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Aegwynn

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NeutralAegwynn
Image of Aegwynn
Title Guardian of Tirisfal
Gender Female
Race Human (Humanoid)
Character class Archmage, former Guardian
Affiliation Theramore, New Council of Tirisfal
Occupation Former Guardian of Tirisfal, Jaina Proudmoore's chamberlain
Location Buried near Karazhan, Deadwind Pass
Status Deceased[1]
Relative(s) Nielas Aran (lover), Medivh (son), Med'an (grandson) [2]
Mentor(s) Magna Scavell
Aegwynn, Guardian of Tirisfal

Aegwynn (sometimes known as Magna Aegwynn; sometimes spelled Aegwyn), Matriarch of Tirisfal, was the penultimate (second-to-last) Guardian of Tirisfal and is recognized as one of the greatest Guardians. She is also the mother of the sorcerer Medivh.

The Order of Tirisfal was originally forged to protect the world from demonic corruption of magic (namely by the Burning Legion) — and these Guardians were given considerable power and longevity. The Order was kept as a secret amongst only the greatest magi. But over time, the Guardian became a puppet of the Order, and the focus was lost. When Aegwynn became the Guardian, however, she refused to be manipulated. She remained focused on the matter at hand — the demonic powers at play in Azeroth. The same hubris that led to the Guardian's diminishing caused their downfall.

Aegwynn served as the Guardian of Tirisfal for almost 500 years. Following the end of her reign, she would eventually serve as Jaina Proudmoore's chamberlain for a time near the end of her life. Aegwynn is recognized as one of the greatest sorcerers of all time.

Contents

Biography

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Genesis

Aegwynn was trained in magic by the Guardian Magna Scavell. Aegwynn was the only girl among five apprentices. Most of the boys didn't treat her fairly, claiming that she couldn't become a wizard, but Aegwynn persevered. Before the end of her first year as an apprentice, she had mastered the lost incantations of the Meitre scrolls, the last surviving work of one of the powerful Highborne wizards from nine thousand years earlier (human mages were dissuaded from even reading the scrolls until well into their careers — even Quel'dorei couldn't read them until a decade into their apprenticeships).

For this feat, she was chosen to succeed Scavell as Guardian of Tirisfal. Though her fellow (male) apprentices complained, the Council maintained that she was the best and the Guardian could not afford to be anything less. The elves on the Council at the time believed that as Aegwynn had faced greater challenges to become a mage than the others, she was most deserving — Erbag the gnome chided the boys for their immaturity.

Aegwynn was subsequently supplied with the power of the Tirisfalen, and began work immediately. One of Aegwynn's first challenges was the destruction of the demon Zmodlor who had begun to possess children in a schoolhouse. Aegwynn rushed in and vanquished the demon before damage to the children could result. Erbag and Relfthra admonished her for her quick action — she had rushed in without a thought to Zmodlor's grand scheme, and could have put the world at further risk. Aegwynn fired back that she couldn't allow children to suffer just because the Council favored a reactive solution to demons.

Aegwynn and the Dragon Hunt

Aegwynn battling the Avatar of Sargeras in Northrend.

500 years following her initial Guardianship, Aegwynn traveled to the world's roof, Northrend, in order to defeat a hunting party of demons that were stalking dragons.[3] As her mastery over the cosmic power of Tirisfal grew, Aegwynn became aware of a number of powerful demons that stalked the icy northern continent of Northrend. Traveling to the distant north, Aegwynn tracked the demons into the mountains. There, she found that the demons were hunting one of the last surviving dragonflights and draining the ancient creatures of their innate magic. The mighty dragons, who had fled from the ever-advancing march of mortal societies, found themselves too evenly matched against the dark magics of the Legion. Aegwynn confronted the demons, and with help from the noble dragons, eradicated them. Yet, as the last demon was banished from the mortal world, a great storm erupted throughout the north. An enormous dark visage appeared in the sky above Northrend. Sargeras, the demon king and lord of the Burning Legion, appeared before Aegwynn and bristled with hellish energy. He informed the young Guardian that the time of Tirisfal was about to come to an end and that the world would soon bow before the onslaught of the Legion.

The proud Aegwynn, believing herself to be a match for the menacing god, unleashed her powers against Sargeras' avatar. With the help of the dragons, Aegwynn battled and ultimately defeated the Lord of the Legion. With disconcerting ease, Aegwynn battered the demonlord with her powers and succeeded in killing his physical shell. Fearing that Sargeras' spirit would linger on, the naive Aegwynn locked the ruined husk of his body within one of the ancient halls of Kalimdor that had been blasted to the bottom of the sea when the Well of Eternity collapsed. Forevermore would Sargeras' body be trapped in the Tomb of Sargeras so that it might never be rejuvenated by the powers of the Nether. Following this historic event, Aegwynn, by her own admission, grew arrogant and cocky.[4] She felt that she no longer needed to act in concert with the Council, that she had done the impossible, and thus she — not the Tirisfalen — would choose the next Guardian. Aegwynn would never know that she had done exactly as Sargeras had planned. She had inadvertently sealed the fate of the mortal world, for Sargeras, at the time of his corporeal death, had transferred his spirit into Aegwynn's weakened body. Unbeknownst to the young Guardian, Sargeras would remain cloaked within the darkest recesses of her soul for many long years.

The Birth of Medivh

(778 years later; 70 years prior to World of Warcraft...) The Guardian Aegwynn grew powerful over the years and used the Tirisfal energies to greatly extend her life. Foolishly believing that she had defeated Sargeras for good, she continued to safeguard the world from the demon king's minions for nearly nine hundred years. However, the Council of Tirisfal finally decreed that her stewardship had come to an end. The Council ordered Aegwynn to return to Dalaran so that they could choose a new successor for the Guardian power. Yet Aegwynn, ever distrustful of the Council, decided to choose a successor on her own. Though powerful, Aegwynn was at her core mortal and consequently knew that she would have to pass on her powers, lest the demons be given free reign of Azeroth. She was determined to prevent the council from manipulating her successor as they had continually tried to manipulate her. The proud Aegwynn planned to give birth to a son whom she would divest her power to. She chose the conjurer of Azeroth, Nielas Aran, to father her heir. Nielas was initially elated when it appeared that the Guardian had fallen in love with him, but was slightly thrown to realize that she had used him only to sire an heir and take the choice of next Guardian away from the Council.

Time passed, and Aegwynn gave birth to a son in a secluded grove in the fall of that year. He was named Medivh, or "Keeper of Secrets" in the Elven tongue. Aegwynn left the baby Medivh in the care of his father at Stormwind Keep. She locked deep within him the knowledge of Tirisfal, to be made manifest when he reached physical maturity. Content with her work, she then wandered into the wilderness and prepared to pass into whatever afterlife awaited her. When that time came however, the power of Tirisfal was too much for Medivh to properly channel and the resulting backlash of magical energy pouring from the child killed his father Nielas and reduced Medivh to a comatose body.

Medivh's Awakening

Medivh awoke twenty years later, assuring the clergy of Northshire that he was in full control of his powers. Aegwynn suspected that something was amiss and her suspicions were confirmed when she watched, in shock, as Medivh made pacts with the Burning Legion and brought the orcs to Azeroth.

Aegwynn confronted Medivh seeking to turn him away from his chaotic course and back to the Guardianship for which he was intended. When he refused her she attempted to battle him but, having given all her power to him so long ago, she was defeated. It was then that Medivh revealed all to her.

As he died in battle before her, Sargeras had spirited his essence into Aegwynn's own body like a cancer, lying in wait for her to conceive as he knew she would. Sargeras later stitched himself into the fabric of Medivh's unborn body so that when he awoke and realized the power of Tirisfal he would also manifest his unholy, demonic heritage. Somehow unable to kill Aegwynn, Medivh instead banished her from his sight.

In a desperate attempt to spread word of Medivh’s evil, Aegwynn had an audience with King Llane. She warned him that Medivh was behind the orcish invasion and that he would eventually have to be dealt with. Llane listened gratefully. (This may have been retconned in The Last Guardian, where it was Khadgar and Garona Halforcen who revealed Medivh's treachery)

Aegwynn, knowing that she had done all she could possibly do, watched the events unfold before her. She watched her son die, the fall of Blackhand and Gul’dan, and her last testament was a praise to the Alliance before she left to prepare herself for her death.

Exile and Return to Society

After witnessing the fall of her son, Aegwynn evaded death's grasp. At some point in the proceedings above, Medivh had stripped her of all remaining magic, but neglected to drain her anti-aging spells. Unraveling the spells, Aegwynn used them to teleport herself as far away as she possibly could — to the far side of Mulgore on Kalimdor. Aegwynn then built herself a small home in the hills near Ratchet, and grew a garden, to live out her life in solitude.

Or so she thought. Aegwynn's magic was still effective enough to scry using her well. When Medivh died a few weeks later, she formulated a plan — she would save up her magic, piece by piece until she could bring back The Last Guardian. It took her 21 years, and again nearly cost her her life. It was accomplished though and Medivh had returned.

After his disappearance, Aegwynn again sought solitude, but was rudely interrupted by Jaina Proudmoore. Though Aegwynn was willing to assist Jaina in her attempt to relocate a herd of thunder lizards, she was annoyed by the deference Jaina showed her, and the continued use of the title "Magna". Shortly after Jaina's arrival they were sealed in Aegwynn's home by familiar magic: Zmodlor's. After a well-timed escape, Jaina, Aegwynn, and Jaina's colonel Lorena discovered Zmodlor had been freed and was now working to create a war between Durotar and Theramore. The trio confronted the demon, but Jaina was incapacitated by the warlocks. In a last desperate act to fulfill her duties as Guardian (which she had never shirked in the past) Aegwynn supplemented Jaina with her last source of magic: her own life energy. Against all conceivable odds, Aegwynn survived yet again.

World of Warcraft: The Comic

WoW-comic-logo-16x68.png This section concerns content exclusive to the World of Warcraft comics.

Aegwynn healing Valeera Sanguinar.

Declared by Theramore's surgeons to "have the constitution of an elf," she began serving as Lady Jaina's chamberlain and advisor, under an assumed name to avoid any unwanted guests.

While in the marsh with Sven, she found two wind riders battling and collapsing into a web. A blood elven assassin named Valeera Sanguinar and her wyvern were able to kill a human assassin and his gryphon, Blackklaw. Aegwynn, seeing a great future in her, immediately helped her and delivered to Theramore. She asked Sven to found Helaina and help Valeera and also added to found someone for her wyvern Bristlefur.

She then assisted Jaina in helping to uncover some lost memories of a gladiator nicknamed Lo'Gosh. It turned out it was the long forgotten king of the Alliance, Varian Wrynn. Some time later she assisted the Valeera, a direct descendant of Relfthra, in subduing her magical addiction. Shortly after she was present at a summit where the half-orc assassin Garona made an attempt on Varian's life. In the events that followed, Aegwynn discovered Garona's son, Med'an, bore a striking resemblance to her own son. Adding to the fact was that Med'an gave off powerful aura like a "beacon of power", much like Medivh did. Aegwynn could only conclude that he must be her grandson. This knowledge gave her a new surge of hope and joy, and she began to see him as a chance for redemption, likely from her choices that had shaped Medivh's life.[5]

Aegwynn learned about Arthas' story from Jaina. She was present when Jaina felt that Arthas had awoke.[6]

Aegwynn considered whether or not to tell Med'an how Medivh is related to him, but also believed that revealing herself as his grandmother was ultimately a selfish wish on her part. As her arrogance had killed her son and brought disaster to her world, whatever was best for Med'an would take precedence: his future was too important. Though the boy's guardian, Meryl Felstorm, strongly disagreed, she would come to decide that no one, especially Med'an, should know who had fathered him. She believed that the son of Medivh would be distrusted and shunned by any who learned of it: his future would be blighted, and his potential wasted. Aegwynn convinced Meryl into silence only by agreeing to keep quiet about his possession of Kathra'Natir.[7] She is one of the founding members of the New Council of Tirisfal.

In the final battle between the New Council and the newly-empowered ogre mage Cho'gall, she sacrificed herself to give her grandchild the extra power he needed to defeat the evil Ogre. Afterwards, the council buried her at Morgan's Plot by Karazhan, next to her son.

After her death, Jaina found herself missing Aegwynn and her advice.

Memorable quotes

  • "Honestly, they don't teach you young mages anything these days. Violet Citadel's gone to pot, and that's the truth."
  • "Don't go calling me 'Magna'. That was another time and another place, and I'm not that woman anymore."
  • "I was facing dangers far worse than that little twerp of a demon when your great-grandparents were infants."

Trivia

Gallery

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See also

References

Preceded by:
Scavell
Position:
Guardian of Tirisfal
Succeeded by:
Medivh