Saturday, 26 December 2009

The year that was

Winter Veil always seems to me to be a double edged sword (wooden one of course) or perhaps two sides of a chocolate coin.

Don't misunderstand me, the feasting and merry making, the mountains of presents and the decorations that adorn every spare corner whip me up into a near frenzy of bubbling excitement. My friends listen with fading patience to my enthusiastic chatter of presents, decorations and festive fare. Even my demons become ever more reluctant to heed my summons , fearful of being draped in tinsel and adorned with fairy lights!

Yet the festival has its roots in coaxing light in the darkness of the depths of winter, in the promise of spring and the renewal of the world. So, for me at least, it is also a time to reflect, to take stock and to remember past times. There's something special about the quiet after the party has died down, staring into the low flames of a dying fire lit by the twinkling of fairy lights.

This has been an interesting year, for myself and of course my companion, Aggrion. We had all but lost touch with one another at the end of last year and the discovery of Northrend did little to enthuse my warrior. Eventually I was able to drag him out of his drunken stupor and we boarded a ship from Stormwind that took us to the besieged town of Valgarde. There we began to learn a healthy dislike and respectable admiration for our new foe, the Vyrkul. Our first few expeditions left me concerned that our friendship was not what it had once been. Had our time apart created a chasm too deep for us to bridge?

Perhaps to reassure myself I started to spend my free evenings reminiscing. Remembering the many adventurers we had experienced together and our varied and ridiculous disguises. In light of these memories it seemed foolish for me to worry, we have so much that binds us.

But Valentine's day came and went with my romantic meal coming to nothing but a 'pleasant' few hours. Can he really be so blind to my feelings? Still, as the weeks and months passed we fell back into an easy way with one another, getting a feel for each others moods and more importantly, fighting styles. We worked together fluidly, bantering as we fought our way across Northrend. Finally, in April, I caught a glimpse of a deeper, kinder side to Aggrion as he spoke tenderly to Emily following our failure to rescue her rabbit, Mr Floppy.

The next few months were lighter, perhaps the weather, perhaps our growing familiarity with Northrend, and we found ourselves donning many strange costumes, raiding the Undercity (with gnome sized standards!) and laughing until we cried whilst dressed as Scourge. Then all of a sudden, almost at the same moment (almost), we were level 80 and a new era opened for us.

We put ourselves up for hire as 'Tank' and 'Damage Dealer' and started to explore the dungeons of Northrend. But we did so with little direction or drive, not really knowing where we wanted to go, rudderless in a way.

It was with this backdrop that we ended up at the Brewfest festival in Dun Morogh, and the day that changed our relationship forever.

Not that you'd know it if you saw us today of course. We're just as light hearted as ever, always teasing one another. But beneath that our friendship is strengthened in a way that can't be captured in simple words.

As for our careers? We thought it unlikely we'd ever be accepted into the larger raids that were organised against the powerful forces of the area, and for a long while that was true, but slowly we are beginning to tag along.

Our motivation? To carry on adventuring. Together.

So what am I grateful this Winter Veil? I'm grateful for my friends and most of all for my Warrior.

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