediatly a Phoenix comes up. Jae and I took it down, then popped the egg. We focused on Kael'thas for a bit, then another Phoenix pops and we start to take it down. Just as the bird dies, we are Gravity Lapsed. We continue to shoot the egg, but an orb takes out Jae and me. Rhianne falls to an orb a moment later, but Aeth and Uno are still up and Kael'thas has 26% left. Uno keeps up the dots, and Aeth dodges orbs. As soon as the Gravity Lapse ends, they open up all their dps dropping him to 13%. They shoot up, and Aeth gets hit by a bubble. 900, 700, 200, 110, 90, and dead. Uno continues keeping a close eye on the dots and dodging bubbles. Uno moved away from Kael'thas' bubbles and fired off the last Shadow Bolt to kill him.

I got Healing Potion Injector recipe for Dora, but we sharded all the loot including the epic huntard chest (of which I have Arena S3 chest). Lots of shards, lots of fun.

A few members of the group dropped, and we picked up Dianthys and took her to BRD again. I had to step out during the first few bosses, but I came in and was able to help them cut through the place like butter. Its such a blast to go to those old dungeons that used to be sooo hard. Makes me feel superior to that former me. Funny.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Exalted! Finally!

I hit exalted tonight with Shattered Sun Offensive. I think I am the first in my guild, so I am quite happy about that. Now I can start focusing on some other things. The shield is really great, and is a big upgrade for me. I also bought 2 of the necklaces, the healer one and the spell damage one. I also picked up the recipe to make my new Alchemist Stone. I am contemplating waiting because I don't really need it for tanking, and I am not healing right now, so might as well not spend the 30 badges to get the 2 primal vortexes you need.

More Kara tomorrow. Chess, Prince and Netherspite are left.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


We have been having problems with Illhoof over the last few months. While we had gotten him down occasionally, it was not "on farm" by any means. Since I respecced to Protection recently, I have been main tanking Illhoof. The biggest problem with the fight, is the imps he spawns. They shoot fireballs which hit the healers. Since Paladins have an AoE threat builder in Consecration, I can gather those mobs to hit me instead of our healers (of which I used to be one).

So as of now, I proclaim Illhoof to be on farm. That leaves Prince as the one fight we haven't gotten down yet. That is such a luck fight though, I don't think any guild can truly say its on farm.

I tried to tank Nightbane, but he hits hard. I need to work on my defense and stamina for that fight. Soon, perhaps. I need a helm.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

WIDT: BE Huntard

Monday is Horde day! I ran Wyndistorm through the rest of the Ghostland quests tonight, dinged 21, and made my way to Tarren Mill. I took a "shortcut" through Lodremere Lake, and made a bad choice without looking at the map, and ended up in Alterac Mountains. Noob. Died six, seven times easy as I crossed the map. My shortcut took an hour longer than just running around.

Live and learn. Thats me.

Monday, April 14, 2008

WIDT: Heroic Slave Pens

What I Did Today

Ground out some more SSO rep today, spent 2+ hours on the dailies. Its not hard by any means, but it is time consuming. I will be happy to get Exalted on Asher and start working on something else.

In guild news, long time Keeper Namoria's last day was today. She is going to school in the fall, and wanted to focus on her school work, and enjoying her senior year of High School. I expect she will be back, but I wish her well in her last months of school. :)

Ran PVP on Dorabel with our 3v3 arena group. Went 4-6 on the day, with a 1400+ rating. It would be nice to be higher, but I am comfortable with our team so far. We are going to replace Namoria with Rhianne next week for PVP. Will be nice to have her take Namoria's role.

Also ran Heroic Slave Pens tonight with the gang. It was slow going, but we finished. My computer crashed right after we downed the boss. Glad we were done.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

WIDT: Heroic Magister's Terrace

Dude, this is hard.

11000/21000 on SSO rep. Couple more days...

Saturday, April 12, 2008

WIDT: Heroic Shattered Halls

What I Did Today

We were scheduled to run Karazhan tonight, after completely owning the place on Tuesday. We had 6, so we decided to go to Heroic Shattered Halls and knock out some quests. A pally tank owns that place, and we cut through the first three bosses with ease. After that there were some tough pulls that took us a couple of tries to get down. Then the final boss took us down time and time again.

We had Izgrim (70 Dranaei Shaman), Rhinanne (70 Night Elf Druid [Resto]), Alphaquasar (70 Human Warlock), and Trinkit (70 Gnome Mage), and Iamasher (70 Dwarf Paladin [Protection]). The neat thing about a pally tank is they can tank a large number of mobs at once, as long as they keep getting heals. This leaves only a minimal amount of crowd control needed, in this case, a sheep.

At the end though, that Blade Storm the last boss does just wiped us out. We could survive one, but the second or third would kill our healer or multiple clothy dps. I am not sure what we would need to fix it for next time, but I think I tanked it as well as I could. I need more Stamina, as I am just under 12,000 unbuffed, but I think this is a product of still being in some blues/some epics. I need a better tanking trinkit.

I played a bit on my Blood Elf Huntard, Windystorm on Black Water Raiders. Its fun playing a class that you have already gone through. You already have a lot of knowledge as to playing the class, so you lose that whole build up of skill. I am trying to rush to 30, as that is where Rhianne's crew is. IT would be nice to run with them in a dungeon.

I also did a bunch of Shattered Sun quests on Asher. Those are already boring, but I am about 5000 into Revered. I really want to get my new Alchemist Stone.

Friday, April 11, 2008

News: Wrath of the Lich King in Alpha

The Instance, along with most other WoW news sources are reporting that the second expansion to World of Warcraft, Wrath of the Lich King has entered "Friends and Family" alpha testing. This type of testing is common at Blizzard. A number of signs are pointing towards this. The address has gone active. On top of that, the Public Test Realms were taken down much earlier than normal. Could they be using this server for something else, perhaps?

I have heard speculation on the street date from August '08, to January '09. If you know nothing else of Blizzard, you should know that they take as long as needed to get the game right. If that means going through multiple release dates, then they will do it. And we will bitch about it.

Nature of the beast.

Off to go tank Karazhan on Asher. Recently changed specs, and enjoying it greatly. Will discuss further later.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

My Figureprint is here!!!

A few months ago, I won the lottery over at Figureprints are a 3D render of your World of Warcraft character. Its a cool process, and a great way to show off your character in the real world. So after spending 3+ hours dressing Asher, spending $114.95 in my cold hard cash, along with 2+ months of waiting I know own my very own little Asher.

Here is Asher from the front. The pose he is in (2H Attacking) twists his body, so you can't see the tabard clearly, but you get a sense of movement. The figure is about 4" tall, and is very light. Asher is holding the Frightskull Shaft, a drop off of Rattlegore. I almost used his full healing set, but since mace is such a big part of his RP story, I had to use it.

Here he is from the back. You can see how well the shoulders (Forest Wind Shoulderpads) match up with the cloak (Shadow-Cloak of Dalaran).

Another back shot here. You can again see the cool way the shoulders stick out, and how the cloak looks to be in motion. You can also see the weird hump on Asher's back, near the neck and shoulders. I am not sure what causes that, but its only visible if you look closely.

I am so proud to own this. I know it seems silly, and expensive, but this is an amazing snapshot of my character.

Screencap: Asher on a Throne

Trinkit (70 Gnome Mage) from the Keepers posted on our guild boards recently about our run through BRD. We dragged Rhianne's (70 Night Elf Druid) real life friend, and all around awesome chick, Dianthys (50ish Human Mage) through there for quests and gear.

I tanked, Rhianne healed, with Trinkit and Dianthys doing the damage. Dian got 4 really awesome upgrades and I still need to get some enchants done on her gear.

It was fun going through there again.

The Corruption of Asher: A Tale in Four Parts

The Corruption of Asher


Asher watched the fire, silent. His mother, Dorabel, sat on the bed with him, her heavily muscled arm around him. She smiled, watching the light dance in her son's eyes. She was about to leave him, and he couldn't understand why. He pulled away from her touch, his emotions pushing her away. Dorabel sighed, and kneeled before him, her gleaming Lightforge armor glinting in the flickering flames. “Asher, look at me.” Defiant, he turns his head looking out his window to the forge below. “Asher, please.” A desperate quality to her voice caused him to face her. “You know what I have to do. I told you why. I have to back up my guild mates in the Argent Dawn, to take down Rattlegore. Too many have died at his hands. He must be stopped.” A blank look covered Asher's face. He had heard all of this before.

“The guild is ready to leave, but I must tell you something.” She stood up, her stout Dwarven frame outlined by the fire. She picked up her son, looking him in the eye. “By the light! Asher! You are almost too big to carry!” She laughed, as her eyes moistened with tears. She looked into his defiant face, memorizing it. “I love you Asher, with all of my being. The worst thing a mother can to her child is to go away.” He squirmed in her arms, but she did not let go. “I will be back by morning.” She lay him down on the bed, and gently tucked him in. His eyes snapped shut as she kissed his forehead. “I love you Asher.” She walked to the stairs, and turned, taking a last look at her son. A single tear fell onto her tabard. Looking at her son, she remembered the reason she joined the Argent Dawn in the first place, so that mothers would not worry about their sons being killed by the evil of the world. She wiped her eyes and walked out into the great Dwarven city, filled with soot and brimstone, which lay out before her. Ironforge. ...

Her guild mates were waiting for her in front of her home. The party leader, a night elf hunter known as Barley, smiled weakly. “This could not be avoided, Dorabel.” She frowned up at him, his impossibly long ears twitching at her withering gaze.

“I know. So let's go, and get this over with. I would like to be back before my son wakes.” She moved toward the Hippogryph master. A young human warlock, known only as SoulStealer, stepped in front of her.

“This night is filled with evil, Dorabel. A dark omen fills these cavernous walls. You are not meant to go on this mission.” A shadow crosses his face. “I don't think you should go with us. You will only be a liability.”

Dorabel frowned up at her dark companion. “Just what do you mean, SoulStealer?”

“Rattlegore is a terrible enemy, Paladin, one who should not be underestimated. I cannot tell you more, as my voidwalker is now silent.” He nods his head toward the blue demon next to him. “Jakalarak has seen a terrible fate for you. For the sake of your child, and the Argent Dawn, you should stay behind.”

Dorabel, shaking with fury, stalked towards SoulStealer. The gnome warrior, Giztra stepped between the two of them, sticking a sword in each of their ribs. Quietly she said, “If anyone spills any blood on this ground, it will be me. Understood?”

Dorabel, looked over the gnomes head, into the dark eyes of the human. “Listen to me, demon trafficker, and listen well. My child is just that. Mine. My concern! Not yours!” She stepped back, looking over her guild mates. “I am Dorabel Faithhammer, a member of Argent Dawn! I will not rest until Rattlegore is dead. Now, who is coming with me?” Without waiting for a response, she turned and walked to the Hippogryph master. A few minutes later, she landed in the Eastern Plaguelands, followed shortly by the rest of her guildmates. ...

That day, though, a hundred savage undead had fallen to Dorabel's flaming sword, Destiny, when they arrived at Rattlegore's chamber. The party took a moment to rest up as they formulated their plans. “Rattlegore is not a subtle enemy,” said Pieren, the parties priest. “Giztra and Dorabel should go in first, to get rid of his Bone Golems, then we can all focus on Rattlegore.” Everyone nodded in agreement.

One by one, the Bone Golems fell. Destiny caused flaming tracers to form in the air around her. Finally, the party turned their attention to Rattlegore. An evil glint formed in the eye sockets of the skeletal undead, as he attacked the party...

When the battle was over, the party from the Argent Dawn lay dead at Rattlegore's feet. The undead monstrosity grabbed the lifeless body of Dorabel, and began to eat the flesh off her bones, tossing them into a huge pile in the middle of his chamber.

As Rattlegore turned to devour another member of his party, SoulStealer rose from the dead, using his Soul Stone. He moved out of the room quietly, and used his hearthstone to teleport back to Ironforge. A few minutes later, he stood on the doorstep of the House of Faithhammer. He knocked quietly. A young dwarven boy opened the door. “Asher, my name is--nevermind. I am a friend of your--”

“She's dead.” Asher said, cutting the stranger off. Soulstealer took a moment to look for the right words, and when they didn't come he decided on the truth. “Yes. Rattlegore killed us all. He ate your mother first. I assume he ate the others as well.”

“And you, warlock! What did you do to save her? You are standing here alive, well, while my mother sits in the belly of the undead!” A primal scream, guttural and animalistic, escapes from Asher. “Get out! Get out, you bastard! And don't come back!” Soulstealer nodded, understanding and walked away. Asher stood silent, inner rage causing his entire body to quake, as he wept bitter tears... and plotted his revenge against the monster that killed his mother.

Part 1 – Rattlegore Down

“RATTLEGORE!!!” Asher cried. His party, all guildmates in the Keepers of the Realm, stood behind him. They knew this mission was not about gold, or equipment, or even experience. This mission was about revenge-- hard, cold-blooded revenge. A cackle filled the hallway outside Rattlegore's chamber.

“Come and get me, Paladin! I will eat your flesh and dine on your bones!”

Unable to control himself, Asher charged Rattlegore, striking him over and over with his mace. His guildmates quickly dispatched the Bone Golems, and began to back up the raging Asher. “You killed my mother, you bastard! Now it's time for you to return to the nether realm you come from!”

He struck him again, but Rattlegore countered, striking Asher across the face, leaving four bleeding lines across his face. Four rivulets of blood ran down the cuts on Asher's face. “What is your name, dwarf?” he asked, as he was hit by a barrage of arrows from Ehteht, the night elf hunter.

“I am Asher. I am the Light!” His mace struck the undead again, throwing bone chips into the air. Rattlegore laughed, his teeth chattering together like a demonic squirrel.

“I remember your mother well. She was very good, very tender. I wonder if her son is the same?” He stood above Asher, and swung down with all his might. He missed. Asher lined up his shot, hitting Rattlegore in the chest. His ribcage exploded in a shower of broken bones. The dark light behind his eyes dimmed as Asher stood above him. “This is not over, Asher Faithhammer, not by a long chalk,” Rattlegore hissed as the dark light in his eyes dimmed at last.

Asher fell to the floor, tears of joy and pain streaming down his face. Ehteht walked over to him, and placed a strong hand on his shoulder. “Its over, Ash. Let's go home, and have some of that awful ale you dwarves like to drink so much. We will celebrate our victory, and raise a glass to your mother.” Asher shook his head, tears falling to the left and right. “Perhaps shortly, but there is something I must do first.” Asher stood, and opened one of his sacks. “I must have a reminder.” Rattlegore's broken skeleton lay in front of him. Asher ripped free the skull and spine of the murderer, and put it in his sack.

Delmagan, a dwarven warrior, and a long-time friend of Asher, looked at him as if he were mad. “What are you doing, friend?”

“Taking home a trophy.”

That night, they did drink. To excess. Asher and Ehteht walked to the House of Faithhamer, stumbling and singing dwarven and elven dirges of lost loved ones. He took Asher up the stairs to his childhood room, and let him pass out on the bed. As he left, Ehteht noticed the grisly skull and spine of Rattlegore in the front room next to the fire. He paused, thinking of hurling the lot of it into the lava of the Great Forge. He was no rogue though, and if his friend wanted a trophy, then so be it. Besides, Ehteht thought, what harm could come?



Asher grumbled in his sleep.


He jerked up in bed, looking around the room for whoever was speaking. Seeing nothing, and feeling none too chipper, he lay back down. “That'll teach me to drink that Darkmoon Faire Special Reserve.” He clutched his head in agony from his hangover, and lay back down.


He sat bolt upright in bed. “Mother?” The disembodied voice of his mother spoke into his head.

Yes, Asher, it's me.

“Where are you?” he asked, searching the room, his naked feet slapping on the floor.

I am inside you, child. The voice hesitated a moment. Come downstairs, and I will tell you everything.

A few moments later, Asher sits in a chair staring at the trophy he brought back from Scholomance.

How much do you know about Rattlegore, Asher?

“Not much, really.”

Rattlegore gets his power from the flesh he eats, and the bones he rests upon. He fed on me, which as caused my soul to become trapped in the nether realms.

Asher nodded. He sat silently for a moment, taking the information in. After a moment, he asked, “Can you come back?”

Not without help.

“Tell me what I must do, then,” he said, without reservation.

The power to bring me back is in the bones. Use your hammer smithing talents to fashion a weapon from your trophy and use it to fight the undead, horde, and your other enemies. The mace you create will drain bits of life energy from them and in time I will be able to return to you, my loving son.

Asher stood up, grabbed the trophy and his blacksmithing tools. Naked feet and all, he went to the Great Forge and began hammering, forming the skull and spine into a weapon. The other smiths, engineers and hard-boiled miners watched, as the sparks flew at Asher as he worked.

Hours later, Asher stood in his living room, holding his new weapon. It was well balanced and sturdy. Now he needed something to use it on.

Part 2 – The Stockades

Never before had there been a more wretched hive of scum and villainy than in the Stormwind Stockades. Three days earlier, a riot had broken out in Azeroth's only maximum security prison, led by the charismatic Bazil Thredd. Within hours of the riot, Thredd had killed the guards, who hadn't had the good fortune of escaping with Warden Thelwater. They had broken through the main door of the prison into Stormwind, but the Warden and the remaining guards were able to halt the felons, confining them to the prison. Asher heard of the riot from a gnome mage while on the tram from Ironforge to Stormwind. Once he stepped into the Dwarven District of Stormwind, he knew what he had to do, not just for the citizens of Stormwind, but for the soul of his mother.

The Stockades were a huge, gleaming white building buried under the Canal District of Stormwind. Asher walked into the front door to see a number of archers take down another inmate attempting to escape. A broad-chested human barked orders and congratulated his men. “Good job, boys! That was Mad Mooney Smith! Seems only the crazy ones are trying to escape now!” He turned, hearing Asher's armor clink behind him. “Ho, Paladin. Come to help?”

Asher nodded. “Aye, I have. I am Asher. I have come to rid you of your problem.” He extends his hand, and the Warden shakes it heartily.

“I am Warden Thelwater.” The Warden smiled. He looked over Asher, and saw the mace on his back. “I know of you, Asher. You're the one who killed Rattlegore.”

Asher nodded, and wielded his mace. “Aye, but I cannot take all the credit, as my guildmates backed me up that day.”

“It's a good dwarf who thanks his friends for his accomplishments.” He looks somber a moment. “Even with your victories, are you sure you can do this alone? I have seen entire groups of adventurers enter this prison over the last few days and never come out. There are some very dangerous men down there.”

“None are as dangerous as me, Warden. Tell me what to expect.”

“The real threat is Bazil Thredd. These types of riots are usually controlled by one man, and Thredd is it. If you cut the head off the snake, the snake will die.” The Warden, picking his teeth with a bit of wood.

Asher entered the Stockades, but before his eyes could adjust to the darkness, four inmates rushed him. Three days of fighting, blood, and waste had caused the stench to be overpowering. Everything breakable in the place littered the floor in shards and pieces: doors, furniture, crockery, people. The four inmates in front of him were broken, desperate men. Their weapons were crude: boards with nails, shanks, and the like. One had a two-handed mace, and knew how to wield it. Asher targeted him first, blocking the inmate's first strike, and countering with a strike of his own. The skull struck the inmate in the chest. A green cloud formed around the inmate, and his pale skin took on the same greenish quality. He could no longer hold his mace up properly. Asher swung again, striking the inmate across the face. The skull mace flared to life. Asher could feel the inmate's life force entering the mace, as a dark green haze obscured the mace as he searched for another target.

Perfect, my love, but one is not enough.

With his mother's soothing voice in his head, he took out the other three with strikes from the mace. Each one caused it to flare up with its green haze. Asher stalked down the filthy hallway, barely keeping his lunch down from the foul air, killing one inmate after another. “Bazil Thredd!” he called. “I am Asher, and I am here to bring justice to these dank halls! Come out, and face me like a man!”

Some inmates attacked, which he quickly dispatched. Others cowered. He left those for the warden, as only the strongest life force was good enough for his mother. From down the cell block, Asher heard Bazil screaming, “Protect me, you assholes! Line up, the four of you!”Asher sprinted down the hall toward the voice, killing an inmate who tried to stand in his way with one blow. He darted into the room, seeing Bazil and his four inmate protectors.

“A paladin?! You're kidding, right?” Bazil started laughing, gripping his sides in mirth. Asher growled, and consecrated the area around him. His five enemies screamed in pain, as the holy light seared the sins of their souls. He grabbed the closest inmate, and twisted his neck around. The inmate fell to the floor, burning up from the inside with light. Another inmate jumped in, and hit Asher with a board with a huge spike sticking out of it. The spike punctured his Lightforge Spaulders, and tore into his arm. Blood trickled down Asher's side, as he felt his body grow heavy with disease.

He growled, “Death to all of you.” The mace swung around, catching the three inmates in fatal strikes.

Bazil Thredd fell to his knees, putting his hands on his head. “I surrender! I surrender! Mercy!” Asher looked down at him.

“Justice knows no mercy! By the Light, Bazil Thredd, I sentence you to death!” He raises his mace into the air...

“Noooooo!” ... and strikes Bazil down. The mace flares to life, as the corpse of Thredd begins to shrivel and wither, a green cloud forms around his inert corpse.



That night, Asher went into the Elwynn Forest and picked up a bottle of wine from his favorite winery. He sat alone in his room. The skull mace sat next to the fire. His mother spoke to him.

It is not enough, Asher. We must try something different.

“What do you suggest, mother?”

She paused for a long while. In the Badlands, there is a mine known as Uldaman. There you will find an enchanting trainer. She will teach you to become an enchanter.

Asher looked stunned, but he nodded. He enjoyed being a blacksmith, but helping his mother was the first priority.

From there you will travel to the Barrens, where you will seek a forsaken warlock...

Asher gasped, and jumped up angrily. “Never will I deal with a demon trafficker! Let alone the undead! SoulStealer let you die. I can never forgive him, or the selfish lot of them. Bastards one and all.”

Asher, I would never put you in a position like this if it weren't important. Tam Freely owns an enchanting formula known as lifestealing... and it doesn't matter how you feel about him.

She laughs darkly into his ear. Asher cackles madly along.

Part 3 – The High Keeper

The trip through Uldaman was easier than Asher expected. The Troggs, which had recently caused the shutdown of the mine, fell to his skull mace. Each life taken added to the power of his mother. Enchanting was easier than he expected as well. Blacksmithing was tedious and boring, but the power of enchanting was something that he could not ignore. Afterwards, he spent a few days in Ironforge, honing his skill and learning the ins and outs of his new-found enchantments. He was sitting alone in his study, reading The Rise and Fall of Lordaeron, when he heard a knock at his door. He stood and answered the door.

The High Keeper stood on the other side. The High Keeper was the spiritual focus of the guild so having the venerable night elf on his doorstep was an honor at least, a bad omen at worst. “May I come in, Asher?” he asked, with a smile. Asher nodded, closing the door behind him.

The High Keeper stood next to the fire. “To what do I owe this honor, Keeper?”

The High Keeper thought for a moment, pausing to choose the right words as was his habit. “Your class leader, Jessyca, said that you were out of sorts since your defeat of Rattlegore. I thought I would come by, to see if there was anything I could do for you.” Or spy. “Maybe you would...”

Don't listen to him Asher! He means to spy on you! You must get him out of here.... Asher stood, staring into the fire, not knowing what to do.


Asher visibly flinched, so much that The High Keeper saw it. “Asher, come with me to Fray Island. I want to have a Priest look at you. Make sure you are fit and healthy.”

“I... I... don't think...”

Wait! Asher. Go with him, but wait till nightfall to leave.

“I don't think I can go right now, Keeper, but I can in a few hours. Let me finish up a few things, and I will meet you at the Deepwater Tavern in Menthil Harbor. We can ride the boat to Theramore and Ride to Fray Island together.” Asher plastered a smile on his face so real, even he believed it.


That night on Fray Island, Asher snuck away into the water and crossed the bay. From there he mounted up, and rode into the Barrens. From the island, The High Keeper puts away his ornate spyglass and walks back into the building shaking his head.


“Welcome to the Barrens, Paladin. Not too often do we get such upstanding members of the Alliance here.” The undead, Tam Freely, laughed, and looked Asher over with those sunken, dead eyes. Asher glared at the stinking pile of flesh.

“You have something I want, horde filth. The enchanting formula lifestealing.”

Freely laughed manically. “That's rich! The Paladin wants to know a 'forbidden' secret! That's a laugh, dwarf. Even then, you can't afford it.”

“Name your price, warlock.”

“I want your mace.”

It was Asher's turn to laugh. “What for, warlock?! You can't even lift the thing, let alone wield it.”

Enraged, the warlock began to cast a spell, but before he could finish casting, Asher donned his mace, and brought up Seal of Command. The power of the holy light surrounded Asher in a golden nimbus.

“I know what you are thinking. 'Can I finish this spell before he kills me with his huge mace?' So I have just one question for you. Do you feel lucky, warlock? Do you?”

Tam Freely dropped his hands, his spell fizzling, and admitted defeat. Asher lowered his mace, and as he does, the warlock curses him with weakness and runs away. Asher tries to cast Holy Shock, but his mother's voice stops him.

No, son! Kill him with the mace! His power will add to what I have already.

The curse began to severely weaken him, and he knew the fight must end quickly or this upstart warlock would kill him. He chased after the cowardly Freely, hitting him with the mace. One after another, he endured the warlock's attacks, as the coward hit him from afar. That is, until he got too close. Asher stunned him with his Hammer of Justice, and struck Tam Freely down. The warlock's soul visibly entered the mace.

Yesssss.... Asssshhhher, that is the kind of power I need. Search his body, son. Find the formula.

“Yes, mother.” He set about his grisly task. He found the formula, and read it over. Asher learned it quickly, and brought out the reagents to enchant the mace.

Good, son, enchant it quickly so we can get back to Fray Island. I have another task for you there.

“Yes, mother,” he said dryly. Asher pulled out his Arcanite Rod, and placed the reagents onto the mace. He waved the rod over the mace, and said the command words. A surge of energy loosed into the mace, and knocked him backwards. Asher sat up, looking at his treasure with an unnatural love. The mace was glowing now, around the skull a purple light shone. The eyes of the skull began to glow with the same intensity.

”It's beautiful,” he muttered.

Part 4 – Endgame

Asher crept into the guild house. His mother's words ringing in his ears. The High Keeper slept on the floor, resting his head on a small pillow.

Strike him down, my son. Destroy the High Keeper, and steal his life. His life force, bolstered by the enchantment, will allow me to return to life! We can be together again, my son!

“This is the not the way of the light, mother,” Asher muttered.

Do it! Asher! Do it now! Her words held power. A power he was unable to resist.

The skull mace rose above the High Keeper, its purple glow giving the sleeping elf a ghostly look. Asher's eyes are filled with a dark glow, just then, the High Keeper woke. “Asher, no!” He brought the mace down, crushing the skull of his guild leader. His life force filled Asher and his mother with power.

That's it, Asher! That's it exactly!

Her laughs filled him with joy and terror. He left behind the corpse of the High Keeper, bleeding and broken. Dark clouds obscured the moon as he walked out onto the island. Asher took the mace, and planted it into the ground. The eyes of the mace pointed to the northeast, the direction of Scholomance. His face weary, his body tired, he watched the purple glow of the skull mace envelope the entire mace, and he sunk into the ground. The ground around it began to glow and pulsate. The ground rippled and bucked, throwing Asher off his feet.

The bones of those who had died on Fray Island began popping out of the ground, and collecting around the mace, as if it were a Pied Piper of bones. All at once, a great explosion of light blinded Asher. He blinked, clearing his eyes, and looked for his mother.

All he saw before him was Rattlegore! In his mother's voice, Rattlegore spoke, “Poor little Asher. My loving child.” The bony jaw of Rattlegore bounced up and down with amusement as he mocked Asher. “My loving son!”

Asher, unable to control his emotions, cried, “You lying, dirty bastard! Now you die for real!” “Not this time,” said Rattlegore.

“I am Asher. I am the Light!” Asher brought out his secondary weapon, a one-handed mace he picked up from a troll priest, and his Draconian Deflector. He rushes Rattlegore, the battle begun!

Minutes later, with Asher bleeding and broken, he struck Rattlegore across the skull.

Finally, the undead beast dropped into a pile of broken bones. The souls of those Asher had killed were set free. Asher watched as the soul of the High Keeper moved toward the guild house. He followed and watched as the soul hovered over its body.

“Your soul is free of Rattlegore, wise leader, reenter the light so that you may live!” Asher finished his Resurrection spell, and watched as the High Keeper's eyelids fluttered open. He saw Asher and smiled up at him. “Keeper, I am so...”

“No need to apologize, young Asher. It was foretold to me that you were being manipulated. What I didn't know was how bad.” He sighed. “I failed you as much as you failed me.” Asher looked at this leader, and smiled.

“Look at it this way. Tomorrow will be much better than today.”