|Class||Blood Death Knight|
- Name: Ituha Yanisin of the Winterhoof Tribe
- Race: Tauren
- Size: An average build. Slightly short.
- Age: Died in early middle ages about 6 years ago
- Guild: Ani Ayastigi
- Occupation: Champion of the Ani Ayastigi, Spirit Guide, Front-line Soldier, and Jewel-crafter
- Personality Sketch: Optimistic. Friendly.
- Weaknesses: Brain damage from her death causes the right side of her body to become paralyzed at times.
- Birthplace: Camp Taurajo
- Home: The bearskin rug in front of the hearth of the Ani Ayastigi guild hall
- Family: No living relatives know of her resurrection. Only Serahe, who she trained with as a Shaman, knows her from before her death.
- Haketche (Father), Dahmela (Mother), Asehma (Sister, Later: Maplebrook), Hawakme (Brother, Deceased)
- Description: Cobalt bangs cascade over either side of her forehead. Her mane falls in two braids. The left has several small feathers weaved into it and the right has a Large Iron feather bound to it. Her weapon is well polished. Her armor, though rigid and thick, is dusty and battleworn.
Life and Death Edit
Ituha was born in the harsh barrens where her home was under constant attack from the centaur. She was a natural shaman and began training under Ta'he Winterhoof at a very young age. His daughter, Serahe, joined the classes and they quickly became great friends. As the years went by her relationship with both Serahe and The Elements grew stronger until she removed herself from training and chose to aid in fighting the centaur of Desolace. She felt it necessary to aid in the battle not only for her hatred of the Centaur, but also as experience to help her be accepted into the Ani Ayastigi. Ituha always dreamed of serving them. There was no greater honor to her than serving the warrior tribe and working closely with her own people and the orcs she so admired for their help with the crossroads caravans. One day she carelessly wandered away from her war-party and encountered a band of centaur that had slipped past the line. Before she could react they were upon her and she was left dead and stripped to bleach in the dry Desolace wind.
In Service of the Scourge Edit
She was very powerful in her early years of serving Arthas. Her elemental affinity augmented her necromatic powers making her very effective in war. She showed no quarter or remorse. What tortures her the most is that she remembers well the things she'd done, but at the time she was watching in a stupor as her mind was as if it were behind a veil. As the atrocities she'd committed piled up her elemental powers waned. She watched helplessly as her life's calling forsook her. Now significantly less powerful, she was demoted and assigned to serve under Goretooth. Over time she became less powerful and ruthless. Her wit returned slowly with each passing day until she was sent to battle at Light's Hope. Azeroth wept blood from the sky as the invasion was impending, and as it struck her skin her mind came back to her all at once. As the other scourge units charged, she dropped her axe and stood still in astonishment of her sins.
Acceptance of the Horde Edit
When Ituha first broke from the Lich King, her first instinct was to return to Orgrimmar to find Serahe at the orphanage. She didn't want Ta'he to see her as she now was, but deep down she knew Serahe would accept her. Luckily Darion Mograine had tasked her to do just that, so her first action as a free knight was decided. She inhaled deeply, clutching the parcel from High-Lord Mograine and preparing herself. She knew insults would be thrown, but never expected the rotten fruit as she entered the city gates. The orcs she respected so much for their honor and strength had sided with the elements and turned on her, seeing no forgiveness. She tried to apologize as she passed, but the guards would dart to her sides to evade any attack that might come. They hooted and roared and taunted her, so she hung her head and headed straight for Thrall hoping deeply that the Kor'Kron would not slay her on sight. When she finally reached Thrall he read the parcel and sat quietly for a moment considering it. "You will welcome Ituha, a former hero of the Horde, and treat her with the respect that you would give to any ally of Orgrimmar," he bellowed, sending two messengers out the door to spread the word. She replied quietly with a bowed head. "Yanisin if you please, Warchief. I wish not to shame my former name with the actions I've committed."
The Warrior Tribe Edit
Now given a second chance, Yanisin felt compelled to carry out with joining the Ani Ayastigi. She found a small gathering of some braves and champions in Thunderbluff, and approached them choosing her words carefully. “Dawado ale Oginali ("I am, and I am a friend" in the Ani tongue)," she said. She explained her story and asked not that they forgave her, but that they would tolerate her until she could prove herself again. An orc hunter, Tamsinela, stepped forward to speak, and told her where to seek council with the elders and approval from the clan. She was weary of the knight, and refused to break sight with her. Slowly she backed away and returned to the fire, leaving Yanisin to return the next week.
Acceptance of a Death Knight into the clan was a grave issue for the elders; one they didn't make lightly. The second week she returned for a judgment the Ani met at the shrine of the fallen warrior to reveal their historic decision. She rode in early, dismissing her kodo at the base of the mountain to make the rest of the trek alone. Many of the warriors chose not to acknowledge her so she found a place toward the back of the meeting place, where many of the Death Knights who sought acceptance seemed to gravitate toward. Knâr, a champion of the Ani, stepped forward to sound the Elder's judgment. As Cairne trusted the judgement of Thrall on many matters, the Ani would trust his judgment on the acceptance of these new allies. The Knights stepped forward to kneel and take the oath when suddenly two elf knights called out an interruption. They tried to explain to the gathered that there was no place for them among the living. That joining the clan was a mistake; a folly in trying to become what they once were. This struck Yanisin hard. Deep down she thought it could be true. They asked that the knights come back with them and join the Order of the Ebon Blade, the only place a knight truly belonged. The words fell on the deaf ears of others and they were asked to leave much to Yanisin's relief. She kneeled and took the oath full of a vigor to prove herself and bring honor back to her name. Little did she know that she'd go on to become a Champion of the Tribe.
The Seer's own QuestEdit
Yanisin paced in the Shu’halo burial grounds as she had many times before. Swinging a censor full of gently burning herbs and grasses meant to draw in the spirits, she prayed with closed eyes that her ancestors would visit her this night and bestow upon her the wisdom she sought. With a dull yet harmonious hum, she walked amongst the mortuary scaffolds—leaving behind her a trail of fragrant smoke. It was a motion she had become so practiced in, she needn’t open her eyes for guidance. Finally, seemingly without queue, she stopped and sat. With her eyes still closed, she gently folded the censor’s chain and set it upon her lap as a vision encompassed her.
When she opened her eyes, it was light as if mid-day. A fog enveloped her and the burial grounds and glowed yellow as the overhead sun passed through it. The mist stopped her from seeing more than a few feet in any direction, but she thought she could barely make out a figure just down the path between the scaffolds. As she stepped forward, the silhouette slowly took shape. It was a male—a large one... and he stood sideways while looking at her as if caught in the middle of some act. Finally recognizing the spirit, she raised her hand and placed it on his cheek, pulling it gently into her chest as he hunched over to embrace her.
“My dear brother, it has been so long.” She dropped her arms and stepped back, looking at the bull with a smile. Though his voice was bold and deep, the raspy sound of leaking air sounded as he spoke. “Yes, Ituha. I wish I could have come to you sooner. But I regret… there is a reason I have, as it must be.” Nodding with an expression that grew more concerned, she looked to the ground. “I understand. It’s not often that such a young spirit comes to vision. By all rights the last time we should have seen one another would have been in Desolace. But if it is a message you have for me, Hawakme, I will hear it.” She took his hand and they both sat upon the earth.
“Ituha,” he said with concern. Leaning forward, he attempted to start again. “A great injustice has been committed against your soul.” Her face went blank as he said this and she looked outward into the fog as he continued. “You walk amongst the living after death. Why haven’t you gone to visit mother and father?” Her voice cracked as she strained to hold back tears she couldn’t produce. “I… I am dead, brother, as are you. A parent should not have to bury their child… they should not have to bury two. I cannot bring myself to haunt them. They’ve endured enough.” Placing his hand on her knee, he leaned forward to meet her gaze. “And what of the joy you would bring them? To know their daughter still walks upon the ground. What of Maplebrook, our sister? You think it better they’d never know?”
Afraid to give in to his request, she fought hard not to meet his gaze. It was easier, after all, to resist without looking into her brother’s eyes, but he was unrelenting. “They deserve to know, Ituha. As painful as it may be, they deserve to know.” She finally broke and looked at him. His eyes were glowing like golden honey, and though she could feel anger and fear welling up inside her… there was something calming and joyful in his eyes. She tried several times to speak before finally looking away, again. “But I’m happy as I am. Please… do not make me go.” Placing an arm on her shoulder, he turned her towards him again and placed his finger below her chin. “We’ve been watching you, sister. You may act as though you are happy… but you are not whole. You haven’t yet accepted what you are. This… you must do.”
Nodding, she slowly leaned into him to bury her face into his neck. She sobbed as he cradled her and made a gentle hissing sound—one he used to make when they were young, to calm her. Slowly and gently the vision dissipated, and on the ground, in the night, she lay on her side… warring on the inside over the quest her brother had issued. It would be several hours before she had the strength to return to the bluff.
Yanisin looked onward into the lush purple growth and gripped her pack with a deep breath as she prepared to enter it. She had travelled alone on hoof for most of the journey, sleeping in the grasses as her ancestors did, but it was just as she’d have it. She wanted time to think and reflect between destinations, and her journey was too rough for her kodo, anyway.
Her immediate family, though mostly Winterhoof, were spread all over Kalimdor. She’d already spoken with many of them from the southern-most reaches; aunts, cousins, even a grandparent who still grasped at life. For some, she was well received. Others were cautious, though, and she’d even been shooed and chased away by a few. She’d even run into the Ani in Feralas, for which she was glad. The quest had been taxing, and it offered her a retreat from it all if only for a moment.
Now she stood at the border of Ashenvale, though. This was the part of the journey she’d most dreaded. She’d seen the full spectrum of reactions from distant relatives and it brought no certainty to how her very own parents would react. If everyone had embraced her, she’d be able to walk easier into their quiet life. If they’d all called her a monster… she’d know the quest folly and return home without a word. She was stuck, though. Uncertain. The step that she finally took wasn’t along the beaten path, but it sent her off toward a fallen log some way into the foliage, where she sat. Whenever she was unsure of her course, sitting alone in the wild and talking it out with herself always bolstered her resolve. Now seemed like a great time for one such talk.
“I wish Maplebrook had been at her camp while I was there, in Stonetalon. She’d have reacted just like Mother and Father will. I wish I had that insight. How will they receive me? I keep expecting the worst, but they’ve surprised me before. They respect balance. When I told them I was to become a Shaman… they were surprised to say the least. They hoped I would follow in their footsteps, like Maplebrook did. But they were supportive. They… don’t fear what is different, as most do. They’re out here, living in peace with the elves… and as long as respect and balance is maintained, they are at home. What of my affront, though. By all rights in the view of the Earthmother, I’m an abomination. They are druids. They value balance but they also exalt life. To stir after death is a great assault… a mockery on the sanctity of life.”
She let out a labored sigh and took a deep breath to retrieve herself from the onset of sorrow. “I wouldn’t be bothered with this now if I’d never become a shaman. I’d never have gone to Desolace… never have died. I’d… never have trained and met Serahe.” She paused for a moment, looking down at the leaf she’d been running through her fingers anxiously.
“She’s been such a dear friend to me; a beacon that always kept me on the right path. I’d never have joined the Ani Ayastigi… found success with them as a Spirit Guide. I’d be more like Maplebrook is… a druid, like them. She’s done well for herself… in high standings with the Oatwind tribe. It’s not for me, though. Too comfortable. We were always rivals growing up. We had our own paths… Perhaps it’s better I faced her last with this. Mom and Dad have always been…”
Her audible thoughts were suddenly interrupted as a hand came down upon her shoulder.
To be continued...