- From the notes of amateur Scholar and Historian, Keltarin Dreamhunter
Following The Tri-City Assault, considered a somewhat embarrassing attempt by the Alliance to use Guildwatch as a cat’s-paw in it's Cold War with the Horde, Shaila Viridiant was accused of conspiracy to commit treason against the Alliance and put on trial. The effects of this trial are far reaching and have changed the very nature of warfare across the world, in this writer's humble opinion.
It began with the rather embarrassing situation that resulted from the botched attempt by Guildwatch to eliminate Sylvanass Windrunner and the threat of engineered plagues created in Lorderon. Instead of a lighting fast assault into the heart of the Undercity, the Alliance was met with Horde resistance by many large and well known clans or guilds, such as the Orgrimmar Marauders, Brotherhood of the Dusk, and Low Red Moon. It became apparent that the attack was no surprise to the Horde, who deftly turned back the attackers throughout the night.
A scapegoat was sought, but the most guilty of turncoats was out of Alliance reach. The mage Calvo, once a staunch supporter of Guildwatch and aide to Mixler, had turned undead and given his secrets to the Forsaken. Unable to bring Calvo to justice (or even simply destroy him), powers within the Stormwind nobility sought a new scapegoat. They found one in Shaila Viridiant.
Shaila was arrested and kept from travelling despite some attempts by her friends to free her. The fear was that she would be executed to put an end to the embarrassing situation, and that her death would only excuse Stormwind from any liability. Not only would this end the life of a girl who only wanted to protect people, it would do nothing to stop the bloodshed between Horde and Alliance, and in fact, might spark additional conflict. The trial, it seemed, was nothing more than a bureaucratic formality. Shaila's friends, however, saw the trial as a chance to prove beyond doubt that Shaila was not responsible for the Tri-City Assault's failure.
Originally, Ceil Nightfury and Tarquin ap Danwyrith were designated to be Shaila's defense, and an enigmatic woman named Callaine, the prosecution. Tarquin was unable to participate, however, when it was revealed that he was working for the non-Alliance country of Gilneas, and had no business in an Alliance courtroom. This humble writer instead took up Shaila's defense, though I fear I did not do as good a job as Tarquin might have. Rikaelus the Paladin was judge overseeing the proceedings.
Without going into great detail, the trial pitched back and forth, with new information being brought up by both the prosecution and the defense. The prosecution focused on defaming the character of Shaila, noting her previous ties to the Horde and her willingness to work against the Alliance (and in particular, her work as an assassin and a Defias "daughter"). The defense focused on the facts, noting that Shaila was not even aware of the Tri-City raid until it was already underway, and that she had been mislead when she confessed to telling the Horde of impending Alliance attacks.
Before the end, the defense managed to bring Degmarlee the troll (sometimes called "The Worm") to court to formally declare Shaila innocent of her charge in the eyes of the Horde, stating clearly that Shaila was not the one who told of the invasion, but that Calvo was (and since Calvo was now a member of the Horde, was protected from Alliance judgment). However, the act somewhat backfired on the defense, as Degmarlee's disdain for the circus of a trial and scapegoating became apparent, and he spoke freely of his anger at the Alliance for all it had done.
Shaila was found guilty, after all that had occurred. Rather than send her to the gallows, however, she was forced into a magical geas where she would not speak for many months. Her sentence was reduced later after the charges were overturned; however, the reason she escaped death was her unborn child, revealed during the trial, in a last ditch attempt to save Shaila.
However, more interesting perhaps is the consequence of Degmarlee's apperance at the trial and the effects of the verdict. Degmarlee was furious and told the Alliance how disgusted he was with what was happening, and returned to the Horde to tell of the arrogance and corruption of Stormwind. Shortly after, the Alliance organized a new system of "honor" to reward freelance fighters and soldiers for accomplishments against "Horde dissident citizens and groups", which technically meant people and guilds in the Horde who worked without the Warchief's authority, but quickly became so general that any Alliance kill of a Horde citizen was rewarded. The Horde instituted a similar situation shortly after, likely to give the Forsaken greater incentive to fight on behalf of the Horde (the Undead are generally considered allies of the Horde and not official "clans" under the Warchief). The "honor" of the honor system is not in fact, honorable combat, so much as it is the respective government "honoring" the combat achievements of individuals on both sides.
While some may balk at my insinuation that the Honor System was a direct result of Shaila's trial and the botched Tri-City Assault, I find the timing too good to be coincidental. It should be noted that the clerk who filed the accusation and trial has not been heard from since, and that it remains unclear as to where the charges originated, as well as where Mixler's orders came from.