For nearly 7,000 years, high elven society centered on the sacred Sunwell, a magical fount that was created using a vial of pure arcane energy from the first Well of Eternity. Nourished and strengthened by the Sunwell’s potent energies, the high elves’ enchanted kingdom of Quel’Thalas prospered within the verdant forests north of Lordaeron.
During the Third War, however, the high elves were nearly scoured from Azeroth. Led by the death knight Arthas, a Scourge army stormed into Quel’Thalas, slaughtering almost ninety percent of the kingdom’s population. Arthas then used the mystical Sunwell to resurrect the fallen necromancer Kel’Thuzad, irrevocably tainting the fount in the process.
Fearing that the befouled well would obliterate his dwindling race, Prince Kael’thas Sunstrider gathered a group of Quel’Thalas’s defenders and destroyed the fount to avert catastrophe. Although the high elves were spared from continued exposure to the Sunwell’s dark energies, in the fount’s absence they suffered terribly from withdrawal. As a result, Kael’thas desperately searched for a means to help his people—whom he had renamed the blood elves—and thus he set out for the shattered world of Outland. There he allied with the renegade demon Illidan Stormrage in the hopes of finding a cure for the blood elves’ crippling withdrawal.
Kael’thas had assured his people that one day he would return to Quel’Thalas and lead them to paradise, yet time revealed that his promises were nothing more than lies. On Outland, the prince became twisted due to his reliance on fel energy, the dark and corrupting essence wielded by the demonic Burning Legion itself. Unbeknownst to Illidan, Kael’thas also came under the sway of the Legion’s commander, Kil’jaeden.
At the bidding of his new master, the wayward prince eventually returned to Azeroth and seized the site of the Sunwell, hoping to use the fount as a means to usher Kil’jaeden into the world. Ultimately, Kael’thas was slain before his recklessness could bring ruin to Azeroth. In the wake of Kil’jaeden’s defeat, the draenei prophet Velen purified the Sunwell with the Light-infused heart of a fallen naaru, transforming the fount into a source of both holy and arcane energies.
Inspired by the Sunwell’s rebirth, the blood elves have since entered into a shining new era in their ancient race’s history. Although some elves remain hesitant to abandon their dependence on arcane magic, others have embraced change for the betterment of Quel’Thalas. Yet only time will tell if the blood elves can avoid repeating the tragic mistakes of their past.