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Grand Magistrix Elisande is the magistrix of the nightborne race on the Broken Isles. She rules the lands of Suramar and has recently allied herself with the Burning Legion during their fourth invasion of Azeroth.
10,000 years ago, while other well known Suramar citizens Tyrande Whisperwind and the Stormrage twins left to take the fight to the Burning Legion at the heart of the Night Elf kingdom, Elisande led the city in its defence against the Legion, rebelling against Queen Azshara.
It was under her leadership that the Pillars of Creation were used to seal the second demonic portal, and the creation and use of the Nightwell to seal off the city in a protective barrier that would stand for 10,000 years.
Elisande can use the power of the nightwell and the Eye of Aman'thul to examine potential futures. When alternate Gul'dan arrived and ripped open the sealed portal in the broken isles, Elisande examined the timeways and saw no possible future the nightborne would survive except alongside the Legion.
She betrayed everything she had fought for for the last 10,000 years, including enduring living in isolation, a city wide starvation and leading the night elf population to the lofty heights we meet the Nightborne in by surrendering the city and its people to Gul'dan and the Legion.
She is opposed by First Arcanist Thalyssra who leads the resistance to free Suramar from the legion and bring Elisande and nightborne who joined the Legion to justice.
It is unclear how using the Eye of Aman'thul or the Nightwell to examine the timeways works, but it appears to have limits, working only based on what the user knows.
- Elisande could not foresee things not related to the nightborne - the nightborne were not aware that their kin had defeated the Legion and survived, nor of all the encounters that have happened up to and including the Third War. Presumably there was no need to look beyond the safety of the city.
- She could not foresee the arrival of Gul'dan either until it happened, possibly because he comes from an alternate universe and as such his actions affecting the nightborne were not foreseeable until he arrives.
It is possible to conclude that Elisande was undone by putting too much confidence in her knowledge and magic as it did not see the Adventurer's involvement, as at the time Gul'dan approached her, they were not aware of the Adventurer. Thus, despite the usefulness of these clairvoyant artifacts, they clearly have limitations.
It is also possible that Elisande intentionally and shrewdly sacrificed herself and all those who would have turned to the Legion and betrayed the Nightborne; that she saw that the only way the Nightborne would survive would be if she joined the Legion, causing a resistance to rise up and, led by Thalyssra, find help from the rest of the world in time for the resistance to motivate the majority the city to rise up, as this would be the only route sufficient to avoid the Legion annihilating them totally before help could be found and mustered. She might have seen that, this way, all those who would have joined the Legion even if she resisted would come out straight off and would all be totally separated from those who would not allowing them to be cleared out by the resistance,[clarify] and both the city and the Nightborne would be saved from the Legion.
- ^ Nighthold Elisande Encounter