There I sat, in the Vault with nine others, delicately partaking in my fish feast and generally minding my own business, when the giant tree to my left nudged me with a root.
I glanced up ... and then farther up (hey! I'm a dwarf! Shut it!), to catch the eye of this huge tree that was smirking at me, and gave him (her?) a pleasant but timid smile. Treeperson leaned down to me and whispered:
"Take a look at this hunter over here."
I look over in the direction Treething points and check out the hunter in our pick up raid. I inspect her talents with some hesitation (what do I know about hunters?). All 71 talent points are under the Beast Mastery tree.
Well, I may not know much about hunters, but I suppose in general you don't see very many good specs where every point is in one tree. I smile hopefully at my newfound tree friend.
"71 points in BM? I take it that's, uhm... bad?"
Treeperson chuckles and then starts mumbling about wasted crit rating and the like. I don't really know what he's talking about, so I simply smile and nod politely, while shooting longing glances at my fish. As I begin to edge away, Treeyodapersonthing finishes, stating confidently: "This isn't going to work. That hunter is doing no more than 700 dps - and no one else is really doing much better."
That can't be right. I check my own numbers, and sure enough, Treedude is correct. This is Emalon we're talking about here, and I'm not sure if our little group could even master Archavon. I hum for a moment while eyeing the other holy priest in the corner, who is nibbling at his strudel, and shooting bewildered glances around him. His gear isn't too great either, but with two other healers, that really shouldn't be a problem. Trouble is, it's a ten man raid, and we've got three healers - so to make up for it, the DPS better be pretty awesome... and it's not. We've already wiped once, and it really didn't take long.
I sigh and let my shoulders slump. I really hate being *that* person in a pug - the one that says "you all suck lawl" and then drops group. Especially since I'm a healer, and therefore harder to replace. I committed myself to this, and it would be honorable to see it through. I *am* a priest after all. But... I can already tell this raid is doomed, and I can tell my two fellow healers feel quite similarly.
I gaze up at my new Treefriend and I am greeted with a small, understanding smile. I clear my throat, and let my brogue ring through the vault halls.
"Well mates, I hate to say it, but I think I only have one more try in me. I'm not sure we'll be able to do this without some raid makeup changes." There. I've put in a disclaimer.
Everyone else ignores me and gets into position. Treeter chuckles quietly, and positions him/herself as well. I shrug and join the group. Raid leader yells "CHARGE!" and five seconds later we've begun throwing our best stuff at Emalon and his minions.
Twenty seconds later, we're all dead.
As we all make the short spirit run back to our dead bodies, the restlessness and frustration within raid chat is tangible. The raid leader is pretty admirable though. He's not pointing fingers, and instead is encouraging us... or at least, he thinks he is.
"Don't get frustrated guys! We have two hours to get this down. We can do it, we've got a great group!"
Err.. pardon, did you say two hours?
I stare with shock and horror over at the raid leader. Props to him. He's willing to take a rag tag group of complete strangers, and take the time to teach them this fight. You don't see that often (okay, like, ever) in a pug. Unfortunately, I already know the fight, and I don't need to learn it, and I have no intention of spending the next two hours trying desperately to heal through this abyssmal affair. Learning the fight is really something you should be doing with your guild-mates anyway... right?
Before I even get a chance to say anything, the other holy priest drops group without a word to the raid, whispering to me as he runs out, "Sorry... but this is NOT going to work." Treefart over to my left has abandoned chuckling for all out giggles, and I award him with a steely glare, and a not so subtle suggestion that he might want to remember I have a slight Dwarven instinct with axes. Elves. Yeesh.
It's time to cut my losses. I thank the raid leader for his time and effort, and bow out graciously, with Treecat in hot pursuit. As we make our way back to Dalaran, we discuss his guild and mine, and our raiding experiences, as well as our disappointment in this recently failed attempt. We share an ale to drown our disappointment, while debating whether we want to give it another go. Finally, after discussing it a few minutes, we group up, and invite our former raidmate holy priest and decide to make our own damn pug on our own terms - on a healer's terms.
Treefer is shooting potential names at me while I inspect them carefully to ensure that they have roughly decent gear and experience. Within 5 minutes, we have a full raid, well equipped for the oncoming fight. Within 15 minutes, we've taken Archavon and Emalon, and added a few badges to our pockets.
Ulian (I finally decide "Treeyeti" is really not very polite) pats me on the back, telling me well done, and we laugh about the most important lesson learned this evening. Ah yes, healers. We know what we're doing AND when we put something together we start the raid invite process with half the battle won.
So... if you want a pug done right, let the healers take control.