In a nook in Coldridge Valley just north of the clearing used by so many for their first adventures was a small collection of businesses, huddled against the chill. An ornately carved if slightly singed placard announced that one such business was the office of Doctor Rumplewiggle, noted Gnomish healer and scientist. This and the rest of the enterprises of the Valley went about their way, oblivious to the doom approaching them all...
A sense of palpable evil came over the area. Granted, the inhabitants and rabbits and Troggs and Trolls all seemed to remain blissfully ignorant, but it was there all right! Thick, like a...a nice dark jelly. Made of EVIL!
And possibly blackberries.
A shadow fell across the doorway of the good Doctor's office...
"Why if it isn't little Nummie Gigglepie! It's been so long since you came to see me!" Dr. Rumplewiggle said to the figure in his doorway. "You're growing up to be such a cute thing!"
Nummie glared at him with a look of pure hate. "I am not CUTE. I am menacing and intimidating and have been known to chill the blood of grown men with one look. I am the RUINER of WORLDS and am destined to conquer Azeroth with my MIGHTY VILLAINOUS POWER! The very GROUND shrinks from my approach, and the very SKY--"
Dr. Rumplewiggle frowned and gazed at her over the tops of his owlish glasses as she went on. He picked up a chart and started making notes on it. As she continued to rant, he took a few measurements and readings with various devices on and around her person. Then, after a time, he went and prepared and poured some tea for the both of them before she eventually wound down.
"--will sing my NAME in TERROR and AWE!" Nummie finished, staring wildly into the distance.
"Sooooo..." the doctor started diplomatically. "Your Aunt Tufsy told me that she asked you to come check in with me...she's apparently a little...concerned?"
Nummie's eyes sharpened and fixed on him again. "Bah! Auntie Tufsy simply does not understand the EVIL DESTINY of NUMMIE GIGGLEPIE! She is a FOOL who has been holding me back for TOO LONG! AND...say, do you have any cookies to go with this tea?"
"Now Nummie, there's no need for you to shout, I'm right here," the doctor said calmly, rummaging in a cabinet and producing a packet of spice cookies left over from the holidays.
"SPICE cookies? You offer NUMMIE GIGGLEPIE spice cookies??" Nummie exploded.
With a sigh, the doctor opened his desk drawer and removed his secret stash of chocolate chip cookies and handed them over. As his hand passed over, he subconsciously straightened an old picture on his desk of a smiling Gnomish family. The corner of the frame was blackened and a little bit sticky.
Nummie pondered a cookie for a moment. "When I rule this world, I will have a throne made entirely from chocolate chip cookies..."
The doctor frowned again and made a note on his chart. "Now Nummie, I've been friends with Tufsy for a long time and I'd hardly describe her as a fool. My practice was practically a stone's throw from the Gigglepie clan's residences back...well, back in Gnomeregan." Dr. Rumplewiggle removed and wiped his glasses hastily, blinking rapidly. "We all know that she has done her best to take care of you since...the Incident..."
Nummie didn't look at him. "Of course, it would have to be baked again fresh every day...It wouldn't do to have a throne of hard old cookies. I've already assigned a servant to distribute the used cookies to the poor and orphans and whatnot."
"Yes, orphans," the doctor said carefully. "Nummie, how old are you now?"
Her attention finally came back to him again. "My evil is older than time itself!"
"Well, all right, but in conventional years do you have a general estimate?"
"Oh, well in your ORDINARY years Nummie Gigglepie is well past sixteen now. PLENTY old enough to be out on my own and not under the constant eye of a busybody Auntie! Time for the WORLD to accept my DOMINANCE AS ITS--"
The doctor made a few more notes on her chart. "So that would have made you...twelve when the Incident happened? Yes, a very impressionable age, that. My own Mopsy was twelve at the time..." His eye fell on the picture frame and he blinked quickly again, looking away. "If I recall, the two of you were playmates. I remember the Nummie Gigglepie I knew primarily being concerned with boys, and flowers, and cats. And cookies."
"HA! I was pure evil from the moment I was born! Your head must have been addled by all the radiation fumes!" Nummie sneered.
"Yeeesss..." the doctor said, consulting his chart. "I seem to recall that we did a full battery of tests on you after the Incident and found nothing wrong with you physically, no contamination. Even today there's no residual radiation. But even then Tufsy said that you had changed..."
Nummie stood up abruptly. "Look, I have evil deeds to be attending to and this is wasting my time. Is there a POINT to all of this? I only came so that my Auntie would shut up about it."
"All right then, I'll get right to it," Doctor Rumplewiggle said, standing up. "Your behavior is concerning us as a community, all of us who survived Gnomeregan. Your parents were friends of mine, and they wouldn't have wanted to see you like this--"
Nummie wheeled on him. "My PARENTS were WEAK!" She hissed. "They could have saved themselves, but they saved ME instead! There will be no room for weakness in my New World Order! I will enslave the entire population of Azeroth and rule them as their undisputed Queen of All Evil! The world will TREMBLE before my WRATH!" She advanced on him and he retreated until he bumped into his desk. The picture frame fell over and little Mopsy's image stared into the sky blankly. Beside her was a little girl with pink hair, holding rabbit ears behind her head and grinning.
The doctor was quiet for a moment. "Dear...we all lost people we loved in Gnomeregan. But this...this isn't the way to get them back."
Nummie grabbed her cloak and wrapped it around her, striding to the door. She paused in the shadow of the doorway, her face dark under her hood.
"When I rule the world, nothing like Gnomeregan will ever happen again."
She slammed the door shut, and the doctor heard her footsteps crunch away rapidly in the snow. He picked up and fingered the picture on his desk and squeezed his eyes shut. Outside, he heard a voice yell.
"FEAR MY WRATH!"