It only took an hour or so Monday night for Tal to reach level 86, even with all the little breaks and pauses in the process. And I remembered the thing that I seem to discover with him every time I play him for a while solo, that he's incredibly fun to play! When he's not getting ganked and camped because my absolute awful pvp ability makes him a target on the pvp server he's on, he's just fun. I've got a new goal for myself with him, not going to kick myself if I don't manage it but am going to give it a try. I want to see if Tal can quest his way through Pandaria, all the way to 90 without dying once. So far, at 86 and 1/2, so good.
He's heading to Valley of the Four Winds soon, and his herbalism is coming along nicely, it should finally be capped even before his level is. And the questing, I was afraid he'd be super squishy, but the voidlord is a really good tank and after getting warmed up Tal can pull huge groups and just burn them into oblivion with the help of his crowd of wild imps. He's got an entire entourage following him around most of the time, and like I said, it's just loads and loads of fun. It kind of makes me wonder why I waited this long to get around doing more with him.
A few initial thoughts on connected realms.
Wow, this doesn't look like my Orgrimmar/Shrine is one of the first things I keep thinking when I log into one of those places. I guess I hadn't realized just how quiet they were on Seish's server until I started seeing them crowded with people. The Auction House is far fuller than it used to be and some stacks of Cata herbs Tal had been posting on the Auction House for weeks finally all sold.
You can invite people from the sister realm into guilds on your home realm and you -can- mail heirlooms as well between the two, so effectively you can double the characters you have in your main guild. And trade chat is considerably more active, not just with people chatting about random things but with people looking for crafted gear and pugs and the like. So far... I don't mind it, but I'm going to give it a few weeks before I really finish forming a full opinion. Time for it to sink in on me and time for me to really see what things end up looking like. But at least so far I don't hate it.