Tale of Paeldryth (book)

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The Tale of Paeldryth
By Guildmistress Melear

You are familiar with the spell "Paeldryth's Wrath," correct? It is a spell within the Air Manipulation book, one which we teach to young mages just learning the art of manipulating air. The story of this spell begins long ago... in the days of Arhat, and the founding of the Guild.

In the days following Lanival's disappearance, when the Realms were still settling into the new order of provincial governments, there was much chaos. Remnants of the armies, from both sides, refused to lay down arms. They spent their time terrorizing the small villages surrounding the larger cities. Because of their efforts in supplying the fighting farther south, the township of Riverhaven was very poor and could not afford to hire their own guard to defend themselves. They were quickly defeated by one of those wandering bands of soldiers who thought to control the town, and the trade route it sat on.

At that time, Arhat had set one of his mages to ferrying stores to the towns away from the Crossing. He knew that many were without homes due to the fighting, and would seek shelter within the larger cities. The mage who was responsible for the food shipments to Riverhaven was a Human named Paeldryth. He was still young, but his skill in controlling the element of Air had quickly earned him the title of Adept. He used his powers to speed the supply boat on its way, so no one would go hungry because of lack of wind.

After several days of being ruled by the warrior band, the people of the Riverhaven township conspired to have a young Halfling escape. It was their hope that this young man could find help for them, someone to drive off the warriors. Someone who was not just as bad, or worse. Now, the way they had to smuggle him out is not for the faint of heart, and it is a measure of their desperation that they would even consider such. In the darkest time of the night, they snuck the young man to the trash carts; those that took the remnants of everyone's food to the fields, to be used to nourish the land. They smuggled him out with those carts. As the new day dawned, the trash carts were taken out to the fields, as they always were. Only this time, the young Halfling escaped before they reached the field. He quickly headed south, following the river as closely as possible.

As he was escaping southward, he saw the supply ship journeying north over the Faldesu, towards Riverhaven, propelled by Paeldryth's winds. The Halfling raced to the shore to flag them down, so they would not pass by without hearing his news. The crew saw him waving, and quickly dropped anchor. After a rowboat had been sent to collect him, the mage Paeldryth spoke with him about how to free his home.

The future looked very bleak. On the supply boat, only Paeldryth and three soldiers could fight while the town was under the control of over a hundred warriors. For many hours Paeldryth pondered strategy after strategy. But the numbers were impossible. There was no way that three soldiers and a mage could defeat a hundred warriors.

Know now that, for many years, Arhat, Paeldryth, and others of the Warrior Mage Guild had been pondering the source of elemental power. It was not simply the presence of the elements, or power would be abundant everywhere. Paeldryth's beliefs had been leaning towards the theories first established by Hh'reshh, the S'Kra Archmage. Those being that power was drawn, not from our Plane, but from others, the Elemental Planes. The Elemental Planes, where Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Aether, and Electricity are pure, and unsullied by the presence of the others. Hh'reshh stated that, if such Planes did exist, then they would be the source of elemental power and, just as in the Plane of Abiding, there would be beings living there. Those beings are called elementals.

In this hour of need, Paeldryth pondered those theories more and more. And soon found the truth within them. Though how he accomplished this has been lost to time, he was able to summon an army of elementals from the Plane of Air, and he sent them against the warriors controlling Riverhaven. Some deal had been struck between the elementals and Paeldryth. Though what that deal was, we will never know. I wish I had been alive at that time, to watch that battle.

The arrows that the warriors fired into the air turned in mid-flight... falling down to strike at them! Their weapons were frozen, and held in place by the very air around them. The warriors had no chance against the army of air elementals. None of their weapons could harm them. The people of Riverhaven quickly joined in and attacked their captors in the hopes of liberating their city. The battle was over very quickly, and the warriors were driven far to the north.

We don't know how Paeldryth summoned the elementals. But we do know that he forgot to conceive of a way to return them. Whether through carelessness, or through lack of time, we do not know. Once their task was complete, the air elementals dispersed throughout the world, wreaking havoc as they went. That carelessness made chaos of the world's weather. For a being that can summon a tornado at will, destroying our clouds and seasons was easy for them.

Paeldryth spent the rest of his life attempting to correct that mistake. He found as many of the elementals as he could, and returned them to their homes. His journals say that they all went willingly. For there was no malice in their actions -- they were like children who have found a new toy, and don't realize the damage they do as they play with it. But he does mention that he never did find all who came through the portal with him. It is my thought that the ones he did not find were captured by the Dragon Priests, who bound them into a staff...

My own personal theory, of course.

Melear Kadriash'nar'a
Guildmistress of Dertalriosh Endaertheal'a