Wide green eyes observe the world with an oddly detached gaze. The girl before you is neither old nor young, pretty nor dull. Unremarkable in nearly every way, she slips from your memory as easily as she leaves your line of sight, quickly forgotten.
Blunt and to the point, Shade rarely minces words, not seeing any reason to. Curiously absent is the delicate, often fragile personalities of so many of the elves. While most others would tend to flit around the truth with flowering phrases and careful explanations, Shade speaks her mind when and where she sees fit.
The Girl Left Behind Edit
It was quiet in Eversong the night the strangers came to the small cottage in the woods. Whether a soured trade deal or a favor gone horribly wrong, the girl that was taken never knew – or what happened to her parents. But the strangers, unidentifiable and unfamiliar, showed at least a small amount of compassion by taking her to an orphanage rather than killing her on the spot.
The little girl was far, far too young to know or understand what had happened. All she knew was that one moment her parents were there and the next they were not – and she was left in a strange place, with strange people, in a large and brilliant city with which she had little familiarity. Left to her own devices, she crept out that night and vanished.
Or so the orphanage thought, never bothering to look for her again and demonstrating the same lackluster attitude of many in the city at that time. The girl wandered the streets, stumbling into the dark recesses known now as Murder Row – and it was there that Nerisen found her.
Nerisen was shrewd, lithe and utterly lethal – but he knew an opportunity when he saw it. And the strange, pale child that wandered the streets like a small ghost was just that: opportunity.
Dubbing the child ‘Shade’, after the spectre she appeared to be, he proceeded to take the girl in, sympathizing with her plight, telling her it would be all right and vowing to find her parents at all costs - raised her and taught her the ways of the silent, the quiet, the unspoken-of underbelly of Silvermoon that whispered its way through the high courts and performed the...unsavory tasks that few spoke of, and most refused to acknowledge. In Silvermoon, appearance is everything. Propriety must be upheld at all costs – and those with the largest coffers were those that were best able to hold their positions, legally or otherwise.
Nerisen himself held little to no rank in Silvermoon. Most refused to even acknowledge the strange little corridor, the building where he did ‘business’. For his business was very precise – he was an expert in the trade of favors for coin. While he trained many, he had his ‘specials’ – those he trusted with particularly delicate assignments that he received from an unknown group he simply called the ‘higher ups’. These faceless nobles who had their own reasons for getting information, or getting rid of competition, found Nerisen to be a distinct advantage. Nerisen took their orders, distributed them among his army of street rats, and raked in the profits – with a small fee paid to the rat that actually performed whatever deed was requested, of course.
Shade grew from a child into an adult, carefully groomed by Nerisen to be exactly as she appeared to be, no more, no less. Bred to be a chameleon, she had the distinct advantage of not looking like anyone in particular at all – pale, but most women were pale. Pretty, but most women were pretty. Small, but all women were small – indeed, were one to see her in a crowd one would barely notice she were there.
An advantage, when one is raised in the art of not being seen. And she wasn’t
Strangely it never occurred to her that she was participating in the selfsame activities that were more than likely responsible for her parent’s disappearance. Coldly raised by Nerisen’s uncaring assistants in the most mechanical of fashions and overseen by Nerisen himself, she was content to perform the tasks he asked her to do - especially when the end result was often praise, gold, and yet another pretty dress to add to her extensive collection.
She wasn’t lacking in morals, necessarily – it was very hard to lack what one had never been brought up with in the first place. Quiet and reserved, she was content to merely observe what she saw around her, use her own common sense, and form her own opinions – yet smart enough to keep those opinions to herself, especially after seeing what came of asking too many questions of nobility. But those observations held with her, and formed her into the person she is today. For all its appearances, for all its brilliance Silvermoon was, in essence, a beautiful serpent. Exotic and brilliantly colored, but nonetheless deadly. While outward appearances would lead anyone to believe the city and the people in it were pleasant, beautiful and refined, to her it was as if she daily looked into a magic mirror and saw what was really there – the manipulations and machinations of those that did not wish to get their hands dirty as plain as day.
Fall of the Sunwell Edit
It was some time much later in her adulthood that the Scourge came. Silvermoon rose to defend – and there were those that defended, and those that died. But Nerisen bid her not go and instead had her hide, tucked safely away in the darkened corridors.
“Stay safe, hide away, and don’t come out again till I come for you – I don’t want you damaged.”
The sounds of mayhem and murder filled the air - how jarring must it have been, to be an agent of quiet moments of death for so long now suddenly confronted with the sounds of violent acts. Huddled in her hiding place, she waited for the noises to die. Nerisen came for her then, leading her out into what remained of the once glorious city, the Sunwell that was center stage to all politics and machinations now nothing more than a dream.
The word Sin'dorei meant little to her - her people could call herself what they wished, she did not care. The sacrifices made by those that fought had little meaning to her as well – why should they? At the end of the day what remained was her work, her life, and Nerisen – who seemed relieved to find her unharmed.
The question of why he was relieved never occurred to her, the unspoken answer, ‘because he cares for me and doesn’t wish to see me hurt’, already assumed.
Alliance With The Horde Edit
When the Sin'dorei finally broke free of their somewhat isolated state and allied with the Horde, Shade was curiously unaffected by the news. When the Horde started sending emissaries to Silvermoon, she watched them with a certain curiosity. Here were the creatures her people decided to ally with, and they were so…strange. Having never seen anything but elves, dealt with nothing but elves, for all of her life these new beings were fascinating, and in between the assignments she would quietly wander the city, watching them, always observing...
It was some time after the allegiance with the Horde that the assignment came to Nerisen – a Forsaken priest had been seen roaming the city streets, and she was in possession of something terribly, gravely important. The ‘higher ups’ did not want her harmed, kidnapped, or otherwise incapacitated – they merely wanted to pinpoint her location and determine where she was staying, and whether or not she was in the company of a certain troll warrior as well. It was made crystal clear to Nerisen that this was a very special assignment, and as such he assigned Shade to locate her.
Struggling to complete the task given her and dealing with the added annoyances of the priest’s friends, Shade made error after error in judgment. Nerisen, strangely panicked and overwrought, hounded her to complete the job – and out of a devotion borne from dedication to the one person who’d shown her any kindness, she made a fatal choice and a bargain with the priest’s companions. Betray the ‘higher-ups’, expose their deceit and machinations in exchange for the life of her beloved mentor and herself.
Unfortunately, she severely underestimated the so-called ‘higher-ups’ and their power. Nerisen casually mentioned a meeting that was to take place at Sunfury Spire – a meeting that was cancelled. Shade went to the Spire, convinced that she could somehow save her mentor, and was greeted with the most terrifying experience of her life.
For the higher-ups listen, and have eyes in every wall, every corner, every nook and cranny in Silvermoon. And while the everyday people strut and fret upon the city streets, these nobles – unknown, disguised and power-mad, pulled the strings. Brutally torturing the rogue, they asked her question after question about what she knew – and she managed to escape with her life, barely.
After confronting the priest’s friends, filling them in on what little she knew, Shade left Silvermoon for good, disgusted with her people, with Nerisen, and with herself for being foolish enough to think she could succeed.
It was an equally dark night, hot and pouring rain in Sen'jin Village when Gadrin, the leader of the small group of Darkspear that lived there was suddenly confronted by a small, pointy-eared figure in his hut.
“Give me something to kill,” she said.
And he did.
Over the next several months, Shade lived with the trolls – oddly enough content to do the simple tasks that were asked of her and slowly gaining if not their trust, their grudging respect. What brought her to the village nobody knew, but Gadrin seemed all right enough with simply speaking with the girl, getting the story out of her bit by bit and sharing tales of troll folklore and song with her. Gadrin informed Vol'jin of the girl’s presence, and Vol'jin ordered him to watch her, gain her trust. After all, the girl seemed to have a peculiar hatred for the city from which she came.
How much easier it is to spy upon those you are unsure of, when the spy wears your enemy’s face.
And so Shade is back in Silvermoon on her own curious mission, although she avoids Murder Row and its denizens. The 'higher ups', whoever they may be or might have been, are noticeably absent from the city – perhaps they have fled to regions north, obsessed with the Sunwell. Perhaps they have simply gone into hiding, for now.
It’s only a matter of time before somebody finds out.
Out of Character Information Edit
- Assume Shade is Roleplaying unless otherwise noted with Out of Character brackets, or a previous warning.