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Erich Gottfried Manstein, 31st Baron Faulkenburg
Commission-Erich
The Voice of the Church

Current Titles

Baron of Faulkenburg
Lord-Speaker of the Stormwind House of Nobles

Past Titles

Colonel of the Second Stormwind Regiment of Horse (ret.),
Commandant of Lordamere Internment Camp,
Ambassador of Stormwind to the Kingdom of Kul Tiras,
Governor-General of the Alliance Relief Effort in Gilneas (res.),
Lord-Prosecutor of His Majesty's Ministry of Justice (res.)
Metropolitan Secretary of State
Grand Knight of the Congregation of the Silver Hand
Duke of Eastburg
Count of Eastvale
Lord-Vicar of the Church
Dean of the Church College of Canon Law
Clerk of the Council of Bishops
Congregational Clerk of the Congregation of the Silver Hand.
Lord Magistrate of the Stormwind High Court (ret.)
Episcopal Legate of the Bishop Johannes Moorwhelp (ret.)

Honors

Knight of the Brotherhood of the Horse
Paladin of the Silver Hand

Age

53

Affiliations

House of Manstein
Stormwind Peerage
Alliance of Lordaeron
Grand Alliance
Brotherhood of the Horse
Order of the Silver Hand
Church of the Holy Light

Family

Wife: Wilhelmina Cartres (dec.)
Children: Niklos Adamant (Bastard), Guderian Manstein,Arminius Manstein
Sister: Leliana Manstein Garithos

Status

Alive

"May the man rest in peace, but what he stood for go on forever"

- Dame Amailiana Bradford, Highlord of the Silver Hand


Nobleman, Officer, Paladin, Politician, Writer, and Philanthropist, Erich Gottfried Manstein, (March 15, 559 K.C. -  Present) is many things. From his noble birth in a long forgotten sliver of the Kingdom of Azeroth, failed Governorship over the misty mountains of Gilneas, his illustrious career as the mastermind behind the Church of the Holy Light's political ascension, and his stunning return from two years of exile in the Twisting Nether, Erich Manstein has been a true shaper of the world around him. The consummate man of politics, Erich is the very definition of an ambitious political animal yet also "A good man, once. A man seduced by his own intentions, led willingly down a path of immortality by desires of power, tempting him to even greater and greater acts of wickedness until the shadow of ambition he had used for drive had come home to claim him." - Eldanesh

Despite his aristocratic tendencies, Manstein is a man of deep and resounding faith, a faith which initially led him to join the ranks of the Clergy of the Holy Light in humble servitude shortly after the Cataclysm. In service to the Church Lord Manstein's wealth, prestige, and influence in the the political spheres of the Alliance rose to staggering heights. Starting as a modest minor lord of a little known and derelict barony, Manstein rose to become the ruler of one of Stormwind's most affluent territories; Eastvale, and shortly before his disappearance at the Battle of Death's Door he witnessed his elevation to near royalty with the incorporation of Eastvale and Faulkenburg into the combined Duchy of Eastburg, thus forever preserving the power and wealth of the House of Manstein for generations to come.

Paralleling the ascent of his lordly power was his influence within both the government of the Church and that of the Kingdom of Stormwind. Soon after joining the Church, Manstein displaced Tenevus Stromheart as the foremost servant the much revered Bishop of Stormwind, Johannes Moorwhelp, becoming both Dean of the Church College of Canon Law and the Bishop's Lord-Vicar. Whilst serving in these capacities, Manstein was instrumental in the reformation of church law and ecclesiastical organization; services that eventually resulted in his appointment to the position of Lord-Magistrate of the Stormwind High Court. Eventually Erich was elevated to the second most powerful position in the church, becoming the Metropolitan Secretary of State (later renamed to Lord-Chancellor under Caspius I) to Archbishop Columban V.

It would be his unprecedented aggrandizement of influence within the circles of Stormwind's major centers of power, as well as those abroad, that led Manstein to almost single-handedly redefine the role of the Church in contemporary politics, an evolution that many commentators still debate to this day. It would be at the height of his power that he assumed the role of Grand Knight of the Congregation of the Silver Hand, a position that ultimately facilitated the execution of his secret desire for redemption; the Quest for Turalyon. While the series of Crusades that made up the Quest were met with stunning success, the final battle of the campaign ended with the elder lord's disappearance through a malfunctioning portal. Thought dead by most, Manstein was nearly canonized by the Church, but political detractors within the administration of Archbishop Caspius I saw the monuments erected to his honor removed and defaced.

It would not be until the reopening of the Dark Portal, and the dramatic shifts in the Twisting Nether that it caused, that Manstein was able to escape his demonic prison and return home.

AppearanceEdit

Bannerm

"My family is older than yours could ever hope, ever wish to be, yet you dare address me in the manner with which you have? I come from bloodlines older than the Menethils. My family came south with the destruction of Arathor, we fought off the yoke of their oppression, what have you?"

- Duke Manstein to Queen-Claimant Madelynne I shortly before his final expedition to Outland

Young Manstein

Manstein at 18 years.

A handsome man in his youth, and still so in his older years, at the age of fifty-three Manstein maintains a fit and brisk appearance. His hair, once a vibrant blonde now turned silver with age, has receded over the years but is still full and thick. Despite the natural burdens of age, the lord retains a commanding and authoritative presence, his face the chiseled example and personification of the dignified noble, paladin, and elder statesman.

In matters of attire the Duke was always careful in his appearance. Insistent that he wear only the finest and richest garbs available in the Eastern Kingdoms, Manstein is direct in his intentional portrayal of a "proper Lord" of Stormwind. Whether in the rich silks of Quel'Thalas, fine obsidian Gilnean attire, the clean Magisterial robes of the Stormwind High Court, or the opulent yet supposedly humble garments of the Church, Manstein always presented the cleanest picture of high society. 

PastEdit

UpbringingEdit

"There is no worse an illness than to be nobody to anyone."

- Baron Arminius Manstein von Faulkenburg to his son

2

Young Erich standing before his father, Arminius, and his mother, Cecilia, in old Stormwind.

Coming into life twenty three years before the opening of the Dark Portal as the first born son of Arminius and Cecilia Manstein, Erich was raised in the traditional fashion of the realm's nobility. As the future scion of the House of Manstein, a family whose roots could be traced back to the days of ancient Arathor, Erich was bound from birth to be the shining exemplar of Stormwind's favored nobility.

The family lands of the Barony of Faulkenburg, although small, were rich and prosperous. Located high in the mountains east of Stormwind, the House of Manstein controlled several gold and silver mines, thus making the family a wealthy and highly influential force within the old aristocracy of the Kingdom of Azeroth.

1

Erich as a young Knight of the Brotherhood.

At an early age, as was customary of firstborn sons of the House of Manstein, young Erich was sent off to train as a soldier and squire in the Brotherhood of the Horse, an order of noble knights stationed in Northshire Abbey. Training and learning the ways of knighthood at Northshire Abbey for many years, Manstein found himself walking amongst men that would later move and shape the Eastern Kingdoms. Learning the ways of honor, faith, and loyalty from the knights of the Brotherhood, Erich devoted himself to his duties with all the industry that was expected of the members of Stormwind's nobility. It was during his humble young years as a squire that Erich first meet two men, one of which would later become his adversary, the other would one day become his undisputed hero. The former was Lord Tenevus Stromheart, who he held no recollection of in his later years, and the later was the Armsman of the Brotherhood of the Horse, Lord Anduin Lothar. At the time Erich met Lothar the future hero had many years ahead of him before he would become famous for recovering the Tome of Divinity, let alone becoming the savior of Stormwind and Supreme Commander of the Alliance Military Forces.
Aria

Aria Cladwell

Upon the age of eighteen, Manstein was dubbed a Knight of the Brotherhood of the Horse and awarded a commission as a Lieutenant in the army of King Adamant Wrynn III, thus leaving his childhood behind as he entered adulthood. As a gift to his son for achieving knighthood, Erich's father sent him to Lordaeron to participate in a circuit of tournaments and further hone his martial skills by learning the styles of Lordaeron's knightly class. It was during this time that Erich met Aria Cladwell, a young priestess of stunning beauty. The two bonded instantly but the unexpected pregnancy put a sudden end to their affair. Concerned that Aria would be ostracised from the priesthood for her dalliance, and that he might be disowned by his father for marrying a commoner, Erich arranged for Aria to wed a wizard from Dalaran, giving both a considerable sum of gold in return for their silence. Unfortunately, Aria died during childbirth, and the bastard child born as William Cladwell, would come to be known as Niklos Adamant, the future Bishop of Lordaeron.

A Changing World

The First WarEdit

3

Erich on the front lines during the First Great War.

"The line is fallen and I am still alive."

-Duke Manstein at the Battle of Death's Door

The arrival of the orcs through the Dark Portal was the first signal of change that came to Stormwind. Still a young officer within the ranks of the King's army, Erich served on the front lines in repelling the first excursions of the Horde from the swampy wetlands of the Black Morass. At first the armies of Stormwind were successful and for many years the loyal soldiers of the King were able to repel the bloodthirsty orcs under Warchief Blackhand.

It was during this time that Erich first tempered himself within the hot fires of brutal combat. Fighting alongside his fellow knights, the forces of the Brotherhood were often involved in the bloodiest of fighting and were occasionally called to fight in the dangerous marshlands of the Swamp of Sorrows and Black Morass.

For years Erich fought with his fellow knights and under the wise leadership of the new King Llane Wrynn, the military forces of Stormwind were able to outsmart, outmaneuver, and outfight the orcish hordes. It was during this time that Erich quickly rose through the ranks, a fact due not only to his tactical prowess, but also the unfortunate result of the heavy losses sustained upon the field of battle by the Royal Army of Stormwind. Erich's meteoric rise saw him promoted to the rank of Major and assigned as a close adjutant on Stormwind's General Staff.

Unfortunately for Erich, his quick rise came with a price. During a skirmish along the border between Grand Hamlet and the Swamp of Sorrows he was badly injured, his leg cut by the axe of a orcish grunt in a brutal ambush planned by the increasingly powerful orcish chieftain, Orgrim Doomhammer. After sustaining the grievous injury, the young officer was reassigned to the garrison of Stormwind Castle, a prestigious yet very much non-combative assignment that was becoming increasingly infamous as a posting for injured officers of too noble of blood to simply dismiss from duty.

The circumstances around the posting of injured noble officers as the general garrison of Stormwind Castle would later be called into question by more realist reformers of Stormwind's civilian administration who asserted that the policy directly led to successful assassination of King Llane Wrynn. Unfortunately, any reforms which may have been instituted were quickly swept aside with the fall of Stormwind.

The Fall of King Llane, the Doom of a KingdomEdit

PatrolManstein

Young Erich on patrol in Stormwind Castle the night of Llane's murder.

It was on a dark night, whilst Erich patrolled the great corridors of the Stormwind Keep, that a single cry rose up and echoed through the halls, "The King is dead, the King is dead!" Whilst Erich was on patrol the half-orc assassin, Garona Halforcian, betrayed King Llane, murdering the benevolent king. Although he was far from the assassination, Manstein took the death of Llane harshly, blaming himself for not being able to protect the King and perform his duty not only an officer of the castle guard.

News of Llane's death spread quickly throughout Stormwind and the already stressed armies of Stormwind began to crack. For some months Stormwind had been suffering relentless attacks from the Horde which had put the army of Stormwind on its heels and news of Llane's death destroyed the morale of the soldiers and allowed Doomhammer to break through to the city.

Destroyed Stormwind

Stormwind in flames after the First War.

Realizing the city was doomed, Sir Anduin Lothar rallied the remnants of the army and managed to evacuate much of Stormwind's population to the boats docked within the city harbor. Many of the knights of the Brotherhood remained behind to fight the Horde and make time for the citizens to evacuate, almost all were slaughtered. Erich himself managed to make it onto one of the last boats leaving the harbor, the flames of the burning city licking at his back.

Lordaeron's Embrace, The Second Great War

The Order of the Silver HandEdit

"There are no sides, only the that of the Light"

-Bishop Mellar Servus, crowned Archbishop Columban V

Annointment

Erich's anointment by Sir Uther the Lightbringer

Arriving in the port of Southshore with his fellow refugees from Stormwind, Erich was among the last surviving Knights of the Brotherhood of the Horse under the command of Lord Anduin Lothar. Compiled with the loss of much of his family, lands, and country, Erich took the assassination of King Llane close to heart. Searching for answers to his grief, Manstein volunteered to head north with Archbishop Alonsus Faol in a religious mission to the great city of Stratholme. The purpose of the mission was the reestablishment of the organization which had been previously known as the Clerics of Northshire. Faol believed that the First War was proof that the Clerics required reform, and soon the Order of the Silver Hand was founded with Sir Uther the Lightbringer anointed as its Grand Master.

It was whilst serving Faol in the Bishop's mission to Stratholme, Erich watched as the Silver Hand was founded, observing the anointment of Uther and the first three members of the Order; Gavinrad the Dire, Turalyon, Saidan Dathrohan, and Tirion Fordring. Coming to believe that much of his ill-fate was a result of a lack of faith, Erich vowed to devote himself to the service of the Light and protecting all those he could; an atonement for the past "sin" of his believed role in Llane's death.

Following the lead of Uther and Faol, Erich volunteered to serve as a paladin of the Silver Hand and was soon inducted into the Order. For several years Erich would serve as an aspirant to Sir Gavinrad the Dire, learning the virtues of the Church and gaining a mastery in wielding the Light whilst continuing to hone his martial prowess. Shortly before the start of the Second War Erich was finally anointed as a paladin, but during his time as an aspirant he first encountered the woman who later became his wife.

Love's GraspEdit

Proposal

Erich proposing to the lovely Wilhelmina at her father's manor.

Shortly after his induction into the Order of the Silver Hand Erich meet his future wife; the beautiful Wilhelmina Cartres, daughter of Lord William Cartres, Count of Northdale. Taken in by her beauty, her devout faith, and her devilish charms, Erich courted the young woman whilst undergoing his training in Stratholme. It was many long months before the young nobleman, former cavalry officer and now paladin managed to convince the young woman to take his hand in marriage, but she did so with great love and happiness. 
Wedding

The wedding within Alonsus Chapel

The two lovers were wed in Alonsus Chapel, a mere two months before the orcish invasion fleet would appear off the coast of Southshore and threaten all of the northern kingdoms. Although their marriage ultimately proved to be one of political convenience, the two kept a lengthy correspondence throughout the conflict, their attachment to one another growing more fond with time.

The Second WarEdit

"My church is the field of battle."

-Sir Uther the Lightbringer


When the orcish fleets first landed upon the shores of southern Lordaeron, it was the people of Stormwind who understood best the threat the Horde posed to humanity. Inspired by the leadership of men such as Lord Anduin Lothar, Sir Uther the Lightbringer, and Sir Turalyon, Erich and his fellow paladins fought alongside the armies of the northern kingdoms throughout the war. 

The Paladins of the Order, not quite ready for battle at the onset of the war, did not enter the fray until the orcs had begun in earnest to push upon Capital City. It was during the defense of the city, and the subsequent battles, that Erich once more proved his bravery and skill in battle, fighting valiently to help stymie the Horde's advance on Capital City. Although not the best fighter within the Order, Manstein's command the Light was adept and it was his ability to lead with tenacity and energy that set him out amongst his fellows. 

Successful upon the battlefield, quick of mind, and of good birth, Erich quickly moved advanced quickly within the ranks of the Order, his place within the grand army ascending ever faster as the Alliance of Lordaeron approached final victory over the orcish Horde. 

The Battle of Blackrock SpireEdit

The Second War

Manstein as a Knight of the Silver Hand during the Second War

In what would become the last great military engagement of the Second War, the Battle of Blackrock Spire was a battle that would be recorded in time as both a great loss and a great victory. The battle was a last ditch effort for Doomhammer's Horde to survive, the forces of the Alliance having pushed them back to their last great stronghold within Blackrock Mountain.

Orgrim Doomhammer, sensing a chance to hopefully break the will of the Alliance forces, sought out Lord Anduin Lothar, the Grand Commander of the Alliance, on the battlefield. Doomhammer eventually spotted Lothar through the swirling melee and began to beat his way through the walls of human flesh and steel to the Lion of Azeroth. 

Erich was one of the many paladins participating in the battle and was one of the few soldiers who saw and understood the Warchief's path. Resolved to not allow the same fate as Llane to befall Lothar, Erich and a small group of footmen attempted to intercept and stop Doomhammer.

Unfortunately, they were as mere paper before Doomhammer's might. 

Swatted away like flies, Erich and the men were easily brushed aside, slaughtered by the fearsome Doomhammer and rendered unable to protect their leader. Indeed, Lothar was slain that day by the orcish Warchief, but, in an act of great valor, Turalyon took up Lothar's shield and broken sword, rallying the forces of the Alliance and leading them to victory on the battlefield that day, and, as a result, the Second War.
Death of Lothar

The death of Anduin Lothar.

The Alliance had finally defeated the Horde, but Erich was lucky to have escaped with his life. In his attempted valor, the Doomhammer had landed a blow squarely upon his chest, shattering his ribcage and leaving the man on the verge of death. Only the quick action of a nearby paladin managed to save the nobleman's life. Despite the quick aide, even the Light could not heal Manstein fully. Thus Erich was forced to live the rest of his life with a grotesque wound upon his chest, a great cavity more akin to a crater than a real wound of battle. The shattered remnants of his bones pressed daily against his lungs and made many of his movements a painful endeavor, especially when he sat or stood. Nevertheless, the imprint of the Doomhammer lived with Erich every moment of his life, causing him much pain until his eventual death.

It was because of his wound that after the end of the Second War Erich was asked to retire from the Order of the Silver Hand and the Alliance Army. The young nobleman was filled with grief over his inability to protect the one's he held in the highest of esteem and protested the termination of his service, feeling that his only choice was to continue to serve as penance for his failure. Eventually he was victorious in receiving an extension of service, albeit with a commission as a Colonel and as the Commandant of the newly constructed Lordamere Internment Camp

Despite his many misfortunes and inner grief, Manstein was still a man of deep resounding faith, conviction and goodness of heart. Truthfully, he loathed and hated the orcs that he was tasked with guarding over, but his attentions were focused upon his wife and the raising of a family. The years between the Second and Third Wars would be some of Erich's happiest; his wife and children at his side.

The Enemy Within, The Third Great WarEdit

"Special Designation 462, FROSTFALL

In accordance to outlines specifically presented in §42 of the Internment Commandant's Codex, all Internment facility commanders are to provide for and make appropriate designations of resources for the contingency that a general uprising of the interned prisoners should occur and that, in the event of such a general insurgency, the order of the general internment officer is to terminate all prisoners of orchish descent.

General Aedelas Blackmoore, Commander of the Alliance Internment System"

When the Third War came, Manstein's world was once more sent into chaos. When Thrall, the future Warchief of the Horde, released the orcs from their internment camps, news was quick to spread of the incident to the commandant's office of the Lordamere Internment Camp. Knowing that a full scale uprising was being contrived, Erich feared the worst and acted upon a secret order issued to him many years before by Aedelas Blackmoore; Operation Frostfall.

Commandant

Manstein overseeing activities in the Lordamere Internment Camp.

Frostfall was an emergency order drafted by Blackmoore and secretly given to the wardens of the prison camps. The orders detailed how the commanders were to, in case of a general uprising, do everything within their power to contain the possibility of the prisoners once more becoming an armed threat.

Subsequently, Manstein ordered the wholesale execution of the entire orcish population of the camp. Some of the orcs, however, did manage to escape the slaughter when a fire caught hold of the primary barracks building. To this day Manstein still considers it a great personal failing that he was unable to kill all of the orcs under his watch.

While dealing with the flight of the orcs in the south of Lordaeron, the plague hit northern Lordaeron with its full venom. It would be many months before Erich would discover that his wife, along with all of her family, was killed in the infamous Culling of Stratholme and subsequent plague infections. His sons and daughter, thankfully, had been spending the summer with Erich's cousins in Stormwind and escaped the calamity unharmed.

With the betrayal of Prince Arthas and the death of King Terenas Menethil, Manstein, along with the majority of Stormwind's forces in the north, was recalled to south in order to muster the defences of the city.

Honeyed Words and a Beaming Smile, The Paladin turned StatesmanEdit

"Can your blood atone for genocide, orc? Your Horde killed countless innocents with its rampage across Stormwind and Lordaeron. Do you really think you can just sweep all that away and cast aside your guilt so easily? No, your kind will never change, and I will never stop fighting you."

- Grand Admiral Proudmoore


Before the Third War began Manstein's infirmities had begun to push his desires away from military service. Testing his abilities in diplomacy, Erich served as part of an ambassadorial team to Lordaeron on behalf of Stormwind some months before the war. Adeptly arguing for more latitude and autonomy in the management of the Internment Camps, Erich impressed many of the older statesmen at his side and, upon his evntual return to the city, took his seat in the Stormwind House of Nobles and was enlisted to serve in the Kingdom's diplomatic corps.

Tandred

Ambassador Manstein speaking with Lord-Admiral Tandred Proudmoore, King of Kul'Tiras.

It was during these years that Erich honed his abilities as a statesman. Actively engaging himself in the business of the Stormwind House of Nobles, Manstein's influence with his peers rose with the power of the House itself. The disappearance of King Varian and the ascention of Lady Prestor's influence put the Stormwind House of Nobles in place where they were able to exercise far more power than they had previously enjoyed.

Known for his natural talent in oratory, Manstein was often enlisted by House leadership to present controversial laws or motions before the body. Many a day did the Baron's skill at speaking and winning hearts carry the day on the passage of hotly contested law. Eventually Manstein accepted an appointment to serve as Stormwind's ambassador to Kul'Tiras and left Stormwind to take up his residence at the embassy in Boralus. He would serve in his official capacity as ambassador in Kul'Tiras for several years before his recall after the Cataclysm.

Governor-General, The Citizens of GilneasEdit

WoWScrnShot 031713 185300

Greymane Manor; base of operations for the A.R.E.

"It was stubborn isolation that brought this avracious nation to its knees and it shall be the continued instransigence of its people that will condemn it to the thralldom of the Banshee Queen."

-Governor-General Manstein to a Gilnean delegation convened to discuss the A.R.E.'s efforts in Gilneas

Towards the end 620 K.C., the convulsions brought on by the great Cataclysm began to subside. For a time the Alliance 7th Legion managed to erect a stable warfront along the Gilnean border, thus securing large swaths of the ruined country. It was during this time that King Varian Wrynn, his ear constantly besit by King Genn Greymane's calls for increased aide, and the Stormwind House of Nobles announced plans to begin the reconstruction of Gilneas.

Manstein was assigned to head up the Alliance Relief Effort in Gilneas, otherwise known as the <Citizens of Gilneas> or ARE in the capacity of Governor-General. Gathering together a small group of Gilnean refugees, along with a variety of volunteers from other areas devastated by the Cataclysm, Erich commissioned the construction of three merchant vessels to serve both as transport for the people, but also as future mercantile and supply vessels. The ships were compeleted in December of 620 K.C. and were christened the HMS Deliverance, HMS Lothar's Resolve, and the HMS Llane's Legacy.

WoWScrnShot 031713 185652

Governor-General Erich Manstein, Baron von Faulkenburg.

With the consent of King Greymane, the ARE firmly established themselves within the halls of the still standing Greymane Manor. From the manor the ARE was able to organize itself into a highly motivated work force that began the reconstruction of the shattered towns and villages surrounding Gilneas City. Within a matter of months the force was able to completely repair the facilities and buildings at Keel Harbor and, with a functional port, was able to greatly exapnd its area of operations.

With ships now running regularly from Stormwind to Keel, the ranks of the ARE swelled with Gilneans seeking to return home. Craftsmen, farmers, nobles, and soldiers all flooded to the opportunity of rebuilding their lives that the ARE offered. For many more months the ARE continued its mission and was successful in rebuilding large sections of Gilneas City, as well as many of the outlying manor homes and villages.

It was during his tenure as Governor-General that the old Paladin from the mountains of Stormwind began to undergo fundamental changes. Eventually staking the audacious claim of Greymane Manor as his personal office of residence, Manstein began to rule over the land as if it was his own holding. Despite his increasingly lordly attitude, Manstein was still known for his caring, almost fatherly, guidence of the people of the ARE. It would not be until the scandal involving a gilnean organization that Manstein would lose much of the kindness in his heart.

ARE

The Alliance Relief Effort fleet in Gilneas.

A military organization of Gilnean patriots based out of Stormwind took offense to the ARE's efforts in Gilneas and proceeded to move much of their activity to the small town of Emberstone. For the next several months the Gilneans and the ARE were entangled in a series of scandals, skirmishes, and diplomatic breakdowns. Eventually, frustrated and tired of what he perceived as the ignorance and isolationism of the people of Gilneas, Manstein ordered the complete withdrawel of the ARE from Gilneas proper. To this day Manstein harbors a resentment towards many Gilneans and became deeply embittered to many of the people around him as a result.

Pre-Portal ActsEdit

Man of the Cloth, The Clergy of the Holy LightEdit

Reconcilliation

The reconciliation between the Church and Queen Madelynne I.

"You might very well think that, I couldn't possibly comment."

-Lord-Vicar Erich Manstein

With the failure of the ARE in Gilneas, Manstein retired from his service abroad to return to the noisy halls of the Stormwind House of Nobles. Erich's retirement from his governorship marked a significant change in the mood and sensibilities of the now elder statesman. Consumed with the inner anguish over what he believed his litany of failures; to protect King Llane, to defend Lothar, to save his wife, to rebuild Gilneas, Manstein could not help but feel that his life was becoming an increasingly long list of personal failures and increasing inadequacy. Refusing to allow himself to succumb to depression, Erich threw himself into the arena of politics in hopes that he could affect some measure of positive change within his homeland. It was during this time that Erich served the crown as a Lord-Prosecutor in his Majesty's Ministry of Justice, issuing judgement and enforcing the rule of law upon Stormwind's deviant citizens.


Clergyman

Manstein meeting with Bishop Johannes Moorwhelp. Father-Dean Tarso Valcari and Father Albus Hammermo.

It was not until September of 622 K.C. that Manstein became a benefactor of the College of Canons under the leadership of Bishop Johannes Moorwhelp. Offering his abilities as a diplomat and lawmaker to the Bishop, Manstein was appointed to the Deanery of the College of Canon Law to begin rewriting and reforming the church legal system. Shortly after his appointment to the Deanery, Manstein was also approached in the official channels of the Ministry of Justice and offered the secular post of Lord Magistrate; a judicial position of immense responsibility and importance within Stormwind's judicial system.

Serving dutifully as Dean of the College of Canon Law and as a Lord Magistrate, Erich's deep faith, as well as keen role in negotiating the reconcillation between the church and the Kingdom of Lordaeron Restored under Queen-Claiment Madelynne I, led to his appointment by Bishop Moorwhelp to the duel posts of Episcopal Legate and Lord-Vicar.

Rise of a PowerEdit

As Erich's role in the College became increasingly integral to the diplomatic health of the church in the aftermath of the reconcilliaton with Madelynne I, Bishop Moorwhelp began to rely more heavily upon the counsel of the aged nobleman rather than that of his Exemplar, Lord Tenevus Stromheart, who at the time was embroiled in a bitter divorce with his wife, Lady Rennali Sunwhisper and was becoming increasingly mired in several petty controversies.

Believing that Tenevus' leadership of the Church's chapter of the Silver Hand and Silver Hand Council was ineffectual and marked by incompetence, Erich began what would turn out to be a long and intricate campaign to bring ruin upon the upstart paladin and replace him as the chief advisor to Bishop Johannes Moorwhelp.

In order to ensure his success, Erich began aggrandize for himself a delicate web of authority, credibility, and power. Playing upon the Bishop's constant diversions with generally petty matters in Stormwind, Erich began to slowly shore up his image as the diplomatic face of the church by making regular visits to the various leaders of the Alliance's more influential subsidiary organizations; befriending as many as possible and offering the monetary, spiritual, and temporal assistance of the church to them all. Although many of the leaders were initially surprised to communicate with Manstein instead of Bishop Moorwhelp, slowly but surely Erich's face became synonymous with church diplomacy and before long virtually all diplomatic communiques passed through his hands before ever reaching either Stromheart or the Bishop.

The first step towards the eventual downfall of Lord Stromheart began with the inquisition called by Bishop Moorwhelp on Stromheart's separated wife, Lady Rennali Sunwhisper, on accusations that she was actively engaging teaching non-orthodox seminaries; a heretical offense. Using his legal expertise as his credentials, Erich positioned himself in such a way that Moorwhelp appointed him as the lead Inquisitor on the case. Staging a grand trial, Erich managed to cleverly convert the proceedings on Lady Sunwhisper's heresy into an indictment of Stromheart's poor performance as a husband. The court heard numerous testimonies on how Stromheart had abused his wife with inattention and scorn (some of which were, unknown to all, paid testimonies) in addition to those which were heard to account for the Lady's alleged heresy.

After the testimony regarding Stromheart was heard, Manstein, operating under the believe that the accusation of heresy was little more than a farce in the first place, railroaded the remainder of the trial and reported to Bishop Moorwhelp that his investigation had revealed no substantial evidence of heresy on the party of Lady Sunwhisper and had only shown Stormheart's supposed abuse of the woman. Moorwhelp soon after agreed to absolve the Lady Sunwhisper of any suspicion of heresy but the damage to Stromheart had been done. Behind closed doors Erich spread rumors that the entire trial was called by the Bishop at the urgings of Stromheart as a result of the latter's hatred for his wife. Manstein's bid worked and before long the streets of Stormwind were filled with the rumors that the whole endeavor was nothing short of a persecution of Sunwhisper by her jealous husband.

Not long after the trial the divorce between the two was finalized.

AscensionEdit

With his place in the College of Canons secure, Erich began a series of maneuvers that ultimately redefined the church's contemporary role in Alliance politics. Through is involvement in manipulating the various factions of Arathor, dismantling the Silver Hand Council, and bringing virtually all major entities of the Grand Alliance into the Church's sphere of influence, the Church of the Holy Light enjoyed an unprecedented degree of power and authority.

Under the foundations put down by Manstein, the Church was able to hold a conclave to elect a new Archbishop following Benedictus' betrayal, securing himself the position of Metropolitan Secretary of State upon the election of Mellar Servus to the throne. It was during this time that Erich served as the Clerk of Council to the Council of Bishops, helping to establish the very rituals and procedures that still govern the Council to this day.

Congregation of the Silver Hand Edit

During this time he also managed to establish the successor organization to the Silver Hand Council, the Congregation of the Silver Hand. Elected as its first Grand Knight, immediately calling for the Quest for Turalyon and establishing a crusade to see the heroes returned. Erich personally led each campaign, seeing victory over the Horde in Outland, Tirisfal, and Quel'Thalas. It was not until the final battle at Death's Door that the Congregation suffered its most grievous lost, and Erich was entrapped by demonic forces located inside the reopened portal. Thought dead by many, the crusade quickly dispersed.

Posthumous LegacyEdit

Shortly after word of his death and ascension reached his Eastvale estate, Erich was declared to be profetes by the Reformist Church and a version of his life recorded in their holy text.

PersonalityEdit

Manstein

Art by Nelany

Erich's noble upbringing and years of grooming in the Stormwind House of Nobles has created a man of eloquent speech, winning smiles, and humble demeanor before his social betters. Despite his modest personality, Erich is always sure to dress in the fine and neatly pressed cloths of nobility, carrying himself in the manners of the consummate nobleman. Many who meet the Baron find it easy to come away with an image of a courteous and tender hearted old man, the ideal picture of the nobleman who lives up to station while devoting himself to the service of those beneath him. Others, those who are perhaps more accustomed to the ways of those in power, find his normally benevolent smile to be decidedly more shark-like.

A man of tireless industry, Erich is a man who loathes the slothful and respects tenacity. Otherwise, Manstein's public figure is that of a man of reserved benevolence and wisdom. Showing charity to commoners, extolling the role of the nobility as protectors of the people, and offering kind words of wisdom, Manstein actively propagates an image of an innocent and deferential servant of the Crown and Holy Light.

PhilosophyEdit

Unquestionably loyal to Stormwind and the Wrynn dynasty, Manstein’s years of service to the House of Wrynn, as well as deep seated monarchial beliefs have formed the man into a complete patriot of Stormwind. In addition to his loyalty to the King of Stormwind, Manstein has an unwavering devotion to the Holy Light. To Manstein, it is the lot of the nobility in life to lead the people and to do so in a benevolent manner.

Romance and RelationshipsEdit

A widower since the death of his wife, Manstein has lived without a wife for many years. Although open to the prospect of another marriage, he find such an occasion doubtful to occur.

Manstein had two younger brothers, Marius and Arminius, both of which died during the First and Second Wars, respectively. He has a surviving younger sister, Leliana Manstein Garithos, who was wed to the infamous Othmar Garithos in the years before the Third War.

Manstein had three children with his wife, Wilhelmina; two boys and one girl. The girl died during childbirth and the oldest boy, Guderian, was disowned by his father in his early years. Manstein's relationship with his only 'surviving' son, Arminius, is poor at best, as the two have not spoken for many years.

It would not be until his return from the Twisting Nether that Erich officially recognized the legitimacy of his bastard son, Bishop Niklos Adamant.

Duke of Eastburg
Preceded by
Peerage Established
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Arminius Manstein
Metropolitan Secretary of State
Preceded by
Bishop Jarl Benedictus
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Kashes Lightborn
Grand Knight of the Congregation of the Silver Hand
Preceded by
Created
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Amaliana Bradford
Lord-Vicar of the Sacred College of Canons
Preceded by
Office Created
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Office Abolished
Count of Eastvale
Preceded by
Henry Flintridge
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Office Abolished - Subsumed into Duchy of Eastburg
Baron of Faulkenburg
Preceded by
Arminius Magnus Manstein
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Office Abolished - Subsumed into Duchy of Eastburg


Lord-Magistrate of Stormwind
Preceded by
Count Remington Ridgewell
Erich Gottfried Manstein Succeeded by
Baldrec Ashcroft

GalleryEdit

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