Written by | Posted September 8, 2015 – 9:51 pm Descent and Ascent

It didn’t take long to get from Thunder Bluff to the Echo Isles – Ankona took advantage of a wyvern so she could think and plan before getting to her destination. She had information to confirm with the spirits – was Gromnor dead? Was he really in the northern part of the Eastern Kingdoms, somewhere […]

Aelflaed: First, Finest, Last
comment 1 Written by on November 10, 2011 – 8:15 am

Lars was her first, the man from whom she got her hair and her temper, who taught her to tell stories. Though he was often tired, and his hands were always stained with ore, his green eyes had twinkled when he told her of the Old Man in the Willow and the Woman With the Ribbon Necklace – scaring them just enough, but never so much they doubted he could take care of them. He was so patient too, with his children, warm and funny and accepting that he had a rough and tumble daughter who was only going to leave their life and go on to other things. She’d known how much it had hurt when she left, but also known how proud he was of her vows and her Order.

Bertrand was her first, more best friend than lover, on the last evening before she left to begin training. They’d denied each other for so long, pretending, but when faced with the possibility of never seeing each other again, all pretense fell away. It was a sweet sort of thing, and clumsy, but understood as a tie they could make to each other. They’d promised to write, and had for awhile, but then the war had happened. They had both been sixteen.

Commander Bethany Newsom was her first, a little bulldog of a woman who taught her the necessity of following orders and the ability to answer in her head silently before answering with words. She was a difficult woman to follow, but a fair one, if slow to praise and quick to punishment. Steely resolve was her specialty, and she evoked it in all of her trainees – a skill that came back to save all of them later, when the war had begun and nobody knew where to turn other than to their own strength.

Brother Olfric was her first, a man who taught her both the proper way to pray and the proper way to love and heal the people who needed her. Healing of the heart and healing of the body and healing of the soul – the Light could provide all of those things, and who better than a village priest with a heart as big as his church to slowly mold a redheaded spitfire of a girl into a young woman with a dream of taking orders in the Silver Hand.


There was no finest. You couldn’t make her choose between them for any amount of money: the man who gave her breath or the man who brought her from the edge of death. She thought it lucky to have had two such men in her life, who truly cared for her in a way that wasn’t afraid to speak up or challenge, but never did so without reason.

Phileas had been her fastest, if not her finest, the warmth of his brogue and his nimble fingers in her hair, two children of the fallen North, absorbed in passion as though clinging to each other would bring back their homes. The trust had brought both of them face to face with the past, and while he’d been able to face it, she could only run away. The force between them blazed in an all consuming, ever burning sort of way – the way that burned them both out in the end, when there was nothing left but ash to go between. She had no reason to think of it anymore though.

Tirion Fordring was her finest, a man who truly led by example – both kind and unwavering in his pursuit of justice. An exemplar of the Three Virtues, he had taken a force decimated by the Wrathgate, forged it with the remnants of the Paladins and turned it into the Argent Crusade – a feat of great leadership and foresight. That leadership brought them to the edge of the Citadel, to that last great battle with the fallen Prince of Lordaeron, Aely was proud to be there, to have answered the call with what seemed like it would be her life.

Brother Willhelm and Katherine the Pure were her finest – teaching her to master the demons of her past and turn them into a desire for all that was right and good, to protect the innocent and wring justice from the forces of evil. They had taught her to take people as they were, and to teach each at their own level, and to never, ever give up. Their patience with her drunkenness was legendary, if augmented with appropriate punishment, and through them she came back from the brink of sanity – stronger, more devoted, and more balanced in her pursuit of her art.


Jolstraer was her last, a grumpy, coarse old man wearing Lordaeron colors who spoke profanity with the fluidity of a native tongue. The rasp in his chest was heartbreaking, but not as much as the fact that he’d asked her to be there for him, in the end. To do the rites and send him to the halls of his fathers. She’d remembered what it was to be a daughter of the North that day and every day since, and hoped she’d made him proud.

Arrens was her last, and really her finest as well, as they’d both learned to love and trust again. Two hearts solid enough to live with and around each other, and delight in their togetherness. He’d seen her at the edge of breaking after Icecrown, and she’d brought him back from the Twisting Nether, and the ties between them were tangible and real. She’d found in him a partner – someone with whom she could live and breathe and raise a family. A man with whom she created home, instead of always longing for it.

Tarquin was her last, a man she called “Boss” instead of “Sir”, and a man whose devotion to his so-called family was unquestionable. She still served for the Crusade, but in these later times it was Tarquin’s leadership, and that of the rest of the Riders, that made more of an impression. It was one thing to give orders, and one thing to really and truly care about those orders and the people carrying it out, and she knew the difference when she saw it.

And here she was at last, with a Squire in the Crusade, a position as the head of an Infirmary, and a whole batch of new recruits to train in battlefield healing. It was odd to think of herself as a teacher, a mentor, a spiritual leader of sorts – but really, what else was she? Her work was her life, the Light so much a part of her that she felt it in the very fibers of her being. She had, after all these years, turned into the Paladin she had once set out to be – if, perhaps, by a different route than originally intended.

(Blame Tarquin. He started it. You can read others here.)

comment Comments Off on Spectacles Written by on November 9, 2011 – 8:04 am

((500 word ficlet challenge from Bricu, story advancing for our current Wildfire Riders plot, which is related to an uprising in illegal (and dangerous) Black Lotus dealing in Old Town, as well as slowly working towards bringing Aely out of retirement and back into the RP circle. Enjoy!))

Aelflaed sat across from Elizabeth Cross at the little breakfast table, in the tiny kitchen behind the Silver Shield. Her old landlady hadn’t changed outward appearances in the last year, but everyone in Old Town was more cautious now, and the windows had better shutters with locks. After the cultists had been the elementals – and after the elementals things had gotten pretty tough with the proliferation of lotus-addicted thugs.

Tea steamed.

“It’s good to see you, Aely – you look well. Brian said you’d stopped in looking for me, and I heard about the kerfluffle with Bricu, what’s the trouble?”

“Well…” Aely grinned a little. “I ken ye’ve a pin on everythin’ wha’ happens in this place, e’en down to knowin’ if Sevens involved, so I figure if anyone’s got news, it’d be ye.”

Bess smiled. “Well, I do seem to be easy for folks to talk at, if that’s what you mean.”

“Yeh, exactly. I’m still tryin’ t’ figure what’s goin’ on wi’ Bricu an’ Haemon endin’ up… well, missin’. I ken it’s Sevens, but I dinna ken why, unless it’s th’ Riders tryin’ t’ look out fir Old Town against th’ druggies?”

“Well, you’ve got about all the news I do on that front – they don’t like people messing in their business, especially with the one they call the Angel.”

Aely grimaced. “Aye, that’s a title ‘s been bandied ’bout. Ken anyone’s got connections to it tha’s tryin’ t’ do business as well, air is th’ whole mess underground?”

“Not outright.” She set down her tea. “Madeleine Hunter still takes the Purple stuff as a tincture to help with her back, but she’s done that for years and isn’t likely to stop, nor is she likely to be selling it – she needs it too badly and she gets it as upfront as you can get it, from an herbalist who also does poisons. The garden variety lotus heads are after that weird distillate of Black that’s been the hot new thing in brain destroying chemicals for the last year or so. I don’t push too close though, for the same reason as Bricu and Shad are discovering. Those folks ain’t nice.”

Aely dug in her pocket and produced her reading glasses and a notebook, opening it to jot down a few notes about the different types of recreational lotus.

“Reading glasses?” Bess nudged at the glasses gently. “That’s not something I remember.”

“‘S new, an’ bugger all annyoing. Crusade’s got me workin’ paper pushin’, an’ after a long day I canna see th’ end ay my nose. So I wear specs.”

“Seems a waste, putting you on clerical duty.”

Aely huffed into her tea, fogging up the lenses. “Aye… aye it does.”

In Related News: Deathwing’s History Lesson?
comment Comments Off on In Related News: Deathwing’s History Lesson? Written by on November 8, 2011 – 10:53 pm

Interesting post over at Need More Rage about Deathwing and how he’d be portrayed in the “history” books.

In Azeroth, though, is one clear problem: A dragon is destroying the world. And one clear solution: Kill the dragon. But they ain’t bickerin’ over how fer ta do that, they’s bickerin’ over the Swamp o’Sorrows. Would be like if Germany done invaded Poland in 1939, and France and England responded by attacking each other’s colonies in Africa.

Walking Uphill
comment 2 Written by on November 8, 2011 – 8:33 am

I’m not very good at RP walking.

There are some who say that to be a “real” RPer, you must always only walk when you’re in town. I call bullshit, but that’s just me. Sometimes when I’m in town, I’m there for 3 minutes to repair, grab reagents, fill up my stack of water, and hit a portal on the way to a raid.

I do, however, RP walk when I am in a city with extra time.

I’ve returned to my old tradition of walking from the Pig and Whistle back to wherever Aely is living (right now it’s in the Mage District, at SWU with Arrens, before that it was at the Silver Shield).

Roger, the wolfound, follows after her, and she always uses her Argent Charger. She also nods at guards, especially Officer Pomeroy and Officer Jaxon, since it’s always good for the Riders to stay on the good side of the Stormwind Guard. Or at least to TRY.  If someone is fishing, I have time to ask if they’ve caught anything good, or if they’ve seen the canal beasts this week.

It makes me slow down, pay attention to who is around, what they are doing, and if there is any open RP going on – even if it’s simple stuff.

I’m never really sure if anyone really notices. At least, the vast majority of the time it’s just me walking on my own, occasionally throwing emotes.

Sometimes, though, I get emotes back, or strike up a quick conversation. Someone in the Cathedral District offers a wave and a blessing, or just a quick nod in passing. And that makes the whole thing worth it.

Descent and Ascent

September 8, 2015 – 9:51 pm

It didn’t take long to get from Thunder Bluff to the Echo Isles – Ankona took advantage of a wyvern so she could think and plan before getting to her destination. She had information to confirm with the spirits – …

The Stink Eye, Part II: You remind me of the babe

August 4, 2015 – 12:22 pm

An old story, reposted here as I’m shaking the mothballs off Ankona and needed an easy way to show people a little bit about the (batshit) things she gets up to. Enjoy, and don’t be too creeped out!

It really …

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November 14, 2014 – 7:32 am

So I haven’t finished the intro quests yet (the server queues from the reduced server capacity due to the DDOS attacks meant I only got about an hour to play yesterday), but I’m finding that Draenor is pretty cool so …

A Girl and her Dog

November 13, 2014 – 12:30 pm

The morning of the all hands summon to the Blasted Lands, Aely went for a walk. The late fall air was clear and cool, and leaves crunched under their feet in the less-traveled parts of the streets. She and Roger …

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November 11, 2014 – 3:09 pm

What a long strange trip it’s been. I’ll be the first to admit that, at the beginning, I wasn’t sure Pandaria was going to be for me. I’ve made clear my dislike of daily quests, and that seemed to be …


October 24, 2014 – 12:01 pm

Squire Benjamin William Sullivan stood in the middle of Light’s Hope Chapel in his underpants.

Actually, it was white linen pants and a shift, but the effect was approximately the same. The little chapel was warm, on the edge of …

Introducing the Newest Anna

June 29, 2014 – 4:39 pm

So I’m not really in a position where I should be creating alts. This, of course, does nothing to deter me from making alts when the inspiration strikes. I’ve been really enjoying my Alliance hunter, and she’s my raiding main …


November 19, 2013 – 4:46 pm

Bad things are happening in Stormwind – and beyond.

The Hand of Lothar, they call themselves.

Yva Darrows was their first target.

Tirith and Aely were their second and third.

They have since… expanded their reach and escalated their methods …

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