Excerpt from an ancient treatise of forbidden knowledge by Thal’rakozh, the Supreme Sage of the Nathrezim Lorekeeper Order
Beware you who shall open this tome: it is not meant for the eyes of the unitiated, least off all a non-nathrezim. If you are not of our race or your mind is not ready for the third circle of initiation, this tome shall sear your mind and tear it from your flesh forever. Beware the terrible power of the nathrezim!
Some believe our race was once mortal. That we looked like humans, before we succumbed to fel corruption and grew horns and hooves, like any other pitiful mortal race would. But it is not true, for we are the ancient heritage of the Twisting Nether, older than any other demonkind, and our true origin lies not in the flesh we wear, but in the spirit of the fallen darkness. Before any mortal life achieved sentience, we already existed and were conscious of the universe around us and each other, but we bore no flesh. We were known at that time as thal’kituun, the unseen guests, the corrupting spirits of the dark who occasionally got out into the mortal realm and twisted the beings of flesh to our liking, turning them against each other for our amusement. We did not yet understand our true nature or what we could achieve, but it would soon change.
In that immemorial time, we found a world seeped in darkness, so close to turning to fel that we could infiltrate it in numbers. We saw beings of humanoid form and saw their true natures. Dark, cunning and scheming, they killed each other over the pettiest insults and feuds that lasted for generations. For ages, we manipulated them to further this bloodshed and bring their world closer to us, until finally it came so close, the doors were open to us to pour into this world. These mortals became so twisted and broken that we could bind ourselves into their flesh so thoroughly, it became truly our own. The world tipped over and wholly fell into the embrace of the Twisting Nether. This world’s name was Nathreza.
Bearing bodies of flesh but being the trueborn sons of the Twisting Nether, we embarked our into the universe to find more of our demonic kind, and more worlds to corrupt and turn to our will. We enjoyed scheming against each other as well, but we made one rule – we cannot slay each other directly, or we would become as filthy as these inferior beings of flesh. Over the aeons, we found multiple worlds prone to our manipulation, and all of them fell one by one, manipulated to turn against each other like children. Those among these lesser beings that would fall to fel corruption and become new demons were welcome to serve us… but never allowed a place at our table. They were victims and pawns, and nothing more. Only true demons, born of the Twisting Nether, were allowed to be lords.
In time, we found more races born of the fallen dark. Among them, we found annihilans, great instruments of rage who like us took mortal bodies, but one of gargantuan size and mass, perfect for their use as troops against those who would oppose our puppets in the mortal world. We found the mo’arg, a race of great ingenuity and technical talent, who enslaved the flesh of their meat puppets to machines. And we found the xetlothak, the race of great inquisitors, eyeless demons and their puppets, the hounds who would become the felhunters. Those three great ancient races of demons would unite into a great Dread Legion under our command and would corrupt hundreds of other races to join as puppets – the decadent sayaad, the corrupted Titan constructs ered’ruin, shadows of nature’s grell the imps, aberrations of the Void known who consumed the fel and became the observers.
We were lords and rulers of the mortal universe. Our Dread Legion scoured numerous worlds, until the Titans themselves took interest. The one who would be our destroyer and savior started fighting our armies. Sargeras. Champion of the Pantheon. He would send mortal avatars to worlds we invaded and single-handedly destroy whole hordes of our minions. We hated him and sought ways to corrupt his indomitable mind, but as it would prove, we did not need to do it. He found a splinter sect who worshiped the dark beings of the Void and from them learned their plans. Plans we cared not for, for we saw them as ultimately futile and remote. Yet he fell into panic and despair and turned against his own kin. He would soon free those of us he imprisoned in the accursed Mardum, and in doing so, he would be corrupted by the fel himself.
And yet his greatest triumph was our greatest failure. For we could not remain in control of the demonkind. We were bound to his will, or we would be put back in chains. If that wasn’t enough, he found another mortal race, the eredar and corrupted them, turning them into masters of his Burning Legion. We, once the true masters of the universe, were forced to play second hand to his puppets, and even sometimes the brutish annihilans would be elevated above us. But we are endless. We are older than the Titanic order by aeons, and existed for cycles beyond reckoning before the eredar were born, and we will exist for countless cycles after his Burning Crusade will end.
We will bide our time. We will endure the humiliation. When the time comes, nathrezim will rise ascendant once again. And we shall rule the universe and the false demons will be brought to heel.
Addendum by the shivarra Mahagurvi: This book is considered one of the greatest heresies against the Burning Crusade and the divine Sargeras. Sharing and espousing the views inscribed within carries with it the greatest punishment in the Burning Legion – obliteration within the Twisting Nether and the true, final death it carries with it. All copies shall be found and destroyed when possible, or sealed in planes beyond the reach of any soul, mortal or fel.