"The Alu'norsa know not of the Key, young Garidan." Turing to Niyut, he continues, " They come from the realm of water and ice. The splintering of the world has allowed the giants to breach my portal and enter the world through the Great River. They know little of your world but seek to dominate it as they have yet to defeat the undine in their realm. The giants come to the shrine now, not to seek the Key, but to gain control of this portal... to open it for all of their kin to come and go as they please."
Leontil bends down and touches the water. His eyes pulse with a deep blue that conjures the image of the oceans depths to you. He nods and his look grows stern. "The Great River flows through the mountain and down a great fall into a cavern in which the giants have made their encampment. They build a citadel now from the ice and snow to guard these head waters of the river." As the godling describes the waterfall and encampment of the giants, Niyut recalls the large cavern she entered while exploring alone. "They do not guard the river for now, and I can assist you with survival while in the water's grasp, but stealth would be required. They would not take kindly to finding you floating past," Leontil says as he releases his sight of the river and stands back up.
Once again a serene look crosses his face as he looks to the oracle, "All the Magi have divination at their core for that was the essence of the ether first felt by the Ealintaine. Knowledge of what was, of what is and of what will come to be. We differ in our mastery of the source of our knowledge. My knowledge comes from the sight through water. Templa'lu as the first elves once called it. Your man-fathers referred to it as Hydromancy. Until the Godling Wars, my brothers and sisters did not know the true power of the ether... to create and destroy... to summon and to protect. Only afterwards, when Thaedymar revealed the full power of the ether to us did we regale ourselves in the harmonic wave of the ether and become the Magi. When the Magi of Air realized that Thaedymar's gift to us unlocked the ether to the other races, he took it upon himself to teach and organize the wizards. We did not concern ourselves with his schools of magic... and the title of Hazard."
It is a swift action to activate the elemental mode.
Leontil smiles at Truk'tosh and nods approvingly. Turning back to the rest of the group. "You have the Key to the Circle of the Whispering Wind. There is nothing further I can do to help you. Return to Earthenwork and open the gate so that the King may yet save his people. We shall protect the portals at all costs." Leontil, motions to the raging river. "Although the ice giants flow from this portal, they may not return," the godling continues. As you look into the churning, frigid waters, you can now see forms taking shape. Cold, blue eyes stare out from the water, but are swept away through the tunnel to the north.
Leontil mutters something under his breath, and a riches into the waters. From its icy depths he pulls a rather large water elemental out by the hand. The elemental bows to him and turns and heads out the passage, leading back to the shrine. "My support continues to arrive. We will not likely defeat the giants... they are too powerful. But, we can keep them at bay for now."
Again pointing to the waters, he offers some advice. "The waters of the Great River could quickly take you back to Earthenwork, but you risk passing through the giant's encampment. Alternatively, you could navigate the collapsed tunnel on foot. To the north, perhaps less that two hundred feet, you will find a passage that leads to a high mountain pass in the Iron Mountains. At one time, it led to the the ancient lands of the first children of the gods to the east or back to Earthenwork and the people of Haemil to the west.. How the Shaping has affected this pass, I do not know. Either way is perilous and I can not foretell which path best leads you to your quest."
"Mortality is nothing more than a state of being, conceived by those born of this world to describe themselves. You are born; you grow; you die... so, you believe yourself to be mortal and bound to this world. You feel constrained to this physical form.." Leontil says as he places a gentle hand upon Niyut's shoulder. "Yet, your grandmother still exists... and she still speaks to you despite the fact that her physical form is no more. Is she mortal?"
He walks back closer to the river. "I was conceived of thought by Celestri and was born. I have lived here upon the world and in the ether... and one day, my physical form here may die... does that not make me mortal as I have described you, Niyut?" Leontil smiles and nods again at the oracle. "Our only difference is the conception of our spirits... not the death of our physical selves." A wry grin comes across his face, "Of course, my knowledge of the ether has allowed me to take this form and sustain it for 8,000 years... an should it die, I can remake it with a thought..."
"So, am I mortal? Am I immortal? Are the histories told by man true or are they false? The answer is yes to all of it."
Sorry to get all meta-physical on you. As a matter of course, it is a common misconception among the "mortal" races that the Magi were run-of-the-mill mortals. They are not."
"My apologies, young Garidan. It was not my intent to harm or disturb you... it is just easier for me to communicate that way. It is natural to me," he says with the same serene look upon his face. "And the choice is yours. It has always been yours to give or not."
When the half-orc halts and speaks to him, Leontil nods slowly. "I am Leontil, Godling of the Quiet Rivers. They have called me the Blessed since man first walked upon the world. I am the Magi of Water and the protector of its plane," the man says as he gestures towards the portal to the south. "...and steward to the plane of air," he continues as he gestures to the northwest. "As for my part, that depends entirely upon the quest you choose to take. For now, that has been to find the hazards and by extension to aid the people of Haemil. For that errand, I was the bearer of the key to the Circle, but your friend Malthazir now bears that burden... and I am left here to guard the planes of air and water. But your fate is tied to your twin and that of both of your spirits. The chilling waters of the Great River will allow the ether to flow into your arms." With that, Leontil motions back towards the raging waters that rush through the chamber and out the tunnel to the north.
Stepping forward to the waters edge, he bends down and lays one hand in the water. Immediately, the water directly around his hand calms. The flow of water still rages from the portal and moves to the north, but that small area now becomes a still pool. Leontil smiles and reaches out his other hand to Truk'tosh.
In the recesses of your mind, Ruza's voice echoes. Did you really just berate a godling? She laughs heartily then adds, Dad would have been proud...
Missed a description for the group while Leontil was engaged with Malthazir...
As Leontil gazes into the mind of Malthazir, he reaches into his robes and pulls forth an amber shard the size of a shortsword. One end looks smooth and shaped to fit a hand while the other is sharp and jagged with many points and edges jutting out in all directions. He turns the shard about in his hands and offers the grip to the elf who gently takes it without so much as a smile. You would sense that Malthazir is lost in thought and only vaguely aware of what he now holds in his hand. Leontil then produces the sea shell from which he had drank earlier. With a slight nod of his head he offers this to Malthazir as well.
"It matters to me, Gruskorb. The world was here long before hazards and kings... And it will come to an eventual end. When Amus created the universe, it set time in motion, and each moment is but a tiny grain of sand falling through the eye of the abyss. It will run out. There is nothing we can do to prevent that... but it does not have to be today nor any day soon." Leontil sighs and leads Truk'tosh to the rushing waters. "Come, my brother..."
Leontil takes a knee and dips a hand into the now raging flow of icy water. A flare of energy passes from the azure waves and into his being. He closes his eyes and smiles taking in the energy and feeling its embrace. Rebouding like a ripple against a shore, the energy cascades down his arms and back into the water. "Bath yourself and embrace the ether," he offers to the half-orc.
Turning back to the group, Leontil smiles and a comfort once again sweeps over you. "The Magi are scattered now... and the first dragons slumber in a reverie of days gone by... regardless of their intentions, the hazards must be gathered. My brother has done well to teach them, but now the mortals must wage war against those forces that conspire to end the world that the Mother has wrought."
Niyut's nimble mind looks for hints or clues as to whom this stranger might be, but no thoughts enter her head and her grandmother is silent. She looks again at the man and peers into his deep blue eyes sensing a greater power than she has seen before. A raging torrent lies buried beneath the calm surface of his irises. He is reminiscent of Celestri from what Niyut had read in the book of the greater spirits, but the feeling she experiences in his presence is closer to the warm embrace of Teysura in the crypts of Eastgate.
She comes back to the moment at hand and realizes that she has been gawking at him. He smiles and peace flows from his lips. "Bold... you ask a question when you have not answered mine, young Niyut." He nods as the oracle mentions the hazard. "Powerful and deceptive they have become... the hazards. Do they serve at the behest of the political figures of the world or do they manipulate the strings? It is the latter, I would think."
The man turns and motions with his hands as a font erupts from the flowing stream of water. The water bubbles as the watery fountain stretches outwards and forms a pool of placid, icy blue water at the man's waist level. He gazes deeply into it and remains motionless for a time. At last, he reaches out and ladles out a draught of the liquid in a shell. Raising the shell to his lips he, he takes a long drink and is visibly refreshed. "Ah... a gnome. She is quick and bright and has made Her proud no doubt. But the King still rules and she would willingly follow him. His wisdom is profound and she senses it... as is his love for his people. The Krögen line has not fallen yet." His eyes open wide and he takes a longer stare at Niyut while he approaches the group.
A new voice enters your mind. You recognize it as Leontil's. "Fire is in your future. I have foreseen it. But the blessed wates of the Rynin will not quench it. Only with the mother's true embrace will the flames be subdued."
HIs eyes then turn to Garidan...
A new voice enters your mind. You recognize it as Leontil's. "Fire is coming for your orcish friends. Before the end, they will need much aid. Perhaps the greatest sacrifice from you."
They then shift to Gruskorb...
A new voice enters your mind. You recognize it as Leontil's. "You hold the key to world's new life. Find it and let it take root. My waters will nourish it and then you will be freed."
His eyes then fall upon the elf...
A new voice enters your mind. You recognize it as Leontil. "Many strands of reality converge upon you, and death most often follows. But should you find your way to the end of time, you may pass the test and gaze upon the ether in its entirety." The voice becomes quiet and Leontil stretches out both hands to you. In his right, he holds an amber shard the size of a short sword. "Here is the key to the Circle of the Whispering Winds. Protect the people." In his left hand, he holds out the shell. "It can renew a life or it can renew all life. It is in your hands the fate of the world rests."
He remains gazing at Truk'tosh the longest.
A new voice enters your mind. You recognize it as Leontil's. "Your spirit is fire and your sister's is ice. Before the end, you must defeat one and then the other. Bath in the cold power of the headwaters of the Great River of Haemil and make them your weapon."
Lenotil breaks from the intense gaze of Truk'tosh and motions towards the waters that rage north through the room.
As the man turns, his azure robes ripple like a subtle disturbance on the surface of a serene lake. His eyes survey the group looking deep within their souls, asking questions of each as to their origin. One by one, the five outsiders open their mouth as if to answer an unspoken question but reflexively shy away from the man before them. His demeanor is calm and his face is youthful. Yet, his eyes show sorrow and pain that only a lifetime of toil would reveal. Finally he speaks in common with a smooth, silky voice that refreshes all who hear.
"You are not who I expected..." he utters with the slightest disappointment. "What brings you here to the Shrine of the Summoner? Salaphise says you come looking for amber? Did the King at Earthenwork send you?"