Well, it didn’t take long for me to finish reading this short story. I watched Nobbel88’s video about Sylvanas Windrunner’s Lore Part 2, and that was exactly when I began my search for the story. In truth, I am always interested with this character. The once, great Elven ranger, died in the hand of Arthas, resurrected as a Banshee, forsaken by the Scourge, and now she has her own kingdom, The Undercity. Atop of it is the Ruins of Lordaeron, a mighty Human kingdom… at least before the Scourge Invasion.
Sylvanas played a great role in the Wrath of the Lich King. During the Battle for Angrathar (see this), the Forsaken Undead led by Grand Aphotecary Puttress threw the New Plague to the forces of Alliance and Horde, resulting in massive number of deaths and the unknown status of Bolvar Fordragon. An immediate action was set by both Alliance and the Horde upon the Undercity. For the Alliance, they wanted to retake their old kingdom while the Horde wanted to take back Undercity from Varimathras. Varimathras was defeated, but then the Alliance appeared and had a clash with the Horde. Jaina stopped the fight and teleported the rest of Alliance to safety.
Later on, Sylvanas led Horde to the Icecrown Citadel, starting in the Frozen Halls. They descend to the Pit of Saron until finally, they entered the Halls of Reflection. This was the place where Sylvanas met the old blade that killed her in the past. She tried to summon the dead spirit from it, and then Uther appeared (see it here).
Uther the Lightbringer says: You haven’t much time. The Lich King sees what the sword sees. He will be here shortly.
Lady Sylvanas Windrunner says: The Lich King is here? Then my destiny shall be fulfilled today!
Sylvanas, filled with anger and hatred, chased The Lich King to a one-versus-one fight while the heroes fought the raised soldiers and generals of Lordaeron. After the fight, the heroes met Sylvanas only to find out that The Lich King had become stronger than ever. They barely escaped because of timely aid from Kor’kron Battle Zeppelin.
The heroes went through the Icecrown Citadel, defeating a lot of Undead and great servants of The Lich King, such as Lady Deathwhisper, Professor Putricide, Blood Queen Lan’athel, and even the raised undead dragon… Sindragosa. They finally defeated Arthas with the help of Tirion Fordring– the Ashbringer wielder. He smashed Frostmourne with it and then all the contained souls in the Frostomurne lifted Arthas in the air. He was vulnerable.
The Lich King says: “Now I stand the lion before the lambs and they do not fear. They cannot fear.”
The Edge of Night is a short story about Sylvanas. Her enemy– The Lich King– was finally dead. Then… she couldn’t think of another purposes left to live. Her destiny was fulfilled and she wanted to suicide by throwing herself from the very peak of The Frozen Throne.
Sylvanas stepped back, the wind whipping her hair and snapping her frayed cloak. The memories of who she had been and what she had become closed a knot in her stomach, and she moved now to unravel it. No more would she be the vengeful leader of a mongrel race of rotted corpses. Her work was done, and her long-denied reward awaited her. Longing for that forgotten bliss, she allowed herself to fall backward from the top of Icecrown Citadel. The wind rushed past her, a growing wail. The pinnacle, and the silent Val’kyr at its peak, disappeared…
Her body burst on the saronite stones below with a crushing finality.
There! Did you read the word Val’kyr? What is Val’kyr? According to Wowwiki (read here), Val’kyr are a type of undead Vrykul, and seem to be a recent addition to the armies of the Scourge. There were nine, according to the story, of remaining Val’kyr bound to the Lich King. They hungered for freedom. They tried to convince Sylvanas that she was their only hope to break free from the Lich King’s chain. They failed to convince Sylvanas in the limbo, because of she was so rock-headed.
“Sylvanas Windrunner, the oblivion you seek is yours. We will not stop you.”
Annhylde’s eyes closed, and at once the figures vanished into their faceless spectral forms.
Then Sylvanas felt herself being pulled away, her senses reeling. Everything disappeared, and time stopped.
“She is lost!” Agatha wailed.
And then, Sylvanas was in hell. Tormented. She saw Arthas having the same torment with her. Horrible creatures inflicted pain to her body over and over. At that moment, she realized that her decision was wrong.
Here she was, her spirit once again feeling whole, only to feel it suffer. To feel once more, only to feel abject pain. Cold. Hopelessness.
There were others in the darkness. Things she didn’t recognize, because nothing so terrible could exist in the world of the living. Claws tore at her, but she had no mouth with which to scream. Eyes looked at her, but she couldn’t look back.
She sensed a familiar presence. Recognized it. The taunting voice that had once held her in its grasp. Arthas? Arthas Menethil? Here? His essence rushed to her, desperate, then shrank away in horrified recognition. The boy who would be Lich King. Just a scared little blond child, reaping the aftermath of a lifetime of mistakes. If any part of Sylvanas’s soul were not at that moment torn and tormented, she might have even felt—for the first time—the slightest glimmer of pity for him.
Then finally, the Val’kyr leader, Annhylde the Caller, came to Sylvanas and told her what she wanted.
“Lady Sylvanas,” Annhylde said, her voice soothing. She touched the side of the elven ranger’s face. “We need you.”
“What—what do you want?”
“We are bound to the will of the dormant Lich King. Imprisoned atop Icecrown, possibly for eternity. We hunger for our freedom, as you once hungered for yours.” Annhylde knelt beside Sylvanas, the other Val’kyr clustering around the pair of them, arms linked. “We need a vessel. One like us. A sister of war. Strong. Who understands life and death. Who has seen the light and the dark. Someone worthy—worthy of power over life and death.”
“We need you,” repeated Agatha, her black hair floating freely in the light.
“My sisters will be free, free of the Lich King forever, but their souls will be bound to yours,” Annhylde continued. “Sylvanas Windrunner, Dark Lady, queen of the Forsaken… you may walk with the living again through the sisterhood of the Val’kyr. As long as they live, so too shall you. Freedom, life… and power over death. This is our pact. Do you accept our gift?”
Then, Annhylde vanished, taking Sylvanas’s place in hell. Sylvanas lived back to the world of the living. One of the reason she accepted the pact was because Annhylde gave Sylvanas the visions of future, such as her Forsaken army perished under the command of Garrosh.
“Hellscream. Gilneas will fall. And the Horde will have its prize,” she said. “But if you wish to use my people, we will do this my way.” She threw her cloak over one shoulder, revealing her dappled gray skin and the feather-festooned leather plates of her ornate black armor. “My three fastest ships have already been dispatched to the southern coast to divert the attention of the Gilnean capital. And even now I gather reinforcements from Deathknell.”
And then, Sylvanas, accompanied by eight Val’kyr led the Forsaken to strike the Walls of Gilneas.