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The Mage is very impressed with your abilities and wonders if you’d like to become his disciple. That’s great, but even a very powerful mage can’t stop this curse. The High Mage of Frost says, “I haven’t felt the cold stab of fear in a long time. This evil is draining my magic and life force. The curse is not from this world. It simply can’t be.” An icy wind pierces the Mage deep in his soul and he wonders how long until everyone is gone. “See the snowflakes sparkling in the moonlight! This world is too beautiful to leave.”
The High Mage of Frost knows of a ritual to slow the residents’ disappearance from the world. With your help, he still has enough power left to perform the ritual. You set about collecting some magical items and potions, even requesting some from other mages. “The magister of the Order of Burning Heart has some requests in exchange for a mandrake tear for my ritual, Lady Melissa will send a fern flower and Ellaniel, the elvish healer, has powered unicorn hair.”
The Mage feels “as though the wind is blowing us ever forward” as he prepares the ritual. Everything is put into place and the Mage gathers all the magical power he can muster. “Success! It worked! The process is slowing. It’s up to you now. Assemble the Shadow Tamer and stop this curse!”
The Genie at the Gates to Atlantis is also a victim of the shadow curse. “Your presence raises my spirits, despite my state.” The Genie didn’t think it was possible, “but the ritual of the mage from your world slowed the transformation.” The Genie is perplexed that an ethereal creature such as himself could be turned into a shadow. “I’ve never seen such magic before” and he vows to “find the one who did this. There is nowhere for the Lord of Darkness to hide.” Try as he might, the Genie says “the sensation of shifting from an ethereal state to that of a shadow is indescribable.” Genies are rather persistent and pernicious, so while his efforts are fruitless at the moment, “I’ll get this villain, wherever he is. I’m getting close. It won’t be much longer.” The Genie found the Lord of Darkness and wonders about your plan for talking to him. “Knowing you, he’ll join our side by the end.”
The Lord of Darkness “felt your pet genie searching for me, so I let him find me. I have no reason to run. Now, I’m ready to spend some of my time on you.” The Lord asks if you remember the “entertaining conversation last time and you distracted me long enough to seal the portal to my world. I wanted to punish you for ruining my plans, but physical injury is so unsophisticated. Did you like the new look I gave your friends and allies?” The Lord of Darkness promises “there will be more shadows soon. Your mage’s pitiful attempt to slow the process is pure and simple desperation. The genie’s and wise raven’s shadows will be valuable acquisitions.”
Has his dark revenge been sated, “My, my, you are angry! I think that I’ve had my revenge for you sealing the passage to my world, don’t you? Why are you here? Small talk? I wonder if I could make you even angrier. My army can’t invade because of you, so I thought I’d make a new army here instead. Frustrated, are we? The curse is impressive, no? The first tests were with lab rats. Everything worked out, as you can see.”
Then the real threats begin, “I plan to increase the range of the curse to affect all of the Midnight Castle residents, including you. The longer you take the more of your friends become shadows. Your worry amuses me. Our conversation is becoming tedious – I’m telling you fun stories, but you only make angry faces in reply. You’re diligent. I’d like to have you as a shadow. And soon, I will!”
The Lord of Darkness promises there are no empty threats, “Everything I’ve said will come true, so why not join me? You’ll be so powerful! Your inability to look ahead surprises me. You seemed so bright.”
When you return to the Genie, he notes that the “streams of magic have dulled. They’re contaminated by the darkness.” The Genie knows the location of one Shadow Tamer artifact, “the part we need is locked inside the Echo Crystal. The Crystal looks delicate, but it’s quite strong. Three genies must meditate around the Echo Crystal for three days. I have to persuade two others to join me.” It’s time consuming work, but the Genie manages to get three genies in one place, a feat he hopes will never happen again, and you are rewarded with the Rainbow Threads, which binds the branches of the Shadow Tamer securely, enhancing their powers.
It’s wonderful to see everyone united against a common enemy, and there’s another flamboyant friend, a powerful sorceress, who can help.
The Fire Conjurer is in a burning fury, “Do you see this?! I’m a ghost – a shadow of myself! It’s impossible! I was cursed and didn’t notice it!” Unfortunately, the Fire Conjurer, as well as other mages, have no solutions. They’ve tried everything in vain. “I don’t want to disappear! It feels like I’m dreaming, but I can’t wake up. This won’t end well.” The Fire Conjurer is compelled to help, “I can’t save myself, but I can at least help you. If the Shadow Tamer works, it will lift this terrible curse.”
With her magic pendulum moving, the Fire Conjurer notes more of her acquaintances are becoming shadows. “I must charge the guardian stones that protect our community.” You collect some items to help charge the stones, but something is wrong. “I charged the stones, but their light is bright red, and it should be green. I must look into this.” It appears that someone damaged one of the stones, “one of the stones’ magical runes is gone, either eroded by time or sabotage.
Recreating the ancient paint formula used by the fire people of the Southern Lands is no simple task, but the Fire Conjurer completes this task and now needs the scroll with the inscriptions. “If you were one of the ancients, where would you put a scroll with magical runes? The library! Of course!” Having secured the scroll and the paint, the Fire Conjurer sends you to Valkyrie while she continues to restore the guardian stones.
Valkyrie, standing at Sacred Grove, is another obvious victim of the shadow curse. But “despite the dire circumstances, I need proof that it’s really you.” Valkyrie sends you on several tasks and says upon completion, “I believe you now. Nobody else can do what you do.” Valkyrie apologizes for the precaution, but states “brave Valkyries prefer a fair battle to that devious shadow magic.” She’s glad you’re on her side and vows the one who did this must be punished.
According to Valkyrie, “One by one my Valkyries turn into shadows while our wolves frighten our neighbors with their howls. Seeing my sisters like this fills my heart with sorrow. I must do what I can to save them.” The future appears bleak, but there may be a way to stop this.
Suddenly, there’s an eerie silence. “Listen! Our wolves have stopped howling, but another sister is becoming a shadow.” Valkyrie searched the scrolls in the secret library of the Valkyries and found one ancient scroll that contained information about an artifact part. Valkyrie assembles a squad of her bravest warriors, “Our priestesses will protect them while they retrieve the artifact part. We’ll be vulnerable here with our priestesses gone, but it’s for the greater good.” All hope lies with the priestesses preparing to leave with the Valkyrie squad. The squad is ready to go, but there’s a long road ahead and the task will not be easy. “The squad is on their way. The priestesses will protect them from the Lord of Darkness’s curse on their journey. All we need to do is wait.”
Sometimes, no news is good news and there’s nothing else to do but keep living our lives. Never before has waiting been so agonizing. Valkyrie receives word that the squad is on the way back with the artifact part! “May the wind be at their backs; I can feel the power of the priestesses back in our sacred borders.” The situation is grim and the price of victory dear. The artifact part is back, but the Valkyries have almost become full shadows.
Valkyrie hands you the Inhibiting Wraps, which will add power to the Shadow Tamer, and says “I hope you can solve this dilemma. My people need you now more than ever.”
Meanwhile, the Fire Conjurer finished restoring the stone, “The stone is restored, bathing my community in emerald light. It won’t stop the shadow transformation, but it’s slowing. Everything seems to be fine, but I’ll continue to monitor the situation. All of that effort, but people are still turning into shadows. At least it bought us some time.”
The Fire Conjurer hands you an unexpected gift she found while searching the library, the Agony Tree Bark, another artifact part for the Shadow Tamer.
Fate has prepared another new encounter, hopefully an ally.
Morisa the Forest Witch says, “As my dice foretold, a visitor came to see me. You’ll have to gain my trust, stranger. Then we’ll talk.” After your completed tasks gain her trust, the Forest Witch introduces herself. “My name is Morisa. I’m from the world of the living, but it was too noisy and hectic there, so I moved to the Dark Side. I don’t intend to leave my dwelling just yet. As you can see, it’s much quieter here – the ideal place to do magic.”
The Forest Witch acknowledges an uncertain future lies ahead, “I know what the Lord of Darkness is doing. I’ve seen the future, and...No, I shouldn’t tell you, or it won’t happen. I know a lot, but I can’t tell you everything.”
After expressing to the Forest Witch how much you need her help to find the Shadow Tamer’s final artifact piece, Morisa says, “Of course, where could the last part of the Shadow Tamer be if not the shadow world? I need to see what the cards say and check the position of the stars.” That final piece is the most elusive piece and Morisa will help you find what you need...for a couple of favors.
As luck would have it, you can always count on family and Morisa knows just the right person. “My cousin, Baba Yaga, can help get the part, but she won’t do it for free.” The Forest Witch asks, “Could you do me a couple of favors while my cousin is busy with ours?” Once the tasks are done, Morisa comments “I haven’t heard that much complaining in a while, but it will be worth the effort.” But she is also quick to compliment, “You’re as fast as a magic broom, your abilities are amazing” and “you’d make an excellent apprentice.”
Morisa the Forest Witch doesn’t consider the Lord of Darkness either friend or foe. “I’m not worried about the Lord of Darkness. He has no use for me. I wouldn’t help him anyway.”
While the Forest Witch looks forward to sharing some good news, there’s nothing for now. But she’s positive her cousin will find what you’re looking for. Word finally comes of a fortunate find, “Wonderful news! My cousin found the missing piece! She’ll visit soon.”
While you were away, it seems Morisa the Forest Witch and her cousin had a pleasant visit. “You missed the fun! My cousin brought raspberry tea, and we had a hearty conversation. We’ve been telling stories and laughing all night! It was so much fun, I’m not sure I’m ready to get back to work just yet.”
*****I’m busy practicing magic and preparing herbs right now. Come back in another Moon phase. (End of Update)
LEVEL 100 cont. (Update September 17, 2020)
Morisa teases about completing trials like in the fairy tales before she’ll surrender the final part of the Shadow Tamer. But she claims it was a just a joke to cheer you up and hands over the Scroll of the Secret Song. The Shadow Tamer is now complete and the power of the artifact helped everyone regain their physical forms (Valkyrie, Fire Conjurer, Genie and High Mage of Frost).
“It’s time we dealt with the Lord of Darkness. He’s caused constant distress since his arrival.” The Northern Breath is a powerful artifact capable of destroying the darkest intentions of the evilest beings.
The Genie searches through the entire Elder’s knowledge for information about the Northern Breath. “My mind has found a legend, but we’ll have to verify its authenticity.” While the Northern Breath is a legendary artifact, “we can’t even confirm that it truly existed.” It’s been a long time since anything piqued the Genie’s curiosity like this. “Several parts make up the Northern Breath. The first is called the Firestorm Eye. It’s said to be protected by a powerful Pearl Dragon.”
Unfortunately, the Pearl Dragon is less than cooperative and demands gifts in exchange for the Firestorm Eye. The Genie suggests, “Let’s send the first gifts to the dragon to at least confirm that he really has the Firestorm Eye in his treasury.” The wait seems interminable, but finally the Genie has the answer, “The Pearl Dragon said “yes!” Do you know what this means, mortal? The Northern Breath is real!”
Whatever the Pearl Dragon asks for, always remember the goal. The Genie wonders if you’ve ever heard the legends of dragon treasuries. “They aren’t true – their treasuries are even bigger than they say.” Finally, the Pearl Dragon has been entertained sufficiently, the gifts garnered his favor and he’s ready to hand over the well-earned reward. But your continued grit and patience, allows the Genie to sneak in a few tasks of his own, “Your reward is on its way, but I have three requests for you in the meantime. Why can’t a mortal fulfill a genie’s wishes from time to time?” After his third wish is fulfilled, the Genie wonders “How did it feel, walking in a genie’s shoes?”
Even as an immortal being, the Genie is eager to see the artifact. “The Firestorm Eye is in my hands. I’m sorry, but I’d like to hold it for a bit. You don’t get to touch a legend every day.”
Even the Guardian Titan, with centuries of wisdom, is surprised by the existence of the Northern Breath. “The winds bring worrying news. We must deal with the Lord of Darkness before it’s too late.” After doing some fact-checking, the Guardian Titan shares what he found, “The Northern Breath is no harmless trinket. There’s a reason its parts were separated and hidden. The parts were so well-hidden that their existence was even erased from the memories of the Elders.”
If you are ready for whatever fate has in store for you, the Guardian Titan will continue with his search. “One legend mentions a possible location of the Dragon Fire Orb. According to the legend, the Dragon Fire Orb is right under our nose in the old arsenal, but an ancient Golem guards the way. Tricking the Golem is impossible. Defeating him...Hm..I’ll have to think about this.” The mages determined the only way to fight the Golem is by creating a special weapon. The Guardian Titan finds the plans to make the weapon, but “I won’t need fire, steel, or even tools – just magic, and knowledge.”
The weapon is almost ready; its silhouette is already visible through the magical mist. Just then, on snowy wings, a messenger owl arrives with an urgent request from the Ruler of the Islands.
Ruler of the Islands is grateful for your haste. “I know that you’re assembling an artifact that can help us, but I want my people to be ready if anything...unpredictable happens.” The horrible calm is maddening, “It feels like the threat of another storm!” She found a special spell in the ancient royal scrolls. “It’s not exactly a spell, but an appeal to the high Northern gods. The Northern gods are stark and silent. We need to clean up to show that we treat our islands with love.”
To appease the gods, the ability to uncover secrets and solve mysteries must be proven. “Birds are singing happily in the forests, and the breeze is blowing gently. The gods need to see our crafting skills. We should show the finest works of our blacksmiths, leatherworkers, and jewelers.” Preparations are in full swing when “the clouds broke, and the sun spread its rays over the snows of the North. This is a promising sign.”
“Our best cooks are making our finest and most famous dishes. We’ll place the tables in the main square and feast to show our love for this land.” All this preparation is actually an appeal to the gods, so it’s important to be heard. “Can you feel it? The gods are satisfied. The sun will protect us during the day, and the moon will at night. The Lord of Darkness has no power here.”
The Ruler of the Islands considers you a true friend, “Win or lose, the Lord of Darkness will change our world forever. I hope it’s for the better. I’m ready to sacrifice everything to keep my people safe. I hope to see you again someday.”
The Guardian Titan readies his special weapon, “There’s nothing like a solid crossbow that’s powerful enough to pierce stone! I tested the magical crossbow. It’s sure to deal with the Golem.” The Guardian Titan believes in your success and hands over the Dragon Fire Orb.
Nala, former apprentice to the High Mage of Frost, stands in the Old Tavern with her cat named Cauldron. “I’ll admit it’s a strange name. I named him when I was little, and we’ve been together ever since.” Nala enjoys your company and thinks you seem trustworthy, so she decides to share her story. “I became a mage’s apprentice to be strong and independent. See, I’ve always been a little clumsy, and I thought an apprenticeship would help me. While the other apprentices succeeded, I struggled to keep up until I started to feel out of place. That’s when I really messed up.”
Poor Nala made a huge miscalculation, “I wanted to prove to myself, my teacher, and the other apprentices that I was worth something, so I stole my teacher’s book for a certain spell. The spell was powerful – too powerful for someone at my level. I was overconfident. The spell was supposed to summon a monster from the Dark Side, but I messed up and got teleported here instead. The worst part is that my body and spirit are bound to this place. I can’t leave, no matter what I do.”