“I think he’s waking up. Quick! Get some water!”

Fuzzy didn’t recognize the voice he was hearing. Was he in the afterlife? The smell of the smoke was almost completely gone. He couldn’t quite open his eyes but could feel a soft damp cloth against his face. His entire body ached. The sounds around him were not familiar, but he could make out the sound of ships bells in the far distance. He tried to ask where he was, but his voice was gone, stolen by the smoke. His throat was raspy and coarse, like he was trying to breathe through sand.

“Don’t try to talk, your throat is still badly damaged by the smoke. Here, drink some water.” Fuzzy could feel a cup pressed to his lips. He took a small sip; the water was cool and refreshing. It was so clean and yet had a slight medicinal taste to it. The water lined his throat and gave a soothing cool feeling. After a moment of taking small sips, he was able to muster a very growly question. “Where am I?”

“You’re in Stormwind. You were very badly injured in the fire. My name is Shaina. You’ve been in a concussion for nearly a week”

“A week?!? Wh…Where’s my family?” Fuzzy could barely get the words out. Partially choked by the damage in his throat and partially choked by fear.

Shaina gave Fuzzy some more water. She checked his forehead for fever. Her voice cracked slightly as she answered, “You’re family? Oh, I’m so sorry, there wasn’t anyone else with you. You were rescued by the sentinel’s and their gryphons. They were only able to save a few hundred Darnassian citizens before the fire consumed the entire city”.

Fuzzy’s heart sank to his feet. Maybe they still got out, there was a chance they were ok. They had always agreed upon meeting in Stormwind in a situation like this. Maybe they were here? After all, Shaina said there were a few hundred saved, he just needed three of those lives. But how selfish to take those lives from someone else, even if only in his mind. But he didn’t care, this was his family, his wife, his little girls. “I have to find them, I need to go find them. I need to know..” He couldn’t get any other words out, his throat began to burn again.

“It’s alright, there is time. All of the evacuees are being treated for smoke. We’re actually quite lucky we found you. I hope you don’t mind, we found some Frostweave in your bag and used it to help the others. We’ll reimburse you before you go. It’s such a difficult cloth to find around here, especially during such circumstances.” Shaina put her hand on Fuzzy’s shoulder. “I’ll leave you to rest. Your eyes are healing very quickly, I would expect maybe in a few days you will be able to open them. In fact, your whole body is healing much faster than we expected. But I guess that’s expected of your kind.”

The next few days and nights were much of the same. Water, food, bandage changes. Sometimes Shaina would read to him to try calming his mind. But the peculiar thing Fuzzy kept noticing was the taste of the water. It wasn’t sour, or bitter, it was slightly sweet but not not sweet at the same time. It was almost as if the water were mixed with something else. It seemed familiar, in a way. It almost reminded him of…his potion! Oh he had nearly forgot! And it had been at least a week already without taking it! The local alchemist would surely be able to help, but he would have to hobble his way there. Fuzzy had been to Stormwind dozens of times and was quite familiar with the city layout. But trying to reach the alchemist from the first aid station would be quite the feat in his condition. He could only hope that his…situation…wouldn’t change before he could get the potion.

“Shaina?” Fuzzy managed to mumble. “Any word from my family?”

“I’m sorry, I haven’t heard from anyone yet. Maybe if you could describe them for me I can look for them when I go out for supplies?”

“I would love to.” Fuzzy gave Shaina a description of his beautiful wife and children, leaving no detail spared. His mind could see them so clearly as if he were seeing them standing in front of him. He especially enjoyed describing his wifes long blue-purple ears, sapphire blue eyes that glimmer like a deep ocean, and her green eyelashes that looked like furry caterpillars dancing on her brow. It may seem strange describing these things to a human, but to a night elf these were each beautiful traits. As soon as Fuzzy finished, he could hear foot steps enter the door way…

“You forgot to mention my new sexy man voice.” The voice sounded ravaged by smoke and as raspy as his own, but Fuzzy knew exactly who it was. 

“Erinia! Oh my dear Erinia! I thought I had lost you!”, cried Fuzzy.

“It would take more than Teldrassil on fire to separate us for long. The girls have cried every night, we thought the worst when we heard about Darnassus. We got out just before the fire spread to our house.” A tear fell from her cheek. “Oh our poor house, it’s gone. All of our memories, our heirlooms, the notches the girls made on the doorway to see how much they had grown…all gone. Teldrassil…our beloved World Tree…”

“It’s just a house”, Fuzzy said. “What’s important is that we have each other. Where are the girls? Are they ok?”

“They are fine, they are playing with the school children in the Mage district. They enjoy watching all the adventurers come down from the mage tower. They play a game where they try to guess where they are going or where they came from. Oh they will be so delighted that you’re ok!” Erinia turned to Shaina, “Thank you so much for watching over him.”

Shaina smiled and bowed. “It’s been no trouble at all. In fact, he is probably strong enough to try opening those eyeballs today and maybe even standing!”

Fuzzy smirked. “I don’t know, it’s kind of nice having two ladies dote on me for once instead of the other way around.”

Erinia coyly smiled, “Well at least almost going blind hasn’t affected your sense of humor. You sitting around for a week…well that’s pretty much normal.”

Fuzzy let out a snort and managed to open one eye to see his wife in front of him. It was the most beautiful sight he had ever seen. Then his mind recalled what Erinia had said. “Teldrassil, it burned? All of it?!? Who would do such a thing?”

Erinia felt a tear well up in her eye and began to travel down her face. “It was Sylvanas. She set fire to the tree. She wanted to destroy the hope of all people.”

Fuzzy felt a rage inside him begin to fester. “Destroy hope? I think all she did was awaken a reckoning…”