| Elana Firemantle|
|A queen recast in the body of a peasant girl.|
Elana Firemantle was born on 2909 AA to a peasant family in the town of Allswaythe. Her distinct fiery red hair set her apart from her peers and even from the townsfolk, as neither of her parents, no anyone else in the town, had this rare trait. Always the outsider, Elana turned to the forests for comfort, learning their ways and the secrets of the wild lands. She took the worship of Aesia, as almost all in Sellador did, but worshiped her as the druids do, as a force of nature and a spirit of light and life.|
It was in her fourteenth year that she encountered a mysterious ranger deep in the wilds. His name was Horus and, though he always kept his distance, Elana found friendship with this distant and quiet man. After a year of these strange encounters Horus eventually revealed his true nature to Elana: he was an elf. Though shocked at first, Elana yet discovered that Horus' true self, strange and fantastic as it might be, did not upset her. As a young druid she knew of the spirits of the woodlands; the fact of his heritage did little to dissuade her from agreeing to become his traveling companion.
Elana and Horus traveled the lands of Gideon and Sellador for many years together, exploring its farthest reaches. In the winter of 2926 AA, after 2 years of traveling together, Horus reluctantly left Elana and revealed little for the reason for his departure, saying only that he had an ancient duty that must be fulfilled. Elana wouldn't see Horus again for many years.
Alone and grief stricken, Elana returned to the civilized world. Being amongst people again after so many years had a strong effect on her and she quickly fell in love. Her happiness was short lived however, as her husband died only a few years after their daughter, Leyla, was born. Thieves had attacked their home and, though they were driven off, he was killed during the fight.
Once again drawn away from the city by her grief, Elana took Leyla and sought refuge in the forests. She took her daughter to Caer Duhl-Darah, the home of a secretive druidic order. It was here that she befriended a young man named Hiram, a fellow druid with a thirst for adventure.
The next years were happy for Elana and Leyla. They lived their lives amongst the druids, sheltered away from the cities and political intrigues of the outside world.
Years later Hiram would return from one of his many adventures with a guest in tow. This man, known only as Ashton, was a necromancer, a practitioner of forbidden arcane magics dealing with the nature of life and death. Foolishly, Hiram brought Ashton to Duhl-Darah thinking that he could at last settle their debate on the balance of nature and the true path of power.
It was also at this time that Leyla, now a young woman, yearned for an escape from the sheltered life that her mother had forced on her. Ashton was dark and mysterious, charming and powerful; Leyla found herself drawn inexorably to him. Against her mother's wishes she left with Ashton to experience the outside world. Blaming Hiram's foolish mistake for Leyla's absence, Elana fled once again into the wilderness.
It was 2944 AA when Elana once again encountered Horus in the wilds of Gideon. As before, they took up their old wanderings. Elana, now 35, still yearned for the secret wisdom of the wild places.
In 2945 AA she, together with the enigmatic ranger Horus and Lord Edom Skaelan, helped to destroy the black dragon Tzelgoriath, clearing the path for human settlers to found the city of Drachenhorn, gateway to the Selladorian Free Nations.
Elana wandered, occasionally alone, for many years. She would return to Duhl-Darah but never stayed for long.
Elana, knowing that the ancient tales spoke of elves living in the forbidden lands to the north of Sellador, stole herself across the straits into the Forbidden Wood and, being a druid, was able to pass through their wards relatively unharmed. As she explored Tel-Tenauril she came to the druidic sanctuary of Caer Airbhe-Fal. It was there that she met Jemerall, the keeper of that grove. He taught her much in the ancient ways of the elven druidic orders.
She dwelt with Jemerall for several years, falling in love with her mentor. During this time she once again became a mother. While in Tel-Tenauril Elana gave birth to two half elven children: a elder a boy named Jerick and the younger a girl named Suzara
In their time together Jemerall came to discover why Elana had seemed so familiar to him from the very beginning: he learned that Elana was, in fact, the spirit of Aesia reborn. As the brother of Aradhrath, the king and former husband to Aesia, Jemerall became fearful. He knew the pain that Aradhrath harbored in his heart for his lost love, and the blame that he placed upon humans for the loss of his wife, was a powerful, poisonous force. Fearing for the safety of Elana should Aradhrath discover her true nature, Jemerall devised a plan to keep her safe. Unfortunately, to his own pain, it would mean losing the woman he loved and one of his children forever.
Jemerall, using his knowledge of herbs and magic, created a potion that would rob Elana of the past several years of her memory. With sorrow in his heart he gave this potion to Elana. He took Elana and the infant Jerick to Duhl-Darah and gave them into the care of Hiram. Hiram would keep the secret of that visit for the rest of his life. He took Jerick as his own son and told Elana that she had suffered from a fever. He never knew that Jerick was her child, though he often suspected it.
During the next years Elana was content to aid villages and farmers as best she could, though always in secret or under an assumed identity. The clerics of the Church of Aesia frowned upon the druidic orders. Elana, above all else, wished to avoid conflict.
It was in this time that Elana would again meet with her estranged daughter, now a mother and the wife of Ashton. Leyla wished Elana to teach her children of the natural world, and Elana was happy to do so. She spent brief moments throughout the next few years instructing them in the ways of nature, though she found her teachings often twisted into new lessons by Ashton and Leyla.
Angry, she finally confronted her daughter. Only too late did she realize the true horror of what Leyla had become under the subtle and sinister manipulations of Ashton. Elana barely escaped with her life.
She wandered, aimless, for years. Unable to even to enter a city or even to help the villages and farms as she once did.
Once again, as mysteriously as ever, Horus appeared. He spoke of a protege, a ranger in training that he wished Elana to meet and instruct in matters of the spirit. Elana, her own spirit broken and overcome by apathy, refused. Seeing the plight of his longtime friend, Horus wandered with Elana. It was during this time that the bore witness to the raid on Calathor by Orcish forces in 2980 AA. Elana, now an old woman of 77 and still suffering from wounds both physical and spiritual inflicted upon her at the hands of Ashton and Leyla, was wearing out. Horus could sense that the end of her life was drawing near. As an elf he had seen many generations of human friends grow old and pass and was well versed in the signs of coming death.
The couple returned to Caer Duhl-Darah. Hiram, older and much wiser, was now the Elder of the Dark Oak Druidic Order that dwelt there. Still carrying the weight of his perceived guilt from years before, he prayed to the nature spirits and to the god of fate, Aranor, for a change that might save her tragic life. He offered his life for hers, of only that she could have a second chance.
That night Elana passed away. Hiram and Horus wept for the death of their friend, one of the gentlest souls they had ever encountered.
Yet, with the dawn, Elana was reborn. She wandered from her death chambers revitalized, her body young again. Horus and Hiram were shocked by this, as now she wore the body of an elf maiden no older than she had been as a human. Elves, however, are much longer lived. An elf of seventy eight years is just entering into adulthood.
In this new form the lethargy of her mind slowly faded. She found renewed joy in the natural world and reveled in the experience of living. She left Duhl-Darah with the promise of a return. She needed to wander the wilds once again and learn of hew new nature. Horus returned to the southlands of Gideon, once again feeling the call of his ancient duty. Hiram remained, the events of that night of rebirth weighing heavily upon his mind.
In 2984 AA, days before the destruction of Lloleyn, Elana met a young half-elven druid by the name of Jerick in the gardens of the capitol. Jerick was an orphaned child and was raised by Hiram within the Dark Oak Druidic Order.
In 2985 AA Elana would once again encounter Jerick, this time with a group of companions who would later be known as the Heralds Of The Dawn. They were seeking passage into the elven lands to the north. Elana, who had wandered briefly into the forbidden forests across the strait north of Nuray Port, agreed to be their guide.
That night, before they could leave, Elana once again encountered her daughter, Leyla. Resembling nothing of the daughter she once was, Leyla attacked Elana and kidnapped her.
It was a little over a month before Jerick and his companions tracked her down and came to her rescue. Elana was filled with mixed joy and grief, for in the struggle to free her Leyla had been slain. With Jerick also was Blake Ashton, her grandson. Blake had also lost his life in the fight against his own mother.
That night Elana called to the spirits of the natural world and bade them give Blake's soul a new body. Blake returned to his companions, reincarnated into a new form. He didn't recognize his grandmother in her elven body, though his suspicions were many. Eventually, he would come to learn the truth of Elana's past.
Elana joined the Heralds Of The Dawn on the quest for the sacred tablets. The return of the destroyer god Naresh was drawing near and the tablets presented a means to stop them.
Through many adventures she journeyed with Jerick, Blake, and their companions. It wad during this time that they revealed to her the secret that Aradhrath, king of the elven people, had given them. Elana was the spirit of Aesia, apparently the king�s former wife, reborn. Her elven body, red hair and all, was apparently the exact image of the long lost queen. Elana refused to believe them; she worshipped Aesia as her goddess and the idea that she, of all people, housed the soul of Aesia to be absurd and deeply unsettling.
It was learned that Thanandir would soon become a target of the Heralds of Naresh as Lloleyn had been. Given this knowledge and needing to find answers to her true nature, Elana traveled to Thanandir. The Heralds Of The Dawn continued to search for the fragments of the tablet that would drive away the impending apocolypse.
After a long journey Jerick traveled to Thanandir to discover if Elana had survived its destruction. When he arrived only devastation greeted him. It was thought that Elana had perished.
In truth Elana had survived. Led by vague impressions of ancient memory she had discovered an ancient artifact designed to save the city from destruction in the most dire of circumstances. At the last moment, which the city was besieged by creatures born of nothingness and about to be destroyed, the artifact transported the entire city to the Temporal Plane, freezing it in time but saving it from destruction.
The Heralds Of The Dawn would go on to defeat Naresh and save all of Geas. Elana met them briefly again on the Temporal Plane as they fled from an alternate future world in which Naresh was victorious. They carried with them the tool that would allow them to put a stop to Naresh once they had bound his spirit into a mortal body with the tablets: the Genesis Crystal, a fragment of pure creation. She could not leave the Temporal Plane to go with them, however, as the artifact that had saved the city also bound her to it.
Thirty six years later, in 3024 AA, a group of adventurers known as the Fellowship Of The Dark Shards found themselves in Thanandir, trapped in time on the Temporal Plane. They were on a quest to save their companion Veridean from the darkness inside of her: when the Heralds Of The Dawn defeated Naresh they didn't destroy him as they had thought. One cannot destroy that which is destruction made manifest, only change its shape. The soul of Naresh had shattered into thousands of fragments. Each fragment sought a home within a living being, tainting it and changing it. These beings fought amongst each other, stealing power in a cycle of blood and violence until at last Naresh would be reborn; Veridean already held within her a great deal of this dark essence.
The Fellowship Of The Dark Shards revived Elana just as they were attacked by a creature in service to Naresh. Veridean was overcome with the darkness inside of her and attacked the creature, killing it and taking from it the undistorted essence of Naresh it held inside of it from a time before the dark god's destruction. This essence proved to much for her to contain and she began to transform, the darkness swelling up inside of her.
Elana, in an unthinking act, tapped the divine spark inside of her and separated the taint inside of Veridean from the woman she had become. This taint became its own being in the image of Veridean. Together Elana, Veridean, and the Fellowship Of The Dark Shards defeated this latest incarnation of Naresh.
Unsealing Thanandir from its temporal stasis and returning the city to the material world, Elana left Thanandir to find her way in this new world. Taking the assumed name of Telariel and seeking to learn more of the truth of her mysterious divine nature, Elana made use of a Mask of Disguise and journeyed to El-Alahd to seek the wisdom of Thral-Tep, a being who is said to be both god and mortal simultaneously.
It was there, while attempting to read an inscription written in Aeonic, that she encountered the Fellowship Of The Crystal Tear. Learning of the death of Aranor and the ascension of Jerick to godhood at the end of the quest of the tablets, Elana sought to join their group, as they claimed to be on a quest from Jerick himself. They were seeking the fragments of the Genesis Crystal which Jerick has shattered upon his ascension for safety, for the crystals powers were too great for any single being, god or mortal, to possess safely. Aram, a fallen angel and being of great evil, was seeking the fragments; they sought to stop him.
It was while traveling with this group that she learned of the existence of Threnody, a new shape for the essence of Naresh that she thought had been destroyed. Threnody was a woman cast in the exact likeness of Veridean; she was the essence of evil which Elana had taken from Veridean and given shape. Feeling responsible for this latest incarnation of evil, Elana vowed to put an end to the legacy of Naresh once and for all.
In 3026 AA, with the help of the Fellowship Of The Crystal Tear, Elana reclaimed the power of Aesia hidden in the Orbs Of Tel-Tari and that stolen by Aram the Fallen and reascended as Aesia reborn, the goddess returned. She reclaimed her lost memories and revealed to Suzara
that she was the heir to the throne of Tel-Tenauril. She became whole again, both queen Aesia and Elana firemantle unified into a whole and complete divine being.
|Race: Elf, Anoril (Sun)|
|Associated Regions: Sellador, Tel-Tenauril|
|Elana Firemantle is a member of the Dark Oak Druidic Order, Heralds Of The Dawn, Fellowship Of The Crystal Tear|
Related Articles: Telariel, Skaeraksis, Dean Selvarlas, I. The End Of The World, Edom Skaelan, 6, Satur AA 2987.
Contributor: Shawn Nicolen