The following is the eulogy of one Bricu Bittertongue. It occurs years from now.
A woman led the procession of mourners from the great Cathedral in Stormwind to the back alley of the Pig and Whistle. Some of the mourners, those farther away from the front, wept. Those in the front, all of whom were decked in the Black and Red–even if the edges were torn and the colors faded from age–were as silent as the grave. In between the mourners and the Riders, the occasional Agent of the Crown could be seen, studying the faces of the assembled mourners.
When they reached the back alley, the woman turns to address the crowd. She has auburn hair and northern eyes. She does not cry nor does her voice crack with emotion. She says these words with practiced ease.
My father was a bastard. Some of you, the more forgiving of you, might credit this to his childhood: Growing up on the streets of Lordaeron with the other refugees and orphans. While he was quick to point out that he was an orphan, I would be remiss if I did not remind you all that he was, in his heart, a right bastard.
He was a solider of so loyal to his Prince that he put his own countrymen to the sword and burned down his home. While many men would repent this sin, or follow their prince to the bitter end, my father did neither. He marched his way south, to Northshire Abbey, where he cheated and conned his way into what was left of the Order of the Silver Hand. Maybe he mentioned his liege–a landed knight who lived near Stratholme–or maybe he begged for sanctuary. He never spoke of it to me. He did tell me how he spent his days sneaking out to Goldshire and drinking away his memories. He did tell me how he challenged the faith of his instructors and mentors, how he was punished for heresy–twice–and yet he managed to charm his way into a set of spurs.
What kind of Paladin is a founding member of the Black n’Red? Maybe the Light he worshiped is the light reflected off gold and silver coins that he helped steal.
That’s how he taught me about the Light–A story of how the Fox stole enough the Light to hunt for food for her kits, another to keep her kits warm at night–stories that he swore were told to him by his own parents. This is how I was raised: with the criminals of Old Town, and taught fantastic heresies from the Old North. Only a bastard would raise a child this way.
He was smart enough, to put down his bourbon long enough to see my mother for who she is. Threnody Al’Cair is as beautiful and clever as the day she met my father. Bricu had no chance against her. To his credit, from the day they stood watch at my family’s shop, my father put ahead of everyone else…until I was born.
My father was there to kill the Bloody Prince–the bogeyman that still haunts those who have Northman blood. Then he hosted his wake. My father was there to help the people of Stormwind when Deathwing appeared. Then, once the dust settled, he delivered the Riders’ Bill For Service to the King’s steward.
A good bastard keeps account of who has what coming. No one could do that better than my da.
I’m sure that many of you here, in front of the Pig and Whistle, are part of the King’s Service. The illustrious organization that my father refused to call anything but Seven, or the Bloody Arseholes of Seven. You locked him away before I was born. You took him away from me when I was just a girl. You may even have had something to do with us being here today. So it is for your benefit today that I remind you of how my father, Bricu Bittertongue, was a right bastard.
He wouldn’t mind you lot speaking ill of him–he didn’t have a kind word to say about you either–and he would be offended if you lied about him.
But he was my bastard, and I would rather have a right bastard with me then King or Country behind me.
Good bye Da. I love you. We’ll miss you.