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Originally written July 18, 2012.

The reign of Darow is ended, those infected are guaranteed life until, at least, the next threat appears. There were many moments of unexpected heroism by those who responded to the mission, most notably those who affected by the disease itself. Nyres Treestalker showed much tenacity despite her condition, further solidifying herself as a steadfast officer of the Rose. For someone so congenial, she is a bulwark in battle.

 

It is both odd and a relief to see Crowling taking on the mantle of hero instead of villain. For a woman so recently condemned to death by Stormwind courts, she faces it now with alarming regularity. Aye, the court itself ruled that it would issue a full pardon if she was assigned to a suicide mission and survived, this mission perhaps could qualify.

 

The heavy burden on Taldrus appeared lifted when he returned from the mission. I saw in him the same youthful exuberance that so defined him when we first met. His conscription into the Alliance and new responsibilities have harshly drained him in the past months, to the point that I was suddenly struck with the differences to his person after we spent a number of days apart. It was a harsh decline, but gradual enough that I was conditioned not to notice. It is warming to my heart to see him so energized once more, most especially at the moment of our marriage.

 

I find myself looking inward during these days of inaction – or perhaps I should clarify: preparation. I find both myself and others preparing for the next all-encompassing war. "Fourth War" was at first floated as a scare tactic, the politician's choice of words; but slowly but surely, the term firmly attached itself to reality. It is only a matter of the decisive opening strike that will shift the war status from informal to formal. I question from which side that strike will come, both sides are equally thirsty.

 

I at times consider whether we slayed one Destroyer to only allow multiple others that live within each Azerothian soul take flight. Hate has become hell's usher to a new doom. Perhaps that is why I look inward and seek to find heroes instead of villains – the latter is exceedingly common, and increasingly desperate.

 

The Rose is ill-equipped to survive in such violent times between the Alliance and Horde, it was formed and trained to fight enemies outside the factions. Looking inward, I see the strengths that may yet see us through, as well as protect the seen and unseen others caught in war's center. We too are caught in the center, our emblematic cross is far too much like cross hair. Perhaps a renewed direction will build a more solid ground for our feet to stand, and invite or shelter the like-minded to stand with us.

Author Ari
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