|This article, Vanessa Vancleef (Gruntijackal), was written by Gruntijackal. Please do not edit this fiction without the writer's permission.|
This article was made prior to the events of Patch 4.0.6 and contradicts an aspect of her current mode of death
|Birthplace||Sentinel Hill, Westfall|
|Current Residence||The Deadmines|
Vanessa VanCleef (also known as Hope Saldean), was the leader of the Defias Brotherhood at the time of the second sundering. As the daughter of Edwin VanCleef, Vanessa was raised to be an expert rogue. After seeing her father brutally decapitated infront of her, Vanessa made a personal vendetta against the kingdom of Stormwind, or more specifically, King Varian Wrynn.
- "If there was one thing that man was good at, it was keeping secrets."
- —Gryan Stoutmantle about Edwin hiding his daughter.
Vanessa was born to Edwin VanCleef and an unknown mother in Sentinel Hill. At this point her father had only recently created the Defias Brotherhood, and brought Vanessa to the Deadmines to gain leadership skills and the abilities of the rogue from her father. While Edwin had never told Vanessa why he hated Stormwind, Vanessa stood at her father's side. The majority of her pre-pubescent life was spent training and ordering around the lowly miners in the Deadmines.
When Vanessa was 16, she watched as her father became more secluded and lonely. Gryan Stoutmantle finally began a campaign against the Defias. She and Edwin became cut off from Elwynn 4 years after the Third War. With the 'death' of Morgan the Collector, all of the gold income from Elwynn grinded to a halt and the defias began losing it's grip on Elwynn. Vanessa visited Elwynn to discover what had become of the Defias presence. She discovered that the Northshire Guard had driven out the Defias Thugs in the Vineyards, aswell as taking back the grape harvest. She also discovered that Surena Caledon has been slain by an alliance warlock to learn how to summon a voidwalker. After nearly being discovered by patrolling guards, Vanessa fled back to Westfall and into the Deadmines.
Edwin barely left the Deadmines, and instead relied on a Defias Messenger to give him information from the outside world. The messenger turned out dead, and Edwin could not realise that human adventurers were destroying the Defias presence outside of the Deadmines. After hearing the sound of battle, Edwin called for his Defias Blackguards to stay by his side.
When the Alliance assaulted the Deadmines, Vanessa witnessed her father get slain by a group of alliance adventurers and brutally decapitated. Being the only living member of the Defias Brotherhood in the Deadmines, Vanessa left after quietly mourning her father.
As Hope SaldeanEdit
- "We named her Hope, for that is what she respresented."
- —Salma Saldean on Vanessa.
Vanessa left the Deadmines after the murder of her father in the dead of night. Vanessa was soaked by the rain storm that was going on that night and walked through the drenched ground of Westfall. She stumbled upon the Saldean Farm, where she collapsed in the front door. The Saldeans adopted her and named her Hope. Hope was the name given to her from her adopted uncle William.
However immediatley after earning the Saldean's trust, Vanessa secretly began plotting in her room and out in the fields. With the defeat of the Defias Brotherhood, the People's Militia had began trying to reclaim the lost mines and rebuild (and in some cases reinhabit) the farms of Westfall. While practising her combat skills on target dummies outside the farm, Vanessa remember that her father never managed to teach her the secret of close quarter combat with her daggers. Shortly following the 'death' of Kael'Thas Sunstrider, Vanessa disappeared for a two month period. She hid in Westfall's quarry for most of the duration, plotting the return of the Brotherhood. She knew it would take a long time to fully rebuild her father's affiliation; she prepared to leave the Saldeans to go undercover.
Vanessa returned to the Saldean farm, stating that she was captured by murlocs. 'Hope' then left the farm and headed for Sentinel Hill following the defeat of Kil'Jaeden. She rented the first fully built house in Sentinel Hill to the Alexston's who had recently lost their farm to malfunctioning Harvest Watchers. Shortly after, Gryan Stoutmantle and the People's Militia left Westfall to fight in Northrend. With no guard left behind, Vanessa trained the people to fight for themselves while secretly taking control of the town. As Hope, she was beloved by the people of Westfall. However, as she talked to the Furlbrows leaving for Stormwind, they immediatley knew her name and who she was. Vanessa fled the scene and returned to Sentinel Hill.
Approximatley one year after leaving, the People's Militia returned. Now named the Westfall Brigade they dedicated Sentinel Hill as a shining beacon of the Alliance's power in Westfall. Hope's rule of the village was taken from her by Gryan, and she knew it was time to reform the Brotherhood. As Hope, she whispered into Gryan's ears of how well the area had been kept, putting him in a state of calm. As a result of the cost of the War Against the Lich King, around 7,000 of Stormwind's peasents lost their jobs, and a such, their homes. Most, if not all, of the homeless left Stormwind and headed for Westfall or Redridge. The majority heading for Redridge were rounded up by the Stormwind Royal guard and dumped in Westfall or the Stockades.
Vanessa travelled to the local farms and streets to persuade the homeless to join her cause and have vengeance against the kingdom of Stormwind. She later ventured to the west coast of Westfall to find an old ally of her father: the Chef Cookie. Cookie's life had made a turn for the worst since the near total annhilation of the Brotherhood. He gladly joined Vanessa and retreated back to the Deadmines, taking some of the Murloc's tamed parrots along with him. Knowing that the Furlbrows knew her identity, Vanessa reluctantly ordered some Westfall Thugs to murder them. The thugs murdered the Furlbrows and their horde Old Blanchy. It was dubbed as Double Homicide and One Horsicide. The homeless, who were loyal to Vanessa, framed the nearby Gnolls and Murlocs. In the 6 hours between the murder of the Furlbrows and the arrival of Lieutenant Horatio Lane and Human Adventurers, Vanessa ordered an old friend (Helix) to send the Riverpaw Gnolls to attack Sentinel Hill. Human Adventurers, under the order of Horatio, questioned the richest Bum in Westfall, Two Shoed Lou, about the murders. Lou offered the adventurers his 'living crate' in which to spy on the Jangolide Mine owner, Glubtok. Another hobo and former employee of William Pestle, Jims, asked that the adventurers kill any Kobolds they find as vengeance.
The Adventurers spied on Vanessa's meeting with Glubtok, even though she was highly aware of their presence. She wore a cloak which covered her face and asked Glubtok to join her and be rich and powerful or die. Glubtok accepted to go to the Deadmines, bringing the remaining Kobolds with him to mine the ore from the mostly abandoned caverns. Cookie and his Murlocs had already turned the Juggernaut into the death machine it had once been 30 years before. Most of the Murlocs died building it, leaving Cookie with their children.
Vanessa planned to release James Harrington, or as he was commonly known Ripsnarl to be the new admiral since the death of Mr. Smite and Captain Greenskin during what she called the 'Dawning'. She had one last meeting with Helix before telling him to accompany her to free Ripsnarl. She rallied the local peasents of Moonbrook to join the Brotherhood following numerous pieces of propoganda (one of which framed the Alliance Adventurers) and a rallying speech in Moonbrook.
Unbeknowst to Gryan, all of his Sentinel Guards had betrayed him and joined the Brotherhood as Blackguards. She shed her disguise of Hope Saldean and released the admiral Ripsnarl as Gryan was incapacitated by the Blackguards. The Alliance Adventurers escaped, as Vanessa spared them.
Vanessa had the miners extend the Deadmines; they installed numerous hidden passages in which Vanessa could easily travel through the Deadmines without the risk of being detected. Approximatley three weeks following the Dawning, lieutenant Horatio Lane along with a few Stormwind Investigators arrived in the Deadmines. The invading guard quickly secured the first room and managed to secure one of the Goblin teleporters. A group of Alliance adventurers invaded the Deadmines. Vanessa ordered Glubtok to call his ogres back to behind the first door. As the group of adventuers arrived in the empty room, the two Stormwind guards were instantly slain by Vanessa. She had the goblins plant a bomb on the Gnomergan Investigator bots, which slowly drained their power before they shut down. Vanessa then gripped Horatio by the throat and broke his neck. From one of the hidden passages, Vanessa could see the adventurers. She then realised that they were the same group that murdered her father five years prior. Vanessa managed to shut the door behind them, trapping them within the room. Vanessa then stabbed the human with the shield's back, knowing that he was the one that distracted her father away from the softer, more deadly enemies. The female tried to resurrect him but Vanessa shut down the lights, blocking her vision of the corpse. Vanessa proceeded to attack the female who had shielded the shielded human from her father's attacks. Vanessa made sure the 'healer' felt as much pain as she could possibly inflict before killing her. The last three adventurers met a similair fate, each as agonizing as the next as vengeance.
Another group of adventurers invaded the Deadmines a week later. At the time Vanessa was planning out the Defias' invasion of Westfall to reclaim it for the homeless. The group of adventurers caught the ogres by suprise, near instantly massacaring the room along with the last of the Kobolds from the Jangalode Mine. The group engaged Glubtok, the Foreman. Glubtok tried to incinerate and freeze his enemies with his Fists of Flame and Frost. However, he quickly realised that he needed to use Arcane Power to empower his abilities. Glubtok rapidly began to summon elementals and do massive interior damage with his unstable abilities. However, the adventurers eventually caused Glubtok to increase his power which caused him to explode leaving only a small pile of dust and armour behind. The former Bilgewater Cartel goblins were too focused on the 'attractive' Mine Bunnies to realise that the adventurers had freed their monkey slaves. The combined forces of the monkeys and the adventurers overpowered the overseers. The Mine Bunnies fought back, slaying numerous monkeys and temporarily drunkening an adventurer. However, all the goblins were defeated in quick sucession. A lone Oaf Lackey entered combat with the group, driving an axe in the head of the hunter. The lackey was then instantly slew and flown into the door, opening it. The resting lackeys were also slaughtered. Helix then ordered his crew to chuck bombs at the adventurers. Atop the strongest of oaf lackeys, Helix fought the group. The oaf gripped the human hunter and charged her into the lumber cutter, breaking it. After intensive fighting, the oaf fell to his death. Pretending not to panic, Helix launched himself onto the mage's face, stabbing him whenever he could. The priest quickly put a shield on the mage before any major damage could be done. Helix was knocked off and ultimatley killed as a result. The remaining goblins then retreated as the deadly Foe Reaper 5000 had turned against them.
The adventuers quickly engaged the Foe Reaper, however they damaged the machine which sent a stray jolt into the forge. The warrior boarded a harvest reaper and engaged the furious fire elementals that formed from the forge. The Foe Reaper tried to cleave the paladin to no avail. After sustaining much damage, the Foe Reaper's safety restrictions shut down and he began to literally fight itself to death. The group began to retreat as the Foe Reaper destroyed itself, which lead to it's top half becoming limp and the machine shutting down for good.
The defias guarding the way towards the Juggernaut were near instantly killed when the hunter deployed a snake trap. The snakes destroyed the defias presence. It was then that Vanessa had become aware of the adventurer's presence and she gave Ripsnarl an invsibility potion. As Ripsnarl began to combat the adventurers, he soon realised he would have to use the invisibility potion. Vanessa chucked several gaseous vials which spread fog across the ship. The gases formed into shades which grew with the fog. Ripsnarl's invisibility potion began to falter, and he jumped onto the shieled human, trying to shred him. The warrior charged Ripsnarl, knocking him off the human, and was repeatably hit by his enemy so he couldn't get up. Mortally wounded, Ripsnarl stated that they would not find Vanessa until it was too late. Vanessa felt nothing of Ripsnarl's death and waited for Cookie to appear. As the group entered the lair of Edwin VanCleef, Cookie attacked. Pushing through the group, Cookie deployed a cooking pot and leapt into it. He began to chuck all of his cooking ingredients and food at the group. He poisoned most of it, which the adventureres tried to avoid. He chucked the murloc orphans into the fray, but were ignored by both forces. The hunter called an order, however a piece of posion food was chucked into his mouth and began to act differently. Before it could react, the hunters pet Mastiff was instantly slain by the hunter. The mage froze the hunter in place before firing a frostfireball into the cauldron, which froze the fire and snapped the legs, aswell as boiling the water. Cookie broke his legs when the cauldron shattered when it collapsed. Cookie reached his hand in the air to Vanessa, dropped Vanessa's note and died an agonizingly painful death in scalding water.
Vanessa watched from atop her father's hut as the adventurers read her note, as the group read, she chucked a dagger at the frozen hunter, breaking the ice and unleashing the crazed Night Elf.
- "I've been waiting a long time for this you know."
- —Vanessa suprising the group when she reveals herself.
The Mage immediatley suspended the Night Elf, but it's will was too strong to be swayed by a mere spell and the Mage channeled his powers into keeping the spell active. Then, Vanessa revealed herself. Vanessa explained of how heartbreaking the death of her father was, but then stated that his death was a milestone to a much bigger Defias Brotherhood. She wasn't lying, as the Brotherhood spread much futher than Westfall and had many more members on the outside of the Deadmines. Vanessa utilized four of her poisons and infected the group.
The group was then moved to the forge where the Foe Reaper 5000 was killed. While tied up, Vanessa ordered the remaining goblin engineers to drop fire bombs across the forge. The remainig adventurers broke free of their bounds and leapt out of the forge's lava pit before their demise. The goblins deployed the fire bombs but accidently fell, revealing themselves to the group. They were slaughtered as the group fought their way to the door. Vanessa explained how tragic Glubtok's life had been, and by recruiting him, she had gave him a better life. The adventurers ignored it as they combatted the ghost of Glubtok. Glubtok called upon many frost and fire spells which damaged the floor of the room. As Glubtok's ghost fell, the spiders that were lurking below burst through the weakened floor. The ghost of Helix appeared and Vanessa spoke of his issues. Helix leapt ontop of the mage as the rest ripped him apart and held back the arachnid onslaught.
- Vanessa is an Assassination and Subtely rogue. The reason she is not Combat is because her father did not teach her before he was slain in the Deadmines.
- Vanessa invented an upgraded version of a Goblin Smoke Bomb, however before use it was stolen by an Rogue Adventurer.