Cassified is a new series that seeks to shed some light on what the soldiers, knights, mercenaries, and adventurers of the Alliance are fighting: What their actions keep the general populace safe from. After all, they risk their lives over and over to protect us all from a number of dangers: Demons, undead, bandits, Naga… The list of threats goes on and on, and someone has to face them.
Last week, I joined the Dawn of the Faithful on one of their deployments, against a group of smugglers that had recently been causing trouble all over the Kingdom. They call themselves the Valerunners, and here’s what the Dawn’s Seneschal had to say about them:
Karyinn Southwall: The Valerunners are an extensive smugglers creed who have been found accountable for extortion, slave trade, alchemical experimentation on civilians, azerite enhanced weapon trade to pirate creeds and illegal substance trade. As we speak the marines are trying to pinpoint "The Cockatiel'' which we deducted to be their (main) ship in use to traverse to all the bases and operate their trade which in turn may reveal their leader(s) location. The Overseer of Outpost Rapier made mention of a Mistress, but we still lack an alias or a name.
From recent clues, discovered within the inventory that was confiscated, Alliance command has discovered a multitude of outposts which are to be investigated and apprehended, they are across continents, making this operation harder, though should any combat personnel be willing to help out, they are to get in touch with the Keep, or Stockade Wardens to aid the cause, and put a stop to the Valerunners.
On the mission that I joined, the strike team of the Dawn consisted of a large group of paladins, a sniper, a scout and a mage. More variety than I had expected from an order that’s so closely connected to the Light and its teachings, but it does come with some major advantages, of course. The mission saw them deployed near the beaches of Stranglethorn Vale, where the Valerunners had fortified a camp in some old Naga ruins with stolen supplies and a group of hostages. They approached covertly at first, using a cliffside as cover, but they soon spotted some snipers that were positioned on top of the mountain. Thankfully, they didn’t seem very attentive, and with one well-placed portal, the Dawn’s mage could bring their scout in position to silently incapacitate these guards.
The Dawn then charged in, making short work of the first sets of guards, disposing of them quickly enough to not draw any attention to their presence yet. The scout continued to survey the situation from the cliffs before gathering up with the rest of the group once more. Chaos ensued within the smuggler’s ranks when some of them seemed to be engaging a group of Naga at the beach, allowing the Dawn an opening to directly attack the camp. The safety of the hostages was always the highest priority, and the Dawn’s sniper and mage both positioned themselves on a nearby hill to have a good overview. As the Dawn started their assault on the camp, they were greeted by a group of goblins in heavy armour, which seemed to be under the influence of some sort of substance. They were quickly dealt with by a combined effort of the mage’s support from above, and the knights’ weapon skills. However, their leader proved to be a more significant threat: He wielded a massive gun capable of shooting at high speeds, presumably of goblin engineering. With the Dawn’s sniper’s assistance, however, he too was dealt with soon enough. But he refused to go quietly, setting off a grenade to try and take the Dawn’s knights with him. A few well-placed holy shields were able to prevent most of the damage, though at least one of the Dawn went down and required immediate medical attention.
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Things got a little hectic then: The mage and sniper combined their efforts to take care of the last few guards around the hostages and managed to free them all. The fight at the beach, meanwhile, seemed to have gone in favour of the Naga, and the Dawn evacuated quickly via portal, taking hostages, prisoners, and some key items from the outpost with them before the snakes caught up with them. Of course, the Valerunner threat still remains, but at least one decisive blow was dealt to them. Once we all safely got back to Stormwind, the Dawn brought the prisoners to the stockades, the hostages to safety, and the recovered goods to the cathedral. I had a chance to get some statements, from both hostages and prisoners:
Greva, goblin prisoner: "They bribed us all with coin.. We completed some cargo missions for them, then on one of these missions we had to camp up.. The next thing anyone remembers is cages and captivity. My men were used to experiment upon.. It was horrible, especially in the early stages of whatever cursed substance they addled their minds with, they disposed of the 'failures' as feed for their pets.. The others.. They weren't my brothers anymore, drugged and weaponized.”
Catherine, human hostage: "The worst part was the wait.. No one would miss us, I myself had ran away after a horrible divorce..- All we could do is wait, every so few often days people were hauled from the cages, and send of to the ship.. They were never seen again, but it was a fate that awaited us all."
Eruadan, elf hostage: "I..I had debts with them.. If I knew -THIS- would of happened, I would of sold of one of my organs to pay them back.. Now they cut off my ears..- As a gift for some Troll Tribe and I still wasn't allowed to go home."
So, a lot of lives were saved that day by the Dawn’s valiant efforts, but the Valerunners still remain active. If you hear anything about them, contact the Dawn of the Faithful about it, and I’m sure they’ll be grateful.
And with that, the first entry in the Cassified series is done! If you have an issue that you would like to bring to attention, a mission that would benefit from having a field reporter embedded or want to get the word out about what it is that you actually do out there, then don’t hesitate to contact the Lion’s Roar.