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G'Hanir

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G'Hanir, also called the Mother Tree and the Great Bough,[1] was the domain of the Wild God Aviana located in the Emerald Dream atop a high peak.[2] It was described as the tallest tree atop the tallest peak, with its fruit containing the seeds of all Azerothian trees. It served as an afterlife for all winged creatures of Azeroth including even dragons, all of which could be seen flying amongst its many branches.[3]

History

G'Hanir was created at the dawn of the ordering of Azeroth as the first thing Freya shaped within the Dream. It was a source of healing and balance, a place where all life could rest and survive. From it bloomed many fruits and flowers, and new life flowed outwards in waves, sweeping across the land. Freya sculpted many pools of life in other locations within the Dream, but G'Hanir was the first, the tallest, and the most radiant. For millennia, it served as a source of healing and balance that extended beyond the Dream and into the physical world.[2]

As life flourished on Azeroth, generations of animals came and went. Soon the Emerald Dream was filled with the spirits of countless beasts, and G'Hanir became a haven for winged creatures. Its many boughs and branches had room for all, and its healing, peaceful energy calmed even the most distressed minds. One powerful spirit that was drawn to G'Hanir never left: the Wild God, Aviana. Aviana grew enchanted with G'Hanir, as it was more than a tree; it was a source of life, healing, and peace. Aviana spent years melding her power into the tree, and soon all winged creatures of Azeroth dreamed of spending the afterlife flying through its branches. Aviana's spirit became tied with G'Hanir, and in time this would have lasting consequences.[2]

G'Hanir died during the War of the Ancients when Aviana was killed by demons.[4] The shock of Aviana's death reverberated through the Emerald Dream, and all the leaves of G'Hanir fell from their branches. Many mourned it, and some succumbed to the temptation of serving dark forces in Aviana's absence. But although she had died, her spirit lingered. As the night elves struggled to rebuild their society in the wake of the Great Sundering, the green dragonflight discovered a gift: A single branch from the Mother Tree, with a single acorn hanging from its leaves, had been left in their care. Alexstrasza of the red dragonflight used the acorn to grow Nordrassil, the World Tree.[2]

Malfurion Stormrage sensed that it had been Aviana's spirit that had given the branch to them, and he believed it was best to keep it hidden. Many of Aviana's children had been lost to chaos, and they might be driven to claim the remnant of Aviana's legacy for their new masters. Quietly, Malfurion moved the branch to a safe location within the Emerald Dream. Few knew of its location, but its influence was felt far and wide. For many millennia, the branch served as a stabilizing force for the Emerald Dream, and the land near it was said to be a place of great healing and peace.[2]

Ten thousand years later, Aviana was one of several Wild Gods brought back from death to defend Mount Hyjal from the forces of Ragnaros. After the mountain was saved, Aviana turned her attention to G'Hanir once again. Times had changed, but her dream of providing a spiritual haven for her kind had not. She set out to restore the Mother Tree to its full glory.[2] During the war in Draenor, Aviana had an interest in giving the arakkoa a place on the Great Bough, and sought a way into offering the species an invitation.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b N [100] Aviana's Request
  2. ^ a b c d e f Tome of the Ancients
  3. ^ The Demon Soul, ch. 15
  4. ^ Knaak, Richard A.. The Sundering, 358. ISBN 978-0-7434-2898-9.