Monday, December 30, 2013

The Tale of Aedgen


At that time a warrior-priest named Aedgen led the Ethrum. After meeting the dwarves he turned his people south, for the Ethvold seemed a welcome home to them. It harkened to their abodes in the northern forests and promised shelter from the giants and dragons that hounded them.

Coming to the headwaters of the Ardeen River he ordered his people to make camp so that he might explore further and find a good place for them to settle and build homes. He traveled by boat, bringing with him a small company of rangers led by his brother Areos and a company of solders led by his youngest brother, Kayomar. They followed the river down its southern way, exploring and mapping as they went. After many weeks they came to a bend in the river that sent them into a deep valley surrounded by stark cliffs and mountains until at last they came to the confluence of two rivers and a mighty falls.

The camped and explored the lands all about and pondered how best to master the falls. It was Areos who found a way to pass over them and he brought them to the low river safely. But there, tragedy struck for they came upon a creature of ill intent and it rose from the waters and fell upon the company, slaying the company and dragging Areos to the bottom of the river. Aedgen alone with his younger brother Kayomar, escaped, washed ashore south of the cliffs. They stood in the far south of the Ethvold, alone and unarmed, with no way to return to their people. They could not go back up the river for the course was too strong, so they struck out into the deeps of the wood, hoping to move north and return to their people. But there were no roads and the tracks of the wild beasts led him ever deeper into the long valleys.

Here Kayomar met his end for the pair stumbled upon a great tusked beast that fell upon them. They fought, with stones and clubs. But the beast caught up Kayomar in his arms and lifting him on high, crushed the air from his lungs. As his bones shattered the young warrior took the beast by the tusks and pulled with such might that he tore its head asunder. But the warrior died of his wounds and Aegden lay him to rest in the land that ever after were called the Valleys of Kayomar. Though time has swallowed much of that people it is held to be a sign that any who stumble upon the Tomb of Kayomar shall be accounted the greatest warriors of their age.

After many days, he stumbled, hungry and tired, upon another river.

Broad and swift, it cut its way through the forest in a rocky channel. Trees grew in abundance along its shores, flanked by reeds and water grasses. Coming to the river he saw the sun for the first time and learned that he was heading west and not north as he hoped. He was utterly lost for his brother Areos had been his eyes in the wild. He stood there, upon the river and glared down its length, pondering what course to take. No fear crept into him, only a determination to return to his people before they were lost.

It is here that Tefnut found him. She alone of the Val-Earhakun had had no contact with man or dwarf for all these long ages, dwelling as she did in the rivers and forests of her home. She found Aedgen upon the shores of the Tarvish River and was curious. She watched him, until at last she could bare it no further and rose from the waters without raiment and called to him. Aedgen was amazed. Her beauty was beyond that of any mortals and the light in her greater than any had ever seen. They talked upon the rivers edge and such was his speech that she became enamored of him. And her voice echoed the deep places of the forest and conjured images of safety and power and Aedgen loved her. She nursed him to health and learned all there was to learn of him, his people and their journey. She guided him then to the deep vale of country that lies between the Tarvish and empties into the Ardeen and gave him that land. It was unspoilt by any and he marveled at it. 

They dwelt there for a long season.

~ The Codex of Aihrde

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