A part of Hath's Vigil and a statue of General Hath.
Lord Johnathon Brand
The Grand Alliance
- "When I first arrived I couldn't believe it existed, it was haven. Now I want nothing more than something to stop the cold."
- -A refugee turned civilian.
Hath's Vigil was a large city in the southeastern section of the snowy Alterac Mountains and was the capital of the Duchy of Hath. Named for the famed Alteraci general, Hath, the city was the first in the Alliance's efforts to recolonize Alterac with a central location of power within the mountains following the destruction of Alterac City. It was known for having one of the few remaining bastions of the Scarlet Crusade prior to its destruction. Since its destruction at the hands of the Forsaken, spearheaded by the Legion of Vengeance, the city has been reduced from thousands to mere hundreds, and a small town has cropped up in the duchy's ruins.
Hath's Vigil was the first of what was to be many efforts to recolonize and repopulate the war torn nation of the Kingdom of Alterac following the dethroning of King Aiden Perenolde. The construction of the city began after massive public outcry from Alteraci civilians who had been displaced by the war and threatened yet another revolt in the mountains, as most of the towns of Alterac had been destroyed and their capitol of Alterac City was razed.
In order to sate the Alteraci people's wishes, King Terenas Menethil of the Kingdom of Lordaeron ordered the construction of the city using a large amount of Orcish slaves. Seen as a sort of slight towards the Alteracis for reminding them of their King and nation's betrayal of the Grand Alliance, the Alteraci population could not complain lest King Terenas revoke the building of the city.
Five years after the end of the Second War and the subjugation of the Orcs, Hath's Vigil began construction with the House of Brand put in charge of it's development. With heavy amounts of Orcish labor used for the construction of the city, people flocked from around Alterac to what would later be their new home. Setting up camps and shantytowns on the outskirts, the first of which being Krastin. Repeated raids of the camps by wandering bandits and various Alliance members who held a grudge against the Alteraci people for their betrayal years ago led to Terenas sending a token force of soldiers to maintain order. The need for survival led to Krastin growing larger and eventually becoming a town on it's own on the outskirts of the city.
As the years passed and Hath's Vigil's construction continued, people began to move into the city, taking up jobs to help speed the construction as well as facilitate early bits of trade with Lordaeron and the rest of Alterac. Menethil guards ensured the populace remained out of the Orc's encampments while they built the large city, though the occasional dead Alteraci or Orc still popped up every now and again.
Mines were constructed in the area, as they found one plentiful with iron and other useful minerals within the borders of the city's construction point. From there, the city received most of the materials used in it's construction, orcish laborers working alongside human ones in order to pump out the useful ores and minerals to speed up the construction of the city and finally begin the re-establishment of Alterac.
Unfortunately, a riot broke out when several Alteraci workers were found dead, and though the culprits had not been found, most of the humans blamed the Orcish slaves. This led to a large fight that ended up killing several of the Menethil guards and the destruction of an entire district of Hath's Vigil and the construction of one district to go unfinished until the riots were eventually quelled by force. During this time, security was increased and curfews were instated so that another riot would not form again in the future.
- "When the Orcs rebelled I could hardly consider my self surprised. I always knew it would happen, I just figured we had more time.."
- -Lord Jameson Brand
By the time of the Third War, Hath's Vigil was nearing completion, the project's setbacks having been repaired over time and the city nearing the final end stages of construction, only for the Orcs to rise up in rebellion. Most of the slave Orcs in Hath's Vigil were of the Blackrock Clan, and when the blade master Jubei-thos rose up and called for his brethren to heed the call, they answered. Once again, a large portion of Hath's Vigil was raided, the town of Krastin was sacked, and then later the town of Strahnbrad was attacked by the very same Orcs as Prince Arthas Menethil and Grand Master Uther the Lightbringer of the Order of the Silver Hand rode out to meet the threat.
During this time, the Alteracis were left to their own devices as King Terenas recalled all troops stationed within Hath's Vigil to meet the rising Orcish threat in Lordaeron. With no Orc slaves left to finish the building, it fell to the impoverished Alteracis who had not the supplies nor man power to even fix the damage left by the orc's departure. With Krastin having been sacked, trade within the Mountains became scarce, as the whispers of plague spreading through Lordaeron discouraged import from their neighbors. It was during this time that Hath's Vigil reached it's lowest point, as harsh weather swept through the area, making the local farms unable to produce enough food to sustain the population.
Scores of citizens fell to weather or famine, many migrating out of Alterac to seek a better living in Lordaeron. The population eventually dwindled to the point where only half of Hath's Vigil was populated, and the rest was left abandoned or still unbuilt.
Plague of LordaeronEdit
When the plague began to sweep across Lordaeron during the Third War and the rumors of the dead rising again, Hath's Vigil responded with the creation of a local militia force. Arming themselves with weapons left behind by the Menethil guards and scavenged from the long abandoned armories of Alterac City, the people of Hath's Vigil were prepared to meet the undead threat head on, though it never came. Their inability and refusal to purchase grain from Lordaeron led to the city being spared from the plague hitting them, and as the undead swarmed throughout Lordaeron, Alterac remained mostly untouched, as did the foothills of Hillsbrad south of them.
Through a stroke of luck, their misfortune was their savior as the city was mostly overlooked during the entirety of the Third War as most believed the city to have been either abandoned or destroyed by then. When King Terenas Menethil was assassinated and Prince Arthas began the Scourge of Lordaeron, Hath's Vigil found it's self becoming a massive refugee hub. Staunch processes were put in place to ensure all those entering Hath's Vigil were healthy, and any who were not were either turned away or killed. The city turned their new refugees to the abandoned unfinished section of the city, and those able were sent to work within the mines and fix the fields. As with Hillsbrad and the province of Blackmarsh, luck allowed Hath's Vigil to continue on with little molestation from the rampaging undead hordes, and later demons, that destroyed Lordaeron.
Hath's Vigil remained in relative obscurity throughout the war, as many refused to believe the Alteracis would have survived where Lordaeron fell, and even fewer believed that they would survive the trek through the harsh mountains to even reach the supposed haven.
In the wake of Lordaeron's destruction, the Syndicate rose to begin their crusade against the former oppressors of Alterac. Lord Brand immediately declared that Hath's Vigil would support the prince Aliden Perenolde, for they believed he would fix the mistakes of his father. However, as time went on and the Syndicate became more and more focused on revenge than the re-establishment of Alterac, Hath's Vigil began to pull away. In addition, the sizable population of Lordaeronian, High elven and other miscellaneous populations of refugees within the city opposed the Syndicate due to their blatant desire to take down anyone who once put Alterac down for their betrayal, even in this desperate time of need.
Hath's Vigil spurned the Syndicate, causing a large amount of fighting to occur in the area between the two factions on the fringes of the city, especially within the ruins of Krastin. Eventually the Syndicate turned away from the city, seeking to focus on their revenge first.
The Scarlet Crusade and the ForsakenEdit
In the years that followed the fall of Lordaeron and the quieting of the Scourge, Hath's Vigil became the host to a large amount of staunch supporters of the Scarlet Crusade. An order founded to re-establish Lordaeron and it's people and purge the Undead threat, Hath's Vigil reached out to these believed noble crusaders in an effort to facilitate a mutually beneficial alliance. In exchange for protection, the people of Hath's Vigil would aid with arming and supplying the Crusade's noble cause, an offer that was too good to deny on either part.
In this time, the Forsaken rose to power in Lordaeron. Their frequent skirmishes with the city's allies led the city to develop a strong hatred for the supposed "freed" undead. In Hath, many people believed that the Forsaken were no better than the Scourge, and they all needed to be purged within the purifying flames of the Light. Though, as whispers went on about corruption within the ranks of the Crusade, the people of Hath began to become ever distrustful of their allies, choosing to section off a portion of the city for their defenders. While masked under the veil of "rewarding" their allies for their continued support, it was mostly to ensure that in the case of the Crusade turning on them, they would be able to quell the issue quickly.
When word reached Hath's Vigil that the Grand Alliance had reformed and was issuing a call for humanity to unite once more, Lord Brand pledged the support of his people to the Alliance. Delegates were sent out to the city, where they observed the city was barely functional, most of the area had fallen into disrepair, the people were paranoid and frightened, still scarred from the fall of Lordaeron, and the areas surrounding the city were inhospitable and filled with hostile forces. Hath's Vigil was accepted into the Alliance, but token support was all they received. Once more, the people of Hath were forced to rely on themselves, as their new Alliance allies not only still held old hatreds against the Alteracis, but felt that the city could not last forever against the Forsaken, who had aligned themselves with the Horde.
As the years went on in the north and the Scarlet Crusade fell into decline, Hath became one of the few areas where Scarlet power could be observed. Despite whispers of corruption, the Scarlets in Hath considered themselves after such a long time to be a part of the community, and in turn the community accepted them. Commander Jacob Falsinmere of the Crusade was made captain of the city's guard, and they accepted their role within the city gladly.
The Second ShatteringEdit
When the Black Dragon Aspect, Deathwing, returned into the world of Azeroth and brought with him the second Shattering, Hath felt the world tremble beneath his might. With their allies becoming fewer and fewer by the day, thanks to the Forsaken's continued campaigns against the remaining denizens of the Alliance in the north, and now the mountains heaving with Deathwing's return, the people of Hath were faced with even more struggles. Avalanches were common during the initial portions of the Shattering, destroying roads in the already beleaguered county of Alterac and killing many who attempted to brave the mountains in this time. Once again isolated, Hath's people preserved until help arrived from the most unlikely of places, Gilneas.
Having recently rejoined the Alliance and reviving the front against the undead in the north, Gilneans flocked to aid the people of Hath in order to gather more aid in their cause. Finding the city in disrepair from age and weather, the Gilneans provided much needed aid to revitalize the city. In this same period, Hath's Vigil finally received Alliance recognition, as the weathered city could provide a vital base of operations in the coming war against the Forsaken and their new Val'kyr servants. Battalions arrived from Stormwind to aid the rebuilding effort in Hath's Vigil, and trade routes became safe for a time in the mountains.
Once more, Hath's Vigil was left to its own once the warfront in Pandaria took up most of the Alliance's focus. With the Lordaeron front having fallen back once again to a secondary pursuit with the loss of Andorhal and the Stormpike legions, Hath's Vigil's only remaining contact in the area was Gilneas. Refusing to even consider aid from the Argents due to their Scarlet denizens, the area once more heavily relied on it's self.
Before their departure, the Stormwind legions did help with fixing the heavy structural damage suffered by the Shattering, as well as leave the area well stocked to become self reliant once again.
The Forsaken ApproachEdit
During the beginning of the month of August, the village of Krastin was assaulted by an organization known as the Hand of Vengeance, one of the Forsaken's many forces, best known for their operations in the frozen tundra of Northrend. During this time, the Hand cut off all contact with Hath's Vigil and the town of Krastin, and in a week's time the town was destroyed. Calling for aid, a Gilnean group known as the Blades of Greymane were summoned to the area due to their proximity to Alterac and prior record of successful missions. The Blades arrived in force, bringing with them two Wolf-class Siege Engines to aid with their mission against the undead. Lord Jameson Brand and Commander Jacob Falsinmere met them within the barracks in the Crimson Lane to discuss the encroaching threat and how it was to be handled. The Blades were sent out to meet up with a small group of crusaders that had been sent out earlier in order to re-establish contact with Krastin, not knowing of its fate. The Forsaken's goal was simple, destroy the city and slaughter it's population for reanimation.
Once the Blades had departed, several hours later the arrival of the Legion of Vengeance heralded the siege on Hath's Vigil. The Undead infiltrated the barracks of the Crimson Lane shortly after the departure of Lord Jameson Brand and Commander Falsinmere to the Falcon's Quarter, where the group assassinated those left in charge of the forces in the immediate area. With no leadership and their main fortification compromised, the Hand of Vengeance began their march on the city, laying siege to the district. Led by Ivan Sibelius Felsorrow and Seleste Shatterheart, the Undead rampaged across the district in the following days, slaughtering the denizens of the Crimson Lane with their vast amount of troops and plague.
By suggestion of Lord Hendrick Cobalstant, the various buildings of non-import were put to the torch. The Abbey, where one of the two resident bishops of the light resided, was put to the torch, with the bishop's body incinerated by fel flames. The small amount of residential homes in the district were engulfed in fire as families hiding within were trapped in the burning wreckage, and the small chapel that hosted the last Bishop was also put to the flame, the bishop himself having been flayed.
With all but one target destroyed, the Undead set their sights on the Darrow Cathedral, where the last of the Crusaders in the district that had not followed Commander Falsinmere upon his return to the district were hauled up. By way of crude reanimation akin to the kind of the Undead Scourge, the Crusaders were over run by the reanimated bodies of the very civilians they were sworn to protect. Within the Cathedral, the remaining defenders were butchered and the cathedral was destroyed in a hellish explosion of fel flames and terror by way of the warlock Praxos Shadowtear. Within a span of two days, one of the most defended regions of the city was destroyed, and its ruins became the headquarters for the siege.
Following the fall of the Crimson Lane, the Undead began to reanimate most of the fallen of the district and began to raid the Eagle Square, which fell within the hour. Its residents were hauled into various small holdouts in the ruins of the area, and many of the fallen were stitched together into monstrous creations, the largest being a flesh giant named Kreug.
Final Days and DestructionEdit
Lord Jameson Brand remained extremely resistant to pleas for evacuation of the remaining two districts, believing that Hath's Vigil could hold out against this plight as it did the others before it. During this time, The Blades of Greymane were sent out into the ruins of the Eagle's Square and Crimson Lane to weaken the Forsaken assault as they just returned from the ruins of Krastin. At the same time, Commander Falsinmere led his men back to the city of Hath's Vigil, rallying outside of the city to try and prepare to retake the city. The Blades began to make their way through the Eagle's Square, evacuating as many as they could from the ruined district from the hold outs. They later found that the large crypts under Hath's Vigil were being raided and also held a safer path to the upper echelon of the city.
After a bloody fight, the Blades were able to clear the crypts out and evacuate most of the civilians. However, once this was accomplished, Commander Falsinmere's forces were destroyed. Spear headed by the newly animated Kreug, the Forsaken demolished the hold out camp on the outskirts of the city, and Falsinmere detonated explosives laid out in his tower as a trap once the Forsaken arrived to assassinate him. The Forsaken were able to escape the blast in time, and Commander Falsinmere was killed in the resulting explosion.
In the following days, the Falcon's Quarter and Frost Court swelled with refugees, Lord Brand refusing to open the rear gate for evacuation. The Blades embarked out into the ruins of the Eagle's Square to attempt to dislodge some of the Forsaken army, though it only ended poorly. The Gilneans were able to dispatch some of the larger siege weapons that the Forsaken had brought along with them, including Kreug, though Lord Grayblade was knocked into a comatose state after being flung from the monstrosity into the nearby river. The Blades retreated with their Commander in tow following this and the Forsaken began to invade Frost Court, causing a massive panicked evacuation into the Falcon's Quarter, which still held its own armed guard.
The Legion of Vengeance spear headed the siege into Frost Court, slaughtering any who were unable to escape in time as well as reanimating their bodies. Through means of subterfuge, the Undead were able to discover that the Blades' leader was out of commission as well as Lord Brand's stubbornness and began preparations to invade the Frost Court. However, after Ivan Sibelius Felsorrow ordered an unprepared assault on the district, the Alteraci were able to repel the Undead and cost the Legion a great set back at this time.
After several days, Lord Berenal awoke from his comatose state and immediately petitioned Lord Brand to evacuate the city. With no other choice, the rear gates opened and the city's remaining inhabitants were evacuated out of the rear gate. While the evacuation occured, the Blades split their forces, one half going with major Catil White, while the other remained with Lord Berenal Grayblade and the Falcon Guard to hold off the Forsaken so the civilians could be evacuated.
After several bloody battles, the Legion was unable to break the shield wall in time and the Falcon's Quarter was successfully evacuated. With the city abandoned, the Undead sacked whatever supplies they could and proceeded to reanimate the dead before putting most of the city to the torch.
After its destruction, many of the civilians of Hath's Vigil were left homeless, with barely an eighth of its population remaining. They were offered asylum in Gilneas by Lord Grayblade, though only a portion of them accepted this offer. Lord Brand was wrought with grief during this time and was escorted to Stormwind City, where he later attempted to hang himself before being found. Lord Brand was escorted to a medical ward and is currently suffering from a mental breakdown. A small band of refugees later returned to the ruins of the city, to find it smouldering and the undead gone. A line of communication with the refugee group suggests they barely have enough to man the Falcon's Keep, where they are currently staying.
The city of Hath's Vigil is currently in ruins with no intent to rebuild from the Alliance. Within the ruins can be found a small refugee band that refused to head south to Stormwind or to Gilneas. They number in the thirties and have been reported to be surviving off of rations left behind in the keep and local wildlife. For all intents and purposes however, the city is no more. The refugees within the city are led by Lord Johnathon Brand following Lord Jameson's death to illness. The duchy's remnants now number in the scarce hundreds, making residence within what remains of the Falcon Quarter and the keep.
The city boasts a large amount of mixed cultures, the dominant ones being Alterac and Lordaeron. Much of the city is segregated, with the people of Lordaeron living in one half of the city, while the people of Alterac live in another, the smaller demographics mixed throughout the city. This has caused racist tendencies to run rampant amongst some of the population of the city, which has led to attempts to desegregate the community to be rare.
The city it's self is composed of four major districts, each housing different ethnic groups within. These are Falcon Quarter, Crimson Lane, Eagle's Square, and Frost Court.
Within Falcon Quarter lies the Falcon's Keep where Lord Jameson Brand rules over the city of Hath's Vigil. The keep is one of the newer buildings, having stood where the Brand manse was originally erected. It was replaced with the Keep in order to better facilitate military matters as well as hold court with the various representatives of guilds and peoples within the city it's self. Falcon Quarter is home to the more affluent and wealthy of the city. The houses are the more recently repaired, being built in the Northrend style of Alliance buildings.
The Quarter is recognized as the best district of the city, with a large gate that is oft left closed by the rear of it. Within this district also houses the only Arcane Sanctum in Hath. The small population of High elves often flock to this part of the district. Due to the inability for the small population to afford to live within the district, a small bit of communism has sprung up amongst the very small elf population. Having purchased a rather large estate near the Sanctum, the elves have pooled together their earnings in order to afford the estate as well as ensure each elf is well taken care of.
Despite the presence of the elves, the Falcon Quarter is often referred to as the "Noble District" by many of the citizens of Hath's Vigil.
In the months after its destruction, this quarter was merged with the Frost court into a smaller town within the city's ruins.
Formerly named Shining Lane, the district was burnt to the ground following the Orcs rejoining the Blackrock Clan. The district was rebuilt by the Lordaeronian refugees that were accepted into the city. The area houses the Darrow Cathedral and an abbey for the religious men of the city. When the Scarlet Crusade allied with the people of Hath's Vigil, Lord Brand declared the district to house the men and women of the Crusade. Originally this was done to ensure that should betrayal occur, Hath would be able to dispatch the Crusaders easily.
The Crusaders renovated the district heavily, marking it with banners of Lordaeron and repainted the roofs of the district red. The district was thus renamed Crimson Lane in recognition of it's new residents. Within Crimson Lane lives the representatives of the crusade, headed by Commander Jacob Falsinmere. The grizzled old commander has been known to be a level headed and pious man, seen amongst the common folk often praying within the Darrow.
Referred to by most of Hath's people as "The Darrow", the Darrow Cathedral is a grand cathedral flanked by guards of the Church within the Crusade at all times. The presence of the Darrow as well as it's central location has led to the Crimson Lane being one of the more visited districts of the city as well.
Amongst the people of Hath's Vigil, the Crimson Lane is referred to as the "Scarlet District" of the city.
Arrival of the ForsakenEdit
When the Forsaken arrived in Hath's Vigil, the Crimson Lane was the first district to fall under the siege by the mighty undead. Within a matter of days, the district was swarmed with various forsaken troops and plague was deployed in order to weaken the defenders. In addition, the barracks which housed most of the Crusader's armaments and plans was compromised after the Legion of Vengeance infiltrated and took over the building. Once secured, the armies of the Forsaken marched on the city and began to destroy it.
The district suffered an extremely large amount of structural damage following the Forsaken's arrival, as the Crusaders attempted to route the Forsaken by opening fire on the barracks, which was unfortunately only successful at causing half of the building to collapse. The area was put to the torch with the exception of the blacksmith and barracks, leveling most of the district within a manner of hours, with the Darrow Cathedral having been engulfed in a furious hellstorm of fel fire that brought about its collapse.
- "Better in the Square than out there.."
- -Common saying in the Eagle's Square
Eagle's Square is the home to the majority of the, primarily Lordaeronian, refugees within the city of Hath's Vigil. One of the larger districts of the city, the area is a slum. Within the Eagle's Square, lesser trade and farming can be found as well as several fields within the city's boundaries. These fields saw great use following the Second Shattering as they provided the majority of the city's harvest, with the outlying fields having been completely destroyed before hand. Given freedom to name the district as they pleased, the people of Lordaeron named it after their once great nation's symbol, the twin headed eagle of Lordaeron.
The Eagle's Square can be described as busy, but the feeling of despair hangs over most of it's people. It is the poorest district of the city, and was the district that was left incomplete when the Orcs rebelled and left Hath's Vigil. The large plots of unused land allowed for the large fields that dominate part of the district, while the other section is filled with cramped small houses in order to accommodate the poor residents within.
Amongst the residents of Hath's Vigil, Eagle's square is referred to as the "Lordaeron District" of the city.
Frost CourtEditFrost Court is perhaps the smallest district of Hath's Vigil, housing the majority of the Alteraci population that is not affluent within the city. Unlike Eagle's Square, it was still renovated with the Northrend building style of architecture and is still a fairly well maintained district. The district bustles with life and trade, similar to the lower Eagle's Square, but here there is a sense of happiness about the people. It is not uncommon for the people of Frost Court to frequent the Crimson Lane or Falcon's Quarter, but rarely do they venture as far as the Eagle's Square.
Within Frost Court lies one of the many crypts of Hath's Vigil, its being the largest within the city's boundaries. Frost Court also technically houses the mine of Hath's Vigil, though many consider it to be a separate part of the city on it's own.
Frost Court is often referred to by the people of Hath's Vigil as the "Alteraci District" of the city.
The city has been led by the same man since it's inception, the aging Lord Jameson Brand. An Alteraci who tossed his lot in with the Alliance over Perenolde and benefited greatly in return, even if he was passed over for consideration of who should rule the Kingdom. The man has led the people of Hath's Vigil through many a hardship, and has made controversial decisions throughout his reign. Regardless, the people look to him as a capable leader, even as his health fails him.
Due to the many times Hath's Vigil has been destroyed and rebuilt, areas of the city do not match other areas at all. The upper echelons of the city consist of architecture similar to what was used by Stormwind in it's colonies in the frozen wastes of Northrend, the building style suitable for the chilly mountains of Alterac. The lower echelons of the city consist of a different style of building entirely, fitting more of the style used by Lordaeron and other nations within the area during it's prime, which is the dominant architecture in the area.
The varying building styles suits Hath's people well, as the city it's self boasts an extremely diversified populace that is unlike most regions of the world.