This article deals with the incredibly long and involved quest chain to create  [The Scepter of the Shifting Sands], used to open the Gates of Ahn'Qiraj.

As of Cataclysm 4.0.1 this chain has been completely removed from the game. Anyone who finished N [60] Treasure of the Timeless One prior to Cataclysm release was rewarded with the Feat of Strength  [Veteran of the Shifting Sands].


  1. Accept the quest N [60] What Tomorrow Brings, offered by Neutral Baristolth of the Shifting Sands in Cenarion Hold. This quest requires you to find Neutral Anachronos at the Caverns of Time in Tanaris Tanaris [65, 48]. There is no need to kill any of the elite dragons around Anachronos to complete this quest.
  2. The follow-up quest N [60R] Only One May Rise has players kill Mob Broodlord Lashlayer in Blackwing Lair and loot the  [Head of the Broodlord Lashlayer].
  3. Return to Baristolth to receive the group quest N [60G] The Path of the Righteous. Even if the Gates of Ahn'Qiraj have already been opened on your server and you have gained neutral or better reputation with the Brood of Nozdormu from the Ahn'Qiraj instances you will still need to complete this quest to proceed with the quest chain. Accepting this quest provides the  [Agent of Nozdormu] badge, which enables players to loot Silithid Carapace Fragments from the formerly-elite silithid in the Hives of Silithus. 200 fragments are required for each turn-in and the reward is 500 reputation with the Brood of Nozdormu.
    • If you are not neutral with the Brood, you can either gain reputation by killing creatures and bosses in the Temple of Ahn'Qiraj or completing the repeatable quest N [60G] The Hand of the Righteous by looting or acquiring thousands of fragments. Each silithid drops at least one fragment, often two or more. This is most easily done in Hive Regal, where the silithid always have a chance to drop one extra fragment. Each turn-in also awards a  [Proxy of Nozdormu]. This can be used on another player and allows that player to loot fragments as well. The fragments do not bind on pickup so they can be sold or traded.
  4. At neutral reputation with the Brood of Nozdormu, Baristolth offers N [60] Anachronos.
  5. Anachronos, now being neutral with you, offers the quest N [60] Long Forgotten Memories. This quest is completed in Silithus by locating the crystalline red tear just outside the Gates of Ahn'Qiraj[28, 89]. Completing this quest activates a small cutscene.
  6. When the cutscene finishes, the follow-up quest N [60] A Pawn on the Eternal Board sends you back to Anachronos once again.

Charge of the Dragonflights

The questline seemingly ends at Anachronos with the quest N [60] The Charge of the Dragonflights, but this is not the case. Anachronos wants you to locate the 3 dragon shards located somewhere in Azeroth, specifically the  [Green Scepter Shard],  [Red Scepter Shard] and  [Blue Scepter Shard] shards.

Neutral  Eranikus, Neutral  Vaelastrasz and Neutral  Azuregos hold the secret to these shards. Completing the previous quest chain enables you to begin these shard quests. Note that the blue shard chain is the most involved, while the red chain is the simplest.

Green Scepter Shard

  1. Enter the Temple of Atal'Hakkar to begin this quest. Approach the Mob Shade of Eranikus and Neutral Malfurion Stormrage will appear, offering the quest N [60] Eranikus, Tyrant of the Dream. You do not need to kill the trolls or drakes surrounding Eranikus to activate Malfurion. Malfurion directs players to Teldrassil to find his agent.
  2. In Teldrassil at [37, 47] is a Neutral  Forest Wisp. It offers the next quest, N [60] Tyrande and Remulos, where players must find Neutral Keeper Remulos in Moonglade.
  3. Keeper Remulos offers N [60R] The Nightmare's Corruption. To complete this quest players must farm the Dragonkin by the Four Dragons portals. The drop on the fragments is now 100% as of Patch 3.0.2. Additionally, the fragment in Duskwood is actually looted from a Mob Twilight Corrupter, a 40-man raid satyr.
  4. When returning the fragments to Remulos, he offers N [60R] The Nightmare Manifests. Accepting this quest will summon Mob Eranikus, Tyrant of the Dream who enters Nighthaven and brings a host of Shades. Players must defend Keeper Remulos from the Shades and not kill Eranikus until Alliance Tyrande can arrive and redeem Neutral Eranikus.
  5. After Tyrande redeems him, Eranikus bids Remulos award players the  [Green Scepter Shard] and the quest N [60] The Champion Returns, which sends players back to Anachronos.

The reward for completing this fork of the chain is either  [Drake Tooth Necklace] or  [Drudge Boots].

Red Scepter Shard

Speak with Neutral  Vaelastrasz the Corrupt in Blackwing Lair and he will offer players the quest N [60R] Nefarius's Corruption, and explains that Mob  Nefarian has the  [Red Scepter Shard]. Defeat Nefarian within 5 hours of engaging Vaelastrasz and the Red Scepter Shard will be lootable off his corpse. Only one shard will drop per Nefarian kill.

The timer stops if EVERYONE leaves - if one person sits in there, the timer still runs. If you fail, you will need to abandon the quest and talk to Vaelastrasz again.

If someone happens to prematurely start the Vaelastrasz encounter before you can accept N [60R] Nefarius's Corruption, there is a short period of time where he is friendly while doing his dialog in which you can still accept the quest.

The rewards for completing this quest are either  [Onyx Embedded Leggings] or  [Amulet of Shadow Shielding].

Blue Scepter Shard

  1. Speak with Azuregos in Azshara. If Azuregos has already been killed, you can talk to the Spirit of Azuregos at any time. You don't need your signet ring with you to talk to him and if the spirit is not in the living world, you can find his ghost wandering in the same area. After much explaining, Azuregos says that the blue shard is being held by a minnow, and to summon the minnow you need to read N [60] Azuregos's Magical Ledger. Unfortunately, you are unable to read this book and must talk to Narain Soothfancy in Tanaris.
  2. Go to Tanaris, just north of Steamwheedle Port, and you will find Narain Soothfancy. He explains in N [60] Translating the Ledger that he cannot read the book you have given him. He requires 3 items:  [Narain's Scrying Goggles], a  [500 Pound Chicken], and  [Draconic For Dummies: Volume II]. These 3 items involve 3 different quest lines.

Narain's Scrying Goggles

  1. Narian explains in N [60] Stewvul, Ex-B.F.F. his goggles were stolen by his ex-B.F.F. (ex-best friend forever), a gnome named Stewvul. Stewvul is located in southern Silverpine Forest next to Greymane Wall.
  2. Stewvul is inside a crate at location [46, 86] in Silverpine forest. He says the goggles were lost inside Molten Core, and gives you the followup quest N [60R] Scrying Goggles? No Problem! The Scrying Goggles have a chance to drop off any mob inside Molten Core. Since patch 3.0 (or before to be confirmed) : the item drops now on the 1st mob killed.

Return them to Narain to complete this quest, and receive 3x  [Major Rejuvenation Potion] as a corollary reward.

500 Pound Chicken

  1. The first quest in this fork is N [60] Never Ask Me About My Business, which involves simply talking to Dirge Quikcleave in the Gadgetzan Inn.
  2. Dirge offers N [60R] The Isle of Dread!. Go to Feralas at [29, 72] and you will find Lord Lakmaeran, a large chimera. Lord Lakmaeran requires 7-10 people to kill. After killing him one person may loot his carcass for the quest. In addition, the surrounding Chimaeroks need to be killed for the 20 required  [Chimaerok Tenderloin]. Chimaeroks can be successfully 2-manned. Lord Lakmaeran is soloable at level 80, he has 323,700 HP.
  3. After gathering the meat, return to Dirge for the follow up quest N [60] Dirge's Kickin' Chimaerok Chops. This quest requires 20  [Goblin Rocket Fuel] and 20  [Deeprock Salt]. The reward is  [Recipe: Dirge's Kickin' Chimaerok Chops] and 20  [Dirge's Kickin' Chimaerok Chops].
  4. Finally, N [60] Return to Narain with the " [500 Pound Chicken]".

Draconic for Dummies: Volume II

  1. The quest begins with N [60] Draconic for Dummies. Narain says he left his book on an island in far southern Tanaris. Getting to this island is somewhat unusual since it exists far past fatigue waters and you cannot swim to it by conventional means.
  2. Before you can reach the island you must first speak with Meridith the Mermaiden, who is located at approximately [57, 95]. She is underwater, close to the shore. She does move around a bit so you may have to search for a while. When you speak with her she offers the quest N [60] Love Song for Narain, which simply requires you to return to Narain.
  3. After completing "Love Song for Narain", there is no followup quest. However, if you return to Meridith she will buff you with a large increase in swim speed. This will enable you to swim to the island in question. Look south and you will see the island. Swim directly toward it and you should reach it without the fatigue bar fully draining. Note there are 2 islands, and the book is located on the southern island.
  4. Upon reaching the southern island, an actionable Freshly Dug Dirt exists. Inside is a note yielding the quest N [60] rAnS0m. The Book has been stolen and a ransom demand is made. Return to Narain again.
  5. In N [60G] Decoy!, Narain gives you a package containing a robe, a turban, a bag of fake gold, and a map. You have to go to Winterspring to the drop off point, and use the Turban which will turn you into Narain. The coordinates of the drop location are [70, 73]. After dropping off the gold, Dr. Weavil arrives, realizes the trap, and sends Number Two, his ape pet, to attack you. Weavil escapes. The ape pet hits tanks for about 600-700 damage and can be killed with a party of 3-5 fairly easily. Once No. 2 is dead, return the quest to Narain.
  6. From here, you receive N [60R] The Only Prescription. The book required to translate the Draconic text has been torn in 8 separate pieces, and all 8 pieces must be acquired to complete the quest. The locations are as follows:
    1.  [Draconic for Dummies]: Located on Alcaz Island in Dustwallow Marsh. You must defeat Dr. Weavil to receive the book. He is much harder than No. 2 and requires about 15 people to defeat. Cannot be soloed by level 80s due to a mind control mechanic. (However a level 80 hunter or warlock can solo because of pet. A paladin may also be able to solo, using [Divine Shield] to break the mind control, then killing him before the next mind control. Mages can also solo this if Mirror Images is timed right. Unconfirmed if a death knight can as well).
    2.  [Draconic for Dummies]: Mob  Felguard Elites & Mob  Doomguards & Mob  Dreadlord in the Blasted Lands have a chance to drop it. These require 4-5 people to farm effectively. (~4% drop rate)
    3.  [Draconic for Dummies]: Mob  Hederine Initiates & Mob  Hederine Slayers in Winterspring at Darkwhisper Gorge have a chance to drop it. These require 1-2 people to farm effectively. (~6% drop rate)
    4.  [Draconic for Dummies]: Located in Undercity[77, 38] on a table in the Magic Quarter.
    5.  [Draconic for Dummies]: Located in the Stormwind Keep library [76, 30] (turn left as you walk in).
    6.  [Draconic for Dummies]: Dropped by Mob  Onyxia.
    7.  [Draconic for Dummies]: In Blackwing Lair in the room after Mob  Broodlord Lashlayer, along Mob  Firemaw's patrol path. It is on a table on the ramp in the corner to the left of the wyrmguard + 3 overseer pack.
    8.  [Draconic for Dummies] Dropped by Mob  Ragnaros.
    • Note: These pieces are white items thus they are in the round-robin loot table and cannot be master-looted. That means, for chapter 1, 6, 8 that require a raid, you have to ask the raid leader to change the loot rule to 'Free for all', or, to ask every member to check boss' corpse even they don't have this quest. In the latter case, a single logged or HSed member may make your effort in vain.
    • Completing the quest N [60R] The Only Prescription rewards the  [Gnomish Turban of Psychic Might].

Only one Chapter drops per kill. Assemble the text, get the chicken, get the goggles, and the quest line merges.

Good news and bad news

After all 3 components of the blue shard are done, Narain offers the quest N [60] The Good News and The Bad News. This quest requires 20x  [Arcanite Bar], 10x  [Elementium Ingot], 10x  [Blue Sapphire], and 10  [Azerothian Diamond]. He will then give the player an  [Arcanite Buoy] and the next quest, N [60] The Wrath of Neptulon. Take the buoy deep off the coast of Azshara and spawn Mob Maws, the "minnow" carrying the shard. The arcanite buoy is used up when you summon Maws but if you fail Narain will give you another one. When you kill the shark the blue shard drops. Return the Shard to Anachronos to complete the Blue Shard line.

The reward for completing this chain is either the  [Band of Icy Depths] or  [Darkwater Robes].


  1. Immediately upon the completion of the third and final fork of the chain, Neutral  Anachronos offers N [60] The Might of Kalimdor where he informs players that they must now wait until the rest of the server finishes the War Effort collection quest.
  2. Five days after the collection quest is complete, N [60] Bang a Gong! is offered. Completing this quest by ringing The Scarab Gong will start the 10 Hour War server event. This quest ceases to be available 10 hours after it was first completed on the realm, and is not available at all on servers opened on or after February 11, 2009.
  3. Once the 10 Hour War is complete, Neutral Jonathan the Revelator offers N [60] Treasure of the Timeless One, finishing the quest chain.


When 10 hours have passed after the opening of the shifting sands, you may choose from one of the following rewards from the quest N [60] Treasure of the Timeless One:


This is  [The Scepter of the Shifting Sands] quest chain:

  1. N [60] What Tomorrow Brings - 250 reputation
  2. N [60R] Only One May Rise - 500 reputation
  3. N [60G] The Path of the Righteous - 500 reputation
  4. N [60] Anachronos - 500 reputation (requires neutral with Brood of Nozdormu)
  5. N [60] Long Forgotten Memories - 50 reputation
  6. N [60] A Pawn on the Eternal Board - 100 reputation
  7. N [60] The Charge of the Dragonflights - 10 reputation
  8. Obtain the Shards:
  9. N [60] The Might of Kalimdor - 500 reputation
  10. N [60] Bang a Gong! - 500 reputation (only within the first 10 hours of opening the Gates of Ahn'Qiraj)
  11. N [60] Treasure of the Timeless One - 500 reputation (after 10 hours)


As of Cataclysm beta builds dating to July 2010, this chain has been completely removed from the game, likely due to the extensive changes to Azshara, Winterspring, and Blasted Lands. As such, if the quests are in your log when Cataclysm is released, they will be forcibly removed. However, anyone who finishes N [60] Treasure of the Timeless One prior to Cataclysm release will be rewarded with the Feat of Strength  [Veteran of the Shifting Sands].

Patches and hotfixes

External links