Some fuel for your fires:
Michael Gray: The death of Ol' Blanchy. I was stunned. (Just another example of Blizzard taking away our favorite Alliance heroes.)
Anne Stickney: Let's see: the end of The Burning Crusade was a shocker, mostly because of circumstance more than anything else. At that point, I wasn't really doing PTR testing or looking for spoilers, so when Kael'thas popped up (again), I was baffled.
And when I watched that first cinematic in Magister's Terrace and saw Anveena, I was really surprised. I didn't expect her to pop up in game. Of course, then I had to spend the next hour or so explaining who Anveena was to my curious guild, but that was fun in and of itself.
Right along up there with that is the Wrathgate cinematic. I figured Putress would be up to no good just given his sudden appearance at the end of TBC, but I didn't expect Bolvar's death. Some of my fondest memories of vanilla involved Bolvar kicking butt in Stormwind's throne room, so to see him up and die was kind of heartbreaking, to say the least. What happened next, with the Battle for the Undercity, was equally as shocking, because I really wasn't expecting Varimathras to up and chuck Sylvanas out. Honestly, that whole chain from beginning to end, both Alliance and Horde, was beautifully told.
More thoughts on WoW storyline shockers, after the break.
Michael Gray: Wow. Maybe I'm too cynical. Wrathgate wasn't even a little bit of a shocker to me. As soon as I heard "there's a conflict here," I was pretty sure the Alliance was going to get beat up and slaughtered by the Horde. My only real ... I don't know ... surprise was the high quality of the animation and how awesome the in-game cinematic was. That and the Garrosh attack really just felt like business as usual.
Matthew Rossi: I was surprised by Naxxramas in vanilla -- didn't see it coming after AQ, especially since it had WCIII names like Kel'Thuzad and Sapphiron in it, and especially was surprised to hear the Lich King after we killed Sapph. I was then surprised that we were going to Outland, because I frankly figured Northrend was next after Naxx. The draenei as a playable race was another surprise.
Scott Andrews: It's a small moment, but drinking the elixir at the Tanaris graveyard during the Linken quest line. You immediately drop dead. At first I had no idea what had actually happened. Then I was amazed when I realized that it was part of the quest, and you couldn't talk to the NPC unless you were a ghost.
What WoW story or encounter left you shocked, amazed, or dumbfounded?