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The Blood Knights are an order of blood elven paladins formed in Quel'Thalas in Year 25.
With the strong support of the Magisters and the blood elven guard force, the former of which had a hand in their creation, the Blood Knights rose from unproven and scorned beginnings to become a popular group within Sin'dorei society. They are led by their matriarch, Lady Liadrin, who was the first of their order.
Most Blood Knights were once members of the Royal Guard, proud defenders of high elven society. After the Third War, the vast majority of the high elves took up the name "blood elves" in honor of their slaughtered people, and in the wake of their ancient kingdom's destruction, many of the elves of Quel'Thalas came to view the Holy Light with contempt. This led to a great number of the blood elves losing their faith, and in turn, their Light-given powers, coming to believe that the Light had failed them in their homeland's hour of greatest need. Thus, they needed to find a new way to access the Light. They did this by sapping Light energy from the captive Naaru M'uru held beneath the Blood Knight headquarters. In a mad lust for power, Kael'thas Sunstrider sent the felblood to attack Silvermoon City and seize M'uru for his own personal uses. The Blood Knights vowed to aid A'dal and the Shattered Sun Offensive in defeating Kael'thas, Kil'jaeden, and restoring their homeland to its glory.
With the Sunwell's rebirth, the Blood Knights have chosen to embrace it and to forge for themselves a new identity as they lead their people into a more promising future.
The Blood Knight order was first conceived by Grand Magister Rommath and Astalor Bloodsworn, two master magi who had sought to find a better use of Prince Kael'thas Sunstrider's gift to Silvermoon: the Naaru, M'uru. After the magi had successfully pacified the being, Rommath summoned the former high priestess, Liadrin, and told her of his plans to create a new order of Light warriors who wielded their powers through sheer willpower - masters of their power, not servants of it. Liadrin, whose life had been led by extremities (a devout, pious priestess to a vengeful warrior), agreed to consider the offer in the hope of finding balance, and after an introduction to M'uru, pledged herself to lead this new order. She rose as Lady Liadrin, Matriarch of the Blood Knight order. Rommath had met Liadrin years before, in the immediate aftermath of the Scourge Invasion of Quel'Thalas, and had noted the former priestess' contempt for the Light.
The creation of the order was not without its critics. The Farstriders and their leader, Ranger-General of Silvermoon Halduron Brightwing, were particularly opposed to the Blood Knights' creation, believing the knights' methods of maintaining their powers to have been immoral. The general populace also looked at the unproven Blood Knights with distrust - sometimes revulsion - for the same reason. The regent lord of Quel'Thalas, Lor'themar Theron, also had his doubts, though he was hopeful that the Blood Knights would prove themselves as a valuable asset in time. The Blood Knight leadership maintained that they were simply doing what had to be done to protect Quel'Thalas, and considered many of their detractors to be ungrateful for the service the knights provided in keeping their people safe.
The Magisters looked upon their exploitation of M'uru pragmatically, knowing this was the only reliable way that the knights, most of whom had come to view the Light with scorn and contempt, could now invoke their powers. However, they were mistaken in their assumption that the naaru had been broken: events had been set in motion beyond their control, and M'uru had, in fact, feigned recalcitrance and willingly granted the Blood Knights his power in preparation for a long-set reckoning to come.
The Blood Knight order attracted elves of many walks of life. Among them were former priests and priestesses who had turned away from the Light following the Third War, as Liadrin had. Others were former members of the Royal Guard, proud defenders of Quel'Thalas. Warriors and war heroes also joined the order, embracing their new-found powers.
The Blood Knights' path was not an easy one. While they had no particular moral code or strict teachings to adhere to, exposure to M'uru had testing effects on the knights. Some were plagued by headaches and had to overcome physical pain to successfully invoke their powers, while others dealt with suppressed emotional issues being reawakened. M'uru's voice (described as reminiscent of "shattering glass") was often distorted and distant - there was little warmth in the road the knights walked.
Atop his glacier in Northrend, the Lich King himself developed a fascination with the notion of Light-wielding warriors who invoked their powers without the need for a moral code and instructed his pawn Dar'Khan Drathir to entrap the Blood Knights and raise them as undead. This led to a battle where the Blood Knights, that were stationed in the Ghostlands after reclaiming Sunsail Anchorage, succeeded in fighting off a risen Dar'Khan and his undead hordes. This saw the beginning of a new era for the order, as the Blood Knights' victories began to thaw out public opinion.
The Blood Knight order was formally introduced after the reclamation of Quel'Thalas. Having styled themselves as their homeland's defenders and the "true masters of the Light", the creation of the Blood Knight order eventually gained popularity. While some elves were still viewing the Blood Knights with fear and revulsion, many guardians of Silvermoon were now viewing their power as a testament to the fortitude of the Sin'dorei as a whole. Under the leadership of Lady Liadrin, the Blood Knights established themselves as one of Quel'Thalas' most prominent organizations. Its members were instructed to drain power directly from the subdued M'uru, which granted them a variety of Light-based abilities aside from that of martial prowess.
When the order was founded, a set number of insignias were forged and distributed, so each new member had to eventually inherit his own from a fallen veteran. While the blood elves left behind in Quel'Thalas were tasked with securing their country from the Scourge, many soldiers loyal to their Prince Kael'thas were empowered and traveled back to Outland, where the split between the Sunfury and the Illidari was about to happen.
The Blood Knights were a key component in the blood elves joining the Horde; Thrall and Cairne Bloodhoof themselves noting the considerable power of the order—though opposing their methods just as much as the Farstriders did. With their new alliance sealed, a regiment of Blood Knights began to wrestle Halaa from the Draenei and their own new allies after the journey into Outland.
A Blood Knight named Mehlar Dawnblade would oversee the order's activities within Forsaken lands and would task adventurers with defiling Uther the Lightbringer's tomb in Lordaeron. To his surprise, the Lightbringer did not fault him for his actions and urged him to instead turn his rage into helping to rebuild beautiful Quel'Thalas. Mehlar would later attempt to create a powerful anti-Scourge item named Scourgebane; the Blood Knights even enlisting the help of Lady Sylvanas Windrunner to this end.
The trials of the Blood Knight order were undertaken by newly-inducted members. These ranged from expeditions into the Ghostlands and the Plaguelands, to directly funding the powerful order, to trial-by-combat against other Blood Knights; the end result of which would be an ever-increasing rank and status in the order, ending with the title of master and control over the Thalassian Charger. The Blood Knights would attempt to assert their dominance to the paladins of the world with their destruction of the Alonsus Chapel.
Something curious at the time was that the Naaru didn't express any sort of dislike for the Blood Knights and even allowed them in their cities. Blood Knights, despite their capture of M'uru, didn't seem to have any enmity with the Naaru of Shattrath City either, some even living in the city.
The will of the order would soon be tested, however, for Kael'thas was eventually revealed to be a pawn of the Burning Legion and defeated in the Eye of Tempest Keep.
Treachery of the princeEdit
Traveling to Quel'Thalas once more, a reborn Kael'thas and his "felblood" minions entered Silvermoon, took M'uru from his place under the Blood Knight headquarters, and spirited the Naaru to the Sunwell Plateau. In the now empty chamber, the magisters that drained the Light energy stood around, dazed; young initiates seeking to learn the powers of resurrection (who would normally tap the power directly from M'uru) had instead to collect the residual holy energies from the dazed elves.
Now without any 'natural' way to channel the Light, the future of the Blood Knights looked unclear. Magister Astalor Bloodsworn, however, proclaimed that Kael'thas would not break the order—and that Lady Liadrin was already seeking a new source of power.
Without Lady Liadrin personally present to directly represent her order's interests, the leader of the magisters Grand Magister Rommath represented them in her place within Sunfury Spire. Meanwhile, Lord Solanar Bloodwrath, the right-hand man of Lady Liadrin, established himself in the Hall of Blood to keep overseeing the duties of training aspiring Masters, something normally undertaken by Liadrin herself.
Seeing Kael'thas' treachery for herself, Lady Liadrin traveled to Shattrath and met with A'dal, who informed her that M'uru had known his fate - to aid in the redemption of the people of Quel'Thalas, as prophesied by Velen. With this new insight, Liadrin pledged herself and the Order to the Sha'tar and the Shattered Sun Offensive, the army raised to battle Kael'thas and his nefarious master, Kil'jaeden.
Following the death of Kael'thas, the corruption and demise of the darkened M'uru, and the defeat of Kael'thas' demonic master, Liadrin observed the sight of the defiled and destroyed Sunwell, lamenting that the blood elven people may never atone for the sin they had committed to damning M'uru to his fate. Prophet Velen then revealed the "heart of M'uru"; unblemished and pure. It was channeled into the Sunwell, and in a massive blaze of light, the blood elves' fount of power was restored. Liadrin was both astonished and taken aback by this turn of events, and Velen mentioned that this was possibly the road to rebirthing the soul of a nation.
With the Sunwell restored, the Blood Knights now channeled their power directly from it—a far less damaging and far more harmonious relationship than their previous method of gaining power.
Wrath of the Lich KingEdit
The Blood Knights played a role in the Northrend campaign, though they took a step out of the spotlight as an organization. The Blood Knights Malithas Brightblade and Liandra Suncaller fought with the Horde champions in the Argent Tournament, and several were seen as part of the elite Kor'kron Guard regiment found in Icecrown Citadel. The denizens of Silvermoon continued to take a great amount of pride in their Blood Knights, and even Lady Sylvanas Windrunner herself was eager to see them in action.
During the quest to restore Quel'Delar, Lady Liadrin was seen speaking to groups of blood elf pilgrims about the Sunwell's revitalization. Acknowledging the road ahead as a difficult battle, she resolved that the Sin'dorei would prevail, and be restored to their greatness.
The more aggressive quotes spoken by the Blood Knight trainers were reworded; now referencing the Light without referring to the Naaru's manipulation. The path to rank and power in the order also became less dubious in nature - instead of undertaking increasingly harsh actions such as engaging in duels to the death and defiling churches, the Sunwell-empowered Blood Knights now instead go about forging powerful items and weaponry for the order's use. The ranks of the Blood Knights are also no longer limited in numbers and the old system of insignias having to be taken from a dead member's body has been abandoned.
Mists of PandariaEdit
Roughly two months following the discovery of Pandaria, Lor'themar Theron led a Blood Knight division to the myth-shrouded continent. The Blood Knights served as either protector of The Reliquary (Kaelis Sunsoar and his knights directing the Reliquary's movements in Krasarang Wilds) or looking to the safety of the regent lord himself in Kun-Lai Summit. Blood Knight Aenea was tasked with tracking down and capturing a Mogu warlord for interrogation in the Valley of the Emperors, and she and Ranger Orestes accompanied Horde heroes to his location.
The Blood Knights were later fielded on the Isle of Thunder when the Sunreaver Onslaught was on the cusp of breaking into the Thunder King's stronghold. A Blood Knight regiment could be seen at the Sin'dorei base camp, the Dawnseeker Promontory.
Despite not being visible, the Blood Knights were present during the Siege of Orgrimmar.
Warlords of DraenorEdit
The Blood Knights were the main force of the Sunsworn, led by Lady Liadrin herself. The Sunsworn hoped to drive out the demonic corruption in the region and joined forces with the Auchenai to defend the Draenei's sacred precinct, Auchindoun, from agents of the Burning Legion. Based mainly in Talador, Blood Knight members could be found all over Draenor, from Horde garrisons to a small presence in Nagrand. Several of the named Blood Knights deployed to Draenor were familiar faces to the keen-eyed players.
With Azeroth under threat from the largest Burning Legion invasion yet, the Blood Knights lend their aid to the reborn Knights of the Silver Hand, combining forces with the other paladin orders. The Blood Knights hold a considerable presence in Light's Hope Chapel, gathering mainly in its western side.
Battle for AzerothEdit
The Blood Knights, led by their matriarch, fought on the fields of the Arathi Highlands during the Battle for Stromgarde. It seems that they are no longer part of the Order of the Silver Hand as it is possible for Liadrin and the Blood Knights to face off against Turalyon, who leads the Silver Hand and Lightforged troops. Turalyon also scoffs at the idea of the Horde armies being led by a paladin, Lady Liadrin, questioning what has happened on Azeroth to allow this. He then claims he will take pleasure in enacting justice on a "misguided paladin of the Horde".
They wear new special armor, as well as Blood-Tempered Ranseurs. All of them appear to have golden eyes, just as their matriarch does.
Blood Knights are unusual among paladins in that their method of wielding the Light is unorthodox. Originally, the Blood Knights invoked the Light by establishing a link with M'uru, a captive Naaru kept imprisoned beneath Silvermoon. The bond was testing and sometimes painful, but allowed the Knights to use the Naaru's Light-given powers without a need for faith or piety; indeed, the Blood Knights turned to this method precisely because they believed the Light had turned its back on them in their darkest hour, and they no longer wished to heed its teachings. The blood elves were misguided in their rage against the Light, as their waning ability to invoke it was due to their own inner doubts and dread in the face of the Scourge invasion, but either way, M'uru provided a pragmatic method to access the Light reliably. Members of the Horde and even many citizens of Silvermoon considered this method of empowerment to be unethical. The power of M'uru's energy in the knights weakened with distance.
This changed at the end of The Burning Crusade, which saw the death of M'uru and the restoration of the Sunwell. The Blood Knights now wield their powers through the Sunwell itself, its renewed energies no longer solely a source of arcane power, but also Holy Light born of M'uru's last spark. It is a harmonious relationship, free of the pain and discord of their previous method of wielding the Light, and the knights no longer suffer from its associated negative effects.
To wield the Light through the Sunwell, a typical Blood Knight must have strong willpower and faith in their own ability. Although possible to "steal" the Light from the Sunwell in the same way they did from M'uru, the Blood Knights have moved past this sort of abuse. The Blood Knights have embraced the Sunwell, as they lead their people into a more promising future.
Ranks of the Blood Knight order BloodKnightSots.jpg There are four "ranks" that were obtainable by players, and some that are only obtained by NPCs.
Where all Blood Knights begin, as their starting set indicates. Initiates were to eventually undergo the ritual of the First Trial to prove their willpower, by engaging in mortal combat and then resurrecting their fallen opponent.
The Adept's Path, and obtaining a weapon commissioned by the Warchief himself. From this point on they are considered full Blood Knights in service to Silvermoon City, and they get their Thalassian Warhorse. Previously, Adepts had to undergo the Second Trial to obtain the order's distinctive weapon and their own insignia instead.
Presumably obtained after getting the Thalassian Charger around level 40. Previously implied to be obtained after learning
Weapons of Darkness around level 50 and getting the [Blood Knight Tabard], which was previously obtained alongside the Master rank and the Thalassian Charger after completing True Masters of the Light around level 60. This rank is also held by some NPCs (Master Pyreanor in Orgrimmar, for example). Blood Knight masters are considered part of an elite inner circle of the order. Acquiring the rank of master requires the sponsorship of another high-ranking knight.
- Bloodwarder: Some Sunfury and Illidari knights in Outland had this rank.
- Blood Lord: Some Sunfury and Illidari knights in Outland had this rank.
- Champion: Some blood elf paladin trainers (Champion Cyssa Dawnrose in the Undercity, for instance) have this rank.
- Knight-Lord: Intermediate officer position, with the role of managing rank-and-files Blood
- Knights (Knight-Lord Bloodvalor in Silvermoon).
- Matriarch: The rank held by Lady Liadrin, supreme leader of the Blood Knight order.