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The Story Behind the Red Blade

Started by Kozgugore, March 03, 2010, 03:29:59 PM

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  ¤  Orcish Lore  ¤  Orcish Timeline  ¤  Red Blade Culture  ¤  Great Spirits  ¤  Red Blade Ranks  ¤  FAQ  ¤ 

The Beginning

Once, when the Old World was still a place of Furies, colossals and primal forces, the orcs had only just begun to emerge from the sanctuary of their caves. They were newcomers to the World, caught between the conflicts of older races and prisoners to the fate bestowed upon them by forces far mightier than them. It was only by banding together that they could even hope to survive the harsh wilderness. In time, some would learn to harness the harsh nature of the world. Others, however, fell prey to greater forces.

One day, a small settlement consisting of nary more but a single family broke to the might of one of these forces: ogres. None survived the fatal attack, save for a single babe. Reggar was his name, and though the ogre aggressors overlooked him in the slaughter, he was left to the unforgiving elements to wither away. For days, young Reggar cried. Until finally, a curious wolf sought out the source of the cries and happened upon the wailing child in its hour of need. Rather than devouring the helpless child, the wolf did a remarkable thing, however: he seized the babe between his maws and returned him to his den. There, he nursed the child together with his mate, raising it to maturity and teaching it everything about the World, its perils and how to overcome them. Until the day came that Reggar had become wise and strong enough to face this world of enemies for himself. The wolf decided it was time for Reggar to forge his own fate, guiding him out into the World and helping him find a pack of his own. Ten sons and daughters did Reggar sire alongside his newfound mate, Lakora, and when the time to demand blood for blood was right, they set out to vanquish the ogres who laid waste to Reggar's family home. Finally, when the dust of vengeance had settled and the crude blades of Reggar and his pack ran red with ogre blood, the wolf was content knowing Reggar and Lakora's pack was now strong enough to weather any hazard that the World would throw at them, and sent them on their way. Reggar's pack would soon be spoken of as the "Red Blades", in reference to their blades which would always be demanded to be touched red with the blood of their enemies the moment they are drawn from their sheaths. At last, they had become masters of their own fate.

As for the wolf? He turned back to his own pack, for it had grown large and mighty in its own time. Reggar and his Red Blades would not be forgotten, however. In his paternal love and devotion, he would forever watch over them as they continued to bloody their blades throughout the World. Akashok was his name. And as the father and teacher of Reggar and his pack, he would become their paragon of strength, law and order. Their protector in times of need, just as he had once come to Reggar's aid in his. So too for his sons and daughters, and for those who would follow after them carrying the name of "Red Blade”.

The Heirs of Redblade

As time passed, the Red Blades grew to become many. A nomadic band of closely knit orcs, they roamed the World in search for honour, glory and a worthy cause to bloody their blades for. The warband grew to become widely known as honourable mercenaries, with Githya Redblade being one of the more renowned of Reggar’s descendants.

Githya's warriors served one of the Warlords of Draenor, an orc whose name is long since forgotten, but they fought many battles on his orders. Such was Githya's strength and courage, that when the old warrior finally fell, the warlord granted Githya's heirs the right and means to found a clan of their own, fearing that the mercenaries might turn to pillaging if left unchecked. Thus Clan Redblade was born, and settled itself in a land far to the north where no orc had yet lived.

In time, Clan Redblade would grow to be a society shaped like the strongest of iron, developing grand tales of heroes of the past such as Kraag the Wolfking, Skagluk the Giantkiller and Grugna Longhand. The clan prospered, but always remained small. The orcs of Clan Redblade enjoyed a reputation as honourable fighters, but little did they realise that the end was soon to come.

The Burning Legion

The Burning Legion came to Draenor with promises of power and wealth. The Demon Lord Kil'jaeden sought out orcs who would be easily corrupted and first the shaman Ner'zhul, then his apprentice Gul'dan, pledged their loyalty to the Legion. Kil'jaeden gave them great power in exchange for their utter obedience and seeing this, many of the clans flocked to join the growing Horde.

In reality the Demon Lord was slowly corrupting the orcs, transforming the noble warriors into bloody, mindless killers. He taught them the demon arts and over time, even the land itself became corrupt. The once idyllic hills and forests of Draenor became harsh rock and burning pits of decay.

Some of the clans realised too late what was happening. Their land was poisoned and their warlords had become mere puppets of the Burning Legion, but they tried to resist. Among these was Clan Redblade. Under their leader, Grenth Stonebrow they and others of like mind, joined forces with a few other clans in trying to warn against following the demons.

The Treachery of Akesh

Not every orc of Clan Redblade was immune to Kil'jaeden's promises however. Akesh, a young shaman of the clan, saw this as an opportunity. Contacting Kil'jaeden's agents in secret, he promised to deliver Clan Redblade over to the Shadow Pact. He formulated his plan, carefully made the arrangements and when all of the pieces were in place, he made his move.

After a night of feasting, when many of the orcs were sleeping off their ale, Akesh stole into Grenth's greathall. Finding the chieftain asleep, Akesh pored a deadly poison into the ear of the sleeping orc. He then crept away to carry out the next part of his plot.

Akesh had spent months winning over Grenth's guards. He told them tales of their leader's weakness. He told them how they had been held back. He told them that fighting Kil'jaeden would mean death, but joining Kil'jaeden would lead them to glory. They were ready to do anything he asked, while he had been poisoning Grenth, the guards had been busy kidnapping Grenth's wife and son.

In the morning, the orcs of Clan Redblade awoke to not only find their chieftain had died in his bed, but that his son had declared that Grenth had wanted Akesh to succeed him as chieftain and that Grenth's widow intended to marry Akesh to further legitimise his claim. The astonished orcs had little choice, but to accept. Akesh had the backing of the chieftain's guards and those few who spoke out against him were arrested, and incidentally, never seen again.

Within days, Akesh was proclaimed chieftain of Clan Redblade and when Kil'jaeden summoned Mannoroth the Destructor and the clan chiefs were required to drink of his blood, Akesh did so willingly and so sealed the fate of his whole clan.

Akesh fought for the Horde when they invaded Azeroth and led the remains of Clan Redblade in battle after battle. However, it was not at the hands of the Alliance that Akesh met his end. He was himself betrayed. Akesh died in battle, but the arrow that felled him was shot from an orcish bow. The remainder of Clan Redblade was swallowed up by the Horde, its name, traditions and even guardian spirits forgotten.

The Traitor's Daughters

So, the traitor was gone, but not before Grenth's widow had born him two daughters, Akesha and Shuska. Now, there was at this time a warrior of the clan by the name of Magrom. Despite the corruption of the demons, some last trace of the old honour of the orcs remained in Magrom's spirit. He realised that whichever orc had been responsible for Akesh's death, would also want his children gone and so Magrom stole the infants away to safety.

Changing his name to Azubal, he was able to desert the army in which he served and attach himself to a different branch of the Horde. In this way Akesh's daughters disappeared and Magrom was assumed to have been lost in battle.

Azubal cared for the two young orclings. They travelled with the baggage train and were cared for by the females who served it. When the old Horde was finally defeated and the orcs were interred, Azubal made sure that Akesha and Shuska were safe in the camp.

The years passed. Thrall eventually led the orcs to freedom in the new land of Durotar and the city of Orgrimmar was founded in the desert. Here Azubal was able at last to find a safe home for the children. He left them in the care of Orgrimmar's new orphanage and Akesha and Shuska were able to live out the last years of their childhood in peace and security.

The name Redblade was forgotten, until Akesha reached adulthood and distant memory of past glories was kindled in the young Akesha's mind. Thus she founded the Red Blade Tribe, taking its name and traditions from half remembered stories of the old clan as was told to her by the old Azubal. Though a small group at first, orcs of many breeds and clans soon flocked to tribe's banner in search for a place of orcish values and traditions in the rapidly growing and advancing Horde.

Whereas the old clan had long been forgotten, the Red Blade as a tribe quickly made a name for itself as it often stood at the forefront of the Horde's expeditions and sometimes even battles. Though Warchief Thrall maintained a fragile peace treaty with Jaina Proudmoore, the Red Blade would often be called upon to defend the orcs' new homeland whenever its security would be in peril.

As the tribe continued to grow and prosper, the Dark Portal reopened after twenty years. Though a husk of its former self, many orcs of the tribe were among the first to return to the old homelands in search of their past. Among these was Akesha Redblade, now Matriarch, in her search for tales and relics of the old clan. What was at first a great find, however, soon turned out to be a burden instead...

The End of a Legacy

It was the war-mask of the old, revered Kraag the Wolfking himself that turned out to be the greatest find among a great number of discoveries that were made of Clan Redblade during the tribe's stay in the Outlands. However, the mask was laden with fel energies, corrupted by the magics of warlocks who had long occupied the remaining lands of old Draenor. The discovery came too late however, as Akesha had already worn the war-mask for too long a time, corrupting her mind unknowingly.

Despite the orcs' best attempts, the corruption could not be banished nor halted. In a decision that shocked every orc present, Akesha decided to go into a self-imposed exile in order to find a final resting place for the war-mask where none other might ever find it. In her stead, she chose Overlord Kozgugore Feraleye to stand in her place as Chieftain in order to uphold her visions for a brighter future for the orcish race.

Under the leadership of the first Red Blade Chieftain who was not of Reggar Redblade’s blood himself, a new era dawned. The search for tradition continued, introducing a plethora of newfound knowledge from the old clan as well as a renewed vigour in defending the Horde's homelands. Though the tribe became well-known for being a nomadic pack of orcs that travelled throughout Azeroth as well as the Outlands, they never faltered in their oath to make for the newest front-lines as soon as they unfolded. Be it in Kalimdor, the Eastern Kingdoms and even Northrend, they fought the enemies of the Horde not only in the shape of various foes such as the Burning Legion and the Scourge, but sometimes even the Alliance as well.

By the time the island of Pandaria was discovered and its conquest between the Horde and the Alliance escalated, the Red Blade tribe had already been host to a a number of battles and skirmishes as a result of its zeal to protect the orcish homelands. Thus it came as no surprise that they, too, were closely involved in the open war that had unfolded since the Shattering of Azeroth. This came to a sudden end when Chieftain Kozgugore Feraleye had been imprisoned by the authorities of the Horde after refusing orders from Horde command, however. Though freed in a valiant attempt led by Morgeth Feralheart, who had seized control of the tribe as its temporary Matriarch, the tribe was branded a traitor to the Horde.

When whispers of an open rebellion against Garrosh Hellscream's rule began to surface, it was an easy decision to make for most orcs among the tribe. While the majority had committed themselves to the rebellion however, Kozgugore made the sudden decision to part ways in a conflict of interest. Rargnasha Bloodmark had been named the new Chieftain, and he led the tribe throughout the ultimately successful rebellion.

So the turmoil within the very Horde itself had come to an end, but only at a great cost. The tribe, too, had suffered the consequences of such infighting, and when the onslaught of the Iron Horde stepped through the Dark Portal, there proved to be little time for a retaliation. Nevertheless, the tribe committed itself to halting the Iron Horde threat, and joined the rest of the coalition between the Horde and the Alliance to step through the Dark Portal. In the ensuing chaos of the battle, the tribe suffered loss and division, however. Moreover, Rargnasha decided to lay down his mantle of Chieftain and let it be taken over by Kozgugore once more.

Outnumbered and facing questionable odds, the tribe sought for means to help tip the scales in the fight against the Iron Horde. Not unlike the stories of old from Clan Redblade and Kraag, the first Wolfking, and the pact made with their wolves, the tribe forged an alliance between orc and wolf under the leadership of Kozgugore, who was hailed as Wolfking thanks to his pivotal role in the forging of this alliance. Thus, the Red Blade had found its first Wolfking in a very long time once more, and with the pact between orc and beast, the tables had turned...

The Rebirth of a Clan

A chase across the alien world of Draenor followed, as Akesh Redblade, the Chieftain of Clan Redblade turned Clan Felblade in the alternate timeline, proved a wily opponent to the tribe. A confrontation with the warlock-chieftain at the foot of the mountain to the Throne of Kil'jaeden eventually marked an end to the Iron Horde conflict, when the Red Blade tribe successfully defeated Clan Felblade and was at long last able to return home.

The conflict with the Iron Horde had left the Red Blade tribe grievously wounded. Worse, rumors of impending threats of the Burning Legion began to surface in Orgrimmar, and not long thereafter a full scale invasion upon Azeroth followed. The Red Blade tribe was mobilized to aid in the defense of the orcs’ homelands and the subsequent disastrous attack upon the Broken Shore. As a result to the Burning Legion’s onslaught, the tribe suffered the greatest losses it had ever seen - greater than even previous disasters such as the Cataclysm and the Iron Horde invasion. In all but name, the Red Blade tribe had practically been wiped out...

Several months passed, with the Red Blade threatening to become yet another clan to be forgotten in the annals of time. Through an unlikely twist of fate however, the threat of the Red Blade's ultimate extinction was the catalyst that brought them back together, stronger than ever before. Facing a cultist threat that sought to hunt down every remaining descendant of the Redblade bloodline and every survivor of the old tribe, the orcs banded together under the leadership of Kozgugore. In the process, a discovery was made that changed everything they knew of the tribe and clan of old. The ancient spirit the cultists sought to corrupt was none other than the guardian spirit of the old Clan Redblade, Akashok. In hindsight, it was uncovered that it was due to the great spirit's very disappearance following his enshacklement by the cultists that the Red Blade tribe fell apart during the Burning Legion's invasion. With its shackles removed, the Red Blade could prosper once more. This time however, it would carry on as a true clan, with newly resurfaced traditions and an identity of its own. The Burning Legion and its agents had been defeated, and a world at war awaited, with the Red Blade Clan standing at the fore to defend the orcish people’s values and traditions...
Kozgugore Feraleye - Chieftain of the Red Blade


Updated up until the latest developments!
Kozgugore Feraleye - Chieftain of the Red Blade