The Banshee loyalists are Horde members who sided with Sylvanas Windrunner during the last stages of the Fourth War, fighting against Varok Saurfang's rebels. After the Horde was reunited, they were given a chance to rejoin with the rest of the Horde by renouncing Sylvanas. Ultimately though, a number of them remained loyal to the Banshee Queen and left the Horde for good.
Battle at the Gates of Orgrimmar
- Main article: Battle at the Gates of Orgrimmar
After Saurfang's revolutionaries and the Alliance established themselves in Razor Hill, Sylvanas ordered her forces to collapse the canyon between Razor Hill and Orgrimmar. Knowing that this was only a temporary measure, Sylvanas ordered Overlord Geya'rah and Jastor Gallywix, the only two leaders of the Horde to side with her, to prepare for battle. While Geya'rah remarked that the Mag'har always stood ready to destroy their enemies, Gallywix revealed that the mechs were good to go but remarked that they weren't cheap and that Sylvanas better be ready to pay on delivery. Sylvanas and Nathanos also sought to secure Orgrimmar from internal dissident by arresting Eitrigg and burning the propaganda that dissidents within the city had been spreading.
Seeking to weaken their enemies, Nathanos ordered the loyalists to sabotage the enemy siege weapons, however, Saurfang had anticipated this and ordered his revolutionaries to deal with Sylvanas's spies and protect their siege weapons. At the same time, Nathanos sought to strengthen the loyalists' army by rallying the citizens of Orgrimmar to their cause.
Though the loyalists were prepared to fight Saurfang's revolutionaries and the Alliance, the battle would never come. Instead, Varok Saurfang, recognizing the loyalists as his fellow brothers and sisters in the Horde, challenged Sylvanas to mak'gora. When Sylvanas questioned why she should accept his challenge, Saurfang merely pointed out that she wanted him to suffer, causing Sylvanas to wordlessly agree. While Sylvanas armed herself, Saurfang was granted an axe by Thrall and Shalamayne by Anduin. Sylvanas initially had the upper hand against Saurfang, however, when she began to mock him about hope, Saurfang got his second wind by declaring that Sylvanas couldn't kill hope. As Saurfang turned the tide against Sylvanas he claimed that she had failed to kill hope at Teldrassil, failed in getting the Horde and Alliance to keep killing each other, and further declared that the Horde would endure, as it was strong. Varok then managed to slash Sylvanas across her eye. This turn caused an enraged Sylvanas to declare that the Horde was nothing, that they were all nothing. Sylvanas then killed Saurfang quickly with a blast of unknown magic, and abandoned the Horde altogether.
Aftermath of the battle
In the wake of Sylvanas's betrayal, most of her loyalists bent the knee to the revolutionaries, though they were viewed in a poor light by some members of the Horde. However, people like Gazlowe, First Arcanist Thalyssra, and Baine Bloodhoof would defend them, stating that they were now loyal to the Horde, and if they asked for forgiveness, it should be given, as the Horde needed to be united now more than ever. Those who refused to renounce her were bound in chains, while others were faking their disgust with Sylvanas, and some were exiled. At the same time other loyalists, like Nathanos Blightcaller and Dark Ranger Lenara, would successfully evade the Horde and reunite with Sylvanas. In time, loyalists adventurers joined them, at which point Nathanos departed, and Sylvanas spoke privately with them. Declaring that nothing could stop what was to come, Sylvanas revealed that even though Saurfang's challenge ended the war, it was largely meaningless as countless souls had been fed to the hungering darkness. She mentioned that though she cared nothing for the living, she did pity the Forsaken and abandoned them because they clung to hope. Revealing that she had a struck a bargain with Queen Azshara, Sylvanas remarked that the armies of Azeroth would fight her master, who would line the streets with corpses and, in the end, he too would serve Death. Her reflection finished, Sylvanas remarked that nothing lasts and that the loyalists will understand when they see each other next.
Horde agents discovered two loyalists on a ridge in the Northern Barrens, and after alerting a patrol in the area, they were able to track and capture them. However, the spies had swallowed some foul concoction and died before they could be questioned. Though their purpose could not be discovered, the Horde Council celebrated their passing as it meant Sylvanas no longer had eyes in Durotar.
While working in the shadows, as both the Horde and Alliance race to uncover their next move, Sylvanas tasked Nathanos Blightcaller and Sira Moonwarden with a terrifying gambit: to kill the troll loa of death himself, Bwonsamdi. To that end, they allied with the Widow's Bite, a group of Zandalari rebels led by a witch known as Apari. In order to weaken the protections around Bwonsamdi's shrines, Nathanos was forced to hand over something precious and irreplaceable to the witch. Thus, after a moment, he handed his officer's badge given to him by Sylvanas when they were among the living, and warned Apari that if she failed to destroy the loa's shrines as promised, then the consequences would be severe.
With this accord, the Widow's Bite and the Banshee loyalists fought side by side and finally clashed with the Zandalari Empire in Nazmir, where they were discovered attempting to sacrifice children in order to weaken one of Bwonsamdi's shrines. Thanks to the courage of Zekhan, the children were saved, and due to their smaller amount of numbers, the loyalists and their new allies fell back. In light of their alliance, Sira revealed that Lelyias was a skilled healer who could help her with her leg injuries, however, Apari refused. This vexed Sira who noted that the Widow's Bite were loyal to Apari, that they would fall apart without her leaving the loyalists with no reinforcements, and more importantly, to Sira, was they needed the witch to survive until the loa Bwonsamdi was killed.
After successfully weakening several of his shrines, Nathanos and Apari gave the order for their forces to strike at the loa's Necropolis for the final assault on Bwonsamdi. Prior to the battle against the loa Tayo, a Widow's Bite member, outraged, and being disgusted with Apari's actions in harming children had decided to defect to the Horde, ultimately aiding them by revealing the traps Nathanos had set up. With the traps disabled, the Horde clashed against them with greater numbers. During the conflict, Apari was killed and, proving Sira's fears true, the Widow's Bite collapsed leaving the Banshee loyalists to stand on their own against the Horde. While many of the dark rangers on the battlefield would be slain, Sira was captured and taken prisoner, and Nathanos narrowly escaped the battlefield knowing that he had failed his mission.
At some point Sylvanas personally journeyed to Icecrown Citadel where she fought against the Lich King Bolvar Fordragon and his Scourge. After winning the battle, she took the Helm of Domination from him and shattered it, thereby piercing the veil between Azeroth and the Shadowlands. She was soon approached by Nathanos, who informed her of the failure to kill Bwonsamdi. While acknowledging that it was a blow to her plans, Sylvanas was confident that it was a setback that they could overcome. After learning that Blightcaller was going back to the Marris Stead to await further orders, Sylvanas told him to not remain idly, and that she expected him to return to her with a means to prevent Bwonsamdi's meddling with their plans.
In time, the Argent Crusade discovered Nathanos at his home, and they alerted the Alliance and Horde causing Genn Greymane and Lor'themar Theron to send champions to deal with him. In the subsequent confrontation Nathanos met his end at his own home, with Tyrande Whisperwind dealing the final blow.
- Sylvanas Windrunner
- Nathanos Blightcaller
- Dark Ranger Lenara
- Dark Warden Sira Moonwarden
- Deliria Dawes
- Banshee Loyalists — Those who stayed loyal even after Sylvanas' departure, now bound in chains by Orgrimmar Grunts.
- Dark Rangers — Unlike others, a number of Dark Rangers have remained fiercely loyal to Sylvanas.
- During the War Campaign's ending
- Former Banshee Loyalists — Some of them are actually still loyal, and are merely pretending to be disgusted with Sylvanas.
- Horde adventurers — Ultimately abandoned and discarded by Sylvanas as despite their loyalty, the Banshee Queen had no intention of saving loyalist adventurers from what was to come. Some
- While Nathanos and Sira were aware of the Maw, it is unknown if the rest of the loyalists know as well.
- Due to Jastor Gallywix leaving the Bilgewater Cartel, he might have followed Sylvanas instead.
- Magister Hathorel may also be a member.
- Due to his desire for Malfurion Stormrage's head, Lorash Sunbeam may have joined Sylvanas over remaining with the Horde in light of the armistice with the Alliance.
- ^ Reckoning
- ^ Battle at the Gates of Orgrimmar#Order in Orgrimmar
- ^ Shadows Rising, pg. 136
- ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 1
- ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 4
- ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 13
- ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 23
- ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 26
- ^ Shadows Rising, chapter 29
- ^ World of Warcraft: Shadowlands Cinematic Trailer
- ^ Shadows Rising, epilogue
- ^ Narrative Wrapped Up - No Gameplay Impact in Shadowlands
- ^ Shadows Rising, pg. 233