jeudi 12 avril 2012

A dark rebirth - Part 2

Here is the second part of my Worgen Death Knight's story. At the moment, this is the last "edited" part of my story. My other chapter is far from being ready to post... It needs more pages as well as a lot of editing. And since my job takes a LOT of my time these days, I do not know when I'll have time to write some more...


 “Ye’r a Worgen, lad! I thought yer race was fearless!”

Giltharak was standing there. He was quietly whimpering as he looked at the revived animal presented to him by the Dwarven Death Knight. Who in their right mind would want to fly on a gryphon? Let alone a revived one! The flightmaster assured him that no one ever fell from the back of those bone gryphons but Giltharak wasn’t quite ready to put his fate in the hands of someone who already died before. What guarantied the Worgen that the flightmaster standing beside him didn’t die from falling off a gryphon during a flight in the first place? Nevertheless, he had to get to the ground. And it was either by taking a gryphon, flying “safely” down, or jumping off from Acherus. Since the second choice was less appealing than the first one, Giltharak had to put his fear of flight aside and mounted up on the big animal in front of him. Taking one last look at the flightmaster, the Worgen slowly directed his mount to the edge of the platform.

“Suff’r well, lad”, said the gryphon handler with a wicked smile.

“I sure will suffer…” answered Giltharak, a frightened look on his face.

In the mind of the Worgen, as he launched his mount off into the air, one thing was certain. His race was definitively not made for flying. Even though the gryphon was gracefully gliding through the air, the panicked Worgen was paralyzed by fear. How could a wolf willingly put his life in the claws of a bird? It did not make sense. It was not natural. He was supposed to eat birds not fly with them. Giltharak’s eyes were shut and his claws were digging holes in his paws. He tightly held on to the reins, waiting for this dreadful experience to come to an end; good or bad.

It took less than a minute for the gryphon to get from Acherus to the ground level. However, it felt like an eternity for Giltharak. Preparing its approach, the mount rapidly flapped its bony wings and smoothly landed close to the Scourge camp. The still paralyzed Worgen let himself drop onto the grass.

“They will have to kill me yet another time before I mount on one of those things again” thought Giltharak lying on his back, watching the gryphon take flight to get back to Acherus.

The Worgen laid there in the grass for a few minutes, thinking of what could have happened if the gryphon had let him fall to his death. A shiver ran through his fur as he finally decided to get on his feet and search for Prince Valanar.


“Ah!” said the Prince, looking back at Giltharak. “I see the Lich King sent his new champion to be put to the test. Do not think I will go easy on you, Worgen. You shall suffer as much as the other Death Knights, if not a bit more. I will personally make sure of that.”

Kneeled in front of the Prince, Giltharak winced. He almost hoped for a second to be treated like everyone else but it seems like he would not get that privilege. Every Death Knight standing around the Worgen was looking at him with scornful eyes; even the Prince and his fellow officers.

“So be it” thought Giltharak. “I will prove to them that I am worthy of being a Death Knight.”

Raising his head up, the Worgen answered with confidence: “Give me your orders, my Prince, and I will carry them without hesitation.”

“You better not disappoint me, Death Knight. You wouldn’t want the fury of the Lich King unleashed upon you. Come now. I will show you what I have in mind for your first mission.”

Giltharak rose up and followed Prince Valanar to a table on which the map of New Avalon was displayed.

“As you can see”, said the Prince, “we control most of the area around the city. However, the Scarlet Crusade received reinforcements from the sea earlier today. We need to thin their numbers out. That is where you will be able to help us. Find a way to get on-board one of their ships and use their canons against them. Kill as many Scarlet Crusade soldiers as possible. We will provide you with a gryphon to make your escape once your mission is completed. All you have to do is to fire this flare up in the air.”

A shiver ran through Giltharak’s fur as he took the small gun from Valanar’s hand. “Not again” he thought. “The Prince must have seen me land. He really hates me.”

“I will do as you ordered, sir” hesitantly said the Worgen.

“Well then, do not make me wait any longer. I will prepare my troops to crush what will be left of their battalion. Good luck, Death Knight” said Prince Valanar.

“Thank you, sir” answered Giltharak. “However, I do have a question if you would allow me, my Prince.”

“Sure, go ahead Death Knight” replied Valanar, annoyed that the Worgen was still standing in front of him.

“It seems that, as soon as I arrived in this camp, no one could stand my presence. There is much hate in their eyes, as well as yours. Have I done something wrong?” asked Giltharak.

Valanar sighed. “As a Death Knight, you have not done anything wrong. However, before becoming one is a different story. You probably do not remember, as the Lich King wipes the memory of all of his Death Knights, but you were pretty hard to kill. The ghouls you killed that night are irrelevant, as we can revive new ones quickly. Training a new Death Knight however takes time. You killed five of my men during the fight. Out of these soldiers, three were in such a terrible shape that all we could do was raise them back from death as ghouls. Among them was one of my senior officers.”

“I am sorry, sir” replied Giltharak, ashamed of himself.

“Do not feel sorry for them, Death Knight” answered Valanar. “Even though we fought together, they were weak and they deserved their fate. As a servant of the Lich King, we have the gift of immortality. However, the state in which we die will decide how we will be raised back to life. If your body is too damaged, the only option will be as a ghoul.”

“As for our opinion toward you”, continued Prince Valanar, “it will change if you can live to the Lich King’s expectations. We, Death Knights, judge our comrades on their actions. And since the Lich King himself said that your abilities could turn the tide of some battles on our side, you will need to prove your valor more than anyone else.”

“I understand, sir” replied Giltharak.

“Good. Now, let’s get back to business. I am counting on you to distract and kill as many Scarlet Crusaders as you can while I take some of my men to the beach to kill the rest” ordered Valanar.

Giltharak saluted the Prince before taking his leave. As he walked pass the Prince’s officers, cladded in their shiny new armor, the Worgen saw that most of them were laughing at him.

“He will never be able to do it” Giltharak heard a Blood Elf officer say. “The Tauren we sent this morning did not even made it down to the beach. Let’s see if that wolf can at least kill a few of those Scarlet Crusade rats.”

“I was there when the Lich King captured him. I am pretty confident he will make it all the way down” another said.

“You are overestimating him, my friend” replied the first one. “I am sure his third kill will be his last.” replied the first one.

“I will kill at least a hundred” said Giltharak, angry at the officer’s lack of fate in him. “And when I do get back, I want a set of armor like the one you have. Mine is falling apart.”

“Deal!” mockingly answered the officer. “If you succeed, I will ask the blacksmith to forge you the best armor you will ever see. But if you fail, you will be raised as a ghoul and your next mission will be to serve me.”

“Tell the blacksmith to heat up the forge, I won’t be long” said the Worgen, rapidly leaving the camp.

“This is one overconfident fool” said the officer before bursting into laughter.


“Wow! I might have spoken a little too fast” thought Giltharak.

The Worgen was hiding behind a bush, near the entrance of a mine. The road in front of him was well-guarded. Going down to the beach was not going to be an easy task. On each side of the road, groups of soldiers were standing there, waiting to kill any ghoul or Death Knight foolish enough to try his luck. He had to find a way down. If he were to use a gryphon, he would be shot down in seconds by their archers. Giltharak decided to take a look at the cliff. Maybe he could climb down unnoticed.

Slowly crawling to the ground, the Worgen reached the cliff, unseen. As he looked down, his hope vanished. The rock wall was too steep for him to climb down, and it was too high for him to jump. There was no way he could plan any surprise attack on that beach. He will die trying to reach the boat and will continue his service to the Lich King as a ghoul.

“Don’t give up!” said a small voice inside his head. “You’ve managed to live through worst situations than this one!”

Giltharak drove his negative thoughts away. There has to be a way to get to the boats. He thoroughly looked at the beach below, trying to find an opening. Regrouping on the sand were countless soldiers clad in red; some of them were gathered around a few canons, preparing for a battle that soon shall come. Going up and down the ramps leading to the deck of both boats, many workers were getting boxes off to the beach. Some of them however, were pulling mining carts up on the deck, before disappearing inside the ship’s hold. Taking a closer look, the Worgen realized that those mining carts were coming from the road he was supposed to use to get down to the beach.

An idea immediately formed in Giltharak’s mind. That was his way in. He had to hide inside one of the mining carts and let the workers get him on one of the boats. Crawling back to the mine, he began to plan his move. He will have to be quick and make sure no one sees him or he will be killed in an instant. As he reached the entrance of the mine, he saw some mining carts abandoned in front of it. Around the entrance, a few guards were busy defending the mine from a group of ghouls trying to enter. Once in a while, miners were running out of the mine; some were hauling carts, leaving the mine as fast as they could with goods, while others were simply panicking, running for their life, occasionally grabbing a cart and scurrying down the road to the beach without paying attention to its content.

Giltharak acted swiftly. He grabbed one of the abandoned carts and brought it back close to where he was hiding, but still close enough to the road. Taking a few ore chunks and some rugged clothing, he jumped in the cart, crouched at the bottom, put the cloth over him and placed the ore as best as he could to hide his presence.

Luckily, the Worgen did not have to wait for long as a panicked miner, came running out of the mine and crashed into the cart.

“Ouch! That hurt!” said the miner as he got up to his feet. “I better take this one down with me. Else, the commander might not like it. Besides, it is already full.”

The trip down to the beach was pretty quick. Giltharak feared that one of the guards might take a look inside his hiding spot but no one seemed to care. The miner brought the cart all the way down the road and up to one of the boat. Once inside the ship’s hold, he pushed the cart in a corner and ran out.

The Worgen was more than happy of what he saw after taking his head out of the rugged cloth. He was inside one of the cargo areas of the ship. Around him, many carts full of ore and other materials were gathered in an unorganized fashion. No human could be seen across the room. Preparing his sword, Giltharak got out of his cart and slowly walked out the door and up to the deck. Peeking his head out of the doorway, the Worgen saw what he was looking for. Three canons were lined up on each side of the boat.

“Great! These cannons are perfect” thought Giltharak. “Now, let’s kill some humans.”

Sneaking his way to the nearest canon, Giltharak sat on the seat and looked at the controls. He was never good with guns and this one seemed even more complicated than he thought a canon could be. Buttons were laden everywhere on the control panel. The Worgen thought he could identify at least two: one was red with what looked like a cannon ball shooting from the barrel, the other, where a canon was encased in a bubble, was blue.

“Why must engineered weapon be so complicated?” said Giltharak to himself.

Positioning the cannon, the Worgen tried to aim for one of the cannons on the beach and pressed the red button. The cannon ball erupted from the barrel with a loud “Boom”, traveled up into the sky and finally crashed down on its target producing a large explosion. The destructive power unleashed on the cannon pulverized it, sending many Scarlet Crusade soldiers flying high into the air before falling back onto the beach, landing with a loud thump.

“The enemy has taken one of our ships! Stop them!” said one of the Scarlet Crusade commanders.

The chaos caused by the first explosion was rapidly spreading across the beach. Some soldiers were running for their life while others were trying to take cover or assault the boat. Meanwhile, Giltharak was having a blast, raining destruction on the beach. Pieces of armor were flying everywhere. As he looked towards the road, he saw that some Death Knights were slaughtering everyone who tried to escape the carnage. His mission was accomplished; he could now leave that ship.

Giltharak was getting ready to get down from the cannon when he saw a few soldiers going up the ship’s ramp, swords in hand, ready to kill the Death Knight where he stood. Hoping his assumptions on the blue button were right, he quickly pushed it. From the base of the cannon, a blue flash rapidly spread on the ground. Every soldier in a radius of fifty yards collapsed to the ground, struck by the powerful electrical current coming from the cannon.

“Now, the hardest part of the mission” said Giltharak as he got back down on the deck.

Using the flare Prince Valanar gave him, the Worgen watched as a bone gryphon was making its way down from Acherus to meet him.

“This is pure torture” thought Giltharak as the gryphon landed next to him.

“Silly wolf! Fearless in front of an entire army, yet afraid to leave the ground on a flying mount!” said a feminine voice inside the Worgen’s head, laughing at him.

“Shut up!” yelled Giltharak. “You don’t know me!”

“I know you better than you think, my dear brother” whispered the voice.

“Brother? Why are you calling me your brother?” asked Giltharak. However, the only answer he received was the sound of the waves crashing on the boat and the chaotic noises of the battle raging on the beach.

“It must have been my imagination” he told himself. “If I let myself get distracted like that, I’ll end up dead… again.” Looking back at the gryphon, he sighted. “Unless that thing decides to let me fall… Then I won’t have to worry about voices in my head anymore.”

Taking the reins in his hands, Giltharak, looking into the empty orbits of the gryphon’s skull as if its eyes were still there, told the undead beast: “Don’t you let me fall to the ground, bird! If you do and I somehow manage to survive, I’ll gnaw on your bones until nothing’s left of your skeletal corpse.”

The gryphon looked quizzically at the Worgen, not understanding a word of what he had said. But it had a passenger to carry to safety and that is all that mattered to the beast at the moment. It lowered itself enough for Giltharak to climb on its back and launched itself into the sky. Giltharak wasn’t prepared at all for the rapid maneuver of the gryphon and let out a loud yelp while holding on as best as he could to the reins.

“I will kill you, heartless beast!” yelled Giltharak as he disappeared into the clouds.


“The beach has been secured” said Prince Valanar to his officers. “Our new recruit did an amazing job at distracting the Scarlet Crusade’s forces. We killed most of the remaining soldiers and took control of their boats.” He turned his head to his right and asked one of his officers: “Prince Keleseth, how is the assault on the stables and farms around New Avalon?”

“It has been carried according to plan, brother. Most of the soldiers were either killed and raised as ghouls or fled behind the walls of the city. The Scarlet Crusaders are regrouping inside New Avalon’s walls to prepare their defense, as if it could stop us. We are establishing our new base of operation inside the crypt near the city. We shall be ready to launch our first assault soon” answered the Prince.

“Good!” said Valanar. “I will send you my new Worgen recruit as soon as he gets back from –”

“AHHHH!! LET ME DOWN YOU STUPID THING!!” yelled Giltharak as he was passing over the camp, the gryphon apparently refusing to hear the poor Worgen’s command.

“Just in time” laughed Valanar.

Doing one last circle around the camp, the undead gryphon decided to land right in the middle of it, a few feet away from the officers. On its back, a pretty agitated Worgen was hitting the beast with both hands. As soon as the mount touched the ground, Giltharak jumped off its back, took his sword and proceeded to cut the head of the gryphon off. Unfortunately for him, the beast was faster than the Worgen expected and the Death Knight’s sword missed its target.

“COME BACK FOUL BEAST!” cursed Giltharak, as the gryphon was flying back to Acherus.

Around the Worgen, most Death Knights were laughing at the scene, even Prince Valanar.

“I wonder how a weakling like that managed to become a Death Knight” said a Tauren to the Troll standing right beside him.

Baring his teeth, Giltharak slowly turned around to face the Tauren.

“What did you say, cow?” said the angry Worgen.

Still mocking Giltharak, the Tauren replied “I said that I wonder how a weakling—”

His sentence was abruptly interrupted by a purple beam, gripping the laughing Death Knight and letting him fall in front of the Worgen. Giltharak could not control his actions anymore. He will not let anyone laugh at his fear of flight. His sword was ready to cut the Tauren in half.  But before it even got near the other Death Knight’s head, a Val’kyr appeared and a massive pain wrecked through the Worgen’s body, who collapsed on the ground, yelping helplessly.

A powerful voice rose inside Giltharak’s head. “Do not disobey my command, minion! I might not be so forgiving next time” said the Lich King as the Val’kyr was releasing her grip.

When the Worgen managed to open his eyes, the Val’kyr was gone. He saw the Tauren Death Knight he tried to kill kneeling in front of him, stunned, while his Troll friend was trying to get him to move away. Slowly, Giltharak tried to get up, using his sword to keep his balance. He looked around and saw that nobody was laughing anymore. Only Prince Valanar had a smile on his face.

“Come, Death Knight” said Valanar, signaling Giltharak to meet him at the officer’s table. “You now know how it feels like when you disobey your master. The Val’kyr you saw is one of the many who could bring a Death Knight back to life. However, they are also among the strongest soldiers of the Lich King, able to travel from the Spirit Plane to this plane of existence and strike. Their attack is particularly painful. I am pretty sure you do not want to go through that again am I right?”

“No sir” weakly answered Giltharak. “I will try to control my anger and direct it against our enemy instead of my fellow Death Knights.”

“That is what I wanted to hear. Keleseth, I want you to take this Worgen with you to the crypt. I know you still need to gather some material to prepare the next phase of our assault on the Scarlet Crusade. I am sure that you could use a soldier like him in your rank” said Valanar.

“As you wish brother, as long as he does not go on a rampage every two minutes” answered Keleseth.

“Do not worry brother, he learned his lesson. Besides, I am sure the Lich King will keep an ‘angel’ on his shoulder” laughed Valanar.

“You are probably right” replied the other Prince. Turning his sight toward Giltharak, he added: “You should go see the blacksmith before joining me at the crypt. I promised that you would get a new armor shall you succeed your first mission and I am a man of my word. You should also ask Salanar the Horseman for a new mount. I am sure he will have something that suits you better than a gryphon.”

“Thank you, my lord” answered Giltharak.

“Do not make me wait, Death Knight. We have a Scarlet Crusade to annihilate” said Keleseth before leaving the table.


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lundi 2 avril 2012

Part of a minority, and proud of it!

I might get a lot of negative comments about this post (if someone takes the time to read this anyway), but I really have to get this out of my head. I have been thinking about it recently but I am pretty tired of that kind of abuse. It is not considered as offensive as the harassment Apple Cider Mage and other feminine MMO players (and women in general!) have been victim. It will probably never be talked about on the public scene as Martin Luther King did many years ago with racial discrimination. We will probably never see international conflicts caused by it as is currently the case with religion. And it won't make the news like high school bullying has been for the last few months. It is probably the opinion of a small group of people, but it is there and almost made me reconsider playing MMOs in my timezone.

First of all, I have never suffered from discrimination based on my sex, my race, my health or my religion. What is it then? It might be because I am a Canadian. But then again, we usually laugh, as everyone else, at the crude humor American TV shows like South Park (to only name one) uses to describe us. Most of the Americans know that Canada is not that bad and usually like their Canadian neighbors. I have met more than a few Americans who would love to come visit our country and see what it has to offer. There is however a small group that, in a certain way, even other Canadians love to hate. These people are working hard to keep what makes them almost unique in North America, their language.

I live in the province of Quebec. And as you probably know, most people living here speak French. Over the last thirty years, we have been strongly encouraged to learn English. After all, we are only a few millions surrounded by hundreds of millions of English speakers. The standard for someone my generation (25 to 35 years old), is to at least(!) speak and write in both languages almost flawlessly. Professionally speaking, it is for the best. It opens up a ton of doors that would have been closed to anyone exclusively speaking French. As an engineer, I often have to work with many people from different countries so speaking more than one language is a huge gain. I was able to work for a year and a half in France, as well as a few months in the United States without any problem.

"Hey Gil, what the hell were you talking about earlier? You spoke of discrimination but I don't see any here!" I hear you say.

Actually, it isn't always pretty on the French side of the fence in North America. I do not want to stroll around the never-ending "Quebec VS the rest of Canada" thing, it would be too long to explain and I agree in part with both sides. Let's just keep it at being a French-speaking Canadian in a world of English-speakers.

I played WoW for many, many years and I have recently switched to SWToR. During those years, I have played on both European and American servers. I never had any negative comments when I wrote something that could sound weird to French people on European servers(we do have some weird expressions!). And you can't even imagine how many times I've heard on Ventrillo while playing in France : "Oh! Un cousin Québécois!!  Je kif trop ton accent!!" [translated : "Oh! A cousin from Quebec! I really LOVE your accent!!"]. But being a French-Canadian on an American server is a totally different thing. Since it is my most recent experience, let's take a look at what happened to me in SWToR.

When the Early Access began, a lot of French-Canadians decided to create/join guilds on the same American server, Canderous Ordo. I did create a character on that server but, unsure if I wanted to join a big French-speaking guild or not, I decided to level my Sith in an smaller American guild. During the first days of Early Access, every guild was trying to recruit new members over any channel available. Among them, a guild composed exclusively of people speaking French was recruiting, but posting their message in French. I couldn't believe how many people just mocked them!

"Shut up french f**got!"
"Go back to the french servers"
"Quebec sucks"
"L2Speak English KTHXBYE"

And I've seen far worst than that... But what really pissed me off was shortly after a warzone, one member of the guild I was in decided to go all out about how Quebec is the worst part of Canada and how they should just leave the server and let the real people play.

Me : "Eh... [NameOfStupidGuyHere], why do you say that in General chat about Quebec?"
Stupid : "cause they suck"
Me : "And you know that because...?"
Stupid : "they cant speak english and they piss everyone off with that." 
Me : "And what about that other guy who spoke Spanish a minute ago?"
Stupid :  "dunno... missed him i guess. but its not the same"
Me : "Because he's not french-canadian right?"
Stupid : "lol yeah!"
Me : "So you don't think that they are good enough to play on this server?"
Stupid : "nope!"

At that moment, I decided to stop trying to reason with him. Unfortunately,  he keeps on bashing on Quebec and my anger is rapidly taking control.

Me : "Mind if I try something?"
Stupid : "sure"

Since he is right besides me, I flag him for a duel, which he promptly accepts. He is two levels higher than me but I don't really care. In the end, I kicked his ass pretty badly. Not only once, but 3 times in a row.

Stupid : "damn youre good!"
Me : "Thx! But it's kinda weird to hear you say that! Based on what you said earlier, I should suck!"
Stupid : "huh?"
Me : In case you didn't know, I am French-Canadian. As you can see, I can speak English and I am not that bad at PVE and PVP (at least, better than you). So, I'll get down to your level of stupidity and say this: Learn to respect people, idiot!"

I walked to a mailbox and, during the 3 or 4 minutes it took me to write a message to the guild leader and open a ticket, this guy hasn't stopped bashing on me. I sent my ticket to the GMs, left the guild, logged off and started a brand new character on another server. I do not know what happened in the end and I have to admit that I don't really care. I do hope the guy got kicked out of the guild and/or of the game for a few days... That was back in December.

A few weeks ago, at the request of a friend who wanted to join a guild where he could finally speak French, I returned on Canderous Ordo, but on Republic's side. Things haven't quite changed... I still see people bash on Quebec. Not that many but still... I always stand for my province when people goes all out on us but I am slowly getting tired of it. I just feel like it will never change... Even if I am now member of a guild with more than 400 French-Canadian players, out of these players, maybe half of them do understand and speak English pretty well, but only a handful are able and willing to reply to some English speakers' hate. It does take a lot of courage to stand up to all the hate and negative comments. There are a few Americans and Canadians who also come to our defense, and I wholeheartedly thank them for that.  But in the end, all this boils down to one word : discrimination.

We have seen all kinds of posts in many blogs recently about feminism. Racism, despite much improvement, is still unfortunately present almost everywhere. Even though we are far from the Crusades that took place during the 11th to the 13th centuries, international conflicts still erupt based on religion. But what about discrimination based on language? Why couldn't I use the language I want in public without being judged on it? I do not want to go play on European servers! Not because I hate them (I still have some very good friends in France), but I want to play with people sharing my own timezone! Have you ever tried to raid in a group with a 6-hours difference? It is nearly impossible, except on weekends. I live in North America, why shouldn't I have the right to play on an American server? But even if the MMO companies gives us the right to play on American servers, we still have to live underground, creating our own little guilds where we can freely speak in the language we want and stay the hell out of General chat!

"Hey Gil, I don't think it's that bad! You should still consider yourself lucky to live in a free country!"

Yes! I do think I am VERY lucky to live in Canada. But again, may I ask you this : Why do some of you make me feel like I can't FREELY choose where I want to play? And also, why can't I FREELY speak French in General chat without having some people curse at me? Don't we also have the right to look for people speaking our own language to do something in-game?

Yes, we are different. We speak a language that is not common in North America. However, I am proud of speaking French. Taking a closer look, we are not that different from our American neighbors! Back in the 16th-18th centuries, we've been able to fend off most of the attacks made against us by England and the United States, as you did (well... you haven't really attacked yourself but I think you get my point there). We protected our way of life and freedom, as well as our language. We were able to keep what makes us different from the rest of North America. On July 4th, you celebrate your freedom, waving your flag and showing the world you are proud of living in the United States, and you are right to do so. We do the exact same thing every June 24th, waving the "fleurdelysé", our flag, and showing the world that, even though we are surrounded by English, we are proud to still speak French!

The world we live in is made of various colors, may those be of skin, personality, culture or ideas. We need to embrace those differences! We have to accept the fact that each of us is unique. So, next time you want to bash on people who are different, think about what makes YOU different from the rest and ask yourself : "What would my reaction be if I was the target of this bashing because of who I am?" You might be surprised by your own answer!

mardi 27 mars 2012

A dark rebirth - Part 1

Here is the first part of my Worgen Death Knight's story. 

“Wake up brother! Stay with me… I need you! We all do…” said a soft feminine voice filled with sadness.

“Leave him Nerrivik! His wounds are too great. We can’t do anything for him anymore” replied another voice.

“But…” sobbed Nerrivik, tears rolling down her furry face.

“I know but we have to go. If we don’t, the Scourge’s going to kill us too.” said the other voice.

Feeling a big hand resting on his head, the dying Worgen heard: “Thank you my friend! You saved my life and that of many others tonight.  We won’t forget you.  You were like a brother to me.  I will protect your sister and our pack until my dying breath. Goodbye …..”

As footsteps fled to the east, the sound of horses arriving from the west was louder and louder, until it was all around. Trying to open his eyes, the Worgen felt a sharp pain in his chest as the blade of a cold sword pierced his heart.

“You killed many of my best soldiers, wolf, but you shall soon become ours. You will be a powerful weapon under my master’s command” said a cold voice before death took hold of the Worgen’s body.


Giltharak suddenly opened his eyes and howled loudly, as if waking up from a terrible nightmare. He felt cold and sweaty all over.  His body was wreaked with pain. Sitting up, he tried to find wounds but no trace of blood could be seen through his white fur. 

“It must have been a dream” he told himself.

Trying to regain his thoughts, he looked around. He was sitting, naked, in a dark room. The air was filled with death. Shadows were moving all around. Giltharak looked at the one standing closer to him, trying to figure out what it was. It seemed to walk on two feet, its back was arched and its flesh was showing signs of rot.  But still, it was standing there, working on some kind of table laden with body parts. For a second, fear took over the poor Worgen but it almost felt… normal. As if he was used to seeing those rotting abominations walking around. The ghoul was assembling what looked like a bigger version of itself. And as Giltharak’s eyes got used to the poor lighting, he could see that many more were doing the exact same thing. He was so absorbed by the grim display of these undead creatures moving in front of his eyes that he didn’t heard heavy footsteps rapidly approaching from behind.

“Welcome to your new life in Acherus, Death Knight”, said a powerful voice.

A cold shiver running up his spine, Giltharak slowly turned his head and came face to face with a massive, dark figure.  The Lich King was standing there, gazing down on him with his cold, glowing eyes.

“You’ve been raised from death to be part of my most powerful soldiers, Worgen. Now kneel before your new master and pledge allegiance to the Scourge.”

Giltharak shakily rose up, keeping his head low, and kneeled in front of the Lich King. With a hint of fear lingering in the back of his mind, he answered, as if his voice was guided by darkness deep inside him: “Master, I will serve you and the Scourge for the remainders of time. My blade and claws will mercilessly cut through your enemies’ flesh. May they drown in despair while the Scourge emerges victorious against the Light!”

A cold smiled was drawn on the Lich King’s face as he replied: “Good, my minion. Now, take up your armor and meet me up at the platform overlooking the battlefield.”

He then turned around and quickly left the room. As soon as the Lich King was out of sight, the dark atmosphere in the room seemed to dissipate a little. The stench of the rotting flesh, however, did not. Rising up to his feet, Giltharak slowly walked up to the door the Lich King went through. On a small decrepit table, he found ragged pieces of armor. From the look of it, the armor was probably made for a Tauren. But given the pitiful state it was in, it most probably was salvaged from a dead one. Giltharak was tall, even for a Worgen, towering at 7 and half feet. The armor itself was pretty large but he had trouble putting it on. His broad shoulders were almost tearing the crude material of his robe apart. As for the hood, he had to rip two holes with his claws to make sure his long furry ears weren’t too uncomfortable. It was however impossible to conceal his long gray snout in this cowl.  The gloves proved difficult to put on.  He eventually had to rip the fingers off to make his claws go through. As for the boots, well, these were more like ankle bands than boots so he had no trouble placing these over his paws. Giltharak took his time, covering his massive frame with the entire garment found on the table. Once ready, the Worgen took another look with his cold blue eyes at the room while slowly making his way towards the door and left the room.

As he walked through the gloomy corridors, Giltharak tried to remember how he ended up here. But, as soon as he tried to reach in his memories, darkness engulfed his thoughts. The more he tried, the more darkness overwhelmed him. The only thing he could somehow remember was his name. Where was he from? What has he done to deserve the honor, or so he thought at that moment, of being chosen by the Lich King to be a Death Knight? And most of all, what was that weird feeling, coming from the farthest reaches of his soul, telling him that this was not where he should be? 


After walking for a few minutes, he reached the end of the corridor. As he looked left and right, no doorway or staircase could be seen. However, a small, round platform emitting a weird purple light was placed on the floor.  Hesitating for a moment, Giltharak finally decided to get on the platform. A flash of light engulfed the corridor as he was magically transported in a large room, filled with other people.  Even though the flash of light couldn’t possibly go unnoticed, everyone kept doing their work as if nothing happened.  Across the room, many Death Knight Initiates were gathered around forges, working on their blades. The forge master was walking from one group to the other, giving instructions and punishing severally any mistake. At the center of the room, chained in a small pit, failed initiates were sitting on the floor, waiting for the moment their master would put an end to their misery. Giltharak could identify most of the races of Azeroth; Gnomes, Dwarves, Taurens, Blood Elves and even Forsaken. However, it seemed as if he was the only one of his race. Maybe that was why the Lich King wanted to make him a Death Knight. He might have seen something in Giltharak that no other race of the known world could provide.

Behind the Worgen was a stairway leading to a large balcony. The Lich King was standing there, looking out at the field below the citadel.  As Giltharak climbed up the stairs, the echo of the battle raging outside could clearly be heard.

“Come, Death Knight, and gaze upon the field below” said the Lich King. “All those pathetic humans, fighting a battle they will not win. Feel the power of the Scourge at work.”

As Giltharak reached the ledge, he looked down and saw many humans in red armor trying to defend themselves against the Scourge, while citizens were running out of what once were their homes. Waves after waves of ghouls and Death Knights poured down on the valley, killing each and every one standing in their way. The humans were retreating to a small city surrounded by heavily fortified walls. Looking towards the sea, Giltharak could see the masts of large boats, getting ready to set sail.

“As you can see”, said the Lich King, “the Scarlet Crusade is powerless against my assault. Soon, we will crush every single one of them, gathering new soldiers from their dead bodies.”

Pointing to the west, the Lich King continued. “Beyond these mountains stands the Argent Crusade. These so-called defenders of the Light think they can stop us from taking over the Plaguelands. They can’t imagine how wrong they are, especially now that my new champion has arisen.”

“Who is that new champion, master?” asked Giltharak.

Looking back at the Worgen, the Lich King answered: “Well, YOU of course! You must probably be wondering why you are the only one of your race in Acherus don’t you? For a long time, I have watched the Archmage Arugal change your race within the depths of Shadowfang Keep. From the savage beasts you once were, you slowly evolved into a sentient race, able to keep enough control over your feral nature without affecting your ferocity and fighting abilities. When I got word that Arugal was killed by the Forsakens, I sent my best men to raise him back from the dead. While performing the ritual, my scouts found your kind, hiding in the mountains north of Shadowfang Keep. Unfortunately, you were the only one I could capture, at least, for now.”

Looking into the hearth of Acherus, the Lich King continued. “You managed to kill many of my best Death Knights before finally crumbling to the ground, giving enough time to your fellow Worgens to make their escape. Your savageness and fury is impressive, as well as your stamina. I have seen Taurens put a pretty decent fight against my army but they couldn’t measure up to the carnage you caused while trying to escape from my grasp. That is why I wanted you here. With my fury guiding your actions, you shall be unstoppable!”

Kneeling in front of the Lich King, Giltharak replied: “You shall be proud of me, master. Your enemies will tremble at the sight of my bloody claws ripping their comrades apart.”

“That is what I am expecting of you, Worgen” said the Lich King. “But before I send you out to kill the enemies of the Scourge, you will need to learn how to master the powers I gave you as my new Death Knight. Meet with Instructor Razuvious inside Acherus. He will help you get ready to fight under my command.”

With those words, the Lich King turned his sight back onto the battlefield. Giltharak stood up and walked back inside Acherus. 


Razuvious was standing near the forge, yelling at a Blood Elf initiate holding a broken blade in his hands. 

“Weakling!” yelled Razuvious “How dare you break your blade? You do not deserve the gift the Lich King bestowed upon you. You are pathetic! You will not be of any use to the Scourge.” Looking at two other initiates, the instructor said: “You two, chain him in the pit.”

The two Night Elf initiates put their blades back on the rack in front of them and took hold of the Blood Elf. Looking at the scene, Giltharak could not help but feel pity at the initiate. The Blood Elf saw the look on the Worgen’s face and anger took hold of him.

“What are you looking at, wolf?” said the initiate.

“Weakness!” replied Giltharak with darkness in his voice he never knew he had.

Angrier than ever, the Blood Elf replied: “You overestimate yourself, fur ball! You shall be chained by my side soon enough!”

Giltharak laughed. “We shall see!” he said, turning his attention back to the instructor.

“Worgen”, Razuvious said, “the Lich King have very high hopes in you. And I see that you have a high regard for your own abilities. Let’s see if you’re as good as you sound, initiate…?”

“Giltharak, sir”, replied the Worgen.

“Right. Take a sword in the weapon rack over there and bring it to the forge.”

Giltharak walked up to the rack and searched for a suitable weapon. Many of the blades were useless, either missing a piece or too dull to cut through anything. After almost giving up and walking to another rack, a small glint of red caught his attention. He reached far inside the rack, grabbed the hilt of a sword and took it out. It was almost 5 feet long and looked brand new. Even though it should be pretty heavy considering its size, the sword was surprisingly light in Giltharak’s hands. From the guard, red lines drew weird patterns on the first third of the blade, and a single red stripe was going almost all the way to the tip. The guard was small but Giltharak was able to place his two big hands on the long grip of the sword. It was almost as if that blade was made for a Worgen. A small flash came through his clouded mind. He was sure to have seen that sword somewhere before, but where? It seemed somehow familiar. Chasing that thought away, he met Instructor Razuvious in front of the forge.

Taking a look at Giltharak’s weapon, Razuvious said: “You’ve made quite a discovery there, Worgen: the Haunting Blade. The curse placed on this sword will drink the blood of anyone wounded by its blade, weakening its enemy faster than any other weapon. It is however quite strange. Very few can wield it. You first have to be wounded by the blade, and then kill its original wielder. Only then will the sword accept you as its master and let you fight using it. Many initiates tried to pick that sword up but were unable to take it off the rack let alone bring it here at the forge. You intrigue me, Initiate Giltharak. I will take great interest in training you. That is, if you can forge your blade correctly.”

Turning back toward the forge, Razuvious continued. “This is a Runeforge, where Death Knights create their first Runeblade. Even though your sword is already quite powerful, by placing your weapon on the forge, you’ll be able to infuse it with your powers, giving you command over many things, even death itself. A Death Knight cannot fight without his Runeblade, as it is a part of him. Now, place your sword on the Runeforge, put your hands on the blade and let the power of the Lich King and the Scourge flow through your being and into your weapon.”

Giltharak placed his sword at the center of the forge, closed his eyes and touched the blade. The Worgen immediately felt the sword draining energy from him. The pain was beyond measure and a loud yelp escaped the Worgen’s maw. Darkness was surrounding the blade, as more energy was sipped from Giltharak and mixed with the power of the Runeforge. He was about to collapse when the sword finally released its grip. It now had a dark blue glow upon its blade. Giltharak picked it up from the forge and presented it to his instructor.

Taking a good look at the newly forged blade, Razuvious smiled and said: “Good work, initiate. Your sword seems stronger than it ever was. Most initiates spend days to achieve what you have done in minutes, while some miserably fail at even keeping the blade intact” finished the Instructor, gazing over the failures chained in the pit. 

“Now is the time to test it. Take this key. It will unlock the chains of one of these initiates in the pit behind you. Challenge him in a fair fight and kill him. But remember, Worgen, that failure is not an option! If one of those weaklings beats you, it will take your place as a Death Knight and your next rebirth will be as a mindless ghoul.”

With those words in mind, Giltharak took the key and made his way to the pit. As soon as he reached the center, the Worgen looked at all the failed initiates chained around him. All of them were still kneeling on the floor; all but one. The Blood Elf Giltharak met earlier was there, standing straight and looking defiantly at the Worgen.

“You haven’t got what it takes to be a Death Knight, wolf! You shouldn’t be here! Your kind does not deserve the honor of serving the Lich King.”, said the initiate.

Anger took over Giltharak, guided by a dark presence lingering in the back of his mind. “Maybe”, answered the Worgen. “But tell me, who is chained at the wall waiting for death?” Walking toward the Blood Elf and unlocking the initiate’s bounds, he added: “I will put an end to your miserable existence right away if that is your wish.”

“You will be dead before you even realize your mistake, fur ball!” said the Blood Elf.

As soon as he was released, the Blood Elf reached for his armor and his broken sword. While his enemy was getting ready for battle, Giltharak was barely able to keep himself from jumping on the Blood Elf and ripping right through him with his claws. Anger was now filling his mind. His thoughts were dark and murderous, wishing to shed as much blood as possible. However, from the deepest reaches of his soul, a small glint of light emerged and with it came a soft voice calling to him.

“Stay with me, brother. Do not let your mind get overwhelmed by hatred.”

Giltharak stood there, dumbfounded. Somehow, he knew that voice, but couldn’t remember who it belonged to. Trying to remember only caused the Worgen more pain than he was already enduring. In front of him however, the Blood Elf was finally ready for battle. Raising his broken blade, he said, with a hint of haughtiness: “Come and meet your destiny, fur ball! Your white pelt will look amazing as my brand new mantle!”

That was more than Giltharak could take. The small patch of light in the back of his mind instantly disappeared and darkness filled him. His feral instinct took control of his body. 

“No one will ever skin me like a beast!” yelled the Worgen

 Letting out a bestial roar, Giltharak extended his arm toward his enemy, trying to reach him. A purple beam shot from his hand, grabbing the surprised Blood Elf and bringing him right in front of the furious Death Knight. Paralyzed by fear, the initiate barely had time to stop the first blow as the claws of the Worgen came from the other side and ripped his chest. Taking a small step backward, the Blood Elf noticed a quick flash of red on his left, but only a moment too late. Giltharak’s sword cut one of his arms off and quickly returned to finish the job, cutting the failed initiate’s body in two.

The Worgen stood up, gazing down on what was left of the Blood Elf. His cold eyes then went around the pit, looking at the other chained initiates, trying to find one more prey. They were all cowering in fear at the grim demonstration of what the Worgen was capable of. At the moment, no one dared to look at Giltharak. He was getting ready to pounce on another initiate when a voice coming from outside of the pit stopped him in his track.


 Raising his head, Giltharak saw Instructor Razuvious looking at him. 

“You are the most vicious initiate I’ve ever seen. It seems as if you were meant to be a Death Knight. You flawlessly used your abilities to kill your opponent quickly, spreading fear all around you. As expected, the fate of the Lich King in your abilities was not misplaced. You will become a very powerful Death Knight. Come now, I think you are ready to be sent on the battlefield as you seem to instinctively know everything you need to. But before we do, the Lich King has called for you, Death Knight Giltharak.”

Without saying a word, the Worgen turned away and slowly climbed the stairs leading out of the pit. His anger was gradually dissipating but his thoughts were darker than ever. Killing that Blood Elf had awoken a hunger for blood that was difficult to control. He needed more blood! He had to kill someone. It did not matter to him anymore if the prey was sentenced to death or not. He had to feel blood on his sharp claws; he had to taste it!

Arriving in front of the Lich King, Giltharak saw a freshly revived Draeinei initiate. She was kneeling in front of the leader of the Scourge, turning her back to the feral Death Knight. Her tail was slowly going from left to right as she listened to her new master. She seemed so vulnerable, so delicate and she smelled so… TASTY! Without a second thought, Giltharak took out his sword and leaped at the initiate. His prey was almost within reach when the Lich King lifted his hand and instantly stopped the Worgen in midair. Giltharak dropped his sword, feeling a powerful, yet invisible hand grabbing him by the throat, squeezing, almost breaking his neck. Giving his final orders to the new initiate who scurried away, the Lich King dropped the choking Death Knight to the ground.

“Worgen, it appears that you have enjoyed killing that failed initiate in the pit. I can see that all of your thoughts are tainted with the blood you have shed today and that you need to spill more. I will help you satisfy the hunger you feel. Prince Valanar is looking for strong soldiers for a few missions inside New Avalon. I think you are the perfect candidate, Death Knight. And besides, you will be able to kill as much humans as you want. You will find the Prince in the camp, under Acherus. Take a Bone Gryphon from the upper level of this citadel to reach the ground. Go now and do not show any mercy at the enemies of the Scourge.”

Taking his sword back, Giltharak answered: “I will do as you order, master.”

“Good” said the Lich King. “Be advised that I will keep an eye on you, Death Knight. I want to make sure you do not cause any collateral damage to my army.”

“As you wish, master” replied Giltharak.

Rising up to his feet, the Worgen saluted the Lich King before taking his leave. His hunger for blood has somewhat receded. He was now feeling ashamed of himself, giving up to his feral instinct like he did. It almost cost the life of yet another person. He had to control his anger. He had to make the Lich King proud of him. He had to find a way to kill his enemies without reverting back to the beast he once was. 

Unbeknown to the Worgen, his quest to salvation began, as the small light that almost stopped him from killing the Blood Elf reappeared in the back of his mind. It was still pretty weak, fighting its way through the darkness filling the Death Knight’s mind.

“I do not want to lose you again, brother. I will help you get back to the way you were when you helped us escape from Arugal” said a voice in the back of the Worgen’s mind.

Giltharak couldn’t hear what the voice said but somehow, he felt at peace. A smile appeared on his face as he walked toward the purple platform that would take him to the upper level of Acherus


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jeudi 22 mars 2012

Where it all began

Since I am new to all this blogging thing, I will take a few lines to talk about myself. I have been an avid follower of some bloggers, not always commenting but always appreciating their generosity and incredible writing talents. Again, if you find typos, I am very sorry and I will work on it to improve my writing skills!

I have been a huge fan of RPG games for a long time. Unfortunately,  most of my friends at the time were not interested in those kind of games at all. The only way for me to play some RPG was on a video game console, mostly on my own. A few years later, I was 15 at the time, I got my first job at a summer camp where, each year, they had a theme and a small theatrical event every night. The following year, I ended up as a member of the team creating the new theme and writing the play. I took the role of the bad guy and had a blast creating his story and writing his text. I could say that it was my first real RP experience. Since then, I tried to find new opportunities to create characters but couldn't really do it. Lack of time and resources, lack of friends with common interests, everything seemed against me. I didn't have a very powerful PC at the time so all the "Ultima Online" and other games of the sort were inaccessible to me. I kept on playing RPG games on Playstation and Playstation 2, mostly the Final Fantasy series. I loved the storyline of (almost) all of the FF games but still felt a bit trapped. I had to act the scenario that was already written and the main characters usually had a pretty detailed background story. Then, Final Fantasy XI came out on the Playstation 2. OMG! I could finally create my own character, his/her story and play with as many people as I wanted! I played for quite some time with a real-life friend of mine I met at the university. Later on, when I bought a good computer that I could finally play on, another friend of mine showed me World of Warcraft and I began to play the following week. I played for over 7 years, on different servers, in different regions, and finally decided to stop last year.

Even though I never really tried to play on a RP server, I still loved to create some kind of background story for my characters. Most of my recent main characters do have one. From my Tauren Druid who lost his parents when he was still very young, killed in the Charred Vale while trying to restore it, who then took over himself to finish what his parents had started, to my Night Elf Hunter who got bored of the same old Teldrassil and, wanting some fresh air, traveled all around the world with her faithful companion Shadowstorm. I wanted my Worgen Death Knight to have that kind of story.  But I found out that it was harder than I thought...

Worgen is my favorite race, at least on Alliance side. The storyline of how you become a Worgen and what leads your race to Darnassus is very compelling. I loved it. As for the Death Knight class, I have to say that I really love the lore surrounding your rebirth and how you and the other Death Knights manage to break the hold the Lich King has on your soul. However, mix "Worgen" and "Death Knight" together and you have... eh... what seems like a quick patch of lore to explain how the two mixes together. Some say it's impossible, some say that Worgens shouldn't be able to roll as Death Knights, and some just don't care. But I do care. A lot! So, taking what I could from the game, the comic book, as well as all the verified (and sometimes speculative) lore I could find on the Internet about the Worgens (both before AND after the Cataclysm), I crafted a story for him.

Unfortunately, my Druid was taking most of my time so I did not had all the time I wanted to work on my Worgen's background story. And the fact that I left WoW behind recently did not help either.

Earlier this year, I stumbled upon my file and read the 30 or so pages I wrote. I really loved what I had written in there and I did not want his story to be put aside. I decided to keep my characters, but recreate the world they live in from scratch and remove every trace of WoW. I am still in a very early state of writing, having only rewritten the first 4 pages. It is pretty hard since all my stories are in French and, because I was thinking of posting that new story in some way on the web, I decided to translate everything in English as well. BBB's writing challenge, as well as a few good comments I received here and there, probably gave me the courage I needed to continue this project. I really loved writing the small text about my main character so, even if I was not expecting to post anything until this summer, I might speed things up a bit.

As a first step, I will translate all of Chapter 1 of my Worgen's story, roughly 19 pages of text, and post it here on the blog in two or three parts. Chapter 2 however might not be posted here. With only 10 pages of rough text and a few ideas left to fully develop, I don't know if I'll have (or take) the time to finish it. I want to invest that time in writing the new story instead.

 So stay tuned! And thank you in advance for your support.

mercredi 21 mars 2012


Sitting at the farthest table of the gloomy inn, a lone traveller was gulping the last bite of what used to be a big and juicy slab of meat. A strange aura was surrounding him, as if a dark curse had been cast across the room. Seeing that his meal was finished, the waitress reluctantly walked around the empty tables on her way towards the stranger. Most of the other customers had fled when the tall figure entered the inn an hour ago. 

“Would… eh… Would you like to order something else, good sir?” said the girl, her slender body shaking like a leaf ready to fall in the cold autumn wind.

“No, that would be all” answered the stranger, placing a gold coin on the table, covering more than what was due. “Thank you for your hospitality.”

“The pleasure was… was… ours, sir”, replied the girl, running back to the kitchen without taking her payment.

Giltharak sighed at the view of the shiny coin still on the table. He placed another one next to it, rose to his feet and slowly walked to the door. Many times has he tried to appease the fear his presence instigated in the heart of others, but in vain. He was however glad that the owner of the inn, a big man tightly holding the shaft of his axe, had decided to stay where he was instead of attacking him. Taking a torch along the way, the traveller quietly slipped outside the inn and into the night, hoping the owner wouldn’t change his mind. Humans were very unpredictable at the sight of Giltharak. Towering at over seven feet tall, his body in itself was pretty imposing. However, his general appearance was considered frightful to most of the other races of Valipendir. 

The lone traveller walked for a few miles before lying down under a tree, far from the road. Giltharak pulled back his cowl, releasing his furry ears and snout from under the crude material. He was a Wahila, half Human, and half Wolf. Despite his feral look, his race was peaceful. The Great War that had started a few years ago had destroyed the island his people used to live on. Forced out of their only home, the Wahila scattered across the world, trying to find a new place to live. A few unfortunate souls were forced to fight alongside the Saanar’hi, a dark race which recently arrived on Valipendir. They used obscure magic to strip the strongest Wahilas of every trace of compassion, shaping them into unstoppable killing machines. As he looked at the stars above, a tear rolled down Giltharak’s face as memories of the carnage he had been forced to do came back to haunt him. If that young Human mage haven’t been there to break the spell, who knows what more atrocities he could have caused. Chasing those thoughts from his mind, the young Wahila slowly drifted to sleep, thinking about his sister Nerrivik, hidden somewhere in Valipendir, waiting for his return.

Edited to fix a few typos...

BBB's writing challenge

I know it is kinda weird that this will be the very first message I will post here, but sometimes, bloggers are an inspiration. John "Big Bear Butt" Patricelli is one of them. I have read most of his posts and love his style. There is a little something in the way he writes about things in his life, in his WoW experiences and many other subjects that I like a lot. I cannot say exactly what it is but it is there, hidden in the words of his "bear walls". Recently, he challenged bloggers around the net to a Writing challenge.

I thought about it for a while. I wanted to start a blog for quite some time but I wasn't too sure about how to start things out. When I read about his writing challenge, I thought it would be the best start I could hope for. Considering I almost NEVER write something in English, it was an even greater challenge. I am happy to (try to) write something that you will enjoy. So don't bash too hard on the grammar, I have done the best I could. It may be the start of a long term writing project but we'll see!