The Fellowship of the Wagon
Leluthiel Ethireil Malythien
Born into the great house of Malythien Leluthiel was a child of privilege and power. She was indulged in her every whim for her first 120 years of life. Mordant Spire is an unusual place. Sealed away from the outside world except for the lowly Aquatic Elves who would bring them food in trade Leluthiel met none of the other inferior races. She spent these long years speaking Azlanti as the only true proper language the Mordant Spire elves prefer it as they believe themselves the inheritor of ancient Azlant. The Mordant Spire elves had after all retaken the ancient home of that bitter foe and claimed all its ancient splendor, power, magic, and mystery of the yet even more ancient ruins for their own. These ruins along the far western tip of the Varisian archipelago need protection and the legendary magical skimmers of the Mordant Spire maintain their stranglehold on ancient Azlant. Once a year a delegation from the Pathfinder Society is tolerated to visit. It so happens that Lelu eavesdropped on one such visit. She was surprised to see elves among this contingent who were not speaking Azlanti. Not only were there two elves, but there was a human and a gnome of all things! Lelu became intrigued by the outside world. What were these curious other races? Why did everyone hate them. Surely not just because they didn’t speak the proper language and we had to suffer their harsh sounds uttered from their lips. Lelu did know that her father as a warchief of their family had lead the defense of their lands protecting the ancient ruins from being sacked by dwarves and lesser elves from Kyonin. Killing or driving off outsiders was not too common an occurrence since the Mordant Spire elves are feared. Lelu being of privilege never needed to get her hands dirty and enjoyed the arts, fishing, and the famed magical meals prepared for her people. Entire meals would be constructed from magic and be just another part of the ongoing decadence afforded Lelu. While Lelu was intelligent she bordered on selfishness and was quite the imp. Never one to be told what to do this delegation sparked something in Lelu. She stole a few moments away from her father and the rest of the delegation with the gnomish woman. Frustrated that she had to speak Common she didn’t get too far in dialogue before the gnome was stolen away and bustled off. Lelu now knew that the next time visitors or traders arrived that she had to have more time to get to know them. She had to know why that they were all killed or left exposed to the elements except for these Pathfinder Society folks.
Over the years Lelu would sneak away moments with any traders or Society delegates to the best of her ability. Eventually she learned that it was her own people being the aggressors and preventing open exchange and travel. She remembered back to meeting her first outsiders and the kind gnomish woman. Lelu was going to change things! Lelu went to speak to her father after she heard that a raid had happened and they slaughtered some traders to the last man. Exclaiming that it did not have to be this way she got slapped so hard her mask fell off. Shocked, hurt and afraid Lelu went crying off into the night leaving her mask where it fell. Later that evening she stole off in one of the magical legendary skimmers of her people. She knew how to operate them as they required little effort due to their nature. She swooped off into the Steaming Sea. Her voyage was not well planned nor prepared for in advance. She was going to go live amongst the lesser peoples and try and understand more. Perhaps her father was right, but then again maybe there was something more to these strange folk.
Her skimmer was badly damaged as she skirted the Eye of Abendego looking for fresh water and supplies. The storm sapped the magical resources of her craft and her own skills were found lacking of the task. She became shipwrecked in The Shackles. Waking up without a sign of her precious skimmer she was on a rocky island. Lelu gave praise to Gozreh for saving her from the unnatural storm and preserving her in his surf. This tiny island had nothing to forage and she had no supplies. Nothing to do except swim for one of the other islands nearby. One of them appeared to be enmeshed in a jungle terrain and have a river. Yet another was filled with caves and rocky outcroppings. She took her chance looking for fresh water with the jungle island. This island did indeed have fresh water. It also had a wooden palisade and dock to her surprise. Men came for Lelu. Rough men who didn’t speak properly (not Azlanti). Men who didn’t treat her with respect. Lelu was ill prepared when they grabbed her and slapped her in irons. The words they would say and the deeds they intended were branded like fire in Lelu’s head. Lelu now knew why all outsiders must be killed. Lelu doesn’t know what happened for the next few months. She does not recall Mordant Spire, her hidden name, her family name. She does not remember that she speaks Azlanti.
Lelu remembers that she ran one fortunate day. She ran and swam to the rocky island and hid in a cave. She subsisted on grubs, worms, and locusts. One day when searching for her meager meal a raven appeared who pecked at her latest prize. Nimbly stealing the nourishment from her hand the raven quorked at Lelu. Lelu broke. Her life was hard enough and now she had even bugs taken away from her as a food source? Long ago were the days of feasting on magical delicacies. Not that Lelu remembers those now anyway, but how far had she fallen to be losing to a raven! Lelu stared maliciously at the raven and was readying herself to spring at it to choke it to death. Roast bird sounded pretty good at the moment to her. Lelu sprung at the raven with her hands outstretched when the most peculiar thing happened. Lelu fell face first into the dirt and rocky scrabble. Looking down at her with piercing eyes the raven looked at her and said “Child, these things are not for you to eat.” Gawking at the talking raven Lelu stammered and blinked furiously trying to remove the mirage from her eyes.
The raven said “Child you are meant for grander things than eating bugs and being disabused by foul men.” Lelu cried. Child, would you like more than this? Do you not want more? Not only food, but of life? Lelu nodding emphatically and burning in shame cried out her agreement. The exact details of how the raven became named Ebonwing and how Lelu became a witch are not something Lelu herself quite recalls. Lelu serves the darkness, the Shadow. Lelu serves herself and by doing so somehow the inner darkness is appeased. Fish and fishing became staples of Lelu’s life again after Ebonwing awakened that previous memory and skill latent within her. Never again would Lelu need to eat bugs out of need. Never again would men treat her in that way.
Lelu has travelled for the past year and arrived in Taldor. She needs resources to continue her journey. This Fellowship of the Wagon appears to be providing income and protectors so that she does not need to get her hands sullied.
What is Lelu’s true motivation for journeying to Taldor? You had best ask Ebonwing that question. Perhaps her dark master has designs for her budding strength, her will, her curiosity.
Time will tell.