| Article of the Month|
This page has been claimed as an Article of the Month.
|Class||Death Knight (formerly Paladin)|
|Affiliation||DKOG (formerly Scourge)|
|Age||27 (Upon becoming a Death Knight)|
|Current Residence||Acherus, Eastern Plaguelands|
- "For what you did to me, Scourge filth, you will die a thousand horrible deaths"
- —Jill Valdaar
Jillian Valdaar (usually just referred to as "Jill") is a Death Knight who formerly served the Lich King. Freed from his service, she has vowed to destroy the Scourge at any costs.
By human standards, Jill is rather large and heavily built; her body is well muscled, giving her a rather imposing and somewhat intimidating presence. She is clearly toned and fit, indicating that she is constantly prepared and ready for battle, at the same time making her role as a frontline combatant clear. Her movements are usually precise and deliberate, aimed at demonstrating both her strength and intimidating physical presence.
Jill has red hair that, despite practical considerations, is usually worn long and loose. Her body carries numerous small scars, the legacy of her role as a warrior in some of the most dangerous places on Azeroth. Usually, she wears an image of control and discipline; however, when she grins it twists into a toothy, somewhat deranged looking leer, indicating that not all is right with her.
Like most Death Knights, her eyes have an unearthly blue shine to them, having been green before her service to the Lich King. However, as she joined the Scourge while still alive (as opposed to being raised from death), she still more or less resembles a normal human; aside from her eyes, her voice and her low body temperature. She could, with some effort, pass for a normal human; something that she has found useful in her efforts to reconnect with the rest of Azeroth.
As a Death Knight, she wears a suit of heavy plate armour, almost a uniform of her former service to the Lich King. Bulky and imposing, the armour is adorned with spikes and other details to give an impression of the brutal and unyielding nature of the wearer and the path they have chosen to follow. Up close, her armour appears to be somewhat battered. The number "017" is painted on the right shoulder.
At one time a zealous member of the Scarlet Crusade, and then a loyal follower of the Lich King, today Jill is driven by her own anger and her desire for revenge against those who have wronged her in past. She is fuelled by an all-consuming hatred of the Scourge and their followers, and seeks to redress what they have done, bot to the world as a whole and her in specific, by destroying them. Having been a part of the Scourge, she feels that she knows how they think and what they want, and feels that the only solution to the undead menace will be in its utter destruction.
However, her strongest hatred is not for the undead legions, but those amongst the living that would willingly serve the Lich King. To her, such a betrayal is the worst act a person is capable of, selling themselves into damnation in exchange for promises of power. Against such opponents, she is, if anything, even more driven and merciless, showing neither remorse nor pity for such traitors. Her greatest foes are her fellow Death Knights, not only does she recognise the power they possess, but she also knows the evil they are capable of - and remembers being ordered to commit such heinous acts herself.
Despite what she has been through, she has very little love for the Horde either. She sees the Forsaken as being little better then the Scourge; while she is aware that they have free will, she sees them as being just as evil and just as bent on destruction as the Scourge were. That the Forsaken have sent a military unit - named the Defilers, no less - to her homeland to strip its resources does not help their cause any. She has less then pleasant memories of Orcs and Trolls from her youth; even then, she would distrust the rest of the Horde simply for aiding the Forsaken.
- "You, bonebag! Get the EFF out of Arathi!"
- —Jill Valdaar
Jill carries herself with a certain degree of recklessness, almost uncaring of her own survival. The main reason for this is the fact that she knows she has nothing left to return to; her family are dead, her homeland is in ruins, the order she once saw is long disbanded and the Scarlet Crusade would gladly slaughter her on sight for what she is, not to mention what she did to them. However, there is one factor that keeps her grounded in reality and brings her back from the edge. She has developed a partnership of sorts with Sellek Lerenze, a fellow Death Knight who also escaped the Lich King's service. Knowing of his own mission to recover his past, she has agreed to aid him. For the most part, this comes from the fact that he is one of the few people she knows she can rely upon and not to distrust her for her past.
She seems to enjoy using her Death Grip a bit too much.
Jill was born in Stromgarde to a working family. Raised in the city, she knew both the peace and safety of pre-war Lordaeron, and then first-hand saw the power and destruction of war during the Horde's invasion of the continent. While she was not directly affected, nor did she lose any members of her family to the conflict, seeing the destruction wrought by the Horde hardened her, giving her a determined resolve not to let events such as those occur again.
It was in the post-war period that this determination manifested; she developed an interest in the military and fighting, joining the Stromgarde army and training as a warrior. As a trainee and later a young warrior, she fought in several battles against remnant groups of Orcs, as well as the Ogres and Forest Trolls that had infested the land in the aftermath of the conflict. In these battles, dispute her youth and inexperience, she fared well, able to match strengths with the obstinately more powerful enemies she faced.
Jill's performance in battle had bought her to the attention of the Order of the Silver Hand, the force of Paladins that had been so potent in the battles of the second war and vital to its outcome. Contacted by the order, she willingly joined them and was inducted into their ranks. Leaving her home, she travelled north to Lordaeron itself in order to begin her training. Of all the areas that the Knights were schooled in, her greatest aptitude was shown to be for straightforward melee combat; her strength allowed her to wield even the heaviest of weapons effectively. Her training complete, Jill was knighted and stepped forward to serve her nation and the Alliance.
However, it was not to be. Instead, the Scourge descended on Lordaeron, destroying the nation from within. The Knights were betrayed and disbanded by one of their greatest champions, Arthas Menethil, and then hunted down and destroyed as their nation collapsed around them. The surviving knights banded together, retreating to secure fortifications while destroying any undead in their path. Jill was amongst their ranks, experiencing the horrors unleashed by the Scourge. Badly wounded in battle, she none the less persevered to join her comrades.
Secure inside the fortress of Tyr's Hand, the surviving knights were reorganized as the Scarlet Crusade, pledging themselves to ridding Lordaeron of the undead and reclaiming it for humanity. Jill willingly joined this cause, seeing the undead as being the greatest threat that the Alliance had ever faced; that they had already destroyed Lordaeron and corrupted its prince into their service only served to underscore this point.
Like the other Crusaders, Jill became caught up in the zealotry and fanaticism that had come to control the Crusader's cause; however, there was more to it then just that. Somehow, possibly due to the injuries she had suffered yet managed to escape from, she became convinced that she had been "chosen" by the Light. As time wore on, she came to the twisted realization that she was the Light's Arbiter of Justice, and that it was within her power to decide who would live and who would die.
Armed with this new self-appointed cause, she joined the rest of the crusade in fighting the Scourge - and any others that dared to oppose her, whoever they may be.
After several years of battling the undead in the Plaugelands, the Crusade decided to launch an expedition against Northrend itself, aiming to destroy the Scourge at its source. Lead by Admiral Westwind and Captain-General Orman, the expedition included some of the Crusade's best and most loyal soldiers. Jill Valdarr was amongst their number, proud to stand against the Scourge and determined to destroy the menace once and for all.
The Expedition did not go as planned, however. The expedition met stiff resistance upon reaching the coast of Northrend, its ships and their crews coming under attack from almost endless Legions of the Scourge. Overwhelmed, the expedition fell, most of its members dead, dying or, even worse, transformed into the very undead they had sought to destroy.
Critically wounded and separated from her comrades, Jill was determined to press on and complete her mission, regardless. However, as her injuries and the elements wore on her, she collapsed into the snow, near death. However, as her end approached, she heard a voice, promising her greater powers then she had ever possessed before, promising to transform her to the ultimate agent of justice if she would vow to serve it. As an incentive, it offered her a powerful new weapon, a sword possessing incredible magic.
She willingly accepted, only realizing the truth once the bargain was done; the voice was that of a Lich and the blade was a Runeblade; she had, by her own agreement, chosen to become a Death Knight in service to the Lich King. However, having willingly taken the blade, she had forfeited control of her own destiny. Transformed by the Lich King's magic, she returned to the Plaugelands, not to destroy the Scourge as she had originally intended, but instead to serve their cause and eliminate those who would dare stand against her master.
She was placed under the command of Karl Baarfden, a powerful Death Knight, who oversaw her training. Impressed both whit her skill and her zeal, he initiated her into his own order of Death Knights, the Knights of the Blackened Claw. From there, she willingly served the Scourge in the Plaugelands, striking out at any who would dare oppose her master, the Lich King. When confronted with the Scarlet Crusade, she gleefully attacked her one-time comrades, furiously cutting them down.
Against the Crusade
The Knights of the Blackened Claw, Jill amongst them, were a part of the army amassed by the Lich King for his assault against the Scarlet Encalve of New Avalon. Again she was thrown into battle, revelling in the slaughter and carnage she unleashed. Cutting a bloody path through the Scarlet ranks, she seemed unstoppable, intent on killing every last Crusader herself if needs be.
However, during one assault, she was surprised to come face-to-face with someone she recognised, Jordie Taeny a Crusader whom she had served alongside while she was stationed in the Plaugelands. For a moment she hesitated, confused as to what she should do - she knew her orders, but at the same time, remembered Jordie for who they were. Her hesitation gave them time to flee, and, more importantly, was noticed by her superiors. Karl saw fit to punish her for her infringement, harshly beating her and threatening her with death (and subsequent enslavement as a Ghoul) if she were to ever show mercy again.
Jill continued to serve the Scourge, following orders to destroy the Scarlet Crusade and claim their lands, but her commitment was never so strong again. She began to realise what she was doing, as well as remember more of her past. She began to regret her decisions, but at the same time knew that she had no way to escape - or so she thought.
Following the destruction of the Scarlet Enclave, the Blackened Claw were tasked with a second duty, an attack on Light's Hope Chapel, aimed at eliminating the hated Argent Dawn. Joining with a number of other Death Knights, they marshalled for the attack. However. Jill could sense that something was amiss; none of the Blackend Claw's leaders were present; instead their ranks were being bulked out with undead minions. Regardless, Highlord Mograine launched the assault on the Lich King's orders.
While their numbers were massively overwhelming, the Argent Dawn's forces were far stronger then expected; they managed to hold the Scourge forces at bay, killing a number of the Death Knights while disposing of innumerable Scourge minions. The arrival of Tirion Foriding further unbalanced the odds, swarms of Scoruge falling before his might.
In response to this, the Lich King himself appeared, attacking Foriding; at the same time, he explained his plan - all the Scourge forces present were considred expendable, used as bait to lure Foriding out of hiding. Shocked at this revelation, the Death Knights, Jill amongst them, chose to turn on the Lich King. Between Mograine, Foriding and the Death Knights present, the Lich King was forced to retreat.
In the aftermath, Jill was amongst those who swear fealty to Mograine's Knights of the Ebon Blade; vowing to destroy the Lich King and end the Scourge threat for all time.
Despite leaving the Scourge, Jill realised that she had nowhere else to go; her home was in ruins and her family dead, and she certainly couldn't return to the Scarlet Crusade; not only had she been instrumental in their near-complete destruction, she also knew that they would cut her down for what she was. Instead, she formed a partnership of sorts with Sellek Lerenze, a fellow former member of the Blackened Claw. She agreed to help him in his own quest to find those responsible for the apparent death of his family and his exile - which had driven him into the arms of the Scourge in the first place.
Not too long after that, the pair of them were approached by a group known only as DKOG. Composed of fellow survivors of the battle of Light's Hope, the group was formed by the Alliance military to directly combat the Scourge. Seeing it as a chance at getting her revenge, Jill readily joined the organisation.
- "Ghouls go wham mish mash zonk plunk and explode into gibbs"
- —Jill Valdaar
Working both on their own and at the behest of DKOG, the pair of them made an incursion into the Plaguelands, obstinately to test how their Scourge-granted abilities would fare against the undead forces. The result was dramatic, the pair of them cutting a bloody path through the undead hordes. They also encountered the tattered remains of the Scarlet Crusade, confirming the all but complete destruction of the organization; outside of Tyr's Hand, their posts and holds were abandoned and over-run. As Jill expected, the handful of Crusaders she encountered didn't care if she was a part of the Scourge or free-willed; they simply attacked her on sight.
Blood, Death, etc
Reassigned, the pair of them travelled to Northrend to aid the Alliance forces in their campaign against the Scourge. Again, they acted both on their own accord and under DKOG orders; regardless, Jill was glad for a chance to take on the undead forces, gleefully throwing herself into battle, looking for any chance she could get to reek bloody vengeance for her treatment at their hands. She especially enjoyed fighting those Death Knights who were loyal to the Scourge; not only did she see them as the greatest threats they would face, but she secretly hoped that she would encounter members of the Blackened Claw and have the chance to personally dispatch them. That Death Knights offered her a greater challenge then the average ghoul didn't hurt.
However, one routine mission turned up an unexpected development; sent to investigate a suspected Scourge outpost, the pair instead encountered the Scarlet Onslaught, the rebuilt core of the survivors of the Crusade. Jill again encountered Jordie, the pair of them once again clashing. Their fight was bloody, with Jill's abilities simply proving to be too much for the Crusade warrior. While she grievously wounded Jordie, Jill chosen not to finish her off; in an uncharacteristic move, she simply stated that doing such would make her no better then Jordie was.
A second chance encounter bought her and Sellek back into contact with the Blackened Claw. The pair of them accidentally stumbled into an operation run by Vidruand, one of the so-called Knights of the order. While the Scourge knight was able to escape the pair of them, they did slay two of his minions. More to the point, it gave the pair of them a new goal; to track down and eliminate their one-time compatriots.
At the urging of DKOG, Jill and Sellek were sent to Icecrown to further investigate the activities of the Scarlet Onslaught. To her surprise, Jill had a third encounter with Jordie; however, this one was even more baffling, as the Scarlet Warrior had somehow been transformed into a Death Knight. Claiming to be “blessed” by the Onslaught’s leader, Jordie initially proved to be a match for Jill. However, as the battle wore on, Jill’s greater experience both as a Death Knight and fighting other Death Knights proved to be decisive; Jordie was again defeated, this time killed.
However, the battle raised two troubling questions for Jill; the first was the revelation that the Scarlet Onslaught somehow had the ability to create Death Knights. The second was that they were being lead by Admiral Westwind, the man who had lead the first Scarlet Expedition to Northrend – and Jill knew had died in the landing.