We've snuffed out Old Gods. We've unseated the unruly undead. We've eradicated old empires. We've banished demonic eredar lords. We've slaughtered powerful dragons from Ultraxion to Onyxia, including the former Aspect of Magic himself. We've drowned lieutenants, purged second-in-commands, and dissolved elemental councils.
We've braved the deepest lairs, delved into the elemental planes, and pried the latest corruption off Azeroth limb by limb.
What should mortals do now?
Who cares about what we should be doing? You heard the Lifebinder -- the Age of Mortals is dawning! Power is for the taking!
The strongest of bonds
We're not shaman anymore, seeking to ask permission and exaltation from the elemental lords. We're not weakling mages, with their books in their high towers, watching over careful pipelines of power. The druids have their circles and their expeditions, their guardians and their avengers. "All druids must help each other," that mantra they have.
We're warlocks. We take what power we want. We've been studying in secret over the years. We need to stick together and share what we know with each other. But we're careful, careful not to share too much. After all, sharing is for druids. Personal gain is for warlocks.
A council of six has begun the collection of research into harvesting the power available for the taking. It would be wise to go along with these councillors and reap what they bring back.
Destruction warlocks crave the power of fire. They don't adore the molten core like shaman do. No, no, no, no, they prefer the chaos a well-spread immolation inflicts upon the living. They burn to unleash a recklessness that consumes everything. Fire is a tool of pain that can be harnessed. Destruction warlocks are the natural choice to venture back to the Firelands and listen carefully to what the fiery fountains of Sulfuras can teach us.
Demonology warlocks are iconic sorcerers who consort with demons and perhaps fall in love a little too much. They embrace the fury of the void and employ the strongest demons around as minions. They seek to emulate Darkness Incarnate, wielding his hand of shadows, speaking in tongues with his breath. It does not surprise me to find the demonologists venturing back to the Black Temple. Whatever did happen to his skull? Did it die with Illidan? Did Illidan drink all of its power?
Affliction -- ah, affliction. The pain of others brings about such fresh levity in us, doesn't it? Watching the lives of poor fools drain away in my grasp just fills my soul right up. Don't you love how night descends on the faces of the corrupted, their mouths twisting in agony? Or perhaps you prefer to imprison your foes in fear. That's just fine, too. Spells are not the way to your enemies' nightmares; total corruption is the goal.
Each warlock specialization has its strengths. We'll use these to our advantage.
We've made a dark bargain with one another: If you won't try to kill me, I won't try to kill you. Our loyalty is only bound by how much power we each have to offer. We haven't spent years underground and skirting the edges of society only to waste it all on a fool. We're all greedy, each with our dark intentions, but those of us who are still alive learned to be careful.
We must pay for our power. Warlocks are about the future. Warlocks are about eventualities. Your comrades will understand -- you borrow a lot, but you always pay it back, whether it's for mana or survivability. Your foes will be less understanding -- they just don't grasp their very important role in making you into a fount of demonic power. It's OK. They'll stop fussing once they're dead.
Keep your enemies close. (For how else to plant the seeds of terror?)
Keep your friends closer. (It's far easier to get rid of them when the time comes.)
The price of your recklessness
Of course, the price of mistakes is hard to bear. So cover it up in the fog of war. Let others die for your blunders. Send your minions into battle while you stand back and fling shadowy spells.
We've sent trustworthy agents to gather information for the Council. To make sure everything's fair, we've sent them in pairs, so double-crossing will be easy to spot. The whole six likely will never meet again. They'll return to their sects separately; Kanrethad, Zinnin, and Zelfrax will confide in the Alliance, while Ritssyn, Shinfel, and Jubeka return to the Horde. We can fight over the details later and sort out the rough spots in the crossfire.
There are rumors about a new land to explore, an island shrouded in mists, full of interfaction strife. What a perfect testing ground, don't you think? Besides, those manifestations of negative thoughts looked familiar. If they truly are familiar, I'm sure there's power to be harvested from them. We're already looking into one servant's record.
We might have bested the best, but Zinnin -- and others -- won't talk about the experience. We'll have to rest up a bit. We need to get stronger before we can turn our gaze toward the mighty temples and terraces of Pandaria. We'll need all our cunning and fury to wreak vengeance upon those who have stood in our way to glorious power.
That's why we've sent out our six, to see what we can learn from this last few years so we can better shape our powers in the future. We want to sharpen our shards. We want to embrace our inner demons. We want to cradle the flames of chaos in our hands before we wrench it back at our enemies.
When the six return, it'll be a new dawn for us warlocks. We'll have to learn again many things. Wouldn't it be a sight to see fel fire dancing from our fingertips? But that's a long way off from now.
There are only a few of us now, but I'm sure more will show themselves later. Warlocks are not afraid to go after the power we want; it's in our natures to seek it out, whether we're popular or not. Gul'dan said it himself: Behold ... the warlocks!
So let's not disappoint. Let's go get our evil groove back.
Blood Pact is a weekly column detailing DoTs, demons and all the dastardly deeds done by warlocks. We'll coach you in the fine art of staying alive, help pick the best target for Dark Intent, and steer you through tier 13 set bonuses.