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The Fall and Rise of the Canolbarthby Robin from Threshold Magazine issue 10
This article compiles and expands the history of the Canolbarth Forest, focusing primarily on the time after AC 1000.
In the timeline, boxed text denotes canonical information excerpted from Wrath of the Immortals, the Poor Wizard's Almanacs, and Joshuan's Almanac; covering years 1004 to 1013; as well as events from the fan-produced Mystaran Almanacs, covering years from 1014 to 1019.
Text in normal typeface notes original material from the author, inspired by posts on The Piazza forum by users "Gecko" and "julius cleaver". Character’s details; by Joseph Setorius.
Wrath of the Immortals begins, Rafiel and Rad are deeply drawn into the conflict.
1004 AC, Spring:
Atzanteotl asks Rafiel, to his knowledge an Entropic Immortal, to join the Brotherhood of the Shadow. Rad & Rafiel consider that having Rafiel inside this organization will work to their benefit. Therefore they conspire to have Rafiel function as a double agent for the Fellowship of the Star. Rafiel thus agrees to Atzanteotl’s offer, learning the goal of the Brotherhood of the Shadow is to continually help the less powerful side, thus prolonging the conflict.
Invited to visit Pandius by Ilsundal, the elven hero Engledoc Dewsap, accidentally stumbles upon this meeting just before leaving. Knowing Ilsundal is embroiled in the war, Engledoc decides to first investigate this apparent allegiance himself. He overhears them discussing the Shadow Elves, and how they might be plotting against Alfheim. When Engledoc informs his Patron Immortal, Ilsundal explains that Atzanteotl is an ancient enemy. Ilsundal surmises one of them is patron of the Shadow Elves, and he bids Engledoc try and uncover what the two, apparently Entropic, Immortals are planning with their mortal followers.
1005 AC Summer:
Atzanteotl suggests to Rafiel the Shadow Elves invade Alfheim adding their participation to the cause. Rafiel agrees, and Atzanteotl offers to gift the Shadow Elves with a new spell able to corrupt the Trees of Life, thus weakening the Canolbarth and the Alfheim elves. With Alfheim controlled by the Shadow Elves, Atzanteotl plans on crushing Darokin, thus giving his followers a chance of striking Glantri. Moreover, the destruction of Alfheim is one of his paramount goals, and Ilsundal one of his most hated enemies. Rafiel sees an opportunity to rid Glantri of a powerful ally and grant his followers what he long promised them; however, he prefers not to involve his Shamans in this scheme, keeping them and his secret project hidden from Atzanteotl’s prying eyes, and so willingly accepts Atzanteotl's spell.
1005 AC, Felmont 19:
Xatapechtli, head of the Shadow Elven spy-network, dreams of an ancient tome about the Trees of Life secreted somewhere within Alfheim. In the dream an Azcan voice whispers the manuscript must be found if he wants to take revenge upon the Alfheim elves1.
1005 AC, Fyrmont 12:
Shadow Elves spies found evidence of a book detailing Ilsundal’s struggles to create the Trees of Life and quickly locate and manage to steal it, allowing Kanafasti to learn it's vital knowledge.
Engledoc was fortuitously conducting research in the Library Tree at Pinitel, learning Shadow Elves were recently seen in the library, consulting an ancient tome about the early days of Alfheim. Engledoc discovers the book is missing, and manages to track the culprits. The chase ending in an ominous part of the Canolbarth, west of Black Lake. The forest has changed here, as giant fungi replace dead trees, making it a dark and gloomy environment of massive trees and giant toadstools.
Here Engledoc witnesses the Shadow Elf spies entering a hidden cave, well-lit from inside. As Engledoc views the leader of the group, a dark shade in opposing light, an assassin aided by silence and invisibility spells, slings a garotte around his throat. The Shadow Elves became aware of their pursuer, and thus ended the threat to their secret plans. 2
1005 AC, Fyrmont 27:
Atzanteotl visits Kanafasti incorporeally, providing knowledge needed to research a new spell able to eventually weaken the Canolbarth forest and kill the Trees of Life. Allowing the Shadow Elves to drive the Alfheim Elves out. Rafiel allows Atzanteotl’s intervention. Unfortunately, Rafiel doesn't realize Atzanteotl's magic would forever corrupt the forest, Entropy being what it is.
Engledoc; famed elven adventurer, murdered to cover up the Shadow Elves evil plot; awakens next to his body. With the cave entrance concealed once again, and no one knowing what has occurred, in his panicked state, Engledoc decides to call for help. Soon after discovering his spirit, for unknown reasons, is not bound to his body or final resting place3, Engledoc discovers how to enter the dreams of prominent elves across Alfheim whispering his name and short invocative phrase: "Mordunastar Vargalos". 4
Yet the nature of the invocation, or its apparent purpose is unknown. Whether signifying a name, place, object, or magic password remains a mystery. However; the location of his body also remains unknown. The only clue to its location coming in whispered dreams. It remains unseen if the fair elves can find the tomb’s whereabouts in time to stop the evil plot. It is said one may commune with the dead at his body, learning crucial elements of events threatening all of Alfheim.
1006 AC, Flaurmont 12:
The team of Shadow Elf wizards led by Kanafasti successfully completes research of the new spell. 5 Tunnel Shapers work hard constructing a network of tunnels running beneath all of Alfheim; imbuing the Canolbarth with the spell’s effect; in preparation for the invasion.
1006 AC, Summer:
An enormous meteor slams into northern Darokin, the Silver Sierras and the Amsorak Mountains, creating a crater dozens of miles in diameter. The resulting earthquake topples buildings as far south as Akesoli and is felt as far north as Glantri City. The debris cloud rising from the impact is larger than several countries. Spread by the last western winds of the season, the cloud covers all of Southern Glantri and Northern Darokin as far east as central Alfheim. The immediate loss of life is tragic, however, the impenetrable cloud remains in the air for days, blocking out the sun. When it finally settles, ash covers everything, killing plants and fouling water. The cloud and ash have a combined catastrophic effect on both Glantri and Darokin’s crops, ruining harvests and threatening famine in the upcoming seasons. Even the Elven Hometrees seem mildly affected, stunted in fruit production and foliage growth.
1006 AC, Ambyrmont 17:
In a secret meeting in the King's Palace between Telemon, Kanafasti, Xatapechtli and General Garafaele, the King urges the Royal Wizard to act now and orders the Radiant General to start drafting a wartime army. Taking advantage of the confusion created by the meteor strike in Northern Darokin this summer, Telemon urges Kanafasti to start casting the spell.
Xatapechtli is increasingly convinced of the power of Atzanteotl and secretly sways from following Rafiel’s guidance to Atzanteotl’s coercion, wooed by promises of great power.
1006 AC, Ambyrmont 24:
Led by Kanafasti, the most powerful mages gather in tunnels running beneath the Canolbarth Forest and begin the complex magical ritual, which will take at least a month to have any appreciable effects and considerable time before affecting the Trees of Life.
1006 AC, Sviftmont 4:
As the forest begins to darken, Treekeeper of clan Grunalf, Talyn Grunalf, contacts her Tree of Life and learns of a great impending catastrophe. This is the first effect of Atzanteotl’s magic, more mutations will follow in the next weeks. Fairies and Treants, aware of the pervasive undertow, try to discover what is corrupting the Forest’s life-force. Wood-imps congregate and prepare, making allegiance with the Shadow elves.
Engledoc’s spirit continues to muster support, by appearing in the dreams of Elven Heroes, but fears he is too late. Now learning his fate, Engledoc has yet to accept it.
1006 AC, Sviftmont 28:
Since Talyn Grunalf gave alarm, three weeks past, the forest has become even darker and more twisted. Trees stop growing new leaves and plants stop making flowers; herbivores strive to find food. The elves are at loss to explain this strange disease, other than surmising it is the consequence of meteor fallout. Trees of Life continue to make leaves, but feel a deep pain coming from the very earth through their roots, while anxious Treekeepers and Fairies search ways to reverse the process. In the meantime the forest becomes increasingly inhospitable to the elves. The Shadow Elves have thus far concealed their infiltration into Alfheim.
1006 AC, Kaldmont 21:
Five elves are found dead and ten others seriously sickened after drinking water from a nearby spring. Careful investigation reveals the water has been poisoned. This is another consequence of the spell. By now the trees have stopped growing and leaves begin falling. Many small plants and herbivores have already perished. Carnivores have trouble finding game and many springs become poisonous.
The magical springs and lakes slowly darken and lose their power. Crystal growth still continues as if unaffected.
1006 AC, Kaldmont 28:
Treekeepers from all the seven major clans meet today in Feador to discuss the matter. Feadiel and Grunalf clans agree on the need of relocating their communities elsewhere to prevent the Trees of Life’s demise. Clans Long Runner and Mealidil bitterly disagree about abandoning Alfheim, though not even within the Annals of Mealiden is anything similar to the current situation mentioned. Fairies convene at Dreamland, requesting information. King Oberon prepares faerie ring enchantments, keeping them a secret for now, but readied for future use.
1007 AC, Nuwmont 13:
Clanmaster Lynnwyl Chossum is unknowingly poisoned by Carlisan, Counsellor to Lynnwyl, in a secret plot to allow a Shadow Elf to take Lynnwyl’s place.
1007 AC, Nuwmont 15:
After a short struggle with death, Lynnwyl finally succumbs; yet before passing away he picks Carlisan as his replacement. This is a major achievement for Shadow Elves, now fully in control of one of the leading clans.
1007 AC, Thaumont 15:
The Council of the Clans convenes in Elleromyr today to discuss the proposal of leaving Alfheim. King Doriath charges his ambassadors with beseeching Known World rulers and elven clans for asylum. The once mighty trees of Alfheim are now twisted and dying, other plants are already dead and the animal population has drastically decreased. Increasingly more elves and fairies think leaving is the best solution, but many still refuse. Clans Feadiel and Grunalf are concerned about the Trees of Life; Clan Chossum, now controlled by Shadow Elves, is anxious to sell whatever is needed to make such a journey, and Clan Erendyl thinks leaving Alfheim is reasonable for the time being. Clan Mealidil doesn't want to leave the country founded by Mealiden, believing an answer for the dilemma may still be found examining the ancient tomes, being only a matter of time until a cure is discovered. Mistrusting all non-elves, Clan Long- Runner doesn't want to have any contact with the outside world’s supposed generosity; while Clan Red Arrow is mostly concerned about the danger of such an exodus; their role being to protect the other clans.
1007 AC, Flaurmont 11:
By now King Doriath has received reports from all his ambassadors: King Stefan of Karameikos, King Gylharen of Wendar, and Princess Carlotina of Erewan in Glantri agree to give the elves of Alfheim asylum, should they need to leave the forest. Now aware there are nations able to host them, the Alfheim elves only need plan their flight.
1007 AC, Flaurmont 23:
Following a steady increase in the monstrous and malevolent activity near the Bad Magic Points, a Beholder appears today in the area of Thornbush, wreaking havoc throughout the forest. The increased level of twisted magic is a consequence of Atzanteotl's entropic magic.
Xrathpack, a powerful beholder, and many other monsters are lured into the area by Xatapechtli, using the spiders around Thornbush as sly and dangerous minions. The local imps grow in number due to the chaos, and also accelerate the growth and birth of new and more spiders. The beholder reveling in this chaos, desires to propagate.
1007 AC, Flaurmont 28:
Talyn Grunalf, continues searching for the exact source of pain felt by the Trees of Life. Leaving a tower repository just north of Thornbush, she stumbles upon Xrathpack. Talyn’s fright of Beholders almost causes her missteps to be her demise. If not for the actions of old Treant Doak, venturing into the area for the same reasons, Talyn would have surely met her doom. They barely escape, with Doak’s use of animate trees keeping Xrathpack at bay.
1007 AC, Yarthmont 7:
On this night, King Oberon of the Fairy Court decides to leave the twisted forest, heading through the Pixy-circles to Redstone on the Isle of Dawn, where there is already a fairy settlement. A small group of fairies and most centaurs will resettle in nearby Darokin awaiting the forest’s return to health. The good magic points have now lost their magic and collapse inward. The bad magic points expand and become more powerful.
1007 AC, Yarthmont 19:
A party of adventurers stumbles upon a small elvish community, finding the inhabitants have been cruelly slaughtered. Malicious monsters escaped from Thornbush are deemed responsible for the carnage; however, the massacre is the work of a small band of Shadow Elves. In the following months similar attempts to annihilate isolated Alfheim communities will be carried out.
That night Engledoc pervades the dreams of the adventuring party’s druid, imparting a simple message; "Mistrust your observations"
1007 AC, Yarthmont 20:
The now wary druid casts a "Speak with the Dead" before leaving the village and discovers the assassins weren’t monsters, but a party of elves. The druid is unable to ascertain what manner of elves were the murderers, but soon after relating his discovery to Alfheim’s military commanders, fear and suspicion of invading Shadow Elves spreads throughout Alfheim.
1007 AC, Klarmont 16:
Jorodrin Feadiel, Treekeeper of clan Feadiel, and his assistants perform a ceremony devised over the last few months6, uprooting their Tree of Life, yet keeping its roots in the encompassing soil. By now all plants, trees, and most animals have already died, except fungi and Hometrees. Yet the number of monsters has increased; and the Trees of Life are nearing death.
1007 AC, Klarmont 23:
The Tree of Life’s uprooting ceremony successful, Alfheim’s Treekeepers are aware of perhaps being able to save their Trees of Life from the strange disease.
1007 AC, Felmont 1:
King Doriath, General Gilfronden, Captain Brightsword and their most trusted advisers meet in Elleromyr to plan the flight from Alfheim. During the council, evidence is revealed about the Shadow Elves moving stealthily thru the twisted forest. Captain Brightsword rises and vows to personally slay any known Shadow Elf.
1007 AC, Felmont 13:
Captain Brightsword is narrowly missed by arrows while patrolling the forest. The elves identify the arrows as coming from Clan Chossum, long suspected of sheltering Shadow Elves. Brightsword decides to press for Desnae and confront the Chossum Clanmaster. This is not a bungled attempt to assassinate Brightsword, but a way to lure him into Desnae.
1007 AC, Felmont 16:
Clanmaster Carlisan privately meets Brightsword. Managing to cast charm person, Carlisan puts the young Captain under his control, assuring Brightsword the clan is not sheltering Shadow Elves. Carlisan asks Brightsword allow a famed and trusted adventurer of clan Chossum to join his patrolling party. Now Brightsword, General Gilfronden’s biggest threat, is under Shadow Elves control. Carlisan knows the spell effect will not last, so he plants another Shadow Elf on Brightsword’s path, tasked with casting a charm person on Brightsword every morning.
1007 AC, Felmont 28:
Radiant General Garafaele Galeifel orders Starlight Legions I-III to deploy below Alfheim. The Shadow Elves are now preparing for the final phase of the invasion. Wood imps collaborate with the Shadow Elves quest to conquer Alfheim.
1007 AC, Fyrmont 7:
King Doriath and General Gilfronden meet elvish members of the DDC (DDC= Darokin Diplomatic Corps. Today’s DDC has a number of responsibilities, including; maintaining good relations with all of Darokin's neighbours, resolving disputes between neighbours especially if Darokin is caught in the middle, and negotiating trade agreements of all types, both within and without Darokin. The DDC, its methods, leadership, and role in Darokin society is discussed at length in Gazetteer 11 The Republic of Darokin) in Alfheim Town today. They discuss relocating the Trees of Life on Darokinian soil with a mixed Darokin-Alfheim honour guard protecting them. This guard becomes known as the Root Watch. Their agreement also allows elves to freely cross Darokin should they need to abandon their homeland. King Doriath implores the DDC keep the utmost secrecy concerning the meeting.
1007 AC, Fyrmont 14:
The curtains of fog surrounding the cursed province of Avonleigh7 dissipate. Heroes enter and successfully dispatch Morgoroth, but this allows many undead to leave the region and multiply. Darokin is astounded at what the fog obscured, yet welcomes the few hundred surviving great-great-grandchildren of the Doulakki.8).
Treekeepers from the seven major clans meet today in Feador to discuss the Trees of Life’s relocation. Treekeepers from clan Long Runner exhibit a new spell masking a Tree of Life’s aura, making it appear as a normal tree, thus disguising it from hostile eyes. By now all clans, excepting the Mealidil and Long Runner, have performed the ceremony and uprooted their Tree of Life. Still a bit perplexed, they are now ready to immigrate and relocate the dying Trees of Life in Southern and Eastern Darokin.
1007 AC, Fyrmont 20:
Setting a precedence; Jorodrin Feadiel, Treekeeper of Clan Feadiel, guides its Tree of Life into Southeastern Darokin, outside the twisted Canolbarth Forest. Clan Feadiel is first to reposition its Tree of Life, and soon the other clans, excepting Clans Long Runner and Mealidil, will follow suit. The Trees will be placed in the most densely forested areas around Dolak or Dolos, though far enough away to not be further affected by the sickening. At least this is the Treekeeper’s hope.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 1:
The Clanmasters sadly resolve to leave their now dead beloved forest on the fifteenth of Ambyrmont. Beasthunter and Mealidan, Clanmasters of the Long Runner and Mealidil Clans respectively, acrimoniously disagree on leaving the forest; and warn leaving the forest can only harm the Trees of Life, and inevitably corrupt the elven way of life. They have yet to uproot their Trees of Life, being firmly convinced leaving is the wrong decision.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 3:
King Doriath’s messengers reach the various Clanholds, bringing news of the evacuation. Old swords are honed, bows oiled and strung, and spellbooks memorized; preparing for what will most likely be a very dangerous journey. Clans Chossum, Red Arrow, and Feadiel, will head South to Karameikos crossing Eastern Darokin and the Cruth Mountains; clans Erendyl, Mealidil, Grunalf, and Long Runner will head North to Wendar traversing the dangerous Broken Lands and hostile Ethengar. Alfheim elves everywhere, pack their belongings; loading carts and wagons hitched to beasts of burden. The caravans led by heroes astride Elven War Horses.
The young gold dragon Raspaert collects her possessions and departs for the Five Shires. Feeling insecure and unable to assist curing the forest’s disease, once sheltered in the Shires, she begins the Dragon Circle of Knowledge9 to help find a way to solve the forest’s illness.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 4:
Clanmasters Beasthunter and Mealidil meet today in Mealidor to discuss the message received yesterday. Both leaders are still firmly convinced remaining in their homeland is the right decision, but must admit the forest has grown increasingly dark, dangerous, and inhospitable. Despite prolonged research they are unable to find a way of saving the dying Trees of Life, yet they decide to stay and continue researching until the spring.
Meanwhile, Xatapechtli begins a bizarre magical experiment on spiders around Thornbush. He requests help from several powerful Shadow Elves, but infuriated by their lack of enthusiasm and commitment, Xatapechtli dismisses them. Atzanteotl understands how to solve the impasse, sending more Shadow Elves devoted to him.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 10:
General Garafaele receives reports about the Alfheim elves preparing to mobilize and orders Starlight Legions to deploy along the tunnels under the Canolbarth forest. Knowing the surface elves will flee the twisted forest on the fifteenth of Ambyrmont, the Radiant General urges his troops advance to further destabilize them.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 15:
In a move that shocks the Darokinians, yet not the well-informed DDC, the elves of Alfheim flee their country. Several long queues made of thousand of carts, horses, and elves on foot dot the Darokinian landscape; departing like living tendrils from the twisted forest and either head northwest towards Corunglain or southeast to Selenica. Only about half the elves from Clans Long Runner and Mealidil flee with King Doriath; the others are determined to defend their villages, Clanmasters, and Trees of Life.
Talyn Grunalf and Doak, the old Treant from the Emerlas, meet in Farshire10, where the fleeing Centaurs and several Fairies have temporarily taken up residence. Talyn has put faith in the other Treekeepers to uproot the Grunalf Tree of Life. Her in depth research is of greater importance. Memories bringing her back to a boisterous time spent long ago with Engledoc. Since Engledoc’s recent disappearance, his final haunting thoughts still roam her mind, spurring her toward action with a single thought; "What if he knew...?".
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 17:
During the night well armed Shadow Elven troops enter the twisted forest skulking out of tunnels, quickly overwhelming the small bands of elves staying to defend their homeland; however, the Shadow Elves must retreat before dawn, because they aren't yet acclimated to the sunlight. The fiercest fighting takes place around Pinitel and Mealidor, but thanks to their superior numbers, the Shadow Elves manage victory before dawn. Before bolting north, the few survivors from Clans Long Runner and Mealidil manage to cast the unique spell disguising their Trees of Life. (See Fyrmont 14). A small group of Shadow Elves, equipped with magical amulets allowing them to ignore the effects of sunlight, fights their way toward Alfheim Town, only to find abandoned buildings. The Legions, as planned find almost no resistance invading the forest, yet now their main obstacle is adapting to the daylight; though the darkened forest will make this easier.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 18:
Darokinian and elvish authorities receive news of the invasion. In Darokin City remaining troops are put on high alert. Charles Mauntea urges the DDC to get in touch with these unfamiliar invaders. In Corunglain messengers from the Long Runner and Mealidil Clanmasters, prompt King Doriath to send back some troops to defend those left behind. The King; however, only allows courageous adventurers from both clans to go back to Alfheim to return and collect news about the invasion. Long seen as an elven legend outside Alfheim, Darokinians are shocked to learn Shadow Elves really exist. Darokin never considered Alfheim a credible threat. Their armed forces greatly depleted after war against the Master, yet Darokin would now be completely unable to stop an attack coming from the very centre of the Republic. Diplomatic solutions are once again Darokin’s only hope.
1007 AC, Ambyrmont 28:
A lavish party is thrown tonight at Atzanteotl's mansion in Pandius to toast Ilsundal’s utter defeat. Hel, Alphaks and Rafiel attend. The invasion of Alfheim was a major stroke against Ilsundal. Of course Rafiel must attend the party to avoid Atzanteotl's suspicions Despite not hating Ilsundal, Rafiel must continue this deception of Entropy.
As of yet Rafiel is unaware several Shadow Elf Feathered Serpents and their families have adopted Azanteotl’s doctrines along with their leader Xatapechtli. Suffering greatly from this major stroke, Ilsundal alters his appearance, reflecting a change of ways and triggering another train of thought and ideas.
1007 AC, Sviftmont 9:
General Garafaele takes possession of the city in the name of King Telemon and renames it Rafielton. By now his legions have conquered the whole region, and in places they even occupied the Northern Darokinian borderlands. Now celebrating their victory, the Shadow Elves soon have to start the hard task of rebuilding. Garafaele plans to destroy the wooden buildings and Ironwood wall surrounding the city, to replace them with more familiar stone buildings and a solid stone wall.
1007 AC, Sviftmont 17:
In the square named after him, King Telemon renames the conquered Canolbarth Forest to Aengmor, after a legendary city they once inhabited, then he crowns his daughter, the Princess Tanadaleyo, as Governor of Aengmor. General Garafaele is named Warlord of Aengmor. In a long sermon Porphyriel announces the prophecies of Rafiel have finally been realized, the Shadow Elves now having a place upon the surface where they can live under the sun among green trees (or so they think). Meanwhile in their underground cities other shamans are preaching similar tales to the entire Shadow Elf population. Everyone is joyous in victory. The ambitious Tanadaleyo has long dreamed of being Princess of Alfheim. In conquering Alfheim Garafaele has finally succeeded where his predecessors failed; gaining an exalted place in Shadow Elf history. Long coveting the Canolbarth Forest, Telemon now has it, and without help from the meddling shamans!!! Porphyriel is blissful because she can claim the conquest of Alfheim is Rafiel’s will, thus strengthening her people’s faith, which had waned after centuries of privations and unfulfilled promises.
The Shadow Elves enthusiastically welcome new Crystal growth on the surface, and the effects of existing crystals gradually become stronger.
Engledoc’s spirit sees all that is happening, but cleverly turns his attention towards lower Aengmor; the Shadow Elves’ legendary city, hearing so many of the Shadow Elves rekindle their hope of taking back their ancient city after the conquest of Alfheim. This ancient city, spoken of so highly, as being one of the other major promises Rafiel seemed to have made. If rediscovered, perhaps Engledoc could entice the Shadow Elves towards this ancient city, leaving Alfheim, to be reconquered.
1008 AC Spring:
As the spring thaw opens the mountain passes, many of the elven clans of Alfheim finally reach Karameikos. Several Shadow Elves venture towards Glantri city, secretly followed by Engledoc. Through their ramblings he deciphered they intended to investigate a rumor heard of an ancient city occupied by humanoids hidden in the Broken Lands.
A mage named Angus McClintock, is giving unusual lectures at Glantri’s Great School of Magic, about a society of civilized humanoids. He enthusiastically speaks of their ancient city named Oenkmar. Oenkmar, sounds all too familiar to ignore, seeming very similar to Aengmor, for both Engledoc and the Shadow Elves. The lecture, although interesting, resolves nothing, causing the Shadow Elves to prompt Angus for more information. When cornered and intimidatingly questioned by the Shadow Elves, Angus proves to be more than a match for the Shadow Elves, easily dispatching them. Now being more cautious, and uninterested in more "enthusiasts", Angus teleports away. Engledoc touches the mage as he casts the spell, traveling with him unnoticed, swept up in the wake of the spell. After a few days of investigation, Engledoc discovers this location must be the humanoid city of Oenkmar. Venturing along the great pyramid, he notices the all too familiar disguised shadow elves, studying the old elvish runes and scriptures on the stones. The scriptures mention the city’s name being Aengmor, and tells of the days before the elves were forced to abandon the city, due some great disaster. Engledoc then fades through the surrounding rocks travelling to the surface to locate the cities relative position. Once topside he finds several passages leading to the city below.
1009 AC Fall:
The second group of Alfheim elves leaves the Northern Glantrian Mountains and enters the nation of Wendar. Rad, Rafiel, and Rathanos finish construction of the Doomsday weapon underneath Glantri. Immediately after hearing Thyatis has conducted a peace treaty with Alphatia, Rad activates the device. Minutes later an enormous storm forms over the Alphatian capital city of Sundsvall. Spellcasters all over Mystara, quickly discover all forms of magic no longer function. Across the world, members of magical races, such as elves, grow ill and lose their strength (ST -5). Then, after hours of meteorological abuse, earthquakes begin rumbling across the Alphatian continent, and within the span of a few hours, most of the continent sinks beneath the cold dark waters of the Sea of Dawn. Magic does not return to the world for a full week.
Thankfully, the Alfheim refugees have replanted all Trees of Life in healthy ground, no longer needing magic to mask their presence. This effect lasts for a week, enabling the last Alfheim elves to reach their brethren. Talyn, adversely suffers from the effects, her strength slowly falling. So frail now, she nearly succumbs. Magic having all but vanished, her only hope lay upon the healing skills of the centaur’s herbalist. Talyn still thinks all of this has come about because of the Canolbarth’s corruption. Among the weakened Shadow Elves, feelings of doubt take root in the minds of many. This is a first sign showing perhaps their actions were flawed.
1010 AC Felmont 14:
An informal band of Rockhome adventurers, are in a scrap with humanoid forces in the Broken Lands, training their new members to fight, when one of them stumbles upon a cave opening. The dwarves go in after him and find a pure vein of gold, but then encounter forces from the underground city of Oenkmar. Secretly among them is the ghost of Engledoc, trying to make a layout of the area. They escape with their lives, making a beeline for Rockhome, pursued by Engledoc. The dwarves have indeed discovered gold in the surrounding bedrock, which sparks a dual invasion of dwarven soldiers and miners intent on destroying the humanoid city,and the threat it poses to the civilized world, and afterwards stripping gold deposits from the Broken Lands.
Engledoc hopes this leads to the discovery of Aengmor, and if the Shadow Elves discover the Dwarves have occupied their fabled city, will send troops from the Canolbarth in an attempt to reclaim it. Thus leaving the Canolbarth less defended.
1010 AC Fyrmont 1:
Summer strikes hard in the new nation of Aengmor. Without Alfheim’s elven weather magic, the area suffers a great drought. For the first time in many years, spring rainfall has been sparse. By this date, no rain has fallen in weeks. The forest becomes arid and small tracts of transformed Hometrees are beginning to die. Princess Tanadaleyo decides to send a diplomatic mission to the Elven communities of Norwold, apparently because they have no ties with Alfheim, as far as the Shadow Elves know. Should the mission fail, the diplomatic envoys will have to return by way of Wendar and seek help there, even though Alfheim elves now inhabiting Wendar will naturally seek to poison the Wendarian minds against the Shadow Elves. Aengmor is now forced to interact with foreigners as other nations do—with diplomacy instead of just invasion.
Now fully recovered, Talyn sallies forth with her ragtag group of companions: Doak; old Treant of the Emerlas; Chavas; female Centaur healer; Pratiwass; Pixy warrior; Shrepsy; Sprite sorceress; and Hesshrouu; sagacious Hsiao cleric. They begin a lengthy winding trek through the remains of the Canolbarth searching for clues. In the upcoming months they will slowly make a counterclockwise journey around the Canolbarth.
1010 AC Ambyrmont 2:
Aengmor, laying entirely within the borders of Darokin, sends emissaries to appear before the rulers of Darokin. They assert Aengmor has extended its borders over the sparsely occupied strip of Darokin territory surrounding it, and give the people of Darokin three months to evacuate all settlements within this borderland—including the city of Selenica. The Shadow Elves threaten if the leaders of Darokin refuse, they will blight every tree in Darokin, then adapting their spells to blight grain crops as well. Most unrealizing the Shadow Elves demand is as hollow as Mystara; as the spells used against Alfheim’s trees were specifically tailored to affect the magically-enhanced oaks native to the Canolbarth forest.
1010 AC Sviftmont 5:
The party of Aengmorian emissaries reach Norwold and a small elven community in the deep southern woods. The Shadow Elves recount the situation and ask for help in the development of spells to save the Canolbarth.
1010 AC Eirmont 21:
Darokin, having investigated Aengmor’s claim, calls their bluff, saying that they refuse to abandon lands long belonging to Darokin, declaring borders will remain fixed. However; to their considerable surprise, the Darokin diplomats extend a hand in friendship to the Shadow Elves, also reaffirming that the elves of Aengmor may conduct trade through Selenica and all of Darokin. The Shadow Elves are baffled by this entirely reasonable attitude.
1011 AC Sviftmont 1:
Despite the initial promise of a wet spring, drought continues to plague Aengmor. Yet hope arrives from Norwold, where elves have conducted magical experiments to save the trees of the Canolbarth. Eager to test their laboured resolutions, the returning elves promptly cast the new spells. Soon after, a fine mist moistens the forest, yet lasts only a few minutes before the clouds disperse once more.
1012 AC Kaldmont:
The wood imps’, who established a court in 1009 AC, have assembled every new moon, engaging in violent orgies around their sacred Stalkbrow. Afterwards, the imps travel on spider mounts in an anarchic and carnivalesque procession to Lolach-Lomod, formerly Dreamland. The Shadow Elves feel extremely uncomfortable with the imps' chaotic lives. The imps simply reply that their way is "the way of the wood". The problem; however, is young Shadow Elves are starting to emulate this behavior, leading highly scandalous lifestyles and frowning upon the doctrines of Rafiel. The imps are slowly becoming a real nuisance for to the Shadow Elf elite. But since the bad magic points are stronger, the wood imps are becoming quite powerful in Aengmor - and a crusade against them might not go as intended. Besides their spiders, the imps have other strong allies; including the evil Treant, Travestis whose patron Nyx has set him on the path toward Immortality, and is in fact starting the process of populating the dead forest with her own hordes of Evil Plants and Foul Folk. Among them; several Hags; Dark Dryads11, Feral Satyrs12 and several Redcaps still haunting old Elven and fairy buildings and monuments. Additionally, Undead from the cursed province of Avonleigh are found wandering into the corrupted Canolbarth.
1012 AC Vatermont 15:
Engledoc finds a Shadow Elven scouting group, and stealthily influencing their path of movement leads them to a small outcropping overlooking Oenkmar.
One of them is sent away to carry the thrilling news to Tanadaleyo, Radiant Princess of the Shadow Elves and governor of Aengmor. He speaks of the fabled city of Aengmor’s discovery, thought destroyed more than twentythree centuries ago. Aengmor, now called Oenkmar, is currently inhabited by horrible humanoids, and is presently besieged by the even more repulsive dwarves. Tanadaleyo consults with the Radiant general, both agreeing Aengmor must be reclaimed. Before the day’s end, messengers are dispatched to the City of the Stars, bringing King Telemon news of the discovery. Aengmor’s Shadow Elves prepare for a holy war.
In the upcoming weeks, Dwarves followed by Shadow Elves attack Oenkmar. The Shadow Elves first attack, afterwards being repelled by the humanoids. Atzanteotl soon lost interest in the occupying Humanoids placing his interest in the more formidable Shadow Elves, whom progressively forsake Rafiel in favor of the Dark Lord. Atzanteotl’s most devoted disciple is Xatapechtli, along with his Shadow Elf spies the "Feathered Serpents". Most of whom have been quietly diverting young Shadow Elves away from Rafiel.
1012 AC Ambyrmont 16:
The Shadow Elves break Oenkmar’s defenses, driving the humanoids out, feeling no remorse or pity for the fleeing of the humanoids. The humanoids having little chance of escape, is no concern to them, most being thrown from the battlements into the lava pool below. This evil behavior in fact is instigated by Xatapechtli and his "Feathered Serpents",
Angus McClintock, realizing there is nothing he can do to stop the destruction of his beloved city; flees Oenkmar and returns to Glantri.
1012 AC Sviftmont 1:
Kanafasti, royal wizard in the City of the Stars, receives an unusual visitor in his makeshift laboratory in Aengmor’s Citadel. Teleporting into the room while Kanafasti is alone, and before the Shadow Elf wizard can cast any spells, the visitor holds up a weathered, wrinkled hand and speaks the Shadow Elven word for peace. Intrigued, Kanafasti beckons his guest to have a seat, inviting him to state his business. The visitor introduces himself as Felestralor, a Shadow Elf wanderer sent away from the City of the Stars nearly a century ago, and reveals a community of wanderers—nearly a hundred residents—have been living in Oenkmar, and have much knowledge to share with their Shadow Elf brethren. Managing to remain unnoticed among the humanoids with the use of magic and disguise, old Shadow Elves not looking markedly different from old humanoids. Felestralor reveals to Kanifasti they have substantial knowledge to share with their Shadow Elf brethren.
Dedicating themselves to learning as much as they could of the sacred city of Aengmor; their knowledge could prove invaluable to Kanafasti—provided he dares to disobey the Immortal Rafiel’s prohibition concerning contact between wanderers and the general Shadow Elf population. Kanafasti, himself a mere two years from becoming a wanderer, promises to do all he can to integrate the wanderers into Shadow Elven society here in Aengmor.
Unknown to Kanafasti all wanderers in Oenkmar have in time discovered ancient teachings of Atzanteolt in the Great Pyramid of Aengmor and have forsaken the Faith of Rafiel. This is another step in Atzanteotl’s bold plan.
1012 AC Sviftmont 28:
Princess Tanadaleyo informs the foreign ambassadors within Rafielton the Shadow Elves have reclaimed the legendary city of Aengmor, and accordingly, the lower broken lands now belong to them as well. Tanadelyo assures the ambassadors, merchant caravans shall be allowed to traverse the trade routes through the broken lands, as they always have—but any incursions into the lower broken lands, will be dealt with most harshly. Dwarves in particular, will be attacked on sight if discovered in the caves and passageways surrounding the sacred city of Aengmor.
With Aengmor’s rediscovery, Xatapechtli learns still more while exploring the surrounding area, and continues his diabolical experiments in secrecy. In a short timespan Xatapechtli has become extremely powerful, and is certain his rise is gift from Atzanteotl.
1012 AC Eirmont 20:
Despite the Shadow Elf mages recent successes with weather magic, the twisted trees of Canolbarth continue to sicken and die. The Canolbarth’s perimeter is giving way to grasslands, and Aengmor’s borders are rapidly shrinking. Princess Tanadaleyo has come to regret the magic used to twist the trees of Canolbarth into parodies of their former selves. The twisted "blight oaks" do not have the strength to resist drought. Shadow Elf immigrants have been disillusioned by Canolbarth. Growing up hearing stories of how one day the beautiful Canolbarth forest, with its green-leaved trees dappled by sunlight, would belong to them, many now believe that dream seems as twisted as the trees themselves.
1013 AC Spring:
The great influx of Shadow Elven colonists has brought fierce resistance, the humanoids not being easily driven from their territory. Shadow Elf warriors frequently patrol the underground passageways, seeking out obstinate humanoids. Combat has occurred on the surface as well, for the Shadow Elves are determined to drive all humanoids from the Eastern Broken Lands.
Thousands of Hobgoblins and Orcs pour into the northern Dwarfgate foothills and the Emerlas. This horde stumbles upon Trolls bereaved by the Dragon Kordarg’s slaying, with the ensuing encounter not ending peaceably. The Trolls having already lost their mighty leader, after attacking Dorneryll to strengthen their foothold, are pitted against the more organized Orcs in the region. As a consequence, Orcs from Xorg hear of their kin’s struggle with the Trolls, and join the battle. Assaulted from two sides, after a three week battle, the Trolls and their Gnollish allies are defeated and enslaved. Sparse few have fled toward the Western Broken Lands. The Orcs; however, have also been greatly weakened, and most break into smaller tribes, settling within the region. The only humanoids truly benefiting from these events are the Bugbears in the east, having not participated in any of the battles. As such, they remain strong and plunder the Western Canolbarth and the ruins in the hills. The bugbears even begin emulating some elven military structure. Bartziluth’s Bugbear shamans recite prophecies claiming greatness awaits his followers.
Talyn is awakened by strange dreams one night. Visions of an old familiar face, warm and trusting; Engledoc. No words are spoken, but Talyn feels the great sensation of mutual trust and respect they once shared wash over her, now knowing she is on the right path with her research.
After having contemplated many scenarios to rid the Canolbarth of the Shadow Elves, aside from sending numerous elven heroes into the fray, Engledoc comes upon the idea to reawaken the Good Magic Points. Incorporeally, Engledoc has often travelled to Limbo. Observing similarities between the affected regions in Limbo and the Canolbarth. Deeply analyzing these correlations, he soon discovered the magic used to corrupt the Canolbarth had allowed negative energy from Limbo to leach through many small portals around the region. Engledoc traveled to these gates, finding each was guarded by wights and wraiths, having alternate reflections existing in Limbo.13.
Soon after approaching, the trapped identities of the undead were stirred through magical triggers, immediately acting to locate the intruder. Taking several hours and all his spells, Engledoc nevertheless overpowers the undead minions. Severely weakened by their energy draining capabilities, he still manages to seal the gate. Traveling across Alfheim and Limbo, he salvages souls in Limbo and ghosts from the Prime Plane among Alfheim’s slain warriors, banding them into an undead army. The cursed elves knowing to fail in this obligation, would cause cessation of their existence. No afterlife, rebirth or reincarnation, only an endless nothing. Yet with one notion they all agree. Engledoc’s army of haunts travels from one gate to the next. Initially the victories come easily, but soon after Atzanteotl discovers half the smaller gates have already been closed by Engledoc’s forces, he summons more powerful Nightstalkers and Nightwalkers sentries to guard the most important gates leading to the Magic Points.
1013 AC Sviftmont 23:
Princess Tanadaleyo invites certain Alfheim refugees to visit Rafielton to discuss the future of Canolbarth Forest. The forest’s perimeter has receded several miles, leaving stark, twisted corpses of the once-mighty oaks behind. The land is so parched, the merest spark could result in a roaring blaze, which would quickly consume the dead trees and underbrush. Over time, grasses blanket the blighted landscape. In this way, the forest has lost ground, acre by acre, mile by mile. There are no signs of this trend slowing, let alone reversing, despite the best efforts of the Shadow Elves and Elven mages from far-away Norwold, answering the Shadow Elves’ cry for help three years ago.
The Alfheim elves are shocked to see how everything has changed. Gone are the elegant Home trees where they once lived in. Alfheim town—now Rafielton— is unrecognizable. The magic the Shadow Elves used to blight the great oaks has rendered the forest nearly uninhabitable. Without the spells of weather change the Great Canolbarth is dying.
1013 AC Winter:
Talyn and her unlikely party of heroes have almost circled the entire Canolbarth, reaching the Magic Point of Ironbark. Instantly aware of the ground’s positive aura, Doak takes root, replenishing himself. Within two days, his brown leaves show the green buds of new leaves. Talyn realizes the magic of nearby Ironbark is responsible; the Magic Point still emanating powerful energy. When they discover the small island of Ironbark, all plants seem to be young and rejuvenated. Together the party begins gathering clues, casting spells in order to understand the source, which Ironbark rapidly absorbs. The magical energy flowing somewhere else; where they do not know.
Engledoc’s army of souls discovers waves of magical light emanating through the grey skies of Limbo14, uncovering the first crucial major gate; the one linked to the Good Magic Point of Ironbark. Over two-and-a-half thousand elven souls approach the d defending pair of Nightwalkers, Wights, Wraiths and a solitary Nightstalker. The battle is turbulent, as spirits are obliterated, but the elves extinguished, "die" with a smile... how great their sacrifice...for a greater good. Their sacrifice had unforeseen consequences. Ironbark, being the most powerful magic point, created by strains of combat magic becomes active.... IN LIMBO!! From this moment onward, all undead powers become diminished. With each magical spell cast, each fallen Elven soul or even undead essence the powers of Ironbark grow s stronger, as if feeding on the magic and energy of perished souls. As the last enemy falls, Ironbark’s power is so great it reveals all other magic points and smaller magical locations. Engledoc then seals Ironbark’s gate. All the surviving Elven souls cheer. Over the next thirty years, taking into account time moves differently in Limbo, Engledoc’s army finds and closes the majority of the smaller dimensional ruptures leading into Limbo.
1013 AC Kaldmont 13:
Deep within the world's crust, Shadow Elf explorers from the City of the Stars finally make their way to the Hollow World's surface, eventually encountering the Schattenalfen.
1013 AC Kaldmont 16:
The Schattenalfen Queen converses with these exploring Shadow Elves, learning a great deal of history her race has forgotten. She agrees to open diplomatic ties with the City of Stars. Though the two divisions of the Shadow Elves do not like or trust one another, both recognize the ties that bind them— each realizing it may learn from the other.
Xatapechtli has also travelled to the Schattenalfen Lands, secretly learning more about Atzanteotl, and the Shadow Elves’ forgotten past shared with this Immortal. Xatapechtli relates this knowledge to his Feathered Serpents. Slowly the Faith of Atzanteotl gains a secret but stronger foothold within Shadow Elven society. Rafiel learns of the attrition of his followers, yet assumes it is only a small number of believers, deciding that at the moment, the Canolbarth takes precedence.
1013 AC Eirmont 16:
delegation of Alfheim refugees returns to the Estate of Radlebb after negotiating with Princess Tanadaleyo in Rafielton, debating the fate of the Canolbarth Forest. They announce the Shadow Elves are contemplating a partnership to save the Canolbarth from further destruction.
1018 AC, Vatermont 27:
Elven scholars, under the guidance of Talyn Grunalf and her companions, studying the Ironbark Magic Point notice new floral growth outside Ironbark's supposed bounds. This news creates a great sensation across the nation, as it is heralded as evidence the Canolbarth is recovering. Alone among the "Good" Magic Points in the Canolbarth, Ironbark has persisted despite the Shadow Elf sorceries warping the forest. Within Ironbark’s borders, the forest has always remained healthy and vibrant, evidence of the powerful magics originally creating the Magic Point in the first place. New growth outside of its borders may be evidence Ironbark is expanding its range of influence, or is simply working in conjunction with the Trees of Life’s restoration and the Chamber of the Spheres to revitalise the forest. Either way, it is good news. This is actually the same instant as Engledoc’s victory in Limbo and the gate’s closure.15
1018 AC, Fyrmont 8:
In a remaining healthy thicket of trees, using combined magics and gained knowledge, Grunalf treekeepers under Talyn’s supervision and Shadowelf shamans attempt to reactivate the Dreamland Magic Point west of Shieldtree. With the discovery of new growth around Ironbark, a theory was advanced that restoring the Canolbarth’s Good Magic Points might be a means towards further restoration of the forest. Alfheim treekeepers together with Shadow Elf shamans, secretly using magic developed in the Chamber of the Spheres, worked together to bring about this end. The Dreamland’s restoration is heralded as a triumph of the diplomatic efforts between the two elven races, as well as an omen the Canolbarth can be restored to its former glory. However; how long this may take is anyone's guess, as the damage already done is extensive. The Forest has receded many miles, and with it the borders of Aengmor.
Engledoc soon discovers the corresponding spot in Limbo of the Dreamland Magic Point, due to the various magic pouring in from the Prime Plane. Shining like a beacon, it attracts the soul army. The Nightwalkers present notice the bright light during the battle has attracted creatures from beyond... from somewhere they would never reach. Several Archons enter the battlefield, attracted by the overwhelming grace and sacrifice of the battling souls. The released energy was so pure, the Archons became fascinated, astounded what was actually taking place, and entered the fray. With the aid of their awesome might, Atzanteotl’s forces are obliterated; and while Engledoc closes the gate, the power flows straight into Dreamland.
The Borders have now regressed further still, yet new forest bloomed in the western Canolbarth around the Good Magic Point of Ironbark. Dreamland also fosters new growth, yet it is too undeveloped to account for all the Shadow Elves needs and wants. Centaurs quickly retake Dreamland, and Princess Tanadaleyo does not challenge their claim. Better a friendly folk there more adept than the Shadow Elves to reignite the forest, than the wood imps and undead previously ruling Lolach-Lomod (Dreamland). It now seems possible the Canolbarth can be saved, but will forever be transformed. Fungal spores, inadvertently transported by the Shadow Elves from the depths, have taken root in many locations over the Canolbarth, with a multitude of different appearances. The dead darkened forest is sporadically broken by Fungal Forest and near the rivers by fungal swamps. Despite new growth in the West, the Canolbarth is only roughly one third of its previous extent. Rafielton and Wizards Glen now open upon the Streel Plain across the border. It will take several decades, or even centuries, for the Canolbarth to become as large and imposing as before.
At this stage, many Shadow Elves return to their underground world. They are ashamed of failures on the surface, thwarted by their very own magic. Others travel to the legendary city of Aengmor, soon realizing they have more freedom to do as they wish. Worship of Rafiel is dwindling in this region, replaced by the idolization of Atzanteotl. Rafiel is aware of this development, but is unable to act directly against Atzanteotl, yet for all his efforts nothing seems to change. Trying to subversively return his followers to the fold, many instead feel Rafiel has broken promises, and continue to worship Atzanteotl. This is Atzanteotl’s third major stroke against his foes and rivals during Wrath of the Immortals. The first being against Ilsundal, by taking over the Canolbarth; then indirectly targeting Rad; and finally Rafiel, now betrayed and robbed of followers.
Now in his prime, Xatapechtli continues carrying out diabolical experiments. His offerings to Atzanteotl eventually reveal the existence of "Merging Scrolls" hidden in Glantri, and he sets out to acquire them. Xatapechtli; however, is increasingly leery of Atzanteotl’s patronage.
Darokin has begun annexing lost territory in the west, such as Callair; and east, including Hobart, Selenica, and Avonleigh; turning the new acquisitions into farmland in order to grow crops or provide pasture. Feeding Darokin’s burgeoning population and further strengthening their growing market position. Weather patterns seemingly return to normal; however, the northern half of the former Canolbarth and mountain foothills remain as dry as the time before the elves arrival in 800 BC.
Halflings from the Five Shires, with the help of industrious Gnomes, devised a technique to pulverize the enormous lumber, mixing in alkaline minerals and selling it as an effective fertilizer. The deadfall and timber already being harvested will supply merchants and builders for a generation. The price of wood has now fallen below half of what is was before the war.
1100 AC AND BEYOND:
Several decades after Alfheim’s desecration, conditions in the Canolbarth and surrounding area have improved for both Alfheim and Darokin. Good Magic Points in the west have expanded the regions regrowth; and new Home Trees, albeit much smaller and younger, have sprung. Due to sufficient runoff from the Southern mountains, and copious amounts of Hin fertilizer; Alfheim Elves, in conjunction with the Darokin population, replant once forested areas, and the region is slowly reforested. The Province of New Alfheim; encompassing Dolos, Farstead, Comaille, and Northern Illefarn; has the densest region of forest regrowth and is populated by Fairykin and returning Alfheim Elves. Sentinel and Hometree growth and expansion is slow, and more time must pass before the Canolbarth returns to its former glory.
An alarming situation arises in 1115 AC. Water in subterranean Shadow Elven territories slowly diminishes. Underground rivers dry up for the first time, and lakes greatly recede. Fungal harvests are meagre and food shortages become commonplace. The Grand Wizard discovers the water seeping through the overlying crust takes decades before reaching the depths. Since drought occurred on the surface, less water has percolated through the earth. With the new rains, water on the surface is progressively absorbed by the soil, and utilized by the growing trees, though might require decades before the aquifer’s normal levels are restored. So it appears over time, Atzanteotl’s spell of Devastation spell also harmed the Shadow Elves. Most unaware it was a power granted by Atzanteotl, many more Shadow Elves reject Rafiel’s teachings holding him responsible, travelling beneath the Broken Lands were plentiful water supplies exist. Converting to a more chaotic lifestyle under the Doctrines of their new Immortal.
Interaction between Shadow Elves factions is emerging along three paths. Some bonds are broken, others strained or altered, while others remain firmly in place. Whether by divisions of clan, family or holding; Shadow Elves revering Rafiel come to associate with one another, while those worshiping Atzanteotl drift farther away. Ties between Darokinians and returning Alfheim Elves is stronger than anticipated with Shadow Elf followers of Rafiel. Despite Immortal affiliation three groups of Shadow Elves arise.
The first group consists of the sparse Shadow Elves who remain on the Surface. Living in the darker regions of the Old Canolbarth; they continue having problems adapting. The darker abodes of the corrupted Canolbarth are still shrinking, and sun rays harmful to the Shadow Elves penetrate the forest canopy, the baneful sunlight even falling upon Rafielton. Despite these setbacks, the first children born to common elves and shadow elf mixed parents appear; losing their their pale skin and facial markings to the sun. Overcoming these vulnerabilities, these young elves are able to adapt more easily. This group is slowly incorporated into the Alfheim Clans and Families; their Shadow Elven clans eventually vanishing. Faith in Rafiel is shaken, as Shadow Elves question whether they were apparently abandoned, or finally guided by Rafiel to this long desired paradise. Religious and political debate ensues, mostly stirred by followers of Atzanteotl.
The larger second group, is comprised of the majority of Shadow Elves returning to the subterranean realms. Calling themselves Deep Elves to further distinguish them from the dark Shadow Elves and Fair Elves. This faction preserves the traditions practiced over the last centuries. Their numbers; however, are greatly diminished. About ten percent having died in the war and its aftermath, while nearly twenty percent relocated to the surface; and finally, roughly thirty-five percent travel to the Aengmor region, taking up the beliefs of the temple. The original Shadow Elf Clans remain in these locations, although lower in number.
This third group of Shadow Elves have developed a somewhat different appearance from known Shadow Elves; their skin turning darker instead of pale, and their hair almost white. These changes are due to influences of diet, behavior, environment and magic. Both natural magic and Atzanteotl’s strains over the region. Living in the former eastern subterranean Broken Lands, primarily centered around the temple of Aengmor, these Shadow Elves follow Atzanteotl, most being reasonably young. Formerly followers of Rafiel, they became greatly disillusioned with the failures of the Canolbarth, and Rafiel’s seemingly strict doctrines. None bear the familiar purple marks of the Shaman, and those turning away from Rafiel, and oncedisplaying these blemishes, notice these marks slowly fade.
Losing most terrain altering skills and magic, they live as humanoids once did in the area. These "Dark Elves", as they come to be known, still harbor great animosity toward all surface dwellers, yet consciously accept the companionship of evil races. Even monsters, such as Xrathpack the Beholder, come to dwell in their midst; of course under Dark Elf rule. These Dark Elves slowly become stronger, developing superior abilities. The neighbouring Dwarves dubbed them: "Drow", stating they are "Worse than an elf, or an inferior Humanoid; even sorrier than a Shadow Elf".
Most Dark Elves slowly turn toward Evil, though they certainly do not consider it so; claiming retribution, equality, and rights, for past misdeeds aimed at them. No Shadow Elf clans remain among them, all joining the "new clan" of... the Dark Elves.
Fenfolk revolt in Fenhold, in 1119 AC. Their heritage becoming known to them after adventurers succeeded in entering Dovestone Tower in the Cruth Mountains.16 With greater than foreseen forces, they take hold of Fenhold. Soon their reign extends to Alleybrook. This minor political upheaval forced human communities in the region to band together with elves, despite mutual reservations, as ordered by the Fenfolk. This action is a prelude to eastward expansion of New Canolbarth. The New Fenhold Forest, never held Hometrees, yet elves used magic to rapidly alter the area into a more suitable habitat; one where Hometrees might later prosper.
Around Selenica, residents have transformed the cursed province of Avonleigh into a new wooded region with the Alfheim elves aid. An attempt to transform the region in order to act as a deterrent towards undead. The endeavor is a partial success, as undead disperse over a greater region and have lesser impact on surrounding communities. Many fallen Hometrees still lie around, and while the fungal forest has taken root on more locations, the old Canolbarth is still shrinking. The magic used to recreate the forest's water resources failed so far, and most water is gone deep within the underground.
The link between negative forces in the region is now becoming clearer. Ravaging humanoid warbands in the North continually plunder, preventing economic growth. Several renegade Dragons attack Shadow Elf villages, and Evil Fairies between Stalkbrow and Dragontree further disrupt the region. Shadow Elves renouncing Rafiel’s teachings, destabilize the religious foundations of the Shadow Elf Clans.
In the winter of 1121 AC, Xatapechtli becomes engrossed with his experiments. His ambition is to eventually exterminate all not obeying Atzanteotl’s creed. Failing to convert Carmina Daefiel, a captured Shadow Elf Follower of Rafiel, he then decides to use her in his evil experiments. Using the merging effect learned earlier, he attempts to meld this obstinate elf with a wolf spider in a more pliable mindstate. The extremely painful transformation lasts at least twelve hours, with the outcome being somewhat unexpected; a partial union of two species. Similar in appearance to Manscorpions, having the Torso and upper body of the original Elf, yet the lower body replaced with the abdomen and legs of of an immense spider. Carmina seemingly retains her gender and personality after the transformation, and acquired a poisonous bite and a strong devotion to her creator. Her dietary system changed into a carnivorous one, her digestive saliva liquefying flesh to consume. Her diet consists now primarily of Demihumans, Humanoids, Humans or animals and Insects in times of scarcity.
This ritual, however, alters Xatapechtli as well. Atzanteotl, pleased with his subject’s devotion, feels Xatapechtli’s latest evil deed is proof enough. Summoning Xatapechtli’s bodily essence, Atzanteotl transforms Xatapechtli into a superior female ideal of this new race, and a reminder of his power. Atzanteotl "gifts" Xatapechtli with the name Lolth, a title now revered by Dark Elves of Aengmor and the Broken Lands.
Lolth directly starts to achieve a hold over her disciples, showering them with all the treasure she collected as Xatapechtli. Which contains millions in riches, and a multitude of magical devices. Lolth, no longer needing these material possessions, feels their best use is bestowing these resources unto followers, strengthen the faith.
Within a few decades, Atzanteotl withdraws from active coercion and plotting, though remaining acknowledged and respected, and Lolth ascends to his role. With her creations, these "Driders" (Spider + Drow = Drider) will become the fifth and final stem of Shadow Elves. Hollow World Schattenalfen being the fourth. Lolth creates Driders from followers deemed weak of devotion. The fear of this punishment makes her control absolute. Even Dark Elves dislike and fear Driders, despite cohabitation.
Climate/ Terrain: Subterranean Caves and Cities
Frequency: Very Rare
Organization: Solitary or Bands
Activity Cycle: Above ground Night only (they suffer double sun damage as any
Shadow Elf. )
Diet: Any meat, but liquified meat or blood preferred
Abilities: As normal Dark Elves ST+1, IN/WI unaffected, DX-2, CO+3, CH-5
Size: L 9' tall 4-5' wide, 8' long , legs can span 15’
AL : Chaotic (Evil)
NA: 1 or 1d4
Armour Class: 3
Armor Value 3 on insect body/legs else 0 or by armor worn
MV: 120’/40’, on web 50%
HD: 1 HD / Level
HP: 1d8+1 / Level
THAC0: As per dark elf mage or priest level +2
ATT: 1 weapon or 1 bite
Damage: by weapon or 1d4+special
Special Attacks: Paralyzing Poison (1*) Spells (1*/2 spell levels able to cast)
Special Defences: nil
Magic Resistance: 15%
Treasure: Sx2, U, + 1d3 Dark Elf weapons (may be magic), 1 Holy
Book+Symbol or 1 Spellbook. 15% top half of a Dark Elf Armor
(may be magical).
XP Mages: 6th*** level 1250, 7th*** level 1650
XP Priest: 6th*** level 1250, 7th*** level 1650, 8th*** level 2300, 9th*** Level 3000, 10th**** level 3700
These strange creatures have the Head and torso of a Dark Elf and the legs and lower body of a huge spider. They are created by Lolth the new Dark Elf Immortal. When a Dark Elf of above-average ability reaches 6th level, the goddess may put him or her through a special test. those that fail become driders. Priests of 8th and mages of 11th level or higher never fail the test. All Driders are capable of casting the spells of a Normal; Dark Elf, and retain the magical or Clerical abilities they possessed before the transformation. 40% were Clerics of 6th level, 20% of 7th level, 20% were 6th level mages, 10% of 7th level, 5% of 8th level and 5% of 9th or 10th level. Drider (and Dark Elf) Clerics are granted spell-like abilities by Lolth Clairvoyance, Detect Lie, Charm person, and Dispel Magic once a day.
They fight with swords or axes or bows, and retain any weapon mastery (which may even be increased by self-training only).
They can also bite with their fanged mouth for 1d4 damage and inject a poison. (Save vs poison at -2 or paralysis occurs for 10+1d10 minutes (10 minutes =1 Turn, 1 minute =6 rounds). If the save is successful it causes 1d10 minutes numbness resulting in a initiative penalty of 1.
Because they've failed their goddess's test, they are outcasts from the dark elf communities. As thus they are usually found alone or with 2d6 huge spiders of any kind(10% chance). They still feel responsible for their failure and keep near the Dark Elves and help where they can. They are violent, aggressive creatures that favor blood over all types of food (like spiders) they stalk their victims tirelessly, waiting for the right chance to strike.
Sometimes they are placed in temples, burial grounds or enclosed dungeons with valuables as guards as their final task, they don't want to fail again. Then their morale then will be 11 instead a normal 10.
Driders as being biological constructs, created solely by Atzanteotl’s Immortal Curse, do not reproduce (they simply lack the necessary organs), however, as being originally Shadow Elven, they may have the desire to do so. They have a Shadow Elves lifespan.
They are able to produce a thick whitebleuish or grey (latter only by males) webbing, which is only used in creating pathways (over chasms etc), or strengthening unstable constructions. Unlike normal web, it can’t be used to entrap a prey within, as it quickly loses its stickiness, but is strong enough to support weight. It can be harvested, and used to make silk ropes of, or silk fabric. This silk can’t be colored (except by a color spell) and is very coarse or rough, so not likely to be used in clothing. Even Driders know their web has no other use. It can’t be tossed or thrown, but once stuck to a surface it will bond until washed with alcohol. If they want to use it as a bridge, they must find a way to the other side themselves first, dragging the web behind them. This web is as durable as common nylon (several months to years depending on use/circumstances).
Over the next years in Limbo, effects of the Great Battle of Souls fought by Engledoc become clear. With the combined efforts of Alfheim elves, Shadow Elves and Fairies; the Magic points of Dewdrop and Turnclaw become cleansed of their former taint17. Finally with the help of Raspaert the Gold Dragon, returning after decades in exile, they even alter the Bad Magic Point of Dragontree, now linked to the Lawful Draconic Plane of Diamond instead of the Draconic Plane of Chaos, Pearl; in the Winter of 1149 AC. Thus Dragontree becomes a Good Magic Point.
1140 - 1199 AC:
The New Canolbarth is now a continuing work of progress between Alfheim Elves and Darokinians; and as many of the Deep Elves have lost interest in the outer world, they refrain from obstructing the forest’s rebirth. First and foremost because they have discovered most of the underground water originated in the Canolbarth, and because of their past deeds even vast underground resources are now rapidly diminishing. So the Deep Elves decide to remain absent, and by their actions, actually promote regrowth. Unknown to the Alfheim Elves and Darokinians, Deep Elves use their ground magics to nourish the soil, harkening the forest’s revival, as retribution.
Fungal growth in all its variety becomes a normal occurrence within the greater parts of the New Canolbarth. These fungi originate in the Shadow Elves’ underground realm, and with resident moisture they have replaced the dead trees where they once grew, filling an important niche in the ecosystem. Altered Hometrees still remain in existence. These heavily shaded areas will become home to the Shadow Elves deciding to reside on the surface, and protects them from the harsh sun.
The Canolbarth has also overgrown the southern Darokin borderlands north of Karameikos. The northern borderlands remain dry, only irrigated by several seasonal creeks and rivers, and nearly bare of forest and scrubland, becoming a region undesirable to most. In effect, the Canolbarth Forest shifts southward to rest against the Cruth Mountains between Darokin, Karameikos, and the Five Shires. This has forced Darokin citizens and Elves to work together on a completely different level, though seen as mutual cooperation until now, will establish distinct relationships in the future.
The Pale Elves rely now on magic fungal potions (made from surface fungi that basked in the sun) to prevent damage from the sun19, but the children born from Alfheim and Shadow elf parents seem to lose this weakness. The continuous use of these fungal potions has also a strange s side effect; the duration of effect becomes longer with each use of the potion. Maybe in time, the Pale Elves won’t need any potions or only once in a long timespan. The future will tell.
The Soul Army of Engledoc greatly diminished, each gate became harder to conquer than the one before, and less and less elven souls were available. Engledoc accepted now all lawful souls, even Dwarves, who were willing to perish ultimately for the greater good. But his number grew less and less, and any progress came slower and harder with greater losses.
The Orcs of Xorg in the North saw the success of the combined efforts of the Elves and decided they wanted to have their own Magic Point. Some Half-Orcs who lived with the Elves in former Alfheim city knew of the locations of some magic points; even now they are collapsed. All the prisoners they had captured and enslaved, and their offspring (since spring 1013 AC), were gathered, and horrifying sacrificial rituals combined with Shaman and Wokani magic were poured into the formerly good magical point Shadowdown (one of the Initial magic points from the primal creation of the Canolbarth. )
In the meantime in Limbo Engledoc became attracted to the signs of incoming magic. He discovered another large Gate connected to an unknown Magic Point in Limbo. With his decreased army he began another part of his eternal battle. (Time is way different in Limbo, decades here are centuries there). But soon something went awfully wrong, while battling the final guards of Shadowdown, souls from different creatures, mostly humanoids, and a lot of blood and darkness began pouring in. Within the tendrils of darkness, wading in creeping blood thousands of sacrificed lives came in like a wave of souls. As yet new and unaware of their location and situation, Engledoc succeeded in slaying these new souls with less difficulty than the familiar guards. He succeeded to close down this gate and as thus reactivated the Magic point in the Prime Plane, but the work of the humanoids in the Prime Plane turned its influence to evil.20 Maybe the humanoids also succeeded in their goal, due to the continuous balance that the forest needs to remain active. But this will remain unknown to the Elves, humanoids and even to Engledoc.
The Northern part of the area remains dry, only moistened by several seasonal creeks and rivers. Being almost bare of forest and other growth, it became a region undesired by most. Humanoids (Especially the Orcs from Xorg, and from the former Broken lands), but also Kobolds and Ogres, dominate the region. The Goblins have retreated north into the mountains, and the Bugbears went East where they were welcome by a new bugbear regime under a powerful and clever Bugbear King named Purs. Purs was very intelligent and used all his wits to investigate the Ruins of Feador. He came forth with a multitude of former elven magical items. Their use still unknown, his shamans of Bartziluth commenced investigations. Purs was an experience humanoid hero. With skills trained by his father and grandfather from the era Thar ruled the Broken Lands he had become great. He had a wife and since recently a son. The small teddy bear-like creature suckled on the teet of his mother. Purs saw the glint of power and will within the dark eyes. He was content. Ushurpurs was the young one’s name.
1190 AC, Spring:
At the former Magic Point of Glowtree several fairies convened reintroducing foreign bioluminescent plants and several colonies of flitterlings. Even the nearby still active negative Magic Point Thornbush and its resident Imps were completely unaware. The old Treant Doak from the Emerlas had summoned the fairies, together with Raspaert and all druids and Talyn Grunalf and all of the other elven Treekeepers of the former Canolbarth who survived. He said something special was going to be happening.
Engledoc, slowly weakened by the centuries of battle, wandered with the remains of his army through Limbo, in search of yet another gate to close.
Doak and the fairies began singing an enchanting fairy song. The elves (not unknowing of fairy ways) wondered why, but stepped in. The human druids started to hum like a bumblebee. Raspaert summoned a powerful Dragon magical aura or energy. The soft yet beautiful orchestra of fairy power and music became audible all over the Canolbarth. Some Orcs in the north got goosebumps; "Not a nice day to be outside", was their saying.
Engledoc wondered when he would finally find resolution in their quest for eternal rest for him and the accompanying souls, suddenly they all hear a beautiful song. Maybe again a sign to another gate, they all prepared for battle, even though they were weary and weak. When arriving at the location they could see three Nightwalkers, three Nightstalkers, and 4 Nightwings with a large army of Wights and Wraiths who were distraught by the sensitive sounds and the light beckoning from the gate.
Several Wraiths entered the gate into the Prime Plane, only to be turned by the clerical powers of the few Elven clerics within the singing group.
Engledoc somehow knew this would be his final fight. His last soul-points thrived and throbbed within his almost empty shell. Yet still they grabbed their weapons of memory and entered the fray. The song became more and more powerful, and gave a warm feeling, something welcoming in the cold of Limbo. Then suddenly the sky opened and a golden light descended from the heavens. . A large beautiful Elven lady stepped from it, her appearance shredded the undead with fear, and her great power of Awe easily dispelled more. Several winged humanoids followed in her path, armed to the teeth. The battle was short and strong. Within the vapors of dispersing undead souls, she stepped forward towards Engledoc and stretched out a welcoming hand. No word was said, and if there would be one, it could never been understood due to the overpowering musical song emanating from the portal. Engledoc looked at the familiar hand of Ilsundal21 and turned away, first moving towards the gate to close it. The Music echoing still while the magical gate collapsed and the glowing lady smiled; She was right... her choice was good. She directed her hand again towards Engledoc. Weak he dislodged his iron Gauntlet and settled his small and tender fingers upon the giant hand. With the familiar smile she beckoned the other hero souls to do the same. Then a light, and Limbo was gone. Engledoc opened his eyes. The world now full of nature, trees and animals. He saw his company, now all bearing huge swanlike wings on their shoulders. "You have done well, Engledoc, Elven Angel Hero, now first it is time to rest". He shrugged his shoulders, closed his wings and fell asleep. Glowtree was reactivated.
1195 AC, Winter:
In the Hills around Feador, the powerful Bugbear King Purs perished from Old age. His son Ushurpurs, now himself an experienced soldier in the Bugbear army, took over and raised his personal Kingdom Ushurpurs in his own name. All the former magic of the Feador elves were now his kind to use. Among these were many potions of longevity, ... nobody knew at that moment how long Ushurpurs would be able to rule.
1200 - 1250 AC:
The DDC and the two Elven groups convened in 1202 AC. After a relatively short debate they all decided to adopt the Elven region within the Borders, politics and commerce of Darokin. Mutual benefits for all of them have driven the Elves and humans to make this important decision. The Canolbarth has regrown in these decades. The trees tower along the southern Cruth Mountains, and on some places the top branches can even be seen between the spires of the mountain chain from Karameikos and the Five Shires. The weather patterns are full with rain again, except for the northern part of Darokin. The cold winds rolling down the Dwarfgate Mountains blows all moisture southwards to the Cruth Mountains, where it combines in massive rain clouds.
The elves and humans now share the same land, the same profits and laws. Although some difference still exist, and sometimes even give problems, elves and humans are now equal to each other. They more often live together or near the other, sharing or trading, and even forming relations. Ilsundal now again enables them to gain mixed offspring.22
The internal path and Treepaths have been restored and connect the several towns. Typically many of these paths go up through the trees, while in the regions with fungi and lower structures, these follow over the ground, and sometimes even tunnel short distances (especially near Ainsu and Desnae. ). The nation changed the Ruins of Mealidor into a strong fortress to protect the region from humanoid incursions from the North.
The Elven city Elleromyr came to be attached to the Darokin road network, and now has a (4 horses abreast) cobblestone road to Corunglain. , just as the former Elven capital, which has a cobblestone road of 6 horses abreast. The road passes the old Minti Melon monument ruins, which are now to be restored as a monument of friendship between humans and elves of all Canolbarth. The Darokin Province Calair became a much larger region, with great produce (probably started by the very fertile ground, what was formerly elven woods). Many farmers relocated to this province when the Canolbarth absorbed their former lands. The only remembrance of the old Canolbarth is a single untainted huge Hometree in the area formerly known as Parth Teu’kelytka (Elven for; "Moonhorse Fields"). The elves requested to leave this 8 mile wide field encircled by four henges as it is for this legendary creature, which the new residents of the area readily accepted.
Many Elven trails and roads are not located on the ground. These 10’-30’ wide paths are often several hundreds of feet above the ground. Several branches of Hometrees were (and again will be) shaped in such a way that passage from one to the other Hometree can be made with relative ease. Sometimes they even the reach to the top of hills, where they can get accessed easily. Otherwise, there are wide walkways circling the stems of the Hometrees enabling to get to the interconnecting treepath branches. These branches can even be traversed by carts, but only with the use of Elven Horses or Moonhorses (Both having a natural Trewalking ability. Further information about these creatures see Monster Manual Compilation chapter "Animals". Rarely have these paths railings, except when having a steep angle, stairway or attached settlement.
These railing tend to be highly decorative, and often bridge over the whole path. Bioluminescent lanterns (with hoods if need be) guide the way. Where there are no Interconnecting branches, sturdy wide ropebridges do exist to continue the Treepath. All in all it will be somewhat like this.23
Treepath traversing need a Treewalking skill every mile covered (or a dex check at-5). Failure means a minor mistake; roll again; failure means a serious fall, roll again; failure means fall down. Elves, and other Forest creatures get a +2 on this roll. Usage of carts give a penalty of -3, but cumulative if failed for each next roll. Carts without spiked wheels give a penalty of -5 instead.
The province of Inlashar became a border region, when the old towers were restored giving enough protection from the humanoid incursions in the north. The main road to Corunglain now fully installed, being instead improved remains of the ancient Urudtai trail. A 6 horses abreast cobble-, and flagstone road it now has become.
The southern provinces; Dolos, Fenhold, Nemis, Cruth, Comeille have changed significantly. Some borders were rearranged, mostly under command of the borders of the Canolbarth itself, some lands were given to bordering provinces, some were taken. They are now separate provinces, no more borderland, within the new province of Alfheim. A stable fusion of Elven and human residents, they changed and grew, also due to the great benefit from the widened road (8 horses abreast) and Dwarven Train through the area. Fenhold is now an open Prince, where especially Half-Elves are welcomed. Its borders became greater than before their revolt.
The provinces; Farstead, Alleybrook, and Canolbarth Borderlands, ceased to be. The Province of Alleybrook became part of the Province of Cruth.
The formerly cursed province of Avonleigh, became part of the Province of Selenica or the Great Province of Alfheim. The Province of Hobart, also became part of Selenica, mostly due to the importance of the Dwarven Train.
The Provinces Northmark and Eraeda only lost some miles of land, but gained more water flows.
The Province of Eastwind is completely overgrown by the new Canolbarth. Many humans left decades, almost centuries, earlier out of fear of the Shadow Elves, but many more leave now the forest takes over. The hamlets and villages had a new precept; "Clear the new trees on the land and keep doing it, for if you do not, the forest will take your land, and you have to adapt or leave". This act caused an overall change in the region. Some locations disappeared, swallowed by the New Canolbarth, leaving nothing or only some minor ruins. Other locations became open spots with a hamlet or village enclosed within the towering trees. Many moved to the new lands in Calair, where the fertile ground gives abundant produce. Older hamlets and villages grew into villages and towns; like Cornackers and Sword of the Lake.
The Province of Eastwind thus seized to exist. The Elves and humans in the region gained new Hometrees, no giant Oaks, but Walnut. Equal in size and shape, but enabling more light to the undergrowth. Especially on the Emyn Kotsivoite (Elvish for Nut-bearing Hills) these giant trees grow prominently. All other nut-bearing plants (Hazel, Hickory, etc. ) also gained a tripled growth in produce, hence nobody complained.24
Alfheim city, renamed again, is now somewhat of a secondary Capital in Darokin, specialized in Elven matters and Nature in common. Elves are still ruled here, now democratically together with Darokinians. A merging of Shadow Elf stone structures, nature, wood structures and even human ideas, it became a much brighter place than before. The Alfheim Part of the Darokin Senate includes both Alfheim Elves and former Shadow Elves, and there is even a consulate for the Deep Shadow Elves. In effect Alfheim now is part of Darokin and vice-versa. Both share all rights and benefits,... as being one nation and one population, sharing and taking benefit of differences in race, culture and ideas. They all now listen more to each other instead of letting themselves being lead by bigotry and fear, distrust or hate.
The merging of the Shadow Elves and their altered Hometrees and Fungal forest became balanced. The fungi live like they did in the Underground, or have slightly adapted (to the sun)... the same happened with the Shadow Elves. All offspring seem to have lost all underground adaptations. The only difference is that they seem to be somewhat paler than common elves. These Shadow Elves are free from their ultimate Faith of Rafiel, but some still follow it. Others follow Elven Faiths of the Alfheim Elves or even the Church of Darokin. In effect they are no more different than the Alfheim Elves except from some history and interests.
The Dark Elves hate these Pale Elves more than they hate Alfheim Elves, but their culture of hate and distrust has caused them to become a loosely tied clutch of small groups within the caves of the Old Broken Lands. They seem to cooperate with spiders and monsters like the Beholder Xrathpack, and many humanoids which returned to the Eastern Broken Lands, although still ruled by the Dark Elves. It is rumored that one of these Dark Elves recently became Immortal under the guidance of Atzanteotl, and slowly takes over his faith in this region. Her Symbol seems to be a spider, and her magic was so strange and evil, that she even merged spiders with Dark Elves (called Driders)
The Deep Elves, still have contact and even share commerce with the surface, but blocked all ways to the Broken Lands. They refrain themselves from making contact with the Dark Elves, and if there is contact, it is mostly a short battle, and then a retreat.
The bad magic Point of Stalkbrow is still active with evil Fairies and Goblin Park is still inactive. The border between the new forest and these regions is under close supervision, both by patrols and magic. But even the evil fairies and humanoids keep a strict eye upon the region. This stalemate will probably remain in existence for centuries, maybe with some skirmishes in between. The region between Goblin Park and active Stalkbrow, is currently sparsely populated by the Imps, and regular attacks of the nearby Orc, Ogre and Kobold bands (who have taken hold of the ruins of Pintel). The Wokani and Shamans became more knowledgeable due to the books they recovered in the ruins of the former Elves here. Though most is gone by decay, enough was available to increase the yield of spells these humanoids were able to wield. Many large spiders and scorpions live in this whole region, used as mounts for the Imps. Other insects (including large versions) live here too, feeding upon the remnants of the former Hometrees, being food themselves for the spiders. There is rumor of a single hive of Aspis north-east of this region near the hills (near the Realm of Ushurpurs), but these refrain themselves from making contact to sentient species (other than for food/tools/slaves).25
The Elves have tried to retake Algorn's Last Stand (since 1192 AC, 8 attempts) but so far failed due to the strategic tactics of the clever Bugbear King Ushurpurs. The magic point has completely shut down and any attempt on either side remained unsuccessful. Whether this will remain this way is still unknown.
Humanoids hearing of the success of Shadowdown currently try to reactivate Misthaven, but they seem to miss the knowledge and sacrifices for this tremendous magical feat, and fail, every year again, since their first attempt in 1193 AC. Unknown to them is that there is no more soul army of Engledoc who closes the gate from the other side. Their are still guards in Limbo on these locations, but they will most probably have reverted to the primal Wights and/or Wraiths, since the "threat" of closing is almost nil. The few minor gates in Limbo (less than 6, these are the 5% of the gates Engledoc did not close) still existing lead to possible future magic points and can only spontaneously activate due to circumstances on the Prime Plane in the Canolbarth itself.
1208 AC, Summer:
The ragtag group of adventurers led by Talyn Grunalf, who ventured against the Dark elves find a miles long, centuries old tunnel. The tunnel holds remains of the great Shadow Elf invasion 1007 AC. Investigating further, (leaving Doak to return to New Canolbarth) they come to a dead end. The wall clearly reveals molten reshaped stone, probably with the use of magic. A well worded Disintegrate spell allows them to continue, and exit within the fungal woods west of Black Lake. A few feet away they discover the bleak bones and corroded armor of an Elven warrior, with his right arm and index finger pointing straight at the cave entrance. In the upcoming weeks it is discovered that the Mithril Sword bears a name; Engledoc Dewsap. Talyn can’t hold her tears, more than 200 years she felt his support in her goal to restore the Canolbarth, now all is at the end, all has done what they could have done. The ruling council finally learns what Engledoc had discovered, and decide to make his sacrifice to be remembered. A white alabaster Sarcophagus is created, emblazoned with the story of his deeds in bas relief pictures. A life-sized kneeling statue erected where he was found, pointing towards the cave. Inside the cave the sarcophagus is placed perpendicular to the corridor, hindering passage beyond. Gates are placed on both ends, warded with magic seals. Henceforth it will be named the Dewsap Cave or Engledoc’s Tomb. A final memory for the Hero who did what he could. In his tomb his items are stored. His ring of Djinni Summoning however is merged with the pointing finger of the statue. The Djinn is ordered to take action when needed to do so against the enemies of Alfheim. In the winter of the same year an Angel was seen within the region. Soon thereafter the area strangely became one of the minor magic locations, having a negative effect upon all illusions, invisibility and silence, making them more easily to detect and dispel (except fairies Invisibility to Mortals). Radius of effect; Sphere 200 yards.
FUTURE GAME BALANCE ISSUES
If Misthaven would ever be reactivated, the whole region here up to 40 miles away would be clouded in an everlasting moist fogbank (visuals less than 100' ) as before. This would become a great boon to the Fungii. They would rapidly (less than 10 years) replace all the fallen trees and thus enlarge the fungal forest there. The new Canolbarth border would then be pushed further northwards (almost up to the hills north and east of Misthaven), to the edge of the new forest. However, the area would remain a source of food, predation, and hunting to the high number of humanoids there. Chance this could happen eventually someday is about fifty-five percent per century.
If Goblin Park would ever be reactivated, it would become a negative magical point and thus a boon to the humanoids living there. Together with still negative active Stalkbrow, this would increase their hold of this region, becoming a mixture of imps and Humanoids territory. Chance this could happen eventually someday is forty percent per century.
If Algorn's Last Stand would ever be reactivated (a very slim chance though) it would cause the region a new area of growth, but not trees, rather bushes, and low plants. With the demise of the forest, by drought, fire and the wood looted from nearby Humans and Humanoids, and the region taken over by the Bugbear Ushurpurs, all seeds of trees or larger plants have completely perished. The region changed forever. However, a "new" magic point would still benefit all races (Bugbear, Humans and Elves) in a positive way... maybe even enabling a weird truce... for several years. Chance this could happen eventually someday is nineteen percent per century.
Any new Magic points will reflect the happenings creating the point in the first place. the chance of this happening is extremely small, and never near another magic point. It can only be spontaneously created by magic, under special circumstances (Set by the DM... read Gazetteer 5 The Elves of Alfheim)
The Emerlas thus would remain Humanoid territory, and never return to the Canolbarth. The area would become darker, with glooming dark shadows everywhere. Darker creatures (like Shroud Spiders (see B10- TSR9149-Night´s Dark Terror), Shadows and Shadow Wolves) are drawn to the area by the magic of Shadowdown, or even created, and settle between the humanoids (sometimes preying on them). Fort Mealidor became a strong point of knowledge about these vile (not undead!!) creatures, and a great point of defence to the inhabitants of the Canolbarth.
In effect there are now 4 sorts of Shadow Elves on Mystara;
Evil Shadow Elves mostly called Dark Elves, or Drow; Located in Underground in Eastern Broken Lands, Followers of Atzanteotl and the New (former Shadow Elf ) Immortal Lolth. Darker skin, lighter Hair, Love for Spiders, Evil to Neutral at best, Neutral to Chaotic. Have normal Elf Wizards, and Elf Clerics with mostly Lolth’s spells. They no longer have Shamans, these have become full fledged clerics.
Driders are a variation of Dark elves.
Shadow Elves often called Deep Elves; Located in Shadow Elf Underground Territories, Followers of Rafiel. Pale skin, white Hair Clear Eyes (sometimes Purple skin markings) Have Wizards and Shamans. Neutral but a bit Xenophobic.
Surface Shadow Elves sometimes called Pale Elves; In the Canolbarth Forest (especially the Altered Forest and Fungal Forest). Often merging with normal Alfheim Elves. Pale skin, Light hair, but a better tint than the Deep Elves. Darker hair and greenish tint of skin like the Alfheim Elves are also more and more common. Slowly adapting to the sun (In about 1 or 2 generations at most this species will have completely merged and be indistinct from any other surface elves). Followers of Ilsundal and other Surface Elves Immortals, but many also of Rafiel, but much more free and less restricted than the deep elves (it is a declining Faith however). Have Wizards and some Clerics, no Shamans anymore. Neutral and Open.
Schattenalfen; In the Hollow World, Followers of Atzanteotl. Have Wizards and Clerics. Neutral to Chaotic and many also Evil.
Shadow Wolves Adjusted from ST1 "Up the Garden Path" AC3, AV0, HD4+1**, MV 180’(40’), Att 1 bite, Dm 1d4+special, NA 2d6(1d6), SV MU5, Mr 12, TT nil, IN 6, AL CN, XP 275. Shadow Wolves are creatures of pure shadow, which can be called into being by powerful magic (in this case the Bad Magic point Shadowdown). In appearance, they are very much like normal grey wolves, except that, in bright light, they are slightly translucent. They can only be harmed by magical or silver weapons. In addition to causing damage, the bite of a shadow wolf causes its victims to fade into shadow. In the process the victim loses 1 hp per round and gradually becomes greyer and slightly translucent to onlookers. This fading process continues until the victim is reduced to zero hp, in which case he or she becomes a shadow wolf, or a successful saving throw vs. Paralyzation is made to survive. Additional bites inflicted while a victim is fading do not increase the rate of hp loss. You should keep separate records of bite and "fading" damage caused to each victim, since the latter is resistant to magical methods of healing, such as cure spells and potions. Two "hp worth" of magical healing are required to restore each hp lost as a result of fading. Victims who choose to rest and recover do so at the normal rate (1 hp per day of rest). Once a Shadow Wolf only a Wish can reverse the effect. The soul will be released once the Shadow wolf perishes, and can then be reincarnated or pass on, a Raise Dead will only revive the wolf, as it is, like the Shadow, NOT an undead. Shadows and Shadow wolves do NOT work together, but will not attack each other or Undead. A slain Shadow Wolf will, like the Shadow, leave a quickly evaporating ethereal goo, that can be used to restore Strength draining of Shadows, equal to Shadow goo. When this goo is devoured it will restore some of the Strength any Shadow had drained from a victim. Check for initiative for the moment the goo comes into existence (the same moment the Shadow was slain). Each initiative segment 1 strength is evaporated from the goo, and after 1 full round it will be gone. A character gobbling up the disgusting black goo, will be able to restore as many strength as it can consume before it evaporates, but never more than its own body lost, and never faster than 2 + PC’s constitution adjustment (never less than 1) in 1 round = 6 segments. Only thus will Strength drained from a spell or item be able to restore a living creature, and not restore the spell or item in question. The goo cannot be stored in any way, but temporal stasis, or setting it outside of time, will prevent it from evaporating. It will further always evaporate unless consumed.
Engledoc is first described in GAZ5 "The Elves of Alfheim", Page 55, TSR 9223. He is described as being the "Tavernkeeper" of Quickneedle's Rest in Alfheim Town, which he has owned for around a century. History: Engledoc’s parents were born from mixed elf-human unions, though Engledoc is wholly elven. In his younger years he adventured throughout the Known World, even spending some time in Rockhome disguised as human mage. During the last century; however, much of that time was spent with Talyn Grunalf, wandering across the Darokin borderlands. Finally the pull of the forest drew him home...just not all the way. He adopted his current name shortly after taking charge of Quickneedle’s.
Personality: Quiet and laid back by human standards, yet seen as jumpy and assertive by forest elves. Wide variety of friends and acquaintances from Quickneedle’s, but has little influence, despite having access to most current rumors. Engledoc holds no Clan ties.
Appearance: Tall and heavily built for an elf 5’8" and 160 pounds, but would seem slim among human warriors; with curly black hair and blue eyes. Age: 350. Dresses in typical Alfheim Town fashion, usually sporting a brown leather apron when keeping bar.
DMing Notes: Engledoc is one of the more immediately accessible NPCs for the character to meet. Before the start of the war, he is usually encountered at Quickneedle’s Rest. After the war’s commencement, he can be found virtually anywhere in the forest, recruiting the characters to help in his quest.
Combat Notes: E9; AC 8; hp 42; MV 120’ (40’); #AT 1; D 5-10 (Elven Longsword +2 +1 vs humanoids and Str. Bonus); Save E7; ML 9; AL LN; ST 15, IN 16, WI 14, DX 15 CO 11, CH 14, CM 12. [Base AC 8; with magic 6]
Favoured Spells: Engledoc employs spells good for quieting down rambunctious patrons and detecting possible trouble; such as Sleep, Charm Person and Detect Evil. Level I: Charm Person, Detect Magic, Sleep. Level II: Detect Evil, Wizard Lock/Knock. Level III: Clairvoyance, Dispel Magic, Hold Person, Protection from Normal Missiles. Level IV: Charm Monster, Remove Curse, Wizard Eye.
Abilities & Skills: Knowledge of Alfheim Town (I), Knowledge of Rockhome (I), Persuasion (CH), Riding (D), Tavernkeeping (W), Tracking (I).
Languages: Elvish, Thyatian, Darokin, Dwarven, Orc (Tharian), Gnoll (Dwarfgate), Hobgoblin (Everast).
Magic Items: Engledoc still has his Ring of Djinni Summoning, and Wand of Illusion (5 charges). In combat he uses and Elven Longsword +2, (+1 vs Humanoids).
Dislikes: Boredom, Brawls, Betrayal and Intrigue. Also Orcs and Trolls.
Likes: Quickneedle's Rest, good conversation, and a hearty brew!
Fears: Shadow Elves, the Undead, and being dead!
Additional Notes: Engledoc still pines for Talyn, despite thinking him being the one who ended the relationship. Engledoc still wanted to adventure, when Talyn wanted to return home. In fact, he questions what brought him back. His longing for home, or his desire for her. He has yet to start another relationship, and is unaware of Perfynn and Talyn’s recent elopement.
Some of Engledoc’s current statistics vary from those in the gazetteer, as he has acquired better weapons, equipment and experience over the last decades. His soul statistics in Limbo will be the same, with the same items (being soul reflections actually) according to Limbo rules, as explained by Bruce Heard’s article on Undead in Dragon #180 and in "Monster Manual compilation book Undead".
Talyn Grunalf Treekeeper of Clan Grunalf
History: Talyn has spent nearly her entire life within the bounds of the Canolbarth, and she is infinitely familiar with the Northern tip of the forest, including Dew Drop and Misthaven. Though Talyn rarely travels beyond the River of Monsters, she is often found as far North as the Emerlas. In her wanderlust youth, along with her companion and love) Engledoc Dewsap, she traveled throughout the Darokin borderlands, almost twice meeting her doom. The first being, along the foothills of the Dwarfgates, running into a Bargda and his Ogre and Troll minions. She and Engledoc Dewsap the only members of their party to escape. Afterwards, Talyn spent some years in both Glantri City and Selenica before permanently returning to the forest. Upon returning, and traversing the Selinar region, she was almost slain by Dûr-tirn, The Dark Watcher, an evil Beholder minion of the wizard Moorkroft. Only with the aid of Druid Cucurbita Pepo, did she evade death. When her parents found out that she had taken up with an elf of mixed elf-human unions, she was forced to distance herself from him and return to her studies. Grudgingly she being taken by "Pepo" to meet Ara-Laur uin Eryn, the Old King of the Woods. It was the ancient Treant’s philosophical ponderings that eventually set her on the Way of the Tree.
Personality: Talyn is generally reserved, but when peril or politics threaten the clan she musters an assertive resolve to argue her point, or defend the clan. Though she and Durifern Widefarer are seldom in disagreement, Talyn often wishes he was more attentive to clan duties. His frequent hunting trips regularly require Talyn to assume both role of Treekeeper and Clanmaster. In fact, should Durifern and Talyn ever come to odds, most likely the bulk of the clan would follow her lead. His terse manner is also a matter of contention between them. Frequently, she torments him with youthful inquiries and demands, until finally getting her way.
Appearance: Only 242 years old, Talyn is both young at heart and of mind. At only 5’2" tall, and 110 pounds; she exudes a fit and youthful vigor. Although faircomplected, her life in the outdoors has given her a healthy tan. Talyn is immediately recognizable, boasting platinum blond hair, graced by unusual streaks of grey; which she wears unbound save a single pleat in back. A consequence of her encounter with a Beholder years ago. Elves being somewhat innately magical, the Beholder’s anti-magic ray "aged" her locks. Talyn’s blue-green eyes have a jewel-like quality. Depending on the light, they appear either like sapphires, in sunlight and bright environments, or resemble emeralds, in low-light or darkness. Giving her excellent vision in any given situation. She primarily dresses in green and brown shades, dappled with orange and yellow hues. The colors of the forest.
DMing Notes: Despite assuming her responsibilities only ninety-two years past, after the sudden and unexpected death of the former Treekeeper, Talyn is nonetheless a capable Keeper, yet still a wanderer and adventurer at heart. While characters will only find a cold shoulder from Durifern, they might receive warm welcome from Talyn. Provided of course they prove themselves friends and worthy defenders of the forest.
Personality: Silent, yet curious, careful, yet intelligent, when younger boisterous.
Combat Notes: E12th level Treekeeper; AC 4(base 8, magic+2); hp 46; MV 120’ (40’); #AT 2 (Attack Class D); D 1d8+3 (Quarterstaff +1, EX Mastery); Save E10; ML 11; AL N(G); ST 8, IN 16, WI 17, DX 14, CO 14, CH 16, CM 18. [Magic Base: 6]
Abilities & Skills: Animal Empathy—Forest Animals (CH), Forest Survival (W), Hiding (I), Knowledge of Canolbarth Forest— Focus Trees of Life (I), Lore—Clan Grunalf (I), Lore—Magic Ritual (I), Treewalking (D), Woodlore (I).
Languages: Elvish, Glantrian, Thyatian, Orc (Tharian), Goblin (High Yazar & Doth), Hobgoblin (Hutai), Kobold (Cruth/Black Hill Dialects), Hill Giant.
Favoured Spells: Talyn abhors lethal and fire-based spells. Level I: Command Word, Charm Person, Faerie Fire, Faerie Lights, Longstride. Level II: Entangle, Invisibility, Mirror Image, Silence, Warp Wood, Web. Level III: Call Lightning, Fly, Hold Animal, Hold Person, Protection from Normal Missiles. Level IV: Charm Monster, Confusion, Fear, Growth of Plants, Hallucinatory Terrain. Level V: Control Temperature 10’ Radius, Control Winds, Feeblemind, Telekinesis, Teleport. Level VI: Anti-Animal Shell, Anti-Magic Shell, Cure Serious Wounds, Lower Water, Pass Plant, Stone to Flesh.
Magic Items: Talyn has Leather Armor +2, Quarterstaff +1, A Ring of Fire Resistance, and Silver Torc of Protection +2.
Clan Items access to; Treekeeper staff of wizardry (has nature spells; Thornstrike (Magic Missile variant for 8d6+8 damage ), Faerie Fire(Lvl 1), Entangle, Invisibility, Bioluminescence (variant of Continual Light), Warp Wood, Web (Lvl 2), Growth of Plants, Obscure, Summon Animals (Lvl 4), Plant Door (Lvl 5). Control weather (Lvl 6), further equal to normal Staff of Wizardry, 31 charges left, recharges 1 charge per week if placed in Tree of Life. Can only be used by Treekeepers.
Faith;: Patron, Ilsundal.
Dislikes: Violence, Sport, Orcs, Trolls, & Goblins.
Likes: Exotic Fruits (Banana, Pineapple), Chocolatl, Elegant Jewelry, Foreign Shoes (Especially Ylari Sandals & Peshwari Chappals), & Laelia Orchids.
Fears: Beholders, Bargdas, & Fire.
Additional Notes: Talyn has all of Clan Grünalf’s magical recourses at her disposal. Most often she also wears an elven cloak and boots when traveling far afield, and carries wands of healing (20 charges), persuasion (20 charges), and paralyzation (12 charges) to avert dangerous foes. In combat she is precautious, staying back and casting spells, aware of her importance within the clan. However; she isn’t afraid to enter the fray when necessary, attacking with her Quarterstaff +1. Talyn has expert mastery with the weapon, from her years before taking role as Treekeeper; leaving Alfheim once every five years to train with a Master in Selenica, to keep this skill relevant. Talyn’s magical silver torc is actually a gift from Princess Carlotina of Erewan in Glantri. Presented to her after saving a diplomatic envoy and his entourage from certain death. The torc is decorated with bronze filigree which has heavily oxidized in Alfheim’s humid climate, giving the entire torc a verdigris tone. The bronze seemingly glowing with magical energy.
Talyn and Perfynn’s relationship is barely two decades old, despite having known each other close to a century. As of yet, Talyn and Perfynn have no children, though that may change.
Perfynn Grunalf Captain of the Guard of Clan Grunalf
History: To most, it would seem as if Perfynn Grunalf has led an unremarkable life. After his initial twenty years of youth, he spent the next forty learning the ways of the elven forester, and shortly thereafter began a storied career in Alfheim’s armed forces. First serving with distinction at The Sump & Weir, and after serving in nearly every Alfheim post over the next three hundred years, until finally making his way home. Tasked as Captain of the Guard, a job that is first and foremost protecting the Clanmaster of Clan Grunalf, Perfynn has found it to be one of his most difficult charges in his three-hundred year career. For Durifern Widefarer, a name aptly given, refuses to allow Perfynn to do his assigned duty. Durifern often wandering off into the wilds alone. So Perfynn has instead taken up being defender and protector of Ainsun, and the Grunalf clan members residing there.
Utmost among them, Perfynn has come to respect Talyn Grunalf, steadfast custodian of the Tree of Life; and not unlike himself, thrust into the impossible undertaking of having to occasionally deal with Durifern. Yet over the course of Talyn’s tenure, the two have come to mutual understanding, which has slowly matured into a romantic relationship. Both feeling Clan Grunalf might be better off with Perfynn as Clanleader, and Durifern as Counsel.
Personality: Though boisterous in his youth, Perfynn is now able to stand toe to toe with Durifern’s gruff demeanor, except when it comes to Talyn. Though a soldier through and through, Talyn has awakened a different side within him; one of intelligence and curiosity. Perfynn is amazed at Talyn’s ability to still marvel over the mysteries of the forest; and in turn he has begun to ask relevant questions, and carry on meaningful dialogue with her about the Canolbarth. Ones even filled with full sentences. A chore his superior is evidently unwilling to master!
Appearance: At 352 years old, Perfynn is the typical 5’6" height for a male elf, yet brawny, weighing 168 pounds. He wears his wavy chestnut hair to his shoulders, usually unbound. Perfynn’s golden eyes seem cold and emotionless, until viewed in Talyn’s presence. Like most Alfheim warriors, his fair complexion bares a light tan. Though in the past, almost always encountered in his enchanted leather armor, complete with wooden shield strapped to his arm; these days Perfynn’s tastes are changing, Talyn’s influence at work. Now seen sporting brown trousers and flowing long-sleeved singlets with lace up fronts. Perfynn is apparently trying to appear more Clanmaster, and less soldier these days.
DMing Notes: Perfynn will not usually be the first Grunalf clan member characters meet. His eventual appearance might take place after being rebuffed by Durifern, or being referred by Talyn. He is mildly tolerant of other races, and even has some affection for druids and foresters, having met a few in the past. Though he enthusiastically attempts to recruit young elves into the army. Characters not of the clan, and lingering too long, might find themselves being escorted toward The Sump & Weir to report for duty!
Combat Notes: E10th level; AC 2; hp 54; MV 120’ (40’); #AT 2 (Attack Class F); D 1d8+t (Elven Longsword +2, EX Mastery); Save E10; ML 11; AL L(N); ST 16, IN 12, WI 10, DX 14, CO 16, CH 12, CM 14.
Abilities & Skills: Forest Survival (W), Knowledge of the Canolbarth (I), Knowledge of The Sump & Weir (I), Military Tactics (I), Riding (D), Tracking (I), Treewalking (D).
Languages: Elvish, Darokin, Thyatian, Orc (Tharian), Gnoll (Gnollistani), Goblin (High Doth), Hobgoblin (Hutai), Kobold (Black Hill Dialect), Stone Giant.
Favoured Spells: Level I: Magic Missile, Protection from Evil, Shield. Level II: Detect Evil, Detect Invisible, Web. Level III: Fly, Lightning Bolt, Water Breathing. Level IV: Charm Monster, Growth of Plants, Ice Storm. Level V: Cloudkill, Wall of Stone.
Magic Items: Perfynn has Leather Armor +2, Shield +2, and Elven Longsword +2, Elven Cloak, Boots of Traveling and Leaping.
Dislikes: Incompetence, Capitulation, Orcs, Trolls, & Goblins. Likes: Weaponry, Smoked Venison, Ylari Pistachios, and recently finer clothes.
Fears: Dragons & Shadow Elves.
Additional Notes: Perfynn prefers to charge into the fight with his Elven Longsword +2, only withdrawing to use his bow after taking serious wounds. He wears Leather Armor +2, and carries a Shield +2, giving him an AC of 2. Additionally he wears an Elven Cloak, and wears Boots of Traveling and Leaping.
Perfynn has no living relatives among Clan Grunalf. His younger sister joined the Long Runners, and a younger brother long ago left the forest, never to be heard from again.
Perfynn has Expert Mastery with the Elven Longsword; a "gift" from Redsword Truetalker, as Redsword allowed a younger Perfynn to travel with him to Alfheim Town and train with a master when Perfynn was under his command at Shield Tree. The two have a mutual respect for one another, and Perfynn feels Redsword is the finest warrior in Alfheim, thinking Gilfronden’s posting as General of Alfheim’s Army was a mistake on Doriath’s part.
Perfynn and Talyn’s relationship is barely two decades old, despite having known each other close to a century. As of yet, Perfynn and Talyn have no children, though that may soon change. Perfynn being a soldier through and through kind of takes care of him being a strict, and "work-comes-first" person. He will take an important place in the actions of the Grunalf clan from 1200 AC on.
1 The dream is planted in Xatapechtli's mind by Atzanteotl, seeing a willing subject. Atzanteotl had discovered the creation of the Trees of Life was penned in the same source which was later used in the creation of the Canolbarth. However; he has no idea which specific source it is, other than knowing it is old beyond reckoning, and probably hidden in one of Alfheim’s Libraries. The creation process could thus be the basis of knowledge the Shadow Elves need to corrupt the Canolbarth Forest and the Trees of Life. Throughout the following months; Serpent Eyes, Shadow Elven Spies, will scour Alfheim for the ancient and invaluable manuscript.
2 Concealed Shadow Elf caverns; These can be located more easily than expected, as Shadow Elves unknowingly transport spores from their enormous underground fungi with them, which then take root in the forest near their point of egress, brushed off by vegetation where it is still moist and dark enough for their propagation.
3 A ghost is either bound to the original body, a specific item, or to the location it perished, unable to wander more than a few hundred feet away. Only on rare occasions is a ghost able to wander freely. This can come about through great need, a quest, or magical influences. All three are taking place here.
4 In Elvish Mord únës tar = Black first standing, Var Galoth = Either light hole. The "d" attached to "Mor" denotes an identity or person. This explains that a shaded person may be hidden by light from behind. The cave was well - lit inside at the moment of Engledoc’s demise. The dreams sent throughout Alfheim are thus Engledoc’s dying thoughts.
5 Atzanteotl’s Spell of Devastation; In actuality the spell is a complex ritual, being cast over several weeks, employing multiple casters, and more powerful than anyone believes, excepting Atzanteotl; able to corrupt not only the Trees of Life but the entire forest.
6 Since 28 Sviftmont
7 The hidden Province of Avonleigh in Darokin, is based upon the TSR9494 AD&D 2nd Ravenloft Audio adventure "Light in the Belfry". Adventure map redrawn and adjusted to a Mystara style hex map, and squeezed in between Dolak, Selenica and the Southeastern corner of Alfheim. This domain was created a few years after the Elves arrived here (±800 BC). Morgoroth was the son of Moorkroft I, the original Elven nemesis from the Sylvan Realm. With the creation of magical fogbank over this realm in 775 BC by the Elves, with assumed Immortal help; with no way of escape, several Doulakki families were also imprisoned within the barrier. They barely survived, but all people mentioned in this adventure are descendants of these Doulakki families, and the few visitors ending up here once in a while. map of the Baronial Domain of Avonleigh
8 The Doulakki; See "History of Eykaivial and the Dwarfgate Mountains Region" by Sheldon Morris, Aaron Nowack, Geoff Gander, and Thorfinn Tait
10 Farshire, Darokin; A forested region on the Northern side of the Cruth Mountains separating Darokin and the Five Shires. A peaceful settlement of both humans and halflings, and welcoming to the Alfheim refugees.
11 Dark Dryads are the embodiment of dead trees in Aengmor, being very pale and ghostlike; having a Dryad winter white, or grey hair. They are extremely solemn, almost sad beings; their main weapon being their famine curse, which they use to corrupt and destroy all surrounding life.
12 (Feral Satyrs are even more beastlike than Fauns; having large horns, which gives them a demon-like appearance. Both Feral Satyrs and Dark Dryads will be more thoroughly explained in the upcoming chapter of my Monster Manual Compilation: Fairykin and Weefolk
14 Magic Light; This effect is similar to the Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis. The light Engledoc sees is actually magic from Talyn and her ragtag companions. Both heroic groups are trying to resolve the issue, unknowing of the other, yet still aiding the other through their own acts
17 Magic Points; Dewdrop, sanctified in the Spring of 1115AC, now creates moisture in the form of low thin fog for nearby Fungi. Turnclaw, purified in the Summer of 1128AC, functions as if unchanged.
19 Sunlight; The original, painful, way of adaptation to sunlight and any side effects are extensively explained in Gazetteer 13 The Shadow Elves, page 52.
21 Immortals; They normally occupy sturdy, but unique , material forms designed for convenience, familiarity, and pragmatic utility. Though these forms are technically mortal, they are extremely durable, and are referred to as normal forms. Such a form can imitate the character's mortal form in shape, but the flesh has been replaced with a sturdier form. The immortal can make his manifestation form look like anything. Most immortals choose one or two specific appearances for their Manifestation forms. Often guided by great happenings in their Immortal existence. A Major Strike thus can result in the change of the Immortal’s appearance Not only is this psychological but even Immortals use impression, appearance, reaction and non-verbal communication as generated by the current form in their decision. Ilsundal suffered a Major Stroke on Ambyrmont 28 1007AC by Atzanteotl, and now tends to find ways to adapt, to change and renew growth. Especially for Ilsundal who is a chaotic Energy Immortal, change is good. He (now She) thinks a new appearance will ignite new reactions and thus growth.
22 Half-Elves; As according the Rulebooks no Half-Elves exist. But according the Savage Coast rules (Immortal influence) and the mentioning of mixed elf-human relations in Gaz 7, they do exist. Thus the rule used there must also be applied here; Ilsundal decides to allow Half-Elves to be, no more individually, but now on her whole race, using the same magic. The secret of the Fenfolk is that they are all partially Elven, in effect Half-Elves. Due to generations no further intermingling with non-Fenfolk the same genes still run through their bodies. They are all descendants of the first Elf-DoulakkI intermixing, but rejected by both cultures at that time, forced to retreat in the most unwanted region at that time; the Fens. Several clashes, and wars deprived them of cultural and mental growth, and after centuries they forgot their own past. Their ruins are feeble reminders of a past hated by men, misunderstood by Elves, moments of resolution and cultural growth. Current Fenfolk look almost human, but are smaller and thinner, almost frail, and live roughly 25% longer than humans. They have almost no elven features, if so, then only minor. In effect they further follow the same game rules as other Half-Elves, except what is given here.
24 Walnut Hometrees; The average size of the walnuts from these Walnut Hometrees is 1d3+1 feet, however, 5% may gain a size of 8+1d4 feet in diameter. The larger versions lose most taste, but the flesh is perfect for Walnut Oil. The nutshells are usable as baskets, buckets or helmets, while the larger, may even be used as roofs or wagon parts. The outer softer shells are used in making fertilizer, inks, or fibres. Elves, Druids and Fairies adore the wooden shells, and use them wherever they can. The region is dangerous in Autumn, falling nuts cause 1d8 damage per feet diameter if hit (save vs DR to negate). A cracking sound above will signal that a nut starts falling. The locals rapidly learn to recognize this peculiar sound or stay near the stem of the trees, where the chance of being hit is very low (each of these habits give a +4 on the saving throw, maybe added). Giant nutshells are also a good way to hide. For miniature use and diorama building DM’s and players, this gives great use of real walnuts in your crafting works ;-) See Wikipedia entry for more info on Walnuts.
25 Aspis, spiders, scorpions, and other insects; read the Lowlife chapter from my Monster Manual compilation book for more information. The Aspis would live in a single lair in the hills Northwest of former Feador, as thus further separating the Bugbears from the Imps and humanoids in the East.