While Orkan was busy rebuilding everything, he sent us on a mission to occupy us. Turns out, that one of our clients in the Venture Company had their supplies stolen multiple times and called on us for help in stopping this. Having no rift to quickly take us to the area, we had to get there by ship and found the old shipping docks in Grizzly Hills occupied by Venture Company again. We managed to talk one of the goblins into leading us around and explaining what happened. We found a shack where the supplies were stolen from, and with the help of little magic, we’ve seen some silhouettes of the figures that took it – and they were worgen.
We followed further into the camp, where we met with our client, a notorious goblin gangster known as Motorhead. He was full of appreciation for our work and our recently deceased boss, so he let us meet their newest prisoner the goblins caught around their base. The prisoner was a crazy Scarlet Crusader, no less racist than any other Scarlet Crusader, but was far more rambling. He did, however, claim he knows where the thieves are and would lead us there. On our responsibility, he was let go, and took off into the forest.
As we chased him, it quickly turned out something was off about him, moreso than just being a Scarlet Crusader. He viciously attacked some ghouls, left over from the Scourge invasion, and worgs in the woods actually refrained from attacking him. Then, we finally reached an old logging ground where the stolen supplies were stashed. There, we confronted a Solstice Villager, secretly a worgen, and as fought her, the Crusader revealed himself to be a worgen himself. Before they both died to our blades, he claimed that “all the humans in Grizzly Hills have been turned, every single one”.
We immediately followed to the nearby Amberpine Lodge to talk to the locals about this revelation. The mayor arrived and tried, in many ways, to dissuade us from investigating, but Ethan revealed something. He knew the Scarlet Crusader was a worgen from the very start, because he could smell it on them. And now he was insinuating the mayor should tell us something. Finally, the discussion turned into an argument and the mayor revealed herself – she was a worgen too. We took her down easily, but not before she scratched the lieutenant in command of the post. With some quick healing and curse removal, we cured him before the curse took hold and he was spared being turned.
We investigated further what we can find to stop this new worgen cult, learning some interesting things. Like druids, they turned back into humans upon dying, and the strain of the curse was different from the one in Gilneas. The lieutenant admitted he sent off a young night elf druidess to “collect furbolg spear”. Doing the proverbial “bear ass collection” – some empty work for an eager adventurer. We decided to follow that girl to get her help with the curse.
As we went into Grizzlemaw, Calaara cast a linguistic spell, letting us speak Ursine. It was rather broken, but it let us talk to the furbolgs and learn the young night elf is inside – helping them instead of killing them for their spears.
Anthara Graywind, the druid, was a very cheerful, enthusiastic personality and she saw the furbolgs – and their bear gods more specifically – were in distress. Orsonn was despondent, because he felt something was wrong with their father, Ursoc, so Anthara decided to summon a vision of Ursol, the other bear, to learn what happened. She couldn’t do it herself, but with our help, she’d finally be able to conduct the ritual.
After channeling the ritual together (and March’all arranging some candles) we talked to Ursol and learned that Ursoc’s life has been sacrificed to feed the anima drought in Ardenweald. That hardly helped Orsonn, but at least we knew what was happening, and Anthara was happy to help. As we were about to leave… we heard an explosion and before we could leave the chamber, we were jumped by worgen in the middle of the furbolg city. After dealing with them, we went out and saw a giant hole torn into the Grizzlemaw, and worgen pouring in…
Orsonn and Kodian went to stem the tide and stop more worgen from invading, while we went down the paths into the heart of Grizzlemaw. After killing a few worgen on our way there, we met one of the feral priest, performing a ritual on the furbolg elder. Once he was done, the furbolg was worgenized, turning into a hulking, bestial berserker. Since it wasn’t his fault, we decided to try not to harm him, and channeled a spell together to put him to sleep. After that, we killed the feral worgen priest. The bear gods came back, promising to work to help the worgen furbolg adjust to his new life, while Anthara departed to inform the Cenarion Circle of the situation.
We did learn from Orsonn and Kodian more about this prophet leading the cult. All he knew was that one member of the original Druids of the Pack seceded and went to sleep somewhere in the Grizzly Hills. After a little bit of scouting, we found a barrow den, far in the north-eastern corner of Grizzly Hills and delved down into it, in search of anything we could find on this prophet. We found some of his writings, talking about his plans to “unite all of Azeroth under the superior worgen form” and even some plans to invoke the Night Warrior. We found some of the original druids, still slumbering in the den – so somehow, he did not wake them up to go with him to lead this cult.
However, things got stranger when the night elf’s writings were scribbled over by a invading troll who decided he wanted to claim this power. As we got to the heart of the barrow den, we found the prophet – or rather his remains. As a vision cast by Calaara revealed, the troll, Jakaro, tricked him into being bitten and gaining the power of a worgen, then ate him and assumed his position to convert the villagers of Northrend.
Armed with that knowledge, we left the barrow den, to investigate the human villages.
First we investigated Silverbrook, where we were expected by the priest in charge of that community. An affable Gilnean, he arrived in Northrend to convert the villagers, but instead they turned him. He insisted feral worgen are simply embracing their true natures, the true animal desires dreaming inside of everyone. At the same time, an older lady kept pushing a steak for Ethan to eat, which he finally did, angrily. Unfortunately, that was a trick. The meat was poisoned with some extract they prepared and Ethan was no longer able to turn back into his human form. After we dealt with the priest and his helpers, all the worgen started turning and howling, as the fake prophet’s true master revealed itself – Sara, the Avatar of Yogg-Saron.
As we ran, Druids of the Talon arrived and bathed the town in moonfire, destroying the avatar. Skylord Omnuron himself arrived to help settle the matter of this cult, as it was starting to get out of hand.
We continued on to Solstice Village, where our way was immediately barred by ferals in human form, talking about preparing some ritual. After we insisted, we were attacked and had to press through a few packs of feral worgen before we could get to the town center. There, we found the “Prophet”, and a priest holding captive a mysterious paladin. The Prophet revealed his plan to invoke the Night Warrior, much like the original Prophet wanted to, but in the process of fighting him, he was revealed to be a troll, which turned the ferals against him. In spite of using his worgen, troll and (surprisingly) Claws of Shirvallah form to fight us, he could not beat us, and fled on the back of a dire bat. Druids of the Talon once again descended on the village and promised they’d try to pacify the ferals again, however, they said it’s proving difficult – for Ethan too, in his current condition.
Meanwhile the paladin turned out to be Karl the Lost, and would be led to reunite with George the Fallen after the battle.
We followed Jakaro all the way to the Bloodmoon Island, where he was preparing his ritual on top of the tower. On our way up, we dealt with a few ferals, as well as Jakaro’s dire bat suddenly swooping down on us and trying to drop March’all from several feet in the air. We managed to deal with them, however, and although the bat trie to flee, we killed it in one try.
On our way up, we found another experiment, a worgenized horse. A ferocious, flesh-eating mare… that we completely by-passed by putting it to sleep.
On the top of the tower, we found Jakaro with his last followers, preparing to enact the same ritual Tyrande did, and he was about to start. Knowing not everyone can survive even looking at it, we hid and let Elune make her choice. Once the ritual was completed… Jakaro and all his worgen had their flesh melt off their charred bones, ending the problem. Their skeletons were still worgen, however, so Omnuron speculated either Elune seen letting them remain worgen for good as a blessing – they could remain what they wanted to be – or a curse, remaining beasts forever.
Regardless, the cult was done for and our client’s supplies were safe, so we returned home, only Ethan being scarred for long, still unable to shift back to human form.