I already had the thalumbra faction because I did it when ToT was current. I was slack in SF otherwise I would have had that faction done as well. At the end of the day an epic quest is going to require faction with people. Now it might have been nice to know ahead of the game as a pre req and I actually /feedbacked the faction item saying that it should be visible to people but not buyable at least because otherwise we grind random factions until we hit the right one. at some point we have to accept that these quests require alot more work than a normal quest and they are supposed to. Look at the claymore line or the peacock club or the original epics. they are hard, long and require some annoying faction grinds. Proof in the pudding is another classic example. This is how these quests work and what they are supposed to be so get in and get it done. Thats what i've been doing while I wait. I've run the quest once a day to get the faction going at least.