The History of "The Worm"
The following is all you are able to retrieve with reference to this entity from the archives of Silvermoon.
Name: Tarquin Wyrmsong
Position: Trusted advisor to Lor'themar Theron
Current Age: 87
Place of Birth: The Former Azothi Domain of Alterac
Languages spoken: Human Common, Thalassian, 'Gutterspeak', Orcish
Then there is the object that began your research: a small amulet, recovered from what remained of the private collection of a Silvermoon mage who had been imprisoned by the high elves in the Second War for treason, but was pardoned and released a few years later. It appears to be a magical holographic device, ideal for recording and replaying conversations without the knowledge of the other party. After reviewing the content, all of which appears to have been recorded before the Third Great War, the only data of any particular interest is a confession of sorts in a cell you recognise to have been within the Old Silvermoon prison.
As the full-sized coloured 'hologram' emenates from the amulet, you marvel at the detail. The subject is also an elf - or at least appears to be - and seems bedraggled, weary and broken; with cold green eyes set deep into a face that may once have appeared handsome but was now thin and gaunt. Lank black hair falls around his face and an unkempt prisoner's beard grows on his chin. You have studied this face carefully, and it is indeed a face that you swear you have witnessed recently in the shadows of the palace. It is interesting to note that only the voice of the man can be heard when the 'conversation' is played.
Prisoner: I was born 60 years before the First War in the kingdom of Alterac to an elf and a man. My mother had desecrated her elven heritage by whoring herself off to noblemen around the court and I was the product of a night of debauched passion with one of the old Lord Perenolde's favoured courtiers.
*He pauses, as if listening*
Prisoner: What? No, I shall not tell you his name. The name of his bastard bloodline is cursed by man and orc alike and they played little part in my life. Be silent and listen...
*The prisoner sighs*
Prisoner: Fortunately, the money he gave my mother to keep the web of lies about my origins strong allowed me to be more than just a bastard doomed to achieve nothing due to his illegitimacy. I was more than lucky - just a week in age seperated me from the future ruler of Alterac. Aiden. The Lady Perenolde was only too happy to have me as his play partner in those first years. Other children would shun me because I was different, because of these eyes and ears. But Aiden Perenolde and I were close enough to have been brothers...
*He pauses and averts his gaze*
Prisoner: And so I grew up in happiness. We hunted together, schooled together and even watched the young women of Alterac walk by - together. At 17, he sang the Song of the Mountains at my mothers funeral then three years later, I at his parents memorial - it was said they had fallen to their deaths in a coach across the Thandol Span, though to this day nothing else has yet been unearthed about their fate. Of course, he became the Lord and Sovereign of Alterac, and I naturally his chief advisor.
*He pauses and breathes deeply before launching back into his account*
Prisoner: Though great joy and tragedy arrived in turn we both stood as rocks against the tide. Noone was happier than I to be the best man at his wedding, none a better candidate for his son Aliden's godfather... and none of course so sad to stand beside him and sing that damn dirge once more as Lady Perenolde was laid to rest after six months of pain and fever.
*He looks down and closes his eyes, touching his hand to his forehead*
Prisoner: He had lost his wife, his parents and his son was far too young to understand him. He was left nowhere to turn to... but me. A shoulder to cry on, an old friend who new him better than any other living man or woman. Of course, it slowly dawned on him that our intense friendship was more than just that. After one night transformed from comforting him in his room... we became lovers.
*A mocking sneer appears on his face*
Prisoner: I can see the way your face screws up in disgust, but I seriously doubt you have the right to judge me. It can be said those days were not like now. My actions would have been seen as heresy against the Light would they have ever been laid bare. But I can be thankful that it was kept a secret all that time. Not even young Aliden knew, though it was obvious the little bastard grew jealous about my hold over his father.
Prisoner: Even though he knew my youthfulness contrasted with his fading years as we turned 60, we were nevertheless as much the inseperable companions as we had been since those days of our prime. And then came our downfall. The war in the south had spread north. Orcs looking for vengeance and human blood. We were a nation of peace; we lacked an army of any power and yet we were positioned between the hammer and the anvil, as delicate and bare as a child. I exerted my control over Aiden, and one night we rode out to a secret meeting with the orc Doomhammer to plead for the lives of our people.
*The prisoner narrows his eyes and frowns*
Prisoner: A noble cause, wasn't it? But strangely, we even ended up liking the barbarian invader. This warchief had honour and respect, whilst our other 'greater' sister nations within Lordaeron treated us as only human bullies can. I guided Aiden's hand well. Our pact was sealed that night and the freedom of the people of Alterac guaranteed. We gave whatever aid we could to the greenskins - equipment, weapons; even the war plans of the Alliance when we got our hands on them...
*He pauses again and sighs*
Prisoner: But when Quel'Thalas sent rangers down to the beseiged Alliance I felt a pang of guilt. These were very much more my blood kin than the humans of the Alliance, and as yet their impact upon my Alterac had been minimal. I requested that Warchief Doomhammer stage an ambush for a force of rangers I knew to be heading south not far from us, and capture them. Alive.
*His expression becomes bitter and downcast*
Prisoner: That day I rode out to persuade our elven guests to join the Great Horde. Silvermoon would be spared, and the Alliance crushed by united elven and orc forces... and peace would return swiftly. That day was the last time I saw my beloved; waving from the fortress door.
*He looks, presumably, into the interviewer's eyes, a wearied look upon his features*
Prisoner: When I got to the orcish prison encampment, somewhere near Tarren Mill, I saw that the elves had been recaptured and the population of the camp... was dead. I should never have fled - the Alliance was wise enough to have left a ranger behind in the bushes. I was arrested. But I was a half-elf; though it was unclear where my allegiances lay, they could not simply dispose of me, especially wearing - damn my lack of foresight - the emblem of a human nation on my robe. But I kept my mouth tight shut. I was dragged around by the Thalassian elves for weeks, months...? I cannot remember. But I do remember the news of the Tyr's Hand revolt - something I had planned myself; the Battle at the Runestone of Caer Darrow...
*He trails off and closes his eyes to stem the tears beginning to form. He grits his teeth as he speaks*
Prisoner: ...and the 'treachery' of Alterac. My... my heart fell. I wept as the captain of the regiment ordered that, as an elf, I be taken north to Silvermoon to await the judgement of the Convocation of Silvermoon. He stripped my phoenix-emblazoned robe from me and burned it. And I was taken wretched and broken into the north, fearing for the fate of my lover... and my people.
*He opens his eyes, tears running down his cheeks. His gaze shows only anger and hatred*
Prisoner: It is said... it is said they... they placed the bloodied heads of all 'the traitors of Alterac' upon the fortress gate as a 'warning'. They burned my kingdom to the ground and all beauty that once was, was lost... You will be allowed to leave this prison soon, magician, but I am condemned to stay until my bitter madness consumes me. I have no hope of pardon, but if I should then... then I shall love none ever again... and I wish only emptiness and dispair as cold as my heart upon this world.
*The prisoner closes his eyes once more and sniffs back the tears. A strange, mirthless smile slowly spreads across his lips as the recording slows to a stop, a dark grin frozen in time that chills you to the bone... you stop the hologram and shiver*