The Spades

Sheltered by the Jörmunsul...

You did not expect to be able to open your eyes once more. But here you are, unharmed and unarmed in this unearthly place. You quickly realize that your companion and Hayyan’s bodyguard, in equaly good condition, are standing next to you. The moonlight shining down allows you to observe your surroundings.

In the distance, to your left and right, are lines of evergreens standing side by side. Before you is a gigantic Ash tree, large as a castle, that seems to stretch up to the heavens. Its green foliage gently oscillate from the breeze. Between its roots, patches of purple iris and crocuses, yellow aconites and sprigs of jasmine and snowdrops intermixes with the lush grass. At the foot of the tree, sits a young dwarven maiden with beautiful long red wavy hair wearing a simple yet elegant white dress. Her eyes closed, she plays a captivating melancolic melody on her wooden flute. Next to her is a basket full of flowers.

You unhurriedly make you way towards the maiden. When you reach her, not wanting to interupt her, you sit and listen to the tune. Once she finishes, she opens her eyes, green as the purest jade. She looks at you, briefly smile and looks up. You follow her gaze to a branch above you where a white barn owl is perched.

«Her powers are quickly fading. She has no power in the realm of the living… But even in her state, she still has some sway over the dead…»

«Hear her song!»

The owl begins to hoot and a sudden gust lifts up, forcing the Ash tree into releasing millions of green, yellow and red leaves that quickly surrounds you and the maiden.

A flash of bright light blinds you.

Kalim suddenly straightens up start coughing up blood violently, interupting Hayyan’s silent prayer. After the initial shock, Hayyan beams: «It is fortunate you did not dally any longer returning to us, I was about to cremate you as per our custom!».

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