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World of Warcraft: Death Knight

An original story set in the World of Warcraft universe that studies one of the newest classes in the game—the Death Knight!

Thassarian is a loyal Lordaeron solider that longs to be a great hero like his deceased father. But though he possesses strength and skill, he lacks the spark that all great leaders have to lead men into battle. So when Prince Arthas calls to arms brave men to sail to Northrend and battle the scourge army, Thassarian sees his chance to prove to others—and himself—that he has what it takes to lead. After bidding farewell to his mother Vivian and his sister Leryssa, Thassarian joins Arthas

Warcraft Archive - Book Excerpt

By: Blizzard Entertainment
This Edition: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: 10/2006
Estimated Price: $14.95


Description

In the mist-shrouded haze of past, the world of Azeroth teemed with wonders of every kind. Magical races and ancient beasts strode alongside the tribes of man—until the arrival of the demonic Burning Legion and its baneful lord, Sargeras. Now dragons, elves, orcs, and dwarves all vie for supremacy across their scarred, war-torn kingdoms—all part of a grand, malevolent scheme to determine the fate of the world of…

WARCRAFT

DAY OF THE DRAGON: A terrifying upheaval among the highest ranks of the world’s Wizards sends the maverick Mage, Rhonin, on a perilous journey into the Orc-controlled lands of Khaz Modan. What Rhonin uncovers is a vast, far-reaching conspiracy, darker than anything he ever imagined—a threat that will force him into a dangerous alliance with ancient creatures of air and fire if the world of Azeroth is to see another dawn.

LORD OF THE CLANS: Slave and Gladiator. Shaman and Warchief. The enigmatic Orc known as Thrall has been all of these. Raised from infancy by cruel human masters who sought to mold him into their perfect pawn, Thrall was driven by both the savagery in his heart and the cunning of his upbringing to pursue a destiny he was only beginning to understand—to break his bondage and rediscover the ancient traditions of his people. Now the tumultuous tale of his life’s journey—a saga of honor, hatred, and hope—can at last be told.

THE LAST GUARDIAN: The Guardians of Tirisfal were a line of champions imbued with godlike powers, each one through the ages charged with fighting a lonely secret war against the Burning Legion. Medivh was fated from birth to become the greatest and most powerful of this noble order. But from the beginning a darkness tainted him, corrupting his soul and turning to evil the powers that should have fought for good. Medivh’s struggle against the malice within him became one with the fate of Azeroth itself…and changed the world forever.

OF BLOOD AND HONOR: The paladin Tirion Fordring had always believed the Orcs were vile and corrupt, but an unexpected act of honor and compassion sets in motion a chain of events that will challenge his most fundamental beliefs and force him to decide, once and for all, who are the men…and who are the monsters.

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  • Read an interview with Richard A. Knaak (Day of the Dragon)
  • Read an interview with Christie Golden (Lord of the Clans)

Warcraft: Lord of the Clans Excerpt

Written by Christie Golden with cover art by Blizzard’s Sam Didier.

The excerpt below is a duel between Thrall and Orgrim Doomhammer the Hermit

“I will not be here long,” said Thrall.

“Come spring, I will rejoin Grom Hellscream, and help his noble clan storm the camps and free our people.”

“Grom Hellscream,” sneered the stranger, waving his hand dismissively. “A demon-ridden dreamer. I have seen what the humans can do, and it is best to avoid them, believe me.”

“I was raised by humans, and believe me, they are not infallible!” cried Thrall. “Nor are you, I would think, you coward!”

“Thrall—” began Drek’Thar, speaking up at last.

“No, Master Drek’Thar, I will not be silent. This stranger comes seeking our aid, eats at our fire, and dares to insult the courage of our clan and his own race. I will not stand for it. I am not the chieftain, nor do I claim that right. But I will claim my right to fight this stranger, and make him eat his words sliced upon my sword!”

The strange Orc laughed heartily and rose. He was almost as big as Thrall, and now, to his astonishment, Thrall saw that he was completely clad in black plate armor, trimmed with brass. Uttering a fierce cry, the stranger opened his pack and pulled out the largest warhammer Thrall had ever seen. He held it aloft with seeming ease, then brandished it at Thrall.

“See if you can take me, whelp!”

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Our Interview with Christie Golden

Warcraft Legends Vol. 1 - Excerpt

DESCRIPTION

Warcraft: Legends Volume 1
Hot on the heels of the bestselling Warcraft: The Sunwell Trilogy comes a stunning and truly awesome collection of original adventures set in the Warcraft universe.

Fallen
From Richard Knaak and Jae-Hwan Kim comes an intriguing follow-up to Warcraft: The Sunwell Trilogy. Trag Highmountain, the courageous Tauren who first made an appearance in Warcraft: Shadows of Ice, finds himself reborn…as one of the Undead.

Story by Richard A. Knaak
Art by Jae-Hwan Kim

The Journey
The arrival of a group of adventurers with promises of gold and excitement will disrupt a simple farmer’s life in ways unimaginable as he takes a nightmarish ride into Scourge-ridden Andorhal.

Story by Troy Lewter and Mike Wellman
Art by Mi-Young No

How to Win Friends
Lazlo Grindwidget is a Gnome engineer with a house full of seemingly useless inventions and a knack for saying the wrong things at the right time. But when a Troll goes on a rampage in town, Lazlo may be the only one who can sooth the savage beast.

Story by Dan Jolley
Art by Carlos Olivares

An Honest Trade
Nori Blackfinger is known from Thorium Point to Booty Bay as a master weaponsmith who will sell his fine blades to anyone with enough coin. But when he sells a sword to Havoc, the infamous bandit and murderer, the result is an adventure that begins in tragedy and ends in blood…

Story by Troy Lewter’
Art by Nam Kim

MSRP: $10.99
PAGES: 192
ISBN: 1-4278-0722-1
EAN: 978-1-4278-0722-9

AVAILABLE: 08.01.2008

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World of Warcraft: Night of the Dragon - Excerpt

DESCRIPTION

Grim Batol: its dark legacy stretches back into the mists of Azeroth’s past. But most know it as the site of a terrible tragedy—where the vile orcs corrupted the hatchlings of the noble Dragonqueen, Alexstrasza, and used them as weapons of war. Though a band of heroes, led by the enigmatic mage, Krasus, defeated the orcs and freed the captive dragons, the cursed mountain stands as another ravaged landmark within the…

WORLD OF WARCRAFT

But now Krasus—known to some as the red dragon Korialstrasz—senses the malice of Grim Batol rising once more to threaten those he holds dear. Determined this time to confront this evil by himself, he is unaware of the quests that will draw others to Grim Batol and reveal the monstrous truth that could not only herald their deaths, but usher in a terrible new age of darkness and destruction.

 

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World of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal - Excerpt

DESCRIPTION

The aging orc shaman Ner’zhul has seized control of the Horde and reopened the Dark Portal. His brutal warriors once again encroach upon Azeroth, laying siege to the newly constructed stronghold of Nethergarde Keep. There, the archmage Khadgar and the Alliance commander, Turalyon, lead humanity and its elven and dwarven allies in fighting this new invasion.

Even so, disturbing questions arise. Khadgar learns of orcish incursions farther abroad: small groups of orcs who seem to pursue a goal other than simple conquest. Worse yet, black dragons have been sighted as well, and they appear to be aiding the orcs. To counter Ner’zhul’s dark schemes, the Alliance must now invade the orcs’ ruined homeworld of Draenor. Can Khadgar and his companions stop the nefarious shaman in time to stave off the destruction of two worlds?

PRODUCT DETAILS

Pocket Star, June 2008
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
ISBN-10: 1-4165-5086-0
ISBN-13: 978-1-4165-5086-0

Authors: Aaron Rosenberg & Christie Golden

PROLOGUE

Throw down!”

“Shut up!”

“Throw down, damn you!”

“Fine!” Gratar growled, half-rising, his powerful shoulder muscles bunching. One arm whipped forward and down, fist descending in a blur—and his fingers opened, the small bone cubes spilling from them to clatter upon the ground.

“Hah!” Brodog laughed, tusks jutting up as his lips pulled back in a grin. “Only one!”

“Damn!” Gratar sank back down onto his stone, sulking as he watched Brodog again gather the cubes and shake them vigorously. He didn’t know why he kept throwing against Brodog—the other orc practically always won. It was almost unnatural.

Unnatural. A word that had nearly stopped having any meaning for Gratar. He glanced up at the stark red sky that filled the horizon, the sun a burning globe of the same shade. The world had not always been thus. Gratar was old enough to remember blue skies, a warm yellow sun, and thick green fields and valleys. He’d swum in deep, cool lakes and rivers, blissfully ignorant of how precious a thing water would one day become. One of the most basic needs of life, uncontaminated water was now brought in in casks and stingily parceled out.

Rising, Gratar kicked idly at the ground before him, watching the red dust puff upward, parching his mouth, and he reached for the waterskin and drank sparingly. The dust covered his skin, dulling the green hue, lightening his black hair. Red everywhere, as if the world had been drenched in blood.

Unnatural.

But the most unnatural thing of all was the reason he and Brodog were stationed here, whiling away the dusk-clogged day with idle games of chance. Gratar looked past Brodog at the towering archway just beyond them and the shimmering curtain of energy that filled it. The Dark Portal. Gratar knew that the strange mystic doorway led to another world, though he had not passed through it himself—none of his clan had. But he had watched as proud Horde warriors had entered the portal to win glory over the humans and their allies. Since then, a few orcs had returned to report the Horde’s progress. But lately there had been nothing. No word, no scouts; nothing.

Gratar frowned, ignoring the clattering sound of Brodog’s tossing of the bones. Something about the portal seemed…different. Gratar stepped closer to the towering gateway, the hairs along his arms and chest tingling as he approached.

“Gratar? It’s your turn. What are you doing?”

Gratar ignored Brodog. Squinting, he stared at the rippling veil of energy. What was going on beyond it, on that strange other world?

As he watched the curtain’s undulating shimmer grew and became more translucent, allowing Gratar to see through it as if through murky water. He squinted his eyes, peered intently—and gasped, staggering back.

Playing out before his eyes, as if he were watching a ritual enactment, was a fierce and violent battle.

“What?” Brodog was beside him in an instant, the game forgotten, and then he was gaping as well. They both stared for a second before Gratar regained his wits.

“Go!” he shouted at Brodog. “Tell them what’s happening!”

“Right—the commander.” Brodog’s eyes were still glued to the scene before them.

“No,” Gratar replied sharply. He had a gut feeling that what was about to happen would be more than his commander was prepared to handle. But one orc he knew might be. “Ner’zhul. Get Ner’zhul—he’ll know what to do!”

Brodog nodded and took off at a run, though not without glancing back a few times. Gratar heard him leave, but still his gaze was riveted to the battle that was so violent but so oddly veiled. He could see orcs, some of whom he thought he recognized, but they were fighting strange figures, shorter and more narrowly built but more heavily armored. The strangers—they were called “humans,” Gratar remembered—were quick and as numerous as gnats, swarming over the beleaguered orcs and overpowering them one by one. How could his people be suffering such a defeat? Where was Doomhammer? Gratar saw no sign of the massive, powerful warchief. What had happened on that other world?

He was still watching, sickly enraptured, when he heard the sound of approaching feet. He tore his gaze away to see that Brodog had returned with two others. One was a massive figure, larger by far than any orc and much stronger, with pale milky skin and heavy features. An ogre, and a mage, by the cunning Gratar saw glinting in his small, piggy eyes. More important than this towering figure was the orc who accompanied him, pushing his way forward right up to the portal itself.

Though his hair was gray and his face heavily lined, Ner’zhul, chieftain of the Shadowmoon clan and once the most skilled shaman the orcs had ever known, was still powerfully built and his brown eyes were as sharp as ever. He stared at the portal and the vaguely glimpsed disaster unfolding behind its

shimmer.

“A battle, then,” Ner’zhul said as if to himself.

And one the Horde is losing, Gratar thought.

“How long has—” Ner’zhul began. Suddenly the space framed by the Dark Portal shifted, its energies swirling violently. A hand thrust from the curtain as if it were rising from water, gleams of light and shadow clinging to green skin as it breached the barrier. A head followed, then the torso, and then the orc was through. His war axe was still in his hand but his eyes were wild as he stumbled, then caught himself, racing past Ner’zhul and the others without even looking.

Behind him came another orc, then another and another and another, until there was a flood of them, all racing to pass through the portal as fast as their feet would carry them. And not just orcs—Gratar saw several ogres emerge, and a group of smaller, slighter figures with heavy hooded cloaks bridged the gap as well. One warrior caught Gratar’s attention. Too tall and bulky to be a full orc, his features brutish enough to have some ogre blood in him, this one did not run with the air of panic the others did, but with purpose, as if he was running to something rather than from it. At his heels loped a massive jet-black wolf.

An orc shoved past this warrior as they stepped from the portal, snarling at the obstruction. “Out of the way, half-breed!” the orc snapped, but the warrior merely shook his head, refusing to be baited at such a time. The wolf, however, snarled at the orc before the warrior silenced it with a sharp hand gesture. The wolf fell silent, utterly obedient, and the warrior dropped a huge hand on the black head with affection.

“What has happened here?” Ner’zhul demanded loudly. “You!” The shaman pointed toward one of the unfamiliar creatures. “What manner of orc are you? Why cover your face so? Come here!”

The figure paused, then suddenly shrugged and stepped closer to Ner’zhul. “As you wish,” he said in a cold voice that had a slightly mocking tone to it. Despite the heat of the land’s baked, lifeless soil, Gratar shivered.

A mailed hand slid the hood back, and Gratar could not help crying out in horror. Perhaps the being’s features had once been fine and regular, but no longer. The skin was a pale grayish green, and had burst open at the juncture where ear met jaw. A thin trickle of ooze glimmered. Swollen, cracked, purple lips drew back in a smile as the eyes glowed with malevolent humor and a fierce intelligence.

The thing was obviously dead.

Even Ner’zhul shrank back, though he rallied quickly. “Who—what are you?” Ner’zhul demanded in a voice that shook only a little. “And what do you want here?”

“Don’t you recognize me? I am Teron Gorefiend,” the figure replied, chuckling at the shaman’s obvious discomfiture.

“Impossible! He is dead and gone, slaughtered by Doomhammer along with the rest of the Shadow Council!”

“Dead I am indeed,” the creature agreed, “but not gone. Your old apprentice Gul’dan found a way to bring us back, and into these rotting carcasses.” He shrugged, and Gratar could hear the lifeless flesh creak in slight protest. “It suffices.”

“Gul’dan?” The old shaman seemed more shocked by that revelation than by the sight of the walking corpse in front of him. “Your master still lives? Then you should return to him. You forsook me and the shaman tradition to follow his lead and become a warlock when you lived, abomination. Serve him now that you are dead.”

But Gorefiend was shaking his head. “Gul’dan is dead. And good riddance. He betrayed us, halving the Horde at a crucial moment and forcing Doomhammer to pursue him instead of conquering a human city. That treachery cost us the war.”

“We…have lost?” Ner’zhul stammered. “But…how is that possible? The Horde covered the very plains, and Doomhammer would not go down without a fight!”

“Oh, he fought,” Gorefiend agreed. “Yet all his might was not enough. He killed the humans’ leader but was overpowered in turn.”

Ner’zhul seemed stunned, turning to look at the panting, bloodied orcs and ogres who had rushed through the gates moments earlier. He took a deep breath and straightened, turning to the ogre who had accompanied him. “Dentarg—summon the other chieftains. Tell them to gather here at once, bringing only weapons and armor. We—“

The wave washed out of the portal with no warning, a massive energy burst that slammed all of them to the ground. Gratar gasped for breath, the wind knocked out of him. He stumbled to his feet, only to be greeted by a second explosion, more violent than the first. This time hunks of stone had been snatched up by the energy that powered the portal and came flying past them, chips and slabs and slivers and sheets. The curtain wavered, becoming opaque.

“No!” Ner’zhul raced toward the portal. He was still several feet away when the shimmering curtain of light flickered, contracted, froze—and then exploded. Stones and dust erupted from the archway. Ner’zhul was tossed into the air like an old bone, and struck the earth hard. Dentarg let out an angry bellow and rushed to his master’s side, scooping him up as if he weighed nothing. The old shaman lay limp, head lolling, eyes shut, a trickle of blood along his right side. For a wild moment energy screamed and shrieked about them all, howling like angry spirits. Then as abruptly as they had come the lights vanished, the curtain disappearing utterly, leaving only an empty stone portal behind.

The Dark Portal had been severed.

Gratar stared at that stone archway, and at all the Horde warriors who had escaped back through it one last time. Then he glanced over at Dentarg, and the elderly shaman cradled in the ogre’s surprisingly gentle grasp.

In the name of the ancestors…what would they do now?


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World of Warcraft: Tides of Darkness - Excerpt

World of Warcraft: Tides of Darkness
Pocket Star, August 28, 2007
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
ISBN-10: 1416539905
ISBN-13: 978-1-4165-3990-2

DESCRIPTION

After killing the corrupt Warchief Blackhand, Orgrim Doomhammer was quick to seize control over the Orcish Horde. Now he is determined to conquer the rest of Azeroth so that his people will once again have a home of their own in the…

WORLD OF WARCRAFT

Anduin Lothar, former Champion of Stormwind, has left his shattered homeland behind and led his people across the Great Sea to the shores of Lordaeron. There, with the aid of the noble King Terenas, he forges a mighty Alliance with the other human nations. But even that may not be enough to stop the Horde’s merciless onslaught.

Elves, dwarves, and trolls enter the fray as the two emerging factions vie for dominance. Will the valiant Alliance prevail, or will the Horde’s tide of darkness consume the last vestiges of freedom on Azeroth?

CHAPTER ONE EXCERPT

Despite himself, Lothar was impressed.

Stormwind had been a towering, imposing city, filled with spires and terraces, carved from strong stone to resist the wind but polished to a mirror sheen. But in its own way Capital City was equally lovely.

Not that Capital City was the same as Stormwind. It was not as tall, for one. But what it lacked in height it made up for in elegance. It sat on a rise above the north shore of Lordamere Lake, gleaming all in white and silver. It did not glitter as Stormwind had, but it glowed somehow, as if the sun were rising from its graceful buildings instead of beating down upon them. It seemed serene, peaceful, almost holy.

“It is a mighty place,” Khadgar agreed beside him, “though I prefer a little more warmth.” He glanced behind them, toward the lake’s southern shore, where a second city rose. Its outlines were similar to those of Capital City, but this mirror image seemed more exotic, its walls and spires suffused in violet and other warm hues. “That is Dalaran,” he explained. “Home of the Kirin Tor and its wizards. My home, before I was sent to Medivh.”

“Perhaps there will be time for you to return, at least briefly,” Lothar suggested. “But for now we must concentrate on Capital City.” He studied the gleaming city again. “Let us hope they are as noble in their thoughts as they are in their dwellings.” He kicked his horse into a canter, and rode down out of the majestic Silverpine Forest, Varian and the mage right behind him and the other men trailing them in their carts.

Two hours later they reached the main gates. Guards stood by the entrance, though the double gates were wide open and large enough for two or even three wagons to pass abreast. The guards had clearly seen them long before they reached the gates, and the one who stepped forward wore a crimson cloak over his polished breastplate and had gold traceries in his armor and helmet. His manner was polite, even respectful, but Lothar could not help noticing how the man stopped only a few feet away, well within sword range. He forced himself to relax and ignore the laxity. This was not Stormwind. These people were not seasoned warriors, hardened by constant battle. They had never had to fight for their lives. Yet.

“Enter freely and be welcome,” the guard captain stated, bowing. “Marcus Redpath warned us of your arrival, and your plight. You will find the king in his throneroom.”

“Our thanks,” Khadgar replied with a nod. “Come, Lothar,” he added, nudging his horse with his heels. “I know the way.”

They rode on through the city, navigating its broad streets easily. Khadgar did indeed seem to know the way, and never slowed to ask directions or puzzle over a turn until they had reached the palace itself. There they surrendered their horses to some of their companions, leaving them to mind the steeds. Lothar and Prince Varian were already striding up the palace’s wide steps and Khadgar quickly joined them.

They stepped through the palace’s outer doors and into a wide courtyard, almost an outdoor hall. Viewing boxes lined the sides, and though empty now Lothar was sure they filled with people during celebrations. At the far end another short flight of steps led up to a second set of doors, and these opened onto the throneroom itself.

It was an imposing chamber, its arched ceiling so high overhead its edges were lost in shadow. The room was round, with arches and columns everywhere. Golden sunlight streamed down from a stained-glass panel set in the ceiling’s center, illuminating the intricate pattern in the floor: a series of nested circles, each one different, with a triangle at their middle overlapping the innermost ring, and the golden seal of Lordaeron within that. It had several high balconies and Lothar guessed these were for nobles but also appreciated their strategic value. A few guards with bows could easily strike anywhere in the room from those vantage points.

Just beyond the pattern stood a wide circular dais, its concentric steps rising up toward a massive throne. The throne itself looked carved from glittering stone, all sharp edges and planes and angles. A man sat there, tall and broad, his blond hair only lightly touched with gray, his armor gleaming, the crown upon his head shaped more like a spiked helmet than a coronet. This was a proper king, Lothar knew at once, a king like his Llane who did not hesitate to fight for his people. His hopes rose at the thought.

There were people here, townsfolk and laborers and even peasants, gathered facing the dais from a respectful distance. Many carried items, scraps of parchment, even food, but they parted before Lothar and Khadgar, falling away from the pair without a sound.

“Yes?” the man on the throne called out as they approached. “Who are you and what do you wish of me? Ah.” Even from here Lothar could see the king’s strangely colored eyes, blue and green swirled together—they were sharp and clear, and his hopes rose still further. Here was a man who saw well and clearly.

“Your Majesty,” Lothar replied, his deep voice carrying easily across the large room. He stopped several paces from the dais and bowed. “I am Anduin Lothar, a Knight of Stormwind. This is my companion, Khadgar of Dalaran.” He heard several murmurs from the crowd now behind them. “And this”—he turned so that the king could see Varian, who had been standing behind him, unnerved by the crowd and the strange trappings—“is Prince Varian Wrynn, heir to the throne of Storm-wind.” The murmurs turned to gasps as people realized the youth was visiting royalty, but Lothar ignored them, concentrating only on the king. “We must speak with you, your Majesty. It is a matter of great urgency and major import.”

“Of course.” Terenas was already rising from his throne and approaching them. “Leave us, please,” he asked the rest of the crowd, though it was an order despite its polite wording. The people obeyed quickly, and soon only a handful of nobles and guards remained. The men who had accompanied Lothar faded back to the sides as well, leaving only Lothar, Khadgar, and Varian when Terenas closed the distance between them.

“Your Majesty,” Terenas greeted Varian, bowing to him as to an equal.

“Your Majesty,” Varian replied, his training overcoming his shock.

“We were grieved to hear of your father’s death,” Terenas continued gently. “King Llane was a good man and we counted him as a friend and an ally. Know that we shall do all in our power to restore you to your throne.”

“I thank you,” Varian said, though his lower lip trembled slightly.

“Now come and sit, and tell me what has happened,” Terenas instructed, gesturing to the dais steps. He sat on the top one himself and motioned for Varian to sit beside him. “I have seen Stormwind myself, and admired its strength and beauty. What could destroy such a city?”

“The Horde,” Khadgar said, speaking for the first time since they had entered the throneroom. Terenas turned toward him, and Lothar was close enough to see the king’s eyes narrow slightly. “The Horde did this.”

“And what is this Horde?” Terenas demanded, turning first to Varian and then to Lothar.

“It is an army, more than an army,” Lothar replied. “It is a multitude, more than can be counted, enough to cover the land from shore to shore.”

“And who commands this legion of men?” Terenas asked.

“Not men,” Lothar corrected. “Orcs.” At the king’s puzzlement Lothar explained. “A new race, one not native to this world. They are as tall as we are, and more powerfully built, with green skin and glowing red eyes. And great tusks from their lower lips.” A noble snorted somewhere, and Lothar turned, glaring. “You doubt me?” he shouted, turning toward each of the balconies in turn, looking for the one who had laughed. “You think I lie?” He struck his armor with his fist, near one of the more prominent dents. “This was made by an orc warhammer!” He struck another spot. “And this by an orc war axe!” He pointed to a gash along one forearm. “And this came from a tusk, when one jumped me and was too close for our blades to strike one another! These foul creatures have destroyed my land, my home, my people! If you doubt me come down here and say so to my face! I will show you what sort of man I am, and what happens to those who accuse me of falsehood!”

“Enough!” Terenas’s shout silenced any possible reply, anger plain in his own voice, but when he turned to Lothar the warrior could see that this king’s anger was not directed at him. “Enough,” the king said again, more softly. “None here doubt your word, Champion,” he assured Lothar, a stern look around daring any of his nobles to disagree. “I know of your honor and your loyalty. I will take you at your word, though such creatures sound strange to us.” He turned and nodded at Khadgar. “And with one of the wizards of Dalaran beside you as a witness, we cannot discount what you say, nor the notion of races never seen here before.”

“I thank you, King Terenas,” Lothar replied formally, reining his anger back in. He was not sure what to do next. Fortunately, Terenas was.

“I will summon my neighboring kings,” he announced. “These events concern us all.” He turned back toward Varian. “Your Majesty, I offer you my home and my protection for as long as you shall need it,” he stated, loud enough for all to hear. “When you are ready, know that Lordaeron will assist you in reclaiming your kingdom.”

Lothar nodded. “Your Majesty, you are most generous,” he said on Varian’s behalf, “and I can think of no safer and finer place for my prince to reach his maturity than here in Capital City. Know, however, that we did not come here merely for sanctuary. We came to warn you.” He stood tall, his voice rumbling across the room, his eyes not leaving Lordaeron’s king. “For know this—the Horde will not stop at Stormwind. They mean to claim the entire world, and they have the might and the numbers to make their dream a reality. Nor do they lack magical might. Once they have finished with my homeland—” His voice grew deeper and rougher and he forced himself to continue. “They will find a way across the ocean. And they will come here.”

“You are telling us to prepare for war,” Terenas said quietly. It was not a question, but Lothar answered nonetheless.

“Yes.” He looked around at the assembled men. “A war for the very survival of our race.”

World of Warcraft: Rise of the Horde - Excerpt

World of Warcraft: Rise of the Horde
352 pages – December 2006
Simon & Schuster Publishing
Written by Christie Golden

Though the young Warchief Thrall ended the demon curse that had plagued his people for generations, the orcs still wrestle with the sins of their bloody past. As the rampaging Horde, they waged a number of devastating wars against their perennial enemy—the Alliance. Yet the rage and bloodlust that drove the orcs to destroy everything in their path nearly consumed them as well.

Long ago, on the idyllic world of Draenor, the noble orc clans lived in relative peace with their enigmatic neighbors, the draenei. But the nefarious agents of the Burning Legion had other plans for both of the unsuspecting races. The demon-lord Kil’jaeden set in motion a dark chain of events that would succeed not only in eradicating the draenei, but forging the orc clans into a single, unstoppable juggernaut of hatred and destruction.

The new pocketbook by Christie Golden will be released on December 2006.  Chris Metzen revealed post-E3 2006 some info about the Draenei and plans for the prequel book telling their story.  Here is what Metzen revealed about this new pocketbook:

Chris Metzen: “Ok, so what’s the real scoop behind the eredar/draenei story then? At this point, even though the NEW lore directly counters the Warcraft III manual, we’re still going to run with it. There are a lot of reasons for this, not the least of which is that I think it’s far stronger than what I crafted back in the day. The eredar were not necessarily all evil. Sargeras did come to them and tempt them with power. They did NOT make Sargeras crazy. This gives the eredar more dimensionality and roots the draenei to a key moment in Burning Legion history.

We’ve also woven all of this new lore into an upcoming novel by Christie Golden (author of Lord of the Clans) that depicts the draeneis escape from Argus and the RISE OF THE HORDE on Draenor. The book DOMINATES, and you’re going to really dig it. Durotan, Nerzhul, Guldan, Doomhammer, Hellscream, Kiljaeden, Velen; this story is the one youve been waiting for. I’m getting geeked up just thinking about it.

However, this new lore does leave a large hole. How did Sargeras go nuts? What drove him to fall and begin his Burning Crusade? I dont know yet. It will be his encounter with some evil race (who dares me to use Old Gods???), but it wont be the eredar.

I’ll chew on this. Maybe we’ll solve this by the end of the expansion. See this is that flexibility stuff I was talking about earlier.”


Buy World of Warcraft: Rise of the Horde Interview with Christie Golden

World of Warcraft: Cycle of Hatred - Excerpt

an excerpt from

World of Warcraft:
Cycle of Hatred

by Keith R.A. DeCandido

[Excerpt from the novel on sale in 2006 from Pocket Books. The book can be ordered Here.
Copyright ? 2006 Blizzard Games. All rights reserved.]

* * *


Erik had been cleaning ale off the demon skull mounted behind the bar when the stranger walked in.

The Demonsbane Inn and Tavern didn’t usually get much by way of tourists. Rare was the day when Erik didn’t know the face of one of his patrons. More common was when he didn’t know their names—he only remembered their faces due to repeated exposure. Erik didn’t much care who came into his tavern, as long as they had coin and a thirst.

Sitting down at a table, the stranger seemed to be either waiting for something or looking for something. He wasn’t looking at the dark wooden walls—though you could barely see them, seeing as how the Demonsbane had no windows and illumination only from a couple of torches—or at the small round wooden tables and stools festooned about the floor. Erik never bothered to arrange the tables in any particular pattern, since folks would just go and move them around to suit themselves anyhow.

After a minute, the stranger got up and walked up to the wooden bar. “I’m trying to get some table service.”

“Don’t have none,” Erik said. He never saw the sense in paying good money for waiters. If folks wanted a drink, they could walk up to the bar. If they were too drunk to walk up to the bar, he didn’t want them to drink anymore anyhow, since folks who were that drunk were like to start fights. Erik ran a quiet tavern.

The stranger plunked a silver piece on the bar, and asked, “What’s the most expensive drink you have there?”

“That’d be the boar’s grog from the north. Orcs make it, ferment it in—”

The stranger’s nose wrinkled. “No—no orc drink.”

Erik shrugged. People had weird considerations when it came to alcohol. He’d seen folks argue about the relative merits of beer versus corn whiskey with an intensity greater than political or religious disagreements. If this gentleman didn’t like orc drinks, that wasn’t Erik’s lookout. “Got corn whiskey—fresh batch made last month.”

“Sold.” The stranger smacked his hand on the wooden bar, disturbing some of the nut shells, berry seeds, and other detritus that had gathered there. Erik only cleaned the bar about once a year or so—unlike the demon skull, no one could really see the bar, and he never saw the need to clean a surface that wasn’t visible.

One of the regulars, a soldier who always drank the grog, turned to look at the stranger. “Mind tellin’ me what you got against orc booze?”

The stranger shrugged while Erik pulled the glass bottle of corn whiskey off the shelf, and poured some of its contents into a mug that was mostly clean.

“I have nothing against orc drink, good sir—it’s orcs themselves I have issue with.” The stranger held out a hand. “My name is Margoz. I’m a fisherman by trade, and I have to say that I’m not well pleased with how my nets have filled up this season.”

Not bothering to shake the hand or introduce himself, the soldier said, “All that tells me is you ain’t no good as a fisherman.”

Lowering his hand upon realizing that the soldier wasn’t feeling friendly, Margoz took his corn whiskey instead. “I’m a fine fisherman, sir—I thrived in Kul Tiras, before circumstances forced me to move here.”

On the other side of Margoz sat a merchant who sputtered into his ale. “Circumstances. Right. Got conscripted to fight the Burning Legion, did you?”

Margoz nodded. “As I’m sure many were. I tried to make a new life for myself here in Theramore—but how can I, with the damned greenskins taking all the good fishing waters for themselves?”

Erik found himself nodding in agreement with the first half of Margoz’s statement, if not the second. He himself had come to Theramore after the Burning Legion was driven off—not to fight, as the fighting was over by the time he made the journey, but to claim his inheritance. Erik’s brother Olaf fought against the Legion, and died, leaving Erik enough coin to build the tavern Olaf had dreamed of opening after he finished his service. In addition to the money, Erik was bequeathed the skull of a demon that Olaf had slain in combat. Erik had never particularly wanted to run a tavern, but he’d never particularly wanted to do anything else, so he opened the Demonsbane in honor of his brother. He figured, rightly, that the community of humans in Theramore would gravitate toward a place with a name that symbolized the driving off of demons that led to the city-state’s formation.

“I ain’t standin’ for this,” the soldier said. “You fought in the war, fisherman—you know what the orcs did for us.”

“What they did for us is not what distresses me, good sir,” Margoz said, “but rather what they are doing to us now.”

“They get the best of everything.” This was the boat captain at one of the tables behind the soldier. “Up Ratchet way, them goblins always favor orcs for repairs or dock space. Last month, I had to wait half a day ‘fore they’d let me dock my skiff, but some orc boat come by two hour after me, and got a spot right off.”

Turning to face the captain, the soldier said, “Then go somewhere other than Ratchet.”

“T’ain’t always an option,” the captain said with a sneer.

“S’not like they always need the repairin’, neither,” the man with the captain—Erik thought it might have been his first mate, since they dressed similarly—said. “They got oaks up in mountains above Orgrimmar, be makin’ their ships from them. What we got? Weak spruce, is all. They hoard ‘em, they do, keepin’ all the good wood. Our boats’ll be leakin’ all over thanks to the marshy garbage we gotta work with.”

Several other voices muttered in agreement with this sentiment.

“So you’d all like it better if the orcs weren’t around?” The soldier slammed his fist on the bar. “Without them, we’d be demon-food, and that’s a fact.”

“I don’t think anyone’s denying that.” Margoz sipped from his whiskey mug. “Still, there does seem to be an unequal distribution of resources.”

“Orcs used to be slaves, you know.” This was someone else at the bar whom Erik couldn’t see from where he was standing. “To humans, and to the Burning Legion, if you think about it. Can’t blame ‘em for wanting to take everything they can now.”

“I can if they’re takin’ it away from us,” the captain said.

The merchant nodded. “You know, they’re not from here. They came from some other world, and the Burning Legion brought ‘em here.”

The first mate muttered, “Maybe they oughtta go back where they came.”

“Makes you wonder what Lady Proudmoore was thinking,” Margoz said.

Erik frowned. At those words, the tavern suddenly got rather quiet. Lots of people had been muttering assent or disagreement, either with the sentiments expressed or the people expressing them.

But as soon as Margoz mentioned Jaina Proudmoore—worse, mentioned her in a disparaging manner—the place got quiet.

Too quiet. In the three years Erik had been a tavern owner, there were two
times when you expected a fight to break out: when the place got too loud or got too quiet. And the latter were usually the really nasty fights
.

Another soldier stood up from next to the first one—this one was wider in the shoulders, and he didn’t talk much, but when he did, it was in a booming voice that made the demon skull behind the bar rattle on its mount. “Don’t nobody talk bad ‘bout Lady Proudmoore ‘less he wants to be livin’ without teeth.”

Swallowing audibly, Margoz quickly said, “I would never dream of speaking of our leader in anything but reverent tones, good sir, I promise.” He gulped down more of the corn whiskey than it was advisable to drink in one sip, which caused his eyes to greatly widen. He shook his head a few times.

“Lady Proudmoore’s been very good to us,” the merchant said. “After we drove back the Burning Legion, she made us into a community. Your complaints are fair, Margoz, but none of it can be laid at the lady’s feet. I’ve met a few wizards in my day, and most of ‘em aren’t fit to be scrapings off my sandals. But the lady’s a good one, and you’ll find no support for disparagements toward her.”

“It was never my intent to disparage, good sir,” Margoz said, still sounding a bit shaky from his ill-advised gulp of corn whiskey. “But one must wonder why no trade agreements have been made to obtain this superior wood that these fine gentlemen have mentioned.” He looked thoughtful for a second. “Perhaps she has tried, but the orcs would not permit it.”

The captain swallowed a gulp of his ale, then said, “Perhaps them orcs told her to leave Northwatch.”

“We should leave Northwatch,” the merchant said. “The Barrens are neutral territory, that was agreed to from the beginning.”

The soldier stiffened. “You’re crazy if you think we’re givin’ that up.”

Margoz said, “That is where the orcs fought Admiral Proudmoore.”

“Yes, an embarrassment. As fine a leader as Lady Proudmoore is, that’s as much of an idiot her father was.” The merchant shook his head. “That entire sordid incident should be put out of our heads. But it won’t be as long as—”

The captain interrupted. “If’n you ask me, we need to expand beyond Northwatch.”

Sounding annoyed, though whether at the interruption or the sentiment, Erik neither knew nor cared, the merchant said, “Are you mad?”

“Are you? The orcs’re squeezin’ us out! They’re all over the blessed continent, and we’ve got Theramore. It’s been three year since the Burning Legion was sent off. Don’t we deserve better than to be lower class in our own land—to be confined to one cesspool of a city-state?”

“Theramore is as fine a city as you will see in human lands.” The soldier spoke the words with a defensive pride, only to be followed by a more resigned tone. “But it is true, that the orcs have greater territory. That is why Northwatch is essential—it allows us to maintain a defense beyond the walls of Theramore.”

“Besides,” the first mate said with a laugh into his ale mug, “the orcs don’t like us there. That’s reason enough to keep it, y’ask me.”

“Nobody asked you,” the merchant said snidely.

The other man at the bar—Erik had wandered downbar a bit, and now saw that it was that bookkeeper who worked the docks—said, “Maybe someone should. The orcs act as if they own Kalimdor, and we’re just visiting. But this is our home, too, and it’s time we acted like it. Orcs aren’t humans, aren’t even from this world. What right do they have to dictate how we live our lives?”

“They have the right to live their lives, don’t they?” the merchant asked.

Nodding, the soldier said, “I’d say they earned that when they fought the Burning Legion. Weren’t for them?” He gulped down the remainder of his wine, then slid the mug toward Erik. “Get me an ale.”

Erik hesitated. He had already started reaching for the grog bottle. This soldier had been coming into the Demonsbane ever since Erik opened the place, and he’d never drunk anything save for grog.

But that three-year-long patronage had earned him the right not to be questioned. Besides, as long as he was paying, he could drink soapy water, for all Erik cared.

“Fact is,” the captain said, “this is our world, by right of birth. Them orcs are just guests in our home, and it’s high time they started actin’ like it!”

The conversation went on from there. Erik served a few more drinks, tossed a few mugs into the basin to be cleaned later, and only after he gave the merchant another ale did he realize that Margoz, who started the whole conversation, had left.

He hadn’t even left a tip. Erik shook his head in disgust, the fisherman’s name already falling out of his head.

But he’d remember the face. And probably spit in the bastard’s drink next time he came in—only having one drink and then starting trouble. Erik hated troublemakers like that in his place. Just hated it.

More people started complaining about the orcs. One person—the bruiser next to the soldier—slammed his ale mug on the bar so hard that it spattered his drink on the demon skull. Sighing, Erik grabbed a rag and wiped it off.

* * *

There was a time when Margoz would have been too scared to walk the darkened streets of Theramore alone.

True, crime was not a major concern in so closed a community as Theramore—everyone knew most everyone else, and if they didn’t, they knew someone else who did—so criminal acts were rare enough. Those that were committed, were generally punished quickly and brutally by Lady Proudmoore’s soldiers.

Still, Margoz had always been small and weak, and the big and strong tended to prey on the small and weak, so Margoz generally avoided walking around alone at night. You never knew what big and strong person was lurking to show how big and strong he was by beating up on a lesser target. Many times, Margoz had been that target. He soon learned that it was best to do what they said and make them happy to avoid the violence.

But Margoz no longer had that fear. Or any other kind of fear. Now he had a patron. True, Margoz had to do his bidding, also, but this time the reward was power and wealth. In the old days, the reward was not being beaten within an inch of his life. Maybe it was exchanging one type of gut-crippling fear for another, but Margoz thought this was working out better for him.

A salty breeze wafted through the air, blowing in off the port. Margoz inhaled deeply, the scent of the water invigorating him. He spoke at least partly true in the Demonsbane—he was a fisherman, though never a particularly successful one. However, he did not fight against the Burning Legion as he claimed, but instead came here after they were driven back. He’d hoped to have more opportunities here than he had at Kul Tiras. It hadn’t been his fault that the nets were substandard—it was all he could afford, but tell the dock authority that and see where it got you.

Where it got him, mostly, was beat up.

So he came to Kalimdor, following the rush of people hoping to provide services for the humans who lived there under Lady Proudmoore. But Margoz hadn’t been the only fisherman to ply his trade, nor was he anywhere near the best.

Before his patron arrived, Margoz was close to destitute. He wasn’t even catching enough to eat himself, m
uch less sell, and he was seriously considering just grabbing his boat’s anchor and jumping off the side with it. Put himself out
of his misery.

But then his patron arrived, and everything got better.

Margoz soon arrived at his modest apartment. His patron hadn’t let him move to better accommodations, despite his pleading—the patron called it whining, and unseemly—regarding the lack of good ventilation, the poor furnishings, and the rats. But his patron assured him that such a sudden change in his status would draw attention, and for now, he was to remain unnoticed.

Until tonight, when he was instructed to go to the Demonsbane and start sowing anti-orc sentiments. In the old days, he never would dared have set foot in such a place. The types of people who liked to beat him up usually congregated in large groups in taverns, and he preferred to avoid them for that reason.

Or, rather, used to prefer to avoid them.

He entered his room. A pallet that was no thinner than a slice of bread; a burlap sheet that itched so much he only used it when the winter got particularly cold, and even then it was a difficult choice; a lantern; and precious little else. A rat scurried across into one of the many cracks in the wall.

Sighing, he knew what needed to be done next. Next to the inability to move to better quarters, the thing Margoz hated most about his dealing with his patron was the odor he carried with him whenever they spoke. It was some kind of side-effect of the magic at his patron’s command, but whatever the reason, it annoyed Margoz.

Still, it was worth it for the power. And the ability to walk the streets and drink in the Demonsbane without fear of physical reprisal.

Shoving his hand past his collar to reach under his shirt, Margoz pulled out the necklace with the silver pendant shaped like a sword afire. Clutching the sword so tightly that he felt the edges dig into his palm, he spoke the words whose meaning he’d never learned, but which filled him with an unspeakable dread every time he said them: “Galtak Ered’nash. Ered’nash ban galar. Ered’nash havik yrthog. Galtak Ered’nash.

The stink of sulfur started to permeate the small room. This was the part Margoz hated.

Galtak Ered’nash. You have done as I commanded?

“Yes, sir.” Margoz was embarrassed to realize that his voice was getting all squeaky. Clearing his throat, he tried to deepen his tone. “I did as you asked. As soon as I mentioned difficulties with the orcs, virtually the entire tavern joined in.”

Virtually?

Margoz didn’t like the threat implied in that one-word question. “One man was a holdout, but the others were ganging up on him to a certain degree. Provided a focus for their ire, really.”

Perhaps. You have done well.

That came as a huge relief. “Thank you, sir, thank you. I am glad to have been of service.” He hesitated. “If I may, sir, might now be a good time to once again broach the subject of improved accommodations? You might have noticed the rat that—”

You have served us. You will be rewarded.

“So you’ve said, sir, but—well, I was hoping a reward would come soon.” He decided to take advantage of his lifelong fears. “I was in grave danger this evening, you know. Walking alone near the docks can be—”

You will come to no harm so long as you serve. You need never walk with fear again, Margoz.

“Of—of course. I simply—”

You simply wish to live the life you have never been permitted to live. That is an understandable concern. Be patient, Margoz. Your reward will come in due time.

The sulfur stench started to abate. “Thank you, sir. Galtak Ered’nash!”

Dimly, the patron’s voice said, Galtak Ered’nash. Then all was quiet in Margoz’s apartment once again.

A bang came on the wall, followed by the muffled voice of his neighbor. “Stop yelling in there! We’re tryin’ to sleep!”

Once, such importunings would have had Margoz cowering in fear. Today, he simply ignored it, and lay down on his pallet, hoping the smell wouldn’t keep him from sleeping.

* * *

To learn what happens next, you’ll just have to buy the book……

Warcraft: The Sunwell Trilogy Vol. 2, Shadows of Ice - Excerpt

Warcraft Manga:
The Sunwell Trilogy
Book Two: Shadows of Ice

——-

  • On the war-ravaged world of Azeroth, a young blue dragon’s quest for a mysterious power has led him and his companions to the remote mountains of northern Lordaeron. In that frozen, treacherous wasteland, they find themselves caught in a battle of life, death—and undeath!”

    ——-

    Kalecgos and Anveena continue their quest to unravel the mystery about Anveena’s past.  A mysterious bearded Elder wizard named Borel is all they have to lead them to unveil Anveena’s past.  Although she’s never met him, her parents used to talk about Borel who lived in Tarren Mill.

    However, their search leads them to Aerie Peak.

    Find it at our Blizzplanet Store

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