Feral and fierce, this Kal'dorei is the bane of the Horde.
Less than 300 winters
Tamlin is an elf of medium height with a powerful build. He wears his dark hair in a long unkempt tangle. His mail is for the most part dark and hand made, well worn and often battle soiled and bloodied. He carries a large polearm on a baldric, a full quiver and a bow. He seems to bear a constant snarling expression due to deep horizontal scars that disfigure his face. HIs voice is a low growl that obscures his words. His eyes are as bright as orange flame and his ears continually flick and twitch.
"When I was young, I was a wolf and I sang to the moon with my brothers while we ran the night on silent padded paws that knew the green ways through the old forest. It was a world without limit, without pain or fear or guilt, the ancient songs that made the world were known to us then and are still in the land where we were born." ---The Templar's Journal
Tamlin himself is unsure of his origins, though he was surely found as a young child, feral and ill kept with nothing but a rune inscribed moonstone about his neck and a child's simple call name. He recalls being given to druids who soon determined him too wild and fractious to learn the ways of the shan. Apprenticed to a trapper and hunter, Tamlin learned bowcraft and leather work. Never comfortable with the company of other Kal'dorei, he soon lost himself again to the wild.
He wandered thus, avoiding civilization until Nordrassil was struck and shattered. The impact to what he thinks of as "the Green" or the growing living world was enough to startle the young Kal'dorei out of his isolated existence. Tamlin walked out of the wild in the company of a large black wolf and was amazed to discover eventually that Ashenvale felt as familiar as any dream of a home he had known.
A Templar's Oath Edit
"As compared to my people, it seems I am an oddity. I remember what others forget; in dreams; in the green ways. I have an impression of all of the Kal'dorei; like a hereditary instinctual memory of who we are and where we came from. The only sense of belonging I have had. I name myself Kal'dorei; child of the stars; I hear the Tree and I walk the dream.
Yet I look at the other of my people and I am left bereft and confused. Little do they resemble our noble past anymore. Most live now in the human lands and take on their petty and apathetic attitude toward our land, our birthright, and our sacred trees. How many have I seen daily, cavorting about unclothed and laughing? No dignity, no respect nor care. How many more have lost their will for battle and flop about helplessly in the face of our enemies. This is hard for me to bear.
And so, in coming to Ashenvale; I eschewed this trend by allying with the Templars. Many and many moons I fought with them and took pride in the safety of our forest with my brothers and sisters and for a time I belonged..." ---The Templar's Journal
Once in Ashenvale, Tamlin learned of war. The Horde were merciless in their drive to claim Astranaar and the surrounding forests. He fought viciously and tirelessly, soon coming to the attention of the Templar's of Ashenvale, a group of zealot Kal'dorei fighters. The Templars were merciless in the defense of the elven lands and Tamlin soon became of a rank among them, designated "ohtar" or knight. As the commander of Ashenvale forces, he lead a warband of up to fifteen against any and all threats to Astranaar. His position also demanded that he prove the Templars' cause to other influencial alliance forces. He sought and procured an alliance with the Stormwind military through the help of the charismatic human knight, Santiago and the Archmage Robious. This agreement gave the Templars license to extend their battle forces to the Horde ravaged village of Southshore and also provided reserve human forces for the ongoing war in Ashenvale. As the diplomatic voice of the Templars and due to his insistence to be at the head of every battle, Tamlin also gained notice by the enemy Horde. His letters and words and news of his fearlessness in battle made him an almost trophy figure to the Horde and subsequently, he became and remains a triumph to hunt down, debase, humilate, capture or kill. None of this swayed Tamlin. "I would that the Horde hate and fear me both, so would my heart be glad to know such to be true," he would proclaim to any that suggest that he might be garnering too much attention from his enemies. Unfortunately, this included the leader of the Templars, a fanatic called Taliwar. Convinced that Tamlin's reknown was a threat to his authority and also that the young hunter was actually bringing more conflict to Ashenvale through his fervor, Taliwar stripped Tamlin of his rank and exiled him from the Templars.
The Highguard Edit
While on diplomatic missions to the human lands, Tamlin would offer to accompany human and dwarvish groups in forays for exploration and glory seeking. He slowly attained notority as a capable and dependable tracker and guide. Even as a Templar, Tamlin was on retainer to one such group of exploring raiders known as the Alliance Highguard. Led by the human rogue Toraion and the Cenarion Master Kerius, the Highguard mounted a two year campaign to battle within and conquer the Molten Core. They chose Tamlin as the hunter that would guide them through safely and when Taliwar set him to exile, Tamlin agreed to wear the Highguard's banner.
Even as he was learning to guide a warband and still defending Ashenvale, the hunter's normally stoic nature was eroding. His relationship with the fickle druidess Saunee came to a bad and confusing end, with his own young son, Tamaryn, being lost "between" worlds following his birth in the nether where Saunee was lost for a great length of time, she returned not knowing Tamlin at all.
It was perhaps this despair that started a change in the hunter. First melancholic to the point of self destruction, he went alone to the gates of Orgrimaar and called his enemies out to him. Saved only by the strange moonstone at his throat, the glow and heat of which kept his spirit coming back to his battered body, and his tiger, Rhuu's determination to haul him phsyically to safety, Tamlin returned home with a permanent growl in his voice and his eyes alight with a deep orange glow.
In the wake of these events, Tamlin found it more and more difficult to relate to the Highguard and would avoid them unless called to battle. His strangeness only grew more pronounced when he took up a pair of claws in the ruins of Zul'Gurub. Entranced by them, he would don them for long nights and days and hunt the wilds of Un'goro and the tainted forests of felwood. Even his friend Tanas grew increasingly concerned and insisted that Tamlin set the claws aside.
Heedless of these warnings and intoxicated by his own mysterious wild nature, Tamlin continued to walk point for the Highguard. He skillfully helped them to navigate Nefarion's lair and put the old dragon down, while his battle savvy and thirst for war inspired them to attack Orgrimaar and warchief Thrall.
"Day by day it grows stronger in me, and in truth, I know I must maintain control, lest I become more cat than Kal'dorei. And yet, I welcome it too when it comes...wanting to be tiger..wanting to be wild..."---The Templar's Journal
Following his falling out with Saunee, Tamlin impetously began an ill fated tyrst with the Priestess Alizon, keeper of the strange artifact known as The Book of Ancients. Named therein prominently, the hunter remained confused and suspicious of the Book's origin and sentinent nature. Alizon and Tamlin were together long enough for the Priestess to bear him a daughter, Siladhiel. Even while their young daughter grew into a capable hunter in her own right, Alizon became more fearful of Tamlin's wildness. Worried over Siladhiel's own strange ability to know anyone's mind by touch and frustrated by Alizon's refusal to leave the Temple of the Moon and come home to him, Tamlin fell further into the insistent call of his own primal nature.
Soon, he was taking the shape of a tiger beast in fits of rage and duress. He lingered long in the wild places of the world, hunting and trailing losing his words and himself in the tiger's instinctual needs for blood and killing. He spent much time fierce, angry and alone, returning as always to Ashenvale to stave off the attacks from the Horde with his swordbrother and trusted friend Tanas.
Meantime, other than Tanas, only the Warden Aktarin Shadowsong seemed not put off by his inherent wildness. Tamlin and Aktarin developed a friendship out of a formal relationship that sometimes had them at odds in the past over the dictates of the Templars to which he was bound and the decrees of the Temple to which Aktarin held loyalty. He would often seek Aktarin out and eventually, grew to trust her and he realized that he had always loved her though he dared not act upon it. Tamlin held Aktarin while she cried out her grief for her lost daughter. He stood to her side more often than not when the Dark Portal opened. Eventually, he even took her warning to heart and set his claws down for a time once she confessed that she would be grieved to loose a friend she had come to be fond of.
Tamlin asked Aktarin at last to take him as a shield mate, a Kal'dorei custom for taking companionship from those who hold the shield beside each other, while true mates or lifemates are away at war or asleep in the Emerald Dream without bonds or jealousy. And thus, while Alizon was away at the Temple, and Aktarin's previous mate Ythfas had abandoned his tower and Lurias walked the Dream, Aktarin and Tamlin agreed to be together.
Not long after, Aktarin recognized at last Tamlin's true heritage and unraveled the mystery of his inexplicable wildness and aptitude for the Dream. The moonstone he wears she told him was in fact a ward that the Ancients would often bestow upon their offspring. Her own lost daughter Tie was in truth a product of her liason with old Cenarious and a dryad and had the task of minding the offspring of the Ancients. Though he was terrified to learn that he might be a halfbreed, Aktarin instead assured him that she loved him because of his uniqueness. His growling voice, mobile ears and strange flame bright eyes all were signs of his divine blood and a blessing she insisted.
Betrayed and Captured Edit
"What more can one say for a brother than that he be true? I have used the word, never lightly, but not quite in the capacity that Tanas has exemplified while being named such.
Formally, of course, all Kal'dorei I call brother and sister, for surely we are all blessed of Elune; Children of the Stars.
My Templars too, I named brother and sister as well, whether they were elves or no. An appellation of brotherhood under an oath sworn, say true.
And yet still, upon naming Tanas thus, I did not realize what really it meant for I have not had a brother before. For my part, I meant when it was said that I was sword brother to him; his enemies would be mine; his fight mine own. We would join our strength and fight together to protect our home, those dear to us and of course, each other.
It is one thing to say such and quite another to see it done."---The Templar's Journal
Because of this revelation, Tamlin it seems through the acceptance of his parentage, became ever more interested in exploring what his blood as part Ancient could mean. The Dream he had always seen with waking eyes. The old ways, the green ways as familar to him as breathing. He found walking Aktarin's dreams wonderful and sad and strange. He stood with a foot in both worlds, the world that should be and the world that is Azeroth.
He confessed his love for Aktarin at last to Tanas who accepted it without surprise. He had fought long with Tanas Enerai and assumed it would remain so and for awhile, the Templar was content. He called Aktarin's golden hall in Feralas a home, the first he had ever had. Hers the first bed he had ever slept in. He braved Medivh's Tower with the Highguard and defended the elvish lands with Tanas, the two of them taking up arms together in the portal lands and bringing death and misery to the Horde.
Tanas however was harboring a terrible secret...a mortal wound from Arthas's cursed blade. The shadowwalker himself it was revealed was not human at all, but a construct born of the Titans. To prevent the corruption and fall of his spirit by the will of the tainted wound, his Titan watcher had decreed that Tanas be returned to "the vessel," a draenaic enchanted spear. Tanas asked Tamlin to finish off his flesh with the vessel and the hunter, determined to do as his sword brother asked him, but also convinced that they together would find a better way agreed.
When at last the day came, and Tanas lay collapsing at his feet, swallowed by a darkness that blackened the earth and caused the trees themselves to scream, Tamlin found the courage to kill his only friend quickly and mercifully. Afterwards, besotted by guilt, he carried Tanas's corpse alone to a secret place in Ashenvale and laid him under a mound of earth and rock. His grief caused him to abandon the Common tongue and he bore Tanas's blood on his pauldrons for some time after.
The real horror, though came in a wake of Sin'dorei attacks upon Ashenvale and Feralas and the recognition that the Sin'dorei mage that lead this group called Pox had a paramour, a Sin'dorei Blood Knight that unbelievably and undoubtedly had a piece of Tanas's soul. This Aphram knew enough of the Kal'dorei defenses and movements to strike crippling blows against the elves. The Nightsabres and Tamlin in particular being targets of their assaults.
Tamlin took it upon himself to hunt Aphram down and finish him. Guilt over slaying his swordbrother became sinking terror at the belief that he had someone loosed this evil on the world. Through this self imposed duty was Tamlin baited, tricked and ultimately captured by Aphram and Pox. For a week, he suffered at his enemy's hands. Tamlin made hardly a sound when the Sin'dorei finally tortured him to death.
Returned to Feralas and Aktarin, Tamlin was resurrected and gradually recovered, though he habored and at the same time denied a deep fear of what happened to him, he nonetheless became increasingly more suspicious, wild and intemperate.
In the North Edit
Upon surviving death and torture, Tamlin took an oath to obey Warden Shadowsong and took up her colors. When the Golden Hall was sealed recently and the Nightsabres moved to the Lothlar woodlands for war with the Lich King, Tamlin followed. Neccesities of war demanded that the Warden include new and previously untolerated forces in her warband, including mages, warlocks, deathknights and even a srith. Tamlin did not weather these changes well, nor did he anticiapte that loving Aktarin and obeying the Warden would be so difficult.
Currently, Tamlin is learning to be a soldier as well as a mate, a Nightsabre Guardian as well as a Templar and a Kal'dorei as well as an Ancient.
"Now it seems so small, so impotent, this fear I have harbored for so long. I can see what I have done to myself..how gaunt I have become..how cruelly I have punished myself. Nehr'Goran, the tusker's tiger god, Tyne told me had a piece of my heart in the claws I wore for so long. Blood magick, old magick and wild enough to entice me. Intoxicating is the tiger and I believe he is still there, but tempered now by something long lost to me. When it is found, then all is open to me and I see, not with the red haze of fury and chaos but with the clarity of a hunter that is at peace with himself.
I remember the wolf.
The pack sings me home to Ashenvale and ever is the forest there familiar to me like the memory of an oft traveled dream. She asks that I come with her there and she is a woman again for me. We spend the night chasing and playing as wolves might, loving each other. I have to hide my face in her hair when I wake with her and find that she is as real as the warm earth underneath us and not a dream.
Aktarin is a cold woman and a hard one. She has lived a span of time that I have no ken of. For me, the world is simple. I love her. Not so for her, she is Warden first. Her life is not her own and her duty is the tether that she willingly is bound to. She is a woman away from all eyes and my lover, my mate when she can permit the freedom to express such things. I promise not to try and change her. I will instead cherish her secret smiles and the soft voice that she breathes into my ears when we are alone. I see her fear now as plainly as my own, to be weak and soft, to have the mask of the Warden undone. Love is built on trust. Eventually she will trust me, eventually she will be proud of me, when she is assured that I will not use what she is against her...not ever again."---The Templar's Journal