That was a great adventure.

Madrana went “home” today, back to the server she’d started on, back to the guild she’d helped form.

My original intention had been to stay with my Skywall guild until they got their meta achievements for the drakes or raiding had completely stopped for the expansion or Cataclysm launched.

I did not anticipate the amount of time I really feel I need to put into Apotheosis. I’ve barely touched Madrana since the patch and that’s not good for me as a player. I need to get use to new mechanics and I want to write about this stuff, too. But every time I logged in to WoW, I felt like I should have been on ET, doing something guild-related. I’ve done more on Kurn since the patch than on Madrana.

Due to Blizzcon and the patch and everything, my Skywall guild has essentially stopped raiding. Not completely — we had a normal ICC25 run on Monday, which was a hideous experience for me because it was before the holy pally hotfix — but enough that raiding isn’t required any longer by anyone and we weren’t going to raid until something like next Wednesday. Which made me sad; I thought we were going to try to raid this reset, but I totally forgot that half the guild is going to Blizzcon and would make that really difficult to pull off.

Add to that the feeling that I couldn’t just ignore Madrana for another week, which is what I would have done, since we weren’t raiding, and it just made sense to say goodbye now. So after some back and forth with my GM and with Walks and with my brother, I decided to bring Madrana home.

It was so much harder to leave my Skywall guild than I had ever thought it might be. I figured that I’d spend a couple of months there and then hop back to ET at 4.0 and not even blink.

It was hard to leave Apotheosis when we stopped raiding in March of 2009. Leaving this guild to go back to Apotheosis was almost as hard. No kidding, for real, I actually cried while writing my epic-length goodbye post. There are replies there, several of them, which I can barely even read because I’m all emotional about it.

I’m not normally someone who cries easily, especially about something like this. But the guild was just such a haven for me after the outright abuse I experienced in my previous guild. Compassionate, kind, happy voices filtered through my headset every raid. Laughter, gentle ribbing and the like? It was amazing after “healers you fucking suck”.

Senses of humour abounded. In-jokes were developed. I BOPped a tank on Festergut on my second night in and wiped the raid and everyone joked about it.

I was a big part of getting heroic Saurfang for them for their second kill, and the subsequent ones. I was a big part of helping them rescue Dreamwalker — both on my second-ever raid with them.

I helped out with Lady Deathwhisper strat stuff. I was there for Putricide’s two heroic deaths and an epic Sindragosa kill. I was there for lots of achievements, from a couple of Portal Jockeys to Been Waiting a Long Time For This.

So I did what I set out to do. I finished up Wrath with a great raiding group where I made a difference. I had fun. My raid leader would “butt-pull” now and again. One tank would turtle pull (as in mount up on his turtle mount and run in for the pull). I zerged Sarth 3D on 25 a couple of times. I even managed not to get bounced around on Blood Prince Council once.

The last four months have been a great time in WoW for me. I’ve seen my friends and compatriots trickling back to Eldre’Thalas while I’ve had a blast in 25-man raids with a great group of people who kept on pushing and pushing and finally got two of the three hardest encounters in ICC — heroic Putricide and heroic Sindragosa.

It was time to go. The day that I knew would inevitably come had finally arrived.

And even though I cried while writing goodbyes to some of the best personalities I’ve ever encountered in this game (a certain mage is definitely going to be written into a story at some point in time…!), I know that the guild will be okay. They can get Neck-Deep in Vile and All You Can Eat without me. They can get those drakes.

I went to the store this evening to pick up some milk. It was after the transfer, after I’d been re-guilded in Apotheosis, after I’d even run a heroic or something on Madrana. I was walking to the store and thinking about WoW and about how Madrana was home.

And it was just a huge relief, all of a sudden. Uncertainty stresses the crap out of me and not knowing when I’d be transferring was weighing on me more heavily than I realized. I just felt the weight be lifted off me as I took a deep breath of cool October air and knew that I’d made the right decision.

Now I can be more focused on the guild, more focused on my own toons. I don’t have raids to worry about. I can open recruitment and know that if I’m on WoW, chances are, I’m on ET and able to answer questions.

So tonight had me online on ET, hopping around my alts. I ran some stuff on Kurn and I ran some stuff on Madrana. I didn’t rely on my brother’s JC to cut gems to sell. I had some hilarious Vent conversations and gave Apple some advice about running heroics. I chatted with my friends and guildies and I was just generally present for most of the evening.

It was a good day. A sad day, though. I’ll never, ever forget my time in Choice of Skywall. They’re recruiting for Cataclysm, you know. And they definitely have an opening for a holy paladin.

They’re some of the best people it’s ever been my pleasure to run with. If you’re looking for a Cataclysm guild, I have to recommend them. (Apotheosis recruitment is not yet open, but we’re looking for a rogue, a mage, a feral druid, maybe a resto shaman when recruitment opens. No holy paladin spots right now.) 9pm-12am (Eastern) on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Mondays, although you’d have to check with them for when they plan to raid in Cataclysm.

Excellent group of people. Give them a shot if you’re looking. But be aware; I might be the one asked to look over your application. ;)

Thanks, Choice, for four of the best months I’ve spent in this game. I’ll miss you guys. <3

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