- For his alternate Draenor counterpart, see User:Joshmaul/Vindicator Velenkayn.
"I am a wretched, corpse-like thing, but I am a vindicator still. I bear the mark of the Lich King, but I continue to do the work of the Light."
- - Battlelord Velenkayn
|Title||The Fallen, the Black Vindicator|
|Class||Death Knight, formerly Vindicator|
Hand of Argus
Knights of the Ebon Blade
The Argent Crusade
|Former affiliation(s)||Council of Deathlords|
|Occupation||Master of Shadowgarde|
|Location||Shadowgarde Keep, Shadowmoon Valley, Draenor|
|Relative(s)||Taelina (wife, deceased), Ammenkayn (daughter, deceased), Velen (namesake)|
Saavedro of Stratholme
Settra of Borealis
Battlelord Velenkayn was a powerful vindicator in the service of the Hand of Argus. When he was corrupted, he was turned over to the Scourge by a warlock seeking immortality. In time, he became a feared Scourge commander and wreaked havoc across the lands until he was defeated at the Battle of Light's Hope Chapel. Redeemed by Tirion Fordring, Velenkayn became one of Baron Artimus Devaneaux's lieutenants in the Council of Deathlords, after being granted an amnesty by King Varian Wrynn. He eventually earned a reputation as a fearsome warrior and battle-hardened commander in the war against the Lich King, which he participated in up to its end in Icecrown Citadel. Fighting alongside Artimus in the growing battle against the Horde, Velenkayn has upheld the Baron's legacy since his death, through the Cataclysm War and the battle for Pandaria. During the war against the Iron Horde in the time-altered Draenor, Velenkayn has made war against the demented warlock Rakeri Sputterspark and claimed his fortress of Shadowgarde.
Velenkayn was born on one of the worlds of the draenei some eleven centuries prior to their arrival on Azeroth. He is one of few people named after the Prophet Velen; his name means "Hand of Velen", though some called him "Little Velen". The Prophet foresaw that the boy would have a greater part to play sometime in the future. Upon settling on Draenor, Velenkayn was a vindicator fighting alongside Restalaan, the captain of the guard in the city of Telmor.
In the opening hours of the holocaust perpetrated by the newborn orcish Horde, Velenkayn and his wife, Taelina, fled to Shattrath when Restalaan was killed, and there his daughter Ammenkayn was born. Along with Velen and other refugees, Velenkayn, his wife and his infant daughter fled Shattrath when the orcs made their final assault. His wife was overcome with some sickness, and began to degenerate. Heartbroken but determined to remain with his people, Velenkayn cast his wife aside along with the others who shared her symptoms. They became known as the Krokul, or Broken.
After the end of the war with the draenei and the events leading to the creation of Outland, the "pure" draenei people remained in hiding - a period that spanned nearly four decades. During this period, the former Vindicator Nobundo, who had found the path of the shaman, had returned from his imposed exile and shared his revelations to any who would listen. Most, including Velenkayn, were immediately skeptical, wondering what a Broken could teach them. However, the Prophet was more than willing to listen to what Nobundo had to say, and the younger, idealistic Ammenkayn - having felt the power Nobundo had experienced - was swayed by Nobundo's teachings, much to Velenkayn's dismay. Velen encouraged Ammenkayn and the others touched by the spirits to listen to what Nobundo had to teach them, and they began the path to become powerful shaman. Velenkayn, however, remained on the path of the paladin.
Velenkayn later joined his Prophet and people in their mass raid of Tempest Keep, the naaru dimensional fortress taken by Kael'thas Sunstrider and his blood elves. The raid was successful in capturing the Exodar, one of Tempest Keep's satellite structures, and using its dimensional engine to escape Outland. However, the blood elves sabotaged the Exodar's dimensional drive, causing the vessel to appear in Azeroth. Screaming across the skies of northern Kalimdor, crystaline shards falling like meteors, the Exodar came to a rest on the island the draenei called Azuremyst.
Saavedro Discovers An Apprentice
During his time as a member of the Second Alliance Expedition, the paladin Saavedro of Stratholme had just defeated the ogre-mage Mogor in Nagrand when his druid ally Arrhae Leafrunner sent word from Kalimdor. She had seen the Exodar's descent from Darnassus, and had made contact with the draenei as a member of a diplomatic party sent by Jaina Proudmoore, the leader of the Alliance in Kalimdor. The draenei were being accepted into the Alliance, and would be led by Velen. Saavedro immediately returned through the Dark Portal and travelled to Menethil Harbor, taking a board across the Great Sea to Auberdine, and from there to the port of Valaar's Berth. He entered deep into the crashed Exodar, where he met the Prophet Velen - and this stalwart vindicator who bore his name...
Descent Into Madness
Velenkayn had been haunted for nearly five decades by the events in Telmor, particularly the point where Restalaan was killed. After Saavedro returned to Outland, Velenkayn felt listless, as if (despite the common credo that his people lived by) that the naaru had forgotten the draenei people. Filled with grief and anguish, Velenkayn cut himself off from the rest of his people and wandered in the wilderness of the Eastern Kingdoms, arriving first in Stormwind, where he prayed at the Cathedral of Light. The last person to see him was Archbishop Benedictus, who blessed him before Velenkayn went on his way.
Velenkayn decided to explore his mentor's homeland of Lordaeron, and was dismayed to see the devastation. He wandered into the town of Corin's Crossing, where Saavedro was born, and found a journal belonging to Magistrate Ezekyle, Saavedro's father, in the ruins of his house on the edge of town. Little did Velenkayn know that he was being hunted.
A spy for the Blood Knight Order spotted Velenkayn in Tirisfal Glades on his way into the greater Plaguelands. Travelling to the Undercity and translocating to Silvermoon, he reported to Master Ordevaas Portalseeker that Saavedro's apprentice had been spotted in the Plaguelands. In a moment of intuition, Ordevaas devised a plan where - instead of killing the draenei vindicator - he would capture and torture him...and possibly even turn him into what he and his mentor Saavedro despised the most: a necromantic death knight. Ordevaas sent the spy to Chillwind Point in Alterac to find General Settra, and sent another messenger down through the Dark Portal to Shattrath - to locate Ordevaas' master, Joshmaul the Corruptor.
Joshmaul agreed with Ordevaas' plan and met with Settra outside Shattrath (as the naaru would probably frown on planning such atrocities inside their city), where he discussed the plan in detail. After the meeting, both travelled through Khadgar's portal to the Undercity, where they joined Ordevaas on their way to the Plaguelands. Ordevaas theorized that Velenkayn would be there studying Saavedro's history and would either be in Corin's Crossing or further north, in Stratholme. As predicted, they found Velenkayn inside the Magistrate's home, and captured him, bringing him to the Undercity.
Deathlord of Lordaeron
Joshmaul initially corrupted Velenkayn to serve as one of his bodyguards and also as a cruel gesture to Saavedro - a draenei vindicator sworn to Light and justice becoming the very thing he swore to destroy. But as time went on, Joshmaul realized that he could make a potential ally with the Scourge, despite the fact that one of its death knights - Artimus Devaneaux - had partially blinded him months earlier. With that in mind, Joshmaul arranged a meeting between himself and the draenei Koschei, who was corrupted by Artimus during his sojourn in Shattrath and now ruled a small pocket of Scourge in Outland, based out of Auchindoun. Koschei was a member of the Council of Deathlords, a group of powerful death knights who ruled various locations in the worlds.
Koschei met Joshmaul in the shadows of the Ring of Observance and agreed to take his fellow former vindicator under his wing as a deathlord, sponsoring him to replace the late Baron Rivendare - killed by Saavedro of Stratholme - as Deathlord of Lordaeron. This entire meeting went on without the knowledge of either Settra or any of the other Forsaken, leaving Joshmaul an ace-in-the-hole should Settra decide to betray him. He also had a means to kill both the House of Whitehair and Sekhesmet of Stratholme for their treachery, and possibly even take on Saavedro himself.
Over time, Velenkayn obtained the rank of Scourge Commander and took upon himself the title of "Battlelord". His many years of experience in combat, fighting the Horde on Draenor, made him a valuable asset to the Scourge. During the battle for Stormwind shortly before the departure of the Valiance Expedition, Velenkayn had led an attack himself and left the field with Saavedro's Cenarion emissary, Arrhae Leafrunner, who became one of his acolytes during the sacking of the Scarlet Enclave. In the major battle that was to come in the Plaguelands, his experience was called upon once more...
In the months after his appointment as Deathlord of Lordaeron - during which time he aided in the resurrection of Baron Rivendare - Velenkayn terrorized the human resistance and ruled the Scourge with an iron fist, the Lich King guiding his hand in all things.
When Naxxramas returned to Northrend and Acherus was sent to maintain the Scourge presence in Lordaeron, Velenkayn received a message from Highlord Darion Mograine, the son of the Ashbringer and master of Acherus. The Highlord requested that Velenkayn join him and his lieutenants - Thassarian, Koltira Deathweaver, Orbaz Bloodbane and Artimus Devaneaux - at the fields outside Light's Hope Chapel, the seat of the Argent Dawn.
Velenkayn agreed and - with a deathcharger willingly provided by the dark riders of Acherus - rode to Light's Hope where he met with Mograine. The Highlord commanded the charge personally, and Velenkayn slew many defenders of the Light. However, the Scourge forces were overwhelmed by the power of Highlord Tirion Fordring, the master of the restored Silver Hand, and the death knights were forced to stand down. His eyes opened to his corruption, Velenkayn was horrified to realize what he had done and immediately travelled to the Exodar, where he threw himself at the mercy of the Prophet.
Velen had forseen what would happen to the vindicator named for him, and knew that he would eventually use his powers for the betterment of the Light and the draenei people. While he was saddened that Velenkayn's destiny had led him to take up necromancy, he supported his return to the Alliance. As a result, Velen restored his status as a member of the Hand of Argus and gave him a new tabard to replace the one slashed to pieces by defenders of the Light during the battle at Light's Hope.
The Battlelord and the Regent: Through the Dark Portal
After being kept in the Exodar under "shackleless arrest" until they could determine his loyalty, Velenkayn returned to Acherus to meet with Artimus Devaneaux, who had become much more powerful since breaking from the Lich King. With Koschei dead and Settra's allegiances suspect, Artimus had no eyes in Outland, so he dispatched Velenkayn to the Dark Portal and hence to that shattered realm, where Velenkayn was finally able to begin bettering himself to join his master on the front lines against the Lich King.
Still somewhat suspicious of Velenkayn's motives, the Hand of Argus sent a message to Saavedro in Northrend and dispatched Farseer Jaeden'laek to meet the Regent in Shattrath. Velenkayn, being draenei after all, warmed to the challenge of fighting the Fel Horde, and the ability to fight for his shattered homeworld again. Accompanying Velenkayn into Hellfire Citadel to battle the reinforcements sent after Kargath's death, Saavedro was suspicious at first, but was satisfied that Velenkayn seemed to be genuine in his efforts. Velenkayn would then join Jaeden'laek in fighting various foes left behind by the purges Saavedro had led, including the release of the spirits of the "Path of Glory".
Arrival in Northrend
After battling alongside Jaeden'laek for some time, Velenkayn finally arrived on the front lines in Northrend, to help finish off what forces of the Scourge remained after the destruction caused by Saavedro, Artimus and their allies.
Velenkayn had recently lost his daughter Ammenkayn to Joshmaul's treachery, and was wary of the Corruptor's agents that wandered Northrend - particularly Joshmaul's blade-fisted apprentice Helbrand, who primarily resided in the Howling Fjord. He was also haunted by the shadow of Saavedro, his accomplishments throughout Northrend (earning him the title of Loremaster of the Alliance) clear enough to see whenever he visited the towns in the Borean Tundra or in the Fjord, more often than not with Artimus aiding him.
In time, however, Velenkayn grew to embrace the challenge, and became one of Artimus and Saavedro's staunchest allies. Together, all three men joined the Ashen Verdict in their final push against the Lich King, ending with his death. Lordaeron was avenged, and the Knights of the Ebon Blade had repaid the Lich King's insult at Light's Hope in blood.