As night falls on the edge of the world, Karl, Thunder and Aengus negotiate a series of large stepping stones through the shallows of Dragon Lake towards an abandoned farmhouse. Someway behind, Aengus saw his father following, pausing on occasion to look over his shoulder with a look of consternation. Overlooking the waterfall from which Bangog had fallen, a ramshackle stone building nestled within a series of large rock pools along the cliffs edge.
Entering the building the companions set their torches on the walls and begin to examine Hel’s gifts. Inside the dark wooden box Karl retrieves a rolled parchment bearing the stamp of House Aellrinath. Unrolling the brittle document it appears to be in two parts. Written in the exquisite hand of Eladrin nobility it states that the bearer may claim one of the two rewards. Firstly, there is given details of an arcane ritual which may be employed to cross between two worlds. Secondly, Karls is surprised to see his entire family tree listed in intricate detail, including a wife he hasn’t met yet and children he hasn’t had. The family tree extends many generations into the future and ends in the declaration that all those listed here are henceforth released from service to House Aellrinath.
Aengus retieved a small roll of soft fabric, within which was stored a single nightshade flower. As he held the flower up to examine it his father related to him Hel’s instructions.
“The flower is the soul. It was the property of Hel and those in her care dwell in darkness, but your mother is a child of light, and as such her full restoration requires much sun. For best results, she should be grown in a place as far away from darkness as possible, high up, above the clouds even so as to maximise the light. The higher the better. Like any other bloom she will also require earth and water, but remember Aengus, light is the key.”
Thunder reached into the box and retrieved a single piece of metal the size of a large coin. At this Aengus’ father spoke once more.
“You, legionary, are searching for the salvation of mankind from Ragnarok. For services rendered, Hel hereby presents you with the legendary Crown Of Byfrost itself.”
Thunder saw that he was holding a warforged ghulra in his hand. It was very old. A large gash reached from one corner to its the opposite, apparently a battle wound inflicted on it’s wearer long ago. Now traces of rust gathered around the scar, and the symbol depicted on the face of the ghulra was at first unclear.
Thunder cleaned the old relic quickly, to discover the name it bore was that of Rivenhart, legendary hero of the Crown Wars, who slew the first three of the great fey beasts to end the war and save mankind from destruction at the hands of it’s own creations. With this ghulra, the party now possessed all 500, including the one they had salvaged from the destroyed warforged near Kindraed, and the one that Thunder himself bore.
“Our old adversry Siegmund had some ideas about what to do with these.” commented Thunder as he produced a bundle of items they had recovered from Siegmund’s laboratory on Glorium. In the bundle was a preserved toe on a chain, an old dog whistle, the remaining ghulra that had not been used in the creation of magic items, and a book of notes and drawings made by Siegmund himself.
“It seems that he was trying to put the pieces into some kind of pattern, but each attempt met with failure. Now that we have all the pieces maybe we will succeed where he did not.” spoke the warforged with grim determination.
The companions discussed what this might lead to. Thunder proposed that by connecting all the ghulra together correctly they might form a map of some sort. Aengus suggested that the ghulra themselves could form the Crown. Karl meanwhile was studying what seemed to be his future family tree.
“How could even the Arch-Fey know all this if it hasn’t yet come to pass?” he pondered.
The adventurers remained there in the old farmhouse deep in study throughout the night, before finally finding some much needed sleep. When they awoke to the light of day, it was a very different picture that awaited them outside.