Sylvanas Windrunner had a dream

Cold sweat broke out over her body like a strange disease. She had just seen the pale radiance of a golden elf. He turned from her in fury, snuffing out all light and left her in darkness.

She tried to rise and call out to him but an invisible force held her down. Inexplicable pain tore her side. Be still, it said with the impatience of a girl and the knowledge of an adult. Or we will be found out.

She could not comprehend the meaning of this dream.

She slept on.

Suddenly, she was flying across miles and miles of crimson desert. Two moons hung mournfully in the sky but they shed no brilliance upon the abandoned red world. She found herself soaring fast and faster until she realized there was a solid cliff wall in front of her. In panic, she tried to manoeuvre, but she could not. She could only wait for the smashing impact that would be her instant death.

But she penetrated right through the wall as if she was not real.

Her vision changed. Behind the wall was a labyrinth. A man stood at the centre of the maze with his arms folded in front of his chest like a foetus. His skin was hived and rugged it reminded her of the bark of a tree--except that it was dyed in blood. She ventured to gaze upon his face--a tragic sight. His eyes glowed green with unholy rage. She was horribly afraid, not because he was gruesome, but that she recognized him in all his dark glories.

It was Alanen.

Frostmourne had not destroyed his soul, not had the funeral fire ruined his body. He was staring straight into her soul. She recoiled in terror, but more in disbelief. He could not be alive. He could not be her father.

Her father? Never!

I am Sylvanas Windrunner.

But as her soul tossed and trembled and she waited for herself to wake, she saw the tresses that spilled over her bare shoulder were ebony like the night. She tugged at her hair--yes the echoing pain at her scalp proved that it belonged to her. She must have torn something when she jerked her hand violently. The pain in her side was burning now. It was driving her mad.

The chorus of a million, a million souls began to bicker in her head. Her vision swam although it had never been lurid.

She screamed, but her voice belonged to someone else. She could not but be drowned by the intruders in her nightmare.

Alanen's apparition touched her chest with a burning claw. Her skin shrivelled and blackened and melted away to reveal her beating heart. He took it carefully in his paw as if it was a wounded dove. She saw him turn to a broken figure that hung in chains behind him.

A night elf female.

Sylvanas thought she knew her, but the Kaldorei could be no more than a fraction of her hallucination. She watched as Alanen opened the night elf's clothes. There was a hole in her chest where her heart once was. The flesh was arid and cracked like a garden that had not been watered for years. He replaced the hollow with Sylvanas's fresh heart and the dark muscle began to pulse. Blood resumed its flow along the tributaries that irrigated the parched earth. Colour returned to the night elf's deadened skin.

"I grow tired of waiting," she said suddenly. Her eyes flared up in incandescent blue. "Illidan will be mine!"

The labyrinth faded from Sylvanas's eyes. She clawed wildly to grasp onto something that she could make sense of.

Be still, pain's girlish voice sounded again, softly, commandingly. You cannot move without a heart.

Sylvanas had no choice but to obey.

Then, there was blood before her eyes. Atrocity. Ashenvale lie in desecration. Crimson painted the front porch of the Moon Temple. She flew inside, the massless spirit that she was. Maiev Shadowsong led the way, and on the balcony of the second floor, she met Tyrande Whisperwind in combat.

With her impossible strength, Maiev threw Tyrande down the stairs. Before the priestess could recover, she leapt, raised her charkram to cleave out her heart--another trophy to return to her Master of Agony. Illidan appeared amid the misted shadows and roared in dreadful anguish. He bent over the corpse of his lover and kissed her many times. Tears still streamed from his sightless eyes as Maiev lopped off his head with her weapon. He could not fight her--of course not. Without Tyrande, he had no strength to live.

Then, Maiev's gaze fell upon Sylvanas as if she was surprised. "Why are you following me, child?" she asked.

"You have my heart," Sylvanas told her, unsure how she should feel to be called a 'child'. Compared to the ancient Kaldorei, she must have been no older than an infant.

Maiev shook her head in puzzlement. She held out her wrist and Sylvanas touched her gingerly, "Feel me. I have no pulse. I do not have your heart."

Then, she, too, vanished from sight.

It was Tianithan's face she was looking into now. He was an adult. He had the same blue eyes of his mother's and the same golden mane of his father's. But he was a dark sorcerer and he made playmates of his conjured black phoenixes that spurted firestorms. He was estranged from his father even before his birth but his hatred for him was great. He kissed Sylvanas's lips with taunting gentleness she did not expect from one whose soul was so thoroughly tainted, "Mother, I am going to bring you Kael'thas's ghost. I must have your blessing."

And without knowing why or what she was doing, she gave it to him.

Tianithan's image peeled away to reveal a little girl, a brunette with green eyes--perhaps of five or six human years. She had half a dimpled smile on her face.

"Who are you?" Sylvanas heard herself ask. She had only the vaguest memories of such a child.

The girl did not answer. Instead, she proffered a tiny hand. As soon as Sylvanas touched her, the girl began to bleed profusely from a cut on her left shoulder. She bled and bled and then she died.

Yet the question still ricocheted in the air.

Who are you?

Who are you?

She tried to answer it.

I am Sylvanas Wind...

I am Sylvan...

I am...

Suddenly, she did not know who she was anymore.

She awakened with a start and stared into the face of the sly warden named Rue Wyena.

A/N: A fanfic writer is allowed to have writer's blocks, homework and laziness, isn't she? Thank you for your patience and impatience. I owe you guys more than an apology. It's been very fun writing this story, and I learned a lot from the experience. I'm sorry I have left it for so long--other commitments in life have and will keep me from updating, but I might launch back into it anytime when inspiration hits me full in the face (like WoW Blood Elf leaks).

Once again, thank you for reading. This update is very bizarre, but I got up early with a burning urge to write. I hope that does explain something of the plot.

Find me at jenvisage. deviantart . com or w w w . shatteredenigma . com.