Last night for instance night, several of us in the Valar Guild (including Maedhroc) went down into the dark places and confronted Gwathnor. "What's a Gwathnor?" you may ask? Good question. Answer: danged if I know! But I can show you a picture:
I suppose that, having a name, he doesn't really count as a nameless thing. But he opens up wormholes at the bottom of Moria, and that can't be good!
It was a very methodical, very smooth run, and I was very pleased all around. I was the group organizer and main tank and some off-healing or DPS, with jamesbarrett's champion Avengelina as off-tank and melee DPS (as well as strat tips from having gone through the instance before), with Fairmaiden the minstrel and Passim the runekeeper providing heals, Nimrodel the hunter bringin' the pew-pew, and Erkendan the captain providing buffs, off-healing, and DPS. The hardest part was the crazy "escort the suicidal elf through trolls" part in the middle of the instance, but even that was relatively smooth and we had no deaths. The champion came close, but champions are like that. Fortunately, jamesbarrett knows the class well and could pull his own fat out of the fire — I went into the instance with the policy that he pulled aggro on something to let him have it, for just that reason.
This run was a biggie for Maedhroc for two reasons. First, it was the last obstacle between him and his shield capstone skill, which is what most high-end wardens use for tanking. Second, it was one of my first real, heavy duty, training-wheels-are-off main tank/instance leader runs, and as we discovered on our previous attempts last week (three wipes and "we'll try again next time"), it's not a milk run. The fact that I not only main-tanked it, but main-tanked it well (lost aggro to the hunter once, when she was going full-strength, but kept a solid lock on all bosses and most adds) was a real confidence-booster. I've still got plenty of room to improve of course, but I don't feel quite so much like a wanna-be now. I also don't feel so much like I've got to prove that wardens can tank. I know they can, 'cause I've done it. :)
The followup quest, where you look into Galadriel's mirror, was a very cool character moment for Maedhroc as well, so I made sure to grab a bunch of screenies. I may just be able to do some more "Life of a Bounder" posts yet! Assuming I can get the ticket resolved to bring the other ones back from the dead, anyhow. If I have some time this week/weekend, I'll probably scrape 'em from the RSS feed and make copies on gneech.com so I can be reasonably sure they won't go away.