Concept art of a Drust.
When early Gilnean sailors under the Empire of Arathor arrived in Kul Tiras around 2,700 years ago, the Drust, led by Gorak Tul, waged war against the human colonizers. However, not all Drust agreed with the war, and the druidic Thornspeakers left Drust society to side with the humans.
Gorak Tul eventually lost the conflict, and his Drust were all slain by the human invaders under Arom Waycrest, the founder of the House of Waycrest. Yet, the Drust hadn't departed from Azeroth, they remained as spirits and over time, the Drust had slowly been trying to make their way back to the mortal world.
During the Blood War, Gorak Tul made a pact with Lady Meredith Waycrest to help her save her dying husband in exchange for her to form the Heartsbane Coven who's magic awakened the stone and wicker constructs that the Drust spirits then possessed.
War Against the Drust
- See main article: War Against the Drust
Originally a seafaring tribe, the Drust settled in Drustvar and their culture eventually centered around Drustvar's magical woodlands. Hunting and woodcraft were the backbones of their primitive society, as did their religion of druidism.
Before the reign of Gorak Tul, the Drust practiced peaceful druidism, one such known group were the Thornspeakers. However, when King Gork Tul sought power, he invested himself in forbidden death magics. Gork Tul's twisted ways quickly revolted the druids, believing him to bring disgrace upon the Drust who commanded a great deal of respect amongst Drustvar's animals.
When humans from Gilneas under the Empire of Arathor arrived on the island and began building small villages, Gorak Tul commanded unprovoked raids against the human's hamlets from his seat of Drustvar. Drust barbarians continued attacking human settlements repeatedly, and when the humans landed on Drustvar they tried to enact peace through gifts and diplomacy. Gorak Tul's Drust instead immediately went to war with them, glorifying slaughter and attacking unarmed civilians.
Despite the fact that the grand majority of Drust was under Gorak Tul, believing humans to be nothing more than invaders; not all Drust agreed with the warmongering nor the brutality. Members of the Order of the Thornspeakers, such as High Thornspeaker Ulfar, left the Drust to join the developing Kul Tiran society, and some eventually produced offspring with them. Some of their descendants heard the call of the wilds and sought to learn the ancient ways, and so the Drust Thornspeakers taught them the ways of druidism.
Colonel Arom Waycrest and his second-in-command, Captain Lilian Nottley, led the Drustvar Militia as it began to wane under the power of Gorak Tul's armies and their death magic. The humans were beginning to lose the war, but nevertheless, the militia under Waycrest was a hearty folk, and they pressed on while the Waycrest family created the Order of Embers and researched weaknesses in Drust magic. They soon discovered that silver countered Drust magic, and so the Order of Embers started to use weapons of silver.
With this new advantage, the tides changed in favor of the Drustvar Militia. In time the Drust would be forced to withdraw as they lost numbers to the human settlers. When Gorak Tul ran out of living warriors, he planted fallen Drust spirits into golems of stone that served him in hopes of claiming victory over the humans.
Colonel Arom Waycrest led the final assault at the Battle of Gol Osigr and stabbed Gorak Tul himself. As Gorak Tul was stabbed his power was broken and, with it, his connection to his stone constructs which shattered. From this victory, Arom was made the first Lord of Drustvar and became the founder of the House of Waycrest. But though wounded and broken, Gorak Tul did not die.
In modern times, the story has been warped. The modern Kul Tirans believe that the stone constructs were used for a longer period than just near the end of the war, that Arom had killed Gorak Tul, and that Gorak Tul's living army fell soon after his death instead of earlier on.
The Drust would live on as spirits, trying to return to the physical world. The Waycrests had wiped out the Drust, but could not destroy Gorak Tul. For countless years he waited to enact his vengeance from within Thros until Lady Waycrest provided the means.
The Blood War
- See main article: Blood War
Shortly before the start of the Blood War, Lady Waycrest was stricken with grief as a result of her ailing husband Lord Arthur Waycrest. She called out to any power that could save him, and Gorak Tul responded to her wail, promising that death would never part the couple, for a price. In return for teaching Lady Waycrest ancient Drust death magic, she, in turn, would form the Heartsbane Coven who's magic could awaken the remaining stone constructs for the Drust spirits to enter. The coven's magic stirred up the Drust's spirits, drawing them back to fight once more as skeletons. Other Drust spirits were put into powerful wicker constructs.
Lady Waycrest was merely a vessel for Gorak Tul's power, and her death opened the Rupture, the doorway for the Drust to enter Azeroth. At the Rupture, Gorak Tul was able to raise his people from the dead, but he was slain nonetheless. However, upon his death, Gorak Tul revealed that it was only a vessel and he still existed in the Blighted Lands. Even so, the Heartsbane Coven was broken and Drustvar was released from Gorak Tul's power. When Jaina Proudmoore was exiled to Fate's End by her own mother Kathrine, Gorak Tul captured her and dragged her into Thros. When the people of Kul Tiras sought to rescue Jaina and turned to the Drust druid Ulfar for help, Gorak Tul attacked him and the Thornspeakers who he had taught the Drust's ways too. Gorak Tul was not happy that Ulfar had shared their gifts with the humans, but Ulfar himself saw Gorak Tul's twisted ways as bringing disgrace to the Drust. Within Thros, Jaina was being tormented by memories of her past. After she was saved by her mother, Jaina and the adventurer slew Gorak Tul in his own domain.
Drust souls incarnated in Azeroth today primarily occupy Wickerman golems made of wood and bone and other stone constitutions. The Drust King Gorak Tul has a unique appearance that emulates his living appearance, including his beard.
High Thornspeaker Ulfar, who in hundreds of years training Thornspeakers has yet to unveil his true appearance, preferring to stay shape-shifted into a bear-like form.
- Information taken from: https://wow.gamepedia.com/Drust
- In-game dialog between Ulfar and the adventurer: https://i.imgur.com/tKrKWal.png