While Anarina and the caravan of humans stayed in the capital of the Sidhes, the heros continued north.
On the way, Cale stopped at the tower of the mages and picked up Grand Master Flash in his apartments. Then they did another halt at the country farm of her Grand Mother. She told them some children stories about the Mandragores.
" Long time ago, before the Sidhe became a people on this land, the forests were larger and covered most of the place. Each time the tried to settle, the Mandragores came from the forest, and controlled the trees to grow and destroy the houses. The First high lord formed a regiment and they raided to the dark forest, to the city of the Mandragores. Most of hig guard never came back, only the High lord. He told that the tree creatures were defeated but never said how. Since the tree were cut and the Sidhe forest shrinked, but the large forest of the north is still forbidden, and dark."
They also heard the news of peace in the South, and the fact that the Goliath finished the mourning of their prince, and pardon the Troll Khan (Derek Barca), and that in exchange he convince the trolls to make peace. This troubled the team, as Derek was here with them, so an usurper had taken it's role, could it be linked to the ritual in the Krak of the Goliaths ?
The Heroes decided to continue north : Pinky Sprocket the gnome, Derek the troll, Cale the Sidhe and Grand Master Flash the bewitcher.
In the wood they got lost, had to pass over deeps, and were harassed by giant insects that were distracted by Pinky's illusions.
They felt in a trap on the stairs of the old city, covered by root and plants. Wooden javelines felt on them, and 3 wolves surrounded them, while a strange archer figure with a bow pointed fire arrow at them. They fought the wolves while Cale was trying to befuddle their opponent with magic. Then Flash tried to convince him that him and the others were not the "monsters or brought them here" as he said. Once calmed down the fight stopped, but the poor person was confused and was also mad from isolation. This was Lorin the last of the rangers guarding the forest, heir of a long lineage of the elite guard.
The city was covered with moss, but many old sculptures showed the root creatures that lived here. They seemed to bound with plants, but mentions were also made of a schism and of some Mandragores who bounded with animals, and were exiled. The legend Lorin said explained how they were defeated, they used one of them weapons against them. On the top were 2 shrines that Lorin was keeping. The first one had a staff on an altar, this was the object the Mandragores used to reveal the deviants who created offspring from animals, and reveal their true form.
At that moment, Grand master flash too the staff to look at it, then cast a portal spell, and jumped out of here. "So long suckers". Suprised by this betrayal, they couldn't stop him, only Cale had the time to jump in the portal before it closed.
In a library room of the Sidhe palace Flash and Cale stand up and started to fight, as Flash refreshed his magic, Cale stabbed him to death. Then hide the body, and used the staff on him.. he turned into a form of an humanoid made of roots with nose and long fingers. Then the climbed out of the place while other Sidhe came, including the Justice Adjudicator. Then used a message spell to inform Pinky.
Still in the forest, the astonished Troll and the Gnome explored the second shrine, it contained a wheel with a dark water. The water is deadly to plants and Mandragores, and the rangers used it to eradicate them.
Secret for Pinky: Testing the water of the fountain
As per the stories of Lorin, the water is supposed to kill the Mandragores, their plants offspring and their spawns.
You tested on plants, they do die at it’s contact. But when you put a drop on your skin, it burned you.
Now you wonder.
Secret for Derek : The madness of Lorin
After listening to the mad Sidhe ranger talking to his wolves, you heard some pieces.
He said that his companion were crazy or monsters, but “ My wolves, I only can trust you”.
His logic was that “the fountain water burned them, so they were not to be trusted”.
Lorin killed them all, and throw the bodies in the bottom of the fountain.
News : Peace
Since the end of the war, the civilized people are unified behind the Sidhe High lord Trajan.
The Goliaths were able to see beyond their grief and mercy the Khan of the Trolls.
The Khan of the trolls asked them to stop the fight and to make peace with all the other races.
For the first time in a long time the peace is near.