Childhood and the Defias
Jormungand was born to a poor dwarven family in Lordaeron towards the end of the Second War, shortly before reconstruction work on Stormwind began. From an early age Jormungand proved himself to be a particularly skilled thief, which at the time was the only career available to him. However before long his parents joined the Stonemasons Guild, returned to the Kingdom of Azeroth, and settled in a large mansion in the new Dwarven District. When the Stonemasons were exiled and formed the Defias, his parents were two of the first members to join, but were soon killed while raiding Goldshire. Jormungand was raised by the Defias, and his skills once again became extremely valuable. He quickly grew to fame within the brotherhood, even being taken on as an apprentice by Edwin van Cleef himself, and when he reached the age of sixteen he was given the great responsibilty of acting as ambassador to the Venture Co.
As a high-ranking member Jormungand came to learn many of the secrets of the organization, and he did not like all that he saw. Everywhere he looked the Defias were falling into corruption, abandoning their mission of being a nuisance to the nobles of Stormwind and instead becoming a petty criminal gang. While he had nothing against crime, he felt that the criminal should have a reason for committing it. Even worse many of their victims were innocent civilians, those for whom they aimed to act as representatives. When he saw how they were prepared to do business with even worse organisations like the Venture Co. he decided that the Defias had forgotton its ideals. For voicing this he was sentenced to death by van Cleef, and only escaped by slaying his guards and sneaking out the back entrance to the Deadmines.
There was no way that Jormungand could return to the Alliance, where he would surely be imprisoned in the Stockades. So he became a bandit, wandering the fields of Westfall. For months he survived on little more than a handful of wheat which he would steal from the fields. Sometimes he would find an unfortunate traveller, whose supplies he would raid as they slept. But all the time he was on the run from his pursuers. Every so often he would be ambushed by a group of Defias. Every time he managed to slay them all. Eventually his old friend Korkan, a High Elven mage, was sent as a test of loyalty, and the two clashed in a fierce duel. But although Korkan managed to mortally wound Jormungand, he could not bring himself to deal the killing blow and left his friend - without the headscarf - in an inn at Sentinel Hill.
The healers there did everything they could to save him, but they could do nothing. Eventually a night elven priestess stopped by, and with one prayer to Elune completely healed him. As Jormungand awoke he thanked the priestess, but was disappointed that he could remember nothing about his past. With a word of farewell he packed his few belongings and began the long journey to Ironforge, where he hoped he could recover his memories.
When he arrived in Ironforge, he immediatly visited the Mystic Ward to consult the spellcasters there. At the time they could do nothing other than recommend regular apppointments. In the meantime, they suggested, Jormungand should take up a legitimate profession and do his best to settle down. He tried playing around with different careers, trying out engineering and leatherworking for a time, but soon discovered that the most profitable way was trading on the Auction House.
It took less than a month between first arriving in Ironforge and gaining a reputation as the most successful businessman in the city. Jormungand would buy any rare items he could find, often travelling across Khaz Modan to find them himself, and then sell them for much more to the highest bidder. However he began to tire of the practice and began to crave more exciting ways of life. So when he saw a large bag full of coins on the tram one day he did not hand it in as his conscience urged him to, but instinctively kept it. After that he began to engage in more and more illegal activity, and eventually reverting entirely to crime.
However, unknown to him, he was being watched by an agent of SI:7. Tyrion the Gnome had been following him all the way from the Deadmines to keep a track on one of the Defias' best thieves. However when he discovered Jormungand's expulsion and amnesia he saw the potential that such a person could show in an official organisation. So instead of assassinating Jormungand as per orders he confronted him and made a job offer. Seeing no other option other than to flee and be forever hunted, he accepted.
One of his first assignments, in a hope to restore his memories, was to venture inside the Deadmines and eliminate Edwin van Cleef and the rest of the Defias commanders. Jormungand gathered together a party of similarly-skilled adventurers and forced his way through the mines, slaying . Eventually they reached a vast cavern, at the middle of which was a great battleship under construction. Step by step they fought their way up the gangplank, and at last faced Van Cleef himself.
Later Jormungand would decide that he must have been involved in the Defias in the past, due to Van Cleef's recognising him and the familiarity with which he guided the party through the mines. However at the time the only thng he was interested in was ending the life of Van Cleef once and for all, which he did. Then they ran for the back entrance and escaped with barely a scratch, only to not look where they were going and fall down a cliff into the waters of the Great Sea below.
Jormungand was the only survivor, and that was because he was caught by a tree half way down. Seeing a light nearby, and with nowhere else to go for the night, he climbed down the rest of the way and swam towards what turned out to be an abandoned lighthouse, hoping that he would be safe there.
The next morning he journeyed south into Stranglethorn Vale, following the coast. Before long he encountered a group of trolls, newly arrived from Zandalar. Since all the trolls he knew of were vicous cannibals, he fled for his life despite the dangers they tried to warn him of. These dangers turned out to be a beach infested with crocolisks and basilisks, but Jormungand easily avoided them. When a basilisk finally noticed him he simply stabbed it in the eyes before it could petrify him and continued. In this way, after a full days journey he managed to reach open jungle and made camp.
The next day he began exploring the jungle and came across a small encampment manned by a group of hunters. Their leader, Hemet Nesingwary Jr, introduced himself and gave directions for the nearest settlement - Rebel Camp. However Jormungand had no intention of returning to civilisation just yet, and for a while joined the hunters, proving especially adept at ambushing their prey. Together they journeyed throughout the vale, and at last succeeded in tracking down the great tiger King Bangalash.
With the tiger dead, Jormungand said farewell to his companions and continued on to Booty Bay. For a few weeks he hired himself out as a mercenary to the Blackwater Raiders, fighting against their mortal foes the Bloodsail Buccaneers. Unfortunately he proved too good at it, and when half the Bloodsail's lay dead the Blackwater's decided they could take on the rest themselves. Jormungand's contract was terminated.
So he decided to try his luck in Ratchet, just a short hop by boat across the Great Sea. In comparison with Booty Bay, where one could find oneself stabbed in the back for looking at the knife-wielder in "a funny way", the citizens of Ratchet were much friendlier and willing to do business. Jormungand hunted over a hundred debtors and miscreants all over the Barrens, and for each one succeeded in bringing back either a head or a large sum of money. Occasionally he was entrusted with deliveries to the other Steamwheedle Cartel cities. And then Gazlowe told him of the corrupt and evil Venture Co, which was bent on destroying all rivals and which was now trying to seize Ratchet as its own.
From then on Jormungand's forays took him ever farther afield, from the grasslands of Mulgore to the forests of Ashenvale, wiping out Venture Co employees wherever they might be found. In his rage he destroyed entire operations, slaughtering the workers. Step by step the company began to retreat from Kalimdor, net profits turning into a loss. The executives became desperate and tried to stop him in every way they could, but he always evaded their traps. At last, conceding defeat, the company abandoned Kalimdor and recalled all employees back to Kezan. Jormungand chased after them, only to fall into the hands of the Durotar border guards.
Among the Horde
Jormungand was taken back to Razor Hill and thrown into a cell. The orcs treated him well, with regular meals and a warm bed, but he began to begrudge his imprisonment and secretly began to plan escape. However it was not needed, for after a couple of weeks he was taken out and escorted to Orgrimmar to have his case heard by Thrall. After hours of interrogation, he finally confessed that he had once worked for SI:7. When he heard that, Thrall began to decree that he should be executed but for the pleas of a not so familiar face - Korkan.
After being sent to dispatch Jormungand, Korkan too had begun to realise the corruption that was steadily claiming the Defias. He had managed to escape while out raiding and eventually found his way to Quel'thalas, where he converted to the Blood Elves. But witnessing for the first time the full scale of the destruction caused he despaired of any hope and when his people joined the Horde he travelled across the sea to find new opportunities in a new continent.
With Korkan's intervention, Jormungand was set free but banished from the boundaries of the realm of Durotar forever. He returned to Ratchet, intending to continue his employment there, only to find that most of the city had been taken over by the Venture Co. which, in his absence, had begun to reclaim their worksites. When he saw a poster offering a reward for his capture, he sneaked back out but caught the attention of two guards patrolling the main road. He managed to overpower them, but not before one raised the alarm and brought an army of goblins out with the sole intention of subduing him in any way necessary.
He fought back fiercely, but no matter how many he slew there were always more. After several hours of this he began to tire, his movements becoming slower and not so powerful. Eventually he dropped from exhaustion. The goblins surged forward... but were immediatly thrown back by a powerful gust of wind.
For the second time, Korkan had saved his life. With his last strength, Jormungand blinded those goblins nearest to them and allowed himself to be brought through a portal conjured up by the elven mage.
When he awoke, Jormungand found himself in a hammock clearly intended for larger folk. The room appeared to be overlooking a lake, beyond which were grasslands and hills. On a lower level he found Korkan talking to a number of tauren, which led him to believe that he was somewhere in Mulgore, that vast valley hidden in the mountains west of the Barrens. For now he knew there was no way he could return to his homeland, so he walked the road to Thunder Bluff and pledged his allegiance to Cairne Bloodhoof. Initially Cairne was suspicious, believing him to be one of those excavators defiling the land at Bael'dun. But after he told the story of his crusade against the goblins he fully earned Cairne's trust, and when he managed to finish off the last Venture Co stronghold in the region he was made an honorary member of the Bloodhoof Tribe.
Cairne was concerned that the tauren were becoming estranged from their ancient allies, the Night Elves and Furbolgs, and wished to send emissaries to them to renew their friendship. After the first few vanished he considered sending a rogue, of which Jormungand was one of very few in Mulgore at the time. By lot he was chosen as the next messenger, and was accompanied by a number of bodyguards including Korkan.
Less than a week after arriving in Mulgore, Jormungand left it again. For many days they journeyed north, crossing mile upon mile of windswept plains, until they reached the Mor'shan Rampart and the official border of Horde-controlled territory. They resupplied at the fortress there before proceeding on into Ashenvale Forest. Almost immediately they realised what had happened to their predecessors. Crazed furbolgs began leaping out on them as they approached one of their villages. Initially the tauren were reluctant to fight them, remembering the many times when they would have fought together, but after three of their number were struck down the rest saw the corruption and began to defend themselves.
In the brief battle that ensued, many on both sides fell, but ultimately the tauren were victorius. Tragically as they returned to the road one lone furbolg came out behind and struck Korkan a mighty blow. Although Jormungand at once destroyed the creature he could do nothing for Korkan, who had perished in an instant.
Much subdued, the party continued further into the forest. As they approached the first Night Elven settlement, Silverwing Outpost, they announced their presence to any who may be listening. So it was with ease that a regiment of Sentinels managed to surround them and then confront them with an arrowpoint.
Children of the Stars
Jormungand managed to persuade the Sentinels to send them for an audience with the Kaldorei leaders. Upon hearing the message their leader agreed not to hinder them, but refused to lend any aid save to send word to Darnassus and prepare the way. After some "negotiation" however the Sentinel found herself escorting the party back to the outpost, there providing a meal and a stop for the night, in addition to bringing them as far as Auberdine to ensure their complete safety.
For some reason Jormungand recognised one of the junior night elves, though he wasn't sure why. At that time though all that mattered was getting through the night elven lands safely and speaking with the High Priestess. The journey passed uneventfully, and after a few days they passed through Astranaar, A week after that arrived in the port of Auberdine, where they boarded a ship and landed at a small village between the roots of Teldrassil. The next morning they passed through a portal into the city itself, in which they paid homage to Elune at the Temple of the Moon, and then spoke to High Priestess Tyrande and Archdruid Staghelm in a private meeting out on the branches of Teldrassil. Tyrande seemed to be sympathetic to the tauren's plight, but Staghelm refused point blank to reopen communications other than with those few tauren druids who had joined the Cenarion Circle.
The absence of the furbolgs, regarded as a neutral party, only served to cement Staghelms convictions that such an alliance would never work out. With a heavy heart they returned to their quarters and prepared to return. At the last minute however a number of tauren changed their minds and vowed to Stagehelm that they would find some uncorrupted furbolgs and restore relations. The rest began the long trek back to the Barrens.
Upon arriving back at Mor'shan Jormungand was summoned to Orgrimmar for an errand of the utmost importance. The old human fortress at Northwatch Keep had been taken over by Theramore deserters who were now staging raids all along the coast from Bladefist Bay to Theramore Isle. Working in conjunction with Jaina Proudmoore, Thrall had resolved to wipe out this threat to both orcs and humans, and attempted to raze the keep to the ground.
Unfortunately neither the orcish warriors or human marines had much success in capturing the fortress. The deserter numbers were much greater than either had realised, and they were driven back with great loss. So after three successive attacks were a complete failure, Jaina came up with an elaborate plan to distract the guard while a contingent of assassins took out the leaders. As one of the most skilled rogues in the vicinity, Jormungand was elected unanimously to act as the leader, while High Overlord Saurfang of the Horde led an assault against the main gates.
However hours before the operation was due to begin a massive army of deserters invaded Durotar. They swiftly reconquered Tiragarde Keep and proceeded to besiege Razor Hill. Seeing no time to retreat to Durotar, the allies continued the attack, killed the rebel commander Captain Fairmount, and left a guard over the prisoners, before marching as fast as they could to intercept the invaders.
By the time they reached Durotar the rebels had been joined by fresh reinforcements from Kul Tiras. In addition the Shadow Council had taken advantage of the turmoil to overthrow Thrall and set up a puppet warchief in Orgrimmar. Thrall and his loyal bodyguard escaped down the Southfury River and met their allies at an anchorage near the Echo Isles. The next morning the combined Theramore and Durotar armies met the rebels in battle north of Sen'jin Village and vanquished them utterly.
They proceeded north, rooting out rebels wherever they could be found, and at last marched on Orgrimmar. The Shadow Council had used the time to build up the defences and successfully resisted the first two attacks with a combination of Fel Orc bloodlust and warlock magic. But on the third Jaina and her sorcerers blasted a massive breach in the city wall and the orcs stormed their own city.
The Shadow Council were slaughtered and most of the Fel Orcs redeemed. But some, including the Burning Blade leader Neeru Fireblade, attempted to flee through Ragefire Chasm and into the caves in the mountains. But fortunately Jormungand had infiltrated those caves from the other end, and as Neeru passed he ambushed him and killed what remained of the warlocks.
For all his brave deeds Jormungand was promised a lok'vadnod when he died - the highest honor which could be given by orcish society. But for now he returned to Theramore and took the ship to Menethil Harbour. After a short time hunting crocolisks he returned to Ironforge and attempted to restart his legitimate business. Unfortunately before long he caught the attention of a couple of SI:7 agents on an unrelated mission, and was kidnapped and taken back to their headquarters.
Matthias Shaw accused him of desertion, an offence which carried the death penalty for fear that former agents might reveal state secrets. While he was waiting for his trial Jormungand was thrown into the Stockades, but after being nearly stabbed in the back by angry Defias prisoners he was removed and imprisoned in the Vault instead. He had a dozen guards outside his cell 24/7, with no opportunities for leaving the cell or formulating an escape plan. For six months he languished while his prosecutors sorted out the legal side of things, and then he was dragged out and presented to Anduin Wrynn.
Surprisingly Anduin sided with Jormungand, saying that his years in exile had given the rogue access to Horde intelligence and that the benefits which may come from it exceeded the risks taken by setting him free. However he decreed that Jormungand must not be allowed to leave the city without a guard to watch him. So he remained in Stormwind for another year and tried to continue with his trading. But without the opportunity to go out and collect rare and valuable items, the business suffered and went bankrupt.