Character: Vol’jin, Avatar of Hakkar
The view from the top of the pyramid was breathtaking. Quite literally, in fact, as countless lives have been taken and countless souls have been sacrificed to the Blood God. Vol’jin sat comfortably on the richly adorned throne at the very top, as the priests brought yet another human sacrifice before his altar. The human stopped wrestling with his captors long ago, because he knew there was no point to it. He had just one thought – in one, final act of defiance he would look the troll chieftain in the eye and spit him in the face. But when the human raised his head and looked into the eyes of Vol’jin he saw something he could not comprehend. Madness. Ancient hysteria. A thirst for blood that could rival only the Old Gods. The eyes of the troll chieftain were no longer his own – now there was only Hakkar.
We had no idea how outdated our maps of Stranglethorn area were. First and foremost, they appeared on my maps as one, contiguous zone and one of the first things I noticed upon approaching the mainland was a giant whirlpool located very close to the mouth of Nazferiti, splitting the area in two. As I would later learn, the two resulting areas are now called “Stranglethorn Jungle” and “Cape of Stranglethorn”. Once I was told a similar whirlpool in the region of Kalimdor known as Darkshore leads to an underwater cavern haunted by the ghost of a demon hunter. Alas, I was not willing to investigate and look for more kaldorei spectres and set my course towards the river. Swimming upstream on a boat this size can take quite an effort, so I put my full concentration on the journey.
After leaving the pirate-infested Hiji behind, I continued to sail through the eastern part of South Seas. The winds were favorable most of the time, so I took this chance to study the maps I had of the area. The maps were confusing at best. On some, there was nothing but another long stretch of empty sea until you run into Stranglethorn Vale. On others, there were two islands painted on the way, but both were very poorly described. Having no formal names on the maps, there was only the vaguest shape and a warning sign. Had I noticed this back in Uldum, I would have consulted our best repositories of knowledge but given that the maps I took had nothing, I doubt I would find anything worth mentioning. Seeing that my course was taking me directly towards these two mysterious islands, I braced myself for danger.
I mean, Westfall is as dry as a bone. No, it’s drier than that. If I spit, it would probably dry out before it reached the ground. Even opening your eyes is unpleasant in this place. Who lead this place into this disastrous state? I heard this was once “the breadbasket of Stormwind”. Well, let me tell you, there’s no bread or baskets here now. Just dust, cold, dry air and dead grass. When you take a dictionary and check the definition of “agricultural or economic mismanagement”, there should be a picture of Westfall printed there. Even Hellfire, place in a scorching heat where ground itself is cracked and stripped to bedrock, didn’t feel as dry as this.