Notice: This post contains spoilers for Living Story Season 2, Path of Fire, and Icebrood Saga
With that out of the way, here are the fruits of some shower-thinking: namely my attempting to reimagine most of the Icebrood Saga, because I'm greatly displeased by everything after the Prologue (I'll save that coffer of salt for another posting). In short, I feel like the segments in Bjora Marches didn't live up to that opening sequence, nor did the events thereafter feel to honor the story of Guild Wars 2 itself.
I'm also incredibly salty about Almorra. She even had a song written about her, I mean, c'mon! What we got was the symbolic recreation of Kalla Scorchrazor's demise to cement the fact that Someone's Scar OC I mean, uh ... Bangar Ruinbringer is bad news. And her death was basically just writing her out of the story!
... anyway. Without further prattling, the idea:
Instead of her death, General Almorra Soulkeeper is found grievously wounded and unconscious. Every effort to wake her fails, and it seems that her life is hanging on by a mere thread. Without their leader, the Vigil turns to Jhavi Jorasdottir to lead them through the crisis (largely leaving this sequence unchanged). With no sense of whether Almorra might ever wake, is her seeming loss a devastating blow to Tyria and the Pact, and hope begins to wane.
However, shortly after hearing the whispers upon their entry to Jora's Keep, the Commander begins experiencing blackouts. They keep waking up in locations around Bjora Marches, in snowbanks and caves and anywhere but where they last remember being, when the whispers led them away from their comrades. It seems innocuous enough at first, but Rytlock, Braham, Crecia, and even Marjory all affirm that the Commander was off the comms for hours, and entirely unreachable, with a few murmurs of having seen them here and there, but going unseen whenever someone when to look for them. "I'm alright," says the Commander, "just ... really cold."
It's after one particularly nasty situation, when the Commander comes to in the Aberrant Forest, surrounded by dead Vigil troops. Following in the vein of the ambient event to help Investigator Eleni and her dolyak Aja find evidence of the massacres, the Commander starts searching about for clues as to what happened ... only to find that the bodies are much the same as what happened in and around Jora's Keep: no signs of struggle, deep gouges and stab wounds, and recruits all but butchered. Worse still, a seem fresh, and haven't become completely cold from the snows.
Realizing they were too late to stop whatever came to pass, the Commander pays what rites they can, burying the corpses before heading out to inform the soldiers in the Keep so the dead can be properly honored and tended to ...
... or would, if a group of Vigil did not leap from out of hiding, holding the Commander at sword and rifle-point. One in their number immediately accuses, "That's them! That's the one I saw!"
Their leader looks on in confusion, lowering her weapons. "That's ... the Commander," they say, incredulous.
"Does it matter?! You saw it with your own eyes," counters the witness. "You saw them hiding the bodies! By the Six, I can see the blood on their hands from here!"
The Commander surrenders, realizing that all is not as it seems, and is led away to the brig in Jora's Keep. It's here that Jhavi realizes they appear to be under the influence of powerful magics, but not Raven's, meaning it wasn't the workings of the fraenir. With no sense of what's happening, and mounting evidence that the Commander just slaughtered a entire team of Vigil soldiers, there's no choice but to keep them under watch and confined. Jhavi, however, wants to try something.
It's during this that the Commander begins to hear the whispers again, and lapses into a trance-like state, finding themself in a shadowy version of Jora's Keep once more (much like the opening sequence, "Silence"). It's here that a writhing, shadowy figure speaks to them, telling them strange things and urging them to listen. Unbeknownst to the Commander is this Drakkar, the mouthpiece of Jormag. And the whispers become louder and louder, building unto a shouting cacophony that drowns out everything else.
Until a second figure appears, wrought of prismatic light. Aurene.
"No," proclaims this youngest of the Elder Dragons. "This is my champion. You shall not have them!"
Releasing a wave of coruscating light, is the shadowy figure banished and the vision revealed for what truly it is -- naught but illusions and maddening whispers. The Commander comes to, freed from the whispers' malevolence ... if only for a time.
Thus is it learned that these voices were that of Drakkar. Moreover, when the Commander was slain by Balthazar and later resurrected by escaping the Domain of the Lost, they retained a connection to the Mists. It is this, Aurene explains through a vision of her own, that is both the Commander's greatest strength -- that the cause of so many of their unparalleled abilities -- and their gravest weakness, for it allowed Drakkar to so easily slip in and influence their mind, thus leaving them vulnerable to Jormag's influences.
Aurene cannot mend what is no wound, nor wrought by dragon magic, but she can shield it briefly -- giving the Commander just enough time to hunt down and slay Drakkar.
(As much as portions of the closing sequence were terribly predictable, I'd largely leave them be ...)
Drakkar's death sees another victory in the waking of General Almorra Soulkeeper ... but it is a bitter one, for Almorra knows well the extent of her wounds, and fears she will be unable to lead the Vigil, let alone fight again. She offers her knowledge and her people, but remains wary, having once more come so close to death, and lost so many who are dear to her.
With Drakkar slain and the whispers silenced, the Commander and their team turn to deal with the civil war created by Bangar and his mad bid to obtain a dragon's favor. However, there is another whom Jormag covets, someone who equally bears an indelible connection to the Mists themselves, and who has gone overlooked and been touched by their influences in the past. Someone who would make an equally suitable avatar.
Bangar is slain in the final confrontation in the Frost Citadel, and Ryland flees, escaping Rytlock and Crecia whilst cursing them both. Rytlock, however ... succumbs. He becomes Jormag's champion in Ryland's place, being corrupted and seeing even Sohothin, the sword he followed into the Mists themselves, be touched by Jormag's icy breath (yes, that weapon skin exists, so let's use it).
With Rytlock fleeing with Jormag and Crecia devastated is an even greater blow struck against Tyria and the remnants of Destiny's Edge. With the old guard all but gone, it falls upon Dragon's Watch to continue the fight against the corruptive influence of the Elder Dragons and the waking of Primordius ... and, perhaps, discover whether it's truly possible to undo a dragon's magic, now that it seems Rytlock did not so much succumb as desperately accept Jormag's twisted help in winning back his son.
(Because yeah, if the writers are going to push that angle, let's take it ["To the Limit!"])
p.s.: I tried to verify most of this against the wiki and what portions I've played, so apologies if I botched any part of it!