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Old 08-11-2011, 10:57 PM
AndyJP AndyJP is offline

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Default Illidan & Gul'dan

This story is an elaboration of Illidan's experiences in the third war which ties in to my fan comic about the Burning Crusade, but it can just as well stand on its own. Gul'dan becomes a major influence in Illidan's life as soon as he starts speaking to him through his skull as Gul'dan did with Ner'zhul. It is the first in several short stories I am writing for the major characters in my fan-comic, although this one is going to be the longest. I decided against making this into a comic itself since it's difficult to convey emotion through Blizzard's stale models. I'd like to give it a good title but I can't think of anything at the moment. I would greatly appreciate feedback and also please point out any grammatical or continuity errors.

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five
Part Six
Part Seven
Part Eight

This is the first part:



The sounds of battle raged all around him, but Illidan Stormrage remained focused and undisturbed. The demon hunter was locked in a deeply magical and meditative state, a practice he commonly undertook for centuries at a time. Physically, he could not escape from his prison within the Barrow Deeps. His sentence was for eternity, the rays of the two moons never to grace his skin ever again. Some day, he thought, they will see that I was right.

In his deep, trance-like state, Illidan reviewed the war against the Burning Legion and the events of its aftermath in his mind. The practice allowed him some subconscious feeling of freedom, but in truth, he kept looking to these memories for a way to fix everything that had gone wrong in his life. It was particularly the day that he scaled the untamed peaks of Mount Hyjal to create a new well of eternity that lingered in his mind. He wished he could make them understand that Elune and druidism could not compete with the might of the Legion. The Burning Legion would return, of this he was sure, and Azeroth would not be prepared.

The screams and cries of death and war around him echoed that of the scenes in his meditation. They blended together, and Illidan could not recognize them as foreign sounds. He heard the voices of his jailors speak muffled threats. Where they really there in his memories to battle the Burning Legion? He could not remember clearly, and scoured through all the scenes of war that he could recall for their faces, but he drew no matches. Something wasn't right.

"Illidan! Is that you?"

Illidan was jerked back into the waking world. That voice, her voice; it was more vivid than anything within his mind. He turned his head to see Tyrande Whisperwind leap off of a frostsaber mount that she favored in battle and run to his aid. He could do nothing but stare, waiting for this cruel hallucination to fade away.

"Illidan, it's me... Tyrande." Only at this moment had she begun to worry and realize what damage 10,000 years of imprisonment would do to a person. She had forgotten about him, as they all had. An overwhelming feeling of shame washed over her. It had been so easy in their state of shock and anger to condemn him to an eternity of hell. Such a fate might have been permissible for the Burning Legion if the Night Elves could manage an ounce of sympathy for any demon, but Illidan was certainly no demon.

Illidan hesitantly reached over to touch her face. He could feel that it was smooth and clean unlike his own. He moved slowly and spoke with the weakened voice of a sickly, old man. "Tyrande... it is your voice! After all these ages spent in darkness, your voice is like the pure light of the moon upon my mind."

"The Legion has returned, Illidan. Your people have need of you once more."

Illidan hung his head down for a moment and then rose to his feet with swiftness that would seem unlikely after thousands of years of incarceration. It surprised Tyrande, who bit back a gasp at the shock. Ash'alah, her faithful frostsaber, crouched down into an alert posture. Illidan briefly paced the distance within his cell. "MY people? I will never owe them anything!"

Tyrande opened her mouth to say something, but she stopped herself as she became aware of Illidan's volatile mood. Instead, she placed her hand on his shoulder. Illidan looked down to her hand, though it initially was an unwelcomed gesture, a feeling of serenity flooded over Illidan and his anger retreated.

"Because I once cared for you, Tyrande, I will help you hunt down the demons."

Tyrande smiled briefly before retracting it, thinking that Illidan could not see it anyways. Illidan could, in fact, see her smile, but he wished he could have seen her beauty with his old eyes. The glowing green orbs he now saw with were granted to him by the Lord of the Burning Legion, Sargeras, allowing him to see the world as the magical energies that flowed in and around it. Living creatures, through his new eyes, only appeared as the energy that shaped their bodies. He missed seeing all the colors of the world.

"Illidan, we must hurry to the surface!" Tyrande's words were urgent, and Illidan quickly located where his glaives, the twin blades of the doom guard Azzinoth that he slew so long ago, were located. His jailors thought they hid them well, but he could always feel their presence; and they called for their master.

"T-traitor.." Illidan looked around to pinpoint where the voice was coming from, and noticed one of his jailors on the floor beaten and bloodied, but still alive, futily attempting to crawl over to them, as if she had the strength to stop them. Illidan recognized her energy signature as Maiev Shadowsong. She had always taken sadistic pleasure in making Illidan's imprisonment as hellishly unbearable as possible.

He reached back his arm with the intent to strike her and end her life as he had wished to do so many times, but Tyrande placed her hand on his chest and moved in front of him, forcing him to halt his attack. She looked up at him with somber eyes, but Illidan's verdant orbs prevented him from reading such emotion. "No, Illidan... there has been enough bloodshed, I have what I came here for," said Tyrande, while attempting to drown out the moans and cries of the living wardens in her ears and avoiding all eye contact with them.

Tyrande led Illidan through the corridors of the barrow deeps, passing over the fallen bodies of Califax, one of the sons of Cenarius, and many other watchers, each one of them believing in their duty so strongly that they defied the command of the High Priestess of Elune on this day. The trail of bodies that Tyrande left began to seem endless, but they eventually reached the end, where they found Malfurion Stormrage looking on in horror.

"Furion!" Tyrande gasped in surprise. She feared the look on her beloved's face, but she would stand by her decision.

"It has been an eternity, brother," Illidan sneered at his twin, "an eternity spent in darkness!"

Malfurion's expression changed as he turned his gaze towards his brother, appearing angry and disgusted at the very site of him. "You were sentenced to pay for your sins, Illidan, nothing more! You've deserved every second of the past 10,000 years!"

"10,000 years, has it really been that long?" Illidan shook the surprise from his mind, returning the contempt his brother shared for him, "And who were you to judge me? We fought the demons side by side, if you recall!"

"Enough of this, both of you!" Tyrande placed herself in the middle of the feuding brothers. "What is done is done! My love, with Illidan's help, we will drive the demons back once again and save what is left of our beloved land!"
"Have you even considered the cost, Tyrande?" Malfurion tried to look back up at the trail of bodies in front of him, his fellow Kaldorei that his beloved killed while attempting to free the one who betrayed their kind so long ago... but he found himself unable to meet their bloodied bodies with his eyes once more. Instead, he greeted Tyrande's pleading gaze with his own, "This betrayer's aid may doom us all before the end. I will have nothing to do with this."

"Let me prove myself, brother! You know what I can do against the demons!"

Malfurion stared down his brother. He could sense that Illidan sincerely wished to help and prove himself, but he had not forgotten his reckless use of magic. Still, there was nothing else he could do with Illidan now other than put him into the heat of battle. Malfurion motioned to one of his students behind him. "Fandral - I want you to take your troops and accompany Illidan to the surface. We need to put a stop to the corruption of these forests. If my brother does ANYTHING disagreeable then.." Malfurion hesitates, "..then do whatever must be done."
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Old 08-12-2011, 11:10 AM
Cromat Cromat is offline

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Wow Andy, I really want to read your comic now. A really cool elaboration on one of the best moments of WC3. I love it!

As for grammer and spelling errors, I saw a couple and I'm sure there's more, but I'll let DarkAngel handle that. He's much better at that stuff than I am.

Other than that, I want more
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Old 08-13-2011, 06:27 PM
DarkAngel DarkAngel is offline

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If I may do my thing on this...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyJP View Post
Some day, he thought, they would see that I was right.
If you're giving his thoughts in a "quotation" style, wouldn't it be more likely Illidan would say "they will see that I was right?"
Quote:
Illidan was jerked back into the alertness of the waking world.
How about just "jerked back into the waking world?"

Who is the focus character for this passage? If you're going to describe someone's inner feelings, you have to stay on the same person. We start with Illidan, then suddenly move to Tyrande, then to Furion at the very end. Who's perspective are we seeing this from? Granted, your whole reason for writing was to show internal workings not availible in the comic, but perspective switches are best denoted with section breaks. That's what I do, at least.

Quote:
Illidan closed his eyes for a moment
Um...what eyes?

Maiev? I'd always heard that she was conveniently away at the time of Tyrande's invasion. Could just be fanon, though.

There's more than a few brushes with the past tense rule, here:
  • Elune and druidism could not compete with the might of the Legion.
  • The Burning Legion would return, of this he was sure, and Azeroth would not be prepared.
  • feeling of shame washed over her
  • The glowing green orbs he now saw with
  • magical energies that flowed in and around it.
  • the energy that shaped their bodies
  • I have what I came here for," said Tyrande
  • Illidan shook the surprise from his mind
  • the contempt his brother shared for him
  • Tyrande placed herself between the feuding brothers.
  • Malfurion tried to look back
  • he greeted Tyrande's pleading gaze
  • Malfurion motioned to one of his students

Other assorted problems:
  • That voice, her voice; it was
  • a sickly, old man. "Tyrande
  • their presence; and they called
  • beaten and bloodied, but still
  • Tyrande, while attempting to drown out
  • one of the sons of Cenarius, and many
  • students behind him. "Fandral

As an overview, it went well. The true inner conflict can't be portrayed in a viusal medium like comics or the game itself, so "novelizations" like this provide critical insight. Somehow, the characters feel kind of...bland. That's probably because your plot was written for you, I'll concede. Keep more coming.
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Old 08-13-2011, 09:03 PM
AndyJP AndyJP is offline

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Your help is very much appreciated Dark Angel. I am learning a lot from you. I made all of the corrections except I am not sure how to approach the character focus dilemma yet without having to rewrite it all.

I hope that the change of font and size is alright with everyone. Maybe it's just me, but I have trouble reading the default font on any of the backgrounds of this forum.

Quote:
Um...what eyes?
It's so funny, I kept doing that. I made several corrections relating to Illidan's eyes. That one just slipped through I suppose.

Quote:
Maiev? I'd always heard that she was conveniently away at the time of Tyrande's invasion. Could just be fanon, though.
I thought it might have been said somewhere but I couldn't recall. I don't like all the convenience in Warcraft anyway. The whole point of having someone there that wasn't killed was to show that Tyrande didn't kill when she wasn't forced to. These are her people, and she was just doing what she believed was necessary. She isn't a monster.

Quote:
As an overview, it went well. The true inner conflict can't be portrayed in a viusal medium like comics or the game itself, so "novelizations" like this provide critical insight. Somehow, the characters feel kind of...bland. That's probably because your plot was written for you, I'll concede. Keep more coming.
Thanks. Most of the dialogue is directly from Warcraft 3, although I have altered and switched around some of it like it was done in the Arthas book.

Quote:
Wow Andy, I really want to read your comic now. A really cool elaboration on one of the best moments of WC3. I love it!

As for grammer and spelling errors, I saw a couple and I'm sure there's more, but I'll let DarkAngel handle that. He's much better at that stuff than I am.

Other than that, I want more
Thank you, Cromat.
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:55 AM
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Default Part 2

Whew! I entirely rewrote this part three times. It mostly had to do with how I wanted to portray Fandral's character who is part of the larger picture in forming Illidan's state of mind. In the first scrapped version, Fandral was entirely on Illidan's side, with Illidan sort of leaving an imprint on Fandral's personality, but I think it was kind of cliche and not true to his character. In the other version, he was in battle for the first time since the Shifting Sands and clearly wasn't ready. He was suffering from PTSD and was making terrible decisions. Illidan wound up wresting control of the army from him. I think that version would have been great had I been writing a story about Fandral, but this is about Illidan, and the depiction of him that I went with is going to work best as this and the next part play out.

As always, I welcome and ask for your questions, criticism and corrections.


Upon arriving at the surface, Illidan caught the scent of sulfur and death upon his nose. It was all too familiar. With his enhanced vision, he identified the flow of ley lines being redirected to a particular location. He quickly surmised that whatever was responsible for corrupting the forests was located there, and he wished to not waste any time and march their forces to the location immediately. Fandral disagreed with him. "To attack the Burning Legion head on would be foolhardy," Illidan recalled him saying. "The village of Constellas is nearby here. Although it is crawling with demons and there are unlikely to be any survivors, it would be a wise area to retake and begin constructing a new base." Though Illidan wished to end the corruption in Felwood as soon as possible, he could see that Fandral's plan had merit. But the druid continued: "I am counting on the Legion foreseeing this as soon as we make our presence known in the area. The demons will find a small force defending Constellas, and they will not be expecting the rest of us taking the longer path through the mountains to attack the source of the corruption."

Fandral's divide and conquer strategy had impressed Illidan. The other druids only reminded him of his brother, but Fandral was very different. Illidan deduced that Fandral was one who liked to get his hands dirty. Here was a man who was not as held down by his conscience as Malfurion Stormrage. Here was a man who would do what needed to be done. Here, perhaps, was a man who would understand the sacrifices that Illidan had made.

Illidan Stormrage led Fandral Staghelm, the army of sentinels, and recently awakened druids to battle in a Night Elven village that had been taken over by demonic forces. His enchanted glaives sliced through demons, whereas, the inferior weaponry of the sentinels would leave only superficial wounds. As the demons rushed to surround him, flames erupted from out of his own body, igniting anyone who came near him. His knowledge of the Legion's capabilities and tactics proved invaluable, and his martial prowess was indisputable. Once the battle had ended, Illidan would assist in rebuilding the village and establishing a base.



The village of Constellas had been taken by the Legion many days before Illidan and his party had arrived. Illidan had expected to see Doomguards, the insidious Felhounds, and possibly an Eredar or two in the battle, but they encountered only Satyrs. These savage, twisted beings were once powerful Highborne sorcerers, but now only their knack for spell-casting and thirst for more power remained in resemblance. They were loyal to the Burning Legion, but they are more akin to dogs than soldiers in the service of Sargeras. "Satyrs," Illidan said. "They should have been eradicated long ago!"

"On that, we are in agreement," replied Fandral, who was scanning the Satyrs on the ground for any signs of life.

"They willingly gave themselves to Sargeras. The sacrifices I made were for my own people and for the future of Kalimdor," Illidan said. "Do you condemn me like my brother does?"

"No, I would not have imprisoned you," Fandral replied, without removing his eyes from the bodies that lay before him. "I would have executed you."
Illidan was disappointed, and felt that perhaps he had read the druid wrong. Evidently, he wasn't different: he was cast from the same mold as Furion. Since he was freed, only Tyrande had been kind to him. All others wished him dead or returned to his hell deep within the Barrow Deeps. Without Tyrande, he had no one.

"We've got a live one over here!" yelled a sentinel off in the distance. She was standing above a burned and bloodied Satyr who had regained consciousness. Fandral and Illidan quickly rushed over to her position. Illidan presumed that Fandral intended to interrogate the Satyr for any information on who or what was responsible for corrupting these lands.

"I am a druid who values honesty, so here is the truth: Your comrades are all dead, and you are going to die too. I can make your transition to the afterlife quick and painless if you will give me the information I want to know," Fandral said.

The Satyr smiled maniacally, revealing his bestial fangs and offering no hint of fear in his eyes. "I will give you the truth, druid. You're all gonna die!" He cackled insanely until it erupted into heavy coughing. A thorny tendril emerged from the ground and pierced through into a wound in the back of the Satyr, widening it and causing an excruciating amount of pain. The Satyr screamed briefly, but then began to laugh hysterically as though the pain was of no consequence.

Fandral was not amused. He would get the information he wanted one way or another. "You beasts are drawn to any sort of demonic power; you must know what is causing this land to shrivel and die! Tell me, or these thorns will reach every inch of your body!"

"My master watches over me and he will reward my silence! Kill me and he will bring me back more powerful than ever before! Ahh-" the Satyr blurted out before the tendril inside his body grew and spread.

Illidan protested, "You will kill him!"

"He's not giving me anything useful. There's no point in keeping him alive."

"You have not tried everything," Illidan said. "There are worse things than death, druid, I should know."

The Satyr sighed in relief as Fandral withdrew the tendril that had pierced his body and threatened to rip it open. Illidan took his place kneeling above the suffering abomination. The Satyr began to look nervous as Illidan's left hand became engulfed in a green demonic flame. The hand stabbed through the chest of the terrified Satyr with ease, leaving no visible damage. The demon did not scream, but his eyes revealed the horror that he felt inside. After only a few seconds, Illidan removed his hand, leaving no sign of blood or entry point. The Satyr did not so much as breathe before he disclosed everything they wished to know. "A skull... a skull! Powerful skull! Powerful enough to open portals! I know nothing more! Please..."

The Satyr begged Illidan for mercy with his eyes. Illidan was satisfied in that information he got, and with confidence that the Satyr had no more useful information, he promptly ended the demon's life with his glaive.

Illidan didn't have sight, but he didn't need it to feel the eyes all around him gawking, horrified at the magic they have just witnessed. "The Legion can tear your soul from your body," he explained. "It's a pain beyond that of any mortal wound. He only needed to know that I could do it."

"You are a monster," Fandral said. "No different than they are."

"I am what I need to be in order to save this world," said Illidan. "I'm not the villain that my brother says I am! My powers will destroy the Legion! He will see that the demons have no hold over me!"

"Are you certain of that, Demon Hunter? Are you positive that your will is your own?" A voice in the distance alerted Illidan and the army behind him. They had not expected the Burning Legion to have appeared so soon. Illidan readied his weapons as he heard a single rider approach. The aura of this rider was tainted, but was not reminiscent of the Satyrs they had slain today. The form of this being resembled a spell-caster that Illidan had known long ago.

"You reek of death, human," Illidan said, noting the overwhelming stench of decaying corpses that accompanied the rider. This human appeared to be alone, which struck Illidan as highly suspicious. The thought occurred to him that this man may be the leader of the demons in the area. As unusual as it sounded, he couldn't ignore it as a possibility. Illidan's focus was drawn to the weapon the rider held in his right hand. It emanated a power that Illidan had never felt before. It was both alluring and intimidating, a powerful demonic blade that he would expect only a loyal lieutenant of Sargeras to wield. He must have it. "You'll regret approaching me!"

The Human dismounted from his decaying steed and readied to meet Illidan in battle, somehow confident that the other Night Elves would not interfere. "Come then, you will see that we are evenly matched!"

The two warriors rushed into battle, both confident of their own abilities. Illidan's warglaives were lighter than the Human's runeblade, but every attack was swiftly parried by impossible strength. Illidan attempted to scorch the Human's flesh with his demonic flames, but they were canceled out by the rider's chilling aura. He was toying with Illidan, but neither had the demon hunter put much effort into his attacks. He knew that this rider must had come alone for a reason.

"This is pointless," Illidan said as backed away from his foe. "We could go on fighting like this forever. Who are you? What is it that you truly want?"

"I am Arthas Menethil of Lordaeron. I was once a Prince of the most powerful Human kingdom in all of Azeroth, but I found that a greater destiny awaited me." The Human stabbed his runeblade into the ground. "In the frozen lands of Northrend, I discovered this runeblade, Frostmourne, as well as a new master who will make me powerful enough to see all of my enemies fall before me."

"I want nothing to do with you or your master," replied Illidan, "but I would be glad to take that runeblade away from you!"

"You misunderstand. Your destiny is not with us or with Frostmourne! The demon who commands the Legion's forces here is a Dreadlord named Tichondrius. He controls a powerful warlock artifact called the Skull of Gul'dan. It is responsible for corrupting these forests. Whoever controls this skull could become very powerful."

"And you wish for me to steal it, why?"

"Let's just say that I have no love for Tichondrius, and the lord I serve would... benefit from the Legion's downfall."

"Why should I believe anything you say, human?"

"My master sees all, and he knows that you've sought power your whole life. Your destiny lies within your grasp, Demon Hunter. Seize it, and your enemies will be undone!"

Arthas Menethil mounted his skeletal warhorse and rode off into the distance, not wanting to linger around the forests any longer. Illidan returned to Fandral Staghelm, who had monitored the exchange closely. He now eyed Illidan with suspicion. "He could have stolen the artifact for himself, yet he did not. This could be a trap."

"Not likely. I believe he was forced into the service of the Burning Legion, and now wants his freedom. He is unable to oppose his masters directly," Illidan replied. In his studies, he had uncovered many cases where the demon lord Sargeras had forcefully employed entire races under his command.

Fandral raised an eyebrow. "And you are thinking of taking this artifact for your own selfish desires, aren't you?"

"Selfish? If it saves all of Kalimdor, how could you call that selfish? The Burning Legion must be destroyed at all costs; I would gladly make any sacrifice if it meant saving everything that I hold dear in my life."

The druid commander surveyed the damage around him. Selfless druids tended to the dying wildlife while heroic sentinels returned to their construction on a base that would serve as a decoy to distract the enemy. Buried underneath the rubble of a collapsed building they discovered a survivor. The female was relieved to see fellow Kaldorei and not the twisted Satyr as she opened her eyes. Once her fear subsided, she surveyed the soldiers, looking for any other survivors. Her search ended at a row of bodies that the Satyrs had impaled on a wooden spear at the entrance of the village. The soldiers had not had time to put the bodies to rest. The woman was drawn to one body. It was a child's body. Fandral was taken aback.

"Valstann..." he whispered. Illidan looked on as the druid seemed to have lost himself within his own mind. For a long pause, Fandral did not move or speak, then he turned to address his soldiers. "Brothers, Sisters... the Burning Legion is the most terrifying foe we have ever faced. If we do not stop them, there will be no future for any of us. If we all fail, then I do not want the last living child of Elune to stand before the end of civilization and wonder why we were unwilling to cross the line in order to save our world. At any cost, even if we must give up our very souls, we must destroy the Burning Legion!"
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Old 08-21-2011, 07:27 AM
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This has the word "AWESOME" written all over it. I'm gonna save it and read it later when I'm off Internet, and post the feedback once I'm on again .
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Old 08-22-2011, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyJP View Post
Whew! I entirely rewrote this part three times. It mostly had to do with how I wanted to portray Fandral's character who is part of the larger picture in forming Illidan's state of mind. In the first scrapped version, Fandral was entirely on Illidan's side, with Illidan sort of leaving an imprint on Fandral's personality, but I think it was kind of cliche and not true to his character. In the other version, he was in battle for the first time since the Shifting Sands and clearly wasn't ready. He was suffering from PTSD and was making terrible decisions. Illidan wound up wresting control of the army from him. I think that version would have been great had I been writing a story about Fandral, but this is about Illidan, and the depiction of him that I went with is going to work best as this and the next part play out.
Don't feel bad. According to legend, John Steinbeck wrote the full length of The Grapes of Wrath, threw it out, and started over SIX times!

Ah, I always wondered how Illidan got a loyal army so fast. Good explanation.

Once again, watch those verbs! The story is in the past. Keep it there.
  • Illidan Stormrage led Fandral Staghelm, the army of sentinels, and recently-awakened druids OR Illidan Stormrage led Fandral Staghelm and the army of sentinels and recently-awakened druids
  • proved invaluable, and his martial prowess
  • His enchanted glaives sliced through demons, whereas, the inferior weaponry 'Whereas' is a lot like 'however.'


Quote:
He must have it.
As in "Arthas must have the skull," or "Illidan had to have the blade?"
  • Doomguards, the insidious Felhounds, and possibly an Eredar or two
  • loyal to the Burning Legion, but they
  • imprisoned you," Fandral replied, without removing
  • Illidan was disappointed, and felt that
  • Evidently, he wasn't different: he was cut from
  • he was cut from the same cloth as Furion. OR he was cast from the same mold as Furion. I think you're combining some idioms there.
  • a burned and bloodied Satyr The injury is different for some reason.
  • The Satyr screamed briefly, but then began
  • any sort of demonic power; you must know
  • Tell me, or these thorns
  • Ahh-" the Satyr blurted out before the tendril inside his body grew and spread.
  • After only a few seconds, Illidan
  • The Satyr did not so much as breathe before
  • with confidence that the Satyr had no more useful information, he promptly
  • the Satyrs they had slain
  • death, human," Illidan said
  • each confident of his own abilities. OR both confident of their own abilities.
  • a greater destiny awaited me."
  • The Human stabbed his runeblade
  • "In the frozen lands of Northrend, I discovered
  • master," replied Illidan, "but I would
  • oppose his masters directly," Illidan replied.
  • be destroyed at all costs; I would gladly
  • they discovered a survivor.
  • For a long pause, Fandral
  • move or speak, then he turned
  • the end of our civilization Or, is Fandral really thay much of a bigot?

You did well at holding my interest. It's those little 'human touches' on the characters that make the story seem real. The part at the end where the dead child sets Fandral off gives a visceral, fully understandable motive for what happens next. Let's see if you can keep this up.

What's Thrall so confused about?
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:34 PM
AndyJP AndyJP is offline

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Thank you as always, DA! I corrected the errors.

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Ah, I always wondered how Illidan got a loyal army so fast. Good explanation.
I thought it was weird that he had druids with him, or that he would be trusted with any soldiers OR that any soldiers would be willing to follow him. That's why Fandral is there, Furion trusts him to watch over Illidan. I also considered Broll Bearmantle for the role, but I thought there was more potential to be had with Fandral. At this point in the story, they are following Fandral and not Illidan.

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Once again, watch those verbs! The story is in the past. Keep it there.
Bad habit.

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As in "Arthas must have the skull," or "Illidan had to have the blade?"
Is that part really confusing? The paragraph was talking about the runeblade. Do you think that sentence needs clarification?

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  • the end of our civilization Or, is Fandral really thay much of a bigot?
Yes! I wasn't sure whether to put "all civilization" or not. The Night Elves had just discovered humans and orcs, but until then I think they would have thought they were on top of the world. Definitely Fandral would think that way. I see his personality as similar to Lord Ravencrest from the War of the Ancients.

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What's Thrall so confused about?
I think it looks more like a shrug, saying "Meh, that's the way things are, what can you do?"

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This has the word "AWESOME" written all over it. I'm gonna save it and read it later when I'm off Internet, and post the feedback once I'm on again .
Thanks!


The next part is planned to cover the battle to take the skull of Gul'dan and the battle against Tichondrius, which ends Illidan's story in Reign of Chaos, and I move on to cover The Frozen Throne.
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Old 08-30-2011, 04:11 PM
Cemotucu Cemotucu is offline

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Damn awesome... Waiting for new updates on this and your comic.
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Old 08-31-2011, 12:45 AM
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Damn awesome... Waiting for new updates on this and your comic.
Thanks! The comic is updated every monday and friday, and I plan to have the next part of this story done by the end of the week. It will wrap up Illidan's story in "Reign of Chaos" and I can move into "The Frozen Throne".
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Old 09-01-2011, 04:59 PM
Valkrysa Valkrysa is offline

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This story has been told 10,000 times but seeing the little additions you are making is enough to make me wonder "what is going to happen next" due to adding things like Fandral's insight.

I already told before but I'll repeat it here that I look forward to your continuing creativity~
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Old 09-02-2011, 03:02 AM
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This story has been told 10,000 times but seeing the little additions you are making is enough to make me wonder "what is going to happen next" due to adding things like Fandral's insight.

I already told before but I'll repeat it here that I look forward to your continuing creativity~
Thanks again, Valkrysa! I love your Flonne avatar!
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Old 09-02-2011, 03:07 AM
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Thanks again, Valkrysa! I love your Flonne avatar!
Disgaea is so addicting, I've spent way too long lying in bed leveling up my characters rather than going to sleep ><
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:06 AM
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Disgaea is so addicting, I've spent way too long lying in bed leveling up my characters rather than going to sleep ><
Same here, dood! I loved my army of Majins. I have only played the first two games because I don't own a playstation 3.
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Old 09-04-2011, 09:31 PM
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Default Dude, where's my shirt?

This was meant to cover both battles. I've never thought of myself as being very good at describing battle scenes, so I didn't plan for the battles themselves to be very descriptive. But I gave it a shot and I guess it turned out alright. So this one only covers the battle to acquire the Skull of Gul'dan. Next part is the fight with Tichondrius. I wasn't sure how to write Gul'dan's whispers since only Illidan could hear them, but I just did it the same way it was handled in "Beyond the Dark Portal".

Illidan and Fandral hate shirts.


Less than a third of the sentinels, druids and other soldiers that had accompanied Fandral and Illidan to Felwood remained behind in the decoy base at Constellas. The number of soldiers left to defend it were required in order to successfully fool the demons. Only about half of them had been volunteers, and Illidan couldn't decide whether they had been the bravest or the most foolish of Night Elves. He knew what he had assumed was plainly obvious to everyone: the decoy army was going to be obliterated. It was unfortunate that they could not all have been volunteers, many of those men and women had been hand-picked by Fandral to stay behind. Illidan knew from experience that war was never very just.

Illidan could not help but feel pride in his belief that he had gotten through to the druid. Staghelm understood what the demon hunter knew all along: war requires sacrifice. Fandral had already been prepared to sacrifice his men, but now he was ready to give his own soul to defeat the Burning Legion. He knew that in time, all Kaldorei would learn that you can't hold anything back against pure evil.

The route that Fandral had selected was lengthy and required navigating more difficult terrain, but it proved to not be a very significant challenge for the muscular night sabers that the soldiers rode upon. As they came upon the Legion's encampment, it was evident that the strategy had paid off; The base was only lightly guarded, and the Night Elves felt renewed confidence in their chances of winning the battle.

"Illidan, suggestions?" Fandral asked.

"The winged beasts are known as doom guards. They're strong and sturdy, but awfully slow. Keep them grounded and a group of sentinels should be able to take them down. The large fiery constructs are known as infernals. Their armor is nigh impenetrable, save for one weakness: a small exhaust pocket beneath the chest leaves their core unprotected. Attack it and you will bring them down. As for the felhounds," Illidan added, "They should not be underestimated. They feed on magical energy, so I will be their prime target. However, they are not above having a taste for druid magic should they be hungry enough."

"Very well," Fandral said as he turned to face his soldiers. "Archers, target the felhounds, do not let them anywhere near our position. Druids, root those flying beasts to the ground; and Sentinels, proceed after the volley and route those winged abominations. Illidan, you and I will deal with those infernals. If there are any Satyrs lurking about, engage at will once the other targets are down. Understood?"

The Night Elves raised their weapons above their head and softly spoke an ancient war cry: "Andu-falah-dor!"

As the archers moved into position, Illidan watched the felhounds closely. The demons trusted their loyal hounds to alert them, so the demonic dogs would be the first indication that their surprise attack had been discovered. It was better than he hoped, Illidan expected the hounds to detect that something was amiss, but they were only interested in each other. The felhounds played and wrestled with one another, seemingly oblivious to the battle that was about to rain down upon them. Perhaps they had just fed.

"Fire!"

The volley blanketed the outside of the stronghold with arrows. Most felhounds lay dead or dying, while the rest charged forth at the detected invaders. The archers compensated for the speed of the incoming hounds by adjusting their aim and readied for another attack.

"Fire!"

Another volley was launched, but the few surviving hounds had increased their pace, putting themselves ahead of the arrows that pierced the ground behind them. The hounds were too close now, and Fandral nodded to the sentinels. The mounted huntresses sped forth, their saber cats pouncing on the smaller hounds, pinning them to the ground so that their riders can deliver the fatal blows. A stray felhound had avoided the attack and charged at Illidan. A large thorny root suddenly protruded from the ground, impaling the hound through the throat. Illidan looked over to Fandral, who nodded at him.

The felhounds had all been disposed of, but the doom guards had taken flight and were approaching the Night Elves. Fandral pointed them out to his druids, "Ground those beasts, now!"

As the druids began to call upon the spirits of nature, Illidan jerked his head to the east, alerted by footsteps coming from within the trees. "Satyrs," he said.

"How many?" Fandral asked, before realizing that Illidan had already sped off on his own towards the direction that he had detected movement. Fandral cast a spell, and a handful of the trees sprang to life, revealing the Satyrs while choking and immobilizing them with thorny roots.

As Illidan reached the location, he launched himself from his night saber and landed in front of the tree line. As he chanted something foreign to Night Elven ears, his hands began to light up with a brightly lit green flame. As he extended his arms towards the trees, the flames sprang forth, igniting the woods and all Satyrs within ablaze. The treants that Fandral had summoned fell to the flames as well. Illidan turned around, relieved that he had stopped an ambush that could have cost his army the battle. Though Illidan could not see Fandral's face, he could hear him growl from a distance. A discussion of ethics would have to wait until the battle was ended.

The doom guards proved more difficult to contain than the druids had thought. They fought back against their thorny shackles with impossible strength, but the druids hadn't needed to hold them for very long as Fandral and the unit of sentinels stormed the base, delivering the killing blows on all of the winged demons. Only four infernals remained.

The infernals pounded the ground, causing an earthquake that disoriented the night sabers and caused them to panic. Some huntresses were accidentally thrown from their mounts, while other cats lost their balance and stumbled into each other. Fandral's druids of the claw transformed their likeness into bears and rushed to their aid. The druids in their bear forms attempted to bring down the colossal infernals, but they were like gnats on a boulder. The infernals shrugged off the bears, while they brought down their mighty fists down to squish the bears into an unrecognizable puddle of bones and blood. The archers opened fire, but none were skilled enough to hit the internal cores of the rock demons at which they had aimed. The arrows flimsily bounced off of the infernal's rocky exterior.

"Save your arrows, you fools!" Illidan said as he sped past the archers on foot and into the direction of the battle.

Illidan dodged a powerful swing from an infernal by rolling forward on the ground, and followed by stabbing his right warglaive into the infernal's core with precision. The leviathan stumbled backwards momentarily before crumbling into rubble. Another infernal charged at Illidan, who uttered a phrase in Eredun before inhaling the demonic energies that animated the construct, causing this infernal to collapse into a pile of boulders as well. The orbs that were once Illidan's eyes glowed a bright emerald green underneath his blindfold. In a single motion, Illidan unleashed all the energy towards a third infernal. The force of the attack swept the infernal off of its feet and into a demonic obelisk, crushing the stone into pieces in spite of the durable material used in its construction. Fandral was there before Illidan, delivering the final blow to the downed demon.

"We must obtain the skull and close the Legion's portal before the rest of their forces return," Illidan said to Fandral.

Illidan received a nod from the druid as the two moved towards the Skull of Gul'dan, encased within a fel stone at the center of the base. Illidan observes the skull with intrigue. "Interesting, I had not considered the "Skull of Gul'dan" to be literal. This "Gul'dan" must have been a powerful being with great knowledge in order for the Legion to be using his essence to open portals to their worlds," Illidan said as he placed his hand to the stone, feeling the power that resided within. "No matter: his fate is of no consequence, with his power I can become stronger than any of Archimonde's lieutenants."

"Hold, Illidan!" Fandral said, earning his attention. "This power was not meant to be yours, I would never trust you with it."

Illidan was furious. "This power can ONLY be mine! You wouldn't know what to do with such power in your grasp! I'll not let you stand between me and my destiny!"

Illidan had raised his weapons, giving Fandral more than enough justification to use his druidic magic to root him in place. "Malfurion ordered me to do what must be done if you were to try anything," Fandral said, "And I have been waiting for you to give me a reason to kill you, betrayer!"

Fandral Staghelm raised his wooden staff that pulsated with nature's magic and pointed it towards Illidan, who did not cower under the threat. Suddenly, the druid found himself rooted and restrained as he had done to Illidan, preventing him from following through with his death blow. Fandral could turn only slightly to see the handful of druids that had cast the spell upon him, while most others were busy tending to the wounded. "Altruis... Loramus... what is the meaning of this?" He demanded.

"I'm sorry, Shan'do," one of them said, "but Illidan is correct."

Two sentinels moved forward to cut Illidan free from his shackles. They kneeled before him. "Lord Stormrage, I am Sentinel Alandien," said the one to his right. "We have seen your true power and understand that the salvation of the Kaldorei - and all of Kalimdor - lies with you."

Illidan was pleased: things had finally worked out in his favor. He had, at last, found individuals that understood him and the sacrifices he had made. Now was his time. He walked past the sentinels and to the altar that held the Skull of Gul'dan. "For my people, I would gladly pay any price or bear any burden." Illidan shattered the fel stone with his glaives and took the skull in his hands. "This power... yes, it SHOULD be mine! With this power... I will destroy the Burning Legion!"

We will see them kneel before you, it whispered back to him.

The power entered into Illidan, and he was transformed. Fel energy flowed through him as though it replaced the blood in his veins. His muscles throbbed with strength beyond strength, nearly doubling his size over his Night Elven brethren. His mind, too, expanded as knowledge from within the skull flooded his brain with information on the legion that far surpassed his own, as well as the knowledge of a new world - Draenor - that this "Gul'dan" had come from. Curiously though, the skull withheld personal information about the being to whom it originally belonged, which Illidan found quite suspect.

"Now you even look the part!" said Fandral as he spat on the ground before Illidan. "Your brother will have you executed for sure this time!"

Your brother doesn't have to know, the skull whispered to him.

Illidan forced the voice into suppression; he would not allow this being to influence him. However, Illidan had to admit that Gul'dan had a point. If his brother would not execute him for this, surely he'd be returned to his prison deep beneath the ground. Illidan lifted his hand towards Fandral, intent on silencing him.

"I was wrong," said Fandral. "There IS a line that we must never cross. You have become one of them, Illidan. We must never become what we have sworn to defend our world against, we must never become like you, demon!"

The word twisted itself around Illidan's mind, the label hurt worse than "betrayer". He wanted to end Fandral more than ever at this point, but it would have accomplished nothing. Illidan knew at that moment that Malfurion had to be there to see what Illidan can do first-hand. He wanted his brother there to see him destroy Tichondrius. It would surely erase all doubt anyone had about his capabilities.

"Go to him," Illidan said as he lowered his hand. "Find your shan'do and bring him here to see me crush Tichondrius."

Fandral was released, and he called to his mount. "Never did I think that I would see the day when my druids would betray me to Illidan Stormrage," he said. Fandral raised his voice, addressing every Night Elf in the vicinity. "He speaks of his love for us, but his only love is power. I have seen his kind many times before. He will betray all of you. I only hope that when the time comes, you are not too blind as to notice."

Staghelm left the battle zone on his own, but he was soon followed by more than half of the army, all who still supported him. Illidan was left with only a fraction of the force that won the battle for Gul'dan's skull. Even with his new powers, Illidan and his small group of soldiers now had little hope of defeating Tichondrius.
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Old 09-04-2011, 10:11 PM
Valkrysa Valkrysa is offline

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Wow, I just finished reading this and I just loved how you put Illidan's demon hunters in there, Altruis all the more so.
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Old 09-06-2011, 07:31 PM
DarkAngel DarkAngel is offline

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Illidan faces the classic Trafalgar dilemma, and arrives at the pragmatic conclusion.

Um, what's the point of a battlecry if you say it quietly? Wouldn't they just save it for when they jumped out of hiding?

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The archers compensated for the speed of the incoming hounds and readied for another attack.
Compensated how? "leading"

NOTE: Regardless of what SpellCheck might tell you, certain words (eg: 'treeline') should be one word. It most certainly won't like made-up compound words like 'nightsaber.'

Quote:
Another infernal charged at Illidan who uttered a phrase in Eredun before inhaling the demonic energies that animated the construct, causing the infernal to collapse into a pile of boulders as well.
Be careful. As a general rule, you can only do one tack-on per sentence.

Quote:
I would gladly pay any price or bear any burden.
Isn't that Arthas' line?
  • the bravest or the most foolish of Night Elves.
  • to the ground; and Sentinels, proceed
  • charged at Illidan, who uttered
  • causing this infernal to collapse
  • No matter: his fate is
  • Illidan was pleased: things had
  • entered into Illidan, and he was
  • look the part!" said Fandral
  • into suppression; he would not allow

You're getting better at this. My suggestions are steadily veering out of grammar and punctuation and into storytelling and wording. I get the impression you have a very good grasp of what makes the characters tick, but still have difficulty expressing their inner workings. Heck, I do too! This is starting to be one of the stories that I look forward to the next update. Keep at it! Until next time: "Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori."
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Old 09-06-2011, 10:23 PM
AndyJP AndyJP is offline

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Thanks again, I'm glad my grammar is improving.

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Um, what's the point of a battlecry if you say it quietly? Wouldn't they just save it for when they jumped out of hiding?
It was just something I added for them to acknowledge their orders. I realized they had to say it quietly because they were trying to hide!

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Isn't that Arthas' line?
Almost! It was intentional, I wanted Illidan to nearly echo his line at this point.

Prince Arthas says: I would gladly bear any curse to save my homeland.

Prince Arthas says: Now, I call out to the spirits of this place. I will give anything or pay any price, if only you will help me save my people.


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Wow, I just finished reading this and I just loved how you put Illidan's demon hunters in there, Altruis all the more so.
Thank you! They'll all have more of a role to play as the story moves forward.
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:18 PM
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Default Part the Fourth

This is the fourth installment of my 475-part short story, "Better know an Illidan". This brings "Reign of Chaos" to a close as Illidan defeats Tichondrius the Darkener, leader of the Nathrezim. I also introduce a new character for reasons I will mention afterwards. That's Furion, Fandral and Tyrande in front of Illidan in the picture by the way. I would have used Malfurion's cataclysm model but I couldn't get rid of the wings nicely. Maybe there is a way to delete the wings from the skin and then upload it as a new skin in WoW model viewer? I'll figure something out.

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The whispers of Gul'dan returned to his mind: Our power has admirers.

At that moment, Satyrs moved cautiously into view and knelt down before Illidan. One female appeared to speak for them all. "Our master promised us power beyond what our minds could comprehend, and this forest was to be our new sanctuary! We have seen what you can do Lord Stormrage, we... desire to change our allegiance.."

Illidan thought very little of Satyrs: they were despicable pests who would do anything for power. Still, he desperately needed the manpower, and they could be useful.

"Is that so?" Illidan asked. "Then you know where Tichondrius is hiding."

"Of course! I am Axxavia of the Shadowhoof, I will lead you to the Nathrezim, and we will slay him together! But master," Axxavia said as she turns away from the Night Elves who were watching her closely, "Xil al xoth gar'om yrkrie?"

Illidan furiously gripped the Satyr by the throat and pinned her to the ground. "You dare speak to me in that revolting language?" Illidan picked Axxavia back up and threw her face-first into the ground. "Eredun will not be spoken in my presence outside of battle! Is this understood?"

The Satyrs cowered away as Axxavia rose back to her knees. She tried to speak but she could only cough. She looked at Illidan and nodded apologetically. "You asked me why I allow these druids and sentinels to fight alongside me," Illidan said. "Despite the crimes committed against me, I desire peace, not vengeance. Like you, I was empowered by the Legion, but I did this to save my people. We were once all the same, but you lot have squandered your abilities for your own selfish pursuits. I will not tolerate this any longer. Any who fight under my name does so for the Kaldorei, and for all of Kalimdor!"

Illidan walked over to Axxavia who was still down on one knee. He began to see something in these creatures that he had never seen in any other demon: fear. The Satyr instinctively flinched as Illidan extended his hand to help her back to her feet. They had gotten used to being treated and abused like brainless mongrels by the Burning Legion. "Earn your place amongst the Kaldorei once more, Axxavia of the Shadowhoof."

"What would you have me do, my master?"

"Return to Tichondrius...tell him that you have found a new master."
The Satyrs protested by stomping their hooves and mumbling angrily. Axxavia spoke cautiously as to not anger her new master: "You would send us to our deaths, master!"

"You do not trust me then? If you are not loyal to me, then you must still be loyal to the Burning Legion," Illidan replied.

"No...no, of course not! We...we will do as the master asks of us."

"Good, then pass this news along to the Nathrezim. I will be waiting for your return."

*****

Axxavia led her brothers and sisters through the forests that they knew all too well to the fortress held by the dreadlord Tichondrius, with which they were becoming very familiar. As leader of the Shadowhoof, the concern over their current predicament fell heavy on her shoulders. Illidan was powerful and capable, yet still a gnat compared to the power they had seen in Archimonde, who in turn was incomparable to the power held by the great lord Sargeras.

The grand picture the Legion painted had the Satyrs ruling over the whole of Kalimdor, holding powers second only to the demon lord himself, allowing them to bend and shape their world to their will. For ten thousand years, the Satyrs loyally served the Legion only to receive nothing but torment and mistreatment. Not since Lord Xavius was given the original gift had the Satyrs received anything in return for their service to the Legion.

Axxavia hoped to find common ground with Illidan. They both knew the taste of demonic magic, and like Illidan, she felt betrayed by her own kind. To her, the power she felt was a gift to be shared with every Night Elf, and for them to deny it meant that their society would never advance beyond the primitive life they had held onto for all of these years. She saw them as slaves to the world they worshipped. Axxavia knew what Illidan did not, what the demon hunter refused to believe: they would never be able to return to the Kaldorei. Illidan's dream was a farce, and the Night Elves would never change their bigoted ways.

The Satyrs argued amongst themselves while Axxavia deliberated peacefully in her mind. She wanted to trust Illidan, but knew that telling Tichondrius that she and her Shadowhoof had found a new master would not end well. However, she feared incurring Illidan's wrath about as much, if not more, than angering the dreadlord Tichondrius.

Axxavia felt a clawed hand grasp her shoulder. She turned to see Jargannar, one of her trusted lieutenants. He spoke to her silently as to keep their conversation private. "May I offer my opinion?"

"I'm listening," she replied coldly as she pried his hand from her shoulder. She would frequently make it known that she did not like to be touched, but evidently the message hasn't been very clear.

"We should run. We should forget about everything and flee south as far as we can. I would rather take my chances with the Tauren!"

"No one can run from the Legion," she said. "We could run as far away as possible, but they would find us."

"Then, there is one more solution: we return to Tichondrius and convince him that we have infiltrated the ranks of the resistance army in these forests. Perhaps he will believe us, and then we can lead him back to where Illidan waits for us and slay the demon hunter for him. Surely we would be rewarded!"

The idea was tempting, and much safer than following Illidan's orders, but Axxavia could not bring herself to return to the ones that viewed them as nothing more than mangy wolves. Only under Illidan could she imagine a future for her people. "Illidan is our master now, we will place our trust in him."

*****

Illidan Stormrage watched from within the shadows of Jadefire Fortress - the stronghold of the dreadlord Tichondrius - as the Satyrs approached the demon. The approaching Satyrs caused the demons to lower their guard and allow their allies passage, while Illidan and his forces seized the opportunity provided by the distracted scouts to get close and surround the fortress. If Tichondrius knew that Axxavia and her Shadowhoof were in collusion with Illidan, he would expect the dreadlord to trap and slaughter the Satyrs. Illidan hoped this would be the case, as it would be the perfect time to strike. The other scenario Illidan considered was that the Satyrs would attempt to betray him, and lead the demons back to where they saw him last. If Tichondrius did not want to get his hands dirty, he would have sent most of his remaining forces together with the Satyr, allowing only a few guards and Tichondrius himself to protect the fortress. Either scenario would play well for Illidan and his Night Elves. He had not accounted for a third possibility.

"Lord Tichondrius, I wish to have a word with you," said Axxavia. It was bold for the Satyrs - even a clan leader - to address a higher demon directly.

Tichondrius the Darkener had been in his quarters when Axxavia called his name. The dreadlord moved to his window and reserved his anger until he noticed which manner of creature requested his presence. He leapt out of his window and spread out his wings to slow his fall. Axxavia dared to make eye contact.

"Shouldn't you mutts be out practicing your juvenile magics? Whatever reason gave you the nerve to call for me had better be worth interrupting my meal. I'll have you know I've killed better things than you for lesser infractions today alone, and I am not feeling particularly merciful at the moment!"

The Satyrs displayed clear signs of fear, save for Axxavia who somehow stood firm and in control. With her eyes fixed on the dreadlord she said, "The base at Jaedenar has fallen, the portal was sealed, and the skull is no longer in our possession."

"And you dare return to show your faces around here?"

"We came to tell you that we serve a new master. He has become more powerful than you will ever be, and he comes to kill you."

Tichondrius burst out laughing. He could not believe the audacity of this Satyr and her flock, and neither could Illidan. The demon hunter thought the Satyrs to be cowards, and never imagined this one would be so bold as to do exactly what he had ordered. He expected the Satyrs to get slaughtered, but while his expectations would not be disappointed, he would now feel guilty about what was to come. This group of Satyrs were loyal to him, and they placed their trust in him. He had sacrificed good men and women in the past for victory, but to allow this group of loyal followers to be slaughtered right in front of him felt wrong.

Tichondrius back-handed Axxavia across the face, and her body went flying into the wall of the fortress. The dreadlord proceeded towards her to inflict more punishment while the other Satyrs dared not intervene. Tichondrius smiled in delight of the torture he planned for her and said, "Your new master made a poor decision to recruit such dimwitted beings into his army. What did you think would happen by coming here all by yourselves? Did he want you all to be slaughtered?"

The dreadlord picked Axxavia up by her long, red hair and used it to whip her body into the felsteel wall. He appeared to take great care in holding himself back, after all, he intended only to inflict agonizing pain: the cretin did not deserve to die so readily.

"I will let you in on a little secret: your kind mean nothing to the Legion!" Tichondrius said, while kicking her repeatedly in the stomach. "We visit planets, tease the unworthy locals with a bit of power, and they serve for awhile as our eyes and ears on the inside. All we need to do for you dogs is throw you a bone once in a while and you're happy. You're not real demons, you will never be anything like our kind!"

As his leg tired of kicking, the dreadlord reeled back his arm to deliver a blow that would shatter the Satyr's bones. His arm did not respond...

"Well then, let's see how well you fare against one of your own kind then, Nathrezim!"

Illidan stood before Tichondrius, blood still dripping from the right warglaive of Azzinoth while the dreadlord's severed arm lay at his feet. None saw Illidan move: his speed and shadowmelding technique allowed him to slip past the guards. Even his own soldiers were caught by surprise by their leader's sudden move to action.

Tichondrius was in a state of shock. He saw only a demon before him with fel-empowered weapons and the skull of Gul'dan attached to his side. All was quiet until Tichondrius broke the eerie silence, "What...Who are you?"
Illidan did not answer. The demon deserved no explanation. Illidan had only waited that long to satisfy a curiosity: did this demon fear death? As Illidan swung his glaive a second time, Tichondrius found himself too surprised to put up any guard. His severed head rolled around on the ground for a moment before settling next to his severed arm. Archimonde's lieutenant and Lord of the Nathrezim was dead.

Sparked by the death of their commander, the demons retaliated. Illidan's Night Elves sprang into action as well, attacking the fortress from all sides. The Shadowhoof Satyrs, inspired by the death of Tichondrius, fought back against their former demonic masters at the side of their ancient brethren. The Legion's soldiers were easily overcome.

Illidan tended to the Shadowhoof leader, who had been beaten severely by Tichondrius. She could not have believed that the dreadlord would have responded differently, so Illidan knew that she must have really placed her trust in him. He motioned for his druids, "Feronas, heal her. Treat her with the same care as you would your sister. For now on, Axxavia of the Shadowhoof is our equal."

Illidan exited the fortress as he left the druids to tend to the wounded while the sentinels finished off the demons that still breathed. Before him was a large group of Night Elves, easily three times the size of the army he served under Fandral Staghelm's command. There leading the army stood the druid himself, with Malfurion and Tyrande at his side.

"Foul demon! What have you done with my brother?" shouted Malfurion, not recognizing the being in front of him.

"It is I, Furion," Illidan said. "This is what I've become."

Tyrande Whisperwind approached him, and her presence calmed whatever remnants of bloodlust remained from his battle. She had pity in her eyes and reached out to touch him, but then she reeled her arm back in, as if in fear that a single touch could turn her into a demon as well. "No...Illidan...how could you?"

Illidan's heart sank. Despite what he had become, why could they not see what he had done? A voice that only he could hear echoed his thoughts: Fools! They don't understand all you have done for them, Tichondrius would remain in control had you not accepted my power!

"Tyrande...the leader of the undead has been destroyed, and these forests will heal in time. I did what I had to do!" Illidan said.

"At the cost of your soul?" Malfurion interjected. "You are no brother of mine! Begone from this place, and never set foot in our lands again!"

The whispers of Gul'dan returned, and Illidan felt as though they were getting louder. Who is he to banish you? With your powers, you could rule the Night Elves, and then you could banish him!

Illidan sighed, accepting his brother's punishment. "So be it...brother."

*****

Fandral Staghelm watched as Illidan gathered his loyalists and exited the forests that had come to be known as "Felwood." He was not sure if Illidan was entirely demon, but he was certain that he was not a Night Elf...not anymore. The druid observed the carnage that Illidan unleashed with his new powers as he stepped into Jadefire Fortress. Illidan had become a monster, capable of devastating entire battalions if he was set loose. He methods were revolting, but Fandral could not argue with the results. The demon hunter had slain a powerful leader of the Burning Legion. He imagined what he could do with that power himself. Had Fandral possessed those abilities himself during the War of the Shifting Sands, he wondered...could he have saved Valstann?
So with this part I needed to find a way to reconcile how Illidan would have been able to defeat Tichondrius' army, since he really should not have had too many followers at this point. I decided that it was the perfect time to bring in the Satyrs that appear both in the Frozen Throne and in Shadowmoon Valley under his banner. They're in Felwood too, after all. In WoW, there are only two named Shadowhoof Satyrs in SMV, Zandras over the Warden's Cage and possibly Ambassador Jerrikar, a rare Satyr in the zone, who I used initially for the role. Instead, I created Axxavia, a female Satyr who protects her clan with something of a motherly instinct. Here in this part above, she sees Illidan as providing the only true future for her clan. Illidan in this story goes from hating the Satyrs to realizing that they aren't really all that different than he is, and is beginning to see himself as no longer simply a Night Elf. Gul'dan is also slowly creeping forth into the foreground of Illidan's consciousness.
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Old 09-23-2011, 01:43 PM
DarkAngel DarkAngel is offline

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I've been a bit slow getting around to this, but there are higher priorities in life.

A female Satyr? I suppose they have to exist...

We have another big incident of present-tense here. Watch carefully.
  • Illidan thought very little of Satyrs: they were despicable
  • to the Nathrezim, and we will slay him
  • But master," Axxavia said as she turns away
  • Night Elves who were watching her,
  • Illidan furiously griped
  • and pinned her to the ground.
  • Illidan picked Axxavia back up
  • and threw her face-first into the ground.
  • outside of battle! Is this understood?"
  • The Satyrs cowered away
  • Axxavia rose back to her knees.
  • She tried to speak, but she could only cough.
  • She looked at Illidan and nodded apologetically.
  • Illidan walked over to Axxavia, who was
  • that he had seen in no other demon: fear.
  • The Satyrs protested

Illidan must have some kind of plan if he thinks his new servators will come back.

Again, past tense.
  • held by the dreadlord Tichondrius, with which
  • demonic magic, and like Illidan,
  • they had held onto
  • to believe: they would never be able
  • the Night Elves would never change
  • "I'm listening," she replied coldly
  • as she pried his hand from
  • one more solution: we return
  • The idea was tempting, and much safer than following Illidan's orders,

Don't Dreadlords have hooves, not feet?

Interesting. I was under the impression that demons tend to flee when their strongest falls. Still, they were surrounded.
  • across the face, and her body
  • by her long, red hair
  • inflict agonizing pain: the cretin did not deserve to die so readily.
  • a little secret: your kind mean nothing
  • locals with a bit of power, and they
  • As his foot tired of kicking,
  • the dreadlord reeled back his arm
  • His arm did not respond.
  • severed arm lay at his feet.
  • None saw Illidan move: his speed
  • no explanation. Illidan had only
  • curiosity: did this demon
  • Tyrande Whisperwind approached him, and her presence
  • not see what he had done?

Would even the Sentinel fanatics follow him after Furion's pronouncment? It would mean that they accepted exile too.
  • to be known as "Felwood."
  • His methods were deplorable, but Fandral "Deplorable" is not usually used to describe a person.

Good work, overall. You continue to show an instinct for pacing and characterization, but what is it with those present-tense verbs? Are you trying to approximate something that doesn't exist in English?
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Old 09-23-2011, 03:36 PM
AndyJP AndyJP is offline

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I made corrections. I didn't give this part a thorough proofread so I apologize to you. I rushed to complete it because I needed to do some work with the comic so that I wouldn't fall behind. Now that I have a comfortable lead on it, I have about a week to write the next part in this story.

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I've been a bit slow getting around to this, but there are higher priorities in life.
I still appreciate it very much. I am learning more from you than any teachers I've had.

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We have another big incident of present-tense here. Watch carefully.
I blame every English class I've ever attended for never correcting me on that. Seriously, I have never failed an English assignment in my life. I am trying hard to break the present-tense habit, and I really should have proof-read this particular part more than once.

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Would even the Sentinel fanatics follow him after Furion's pronouncment? It would mean that they accepted exile too.
Stay tuned for the next exciting episode of Illidan Z!
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Old 09-23-2011, 04:11 PM
Valkrysa Valkrysa is offline

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Much love to you for your continuing gift of fan-material for us AndyJP. Makes me want to pull out my machinima tools again try to put this to video, but as a text fiction it works well enough.
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Old 09-24-2011, 06:08 AM
Kir the Wizard Kir the Wizard is offline

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Great story, AndyJP! I like it very much.

Though I think you could have added more bits with Illidan's thoughts when Furion exiled him. Illidan seemed to accept the exile too easy in game, and given that you use his interactions with Gul'dan as a plot point, you could have played it as Illidan being, at first, unaccepting, but after the Skull "cheers" for him to disobey and strike down his brother, Illidan snaps out and quickly agrees with Furion, not wanting to be used by the corrupted artifact.
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Old 09-25-2011, 02:28 PM
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Much love to you for your continuing gift of fan-material for us AndyJP. Makes me want to pull out my machinima tools again try to put this to video, but as a text fiction it works well enough.
Thank you! If I had machinima skills, I would be making them myself! Although, with the experience I have taken from the comic, I understand just how hard it is to get these models to show what you want them to due to their limitations. I guess it's kind of like working with Nicholas Cage!

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Great story, AndyJP! I like it very much.

Though I think you could have added more bits with Illidan's thoughts when Furion exiled him. Illidan seemed to accept the exile too easy in game, and given that you use his interactions with Gul'dan as a plot point, you could have played it as Illidan being, at first, unaccepting, but after the Skull "cheers" for him to disobey and strike down his brother, Illidan snaps out and quickly agrees with Furion, not wanting to be used by the corrupted artifact.
Thank you! That is a really good idea, maybe I will write something extra for this part when I put it up on my comic site. In my mind, Illidan has developed feelings of inferiority with his brother, much like the opposite in WOTA when Malfurion felt inferior to Illidan and couldn't understand why Tyrande would choose him. Now Illidan has seen that Furion is the one that is beloved and cherished by his people, and he is the one who won the heart of Tyrande, who they both love. What he wants is Tyrande and to win his brother's approval. I think it fits in perfectly with his depiction in "The Frozen Throne" where he no longer displays bitterness and asks for peace between them.
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Old 10-02-2011, 02:44 AM
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Default Illidan Stormrage and the Skull of Secrets

I corrected several uses of present-tense so I hope I got all of them this time. This part would have been done earlier, but I hit a snag trying to reconcile why my Illidan wouldn't have joined the battle of Mount Hyjal regardless of his banishment, but I think I came up with a nicely fitting explanation there.

Quote:

In the days that followed his exile from the territory of the Night Elves, Illidan led his small army of Night Elf and Satyr loyalists to the south, away from the cursed lands of Felwood and into the enchanted forests of Ashenvale. Illidan could think of nothing but Tyrande and Furion. Though he had slain one of Archimonde's chief lieutenants, he was still not redeemed in their eyes. Tyrande had released him from his prison hoping that he would become a powerful ally against the Burning Legion. Did he not meet her expectations?

"What is our next objective?" questioned Axxavia. She had partially recovered from the brutal assault by Tichondrius, but an obvious limp and noticeable scars served as a reminder of the pain she had endured.

Despite his body seemingly carrying on subconsciously in their departure from Night Elven territory, Illidan had been lost in thought, much like the years he spent trapped within the Barrow Deeps. He had intended to be assisting the Night Elves in the defeat of Archimonde, but it had been made abundantly clear that they wanted nothing to do with him. "The demons fled north," Illidan said, "to Hyjal and Nordrassil, no doubt. If you thirst for battle, you will find it there."

The trees before them had been cut down to be used by the Orcs in their savage constructions, from what he had heard. Their first contact with Night Elves had been a bloody battle that claimed the life of Cenarius. Illidan could at least appreciate that the tree stumps they left behind allowed him a place to rest. With his new powers, he could have continued walking the entirety of Azeroth, but the Night Elves who lacked his endurance were appreciative of the break.

Axxavia approached. "Master... the Night Elves will fall to the Legion without your assistance."

Illidan did not respond. In his mind, he was back in his cell. Without Furion or Tyrande, he had nothing to fight for; their last exchanged having erased all hope for the future he had envisioned. He had betrayed them again, but he did not understand in what way he had wronged them.

Axxavia persisted. "Master... we look to you for guidance!"

"I told all of you that we would return to the Kaldorei as heroes," Illidan said. "I have failed you all."

"The Kaldorei!" Axxavia spat. "What is so great about your people? They will never understand great minds like you or I. The druids have pushed their authoritarian agenda on their kind...there is no room for the outspoken, nor any alternative views that they do not agree with. Rejoining their society has never been a desire of me or my Satyrs."

"One must have somewhere to belong," Illidan argued.

"Then be the one to build us a new, free society, Lord Illidan! You will find many who wish to be free from the Burning Legion, from the druids, from tyranny...you can be the one to usher in a new age!"

Illidan fell silent as he began to deeply consider her words. She had lost his attention, and she took this as a cue to leave him to his thoughts.

The voice of Gul'dan distracted him from his thoughts: She is not wrong, that one. Free will is a difficult thing to supress within individuals with high intelligence and strong willpower, even in demons. You will find many who will follow you if you call to them. This is your destiny, Stormrage.

"Who are you to speak of destiny?" Illidan said, before realizing that he was speaking to the being within him directly for the very first time.

Like you, Stormrage, I was betrayed by my own kind. The Draenei posed a powerful threat to my people, so I reached out, and foolishly accepted the assistance of the demon, Kil'jaedan. The deceiver had abandoned us once we accomplished our task, and my fellow Orcs blamed me and my warlocks for what had transpired. We could have accomplished great things with our power, but instead we were all slain because they had feared what we had become. There are many like us, demon hunter, who are being persecuted and murdered for simply being different. Build us a world that we can belong to!

"I can only lead armies, I don't know how to build a nation!" Illidan said. "And I know so little about you, Orc. Why should I trust you when you keep your secrets from me?"

The apparition of Gul'dan appeared before him. He was an elderly Orc with a long, unkempt beard, but his broad shoulders and large physique made him appear as though he was in peak physical condition...or possibly this was how the warlock envisioned and presented himself. He spoke to Illidan with more clarity than ever before: "Patience, Stormrage. All will be made clear when the time is right."

*****

Alandien and the Night Elves who elected to follow Illidan distanced themselves from Axxavia and her Satyrs that had also joined his cause. The two groups rested far enough away from each other so as to maintain their privacy, but were close enough to keep each other in their sights. Night Elf and Satyr had battled side by side against the dreadlord Tichondrius and his demonic minions, but that is where their camaraderie ended and 10,000 years of distrust and unmitigated hatred resumed.

As the highest ranking officer present, Alandien's leadership skills carried on under Illidan's service, and the other Night Elves looked to her as the liaison between Illidan and themselves. The druids and sentinels had grown distressed over the recent turn of events. Though they knew the risks involved with betraying their former commander Fandral Staghelm, the gravity of the situation had only begun to sink in, and Alandien had the difficult task of quelling her comrades' fears.

"Illidan has come through for us," Alandien said. "With little effort, he dispatched a leader of the Burning Legion. Together, we won a very important victory for Kalimdor. Remember, our actions were for our future, not for riches and accolades!"

"The Legion heads north to Nordrassil, and we're heading South instead, together with these...these beasts!" shouted a Night Elf from amidst the crowd as he pointed in the direction of the Satyrs. Alandien recognized him as Siverell, a recent recruit to the Sentinels that General Feathermoon believed showed a lot of promise. He had a knack for butting heads with his superiors, of which Alandien was discovering first-hand: "Did you see the Satyr bitch meeting alone with Illidan? They hold more favor with him than we do! We have all made a terrible mistake, and now we can't return home!"

Alandien knew that she needed to quiet him before he incited a riot, however, she could not put to rest similar concerns that troubled her mind.

Altruis stood up. He was the senior druid in the group and a well-respected veteran. When he spoke, everyone listened. "You have already forgotten why we are here. Our abilities as druids were largely insufficient against the Legion, and your glaives and arrows could barely pierce the demons' thick hides. But we saw first hand the victory that Illidan's dark powers brought to these lands. Kalimdor needs brave champions who are not afraid to embrace the darkness in order to defend it from its enemies. I would sacrifice everything to save our world!"

"I am glad you feel that way," said Illidan, who they noticed hovering in the sky above them. "Your training begins at sunset. Be prepared!"

*****

Months passed as Illidan pushed the most promising of his followers to their limits. The initiates were forced to endure tests of stamina to eliminate the unfit, to survive agonizing torture from demonic fel magic that burned at their very souls, and to learn how to see the magic that binds and sets the world around them in motion. The final, and most dangerous test, involved the capture of a powerful demon and absorbing its essence. Ten of the fifteen Night Elves that Illidan had selected survived to become his new demon hunters, while Axxavia was the only survivor of the five Satyrs he had chosen.

Illidan and his followers knew that war had found Mount Hyjal. Every demon had been called there, and he had no doubt that Malfurion received aid from all allies of the Night Elves. Against Archimonde, it would not be enough. Without the aid of the Ancients and dragonflights, Illidan was certain that Archimonde was unstoppable. His hesitation to join the battle in spite of his banishment was fed by his desire to see his brother return to him, begging for the aid of him and his demon hunters. The stubborn druid never came. Would he rather die than forsake his pride?

In an instant, Illidan's heart sank as the echo of an explosion coming from the north found his ears, followed by a shock wave that caused a tingling sensation to run up his spine, freezing him in the moment. The Night Elves and Satyrs knew as much as Illidan did that the war had ended in that big bang...but the overwhelming presence he had felt ever since Archimonde sat foot in these lands had faded. It could mean only one thing: Archimonde was dead.

He barely had time to take it all in before a voice called out to him: "Illidan Stormrage!"

The demon hunter knew who called his name, but he did not immediately react. Because he did not feel the presence of the demon lord, he knew that it could only be an astral projection and that he was not in any immediate danger.

"Kil'jaedan, I remember your voice." Illidan could hear several Night Elves gasp, while most of the Satyrs cowered and backed away. He knew that he had to choose his words carefully, as it was imperative to not show any signs of weakness in front of his followers, but he also knew that only a fool would insult one of the great leaders of the Burning Legion, with power only rivaled by Sargeras himself. While Illidan dreamed of confronting and defeating every last demon some day, he was far from prepared at the current moment.

"And I barely recognized you, little demon hunter. I have watched Archimonde's disastrous campaign from the very beginning, the fool never learned not to underestimate this world and its vermin. Do you know who it is that will be hailed as the hero that defeated Archimonde?"

Illidan turned around. The magics that empowered Kil'jaedan's astral projection animated his appearance perfectly, and it was the fel magic that was aligned so precisely that allowed Illidan to see the demon as clear as he once saw the world long ago. "Of course I know. It could have been no one else."

"Yes, it was your twin. Malfurion scolded you for the sacrifices you made for your people, and in the end it was him that did the unthinkable. Your 'world tree' - Nordrassil - has been destroyed. He took away your right to live forever! Every Night Elf is now doomed to ultimately grow old and weak, and inevitably succumb to death's inescapable grasp. Yet he is the hero of your world."

The image of Gul'dan appeared beside Illidan, staring down the ethereal form of his former master. "He has a snake's tongue, Stormrage. He desires to bend you to his will. Tread carefully."

Kil'jaedan either could not see the ghostly apparition of his former disciple, or he had no reason to show interest in the aged Orc. "Where is your justice? Will you continue to wait for the universe to balance itself in your favor? In the past, you have been both friend and foe to the Burning Legion. You've hated us so much that in your hunt you have become one of us! While I appreciate the irony, you've become a powerful weapon against us and worthy of notice - minor notice, at least. But, by consuming the skull of Gul'dan, you've sealed our defeat in this world. I come to offer you a second chance to serve us. That bitter failure of an Orc you hold in your hand will warn you of me, and rightfully so. However, my proposition will benefit the both of us tremendously. Search your feelings, you know that the Legion can never be defeated. Work with us, and we can continue to co-exist."

Illidan was unable to shield his thoughts from Gul'dan, and the Orc already knew that he was considering Kil'jaedan's offer. "Do not be a fool, Stormrage! Remember my fate, for the same is destined of all who conspire with the deceiver!"

"I cannot argue with your wisdom, Lord Kil'jaedan. The only hope for a future is to bow before the Burning Legion. What would you have me do, great one?" The words tasted bitter in Illidan's mouth.

Kil'jaedan grinned deviously. "My creation, the Lich King, has betrayed me. He broke the pact that binds him to my will, but his spirit still lies trapped within the Frozen Throne of Icecrown. Destroy it for me, and I will grant you your heart's desire."

Illidan knew that he did not mean revenge against Malfurion, as it wasn't what his heart desired. "It will be done...my master."
Illidan has some 'splaining to do in the next part. Gul'dan will think of something.

The reason I kept him in Ashenvale is because the meeting with Kil'jaedan appeared to take place in Ashenvale and he is also chased by Maiev in Ashenvale, so why not just stay in Ashenvale? All of the Night Elves went north to Hyjal, so there's not currently a reason for him to be concerned about breaking his banishment.

I also want to clarify that not all of the Night Elves or Satyr were judged worthy of demon hunter training, but the ones who did not train are still there with him.

Gul'dan upgraded to quotes because he is now in ghost form too instead of just a voice.
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