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The Island of Thain :: Forums :: In Character Discussion
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Old Grudges are for Old Enemies

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Raven1210
5:54:13 pm GMT 07/13/20
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
[ image disabled ]

Prelude

The Duty of the Baelnorn was ever two folded, protect the children of Elisara and bring vengeance against their enemies.

Truth to be told, this time was even more personal.

Elith had carried this grudge for a long time but his Duty did not allow him to indulge into: the Lady of the Order, now known as Syfana.
In the past she was corrupted, evil but still one of the people, one he had to believe to be of the misguided ones, one to be healed from Uultak's poison warping and twisting her mind as all of the other Gis'ranthas'.

Except, Elith knew now that he was wrong and the Archdruid Sylvox, along with the Sisters of the Poisonwood and the countless elves that followed him, were the proof of his mistake. The Poison changed, or the forest and its people did, adapting and learning from it. Some resisted and grew with it without giving in to the madness, choosing peace and unification instead of war and annhilation, a flebile thought full of Hope.

Absolutes were never the way of the World thus not all of the elves accepted and understood the possibility given, therefore some decided to remain at the side of the Lady of the Order.
The woman, the elf who was not someone anymore, rather something, the creature known as Syfana, the result of a spell created by the Timeless Enemy Uultak.
The Lady became Syfana, she who turned her back to the elves and to the woods, giving in to her lust for power.

She desecrated the ashes of Talyrenne, she used and abused the blood of the Island, she started and led elf against elf for the sole purpose of increasing her own selfish power. And, worst of all, she suceeded.

Now, even in a weakened state, she was threat absorbing what life energy she could in lieu of restoring her physical body.

The Sorcerer watched the woods infested with fiery dark embers and met the gaze of Silent Prowler, she who studied the ways of the Var'rel, she could offer insight to what happenned during the ritual that transformed the Lady.

It was the first step of many to find out how to prevent Syfana to restore her body and make her unlife as tormented as eternal.
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Raven1210
3:16:37 pm GMT 07/15/20
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
[ image disabled ]

1. The Druidess and the Sorcerer


A week ago.

The air of the cave was damp and fresh, a welcome change from the continuous heat waves emanating from the embers elementals now roaming in the Poisonwood, along wit the beetles and the undead they became the normality where once the silent Arben would patrol and hunt for orcs and trespassers.

In the silence of the cave the water tickled and a small fire crackled, sending unsteady shadows dancing over the walls. One in front of the other, two figures were talking, one dressed in a black and dark green armour, head and face covered by a black cowl, the other, an old looking elf, his skin wrinkled and dry and his clothes recalling more old rags sewn together than a proper attire.

The two had been fighting for long and when not openly, for the influence they could have: the tension in the air was palpable.

-Times have changed-, began the old elf, -and now there is a chance for Unification for the all the Children of Elisara. Yet, something still lurks in the shadow of the Poisonwood, rebuilding its strenght. -

Pausing a moment, the old looking elf looked in the fire before continuing.

- I know that the Lady of the Order altered herself and betrayed our Kin, while you and the Sisters of the Poisonwood, along with many other, chose a different path.. -

- One that would show the merits of the poison and not only its curses, a path that was always there but many refused to see... - interjected the cowled figure.

Raising his head the old looking elf continued

- Indeed many, among whom, I put myself. You, along others have tried to show me my mistake, but my mind was not prepared for such, as my eyes only saw the One ruling your Woods, bending the wills of her subjects to violence. I believed the Poison alone responsible for the inclination of those wills to such violent behaviour but
- he let out a soft sigh - I was proven wrong.-

The cowled figure nodded, seemingly satisfied. -There will be no hard feeling today, though. Speak. What is it you wanted to discuss? -

-Yes....- The old one paused, gathering his thoughts and continued.

- I need to know what happenned during the ritual that transformed the Lady into the one known as "Syfana". She had I have an unfinished business, for a long time now. A Vengeance I have been postponing because of my misconception of the Poison and the Duty I am sworn to uphold. But now that she had revealed herself for who, or rather what, she truly is, she needs to pay for what she had done -

The cowled figure eyes glinted, as if smiling. -She wanted the same thing, wanted her enemies to pay and was ready to sacrifice everyone, even her subject to achieve this, and that she did.-[/i]

The cowled figure, hardened her gaze, loosing any hint of a smile and looked directly into the old looking elf eyes.

- Would you do the same?-

The old one frowned.

- That would be impossible, if destroying her would mean sacrifice the ones I am bound to protect, what sense would there be in such actions? No. There is a line, one I cannot trespass. Stil, this is strange question, why do you ask, do you know something I don't?-

The cowled elf seemed to relax for a moment and then continued.

- Perhaps, perhaps I do. - then after a moment of thought the figure continued, - It is good that you know there are a limits where she couldn't see them. She wanted it all, and now the Woods are paying the price.
I thought the Order as a necessary mean to keep the Woods and our people together. To protect us from those who wanted us gone, an evil, perhaps, but a necessary one to grant our continuity. At least, until the moment when the other Woods realised that the Poison was not anymore what once was and became something upon which we built on. Sadly, when the moment came, the lady forsake us and showed what she truly wanted. Only power for herself and over the Land, a power incapable of life and only able to destroy. -


The old elf listenend quietly as the cowled figure spoke.

- In the end she used an ancient spell, perhaps created, but certainly given to our people by Uultak. I remember she had kept many notes about it but I've never seen what was within them. I arrived late at the cerimony, but I saw how she, through the Ashes of Talyrenne and the Blood of the Island, became what she is now.
This is the reason why I asked what you were willing to sacrifice for her demise.
She might be tied to Us and to the Island itself: destroying her might very well send much more than ripple in our existences.
-


The old elf eyes narrowed his eyes and a deep line emerged on his forehead.

- I understand. -

- For now, she is defeated and weakened, while her minions and herself consume the life of the living to have her physical form restored. -

- This will not happen, it must not happen. For too long she played undisturbed and should she ever recover her bodily form she will be too dangerous. Perhaps severing the connection between her, the Island and the People is impossible but if I could recover the spell, I might be able to understand what she did and how she did it, making sure she will never recover her physical form. And suffer for every second of her miserable unlife. -

The old elf paused a moment and looked the druidess sitting across the fire in the eyes.

- She has to pay for what she did, help me recover those notes.-

The cowled figure cocked her head to the side - Help you? -
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Shade
10:27:18 pm GMT 07/15/20
Shade Registered Member #24916 Joined: 2:58:00 pm GMT 01/23/19
Posts: 390
Where there is light, there is darkness.

One walks the city of Elisara as a man of light, seeking to prevent Syfana's recovery.
The other wanders the ash filled, burned poisoned wood as a man preparing for the greatest darkness, seeking his queen's recovery.

One going by what traitors have told him of their queen.
The other going by the truth he has learned of the one their people rallied behind.

Will the man of light stop the queen?
Will the man in the ashes bring her back?

Can one remove one who found eternity in the poison?

What are they willing to do for their goal?

Will their paths cross?
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Raven1210
7:00:31 pm GMT 07/19/20
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
[ image disabled ]

2. Nur ein blaues Auge?


- Nau, it is too expensive -
The drow said to the tiefling merchant, before continuing - I can see that it is replica, a good one but one nonthe -

- AIEEEEEEEEEEEE! - A in the distance interrupts the negotiation as both merchant and customer look to one another brielfy,

-What was that?-

The question travelled quickly from mouth to mouth as large patches of darkness would appear throughout the city, hardly allowing the drow militians to organize a quick enough response. As brutal as it was, the commotion in the large city of Mora'chel subsided quickly, leaving only two districts hardly hit. Specifically, the Sorcere Tower, rumored to have had one of its Vaults be broken into, and one of the high chapel of the Spider Goddess, rumored to be pillaged.

Survivors and hidden bystanders would describe a shadow, a very angry and loud gnome and an old looking elf responsible for the havoc brought.

***

Leaving the darkness of the cave, Elith felt the warming touch of the sun on his skin. He walked slowly, leaning heavily on his staff. Despite all his knowledge and power, the exertion needed for the task performed had taxed him greatly.
Walking on, he grumbled as the notes of the foul Uultak's spell were not found in Mora'chel but, truth to be told, he did not prepare in order to find them. Still, he had hoped that maybe the Seldarine would have smiled upon his search, or, even, that the spirit of Cassia, as she often would to say "Audaci fortuna iuvat" would have guided his path. Especially given the companions who went along.

Alas, that had not been the case.

But, was it a complete waste? No. not in the slightest. One more had agreed to help him look for the notes of the spell while murdering her way through the Underdark. For a moment, Elith stopped walking and looked back, peering in the darkness of the cave, he blinked and his ears twitched as he thought he heard the the echo of her warcry.

Realising that around him there was only silence, he became aware of his own thought: he was relieved that he kept his true nature a secret to most.
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Raven1210
10:32:37 am GMT 04/26/21
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
((Picking up this old story, with a an idea to avoid possible overlaps. The idea is to write and Roleplay this story as if it is set in the past months, even though it is Role played in the present.

This for two reasons:

1) It wouldn't make sense IC for Elith and other characters involved to be involved in two plots taking place in two the different places at once simultaneously;

2) RL made it difficult to keep the story going in the past year.

With that out of the way, let us have some fun! :D))
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Raven1210
11:59:26 am GMT 04/26/21
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
[ image disabled ]

3. Der rote Pfad


Months ago, few weeks after the peace treaty between Greenvale and Poisonwood.

-Carendhel, did you find anything missing from the treasury?-

- Yes Malgan, something is still missing. I quite can figure out what happened to those. I mean, they don't seem to be of particular value even in the war effort.-

- Out with it, what's missing?-

- Well, a record of the ancient Greenvale lineages, a bowl containing enchanted water to show what happened in the past; few shards of one of General Kintaro's blade and an harp that belonged to lady Talyrenne. As said, perhaps valuable for scholar purposes but truly not in a war effort. -

Malgan listens quietly and nods.

- I understand my friend, but you know how that old one is. He wanted to know if anything had been missing, we better report it to him. -


***

As Elith received the list of items, he thanked the clerk and, once alone, he opened the small envelope. Reading it through, he narrowed his eyes and a perplexed expression set on his face.

It didn't make much sense at all, at least not at first. Not unless the enchanted water could show a very specific moment in history until now shrouded in mystery and perhaps the Harp and the Shards had to be used as reagents, but still, what use would one have of the records of the ancient family lineages?
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Shade
6:50:31 pm GMT 04/26/21
Shade Registered Member #24916 Joined: 2:58:00 pm GMT 01/23/19
Posts: 390
Months ago, in Syfana's Chamber.

"What did you find? Did you kill the traitor Queen at least?"

Elarion shook his head.

"She was absent. I was able to retrieve an artifact for you, but the Queen was absent. It became clear why. She was working with Sylvox, your Majesty. His betrayal must have been planned since your rebirth."

Queen Syfana sighed.

"No doubt it was.. What artifact was this?"

"A Record of Greenwood's ancient lineage."

Her eyes widened as Elarion stepped up to present it.

"Truly." She cackled. "Elarion... you have brought us something.. something wonderful.. Have you examined this?"

"I have not, my Queen." She took it almost greedily and Elarion stepped back.

"It shows the family lines, yes... but also the locations of the family tombs... Many of which were located in our woods."

"How wonderfully fitting."

"Oh yes.. Oh yes, we can do much with this information. Most of these times were thought lost to time. Even Syann himself could not locate many of them... One wonders how Yu'syu kept it from him.. But no matter. We have it now."
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Raven1210
10:32:44 am GMT 04/29/21
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
[ image disabled ]

4. Bezeugungen von der Vergangenheit und Vorschritte


A week after the handing of the items' list.

Reading the Tower's assault reports, it became clear to Elith where he should be looking for answers. Four attacked the tower and only one of the four Arben was still consistently around and in a good standing with the Sorcerer: the Tree Warden or, as she was now called, Arakhor.

Elith moved to the her newfound garden, in the Ridgeshield, where he found her tending a large tree, removing the the tainted metal that threatened its growth.

The two timeless entities, Baelnorn and Dryad, spoke lengthy of what occurred in the forest so many moons ago, about the ritual that brought the Lady of the Order to be Syfana. The conversation offered Elith two very important insights: the first, in regards to the timeline of the happenings and the second regarding the components and the nature of the spell enacted by Syafana.
To Elith's dismayal, he learned that the items smuggled by the the four were the means to orchestrate an assassination of queen Yu'syu; an assasination that did not come to pass thanks to the intervention of the archdruid Sylvox, the betrayer of the Lady's vision of undeath. He who played, as it was now common knowledge, perhaps the pivotal role in finding a solution that brought an end to the hostilities.

But with the frustration of having considered the wrong premises for the ritual, came also a deeper understanding of it, as Arakhor explained, that the Lady "ascended" to her new form few moons earlier as when the assault to the tower took place. The Lady had previously tasked the Tree Warden and her Arbens to collect the items necessary to the ritual itself: the heart of an innocent being, which proved to be a nymph heart, the ashes of an elvenkin wrongly removed, which were Talyrenne's ashes and finally the blood of the world, which was taken thanks to the help of a "third and dear party".

Moreover, in regards to what the heart of the spell was, it became clear to the Sorcerer that Syfana developed an original Uultak's spell, bringing it to a completion that the Lich could not or would not achieve at the time of its creation. From what the Sorcerer gathered, the poison was neither created nor developed by Uultak, on the contrary, it was used by him even though he had not completely understood its whole potential, a potential that was fully discovered and used by Syfana during her ritual.

Putting the pieces of information together, Elith could elaborate a stable and reliable theory: the results of Syfana's ritual had caused her to be reborn, if such a word can be used, as an undead being, linked to the Island itself, perhaps through the Poison that seeped from its depths.

But how such much energy could be mustered and mastered remained obscure to the sorcerer for many weeks, during which he tried to understand how the three components could have acted together, in order release enough power to allow the Lady's being and, perhaps, even her consciousness to be linked to the Island itself. Unexpectedly, the answer came in the form of a brilliant half orc, whom Elith had always wished to be able to educate in the Art. The warlock, tied to the far realms, perhaps by chance or by an unseen hand, while explaining the nature of his craft, offered him another, and hopefully, the definitive insight he needed.

Putting the new information together with what he already knew, he organized his thoughts on a scroll.

The ashes of Talyrenne wrongly removed and the heart of the Nymph were the catalysts of the ritual, they were two waves of opposed energy, that granted enough power, to breach through the stabilized energies of the Island.

In hindsight, the core of the ritual was to bind the Lady's essence to the Island while the two reagents worked as two powerful and opposing source of energy, which clashed one against the other, creating an explosion and a fracture in the balance of the Island's energies; using the blood of the Island as a link between the Lady, target of the ritual, and the Island energies, it became possible for the Lady to be connected to the pulsating heart of Thain.


Elith watched aghast the words he had just written. Syfana had indeed brought further whatever spell Uultak had originally in mind. Such a bind was until now unheard of, and its undoing might very well be a task of monumental proportions.
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Shade
5:59:22 pm GMT 05/03/21
Shade Registered Member #24916 Joined: 2:58:00 pm GMT 01/23/19
Posts: 390
"We still have them..."

"The traitors will come for them again."

"We can lay this trap you speak of.."

"Let them come.."

"I thought about it, and I think I want to bring an enemy here.. I want an army to march into our woods.."

"We will drain them of life.. For our queen.."

"I need five firn'lith sisters.."

"Make the mark of blood, and pour all your anger into it.."

"Let them come.."

"Just lay it over there.."

"Lay it there.."

"It is time for the ritual.."

"Let them come.."
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Raven1210
8:14:02 am GMT 05/04/21
Raven1210 Jungle Law Enforcerer
Registered Member #1180 Joined: 7:46:29 am GMT 10/05/07
Posts: 1256
[ image disabled ]

5. Ein nach dem anderen.


For few weeks, the sorcerer had been going around and around in his mind trying to find a possible weakness in the spell devised by the now known Syfana. She latched herself to the very heart of the Island, using the blood of the latter and the poison of the Woods as links.

As any abjurer worth of the title, Elith analyzed the elements of the spell: 1) objective: transcend mortality; 2) catalysts: earth of a innocent creature and ashes of an elf wrongly removed; 3) Receptors: blood of the Island and pure essence of the Poison.

However, the more he studied, the less he could see a possibility to deconstruct the spell.

The route he would normally follow would have been to travel to to the centre of the linked being and then sever the connection, in this case was not possible for him alone, the Island's hearth was connected to at least billions creatures and beings, let alone finding the right one, how would one sever the bond?

Not to mention that removing the wrong one would have a disastrous impacts to the land.

Elith cursed, loudly. The students waiting outside of the Sorcerer's study for the visiting hours dispersed quickly. Their questions could wait for the old weird one to be in a better mood. Hearing the scurrying footsteps, Elith sighed.

- Removing the bond between the Syfana and the Island's heart, could be possible. But I need something that would narrow down the many links between the Island and its creatures to the one I need and a way to severe it. -

Looking absently outside the window, he watched the terse sky.

- Not to mention finding the way to the Island's heart, following the correct path.-

***


Few days later, Elith was standing next to a notorious elf smuggler in a dark crypt, reading peculiar inscriptions from a Headstone.

He smiled.

The way to the blood was found.
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