Lore Spotlight: A Look at Draka, Mother of Thrall
An Army of Bone and Steel
, the fifth chapter of the
Chains of Domination storyline
opened up this week. We take a look at some of the lore mentioned in this storyline, which features a reunion between Baroness Draka and her son, Thrall.
Warning: Spoilers for this week's Chains of Domination quests if you have not yet completed them.
In this week's quests, players are tasked with helping to launch a surprise attack on Desmotaeron, the area in the Maw that Helya and Vyraz have control over. Baroness Draka is chosen to lead this assault, and Thrall decides to join.
Baroness Draka says: You are the one they call Thrall, yes? I have heard of you. Come, then.
In life, Draka was, of course, Thrall's mother. As a young Orc, she was sickly, and brought shame to her clan - the Frostwolf clan of Draenor. While she was a teenager, Draka went on a quest to find ingredients for a potion that would make her strong. The tasks were difficult, and as she accomplished each one, her skill increased and her muscles developed. When she finally had all the ingredients, it was revealed that the potion wouldn't help her, but that it wouldn't need to anyway. She had already become strong, and was a 'warrior made'.
Now one of the most beautiful and desirable Orcs in the clan, Draka soon caught the eye of Durotan, the young future chieftain of the Frostwolf clan. Durotan invited Draka for a hunt - a common mating ritual for Orcs - and was quite taken aback when she turned him down. He asked again, this time promising that the hunt would be strictly platonic, and she agreed. Together, they managed to take down a wolf, and in the euphoria afterwards, they kissed.
Draka would go on to marry Durotan, and she stood by his side throughout all of the changes that the Orcs of Draenor went through in the following years. While the Frostwolves joined the newly formed Horde along with all the other clans, tensions soon arose when Durotan, now chieftain, forbade his clan to drink of the demon blood when it was offered to them. Still, the Frostwolves continued to serve the Horde, and even took part in the invasion of Azeroth.
Draka fell pregnant with Thrall, or Go'el, as she would name him, shortly before she and Durotan journeyed with the other Orcs through the Dark Portal. While initially the Frostwolves helped the fight against the Alliance, the tensions between Durotan and Gul'dan - the warlock influencing and causing the corruption of the Horde - eventually resulted in their exile.
The Froswolves settled in Alterac Mountains, where Draka gave birth to Thrall and named him Go'el. As he looked at his son, Durotan made a fateful decision. While both Durotan and Draka's brown skin had become tinged with green - due to the influence of the demon blood around them - Thrall was born bright green. The fact that his own son could already be so corrupted shook Durotan to his core. He could no longer turn a blind eye to the corruption that he could see growing in the Orcs, and he decided he needed to reach out to an old friend who was still part of the Horde - Orgrim Doomhammer.
Durotan knew that this mission would be dangerous, and he suggested Draka stay at home with Thrall. This was a mistake. Draka was furious, and confronted Durotan angrily, reminding him of who she was, and telling him that no one would forbid her to follow her mate, "not even Durotan himself". Durotan, pleased to have such a fierce mate, agreed, and Draka and Thrall made the journey with him.
In a sense, Thrall's birth may have saved Horde, because it was this meeting that made Orgrim decide to challenge Gul'dan's influence, eventually taking over the Horde himself. Sadly, it was also this meeting that doomed Durotan and Draka.
On their way home from the meeting, Durotan and Draka were attacked by assassins, loyal to Gul'dan and his Shadow Council. Though they fought bravely, they were outnumbered. Both of Thrall's parents were murdered that day, and Thrall himself, still a baby and too young to even remember them, was left to die in the cold.
Thrall would go on to be found and adopted by a cruel human, raised as a gladiator to fight like an Orc but think with the tactical mind of a human, escape, rally the surviving Orcs on Azeroth, and form the new Horde. After many years as Warchief, he would eventually step down, though he now serves on the Horde Council - a new, more democratic leadership that's replaced the role of Warchief. Thrall has journeyed to the Draenor his parents came from - now Outland - where he learned his true name and met his now mate, Aggra. He has also journeyed to an alternate timeline Draenor - and while he met that timeline's Durotan and Draka, they were not his own parents, and he never told them how, in another reality, he was their son.
After her death, Draka would find herself in the Shadowlands realm of Maldraxxus, where she joined the House of Eyes.
It is currently unknown where Durotan went.
A warrior made, Draka was at first uncomfortable with this House of Eyes' focus on spycraft, but she had adapted once before and did it again. Draka found purpose in her new existence as protector of the Shadowlands, but soon found herself grappling with a sinister plot.
Maldraxxus is usually divided into five houses - the House of Plagues, the House of Eyes, the House of the Chosen, the House of Constructs, and the House of Rituals. The denizens of the zone are seen as the army of the Shadowlands - tasked with the purpose of protecting its realms. The Eternal One associated with Maldraxxus is the Primus.
Over time, the Primus disappeared, and then more things began to go wrong. When the House of Plagues mysteriously fell, Draka was tasked by the leader of her house, Margrave Akarek, to deliver a message to Margrave Krexus of the House of the Chosen. Soon after she left on her journey, Akarek was murdered, and the House of Eyes' necropolis destroyed. In a scene very similar to the one that lead to her death, Draka once again found herself surrounded by assassins. This time, she triumphed over her attackers, and made it to her destination.
Draka would go on to join and eventually become baroness of the House of the Chosen, which would discover a plot between the House of Rituals and the House of Constructs was behind the destruction of the Houses of Plagues and Eyes. The treacherous houses, who had allied themselves with the Jailer, had also begun an assault on Bastion - defying the very cause of Maldraxxus. Civil war broke out, during which player characters assisted the House of the Chosen.
After Margrave Krexus was killed in an attack, players ventured into the Maw to help recover the House of the Chosen's missing baron, who turned out to be Alexandros Mograine. Mograine revealed a traitor in the House of the Chosen's midst - Baron Vyraz - who had indeed been the one to murder Krexus. Players helped to confront Vyraz, but he escaped and fled into the Maw, where he and his forces joined Helya.
Draka, along with Necrolord players, continued to work on bolstering the strength of the House of the Chosen - and by extension, the Necrolords. She has recently journeyed to Korthia to take part in the Covenant assault on the Maw.
Mother and Son
It is easy to see why Draka, still furious with Vyraz for his betrayal, would want to lead this mission against his and Helya's forces. It's also easy to see why Thrall, who clearly has not had a chance to get to know his mother yet, would want to join.
When Draka first greets Thrall, she gives the impression that she does not know who he is. This is believable, as she has not seen Thrall as a baby, and never knew him by that name. For his part, Thrall does reveal their relationship at first, and the two have several short but interesting conversations during our quests in Desmotaeron.
Baroness Draka says: I see you wear the armor of Orgrim Doomhammer.
Thrall says: He left it to me as a gift. One of many he gave me.
Thrall says: You were of the Frostwolf Clan in life, were you not?
Baroness Draka says: I was. Their legacy will always be a part of me.
Thrall says: You are a warrior of great skill, Draka.
Baroness Draka says: I was forged in battle. As were you, I am told.
Baroness Draka says: Who taught you to fight, Thrall?
Thrall says: A human. He wanted a gladiator. He made an enemy.
A side note about Orgrim Doomhammer's armor: Orgrim gave this armor, along with his warhammer, to Thrall when he died, marking him as the new Warchief. While Thrall hasn't worn this armor for some time,
his model received an update to show him wearing it in patch 9.1
. One thing that's missing from the new model is the breastplate - which was damaged badly when Orgrim was killed. At the time, Thrall commanded it be bent into shape and still wore it to honor the former Warchief, but perhaps the damage has, over the years, made the breastplate too fragile to wear. Or perhaps the designers just thought the model looked cooler this way. Either works.
At some point, Thrall seems to attempt to tell Draka who he is, but she reminds him of their mission and their need to focus.
Thrall says: Draka, there is something you need to know. I am--
Baroness Draka says: Focus on the mission. We will speak later.
Only after we finish the mission - with Helya banished, presumably back to Helheim, and Vyraz lying dead at our feet - does Draka reveal the fact that she's known Thrall was her own son all along.
Baroness Draka says: Well fought... Go'el. Come, we will speak.
Thrall says: You... knew?
This moment truly shows us something remarkable about Draka. Thrall is her son. She died protecting him, and missed watching him grow up. She must be curious, and this even spills through in this mission when she gently probes him about his past and who taught him how to fight. Yet she is also a soldier who has been given a mission, and that comes first. Draka shows a determination to prioritize her responsibilities before her personal feelings - an important quality in a leader.
Of course, that doesn't mean there is no room for sentiment. Both Thrall and we are rewarded at the end of this mission by a long-awaited, good old heart-to-heart.
Baroness Draka says: I knew who you were the moment I saw you. Do you really think I wouldn't recognize Durotan's eyes?
We absolutely love this line. Thrall, like Durotan, has blue eyes - which is extremely unusual for an Orc. It's one of his most distinctive features, and the same was likely true of Durotan. Of course Draka would recognize them instantly. The rest of the conversation is just as good, with Draka finally getting to offer her son some much-needed guidance.
Baroness Draka says: You were but a babe when I died. Tell me, who have you grown to be?
Thrall says: I was once Warchief of the Horde, a shaman of the Earthen Ring--
Baroness Draka says: That is who you were. Who are you now?
Thrall says: I... am uncertain. Much has happened in my life. I do not know where it will lead next.
Baroness Draka says: A lesson, then. Not from mother to child, but from one similar soul to another. Remember who you were, but take pride in who you are.
Baroness Draka says: I once thought death was the end. But now, as a warrior of Maldraxxus, I see that it was only the beginning.
Baroness Draka says: It brings me joy to see how far you have come. And I know you have much farther to go.
Thrall says: Thank you... mother. I will make you proud.
Baroness Draka says: Come. I wish to know more of your life. All of it.
The Story of Chains of Domination: Chapter 5 - An Army of Bone and Steel
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