Part 1: Trial of the Night Warrior
Participants: Tinwëtar (DM), Kathene (DM), Syrune, Melaniel, Talasandra, Duskshroud, Astralarius, Maracyn, Ilyande, Seagazer, Delanae, Thylendra, Aariam, Telrenya, Aroki (guest), Tahlayra (guest)
Mission report 1 – Talrendis Point, Azshara
Date: 13th of Curuhen, 2018
Summary: The time had come to finally advance into Azshara from Forest Song, and the Nightblades’ first task was to reclaim the Talrendis Point outpost from the Horde to use as their base for the coming campaign. Even with Ashenvale mostly occupied, the Horde were taking no chances with the Azsharan border – across the narrow bridge stood a fearsome guard of orc and goblin forces, heavily armed and armored. Attacking them head on would be a precarious battle, made all the less palatable by the large brazier that now stood at the top of the occupied sentinel tower in Talrendis – surely if the Horde were attacked, they would use the flame to send a signal to Orgrimmar, and the Nightblades could not stand against the might of the Horde capital if they were alerted.
Instead, the sentinels would make a more stealthy approach, cutting the throat of the Horde before they could call for help. The Nightblades divided into two teams, each headed by an Outrunner – Syrune Sagewing and Aesa Seagazer. For the two of them, the mission would serve as the Trial of the Night Warrior – a test of leadership and skill to prove oneself worthy of promotion to a full Nightblade Sentinel. The sentinels would cross the river from below and scale the cliff into the outpost – from there, Syrune’s team would head to the tower, tasked with slaying the Horde inside and stopping the brazier from being lit at all costs, while Aesa’s team would head to the inn, where the outpost’s leader and many of the Horde garrison resided.
A heavy mist in the air obscured the vision of both the sentinels and the Horde and forced a slow, careful approach. Enemies were heard before they were seen, and distant torches could be spotted by orange glows in the fog, moving up and down the shrouded paths. Syrune’s group advanced through the woods toward the tower, its looming shadow visible overhead through the mist.
Evading goblin patrols and quickly striking down an unfortunate sentry who saw too much, Syrune led her team to the base of the hill, choosing to climb the steep ridge up to the tower rather than risk approaching via the main path. Not wishing to alert the Horde with bright moonfire, Ilyande called upon the Goddess to protect and empower the Nightblades as they prepared for more encounters with the Horde.
Astralarius was sent ahead in crow form to inspect the top of the tower, but the fog proved too thick to see through, and when he came close he discovered – and was discovered by – a goblin mage keeping watch near the brazier. After the mage had released a nasty fire spell towards Astralarius, Melaniel and Talasandra finally managed to reach the top of the tower to join the singed druid. As they reached the top, the mage put up a flame barrier and cried out in alarm to alert the rest of the Horde force.
The Sentinels positioned around the base of the tower made quick work of the goblins that came rushing to support the mage. At the top, the mage herself fared little better, with Melaniel’s glaives and Astralarius feline claws and teeth tearing through her barrier and bringing her to her knees. Melaniel was able to knock the brazier over the side of the tower, preventing the signal – or so the sentinels hoped. But the goblin had one last trick up her sleeve. She began to channel a spell to turn herself into a living bomb, aiming to both wipe out the sentinels and ignite the tower itself as a signal. Before she could complete her spell, Syrune’s swift arrow brought an end to the goblin and her magic, and Melaniel’s boot sent her body tumbling over the edge, averting her explosive finale.
It would have been over, but there was one last opponent waiting for the sentinels. The tower had been home to an orc warrior known as Axemaster Tartharak – the room at its base was lined with racks of his vast collection of axes, and it seemed he was eager to finally put them to use.
Talasandra proved her worth by snatching an axe meant for Syrune mid-air and taunted the Axemaster most foully- “Let me AXE you a question!”. The Axemaster, who took axes quite seriously, seemed to take a dim view of axe-related humour, and the words sent the orc into a fixated rage against Talasandra. With his attentions focused on Talasandra, the others were free to prey on his blind-spots and send him plummeting down to the bottom of the tower, where he cracked the stonework with the impact and knocked dozens of his stored axes all over the floor.
This orc was sturdier than most though, and he survived to drag himself out of the tower, searching for other night elves to slaughter in a daze. Standing at the balcony above, Syrune let loose a final arrow to strike the Axemaster in the back of the neck with deadly precision, putting an end to the warrior’s fury. With that, the tower was secured, the fallen brazier no longer a concern.
Meanwhile, Seagazer’s team made their cautious and stealthy way towards the inn. Their approach was made more difficult due to several Horde patrols along the road up to the tower and they made very slow progress. Reaching the inn without alerting the guards would be difficult, so it was decided that they would try to take out a few of the patrols as they passed, to help thin the Horde’s numbers.
The Sentinels, with the aid from Aroki and Tahlayra, made short work of the first goblin patrol; the thick fog working to their advantage. Once the enemies were slain, a few of the Sentinels, along with Aroki, dragged the corpses aside to hide them in an effort to make sure that suspicions weren’t raised too quickly.
The inn came into sight and it was protected by yet another patrol as well as two burly guards that had the look of thuggish bodyguards. Unfortunately, the Sentinels were not as stealthy this time and the patrolling enemies noticed them. A fight ensued and the Nightblades, along with their allies, eventually managed to vanquish their Horde foes as well as the two thugs guarding the entrance to the inn.
However, approaching the inn head on would not have been advisable, considering that there was still a rather considerable force of enemies guarding the bridge nearby. Instead the Sentinels decided to sneak in to deal with the Horde Commander inside. The Horde Commander turned out to be a goblin with a fondness for explosives and toxins and a short, but brutal fight ensued between her and the Nightblades. In the end she was slain and the Sentinels were free to regroup with Sagewing’s team.
Once both parts of the outpost were free from the Horde, the sentinels’ attention turned on the bridge guards. Syrune fired a moonfire signal arrow over the bridge, beckoning forth from Ashenvale a lone figure on a large frostsaber – Commander Ravenmist herself. The Commander unleashed Elune’s fury on the Horde guards in a rain of falling stars, slaying those foolish enough to stay and forcing the rest to retreat to Talrendis. Huntress Wildstar struck next from the shadows at the Azshara side of the bridge, cutting down a fleeing orc and goblin – the last surviving few ran into the outpost where they sought reinforcements, but only came face to face with a full cadre of sentinels and their allies.
Talrendis was, for now, free from the Horde, and the sentinels gathered around the moonwell to debrief. Both Seagazer and Sagewing were found to have completed their tasks admirably, and both were bestowed the rank of Sentinel by Commander Ravenmist in recognition of their skill and devotion.
With the mission over, the sentinels began the long task of clearing the outpost of their slain opponents. Though they had succeeded in taking Talrendis without alerting the rest of the Horde, it would surely not be long before someone noticed – before then, they would need to make their next move against the goblins of Azshara.
Part 2: Yours? Mine!
Participants: Melaniel (DM), Kathene (DM), Syrune, Talasandra, Aariam, Astralarius, Delanae Cinelyn, Thylendra Duskshroud, Maracyn, Telrenya
Mission report 2 – Talrendis Point, Azshara
Date: 15th of Curuhen, 2018
Summary: With Talrendis secure and the Horde none the wiser for now, the sentinels had a limited time to act before they were discovered. Their first task in Azshara was to infiltrate the nearby Horde quarry; there was word of the Trade Prince – or perhaps one of his doubles – attending the Ironworks there to inspect some goblin project. An attack on the quarry also presented a chance to throw some of the Horde’s supply lines into disarray; If the overseer of the quarry was eliminated, it would certainly be a setback for the goblins. On top of it all, some of the sentinel caches that the Azsharan regiment had left behind were said to have been hidden here – though that had been before there was a quarry at all, and it seemed most likely that the caches were unearthed by the Horde years ago.
The newly promoted Sentinel Sagewing was given lead of a small group for the mission. While Talasandra led her team down into the quarry to hunt down the “Gallywix” in the Ironworks, Syrune’s team would infiltrate by the scaffolding at the quarry’s edge, and use the vantage point to guide Talasandra’s group, as well as eliminate any goblins in their way. Once that was achieved, their task would be to hunt the troll overseer.
The first obstacle for Talasandra’s group was a lax goblin worker taking a break. The Rosesky sisters snuck up on him, and lodged a pickax into his skull, making it look like he fell and tripped on it. A bit further on, they found a goblin working on explosives. Priestess Delanae tried to blow him up with the explosives, but only managed to light the fuse, causing a small commotion.
Huntress Wildstar led the team to a small ledge at the quarry’s edge from which the scaffolding could be reached, Aariam and Duskshroud – the two most experienced with stealth in the group – snuck in first, coming across a goblin sentry whose rifle was enhanced with an engineered searchlight strapped below the barrel. Attracted by the commotion caused by Talasandra’s team, he began to point the light in their direction, but before he could expose the kaldorei in the Horde’s midst he was swiftly knocked to his demise by Aariam. The sudden fall startled the goblins below, but they seemed to brush it off as another unfortunate accident caused by a lack of safety concerns in the quarry.
The “accidental” fall drew the quarry’s foreman, who had some of the goblins take the fresh corpse out of the quarry’s vicinity. Talasandra’s team snuck by and found themselves close to another group of goblins, who were hiding to take a much needed break. They overheard a conversation about the the Trade Prince location inside the ironworks, inspecting a new anvil from Zandalar. A gust of wind from Astra’s direction picked the goblins up and tossed them to their deaths, unseen and unheard.
Syrune’s group pushed further along the scaffold and soon overhead a conversation between two resting goblins below about an “elf box” that had been found in the quarry recently. The loose-lipped goblins let slip plenty of information about the find while the kaldorei listened from the shadows, and the sentinels learned that the box was being kept in a supply hut by the overseer – a place it seemed most miners were reluctant to approach because of the overseer’s fearsome “pets”.
Talasandra’s group approached the Ironworks, and found the foreman standing under one of the cranes. Severing the crane’s chain and turning the foreman into “Yet another Accident”, it drew the attention of the two mooks who were guarding the front entrance to the Ironworks, and they started investigating, as much as their limited intelligence allowed. Talasandra’s group prepared to ambush both, using Astralarius’s bird form as a distraction
Syrune gave the order to eliminate the blabbering goblins. Maracyn remained at the top of the scaffold, supporting Talasandra’s group with arrows from above as they fought the quarry’s guards. The falling crane, damaged by Talasandra’s thrown glaive, drew the attention of the goblin pair, and while distracted they were dispatched by Aariam and Duskshroud – but not so swiftly that the sentinels didn’t draw more attention. A large mook ferrying stone blocks around the quarry heard one of the goblins’ cries for help and came to investigate, forcing Aariam to quickly hide the bodies in nearby crates and take cover in the shadows.
The mook was a slow witted investigator, but an untimely creak on the floorboards above revealed Syrune to him. He hurled his block at Syrune in a rage, the throw strong enough to beat the sentinel’s reflexes and leave her dazed with a very nasty bump on the head. The mook went in for the kill – but even injured, Syrune proved deadlier up close. With support from Aariam, Syrune was able to get her revenge, gutting the mook where he stood with her knife.
With the way to the ironworks clear, Talasandra’s group carefully approached. They found the Imposter Trade Prince hunched next to an anvil, with the only other witness in the room a crane worker, who was trying to lower a large Azerite crystal onto the anvil with the encouragement of the “Prince”.
Astralarius turned himself into a bird once more and tried to annoy the crane worker enough so that they could move the Azerite crystal on top of the goblin “Prince”, but while he managed to do so, the “Prince” became agitated and used his Azerite cane to shoot a beam of energy, burning Astralarius in the process. With the Azerite crystal in place the Sentinels quickly severed the rope to bring it down upon their target. They killed the crane worker before he could retaliate, and Delanae rushed to tend to Astralarius’s burns. The group then proceeded to dispose of as much evidence that they could before clearing out of the quarry.
With the scaffolds clear and Talasandra’s group heading into the ironworks to confront “Gallywix”, Syrune’s team advanced further into the quarry. Telrenya, in her owl form, had already scouted out the Overseer’s location; the troll was lurking in front of the supply hut, feeding rocks to her two loyal basilisks. A third basilisk was confined in a cage, consumed with rage as it thrashed and snapped at the troll. She mocked the beast in return, assuring it that it would soon be as loyal a pet to her as the others.
The sentinels watched from afar, discussing their plans, and eventually Telrenya and Aariam went forward. Telrenya used her druidic powers to send the pair of tame basilisks into a deep slumber while Aariam worked on unlocking the cage of their enraged brother. The lock came open, but not before Aariam was spotted by the troll. Maracyn loosed an arrow at the overseer, but missed, and the troll lunged for Aariam with her axe. The two fought for a short time, but the troll gained the upper hand, tripping Aariam to the ground and raising her axe to claim the sentinel’s head.
Not deterred by her earlier miss, Maracyn let another arrow fly and struck the troll in the back this time, dealing a painful injury. As she did, Telrenya pried open the cage door and the imprisoned basilisk burst out, filled with bloodlust at the troll who had caged and tortured him. Preying on the troll’s moment of weakness, the great lizard pinned her down and unleashed its petrifying stare on her, gradually slowing her struggles and screams as her body was hardened and turned to stone. With the overseer no longer a threat, the sentinels recovered the cache from the supply hut and left the basilisks to their gruesome feast, the sound of powerful jaws crunching and cracking through solid stone echoing behind them.
The sentinels left the quarry behind, most of the deaths left in their wake at least plausible as accidents. At the very least, the Horde would not likely know for certain who was behind it all. Aariam opened the cache, revealing that its contents were nothing more than seeds – though Telrenya’s investigation revealed that these seeds were brimming with natural energies, and that once encouraged to grow, they would quickly sprout roots and vines on a vast scale. Something about this idea seemed to catch Captain Glaivestar’s imagination – but for now, the night’s mission had been achieved successfully and the sentinels were dismissed to treat their wounds and rest. This night, they would hear only tranquil silence from the quarry over the hill.
Part 3: Train in Vain
Participants: Tinwetar (DM), Melaniel (DM), Kathene, Ialluen, Aariam, Syrune, Thylendra, Cinelyn, Alylia, Maracyn, Astralarius, Delanae, Illyande, Duskshroud, Luain (guest)
Mission report 3 – Hidden camp, Northern Azshara
Date: 17th of Curuhen, 2018
Summary: The seeds recovered from the cache were found to have a special property. The seeds, after being planted, had the ability to grow rapidly into large constricting vines, able to tear down a building if they were planted with enough room to grow.
With the seeds in hand, the Commander decided that they would be perfect to use for the next assignment: sabotage the Bilgewater railway that spans throughout the Azsharan bay. Kathene Wildstar took command of the unit for the mission while the Commander and Captain moved on ahead to look for a suitable camp spot in the northern part of Azshara, deep behind enemy lines.
The automated railway was busy, trams laden with supplies racing back and forth on the tracks. The noise thankfully concealed the Night Elves steps as they snuck under the rail and planted the first seed by the support beam. The team then sent a few to scout ahead and others to remain behind and wait for an all clear sign.
The mountainside has been defaced by a construction crew, working to sculpt the face of the Goblin Trade Prince, making the land even more appealing to his grotesque image. While the first sentry was quickly and silently dispatched, killing the second construction worker was spotted by a third, who panicked and run towards the foreman to raise the alarm. Thankfully, with the quick actions of the Scouting team, and the noise of the trains overhead, they managed to kill the ground crew before an alarm was raised, allowing the second and third seed to be safely planted along the support beams.
The tower was now in sight, and so were its defenses. Searchlights, alarm-o-bots and spider mines lain across the field, overseen by two Hobgoblin mooks, whom from their shouting to one another have been named Dum and Dim. The Nightblades tried to jam one of the searchlights in place so they could sneak by easier, but instead it lured one of the mooks to investigate.
Dum managed to spot Sentinel Nightborne by the sabotaged searchlight, but thanks to Aariam’s quick thinking, she managed to convince the slow-witted oaf that she was a troll rather than an elf, which lowered Dum’s guard enough to be ambushed by the Night Elves surrounding him.
With his brother dying, Dim joined the fight, and the commotion also raised the alarm of the tower defenses, and the Nightblades had to contend with the enraged Hobgoblin along with the Spider mines that were approaching quickly. Kathene, Telrenya and Luain were targeted by the spiders, and while none of them managed to outrun the attack, each managed to defend by using their athletic or magical skills, with minor injuries suffered by the Druid of the Claw.
In the end the Nightblades managed to slay the hobgolin mook and he joined his brother Dum in the ever after.
The only remaining resistance were the alarm-o-bots, that aside of being very noisy and annoying, didn’t prove to be any danger. Luckily for the Sentinels, the Operator in charge of the tower, due to his station very close to the train tracks, wore large noise cancelling ear mufflers and was completely oblivious to the chaos below him.
With the way to the tower clear, the druids planted the seeds, and the Nightblades regrouped with their sabers, watching as the seeds sprouted and tore apart the train tracks and towers, putting the entire Azsharan supply line to a screeching halt. They made their way to the designated campsite, on a remote hill at Northern Azshara, to prepare for the next mission.
Part 4: Shell Game
Participants: Tinwëtar (DM), Kathene (DM), Melaniel, Aariam, Syrune, Talasandra, Ialluen, Seagazer, Delanae, Maracyn, Astralarius, Ilyande, Sedmerian (guest)
Mission report 4 – Hidden camp, Northern Azshara
Date: 20th of Curuhen, 2018
Summary: News had reached the Sentinels that a goblin convoy, ferrying precious goods, was going to pass through the valley closeby. The same valley that was said to contain another hidden Sentinel cache, as it happened. The cache was said to be hidden inside a shell, but that was the only clue the cadre had to go on. Armed with this meagre knowledge the Sentinels set out towards the canyon.
Upon arrival they found that the entire valley was littered in beautiful shells of all shapes and sizes. The smallest about the size of a closed fist and the largest as big as the Sentinels themselves. Finding the cache, a task that had previously seemed like a breeze, proved to be a whole lot more time-consuming than they had initially anticipated. But, the kaldorei are a stubborn people and the cadre was determined to find this cache, especially if it happened to contain something that could aid them in their mission against the goblins.
And so they began the arduous task of turning the shells to see if the cache was contained inside or beneath. They quickly encountered a problem, however, as it turned out that not all of the shells were unoccupied. Many of them played host to large snails and hermit crabs, neither of which were too excited about being disturbed. Though, some were quite affectionate; something Aariam got to experience for herself when a particularly amorous snail attached itself to her arm.
Time was slowly running out for the Sentinels as the goblin convoy crept ever closer and the Sentinels needed to find the cache before they could set up their ambush. But in a stroke of luck they finally managed to find the cache and could begin preparing their surprise for the goblins.
The convoy came into sight and whatever the Nightblades had prepared for, it was not the sight that met them. Four mechano wolves surrounded the goods and they were all led by a short figure dressed in a bright red and gold, metallic suit. The figure turned out to be a familiar nemesis; Fizzle Tinyblast!
A long and dragged out battle with Tinyblast and his mechanical creations ensued. Tinyblast, initially, seemed quite happy to have another chance to beat the Sentinels into submission, but he grew increasingly agitated and annoyed as his mechano suit kept trying to save him from the Nightblades’ attacks. The suit, called the S.T.A.R.K.-suit (Steel Transfused Armor Remote Kontrolled suit) had an inbuilt AI that kept making Tinyblast’s decisions for him and managed to keep him out of harm’s way for the most part.
The battle was not going in Tinyblast’s favour and eventually all his creatures had been beaten or destroyed, leaving only him. The AI of his suit decided that enough was enough and blasted Tinyblast off into the sky once again, much to the goblin’s dismay, and the Nightblades were robbed off their chance to finish him off…again.
The convoy proved to have been transporting azerite, something the Nightblades figured that the druids down in Silithus might be able to make use of in their efforts to heal the world. And thus they called in the Cenarion Circle to come and carry the goods off before they returned to camp with their own treasure cache to rest and tend to their wounds.