The Burning Crusade Townhall/The Isle of Quel'Danas

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This article is a copy of "The Burning Crusade Townhall", an official article by Blizzard Entertainment. It presented information about a variety of things in the Warcraft universe. The original article, formerly located at http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/info/story/index.html, did not survive the overhaul of the World of Warcraft Official Website.

The Isle of Quel'Danas

Although the war against the Burning Legion continues to rage on Outland, the latest front has emerged on Azeroth itself. The Isle of Quel'Danas, located in the Eastern Kingdoms, has become the Legion's most recent target in its ongoing mission of destruction. Kael'thas Sunstrider, former leader of the blood elves, has revealed himself as the Legion's formidable new ally. Despite furious opposition from his own people, Kael'thas persists in his efforts, believing that he will obtain infinite power.

The Sunstrider dynasty began ruling the high elves, also known as quel'dorei, after their departure from Kalimdor long ago. Unlike their night elf ancestors, the high elves continue to embrace arcane magic in all aspects of their lives. Using a vial of sacred water stolen from the Well of Eternity, they established a new source of power for their people: the Sunwell. Though weaker than its source, it bathed the high elves in magical energy for thousands of years, allowing them to prosper in their new homeland.

But the Sunwell's great power ultimately became a liability. After his corruption by the Lich King, Arthas and his Scourge army stormed through the high elf kingdom of Quel'Thalas, destroying Silvermoon City to gain access to the Sunwell. Arthas used the Sunwell's magic to revive the necromancer Kel'Thuzad, and the fountain's energies were irrevocably defiled.

The quel'dorei suffered many devastating losses at the hands of the Scourge. King Anasterian Sunstrider was among the countless dead, leaving his son, Kael'thas, to lead the harrowed survivors. An exceptional scholar of magic, Prince Kael'thas understood that the Sunwell's contamination would eventually destroy his people. Faced with a terrible dilemma, he chose to destroy the Sunwell.

In the wake of these tragedies, most of the surviving high elves gathered under Kael'thas, and he renamed them the sin'dorei – "children of the blood," more commonly known as blood elves – in memory of their fallen kin. Already burdened by grief, the blood elves weakened even further after being deprived of arcane energy. Lengthy exposure had made them dependent on magic, and some of the most fragile sin'dorei died from acute withdrawal. Although many of the healthier elves were capable of fighting their addiction, Kael'thas became preoccupied with finding a cure.

Increasing tensions with the Alliance complicated his hopes, leading the prince to side with Illidan Stormrage and Lady Vashj in Outland. In return for Kael'thas' support, Illidan taught him how to siphon arcane energy from alternative sources to satisfy his cravings. Kael'thas passed these techniques along to his people in Quel'Thalas, who were led by Lor'themar Theron in his absence. Though far from ideal, draining magic in this way alleviated the high elves' symptoms for short intervals.

Dissatisfied with the limits of arcane magic, the prince began consuming fel energy to acquire even greater power. Kil'jaeden, the leader of the Burning Legion, began to secretly entice Kael'thas with promises of salvation for the blood elves. The prince's actions became increasingly controversial among some of the sin'dorei in Outland, who eventually banded against him. They settled in Shattrath City, calling themselves the Scryers.

After learning about the blood elf prince's transgressions, Azeroth's heroes attacked him in Tempest Keep, a fortress he had stolen from the naaru. Kael'thas suffered a horrific loss, barely managing to survive the defeat. Though brutally injured and deformed, the prince publicly declared his total allegiance to the Burning Legion. Since then he has assisted with the invasion of the Isle of Quel'Danas, his actions allowing the Legion's demons to seize control of the Sunwell Plateau, the home of the ancient fountain.

When Kael'thas destroyed the magical reservoir, some of its essences lingered in the surrounding lands. The red dragon Korialstrasz gathered these remnants and disguised them as a human girl named Anveena Teague. For a time, she managed to live in safety, and she even developed her own personality and emotions. However, the Burning Legion learned of her existence and is now holding her captive in the Sunwell Plateau. With her immense power the Legion has opened a portal strong enough to facilitate Kil'jaeden's materialization on Azeroth.

Fighters from Shattrath City have joined together as the Shattered Sun Offensive, journeying to the Isle of Quel'Danas to prevent the Legion's invasion. Although the Shattered Sun Offensive's outpost is constantly besieged, the defenders offer their support to adventurers launching assaults on the Sunwell Plateau and Kael'thas' stronghold, Magisters' Terrace. But this desperate coalition may not be enough to counter the terrible power of the Burning Legion's supreme commander as he forces his way into Azeroth.