Such a Lovely Place [NaNoWriMo]

Damn that blasted elf!

A pox on Kael'thas for destroying our poor home and killing my friends! Our little Kirin'Var Village was no Dalaran, but as the years went by, I think we all grew to appreciate its rustic charm. It was a peaceful 17 years on that tiny chunk of rock, studying the arcane phenomena surrounding us, enjoying Luminrath's nightly feasts. Such a lovely place...reduced to ruins by that fool elflord.

Perhaps our peace of mind had left us unprepared for an assault, but I don't think all the preparations in the world would have helped against the elflord's forces. And such arcane power! I have known Kael'thas for many years, and I never once suspected him capable of such destructive wizardry! I have to admit that I severely underestimated him. I am an archmage of the Kirin Tor, and yet it took all my strength and a good amount of luck simply to ward my tower against his evocations.

Unfortunately for me, it seems Kael'thas has developed a cruel streak over the years. He wasn't satisfied leaving me alive, so he wove a terrible stasis curse that froze all magic within the Violet Tower in its current state! My seal persisted, as did other enchanted objects in the tower such as Luminrath's replenishing larder and my lamps, but no new magic could be cast within the tower's walls! He and his could not enter the tower, but I was now helpless.

Eventually they left, so started running for the door, eager to make my way back to less hostile territory. However, the vindictive elf had left me a surprise. He had found Ar'kelos, the arcane construct I had brought along to serve as village guardian and had twisted its enchantments to serve his cause! Though the only thing Ar'kelos had guarded in recent years had been our humble vegetable garden, I knew as soon as I saw it activate and lumber towards me that it was still as deadly as the day I created it. Normally I would have simply blasted the golem to bits, but without magic I was at its mercy! I was forced to retreat back up the stairs, a prisoner here of my own device.

Things look grim, but I have not lost all hope. Before I sealed the tower, I managed to teleport my staff far away, to my apprentice Ravandwyr. Just a few days previous, I had sent him from Kirin'Var to the goblin city of Area 52 to replenish our spell components. The staff is attuned to me, and if it reaches him I should be able to communicate with him through the staff and tell him what has transpired.

Ravandwyr is a resourceful lad, but he lacks the skill and training that will be required to break Kael'thas' curse. I can only hope that he finds help soon!

Success! After months of being trapped in that cursed tower, the Archmage Vargoth walks free again! It has been far too long since I have breathed in fresh air, felt the cool wind in my hair. I was beginning to think that Kael'thas' damned curse would keep me in there until the end of my days!

My staff did indeed reach my brilliant apprentice, and the sharp young Ravandwyr found that he was able to summon an image of myself to his location. Though my corporeal body remained trapped in the tower, I was able to speak with Ravandwyr through the projection and explain what had happened.

It was quite a fascinating experience, actually. There I was, studying my books - what else did I have to do? - when suddenly I felt my head grow heavy, and my sight grew dim. I saw a shimmering light! And the next thing I knew, I was staring at poor Ravandwyr's shocked face. I was quite surprised to discover that I could "see" out of my duplicate, and that my apprentice could similarly "see" me! I expected a simple telepathic connection, not an actual illusory manifestation. Perhaps the latent arcane energy in Netherstorm had something to do with it.

Under my guidance, Ravandwyr was able to copy the staff's enchantment and imbue it into a mundane, common quarterstaff. He then gave the staff to a group of passing adventurers and told them of my plight. Through the staff's magic, I was able to speak with them and enlist their assistance in fetching me the magical components I needed to dispel Kael'thas' spell. It was a surprisingly difficult task, and only by locating one of the elflord's must trusted lieutenants was I able to finally able to break the curse.

I spent a few days in Area 52 recovering from my ordeal, and Ravandwyr filled me in on what had occurred during my imprisonment, that Kael'thas had been slain by adventurers. Our beloved Kirin'Var Village may be nothing more than a mass of crumbling rubble, but at least its former residents may rest easy knowing that the fool elf got what he deserved!

Ravandwyr asked what I would do next, if I would try to rebuild Kirin'Var. I thought about it, but told him that no, it wouldn't be the same without our friends. Besides, I think I've had quite enough of Netherstorm's otherworldly landscape for one lifetime. I think I'll go back home to Dalaran and return to my studies.

I have returned to Dalaran, and it feels good to be home! I decided to give Amisi Azuregaze, owner of the Legerdemain Lounge, a full record of my time spent in Kirin'Var, so that her many visitors may know our story and of what a dastard Kael'thas is.

However, I have run into some unanticipated complications. I was perusing the latest arrivals in the Violet Citadel when I faintly heard someone calling my name. I looked about, curious, and then felt that familiar tingle and lightheadedness - someone was summoning my astral projection! Moments later I was face-to-face with a kindly young tauren lad - back in damned Netherstorm - who was eager to help me escape my magical prison. It seems young Ravandwyr had been very enthusiastic about his mission, and had copied the staff multiple times, and given it to a few different adventurers!

I was quite amused, and thanked the tauren boy for his concern but explained that I was actually already very free, and that his efforts were appreciated, but now unnecessary. After he left, I found myself tapping my (illusory) foot waiting for the projection to fade. Always before, I'd had to hurriedly communicate my needs to the adventurers assisting me before the spell dissipated. I never realized its limited duration would be a drawback! Oh well, 'tis but a minor inconvenience.

After a minute or so, I felt the illusion fading and I was soon back in Dalaran. Much to my astonishment, Archmages Modera and Sunreaver were right next to me, peering intently at my face with concerned expressions. I started in shock, and they jumped back, equally surprised!

It turns out that everything I had said to the youngster through my projection had also been said aloud by my physical form! Oh dear! How mortifying! And of course, since I had been facing a bookshelf with no one else around, it appeared to my companions that I had gone completely insane, babbling and carrying on a conversation with a blank wall.

This is positively dreadful! Hopefully Ravandwyr wasn't TOO generous with those staves. I must make a note to talk to the boy and find out just how many people have one...

Vargoth here. Haven't slept in a week. Apparently, EVERYONE ON AZEROTH has a copy of my damned staff! It feels like I've done nothing lately except get whisked away willy-nilly to embody one of my projections! I'll just be minding my own business, maybe out buying some groceries or giving a lecture to young mages-to-be, and the next thing I know I'll be back in BLASTED Netherstorm, staring at yet another young hero who wants to help me break the curse! I try not to be rude - they're just trying to help me, after all - but it's becoming quite a problem!

It has also led to some very embarrassing moments, when an intrepid adventurer has activated the staff to contact me, only to catch me right in the midst of, ahem, private activities! One poor Draenei lass had the misfortune of summoning me right as I had stepped out of the bath! I'm not sure who was more shocked, but I'd never seen one of their race turn beet red before! It was very awkward and scandalizing. I hope I never meet her in person!

Also, to make matters worse, the summons have been coming at all hours of the day! I'll be fast asleep, when suddenly I'll hear those those voices calling from far away, waking me up in the middle of the night! Don't these hooligans ever sleep?? I'm sure it's been quite a disappointment, summoning the image of a supposedly-powerful archmage, only to be met with a drowsy, sleepy-eyed man in a nightgown! They seem to find it quite amusing, but I fail to see the humor.

I'm not sure what to do! I find myself growing increasingly paranoid of putting myself into what would become a compromising position, should someone summon my image! And it's dreadfully hard to concentrate, when my mind is constantly racing, wondering when I'll next be called away. It's making it impossible to get any research or study done!

This is becoming ridiculous! I am still constantly being summoned by adventurers against my will, only now it seems to be some sort of game or prank to them! I've vicariously "traveled" to a floating tree in Nagrand, to the bottom of a lake, and even into a heated battle against terrible demons! Let me assure you, it is quite startling to one moment be writing a study on the household applications for a water elemental (I personally love having one when it's hot, to rid myself of sweet summer sweat), and the next to be staring down the gullet of an extremely irritated pit lord!

And as if that weren't infuriating enough, people have started conjuring my image just to ask me bizarre questions or get my opinion on mundane, unimportant decisions!

"Archmage, should I have Rhino Dogs or Grilled Sculpin for dinner tonight?"

"Archmage, can you tell me where I can find Mankrik's wife?"

"Archmage, do these robes make my tail look fat?"

I couldn't take it anymore. My confusing public stupors and verbal outbursts were ruining my reputation, and that of the Kirin Tor, so I decided to retreat back to my room in the Violet Citadel and become a hermit, where my one-sided conversations and strange behavior will go unseen by the masses. Now I simply spend the days reading, writing my memoirs, and just waiting for someone to desire my company.

It's really not that bad. I have lots of books, and I can just conjure up some tasty and nutritious food whenever I feel like it. I will however miss Miss Stockton's refreshing beverages, so I asked Captain Sanders to bring me a special shipment of wine next time he was in town.

After some thought, I decided to embrace the absurdity of my situation, and have begun writing down detailed accounts of my experiences. Now that being conjured isn't interrupting me from my work, I've begun to find my adventures quite entertaining! It's a little exciting, since I never know where I'll end up next. And I've gotten to know quite a few young people who were going through hard times and just needed a receptive ear to listen to their woes. Perhaps I should change my name to Doctor Vargoth.

I do expect that eventually I'll want some company, though. My quarters are wonderful, but they can be a lonely place...such a lonely place. I told Rhonin how to teleport to my room should he ever need me, and that if he ever met someone who had unearthed some exciting new arcane knowledge, to send them my way. During my long stay in the Violet Tower, I had plenty of time to study the Mana Seekers roaming about outside, and managed to create a cute miniaturized version that makes a great pet!. I think anyone dedicated enough to the magic to make it up here deserves one of these little guys.

So if you're reading this in the Legerdemain Lounge, I know it's hard to discover new avenues of magical study, but persevere! Complete your studies and come see me for your reward! There's plenty of room at the Violet Citadel, and any time of year, you can find me here!

I suppose I should also record a faint, disconcerting feeling I've been having lately. Recently when I've "appeared" as my projection, I've felt almost like I'm...not fully in control of it. While conversing with my summoner, I can almost feel my eyes twitch or start to roam, as if some other presence was attempting to seize control of the illusion. Could it have possibly attained some degree of sentience from its continual usage? Such an idea is preposterous, yet I can't shake that feeling that sometimes, alone in my room, I can feel a set of eyes on my back...watching.

Well, I'm sure it's nothing.

Show/Hide Letter Notes

Pertinent Lore:

Archmage Vargoth
Vargoth's quest chain
Kirin'Var Village
Excerpts from the Journal of Archmage Vargoth
"Higher Learning" achievement

This was a fun one to write. When I started it I didn't even realize Vargoth was a Burning Crusade NPC! I was just thinking that the funny hermit at the top of the Violet Citadel who gave you the Kirin Tor Familiar pet would be a funny NPC to feature.

I have done Higher Learning and have the book that lets you teleport up to him, and have always wondered just who this guy was. AND I've fished up his coin from the Dalaran well before, as well. But ii wasn't until I looked him up that I remembered that funny staff popping his image out everywhere.

I also hadn't realized just how hilarious his quests, situation and quotes were. Hotel California? So awesome. My absolute favorite line was from his journal excerpts, where he writes that the golem was "programmed to aggrieve." Blizzard writers really knock it out of the park sometimes. Of course I had to try to work in as many lines from the song as possible. I had the song playing on repeat while I wrote this letter.

I wanted to point out the irony that he'd escaped Kirin'Var's Violet Tower, only to end up in another high-up, Violet building later in life. I wondered what would drive him to do this, since he had been so eager to be free. Then I remembered that hilarious staff and how you could still summon his image anywhere you went, and I had my answer! The image was obviously a 2-way method of communication, so picture hundreds of adventurers calling him randomly and for laughs (which is what players do with it!) and it was easy to see how he'd start going crazy with irritation.

I thought it'd be funny to end with an image of Vargoth and his Image standing side by side in his room. But then I figured it'd be even funnier if his Image had become almost alive, and was doing funny things behind his back. (You can do emotes at the Image and it will respond in funny ways, such as /wave, /point, /slap and /dance.)

I actually startled myself while setting up this screenshot. I placed the image, but Vargoth had walked away, so I was tinkering with the angle to try to set up a good shot. I looked at the Image, then turned and looked at where Vargoth was across the room, then turned back to the Image, and did a double-take because the Image was GONE! Its duration had just expired, of course, but for a split-second it caught me off guard. :P

4 Responses Subscribe to comments

  1. gravatar

    Hahah. Okay, THIS is my new favourite letter. Poor Vargoth! Does this robe make my tail look fat? Hahah.

    November 15, 2010 at 10:27 AM

  2. gravatar

    K3? Vargoth and his apprentice were going to Northrend? Don't you mean Area 52?

    Funny story either way; love the bit where he talks about getting summoned at the worst moments. :P

    And where in Dalaran is he? Don't think I've ever run into him actually...

    November 15, 2010 at 3:29 PM

  3. gravatar

    Ahh, good catch Shintar! Silly goblins and their number-themed cities. Fixed now! You get an honorary red shirt! ;)

    He's sequestered up in the Violet Citadel in Dalaran! You can only get to him by completing the Higher Learning achievement (finding each the Schools of Magic books), at which point you get a special book that teleports you up to his room. He then gives you the Kirin Tor familiar vanity pet.

    November 15, 2010 at 3:42 PM

  4. gravatar

    Ohh, I thought the bit about him giving out pets was just something that you made up - that's really cool!

    November 16, 2010 at 6:49 AM