Is It Tuesday Yet?
Airelinna hails from a city of forest elves. There she was known by the name Airelinniel Telumere, the eldest daughter of House Telumere, a powerful family of bardic mages. She has one younger brother, Aerendyl, whom she doted on before she left home. If all had gone well, Airelinniel would have been set to become the next head of House Telumere after her father’s death, inheriting the power and secrets of the Telumere bards.
However, everything changed one day when, while taking a stroll in the woods with some of her friends, who were members of the Forest Guard, they noticed a strange disturbance in the trees that appeared to be coming from the sanctuary deep in the forest. Upon investigation, the group was attacked by a fell creature that seemed to be born of shadows, with no apparent true form. It killed all of Airelinniel’s friends, and would have killed her were it not for her quick thinking. Just as it grabbed her by the neck in its shadowy grip, she used light magic to cripple it and escaped back to the city. But that would not be the end.
When Airelinniel returned to the city, she had a horrifying realization; her voice was gone. A strange black mark encircled her neck, and when she was under the gaze of a living, intelligent being, she could not speak, sing, or use her voice in the slightest. Her future as a bard was effectively ruined. Such was the curse of the fell shade, and it could only be lifted by the creature’s defeat. Airelinniel, desperate to reclaim her voice and avenge her friends, wanted to venture back into the forest, but her father forbade it. To do such a thing would violate the Telumere Creed:
“We are the keepers of legends. We do not create legends of our own accord.”
Months passed. The elders of the city sent countless parties of the Forest Guard to slay the creature, which was slowly but surely draining the life force of the forest, but few ever returned. Those who did were, like Airelinniel, cursed in some way, and the elders began to panic.
During those months, Airelinniel had not been idle. She had been tending her garden, growing roses in solitude, and crafting arrows of rosewood. She had also been composing a song to oppose the creature; the Telumeres’ true power, as was befitting of the lineage of the ancient bards, lay in song. Aerendyl found out about her plans and, knowing the consequences, wanted to stop her, but in the end all he could do was silently support his beloved older sister.
Airelinniel ventured back into the forest, fully prepared. Confronting the beast, she began to sing her song; a powerful melody that spoke to the situation and allowed her to bring out her magic to its fullest. She then shot the beast with her rosewood arrows, which had been enchanted with Continual Light, through her bow, which she had used the Entangling Missiles spell on. The arrows created glowing vines filled with thorns, which she then manipulated with magic to entrap the beast on all sides. The beast, infuriated, attempted to surround and smother her, but she cast a powerful Continual Light on her necklace, preventing the creature from reaching her. As it tried to escape the light surrounding it on all sides, Airelinniel cast the Flash spell repeatedly, until the beast dissolved in the face of the overwhelming light. As the beast dissolved, so too did the curse around her neck.
Airelinniel returned, exhausted and wounded, to the city, where she informed the elders of the creature’s defeat. They wanted to celebrate her accomplishment with a great banquet, but Airelinniel declined; she had violated her family’s creed, and thus she and her accomplishments were to be blotted out from the annals of history. Several of the elders offered to speak to her father on the matter, and one even offered her a place in their household, but she declined, instead choosing to leave the city of her own accord.
She returned to her home, only for her father to call the entire household together and declare her disowned. He then gave her a magical book, known as the Anthology of One Thousand Tales, and tasked her with filling its pages in their entirety, and only once that was completed would she no longer be a stranger in her own home. The elders gifted Airelinniel with a very fine set of magical armor and a rapier that was a marvel of elven swordsmithing and magic as a small measure of gratitude for what she had done, and the price she had been required to pay.
She then set out on her journey to collect tales, discarding her family name of Airelinniel Telumere, and simply calling herself by the nickname her brother had always lovingly called her, Airelinna.