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Saphiara

A New Engineering Log

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I still remember those first days I was given the Light. I sat beside Euphorus at the edge of Netherstorm, our feet dangling over the void beneath us. It seemed appropriate, sitting at the edge of oblivion. The Light made my joints hurt. It was like fire in my veins, worms crawling under my skin. It didn't belong to me; I took it by force. Perhaps those were effects of our early processes, as most of the later Blood Knights seemed to suffer few ill effects from the transfer.

I wonder occasionally about M'uru. He knew his fate; did he pretend to fight us, knowing in our childish anger we could never accept such a gift freely given? As a people, our growth has been slow - hubris has always been a particularly elven curse. If M'uru had simply floated to the gates of Silvermoon and just offered to reignite the Sunwell, avoiding all the pain of the Betrayal, the Eye, the Plateau, the Felblood... all of it - would we have accepted it? I fail to see how. The wounds inflicted upon us by Arthas were simply too deep, and our pride too wounded. We had to take. We had to inflict our pain upon others.

Looking back, I can see how we have grown as a people since then. There is certainly more than our fair share of pride, of course - it seems a racial trait we share with all our cousins, not so easily lost - but a touch of humility as well. We have seen our frailty, and through immense sacrifice been forgiven for it. The Sunwell stands as a reminder that we are not alone in the cosmos, that others are willing to sacrifice for us as well. I have felt a shift in our culture, where we have forged stronger ties with the Horde in the wake of the resistance against Garrosh.

My own road to growth has been just as slow. I was angry after my return from Outland - perhaps justifiably so, given my ordeals - and it was a long time before I allowed myself to feel anything else. After the anger wore off, there was nothing but the pain. That was easy enough to cover up, using my various duties as an excuse to endanger myself and ignore the healing I required. Others reached out in those days, and I slapped their hands away. My pain was my own; in my mind, it was my last surviving connection to those I had lost. I allowed it to consume me.

"Permission to heal." That was how A'dal - a being demonstrably wiser than me, theoretically immortal yet seemingly more aware of mortal fallibility than I - phrased it. It was a permission I had never granted myself. I insisted upon my prolonged punishment as retribution for my failures, never accepting that those failures were never my own. I can only control myself, and sometimes the fate of others is simply outside my influence.

I feel the Light within my frame once again, though I am no longer a paladin. It grants me a new kind of strength now, one that flows through my spirit instead of my muscles. It is a gift freely given, not a prize claimed. It is forgiveness, it is hope. It is a new life, one not to be wasted angry and alone. I must live a life without burden. I must embrace all that is joyful and good. The Legion wishes to destroy all of that. I will not allow it.

My name is Saphiara Sunspell. I stand in the Light.

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I cannot remember the last time I ran with the wind in my hair. Obviously, I have, and frequently - but always to something, or from something. This was different, done for the pure joy of the act. Krasarang is still not a secure location, despite the decimation of both Mogu and Saurok forces, not to mention the defeat of the Sha of Despair. I thought of none of those, however. I felt carefree. I was allowed to liberate my body and mind, trusting my instincts to keep me safe from harm.

I am starting to understand the gift A'dal granted me. For too long, I have served as my own jailer. As a child, it was made clear that my life was owed solely to my duty - duty to the royal family, duty to Quel'Thalas, duty to the Alliance. My life was not my own, sold thousands of years before my birth by ancestors whose names are lost to history, to entities that no longer even exist. That lesson was taken to heart, pounded into me through physical and emotional abuse.

I do not blame my parents. They were victims as well, as were their parents before them, down through the generations.

With the Prince's death at the Sunwell, I was liberated. I owed fealty to none save myself. The prison door had been thrown open, the key tossed away - and I remained in my cell. It was safe there, playing the dutiful soldier. I would not have to think for myself, or at least I could claim my duty as justifications for my actions. It makes sense - if my will is not my own, voluntarily or not, I do not have to extend myself. I am safe to reject the attention of others. I am able to deny my own desires. The perfect self-created foil.

Newly liberated, I am free to choose my own path. I have not yet decided what that path is. There, too, is freedom. I am free to simply be for a while. I have a long life before me, should a demon not take my life in the coming campaign. Time will determine that, along with my skill and a bit of luck. We shall see.

For today, however, I will run through the trees with a tiger by my side.

*Below this entry are a few crude sketches of what appear to be gauntlet- and shoulder-mounted launchers.*

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I remember the first time I bonded with Falore. At the time, I was still a neophyte huntress being trained by a man for whom I had foolishly fallen. When he taught me the magic, however, showed me how to open my mind to the beast and prove my worthiness as a companion, I felt wonderment as I had not known for ages. Even now, experienced in the craft of beastlore, I find it hard to describe the pure primal sensation. It is what separates us from the druids - they can become beasts in shape, but that is poor mimicry of a true beastmaster. The worgen are proof of that folly.

In the past few days, I have come to realize that Falore - my sense of self - is not bound to the form of a wolf, any more than it is bound to the form of a rock or a tree. Falore is no more static or solid than I - both of us are capable of growth and change. Falore's wolf form died, and with it a piece of me died as well; I have now realized that her death liberated me, and her as well. The spirit of Falore - my spirit - is free to take whatever shape pleases it. There is no trapping a spirit.

Whatever instincts guide me - perhaps the Light, perhaps something primal, or perhaps it is simply a matter of my own whims - have led me to the Grizzly Hills. I feel that Falore awaits me inside that ancient forest, simply waiting to be rediscovered and unleashed. I am excited to see what form she takes.

*Sketches are made of a belt-mounted grappling system.*

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