Monday, March 21, 2011

Rheugan: Ritual

Some in-game RP has gotten me thinking about Rheugan's past- namely, the ritual that all baby worgen go through to regain their humanity (and get their nifty human-worgen shapeshifting spell). The quest kinda rushes through it without saying much about what the character actually goes through, which is actually kind of neat because it leaves a lot to the player's imagination (not to mention that every worgen's experience would probably be different anyway!), but I wondered what really happened for Rheugan when he did it. Soooo, here's a little glimpse of my troubled worgen's past. Enjoy!


Rheugan crept through the woods, his black fur and ragged clothing blending in with the shadows. Tucked into his belt, the sprigs of moonleaf rustled faintly. Probably too quiet for any ears but a worgen's to hear, but he still needed to take care. The Blackwald was full of the Forsaken's spies.

He checked one more time, but the path to Tal'doren was clear. Keeping low to the ground anyway, he hurried back to the tree, and the hope he had found inside it. The Night elves had found Crowley, who had in turn found him and the other worgen, and now they offered him a chance to regain control of his own mind. Rheugan glanced around one last time before ducking through the great trunk's entrance, leaves held firmly in his paw.

* * * * * *

"It is time, Rheugan. This... alchemy that has kept the beast inside you at bay will not last for long." Rheugan turned toward the druids and their "wells," uncertainty in his every movement. Crowley turned to look too, his voice dropping lower, quieter. "The first cursed worgen were night elf druids like our new allies. They, however, abandoned the balance that the rest of their kind embraced and allowed the beast to take over their minds. It is only fitting that their brethren be the ones that deliver us from the Curse. Go, drink from the waters of Tal'doren and make peace with yourself." Rheugan took a deep breath, then approached the Night elves.

Lyros stepped forward to meet him. "Leave your weapon behind, you will not need it here," he said, and Rheugan let his mace drop to the ground. Lyros gently took his elbow- Rheugan tried not to flinch at the contact- and drew him nearer, releasing him to step behind the well when they reached it. He handed the worgen a small clay cup, and Rheugan dipped it in the water, then lifted the cup and gulped it down quickly, before he lost his nerve. Tal'doren, the elf, the other worgen... all faded away.

"Just as Goldrinn's spirit once blessed our druids, let Rheugan be blessed with the wisdom of his race and the ferocity of the wolf god."

Lyros' voice was dim, as if coming from a distance, but he paid it no heed. The wolf was there, staring at him from the shadows of his mind. Rheugan stared back unflinching, waiting. Come, he heard it whisper. Hunt, kill. It's what we live for.

Rheugan felt cold. No, he answered it. I don't want that life anymore. I want to be free. The wolf snarled. You enjoyed it, remember? Come, leave this place, and we can show you what it is to be free.

Rheugan's body seemed to be moving of it's own volition, as he stepped to the next well and drank again. The water calmed him, chasing away the panic the wolf's words brought. He faced it firmly, as Vassandra's voice carried to his ears.

"Just as Daral'nir soothes the cursed druids who gave into the beast and abandoned balance, let Tal'doren soothe Rheugan."

Your "freedom" is only another kind of slavery, he told the wolf. You would have me trade my humanity for a life of killing. I won't do that anymore! Inside his mind, he stood firm as the wolf snarled and snapped at him. Meanwhile, his body took another step and dipped the cup into the third and final well. Talran's voice echoed in his ears now.

"Let the Scythe unbind that which was not meant to be bound! Let the soul master the beast, lest the beast master the soul!"

Get down, beast! he said to the wolf. I am the master here, not you! The wolf gave him one last glare, then to his amazement it backed down, showing him its throat in submission. It retreated back to the shadows as he watched it warily, then suddenly a hand gripped his elbow. The outside world rushed back, and he found himself standing unsteadily as Talran helped him stay upright. The Night elf was grinning. "Well done, youngling," he said. Rheugan blinked at him, not quite believing it was over, then he suddenly plopped down on the grass as his legs gave out underneath him.

* * * * * *

"It's done then. You are one of us now." Rheugan looked up from his hands- his human hands- as Crowley spoke. The older man grinned approvingly. "You'll always have a place among my men, lad. The fight's not over yet, and I dare say we'll be seeing a good bit of each other before it's through."

Rheugan offered a shy smile, but a shout from outside Tal'doren interrupted him before he could reply. "Father!" Crowley stood up quickly, turning toward the call as a broad smile crossed his face. "Lorna!" he shouted back as his daughter ran up and hugged him. Rheugan watched the reunion, then his attention was pulled back to the entrance. He quickly stood up himself.

Godfrey and the King were coming.

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