"I have spent my entire life fighting for my homeland. I have fulfilled my duty and served my purpose. All I want is to see my family."
-The Paladin Reikan, days before the battle at Mount Hyjal
A peasant turned knight, Reikan has seen his fortunes rise and fall violently throughout his life. A former Knight of the Silver Hand he served with honor as a soldier of Lordaeron, as well as a grunt in the Orcish Horde. He has seen two wars in his life, and the scars both physical and emotional mark him still. Though many of his friends have traveled to Northrend to take the fight to Arthas Reikan has opted to stay in Kalimdor with the Night Elf Priestess Mahre Rehari, content to live out the rest of his days in relative peace.
General Information Edit
Age: Early fifties
- Evelyn (wife, deceased)
- Terra (daughter, deceased)
- Krys (Adopted daughter)
- Sakina (Adopted daughter)
- Janus (Adopted son, deceased)
Early Life Edit
Reikan was born into the humble life of a farmer. His parents owned a small plot of land east of Lordaeron that they, like their parents before them, spent their entire lives working. For many years the farm only provided enough to feed the family. Clothes, furniture, nearly everything that the family needed they made themselves. It was during his childhood that Reikan discovered his love for crafting, specifically woodworking and as he grew he became quite adept at the trade.
Fortune would smile on the family for the entirety of Reikan's teen years. Favorable rains had brought an overabundance of crops that the family sold at market, as well as many of the extra chairs, tables and cabinets Reikan made in his spare time. The family used this extra money to send their son to Stratholme to get a formal education. It was during his time in the city of Stratholme that Reikan met his future wife Evelyn, the daughter of a moderately wealthy noble family.
With a great deal of help from his father-in-law, Reikan was admitted to the military academy. The years spent working on a farm had made him very strong and he quickly learned the intricacies of wielding the sword and shield. After graduating from the academy he was sent on patrol along the northern fringes of human territory, near the domain of the high elves. His patrols often led him into conflict with the forest trolls who also inhabited the area.
His valor and adept decision making eventually caught the eye of the Knights of the Silverhand who invited him to be trained as a Paladin. After several years of training Reikan became a Paladin, a source of great pride for him. That same year his daughter, Terra, was born. Though his duties as a soldier and a Paladin often kept him on the road he spent nearly every waking moment at home with his new daughter fully embracing the role of a loving father and devoted husband.
The Second War Edit
With the demonic Horde pushing northward from the ruined city of Stormwind Reikan was called away from his family to serve on the frontlines of the conflict. For two years Reikan was kept away from his home, fighting against the Horde and their troll allies, helping to defend the High Elf lands in Eversong Woods. Time and again he proved himself to be a courageous warrior and was promoted several times during the conflict. He gained a great deal of reputation throughout the northern army for never losing a single member of his squad of troops despite being constantly in the thickest parts of the battles.
Despite the respect and admiration he was earning on the field of battle Reikan's thoughts often wandered back to his home. Every night he wrote a letter to his family, and he often received a letter from his wife in return, updating him on the growth of their daughter. Though it pained him greatly to be reading about his daughter grow rather then being there the letters helped him keep his mind throughout the war. There were few happier days in his life then when the war finally ended in the north and he was allowed to return home to his family and to a daughter who had spent far too much of her life hearing about her father rather then being with him.
Raising a Family Edit
Reikan made up for lost time with his daughter by taking only local patrols so he could spend as much time as possible with her. Terra would often accompany her father on his patrols and Reikan took the opportunity to teach her how to wield a sword, and how to defend herself should the need arise. It was Reikan's belief that everyone should know how to protect themselves and his daughter would be no exception.
As his daughter entered her teen years Reikan took under his wing a young high elf orphan named Janus. The boy was quite nearly a man when Reikan adopted him, but Reikan felt a great deal of remorse for the young man who had spent his entire life in an orphanage and was determined to, at least for a few short years, provide Janus with a real family. Like his daughter, Reikan trained Janus in the art of swordplay and the young man proved to be a more then adept pupil. The family had grown to four and Reikan was content with life, though tension was beginning to build beneath the surface.
The Plague of Lordaeron Edit
The tension that had been building between Janus and Reikan was beginning to boil over. Reikan for years had suspected, correctly, that Janus desired his daughter and though he did care for Janus his desire to protect his daughter whom he still, despite her age, viewed as a little girl overwhelmed his senses. The two would often argue, nearly coming to blows on several occassions over anything but the true source of the problem. The constant friction began taking its toll on his daughter who could not stand seeing her father and the man she secretly loved arguing so violently with one another. Whether it was fortune or misfortune before relations were broken beyond repair Reikan was called away to deal with a mysterious plague that was sweeping across the eastern lands.
When Reikan finally arrived the plague had taken hold and a small batallion of soldiers from Lordaeron were fighting off hordes of the undead. Taking command of the unit, Reikan opted instead of trying to discover the source of the plague to evacuate any civilians he could find before the growing numbers of the Scourge could reach them. While battling across the eastern lands Reikan came across another troop led by a former comrade and old friend a knight by the name of Steele. The two joined together and with their combined forces drove deep into territories controlled by the Scourge in a desperate attempt to rescue any survivors who may have been trapped behind the enemy lines.
The efforts of the two men proved to be in vain. There were no survivors to be found amongst the plagued lands. Everywhere the plague touched, the undead rose and it was spreading quickly across the countryside. With every new foray into the Scourge ranks more and more of Reikan's soldiers were falling either by blade or to the plague itself. With their numbers dwindling they were forced to retreat but they did not make it far before they were ambushed. Many of the remaining soldiers fell, including Steele who with his dieing breath, begged Reikan to return to Lordaeron and protect his young daughter, Krys.
Flight from Lordaeron Edit
Reikan for the first time in his life, abandoned his assignment. He disbanded the remainder of his troops, telling them to return to their homes to protect their families. When he finally returned to Lordaeron proper he found that it too was under assault by the Scourge. Determined to keep his word to his fallen friend he rescued Krys from her house in Brill and carried the young girl and her favorite doll to the docks where survivors were loading onto ships to flee Lordaeron. Reikan desperately looked around, asked around for any where abouts for his family, hoping that they had fled the house like so many others had done but he found no trace of them. In his desperation he put the young girl on a boat to Stormwind under the supervision of the captain whom he had known several years back promising he would meet her when he found his family.
The Paladin rode recklessly back into the fallen land of Lordaeron, darting around groups of Scourge that had overtaken the land. He finally arrived at his home to find it a smoldering ruin. Reikan dug desperately through smoldering wreckage, oblivious to the cuts and burns, hoping that his family was not buried underneath. His body went numb as he came across the blackened wedding band worn by his wife.
Before he could grieve the sound of a skirmish caught his attention and he raced over to find a group of ghouls fighting over something on the ground. Though he was wounded during the fight, he dispatched the entire group of them only to find a bloodied silver pendant on the ground. Even soiled Reikan could still make out the name "Terra" etched on the back of it. In his grief his mind drifted away and he somehow found his way to the last ship leaving Lordaeron and boarded it, still clutching the pendant tightly in his hand.
Note: The next several sections are present in greater detail in the story In the Shadows of Hyjal.
Grunt of the Orcish Horde Edit
"I am not going to kill you. You have earned a place, at least temporarily, with my group. Consider yourself one of us now, Knight Reikan, you will learn to eat as an orc, drink as an orc, and, most importantly, fight as an orc."
-Trogar, Orc Champion
Reikan's boat was chased constantly by a violent storm and forced far out into the sea where it was torn apart by the surging wind and waves. Reikan survived the crash and found himself on the shores of Kalimdor, alone. He was quickly captured by a Horde expeditionary force led by Trogar, an orc of some reknown in Thrall's army. Trogar was fluent in Common from his years spent as a slave and in the spirit of his Warchief showed mercy to Reikan and allowed him to live with his troop, treating him as any other orc. As he did before in the armies of Lordaeron Reikan proved his worth on the field of battle earning a few during Trogar's skirmishes with the Quilboar.
During his time with the orcs Reikan and Trogar conversed often, sharing perspectives and reflections on their lives and the wars they had seen. Reikan sympathized with the orc and the two became good friends despite the bloodied history between the two races. Though he had found a kindred spirit in Trogar thoughts of his lost family still haunted Reikan and the wound he had suffered in his desperate search for them was slowly beginning to take hold of his mind.
Leaving the Horde Edit
"Our paths will part one day, Reikan. When they do, do not forget us. Remember what we taught you. We are no longer your enemy. We wish to only be left alone to live out the rest of our lives."
-Trogar, Orc Champion
As the expeditionary force pushed deeper into the plains of Kalimdor they came across two Tauren of the Earthstrider clan, Monok and Vallai. Having a common enemy in the centaur the tauren joined with Trogar, Reikan and the orc forces, offering their knowledge of the land and its dangers. The younger tauren, Vallai, showed a great deal of interest in Reikan, spending many nights trying to learn the human's language.
As the days passed Reikan became weaker. He eventually collapsed and was found babbling incoherently, his sorrow drenched mind conjuring up images of his lost family. At Vallai's recommendation, Trogar allowed the two Tauren to take Reikan with them away from the Orc patrols and deep into the woods of Ashenvale hoping to use the blessed waters of the moonwells to heal the Paladin's injury. During the trek northward Reikan eventually regained consciousness but his delirium persisted. He was constantly plagued by visions of his family, visions of his return to a happy home with his wife and child.
The Lady Whiteraven Edit
"Leave your childish chivalry behind. My reasons for staying are my own, be grateful that I am guiding you for without me you would have been dead long ago.”
-Lady Serris Whiteraven, Kaldorei Sentinel
The three pressed deeper into the woods of Ashenvale fighting off growing numbers of the Scourge. During one such encounter Reikan, who even in despair was still prone to acts of blind heroism, rescued Lady Serris Whiteraven, a Kaldorei Sentinel. Initially relations between the two were very cold; the Night Elf was not fond of outlanders but due to what appeared to be a good rapport with Monok Earthstrider she granted the party her aid in their journey through Ashenvale.
Reikan, as with Trogar, sensed a kindred spirit in the Lady Whiteraven and tried to speak with her at length, hopeing to get her to open up. Serris, however, viewed Reikan's curiosity as advances and became even harsher in her responses. Despite her best efforts Reikan persisted in his attempts to talk with her but the Night Elf was not swayed by mere words. However their relationship improved greatly when during a fight with a Scourge warlock and his demonic minions Reikan proved his worth by overcoming the warlock's powerful spells, slaying him in the process. Afterwards the Lady Whiteraven was much kinder to the Paladin and the two would become very close during their journey through Ashenvale.
Fading Dreams Edit
"We’ll always be with you, Daddy. Don’t give up."
-Terra, speaking in a dream to Reikan
traveled across the expanse of Ashenvale, fighting off demons, scourge and demonic Horde alike. During their travels they formed a powerful bond with one another, one so deep Monok Earthstrider saw fit to carve a new familial totem with representations of his companions depicted prominently. Reikan was deeply affected by this finding, for the first time since his leaving his home to discover the source of the Plague in Lordaeron, a family that he could call his own. However neither his depression nor his wound were to be so quickly forgotten. He dreamed even more often of his wife and his daughter but with each passing dream they began to fade away, whispering to him that they would wait for him to join them in the afterlife, but that now was not the time. His family faded away from his dreams, leaving him only with a haunting plea: "Don't give up."
The journey was brought to an abrupt halt, though when the party was ambushed by a pack of Scourge led by a large abomination. Though they fought valiantly and managed to slay the abomination, the Scourge numbers were reinforced by the arrival of a Death Knight. One by one Reikan's companions fell, wounded in the onslaught until just he alone stood facing the Death Knight and his minions. It was only the timely arrival of a joint force of Dwarves and uncorrupted Orcs that saved Reikan and his companions from certain death.
Finding a Cure Edit
The four were taken to a joint force camp to recover. After several days Reikan, Vallai and Serris were up and walking again, but Monok was not so fortunate. He was wounded gravely in the fight against the Scourge and still was in no condition to travel. The group made the decision to leave Monok behind to recover while they continued on to find a cure for Reikan.
The Scourge presence in Ashenvale had grown considerably and the Death Knight that had assaulted them before was in dogged pursuit, attacking the group constantly. Despite the constant attacks the group managed to break through and the Scourge forces pulled back away from western Ashenvale. They came across an uncorrupted moonwell along the western shores. The sea air brought with it memories of Reikan's past, memories of a happier time. He had found the cure, he would be free of his wound and could live out the rest of his days but such thoughts did not make him happy. He wanted to die. Every living moment kept him away from what he truly wanted, but refusing the cure would mean turning his back on his companions would had risked so much to bring him to the moonwell so he could be healed. His mind was torn between seeing his old family again and living with his new family. Eventually Reikan refused the cure, opting to die, though it pained him greatly to see his new family so hurt by his refusal. Serris was enraged and demanded that Reikan follow her to Hyjal believing that if it was his choice to die he should at least die for something.
The Battle of Mount Hyjal Edit
"Let the world see that though driven from our homes the children of Lordaeron have not been broken! Let our deaths not be in vain! For Family! For Honor! For Lordaeron!”
-Reikan, before making his charge into the Legion's lines.
Reikan was positioned with the human forces on the front lines. Though brave the humans could not hold against the Scourge forces and were forced to retreat to the Orcish base farther up the mountain. With the aid of the Horde the refugees of Loradaeron held fast against the Scourge preventing them from making any progress towards the Orc base.
The Legion forces were limitless, or so it seemed. An orc scouting party discovered the Legion were using a series of portals in their camp to bring in reinforcements. Reikan volunteered, along with several other refugees from Lordaeron to make the charge into the Legion camp to destroy the portals and prevent any more reinforcements from arriving. With the aid of Horde demolistionists a hole was, quite literally, blown in the middle of the Legion's lines allowing Reikan and the other eight riders to dash through and make their way to the Legion camp.
Reikan and his riders were successful in destroying several of the portals before retreating back towards the orc camp. Unfortunately the orcs were overwhelmed and forced to retreat higher up the mountain. It seemed to Reikan that they would not make it all the way to the Elven camp before falling to the surrounding Scourge and demons but his companions refused to give up on him. Where the orc camp had once stood Monok, Vallai and Trogar held their ground, waiting for Reikan and his riders to make their return.
The group retreated to the elf base but enroute Reikan and Trogar were intercepted by the Death Knight. Together they managed to defeat him, but Trogar was wounded in the battle and though it pained him to do so, was forced to retreat leaving Reikan to die alone, as he wished. An oncomming pit lord was ready to grant Reikan his wish but despite his desire something in the Paladin refused to die. He stood valiantly but was simply no match for the demon. Before the pit lord could finally finish Reikan off he was rescued by the Lady Whiteraven and dragged away from the battle and into hiding. Archimonde was approaching and there was nothing either of them could do to stop him but hope Malfurion had enough time.
The Family Earthstrider Edit
"Let us remain true to one another; we are family, Earthstriders all. Though circumstances may lead our people to war our bond will remain strong."
After the destruction of the World Tree and the defeat of Archimonde Trogar, Reikan, Serris, Monok and Vallai made a pact with one another. Through their travels together they had become family and though all realized that without a common enemy war would once again spark between the Alliance and the Horde they pledged to remain true to one another. No order from any King or Warchief would break their bond. Before all else they were Earthstriders and their loyalty to one another would hold for years to come.
After their pledge Reikan spent a few months in Kalimdor with his new family but growing tensions between the Alliance and Horde, particularly over the misguided attack by Admiral Proudmoore, forced Reikan to leave them behind and finally return to the Eastern Kingdoms. Despite the sad goodbyes Reikan had found a new reason to live. His wound, miraculously was beginning to subside, and he knew he had a promise to keep to an old friend.
Return to the Eastern Kingdoms Edit
Arriving in Stormwind, Reikan set out to find Krys. Despite getting little more then dirty looks from the vast majority of the city's denizens he managed to find the orphanage. As luck would have it Krys was there, though to Reikan's surprise she was now much older then he remembered, in her late teens. He had not realized how much time had passed while he was in Kalimdor.
The two stayed at one of the local inns for several days while Reikan set out to find a permanent place to live as well as a job. Unfortunately by the time Reikan had arrived in Stormwind the refugees of Lordaeron had already built up a sour reputation with the citizens of the city and few places would even let him in the door. Eventually he found a place to live, a run down boarding house off the Trade District that was run by a manipulative landlord and kept in ill repair. Despite Krys' protestations they rented two rooms hoping it to only be a temporary stop.
Despite Reikan's best efforts he could not find a job. Many had simply too many hands and could not afford to have another on the payroll. Others still denied Reikan an opportunity based on his age, or the growing perception around the city that he was a kook. In order to make at least some money he took several odd and end jobs a day but none were permanent. As time went on the landlord managed to squeeze more and more money out of Reikan, forcing him to eventually rent only one room at a cost only slightly less then it was to initially rent two.
With very little money left over to buy food or other necessities Krys began to steal what the two needed to survive. Though Reikan knew she was stealing he also knew that the two had few other options. Seeing himself as a failure as a provider and a parent he slipped into a deep depression. Whenever he could afford to Reikan would buy several bottles of cheap alcohol and drown out his sorrows for as long as he could. Even with his growing dependance on alcohol he still put nearly every gold coin he earned towards making Krys' life as comfortable as it could possibly be in their desperation.
At the height of his depression Reikan finally found a source of joy in the otherwise hostile city of Stormwind. The orphans, and indeed, a growing number of other children, would come to him as the sun set every day to listen to his stories. Reikan would tell sweeping tales of the bravery of his companions in Kalimdor always keeping the story focused on them and rarely mentioning any part he played. Krys would come too and listen to the stories, though like many of the people of Stormwind she was skeptical of the old man's tales, believing them to be conjured from an inebriated mind.
Arrival of the Whiteraven Edit
"Pathetic! You would so easily give up again, when so many people depend on you? Where is your courage? Where's your backbone? How dare you sit here drunk out of your mind allowing yourself to be exploited!"
-Lady Serris Whiteraven
The arrival of Lady Serris Whiteraven in Stormwind marked a pronounced turn around in Reikan's life. Infuriated that Reikan would allow himself to fall so far she took it upon herself to straighten both him and his life up. Through sheer intimidation she freed Reikan and Krys from their contract with the landlord and arranged for them a much fairer deal living in a house off the park in Stormwind.
Serris stayed with the two, mostly to keep watch over Reikan to keep him from slipping back into depression. For all intents and purposes the three functioned as a family, though a tad disfunctional. Serris' presence provided validity to Reikan's stories for Krys and she began to discover a new found respect for the old man. Over the passing months she grew closer to Reikan and though she would never admit it, least of all to him, she was beginning to think of him as a true father, and not simply a family friend.
Encouraged by the stabalization of his life under the watchful eyes of Serris, Reikan enlisted to help the Stormwind guard at Northshire Abbey.
Imprisonment and Flight Edit
"You don't know how fortunate you are, to have a family who cares so deeply for you."
After helping to settle the Kobold related mess in Northshire Reikan was moved to Goldshire and the greater part of Elwynn forest to help in the efforts against the Defias. Before he could even begin to help his old friend Vallai Earthstrider arrived in Goldshire, hoping to visit Reikan. Unfortunately knowing very little of humans other then what he experienced with the Lordaeron Refugees Vallai was unaware that he would be met with such hostility by the Stormwind Guard. Seeking only help to find his friend his words were met with drawn blades and a call to arms.
Reikan saw the situation unfolding and quickly moved to step between the mass of guards and his friend. Ordering Vallai to flee, Reikan drew his blade and prevented the guards from giving chase to the tauren. When Vallai had gotten far enough away Reikan sheathed his blade and allowed himself to be arrested. However, the guards, frustrated at Reikan for preventing them from slaying a member of the Horde bound the Paladin and then savagely beat him. As their rage cooled the guards dragged Reikan away and for his near treasonous activities threw him into the Stockades.
News of Reikan's imprisonment reached Serris' ears quickly, and no amount of threats or pleads allowed her access to see her imprisoned friend. Furious, Serris chose to take matters into her own hands, and following a tip provided by Krys who had growing ties in the shady underbelly of Stormwind planned to break Reikan out of jail. Along with Vallai, who felt responsible for Reikan's predicament, Trogar who was monitoring Horde interests in Stranglethorn Vale, and Tremag Ironsprocket, who had the misfortune of being caught overhearing the plan to free Reikan, Serris made her move into the Stockades the night of the prisoner uprising. In the dead of night the group snuck through Stormwind and utilizing the chaos in the Stockades from the revolt rescued their captured comrade.
Feeling that it would be unwise to have Reikan stay in Stormwind, Serris, Vallai and Trogar took him back to Kalimdor. It would be several years before Reikan would see Stormwind again.
In Service of a Priestess Edit
Unwilling to leave Reikan in a strange land with no means to occupy his time Serris quickly found him a job protecting a Kaldorei priestess by the name of Mahre Rehari. The two spent the vast majority of the next few months together traveling across Kalimdor from Darkshore to Feralas. With each passing day Reikan became more tormented. He knew he was falling in love with the priestess but he still felt bound to his fallen wife of years past. The priestess too shared his feelings but did not know the extent of the relationship between Serris and Reikan and did not wish to cause unneeded friction between herself and her friend.
During many of their returns to Darnassus during their travels Reikan found and adopted a young Kaldorei elf by the name of Sakina. Though she had family in Darnassus, her uncle was the owner of a small shop in the city, the young girl attached herself to the old Paladin, enthralled by his stories, particularly those of Monok Earthstrider. She took to referring to Reikan as her father and in many ways was the polar opposite of Krys, Reikan's other adopted daughter. Despite their differences Reikan was overjoyed to have not one, but two daughters and would spend much of his down time teaching both all he could of the world.
Reikan is a complex man with complex emotions. At times he is brave, chivalrous, undeniably heroic while at others he is meek, timid, reserved. His mind is often torn between these two extremes, his desire to be the hero his family sees him to be and his desire to give in to his ghosts and dissapear from the world. He suffers greatly from depression and in his later years has found a taste for alcohol to help him forget his past. His mind very rarely lets him forget his past failures, no matter how small and conjures them often which drives Reikan further into despair. Even in his darkest moments, though, Reikan's desire to parent outweighs all other urges and emotions. He loves children and cannot pass up an opportunity to make one smile.